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Patrick

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Engaging story, excellently read

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 17-02-19

This is the first Martina Cole novel I've listened to and found it absolutely riveting. The very versatile reader made all of the characters come alive and I will certainly be coming back for more books in this series.

Limp post-apocalyptic story

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 23-08-17

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

No. I have loved Ammaniti's previous novels and enjoy a good post-apocalyptic yarn but felt this story fell flat on both counts. He is a writer who can really capture the mind and speech rhythm of children but felt neither worked here.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I think Ammaniti should stick to the world he knows.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Unlike the previous reviewer I felt that the narrator's school-prefect-like delivery was totally unsuited to the gritty, unsophisticated girl Anna is meant to be. I got more and more irritated by it as the story progressed.

Do you think Anna needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

No. Definitely not. Ammaniti should stick to the real world.

Interesting story poorly read

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 26-01-17

What did you like best about Montpelier Parade? What did you like least?

This is a well written story and it was interesting to read about a Dublin I recognize. The development of the hero from boy to young man is well handled and his deprived background is very well observed. My enjoyment of the story, however, was very much affected by the monotonous tone of the narrator. It is not always a good idea to have a writer read his own work and it certainly did not work out here.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The three main characters are all well portrayed but the narrator, Sonny, is probably the most interesting.

Would you be willing to try another one of Karl Geary’s performances?

I would certainly read another of his books but not listen to him as a narrator.

Chilling!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 17-08-16

What made the experience of listening to I See You the most enjoyable?

The fact that Mackintosh tells the story of an ordinary woman caught up in extraordinary events makes it feel very real. She captured the panic someone might feel when you realise that there is danger around but you are not believed.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Zoe, the central character is very well portrayed as is PS Kelly Swift.

Which character – as performed by Rachel Atkins – was your favourite?

Atkins is a great reader and made all of the characters come to life.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

The conclusion of the book was a disappointment as they often are in this genre but the journey to get there is well worth it.

Hard to take seriously

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 17-08-16

Is there anything you would change about this book?

Alison Moore seemed more interested in proving a thesis rather than in presenting believable characters. She includes long extracts from psychological studies and then manipulates her characters to illustrate the point made in the extracts.

Has Death and the Seaside put you off other books in this genre?

Cannot think of a comparable book but I do not think I will read another of Moore's books.

Which character – as performed by Imogen Church – was your favourite?

None. There are no likeable characters in this book but Church's portrayal of Bonnie's parents turned them into total caricatures.

Do you think Death and the Seaside needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

I cannot imagine that anyone who struggles through this book would want to hear about any of the characters ever again!

1 person found this helpful

Perfect for summer beach listening

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-07-16

Would you consider the audio edition of Paradise Lodge to be better than the print version?

Yes. Helen Baxendale was the perfect reader for this book and added an extra dimension to an already very good book.

What other book might you compare Paradise Lodge to, and why?

I can't think of anything to compare it to. It combines lots of laugh out loud moment with a poignant and moving story.

Which character – as performed by Helen Baxendale – was your favourite?

The story is told from the point of view of Lizzie Vogel and Helen Baxendale totally captured her unique voice.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It is both funny and sad. A really enjoyable book.

8 people found this helpful

Disappointing book from a normally good writer

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-07-16

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

No.I have really liked all of Neville's previous books but found this one dull, predictable and found it difficult to be interested in any of the characters. The central character, DCI Flanagan is no match for Neville's other detective, DI Jack Lennon, and the long sections dealing with her troubled family life were utterly boring.

Would you recommend So Say the Fallen to your friends? Why or why not?

Absolutely not. I felt like giving up after the first hour but as Neville's other books have been so good I was sure it would improve. It didn't!!

How could the performance have been better?

The reader's dreary, monotonous voice killed any chance of the book coming to life and her Northern Ireland accent was terrible.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

There has already been a recent tv film with a similar story (The Secret with James Nesbitt in the lead role)

Any additional comments?

Listen to any of Neville's previous books. Much better than this.

1 person found this helpful

A story for our times

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 20-07-16

What made the experience of listening to It Can't Happen Here the most enjoyable?

Though written in 1935 and inspired by the rise of Fascism in Europe this could read as a warning of what can happen when an unscrupulous demagogue takes on the Presidency of the USA.

What other book might you compare It Can't Happen Here to, and why?

It describes a similar kind of scenario as Philip Roths's The Plot against America.

What about Grover Gardner’s performance did you like?

Very good reader. Really captures the different characters and makes the story live.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Some sections dealing with the mistreatment of prisoners were hard to listen to but worth it in the end.

Any additional comments?

Though there are political and philosophic parts to this book it is never heavy or hard to listen to. Beautifully written.

6 people found this helpful

Intriguing conclusion but.....

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-07-16

Is there anything you would change about this book?

This book could do with serious editing. While the conclusion is unexpected and original, there were long sections when it was difficult to remain interested - not helped by the monotonous reader.

If you’ve listened to books by Michel Bussi before, how does this one compare?

I have not read any of his other books and don't think I ever will.

What didn’t you like about Joan Walker’s performance?

A very affected voice which became progressively more irritating. There are three main characters in the book, one a child, one a young woman and the other an 80 year old and she made them all sound alike.

Do you think Black Water Lilies needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

Most of the characters were dead at the end....so unlikely!

Any additional comments?

There are so many excellent readers around it is hard to understand why such a dull one was selected for this book.

4 people found this helpful

Zany roller-coaster read!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-04-16

Would you listen to Hitman Anders and the Meaning of It All again? Why?

I'm not sure I'd read it again but it was great fun while it lasted. An amusing story, like reading the script of a Marx Brothers' movie!

Who was your favorite character and why?

The three central characters are all good fun but the Hitman himself was very well portrayed by Peter Kenny.

What about Peter Kenny’s performance did you like?

He was the perfect choice for this book. His brisk, no nonsense reading underlined the comic elements and he never overdid anything simply for comic effect.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

There are certainly laugh out loud moments in this story.

Any additional comments?

An entertaining way of spending a few hours. I'd be happy to listen to other books by the same author and will certainly look out for Peter Kenny as a reader.

11 people found this helpful