It is the early 19th century, when European traders and adventurers first began to penetrate the forbidding Chinese mainland. And it is in this exciting time and exotic place that a giant of an Englishman, Dirk Struan, sets out to turn the desolate island of Hong Kong into an impregnable fortress of British power - and to make himself supreme ruler: Tai-Pan!
"The best audiobook ever...."
Starting in November 2013 in a forest in Rwanda, where a modest spring spouts a trickle of clear, cold water, Levison Wood set forth on foot, aiming to become the first person to walk the entire length of the Nile. He followed the river for nine months, over 4,000 miles, through six nations - Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, South Sudan, the Republic of Sudan, and Egypt - to the Mediterranean coast.
Alex Verus can see the future. But he never thought he'd see this day. Manoeuvred by forces beyond his control, the probability mage has made a terrible choice: he's agreed to work for his old master once more. Richard Drakh, the sadistic dark mage Alex escaped as an apprentice, has him in his clutches again. And this time he won't let go so easily.
"Excellent story, shame about the voices!"
Simon Chase's life is a maze of burner phones, encrypted emails, secret meetings and weaponry - all devoted to executing missions too sensitive for government acknowledgment. Working for British government entities, the CIA's Special Activities Division and other official bodies, Chase has been on the trail of bin Laden in Afghanistan, protected allied generals in Iraq, and been part of an operation directly related to the attack in 2012 on the US consulate in Benghazi.
"This is a work of fiction."
We are all increasingly bewildered by the simple question of what to eat. Despite advice from experts, governments and dieticians about the dangers of too much fat, sugar, protein and lack of exercise, our nutrition - and the global obesity crisis - is getting worse. Why can one person eat a certain meal and gain weight and another eat exactly the same food and lose pounds? Genes provide part of the answer, but we have been overlooking one vital aspect of diet that lies within us.
Things are going well for Alex Verus. He's on moderately good terms with the Council, his apprentice is settling in, and his shop in Camden is gaining quite a reputation. But when a mysterious woman bursts into the Arcana Emporium one night with an assassin on her tail, Alex is thrown into a plot to revive a long-forbidden ritual.
Alex Verus has a magic shop in Camden, London, and an uncanny ability to see the future. But suddenly everyone can see Alex's future. Because the Mage's Council of Great Britain just named him a traitor and ordered his death in seven days' time, and there's no way anyone can get out of that. Alex's friends - Luna and the other apprentices he's taken in - are tainted by association. They'll be marked for death, too, when the ruling comes into play, and Alex becomes locked in a race against time to save them.
"Now what will happen?"
Camden, North London. A tangled, mangled junction of train lines, roads and waterways. Where minor celebrities hang out with minor criminals and where tourists and moody teenagers mingle. In the heart of Camden, where rail meets road meets leyline, you might find the Arcana Emporium, run by one Alex Verus. He won't sell you a wand or mix you a potion, but if you know what you're looking for, he might just be able to help.
"Not for me"
The downloadable audiobook edition of Andrew Feinstein's powerful exposé, The Shadow World: Inside the Global Arms Trade, complete and unabridged and read by the actor Gildart Jackson.
"What an eye-opener"
Alex Verus is a mage who can see the future, but even he couldn't have seen this day coming. Alex has agreed to join the Keepers, the magical police force, to protect his friends from his old master, the Dark mage Richard Drakh. Going legit was always going to be difficult for an outcast like Alex, and there are those in the Keepers who aren't keen to see an ex-Dark mage succeed. Especially when Dark mages are making a play for a seat on the council for the first time in history.
"Alex Verus goes to the dark err light side."
The foundation for all modern economic thought and political economy, The Wealth of Nations is the magnum opus of Scottish economist Adam Smith, who introduces the world to the very idea of economics and capitalism in the modern sense of the words.
"Very long winded"
Never look back. Alex Verus is a diviner who can see probable futures - a talent that's gotten him and his friends out of many a tough scrape. But what happens when someone doesn't want Alex's help? Alex's friend, the life mage Anne, distanced herself from him when she found out about his past as a Dark apprentice. Now she's in serious trouble but wants nothing to do with him. Alex has to start wondering if Anne's problem is really with him - or if there's a secret she's trying to hide.
"Series starts off as good and ends up great."
Take one wizard - that's me - add a hot female vampire, give them a nice place in the country and what do you get? Paradise. Heaven on earth. So, of course, someone decided to go spoil it. No, it wasn't me, not this time. The Hidden world is in chaos, and apparently I'm the one that's supposed to deal with it! Smart trolls, even smarter vampires - and not the nice ones like Kate - witches on the rampage, inebriated gremlins, and imps intent on causing nuclear Armageddon, they have all combined to ruin my perfect life.
Welcome to Fountain Reach. Ancient seat of the Aubuchon dynasty. Majestic setting of the White Stone tournament. Alex Verus' (not necessarily reliable) reputation attracts all sorts. Most are plain bonkers. Yet there's one invitation he just can't refuse. At Fountain Reach, Alex is perfectly placed among the noted and notorious to figure out why apprentices have been vanishing.
"Definitely going the wrong way"
Life is quiet for Alex Verus. Amazing. With a flat full of friends (and the occasional fish) and business booming, why not enjoy the humdrum here and now? But of course that's too good to be true. In a sudden and cruel pincer movement of fate, Alex finds himself fighting a sinister and powerful gang as well as his own demons - for the same crime. Held hostage by the choices of his past, Alex's future is now in jeopardy....
I watched in horror as dark magic sprang from my hand faster than an imp after your socks. I didn't know my name, let alone that I had such power. The man was dead. I panicked. I ran. How was I to know I was a dark magic enforcer, tasked with keeping magic hidden from the world? Yeah, total noob move, I know. But my memory is returning, and the Hidden have given me 24 hours to make amends. Cover it up. Finish the job I was given, or else. Failure isn't an option.
First published in 1859, John Stuart Mill's On Liberty is an exhaustive exploration of social and civic liberty, its limits, and its consequences. Mill's work is a classic of political liberalism that contains a rational justification of the freedom of the individual in opposition to the claims of the state.
"Great introduction to some aspects of liberalism"
What would you do if you had discovered that the planet was about to be engulfed in a belt of poisonous "ether" from outer space? Professor Challenger invites a hand-picked crew of adventurers and scientists to his home outside London, which has been fortified with several hours' worth of oxygen. Challenger & Co. assemble in front of a picture window to witness the end of all life on the planet.
To become a Dark Lord is no easy thing. The simple ambition to hold dominion over the world and bend all to your will sounds straightforward, but it's not. There are armies to raise, fortresses to build, heroes to defeat, and battles to be fought. After many spectacular failures, Evil decided to lend more than inspiration to these would-be tyrants. He wrote an easy-to-follow Dark Lord's Handbook. And yet the next Dark Lord that came along screwed up like all the others.
"An unexpectedly good read"
I'd had less than a week to recover from an incident that left me half-dead. My body was battered and bruised in ways I can't even begin to describe. Dark magic use had consumed me, spat me out a husk of a man. I was little more than flesh and bone, weary to my very soul. So, of course, there was a knock at the door. My smile faded, happy face turning to tears, as Kate - a gorgeous vampire and the woman I lust over at every available opportunity - told me the news. Dark magic came to me as my eyes snapped to black and my tattoos felt fit to burst with energy.