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Skegg

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  • Magefall

  • The Age of Dread, Book 2
  • By: Stephen Aryan
  • Narrated by: Matt Addis
  • Length: 14 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 17
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 15

With their last refuge fallen, two young mages must conspire against a god to show the world that their abilities aren't a curse; they are the only way to ensure lasting peace. Under the threat of anti-magic fanatics, Wren struggles to find her place as a leader and to keep her people safe as they build a new home. While Danoph searches for answers on a spiritual journey, determined to find out who he really is and where he came from in an effort to calm the coming storm.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Superb!!

  • By Richard McFerran on 14-09-18

Nice continuation to Mageborn, faster pace

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

Reviewed: 24-09-18

I'm now a big fan of this series, but I would suggest that you read Battle Mage and Mage Born before this or you will not be able to catch up.

For fans of the series, the aftermath of the Katie Hopkins / Daily Mail style slandering of a minority group of Mages has taken it's toll on the students and teachers of the Red Tower as they seek refuge and a place in the world with varying degrees of success. It has a much darker tone than the previous works in the series, dealing with the dangers of prejudice and the cycle of violence that this creates.

For those who disliked the slower pace of Mage Born, fear not, there are magical battles, rouge gods and bloody violence aplenty in this one, It is probably my favorite Stephen Aryan book to date due to the combination of intrigue, plot depth and action.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Mageborn

  • By: Stephen Aryan
  • Narrated by: Matt Addis
  • Length: 12 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 45
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 42
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42

It's been 10 years since the Battlemage War, where thousands died as mages sundered the earth and split the sky. Habreel believes eradicating magic is the only way to ensure a lasting peace. He will do anything to achieve his goal, even if it means murdering every child born with the ability. As deaths involving magic increase and the seat of magical learning - the Red Tower - falls under suspicion, two students and one lawbringer must do everything they can to combat Habreel and his followers before magic disappears from the world for good.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A change of pace

  • By Skegg on 02-04-18

A change of pace

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

Reviewed: 02-04-18

What did you like most about Mageborn?

I unashamedly enjoyed Battle, Blood and Chaos so I snatched this up directly. I enjoyed getting to now the old characters like Choss and Tammy again now that they have grown up a bit.

What did you like best about this story?

It feels a bit more mature, tackling propaganda and fake news in a fantasy environment - it is very relevant to the actual world!

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

Matt Addis is one of my favorite narrators and this is another solid performance.

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

There are a few 'sacrifice for the greater good' moments but it's not a tear-jerker, it's a swords and magic fantasy thriller!

Any additional comments?

Whilst the last trilogy was three self-contained stories, this felt like a set-up for a three-part tale. A change in pace but an improvement in writing style and story / character development from the author, I liked it though, looking forward to the next installment already!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Hellbent

  • By: Gregg Hurwitz
  • Narrated by: Scott Brick
  • Length: 12 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 580
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 552
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 551

To some he was Orphan X. Others knew him as the Nowhere Man. But to veteran spymaster Jack Johns, he was a boy named Evan Smoak. Taken from an orphanage, Evan was raised inside a top secret programme designed to turn him into a deadly weapon. Jack became his instructor, mentor, teacher and guardian. Because for all the dangerous skills he instilled in his young charge, he also cared for Evan like a son. And now Jack needs Evan’s help....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant

  • By ben on 16-03-18

Another great thriller by Hurwitz

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

Reviewed: 08-03-18

In keeping with X`s last 2 adventures, we are once again treated to an excess of violence, chases & expensive vodka. In Hellbent, we possibly see a spot of emotional growth for Evan as we learn how serious his enemies really are.

In short, well worth a go if you like a Reacher or Victor the Assassin type of read.

Good narration by Scott Brick once more, his male voices are top draw and he brings good atmosphere to the action.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Places in the Darkness

  • By: Chris Brookmyre
  • Narrated by: Robin Miles
  • Length: 14 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 203
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 186
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 186

Million-copy-selling Chris Brookmyre takes his fiction further than ever before in this wildly inventive and sharply-plotted novel set in the unforgiving emptiness of space. "This is as close to a city without crime as mankind has ever seen." Ciudad de Cielo is the 'city in the sky', a space station where hundreds of scientists and engineers work in earth's orbit, building the colony ship that will one day take humanity to the stars. When a mutilated body is found on the CdC, the eyes of the world are watching.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Well worth trying if you like recent Brookmyre

  • By Skegg on 19-11-17

Well worth trying if you like recent Brookmyre

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

Reviewed: 19-11-17

i was a bit in two minds about this, i read a lot of thrillers and mystery. I do occasionally go for a sci-fi or fantasy title, especially liking the expanse series by James A Corey (for other fans, Detective Miller would happily fit in with Brookmyre`s characters!).

With this in mind, i really enjoyed the book. Brookmyre presents his usual brand of richly detailed anti-heroes and throws them onto a space station. There is some dark humour along the way, a twisty plot and some morals to ponder, so once you get over the space station, it is basically what he usually produces!

There are no lazer guns, aliens and the like. This is a mystery in space. I suspect that it will be accessible by both mystery and sci-fi fans alike. It falls into that rare category of being well written and accessible Sci-Fi, and for that alone it is probably worth a look.

Brookmyre fans, keep an open mind, it is worth giving a chance. Although it is probably not for everyone, i am hoping that this is not the last we see of Nicky Fix and her world.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Want You Gone

  • Jack Parlabane, Book 9
  • By: Chris Brookmyre
  • Narrated by: Avita Jay, Angus King
  • Length: 14 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 256
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 240
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 238

Sam Morpeth is left to fend for her younger sister when their mother goes to prison. But when a stranger begins to blackmail her online, she's drawn her into a trap she may not escape alive. Reporter Jack Parlabane is indebted to a volatile source, and now that debt is being called in, it could cost him everything. Thrown together by a common enemy, Sam and Jack are about to discover they have more in common than they realise - and might be each other's only hope.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Best Brookmyre in a while

  • By Richard on 24-05-17

One of the best Brookmyre books for years

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

Reviewed: 19-05-17

What made the experience of listening to Want You Gone the most enjoyable?

Computer hacking is not a topic I know much about and although there is a degree of technicality, I was not lost as anything relevant is 'explained to Jack' for the reader's benefit. This keeps the pace quite high and the story deep without having to be a nerd to follow it.

What other book might you compare Want You Gone to, and why?

Parlabane is nearly back to his old self but a bit older and a bit wiser. It's something between 'Be My Enemy' and 'Black Widow' for pace and mystery content. In my opinion, better than 'Black Widow' for me (which I enjoyed) and probably on a par with 'Be My Enemy' (which I liked a lot).

What does Avita Jay and Angus King bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Some of the voices stray a bit but the core voices that they represent (Sam and Jack) feel really natural and Angus King is exactly how I pictured Parlabane sounding when I read the books. Good narration overall.

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

There are a fair few heart in mouth moments and a good number of funny lines from Jack plus a guest appearance from Spammy.

Any additional comments?

I think that this new series of Parlabane books really suits Brookmyre's style. Again, it is half way between the edgy comedy thrillers he used to write and the more straight mystery books from the Jasmine Sharpe series and for me this is a really winning combo. Sure, I'd like another 'Sacred Art of Stealing' but if I can't have that, this will still do me nicely. Job well done Mr Brookmyre.

  • The Nowhere Man

  • Orphan X, Book 2
  • By: Gregg Hurwitz
  • Narrated by: Scott Brick
  • Length: 12 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 997
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 933
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 926

Ambushed and drugged, Evan Smoak wakes up in a locked room with no idea where he is or who has captured him. As he tries to piece together what's happened, he receives a desperate call for help. With time running out, he will need to out-manoeuvre a powerful opponent to have any chance of escape. He's got to save himself to protect those whose lives depend on him...or die trying.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great book as good as the first one

  • By despie on 03-03-17

Great Follow Up

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

Reviewed: 14-03-17

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

Yes. It's a thriller in the Jack Reacher / Jason Bourne style, it's just written really well.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Evan is clearly the reason you return for more, however the supporting cast of villains and acquaintances are well fleshed out. Orphan V feels like she is going to bring more to the party as the series progresses.

What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

I like the sense of drama he brings, it's a bit slow going sometimes but his Jack and Evan are good. I think my favourite bit of his narration is when Evan answers the phone 'Do you need my help...'

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

It's violent rather than emotional.

Any additional comments?

Best thriller I've read for years (after Orphan X).

14 of 15 people found this review helpful

  • Preview: A Nondescript Office Building in Montreal

  • By: Audible Originals
  • Length: 26 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 128
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 112
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 113

Best-selling author, Jon Ronson introduces us to Fabian Thylmann, the Brussels teenager who came up with an idea: make porn free and easy to stream online. This one decision, years ago, started a cascade of effects and now millions of people behave a little differently when no one is watching.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great

  • By P. C. Dettmann on 29-12-16

Classic Jon Ronson in a new way.

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

Reviewed: 03-03-17

I really enjoyed this. I should however stipulate at this point that I'm a massive Jon Ronson fan and have enjoyed all of his books to date.

This differs from previous Audible offerings in that it' comprises a narrative from Jon interspersed with interviews with people rather than accounts of interviews. Jon's manner is very light but his questions are intelligent and interesting. You don't feel that anyone is being set up to make a fool of themselves and as a result he teases out genuine and interesting responses to questions.

In terms of subject matter - yes, it's about porn, but really it's about how a significant change to an industry affects ordinary (well...) people.

It's free (at the time of writing) so if you like Jon Ronson or Louis Theroux, you honestly can't lose with this. I look forward to paying actual money for future instalments!

  • Chaosmage

  • Age of Darkness, Book 3
  • By: Stephen Aryan
  • Narrated by: Matt Addis
  • Length: 14 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 198
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 190
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 188

Voechenka is a city under siege. Decimated by the Battlemage War, its restless dead attack every night, begging the living to join them beyond the grave. Three survivors will fight to save the city. Tammy, whose investigation could rescue Voechenka from its grisly fate. Zannah, who must pay penance for her war crimes. And Balfruss: scholar, traveller and battlemage.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Fantasy violence and magic. Good stuff.

  • By Skegg on 09-12-16

Fantasy violence and magic. Good stuff.

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

Reviewed: 09-12-16

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

I've not read the print version but I'm a huge fan of Matt Addis as a narrator, he adds a lot to the story so I can't see the print version being better.

What other book might you compare Chaosmage to, and why?

If you've read Battlemage and Bloodmage, this is closer to Battlemage, especially in terms of fighting, magic and violence. If you've not read books 1 and 2, fans of Brandon Sanderson probably will not be left too disappointed for story line and complexity of characters.

Which character – as performed by Matt Addis – was your favourite?

He has such a broad range, giving each race a particular accent. I think he suits a wide range and his female voice is pretty good (not that silly weak voice so many male narrators go with). To answer the question though, I've enjoyed his interpretation of Vargus throughout.

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

It's not really that sort of story.....

Any additional comments?

A good third book in the series. I liked it better than Bloodmage.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Stone Man

  • A Science Fiction Horror Novel
  • By: Luke Smitherd
  • Narrated by: Matt Addis
  • Length: 14 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,892
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,783
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,775

Nobody knew where it came from. Nobody knew why it came. When an eight-foot-tall man made of stone appears in the middle of a busy city center one July afternoon, two-bit (and antisocial) reporter Andy Pointer assumes it's just a publicity stunt. Indeed, so does everyone else...until the Stone Man begins to walk, heading silently through the wall of the nearest building, flattening it, and killing several people inside as a result.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Original British SF...absolutely loved it!!

  • By Jude on 12-07-15

Tense, clever and original

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

Reviewed: 31-10-16

If you could sum up The Stone Man in three words, what would they be?

Gripping, original, human

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Stone Man?

Difficult without giving spoilers but I found myself quite attached to the characters and it's not always a happy outcome for them....

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

I have not heard him before, this was a first. He is a very good narrator though, I'll be inclined to listen to more of his work.

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

It moves quite fast and I digested it quickly. A tell-tale sign I'm enjoying an audiobook is when I listen to it whilst NOT driving, doing the washing up and so on. I found myself just sitting listening to this without using it as a distraction, so it must have been good!

Any additional comments?

Some might be put off by the Science Fiction / Horror label - although this is appropriate, I think that those who prefer a mystery or thriller would also find this perfectly enjoyable. There are some interesting human interest / morality elements and the horror is down to a fear of the unknown and the unstoppable single minded nature of the Stone Man, not gore and violence. It's genuinely very original, well written and gripping.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • In The Darkness, That's Where I'll Know You: The Complete Black Room Story

  • By: Luke Smitherd
  • Narrated by: Luke Smitherd
  • Length: 12 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,761
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,698
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,695

There are hangovers, there are bad hangovers, and then there's waking up inside someone else's head. Thirty-something bartender Charlie Wilkes is faced with this dilemma when he wakes up to find himself trapped inside The Black Room - a space consisting of impenetrable darkness and a huge, ethereal screen floating in its center. It is through this screen that he sees the world of his female host, Minnie.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Highly recommended

  • By Peter on 15-04-16

Wonderfully Original

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

Reviewed: 11-10-16

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

Yes. I've not read much like it before. It's a horror / sci fi / rom com. Very well read and gripping.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Charlie. He has flaws that are relatable but at his core, he is a normal, well meaning chap who is easy to identify with.

Which character – as performed by Luke Smitherd – was your favourite?

Again, it's Charlie. He reads him very naturally.

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

Charlie's meeting with Tommy. I can't write more without giving spoilers!

Any additional comments?

It's a gripping story that twists and turns but it is the simple human element that kept me interested. I really cared about Charlie and Minnie and I don't often get that attached to fictional characters.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful