Version: Unabridged
Author: Douglas Preston , Lincoln Child
Narrator: Scott Brick
Genres: Thriller, Police Stories
Publisher: Hachette Audio
Published In: December 2011
# of Units: 16 CDs
Length: 16 hours, 39 minutes
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Art critic Jeremy Grove is found dead, his face frozen in a mask of terror. His body temperature is grotesquely high; he is discovered in a room barricaded from the inside; the smell of brimstone is everywhere... and the unmistakable imprint of a claw is burned into the wall. As more bodies are discovered - their only connection the bizarre but identical manner of death - the world begins to wonder if the Devil has, in face, come to collect his due. Teaming with Police Officer Vincent D'Agosta (The Relic), Agent Pendergast is determined to solve this case that appears to defy everything except supernatural logic.

Reviews (10)

Written by John W. on March 6th, 2019

  • Book Rating: 5/5

very entertaining book. I greatly enjoy Preston and Child books. FBI agent Pendergast is a well developed character. Easily 5 stars.

Written by Danny N on February 6th, 2018

  • Book Rating: 5/5

This was a great book. I am a big fan of Pendergast himself and just about all characters in the series thus far. I have listened to a few thousand hours of audio books and sometimes no matter how compelling a story is, the narrator makes or breaks the listening experience. Scott Brick has done a fantastic job here. He has a different dialect for each character and transitions seamlessly from one to the next. 5 stars all around.

Written by Doreen Berarducci on March 28th, 2017

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Have been an admirer of FBI Special Agent Pendergast since my first encounter with the fine southern gentlemen through a wonderful novel entitled "Still Life with Crows". Pendergast is as interesting as he is refined, his personal life is subject to the age old "good versus evil " complex as well as any case he gets involved in. Brimstone was very well written, I especially enjoyed all the traipsing through Italy (Rome, Florence), and the background information about the Stradivarius. The premise of the book was different and entertaining. The ongoing series of Agent Pendergast is a true delight. I would suggest this book and all Preston and Douglas novels (together and separate).

Written by Debbie Rodgers on December 8th, 2016

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Loved this book! Kept me wanting more! Wish they would mention the title of the next book that follows so I wouldn't have to scroll through them all, I love to read them in order!


Written by Sarah on June 27th, 2016

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Preston and Child can write tension and anticipation into their stories. I have to give Scott Brick the 5 stars for his narration. He makes the story "sing"


Written by Anonymous on April 23rd, 2016

  • Book Rating: 2/5

Too long. I couldn't finish it. Many boring parts. Not the best Pendergast book. Usually I like these books but not this one.

Written by Michelle Britton on March 21st, 2016

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Great book! Huge fan of what they did with Count Fosco. Smartly written as usual from these authors

Written by Gregory Calzada on September 4th, 2015

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Outstanding you will not know what's around the next corner

Written by Heather Payne on July 30th, 2015

  • Book Rating: 5/5

What a great story! It will keep you on the edge of your seat. Agent Pendergast at his finest. I just love his character. Thrilling plot by Preston & Child! Most entertaining performance by Scott Brick.

Written by Briana Lutz on June 6th, 2015

  • Book Rating: 5/5

I have read this book at least 3 times in my high school days. It introduced me to the Pendergast books

Author Details

Author Details

Preston, Douglas

Douglas Preston was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1956. He attended Pomona College in Claremont, California, and graduated cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, in 1978, with a degree in English literature.

From 1978 to 1985, Preston worked for the American Museum of Natural History in New York City as a writer, editor, and manager of publications. He served as Managing Editor for the journal Curator and was a columnist for Natural History magazine. In 1985 he published a history of the museum, DINOSAURS IN THE ATTIC, which chronicled the explorers and expeditions of the museum's early days.

In 1986 Preston moved to New Mexico and began to write full-time. Seeking an understanding of the first moment of contact between Europeans and Indians in America, he retraced on horseback Francisco Vasquez de Coronado's violent and unsuccessful search for the legendary Seven Cities of Gold. That thousand mile journey across the American Southwest resulted in the book, CITIES OF GOLD. Since that time Preston has undertaken many long horseback journeys retracing historic or prehistoric trails. He has also participated in expeditions in other parts of the world, including a journey deep into Khmer Rouge-held territory in the Cambodian jungle with a small army of soldiers, to be the first Westerner to visit a lost Angkor temple. He once had the thrill of being the first person in 3,000 years to enter an ancient Egyptian burial chamber in a tomb known as KV5 in the Valley of the Kings.

Preston has published five nonfiction books and thirteen novels, most of which were bestsellers and translated into many languages. With his frequent collaborator, Lincoln Child, he has authored such bestselling thrillers as THE CABINET OF CURIOSITIES, THE ICE LIMIT, THUNDERHEAD, RIPTIDE, BRIMSTONE and RELIC. His most recent novel, DANCE OF DEATH, which came out in June 2005, was on the New York Times bestseller list for six weeks. Preston writes about archaeology for the New Yorker magazine and he has also been published in Smithsonian magazine, Harper's, and National Geographic. He is the recipient of numerous writing awards.

Preston counts in his ancestry the poet Emily Dickinson, the newspaperman Horace Greeley, and the infamous murderer and opium addict Amasa Greenough. He and his wife, Christine, live in Maine with their three children.

Child, Lincoln

Lincoln Child was born in Westport, Connecticut, which he still calls his hometown (despite the fact that he left the place before he reached his first birthday and now only goes back for weekends).

Lincoln seemed to have acquired an interest in writing as early as second grade, when he wrote a short story entitled Bumble the Elephant (now believed by scholars to be lost). Along with two dozen short stories composed during his youth, he wrote a science-fiction novel in tenth grade called Second Son of Daedalus and a shamelessly Tolkeinesque fantasy in twelfth grade titled The Darkness to the North (left unfinished at 400 manuscript pages). Both are exquisitely embarrassing to read today and are kept under lock and key by the author.

After a childhood that is of interest only to himself, Lincoln graduated from Carleton College (huh?) in Northfield, Minnesota, majoring in English. Discovering a fascination for words, and their habit of turning up in so many books, he made his way to New York in the summer of 1979, intent on finding a job in publishing. He was lucky enough to secure a position as editorial assistant at St. Martin's Press.

Over the next several years, he clawed his way up the editorial hierarchy, moving to assistant editor to associate editor before becoming a full editor in 1984. While at St. Martin's, he was associated with the work of many authors, including that of James Herriot and M. M. Kaye. He edited well over a hundred books--with titles as diverse as The Notation of Western Music and Hitler's Rocket Sites--but focused primarily on American and English popular fiction.

While at St. Martin's, Lincoln assembled several collections of ghost and horror stories, beginning with the hardcover collections Dark Company (1984) and Dark Banquet (1985). Later, when he founded the company's mass-market horror division, he edited three more collections of ghost stories, Tales of the Dark 1-3.

In 1987, Lincoln left trade publishing to work at MetLife. In a rather sudden transition, he went from editing manuscripts, speaking at sales conferences, and wining/dining agents to doing highly technical programming and systems analysis. Though the switch might seem bizarre, Lincoln was a propeller-head from a very early age, and his extensive programming experience dates back to high school, when he worked with DEC minis and the now-prehistoric IBM 1620, so antique it actually had an electric typewriter mounted into its front panel. Away from the world of publishing, Lincoln's own nascent interests in writing returned. While at MetLife, Relic was published, and within a few years Lincoln had left the company to write full time. He now lives in New Jersey (under protest--just kidding) with his wife and daughter.

A dilettante by natural inclination, Lincoln's interests include: pre-1950s literature and poetry; post-1950s popular fiction; playing the piano, various MIDI instruments, and the 5-string banjo; English and American history; motorcycles; architecture; classical music, early jazz, blues, and R&B; exotic parrots; esoteric programming languages; mountain hiking; bow ties; Italian suits; fedoras; archaeology; and multiplayer deathmatching.