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Lily the Pink

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I'm going to try reading this book myself

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

Reviewed: 13-01-16

After only an hour I've given up on this book and its truly irritating narration. The silly voices and constant overemphasis is like being bombarded with adverts for sweets and fizzy pop. I really can't tell you much about the story because the whole thing is BEING TOLD IN CAPITAL LETTERS!!
The book itself gets good reviews on Amazon so its sad for the author that the audio treatment is so bad.

1 person found this helpful

I'm rather sad...

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

Reviewed: 03-12-15

I loved the first two books in this series, so I was really excited to see books three and four were available. But something's very wrong. Peter Sanderson, who narrated the first two books, was quirky but quickly became a part of the story. The author has taken over the narration and suddenly several of the characters have strange not-quite-Irish accents, which I find very distracting. But more than that, the poetry in the words, which made the first two books so lyrical, has gone. I'm only about half way through and still hoping the original world, so beautifully created, is still there, somewhere...

Lose yourself in another world

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

Reviewed: 26-09-15

This is a book that has found its medium. None of the author's descriptions, none of the information, is lost, which could so easily happen if it was turned into a film. But with the narration by Jonathan Davis, and the incidental sound effects, it's just perfect.

I bought this book when it was on special offer because I had a small refund voucher and I quite like science fiction. I could so easily have missed it! I think I have probably driven my whole family mad telling them how good it is and how it totally took over my journeys home for weeks. In fact I was so hooked I found I was still listening while I put the shopping away or started the evening meal.

It describes a world not very far in the future where people live in guarded enclaves and become citizens of franchised countries. Someone is trying to take over the minds of all the computer programmers in the world, and it's up to the main character, a brilliant programmer called Hiro Protagonist (yes, really, but I can forgive Neal Stephenson this one bit of self-consciousness) and his sidekick, YT a 15 year old female skateboard courier, to work out what's going on and save mankind.

That really doesn't do justice to Neal Stephenson's brilliant evocation of a world that could so nearly be ours, if things had developed differently. At first it's hard to work out what's going on but then the plot starts to unfold, and even the extended Sumerian history lesson in the middle falls into place. But it's not just about the lead characters. It has quite a cast list, all carefully voiced by Jonathan Davis, and all contributing to the story.

It's a terrific book, and I'm still trying to work out why.

4 people found this helpful

Old fashioned

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

Reviewed: 06-02-15

My mother loved this series but I found it slow and mostly uninteresting.

6 people found this helpful

Like Harold I wasn't sure I would get to the end.

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

Reviewed: 01-12-13

Any additional comments?

One of the joys of an audiobook is that when the going gets hard I have the narrator to keep me going. Jim Broadbent was wonderful as Harold, and if he wasn’t as convincing as the other characters it was because Rachel Joyce was not so involved with them either.
Although part of the point of the book is the great length of Harold’s journey I did feel that was overdone, and towards the end I wished he would get on with it or go home.
Having said all that, I’m glad to have heard this book, and the development of Harold’s memories, and the changes in his mental state, are delicately handled. It’s the only book I’ve come across for years that hasn’t been written as a film script, and I hope no on tries since it would completely spoil the gentle thoughtfulness of the story.

1 person found this helpful

Google the title if you want to know what it means

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-12-12

I was intrigued to find out more about Stephen Fry's background, and perhaps why he is the way he is. His insight into his junior self is painful and at times heart-breaking, and there seem to have been few happy episodes in his young life; or maybe that is just how he remembers it. I'm sad that the despair seems to have continued into his adult life, despite that insight.

1 person found this helpful

Never Let Me Go cover art

ultimately disappointing

Overall
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-12-12

Interestingly, I listened to this shortly after "Rebecca", and found myself thinking that Ishiguro was consciously trying to write a classic English novel, and that's part of the problem with this book. It's very clever, but unengaging. Maybe that was deliberate too, since the children have lead an emotionally deprived childhood, but he takes this too far.



The disappointment is that the adult part of the story is about as gripping as a series of hospital outpatient appointments. He makes the "normality" of the donors' lives so bland that the horror of what they are actually destined for is lost, and with it, any sympathy for their predicament.



Overall, a wasted opportunity for a story of emotional contrasts.

1 person found this helpful

I am trying to like this...

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-12-11

This book has had some good reviews, but I just couldn't get on with the angry, bitter atmosphere of the first 30 minutes. I'll try it again when I'm feeling emotionally stronger.

just bliss

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-12-11

I can't rate the combination of Susan Hil and Stephen Pacey highly enough. Her writing is so natural, and the characterisation and dialogue are more important to me than the plots (of which there are always several on the go). His narration is perfect. Each member of the cast has such a distinctive voice that even when a scene opens with dialogue I always know who is speaking.
I have really got to know the characters well over the five books, and Susan Hill is not afraid to kill key members off, in a way which is very lifelike.
I'm just sad that I've reached the end of the audiobooks, though I think she has written at least one more.

6 people found this helpful

A difficult book to like

Overall
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 31-12-10

I bought this book because it is narrated by Stephen Pacey, and because I like 'relationship' books. The idea for the structure is interesting - that each episode is linked to a picture from the posthumous exhibition of Rachel Kelly's work - but in the end it's unsatisfyingly 'clever' and confuses more than it explains, because of the way it jumps around in time. The only real problem with an audio book, especially if you are listening while on the drive home from work, is that you can't flick back to previous chapters to find the thread of a character's story, so just have to press on and hope things will be explained by the end. And that is the main fault with this book. It just stops, and misses out the most important scene in the lives of all the characters. I could see it coming, in tantalising (but self-conscious) snippets, but it would seem the last picture in the exhibition is missing.
Beautifully read by Stephen Pacey but I don't think I'll bother with any more Patrick Gale.

6 people found this helpful