Download Five Pieces of Jade Audiobook

Five Pieces of Jade Audiobook, by John  Ball Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: John Ball Narrator: Dion Graham Publisher: Brilliance Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Series: The Virgil Tibbs Series Release Date: August 2015 ISBN: 9781501251573
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The body of an elderly Chinese importer of rare jade lies on the carpet of a quietly expensive house in Pasadena, California. In a rough semicircle around his head rest four pieces of jade; protruding from the heart is a fifth—the Ya-Chang ritual knife.

Who murdered the importer? Was it Yumeko, the beautiful half-black, half-Japanese girl who lived with him? Johnny Wu, a rich Chinese-American? Another customer? Or a political enemy from overseas?

Black homicide detective Virgil Tibbs finds himself in the middle of a deadly situation involving hard drugs, Communist Chinese agents, and the exotic settings of the jade trade as he coolly tracks down the murderer.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “This fourth in the Virgil Tibbs mysteries, first published nearly fifty years ago…gains unexpected new life in Dion Graham’s narration. The plot’s working parts include the black homicide detective’s discussions with a young woman of mixed Japanese and African-American descent who speaks minimal English; a variety of Chinese, Chinese-American, and Japanese-American characters; and a couple of white men as well. Graham injects the faintest touch of irony into the antiquated speeches and creates voices that demonstrate varying levels of comfort speaking English while at the same time maintaining respect for both characters and author. In sum, he ensures that this audiobook resonates both as valuable cultural history and fascinating contemporary listening. Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award.”


  • “[Virgil Tibbs is] a remarkable individual who may well end up in the great detective category.”

    New York Times, praise for the series

  • “A nice tight murder puzzle.”

    Times Literary Supplement (London)

  • “A taut, dramatic yarn.”

    Charlotte Observer

  • AudioFile Earphones Award Winner

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About the Author

John Ball (1911–1988) wrote over thirty novels during his career including mysteries, war novels, and adventure stories, but his reputation as a novelist is based on his first work, In the Heat of the Night, from 1965. While under considerable pressure from his publisher to make a change, he insisted on keeping the leading character in his novel a black man. He wrote other books that featured the hero of In the Heat of the Night, detective Virgil Tibbs, including The Cool Cottontail and Johnny Get Your Gun. Born in Schenectady, New York, he grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and worked briefly as a part-time police officer in Los Angeles.

About the Narrator

Dion Graham, from HBO’s The Wire, also narrates The First 48 on A&E. Winner of more than a dozen Earphones Awards and the prestigious Audie Award for best narration, he has performed on Broadway, off Broadway, internationally, in films, and in several hit television series. His performances have been praised as thoughtful and compelling, vivid and full of life.