• A Fine Line

  • Guido Guerrieri Series, Book 5
  • By: Gianrico Carofiglio
  • Narrated by: Sean Barrett
  • Length: 7 hrs and 38 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (117 ratings)

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A Fine Line  By  cover art

A Fine Line

By: Gianrico Carofiglio
Narrated by: Sean Barrett
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Publisher's Summary

This suspenseful legal thriller tells the story of Judge Larocca, who, to quote The Brothers Karamazov, 'lies to himself and listens to his own lies, so gets to the point where he can no longer distinguish the truth'. A man always looking to justify his evil and corrupt behaviour, he is perhaps an apposite metaphor for Italy itself. When he becomes the subject of corruption allegations, fellow judge Guerrieri goes against his better instincts and takes the case.

Eventually justice will be served, though perhaps not in the most orthodox of ways.

©2016 Gianrico Carofiglio (P)2016 Audible, Ltd

What listeners say about A Fine Line

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

Hardly a mystery, yet outstanding!

I can't explain well why I like the Guido Guerrieri series so much, and I know this writing is not for everyone. There is more talk than action and more ambiguity than clarity. This book, even more than the previous four, is light on mystery and heavy on Guerrieri's complicated introspective musings. In fact, the publisher's summary gives everything away so we know where this is headed even before we start. Nevertheless, I'm hooked because the writing is so much fun. Relayed entirely in the first person, we see the world only through Guido's eyes. Guido is aging and, at 48, pondering on what his life and legal career has been like. A criminal defense lawyer, he goes through life beset by various ethical dilemmas that challenge his sense of self-worth. He would probably be happier as an academic, but that is not his calling. He is obviously very good in his work but came to it almost by accident, while wondering what he ought to do with his life. He loves literature, music, women, boxing, and legal machinations that aren't too close to home and are not ethically too challenging. This book is a kind of psychological profile of a long-divorced attorney having another late midlife crisis. He happens to have a network of interesting and loyal friends, the latest of whom is Annapaola Doria, a former reporter who now works as a P.I. She is another person in search of herself but with sharper emotional and psychological insight than Guido. While Guido finds her both intellectually interesting and romantically attractive, she remains a mysterious individual whose depth is only slightly revealed toward the end. I certainly hope that she remains a part of future stories.

I should say that the enjoyment is no doubt enhanced by the consistent reading by Sean Barrett, whose voice seems to express every nuance of a character's speaking or thinking. I wouldn't have thought so, but his clipped British accent seems to fit in surprisingly well with the Italian scene.

6 people found this helpful

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A rich performance

I love Guido Guerrieri! And I especially like him with Sean Barrett's voice. Gianrico Carofiglio writes beautifully and thoughtfully. The combination is rich and memorable. I recommend this series of books to anyone who is looking for a good story with real depth.

2 people found this helpful

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Rich in detail

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

If you like narrative rich in detail and characters that are so real they feel like old friends, you will like Gianrico Carofiglio's novels. Each one gets better and better.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

This novel will have you going to your computer to play the music that Guido Guerrieri has just played or to look up breeds of cats or any of the myriad details that Carofiglio writes about.

2 people found this helpful

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Cappuccino on steroid

If you don't know Carofiglio, then find out. He is a terrific Italian mystery/thriller writer. His Judge Guerrieri teaches us everything we need to know and more about the Italian legal system. But that's not the point which is the storyline is gripping, has twists, and characters that will melt your gelato. Loved it as all of Carofiglio's books.

1 person found this helpful

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Where are ten stars?

I have now read all of the Guido books. My comment is: please write faster.... Great legal, moral, philosophy, and best of all... literate books. Loved them all.

1 person found this helpful

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Excellent

Everything is understated. Slowly, steadily, imperceptibly the tension builds. Then the story turns inside out and the whole thing unwinds.

Five books into the series, we already care every bit as much about Guido Guerrieri’s social and romantic evolution as we do about the plot (another 5 books in to these series (please!) and I wouldn’t be surprised if I felt the actual plot simply to be a McGuffin).

Sean Barrett is the perfect narrator.

Highly recommended - and the book does stand entirely alone and self contained - but do listen to the series in order, Guido is such an engaging character, it would be a shame not to watch his mid-life gently unravel and re-ravel…

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  • Michelle
  • 09-10-16

Quiet yet gripping

Carofiglio writes deceptively quiet crime novels. There are no bullets. Most of the action is in observation, conversation & mental debate. Still, they grip and don't let go.

Even in translation, the prose is beautiful, read by the wonderful Sean Barrett.

The city of Bari comes alive in these stories. You don't need to read the full series to enjoy this one, but repeat readers are fed little tidbits they will enjoy. In this book Guido's team stay in the background more than usual but boxing, the sea, the all night bookshop, art, comics and music all have cameos.

5 people found this helpful

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  • M. Mears
  • 12-07-16

Another psychologically honest & human story

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

My favourite books are the ones in which the style of writing is just as enjoyable & significant as the plot. The Fine Line is one of these. For me this series of books are not first and foremost about plot but rather are about human feelings / interactions and emotional honesty.

What other book might you compare A Fine Line to, and why?

The others in this series - especially "reasonable doubt"

Which scene did you most enjoy?

I love the scenes where we "hear" what he "didn't say"

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Laughed out loud a few times at the above

Any additional comments?

warmly recommended

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Steven
  • 09-30-16

Charming relaxed tale

Excellent narration. A charming educated tale well told. A pleasure to listen to this conversational reflective style.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Linda
  • 09-19-16

Back on top

Whilst I felt the previous book in the series had slipped a little, the latest instalment of this excellent courtroom series is definitely back in finer form and well worth a listen.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • David
  • 03-12-19

tedious in parts abrupt ending

abrupt ending and story was too slow paced. Let's have more of Anna P. bueno

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-14-18

I wish these would never end

This is the 5th book in the Guido Guerrieri series written by Gianrico Carofiglio and I hope there will be more, many more.
They are accurately written with knowledge of criminal law, they offer a fabulous guide to the towns, areas and places the stories are set in, all offset with a tasty knowledge of food and wine.
But most of all they are endearing and leave you believing in the written words as if a friend were accounting their days work activities.
Narrated by Sean Barrett, who has a smooth but masterful voice, that compliments the wording and theme, making the whole audible experience a treat you would prefer didn’t end.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Earnest
  • 09-15-16

Ah, the series letdown..

How muddling it must be for a writer to divide the "self" from the fiction. Some openly don't..Ove Knausgaard has made his own kind of mark in this genre. But overt proselytizing to the point of readerly, massive irritation is not acceptable. The overt pain the writer clearly has over legal issues he is aware of, overwhelmed any plot development at all. Knowing that injustice prevails must be hideous but a reader in the fiction genre needs more
story to embed and carry the ideas so that some empathy can be felt. Perhaps the Avocato in the series ( as in real life) escaped the system and became a motor bike fanatic and roared off into the distance..and wrote better novels-now that he has for this out of his system.