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A Gift for Dying

Narrated by: Ian Porter
Length: 14 hrs and 19 mins
4 out of 5 stars (59 ratings)

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Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook of A Gift for Dying by M. J. Arlidge.   

Could you live with knowing how you'll die?  

Adam Brandt is used to dealing with all kinds of people - as a consulting psychologist with the Chicago Police Department he has faced his share of criminals. But Kassie Wojcek is like no one else he's encountered - 15 years old and burdened, she says, with a terrible gift: she knows how and when you will die. 

After claiming to 'feel' the horrific murder of the first victim, Kassie is caught up in the hunt for a sadistic serial killer terrorising Chicago, frightened that people will die without her help. Kassie pulls Adam into the investigation, determined to stop the torture she sees coming. But as the body count rises, Adam must ask himself if her gift is real or if he is putting his faith in someone far more dangerous than he realised.  

Events soon spiral out of control as the case and their personal lives intertwine. The boundaries of right and wrong shift, the lines between the hunter and the hunted blur, and one thing becomes clear: Kassie is in the sights of a killer.... 

©2019 M. J. Arlidge (P)2019 Penguin Books Ltd
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Very Solid Take on a Well-trodden Path

In fairness, the idea of someone being able to see the approaching death of others is not entirely new. It has been done before with varying degrees of success so it does mean that Arlidge's foray into this partly supernatural territory needs to be good. And it is, this is a well-constructed story that builds from its initial shocking and sinister start towards an ending that I thought was particularly impressive as it ducked nothing and pulled no punches. It's a story of an extremely nasty and viciously twisted villain, a young, tortured girl from the wrong side of the tracks and a well-to-do psychologist who lives on the other side. The point of view switches often between them and supporting characters like the lead detective in the case. I like how this works even if it does mean some scenes can take longer to pan out.

At the microphone for this one is Ian Porter who delivers a fine performance. I wouldn't say he's the best with accents or at keeping the most consistent character voices but to me, he delivers where it really matters. When the story hits its high points he ratchets up the tension nicely with good changes of pace and volume.

Overall this is a very pleasing package from a quality author who takes the time to both build the plot and to give characters suitable depth. There are a couple of quite lovely twists that while maybe not the least predictable give the story no little punch.

16 people found this helpful

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Great book!!!

Have read all m.j Arlidge books, it wasn’t his best, but was still very enjoyable

3 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Uber noir, verging on the depressing

This is the first book I have read by this author so I came to it with a fairly open mind but have left it unfinished .
It is slow, cruel and unremmittingly savage in the descriptions of the various tortures and murders . I prefer subtlety and elegance in a thriller, and well-written characters; none of the characters here are enough to elicit sympathy and liking from the reader so one's interest is almost never fully engaged. In this context it's an overlong, grim read and very slow in parts.

The narrator is not good enough to carry the audiobook

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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I couldn't finish this...

...did not like the narrator, very poor when it came to changing accents for other characters. Nothing like the previous books unfortunately...

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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This was mediocre

Fairly entertaining but not as good as the other MJ Arlidge books. I enjoyed the first half but found the second half ridiculous and predictable. Narrator is so so, not annoying but didn't add anything for me.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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An Intriguing Read

disturbing but riveting read, had me hooked very quickly. Love the Helen Grace books and wanted to read another of his books. I was not disappointed!

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 20-07-19

I fucking hate it when

Characters act like braindead idiots just to conveniently help the author keep the story going. It's lazy, annoying and frustrating. Yeah I'm looking at you ch 43.
The rest of story was okay.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Donna F. Rodriguez
  • 11-03-19

Blood & Gore with Unsatisfying Ending

I almost never write a review but feel compelled to in this case. This book is over the top blood and guts. The author takes a decent man and systematically destroys is life. Still born child, suicidal wife and prison. The hits for this decent human being just keep on coming. If the author is trying to convey the world’s lack of humanity, then they have succeeded! Go back to writing DI Grace novels. At least they provide entertainment and some semblance of hope. A Gift for Dying is a depressing body of work with no redeeming qualities.