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Publisher's Summary

National Book Awards 2014: Crime/Thriller Book of the Year

Can you commit the perfect crime?

Pilgrim is the code name for a man who doesn't exist. The adopted son of a wealthy American family, he once headed up a secret espionage unit for US intelligence. Before he disappeared into anonymous retirement, he wrote the definitive book on forensic criminal investigation. But that book will come back to haunt him. It will help NYPD detective Ben Bradley track him down. And it will take him to a run-down New York hotel room where the body of a woman is found facedown in a bath of acid, her features erased, her teeth missing, her fingerprints gone. It is a textbook murder - and Pilgrim wrote the book.

What begins as an unusual and challenging investigation will become a terrifying race against time to save America from oblivion. Pilgrim will have to make a journey from a public beheading in Mecca to a deserted ruin on the Turkish coast via a Nazi death camp in Alsace and the barren wilderness of the Hindu Kush in search of the faceless man who would commit an appalling act of mass murder in the name of his god.

This is now the entire audiobook, not in two parts.

©2012 Terry Hayes (P)2013 Random House Audiobooks

What listeners say about I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1

Average Customer Ratings
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Steam Train

Would you listen to I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1 again? Why?

Starts off with a bang and you’re captured straight away. The mystery of the two stories and how they will combine kept me intrigued the whole time. Then towards the end of the book it comes home like a 'steam train'. I went straight to my laptop to get the second volume as soon as I finished.

7 people found this helpful

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Thanks For Reminding Me to Stick to Female Authors

I had to give up on this one. From the opening scene, it's chock-a-block with sexist and racist stereo types. Every woman has her body and boobs evaluated. The narrators accents were terrible. His "Asian-American" accent (when portraying the poor bloke that they all call 'Bruce' for apparently obvious reasons)... it was so Mickey Rooney in Breakfast at Tiffany's. Yuck.

3 people found this helpful

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the 1980s style sexism made me give up

it was icky and every woman had tobahve her boobs analysed. gave up very early on as couldnt stand it. do not recommend

3 people found this helpful

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Simply, bloody brilliant.

Bloody brilliant. Without doubt one of the most complex and contradictory simple stories ever written. I cannot recommend it more.

3 people found this helpful

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heavy on stereotypes

An insight into how America sees the world. ignoring the racial stereotypes and dodgy accents this is a reasonably compelling thriller

6 people found this helpful

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Great book, awful accents

The story is great, no complaints there and when the narrator is speaking his native accent it’s fine, but all the accents are...cringe! I think the northern English is the worst! It’s bearable.....Just 🤣🤣🤣 but great story, really grabs you, excellently written and threads weave through effortlessly!

2 people found this helpful

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Sexist/stereotypical portrayals of women

Offensive and boring in how it reduces women to bodies repetitively. Also stereotypes men as in a boring unoriginal way.

2 people found this helpful

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0/5 for depiction of women

0/5 for uneven depiction of women and cliched writing. 4/5 for plot.

Why? ... for at least the first half the women are all described as very attractive and their looks are generally the first thing we know of them. Men are much more rounded out.

Then we have the first woman not immediately described as attractive and all we know is she is “the obese female nanny”. No other description given other than she is obese. Nada. Later we have partygoers described as “chicks” and no panties. No comparative description of the men. Nada. Once “chicks” is out of the bottle it makes a regular appearance.

Such a shame. Would love to support an Australian author and the character of Pilgrim has such potential if he wasn’t such a dinosaur.

It didn’t help that the narrator on audiobook made everyone sound like some variant of a Muppet. Truly the worst speech narration I’ve heard.

2 people found this helpful

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riveting

great reading, do not miss it. well read and keep s you listening in the driveway

2 people found this helpful

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Where is this leading?

From known to unknown and back again, enough facts to make it real and a story that weaves in and out, Terry Hayes has taken the geo-political reality with which we are familiar and entwined within it a minefield of a murder mystery, a terrorist plot and meticulous, intelligent and intuitive investigators to deliver a non-stop ride. A thriller to lose yourself in. Read it - you won't be disappointed.

4 people found this helpful

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  • felicity
  • 09-01-2014

Why is it not the whole book?

What disappointed you about I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1?

Why I was not told it was just half the book, where is the volume 2?

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

The plot was fantastic, but very sad it stopped when it did. I would like to know when volume 2 is available so I can write the review it deserves.

Have you listened to any of Christopher Ragland’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I don't tend to remember the narrators names, but will keep an ear out for Christopher

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1?

None, I would just like to listen to volume 2.

Any additional comments?

I would like to know when volume 2 is available and why it has been chopped in half? without revealing this to very loyal customers. I feel a little pissed off as I am very keen to know what happens. He is an Australian author so not quite understanding why it is not all available.

6 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Amanda
  • 03-01-2014

WHERE IS VOLUME 2?

Audible should make the buyer aware that only half the book is available to download before they download the first half. Who reads half a book? Its available on the uk site. What, are we expected to sign up there and pay them too? Shoddy service audible!

5 people found this helpful

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  • Tony
  • 12-01-2014

Where is the rest of the story

What disappointed you about I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1?

I feel defrauded. Half a story, and I can't even buy the second half.
I have to go and buy the paperback version now.

How could the performance have been better?

Give us the WHOLE book. I'm happy to pay for it, but it's not even available.
Hoe can you release half a book?

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Loving the story, Disappointed in Audible

Any additional comments?

Warn purchasers that it is only half of the story, and the other half isn't available

7 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Vikon
  • 27-05-2014

Highly Entertaining

If you could sum up I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1 in three words, what would they be?

Expansive mystery with lots of background.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

The plot was filled with background stories about all the characters. It was clear the author hoped to have all these various incidents somehow come together in the end, which they do. Unfortunately, this abundance of character information does not make the central plot about a threat to America any more original or interesting than many other books in the genre. The book is very well written and entertaining throughout, but one always has the feeling that one's heard it all before. The author is Australian and it shows, with more than the usual number of passing references to Australia, which is fine. However, the main character is American and little things in the book are obvious Australianisms, like "ring off" instead of "hang up" or "call around" instead of "stop by." It's a little bit annoying and the American editor should be taken to task for not picking up on it. In the end, this book reads like a movie with all the parts left in that won't be there when they do make a film of it.

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

Unfortunately for an audio book the narrator was the worst thing about this selection. His reading is fine, and he's very listenable. However, he is way too youthful to sound like the main character, which rendered the first person narrative wholly unbelievable. It's not the narrator's fault he was totally mis-cast. Also, his Australian accent was laughably bad. His foreign accents were no more authentic. If the producers of this audio book wanted to turn the book into a cartoon, they succeeded by using this narrator.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No. I did, however, listen to it with interest and I did not listen to anything else at the same time. It kept me entertained for about 5 days.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Coenraad van Tonder
  • 28-07-2021

Exceptional!

Truly a ‘Best in Genre’ book. I was listening with attention every step of the way!

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Ryan Fernandez
  • 24-10-2020

very enjoyable - gonna make a great movie

Gripping thriller, a little over the top in terms of realism. but thoroughly enjoyed it and the narration was 100% on point

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  • Rowan Elsey
  • 21-05-2019

very well written, exciting all the way

Could hardly put this book down. Interesting plot from start to finish with many twists and turns along the way and some very creative ways out of the problems our protagonist face.
My only complaint, though very small, was some of the long winded side stories. Their length sometimes had me thinking "get on with it!".
Still five stars for the quality and detail this story went to.

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  • Mike
  • 22-03-2019

Stopped listening a few hours in

After all Barry Eisler's books, this was terrible. Corny writing IMHO. Narrator pretty good if not a bitess tough sounding as the main character is supposed to be.

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  • Eli
  • 07-02-2019

Good story...but wrong title.

If only the author decided to leave the 'Volume 1' out of books title, we would be much more content. The book stands as a complete story, and thus people wanting a followup would less disappointed. Bravo Mr Hayes.

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  • Hardus
  • 01-02-2019

Great entertainment

I didn't want it to end. From beginning to end I was hooked. What a great story.

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  • Anna
  • 19-12-2016

Exciting but a bit too full of cliches

Firstly I want to highlight that the only version available on Audible in November 2016 is the full complete book. It is not in two parts like other reviewers have apparently experienced.

It was an entertaining book, good pace and fairly well written. The story was a bit far fetched, and a lot of the science was made up or exaggerated, but I didn't mind that so much. - it's fiction and you just have to go with it and enjoy it.

But I agree with other reviewers that it is rather black and white: The Americans are the heroes against a mostly all, either evil or dumb/corrupt etc world of muslims and Russians.

The narrator was mostly very good, in all the non-accent parts - his voice is clear, easy and pleasant to listen to. But his range of accents is quite limited. He has no idea what a Turkish accent sounds like, which was a bit annoying since the book has quite a lot of Turkish characters. His British accent was terrible as was his Italian.

All in all I would probably still recommend this book as an entertaining listen.

15 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • T
  • 01-12-2016

Jack Reacher with less muscles

Easy to follow a combination of the strong characters and nuration. Would def recommend for anyone who likes a a reluctant hero and self sacrifice .

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Daisy
  • 08-12-2016

Captivating

Excellent book - intelligent and exciting. English accents are laughably bad, but barely feature. I'd recommend to everyone

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • chris rayner
  • 05-09-2016

Superb

Quite possibly the best book I have ever read/listened to. Once started I couldn't stop !

5 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Timedout
  • 24-07-2016

Frustratingly long winded

Started well but the excessive detail became boring and it felt like the author was showboating.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 11-11-2016

The story keeps you on tender hooks

Because this type of story (action with graphic violent bits) & style of writing (paucity of in depth psych portrayal) isn't my favourite type for me personally, I could have given this book a 4. However I didn't think that would be at all fair. It really is more than worthy of a 5. The author was very knowledgeable about his various subjects, from cultures, to geography, to medicine & numerous other stand points. He was able to take me, the reader into the story. The many near misses were numerous ( a bit too many by the end) & left me quickly turning the page to see what happened next. A good read.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Phillip
  • 28-10-2016

Amazing Story from start to finish :)

I loved every moment of this book, what a performance by Christopher Ragland two thumbs up. Terry Hayes totally amazing, I never wanted the book to end, please tell me you are working on another one ?

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Vivienne L. Ashley
  • 02-09-2016

Brilliant - and I'm difficult to please!

Best thriller this year. So well written and well narrated. Highly recommended. Couldn't stop listening.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Stephen
  • 01-09-2016

Gripping book that takes you on a journey

From the initial chapters you would never imagine where this book will take you. Utterly gripping. Highly recommend

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Sage-Lady
  • 29-08-2016

Brilliant

I loved this book. Characters were well written. Plot wove around wonderfully. Enjoyed every minute of the 22 plus hours.

3 people found this helpful

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