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Parissa

Versailles, France
  • 13
  • reviews
  • 38
  • helpful votes
  • 383
  • ratings
  • Iran

  • A Modern History
  • By: Abbas Amanat
  • Narrated by: Derek Perkins
  • Length: 41 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5

This history of modern Iran is not a survey in the conventional sense but an ambitious exploration of the story of a nation. It offers a revealing look at how events, people, and institutions are shaped by currents that sometimes reach back hundreds of years. The book covers the complex history of the diverse societies and economies of Iran against the background of dynastic changes, revolutions, civil wars, foreign occupation, and the rise of the Islamic Republic.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An excellent scholarly work

  • By Parissa on 22-10-18

An excellent scholarly work

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

Reviewed: 22-10-18

This is a thorough, comprehensive serious and scholarly work, discussing the evolution of Iranian socio-economic history from the Safavid period to the present day.
I found the 19th and 20th century accounts most interesting. Although there is a leitmotiv of the various dynasties seeking legitimacy by harping back to the Safavid period, I would have been equally happy had the book started with the Qajar dynasty.
The book is particularly well read and although there are some slight mispronunciations, it's as good a reading as any non-Persian speaker could have rendered.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Crisis

  • By: Frank Gardner
  • Narrated by: John Sackville
  • Length: 14 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 457
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 424
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 420

Introducing Luke Carlton - ex-Special Boat Service commando and now under contract to MI6 for some of its most dangerous missions. Sent into the steaming Colombian jungle to investigate the murder of a British intelligence officer, Luke finds himself caught up in the coils of a plot that has terrifying international dimensions.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Good but not great.

  • By G.Russell on 19-10-16

An excellent thriller

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

Reviewed: 03-02-17

This is a great fast-paced thriller. Frank Gardner's background and knowledge as a journalist shines through. The story is credible for the genre and (spoiler alert) I was grateful that, for once, the hero of the story doesn't single-handedly save Queen and country. John Sackville's breathless reading adds to the suspense. All in all, this is an extremely enjoyable audiobook. I look forward to the further adventures of Luke Carlton.

  • Conspiracy

  • Giordano Bruno, Book 5
  • By: S. J. Parris
  • Narrated by: Daniel Philpott
  • Length: 16 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 301
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 266
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 264

Paris, 1585: Giordano Bruno has come to Paris, a city on the edge of catastrophe. Alone and near destitute, Bruno turns to old friend and zealous preacher Paul Lefevre. But when the priest is murdered, Bruno is pulled into a dangerous world. If Bruno can't uncover the truth, not only is the future of the de Valois monarchy threatened - but his own life will be the forfeit.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Disappointing

  • By Gabrielle Harvey-Jones on 02-07-16

Best book of the series so far

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

Reviewed: 15-01-17

I found "Conspiracy" to be the best in Giordano Bruno series so far. The story is set in the spectacularly degenerate and corrupt court of the Valois and the atmosphere of constant danger, where anybody could be a potential assassin, is brilliantly recreated. The story has many twist and turns and the suspense makes it "unputdownable". Daniel Philpott's narration also deserves a special mention. Although the dialogues are still narrated in the character's native accents, these do not dominate or ruin the audiobook. I was sorry when the book ended and look forward to the next installment in the series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Thomas Wolsey, the Late Cardinal

  • His Life and Death
  • By: George Cavendish
  • Narrated by: David Thorn
  • Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 5
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5

This extraordinary “eye-witness” account of Cardinal Thomas Wolsey's rise and fall from power was written between 1554 and 1558 by his gentleman-usher, George Cavendish, who was privy to so much of the Cardinal's ambitious endeavors. However, Cavendish prudently waited a long time before chronicling his observations for fear of his life, as there were those who may have take his memoirs the wrong way.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A contemporary account of Wolsey's life

  • By Parissa on 03-08-15

A contemporary account of Wolsey's life

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

Reviewed: 03-08-15

Any additional comments?

This is a contemporary account of Cardinal Wolsey's life and would interesting for all those keen on Tudor history.
It is extremely encouraging to see that Audible will offer books of this caliber.
The choice of reader is unfortunate. As this book is written in contemporary English, it would have been helpful had the reader benefitted from clearer diction.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Miniaturist

  • By: Jessie Burton
  • Narrated by: Jessie Burton
  • Length: 11 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,944
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,760
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,758

There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed...On an autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman knocks at the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of Amsterdam. She has come from the country to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt, but instead she is met by his sharp-tongued sister, Marin. Only later does Johannes appear and present her with an extraordinary wedding gift.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Tricky to get in to

  • By DebNwood on 20-05-15

A charming story

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

Reviewed: 03-08-15

Any additional comments?

A charming story, well read (I rarely think authors reading their own books is wise). The magical overtones (esp the doll's house) create suspense, whereas the 'mysteries' of the story themselves have somewhat predictable explanations. The descriptions of Amsterdam are atmospheric. I've given the book four stars as I found the heroine anachronistically 'open-minded' and ridiculously stoical. Still, a good listen.

  • The Son

  • By: Jo Nesbo
  • Narrated by: Sean Barrett
  • Length: 14 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 899
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 830
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 830

Sonny's on the run. Sonny is a model prisoner. He listens to the confessions of other inmates, and absolves them of their sins. He's been lied to his whole life. But then one prisoner’s confession changes everything. He knows something about Sonny’s disgraced father. Sonny wants revenge. He needs to break out of prison and make those responsible pay for their crimes. Whatever the cost.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow!

  • By David on 26-04-14

Not Harry Hole but just as good!

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

Reviewed: 20-04-14

Who was your favorite character and why?

"The Son", semi-mystical prisoner is a very interesting character. Without spoiling the story, I found that much of the suspense in the book lay in the discovery of the motivation that drives the character of "The Son" to find himself where he's at and to act as he does...

What about Sean Barrett’s performance did you like?

Sean Barrett's performance is, as ever, absolutely faultless. Nevertheless, as the same "voice" is used for the character of the "inspector" in this story, as is habitually used for Harry Hole, it was a little confusing to start off with...

Any additional comments?

All in all, a good thriller. If you have enjoyed the Harry Hole series thus far, you will enjoy listening to this book.

Or the Bull Kills You cover art
  • Or the Bull Kills You

  • By: Jason Webster
  • Narrated by: Mark Meadows
  • Length: 11 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 11
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4

‘Either you kill the bull, or the bull kills you’ - traditional proverb. Chief Inspector Max Cámara hates bullfighting, but one hot afternoon in Valencia he has to judge a festival corrida starring Spain’s most famous young matador. That night he is back in the ring, and what he finds on the bloodstained sand shocks the city of Valencia to its core. As Cámara hunts his prey through the streets and bars, firecrackers echo for the festival of Fallas, and the town hall election.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not my usual kettle...

  • By Amazon Customer on 26-01-12

A great whodunnit set in the world of bullfighting

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 21-11-11

"Or the Bull Kills You" is a well-paced murder mystery set in Valencia. The book begins with the murder of a bullfighter and Chief Inspector Camarra's inquiries are suffused with sufficient suspense to keep the listener's attention. The fact that the story is set in Spain and the book is peppered with Spanish sayings adds an extra layer of interest, highlighting the dichotomy of the cruelty inherent in bullfighting and the deeprootedness of the game (or the "art") in Spanish culture and tradition. Mark Meadow's pleasent voice and good narration adds much to the book. If there are any follow-up investigations from Chief Inspector Camarra, I would definitely be interested!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Inside the Kingdom

  • By: Robert Lacey
  • Narrated by: Andrew Wincott
  • Length: 15 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 54
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 35
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 36

Saudi Arabia is a country defined by paradox: it sits atop some of the richest oil deposits in the world, and yet the country's roiling disaffection produced 16 of the 19 hijackers on 9/11. It is a modern state, driven by contemporary technology, and yet its powerful religious establishment would have its customs and practices rolled back to match those of the Prophet Muhammad over a thousand years ago.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Very interesting.

  • By M on 28-07-16

An excellent book

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-08-10

This is an excellent, well-researched book, which I felt gave an informative, balanced, insight into the rather mysterious Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
I must confess I knew very little about the country other than what I had gleaned in the press. This book certainly overturned an awful lot of my preconceptions and prejudices.
Although this is no rose-tinted view of the Kingdom,I felt the author cared about exposing the good & the bad (and sometimes the downright horrifying) in equal measures, with fairness and sympathy.
What the book does do is offer some historical and social background and puts recent events into context. I was left with the impression of having been offered a broad selection of points of view, from those of the ruling elite to those of the average citizen.
Robert Lacey knows how to tell a good story: the numerous, occasionally moving (and sometimes very funny) anecdotes that illustrate this book give the narrative immediacy. They also lend a certain lightness to this otherwise serious book and provide a glimpse of Saudi humour. It is an easy listen, made even more pleaseant by Andrew Wincott's reading - although I can't judge how good the Saudi accent is which he employs for certain of the anecdotes!

8 of 12 people found this review helpful

Death of an Expert Witness cover art
  • Death of an Expert Witness

  • An Adam Dalgliesh Mystery
  • By: P. D. James
  • Narrated by: Michael Jayston
  • Length: 9 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 59
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23

A young girl is strangled. Then the senior biologist in the forensic lab where her body is taken is also found dead. Adam Dalgleish has a baffling enquiry on his hands.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent!

  • By Parissa on 24-03-10

Excellent!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 24-03-10

A forensic scientist is murdered in his lab and everyone seems to have had a good motive for killing him. An excellent suspenseful Adam Dagliesh novel. It's always a real treat to hear an unabridged PD James beautifully read by Michael Jayston, who is a pleasure to listen to.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Preacher

  • Patrik Hedström and Erica Falck, Book 2
  • By: Camilla Läckberg
  • Narrated by: Cameron Stewart
  • Length: 12 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 112
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 71
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 71

Foul play was always suspected in the disappearance twenty years ago of two young holidaymakers in the area. Now a young boy out playing has confirmed this grim truth. Their remains, discovered with those of a fresh victim, send the town into shock.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Enjoyable Easy Listening

  • By Ann on 21-04-11

An excellent Scandinavian murder mystery

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-08-09

2003: The body of a tortured woman shows up on top of two other bodies, both killed in 1979. The police need to solve both set of murders and discover the circumstances that link them to each other. The suspects all belong to the same family, the descendents of a faith-healer and preacher. Well read and well paced, this is a treat for fans of Scandinavian murder mysteries. I would love to listen to more of Camilla Lackberg's books.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful