©2006 Reginald Hill; (P)2006 W F Howes Ltd
"A mystery novel, but far more than that. It's gripping...Hill is wonderful." (The Times)
Having enjoyed reading many other Reginald Hill books and recently listened to my first as an audiobook - the Woodcutter, I was looking forward to this. Now I wish I'd heeded Claire (Orpington)'s review. It is indeed all in the telling. The accents Gordon Griffin used were irritating and didn't at all match the characters' personalities: everyone over the age of 60 was made to sound reedy and feeble, despite descriptions & actions which indicated that they were strong and far from ailing! But the real problem for me was the fact that he just didn't get the rhythm of HIll's writing.There were pauses in the wrong part of the sentence, and intonation that altered the meaning. I found myself replaying sentences in my head to work out what Hill had intended to say. A good narrator can enhance a story, but Gordon Griffin lets Hill down badly. Unlike Claire, I persevered to the end and enjoyed the tale unfolding, but it was a struggle. If you like Reginald Hill, I recommend you buy and read the book rather than downloading this audio version. (For a narrative masterclass, try Juliet Stevenson's Middlemarch - amazing!)
A good story particularly well told; the reader distinguishing the great variety of accents, genders and ages in a believable way. The combination meant that I could lose myself in the book and, although a long book, it held me to the end
The Woodcutter was my first Reginald Hill book, I loved it and I want to hear some of his other books, so I bought this one. I found the first couple of hours quite difficult to stick with not because of the narrator who I thought was very good but because I could not make sense of it, however it was worth staying with as it turned out to be a good story and nearing the end of the book could I make sense of the beginning.
Having just finished readingThe Woodcutter by Reginald Hill and recommending it to everyone I decided to use my precious credit to listen to another of his novels. I wish I had bought the book and read it instead as I could tell the story was as interesting and original but the narration was trully terrible (in my opinion). His australian, young womans accent was unbelievably bad and he made everyone else sound like a middle aged man from Surrey. I really tried to listen through the mind numbingly dull Gordon but alas I gave up after part 1 and am onto something else. Sorry Reg
First, a point on the narration following on from the other reviews:
Having previously suffered through a poorly narrated volume, I was concerned following the reviews of this title. While the australian accent is interesting, it's not distracting and 10 minutes into the book, i ceases to be an issue at all - overall I found the narration smooth, easy to listen to and nicely in step with the tone of the story.
As for the story - I followed the Woodcutter here, so was very please to find a similarly excellent listen. Recommended!
I really enjoyed this. A good story with strong characters. Spanning centuries, but joined by the present, this is a riveting tale.
Perhaps I am biased - having been a huge fan of Reginal Hill for years.
I like his style, humour and "off-the-wall" plots. Even when writing detective novels, RH's work is several cuts above the rest. For new readers - don't be put off by the pathetic TV version - go to the original books, and enjoy great characters, ingenious plots, and laugh-out-loud humour.
This book was up to standard. I loved it.
This is a clever, intricately plotted book that weaves and turns right up until the last page. Essentially it is a mystery that draws together two polar opposite people; one a Spanish ex-Catholic priest and the other a fiery, independent young Australian woman and deposits them in a Cumbrian village inn called the Stranger House.
I found it gripping from beginning to end, and talking of endings, it has an ending that really delivers - well done Mr Hill.
One last point, I actually liked the narrator and thought he really added to the tale but even if you don't, the incredible story should be enough to see you past any shortcomings.
This is quite a different one for Reginald Hill - very unlike the other books of his I've read or listened to. But I would definitely say it's one of his best (at least of the ones I've read). It's really added to by the quality of the narrator too. It's got a really quirky character and doesn't take itself too seriously, and is a gripping and interesting story. Definitely one to listen to.
i gave up listening to this quite quickly because of the narrator's awful australian accent. as one of the main characters is australian the idea of listening to the whole of the book was more than i could stand.unfortunate as the premis of the book is very interesting. maybe i will read it as a printed book.
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