St Austell, Cornwall, United Kingdom
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  • 5
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  • Storm Front

  • The Dresden Files, Book 1
  • By: Jim Butcher
  • Narrated by: James Marsters
  • Length: 8 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,098
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,745
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,744

A call from a distraught wife, and another from Lt. Murphy of the Chicago PD Special Investigation Unit makes Harry believe things are looking up, but they are about to get worse, much worse. Someone is harnessing immense supernatural forces to commit a series of grisly murders. Someone has violated the first law of magic: Thou Shalt Not Kill. Tracking that someone takes Harry into the dangerous underbelly of Chicago, from mobsters to vampires....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A great story & brilliantly narrated

  • By Tom on 14-08-09

Happiness is a new favourite author

5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-12-14

I'd first come across the Dresden Files as the TV show starring Paul Blackthorne. Yes, I know exactly what a naff, YouTube-ish, pathetic excuse for a review that opening line is. Sorry. However, it's true, and it's an excuse for taking so long to get round to reading (or listening to) the books. I love PB and enjoyed the show immensely, but knew perfectly well that the books were going to be way better - when aren't they? - so I put off going to the source, not wanting the show spoiled for me.

Eventually, though, it had to be done, right? So I finally try the real Dresden Files, and the first one is as wonderful as I hoped. James Marsters' performance is beautifully pitched, nuanced and warm. He brings the character to life instantly, and is a real pleasure to listen to.

The story is wittily told by Jim Butcher's words, with pace and drama to keep you sucking in air in surprise, before you exhale explosively on the next laugh. A fantastic mixture. The story was familiar in many areas, since it was used in the series, albeit in a truncated and tweaked manner of course, yet it still managed twists and turns that kept me hooked. If you don't see any of it coming, it can only be better.

And when you do see it coming before Dresden does, it's huge fun. Wait for that moment at the top of the lift...

Perhaps the best bit is... there are lots of books, and I've only read the first one so far. I went straight back and bought the next two, and look forward to working my way through the whole library. Happiness is definitely a new favourite author, especially one that's going to take a while to catch up.

  • Skinny Dip

  • By: Carl Hiaasen
  • Narrated by: Jeff Harding
  • Length: 13 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 135
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 111
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 110

Joey Perrone is a woman with a mission. She's just been pushed overboard from a cruise liner by Chaz, her scumbag husband, and survived to tell the tale. But rather than reporting the crime to the police, she decides to stay dead and instead of getting mad, get even. Filled with a host of endearingly offbeat characters, and a narrative that is hilarious, romantic and thought-provoking by turns, Skinny Dip takes us on a journey through the warped politics of southern Florida.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Acerbic wit and social critique

  • By P1969 on 21-02-15

Hiaasen at his surreal best

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 28-07-09

I adore Hiaasen's books, and this is my all time favourite. It's splendidly read here. A murderous husband, the world's most hirsute body-guard, a seriously cool dude and his daft doberman, and a supposedly dead wife who's determined to get even. Classic Hiaasen, hugely entertaining.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Company of Liars

  • By: Karen Maitland
  • Narrated by: David Thorpe
  • Length: 18 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,048
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,360
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,356

On this day of ill omen, plague makes its entrance. Within weeks, swathes of England will be darkened by death's shadow. While panic and suspicion flood the land, a small band of travelers comes together to outrun the breakdown in law and order. But when one of their number is found hanging from a tree, the chilling discovery confirms that something more sinister than plague is in their midst.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Medieval Road Movie - Well worth a listen

  • By I. Jamie on 02-02-09

Brilliant but too grisly for me

2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 28-07-09

This book is extremely well written, and very well read, so two stars may seem a little harsh, but I wanted to highlight that it's not all roses (just a small plague joke for you there!) The story starts out appearing as an interesting traveller's tale with a mystery to unravel, but becomes increasingly grim and grisly with the tone darkening constantly. What started out as a gripping story became miserable by such subtle degrees that I didn't realise how depressing it was until I took a break from it. It was quite hard to persuade myself back to hear the end. It's to the credit of the author that I wished to find out how it finished, but as it turned out, I'd completely predicted every turn, so I could have saved myself the bother. If you like your fiction dark as pitch, you'll probably love it. The rest of you, be warned.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful