by Stephen King
Series: Bill Hodges Trilogy #1
Narrator: Will Patton
Length: 14 hrs and 22 mins
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
Narration: 5 cups
In a mega-stakes, high-suspense race against time, three of the most unlikely and winning heroes Stephen King has ever created try to stop a lone killer from blowing up thousands.In the frigid pre-dawn hours, in a distressed Midwestern city, hundreds of desperate unemployed folks are lined up for a spot at a job fair. Without warning, a lone driver plows through the crowd in a stolen Mercedes, running over the innocent, backing up, and charging again. Eight people are killed; fifteen are wounded. The killer escapes.In another part of town, months later, a retired cop named Bill Hodges is still haunted by the unsolved crime. When he gets a crazed letter from someone who self-identifies as the "perk" and threatens an even more diabolical attack, Hodges wakes up from his depressed and vacant retirement, hell-bent on preventing another tragedy.Brady Hartfield lives with his alcoholic mother in the house where he was born. He loved the feel of death under the wheels of the Mercedes, and he wants that rush again. Only Bill Hodges, with a couple of highly unlikely allies, can apprehend the killer before he strikes again. And they have no time to lose, because Brady's next mission, if it succeeds, will kill or maim thousands. Mr. Mercedes is a war between good and evil, from the master of suspense whose insight into the mind of this obsessed, insane killer is chilling and unforgettable.
I am a die-hard Stephen King fan and have been since I was a teenager. I love his quirky characters, vivid imagination and his ability to pull me into the story. Recently I have been enjoying audio books and snagged Mr. Mercedes on audio when I saw the narrator was Will Patton. Mr. Mercedes was brilliant mystery crime thriller with an eclectic cast of characters who intrigued me as much as solving the case. I laughed, cringed and gave myself over to the audio.
The tale opens with an unthinkable, seemingly random crime that has horrific consequences and King had me hooked. The crime goes unsolved and is one of a handful that plagues now retired cop Bill Hodges. He sits in his home day after day watching a regiment of daily talk shows, fondling his gun, and contemplating suicide. When the mail falls through his door he finds a letter from someone identifying themselves as Mr. Mercedes. He is threatening another attack and it springs Bill out of his depression and back on the case. He enlists his neighborhood friend, Jerome to aid him, and picks up other help along the way.
The tale that unfolds in Mr. Mercedes takes us on one heck of a ride with twists and turns that kept me up listening into the wee hours. King includes our villain Brady Hartfield’s perspective, and call me creepy, but I loved getting inside his twisted mind. King’s characters are not your typical heroes and villains. They are quirky and flawed and he quickly brings them to life as you root for them, fear for them and shivers as they crosshairs with Brady. The story was perfectly paced with moments of intense suspense, and eye-opening horror. King then weaves in humor, friendship and teamwork giving you the entire package.
Will Patton is the narrator and many of you will recognize the name from the hit show Falling Skies. He has performed in more than forty-five films and was the narrator for King’s previous novel Doctor Sleep. Patton brought the tale to a completely new level for me. I adored his voice for Jerome as well as the other cast. He made Brady’s thoughts seem real and added a creep factor that gave me shivers. His interpretation of Bill Hodges reminded me of the old dime store novels and Patton breathed life into him. As I closed my eyes, listening to Patton each character was easily identifiable, and the tale flowed seamlessly allowing me to experience that book high I constantly crave.
Fans of King and crime thrillers will find Mr. Mercedes to be a stunning addition to King’s collection.
I’ve just started enjoying audio and saw this at my library’s site the other day. I’ve been wanting to read this (and King in general) but was concerned about how it would be in audio form. Glad to hear this one really worked. I’ll have to get on the waiting list as soon as I finish the book I’m listening to now.
I loved the narration and this is a great crime thriller type novel
Sharon - Obsession with Books
I haven’t read a Stephen King novel in such a long time! this series sounds wonderful.
A great review Kimba!
It was Sharon. I loved the characters.
I need more King in my life if I wasn’t such a wuss. I wonder if listening to his books instead might help me hah
This one is more suspense/crime thriller Lily..not horror like It or The Stand.
Sarah (Sarah's Book Shelves)
I’ve got this one on my “read before the end of the year” TBR list. I had initially shied away because King’s horror is a bit too much for me (aka Misery), but I hear this is more of a thriller than horror. And, I did love 11/22/63! Your review definitely has me moving it higher on the TBR list!
Yes, totally more suspense thriller and nothing like Misery*shivers*
I love a good audio book. I listen while I drive or when I am cleaning. 🙂 I am also a big fan of King- so this is one I have to read or listen to for sure. Thanks for sharing!
I loved Will’s narration and yep King is a win every time 🙂
I read Mr. Mercedes over the summer and loved his quirky characters. Although for some reason kept picturing Buffalo Bill as Brady. Great review!
Would you believe I listened to this in July. LOL I had it scheduled several times but then a shiny arc took its slot..
I have this audio in my queue and I can’t wait to get to it! I listened to the narrator (I wasn’t familiar with him) and feel in love immediately with his voice. I just know I’m going to love this one!
Enjoy, I love the narrator 🙂
I have never read a Stephen King book, but this sounds soooo fantastic! I love your review! Makes me want to read it even more!
Ooo King is one of my favorites. You really need to try him
Good review, Kimba. I’m glad the narrator added something for you – that’s always a plus! I don’t think I’ll be breaking my “no Stephen King” rule anytime soon, though. Too creepy for me!
This wasn’t scary in the blood and horror sense. It was more crime thriller.
Braine Talk Supe
With SKing it is the characters that really make the story. And I love super awesome villains! The creepier, the more evil, the better!
I hope you’re feeling better, Kimberly, enjoy the weekend!
I agree totally, the villain is creepy, but not like some of his darkest.
I’ve never read a Stephen King novel because they sound really chilling, I saw IT when I was younger though and man, that was so creepy. It sounds like all of his books have that creepy vibe to it. Great review Kimba!
I love his quirky characters and the way he can make the hair stand up on the back of my neck. Not all of his books are straight up horror. This is more mystery/thriller.
It’s been so long since I read a Stephen King book but I was anxious to be disappointed I confess but I really should go back to the genre, mainly if you enjoyed it that much. great review!
This felt like old school King to me, like Lawnmower Man
Oh I love Stephen King! Adding this to my wish list. Great review Kim 🙂
Glad to hear you enjoy the King too Sharonda 🙂
I can’t believe I haven’t gotten around to this one yet! I’m a huge King fan, too, my friend, and I am SO happy to hear that this is a great addition to the King collection. I’ll be bumping it up on the list. Thanks for the great review! Have a beautiful weekend 🙂
Everytime I see a Stephen King review I feel the urge to read his stuff…and then I just can’t get past the first chapter. 🙁 I’m starting to think maybe we’re just not a match. I love the movies and shows based off of the books, I just can’t read it. Maybe an audiobook is the way to go?
Hmm, maybe the audio will work better for you.
Ann M. Noser
And now you’ve convinced me that I need to try more audio books (especially when traveling, because scanning through radio stations is kind of lame).
I’m curious–have you ever listened to The Inkheart trilogy, as read by Brendan Fraser? (Honestly, I want the hardcover set for Xmas, AND the audio version–is that selfish of me?)
No I haven’t Ann. This is the first year I have done audiobooks, and now listen to 2 or 3 a month. I do not have a commute, but listen when cleaning, walking and gardening.
Another great read by Stephen King! Thanks for the review!!
Glad to hear you are a fan too 🙂
Another winner for King! Isn’t this the perfect time of year for all his stories?
It is. I actually listened to this in June..LOL I have so many arc reviews I am having trouble sharing the ones I own/purchase..hehe
I don’t do audio, too bad, because this sounds like the perfect story to be told to someone, but I might pick up the book and give it a chance. I used to read a lot of KIng, but slacked off greatly in recent years. When I lived in Maine, it was known that Mr. King was King, and rightly so!
Ooo if I lived in Maine his tales would be even more creepy..especially in Derry. Until this year I would have said the same thing about audio.
I have been curious about this book, so now you have enhanced my interest. Definitely adding this one to my list!
Enjoy Laurel, I do love King 🙂
Man, I wish I could get into audiobooks. I think my MS has made it difficult to concentrate on anything that isn’t in front of me. This book sounds good… Another Stephen King you probably shouldn’t read/listen to at night!
A year ago I would have said audiobook stink. You do need to concentrate, and I find if I am doing things like cleaning and use ear-buds it is easy to get lost in them. The narrator was so good on this one, that I actually sat on the sofa and listened as well. This is more thriller and safe for late night reading..no clowns 🙂
I’m a huge fan of King, but I haven’t read any of his newer work. I’ve read pretty much all of his older stuff. I need to pick up newer stories. This looks really good. Great review.
This has an old King vibe to it. I hope you read some soon