Light of the World (Dave Robicheaux Series #20)

Light of the World (Dave Robicheaux Series #20)

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Light of the World (Dave Robicheaux Series #20) by James Lee Burke, Will Patton

“America’s best novelist” (The Denver Post) and “the reigning champ of nostalgia noir” (The New York Times Book Review) introduces his most evil character yet in the twentieth thriller in the bestselling Dave Robicheaux series.

A New York Times bestselling author many times over, James Lee Burke is a two-time Edgar Award-winner whose every book is cause for excitement, especially those in the wildly popular Dave Robicheaux series.

In Light of the World, sadist and serial killer Asa Surrette narrowly escaped the death penalty for the string of heinous murders he committed while capital punishment was outlawed in Kansas. But following a series of damning articles written by Dave Robicheaux’s daughter Alafair about possible other crimes committed by Surette, the killer escapes from a prison transport van and heads to Montana—where an unsuspecting Dave happens to have gone to take in the sweet summer air, accompanied by Alafair, his wife Molly, faithful partner Clete, and Clete’s newfound daughter, Gretchen Horowitz, whom listeners met in Burke’s most recent bestseller Creole Belle.

“James Lee Burke remains the heavy weight champ,” says New York Times bestseller Michael Connelly, “a great American novelist whose work…is unsurpassed.” The master proves it once again with this harrowing novel that examines the nature of evil and pits Dave Robicheaux against the most diabolical villain he has ever faced.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781442361478
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Publication date: 07/23/2013
Series: Dave Robicheaux Series , #20
Edition description: Unabridged
Pages: 18
Sales rank: 1,173,907
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 5.10(h) x 1.70(d)

About the Author

James Lee Burke, a rare winner of two Edgar Awards, and named Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America, is the author of thirty-one previous novels and two collections of short stories, including such New York Times bestsellers as The Glass Rainbow, Swan Peak, The Tin Roof Blowdown, Last Car to Elysian Fields, and Rain Gods. He lives in Missoula, Montana.
Will Patton's numerous film credits include Remember the Titans, The Punisher, The Mothman Prophesies, Armageddon, and The Spitfire Grill. He starred in the TNT miniseries Into the West and on the CBS series The Agency, and won Obie Awards in the theater for his performances in Fool for Love and What Did He See.


New Iberia, Louisiana and Missoula, Montana

Date of Birth:

December 5, 1936

Place of Birth:

Houston, Texas


B.A., University of Missouri, 1959; M.A., University of Missouri, 1960

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Light of the World 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 67 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It appears that Burke has opted for quantity over quality. When I saw the length of this book, I was enthused about a good long read. Instead I got a lot of social/political/economic commentary filler, with a limited amount of the old Burke magical adventure. Too many characters interwoven, but with little resolution. Maybe he's just setting up the next story. Unfortunately, I won't be reading it. I'd rathet go back and re-read Sunset Limited.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have been a big fan of Burke for several years and have most of his books. When I read his work it seems like he is writing with a paint brush. His vivid writing and ability to tell a story is at the top of the heap. Having said that, I'm really getting tired of his personal politics taking over the narrative. There's nothing wrong with Burke writing about causes which he champions, but he should do it in a non-fiction format. It's muddling up his crime fiction and distracts from the story. I stopped reading John Grisham when he couldn't stay off his soap box.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Burke is a brilliant author, creating incredible pictures with his words and offering wise insights into human nature. On the other hand, his characters and stories are angry, violent and, all too often, depressing. Those traits seem to gotten more prevasive as he's gotten older. I've read all his books but I'm not at all sure I'll buy another. This book left me feeling sad for him, disappointed in the effect the story had, and wondering if I hadn't wasted my money.
The-Ranger More than 1 year ago
This was my first James Lee Burke novel as I was headed up to Montana and on into Yellowstone. I will echo some of those who gave a less than average rating. The book went on and on. The "good guys" kept talking about killing and cutting up people; the "bad" people. The novel had no flow to it. I agree with another critic who wrote Burke wrote quantity over quality. I kept wanting this story to end and when it did it was still disappointing. I'm glad this was a library book and not one I bought.
silencedogoodreturns More than 1 year ago
Sadly, Burke continues to slip, both in quality of story line, and emphasis on his left wing soap box. In this book, we learn right off the bat that the military people lost in combat didn't die for their country, and that the police don't serve and protect. That's all right wing mythology. ANother limousine liberal looking for absolution. No thanks.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Having been a huge fan of Mr. Burke's Dave Robicheaux series, I really started to wonder about 1/4 of the way through this one but, I kept on reading up until Chapter 23. Here, the writing goes off the rails here and I really thought the chapter would end with the Alafair character getting up from her computer and this was a piece of her writing that Burke had inserted for a purpose I couldn't devine. That's the only thing I could think of given the total change in writing style. Either that or another author was called in to rescue a sinking story line. At this point, I started skipping pages by the handful and went through the last 250 pages in about 10 minutes hoping that I was wrong. Terrible book. Too many characters. No gravitas. Bond between Dave and Clete gone. The two daughters totally in some other universe and the bad guys just characters that should have never made it through the second draft. Having said that, I still think that his earlier books rise to great fiction and I thank him for many hours of enjoyable reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wordy...reuse of much of Burke's favorite phraseology.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Boring, waste of money, bad little girles don't grow up. Blender wipped word process files from last ninetern books. Mr. Burke must need money.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you are a Dave Robicheaux fan you will love this newest in the series. James Lee Burke never fails to keep his fans coming back for more Dave! I am a loyal fan and can never get enough! Great job James Lee Burke!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
EWM More than 1 year ago
I love all James Lee Burke books.I do like the ones that take place in Louisiana more than the location of this one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Georgia_writer More than 1 year ago
James Lee Burke is one of the best in the business. None of his novels, and I've read many, has ever disappointed me. LIGHT OF THE WORLD is no different. It's a great read. The only thing different is that it's a Dave Robicheaux drama set in western Montana instead of southern Louisiana. The characters are perhaps a bit more introspective than in previous novels, but that doesn't detract at all from the relentless forward momentum of the tale. All of the usual tension, suspense and violence of a Burke novel is there.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Turn the first page and you're drawn into another tale of good against evil. James Lee Burke writes with words that reveal the inner soul of his story. He captures you with their beauty and surprising power to entrap the reader into another Dave Robicheaux and Clete Purcell mystery. The author fleshes out all of his characters in a short time. His descriptions of people and places are like photographs that we keep as treasures in a special place to view over and over again. I am biased in that James Lee Burke is my favorite author. He can do no wrong in my eyes. His novels are the Christmas present beneath the tree, the oasis in the desert, the favorite dessert to millions of readers. If this is the first James Lee Burke novel you've read, I guarantee it won't be the last.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Coxswain More than 1 year ago
I have always enjoyed Burke's books; and this one has a good story but almost totally buried in so much description of Montana mountains, forests, rivers and meadows I found myself skipping whole pages, even a number of pages at a time. And his philosophical ramblings bored the hell out of me. I found myself shouting; "Get ON with it!" Because of all that padding, only 3 stars.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
daveb48 More than 1 year ago
If I could give this book ten stars, I would. James Lee Burke has done it again. He has given us a work of literary art that kept me up at night until I finished it. His characters are flawed, perhaps more than most, but you have to root for them as they face down some of the darkest evil I've ever seen depicted in a novel. Burke introduced Gretchen, Clete's daughter, in his previous novel and develops her more in this one. She and Alafair, Dave's adopted daughter, seem poised to take up the slack for Dave and Clete as they face the ravages of age and numerous confrontations with the darker angels of human nature. Will the torch eventually be passed to this new generation? Only Mr. Burke knows for sure, but I hope this is the beginning of many, many stories to come featuring this fascinating group of characters. While the Dave Robicheaux series should ideally be read in sequence, "Light of the World" reads well as a stand-alone. There are references to earlier events and characters but not having read the earlier works does not detract from the enjoyment of this one. Buy it. Read it. Become a Burkeophile. You will not regret it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
James Lee Burke has written a great book. Once you start you can't let go. Characters are all consuming and you never know what they will do next. Always happy to see a new Dave Robicheaux available. Of course now I can't wait till the next one is ready.
-Charly- More than 1 year ago
As with all of Burke's books, it was a great read. It's hard to choose another book after finishing....he's a tough act to follow.