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  • 12
  • reviews
  • 8
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  • 26
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  • House

  • By: Frank Peretti, Ted Dekker
  • Narrated by: Kevin King
  • Length: 9 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 5

Two couples vacationing in Alabama are pursued by a maniac killer who lures them to a vacant house which won't let them leave. The "house" mirrors their own heart and souls and they must defeat the evil within.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • What a crock

  • By Kindle Customer on 16-11-18

What a crock

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

Reviewed: 16-11-18

I couldn't get through this steaming pile. From start to where I finished it, not one character or event was remotely believable. The story props itself up on Deliverance-esque stereotypes of the American South and a predictable isolated-in-the-remote-house scenario.

It's perfectly obvious that the masked killer stalking them is the Highway Patrolman they met at the beginning of the book. Said killer locks the protagonists in the house and gives them three rules for the so-called "game" he is playing. Rule Number One is "God came to my house and I killed Him". That's not a rule. That's a statement. A rule is a direction, instruction, or procedure that is meant to be followed.

Perhaps this killer is meant to be an idiot with no command of his own language, but I suspect it is the authors who made this error. Everything else in the book is equally stupid and the protagonists are so unsympathetic that you hardly care what happens to them. Also, maybe it's just me, but when I hear someone killed God, I think of Nietzsche and Zarathustra, which isn't scary. Maybe the killer just want to rap about existential philosophy?

The narration is competent, but it's a shame the narrator got saddled with such a crappy book.

  • Sly Flourish's The Lazy Dungeon Master

  • By: Michael E. Shea
  • Narrated by: Colby Elliott
  • Length: 2 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 17
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17

You love Dungeons and Dragons. As an experienced dungeon master, you've run dozens, if not hundreds of games. You put a lot of work into making your games great. What if there's another way to look at how you prepare your game? What if it turned out you could spend less time and less energy and have a better game as a result? It's time to unleash the Lazy Dungeon Master.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Could use some EQ on the narrator volume.

  • By Kindle Customer on 05-10-18

Could use some EQ on the narrator volume.

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

Reviewed: 05-10-18

Also, there are still some specific tips relating to the obsolete 4th edition. Still, the general principles and tips are sound, and applicable to most editions of dnd and possibly other RPG systems as well.

Interestingly, quotes and interviews come from 4E DMs. No Pathfinder GMs are quoted directly. Is this just because Mike doesn't play Pathfinder, or because Pathfinder is so effing complicated that these tips don't work with that system.

You make the call.

  • NPCs

  • By: Drew Hayes
  • Narrated by: Roger Wayne
  • Length: 7 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 481
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 454
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 452

What happens when the haggling is done and the shops are closed? When the quest has been given, the steeds saddled, and the adventurers are off to their next encounter? They keep the world running, the food cooked, and the horses shoed, yet what adventurer has ever spared a thought or concern for the Non-Player Characters? In the town of Maplebark, four such NPCs settle in for a night of actively ignoring the adventurers drinking in the tavern when things go quickly and fatally awry.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • great listen

  • By DAVID EELES on 31-01-16

A right laugh

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

Reviewed: 30-08-18

A fun bit of RPG wish-fulfilment (with dbag power gamers getting their just desserts). Thoroughly entertaining, especially the way it subverts and pokes fun at the familiar tropes of fantasy gaming. I definitely recommend it.

  • Three Hearts and Three Lions

  • By: Poul Anderson
  • Narrated by: Bronson Pinchot
  • Length: 7 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4

The gathering forces of the Dark Powers threaten the world of man. The legions of Faery, aided by trolls, demons, and the Wild Hunt itself, are poised to overthrow the Realms of Light. Holger Carlsen, a bemused and puzzled twentieth-century man mysteriously snatched out of time, finds himself the key figure in the conflict. Arrayed against him are the dragons, giants, and elfin warriors of the armies of Chaos and the beautiful sorceress Morgan le Fay.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great performance.

  • By Kindle Customer on 21-07-18

Great performance.

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

Reviewed: 21-07-18

This is a story for D&D fans. It was a major influence on the alignment system and on certain monsters, notably trolls. It is also the source of the Paladin character class.

Apart from that, the story itself isn't very sophisticated, and smacks of the casual sexism that permeated its era.

Bronson Pinchot's reading is, however, masterful and goes a long way towards making this audio book enjoyable.

Fun but silly story, important for gaming history, great reading.

  • The Dying Earth

  • By: Jack Vance
  • Narrated by: Arthur Morey
  • Length: 6 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 41
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 27
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28

The stories in The Dying Earth introduce dozens of seekers of wisom and beauty, lovely lost women, wizards of every shade of eccentricity with their runic amulets and spells. We meet the melancholy deodands, who feed on human flesh and the twk-men, who ride dragonflies and trade information for salt. There are monsters and demons. Each being is morally ambiguous: The evil are charming, the good are dangerous. All are at home.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Ripe with ideas and peculiar characters

  • By Amazon Customer on 09-11-13

It's different

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

Reviewed: 27-06-18

No part of this is great prose or great literature, but it certainly is an original idea and a unique vision of the future.

Lonesome Dove cover art
  • Lonesome Dove

  • By: Larry McMurtry
  • Narrated by: Lee Horsley
  • Length: 36 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 136
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 112
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 113

Larry McMurtry's American epic, set in the late 19th century, tells the story of a cattle drive from Texas to Montana, a drive that represents not only a daring foolhardy adventure, but a part of the American Dream for everyone involved.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A wonderful surprise

  • By Lindsey on 15-12-12

Stunning

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

Reviewed: 13-06-18

This is a very long book, one of the longest I've ever read, but I was never bored once. The skill with which the characters are portrayed, the gritty realism of the situations, the pace, the balance of humour and poignancy and tragedy, are all masterful and practically flawless.

It is also one of the best performances I've heard in an audio book. Lee Horsley gives each character a district voice, but never descends to caricature. Absolutely incredible throughout.

  • The Exorcist

  • By: William Peter Blatty
  • Narrated by: William Peter Blatty
  • Length: 12 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 323
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 299
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 298

Father Damien Karras: 'Where is Regan?' Regan MacNeil: 'In here. With us.' The terror begins unobtrusively. Noises in the attic. In the child's room, an odd smell, the displacement of furniture, an icy chill. At first, easy explanations are offered. Then frightening changes begin to appear in eleven-year-old Regan. Medical tests fail to shed any light on her symptoms, but it is as if a different personality has invaded her body.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • it's horror is undiminished

  • By Kindle Customer on 12-04-17

it's horror is undiminished

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

Reviewed: 12-04-17

This is probably the most terrifying book I've ever read, and I'm not even religious.

First off, this is an excellent production. I'm not always a fan of the author reading their own work, but Blatty's moody, gravelly voice not only perfectly evokes the content and characters, but also the smoggy, cigarette-ash torpor of the period, when the Vietnam war was still on, the optimistic peace movement had basically ended with the Manson murders, and it was all too easy to believe Satan or some evil force really was taking hold in the world.

The novel might be forever overshadowed by the film, but there are certain things that give the book an advantage. One thing is the slow burn: the horror develops gradually, increasing the tension largely by suggestion at first. A big part of this is doubt. A priest experiencing a crisis of faith is a central character, and the ritual of exorcism requires that medical and psychological explanations be exhausted first, so much of the novel painstakingly examines the poor girl's symptoms, searching for a rational explanation. Another is the description of smells and odours, which the film can't do. This really brings home the assault on all five senses and the bestial degradation that is so horrific.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Witches

  • Salem, 1692
  • By: Stacy Schiff
  • Narrated by: Eliza Foss
  • Length: 18 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 16

It began in 1692, over an exceptionally raw Massachusetts winter, when a minister's daughter started to scream and convulse. It ended less than a year later, but not before 19 men and women had been hanged and an elderly man crushed to death. The panic spread quickly, involving the most educated men and prominent politicians in the colony. Neighbours accused neighbours, parents accused children, husbands accused wives, children accused their parents, and siblings each other.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Depressing but really good!

  • By NormaCenva on 30-08-16

Thorough and compelling, if somewhat meandering

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

Reviewed: 27-03-17

For a single-volume history of the Salem witch trials, you probably couldn't pick a better book. Thoroughly researched and soberly presented, Schiff manages to explore what feels like all angles at work, including of course how the trials effected and were affected by the place of women and other powerless groups in this strange and unsettling society. And yet, in true academic fashion, she never explicitly endorses any single interpretation of the events (apart from the obvious, that witches aren't real). I found this a very satisfying book.

However, whereas a straight academic work would probably opt for a purely chronological order, Schiff adopts a more rhetorical structure, which can be bamboozling in audio format, though it probably makes for compelling reading. So keep your wits about you as you listen.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • SPQR

  • A History of Ancient Rome
  • By: Mary Beard
  • Narrated by: Phyllida Nash
  • Length: 18 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,410
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,273
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,257

Ancient Rome matters. Its history of empire, conquest, cruelty and excess is something against which we still judge ourselves. Its myths and stories - from Romulus and Remus to the rape of Lucretia - still strike a chord with us. And its debates about citizenship, security and the rights of the individual still influence our own debates on civil liberty today. SPQR is a new look at Roman history from one of the world's foremost classicists.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting and erudite

  • By Mr. D on 01-12-15

Refreshing alternative to traditional idolization

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

Reviewed: 04-12-16

Mary Beard is an exceptional scholar and manages to show us ancient Rome, which we think we know so well, in another light, separating fact from fantasy where possible (and being upfront and honest when it's not). She examines Roman history with her lifetime of experience and with the tools of modern scholarship and recent archaeology, but without disparaging her predecessors either. She even manages to find evidence for the stories of ordinary Romans and slaves. While her thesis that the first millennium of Roman history was a process of gradually extending Roman citizenship over more and more of the known world is likely to be as subjective and rooted in the politics and cultural assumptions of her own time as Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Romans Empire is, it certainly has merit, and is an intriguing point from which to view Europe's most famous ancient civilization.

  • The Haunting of Hill House

  • By: Shirley Jackson
  • Narrated by: Bernadette Dunne
  • Length: 7 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 358
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 312
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 313

Four seekers have come to the ugly, abandoned old mansion: Dr. Montague, an occult scholar looking for solid evidence of the psychic phenomenon called haunting; Theodora, his lovely and lighthearted assistant; Eleanor, a lonely, homeless girl well acquainted with poltergeists; and Luke, the adventurous future heir of Hill House.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Stunning

  • By Stephen on 09-01-11

Canonical, but somewhat dated

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

Reviewed: 10-11-16

This is a classic ghost story by a talented author, and the the way she evokes an atmosphere of dread is truly impressive. But however skilfully Jackson employs terror, rather than horror, they novel falls short of being "scary", and becomes simply interesting fit what it has to say about human nature under extreme duress. This is actually Jackson's speciality. Where the novel also excels is in characterization. The four principal characters are excellently drawn, with Theodora and, especially, Eleanor, possessed of such a rich inner life that they truly live. Even minor players such as Mrs Dudley, Mrs Montague, and Arthur, transcend their function as caricatures and become believable.

But to me this ends up feeling more like a story about mental illnesses than the supernatural.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful