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Clare

SWANSEAUnited Kingdom
  • 10
  • reviews
  • 40
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  • 195
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  • All Out War: The Full Story of How Brexit Sank Britain's Political Class

  • By: Tim Shipman
  • Narrated by: Rupert Farley
  • Length: 32 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 361
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 334
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 334

Based on unrivalled access to all the key politicians and their advisors - including Boris Johnson, Michael Gove, George Osborne, Nigel Farage and Dominic Cummings, the mastermind of Vote Leave - Shipman has written a political history that reads like a thriller and offers a gripping day-by-day account of what really happened behind the scenes in Downing Street, both Leave campaigns, the Labour Party, Ukip and Britain Stronger in Europe.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Magnificent blow by blow account

  • By Mr SA Lambe on 02-03-17

Fascinating account of the Referendum and its party political consequences.

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

Reviewed: 11-12-17

Amazingly, this book manages to be utterly fascinating and a compelling read. It is well structured, with a huge amount of detail but without ever getting mired down in all the nitty gritty; and it is written in a style that is easy to read. Farley pitches the narration perfectly.

As well as the policy questions and choices of the politicians, the story of the campaigns and their managers and strategists are tremendously interesting. For example, the somewhat enigmatic character, Dom Cummings, and his response to the Leave campaign being called out over the £350 million figure is something to make one think hard about what this sort of tactic means for debate in a democratic country. The chapter on the Labour Party's role in the campaign was another highlight. The characters leap off the page, and the account is more revealing than that in Craig Oliver's book.

Shipman has spoken to so many of the insiders, and serves up their views and insights as just that ..... views not facts. He has taken a very emotive topic, and tried hard to be balanced and fair. I think he has achieved this overall.

Finally, though not a fan of David Cameron, I was impressed with the text of the speech he never got to give; the one he would have delivered had the result of the referendum been for remaining in the EU.

If you want a warts and all account of this historic referendum, I would highly recommend this book. If you want to understand why the result was what it was, then this is not a bad starting point. It will certainly get you thinking for yourself. And, if you are interested in an analysis of why one campaign won over the other, this will also fascinate you. And, you might also want to look at Craig Oliver's book for how it felt for the Tory Remain campaigners when they didn't have the expected backing in the press. Oh, and for his comments on the BBC...

Five stars! Terrific!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Spook Street

  • Slough House, Book 4
  • By: Mick Herron
  • Narrated by: Seán Barrett
  • Length: 10 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 626
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 586
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 584

Twenty years retired, David Cartwright can still spot when the stoats are on his trail. And he's not as defenceless as they might think. Jackson Lamb worked with Cartwright back in the day. He knows better than most that this is no vulnerable old man. 'The old bastard' has raised his grandson with a head full of guts and glory. But far from joining Spook Street, River Cartwright is consigned to Lamb's team of no-hopers at Slough House.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Another scorcher

  • By K on 04-10-17

Excellent as always

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

Reviewed: 05-07-17

Love the characters. Slough House is a wonderful invention, and is packed with terrific characters you just want to follow and observe. And I love the trade craft.

A great thriller, like all in this series. Now I just have to wait for the next one.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Medusa

  • Oslo Crime Files 1
  • By: Torkil Damhaug
  • Narrated by: Peter Noble
  • Length: 11 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 24
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 20
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 20

When a shadow from the past reawakens, successful surgeon Axel Glenne's life turns upside down. Soon after, a woman's body is found in Nordmarka, a forest north of Oslo. Items found near the body suggest that the killer is leaving a message, and while this death is being investigated, another woman is murdered. The similarities are too close to be coincidental - and it appears that Axel Glenne has a connection to both victims.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Slow starter

  • By Clare on 05-04-17

Slow starter

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

Reviewed: 05-04-17

I began to think I had made a mistake wit this one. Just as I was losing interest it picked up again.

The final denouement wasn't entirely a surprise, and I didn't really like any of the characters that much, except perhaps, Nina, the policewoman. But I began to see why each character had aspects that were a bit unsavoury - these all fed into the plot.

The reading was overall good, but could at times be irritating.

I think if I could I would give it 3 1/2.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Alex

  • Camille Verhoeven, Book 2
  • By: Pierre Lemaitre, Frank Wynne
  • Narrated by: David Rintoul
  • Length: 11 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 130
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 119
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 119

Winner of the CWA International Dagger. In kidnapping cases, the first few hours are crucial. After that, the chances of being found alive go from slim to nearly none. Alex Prevost – beautiful, resourceful, tough – may be no ordinary victim, but her time is running out. Commandant Camille Verhoeven and his detectives have nothing to go on: no suspect, no lead, rapidly diminishing hope. All they know is that a girl was snatched off the streets of Paris and bundled into a white van. The enigma that is the fate of Alex will keep Verhoeven guessing until the bitter, bitter end.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Trying too hard to shock

  • By Alex on 19-09-13

Good police thriller

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

Reviewed: 09-01-16

I'm afraid this just seemed to lack the sort of character and atmosphere that I find makes a really good thriller. Nonetheless a well plotted thriller, with twists and turns, but perhaps the twists are seen coming too soon?

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Trinity Six

  • By: Charles Cumming
  • Narrated by: Jot Davies
  • Length: 11 hrs and 20 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 199
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 163
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 162

Europe is still littered with the darkest secrets of the Cold War. And the most deadly revelation of them all is about to be made…Hard-up Russia expert Dr Sam Gaddis finally has a lead for a book that could set his career back on track. He has staggering new information about an unknown sixth member of the infamous Cambridge spy ring – a man who has evaded detection for his entire life

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Trinity Six

  • By JOHN M. on 22-12-16

Good story. Well plotted.

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

Reviewed: 18-12-15

But not a new le Carre. Lacks the depth of character and the wonderful atmosphere that le Carre creates. Nonetheless a very enjoyable read/listen.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Nobody Walks

  • By: Mick Herron
  • Narrated by: Seán Barrett
  • Length: 6 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 132
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 126
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 124

Tom Bettany is working at a meat processing plant in France when he gets a voicemail telling him that his estranged 26-year-old son is dead. Liam Bettany fell from his London balcony, where he was smoking dope. Now, for the first time since he cut all ties years ago, Bettany returns home, to find out the truth about his son's death. But more than a few people are interested to hear Bettany is back in town. He might have thought he'd left it all behind when he first skipped town, but nobody really just walks away.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great to hear the Beginnings

  • By Earnest on 12-03-16

Great thriller and Sean Barrett is terrific as always

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

Reviewed: 04-08-15

Really enjoyed this and the Dame Ingrid character, although not as good as Slow Horses. Like the way he can sketch out a character with just a few lines and you can almost see them before you eyes. And I enjoy the tradecraft. Sean Barrett is brilliant as always. He gets the tone pitch perfect.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Funeral in Berlin

  • By: Len Deighton
  • Narrated by: James Lailey
  • Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 73
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 69
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 69

A ferociously cool Cold War thriller from the author of The Ipcress File. Len Deighton's third novel has become a classic, as compelling and suspenseful now as when it first exploded on to the best seller lists. In Berlin, where neither side of the wall is safe, Colonel Stok of Red Army Security is prepared to sell an important Russian scientist to the West - for a price....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great narrator

  • By VCM on 08-03-17

Narration takes a bit of getting used to..

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

Reviewed: 12-07-15

I did get used to it eventually and those who like Michael Caine will probably enjoy it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Verdict

  • By: Nick Stone
  • Narrated by: David Thorpe
  • Length: 21 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 825
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 759
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 759

Terry Flynt is a struggling legal clerk, desperately trying to get promoted. And then he is given the biggest opportunity of his career: to help defend a millionaire accused of murdering a woman in his hotel suite. The only problem is that the accused man, Vernon James, turns out to be not only someone he knows, but someone he loathes. This case could potentially make Terry's career, but how can he defend a former friend who betrayed him so badly?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Verdict by Nick Stone

  • By Steven on 29-01-14

I didn't want it to end!!

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

Reviewed: 15-08-14

What made the experience of listening to The Verdict the most enjoyable?

Great story. Some things you could see coming, but that didn't seem to matter because the characters were good, and the performance was brilliant! I really enjoyed the courtroom scenes, and the whole legal process of building the defence case and challenging the prosecution.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The main character was interesting and engaging. I liked the contrast between his family and his work place relations.

Any additional comments?

The narrator wax terrific! So many different characters' voices, but all brilliantly performed

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

London Match cover art
  • London Match

  • Bernard Samson, Book 3
  • By: Len Deighton
  • Narrated by: Paul Daneman
  • Length: 13 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9

The spy who's in the clear doesn't exist. Bernard Samson hoped they'd put Elvira Miller behind bars. She said she had been stupid, but it didn't cut any ice with Bernard. She was a KGB-trained agent and stupidity was no excuse. There was one troubling thing about Mrs Miller's confession, something about two code words where there should have been one. The finger of suspicion pointed straight back to London. And that was where defector Erich Stinnes was locked up, refusing to say anything.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • What a pity!

  • By Elizabeth on 01-09-07

London Match by Len Deighton

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 17-11-09

I had never read any of the Len Dieghton novels, but I am now completely hooked. I agree that it took a bit of getting used to the narrator's voice, but now I can't imagine any other voices for Bernard Samson and Werner. Having listened to all of the trilogy, I am having withdrawal symptoms and now have to start on the Harry Palmer ones. Hope they are just as good!!

  • The Secret Scripture

  • By: Sebastian Barry
  • Narrated by: Stephen Hogan
  • Length: 9 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 486
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 286
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 286

Nearing her 100th birthday, Roseanne McNulty faces an uncertain future, as the Roscommon Regional Mental Hospital where's she spent most of her adult life prepares for closure. Over the weeks leading up to this upheaval, she talks with her psychiatrist, Dr. Greene, and their relationship intensifies and complicates. Told through their respective journals, the story that emerges is at once shocking and deeply beautiful.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Intriguing story with exceptional narration

  • By Trixie on 26-07-15

Beautiful

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-06-09

This is a beautifully crafted book, and it captures that rural Irish perception of beauty. It is also beautifully read, capturing the soft lilt of the west Irish brogue. "A terrible beauty"! For within lies the brutality of war, the oppression of rigid morality, and the confusion of truth and memory.

14 of 16 people found this review helpful