FOUND IN ACCRA by Paulo Coelho, narrated
with sensitivity and equanimity by actor Jeremy
Irons, is a novel set in Jerusalem in 1099, in
which a wise man known as the Copt (or Egyptian) addresses
the townspeople to answer their questions about life, beauty,
love, and loyalty. In ways it is similar to Kahlil Gibran's
"The Prophet" (in both structure, length, and
content), and also seems to be influenced by the Sermon
on the Mount. Coelho's most popular work is The Alchemist.
Irons is a patient and listenable narrator with both stage,
screen and voiceover experience. At around two hours, the
story is sure to be a hit across South America, where Coelho,
a Brazilian, is a folk hero. Interestingly, he's also a
musician interested in self-improvement and economics, and
once tried to remove a vampire book (to which he contributed)
from bookstore shelves. He is a Catholic.
Daniel H. Pink has a new business book
TO SELL IS HUMAN. Like many recent titles,
it offers counterintuitive insights into motivations and
influences. The author also reads the audiobook
version, and says that most everyone is into sales
in one form or another, and that extroverts do not usually
make the best salesmen (or women.) Why? There is an innate
tendency for people to resist strong sales pitches. Tests
have shown that, even in real bargain situations, customers
perceive aggressive promotions as misleading. They do not
want to be "sold" prior to their own discovery
and romance with the object being sold. I once learned this
on the day I was to give a talk on audiobooks at a major
bookstore, and went outside an hour prior to give away free
audiobooks to people in the mall (along with a printed invitation
to stop by.) "Would you like a free audiobook?"
was followed by "Have you ever tried an audiobook?"
and then "I'm giving away free audiobooks…would
you like one?" Few of the dozens of people passing
by took me up on the offer. Some acted as though I was distributing
explosives. Many people simply cannot make a decision when
pressed, and need to circle an idea first, suspiciously.
These are motor responses. Knee jerk reactions. We are motivated
subconsciously more than we are consciously.
The character of Doc Ford takes his 20th outing in NIGHT
MOVES by Randy Wayne White. The setting is
Sanibel Island, Florida, (where, incidentally, White hangs
out at the Doc Ford Rum Bar & Grille.) The plot involves
a murder attempt on Doc or his buddy, both of whom have
secrets that prevent them from going to the police. The
intrigue is that it relates to the disappearance of five
Navy planes in the Bermuda Triangle in 1945. What's an accident
here, and who is targeting who? White is skilled writer
focused more on character and motivation than on chase scenes
and knife jabs in the dark (like, say, James Patterson.)
For this reason, his style may not appeal to those who bore
easily, or consume a lot of TV pablum. For those who prefer
the thoughtful, inquisitive unfolding of a storyline, his
writing is ideal. Veteran narrator George Guidall
reads the novel, and is again ideal for this approach.
(Has anyone in the industry recorded more books? I don't
think so. Guidall has surpassed 800 unabridged books in
his career. When and if he reaches 1000, you're going to
see him on the Evening news!)
Jenny Milchman picks up Cassandra
Campbell as interpreting narrator for her thriller
and first novel COVER
OF SNOW, about a policeman's wife whose husband
has committed suicide in upstate New York, without discernible
reason, having made love to her the previous night. When
she tries to find out why, she gets only resistance from
his friends, his colleagues, his mother. What are they hiding?
Reader Campbell has the ability to find that perfect balance
between living in the character's shoes and engagingly guiding
the listener on their path to the chilling truth.
Eric Vincent reads THE
SHADOWS, KITH AND KIN by Joe R. Lansdale, another
talented writer with a collection of cross-genre stories that
includes western, science fiction, fantasy, and mystery. Vincent
reading the always intriguing Lansdale sounded perfectly matched
to the text, and complex enough in undertones to engage the
listener with rapt curiosity.
travel back in time to the 1950s, when comic books came under
the target of censors, forcing publishers to censor themselves.
Inspired by real events, SEDUCTION
OF THE INNOCENT by Max Allan Collins spotlights
the McCarthy era with an entertaining whodunit ably brought
to life by performer Dan John Miller, whose
accented interpretations of characters is always "spot-on."
Join Jack Starr as he tries to solve the mystery as Dr. Werner
Frederick aids hearings against comic book violence. It's
also an insider's view of comic book history, when EC Comics
publisher was the subject of a witch hunt that amazingly banned
words like "terror" in comics in some States! Collins
is the author of "Road to Perdition" and
completed a Mickey Spillane script to pick up an Audie award
for "The Little Death" that was produced
on audio by a full cast headed by Stacy Keach.
reviewer's new book, out this month under an assumed name,
is the sports satire "The
Umpire Has No Clothes," an ebook from Crossroad
Press for Kindle, Nook, and iPad.