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Red Light (Merci Rayborn) [Abridged, Audiobook] [Audio CD]

T. Jefferson Parker , Tavia Gilbert
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Brilliance Corporation; Abridged edition (Mar 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1441825452
  • ISBN-13: 978-1441825452
  • Product Dimensions: 1.4 x 1.3 x 0.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,997,574 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Out of the way, please. Sheriff's investigator. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An engaging story of corruption and trust 19 Jan 2007
By Helen Hancox TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is the first book I've read by Jefferson Parker and it was definitely a good read. Having started it there were lots of references to events that had apparently happened before to the main character, Merci Raybourn, and I now discover that there was an earlier book called "The Blue Room". It didn't matter too much that I hadn't read this as pretty much everything necessary was explained - however it did make me realise that this author isn't one for happy endings as evidently the previous book ended rather tragically and this one didn't work out too well for our heroine either.

Merci is a homicide investigator who is called to the murder of a young prostitute whilst also investigating a cold case about the murder of another prostitute. Things go bad quickly as she discovers that her lover and possible-fiancé Mike McNally was involved with the prostitute as a kind of mentor and that he visited her the evening that she was murdered. Merci gathers evidence, partially suppressing some that looks bad for Mike, but as the investigation continues her relationship with him is tested to the limit.

The apparently unrelated murder several decades back turns into something much more immediate when Merci is anonymously sent some leads which reach into the very police department in which she works, including people such as her father and Mike's father. Merci has to make some very difficult decisions, all the while knowing that someone is feeding her information and fiddling with crime scenes.

The book was very well written and moved along quickly. The perpetrator wasn't easy to guess (in fact I didn't guess them before they were revealed) and all the threads were woven together well.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Marti
Format:Mass Market Paperback
MerciRayborn is a dedicated law enforcement official. She is an honorableperson who believes her calling is to apprehend and bring criminals to justice. Although two long years have passed since a psychopath killed her partner and lover Tim Hess, Merci remains consumed with anger and guilt because he died protecting her... Jefferson Parker has written one of the better police procedurals of the first year in the new millennium. Fans of Ridley Pearson and Linda Fairstein will fully enjoy RED LIGHT because it is a novel that has as much heart as it does action. The heroine is a sympathetic character driven by emotional needs that the audience understands and empathizes with even though they will question some of her actions. The rich sub-plots add complexity to the fast-paced main story line. On a score from a high five to a low one, this book is a strong six.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  164 reviews
34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Merci Rayborn is Back! 20 Jun 2000
By P. Connors - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I was surprised and not so surprised that T. Jefferson Parker brought back Merci Rayborn. After all, the ending for the book that introduced her, THE BLUE HOUR all but demanded that she return.
In this book, Merci is two years older and still mourning the loss of her partner (and father to her son) Tim Hess. She has named her little boy after his father and is now involved with another detective sergeant on the Orange County (CA) Sheriff's department, Mike McNally.
Parker provides the reader with a multi-leveled mystery and police procedure novel that uses spare but biting prose to make its point. In this story, Merci Rayborn, a single mother and crack homicide investigator is involved in two homicide investigations. One is current and may involve her fellow officer and lover, Mike McNally and the other is over thirty years old and involves the murder of a prostitute who had had connections with local political and law enforcement officials.
In the more recent of the murder cases, Merci initially investigates the death of another young prostitute, this one who also had conections, but those closer to home. Initial evidence begins to point to Merci's erstwhile lover and would-be husband. Merci, never one to shy away from pursuing justice or the truth follows the trail of evidence with a dedication bordering on fanatical. More and more, the evidence points at Mike McNally. But is he really the killer or is he being framed? And if so, by whom?
I have read almost all of Parker's previous novels and have enjoyed them all. His common denominator is the setting, Orange County, CA. However, with each new book installment, he shows that he has climbed rapidly into the ranks of true masters in this genre. He is spare with his prose and in this he makes me think of what Hemingway would have been like had he written mysteries and police stories. He gives us flawed but interesting characters. Some we come to like and have hopes for and others we don't. I have to say that I did NOT like Merci Rayborn when I read THE BLUE HOUR. But perhaps motherhood, the loss of Tim Hess and the personal and political problems she faces in the Sheriff's Department have mellowed her to the point that she has become more human and less disagreeable. In RED LIGHT, for all of her flaws and self-doubts, Parker has made her a much more agreeable and yes, a more sympathetic character.
This book has some slow points and then, the plot and the level of action pick up. I do not know if this was a deliberate device by Parker or not but either way, the book does become a page turner. When Merci must decide for herself whether Mike McNally is guilty or being framed is where the book really took off. It is where I knew that Parker had planned and timed the story line for just such a reason.
Parker's intimate knowledge of police procedures is displayed at its best in this novel. His former career as a journalist and his extensive background in the history of Orange County also serve him well in RED LIGHT. Although this is the first time that he has used a recurring character, I hope it will not be his last. Merci Rayborn still has a lot to say and I hope Mr. Parker will let her speak in upcoming works.
Thank you Mr. Parker for many hours of enjoyable reading. I hope you won't dispense with Merci Rayborn just yet. I'd like to think of her as your version of Robert B. Parker's SPENSER. And we all know how many novels he has mined from that character. I look forward with anticipation to your next novel and hope that we will all see one or more adapted for the screen.
Paul Connors
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good novel from T. Jefferson Parker 18 Oct 2000
By Old Fisherman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Merci Rayborn is a homicide investigator for the Orange County Sheriff's department. When she's called out to the murder scene of a young, beautiful call-girl it all seems routine. That is, until she discovers that her boyfriend had dinner with the victim just scant hours before the murder. As she delves further, more and more evidence points to the boyfriend as the killer and she's torn between doing her job and trusting the man who loves her.
I've read all of Mr. Parker's novels and this is the first one in which he's brought back a character from another novel. Merci Rayborn was first introduced in The Blue Hour. She seems much different in Red Light, more unsure of herself. However, that's not to her detriment. Like all of Parker's novels his characters are well fleshed out, his dialogue sounds like real people talk, and his police procedure rings true. My only quibble, and it's a small one, is I was able to guess the killer about three-quarters of the way through the book. I have to admit for all the mystery reading I do I'm pretty obtuse when it comes to guessing the killer but this was pretty obvious. It really didn't take away from my enjoyment of the book. Mr. Parker is a very good writer, and he just keeps getting better and better. An added bonus for me is that I live in Orange County so I know the areas he talks about in his novels. I might make one suggestion though. To really understand the Merci Rayborn character it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to read "The Blue Hour" first. That too is a very good book.
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Red Light Stops the Action 28 May 2000
By Tim Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I have always listed T. Jefferson Parker as one of my "must read" authors.This attempt at a creative police procedural set in Orange Co began with intrigue and promise. Merci Rayborn, talented star investigator is found trying to start a new life following the death of her partner and love interest in The Blue Hour. She is assigned to solve 2 cases of murdered prostitutes. The more recent is the point blank shooting of a young and beautiful call girl with all the evidence pointing toward Merci's current boyfriend and fellow police officer. The older case is the 35 y.o. homocide of a prostitute with known connections to the police force when Merci's father worked there. The emotional conflict and doubt in which Merci finds herself has numerous plot possibilities. The story presents a challenge to the reader to guess how the two cases are related and how the solutions to the crimes will effect Merci and those she cares deeply for. However, relating the characters in each case to each other is no simple task and I found it confusing.The story became tedious and the slowly mounting suspense seemed to drag as the story became more complicated. I wanted desperately for there to be a mind numbing surprise as the story neared its conclusion but instead Red Light ground the action to a stop.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Merci Returns 2 Oct 2001
By Untouchable - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Warning: Before reading this book, it is strongly advised that you have already read The Blue Hour. Without this previous experience, a lot of Red Light will be very confusing and would probably ruin your enjoyment of both books.
Red Light sees Merci Rayborn investigate two murders that were committed 30 years apart. The victims were both prostitutes, but apart from that they don't really seem to be related. Her investigation severely tests her relationship with her boyfriend, Mike McNally, and brings to light a few dirty secrets that were buried by the sheriffs department three decades ago.
Merci is not a particularly likable character, but she does have qualities that are very admirable. Her fierce determination to see justice done, no matter who gets hurt, seems to override just about every one of her emotions. The only exceptions to this are her love for her son and father, and the dominance of Hess' memory in her mind.
While I found this to be an interesting story with a well-constructed mystery to be solved, it never really reached any exciting moments as The Blue Hour had. Too often we were forced to witness Merci's self-doubts and continual dwelling over the past. For me, these moments only served to interrupt the more interesting investigative processes without really adding much value to the story.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely positively fabulous 15 April 2000
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
A sergeant in the Orange County Sheriff's Department, MerciRayborn is a dedicated law enforcement official. She is an honorableperson who believes her calling is to apprehend and bring criminals to justice. Although two long years have passed since a psychopath killed her partner and lover Tim Hess, Merci remains consumed with anger and guilt because he died protecting her... Jefferson Parker has written one of the better police procedurals of the first year in the new millennium. Fans of Ridley Pearson and Linda Fairstein will fully enjoy RED LIGHT because it is a novel that has as much heart as it does action. The heroine is a sympathetic character driven by emotional needs that the audience understands and empathizes with even though they will question some of her actions. The rich sub-plots add complexity to the fast-paced main story line. On a score from a high five to a low one, this book is a strong six.

Harriet Klausner
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