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The Last Goodbye Audio Cassette – Abridged, Audiobook

4.4 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: Harper; Abridged edition (Feb. 5 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006059053X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060590536
  • Product Dimensions: 15.1 x 15.1 x 3.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 172 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,876,745 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

"As usual, the story begins with a woman crying." So says Atlanta lawyer Jack Hammond in this mesmerizing thriller about a good man caught in a web of bad love and murder. Beautiful client Violeta Ramirez is doing the crying on behalf of her dope-dealer boyfriend when Jack tumbles so hard for her his high-flying legal career is grounded and Violeta ends up dead. Two years later, Jack is working out of his one-man law office fishing for clients at the bottom of the criminal pool when he begins investigating the suspicious overdose death of his old college pal, Doug Townsend. With the help of a local hacker, Nightmare, Jack unlocks Doug's computer and stumbles into a quagmire involving the deaths of eight hepatitis C patients who were all enrolled in an experimental drug trial gone horribly wrong. Doug was also strangely obsessed with beautiful African-American opera singer Michele Sonnier, as is Jack after one look at her photos and a night at the opera. That her husband is the billionaire CEO of a local drug firm with its own hep C drug makes the liaison even more dangerous. After finding the disgraced researcher who headed the botched drug trial, Jack and his lowlife helpers begin to make real headway in solving the case. Even though melancholy, wisecracking Jack is a lawyer, this isn't a legal thriller so much as a knight-in-shining armor tale with the hero cast in the mold of the great Travis McGee. It's not Grisham that Arvin (The Will) should be compared to, but the incomparable John D. MacDonald. Those readers who value intelligence, fine writing and action will find it all in this outstanding novel.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Doug Townsend is just another overdose as far as the Atlanta cops are concerned. His friend and lawyer, Jack Hammond, doesn't share the cavalier attitude. His suspicions multiply when he learns that Doug's fatal dosage was delivered intravenously despite a lifelong needle phobia. Jack also learns Doug had an obsessive interest in Michele Sonnier, the hottest star in American opera and the trophy wife of Charles Ralston, founder of Horizn Pharmaceuticals. Jack contacts Sonnier and soon learns her well-hidden secret: Michele grew up in Atlanta's poorest, most notorious housing project and had an illegitimate child, whom she gave up for adoption while still a child herself. Doug was tracking down her daughter for her. Did Ralston's company, about to go public with a well-publicized cure for Parkinson's, get rid of Doug rather than allow him to drag the CEO through a scandal? Jack, himself a man with a regrettable past, enlists the aid of a Fagin's army of borderline miscreants to help Michele and, in the process, discover what Horizn is trying to hide. Arvin's first legal thriller, The Will (2000), generated excellent reviews. His second just might kick him to a whole new level, critically and commercially. He presents love, sex, money, power, and violence in an irresistibly melancholy noir package in which redemption is the motive but hell beckons at every turn. Wes Lukowsky
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
From the opening paragraph of THE LAST GOODBYE, the reader knows that this tale of mystery, suspense and romance is going to be special. That introduction --- only a few sentences, sentences that say so little yet tell so much --- creates an air of quiet foreboding that permeates this somber, electrifying story of greed, faith and, in the end, hope.
Reed Arvin showed promise with his earlier work. THE WILL is a modern-day morality tale about gaining the world and losing a soul. Hints of Arvin's potential were seeded throughout THE WILL; reading that fine novel, however, hardly prepares one for THE LAST GOODBYE.
THE WILL was set primarily in rural Kansas, with occasional glimpses of Chicago as a method of providing contrast, but little more. THE LAST GOODBYE takes place entirely in present-day Atlanta, a city full of history (which it revises and rewrites each day), a place that proudly describes itself as "too busy to hate." Passions, however, still run high, as this book demonstrates.
Jack Hammond is the story's narrator. He's a rising star in one of Hot-lanta's white shoe law firms until a violation of ethics results in a tragedy that he should have foreseen. Reduced to taking court-appointed criminal cases in a law firm of one, Hammond is surprised to learn that Doug Townsend, a college friend (and, so Hammond tells us, the reason why he became a lawyer), is dead from a drug overdose. But there are puzzling circumstances associated with his death. Townsend was making strong efforts toward recovery from drug addiction and, more significantly, had died from an injection overdose --- a strange ending for a man who was terrified of needles. Dissatisfied with the official version of events, Hammond begins his own inquiry.
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Format: Hardcover
The contemporary thriller has now been epitomized. Reed Arvin, the talented young author, has delivered a book that stands high and above its contemporary competition for several different reasons. For one, and most importantly, the book has a lot of meat to it. Arvin deals thoughtfully and diligently with a lot of hot-button contemporary issues: race relations, corporate crime, the disparity between the rich and the poor, the modern drug scene, and more. He also delves into explorations of love, lust, and morality. It is hardly hyperbolic to call the novel philosophical -- at least as far as modern writing goes: it certainly doesn't get any better than this. Second, the book avoids most, though not all, of the modern thriller's cliches. As mentioned before, there is more to this book than just the surface fly-by-the-seat-of-the-pants plot: there is depth and complexity: it is not just a mere thriller for thrill's sake. A cliched ending is also avoided. For once, with a modern book, the competent reader can read The Last Goodbye without picturing it as an overblown, big-budget Hollywood motion picture: there is enough meat to this book that a lot would be lost in the process of transferring it to celluloid. The book is also well-written and the dialogue is quite funny.
It should be noted that, though the novel's protagonist is a lawyer, this is not a legal thriller. There are very few courtroom scenes, and they are not the focus of the book. The numerous comparisons to Grisham are not applicable; fans of the strict legal genre that he pioneered should look elsewhere.
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Format: Hardcover
Jack Hammond tells of how it all began when Violeta Ramirez came to plead for her drug dealing boyfriend. Smitten, Jack crosses the line between client & counselor. After handily winning Miguel Caliz's freedom, the ungrateful felon promptly uses it to beat to death the beautiful & faithless Violeta.
Naturally, after Jack is subpoenaed as a witness in this tawdry trial, his high-flying legal career crashes & burns. Two years later, he has remade his life, working out of his own law office, taking all the court appointed cases Sammy Liston, clerk to Judge Thomas Odom, sends his way, defending the dregs of Atlanta.
Until his old college friend, Doug Townsend, is found dead of an overdose. The police don't care that Doug had been clean & sober for months, & tag it as a suicide. Except Jack knows his friend had a phobia about needles.
When Jack finds a drawer in Doug's desk filled with plane tickets all paid for in cash, a computer he can't get into, & programs for operas in which one singer always stars, Jack thinks he is setting out to clear his friend's name. What he discovers is the world of opera & a luminous woman with much to hide, foul play between rival biotech companies out to find a cure for Hepatitis C, & a mother in search of her daughter.
Rebeccasreads highly recommends THE LAST GOODBYE as a multi-layered story, rich with the exotic scenery & history of Atlanta; dastardly deeds & satisfying redemption. It is lyrically written & filled with characters who will linger long in your memory, such as Nightmare, Michele Sonnier, Rabbit, Blu McClendon, Sammy Liston, & especially Jack Hammond.
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