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nicole

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  • Dragon's Code: Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern

  • Dragonriders of Pern Series
  • By: Gigi McCaffrey
  • Narrated by: Ryan Burke
  • Length: 8 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2

The last time Thread attacked Pern, the world was unprepared for the fight - until the Oldtimers appeared. These courageous dragonriders arrived from the past, traveling 400 years to help their descendants survive. But the collision of past and present took its toll. While most of the displaced rescuers adapted to their new reality, others could not abide the jarring change and found themselves in soul-crushing exile, where unhappiness and resentment seethed.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Incredibly well done

  • By nicole on 06-10-18

Incredibly well done

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

Reviewed: 06-10-18

Gigi must have really thought about this one and couldn't have really found a better point to continue her families legacy from. In my opinion this book continues on from the wonderful Harper trilogy and should be placed straight after that in reading order. The dragon on the beautiful front cover is a bit misleading but only a bit, as this story follows one of Anne's beloved characters, Piemur the once darling of the Harper's guild, who lost his own sense of identity when he lost his voice. By following the boys adventures in the little known south, Gigi weaves a wonderful new story for this favoured series, that works with the plots and beloved characters from Anne's world.

It took me a little while to get into the narration. I find most of the voice actors chosen to narrate the Pern stories a bit dry but he does an incredible job with the character voice and always follows the author's cues about their depth and tone. I found myself wondering why he'd chosen such a distinctive voice for a character only to find that it matched a latter description perfectly and the production team had obviously put some real effort into bringing the world to life. I'd definitely buy more books with this narrator.

While there's a summary of events leading to this book, that's actually most helpful for returning listeners like myself to get reacquainted with the story after so many years. Pern is simply one of the greatest fantasy worlds ever written and if you haven't read/listened to it yet, I strongly suggest you do. That being said, I think you can get away with just catching up on the Harper trilogy and listening to the others as prequels latter, if you wish to do things that way but I would not try this as a standalone, without understanding where the characters came from and the history of the world, you won't emphasise with them in the same way and Gigi has not wasted time recovering old ground.

I really admire what Gigi has done here. So many authors get hold of a favourite series and decide to put their own stamp on it, ruining much of what the readers loved. This subtle and far more sympathetic touch, is far harder to do and I've only ever seen it done as well with The Wheel Of Time Series.

***unless you prefer abridged books I strongly recommend you don't just buy these books as they appear in series order from Audible U.K. because there seems to be no set pattern on if it will show the abridged or unabridged version. At the time of writing this review I have found many that are available in an unabridged so I would recommend doing a quick search.***

  • Deadly Escape

  • Shelby Nichols Adventures, Book 11
  • By: Colleen Helme
  • Narrated by: Wendy Tremont King
  • Length: 9 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1

How many times can a person escape death? Shelby Nichols may be one lucky gal, but this time, her luck is about to run out. Working for a mob-boss has danger written all over it, but when an escaped convict with a lust for revenge goes after him, it’s up to Shelby and her mind-reading skills to keep Uncle Joey alive. Not only that, a federal agent from her past has an agenda with her name on it, and he won’t take no for an answer. What’s a mind-reading soccer mom to do? If you’re Shelby Nichols, you jump in with your mind wide open and hope for the best.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A fantastic series!

  • By Jill Kirtley on 13-08-18

Great entertainment

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

Reviewed: 16-07-18

5* narration 4 1/2* story. Psychic, investigative, humour, probably most enjoyable for a female audience. This escapist fun continues to be the type of great entertainment that's guaranteed to get me out of any book slump. Griping action one minute and gentle humour the next with the narrator playing it for all it's worth and making a difficult job look easy. The story is brilliant either way but you are missing out if you don't get the audio on this one.

  • Silence Fallen

  • Mercy Thompson, Book 10
  • By: Patricia Briggs
  • Narrated by: Lorelei King, George Newburn
  • Length: 11 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 115
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 109
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 108

Coyote shape-shifter Mercy Thompson is attacked and abducted in her home territory. Fighting off a crazed werewolf, she manages to escape, only to find herself alone in the heart of Europe, without money, without clothing, and on the run from the clutches of the most powerful vampire in the world. Unable to contact her pack, Mercy has allies to find and enemies to fight, but first she needs to figure out which is which.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great story

  • By Jan on 24-03-17

Missing books in series now available

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

Reviewed: 17-03-18

Using this space to cheat and let Mercy Thompson fans know that the missing four books in the series are now available :)

This series is still going strong at book 10

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • All Systems Red

  • By: Martha Wells
  • Narrated by: Kevin R. Free
  • Length: 3 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 112
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 101
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 101

All Systems Red is the tense first science fiction adventure novella in Martha Wells' series The Murderbot Diaries. For fans of Westworld, Ex Machina, Ann Leckie's Imperial Raadch series, or Iain M. Banks' Culture novels. The main character is a deadly security droid that has bucked its restrictive programming and is balanced between contemplative self-discovery and an idle instinct to kill all humans.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Yay, Murderbot!

  • By L on 02-05-18

Goodreads choice awards nominee sci fi 2017

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

Reviewed: 09-01-18

I started this expecting a fun listen with a silly plot, well it's fun alright but the plot was so much better than I expected. Murderbot has hacked it's controls and finds itself stranded on a remote planet with terrible things happening all around it and now to top it all off, the latest group of humans it has been assigned to guard, actually want to interact with it. People throw big names around like custard pies sticking to a wall when they are trying to explain (or sell) books like this and they often have very little to do with the actual author or story beyond the genre it's in. Since they've really overdone it with this one I will say that in my opinion the story is most like something I would expect from John Scalzi (the less crude stories like The Dispatcher and Old Man's War - note this is not a judgment, I love most of Scalzi's books, this is for comparison only) with a touch of Ann Leckie. I'm not going to tell you much about the actual story beyond this because I don't see any point in spoiling the plot. 5* story, will be listening to again and can't wait for the next.

Narration is harder to mark. My problem is that I love this narrator's work. I listen to a lot of different stuff and he does one of my favorite series the Holmes and Moriarity books by Josh Lanyon (fun and sarcastic murder mystery/romance, between two men, one of whom has been a previously top selling writer of a long running series/sometimes amateur detective and the other of whom is an ex cop/ current incredibly successful author who thinks things should be left with the police. The point being that Kevin R. Free is very good at over the top and funny, while still managing to make the best of a great plot, so I was surprised that his performance here was a little flat in comparison, particularly when voicing Murderbots' thoughts as opposed to voice (perhaps the editor directed him to do it that way). The narrator has a beautiful voice in my opinion and while it's not immediately apparent he can soften his tone enough for a real range of emotion to come through. This also helps with managing to do distinct voices for the main characters without putting on silly characters for the women, which I always appreciate. 3 1/2* but going up to 4 nearer the end. I hope they keep him for subsequent stories where he can really come into his own.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Heart of Vengeance

  • Vigilante, Book 1
  • By: Glynn Stewart, Terry Mixon
  • Narrated by: Jeffrey Kafer
  • Length: 7 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 21
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20

When pirates seize the inter-planetary freighter owned by Brad Mantruso’s family, he is dumped into space. Saved from death by a passing Fleet ship, he is left with nothing but his skills, a gun, and a burning desire for vengeance. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fans won't be disappointed

  • By nicole on 09-01-18

Fans won't be disappointed

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

Reviewed: 09-01-18

Another addictive series set in this enjoyable universe. At first it just comes across like a movie action sequence but the great plot, characters and storytelling I expect in this universe, soon shine through. While the main character is male I think the story will appeal to both male and female listeners of sci fi, which isn't always the case. I can't be unbiased on the narration because I already love Kafers' work from C.T. Phips' Supervillany series. His interpretation is a bit different from the tone of this authors other artists in the world he has created but I soon got into and found it hard to put the book down. I've listened to both books coauthored with Terry Mixon and hope the pair continue to work together if the results are this good.

  • The Terran Privateer

  • The Duchy of Terra, Book 1
  • By: Glynn Stewart
  • Narrated by: Hillary Huber
  • Length: 15 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 97
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 89
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 90

Earth is conquered. Sol is lost. One ship is tasked to free them. One Captain to save them all. When an alien armada destroys the United Earth Space Force and takes control of the human homeworld, newly reinstated Captain Annette Bond must take her experimental hyperspace cruiser Tornado into exile as Terra's only interstellar privateer. She has inferior technology, crude maps, and no concept of her enemy, but the seedy underbelly of galactic society welcomes her so long as she has prizes to sell and money to spend.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • A comedy of accents

  • By Chez on 06-01-17

Addictive

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

Reviewed: 17-10-17

5* story mostly 5* narration but a couple of weird accents bring it down to 3, not enough to put me off a great story though. Straight into the action, great female lead love the plot and the world building. Listened to the first two books back to back and I have honest to goodness withdrawal symptoms waiting for the next book to come to audio, it's just that easy to listen to. Rec for fans of Christopher G. Nuttall's Angel in the Whirlwind series.

  • A Legacy of Spies

  • By: John le Carré
  • Narrated by: Tom Hollander
  • Length: 8 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,064
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 968
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 960

Peter Guillam, staunch colleague and disciple of George Smiley of the British Secret Service, is living out his old age on the family farmstead in Brittany when a letter summons him to London. The reason? His Cold War past has come back to claim him. Intelligence operations that were once the toast of secret London and involved such characters as Alec Leamas, Jim Prideaux, George Smiley and Peter Guillam himself are to be scrutinised under disturbing criteria by a generation with no memory of the Cold War.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant

  • By JOHN on 10-09-17

New life into a favourite series

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

Reviewed: 10-09-17

There's a reason you won't find many spy thrillers in my reading list and it's this simple, I started reading John le Carré in my teens and where as in other genres or cross genres, I could usually at least give you a top ten, in plain unadulterated spy thrillers, no one else has ever measured up. This is up there with this author's best. Not only a new tale but one that weaves around so much of what has been left out of the earlier Smiley adventures. Despite being completely gripped by the story, I wanted to cheer when I heard more information on this character or that characters adventures and perspective. This book breaths new life into one of my favourite series.

There's an amazing performance by the narrator too and with all the different accents and locations that's no small feet.

I do recommend listening to this series in order but you have a choice here between the brilliantly narrated separate books or the alternative of purchasing the collection of really great radio adaptations by the BBC. (The Complete George Smiley Radio Dramas: BBC Radio 4 Full-Cast Dramatization which, at the time of writing this review, is also available to purchase on Audible UK.) I honestly don't think there's a wrong answer here, with the exception of a Murder Of Quality, which I stuck to the radio play for,as it's not the strongest of the series, I went for both.

19 of 20 people found this review helpful

  • Alien: Out of the Shadows

  • An Audible Original Drama
  • By: Tim Lebbon, Dirk Maggs
  • Narrated by: Rutger Hauer, Corey Johnson, Matthew Lewis, and others
  • Length: 4 hrs and 28 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,804
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,471
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,453

As a child, Chris Hooper dreamed of monsters. But in deep space, he found only darkness and isolation. Then, on planet LV178, he and his fellow miners discovered a storm-scoured, sand-blasted hell - and trimonite, the hardest material known to man. When a shuttle crashes into the mining ship Marion, the miners learn that there was more than trimonite deep in the caverns. There was evil, hibernating and waiting for suitable prey.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic!!!

  • By Chris on 27-04-16

Audible got it right with this one.

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

Reviewed: 02-01-17

Tightly written, beautifully executed by the production team, who were completely on point with atmospheric sound effects that really pulled you into the story without ever impinging on the dialogue, as many of these productions do and of course top notch acting. Not what I'd usually listen too, though I do enjoy some sci-fi but this won me over. I loved that the fast paced horror wasn't overdone, using the sound effects to trigger the listener's imagination, then going straight into the next crisis before you can dwell on the last, which makes the listener feel pulled in with the characters and really plays to the strengths of the medium. This is more an audio movie, than a book and for something like Aliens it really works well. Different but reminiscent of the BBC productions when they were still at their best. Top marks.

  • The Dispatcher

  • By: John Scalzi
  • Narrated by: Zachary Quinto
  • Length: 2 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,039
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 960
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 960

Zachary Quinto - best known for his role as the Nimoy-approved Spock in the recent Star Trek reboot and the menacing, power-stealing serial killer, Sylar, in Heroes - brings his well-earned sci-fi credentials and simmering intensity to this audio-exclusive novella from master storyteller John Scalzi. One day, not long from now, it becomes almost impossible to murder anyone - 999 times out of a thousand, anyone who is intentionally killed comes back. How? We don't know.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • grabs you instantly

  • By M O. on 24-10-16

I put this in the basket then realised it was free

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

Reviewed: 09-10-16

Zachary Quinto has yet to let me down on any of his acting and that includes his narrative performance here, great character differentiation, brilliantly done female characters which can be really hard for some of the deeper voiced male narrators. I don't know if it just me but John Scalzi just seems to keep getting better. This is another of his main characters who while intelligent, charming and likable, often lives with and has learned from the grey areas in his life and is unapologetic about that. The detective plot really drags you in, Scalzi's mix of cynicism and hope on the human condition, while still producing completely entertaining stories draws me in every time. Buy it while it's free sci fi, isn't usually my favourite genre but scalzi might convert you too.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Great St. Mary's Day Out

  • A Chronicles of St. Mary's Short Story
  • By: Jodi Taylor
  • Narrated by: Zara Ramm
  • Length: 1 hr and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 410
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 391
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 387

Everyone deserves to get away for a bit. Even the miscreants at St Mary's. Astonishingly, Dr. Bairstow has declared a holiday. Even more astonishingly - he's paying for it. Needless to say, there are strings attached. They have to record the 1601 performance of Hamlet, with Shakespeare himself in the role of the Ghost. It doesn't go well, of course.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A classic St Marys featuring Bill the flaming Bard

  • By English Country Life on 01-08-16

Funniest St Mary's ever

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

Reviewed: 09-10-16

I love all this series but this one really is a laugh a minute, don't miss out.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful