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N Simon C

Bacup, United Kingdom
  • 16
  • reviews
  • 14
  • helpful votes
  • 224
  • ratings
  • The Bookminder

  • By: M. K. Wiseman
  • Narrated by: Bernard Faricy
  • Length: 11 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4

Sired by magick and violence, 16-year-old Liara is found guilty of witchcraft and banished from her tiny village by the very priest who raised, then betrayed her. However, a mysterious mage steps forward to assume custody of her: Nagarath, the Wizard of Parentino, whose secret spellwork has long protected both Liara and Dvigrad from the ravages of war. Despite Liara’s best hopes, Nagarath refuses to apprentice her to his craft but tasks her instead with the restoration of his neglected library. Liara gleans what magickal knowledge she can on the sly....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Decent magic fantasy set in the real world

  • By N Simon C on 21-01-19

Decent magic fantasy set in the real world

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

Reviewed: 21-01-19

I really enjoyed the story of this fantastic historical novel. Set in 17th century Croatia, we see a slightly unlikeable, precocious but genuinely clever and gifted girl, Liara, apprenticed to a powerful wizard.
At the outset, it may seem a YA novel but I think it crosses over the boundaries fluidly and could be for all ages, from well-read teens upwards.
Through the course of her belligerent, learning of the craft, I think Liara does learn, even if she ends up in the clutches of evil. In this, the story is well written and the characters are very full of personality and conscience.
There are some great set pieces of magical use and conversations between the various leads and seemed to flow quite nicely.
A thoughtful fantasy, about back to basics magic use, with an interesting setting.
I wasn't as enamoured about the narration. The narrator seemed to read everything off the page in front of him, including the "chapter XX continued" despite the audio breaks being full chapters. It took some getting used to it too but was reasonably good on intonation and characterisation. I have to say I tended to look through it's faults to the story though.
I will be reading the next volume as I am intrigued by the growing up of and learning curve of our main protagonist.

  • The Third Wave

  • Nick Sullivan Thrillers, Book 2
  • By: Karla Forbes
  • Narrated by: Craig Bowles
  • Length: 11 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6

Charles Morgan is small operator in the vast computer technology industry, but he has big ambitions. He borrows heavily from the Mafia to finance his dreams of becoming a big player, but when he fails to make the expected profit, they are quick to demand their money back. Desperate to save his own skin, he hatches a plan that will cripple the competition and propel his new product into the ranks of market leader. 

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great follow on

  • By Melanie Preston Lewis on 31-12-18

A second, brilliant, Nick Sullivan outing.

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

Reviewed: 21-01-19

More technothriller, and as a geek, this one was right up my street, but then it already was, because it's a Nick Sullivan thriller. Again, Karla Forbes treats us to a plausible, fast-paced story. A great combination of intelligence and action. As in the first book, the detail behind the virus attack was never boring.
Nick Sullivan is in a slightly calmer job/ position at the start but that soon ends when he meets up with Bryony Elliot. Great to see Analise back too. All the characters are really well rounded, have great (if sad for one) backstories and progress realistically by the end of the book. Hopefully, we will see more of Bryony and Analise. There's also more humorous interaction, including the quotes we love from Nick (I'm hoping and assuming this will be a staple of the next volumes)
Craig Bowles' narration, was great. He has really got into the flow of these stories and the character's voices.
I can see there are so far 6 or 7 more stories, so I'll definitely be carrying on.

  • Seismic Crimes

  • Disaster Crimes, Book 2
  • By: Chrys Fey
  • Narrated by: Bill Nevitt
  • Length: 7 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 8

An Internal Affairs investigator was murdered and his brother, Donovan Goldwyn, was framed. Now Donovan is desperate to prove his innocence. And the one person who can do that is the woman who saved him from a deadly hurricane - Beth Kennedy. It’s her love for him that pushes her to do whatever she has to do to help him get justice, including putting herself in a criminal’s crosshairs. When a tip reveals the killer's location, they travel to California, but then an earthquake of catastrophic proportions separates them.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • crime and disaster

  • By K. L. Sturgess on 18-12-18

Decent romantic thriller amidst nature's law

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

Reviewed: 02-01-19

The story: The couple in this series, don't really have a chance, moving from one natural disaster to another, all the while being chased by, or chasing, nefarious people.
I'm not against romance books and they aren't a goto read for me, but those parts of the story, that as many people have said quite steamy, still didn't deter me from listening. I had read the first book prior to this to get an idea of the characters and therefore was used to the quite creepy start to their relationship in this book. However, it grows, very maturely.
The thriller side was very well written, with good pace, a few intense and flowing set pieces. Beth and Donovan were well-rounded characters. I was invested in their chase of the killer.
The narration: by Bill Nevitt, was excellent, kept the pace of the writing and made the intense set pieces thrilling, and read the romantic elements realistically.
A nice easy listen and will likely look out for the next book.

  • Guarded Prognosis

  • By: Richard L. Mabry MD
  • Narrated by: Bill Nevitt
  • Length: 7 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 9
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 9

When Dr. Caden Taggart saw the two men sitting in his waiting room, he didn’t think they were patients. He was right, and when they introduced themselves as agents of the Drug Enforcement Agency, things started to get bad. Then Caden felt as though someone had gut-punched him when his father, Dr. Henry Taggart, told him he probably had carcinoma of the pancreas. When he talked about his son assisting with his suicide, Caden wondered how he could talk him out of that.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Entertaining enough

  • By Timi on 02-01-19

Interesting medical thriller

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

Reviewed: 27-11-18

I love medical thrillers. I'm undecided about this one. I really enjoyed the story, more of the medical side. There wasn't much thriller but it was still an interesting mystery. Interspersed were the background lives of the protagonist and his family, which while connected to the medical theme, provided the link and tried to answer the questions posed by the long-standing religion versus medicine debate.
There was a fair amount of religion, and, while it wasn't in your face preachy, I still felt it could have been toned down a bit. The dialogue of the characters was sometimes a bit stilted, and they seemed to chat in exposition, voicing all their inner thoughts, instead of more natural dialogue. This pulled me out of the book, and the main story at times.
Niggles aside, the medical drama/ mystery side was well written and engaging.
The narration was very good, and I feel helped me stick with the story (which I might have otherwise put down to return to another time in printed form), elevating the sometimes odd dialogue.
Overall I liked it and will read more from the author if they pose as good a medical mystery.

  • The Infirmary: A DCI Ryan Mystery

  • An Audible Original Drama
  • By: LJ Ross
  • Narrated by: Tom Bateman, Bertie Carvel, Hermione Norris, and others
  • Length: 6 hrs and 29 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 602
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 545
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 538

There's a serial killer targeting the streets of Newcastle, seemingly picking his victims at random but subjecting them all to the same torturous end. When the Chief Inspector on the case goes missing, it falls on DCI Ryan to track down the man who is brutally murdering women and goading the police to 'catch me if you can'. As everyone becomes a suspect, Ryan and his team get drawn further and further into the case, but for Ryan the nightmare gets closer to home than he could ever have imagined. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent DCI Ryan mystery....

  • By Salter on 08-11-18

A Fantastic prequel story, with a stellar cast

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

Reviewed: 08-11-18

The pre-order had landed with a thud (well, a ding actually) in my library. I downloaded and already listening within minutes...my other books can wait. Why? Because I'll always give a new Ross my immediate attention. This didn't disappoint.
What a fantastic listen! Of course, like many, long-time readers of DCI Ryan's adventures, I knew the ending but that didn't diminish the journey there.
A more succinct story than her previous novels, this is a lead-in story to the first novel proper, Holy Island, and we see the origins of Ryan, and his new crew, at his new posting in the North East and the case he lands in with one of Ross' most enigmatic and horrible killers. Brilliant storytelling and characters, it is fast paced, builds up to a brilliant conclusion, intelligent and emotional.
Excellent narration, (acting even!) by all the cast, with famous names from tv crime drama, makes this above your average audiobook. I can handle audio dramas and this was an extremely well polished, engaging one. I swear I was panting and sweating along with Ryan by the end.
Loved it and highly recommended to regular fans and newbies.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Exit Strategy

  • Katerina Carter Fraud Thriller Series, Book 1
  • By: Colleen Cross
  • Narrated by: Petrea Burchard
  • Length: 8 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

Diamonds, danger, and a deadly secret... A Katerina Carter Fraud Thriller. Private investigator and forensic accountant Katerina Carter uncovers a sinister connection between blood diamonds and organized crime. Then two company employees are brutally murdered and her investigation becomes much more dangerous than she had ever imagined. Can she can stay alive long enough to expose the real criminals...or will her first case be her last? Buy this audiobook today!

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A very suspenseful thriller

  • By N Simon C on 13-10-18

A very suspenseful thriller

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

Reviewed: 13-10-18

Who'd have thought a story that is mostly about the mining and economics of diamonds could be so thrilling. Yet Colleen Cross pulls it off. I knew a little about blood diamonds (mainly from watching a movie and researching afterwards) but not a great deal.
This book pulls together some quite extensive financial accounting details of the diamond trade, mob bosses, murder, kidnapping and makes a breathtaking chase against time. I was gripped by Katerina's investigation (even the numbers scenes where done with a nice pace) and twists and turns of the action. A very clever, interesting and well-written tale.
The audio was excellent, by Petrea Burchard, with great voices delineating characters, and keeping the pace of the story, it flowed in my ears, and listened to this in pretty much one sitting.
Overall a cracking first book, in a series, that I most certainly will carry on reading or listening to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Lost & Found: A humorous private investigator murder mystery

  • A Daisy Dunlop Mystery, Book 2
  • By: JL Simpson
  • Narrated by: Diana Croft
  • Length: 9 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 11
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 11

Hot on the success of her first case, British female sleuth Daisy Dunlop can count the offers of work on one finger. An empty bank account and the need to prove to her business partner, private investigator Solomon Liffey, that she is an asset, not a liability, calls for drastic measures. Terror has to be overcome as she answers a plea to find the one thing that gives her night sweats and flashbacks. An animal. A missing stud poodle, to be exact.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Fun murder mystery

  • By SandraL on 08-10-18

An amusing PI crime caper with brilliant narration

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

Reviewed: 27-09-18

The story: I came to this expecting it to be (from the blurb) a British equivalent of another American series of comedy crime novels. I was not disappointed at all. This is a nicely paced, quite humorous story, that starts out as a missing person case but escalates to murder. Many of the jokes hit well and given the northernness of the main character I connected with some of them. There was some great banter between the two protagonists and the story moved on in a fairly believable but comic vein, with some mild twists and turns.
The audio: was brilliant. I have never heard any of Di Croft before, but she nailed the huge variety of characters and accents, on the head. The pacing of the story was kept up and the jokes' timing on point, I did, genuinely, feel in the moment, along with the characters.
I would recommend this for 8 hours of really enjoyable listening, a decent story with some laughs and smiles.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Fallout: The First Nick Sullivan Thriller

  • Nick Sullivan Thrillers, Book 1
  • By: Karla Forbes
  • Narrated by: Craig Bowles
  • Length: 10 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 13

The British government is being blackmailed by criminals who got their hands on a quantity of plutonium left over from the Cold War. There is only one man who knows their identity and can prevent a disaster, but he is on the run for a murder he didn’t commit and has no intention of being found. As the authorities attempt to track him down, the clock is ticking, and they are running out of time. They pin their hopes on the fact that a bunch of amateurs won’t have nuclear technology and the worst they will manage is a dirty bomb. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant 5 star audio book

  • By Simon on 16-10-18

A clever, bullet train, of a story. Ably narrated.

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

Reviewed: 19-09-18

For the story:
I hadn't previously read this book, which was originally published in May this year, so I am new to it in both ways.
The story starts off with great humour introducing our main character, barely a few minutes in and you better have strapped in, as this is a fast ride! Nick Sullivan is your everyman (albeit a quite intelligent and initially wealthy one) subjugated to the whims of an unbelieving police force and three "not terrorists" as they try to turn the SE of England into a radioactive nightmare.
I really enjoyed the story, as it was both fast-paced, tense and clever, I did not once think any of it implausible and there were some great characters, whether evil (booing) or nice (rooting for).
I most definitely want to see what happens next for Nick.

For the audio:
I have to admit at not being keen on the first chapter or so, as I felt it stilted a bit here and there, but gradually got used to and warmed to the narration, as indeed it seemed, did the narrator. The pace and tenseness were well kept. Each character was clearly delineated via accents and pitch, and by the end, I wanted more. I'd certainly be happy listening to another story instead of reading.

I would recommend wholeheartedly for fans of thrillers.

  • Cragside

  • The DCI Ryan Mysteries, Book 6
  • By: LJ Ross
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Keeble
  • Length: 7 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 863
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 771
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 771

After his climactic battle with notorious serial killer The Hacker, DCI Ryan is spending the summer with his fiancée within the grounds of Cragside, a spectacular Bavarian-style mansion surrounded by acres of woodland. When they are invited to attend the staff summer party - a Victorian murder mystery evening - it's all a joke until the lights go out and an elderly man is found dead. It looks like an unfortunate accident but, as the dead man's life begins to unfold, Ryan and his team of detectives realise that all is not as it appears.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A 5 star murder mystery

  • By Timi on 19-10-17

Good addtion to the series

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

Reviewed: 23-07-18

The descriptions of the area were very good, the mystery was enticing and a good conclusion, and as ever, excellently narrated.

Minor quibble (and no detraction from the story or presentation), was for me that whispersync/ audio narration didn't work despite it being advertised as such.

  • The Tiger Temple

  • The Hiram Kane Adventure Series, Book 1
  • By: Steven Moore
  • Narrated by: Kenneth Bryant
  • Length: 3 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 3

On the Island of the Gods, expedition leader Hiram Kane is on holiday after a long season guiding in the Peruvian Andes. When a good friend’s greed leads him to betray Bali’s most notorious gangster, their peaceful community is left shell-shocked after the six-year-old daughter of its leader gets kidnapped in a vicious and violent raid. What follows is a whirlwind race across the paradise island to rescue the girl before "The Rooster" takes his sadistic revenge, and with the waking giant of volcanic Mt. Agung threatening to destroy them all, Kane risks everything.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Yet another brilliant audio book by Steve Moore

  • By Simon on 28-03-18

A rollercoaster of an introduction

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

Reviewed: 19-07-18

I'd originally read this on kindle version but snapped up the audio when it arrived. The story already gets full marks, it has a bit of everything and though an introduction to Hiram Kane, I was already familiar with him. This, though, was a great story still offering insights into why Kane does what he does now (books 2 and 3). Well rounded characters, no cardboard baddies here, real terror and nail-biting action and some great dialogue. Again the scenes set were very descriptive and nature plays its part.
The audio was very good, very well narrated, emotion expressed well, and action sequences told with verve. Highly recommended series.