Lead Us Not (Unabridged)
Author: Youlanda Brewster Date: 2015 Narrator: Christa Lewis Provider: Youlanda Brewster Running Time: 2 h 22 min Audible Enhanced Audio Eliza heard the words retirement and club followed by gunfire. It was over quickly, and they were gone…with her voice. A pregnant ex-assassin has days to recall a lifetime, retrieve two stolen chips that control the US defense system and save two children from termination by the Club, which trained her. Only she can’t remember the Club, and the children belong to the woman she terminated, and the Club wants them dead.
My first issue was to decide if this is a very short novel, a very long short story, or a medium length novella. I do realize that the rules for length or even for what is considered a book don’t really apply to digital publications, and that the appropriate length for a full length novel was determined mostly by marketing departments, but I guess I’m old fashioned about some things. What I *am* sure of is that I would almost never spend an Audible credit on such a short work, and unless there were compelling reasons to do so, would be unlikely to pay cash for it, either.
In addition, this was one of the most well written and most confusing works of fiction I’ve read in a very long time. The author uses language beautifully, can set a mood, describe action, and even create very believable dialog. But I still have no idea what either the club or their adversaries are, or what role they actually play. I could have wished that the author had taken the time and space to provide a stronger foundation, so that we knew, for example, if the Club is a rogue Federal agency, a Terrorist group, or a far less than legal commercial enterprise. Same with the Watchers. Who are they, and for whom do they work?
I found the characters to be more than a little stereotypical, too. The “good ones” were way too saintly, the children too angelic, (not to mention absolutely beautiful), and the villains absolutely and unrelievedly villainous. Even the few who were supposed to be “good guys” in disguise didn’t work well, for me.
The only way I can make this book “work” in my mind is as an allegory, but again, I’m not sure what that allegory would be about. Good and evil? Sin and redemption? Possible, I suppose, but not especially interesting, at least not to this reader.
The narration was extremely professional in every way, and the narrator uses her voice to excellent effect.
I give the narrator 4 stars and the book 3 stars.
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for this unbiased review from audioBookBlast dot com.