Friday, September 21, 2012

Pines by Blake Crouch

If you enjoy visiting quaint, peaceful towns, author Blake Crouch’sPines Cover latest release PINES may have you rethinking that.

As I listened to this spine-tingling thriller, I had verses from the old Eagles’ song HOTEL CALIFORNIA running through my head. You’ll understand when you listen to or read PINES.

Secret Service Agent Ethan Burke is not a perfect man. He’s cheated on his wife and doesn’t spend enough time with his young son, but he’s a dedicated agent and a good man at heart. Crouch has created a strong protagonist in Burke making him realistic with flaws and a vulnerable side.

Narrator Paul Michael Garcia does a wonderful job bringing this story to life. His vocalization of Ethan’s range of emotions is gripping. His cadence draws the listener in and holds them spellbound as the suspense and terror explodes. Garcia gives distinct vocals to the supporting characters as well.

Burke is sent to Wayward Pines, Idaho, to search for two missing federal agents. When he and his partner are involved in a violent hit-and-run upon arriving in town, Burke’s world is turned upside down. He wakes with no ID or other possessions, a hazy memory and a dead partner.

Recovering from the wreck, Burke is faced with more questions than answers. He stumbles upon the mutilated body of one of the missing agents only to become the prime suspect in the killing. With no one to turn to, Burke soon realizes there is something terrible wrong in Wayward Pines. He can’t seem to make contact with the outside world and he can’t seem to find the road leading out of town.

Crouch takes the story on a roller coaster ride of emotions as Burke tries to find his way home and come to terms with his surroundings. There are twists, turns, highs and lows that keep the listener/reader wondering what is real and what isn’t. The action is adrenaline-driven with mystery and suspense around every corner leading to a surprise ending.

PINES is one of those stories that may cause you to re-evaluate a few things as the plot stays with you long after the last sentence.
Author Blake Crouch’s website is
Pines by Blake Crouch, Performed by Paul Michael Garcia, Brilliance Audio, @2012, ISBN: 978-1469215952, Unabridged, 7 Discs, Listening Time: 8 Hours 38 Minutes

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.
Do you enjoy stories that have you second-guessing what is suppose to be real to the protagonist? What about stories that lead to you wondering, ‘what if’ as you place yourself in the protagonist’s shoes? Thanks so much for stopping by.


  1. Mason - Oh this does sound like an absorbing thriller. And I've always thought small towns can be excellent contexts for that kind of "what's real and what isn't" sort of mystery. Glad you enjoyed this one.

  2. This sounds like a book to be read in the daylight hours. I like stories that keep me guessing. One story/movie that was particularly a surprise was The Village by M. Night Shyamalan.

  3. I definitely like the sound of this one. Jotting one more author and book title on my extremely long TBR list.


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