The first book in a new detective series that just might make you quit your day job.
Chuck Restic hates his job. A 20-year career working in the risk-averse world of human resources for a large corporation has left him comfortably numb...and incredibly bored.
So when a coworker goes missing without a trace, Chuck ventures out of the confines of his Los Angeles skyscraper into the great city down below. His search for the missing man leads him from the shady underworld of Armenian mobsters to the billion-dollar land developments that serve as the lifeblood of the city. Murder lurks at every turn.
Chuck's HR background proves more valuable as a moonlighting private detective than it does in the office. Chuck may not be your typical detective (he prefers a passive-aggressive approach over the old-fashioned fisticuffs kind) but he is amusingly effective at solving crimes.
The Chuck Restic series is a fun romp that mashes traditional mystery with a scathing send-up of corporate America.
©2015 Paul MacDonald (P)2015 Paul MacDonald
"A Great Mystery That Has It All"
I really enjoyed my time with this book! It's an interesting mystery story with an unlikely 'detective' that will keep you guessing. It has a great, wry sense of humor which the narrator delivers beautifully. It kept me gripped until the very end.
The plot and characters were very engaging. The mystery has depth and the characters feel like real people that I want to get to know more about. Also, the author's detailed descriptions of the Los Angeles area really helped give a strong sense of place.
The narrator does a great job. His style is pretty even and the characters don't have an extreme amount of variation in how they sound, but it works very well for tone of the story and there was just enough characterization to tell the voices apart without sounding over the top.
I'd recommend this to anyone who likes a mystery, especially if they like a good dash of humor mixed in.
"Deja Vu... all over again!"
Certainly one of my favorites... top 10%... hence the FIVE stars!
Actually, yes... if you can call the "edge of my seat" that craving for more... like an Italian grandma's lasagna. Each chapter brings a segment to a proper close... but leaves you wanting to move quickly to the next...not unlike a highly successful TV series.
No. This is the first book I've heard narrated by Paul Dake. He's quite good, though! He brings the book... and it's deadpan humor... to life in a way that makes listening easier than with the garden-variety, generic audio-book. Like a great umpire in a World Series game... the spectacle goes perfectly without anyone realizing his presence. That's the sign of a job well done.
Definitely a laugher... even the serious mystery within is laced with a certain brand of dry, corporate sarcasm and irony that took me back to me days in the world of my first big company... which shall remain nameless... however their initials are IBM. Very funny.
Good story... good performance... Entertainment achieved.
"Fun book and good mystery"
I liked the characters and the southern California setting.
This is a fun mystery with a different detective- the corporate HR professional, a bit bored with his job, who stumbles into a mystery when an employee disappears. The depiction of the corporate world at all levels was perfect, from bike messengers to executives to the fund raising/networking events. This is a new narrator for me and I'm always a bit worried by that. His reading was spot on, and the womens' voices were believable with just that slight change in timbre to make it right.
It's a quick listen at just under 7 hours, and the mystery will keep you on your toes with lots of characters, complex financial matters, city government, and more, all leading to a satisfying conclusion.
I'm looking forward to more adventures with "detective" Chuck Restic.
"Engaging and intelligent."
Well written -intelligent and clever but without pretension. A mystery that keeps you guessing and wraps up with a satisfying colclusion. Wonderfully narrateted with lots of great chatacter distinctions. Looking forward to more from this team of author and narrator!
"Mystery with a Glendale Noir twist! Armenian too!"
What a unexpected delight! Don't know how I found this one, but very glad I did! If you know LA/Glendale; you are home! The author knows his characters and location and gets it right! Very refreshing! Intriguing mystery, a Corporate "Dilbert" as the 'detective' and many interesting twists and turns make this a great ride!
Narration was generally perfect; really captures the corporate mind-think, just a few pronunciation quirks, not enough to lose a star though!
I will be looking for the rest and hope to hear from Chuck again!
The author also has a Pinterest page that illustrates with story quotes the pictures of the many locales...a nice touch!
This is a great story! I really enjoyed it! The characters and situations were believable and interesting. I hope the next book is made available on Audible.
"Classic surprise ending"
What a surprise... But you need to listen through the to see if you can guess!
"it screams bureaucracy of corporate America"
Smile now, cry later is the first book in the series “Chuck Restic Mystery” by Paul MacDonald, which is Published in January 2015, narrated by Paul Dake. The genre of this book is modern detective.
Chuck Restic is a normal office worker in Human Resources for a large corporation, when a man in his corporation disappears suddenly. Only Chuck’s bad emotional state (his very near divorce) and his free time, made him start looking in this case, where he discovers that this disappearance is just the surface for something much bigger than he could have imagined.
The settings are very real, it screams bureaucracy of corporate America. However, what was really realistic was the characters, they were very, logical, understandable, and cool (and I’m talking about a bunch of NORMAL BORING peoples) ….. Let me take a moment to explain how much I liked the style of the characters in this story (sorry about that, but I have to rant or I won’t be able to sleep tonight.)
So here we have the protagonist “Chuck” who is unlike most heroes in detective stories. He isn’t a macho man with all the charm that makes each female sown to the ground. He isn’t a hero with skills in Karate or an expert marksman the likes of a Matrix character. He is a BORING OFFICE WORKER, and you know what that’s okay, he gets beaten up, and threatened, but doesn’t go back to avenge his manly pride, he feels vulnerable, sad, and motivated to help another human being, his only weapon is his knowledge of psychology and HR skills (which is awesome by the way).
okay I’m done….
The events here are told form Chuck’s narrative point, they are fast paced, but not so predictable as part of the plot, we can see the plot is logical, fun, and surprising.
The narration of Paul Dake was very good at moving along with the events, he showed the suitable voice for each scene, he really could deliver the emotional states and the thoughts of Chuck with ease. However, there were some moments I just laughed out loud, he really did a great job with the story.
Audiobook provided for review by the author.
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