Between The Lines

The Barkeep ~ the audiobook

                              The Barkeep

bookAuthor: William Lashner

Performed by Luke Daniels

Released: February 2014 by Brilliance Audio

Category: Crime/Thriller/Mystery


Six years ago Justin Chase discovered his murdered mother’s body lying in the hallway of their home. His life fell apart and, after spending time in an asylum and giving up on becoming a lawyer, he’s made a career as a bartender at Zenzibar. Quite apt as he practices the art of Zen to help him cope and give him a measure of peace.


That is until the creepy, obnoxious alcoholic Birdie Grackle appears in the bar one night and admits killing Justin’s mother, even though Justin’s father is serving a life sentence for the murder.


Justin doesn’t want to believe his father is innocent but has he been wrongly imprisoned all these years? Birdie Grackle has catapulted Justin back to everything he was trying to escape from and forget, including his father. And the deeper Justin digs the more his life is in danger. 




I like this book, a lot. The story and writing are engaging and the characterisation is skilful, letting us get to know each character slowly as they evolve and the story builds, their flaws making them more believable.


Justin, working hard to recover from the psychological effects of his mother’s murder, practicing meditation which he believes means being as detached from everything as possible until eventually realising he’s on the wrong track.


Annie, unhappy and lonely.  Sleazy Eddie Nicosia. Derek, a childlike man who does as he is told whatever it might be and likes to keep things tidy because his Grammy always told him to. There are a lot of threads weaving about under the surface taking the story in different directions with lots of twists and turns. It was a nice touch to name the chapters after drinks.




Luke Daniels is an amazing voice actor and a favourite narrator (if you haven’t already guessed!) He makes Birdie Grackle sound as repulsive as he is, all the other characterisations, whether male or female, are brilliant too.