Podcast Review #99: Crescent City Heat Season 1: French Quarter Hustle

Title: French Quarter Hustle
Author: Charlie Brown
Genre: Fiction
Released: 15 August 2011, 25 August 2011
Located:Podibooks, iTunes
Formats Available: Podcast
Rating: R: for language and adult situations

A couple of weeks ago I was browsing Podiobooks.com completed stories and stumbled across this story. I have several friends and one brother that are enamored with New Orleans, and for one reason or another, this sounded like something I’d like to give a try.

So, on to the review.

Synopsis: Danny Johnson is a Bourbon Street character you don’t want to meet. He has an easy smile and a boyish face and uses it to separate you from your cash.

Life with his girlfriend Lily and best friend Teddy seems alright, until he sees Teddy’s mob connections and gets some ideas.

Crazy ideas that lead him down paths he never wanted to go that lead to surprising revelations about underworld life and his very soul. (Stolen from Podiobooks.com)

Production: I am unsure if Mr. Brown has ever recorded or produced anything before, but to be honest, it doesn’t sound like it. There are numerous issues with the production, including the fact that sometimes the vices are too quiet to be heard. At other times, a phrase or word is inserted into a previously recorded segment at a MUCH greater volume causing the listener to jump out of their skin. The music is a nice touch though and definitely gives the story the flavor of the city it’s inspired by.

Grade: C+

Cast: The consists of two voices, a female lead and a male lead that also does the rest of the voices. Both do a more than adequate job and I had no trouble believing either of them in these roles.

Grade: B

Story: French Quarter Hustle is the story of a low level con artist and girl and their friends and family. It follows our hero as he begins moving up in the world of crime and even provides a flashback or two. Gotta love those flashbacks. Or not.

Grade: C

Verdict: French Quarter Hustle is truly average in about every category, which makes it below average when looking at it through the long lens. I cannot, in good conscience, really state that any part of this story appealed to me. You would think when writing about a low time grifter you would make him have a caring character underneath to appeal to readers/listeners. Not in this case. He is true to life in that he really is only concerned about himself and his own issues, even to the point of endangering those he supposedly cares for. It’s a short book and that is about its only redeeming characteristic. I will admit, the romantic in me enjoyed the last chapter, but by then, it really was a case of too little, too late.

Disclaimer: I’ve never met or conversed with Mr. Brown and was neither offered nor did I receive anything for this review

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