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The Mystery of Nevermore

Snow & Winter
By: C. S. Poe
Narrated by: Derrick McClain
Series: Snow & Winter, Book 1
Length: 7 hrs and 58 mins
3.9 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

It’s Christmas in New York City, and all antique shop owner Sebastian Snow wants is for his business to make money and to save his floundering relationship with closeted CSU detective, Neil Millett. But when Snow’s Antique Emporium is broken into and a heart is found under the floorboards, Sebastian can’t let the mystery rest. 

He soon finds himself caught up in murder investigations that echo the macabre writings of Edgar Allan Poe. To make matters worse, Sebastian’s sleuthing is causing his relationship with Neil to crumble, while at the same time he’s crushing hard on the lead homicide detective of the case, Calvin Winter. Sebastian and Calvin must work together to unravel the mystery behind the killings, despite the mounting danger and sexual tension, before Sebastian becomes the next victim. 

In the end, Sebastian only wants to get out of this mess alive and live happily ever after with Calvin.

©2016 C S Poe (P)2017 DSP Publications

What listeners say about The Mystery of Nevermore

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

A major disappointment

I'm really into murder mystery novels but find them very biased towards hetero characters. So I looked about and thought the premise of this novel was a bit amusing and the lgbt protagonist a welcome change. Within one chapter I was done with this book.

The main character is utterly painful and emotionally vapid. To quote Henry Higgins, Sebastian Snow is an "exasperating, irritating,
vacillating, calculating, agitating, 
maddening and infuriating". By chapter three I wanted him dead on the floor with a raven croaking "never more" over him. His interactions with the two love interests are totally underdeveloped and purely there to provide smut material; which is fine if this book was advertised as such. The manner at which Snow and Winter hookup is clumsy and poorly written. It's as though the author took a beat-sex experience amd then twisted it into some kind of perverse courtship, completely ignoring several stepping stones in character development to reach an outcome.

What frustrated me the most with this story is that the mystery is sacrificed for romance/smut that isn't even good. I will definitely not be looking out for this author again.


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  • Morgan A Skye
  • 20-04-2017

I'm not a mystery fan - but this was very good!

I have to admit that I am not a mystery fan and so my critique of this story is more heavily weighted on the "romance" side of things than the mystery. I think, like Mary, that the mystery was pretty engaging and that fans of Poe will probably love diving into this story for all it's bloody goodness.

The fact that Neil is still part of Sebastian's life at the beginning of the story made me a bit uncomfortable, and that, coupled with how - relatively - quickly he went from Calvin being a new lover to "in love" with Calvin - didn't sit well with my sentimental heart. The initial love scene between them put a bad taste in my mouth for the rest of the story- unfortunately - and I never did warm to these two as a couple. I'm a sap and I just can't help it!

In any case, I really enjoyed Derrick's narration. He is so easy to listen to, the sound quality excellent and he has excellent timing- clearly understanding the importance as it applies to both humor and suspense. He shows a great breadth in characterization, too. He made both a convincing nerd in Sebastian and growly Alpha in Calvin - as well as some very creative secondary characters that included women! Well done!

So for the writing, mystery, romance - I'd give this a 3 of 5 stars and the narration 5 of 5 stars to round up to an overall experience of 4 of 5 stars

5 people found this helpful

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  • ilene
  • 01-05-2017

Had potential

Unfortunately like many misguided authors , this one also couldn't help herself from adding in just enough unnecessary tidbits of animal cruelty to ruin the story and make it impossible for me at least ,to continue. I was enjoying the story and the narration very much so it was all the more disappointing that I had to stop.

4 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Belen
  • 07-01-2018

2.5 Stars

"I was about to do something stupid…"

The narration was fine overall, and Derrick McClain does a good job with easily discernible character voices and infusing a nice amount of emotion where needed. However, unfortunately for me, the plot itself was annoying to the extreme and while sometimes great narration can save a story that has moments that annoy me, if anything, Derrick does such a great job bringing the characters to life that it tipped me even more over the edge.

Told entirely from the first person POV of antique dealer Sebastian Snow, he consistently makes the worst decision possible, even after thinking it through. Literally…Every. Single. Time. I honestly don't think he even once made a safe, sane, or rational decision. Not once. It's an almost 8 hour audio – and I spent nearly all of it exclaiming, "Seriously? Seriously!?! That's what you're going to do?!"

I'm not going to lie…I was really hoping for some redemption for Sebastian, but no. In the end, all this was for me was exhausting. (Note: On-page cheating, poor impulse control and damaged decision making skills.)

Really the only things I liked about this story was Sebastian's relationship with his father and Derrick McClain's narration. I'm sorry, but this was a miss for me, maybe YMMV.

Recommended for those that like a mystery and don't have a problem with a particularly TSTL character, cheating, or requiring a little more suspension of disbelief than usual.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Dennis
  • 13-07-2017

Literary Laziness

Antique store owner and amateur sleuth Seb Shaw makes so many stupid choices to put himself in danger instead of calling the police or 9-1-1 that this is an extraordinarily frustrating read. Writing the sleuth to make foolish decisions to generate drama and unrealistic reveal clues is literary laziness and a failure of creativity. It is possible to have an intelligent amateur sleuth that calls the police and solve the mystery. C.S. Poe is not a bad writer, just a lazy one.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Miareadsbooks
  • 11-04-2017

Brilliant narration!

I already loved this story and Derrick McClain's narration is brilliantly spot on. His Sebastian IS Sebastian. He captures the nuances of this character and brings him to life in a wonderful way. As for his Calvin? Who knew Derrick could do sexy so well! That deeper, huskier voice was an unexpected delight. Cannot wait for the next audiobook in this series.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Texan2
  • 04-04-2017

Fantastic!

A brilliantly funny, marvelous mystery. Derrick McClain gives a masterful performance. A magical listening experience.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Dee Slate
  • 25-09-2017

Loved the story, especially the narration

I enjoyed listening to Derrick McClain bring Sebastian Snow and Calvin Winter to life. The murder mystery with references to Poe was very interesting, together with great narration. This will be an audiobook that I'll listen to again.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • barbaramartin
  • 27-05-2017

Did not live up to my expectations

Neither the story nor the narration really kept me interested in this book. I finished it, because it wasn't awful, but it wasn't that good. The story could have been much creepier, but was rushed. Sebastian was a whiny baby sometimes, and his feelings about Neil seemed shallow. I'm not sure Calvin was aware of how immature Seb would turn out to be. The narration was somewhat annoying to me. Mr. McClain had an odd gasping way of speaking that detracted from the story. It seemed to work for Seb, because it made him sound as immature as I thought he was, but it was somewhat annoying the rest of the time.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Andrea Goodell
  • 13-04-2017

One of the best audio's hands down

Any additional comments?

I read this book when it first came out and simple loved it. Love the narrator's voice so when I saw it became an audio, it was a perfect choice.

Ms. Poe, does a wonderful job bringing everyone to life for us, not just the events of the story, but the sub story, to feeling each person has, why the are having them, even if they aren't the main focus.
From the parrot that has something to share to Maggie that just loves. To Neil and Cal and the rest of the crew.
And Derrick, the narrator does such an amazing job with all the different voices, from the whiny, to the women and everyone in between.
Now I've read book two, so can't wait to hear it!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Zell Oakley
  • 17-06-2020

Not bad, but inauthentic characters

I did enjoy listening to The Mystery of Nevermore, in general--largely due to the excellent narration by Derrick McClain--but I had a lot of issues, mostly with the way the characters behaved. Nobody acted the way a human being would be expected to act in the situations they were in. First of all, let's get this out of the way: this is a carbon copy of Josh Lanyon's "Adrien English" series. Bookish, physically disabled shop owner (antiques in this case but if he ever mentioned any antiques that weren't books, I don't remember it) falls in love with closeted, older, brawny cop. Even the solution to the mystery is similar. I'm not really complaining about the similarity; I loved the Adrien English series and I was looking forward to another series in that ilk. It's not a bad premise, and to be honest if you're gonna copy, you should copy from the best. And Adrien English is the best, far superior to this. One of the reasons is that Josh Lanyon has a much better grasp on human nature. The characters exist solely to say and do inscrutable things. The worst offender is the love interest, Calvin. A cop who is, as he puts it, "deeply closeted," simply would not behave the way Calvin does. First of all, they go from meeting a few times in a professional setting to Calvin calling him pet names and falling into bed with him, with whiplash-inducing suddenness. Later, Cal actually advises Sebastian to tell a specific person THAT CAL WORKS WITH that they have been hooking up. But then the next time they meet, Calvin is cold and angry because he doesn't want people to know that they're in a relationship. Well then why would you advise him to tell your own coworker about it? It makes no sense. Jake, the closeted cop in Adrien English, acts much more in line with how an actual closeted person what act--he's TERRIFIED of discovery, to the point of being cruel to Adrien. Calvin's behavior isn't even recognizably human. Another character who makes inscrutable choices is Sebastian. I saw a few reviews that mentioned the fact that everything he does puts himself in danger, but I was ready to chalk it up to the perils of being an amateur sleuth. But no, it's not just that he makes bad decisions, he's just really, really dumb. He gets a threatening note that obviously has something to do with the case and doesn't tell Calvin about it until two or three meetings later. His apartment is broken into--after people have been getting murdered--and he doesn't tell Calvin. I'm not even sure he remembers, to be honest. The sex scenes were pretty awkward to listen to, as well, and that's not McClain's fault. No offense, but gay sex scenes are difficult for women to write non-awkwardly; even Lanyon's are sometimes a bit cringe. But these are much worse, and there are too many of them. Here's what I did like: the writing is good, I thought Sebastian's disability was interesting, I liked Sebastian's relationship with his father (I liked his father in general). I mostly liked the mystery, even though the solution couldn't have been more obvious if the killer had been wearing a sweater saying "I'M THE KILLER" when they're first introduced. But my advice is to read Adrien English, if you haven't. And if you have: read it again.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kindle Fairy
  • 28-07-2017

Good story

I was listening to this when I had a bad migraine and it was good enough to keep me distracted from the pain. With other similar books, this is not the only murder mystery romance with a cop and an antique book seller I have read🙊, the romance was lacking but this one was better, more believable.

My only issue was that I guessed most of the "mystery" before it happened. I wont put spoilers here, but as they uncovered each revelation I had already noticed and was not surprised at all so I feel I spent most of the book waiting for them to see the obvious.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • ReaderLoves
  • 17-07-2017

Awesome

This story is beautiful and romantic and erotic. Love Calvin and Sebastian together. And the narration is flawless.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mrs. E. J. Curtis
  • 20-07-2020

Great story

The concept is interesting and well written. The characters are likeable and the narration is good.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Meph666
  • 06-07-2020

Loved the mystery and narration

**Possible spoilers re MC's relationship** This is actually my first book by C.S. Poe and overall, I enjoyed the plot and relationship that developed across the story. Sebastian finds himself wrapped up in a mystery when he finds a pig's heart in his own store. When he discovers others in his community have a link, he puts on his thinking cap and digs around to work out what's going on. Alongside that is his attraction to homicide detective Calvin Winter. His current partner, CSU detective Neil Millett, is on the rocks with their relationship still being in the closet after four years and Seb is becoming increasingly frustrated with it all. The mystery starts off quite tame with Seb's discovery in his store but soon evolves into more as he finds out others have been harassed and even murdered, the only thing linking them is messages left quoting Edgar Allen Poe, a subject he knows a lot about. I loved how I was kept guessing throughout, several possibilities arising and how Poe's work was used to tie everything together, For the first time, I found myself more invested in the plot and mystery of the book over the relationship of the MC. It's probably because of Seb still being with Neil when something happens with Calvin for the first time which I'm not a fan of but it helped to keep the tension between the characters as they move through the story and building mystery. I wasn't too sure on how quickly Calvin turned on the personal attention towards Seb and using a pet name considering the little interaction the two men had though you could feel the attraction sparking between them from their first meeting. As we move through the story it becomes clear as to why Calvin is quite reticent and reserved when it comes to relationships but Seb's developing feelings mean he wants to put in the work for them to be together. They are definitely a couple I can see working out and am interested to see how they move forward with the stumbling blocks that they've already faced in this book. There are some great side characters, quite protective of their people, including Seb's father and Calvin's partner at work. They help to give a little insight into the MC's and how they are. I found Seb's disability interesting, something I've never heard of before but clearly has quite an impact on Seb's daily life. A story I would recommend giving a try and I'm interested to see how the couple move forward in their relationship as well as what mystery the author can come up with next. As with the author, this is my first experience with the narrator, Derrick McClain. I enjoyed the voices he provides to the characters and the emotions portrayed, especially in the tense moments between them. I look forward to listening to the next in the series

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 19-11-2017

Managed less than 5 minutes!

I can’t say if this is a good story or not, as I found the narration so irritating I listened to less than 5 minutes of the book.
He is nasal, monotone and emphasises really odd parts of sentences and words. It’s very strange.