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  • Cadenza

  • Rockliffe, Book 6
  • By: Stella Riley
  • Narrated by: Alex Wyndham
  • Length: 13 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 40
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 39
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 39

Julian Langham was poised on the brink of a dazzling career when the lawyers lured him into making a catastrophic mistake. Now, instead of the concert platform, he has a title he doesn’t want, an estate verging on bankruptcy...and bewildering responsibilities for which he is totally unfitted. And yet the wreckage of Julian’s life is not a completely ill wind. For Tom, Rob, and Ellie it brings something that is almost a miracle...if they dare believe in it.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Outstanding narration and an outstanding story

  • By Deborah C on 03-03-19

Another Triumph !

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

Reviewed: 26-02-19

The sixth book in The Rockliffe series is as superb as the previous 5 novels. Stella Riley's books have an elegance about them and her flow of the English language is a joy to read. Cadenza has a plot that is interesting in that it has two hero/heroines with a separate story development throughout the book. Not wanting to give too much of this wonderful story away, our main hero is an extraordinarily talented musician who has landed back in England through circumstances of inheritance, while our two heroines swap places ( Lizzie is a likeable character with a quiet, tempered personality and Arabella (Bella) is wonderful, practical, fun-loving, intelligent and kind). I was thrilled to have The Duke of Rockliffe and his family & friends making their re-appearance, which is always a delight and feels like we, the reader, are welcoming back old & much-loved friends. I particularly liked the musical angle to the story as it is something close to my heart, and as with all Stella Riley's books, the reader finishes a book not only enjoying a well-written and very enjoyable book, but having gleaned some well-researched facts. As to Alex Wyndham's performance - he is absolutely one of the best male narrators that I have heard throughout my 9 years with Audible. Thank you to both for giving me 13 hours of joy, which if it is anything like all my other Stella Riley books will be listened to many times in the future.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Governess Game

  • By: Tessa Dare
  • Narrated by: Mary Jane Wells
  • Length: 7 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 32
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 29
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28

The accidental governess...After her livelihood slips through her fingers, Alexandra Mountbatten takes on an impossible post: transforming a pair of wild orphans into proper young ladies. However, the girls don’t need discipline. They need a loving home. Try telling that to their guardian, Chase Reynaud. The ladies of London have tried - and failed - to make him settle down. Somehow, Alexandra must reach his heart...without risking her own.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Perfect

  • By J. T. on 11-01-19

Outstanding female narration

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

Reviewed: 05-10-18

The book is a good yarn, with many chuckles along the way, but for me the narrator, Mary Jane Wells turned a good book into an excellent audiobook. She was superb, so well read and I felt she really 'got' the nuance of each character. The way she read the children's voices was genius. I'm not a great lover of child voice narration, but everything about MJW's performance was spot on.
Good story, excellent H&H, very funny, quirky and heartfelt. Would recommend as an example of voice properly matching novel. Well done to Tessa Dare and to MJW, thank you for an very enjoyable 7 hours or so.

  • The Earl of London

  • By: Louise Bay
  • Narrated by: Shane East, Imogen Church
  • Length: 9 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 47
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 46

I believe in love. It just doesn’t believe in me. I date. I’m all for giving guys a chance. I’ve just never met the one. Until on a spring morning in the English countryside, a tall, dark stranger emerges from the mist. Logan Steele is all tousled hair, hard chest, and lips so perfect I want to reach out and touch them, just to check they’re real. Did I mention he’s an Earl with a self-made fortune? But when I find out Logan Steele is out to destroy everything I’ve dedicated my life to protect, the chemistry disappears and the hope that had blossomed my chest turns to rage.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • best read in ages!!

  • By lucy on 29-08-18

Darcy's Story

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

Reviewed: 03-09-18

It was interesting to read Darcy's story. I wish I had read the book & not listed to it being narrated. I really enjoyed The British Knight & loved the voice of Shane East & Saskia M. Their voicing of Darcy's character was super, and so I was therefore looking forward to Darcy's story. The story itself is good, though a bit unbelievable when Logan decided that he loved Darcy seemingly only after a good talking to from his granny(?), but sadly it was the narration from Imogen Church that ruined it for me. I'm not sure what her brief was, as to how she was to interpret Darcy's character, but the way she portrayed her was as a dithering, hesitate, slightly pathetic individual. Most of her sentences where stretched out, each word a hesitation before speaking, it was beyond annoying. I have no idea what she was trying to convey, but Darcy's character in the British Knight was so lovely & in this book, she was narrated as quite pathetic (though the book certainly didn't convey her as such). I enjoyed the book, but Imogen Church was certainly not the reader for me. Irritating.

  • The Carrero Effect

  • By: L. T. Marshall
  • Narrated by: Erica Maity
  • Length: 13 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4

Emma Anderson has everything in her life worked out. She has a perfect job in a Manhattan empire, allowing her to live a quiet, organised and safe existence. A necessity after a childhood filled with abuse, bad memories and a mother who was less than useless. She’s worked hard to get where she is - and she has just landed an amazing promotion. But it comes with a problem - and one that could derail everything she thought she needed in her life. Emma’s new role is as the right-hand man for billionaire playboy Jake Carrero. He’s exactly the type of person who could drive her crazy - and not in a good way. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great book. Well worth a listen

  • By Periwinkle Munro on 28-11-18

Woeful!

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

Reviewed: 07-08-18

Sadly, I tried to return this dreadful audio book back to Audible but as they wouldn't allow me to, I decided to persevere to the bitter end. The story in itself wasn't too bad. Wealth playboy meets damaged beautiful woman. My main problem was the woman who narrated the book. Oh my word, she made my ears bleed. Such a dreadful whiny American accent. Do all American women sound like that? I shouldn't think so. She was awful. Her voice was horrendously little-girlie, it verged upon the pathetic. The story began to be frustrating too. All she did was moan about her past. Maybe because I am British & we just get on with things & don't whinge, I started to loose patience & towards the end, wanted to slap her. It was written very much in the 50 Shades mode, minus the S&M, but oh my, did she need therapy. I am surprised the main male character didn't tire of her sooner. She was looking a gift horse in the mouth & still kept whinging. Idiot! I think if I had physically read the book, it would have been slightly more enjoyable, then I wouldn't have the narrator still ringing in my ears.

  • Satyr's Son: A Georgian Historical Romance

  • Roxton Family Saga, Book 5
  • By: Lucinda Brant
  • Narrated by: Alex Wyndham
  • Length: 13 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 44
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 37
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 38

London, 1786. Lord Henri-Antoine has returned from the Grand Tour to a life of privilege and excess. A vast inheritance allows him every indulgence, free from responsibility. Yet, Henri-Antoine maintains a well-ordered existence, going to great lengths to conceal an affliction few understand and many fear. Miss Lisa Crisp is a penniless orphan who relies on the charity of relatives to keep her from the poorhouse. Intelligent and unflappable, Lisa will not allow poverty to define her. She leads a useful life working among the sick poor.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Best audiobook yet in the Roxton family saga!

  • By Mr on 05-01-18

Another triumph !

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

Reviewed: 12-02-18

Where does Satyr's Son: A Georgian Historical Romance rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Anything written by either Lucinda Brant or Stella Riley and read by the amazingly talented Alex Wyndham is always something to look forward to. Satyr's Son, the last (boo!) in the Roxton series, is wonderful. My favourite will always be Noble Satyr, as I just adored the Duke and Antonia's story, but each subsequent book only adds to the series. I enjoyed Henri-Antoine's story very much with the delightful Lisa Crisp.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Satyr's Son: A Georgian Historical Romance?

I loved the scene in the mausoleum, which sounds ghoulish, but if you read the series, you would know why it isn't. M'Le Duc is forever threaded through the series, and it was fitting that he should be included in the final chapter. Beautifully crafted by Ms Brant, as always.

Which character – as performed by Alex Wyndham – was your favourite?

Henri-Antoine. His mellifluous voice is just gorgeous. Alex W is the best at his craft.

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

I loved the book. I've adored all the books and being a part of the Roxton's lives. A marvellous series, my all time favourite. I have listened to them all on many occasions, and will continue to do so. They make a dull old day seem so much brighter.

Any additional comments?

If you haven't read any of the Roxton books, you are in for such a treat - lucky you ! Read the books sequentially to gain the best experience, then read the 2 books with the letters that belong to the series. A magical, wonderful, amazing read or if you have the luxury of listening to the audio books, then settle in to hear the voice of the ultimate narrator, Alex Wyndham. Perfect.

  • The Duchess

  • By: Danielle Steel
  • Narrated by: Gideon Emery
  • Length: 10 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15

At 18 Angélique Latham is her father's closest, most trusted child, schooled in managing their grand estate. But when he dies, her half-brothers brutally turn her out. Unable to secure employment without connections, Angélique desperately makes her way to Paris, where she rescues a young woman fleeing an abusive madam. With her upper-class breeding, her impeccable style and her father's bequest, Angélique creates Le Boudoir, soon a sensational establishment where powerful men, secret desires and beautiful women come together.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Briilliant Book

  • By JAN P. on 25-06-18

Dreadful !

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

Reviewed: 12-09-17

What would have made The Duchess better?

A less heavy hand in writing. There was absolutely no subtlety in her writing style. Nothing was left to the readers imagination - DS constantly hammered home the story. I not sure whether she presumes that her readers lack intelligence? I persevered only because I had spent money to buy the wretched thing.

What could Danielle Steel have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

A dreadful book. I've never read any DS before. I am quite shocked at how badly it was written as she is an author of some note I believe. I was surprised how it read like a child's fairy story rather than a book for adults. Never again will I torture myself to read such pap. Awful.

How could the performance have been better?

I think the narrator had a pleasant voice, but he read the book as if he was so bored and his French accent was lamentable. I'm sure if he was given better material to work with, he might have greater success.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Duchess?

I would have given the book a much lighter hand, and left so many unnecessary sentences out that made the book too clunky. She would do well to rely on the reader having a modicum of intelligence to work things out themselves without being told what they should think. If she mentioned one more time that her father had left her some money that was locked in her bag/trunk, I thought I might scream.

Any additional comments?

Danielle Steele is not my kind of author at all. I am shocked that she is so popular, or that people still buy her books. I think she should leave the English historical novels to the English authors or at least to those authors who bother to write in English of the period. I really hate it when writer's use American words like "diper" or "gotten" Grrr!

  • Glitterland

  • Spires, Book 1
  • By: Alexis Hall
  • Narrated by: Nicholas Boulton
  • Length: 6 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 50
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 46
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 46

Ash Winters is barely holding on, near drowning in his own darkness and fear. He lives a gray shadow of a life, sullen and cynical, unable to remember hope or happiness - much less the distant, fading glitterball of love. It has to be a sick joke of the universe that he finds himself hooked up with good-humored Essex boy Darian Taylor, a wannabe model in a sparkly jacket and a fake tan. Darian may not be an intellectual giant, but he's hysterically funny, and he's got the courage to challenge Ash to live again.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant!

  • By Kristin Honor on 02-02-16

A surprising gem

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

Reviewed: 27-07-17

If you could sum up Glitterland in three words, what would they be?

Raw emotion, beautiful

What was one of the most memorable moments of Glitterland?

The honestly of the writer in his characterisation of Ash when he looked into his flawed self after the Oxford wedding

What about Nicholas Boulton’s performance did you like?

Nicholas Boulton (along with Alex Wyndham) are my go-to narrators. They are the crème de la crème of male narration. Utterly superb voices. I chose this book specifically because he was reading it, and was an absolute gem (not my normal read) but so glad that I did

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

There were many, too many to mention

Any additional comments?

I looked through the audio library for Nicholas' narration, having heard him read many of Laura Kinsales. Glitterland was a departure for me, and by no means my normal read. To say that I enjoyed it immensely is as understatement. The writing was exquisite, an absolute joy to listen to. The story was full of searing, raw emotion for subjects (gay and bipolar) that I don't know much about. A wonderful book, highly recommended. Once again, Nicholas smashed it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Devil's Bride

  • A Cynster Novel
  • By: Stephanie Laurens
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 15 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 34
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31

Governess Honoria Wetherby values her independence. She would rather travel the world than marry and give some man control of her life. Then, one stormy evening, fate changes all her plans. She stumbles upon a mortally wounded young man in the woods. When the stranger dies, she is trapped in a cabin with his body and with his newly arrived cousin, Devil, whom she soon learns is aptly named.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Great Story ruined by a dreadful narrator

  • By Janet on 28-01-19

A good start to the Bar Cynster cousins saga

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

Reviewed: 07-10-16

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

It was a good book to wile away the hours, nothing too tricky or needing full concentration. The books are written sequentially and I have read the first 6 - all of them fun. I think I'll stop at 6, now all 6 cousins are married.

What did you like best about this story?

Other than each of the cousin's nicknames being a bit daft (Devil, Vane, Lucifer, Scandal etc), Devil (head of the family) was a great alpha character, with a very large & noisy family. I have read the first 6 books in the Cynster series (not sure that I will read anymore as they are quite same-y) and was great fun if you like a bit of light froth to read without being taxed in any way.

Devil's Bride is possibly the best in the series with a good storyline. I liked Devil's future bride Honoria who was a strong female character. What I did find amusing in all the female heroine's in the 6 books is that each young lady goes from strong female type to simpering Miss once they encounter the Cynster cousins. They all quickly jump into bed with their male heroes, regardless of any resultant consequence. In those days and being well-bred I can't imagine that all 6 brides were strumpets and gagging for the love of a Cynster. Most amusing. Simon Prebble reading the love scenes was a hoot.

What about Simon Prebble’s performance did you like?

He is so OTT with his narration. I did find myself getting use to his dramatic pronouncements, almost as if he was reading it tongue-in-cheek, which he most probably was

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, I was happy to dib in and out

Any additional comments?

It seems that I like stories that have male family members and friends helping each other out of scrapes and being supportive to each other. This is the third set of series books that I have read that have an alpha male at the centre of the books and lots of male support from friends/family. In a very soppy way, it is heart-warming to see male bonding which is often less prominent than females, who bond/support together more naturally. It brought a smile to my face on a grey old day.

  • Mount!

  • By: Jilly Cooper
  • Narrated by: Sian Thomas
  • Length: 19 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 461
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 407
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 409

In Jilly Cooper's latest, raciest novel, Rupert Campbell-Black takes centre stage in the cutthroat world of flat racing. Rupert is consumed by one obsession: that Love Rat, his adored grey horse, be proclaimed champion stallion. He longs to trounce Roberto's Revenge, the stallion owned by his detested rival, Cosmo Rannaldini, which means abandoning his racing empire at Penscombe and his darling wife, Taggie, and chasing winners in the richest races worldwide, from Dubai to Los Angeles to Melbourne.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Hysterical yarn

  • By Amazon Customer on 11-09-16

Time to call it a day Jilly

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

Reviewed: 07-10-16

What did you like best about Mount!? What did you like least?

I was looking forward to another instalment from JC, especially as this book centred around the wonderful Rupert C-B. To say that I was disappointed was an understatement. Rivals, one of her earlier books, introduced the angelic Taggie who readers fell in love with, as did Rupert. One of the reasons why I really enjoyed Rivals is that the book was of its time, and Rupert reformed from his love rat persona into a committed & adoring husband. Subsequent books included Rupert & Taggie, which was always lovely to re-visit their marriage & his love for her. However in Mount! what Jilly Cooper did with Rupert's character towards Taggie was horrible. I know J.C always likes to shock (either through foul-mouthed language or the death of a beloved animal) but the predatory Gala (stable hand) was a step too far. We have all come to adore Taggie, but the way J.C penned Rupert's behaviour towards Taggie didn't seem to fit with his loved-up adoration of his beautiful wife. I was very disappointed & as several Goodread reviewers have written, they wished they could un-read the novel as it left a sour taste in their mouths.Also, there were gaping errors in the book which she/editor ought to have spotted, when the author re-introduced past themes, characters & horses.The book was far, far too long. Even though the book was about horses & horse-racing, it seemed that way too many pages were slavishly devoted to parading all the research that had been completed for the book, which seemed, at times, over-the-top and unnecessary. A little additional knowledge would have been good, but what was given in the book was too much, and became boring. Also there were far too many characters, more so than usual.Reading the book, I felt like it was written a decade too late, and the funny/smutty witticisms, which as a 20 year old girl use to make me smile, now made me wince. No longer funny, and sadly felt a little pathetic.

What will your next listen be?

Nothing by Jilly Cooper anymore, sadly. Rivals, Riders and Polo still her best books written by the 'old Jilly'.

Have you listened to any of Sian Thomas’s other performances? How does this one compare?

She is a very good narrator. Poor material to work with, which she managed to make enjoyable. Amazing that she could turn a sow's ear into a silk purse. I would definitely listen to other books that she has narrated,

Could you see Mount! being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

I don't think anyone would want to see it in film, but could see it as a 70's-style tv mini series with D-list actors maybe?

Any additional comments?

I have always loved Jilly Cooper, but I think her humour & writing fitted more into the 70's, 80's and 90's. Her writing didn't seem to 'fit' the year 2016, it felt like she was stuck in the past & that her stories no longer seemed modern or relevant. She has done amazingly well for all these years to be popular but think Mount! perhaps ought to be her last. I will always have fond memories of her earlier books before they seemed to slide downhill. Sorry.

  • The Proposal

  • By: Mary Balogh
  • Narrated by: Rebecca De Leeuw
  • Length: 11 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 22
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18

Award-winning and New York Times best-selling author Mary Balogh delights fans with historical romantic tales that touch the heart. After her husband dies in a freak accident, Lady Gwendoline Muir never dreams she’ll love again. So when soldier-turned-nobleman Lord Hugo Trentham stirs feelings in her that have lain dormant for years, she can’t help but imagine his strong embrace. Hugo finds himself drawn to Gwen, but he’s never courted a woman before. Can he muster the right words to make Gwen open her heart and love once more?

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Take a Chance

  • By F on 27-08-16

Take a Chance

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

Reviewed: 27-08-16

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

As a book, possibly. As an audiobook read by Rebecca De Leeuw, probably not.

Would you be willing to try another book from Mary Balogh? Why or why not?

I don't think so, it was hard-going and laboured. The story was a decent one, but in my opinion was too protracted. It wasn't very elegantly written. Personally, I think it could have been completed with several fewer chapters, whilst still telling the story of 2 people who had experienced tragedy and the consequences of its legacy, and how they overcame their obstacles. She was from the aristocracy while he was awarded his title through his military prowess but was from the middle classes. While I thought the heroine very accommodating of his prejudices against her class and her understanding and acceptance of his, I thought he was just rude and quite arrogant in his prejudices of her situation. I didn't warm to him and I thought some of the dialogue from his mouth in regards to his male needs was ugly and base. Read Lucinda Brant, Stella Riley or Laura Kinsale for a really good, elegant and eloquent read.

Would you be willing to try another one of Rebecca De Leeuw’s performances?

No. Her diction was ok on the whole, other than the word "off" which she pronounced as "awf". It might sound a little thing, and wouldn't have been so bad if the word appeared once or twice in the book, but the author was obsessed with this word. I wasn't consciously counting but it must have been around 40 times that the word was mentioned. I actually started to groan every time the woman said the word, and it got to be quite comical, which then detracted from the story . It was at odds to all her other pronunciations, and really jarred my ears. Owch. I want to enjoy listening to my books, not have my teeth set on edge. Sorry.

Could you see The Proposal being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

Its too dull to be made into a film, unless it was just the reader that made the book boring

Any additional comments?

I struggled on to the end as I had paid for the audiobook and was therefore determined to finish it, but I shan't re-listen to it again, and it will be consigned to my audio library, Maybe in book or kindle form it would be more enjoyable? Nothing ventured, nothing gained......it might have turned out to have been a gem, sadly not this time.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful