Saturday, November 29, 2014

Festive in Death … The Marco Effect


Festive in Death audio coverThere’s something oddly comforting in listening to one of author J.D. Robb’s In Death novels read by Susan Ericksen.

It’s a combination of the narrator’s mesmerizing voice and the author’s fascinating characters and riveting storyline. The audio format of the 39th installment in the series, FESTIVE IN DEATH, is a fine example of these two pairings.

Ericksen does an excellent job bringing the characters to life. Her variations in the accents and vocals makes it appear there are more than one narrator. Ericksen’s mannerisms and tones, especially when portraying Roarke, adds depth to the characters and enhances the rich storyline.

FESTIVE IN DEATH finds Eve and her partner, Det. Peabody, investigating the murder of a personal trainer just days before Christmas. They soon discover the list of suspects is quite long as the victim was a jerk. They learn the victim apparently used people, was a blackmailer and had used illegals to drug women into sleeping with him. As they work to narrow down the list of suspects, they also encounter a series of other issues such as spouses cheating and embezzling.

Meanwhile, Eve also has to deal with her own major problems – Christmas shopping and hosting a huge Christmas party with her wealthy husband, Roarke.

The author once again blends homicide, humor, and a touch of steamy romance for a well-balanced story. The characters are likeable and well-developed. The story flows at a good pace with action and suspense.

This latest installment in the Eve Dallas/In Death series can be read/listened to on its own. However, fans of the series will enjoy how the characters continue to evolve with each new adventure.

Robb and Ericksen manage to pull off a Merry Christmas theme as New York’s finest track down a cold blooded killer.

Festive in Death by J.D. Robb, In Death Book #39, Narrated by Susan Ericksen, Brilliance Audio, @2014, ISBN: 978-1480511651, 11 Discs, Run Time: 13 Hours and 17 Minutes 

FTC Full Disclosure – A copy of this book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review. The thoughts are completely my own and given honestly and freely.

THE MARCO EFFECT by Jussi Adler-Olsen

The Marco Effect audio coverI found the latest Department Q installment by author Jussi Adler-Olsen to be a bit different than his previous books. It wasn’t a bad difference, just different.

I think it was different because THE MARCO EFFECT seems to deal more with the actual case (which was both a cold case and current case) than in the way Detective Carl Mørck deals with it.

Narrator Graeme Malcolm brings the characters to life with his distinct vocals for each. His vocals are excellent for the various accents, ages and genders throughout the story.

This story revolves around a young boy, 15-year-old Marco Jameson, who has been taught all his life to be a pick pocket and thief. Rebelling against the cruel treatment of his uncle Zola, the leader of the gypsy clan, Marco flees. Hiding from the other clan members, Marco winds up in a shallow grave with a man’s body and overhears his uncle and father talking about the man’s murder.

Constantly on the run from the clan, Marco tries to better him and wants to help the dead man’s stepdaughter when he discovers a missing person’s flyer. Fearing the law, Marco devises a plan to turn his uncle in and save himself at the same time.

Meanwhile, Mørck and his assistants, Assad and Rose, are looking into the missing person report. As they begin digging, they learn the missing man may have had his own secrets.

While dealing with the case, Mørck is also dealing with his old boss retiring, his feelings for Monda and the changes in his former partner Hardy’s physical condition. While still a hard nose cop with an attitude toward authority, Mørck also shows a softer side and that he too is a bit vulnerable. 

Adler-Olsen creates a character in Marco that readers/listeners will be drawn to. While not innocent, Marco is a victim himself.

THE MARCO EFFECT can be read/listened to on its own. However, a better understanding of the three main characters – Carl, Assad and Rose – will be achieved by following the series in order.

The author places the reader/listener in the middle of the action. The detail descriptions will transport readers/listeners to Denmark as the area comes to life around them. Action packed, this story flows smoothly and quickly keeping you guessing until the very end how it will all play out.

The Marco Effect by Jussi Adler-Olsen, Department Q Book #5, Narrated by Graeme Malcolm, Penguin Audio, @2014, ISBN: 978-1611762648, 12 Discs, Run Time: 15 Hours and 25 Minutes 

FTC Full Disclosure – A copy of this book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review. The thoughts are completely my own and given honestly and freely.

Thanks so much for stopping by today, I do so appreciate it. These are two of my favorite series. They are each fascinating in their own way. I love the idea of visiting New York in the future with Det. Eve Dallas or traveling around Denmark with Detective Carl Mørck. Have you read either of these books? Do you follow either or both series?

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  1. I have read J.D Robb. They are fun, and certainly not a demanding read. I would like to see more development in the main characters though. Which is probably greed.
    I don't know anthing about Jussi Adler-Olsen's work. Thanks for the introduction.

  2. Adler Olsen's series is great, especially for fans of the Nordic Noir genre. I do kind of agree that this Carl Morck book had a different feel to it. I really like this series, it's very well done and generally well translated. I have also liked how his relationships with the secondary characters of Assad and Rose have grown over the books. And how both of them, but particularly Assad's, own stories seem to be coming to light as well.

    I haven't read any JD Robb books, but read Nora from time to time. :)

  3. Mason - I'm an Adler-Olsen fan, so I'm glad to see The Marco Effect spotlighted here. Thanks for sharing!

  4. I love J.D.Robb's series!

    skkorman AT bellsouth DOT net

  5. I haven't read either of these. Thanks for the reviews.

  6. I have read several of JD Robb's Eve Dallas series but have not been acquainted with Adler-Olsen. Do you have to read them in order or are they stand alone?

  7. Cool! There is something about the right author-audiobook narrator combination that just makes the experience SO much better!


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.