10/40: The Man in the Empty Suit (by Sean Ferrell)

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The Man in the Empty Suit

by Sean Ferrall; narrated by Mauro Hantman

Published February 5, 2013 by Soho Press

Audiobook published February 5, 2013 by AudioGO

The following graphic is a great synopsis of The Man in the Empty Suit. It is from Unshelved.com and was created by Gene Ambaum and Bill Barnes. Though the The Man in the Empty Suit had appeared on my radar, it wasn’t until I saw this graphic (courtesy a FB share from SOHO senior editor, Juliet Grames) that I knew that I had to go get a copy and read it! Shockingly, the audio edition of the book was less expensive than the print or eBook editions, so I purchased the audiobook from the AudioGO web-site.

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+ The Man in the Empty Suit is a fascinatingly complex tale rich with imagery, other sensory detail and moods. Overall dark and seedy in tenor, the ruin of a hotel, the flares of color, the spill of liquor, the smell of dishevelment… all are the background rattle and hum of a story in which a man struggles to rise above the personal hell of his making and, his own selfish nature.

The narrator has a clear voice; but didn’t do particularly well in shaping the text, delineating the different iterations of the main characters, and failed to maintain the feminine aspect consistently for a major female character. As a result, I was somewhat confused as to what was really important in a tale fraught with possible allegorical details vs clues in the mystery and; whether I had missed something or if there were plot holes. As for the undifferentiated voices of the main charcter, when he was talking to different versions of himself, it became unclear as to who was speaking though there were textual cues that the narrator could have used to help create distinction. And wow, having a female character all of the sudden speak in a mannish way not only took me out of the story; but wondering if it was a correction that wasn’t voice matched. Also, there was booth noise late in the production which is something that drives me insane in a professional production.

OTHER: I bought a digital dnload edition of The Man in the Empty Suit (by Sean Ferrall; narrated by Mauro Hantman) from AudioGO.  I receive no monies, goods or services in exchange for reviewing the product and/or mentioning any of the persons or companies that are or may be implied in this post. 

I have challenged myself to read forty books this summer. Many books will be backlist titles as I’m trying to clear the stacks; but I have no doubt that new releases will make their way in too! 😉

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