• Old Scores

  • A Chris Norgren Mystery
  • By: Aaron Elkins
  • Narrated by: Corey Snow
  • Length: 6 hrs and 40 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (78 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

It's a headline-making story: the discovery of a previously unknown Rembrandt. Ren Vachey, the iconoclastic art dealer who claims to have uncovered it, wants to make a gift of it to the Seattle Art Museum, but curator Chris Norgren is wary. Vachey is notorious in art circles for perpetrating scandalous shams; not for profit but for the sheer fun of embarrassing the elite and snobbish "experts" of the art establishment. And thanks to the web of strings attached to Vachey's donation (e.g., no scientific testing permitted), even Rembrandt expert Chris is uncertain as to whether or not the painting is authentic. His doubts multiply when he goes to Dijon to examine it, and finds himself in the middle of a host of controversies of which Vachey is the devilish focus. But there's no doubt that the bullet soon found in Vachey's head is authentic. And there's no telling how much time Chris has to find the truth about the "masterpiece" - and the murder - before he finds himself painted into a corner by a shrewd and villainous murderer.

1993 Nero Award, given by The Nero Wolfe Society/The Wolfe Pack for literary excellence in the mystery genre.

©1993 Aaron Elkins (P)2013 Audible Inc.

What listeners say about Old Scores

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Mostly mediocre

Here's what I really, really enjoyed about this book: it was filled with pages of interesting information about art and art history. Loved hearing about artists, and things like debates around the worth of "fakes" and forgeries, and so forth. The story itself was clever.

Here's what I liked less: although interesting, at times it seemed written for about a high school reading level. Sometimes sort of stilted language (but not always).

Here's what I liked even less: the narrator read too fast.

Here's what left me absolutely cringing and needing a bullet to bite on: this book is filled with French words--vocabulary, places, names, even French accents for characters who spoke English. A lot more than the occasional French phrase thrown in here and there. This narrator murdered the French language! It was pretty awful. I might have thought the producer of this book could have found an accomplished bilingual reader to have made it a more credible listen.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Cringe-Worthy Pronunciation

How could the performance have been better?

The narrator's mispronunciation of French words and phrases, and even the names of well-known artists, was truly cringe-worthy--I winced every time. The narrator butchered words unabashedly, which repeatedly took me out of the story. If this sort of thing bothers you, avoid this book.

3 people found this helpful

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art lovers gem

Intrigue with art history gloss. Interesting characters that love and evaluate art put in a mystery format. Nourishment for anyone with the slightest interest in art.

1 person found this helpful

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Interesting story line about art forgery

The story is good, but the narrator should stop trying to pronounce foreign words in their language - he mangles the French and German terribly, and makes them harder to understand in English. If you are speaking Englush, just say the word in English- unless you’re also a native speaker if the other language. So distracting!

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Interesting art con

Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Me Elkins impressed me with his excellent writing and his sense of humor. I would highly recommend this book. Narration was also spot on. Enjoy!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Art Appreciation and sleuthing

you can really see the beginnings of some of Elkins later work with his wife with their female protagonist in these Chris Norgren novels. If you are a reader who likes to see a smart protagonist dealing with the circumstances as they're dealt to him then these books are for you.