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Life or Death

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  9,078 ratings  ·  1,298 reviews
The chilling new psychological thriller from one of the most brilliant crime authors of today.

Why would a man escape from prison the day before he's due to be released?

Audie Palmer has spent a decade in prison for an armed robbery in which four people died, including two of his gang. Five million dollars has never been recovered and everybody believes that Audie knows whe
Hardcover, 434 pages
Published August 7th 2014 by Sphere (first published 2014)
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Average rating 4.07  · 
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 ·  9,078 ratings  ·  1,298 reviews

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As an avid reader, I can honestly say, one of the feelings that never gets old is stumbling across a new-to-me author—one that manages to catch me off guard with their characters or storytelling abilities—inciting a frenzy and leaving me with no choice but to keep my eyes glued to the pages. Or pick up another of their titles . . . immediately. Believe me, as much as I would like it to happen, it’s not a situation this finicky reader finds herself in often enough—which is why it feels akin to pu ...more
Debra (having surgery will be back in a few days)
Why or why would a man escape from prison the day before he is set to be released?

Audie Palmer has spent ten years behind bars for a crime in which four people died and seven million dollars went missing. From day one in prison there appeared to be a price on his head. He survived multiple attacks and beatings. Then he escaped and has everybody and their brother looking for him with everyone wondering why? Is Audie running from something or to something? What motivated his escape?

FBI agent, Des
Nov 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourite-books
An Extraordinary Book!
I recently discovered this author and after reading ‘Bombproof’ I wrote that it was “one” of the best books read this year. Having just completed ‘Life or Death’, it is definitely “the best” book I’ve read this year (maybe even last year as well). The story is about Audie Palmer who was about to become a free man after finishing a ten year sentence in prison. So the question is, why would he escape the day before his release? Now on the run this book soon becomes a page tur
Feb 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a true stand alone by Michael Robotham, without any characters that have appeared in previous books.

Audie Palmer has been in prison for ten years. He's being released tomorrow, but he escapes tonight. Moss Webster is just about the only friend Audie has in prison, and he had no inkling that Audie was planning this. Audie is on a mission. There are times he's lucky and, much more often, unlucky. He gets knocked down, but he doesn't stay down. Audie gets caught in a situation that is
Brenda ~Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
With the help of some of my friends, I am on a Michael Robotham roll here and I have found a new author to add as a favourite for me.

I was hooked right from the start here with our main character Audie escapes from prison a day before he is to be released. It’s all about the why here and the suspense increases as the story unfolds. Things heat up and chaos erupts everywhere for Audie and I couldn’t turn those pages fast enough to get all those questions I had answered.

Life or Death is a compel
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: public-library
Expectations.  They can be dashed to smithereens by one poor decision.  Audie Spencer Palmer, with only one day left of his 10 year prison sentence, escapes under the cover of night.  Makes no sense, does it?  Oh, but Audie has his reasons.  And he has a plan.  Tuck into this thriller after you have done your chores, as you will not want to roust yourself after you start reading.  Terrific characters and a great story!  
Sep 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What can I say about Michael Robotham an outstanding author who takes you on a thrill ride that you can't get off. I love Robotham none of his books have let me down yet , I love the way he takes you on a journey on the dark side.

Audie Palmer was in Jail for an armed robbery 4 people were killed & he survived he stole 7 million dollars & everyone wanted to know where the money went.

Now serving ten years in jail & getting beaten up by guards & prisoners alike he finally escapes from prison, but W
Oct 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
That was so,so good that I had trouble putting it down even for a moment. Audi is such an intriguing and likeable main character and I really wanted things to turn out well for him whilst being unable to see any way in which they could. The suspense is wonderful throughout the book and even when I figured out who was who and what had happened I still could not work out how it would end. When I was almost at the end I actually put the book away for an hour because I was so anxious about the endin ...more
Jul 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Audie Palmer was involved in an armed robbery where four people died and seven million dollars was lost. Audie is only one day away from being released from prison after serving 10 years. Then why would he escape the day before he was due to be released?

Audie suffered numerous beatings and stabbings throughout his time in prison from certain inmates who wanted to know where the missing money was, but no matter how much pain Audie endured he wasn't telling anyone anything.

Whilst the authorities
David Staniforth

I loved this book and struggled to put it down to the extent that I was nearly late for work a couple of times.

Life or Death is more complex than other thrillers I have read, and doesn’t rely on gore or shock value. Moreover, it is a masterful piece of storytelling, almost literary in style, where the plot gradually unravels and the characters develop to give the answer to one overarching question: why does Audie Palmer escape prison the day before being released from a ten year stretc
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: aussie-authors

I am a big fan of Michael Robthom he never fails to entertain but this just blew my socks off. The main character is Audie Palmer who decides to escape from prison one day before his due release date. Why would anybody of sane mind do such a thing? Audie is just one of those characters that you warm to and you will find yourself praying for his success.
He has been in prison for eleven years after being found guilty of some really horrific crimes, one being the killing of a young woman at the sc
Audie Palmer had served ten years in prison for being involved in an armed robbery where four people had died under horrendous circumstances. He had almost died himself and spent time in a coma then a long time recuperating. His doctors were astounded at his recovery – at the very least he should have brain damage they all declared. But Audie recovered enough to be tried and convicted – the seven million dollars wasn’t to be found though. The non-stop beatings over the course of his incarceratio ...more
Mary Beth
Aug 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a Traveling Friends Reas
and also read it with my buddy, Susan! It was a good read. I love this author.
Jul 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Audie Palmer has spent ten years in jail. He was sentenced after a robbery on an armoured truck led to four deaths, Audie himself horribly injured, one man – Audie’s brother –missing and seven million dollars unaccounted for. .. Through all of the ten years Audie has spent in prison he has suffered threats, beatings and countless attempts on his life by people hoping to get their hands on the money. So, with his jail term almost over, his actions make no sense. Why would a man about to be releas ...more
Mar 07, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jonetta by: Phrynne
Audie Campbell escapes from prison on the eve of his release after having served ten years behind bars. What follows next is his odyssey to an ultimate goal where only he is privy to knowing.

The story juxtaposes the past and present in a fairly unique way. It's delivered more topically than chronologically, making it more difficult to follow but tons more interesting. There were many questions to be answered and having them revealed strategically served the story very well.

I enjoyed the story
 Li'l Owl
Re-reading this a second time! Stay tuned for an updated review!

What can I really say that most everyone hadn't already said about this book? Maybe..... Life can be short, READ IT!!
Pat (not getting friend updates currently)
Outstanding, brilliant.

Indeed, why would a man about to be paroled escape from prison on the eve of his release? Audi Spencer Palmer was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his part in an armed robbery of a truck carrying $7 million in unmarked bills. Four people died in the course of the robbery and Audie himself was grievously injured and not expected to survive. The money was never recovered. Audi pleaded guilty and never gave his version of events or dobbed in anyone else. Yet Audie had an a
Susan Z
Jan 15, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have been a huge fan of Michael Robotham since I stumbled upon The Other Wife, his latest book in the Joe O'Loughlin series. I went on to read that whole series as well his newest series with Cyrus Haven and I loved them all. In 2021 I plan to finish his collection and read his stand alone novels. This is my first book on the quest.

Audie has been in prison for 10 years for a robbery gone very wrong including multiple deaths, some innocent some not. The day before he was due to be released, he
I was quite looking forward to reading this one, though unfortunately I was a bit disappointed. I have read three other novels by Michael Robotham and enjoyed them. This one just didn't really work for me. I found it a bit slow and difficult to get into. It wasn't until the last couple of chapters that I found myself really engaged with the book and actually enjoying reading it. The ending did keep me in suspense and I was very satisfied with how it ended. It's just a shame it took me right unti ...more
Jul 22, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars. This was an excellent thriller! I read it because Stephen King enjoyed it and I belong to a group who follows his recommendations.
" he’s filled with a desperate, almost suffocating sadness and sense of abandonment. Why does the world have so little need of him? What can’t it just be ambivalent?"

This is the story of one Audie Palmer. I really can't say too much about the actual story without spoiling it for you and then you won't be 'thrilled' by how the events pan out.

I started with
Michael Robotham is a terrific writer of suspense crime novels and this latest stand alone novel does not disappoint.

The main character, Audie Palmer has survived 10 years of harsh prison treatment for his role in an armed robbery involving the death of four people but inexplicably escapes 24h before his release. At first the FBI wonder if he is out to find the missing money (seven million dollars) or out for revenge or maybe he has an alternative reason that he has never mentioned to anyone? A
Maureen DeLuca
Nov 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a new author for me, and wow- I'm glad I got read this novel.

Life or Death introduces us to Audie Palmer. Audie has been sentenced to ten years in prison for his putative participation in a 7-mil armored truck heist. The day before he is set to be released - Audie breaks out of prison- and now the mystery begins. WHY on earth would you break out of prison when you will be released the next day?!

Much of this book goes to the back story of where Audie grew up, his family, his brother an
Kylie H
Wow! This is the first book that I have read by this author and I will certainly be reading more. I don't want to say too much as I am afraid of giving something away but I tore through this book in two days. I did not want to put it down.
Audie is serving a 10 year prison sentence for the robbery of an armoured van containing 7 million dollars, the murder of four people and an accident that killed an unidentified woman. Over the years of his sentence everyone has tried to get the location of the
Judy D Collins
Top 50 Books of 2015 "Best Tour de Force of Crime Writing "

International best-selling author, Australian Michael Robotham, is at the “top of his game”, crossing many genres and an ocean, for the setting of his latest novel, LIFE OR DEATH.

“Resentment is like swallowing a poison and waiting for the other person to die.”
― Michael Robotham, Life or Death

Choosing the American southern state of Texas, delivering one of the most brilliantly written, and powerful thrillers of 2014-2015! US March
Amanda McGill
Apr 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
Life or Death deserves all of the high ratings that it is receiving! Goodreads friends if you have this on your to-reads, pick it up sooner rather than later!

Audie has just spent the last 10 years in jail. The day before he is about to released he escapes. What is he hiding? Why did he escape?

I was totally surprised with how much I loved Life or Death. I found it a bit hard to get into (maybe the first 50ish pages), but once you get the characters straight and the timelines then it is an intens
Sep 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
Another excellent novel by one of my favourite authors Michael Robotham. The opening features a man who escapes from prison the day before he is to be released, why? This novel is well constructed and full of some really good characters, there are twists and turns and plenty of action. What more could you ask for. I am quickly running out of Michael Robotham books to read, in fact there is only one to go. An excellent writer who deserves more recognition.
Anna Scott
Aug 11, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: b2014, abandoned
This just did not grab me. I gave it 100 pages and nothing in there hooked me like the premise did. Plus I became increasingly frustrated by how, once the main character escapes, he kind of dawdles around. You would think that if you escape one day before your release date, you might've had some time pressures to make you act quickly. Apparently not. ...more
An engrossing and intriguing piece of crime fiction, beautifully written. I found its format refreshing - the absence of the conventional whodunnit with a psychopathic perp and a dedicated detective doggedly determined to deliver the denouement.
My interest never flagged, as Robotham gently unrolled the developments in this complex story. For me his reveals were like peeling away the layers of an onion. There was always something deeper, mysterious, to be further clarified.
The protagonist, Audi
Sherri Thacker
This book was a great book and kept me interested until the end. Looking for more books from this author.
I love this author and this was a good story but IMHO not up there with his other books I have enjoyed. A man breaks out of prison the day before he is to be released after serving an unblemished 10 year term, for a 7 million dollar robbery. I liked the main character but some of the plot was a bit far fetched. A buddy read with my very good book buddy Mary Beth.
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Two-times Gold Dagger winner and twice Edgar finalist, Michael Robotham was born in Australia in November 1960 and grew up in small country towns that had more dogs than people and more flies than dogs. He escaped in 1979 and became a cadet journalist on an afternoon newspaper in Sydney.

For the next fourteen years he worked for newspapers in Australia, Europe, Africa and America. As a senior featu

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