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Cemetery Road

A Novel
Written by: Greg Iles
Narrated by: Scott Brick
Length: 23 hrs and 43 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (77 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The number-one New York Times best-selling author of the Natchez Burning trilogy returns with an electrifying tale of friendship, betrayal, and shattering secrets that threaten to destroy a small Mississippi town.

When Marshall McEwan left his hometown at age 18, he vowed never to return. The trauma that drove him away ultimately spurred him to become one of the most successful journalists in Washington DC. But just as the political chaos in the nation’s capital lifts him to new heights, Marshall is forced to return home in spite of his boyhood vow. 

His father is dying, his mother is struggling to keep the family newspaper from failing, and the town is in the midst of an economic rebirth that might be built upon crimes that reach into the state capitol - and perhaps even to Washington. More disturbing still, Marshall’s high school sweetheart, Jet, has married into the family of Max Matheson, patriarch of one of the families that rule Bienville through a shadow organization called the Bienville Poker Club. 

When archaeologist Buck McKibben is murdered at a construction site, Bienville is thrown into chaos. The ensuing homicide investigation is soon derailed by a second crime that rocks the community to its core. Power broker Max Matheson’s wife has been shot dead in her own bed, and the only other person in it at the time was her husband, Max. Stranger still, Max demands his daughter-in-law, Jet, defend him in court. 

As a journalist, Marshall knows all too well how the corrosive power of money and politics can sabotage investigations. Without telling a soul, he joins forces with Jet, who has lived for 15 years at the heart of Max Matheson’s family, and begins digging into both murders. With Jet walking the dangerous road of an inside informer, they soon uncover a web of criminal schemes that undergird the town’s recent success. But these crimes pale in comparison to the secret at the heart of the Matheson family. When those who have remained silent for years dare to speak to Marshall, pressure begins to build like water against a crumbling dam. 

Marshall loses friends, family members, and finally, even Jet, for no one in Bienville seems willing to endure the reckoning the Poker Club has long deserved. By the time Marshall grasps the long-buried truth, he would give almost anything not to have to face it.

©2019 Greg Iles (P)2019 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A captivating story!

I love committing myself to big books. I crave spending hours with interesting, well-developed characters. I appreciate an author like Greg Iles, who has the patience and makes the time to create the stories that will occupy a portion of my life.

I’ve heard it said many times that an author should write what they know; Greg Iles is a southern boy, and he sets his stories, like Cemetery Road, in small-town Mississippi. I loved the closeness and smallness of Bienville, Mississippi. For all of its “southern-ness,” a person like myself, born and raised in the Northeast, was able to recognize the small-town politics and how everyone knew everyone else’s secrets. I think that when an author is so comfortable with their setting, it allows the reader to find their own familiar parts, thus allowing them to find a home in the story. Well, that’s how I felt anyway.

There were times while listening to Cemetery Road that I was a little bit annoyed or put off. At times I felt like the story was a product placement for The Ford Motor Company. But like all relationships, it’s never perfect all of the time. The story was exciting, interesting, and I always wanted to get back into it.

Cemetery Road is a commitment – six hundred and eight pages in the hardcover, or twenty-four hours in the Audible (which is what I did). Greg Iles kept my attention throughout with the twists, turns, and sometimes convoluted scenarios. I often thought that the characters’ lives seemed too intertwined, but then I remembered my own small town. Keep it real!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Over the top reading performance; mediocre story

I had forgone just how bad this reader can be. Usually I avoid anything read by Scott Brick, but, i needed something to read for the weekend, and thought that perhaps this might be one of his better reads. I was wrong, he sounds so overwrought, why cannot he simply read the story in the clear voice which he undoubtedly has without making the listener feel that The reader is wringing his hands in anguish all the time?

The story? What story? Really found it hard to get past the reader, but when I tried hard, it was slow and featureless.

Back to the site to find something else.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good listen

Filled with suspense and some interesting commentary on life
Doesn’t seem to want to end
Language and sex are bountiful

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Politics is a bad idea

I thought the book was interesting and normally i like this writer but putting politics in just to say Trump bad just turned my stomach. Keep the politics out if you want to keep both sides enjoying your books. Really disappointed

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

a fantastic edge of your seat novel

Scott Brick has a way of keeping you Spellbound with his narration of books and it was no different than with this one... it kept you going for the entire 24 hours that he read the book and the story was second to none with twists and turns and not knowing what happens to the very end... it's the first book by Greg Iles that I've had and he didn't disappoint... I recommend this book to everybody..Dave g. Millbrook Ontario

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Nailbiter

Prepare to put your life on hold as you witness the many twists and turns on every page, a book you wish never ends.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A Gripper

Fabulous writing. Mentally grabs you all the way through. A total mind game. Great narration.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Predictable

Enjoyed the novel but found it often stereotypical, formulated and predictable. Old and jaded maybe.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • shelley
  • Raleigh, NC
  • 2019-03-06

Cemetery Road comes to Life...

Well you definitely get your money's worth with this almost 24 hour book. Although it's not part of the Penn Cage series this is still an excellent book. This is a stand alone suspense that also takes place in Mississippi.
The publisher's summary gives quite a bit of information about the protagonist, Marshall McEwen and touches lightly on the story with out giving anything away. McEwen returns home after 15years when a close friend is murdered. The other key players include Jet, the woman he loved long ago and still does, her husband Paul and Father-in-law Max.

McEwan's brother drowned at 18, his son drowned at 2 and both deaths have haunted him. So do the deaths of his father's first wife and infant daughter. But in the town of Bienville not all deaths are as they appear. And at the heart of the deadly current events is a new paper mill yet to be built, capitalism, greed and the town's future.

Scott Brick narration is as always THE BEST!
This book has my HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION.
If you found this review helpful please indicate so.
Thank You.

334 of 352 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Linda Likes to Learn
  • 2019-04-10

BEST BOOK I'VE 'READ' IN MONTHS!

Don't ever take for granted what direction the plot seems to be taking - you'll guess wrong most of the time. Pay attention to each little nuance and you may begin to anticipate what's happening next. Great action, characters, settings, and narration (though Brick should slow down a bit. He seems to be rushing so he can start narrating his next book...at the very least, take a couple of breaths between chapters! Loved it all - could hardly bear to put it down long enough to perform tasks in the real world!

24 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • DCGrits
  • 2019-03-08

Best read in awhile

Not able to guess this mystery. It’s like several mini mysteries in one big one. Listened to it in almost one sitting as the storyline is that good. Authors political view is obvious but it doesn’t get in the way. Definitely worth the time and money.

88 of 98 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • DrTC
  • Kaysville, Utah USA
  • 2019-03-30

Fantastic book! Who cares about the politics!

Look, everyone seems to be getting all worked up over Greg Iles' politics in the book. Give it a break. He mentions Trump a few times, and his Flex SUV. Big deal. I'm politically conservative and it didn't bother me in the least. This is a fantastic story with lots of build up, and twists and turns that you won't expect. It's classic Greg Iles, who is one of the best authors around. If you're going in for a good story, you will love this. If you get worked up over an author's' comments on politics, then you can skip this, but that will be pretty silly.

39 of 43 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Kitty
  • 2019-03-12

Disappointing

I'm a big Greg Iles fan, but I just couldn't get into this one. For me it was mostly because there were really no main characters that I could really care about. It was just a bunch of random people all acting badly. I didn't really care what happened to them. There wasn't really any plot either - it felt like a weak rehash of bits and pieces of his previous books and characters but without anything to really engage the reader. I personally didn't find the political commentary to be a problem, though.

58 of 65 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Ann Orr
  • 2019-03-25

Not his best!

Too many lengthy side stories. A lot of repetition and very little southern flavor exhibited in Scott Brick’s performance. The second half was better than the first half.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Gayle Moss
  • Vancouver, BC
  • 2019-04-10

Should have read it instead

I have read everything Greg Isles has written. He's one of my favorite authors. But I found this story dragged on and had too much drama. I think a big part of that was the narrator. I did not enjoy his voice -- too dramatic, too over the top emotionally.

I think I would have enjoyed it more if I had read it myself rather than listened to it.

22 of 25 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Arianah
  • 2019-05-12

Disappointed and duped!

I wanted to enjoy listening to this book. I have been a fan of Greg Iles for years. But apparently like most in Hollywood, this author feels his entitled, political rants must be shoved down our throats. I was willing to ignore the continued Trump slights. I am used to people with opposing political views insisting I be inundated with their political propaganda at every turn. However at the point I listened to the following statement, "...not even security cameras stopped the angry trump supporter who simply wore a mask as he marched up to the windows with brick in hand to make his feelings known" I stopped listening. Enough already people! I understand you have a political view. And you have every right to share that view in your personal space, or should I call it your safe space. But don't dupe me into purchasing a book you have me believing is a mystery to find out what I am really getting is an author's personal political views disguised in a story. Save your political issues for a political opinion book, Facebook, your own website, or God forbid, the polls. I do not want to listen to it and I do not want to pay for it.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Steven
  • 2019-03-13

Great storytelling, but leave out the politics

This is my second time writing anything after enjoying a good story. I love good stories. This is a good story, but I was put off by: 1) the political perspective (and I'm not a Trump fan), and, the gratuitous sex descriptions (I'm not a puritan). The next time Greg Iles writes anything, I will read/listen to it because I am always engaged in the story. But, I'm disappointed by the road he has taken in this novel to probably sell more copies.

57 of 68 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • bsaprez
  • 2019-04-29

Cliche much?

First word. Scott Brick is awesome. The fact that he was the narrator was a key component in me spending a credit on this title.

Now about the story. This author clearly has a political axe to grind, and I'd bet his royalties against my salary that he so far to the left he can't even turn his head right. His "hero" is a ….CLICHE WARNING.... journalist and the evil folks are all successful corporate, white, old, Southern, straight, womanizing, Republican men. Seriously, its as if he found a way to view Nancy Pelosi's dreams and then wrote a novel from them.

Don't get me wrong, if a story is good, I don't care about the political ideology of the author. Take Stephen King for instance. The guy is a massive liberal, and he even wound a bit of his lefty sermonizing into his latest book (which was a bit tired from a plot perspective, essentially "IT" in the Southwest), but I don't let that keep me from believing he is one of the greatest authors of the 20th century. On the right Tom Clancy was a flag waving gun toting conservative, and his books are excellent.

But this story is as cliched as they come. As I say, East coast journalist has to move home to backwater Mississippi to take care of his estranged father, where his "like a father" figure is an eccentric do-gooder who is killed because he's trying to keep the big bad Republican corporatists from putting a new factory on top of some ancient native American burial mounds. Blah, blah, blah. The author even has the ex green beret who shot civilians in Iraq to round things out, and that guy is the son of a Vietnam Vet who committed atrocities in that war.

What was even more annoying was that somehow the "hero" gets to be the good guy despite the fact that he's been having sex with his best friend's wife despite the fact that his best friend risked his own life (losing a fellow operator in the process) to save the life of our "hero". And we're supposed to overlook this indiscretion because the journalist decided to leave a bit of information out of a book he wrote, that he won the Pulitzer for.

Ummmm, nope. In my world the "hero" of this book is a terrible person, and being a journalist doesn't make him less terrible.

Anyway, I will admit that I listened to the whole thing, but to be fair I listen to audio books when I'm doing things that don't really require my attention. Walking the dog, driving, cleaning the garage, etc.

I'm going to request a refund of this credit. I feel a bit guilty about doing so since I listened to the whole thing, but the fact that I felt compelled to write a review because of how absurdly cliched it was will be how I justify it to myself.

If you are a committed political liberal who has 24 hours to spend and you LOVE every cliché ever used in the genre, then you will love this book. Everybody else may want to keep scrolling.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful