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Extended Audio Sample Freedomland Audiobook, by Richard Price Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,040 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Richard Price Narrator: Joe Morton Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2008 ISBN: 9780739369975
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A white woman, her hands gashed and bloody, stumbles into an inner-city emergency room and announces that she has just been carjacked by a black man. But then comes the horrifying twist: Her young son was asleep in the back seat, and he has now disappeared into the night.

So begins Richard Price’s electrifying new novel, a tale set on the same turf—Dempsey, New Jersey—as Clockers. Assigned to investigate the case of Brenda Martin’s missing child is detective Lorenzo Council, a local son of the very housing project targeted as the scene of the crime. Under a white-hot media glare, Lorenzo launches an all-out search for the abducted boy, even as he quietly explores a different possibility: Does Brenda Martin know a lot more about her son’s disappearance than she’s admitting?

Right behind Lorenzo is Jesse Haus, an ambitious young reporter from the city’s evening paper. Almost immediately, Jesse suspects Brenda of hiding something. Relentlessly, she works her way into the distraught mother’s fragile world, befriending her even as she looks for the chance to break the biggest story of her career.

As the search for the alleged carjacker intensifies, so does the simmering racial tension between Dempsey and its mostly white neighbor, Gannon. And when the Gannon police arrest a black man from Dempsey and declare him a suspect, the animosity between the two cities threatens to boil over into violence. With the media swarming and the mood turning increasingly ugly, Lorenzo must take desperate measures to get to the bottom of Brenda Martin’s story.

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Quotes & Awards

  • A 1998 New York Times Notable Book for Fiction

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Laura | 2/14/2014

    " I don't know what I expected from this -- certainly not the brilliant exposure & exploration of racism in America I got. Price's dialogue is dead-on, and his stories are just heartbreaking. Un-put-downable. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Matthew | 1/25/2014

    " this is an amazing book. After reading it I put it down and then read four more by Price--there's quite an evolution in his plotting. But throughout his books, the dialogue is as good as any I've read. His novels are as novels should be: deceptively easy to read--simple at first glance, but filled with complex prose and just enough wisdom that the reader doesn't notice until the last page is turned. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Seth | 1/24/2014

    " This book could have been a three or even four star book if it didn't have a major fatal flaw. The story is overly ambitious and not primarily feasible. The author made a good attempt to write an "epic small town" story, he remembered that it's important to have likable characters, true to form dialogue and a writing style that moves with ease inspire of the 700+ page total. But this book is full of side stories, some of which sound pretty interesting to be honest, but they don't have anything to do with the main plot theme and in most cases are not resolved in any redeeming way. I don't think the author is a fool, I think he was trying to cater to what he believes is the true experience of the police detective. Ask a person what they might have seen relative to a major crime, they might not have seen anything, but they'll let you figure that out for yourself while they fill your head with their personal troubles which you didn't come to investigate today. Two points for good narrative, but why did he have to invent a fictional Northern New Jersey county and two towns within that county? Wish he had picked actual communities, and also turned on the TV long enough to understand that New York City based Television newscasts do not send their van based reporters to report on NJ street crime. When Newark burns, they fly their helicopters over head, Why? It's easier, you don't have to fight the traffic or pay the tolls returning to Manhattan. After all, the action reporter and her girlfriends have five star dinner reservations at 8, and a private booth at Webster Hall later. They don't want to be late.. Same thing happens in Philadelphia. It's also important to recognize that more than 60% of their viewing demographics are New York State residents and they don't give two $&i!'s about who was murdered or robbed in Hoboken, East Orange or Jersey City. Those stories are left for the NJ edition print newspapers and the local access cable channels. Anyway, enough about that. Good story over all, but two or three times flawed and receives a lesser rating as a result. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jay | 1/15/2014

    " Do not read this book. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Alana S | 12/22/2013

    " bored... never finished it "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tom | 12/19/2013

    " grimy, gritty, fantastic dialogue, tense plot, sharp characterisation - all the things we expect from Richard Price. Why not 5 stars ? I guess it felt like a long ride - and I didn't feel the same about Samaritan (which was the same length, and very similar setting). "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rob Mentzer | 12/9/2013

    " Great book, big and big-hearted, a web of cops, reporters and suspects working a redball. Unfortunately it ends with people talking about dreams they've had, I don't like books that end with people talking about their dreams. But it is still great. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sadie Slootsky | 10/24/2013

    " Read this before you see the movie! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bill | 5/20/2013

    " Price tells a good story, but at times I wouldn't mind him telling a more concise story. Freedomland is set in the same Dempsey as Clockers, and suffers from being about 20% too long just like his more popular work. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Danielle | 4/9/2013

    " This was hard to read. You know in your heart how it's going to end, but it's so well-written you stick with it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joy | 3/24/2013

    " Haunting crime thriller about a kidnapping in New Jersey. Reading Price though write genre fiction is like reading Cormac McCarthy write genre fiction. Both are such skilled writers that their book eclipses the category. Well done. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Phillip | 12/19/2012

    " Richard Price writes the most fully realized characters of anybody currently writing. Impossible to characterize, made me hate the movie even more than I already did. Although I haven't actually seen the movie. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Elaine | 11/18/2012

    " Francine Prose recommended this author in her book on writing. Interesting race dynamics, but reads like a poor man's Tom Wolfe. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Michelle | 6/1/2012

    " i prefer this genre in a tv show or movie...murder mystery in a racial hotbed. too long! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jane Anne | 2/9/2012

    " Page after page, we had to go over the inner life and nervous condition of the white female character. What of the majority-black neighborhood? The men @ the shade-tree barbershop? The old ladies? I kept waiting for that! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Thomas | 2/3/2012

    " I heard the movie was terrible but don't let that scare you away. I read this when it came out and thought it was the best book I had read in years. The characters are alive and you can talk to them (scream at them). "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 shana naomi | 11/14/2011

    " one chapter in, i am prepared to say that is one of the most compelling first chapters of a book i've ever read... i think people told me to start w/ clockers, but it wasn't on kindle, so i'm starting here. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jim | 9/6/2011

    " This was pretty damned good as well. Like most of the Price work I've read, it's infuriating and the mystery is not so much the key as the characters. Impressive, even if getting to the resolution was grating and maddening. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Nicholas | 6/22/2011

    " Didn't like it. Couldn't get into it. Will probably never finish it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeremy Soldevilla | 4/23/2011

    " I love Richard Price's writing, and really enjoyed this at first, but it took too long to get to the end. About 100 pages too long. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jan Kirk | 3/9/2011

    " Great characterizations and compelling story.... "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Catherine | 8/26/2010

    " Loooong. Yes, I wanted to know what really happened, and yes, character's backgrounds, reactions, etc can be part of the story, but wow, small print, lots of pages, story went on and on. . .
    This is a book I was actually able to put down for days and not mind "missing" it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sean | 3/13/2010

    " Price is peerless. I want endless iterations of his tri-state vérité. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Davidgmarkham | 10/19/2009

    " Listened to this as an audiobook.

    Crime story that is beach book quality, "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melisa | 6/26/2009

    " Too long but was def. worth it because the good parts are so good. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michael | 6/23/2009

    " Excellent story of a black cop stuggling to work both sides during a search for a missing white child in a ghetto amid a background of racial
    rioting. Wonderful Price street dialog and characters. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Baseballs4me | 6/22/2009

    " OH the tangled web we weave when we practice to decieve. "

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About the Author
Author Richard PriceRichard H. Price is a physicist specializing in general relativity. He is the coauthor of three well-known books in general relativity.
About the Narrator

Joe Morton is an award-winning actor who made his Broadway debut in Hair and has gone on to perform in many other plays and over seventy films, made-for-TV movies, and mini-series. He and his wife Nora have two children.