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Extended Audio Sample A Mortal Terror, by James R. Benn Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (162 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: James R. Benn Narrator: Peter Berkro Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Billy Boyle World War II Mysteries Release Date:
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Two officers from the American troops stationed in Caserta, Italy, not far from Naples, have been found murdered. The MOs are completely different, and it seems like the officers had no connection to each other, but one frightening fact links the murders: each body was discovered with a single playing card: the lieutenant, the ten of hearts; the captain, the jack of hearts. The message seems to be clear: if the murderer isn’t apprehended, the higher ranks will be next. Billy is sent to Italy for the investigation, which grows increasingly sinister. But he has other things on his mind, too. His girlfriend, Diana, is on a very dangerous spy mission, and Billy doesn’t know when—or if—he’ll see her again. To make matters worse, Billy’s just learned that his baby brother, Danny, is being sent to Europe as an infantry replacement, an incredibly dangerous assignment. And all around him, he sees GIs suffering from combat fatigue preparing for another battle. As the invasion at Anzio begins, Billy needs to keep a cool head amid fear and terror as the killer calculates his next moves. Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “A fast-paced saga set in a period when the fate of civilization still hangs in the balance. As Boyle reflects after a fleeting assignation with his English girlfriend, an always-in-danger secret agent: ‘We laughed, but I can’t say we were happy…We slept, but could not rest.’”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “A thrilling, fast-paced book...Benn skillfully blends the mystery of the murders and the violence of the war into one fantastic, satisfying whole.”

    Mystery Scene magazine

  • “Benn does a superb job of simultaneously capturing the personal anguish of war and creating a splendid adventure novel.”

    Library Journal

  • “Solid wartime adventure, well grounded in historical detail, and boasting a challenging mystery to boot.”


Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Alexis | 2/18/2014

    " I enjoy the setting of this mystery series - World War II Europe. Lt. Billy Boyle, whose mother is a distant relation to Eisenhower, is on Ike's staff as an investigator, utlilizing his experience as a Boston cop. Despite his mother's hopes that he's in a nice, safe staff position with Ike, he's quite often sent into danger, either from the fighting or from the criminals he's after, or both. In this outing he's after a serial killer who's targeting officers and leaving playing cards on the bodies. This takes Boyle to Italy and the battle at Anzio where he also tries to keep an eye on his kid brother who's seeing his first combat. Helping Boyle is his friend Kaz, a Polish baron attached to the British Army. Boyle also worries about his English girlfriend Diana, who's gone undercover as a nun at the Vatican. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Chris | 2/11/2014

    " A psychopath is killing officers and anyone who gets in his way in an infantry unit in Italy. Meanwhile the Anzio assault occurs and Boyle is again at the front lines dealing with jewels, whores, a gun carrying chaplain, and family interests. A very interesting ending which paves the way for some more adventures. Wondering what campaign we will find Billy in next?? "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Nan | 2/1/2014

    " This series is improving all the time. Time has been taken to really flesh put the main characters, making it easier to identify with them. This one has added Billy's younger brother into the mix. Great research, ready for the next in the series. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Nikki | 2/1/2014

    " Billy Boyle, whom we've met in five earlier tales of World War II, is now in Italy as the Allies move north. What appears to be a serial killer is targeting U.S. officers, moving up the ranks and leaving a playing card on each body. Billy investigates while also worrying about his lover Diana, under cover at the Vatican, and his brother Danny, a college boy now in the Army. These books are so good, you almost don't want the war to end. Recommended. "

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About the Author
Author James R. Benn

James R. Benn is the author of the Billy Boyle World War II mysteries. The debut, Billy Boyle, was named one of the top five mysteries of 2006 by Book Sense and was a Dilys Award nominee. Subsequent books have received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and Library Journal and have been listed as the BookPage Mystery of the Month. Two have been tagged as Killer Books by the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association. A librarian for many years, Benn lives in Hadlyme, Connecticut, with his wife, Deborah Mandel.