New Year's Day - and through the misty streets of Victorian Edinburgh, an elegant female figure walks the cobblestones with a certain vengeful purpose. Jean Brash, the mistress of the Just Land, brings her cool intelligence to solving a murder, a murder that took place in her own bawdy house (the best in Edinburgh and her pride and joy). A prominent judge, strangled and left dangling, could bring her whole life to ruin, and she didn't haul herself off the streets, up through low, dirty houses of pleasure and violent vicious men, to let that come to pass.
"If you love McLevy you will love this"
Eight episodes of the popular BBC Radio 4 Victorian detective drama, starring Brian Cox and Siobhan Redmond. Inspired by the real-life memoirs of one of Scotland's first policemen, this gripping series sees James McLevy prowling the dark streets of 1860s Edinburgh bringing criminals to justice, with the assistance of Constable Mulholland and Lieutenant Roach.
"Great all round"
Nine episodes of the BBC Radio 4 detective series set in Victorian Edinburgh, starring Brian Cox as Inspector McLevy. In this collection all eight episodes of series 11 and 12 are joined by 'Meet James McLevy', a remake of the original pilot episode. Inspired by the real-life memoirs of one of Scotland's first policemen, the fictional James McLevy prowls the dark streets of 1860s Edinburgh bringing criminals to justice, with the assistance of Constable Mulholland.
London had Sherlock Holmes. The dark alleys of Edinburgh had Inspector McLevy. Known as the father of forensics and a likely influence on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, real-life police inspector James McLevy is here reinvented by David Ashton in a thrilling mystery - the first in a series - set in dark, violent Victorian Edinburgh.
"Masterly performance by David Ashton"
Eight episodes of the BBC Radio 4 detective series set in Victorian Edinburgh, starring Brian Cox. Inspired by the real-life memoirs of one of Scotland's first policemen, James McLevy prowls the dark streets of 1860s Edinburgh, bringing criminals to justice, with the assistance of Constable Mulholland.
Brian Cox stars as the Victorian detective in a further nine episodes of the BBC Radio 4 series. Inspired by the real-life memoirs of one of Scotland's first policemen, James McLevy prowls the dark streets of 1860s Edinburgh bringing criminals to justice, with the assistance of Constable Mulholland.
"love this series"
Brian Cox stars as the Edinburgh detective in eight episodes of the BBC Radio 4 series. Inspired by the real-life memoirs of a Victorian inspector in Scotland, James McLevy prowls the dark streets of 1860s Edinburgh bringing criminals to justice, with the assistance of Constable Mulholland.'To Keep Him Honest': with big bets on a champion boxing match, the local crooks keep McLevy busy. 'Picture of Innocence': a high court judge is dead, and suspicion falls on his wife.
Brian Cox stars as the Edinburgh detective in nine episodes of the BBC Radio 4 series. Inspired by the real-life memoirs of a Victorian inspector in Scotland, James McLevy prowls the dark streets of 1860s Edinburgh bringing criminals to justice, with the assistance of Constable Mulholland.
"Classic components but assembled so very well"
A James Bond novel written by William Boyd. It is 1969 and James Bond is about to go solo, recklessly motivated by revenge. A seasoned veteran of the service, 007 is sent to single-handedly stop a civil war in the small West African nation of Zanzarim. Aided by a beautiful accomplice and hindered by the local militia, he undergoes a scarring experience which compels him to ignore M's orders in pursuit of his own brand of justice.
"I love Bond, but I didn't love this"
The first four series of the original BBC Radio 4 fantastical drama series set in a world almost, but not quite, like our own. Paul Hilton stars as William Palmer, the immortal, reluctant and unthanked hero protecting mankind from an enemy they resist believing in: the Grey Folk. Thrilling, dark and contemporary, the dramas are set in a recognisable present day but one haunted by the folktales of the British Isles: drowned villages, changeling children, werewolves and unruly nature spirits.
The first novel in Simon Scarrow's bestselling Roman series. It is 42 AD, and Quintus Licinius Cato has just arrived in Germany as a new recruit to the Second Legion, the toughest in the Roman army. If adjusting to the rigours of military life isn't difficult enough for the bookish young man, he also has to contend with the disgust of his colleagues when, because of his imperial connections, he is appointed a rank above them.
"Let down a bit by the narrator"
Powerful full-cast radio dramatisations of three of Charles Dickens' most famous novels. Barnaby Rudge, set against the background of the anti-Catholic riots of the 1780s, follows the plight of young Barnaby and his widowed mother. Martin Chuzzlewit is a darkly comic masterpiece in which a disinherited Martin sets sail for America to seek his fortune. Dombey and Son examines a rich city merchant and his troubled relationships at home.
"Not quite as listenable as Volume 1."
The Romanovs were the most successful dynasty of modern times, ruling a sixth of the world's surface. How did one family turn a war-ruined principality into the world's greatest empire? And how did they lose it all? This is the intimate story of 20 tsars and tsarinas, some touched by genius, some by madness, but all inspired by holy autocracy and imperial ambition.
"A very interesting story told poorly"
High adventure and dark mystery combine in a sparkling historical romance, by Jodi Taylor writing as Isabella Barclay from The Chronicles of St. Mary's. Bascombe, widowed and tied to an impoverished estate, has learned to ask little of life. With no hope of leaving, the years have passed her by. Lord Ryde, exiled abroad after a scandal, has returned to strip his estate and make a new start in America.
"At last an author worthy of comparing with Heyer"
A BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Simon Brett's entertaining crime novel, starring Bill Nighy. Charles Paris has been resting for quite a while, so he's relieved when he is cast as Ghost of Hamlet's Father and First Gravedigger in a touring production of Hamlet. But rehearsals are a little tense - the lead roles of Hamlet and Ophelia are played by a reality TV contestant and TV talent show winner respectively, and their opinions on celebrity and the theatre differ somewhat from those of the more experienced members of the cast.
"Updated (thank God)"
Sir Tony Robinson is a much-loved actor, presenter and author with a stellar career lasting over 50 years. Now, in his long-awaited autobiography, he reveals how the boy from South Woodford went from child stardom in the first stage production of Oliver!, a pint-size pickpocket desperately bleaching his incipient moustache, to comedy icon Baldrick, the loyal servant and turnip aficionado in Blackadder.
"Fascinating and beautifully read"
In The English and their History, the first full-length account to appear in one volume for many decades, Robert Tombs gives us the history of the English people and of how the stories they have told about themselves have shaped them, from the prehistoric 'dreamtime' through to the present day.
The United States government is given a warning by the preeminent biophysicists in the country: Current sterilization procedures applied to returning space probes may be inadequate to guarantee uncontaminated reentry to the atmosphere.
"Not for me"
This novel, set in London in the late 1950s, finds George Smiley engaged in the humdrum job of security vetting. But when a Foreign Office civil servant commits suicide after an apparently unproblematic interview, Smiley is baffled. Refusing to believe that Fennan shot himself soon after making a cup of cocoa and asking the exchange to telephone him in the morning, Smiley decides to investigate - only to uncover a murderous conspiracy.
"A refreshing change"
The No. 1 Sunday Times bestselling modern classic: A Bravo Two Zero for the Second Gulf War. They were branded as cowards and accused of being the British Special Forces Squadron that ran away from the Iraqis. But nothing could be further from the truth. Ten years on, the story of these sixty men can finally be told. In March 2003 M Squadron - an SBS unit with SAS embeds - was sent 1,000 kilometres behind enemy lines on a true mission impossible, to take the surrender of the 100,000-strong Iraqi Army 5th Corps.
"Not what I really expected"
Everyone deserves to get away for a bit. Even the miscreants at St Mary's. Astonishingly, Dr. Bairstow has declared a holiday. Even more astonishingly - he's paying for it. Needless to say, there are strings attached. They have to record the 1601 performance of Hamlet, with Shakespeare himself in the role of the Ghost. It doesn't go well, of course.
"Funniest St Mary's ever"
By the Sunday Times best-selling author of The Lie. Forbidden love, intimate betrayal and the devastating power of exposure drive Helen Dunmore's remarkable new title. London, November 1960: the Cold War is at its height. Spy fever fills the newspapers, and the political establishment knows how and where to bury its secrets. When a highly sensitive file goes missing, Simon Callington is accused of passing information to the Soviets and arrested.
"Heartstopping and addictive"
David Calder, David Tennant and Hamish Clark star in these BBC Radio 4 dramas based on the original TV series. George Dixon became one of the best-known and most-loved fictional policemen during the course of three decades of BBC TV's Dixon of Dock Green, in which he was played by Jack Warner. In these 12 radio adaptations, he once again upholds the law on the streets of 1950s Dock Green. David Calder stars as PC George Dixon, with David Tennant and Hamish Clark as PC Andy Dixon.
"Enjoyable radio drama to discover the character by"
To the children, the town was their whole world. To the adults, knowing better, Derry, Maine, was just their hometown: familiar, well ordered for the most part. A good place to live. It was the children who saw - and felt - what made Derry so horribly different. In the storm drains, in the sewers, IT lurked, taking on the shape of every nightmare, each one's deepest dread. Sometimes IT reached up, seizing, tearing, killing....
Exclusive interview with David Ashton, author of the Inspector McLevy series.
©2016 David Ashton (P)2016 Audible Studios
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