Extended Audio Sample

Download When the Sacred Ginmill Closes: A Matt Scudder Mystery Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample When the Sacred Ginmill Closes: A Matt Scudder Mystery (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Lawrence Block
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (1,843 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Lawrence Block Narrator: Mark Hammer Publisher: Recorded Books Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2008 ISBN:
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When ex-cop Matt Scudder thought back on the summer of '75, two faces emerged from behind the smoky haze of a half dozen boozy saloons that made up his beat: Skip Devoe and Tommy Tillary - two bar flies he wouldn't have given a second thought to in the bright light of day. Yet they and their troubles were the reason that moved him a little farther out of the bleary-eyed mess that had become his life. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tony Gleeson | 2/14/2014

    " Lawrence Block writes several different series in several different voices. His Bernie Rhodenbarr "Burglar" books are tongue-in-cheek and funny as hell. His Matt Scudder series, set in the same Manhattan milieu, is darker and more pessimistic, but with wry touches of humor. Scudder is a haunted man chased by demons and possessed of a fatal love for booze. Through the series he struggles, and finally achieves, sobriety-- a crucial ongoing theme. To me, this title is where Block most effectively touches on the undercurrent of what it's like to be a drunk (and I know what he's talkin' about BTW). It's funny, it's touching, it's tragic. And as in all of the books of the Scudder series, the mystery is a good one and the plot masterfully constructed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chris Ford | 1/20/2014

    " Favorite Scudder book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Christopher | 1/9/2014

    " Smoky and engaging, nostalgic and philosophical. This is hard-boiled crime fiction the way I like it. In my mind, this one ranks right up there with Chandler's Big Sleep. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karl | 1/9/2014

    " Been rereading the Matthew Scudder books. This one's predecessor, Eight Million Ways to Die, always seemed like a special book to me. So why did Block go back to the alcohol-soaked days of Scudder for this one? Well, it's fine, but ... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ray Charbonneau | 1/4/2014

    " One of the more interesting things beyond the usual is how Block felt it necessary to go back in time to when Scudder an alcoholic in order for the story to work. The "Scudder is _really_ sober" wrapper adds nothing, and Block is skilled enough to know that, but he still had to have it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katherine Clark | 12/24/2013

    " Very interesting. Much more descriptive with lists of places to drink and eat, and descriptions of types of people who drink. The writing seemed more disjointed as well, and the narrative wasn't as plot driven as the other books in the series. It was interesting and kind of dreamy. I liked it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sue | 12/18/2013

    " The title should have been Pub Crawl. Honestly, it was mostly about drinking in bars with a flimsy mystery woven in there. Very thin. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lee | 12/14/2013

    " This is the first in the Matthew Scudder series. Classic series! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Allison | 12/11/2013

    " I love Block's Matthew Scudder novels. The mysteries are incidental; the characters and the clear-eyed but loving rendering of New York are the real success. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kevin Connery | 11/30/2013

    " Matthew Scudder 6 "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 John Beer | 10/16/2013

    " A fun read. New york descriptions right on. Looking forward to more Lawrence Block books "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Pat Burns | 7/4/2013

    " My favorite Scudder novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Finn | 6/26/2013

    " Great modern noir. The novel's intertwining mysteries take a back seat to a brilliantly realized cast of flawed, all-too-human characters. I'm definitely planning to go back to the beginning of the series and read the other books straight through. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andy | 6/25/2013

    " The Matt Scudder series is one of the finest NYC hard boiled ever written. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Heidi | 9/8/2012

    " Love Scudder! This is a great step in his journey! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marni | 8/5/2012

    " This is my favorite in Lawrence Block's Matthew Scudder series. I've read the entire series, of course, but this one is a classic tragedy. It talks about friendship, loyalty, betrayal--a wonderfully written and plotted book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rusty | 5/30/2012

    " investigation of Tommy Tallary's wife's murder and someone stole blackmailing Skip Davoe "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Eddy Allen | 3/31/2012

    " In the dark days, in a sad and lonely place, ex-cop Matt Scudder is drinking his life away -- and doing "favors" for pay for his ginmill cronies. But when three such assignments flow together in dangerous and disturbing ways, he'll need to change his priorities from boozing to surviving. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ed | 2/7/2012

    " Sweet Matt Scudder read. Hang with his drift through the gin joints, empty churches, and old hotels. Just listen to his steady, sometimes unclear voice as he goes through his two cases. Then wait for the big payoff at the end, where he wraps it all up. It's worth the wait, too. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Naomi | 5/10/2011

    " Block depicts the blank despair of the drinking alcoholic uncomfortably well in this book. This is the first Scudder book I ever read, and it both hooked me on Block's writing and subtly impelled me to examine and change my life. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joe | 9/23/2010

    " Great 6th Scudder novel, tightly written plot with great characters and dialogue. Interesting ending I'm both this story and direction of future books in the series..shock I look forward to getting hold off I'm the near future. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Miriam | 9/7/2010

    " Oh, Matthew Scudder novels when Scudder is drunk all the time are oh-so-fun. Check this one out if you need a fix of a great private detective novel. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michael | 8/13/2010

    " This is a flashback book about when Matthew Scudder was sill drinking before he starting going to AA. I read this many years ago, but I recall the story being especially good. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Sue | 6/30/2010

    " The title should have been Pub Crawl. Honestly, it was mostly about drinking in bars with a flimsy mystery woven in there. Very thin. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karl | 1/3/2010

    " Been rereading the Matthew Scudder books. This one's predecessor, Eight Million Ways to Die, always seemed like a special book to me. So why did Block go back to the alcohol-soaked days of Scudder for this one? Well, it's fine, but ... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lee | 12/11/2009

    " This is the first in the Matthew Scudder series. Classic series! "

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About the Author
Author Lawrence Block

Lawrence Block is the recipient of a Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America and a New York Times bestselling author. His prolific career spans over one hundred books, including four bestselling series and dozens of short stories and articles. He has won multiple Edgar and Shamus awards, two Falcon Awards from the Maltese Falcon Society of Japan, the Nero and Philip Marlowe Awards, the Cartier Diamond Dagger from the Crime Writers Association of America, and many others. Aside from being a mystery writer, he has also written a number of episodes for television, including two episodes of the ESPN series Tilt; he also cowrote the screenplay for the film My Blueberry Nights, starring Norah Jones. Block currently lives in New York City with his wife, Lynne.

About the Narrator

Mark Hammer has had long and distinguished career in the theater. After earning an undergraduate degree from Stanford University, he completed an MFA degree at Catholic University. For twenty-three years after that, he served on the drama faculty at that university and as co-chairman of its MFA acting program. For the last sixteen of those years, he was also a member of the resident acting company at Washington, DC’s Arena Stage. There, he had significant roles in both classic and contemporary dramas. He was twice nominated for the Helen Hayes Award for his performances in Cloud Nine and The Wild Duck. He has also appeared in several Broadway plays. Hammer was proud to be chosen to narrate the opening film of the permanent exhibit for the National Holocaust Museum.