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Summary

National Book Awards 2014: Crime/Thriller Book of the Year

Can you commit the perfect crime?

Pilgrim is the code name for a man who doesn't exist. The adopted son of a wealthy American family, he once headed up a secret espionage unit for US intelligence. Before he disappeared into anonymous retirement, he wrote the definitive book on forensic criminal investigation. But that book will come back to haunt him. It will help NYPD detective Ben Bradley track him down. And it will take him to a run-down New York hotel room where the body of a woman is found facedown in a bath of acid, her features erased, her teeth missing, her fingerprints gone. It is a textbook murder - and Pilgrim wrote the book.

What begins as an unusual and challenging investigation will become a terrifying race against time to save America from oblivion. Pilgrim will have to make a journey from a public beheading in Mecca to a deserted ruin on the Turkish coast via a Nazi death camp in Alsace and the barren wilderness of the Hindu Kush in search of the faceless man who would commit an appalling act of mass murder in the name of his god.

This is now the entire audiobook, not in two parts.

©2012 Terry Hayes (P)2013 Random House Audiobooks

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What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    1,451
  • 4 Stars
    383
  • 3 Stars
    107
  • 2 Stars
    33
  • 1 Stars
    43

Performance

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    147
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    37
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    20

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent

Very good story with many twists and fast paced. Excellent narrator. Really enjoyed listening to the book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • T
  • STEVENAGE, United Kingdom
  • 01-12-16

Jack Reacher with less muscles

Easy to follow a combination of the strong characters and nuration. Would def recommend for anyone who likes a a reluctant hero and self sacrifice .

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Exciting but a bit too full of cliches

Firstly I want to highlight that the only version available on Audible in November 2016 is the full complete book. It is not in two parts like other reviewers have apparently experienced.

It was an entertaining book, good pace and fairly well written. The story was a bit far fetched, and a lot of the science was made up or exaggerated, but I didn't mind that so much. - it's fiction and you just have to go with it and enjoy it.

But I agree with other reviewers that it is rather black and white: The Americans are the heroes against a mostly all, either evil or dumb/corrupt etc world of muslims and Russians.

The narrator was mostly very good, in all the non-accent parts - his voice is clear, easy and pleasant to listen to. But his range of accents is quite limited. He has no idea what a Turkish accent sounds like, which was a bit annoying since the book has quite a lot of Turkish characters. His British accent was terrible as was his Italian.

All in all I would probably still recommend this book as an entertaining listen.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Less stars because 2nd book to required!!

What did you like best about I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1? What did you like least?

American hero who is wonderful at everything but entertainingly so, lots of rambling subplots that will, I presume, all come together brilliantly. UNFORTUNATELY I must presume because I find that I have buy a second volume to complete the story!! first volume is not a stand alone book!
Not made clear at the time of purchase - naughty practice Audible two credits required,
you could be losing a loyal long time customer.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

Would I have to go to see two films?

39 of 50 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

wow

gripping from start to finish well worth the read could not put it down !

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Worth a listen

Very detailed and an interesting story.
I found the lead character a little too good at what he did with almost zero flaws which leaves you thinking yeah right.

Saying that I enjoyed the chase and the various directions it takes you.

Very stereotypical American view of the muslin world which whilst i didn't find uncomfortable (it's a book) could I suspect offend the more sensitive listener.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Captivating

Excellent book - intelligent and exciting. English accents are laughably bad, but barely feature. I'd recommend to everyone

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Andrew
  • Croydon,, United Kingdom
  • 04-12-16

wow fabulous book

first 5 minutes of listening I was hooked. always a twist and extremely clever how it all links up. brilliant how the minds works how how you read what you see! ☆

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

excellent

I don't normally like crime stories but would highly recommend this. I will be buying this as part of my mums xmas present.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

The story keeps you on tender hooks

Because this type of story (action with graphic violent bits) & style of writing (paucity of in depth psych portrayal) isn't my favourite type for me personally, I could have given this book a 4. However I didn't think that would be at all fair. It really is more than worthy of a 5. The author was very knowledgeable about his various subjects, from cultures, to geography, to medicine & numerous other stand points. He was able to take me, the reader into the story. The many near misses were numerous ( a bit too many by the end) & left me quickly turning the page to see what happened next. A good read.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Tony
  • 12-01-14

Where is the rest of the story

What disappointed you about I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1?

I feel defrauded. Half a story, and I can't even buy the second half.
I have to go and buy the paperback version now.

How could the performance have been better?

Give us the WHOLE book. I'm happy to pay for it, but it's not even available.
Hoe can you release half a book?

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Loving the story, Disappointed in Audible

Any additional comments?

Warn purchasers that it is only half of the story, and the other half isn't available

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • felicity
  • 09-01-14

Why is it not the whole book?

What disappointed you about I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1?

Why I was not told it was just half the book, where is the volume 2?

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

The plot was fantastic, but very sad it stopped when it did. I would like to know when volume 2 is available so I can write the review it deserves.

Have you listened to any of Christopher Ragland’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I don't tend to remember the narrators names, but will keep an ear out for Christopher

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1?

None, I would just like to listen to volume 2.

Any additional comments?

I would like to know when volume 2 is available and why it has been chopped in half? without revealing this to very loyal customers. I feel a little pissed off as I am very keen to know what happens. He is an Australian author so not quite understanding why it is not all available.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Amanda
  • 03-01-14

WHERE IS VOLUME 2?

Audible should make the buyer aware that only half the book is available to download before they download the first half. Who reads half a book? Its available on the uk site. What, are we expected to sign up there and pay them too? Shoddy service audible!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Michael
  • 06-02-18

Don't Whisper Any Spoilers

What a good yarn. Lots of twists and turns, lots of daring do, lots of stuff I never knew. Trouble with stories like this is you know the hero will make it to the end, but right now.....it's crazy enough to make you doubt that....and just HAVE TO keep going to find out how! :-)

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Sally Jones
  • 13-03-17

Gripping storyline

Listened to this book over one wet weekend. Once I started listening, I found it impossible to put down.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Russell Sachs
  • 28-01-17

Riveting

What an amazing book. Riveting from page 1. Made me cry, made me laugh, made my heart race. Didn't want it to end.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Brenda Brink
  • 01-11-16

Brilliant

One of the best books I have read! Could not put it down. Highly recommend it

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Huntingspider
  • 04-08-16

tip top

Well written. A great story that keeps you reading on and on for more info.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Garth W
  • 18-01-16

Great story but share Audible frustration

Great story but I share other reviewers' frustrations that I bought half a book. I do feel Audible pulled a bit of a fast one by selling what is one book in paperback as 2 separate volumes on Audible. A bit underhanded.
Regarding story, it is great. There is a strange first person approach by the author. Telling the story as he knows it but providing details that he couldn't possibly have been exposed to. I found that a bit hard to overlook but everything else was excellent.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Ben
  • 06-04-15

Surprisingly bland and cliched

What disappointed you about I Am Pilgrim, Volume 1?

Having read the generally positive reviews about the story, I was surprised at how dull and poorly written it is. This is just my opinion and perhaps I've been spoiled by reading a lot of John le Carre, etc recently (I really wasn't expecting a le Carre style thriller believe me), but I was amazed at the lack of imagination. The plot just feels like a bad action movie, filled with predictable events, endless cliches and cardboard cut-out characters...it came as no surprise when the events of 9/11 surfaced in the plot. It doesn't help that the main character has no discernible personality and continuously references his superior skills. I really wanted to like this book but found so much not to like - the wooden dialogue (which often just serves as exposition), cliched characters (with a long and fairly tedious back story to each one), cliched locations, strongly racist overtones (it's pretty clear the author does not like the middle-east), female characters who always seem to have great cleavage, 'wide, beautiful eyes' and 'a perfectly curved mouth' or some such. After a point I'm afraid I just couldn't listen to anymore. Maybe it gets significantly better later on, but I doubt it was ever going to swing it for me.

Would you ever listen to anything by Terry Hayes again?

Based on this, no

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Christopher Ragland?

I did find the narration fairly corny but to be honest it suits the style of the story, so I don't know that anyone else would do a better job. He does a particularly poor job with the female characters though!

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Irritation, and boredom at times. There were moments of interest but these were always let down by the poor characterisation.

Any additional comments?

I think it's unfair that the book is sold in two parts, especially given that it is not a great novel in the first place. That said, I couldn't get through part one anyway.