Release Date: October 30, 2017
In Poolside with Brett by David D’Aguanno, it’s the 1980s in New Jersey, the age of excess. Big hair, hard drugs and lots of sex and one man who is acing the era is Private Investigator, Brett Cornell. He’s winning big and has attracted the attention of an exotic beauty who wants to feature him in one of her adult films and a wealthy woman has hired him to find her husband. Seems like life is going well until Brett finds the missing husband in the trunk of his car. Is someone trying to set him up? Brett must solve the case to get back to his charmed life. Poolside with Brett is the first book in the Brett Cornell series.
The author gave me a copy of this audiobook in exchange for my review.
Brett Cornell is convinced of his brilliance. He has the mustache and the butt to make all of the women swoon. People are there for at his pleasure and if he can use them to his advantage, all the better. He is the absolute best at what he does but is not above taking a job that he sees as mostly a joke. Brett is completely obnoxious and treats his secretary as an object of derision and convenient sexual release. Sounds like a pretty awful guy, right? The draw of Poolside with Brett is how consistently awful he is as a character. Waiting for his “come to Jesus” moment? Well, that’s not happening but this ridiculous loudmouth will keep you engaged in his story where not everything comes up roses for Brett. I’d read another book in the series and remembered him not coming off as the most credible of narrators, but think that’s what makes reading him fun. He’s completely delusional but very consistent in that delusion.
Word of advice, don’t listen to Poolside with Brett during the school pick up. The story is told in Brett’s voice and he can be a bit raw edged. I listened to the first chapter or so at the gym and then made the mistake of having it on in the car. Thankfully, I have an older child but caught it quick when he got a little blue. I’d like to emphasize that he only got a little graphic. If your child watches any 14+ shows, it won’t be shocking for them. Brett is very much the classic Private Dick that one might remember from 1980s television with the freedom to be a bit uncensored. Brett’s humor is also a product of its time. Brett is hugely misogynistic and a bit homophobic which will likely bother some readers.
In a sense, D’Aguanno has given us a bit of a living time capsule in Brett. The story flows well and, as is typical with first books, has our protagonist with a personal investment in his case. He’s facing a murder charge so where this character might normally walk away, he’s unable to do so if he wants to continue breathing free air. The story is realistic and all strings are tied together. There are no magical too easy solutions coming from David D’Aguanno. Brett Cornell is a classic gumshoe with a bit of an undesirable edge and he is a character you will either love or hate.
May I suggest trying Brett in the audiobook format? Narrator Travis Henry Carter is nothing short of brilliant voicing the main character. His vocal stylings of the characters highlight that Poolside with Brett is a novel meant to be heard. There were a lot of laugh-out-loud lines punctuated by Carter’s take on a New Jersey accent (which sounded authentic to me but then I was raised in Michigan). Carter’s reading style had a natural flow that allowed this listener to get immersed and, without exaggeration, made the time on the elliptical fly. While I love the freedom audiobooks give when doing tasks, not all keep the attention the way Poolside with Brett did.
Pick up the Brett Cornell series, and read it from the start but as a special treat get it on audiobook and then let me know what you thought.
Read our book review of David D’Aguanno’s Brett Always Wins.
Poolside with Brett by David D’Aguanno on Audible.
|Title||Poolside with Brett|
|Narration||Travis Henry Carter|
|Length||6 hours and 46 minutes|
|Released||October 30, 2017|
Prefer the book? Read and excerpt and buy the book Poolside with Brett by David D’Aguanno on