LISTENER

Mr. Paul M. Quirk

Reading, UK
  • 27
  • reviews
  • 33
  • helpful votes
  • 169
  • ratings
  • My Brother Is a Superhero

  • By: David Solomons
  • Narrated by: Joe Thomas
  • Length: 5 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 76
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 65
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 65

Luke is a comic-mad 11-year-old who shares a tree house with his geeky older brother, Zack. Luke's only mistake is to go for a wee right at the wrong time. While he's gone, an alien gives his undeserving, never-read-a-comic-in-his-life brother superpowers and then tells him to save the universe. Luke is massively annoyed about this, but when Zack is kidnapped by his archnemesis, Luke and his friends have only five days to find him and save the world.... Hilariously narrated by Joe Thomas.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great fun

  • By Steph H on 10-08-18

Great fun

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

Reviewed: 26-09-18

Bought this for my grandchildren to listen to but listened to it myself as well. It’s a fun story, I really enjoyed it.

  • The Elven

  • The Saga of the Elven, Book 1
  • By: Bernhard Hennen, James A. Sullivan, Edwin Miles - translator
  • Narrated by: Michael Page
  • Length: 28 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 135
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 123
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 124

A fierce and merciless demon has been unleashed on the world, spreading destruction and bloodshed in both the human and the elven realms. Northlander Jarl Mandred witnesses the ruthless attack on his men, and he seeks vengeance with the help of the elf queen, Emerelle.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful story well told.

  • By Trancephoenix on 08-09-18

A grand saga

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

Reviewed: 10-09-18

It took me a little while to get into this book as the first few minutes has a lot going on, but once past that this is a grand saga and enjoyable to listen to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Children of the Deterrent

  • Halfhero, Book 1
  • By: Ian W. Sainsbury
  • Narrated by: Sam Phillips, Jaimi Barbakoff
  • Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 668
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 627
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 624

The new novel by the author of the best-selling The World Walker series. 'My name is Daniel Harbin, and I'm a child of The Deterrent.' What if a superhuman turned out not to be so super...or even human? Britain's superhero, The Deterrent, was unveiled to the world in 1979 and disappeared two years later. The truth about his origins has never been revealed. The rumours about his children - those that survived - and their mysterious abilities have never been confirmed. Until now....

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Sadly predictable

  • By Miss Penelope Wright on 08-06-18

Enjoyed this unusual story

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

Reviewed: 04-09-18

Just finished listening to this one. Really enjoyed it. The different narrators for male & female protagonists worked well. Story was interesting & grown up enough to consider the need for true freedom of choice, respect for others etc.

  • Slaughterhouse-Five

  • By: Kurt Vonnegut
  • Narrated by: James Franco
  • Length: 5 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,058
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,000
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 996

Traumatized by the bombing of Dresden at the time he had been imprisoned, Pilgrim drifts through all events and history, sometimes deeply implicated, sometimes a witness. He is surrounded by Vonnegut's usual large cast of continuing characters (notably here the hack science fiction writer Kilgore Trout and the alien Tralfamadorians, who oversee his life and remind him constantly that there is no causation, no order, no motive to existence).

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Did I Enjoy it or Experience it?

  • By Simon on 05-06-17

Strange book

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

Reviewed: 07-07-17

I've just finished listening to this audiobook & I'm not entirely sure what to think. It is a surreal tale mainly centred around a man with a very loose grip on reality who thinks he hops around in time between many, mainly unpleasant, episodes in his life and who had at one point been abducted by aliens. There is a heavy focus on his time in WWII of course, culminating in the bombing of Dresden.
Have I been enlightened by this book? No. Have I been gently entertained? Yes. Is the book well written? Yes.
Up to you whether you choose to listen. I cannot imagine there being many other books like it and it's only a few hours long...

  • A Little History of Religion

  • By: Richard Holloway
  • Narrated by: James Bryce
  • Length: 9 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 832
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 757
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 749

In an era of hardening religious attitudes and explosive religious violence, this book offers a welcome antidote. Richard Holloway retells the entire history of religion - from the dawn of religious belief to the 21st century - with deepest respect and a keen commitment to accuracy. Writing for those with faith and those without, and especially for young listeners, he encourages curiosity and tolerance, accentuates nuance and mystery and calmly restores a sense of the value of faith.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fascinating book

  • By Mr. Paul M. Quirk on 05-01-17

Fascinating book

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

Reviewed: 05-01-17

I very much enjoyed listening to this book but was concerned about the way Richard Holloway chose to interpret parts of the Bible. (But then, according to Richard, I would.)

He takes us on a journey through the development of the idea of "God", why this would have been important and how the idea was maintained and changed through time. He addresses the big questions of life such as what happens after we die and why there is evil in the world.

His approach to various holy writings is that the authors of each had some sort of revelation which they believed to come from God and then wrote for there. However their understanding was probably muddled or incomplete, hence the various religions. These revelations may or may not have come from an external source. In any case they could have no knowledge of the future so all apparent prophetic writings must have been written after the event. Thus the biblical book of Daniel must have been written during the second century BCE despite evidence to the contrary.

I have the impression the book was written by someone who used to be a Christian but has now transferred his faith to humanity. A kindly soul nonetheless.

The walk through of the many faiths of the world and their origins was very helpful and, I can only hope, fairly accurate.

Overall I found this a fascinating listen even where I disagreed with the author and would recommend it to anyone seeking such an overview.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • The Golem and the Djinni

  • By: Helene Wecker
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 19 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,100
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,052
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,049

Chava is a golem, a creature made of clay, brought to life by a disgraced rabbi who dabbles in dark Kabbalistic magic. When her master, the husband who commissioned her, dies at sea on the voyage from Poland, she is unmoored and adrift as the ship arrives in New York in 1899. Ahmad is a djinni, a being of fire, born in the ancient Syrian desert. Trapped in an old copper flask by a Bedouin wizard centuries ago, he is released accidentally by a tinsmith in a Lower Manhattan shop. Though he is no longer imprisoned, Ahmad is not entirely free - an unbreakable band of iron binds him to the physical world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Extraordinary

  • By AnneDriscoll on 29-01-15

Brilliant, unusual and unexpected

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

Reviewed: 15-07-16

As others have said, this is something of a unique story, mixing fantastic creatures from two different mythologies, yet making a wondrous variation on the "boy meets girl" stereotype.
About three quarters of the way through I was convinced I knew what should be done by the characters but the author confounded me and provided a clever twist to the tale.
A "must listen" book for any lover of fantasy stories.

  • Don Quixote

  • By: Miguel de Cervantes, John Ormsby (translated by)
  • Narrated by: Roy McMillan
  • Length: 36 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 489
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 402
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 405

The most influential work of the entire Spanish literary canon and a founding work of modern Western literature, Don Quixote is also one of the greatest works ever written. Hugely entertaining but also moving at times, this episodic novel is built on the fantasy life of one Alonso Quixano, who lives with his niece and housekeeper in La Mancha. Quixano, obsessed by tales of knight errantry, renames himself ‘Don Quixote’ and with his faithful servant Sancho Panza, goes on a series of quests.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Mother and Father of all novels

  • By P on 22-02-12

We've found a madman. Let's abuse him!

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

Reviewed: 25-06-16

What disappointed you about Don Quixote?

We've all heard of Don Quixote and his tilting at windmills and I I thought it would be good for me to listen to. In practice it was quite hard work. I guess we know the idea of a sensible man becoming deranged and imagining himself a knight errant. The bits we don't know about are some of the people he comes across. While some are indeed worthy and compassionate, others think it merry to set up situations where he and Pancho will be injured or otherwise come to harm.In today's society this is abuse, plan and simple. I did listen to the end and there are some good bits, but I found much of it tedious.

What will your next listen be?

Something actually funny or uplifting.

What does Roy McMillan bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

The narrator did an excellent job, with easily identified voices for the various characters. He is English though, and as someone else has pointed out, a narrator with a Spanish scent might have helped the Spainish flavour of the story.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Frustration with the tedious parts, anger at the abuse and the occasional bits of amusement and sympathy.

  • The Cycle of Arawn

  • The Complete Trilogy
  • By: Edward W. Robertson
  • Narrated by: Tim Gerard Reynolds
  • Length: 65 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 853
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 800
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 799

The White Tree (Book 1): In Mallon, the dark magic of the nether has been banned for centuries. Its users have been driven out or killed. Its secrets lost. But the holy book of the nethermancers has just been found by a boy named Dante. As he works to unlock the book's power, he's attacked in the street. The nethermancers aren't gone—and they want their book back. Caught between death cultists and the law, Dante fights for his life, aided by his growing skills and a brash bodyguard named Blays. Together, they're drawn into a centuries-old conflict that brings Mallon to the brink of civil war. Surviving won't be easy. But if they make it out alive, they'll step down the path to becoming two of the greatest warriors the world has ever known.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Good potential, poorly executed.

  • By Robyn on 21-02-16

Excellent yarn & great value for those who like longer stories

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

Reviewed: 05-10-15

I have just finished listening to this trilogy. First just to mention that all three books are included in the single purchase in case that's not clear.

The story follows 2 heroes, Blaze and Dante (sp?) on many an adventure as they perfect their weapons and magical abilities from their mid-teens through to maturity. They make intelligent and argumentative characters who deal with the challenges of their larger than usual lives with swashbuckling daring.

The characters who populate the world are fun to read about and provide an enjoyable backdrop. I especially liked the Norren and their honest, open attitude to life.

I think it would be fair to summarise my views on this listen by describing it as a "ripping yarn".

  • Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book

  • The Mowgli Stories
  • By: Rudyard Kipling
  • Narrated by: Bill Bailey, Richard E. Grant, Colin Salmon, and others
  • Length: 2 hrs and 32 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,848
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,678
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,681

The magical story-telling and unforgettable characters in Bev Doyle and Richard Kurti's audio adaptation of this children's classic have been brought to life by many well known voices from film, TV, radio and comedy.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Incredible!

  • By The Evil Robot on 02-10-15

Excellent

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

Reviewed: 02-09-15

So much more realistic than the Disney film. (Assuming you accept the premise of a boy stolen by a tiger & raised by jungle wolves of course.)
Great performances all round, good incidental music and atmospheric sounds.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Jack Welch and the GE Way

  • Management Insights and Leadership Secrets of the Legendary CEO
  • By: Robert Slater
  • Narrated by: Michael Prichard
  • Length: 4 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 28
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

Jack Welch's innovative leadership strategies revived a lagging GE, transforming it into a powerhouse with a staggering $300 billion-plus market capitalization. In writing Jack Welch and the GE Way, author Robert Slater was given unprecedented access to Welch and other prominent GE insiders. What emerged is a brilliant portrait that tells you what makes Jack Welch tick.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wish I listened to this along time ago

  • By Raymond on 17-09-17

Good business book, narrator a bit old fashioned

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

Reviewed: 30-08-15

A good book, made a little harder to follow by the narrator. He has a somewhat stern approach to the narration which I found made it a little harder to follow.