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Publisher's Summary

2020 Arthur Ellis Award for Best Non-Fiction

NATIONAL BEST SELLER

A top journalist crosses the yellow tape to investigate a shocking high-society crime.

Billionaires, philanthropists, socialites...victims. Barry and Honey Sherman appeared to lead charmed lives. But the world was shocked in late 2017 when their bodies were found in a bizarre tableau in their elegant Toronto home. First described as murder-suicide - belts looped around their necks, they were found seated beside their basement swimming pool - police later ruled it a staged, targeted double murder. Nothing about the case made sense to friends of the founder of one of the world’s largest generic pharmaceutical firms and his wife, a powerhouse in Canada’s charity world. Together, their wealth has been estimated at well over $4.7 billion. 

There was another side to the story. A strategic genius who built a large generic drug company - Apotex Inc. - Barry Sherman was a self-described workaholic, renowned risk-taker, and disruptor during his 50-year career. Regarded as a generous friend by many, Sherman was also feared by others. He was criticized for stifling academic freedom and using the courts to win at all costs. Upset with building issues at his mansion, he sued and recouped millions from tradespeople. At the time of his death, Sherman had just won a decades-old legal case involving four cousins who wanted 20 percent of his fortune. 

Toronto Star investigative journalist Kevin Donovan chronicles the unsettling story from the beginning, interviewing family members, friends, and colleagues, and sheds new light on the Shermans’ lives and the disturbing double murder. Deeply researched and authoritative, The Billionaire Murders is a compulsively listenable tale of a strange and perplexing crime.

©2019 Kevin Donovan (P)2019 Viking

What listeners say about The Billionaire Murders

Average Customer Ratings
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very interesting

I loved the way this book was being read.I I love in Toronto and it was almost as if we should have known them. Very interesting to know what the couple was really like. I feel like it was someone that new them very well that killed them. A great read. I highly recommend it. I will read it again in the future.

5 people found this helpful

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  • sd
  • 2019-11-02

Thought I knew everything about this case.

Lots of new information I didn't know about. Kevin Donovan is relentless when he is on a mission. Investigative journalists are my heroes. I have very mixed feelings about exposing family matters but it is so important to expose deficiencies in our system . I sense this case will eventually be solved and the writing of this book may be the driving force behind that. I like when authors narrate their own audio books especially when they do it well like this author. This remains a tragic and profoundly sad case and nobody deserves to die like that. The collateral damage is enormous to family , friends and community.

4 people found this helpful

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Disappointing

I'm a true-crime junkie and I have heard a few versions of this story. i read tons of reviews before purchasing and it seemed like I was going to find out more about the suspects involved or theories around the case. I was wrong!! I was looking forward to more details and info, but the focus on lawsuits and drug patents is NEVER ending!!!! after chapters and chapters on various company trials I was looking forward to a deep dive into the core suspects, but it seemed to wrap up far too quickly after alllllllllll of the details and overkill on small trials and issues. I found it hard to finish, but wanted closure. Overall, it was pretty disappointing.

3 people found this helpful

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  • AK
  • 2020-07-08

Disappointing

Provides quite a bit of insight into the lives and deaths of the Sherman couple, at times highlighting how foolish and superficial even smart, wealthy and generous people can be. Sadly, the book can be repetitive at times which I found annoying. More than anything the story of the official investigation illustrates the incompetence of Toronto police and prompts thoughts about the weaknesses of Canadian law enforcement and criminal justice system.

2 people found this helpful

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An In-depth Investigation of So Many Factors

Well researched, excellent story telling! Loved the in-depth look into all angles of the victims, the family, the business, and the science, SO INTERESTING!

2 people found this helpful

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Incredible storyteller. Highly recommend

I was immersed in his storytelling. I strongly believe that journalists tell the best stories because they are worried about being factual. I didn’t pay attention to this case when it made headlines. His in-depth history and careful attention to seemingly odd details felt like I was immersed in the entire spectacle that was their death. Honestly I can’t wait for his next book.

1 person found this helpful

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A sad story, tastefully told by a Toronto reporter

I am a Torontonian and was shocked by the deaths of the Sherman's. But I was also curious to know what really happened. Donovan's book is extremely well written. He tells the story in an interesting way, and ponders events before and after the murders. Although he has no definitive answer to what happened, he recounts the story thoughtfully and gives many theories in the end, some outrageous, some possible.

1 person found this helpful

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Excellent Read

I really enjoyed the quick pace and the level of detail. The journalist put together an interesting portrait of the couple and their lives which was great. I gave the story 4 stars only because there was little gleaned from the material about what had happened to the Shermans. This is reality and cannot be helped but if the reader is looking for explosive details, sumptuous scandals, or a shock ending, you will not find that here. Regardless, I highly recommend

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Interesting story

It was a good book but at the beginning of some chapters and paragraphs, words were cut off.

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helping to fill in some questions

a very thorough account of the tragic murder of two beloved people. I am grateful for this information as I feel compelled to find answers to two total strangers who did so much for Canada.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-11-19

Boring

This is not a book about a murder investigation. It's a book about the generic pharmaceutical industry. It just drones on and on. Kept waiting on something to happen. I finally gave up. Could not finish.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Tanya Nawas
  • 2019-10-31

The Honey Boo Boo Murders

Well researched, written and narrated. While the murders remain a mystery, the author does raise some suspicion upon Honey and Barry’s close circle.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Katrina P.
  • 2019-12-23

Skips around alot.

Story telling is not so intriguing. Some facts given but not really in a concurrent manner that keeps you interested.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Viktor Wiman
  • 2019-11-24

Good but not great

Its a good book and you learn a great deal about the victims. In fact the book is more about the victims than the murders. Still the book is good and interesting.

5 people found this helpful

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  • gauzy
  • 2020-01-21

Dull beyond words

I wanted to like this book given the good reviews. I listen to a lot of true crime and was bored to tears by this, even though I sat through the whole thing. This book goes on the supposition that because two billionaires were murdered that they are immediately interesting. They're not. This couple was impressively boring. There was no juiciness here at all. And the author seemed to insert himself into the story in a weird way that was...journalistic hubris. Hard skip. I recommend anything by Jerry Bledsoe or Fatal Vision by Joe McGinnis if you want a real success + weirdness + murder story.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Barbara
  • 2020-02-04

Illuminating and well researched.

Performance: One of the mysteries of this book is the one where authors think they can read their own books for the audible community. As writers and therefore artists, they ought to understand that narrating books is a distinct and specific skill and if they have no such skill or talent, they should immediately put that thought out of their minds. Alas, this author failed to do that and the resulting narration is poor. The cadence and enunciation of words and sentences is quite annoying. Even Torontonians (of which I am one) will not appreciate the repeated, grating "Tronno" (for Toronto) throughout the book as well as other mispronunciations. I found the reading to be very poor indeed, but not so awful that I needed to stop listening. Story: The story was obviously very well researched and Mr. Donovan has assembled it in a relatively logical way. The writing is fairly utilitarian with many descriptions of events. Where the writing improves is in his thoughtful characterizations of how the Shermans lived, interacted with family and friends and business associates and, through interviews and observations, what seemed to be in their minds. A frustrating story because (in my view) of police incompetence but a long needed exposure of the facts as available. Mr. Donovan brings some light to a very dark tragedy.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2020-03-22

Fascinating crime, boring biography

I was interested in this because of the fascinating circumstances of the murder, but despite having “murder” in the title this reads more as a biography than anything else. If you want to read a biography of Barry Sherman (who, were it not for his murder, you would almost certainly not be aware of) this will be of great interest. If you like true crime, avoid it.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jaclyn Johnston
  • 2020-02-07

I Was So Excited About This Book

I'm an author and I really wanted to like this book. Plus, this book is my very first Audible experience. I thought this book was going to be about the murders, but it is more of a biography. The title of this book is a bit misleading, I feel bad saying this, but I wanted it to be more about the murder investigation.

2 people found this helpful

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  • KMC
  • 2019-12-17

Really enjoyed

Highly recommended if you’re looking for a real thriller where you get to know all parties involved. Provides just enough background info

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kristi
  • 2020-04-17

Review

The storyline was very good. Writing was pretty good. He gave good explanations of things like Canadian laws or unfamiliar concepts. However, he mispronounced so many words it drove me up a tree! Like “laboratory” putting the accent on the second sylable. Even “adult” was mispronounced. Fascinating account of the murders of Barry and Honey Sherman, both of whom I was unfamiliar.