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Brent Cummings has an addiction to pain killers…. and he is an emergency room doctor. Right off the bat, you can see how he might have an on going problem. One day on his way home, he stumbles across a woman’s body in the fog. He ends up accused of intent to distribute controlled narcotics by the police when they come to investigate and a coworker (Plucky, a cancer specialist) must come to his aid. However, when he goes to the pharmacy to fill his prescription for methadone, he sees the same woman, living and breathing. Brent spirals in and out of sanity for the rest of the book.
To date, I have enjoyed several Lorn books. So I dove into this book expecting the same twists and surprises. However, I found this book rather predictable. Now, let me be clear. I was entertained through out. Lorn is an excellent story teller even if you’ve guessed where the story is going. Yet I kept waiting for that little bit of something extra that would put this story up there with other Lorn books. I think, in large part, the lack of surprises is due to the very small cast in this story. Essentially, we have drug-addled Brent, his helpful coworker Plucky, and the dead (or not dead?) woman. I guess you can count Brent’s altered awareness as a fourth wheel to the story. So from the beginning, I guessed the story would go one of two ways and at about the half way point, it became clear to me which way it was going to go.
Due to the small cast, there were fewer female characters than we normally see in works by this author. However, he doesn’t skimp in making them whole and interesting characters. There’s several female side characters and even a memory of a lady from Brent’s past.
I enjoyed the details that went into the tale, especially the loose references to other Lorn books that take place in and around Bay’s End. As usual, Lorn put in small touches that made connecting with this story easy and entertaining. For instance, describing the graffiti drawn on the bottom side of top bunk where Brent has to spend down time – amusing and yet I can totally see that being there. While predictable, there was still some suspense in seeing how it all unfolded and who would still be alive at the end. It was an enjoyable tale even if it lacked the polished genius of other Lorn works.
Narration: Kevin R. Tracy did a good job with this narration. He had a certain desperate intensity for Brent that carried throughout the book and even managed to sound somewhat high or strung out at times. Also, once the creepiness factors starting coming out in the dialogue, he did a great job of getting those across to the listener.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
A handsome doctor decides to eff up his life by taking prescriptions drugs. His drug addled state is noticed by co-workers in the ER but no one speaks up and he quickly spirals into full blown addiction. Walking home one night through a thick fog, he finds a woman’s dead body but when the police arrive to investigate there is no body and because he’s acting all suspicious-like he ends up landing himself in a jail cell and things go downhill from there. Did he see a dead body, was it the drug haze or perhaps a ghostie or was she just playing?
This dude is a mess. I’m not going to lie, I find it hard to sympathize with people who screw up their lives so badly and sabotage every effort to fix things. I didn’t sympathize with this guy. I don’t think I was supposed to. His mess was of his own making. I know, I know, I have no heart. There is no need to point it out. With that out of the way, I did find myself engrossed in his mess of a life. The story moved at a good pace, there were some twists, clever dialogue and some nastiness and I couldn’t stop listening even when I should have. If you’ve read a dark book or two you know there are some scenes that one can never scrub clean from the memory, even if your memory is as bad as mine, and this book contains one. Ick.
The narrator is deadly serious and was a very good choice for this story.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful