LISTENER

Emma Churchouse

Wiltshire, UK
  • 9
  • reviews
  • 13
  • helpful votes
  • 61
  • ratings
  • Hot Mess

  • By: Lucy Vine
  • Narrated by: Elisabeth Hopper
  • Length: 9 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 157
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 140
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 139

It's Valentine's Day, and Ellie Knight finds herself eating Nutella in the bar stock after a no-show date. But single doesn't have to be the loneliest number, does it? She goes back home to her flatshare and weird flatmates. It's okay there's black mould everywhere, right? With a hangover from hell, she goes to the office job she thought she would have quit by now. Doesn't everyone hate their job? Maybe Ellie isn't following the official life plan, but perfect is overrated.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This is THE BEST audio book I've listened to!

  • By claire on 21-09-17

Real and funny

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

Reviewed: 08-10-18

Elisabeth Hopper is brilliant. Between them she and Lucy Vine transport you straight back to those days of cringe-worthy blind dates, Monday morning hangovers and wondering if that dress on the floor is clean enough to pick up and wear again - and miss them! Totally hilarious story, well written with some great dialogue. And Ellie's dad's novel - you don't know whether to laugh or cry. The ending, for me, was just far too suddenly convenient hence this otherwise fab listen not getting 5 starts across the board.

  • Tormentor Mine

  • By: Anna Zaires
  • Narrated by: Tracy Marks, Sebastian York
  • Length: 8 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 48
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42

A new dark romance from New York Times best-seller Anna Zaires. He came to me in the night, a cruel, darkly handsome stranger from the most dangerous corners of Russia. He tormented me and destroyed me, ripping apart my world in his quest for vengeance. Now he's back, but he's no longer after my secrets. The man who stars in my nightmares wants me.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Obsessively Addictive

  • By LilleyLoohLah on 16-11-17

Tormentingly flat

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

Reviewed: 13-04-18

Any additional comments?

All credit to the narrators, their performance keeps the interest going long after the story line has devolved into tedium. The two protagonists appear to have nothing on which to base their dramatic relationship apart from a recent lack of sex and there are too few additional characters to dilute all the intervening querulous self doubt and brooding. There are some truly engaging "dark" romances out there (seek out a copy of Elizabeth Walker's Dark Sunrise), unfortunately, despite the sterling effort of the narrators, this isn't one of them.

  • We Are Legion (We Are Bob)

  • Bobiverse, Book 1
  • By: Dennis E. Taylor
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 9 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,912
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 7,472
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,453

Bob Johansson has just sold his software company and is looking forward to a life of leisure. There are places to go, books to read, and movies to watch. So it's a little unfair when he gets himself killed crossing the street. Bob wakes up a century later to find that corpsicles have been declared to be without rights, and he is now the property of the state. He has been uploaded into computer hardware and is slated to be the controlling AI in an interstellar probe looking for habitable planets.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An unexpected gem

  • By Andrew on 29-01-17

Funny, intelligent and engaging

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

Reviewed: 24-04-17

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. The concept isn't new but this is definitely a new take on the concept of investing spaceships with human intellects. Well written in an engaging and lighthearted style and the narrator is perfect for the story.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Bob, and Bob, oh, and Bob, too. A many faceted character.

Which character – as performed by Ray Porter – was your favourite?

Bob, and Bob, oh, and Bob, too. Ray Porter's narration and characterisation suits the style of the story brilliantly. There can't be many artists that are required to mimic Homer Simpson and Commander Riker in the same conversation.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It's a laugh out loud book.

Any additional comments?

A knowledge of the sci-fi genre and "nerd-ism" in general is a big advantage with a lot of the jokes and one liners throughout the book. Some reviews point out the flaws in the science, but honestly, with Ray Porter's excellent narration whisking your along into the stars with a full raft of nerdy Bobs on board, who cares. Bob is proof that "nerd" is a valid life choice and can lead to great things given the opportunity.

  • Graceling

  • Seven Kingdoms Trilogy, Book 1
  • By: Kristin Cashore
  • Narrated by: Emma Powell
  • Length: 13 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 390
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 333
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 330

In a world where people born with an exceptional skill, known as a Grace, are feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of a skill even she despises: the Grace of killing. She lives under the command of her Uncle Randa, King of the Middluns, and is expected to carry out his dirty work, punnishing and torturing anyone who displeases him. Breaking arms and cutting off fingers are her stock-in-trade.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Disappointing

  • By James Hall on 28-10-15

Mild teen adventure

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

Reviewed: 08-03-16

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

Would be time well-spent for a teen but this is not a story for an older audience. I persevered through the entire book waiting for it to get going but it remained depthless and somewhat mawkish.

Has Graceling put you off other books in this genre?

Not at all. For the ultimate heroine struggling with her own power to kill just leap in and immerse yourself in the unparalleled Chronicles of Morgaine.

What about Emma Powell’s performance did you like?

Loved every moment of her clear, expressive voice. Her delivery is appropriate to the action at the time but not overwhelming and her characters are well defined and easy to differentiate. I could listen to her all day long.

Did Graceling inspire you to do anything?

Only to check the reviews more thoroughly before purchase.

Any additional comments?

Fantastic narrator but material is sadly under par.

  • Puck of Pook's Hill

  • By: Rudyard Kipling
  • Narrated by: Peter Kenny
  • Length: 5 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 6

When two children happen across an ancient shrine, they unintentionally summon an impish sprite named Puck, also known as Robin Goodfellow. To their wonderment, the fairy conjures up the past, taking them on ten magical adventures: They visit Roman Britain and the legion guarding Hadrian's Wall, the thirteenth-century court of King John, and Old England from the time of William the Conqueror.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A warm breath of old England

  • By Emma Churchouse on 03-03-16

A warm breath of old England

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

Reviewed: 03-03-16

Any additional comments?

Of the several versions of Puck of Pook's Hill available I opted for the one narrated by Peter Kenny on the strength of his sterling performances reading Iain M Banks. The choice was amply rewarded by well loved stories brought to vibrant life. He has a deft touch with characters, each one easily identifiable and portrayed without recourse to overly laboured accents or affectations. Puck himself is beautifully presented by the narrator and the stories knit the hills and spirits of old England into a constant, overarching presence. The stories have lost none of their magic over time and although a children's book Kipling's prose is still engaging when read/heard as an adult. It was also pleasing to find that all the poems and songs are also included as, sadly, they have been removed from the audio versions of some other of Kipling's children's books.
Please Audible, can we also have Rewards And Fairies to complete the set.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Selected Just So Stories

  • By: Rudyard Kipling
  • Narrated by: Johnny Morris
  • Length: 3 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 186
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 124
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 124

Have you ever wondered how and why the animals came to be as they are? In these magical tales, drawn from stories he heard as a child in India as well as on folk traditions he later collected all over the world, Rudyard Kipling gives some wonderfully imaginative explanations.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Where are the verses?

  • By Anna on 19-08-11

Magical, O Best Beloved

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

Reviewed: 01-12-15

Would you consider the audio edition of The Complete Just So Stories to be better than the print version?

Overall print is better. With the audio book you miss out on the second Taffy story, How The Alphabet Was Made, as it is so dependant on the illustrations (it's well worth the effort to track down a print version with the original illustrations). I am very disappointed that Kipling's verses that accompany each story have been excluded from the audio book.

What did you like best about this story?

The great use of language and the lyrical quality of the prose.

What about Johnny Morris’s performance did you like?

Just hearing Johnny Morris's voice again catapulted me back to childhood. For millions of British kids growing up in the 60s and 70s there is no voice that talking animals could possibly have other than his (except, perhaps, Willie Rushton). A classic book read by a classic performer.

Any additional comments?

A must have for anyone who was lucky enough to have the book read to them as a child. And a must have for anyone living with someone who had the book read to them as a child - it will shed light on why otherwise perfectly normal people go around using words like "sclusive", "curtiosity" and refer to their husbands as men of "infinite-resource-and-sagacity".

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Ghost Flight

  • By: Bear Grylls
  • Narrated by: Rupert Degas
  • Length: 13 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 689
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 649
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 645

Haunted by his wife and son's brutal abduction and murder, ex-soldier Will Jaeger runs to the ends of the Earth to recover and to hide. But even there he is found and compelled to undertake one last mission and to confront a savage past he can barely even remember. Jaeger agrees to lead an expedition into the Mountains of the Gods in the remote Amazon jungle.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Cheesy but great

  • By Alexander on 02-07-15

Didn't want it to end

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

Reviewed: 01-07-15

Any additional comments?

It doesn't happen often but when it does you love it; a book ends and you ask "where's the next page?", "what happens next?" because you want more. This purchase was made on the strength of the existing reviews and a looming 10 hour train journey. Although I was dubious about fiction from Bear Grylls (fiction? from Man vs Wild? really?) the verdict is 5 stars all round. It's an absorbing, action packed adventure with well drawn main characters and great locations. The author creates a great sense of place, whether it's Africa, the rainforest or homely Wiltshire, something that's often missing from books of this genre. The narration by Rupert Degas is superb and brings added life to every character. His utterance of "Yo, Amazon dwellers!" made me laugh out loud. I can't wait for the sequel, there are so many questions to be answered. But at the same time, I hope its creation is not rushed as I want the sequel to be as fresh, vibrant and engaging as Ghost Flight.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Snow Crash

  • By: Neal Stephenson
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 17 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 932
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 740
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 744

Neal Stephenson is a blazing new force on the sci-fi scene. With the groundbreaking cyberpunk novel Snow Crash, he has "vaulted onto the literary stage." It weaves virtual reality, Sumerian myth, and just about everything in between with a cool, hip cybersensibility - in short, it is the gigathriller of the information age.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Perfect Blend

  • By R on 23-09-10

Hours of delicious escapism

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

Reviewed: 18-05-15

Any additional comments?

Snow Crash was an instant favourite when first encountered as a student in the 90s (studying ancient civilisations by day, gaming by night...) and 20 years hasn't dulled it's appeal. Having it delivered straight to your ear by the smooth, effortless voice of Jonathan Davis while your body is doing other things is a definite treat - shades of the Metaverse? Some of the technology and concepts have lost their initial impact due to the passage of time but the story does not feel dated. The pace moves from fast and furious to scholarly pauses and back again with ease. The unlikely main characters are engaging for both their abilities and their flaws; the burbclaves and franchised countries are all too believable for anyone who has come across "suburb snobbery" in a modern city. And I defy any dog lover not to moved by the Rat Things. An action packed, witty, intelligently observed, bizarre, tongue in cheek vision of our near future.The narration by Jonathan Davis is animated and excellently done. A voice actor that can believably be a teenage skater chick, a computerised librarian and a Vietnamese cyborg with ease, consistency and flawless movement between each is a joy to listen to.The final word? I wish there was a way to read/listen to Snow Crash again for the first time.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Glow

  • By: Ned Beauman
  • Narrated by: Jamie Parker
  • Length: 8 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 51
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 47

With Glow, Ned Beauman has reinvented the international conspiracy thriller for a new generation. A hostage exchange outside a police station in Pakistan. A botched defection in an airport hotel in New Jersey. A test of loyalty at an abandoned resort in the Burmese jungle. A boy and a girl locking eyes at a rave in a South London laundrette... For the first time, Britain's most exciting young novelist turns his attention to the present day, as a conspiracy with global repercussions converges on one small flat above a dentist's office in Camberwell.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Intelligent, absorbing, satisfying

  • By Emma Churchouse on 23-04-15

Intelligent, absorbing, satisfying

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

Reviewed: 23-04-15

Any additional comments?

Glow moves along at a smart pace where the present is interwoven with expanding ripples from the past, and the small events of city life become haunted by the increasingly ominous shadow of a global corporation. Never once does the listener get lost or left behind as the story twists, turns and expands. Ned Beauman assumes an intelligent audience; none of the technical aspects of the story are dumbed down and the clarity of the storytelling ensures that even a lay person in the realm of recreational pharmaceuticals does not flounder through the occasional chemical conversation. Whether the story is approached as true to life fiction or an urban fantasy is entirely up the listener but it's such a small consideration that it should have no bearing on the sheer enjoyment of an excellent tale. The narration by Jamie Parker was close to perfect. No forced accents or over the top renderings, just subtle, deftly handled characters that let the story speak for itself. And the foxes... don't forget the foxes...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful