Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Chopin Manuscript by Jeffery Deaver et al

The Chopin Manuscript is a weird little book in a couple of ways: 


  1. It is only available as an audiobook as far as I can tell.  That’s how I stumbled across it and Amazon doesn’t list a monograph version.  It won the 2008 Audie Award for Audiobook of the Year from the Audio Publishers Association and I can see why.  The narrator, Alfred Molina, was one of the best I’ve heard, though I did have a bit of a problem isolating his female character voices.


  1. It has about 15 different authors.  Jeffrey Deaver writes the first chapter, outlining the major characters and plot points then 14 authors (and it’s a star-studded lineup, make no mistake) each write a chapter to move the story forward.  Mr. Deaver steps in after that to wrap things up.


It was a fairly exciting story that kept me interested until the very end, but those different authors and different writing styles began to take their toll after awhile and choppiness abounded.  I expected more Da Vinci Code and less agonized introspection.  The bad guys didn’t seem quite as bad as I wanted them to be (except for one VeRy bad guy…and I never saw that one coming) and the good guys always got out of trouble immediately.  I know they were going for a tense, DVC-esque tale of intrigue, and it wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t tense and edgy either.  In the end it didn’t resonate with me in any way, it was just a decent story.  Again, Molina is a great narrator!  I’m going to have to look him up and see if he has any other work.

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