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The Poe Shadow
by Matthew Pearl | Mystery & Thrillers
Registered by wingbooklady331wing of Cape Coral, Florida USA on Sunday, December 30, 2007
Average 5 star rating by BookCrossing Members 

status (set by Aberpeter): to be read


8 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by wingbooklady331wing from Cape Coral, Florida USA on Sunday, December 30, 2007

This book has not been rated.

Read by Erik Singer; CD abridged; approx. 6.5 hours 


Journal Entry 2 by wingbooklady331wing from Cape Coral, Florida USA on Monday, May 19, 2008

7 out of 10

Not as good as I thought it was going to be. Reserved for a CD only bookbox 


Journal Entry 3 by wingbooklady331wing at Controlled Release, Given to a fellow bookcrosser -- Controlled Releases on Thursday, April 09, 2009

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (4/9/2009 UTC) at Controlled Release, Given to a fellow bookcrosser -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Enjoy! Traveling for ROUND 3 in the CD only bookbox. 


Journal Entry 4 by carlissa from Miami, Florida USA on Monday, April 13, 2009

7 out of 10

I listened an unabridged copy of this which I got from the library, and I remember enjoying it, but some parts did seem to drag a little bit. I will put this one back in the box. 


Journal Entry 5 by olered at Salem, Oregon USA on Wednesday, September 15, 2010

This book has not been rated.

Released 4 yrs ago (9/15/2010 UTC) at Salem, Oregon USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Tried as I might...Just could not enjoy this one. Listened to three of the disc and decided to move on. Putting in Bookladys CD box - round 4. 


Journal Entry 6 by wingk00kaburrawing at San Jose, California USA on Tuesday, September 21, 2010

2 out of 10

This book enjoyed a brief stay in San Jose, California before continuing its journey in booklady331's CD only bookbox.

I listened to the unabridged version of this audio book in late February/early March 2010. My thoughts:

So I'm really having a difficult time getting into this book, and the main reason for this is that the narrator Quentin Clark is a frickin' jerk. I mean, there's nothing to like about him. At first I thought Pearl was going for an unreliable narrator angle, and that's why his character seemed so out of touch with the reality around him. Whenever Clark decided to bullheadedly pursue the truth of Poe's death, ignoring his friends/lover/requests of strangers, I thought "Surely the man is crazy and that's the way Pearl's going with this." Now on the 6th disk, I'm nearly halfway through, and I'm sure that's the angle Pearl's going for.

Quentin Clark's obsession with Poe is...so disturbing. Why does he care so much about the death of his (admittedly favorite) author that he abandons his law practice, shatters his relationship with his fiance, pesters a poor old detective out of retirement against his will and constantly pesters people who just want to let bygones be bygones? He's arrogant, pushy, and annoying. Even worse, Quentin's not a very good detective, and he's very repetitive. So we're treated to page after unending page of the same old facts as he spins useless conclusions.

Clark's a jerk. A selfish jerk. I don't think I can finish this book, because I just can't stand the main character.

Later...

So I did force myself to finish the book. It wasn't worth it. In fact, the ending was so neat and tidy that all I can say is THE ENDING IS CRAP. After all the idiocy and selfishness and creepy obsessive STALKING A DEAD AUTHOR that Quentin Clark does, he gets a 'happily ever after?'

WHAT THE FRENCH, TOAST???

The action dragged (really, why was this book 14 CDs long?) and there are too many messy plots. I mean, I could happily read a story about Poe's death and trying to solve the mysterious circumstances. (BUT QUENTIN FAILS IN THIS TASK, SORRY TO SPOIL IT FOR YOU.) Throw in a side plot about slavery and OK, I can deal. Throw in another side plot about Clark's aunt trying to take his home away because she thinks he's unstable. That's actually a decent one. Throw in the French president staging a coup to take over the government, and somehow tying this into Clark's quest for Poe? I'm sorry, that one didn't fit. It dragged the book out unnecessarily, introduced pointless characters, and just....distracted from the good parts of the book. What few good points there were. None of them can I think of right now.

It was just bad all over, man. Really disappointed because I did enjoy The Dante Club, but this was excruciatingly dull with an unlikeable narrator. 


Journal Entry 7 by jlautner at San Luis Obispo, California USA on Monday, October 04, 2010

This book has not been rated.

Taken from booklady331's CD-only bookbox. 


Journal Entry 8 by jlautner at San Luis Obispo, California USA on Saturday, October 23, 2010

This book has not been rated.

I became interested in Poe's death when I read The Beautiful Cigar Girl - see info on my copy of this book here: http://www.bookcrossing.com/journal/5859980/. The cigar girl story is a small history, the delving into the death of a young woman and the subsequent efforts by Poe to solve that murder himself, using the "ratiocination" technique from his novel, The Murders in the Rue Morgue.

Then I heard again about the mystery of Poe's death on the radio. I often listen to Public Radio Exchange, a 24/7 radio station that broadcasts podcasts and other audio talk files, some from public radio and others not. One series I listen to on that station from time to time features historical tidbits that most of us may not know. One of these pieces was about Poe's death, and offered the theory that Poe had been forced to vote several times, and was wearing clothes that were not his own because he was in disguise. At the time it was fairly common for certain groups to change election results this way.

So it interested me, this book, because my appetite for the truth was whetted already.

Of course I knew this is a book of fiction. Nevertheless, much of it is based on what is known about the days leading up to Poe's death in a hospital, and about his time in Baltimore.

The narrator of the story is a young man who is beginning his a career as a lawyer in a firm and who has long been in love with a young woman he hopes to marry. All of this changes when he reads of Poe's death in the newspaper. He was an avid Poe admirer and had accidentally seen Poe's funeral without knowing that is who was in the casket. He is upset about the death of this gifted poet but even more so at the lack of public interest. And why? Why had he died so young?

He becomes obsessed with finding out what went on in the days before Poe's death, in the hope of putting together a reasonable approximation of the truth. Knowing he was no detective, however, he decides to hunt down the "real" Dupin, the model for the detective in The Murders of the Rue Morgue and subsequent mysteries. He goes to France to track down the most likely and settles on one, but is later approached by another he had previously rejected, and in bizarre fashion he returns to the states with his reluctant model, close on the heels of the "fake", who is apparently in the quest for what fortunes it might bring him.

A further twist to this curious tale is Bonjour, the beautiful young woman who accompanies the fake Dupin. It comes to light that this woman is actually an assassin, nicknamed "Bonjour" by a rumor that she says "bon jour" to each person she is about to kill. (Needless to say, nobody is alive who can verify this story.)

Our hero must have the answer and he pushes his man to get it. Meanwhile he takes off to discover bits and pieces himself. In the end he puts together some kind of story, ragged-edged but believable. And we learn more of Poe in the process.

It is some kind of wild ride. I wonder what the unabridged version would have brought to the table, but I'm not going to run out to find that out. There were times, when listening, that I felt the awkward break that indicated, to me, that big bits had been cut out. I am not a fan of abridged stories but did enjoy this one for what it did offer. It's also possible that the original book was simply not edited enough, and the abridgement makes up for that, as suggested by k00kaburra's comments, above.

I also enjoyed the reader, Erik Singer. I felt he had the right voice, the right intonation, the right approach to the story. There were a few words he pronounced in a way I thought odd but it may be that they were pronounced that way in the mid-1800s. He did not get in the way of the story and I think I might enjoy hearing him read other books. 


Journal Entry 9 by jlautner at San Luis Obispo, California USA on Saturday, September 24, 2011

This book has not been rated.

Adding to booklady331's audio book box. 


Journal Entry 10 by jlautner at San Luis Obispo, California USA on Monday, September 26, 2011

This book has not been rated.

Released 3 yrs ago (9/26/2011 UTC) at San Luis Obispo, California USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Sent off in booklady331's audio book box to the next person in line. 


Journal Entry 11 by wingbooklady331wing at Cape Coral, Florida USA on Wednesday, January 11, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Arrived home in my CD only audio bookbox. The book has come home. I am trying to decide what to do next.  


Journal Entry 12 by wingbooklady331wing at Cape Coral, Florida USA on Monday, July 16, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Reserved for Iwillrejoice's VBB 


Journal Entry 13 by wingbooklady331wing at Cape Coral, Florida USA on Saturday, July 28, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 2 yrs ago (7/28/2012 UTC) at Cape Coral, Florida USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Enjoy! For Iwillrejoice's VBB, RABCK, and Christmas in July 2012 (Matthew is the name of one of the books in the Bible that tells the Christmas story) 


Journal Entry 14 by tostle at Salt Lake City, Utah USA on Saturday, August 11, 2012

This book has not been rated.

I received this book! Thanks for sharing! 


Journal Entry 15 by tostle at Salt Lake City, Utah USA on Thursday, March 21, 2013

This book has not been rated.

This was a great book! 


Journal Entry 16 by tostle at Salt Lake City, Utah USA on Thursday, March 21, 2013

This book has not been rated.

I am reserving this book for iwillrejoice's Audiobook VBB. 


Journal Entry 17 by tostle at Carpinteria, California USA on Wednesday, September 18, 2013

This book has not been rated.

Released 1 yr ago (9/18/2013 UTC) at Carpinteria, California USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

This book is on the way to California for FeistyPom2Love as part of iwillrejoice's audio VBB. Happy Travels! 


Journal Entry 18 by wingFeistyPom2Lovewing at Carpinteria, California USA on Saturday, September 28, 2013

This book has not been rated.

This audiobook arrived safely in the mail today. :-) Thank you for sending it my way, tostle! 


Journal Entry 19 by wingFeistyPom2Lovewing at Carpinteria, California USA on Tuesday, October 01, 2013

This book has not been rated.

I was really excited about listening to this audiobook as I had read about it online & it sounded fabulous....

Well, after listening to the 1st compact disc, I just couldn't bring myself to continue listening to this audiobook as I was bored to distraction & couldn't care a less about the characters or where the story was going.

Also, the reader, Erik Singer, just wasn't all that good. I didn't feel he was putting his heart in giving a 'dramatic reading' of 'The Poe Shadow'.

I'll be saving this audiobook for the next round of iwillrejoice's audio vbb. 


Journal Entry 20 by wingFeistyPom2Lovewing at Bellevue, Washington USA on Tuesday, April 15, 2014

This book has not been rated.

Released 6 mos ago (4/16/2014 UTC) at Bellevue, Washington USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Happy listening!! Congrats on winning my audiobook Rabck.  


Journal Entry 21 by wingAberpeterwing at Kirkland, Washington USA on Wednesday, April 30, 2014

This book has not been rated.

Thank you for the RABCK. hmmm... I should not have read the other journal entries from this book. But alas, I will give it a go at some point and see what I think of it. 




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