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Ashley

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  • 9
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  • 30
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  • One Corpse Too Many

  • The Second Chronicle of Brother Cadfael
  • By: Ellis Peters
  • Narrated by: Stephen Thorne
  • Length: 8 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 194
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 166
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 166

In the summer of 1138, war between King Stephen and the Empress Maud takes brother Cadfael from the quiet world of his garden to the bloody battlefield. Not far from the safety of the Abbey walls, Shrewsbury Castle falls, leaving its ninety-four defenders loyal to the empress to hang as traitors. With a heavy heart, Brother Cadfael agrees to bury the dead, only to make a grisly discovery: 95 bodies lie in a row, and the extra corpse tells Cadfael that the killer is both clever and ruthless. But one death among so many seems unimportant to all but the good Benedictine.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A lovely listen!

  • By anne on 07-09-15

Crime Detection 12th Century Style

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

Reviewed: 09-04-19

There’s forensic analysis and psychological profiling here to satisfy the modern appetite for such things - anachronistic? Perhaps. But it manages to be plausible and the historical stuff is good fun. It’s 35 years since I first read this book and it does over labour the details of persona motives and observations. But I really enjoyed it - and the narrator has clarity and expression enough to serve the various characters well.

  • The Martian Chronicles

  • By: Ray Bradbury
  • Narrated by: Mark Boyett
  • Length: 7 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 132
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 125
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 125

Bradbury's Mars is a place of hope, dreams, and metaphor - of crystal pillars and fossil seas - where a fine dust settles on the great, empty cities of a silently destroyed civilization. It is here the invaders have come to despoil and commercialize, to grow and to learn - first a trickle, then a torrent, rushing from a world with no future toward a promise of tomorrow. The Earthman conquers Mars...and then is conquered by it, lulled by dangerous lies of comfort and familiarity, and enchanted by the lingering glamour of an ancient, mysterious native race.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Not what I expected... so much more!

  • By Samm on 23-09-15

It’s not about Mars, is it?

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

Reviewed: 28-03-19

I’ve recently read Fahrenheit 451 and found it so relevant to what is happening in the world today, it quite took my breath away. And this is the same - the destruction of habitats; the contempt for all things ‘other’. The fear, the complacency - it’s not an easy read and yet it’s beautiful and allusive and sometimes sry and funny. He’s a prophet and a poet. The narrator was good - an almost nostalgic sense of character in his range of voices and expressions.

  • Silence

  • In the Age of Noise
  • By: Erling Kagge
  • Narrated by: Atli Gunnarsson
  • Length: 2 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 63
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54

Behind a cacophony of traffic noise, iPhone alerts and our ever-spinning thoughts, an elusive notion - silence - lies in wait. But what really is silence? Where can it be found? And why is it more important now than ever? Erling Kagge, the Norwegian adventurer and polymath, once spent 50 days walking solo in Antarctica with a broken radio. In this meditative, charming and surprisingly powerful book, he explores the power of silence and the importance of shutting out the world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A short but charming antidote to busy modern life

  • By Jack Williamson on 17-11-17

A really interesting book about silence

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

Reviewed: 09-02-19

Whilst this doesn’t really offer how to bring silence into your life it does offer a lot of insight into why silence is so important.

  • A Morbid Taste For Bones

  • By: Ellis Peters
  • Narrated by: Stephen Thorne
  • Length: 7 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 200
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 165
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 164

In 1137 the ambitious head of Shrewsbury Abbey has decided to acquire the remains of Saint Winifred for his Benedictine order. Brother Cadfael is part of the expedition sent to her final resting place in Wales, where they find the villagers passionately divided by the Benedictines' offer for the saint's relics. Canny, wise and all too worldly, Cadfael isn't surprised when this taste for bones leads to bloody murder. The leading opponent to moving the grave has been shot dead with a mysterious arrow, and some say Winifred herself dealt the blow.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Morbid Taste For Bones

  • By Dee on 14-04-13

Nostalgia for a time LOOOONG gone!

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

Reviewed: 04-02-19

I read these books first in my teens and remember much of the fine descriptive detail of countryside, seasons and characters. Is it a tad overwritten for my tastes now? Perhaps. But I have huge affection for Brother Cadfael and his world and enjoyed this production. Stephen Thorne has a good strong delivery and his Cadfael has a robust accent. Difficult to produce the range of Welsh voices this story required, but he did well.

  • A Presumption of Death

  • By: Jill Paton Walsh, Dorothy L Sayers
  • Narrated by: Edward Petherbridge
  • Length: 9 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 174
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 156
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 156

In A Presumption of Death, Jill Paton Walsh tells how World War II changed the lives of Peter, Harriet and their growing family. The story opens in 1940. Harriet Vane - now Lady Peter Wimsey - has taken her children to safety in the country. But the war has followed them: glamorous RAF pilots and even more glamorous land-girls scandalise the villagers; the blackout makes the nighttime lanes as sinister as the back alleys of London.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Better than Sayers on her own!

  • By Barbara Hembling on 07-02-17

Wordy, but who cares?!

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

Reviewed: 21-01-19

I love Sayers and her amateur sleuth, Lord Peter Wimsey and this delivers much of what a fan might want. There’s a pleasantly elusive crime, the backdrop of rural England at the beginning of the Second World War and our favourite characters from the golden age. Sayers herself stopped writing crime fiction as the war started and committed herself to more important work and her fictional alter ego, Harriet Vane (now Lady Peter - mother of two boys) also reflects that everything pales against the crisis facing the country in early 1940. There is a LOT of reflection and historical detail - too much perhaps? But eased by the authoritative and flexible tones of Edward Petherbridge this does not strike this listener as over burdensome. Some attempt is made to mitigate the obvious inequities of that time for more modern sensibilities and this grates a little. Sayers had a more robust and pragmatic air about her writing when considering the injustices of the world she lived in. But this is a thoroughly enjoyable listening experience.

  • Lethbridge-Stewart: The Schizoid Earth

  • Lethbridge-Stewart, Book 2
  • By: David A McIntee
  • Narrated by: Terry Molloy
  • Length: 7 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13

Lethbridge-Stewart was supposed to be in the mountains of the east, but things didn't quite go according to plan. On the eve of war, something appeared in the sky: a presence that blotted out the moon. Now it has returned, and no battle plan can survive first contact with this enemy. Why do the ghosts of fallen soldiers still fight long-forgotten battles against living men? What is the secret of the rural English town of Deepdene?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A bit confusing but not a terrible story

  • By Ashley on 15-12-18

A bit confusing but not a terrible story

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

Reviewed: 15-12-18

Lethbridge-Stuart was always a favourite character for me so I was really pleased to get into this series.

I did feel that this story was a bit confused though and didn’t always make sense. Not that I didn’t enjoy it entirely though.

  • These Old Shades

  • By: Georgette Heyer
  • Narrated by: Cornelius Garrett
  • Length: 11 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 235
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 159
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 161

Society believes the worst of Justin Alastair, the notorious Duke of Avon who is clearly proud of his Sobriquet, Satanas. It is he who buys Leon body and soul from a scoundrel in a Paris backstreet.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • GREAT BOOK FOUND THE VOICE ACTING DIFFICULT

  • By Lindsay on 06-06-12

Great fun!

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

Reviewed: 09-08-18

This is classic Heyer - well-written characters and a strong (if thoroughly implausible) plot! She knows her people well and they never speak out of character. The scenarios are rich but not over burdened with detail and there is, among the flounces and flourishes of dress and society nonsense, a thread of emotional truth which makes the story palatable to even the most ratified of tastes. The reading is fine - I knew who everyone was and was not put off by the reading of the Duke of Avon as some were.

  • On Writing

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Stephen King
  • Length: 7 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1,151
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 997
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 987

In June of 1999, Stephen King was hit by a van while walking along the shoulder of a country road in Maine. Six operations were required to save his life and mend his broken body. When he was finally able to sit up, he immediately started writing. This book - part biography, part a collection of tips for the aspiring writer - is the extraordinary result.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great personal insight

  • By Blinkinmarvellous on 13-04-13

Perfect

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

Reviewed: 29-05-18

I don’t read horror. Lots of other genre - but not horror. So I know Mr King’s work by reputation only. I was surprised to find so much biography to begin with - but when he talked later about the ‘how’ of writing I felt he had earned my respect by telling me his story. This was just stating the bleeding obvious that so many of these things turn out to be. It made me cry; it made me laugh - really, it did. And no one could have read that story but Mr King himself - he was persuasive, ironic, relatable. I may have to pick up one of his books ...

  • To Wake the Dead

  • Dr Gideon Fell, Book 9
  • By: John Dickson-Carr
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Keeble
  • Length: 7 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 36
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 35
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 34

Christopher Kent, worth a quarter of a million pounds yet not a penny in his pocket, stands hungrily in Piccadilly one snowy morning looking up at the huge hotel when a piece of card bearing a number floats down to him. He enters the hotel and is served with breakfast, giving the waiter the room number to charge. Then an unlucky chance compels him to go up to room 707....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • One of the best

  • By Sheryl Mason on 07-11-17

Perfect marriage of material and performance

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

Reviewed: 24-12-17

This is my first Dickson Carr - so can’t say if it’s representative of his other works; but it’s well-written - witty, detailed, pacey - and has a vast array of suspects. But the icing on the cake is the performance- Jonathan Keeble masters narration, accents, male and female voices with an ease which does not draw attention to itself but enhances the storytelling. I’ll keep an ear out for anything else this chap has narrated.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Alien: River of Pain

  • An Audible Original Drama
  • By: Christopher Golden, Dirk Maggs
  • Narrated by: Anna Friel, Philip Glenister, Colin Salmon, and others
  • Length: 4 hrs and 52 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,336
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,123
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,116

Ellen Ripley finally returns to Earth, only to discover that LV-426 — where the crew of the Nostromo first came into contact with the deadly xenomorphs — has been renamed Acheron. Protected by Colonial Marines, the colonists seek to terraform the storm-swept planet against all the odds. But in the face of brutal living conditions and the daily struggles of a new world, there is humanity and hope.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • What happened on Planet LV-426?

  • By Becks on 26-04-17

Not a bad interlude

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

Reviewed: 19-11-17

To start with I wasn’t really sure about this story but after I worked out where it fits in the alien cannon it made sense and really isn’t bad. I’d say it’s worth a listen and the performances are good on the whole.