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The Clockmaker's Secret

The Slim Hardy Mystery Series, Book 2
Narrated by: Kevin E. Green
Length: 5 hrs and 28 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)
Regular price: £18.29
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Summary

A buried clock holds the key to a decades-old mystery. 

On holiday to escape the nightmares of his last case, disgraced soldier turned private detective John “Slim” Hardy comes upon something buried in the peat on Bodmin Moor.

Unfinished and water-damaged, but still ticking, the old clock provides a vital clue to an unsolved missing-persons case. 

As Slim begins to ask questions of the tiny Cornish village of Penleven, he is drawn into a world of lies, rumours, and secrets, some of which the residents would prefer to stay buried.

Twenty-three years ago, a reclusive clockmaker left his workshop and walked out onto Bodmin Moor, taking his last, unfinished clock with him.

He disappeared.

Slim is determined to find out why. 

The Clockmaker’s Secret is the stunning sequel to Jack Benton’s acclaimed debut, The Man by the Sea.

©2018 Jack Benton (P)2019 Jack Benton

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Wonderfully Written and Narrated.

Stumbling over a partially buried clock sets off an intriguing, bittersweet, beautifully told investigation. Our central character, the deeply flawed but admirable, Slim, puts his holiday and sobriety on hold to try and solve a twenty year old local mystery. A father vanishes one night but this is just the tip of a story that Slim, our private detective, unravels with an increasing toll on his and the listeners emotions. There is a twist in the tail to complete this very enjoyable book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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The Clockmaker's Secret

A private investigator's tale of his discovery of an unfinished, yet clicking, clock turned into an exciting and intriguing journey into finding the missing clockmaker.

As a mystery book, the story was fast-paced and I liked that. There was no room for boredome the whole time I was listening. The author managed to get my attention from start to finish.

I always liked reading or learning about small village life and the author did not disappoint me on that score. I loved the way he described the Cornish town setting of the book.

The narration was enjoyable to listen to - the performance on the accents was good and done well.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Darcie
  • California, MD, United States
  • 14-05-19

Gut wrenching story...loved it!!

PI ‘Slim’ Hardy is a recovering alcoholic and is on a break in the Cornish countryside. Slim enjoys exploring the moore and discovers a buried cuckoo clock. Since Slim is easily bored, he decides to investigate the clock’s origins. Turns out that the clock was made by a famous clockmaker, who had disappeared decades ago. And so begins the search for Amos the Clockmaker. Slim’s investigations leads him to a heartbreaking discovery that you won’t see coming. I am captivated by this author’s writing...some descriptions will have you LOL...’he was not unlike a toad’! The mystery, the drama, some dry humor, all create a wonderful book! I look forward to more books from this author. Kudos to the narrator whose performance took you to the moore, the pubs and the countryside.
I voluntarily accepted a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Engrossing Cornish Mystery

Slim Hardy is an alcoholic private detective who finds a clock buried in the sand while on holiday in Cornwall. He discovers that the clockmaker disappeared years ago in mysterious circumstances and decides to find out what really happened.

The Clockmaker’s Secret is a fast moving mystery which I listened to in a couple of sessions. The story was mesmerizing and I felt really invested in Slim’s search for the truth. The loose ends of the complex plot were all tied up neatly at the end.

This is the second book in the series, and I did feel that I missed out somewhat when Slim’s previous case and his background were mentioned but it did not spoil my enjoyment of the story.

The author did a brilliant job painting a picture of life in a small Cornish town outside of holiday season. All the characters were developed really well so that you could really imagine what they looked like. The loose ends of the complex plot were all tied up neatly at the end.

I listened to the Audible version of this book and the narration by Kevin Green made the book even more enjoyable. He did the accents brilliantly.

I received a free copy of this in exchange for an honest review. However I enjoyed the story so much that I have now purchased the first book in the series.

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Not for me

I bought this book, 2nd in the series, against my better judgement as I wasn't too thrilled by the first. The reviews were good so I took the plunge.
I really don't like the main character - he has absolutely no redeeming features, he is just a nasty drunk who manages to unscamble the puzzle of the whodunnit by chance.
I didn't actually find a single character that seemed 'normal' or 'likeable', however, the mystery did hold my attention sufficiently for me to finish the book, but thankfully it is quite a short novel. Not worth a valuable credit!

I wasn't very impressed by the odd voices for the different characters!

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  • Jan M
  • Southwest
  • 05-05-19

Engrossing!

The Clockmaker's Secret by Jack Benton is fully engrossing. I loved the mystery and twists in the story. The imagery was so well done, that I could feel the ocean breezes and blowing sand. Slim comes across as a bumbling older gentleman, yet he has panache and determination. Kevin E Green performs this book magnificently. I could hear who was speaking, and he added the right emotions. I did not see the ending coming, which is something I love. Well done gentlemen! I will definitely listen to more books by both the author and narrator.

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Thoroughly immersive and enjoyable

I’d enjoyed Jack Benton’s first Slim Hardy novel but found his second even better and completely agree with the other reviewer - this is indeed an intriguing and involving mystery, well written and narrated. I thought a couple of times I’d guessed elements of the story but was wrong and the ending took me by surprise and I even found tears welling up - not a common reaction! I can’t wait for Jack Benton’s next novel and Kevin E Green’s rendition.

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  • Janice Demille
  • 12-05-19

Surprisingly Good

I really enjoyed this book, the narrator was perfect for the story. It started a bit slow but then I was hooked.

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  • Reneé
  • 05-05-19

Cozy mystery with unexpected twists!

This was a cozy little mystery that I really enjoyed. The author did a good job painting life into the quaint town, and the narrator did a great job differentiating all the characters and giving them personality. The story kept me intrigued and the mystery unfolded nicely. The middle started to get a little slow, but it picked back up fairly quickly and took a few unexpected turns, which reeled me right back in. The author did a good job tying up the loose ends, so there were no lingering questions or holes in the plot. I didn't guess the ending so that's a bonus in my book!

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  • John
  • 05-05-19

This Series Is So Very Satisfying...!!!

I truly love this series.. the next book can’t come soon enough for me..
Our hero has feet of clay, but it only makes him more endearing... !!
At the end of each book, I always breathe a deep sigh of satisfaction..
The mark of a successful read...!!

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  • Gustavo
  • 02-05-19

Great story

I like this kind of mystery genre and this book kept me entertained while stuck on the traffic while driving. I really enjoyed it, good story, great narration and a secret waiting to be found!

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  • Kim
  • 01-05-19

Must pay attention

I enjoyed this book very much. It was a bit difficult to get into right away. But after the first couple of chapters, it came together and was fascinating. It takes those first chapters for you to get use to the Cornish dialect and uncover the mystery of the village. It doesn't have a lot of action but does have all kinds of intrigue while gathering clues.

Kevin Green did a great job narrating and speaks like a native. Hence the need to get accustom to the dialect in order to grasp the nuances. I loved the way he distinguishes the characters (old and young, men and women). The characters aren't wooden constructs and his flare for demonstrating emotions clearly while in character was great.

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  • S. Danks
  • 28-04-19

Awesome story

I didn’t know what to expect since I didn’t read book 1. But it was a great mystery & a surprising ending. Thank you so much for the code to be able listen to your book.

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  • D. Sturgeon
  • 26-04-19

What a great story!

I love a good mystery. Excellent writing and impeccable narration combine to make this one fantastic!

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  • Dehuja
  • 26-04-19

Good Story

I enjoyed this story even though I have not read the 1st story in the series. This story had twists and turns and I have to admit, I was not expecting the twisted ending. Thank you for the code, I very much appreciate it and enjoyed listening to The Clockmakers Secret!!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 24-04-19

Not at all what I expected

I havent read the first book so I wasnt sure if starting with book two wouldn't leave me lost, right out of the gate. I was wrong. This is a mystery with wonderful characters who lead the main character and the reader through to history of a town and a family with whom you will be spellbound.
I don't like to read spoilers so I refuse to leave them in a review but I found myself being turned around many times as to the who, the why, and the how of this mystery. in the final chapters it flips again. wonderfully sad and uplifting at the same time.
I have a new favorite narrator now that I've listened to Kevin Green!!! He is magnificent! Each character and the little nuances of the many dialects is carried out masterfully! I will definitely look for more book narrated by Mr. Green. I know every story has to end, but i really longed to listen to more!
Definitely worth a listen! you wont be disappointed!

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  • Ivy Moore
  • 18-04-19

wow

I love this series! Slim (John Hardy) is on vacation and actually stumbles over an old clock while out walking. This find leads to more questions until Slim finds himself on a new case. This time around he's attempting to stay sober while investigating which adds to his struggle. It was a unique insight into Slim's character that even though he's not getting paid, he wants to solve this case.

I especially like that Jack Benton's mysteries don't fall into the usual overdone plots. Slim is a bit of an antihero but the bad choices he made in his life stem more from reactions to bad situations rather than him being a bad person. Add addiction into that and you have a character you want to empathize with and cheer on when he succeeds in making it through another day.

Regarding Kevin E. Green: In my earlier review of Man by the Sea, I was on the fence about this narrator. Listening again, I think I must have been off that day. (it's been since edited) I really, really like his performance and in my opinion Kevin E. Green 'is' Slim John Hardy. His voice only adds to a great novel. I hope he continues with this series.