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Extended Audio Sample The Strangler Audiobook, by William Landay Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (533 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: William Landay Narrator: Stephen Hoye Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2007 ISBN: 9780739307953
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Boston, 1963. A city on edge. On street corners, newsboys hawk the shocking headline: KENNEDY IS DEAD. In the city’s underworld, a mob war rages. But what terrifies Bostonians most is the mysterious killer who has already claimed a dozen victims, a murderer whose name is indelibly linked to their city: the Boston Strangler. This is the electrifying backdrop of William Landay’s magnificent new novel, a story of one Irish-American family, a city under siege, and the long shadow cast by the most infamous killer of his day . . . 

For the three Daley brothers, sons of a Boston cop, crime is the family business. They are simply on different sides of it. Joe is the eldest, a tough-talking cop whose gambling habits—fast women, slow horses—drag him down into the city’s gangland. Michael is the middle son; a Harvard-educated lawyer working for an ambitious attorney general, he finds himself assigned to the embattled Strangler task force. And Ricky, the devil-may-care youngest son, floats above the fray as an expert burglar—until the Strangler strikes too close to home.

As Joe’s mob debts close in around him . . . and Michael becomes snarled in a murder investigation gone very wrong . . . and Ricky is hunted by both sides of the law, the three brothers—and the women who love them—are forced to take sides. Now each must look deeper into a killer’s murderous rage, into their family’s own lethal secrets, and into the one death that has changed them forever. As William Landay’s complex, compassionate, and terrifying novel builds to a climax, two mysteries will collide—and a shattering truth will be revealed.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Troubled cops, revenge-hungry mob bosses, dead women--these are the things that make life interesting.... [The Strangler has] plenty of violence, suspense and family intrigue. Esquire.com
  • Landay movingly explores the bonds of family and basic questions of honesty and loyalty.... The emphasis remains on such themes as crime and punishment, love and honor, truth and justice. Publishers Weekly
  • Complex.... This character-driven novel ...[unfolds] against the backdrop of the oppressive atmosphere of 1963 Boston. People are reeling from the assassination of JFK and the still-on-the-loose Boston Strangler. USA Today
  • “Landay has a marvelous ear for dialogue and for relationship complexities, smartly emphasizing the impact of crime instead of on the crimes in particular. Baltimore Sun
  • Mr. Landay combines a fictional investigation of the Strangler's killings with a chronicle of three brothers.... The result is a gripping, atmospheric saga in which the official version of many matters (both criminal and civil) bears little resemblance to the truth. Wall Street Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tanya | 2/20/2014

    " I like this author but this story did not flow and had big holes in the plot. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Bob | 2/19/2014

    " Not up to the level I would expect from Landay. Slow, plodding and predictable. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lauren6677yahoo.com | 2/19/2014

    " A little too complex "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jackie | 2/5/2014

    " Pretty entertaining and lots of mystery solving throughout the book. I liked the reference to the real serial killer, The Boston Strangler, but I also liked the personal aspects they took on around the Daley family. Although I wouldn't say Boston in the 1960s is my favorite time period to read about -- also the police aspect and being in Bahstan was a little too much for me -- it gave some historical perspective (right after Kennedy was shot) and I got some suspense in there. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Stacia | 1/26/2014

    " It was not as good as his most recent book. It reminded me of another historical fiction book - but the history in this one is just tedious and merely provides a sort of backdrop for the story which is violent and dark. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ainiah | 1/20/2014

    " The constantly changing plotline was a little difficult to follow, with each of the brothers having to deal with something new each time. I especially enjoyed the brotherly interactiona shared, how on the surface they would fight and argue but underneath they try to keep each out of trouble and support one another against others. The little twist at the end wasnt so much unexpected as surprising, but could be owed ro the fact that it had kind of faded into the rest of the story. Liked that there wasnt too much gore usually seen in a lot of these books dealing with the mafia and all. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Greg Diment | 1/20/2014

    " Not as good as his other two books. It meanders through most of the first two thirds before finally getting its pace. But it never lives up to the suspense or twists of his first book or his subsequent one. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mitch | 1/19/2014

    " Just average. I powered through it because I wanted to finish it... Not because it was a wonderful page turner. It wasnt bad - it just wasn't very good. The characters were decent but most of the writing was just fluff, especially the beginning of every chapter. Disappointing, pass on this one. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leon Aldrich | 12/16/2013

    " If you are a fan of Michael Connelly or John Sanford, then add Landay to your "to read" list. I'm kicking myself for not reading this author sooner. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 nassir | 12/6/2013

    " i liked this book alot although it was not as good as his first book mission flats!!! the story has lots of twists and turns and will keep you guessing til the end "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joan | 9/18/2013

    " This was a great book, but, as I feared, not nearly as good as his Defending Jacob, which was awesome. Still, a good read. It had a lot of similarities to Dennis Lehane's Mystic River and The Given Day. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dana | 9/6/2013

    " It was ok, it jumped around from too many situations a bit too much. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Paul Mccollom | 1/8/2013

    " Could not finish it. Poor due diligence in that one of the main characters has a background as a Marine fighting with an armored division across Europe. The Marines fought in the Pacific and did not field an armored unit in Europe. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pam Bahrt | 12/26/2012

    " I had a hard time following the story line at first. It took a while, but once I got into it and was able to follow, I enjoyed the read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lynn | 8/17/2012

    " Interesting both in plot and characters, well done and compelling. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Megan Tiscareno | 7/5/2012

    " just couldn't get into it. very dry, jumped around a lot and there was no connection to make with the characters. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sue | 4/4/2012

    " I guess I have to give up William Landay. While I really liked Defending Jacob, I find his other books too violently gritty. The images they leave me with are too disturbing. I also find it hard to find a single character in any of the books to root for. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennifer | 12/6/2011

    " Not my favorite book by Landay, probably of his three this was my least favorite. Still, he is a masterful artist and it was a good read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Elbert | 8/8/2011

    " A very slow read. Not up to Defending Jacob in interest, action or story progression. He is capable of better work. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kim Stuppy Couet | 3/1/2011

    " Very interesting characters. I expected it to be more about The Boston Strangler and his story. The story was more about a policeman and his family and what happens to them in this period of time set in 1963 - 1964. The story was better than I anticipated. I love when that happens! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lila Ashear | 8/8/2010

    " I loved how Landay mixed fact and fiction; history and fantasy. Interesting take on Boston in the 60's. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Patricia | 7/29/2010

    " Decided not to finish this book. Just could not get into it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gail Jorgensen | 7/24/2010

    " It was good but not as good as the other two. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah | 7/19/2010

    " It was fairly good, although it ended in a way that I saw coming, which slightly dampened the experience for me. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Coki | 7/22/2008

    " Listened to mostly because I have a little crush on the audiobook reader Stephen Hoye. But interesting juxtaposition of true crime and a family drama - much more my speed than the detail laden non-fic stuff. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jp | 4/13/2008

    " Landay did a wonderful job of evoking Boston of that era. It was a pleasant and suspenseful novel, but Landay wasn't at his best juggling multiple viewpoints which left the book a bit uneven. Nevertheless, the book was okay. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Veralene | 8/29/2007

    " The story of 3 Irish-American brothers (cop, crook, and lawyer) is set in Boston during the time of the stranglings (1963 +). The family story is complicated and messy, like real families, and caught up in the investigation of who is the Strangler. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 nassir | 4/28/2007

    " i liked this book alot although it was not as good as his first book mission flats!!! the story has lots of twists and turns and will keep you guessing til the end "

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About the Author
Author William Landay

William Landay is the author of The Strangler, a Los Angeles Times Favorite Crime Book of the Year, and Mission Flats, winner of the Creasey Memorial Dagger Award for Best First Crime Novel and a Barry Award nominee. A former district attorney who holds degrees from Yale and Boston College of Law, he lives in Boston.

About the Narrator

Stephen Hoye has worked as a professional actor in London and Los Angeles for more than thirty years. Trained at Boston University and the Guildhall in London, he has acted in television series and six feature films and has appeared in London’s West End.