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Pj

Leicester
  • 20
  • reviews
  • 46
  • helpful votes
  • 39
  • ratings
  • Shantaram

  • By: Gregory David Roberts
  • Narrated by: Humphrey Bower
  • Length: 43 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,411
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2,236
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,233

A novel of high adventure, great storytelling and moral purpose, based on an extraordinary true story of eight years in the Bombay underworld. In the early 80s, Gregory David Roberts, an armed robber and heroin addict, escaped from an Australian prison to India, where he lived in a Bombay slum. There, he established a free health clinic and also joined the mafia, working as a money launderer, forger and street soldier. He found time to learn Hindi and Marathi, fall in love, and spend time being worked over in an Indian jail.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An incredible piece of art (written & narrated)

  • By PBM on 04-06-16

Terrible.

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

Reviewed: 11-05-18

Unbelievable story, badly written and wooden. As bad as 'I am pilgrim'. I returned it.

  • Camino Island

  • By: John Grisham
  • Narrated by: January LaVoy
  • Length: 8 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 474
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 420
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 427

All trails became dead ends. Tips that had at first seemed urgent now faded away. The waiting game began. Whoever had the manuscripts would want money, and a lot of it. They would surface eventually, but where and when, and how much would they want? The most daring and devastating heist in literary history targets a high security vault located deep beneath Princeton University. Valued at $25 million, the five manuscripts of F. Scott Fitzgerald's only novels are amongst the most valuable in the world....

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • An Island Story Adrift From its Plot

  • By Simon on 07-06-17

Not up to standard

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

Reviewed: 19-09-17

Not up to JG's usual standard. No dramatic tension and too much backstory. Not recommended.

  • Days Without End

  • By: Sebastian Barry
  • Narrated by: Aidan Kelly
  • Length: 7 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 673
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 622
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 621

Having signed up for the US Army in the 1850s, aged barely 17, Thomas McNulty and his brother-in-arms, John Cole, go on to fight in the Indian wars and ultimately the Civil War. Orphans of terrible hardships themselves, despite the horrors they both see and are complicit in, they find these days to be vivid. Both an intensely poignant story of two men and the lives they are dealt and a fresh look at some of the most fateful years in America's past.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Beautiful

  • By AnnaJean Hughes on 01-03-17

Wonderful.

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

Reviewed: 16-06-17

Part love story, part history, this is a moving account of an Irish immigrant to America, his experience of being a soldier and his experience of loving. Beautifully written in an authentic voice, the story is brought to life by the reader, who adds a touch of magic in a balanced and understated way to an already superb book.

  • Earthly Powers

  • By: Anthony Burgess
  • Narrated by: Gordon Griffin
  • Length: 37 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 72
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 65
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 64

Kenneth Toomey is an eminent novelist of dubious talent; Don Carlo Campanati is a man of God, a shrewd manipulator who rises through the Vatican to become the architect of church revolution and a candidate for sainthood. These two men are linked not only by family ties but by a common understanding of mankind's frailties. In this epic masterpiece, Anthony Burgess plumbs the depths of the essence of power and the lengths men will go for it.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful capolavoro.

  • By Pj on 28-11-16

Wonderful capolavoro.

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

Reviewed: 28-11-16

I read this when it was first published. Loved it then, maybe more so now.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • I Am Pilgrim

  • By: Terry Hayes
  • Narrated by: Christopher Ragland
  • Length: 22 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,570
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,375
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,372

Pilgrim is the code name for a man who doesn't exist. The adopted son of a wealthy American family, he once headed up a secret espionage unit for US intelligence. Before he disappeared into anonymous retirement, he wrote the definitive book on forensic criminal investigation. But that book will come back to haunt him. It will help NYPD detective Ben Bradley track him down.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Exciting but a bit too full of cliches

  • By Anna on 19-12-16

Pastiche of every cliché ever used in a thriller

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

Reviewed: 23-06-16

The narrator did a good job though, despite a story that had me groaning. Pulp.

  • Halfhead

  • By: Stuart B. MacBride
  • Narrated by: Angus King
  • Length: 11 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 75
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 54
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 53

They call them halfheads: convicted criminals, surgically mutilated and lobotomized by the State, then sent out to do menial jobs in the community so everyone will know what happens when you break the law. There are no appeals, no reprieves, and no one ever comes back. Until now. Dr Fiona Westfield, one of the most prolific serial killers Glasgow has ever seen, is waking up. Surrounded by blood and death and darkness. William Hunter has risen through the ranks since putting Westfield away; now he’s Assistant Network Director, in charge of police actions.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Worrying!

  • By Ian on 13-04-13

Disappointing

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

Reviewed: 30-10-15

I didn't finish this. I love MacBride's other novels but this was a venture too far.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Signature of All Things

  • By: Elizabeth Gilbert
  • Narrated by: Juliet Stevenson
  • Length: 21 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 279
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 263
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 263

Elizabeth Gilbert’s first novel in twelve years is an extraordinary story of botany, exploration and desire, spanning across much of the 19th century. This audiobook follows the fortunes of the brilliant Alma Whittaker (daughter of a bold and charismatic botanical explorer) as she comes into her own within the world of plants and science. As Alma’s careful studies of moss take her deeper into the mysteries of evolution, the man she loves draws her in the opposite direction into the realm of the spiritual, the divine and the magical.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Fascinating

  • By Suzanna on 12-02-15

Unremittingly dull.

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

Reviewed: 08-04-15

Would you try another book written by Elizabeth Gilbert or narrated by Juliet Stevenson?

I love listening to Juliet Stevenson, but even she could not entice me to try another book by Elizabeth Gilbert.

Any additional comments?

I kept waiting for something to happen, and it didn't. The plot was heavy and awkward, and characters appeared and disappeared for no apparent reason. I listened to the end - but it was a hard slog.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared

  • By: Jonas Jonasson
  • Narrated by: Peter Kenny
  • Length: 10 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,727
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,197
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,189

Sitting quietly in his room in an old people's home, Allan Karlsson is waiting for a party he doesn't want to begin: his one-hundredth birthday party. Escaping through his bedroom window, into the flowerbed, Allan makes his getaway. And so begins his picaresque and unlikely journey involving criminals, several deaths, a suitcase full of cash, and incompetent but very human police.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastically Odd

  • By Oliver Dayman on 29-05-13

Disappointing

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

Reviewed: 07-08-14

What disappointed you about The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared?

I tried to read this as a printed book, but did not get very far. Given the rave reviews the book has received I thought I'd try listening to it instead, but still could not get on with it. I find the constant shifts of Allan Karlsson's situation, each one more unlikely than the next, made me feel as though I was caught is a cross between Monty Python and Forrest Gump. I could not finish it.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

I found the narration irritating - it sounded as though I was listening to a Blue Peter presenter. This one was not for me, sadly.

  • The Goldfinch

  • By: Donna Tartt
  • Narrated by: David Pittu
  • Length: 32 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,543
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,271
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,284

Aged 13, Theo Decker, son of a devoted mother and a reckless, largely absent father, survives an accident that otherwise tears his life apart. Alone and rudderless in New York, he is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. He is tormented by an unbearable longing for his mother, and down the years clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, strangely captivating painting that ultimately draws him into the criminal underworld.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Narrator Hand Picked By Tartt- Outstanding!

  • By Tara Mcgrath on 02-12-13

As complex as a stained glass window

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

Reviewed: 07-08-14

Where does The Goldfinch rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

The Goldfinch ranks as one of the best audiobooks I have listened to so far, and I listen to many. One expects a novel by Donna Tartt to be outstanding, and so it is. The settings are finely drawn, so that you feel transported to each location - sight, sound and smells are described in such detail, yet with a light touch. The characters are engaging, Theo especially. I enjoyed every minute of the audiobook.

Any additional comments?

This is the second audiobook of Ms Tartt's work that I have listened to, the previous being Secret Histories, for which Ms Tartt was the reader, which I found detracted from the audiobook given that the narrator is male. I am very pleased that for this book an actor was chosen as the reader - David Pittu's performance enhanced my enjoyment - if Ms Tartt had been the reader I would not have chosen to 'read' The Goldfinch as an audiobook.

  • Mr Loverman

  • By: Bernardine Evaristo
  • Narrated by: James Goode
  • Length: 9 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 55
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 49
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 49

Barrington Jedidiah Walker is seventy-four and leads a double life. Born and bred in Antigua, he's lived in Hackney since the sixties. A flamboyant, wise-cracking local character, Barrington is a husband, father and grandfather - but he is also secretly lovers with his great childhood friend, Morris. When his marriage goes into meltdown, Barrington wants to divorce Carmel and live with Morris, but after a lifetime of fear and deception, will he manage to break away?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • It will take you by surprise

  • By Pj on 07-08-14

It will take you by surprise

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

Reviewed: 07-08-14

What made the experience of listening to Mr Loverman the most enjoyable?

The book is beautifully written, as one would expect from Ms Evaristo. This is the story of secret love, told in such an engaging style, with such beautifully drawn characters you can't help but be fully engaged in what is such a sad tale. It had me laughing out loud in places, and near to tears in others. The book is a joy.

Any additional comments?

The performance of James Goode was stellar. He brought authenticity to the characters, and read so beautifully I want to hear more from him. He was the perfect choice to read such a wonderful novel.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful