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Editor reviews

The John Milton audiobook series continues with Book Three The Cleaner, written by tremendously popular crime thriller writer Mark Dawson and narrated by expert voice artist David Thorpe. John Milton, once government assassin now fugitive haunted by his conscience, hides in the back streets of San Francisco driving a cab. He has remained anonymous until a chilling murder draws him out of the shadows. He feels compelled to find the missing girl and the gruesome killer. Perhaps the only way to absolve his conscience is to enter the life of a vigilante. Available now from Audible.

Summary

John Milton has started to hope that he might have a future.

He has a job driving a taxi around the streets of San Francisco. He has his anonymity and his solitude. Being invisible has become a comfortable habit. He doesn't want to be found.

But when a girl he drives to a party goes missing, Milton is worried. Especially when two dead bodies are discovered, and the police start treating him as their prime suspect. Milton is a fugitive from the British Secret Service, and a man in his position needs extra attention like he needs a hole in the head.

As unpleasant secrets leak out, and the body count rises, one thing is for sure. Milton might just be the right guy in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The Driver is a taut, nail-biting adventure which once again stars Mark Dawson's irresistible hero, the maverick ex-MI6 assassin John Milton. Mark Dawson has worked as a DJ and lawyer and currently works in the London film industry. His first books, The Art of Falling Apart and Subpoena Colada have been published in multiple languages.

©2014 Mark Dawson (P)2015 Audible, Ltd

What listeners say about The Driver

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This series just gets better and better

Any additional comments?

My title says it all. I can't tell you how much these audiobooks have entertained me. I was going through a tough time while I was listening to this book and it actually helped ease things, sounds weird but it really helped me take my mind off things for an hour or so at a time and it was a great form of escapism.

You'll love this. Whatever floats your boat book-genre wise you need to give this a go. I would be surprised if anyone turned around and said they did not enjoy listening to it. It's so refreshing to have such a great series to listen to, especially after the Victor the assassin series I previously finished prior to starting this, a series of books I never wanted to end!

17 people found this helpful

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A Poor Man’s Jack Reacher

Average story with an uninteresting protagonist and unsure grasp of location. Worse was the performance because the narrator could not carry the American accents and his pronunciation of locations around the San Francisco Bay Area was consistently inaccurate. eg Tiburon and Moscone come to mind. Narrator and author should be ashamed of such a poor effort.

7 people found this helpful

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Another Milton masterpiece...

Mark Dawson really does have a super series, in the form of John Milton novels . I've really enjoyed the adventures thus far, and looking forward to the remainder of the series.
In this instance, Milton - whilst earning a bit of pocket money driving taxis, stumbles across a sinister plot that is resulting in young women disappearing. As Milton digs deeper, it becomes clear that the plot goes as deep as the Senate itself. Milton - the ex-hitman with a conscience - once again can't ignore the plight of those in need of his help.
Superbly enthralling storyline, which is masterfully narrated by David Thorpe.

Highly recommended..

12 people found this helpful

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Story line wasn't as good as the others

I loved the others in the series that I've listened to so far, so much so that I bought the entire series up to book 15 and am now working through them in order. I kind of enjoyed the story but it was nothing special and not as good as the others, I wouldn't listen to it again. The narrator was good and I enjoy listening to him.

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really good

the performance of the reader really makes this series. it is excellently done and makes it a gripping story.

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Another great book in the series!

I love this series. As I have said in my reviews of others, Mark Dawson has exceptional skill in character development and David Thorpe is a real pleasure as the narrator. Despite John Milton being a former brutal assassin, who is still ‘a bit handy’, I have fallen in love with him. Looking forward to starting the next one in the series.

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  • Dr
  • 17-06-17

Another Thrilling Masterpiece. I will certainly continue with this eries

My first introduction to John Milton was Book 1 in the series. This was quickly followed by Books 2 and then this one. The masterful narration of David Thorpe brings all the characters to life, which is hard to do when the narrative switches from Male to Female, and from English to American characters. Just as in Saint Death ( book 2) , the main character, John Milton, elicits sympathy and you find yourself warming to the " anti hero" as he battles on to " make amends " . If you want a great read(listen) search no further. Mark Dawson is now a firm favorite of mine, up there with Rachel Abbot, Peter May and Jeffrey Archer.

2 people found this helpful

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Man on a mission

What about David Thorpe’s performance did you like?

He has the most fantastic range of voices.

Any additional comments?

John is back in London and serving up coffee and fried food to London’s black cab drivers. Working towards the AA’s ninth step in the program is proving difficult for Milton but he’s finding a way around that. And, as usual, trouble finds him and he is unable to walk away.
This is another brilliant episode in the Milton series. Milton is a modern James Bond but having grown tired of the service for his country because it sucks away his soul one piece at a time he concentrates on what he can do for the living. Sometimes it goes smoothly, sometimes it doesn’t, but it always ends up with Milton on the winning side.
I love Milton’s character. The man has flaws and baggage but who doesn’t? He is not only a cool killer but a man who struggles endlessly with that baggage. Dawson has a formula for his Milton series and it works every time without tiring the reader’s patience. Every mission has complications and casualties and every episode requires a new start because of the consequences.
Dawson’s writing is very masculine. It isn’t bogged down with emotion but it isn’t emotionless; it is understated and insinuated. The action scenes are told well and anyone who isn’t familiar with weapons and military strategy will still be able to follow it without confusion. I recommend the audio version of this book because the narrator is particularly good and really compliments the author.

2 people found this helpful

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Milton Trumps America!

The third installment in what is proving to be a very entertaining series. Milton is a troubled man and trouble seems to find him, this time in the US. I'm really enjoying his motivation to redeem himself from his past and to combat the addictions that resulted, a real man on a mission.

On this occasion he throws himself into a mystery involving disappearing women while a rather Trump-like politician and his entourage are on the campaigning trail. The story generates a decent pace throughout and all of the strings are pulled together neatly at the end. It's described well by David Thorpe who gives an excellent performance as narrator.

It's all good stuff with a good balance between action, intrigue and character interaction. For sure it's not going to do anything like re-defining the genre but it's good quality thriller writing and John Milton is an interesting character of increasing depth.

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Couldn't keep my attention

A reasonable listen and the story was okey but with so much random detail, taking you nowhere and with minimal action, I struggled with my attention constantly wandering off.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Trudy Owens
  • 17-07-15

You can drive me, John Milton!

John Milton is likable. He is an ex-SAS assassin who got tired of the blood and decided to go straight and only help people out. His home office doesn't want him out there with all his knowledge of procedure and missions and personnel, so they keep sending assassins to kill him, or bring him in. Thus he must be on the run constantly. Milton is also a recovering alcoholic who attends AA meetings but doesn't believe he can ever atone for his sins. In every town he lands in he ends up finding trouble and causing nearly as much as he smooths. In this book, he is looking for a missing hooker he taxied to a "party", and trying to find out who killed the other working girls.

At least in this story, none of his new, short-term friends get offed while John is trying to atone. It is interesting all the way through, and we live for the spec ops skills John brings into play. His newest sometime partner, bounty hunter Bo (or Beau, I don't know) reappears to our delight, even though he can not take the place of the lamented Rutherford from book 1.

The narration constantly amazes me. Thorpe's default voice seems to be that of a slightly nerdy, prissy English prig, but he did the English thugs and druggies superbly in book 1, Mexican drug lords in book 2, and now he does Americans of all accents and social levels. He seems to change height and weight as his voices change.

If you like the genre and the premise, this is a good series.

5 people found this helpful

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  • brent
  • 14-05-15

Another good listen

John Milton is Jack Reacher, John Wells, and The Grey Man all rolled into one. David Thorpe also does a great job. He is slowly becoming one of favorite narrators.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-07-15

loved this book, was a great read.

If you like Jack Reacher you will love Milton. Action packed with great detail and we'll developed characters.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Alan
  • 11-04-16

Not for me

I enjoy this kind of story generally and this narrator is superb. I can live with a few mispronunciations, because he's one of the few British readers who can do American accents that aren't strained. The book disappointed me. The writing was dull, the character uninteresting, and the story moved slowly and was illogical in parts. Also, it really wasn't necessary that I had to listen to political drivel that ordinarily would have forced me to use the "power" button on the TV remote. All in all, except for the narrator, a stinker.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jacqui
  • 30-10-16

Good story

The narrator is English & has the worst American accent I've ever heard. He thinks there is only one generic accent for all Americans. It's appalling

2 people found this helpful

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  • John R. Holmes, Jr.
  • 26-08-16

A British San Francisco

What disappointed you about The Driver?

The story itself is bland and meandering. Worse yet, it's a British narrator reading a British-language story set in San Francisco. As a result, all of the local names were mis-pronounced (Mos-CONE Center for Mos-CONEY Center) as well as all the Latino names. Furthermore, all of the idioms were British. I found this only distracting.

A better plot might have worked past this deficit, but the story has no center. It's just a guy who's on the run from a life of alcohol and violence having to dust off his fight skills from time to time as random events occur in his life. It's fun to see a guy with those skills go mano-a-mano with various bad guys, but it's not enough to salvage the book's other deficits.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Michael
  • 19-11-21

Loved it But.

I am a big fan of the John Milton series. But, you new there was a but, right. It's right in the title ; ). I don't have a problem enjoying art that says things politically I don't necessarily agree with. The music industry cured me of that a long time ago.
But Mark, I know you're British, a Republican Governor of California? The whole conservatives as the bad guys is becoming a little hackneyed. Despite all that one of the best books in the series so far.

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  • Pamela Donaldson
  • 21-06-21

Narrator's accents, British idioms

Thorpe does an excellent job normally but his Texas and Southern accents are painful. And in all his American words that end in 'a' he adds an 'r' like ideas. 'Sawr' was irritating as well. Place names in the Bay Area were misplaced.
The author also used British idioms from time to time. otherwise not bad.

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  • Richard
  • 10-04-21

silly childish shallow

imagine if the equalizer light. with cartoonish stereotypes
imagine if you knew nothing about a subject and were to lazy to ask an expert. what a lazy bum
Dawson is. imagine if your car didn't run and you picked up 2 sparkplugs at an autoparts store and that fixed it.

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  • Trish R.
  • 13-08-20

Good story with great narration..

A decent book about politics, and way too many speeches for my taste, but the rest was good. The Governor was running for president but he couldn't keep it in his pants and that caused so much trouble. John, as usual, took care of business, AND got involved with a woman named Eva, for a little bit, then he left town again.

So, no sex and the F-bomb was used 48 times.

As to the narration: David Thorpe did a great job on the voices.