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Unnatural Acts (Stone Barrington #23)

3.71  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,118 Ratings  ·  300 Reviews
When a hedge fund billionaire hires Stone Barrington to talk some sense into his wayward son, it seems like an easy enough job; no one knows the hidden sins and temptations of the ultra-wealthy better than Stone. But as Stone and his erstwhile protégé, Herbie Fisher, probe deeper into the case—and an old one comes back to haunt him---he realizes that even he may have under ...more
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Published April 17th 2012 by Penguin Audio
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Loree Mathews
Jun 11, 2012 Loree Mathews rated it liked it
Another of my mindless escape authors. I am coming to the conclusion though that I am going to have to find some new authors for my mindless escapes as several of my longtime standbys are getting stale or I am getting bored. Not sure which.
Apr 24, 2012 Michael rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
Shelves: stone-barrington
Unnatural Acts is a worthless addition to the Stone Barrington series. For one, Stone Barrington isn't even the main character in the book, being relegated to supporting status to two other regular characters.

It's not clear why Woods felt the need to elevate Herbie Fisher's role in this series from comic relief to "Stone Barrington Lite". In one book, Fisher goes from a lowly associate to the fastest rising senior associate in the history of Woodman & Weld.

It's one thing to relegate Stone in
May 20, 2012 Skip rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-detective
Woods has become the new Robert Parker (i.e., too formulaic.) Stone takes a back seat in this novel to Herbie Fisher, who has become the "new" fixer at Woodman & Weld. He is enlisted to help the troubled son of a hedge fund owner and his assistance showers him with opportunties, on which he capitalizes. Stone's new romantic interest is being threatened by a talent manager and one of Dino's team is almost killed trying to catch him. Dino's love life is also problematic as he continues his dan ...more
S.L. Pierce
Nov 01, 2012 S.L. Pierce rated it did not like it
I believe I said a while ago that I wouldn't read anymore of Stuart Woods books because they had gone downhill. However, desperate for something to read I took a chance on this one when I saw it at the library. Big mistake. Just more of the same. Lots of money and sex with no plot. Everyone accomplishes difficult tasks with a minimum of effort.
Stuart Woods should either put some effort into his books or quit writing. He used to be one of the best and to go out like this makes me sad.
Apr 23, 2012 Lynn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Why do I keep reading this stuff?? I guess I just have to know, what next... this is more about Herbie Fisher and his status and advancement within the law firm and dealings with the clients. Dino and Stone are definately important to the story line as always, but most importantly, Elaine's of the famous restaurant of the same name, is no longer alive. The biggest mystery now is where to go for dinner every night?
Jennifer Norris
May 08, 2012 Jennifer Norris rated it did not like it
Oh Stuart. This book is just crap. And not fun guilty pleasure crap. Just crap. Nothing happened. And the stuff that did happen is completely unbelievable. Such a letdown.
May 17, 2012 Monnie rated it liked it
Funny, but I thought I'd read at least one of Woods's Stone Barrington novels, but once I started, nothing sounded familiar - except that I was struck by the similarity with John Sandford's "Prey" series. Barrington, a former cop turned attorney, is a more genteel version of Sandford's Deputy Chief Lucas Davenport, and Woods writes in a more laid-back fashion than Sandford. Everything moves along smoothly, but I noticed a decided lack of excitement (for want of a better word) on the part of all ...more
Jan 09, 2013 Cathy rated it did not like it
Shelves: unfinished, 2012
Gosh - another book not worth finishing. Is it just me? I know it's not, as others in my book club commented recently on the declining (or declined) quality of many popular writers' works. Do they even werite these themselves?

I've always loved Stuart Woods and Stone Barrington, but have despaired of finding another good book in that series. I panned Son of Stone and couldn't imagine things getting worse, but guess what? Now it's Herbie Fisher - Herbie Fisher is no Stone Barrington (then again,
Jan 17, 2015 Joan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gave-up-on
I just ended a 20-year affair with the novels of Stuart Woods. The break-up has been coming for awhile. The increasingly jaded attitudes and dialogue of Stone Barrington and Dino Bachetti and the decreasing interest of their activities/investigations/cases have been a deadly combination. This book just didn't have anything to keep me reading. I doggedly read the first 50 or so pages, skimmed the rest, and sadly put the book down. I don't know whether the author has just burned out or if the char ...more
May 03, 2012 Kay rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
Although Woods writes a fair story the characters are so shallow, egotistical, oversexed and completely unbelievable. For example when first introduced Herbie Fisher was a bumbling comical foolish little guy. He was almost likable till Wood developed him into a Stone clone and now he is a ritzy lawyer with millionaire clients falling all over themselves to hire him.

I keep waiting for Woods to write a good book like his first ones. If I wasn't OCD I'd give up on this series but I keep reading an
Chris Kasten
Jun 02, 2012 Chris Kasten rated it it was ok
My initial thoughts? Wow, that was awful. I mean seriously... suddenly hapless Herbie is the biggest rainmaker in the world? The smartest guy in the room? Really, that guy?

I ain't buying it.

And yet, like most Stuart Woods' books I found myself sucked in anyways -- or IN SPITE OF how awful the subject matter really was. And believe me, it was awful.

There's a lot wrong with this book but as a quick little mind escape it was tolerable.
Another major change for what has been a comfort series for me and I'm not sure I'm comfortable with it. Aging men about town (Stone & Dino) that have been the raison d'être for the series take a back seat and recurring third stringer takes the Herbie (Herb) Fisher takes the lead.
In deference to his new role, Herbie is now known as Herb (next it'll be the Knob Creek). Herb seems to be poised to be the new Stone and takes on an assignment by getting a wealthy clients son to walk the straight
Oliver Schnusenberg
May 04, 2012 Oliver Schnusenberg rated it liked it
Once again by accident, I've found another character I can easily become addicted to: Stone Barrington. This was the first book of Woods I have read, and, to be honest, I'm not really sure how I feel about it.(Since I read this one, I sliced through "Dead in the Water" like butter in 2 days). Part of the book/plot, etc deserves a 5, while others could do with a 3.First, the positives. I liked the energy and flow of the book; nay three pages go by without another development; the book strings the ...more
Nathan Flamank
Feb 17, 2013 Nathan Flamank rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I so wish I could say something good about this book but I can't. I have read Woods' novels for over twenty years and feel so hard done by of late by how lazy Mr Woods has become. His last six or so novels have been terrible and this is a real stinker.

There is no real story to this novel, just a series of inter-connecting "semi-stories", all of which are so unbelievable as to have had me cringing with every page read.

The women are nothing more than sexual receptacles for the various male charact
Aug 06, 2012 Ed rated it liked it
Shelves: legal, nyc
#12 in the Stone Barrington is more of the same guilty pleasure, fast paced, soap opera fluff that Stuart Woods has been popping out 3+ times a year. Sort of like James Patterson without all the co-authors. In this episode, a major event is the closing of Elaine's, a famous Manhatten Upper East Side eatery and Stone's favorite dinner destination, after the owner's death.

Stone Barrington series - Barrington, partner in the prestigious law firm Woodman & Weld, plays a mostly subsidiary, advis
This is the first Stone Barrington novel I've read in awhile - I was so disappointed with the last one i read (Strategic Moves) that I took a break from Stuart Woods. Unnatural Acts was similar to the first few SB novels that I've read and i enjoyed it so much more. Welcome Back Mr. Woods!!!

I read a recent review where the reader indicated that she was disappointed because Stone (the main character) wasn't utilized as much and she surmised that both the author and Stone were getting old. Well, I
Jul 06, 2012 Pam rated it did not like it
Sad to say, but over the last few years, Stuart Woods' writing has just gone downhill. The last few Stone books have been almost torture to get through. Unnatural Acts was no exception. In fact, this was the first Woods book that I didn't even finish. I just couldn't. I read up til the third chapter, and that was enough.

As others have mentioned here on Goodreads, this book seems to be all Herbie Fisher. From what I remember, wasn't Herbie a real moron? Had a law degree from some fly-by-night jo
Gae-Lynn Woods
Aug 19, 2012 Gae-Lynn Woods rated it really liked it
Confession: I love Stone and Dino and will happily open any Barrington novel. But UNNATURAL ACTS was a weird one, almost like a place filler between D.C. DEAD and whatever comes next. Other reviewers have commented that it focused more on Herbie (now "Herb") Fisher rather than on Dino or Stone. I agree. It sets Herbie (oops, Herb) up for greater roles in future books, and introduces another baddie, Dink Brennan, into the mix.

Do I recommend the novel? Yes, because it's part of the Stone Barringto
May 31, 2012 G G rated it it was ok
Stuart Woods once had a good thing going with Stone Barrington, but the character is getting old, literally and figuratively. It's almost as though Woods has either gotten tired of the character, or has run out of new and interesting material.

This book is a case in point. Stone once again encounters a woman who just 'happens' to live at the other end of the private garden behind his home in turtle bay. That's a huge coincidence in a city the size of New York City.

And every chapter is filled with
Jay Connor
Jun 06, 2012 Jay Connor rated it liked it
Stuart Woods is back up to fluff.

My review of Woods’ last effort – D.C. Dead – was less than complimentary. The only positive note I could strike was at least he hadn’t started farming out his characters to subcontractors like James Patterson has.

Stuart Woods is back up to fluff.

He’s right at the sweet spot of three stars. While this outing has more of a day-in-the-life feel (i.e. no overarching case to propel the plot), it is enjoyable and a relief to those of us who have followed Woods for o
I don't know why I keep reading this series. They're always the same. Stone and Dino have lots of sex, drink lots of whiskey and deal with huge amounts of money and bad guys. Nothing ever deep happens. When Stones wife died in the one book I don't think it took him 2 weeks before he was having sex with someone else.

This one deals more with Herbie than anything. It was totally unbelievable to me that Herbie went from this annoying, obnoxious pain in the butt that Stone did everything he could to
Jul 17, 2015 Ruth rated it it was ok
In all the Stone Barrington books that I have read, I have always enjoyed going to dinner with Stone and Dino at Elaine's. Right in the beginning of the book you find everyone gathered for a last dinner at Elaine's since she has passed away. That was STRIKE ONE.

This was the first Stone Barrington book where Stone hardly played a part in the book and it was really about Herb Fisher and Dino. STRIKE TWO

The plot has a very wealthy man contacting Stone to straighten out a gambling and drug mess tha
Jan 03, 2016 Brenda rated it liked it
Shelves: cozy-challenges
Unnatural Acts is the 23rd in the Stone Barrington series. The series centers around ex cop turned lawyer Stone Barrington and his best friend Lieutenant Dino Bacchetti.

Stone has settled into his new position as a partner at Woodman and Weld and is happily offering advice to his protégé Herbie Fisher. Herbie is afraid to take over the "Stone Barrington" reputation by only handling the jobs that the law firm doesn't really want to have it's name associated with, but manages to find himself embro
Oct 17, 2015 John added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 27, 2012 J.R. rated it did not like it
Shelves: mysteries
This was my first Stuart Woods novel and I see no reason for wasting time on more.

New York Times Bestselling Author? I can’t imagine why if this is an example of his work. Underdeveloped characters obsessed with money, glitz and glimmer; no plot and little mystery. There are at least two incidents which, if not impossible, could be cited as implausible.

Did he jot this down between shots of Knob Creek or dictate it to a secretary on the way to the bank?
Jan 09, 2015 Laura rated it liked it
mindless reading good for summer.

Once again Stone and friends are involved in all sorts go legal matters.
Herbie Fisher is really turned into a main character.
Errors note : including but not limited to:
two NYPD cops go to the Hamptons to arrest someone (the Hamptons are not in NYPD jurisdiction)
Doctor give injection straight to character's vein. No doctor would give an injection never mind straight into someone's vein
Doctor re caps needle. Uhm this book was written in 21st century no provider in
Jayne Hitchcock
May 14, 2012 Jayne Hitchcock rated it did not like it
Dear Stuart Woods,

What happened to mystery and intrigue? Thriller? This was one of your worst books! I got so sick about hearing how many millions and billions of dollars your characters were throwing around, I almost didn't bother to finish this book. And no mysteries at all? Go back to solving murders, please.


A lost and unhappy fan
Mary Jane
I liked that the story was more about Herbie, but disappointed that his character seems to have lost a lot of his personality. He came across to me as a junior version of Stone. The story lines seemed a bit on the dull side, but it was worth the read, especially since I got it from the library and it read fast, as usual.
Oct 09, 2015 Connie rated it really liked it
This is #23 in the Stone Barrington series and it was a fast read for me. I needed something light and this filled the bill.

I don't like the editing done to these books as it appears to be lacking. Even the disclaimer at the back of the book doesn't help me when it comes to editing.

This was more about Herbie Fischer and his arrival to the corporate attorney world. It used to be Stone getting Herbie out of scrapes and now it appears that Herbie is the one getting people out of scrapes.

It amaze
Kyle Murway
Mar 18, 2014 Kyle Murway rated it really liked it
This was my first Stuart Woods: Stone Barrington novel. I was impressed by how quickly this author creates an escape world. It was generally an easy read with drama, detectives, love affairs, family issues, and a traditional chronological uprising of a new, young-gun lawyer. If I could describe it with one simile-the book was like a CSI television show, but the reader version. Will I buy more Stuart Woods? Perhaps. Maybe when I am bored and need an easy read to get me back into focusing on diffi ...more
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Stuart Woods is the author the New York Times-bestselling Stone Barrington series and Holly Barker series. He is an avid private pilot, flying his own jet on book tours. You may see his tour schedule and learn more about the author on his website.

More about Stuart Woods...

Other Books in the Series

Stone Barrington (1 - 10 of 40 books)
  • New York Dead (Stone Barrington, #1)
  • Dirt (Stone Barrington, #2)
  • Dead in the Water (Stone Barrington, #3)
  • Swimming To Catalina (Stone Barrington, #4)
  • Worst Fears Realized (Stone Barrington, #5)
  • L.A. Dead (Stone Barrington, #6)
  • Cold Paradise (Stone Barrington, #7)
  • The Short Forever (Stone Barrington, #8)
  • Dirty Work (Stone Barrington, #9)
  • Reckless Abandon (Stone Barrington, #10 Holly Barker #4)

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