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The Providence Rider

A Matthew Corbett Novel, Book 4
Written by: Robert R. McCammon
Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini
Length: 15 hrs and 33 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)
Price: CDN$ 39.63
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Publisher's Summary

The Providence Rider is the fourth installment in the extraordinary series of historical thrillers featuring Matthew Corbett, professional problem solver. The narrative begins in the winter of 1703, with Matthew still haunted by his lethal encounter with notorious mass murderer Tyranthus Slaughter. When an unexplained series of explosions rocks his Manhattan neighborhood, Matthew finds himself forced to confront a new and unexpected problem. Someone is trying - and trying very hard - to get his attention. That someone is a shadowy figure from out of Matthew's past: the elusive Dr. Fell.

The doctor, it turns out, has a problem of his own, one that requires the exclusive services of Matthew Corbett.The ensuing narrative moves swiftly and gracefully from the emerging metropolis of New York City to Pendulum Island in the remote Bermudas. In the course of his journey, Matthew encounters a truly Dickensian assortment of memorable, often grotesque, antagonists. These include Sirki, the giant, deceptively soft-spoken East Indian killer, Dr. Jonathan Gentry, an expert in exotic potions with a substance abuse problem of his own, the beautiful but murderous Aria Chillany, and, of course, the master manipulator and "Emperor of Crime" on two continents, Dr. Fell himself. The result is both an exquisitely constructed novel of suspense and a meticulous recreation of a bygone era.

Filled with danger, narrative surprises, and an almost tangible sense of place, The Providence Rider is historical fiction at its finest and most developed. It is the novel that McCammon's many devoted readers have been waiting for. They will not be disappointed.

©2012 Robert McCammon (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good but predictable

A number of good characters but used in the familiar storylines. I guess I was expecting a few more twists instead of the predictable outcome. Other than that, top notch writing.

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  • bionichands
  • 2012-06-05

This is a fun series

I've read all four Corbett books to date. Thanks audible for making these available! I highly recommend checking out the entire series. Matthew Corbett is a fantastic character. The colonial America setting is unusual and well written, and the stories are engaging and fun.

I've been looking forward to Book 4 for a few months. Thankfully, McCammon seems to churn these out quickly. All of your favorite characters are back, AND most importantly we finally get to meet Professor Fell. Lots of action.

This isn't high art by any stretch, but it is a really fun read. Well worth your listening time and credits.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful

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  • Oenophile
  • 2012-06-19

Read the entire series...

of four books and am looking forward to more by this author and this narrator. Unlike many characters, this protagonist, although very intelligent, is not superhuman. He possesses weaknesses as well as strengths, petty emotions as well as generous ones. He learns from experiences. The author is very descriptive, so I had no difficulty visualizing the scenes and the action taking place.

The narrator is excellent. I am picky about narrators, so that is saying something.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

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  • Molly-o
  • 2012-09-15

Completely Captivated

I just finished this fourth book of the Matthew Corbett series and I haven't read anything else besides the series for the past few weeks. I have to preface this by saying that I rarely read murder mysteries or detective novels unless I am starting on a long road trip and need incentive to stay in the car or need a book for a plane flight and am in the airport. It is because I feel they are a basically shallow read. BUT this series is different: to start with, it is very well written,a must for me. The characters are well developed, the plot is riveting and the twists are very imaginative. Then you have the narrator who is one of the best I have heard on Audible. What is best is that once you have read the first book and loved it, then you have four more! VERY satisfying read.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • J. Lindsey
  • 2015-05-28

My personal experience.

My reviews don't ever seem to be helpful. Not sure what a helpful review is. But I can say with experience that the Matthew Corbett series is riveting and intense. If you are an avid Audible reader, you will not be disappointed... helpful or not.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • dws1999
  • 2015-06-17

Jumped the shark! Poor sequel

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

I loved the first two books. The third was a bit grim. This one was over the top and around the bend. The plot was very convoluted, the villains too evil to be believed, the narration poor.

Would you ever listen to anything by Robert McCammon again?

Yes, but I have been disappointed by this book, which I chose not to finish. I liked the previous Matthew Corbett books, but I did not like "The Five" either. I would probably listen to an earlier Robert McCammon book and skip the recent offerings.

Would you be willing to try another one of Edoardo Ballerini’s performances?

No. He was overly dramatic and so made the story sound like a melodrama.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • B.J.
  • 2012-08-09

What a talented narrator!

I have become a fan of Edoardo Ballerini's work. It's so easy to listen to him. He makes characters come alive. And just when I think he can't possibly come up with another one, he does. They are remarkably consistent not only from the beginning to the end, but from book to book.

As for the series ... the first book was stellar. As the series went on, each book became a little less magical for me. It's still a terrific listen - no question. But after the first book, each one goes down by about a 1/2 star in my opinion.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Richard Delman
  • 2013-12-02

Curiouser and curiouser...

I think it makes sense to review all four books in this series together, but the length of such a review would parallel the length of just a chapter of one of them. Mister Slaughter, the Queen of Bedlam, Speaks the Nightbird and Providence Rider: all four of these are the adventures of Matthew Corbett, a young man in his twenties who lives and works in and around New York City at about the year 1700. There is almost no limit to the imagination of Mr. McCammon, and my feelings about the skills of Edoardo Ballerini should be obvious to anyone who has read any of my reviews of his work. I'm not sure I could have gotten through one hundred hours of listening (roughly) to anyone other than Mr. Ballerini.
What Mr. McCammon has done is tell an enormously complicated tale, with major and minor plots, characters who move in and out of the spotlight, with plot twists that often defy the logical sense, and so forth. Often I felt that Matthew must have felt something like Alice in Wonderland, because of all of the strange and weird doings all around him. Mr. McCammon will throw in an interesting character and then once we get pulled in to this person, the author just drops him or her right down through the hole in the stage floor. There are utter improbabilities piled up upon each other everywhere. The grand conceit, that Matthew is the first private detective ever, is a clever one. His dalliances with a series of women is off-putting, as the women tend to be so interesting that I wanted one of them to take up more of our time (as Susan Silverman does in the life of Spenser). We are titillated by each one of these smart beauties, and then each of them just fades away.
It is not possible to rate these books one through four, at least for me. I think you read and like the entire series, or you don't. There is a lot of explicit violence in them, but if you think about the collected group of detective stories in existence, you see a lot of explicit violence there, too. McCammon's observational powers, particularly for minor details of clothing and settings, is almost mesmerizing. If he has actually witnessed all of the places, then he is one heck of a researcher, as good as Tim Hallinan. I feel a little frustrated that I am not giving you the sense of the plots of all four of these books, but there is just too much plot for me to be able to do that in a sensible way. So, I'll say: read the first one. If you like it, then read all four. You will, like Alice, fall down into a remarkable world, one full of sense and nonsense, and unforgettable for all that.

13 of 17 people found this review helpful

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  • Tim
  • 2015-01-26

Making the same mistakes in a Great Series

I love the premise of this series and the time period, but the personalities and actions are disappointing. Mathew seems determined to be a punching bag for every bad guy, not capable of defending himself or reacting in time to avoid injury; and I am getting sick of the "I love you too much to love you, so I'm going to treat you like a prick - no wait If I ever get out of this mess I'm going to treat you right" loop that he seems to be stuck in. I've already bought the next in the series, but if this pattern keeps repeating, then the chances of any future purchases of Mr. McCammon's books are doubtful.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2014-11-03

Great writing great story

This series has been a wonderful experience. Great writing great characters great story and great narration. This book is every bit as good as the first three that I gave five stars too. A new Matthew Corbett would be purchased by me as soon as I saw it on audible.
I am however worried that the new book in the series is half the length of any of the first four and has many poor reviews. Not sure when I will listen to book five. Should it disappoint I would feel like I had lost a good friend.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jack Enzo
  • 2013-12-28

Professor Fell meet Matthew Corbett

Where does The Providence Rider rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Oh, tough question, right at the very top next to the other gems in this series.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Sirki, the East Indian Giant. Sirki while physically imposing, was quite intelligent and seemed to possess an incredible amount of discipline. He was the most fitting "second in command" to the all powerful Professor Fell.

Which character – as performed by Edoardo Ballerini – was your favorite?

Sirki. The Indian accent was unforgettable. Bellerini is a Master at his craft.

Who was the most memorable character of The Providence Rider and why?

Matthew Corbett. Headstrong and stubborn Corbett knows no fear.

Any additional comments?

Book 5 cannot get here soon enough. Thank You Mr. McCammons for an incredible journey with so many memorable characters.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful