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blueskythinker

  • 15
  • reviews
  • 66
  • helpful votes
  • 82
  • ratings
  • The Trick to Time

  • By: Kit de Waal
  • Narrated by: Fiona Shaw
  • Length: 9 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 63
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 59
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 58

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of The Trick to Time by Kit de Waal, read by Fiona Shaw. Mona is a young Irish girl in the big city, with the thrill of a new job and a room of her own in a busy boardinghouse. On her first night out in 1970s Birmingham, she meets William, a charming Irish boy with an easy smile and an open face. They embark upon a passionate affair, a whirlwind marriage - before a sudden tragedy tears them apart. Decades later, Mona pieces together the memories of the years that separate them. But can she ever learn to love again?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Simply beautiful

  • By coolreader on 23-04-18

Time flies....and shrinks....

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

Reviewed: 16-10-18

This book is not easy. There is a lot of pain but the pain is 'coped with' and eventually overcome. I felt that I had shared Mona's journey. The writing is wonderful and Fiona Shaw's narration is spot on.
Highly recommended.

  • Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine

  • By: Gail Honeyman
  • Narrated by: Cathleen McCarron
  • Length: 11 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,166
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 9,398
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,376

Eleanor Oliphant has learned how to survive - but not how to live. Eleanor Oliphant leads a simple life. She wears the same clothes to work every day, eats the same meal deal for lunch every day and buys the same two bottles of vodka to drink every weekend. Eleanor Oliphant is happy. Nothing is missing from her carefully timetabled life. Except, sometimes, everything. One simple act of kindness is about to shatter the walls Eleanor has built around herself. Now she must learn how to navigate the world....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Viva Eleanor!

  • By Kaggy on 30-06-17

Fine indeed!

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

Reviewed: 20-07-18

This is wonderful story. Eleanor's character is fully developed and although she is slightly 'unusual', she is believable. The story is sad, tragic even, but always interesting and told with compassion for the character.
The narration is excellent. I enjoyed the interview with the author at the end of the book.

  • The Owl Killers

  • By: Karen Maitland
  • Narrated by: David Thorpe
  • Length: 17 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 354
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 177
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 177

England 1321: Deep in the countryside lies an isolate village governed by a sinister regime of Owl Masters. But their dark status quo is disturbed by the arrival of a house of religious women. Why do their crops succeed when village crops fail, their cattle survive despite the plague? Accusations of witchcraft and heresy run rife, while the Owl Masters rain down hellfire and torment on the women, who must look to their faith to save them from the lengthening shadow of evil... a shadow with predatory, terrifying talons.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • utterly enthralling, loved every minute

  • By Cathryn on 17-04-12

Failed to grip me I'm afraid

Overall
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-07-11

This is the first audiobook I have given up on. I'm really surprised that I didn't get on with this as I loved The Company of Liars by the same author.
The beginning seemed very disjointed and although I had managed to work out who was who I just lost interest in the story.
Maybe I'll try it again in the future but I'm afraid on a first listen this was disappointing.

  • The Anatomy of Ghosts

  • By: Andrew Taylor
  • Narrated by: John Telfer
  • Length: 13 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 161
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 57
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 59

1786, Jerusalem College, Cambridge. The ghost of Sylvia Whichcote is rumoured to be haunting Jerusalem, since disturbed fellow-commoner, Frank Oldershaw, claims to have seen the dead woman prowling the grounds. Desperate to salvage her son’s reputation, Lady Anne Oldershaw employs John Holdsworth, author of The Anatomy of Ghosts a stinging account of why ghosts are mere delusion to investigate.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Good book, brilliantly read.

  • By V. Hannides on 25-09-10

Enjoyable, but not his best

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-03-11

I have read or listened to a couple of other Andrew Taylor novels. The characters here are believable and the historical setting is interesting.
I enjoyed the story but felt that it came to a rather hasty conclusion.
The narration is excellent.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Dark Matter

  • By: Michelle Paver
  • Narrated by: Jeremy Northam
  • Length: 6 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,681
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,262
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,257

January 1937. Jack Miller has just about run out of options. His shoes have worn through, he can't afford to heat his rented room in Tooting, and he longs to use his training as an specialist wireless operator instead of working in his dead-end job. When he is given the chance to join an arctic expedition, as communications expert, by a group of elite Oxbridge graduates, he brushes off his apprehensions and convinces himself to join them.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Top 5 Horror

  • By Joseph on 04-04-11

A chilling tale.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-01-11

This is a ghost story in which the ghost is a very real presence. No wraith-like spectre here. This ghost is a real physical presence in the story.
I enjoyed the descriptions of the harsh conditions in which the expedition took place. The listener accompanies Jack throughout the adventure that soon changes into an ordeal.
Jack's mental deterioration is convincingly described and the atmosphere created is genuinely 'creepy'.
So why did I give it four rather than five stars?
I think it's because I felt the story lost some momentum towards the end. Don't let that put you off though. This is a gripping tale and it's very well told here.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Barchester Towers

  • By: Anthony Trollope
  • Narrated by: Timothy West
  • Length: 19 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 315
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 243
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 244

Barchester Towers is the second of six in the series known as Chronicles of Barsetshire. Narrator Timothy West brings life to the story, begun in The Warden, of Mr. Harding and his daughter Eleanor. It chronicles the struggle for control of the English diocese of Barchester after one Bishop dies and a new one is selected. The rather incompetent new Bishop, Dr. Proudie, led by his formidable wife, and ambitious chaplain, Mr. Slope, begin to create turmoil with their desire to shake up the church establishment.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • West is best

  • By Francis on 28-10-08

Pure pleasure

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-01-11

This recording of Barchester Towers is an absolute joy to listen to. Timothy West gives each character their unique 'voice' and it is easy to picture them in conversation together.
My favourite is Rev. Slope who sounds as slimy and ingratiating as Trollope writes him.
I usually listen to my Audible books before going to sleep and I had several rather late nights while listening to this as I didn't want to stop!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Gone

  • By: Mo Hayder
  • Narrated by: Andrew Wincott
  • Length: 13 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 143
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 71
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 71

November, and evening is closing in as DI Jack Caffery arrives to interview the victim of a stolen car. The man who's stolen the car has also taken an eleven year-old girl. And she's still missing. Sergeant Flea Marley has heard about the car-jacker. He's done it before, she tells Caffery. Twice.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Jackanory narration

  • By Jason on 26-06-16

Gone....but not forgotten

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 24-09-10

I had previously read all of Mo Hayder's earlier books. ('Birdman' and 'Tokyo' are both brilliant.) This was my first audio version of one of her books. Initially I wasn't too keen on the reader's voice but then I thought that this might be because I already had my version of Jack Caffrey and Flea Marley's voices in my head.
The story is excellent and I raced through it. I came to enjoy the narrator's voice and would thoroughly recommend this book. It's one of those stories you can't get out of your head.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Rain Before It Falls

  • By: Jonathan Coe
  • Narrated by: Jenny Agutter
  • Length: 7 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 29
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

As 73-year-old Rosamund sits alone in her remote Shropshire house, her dying thoughts turn to her cousin's granddaughter, Imogen, who has been blind from an early age. Rosamund realises that she has one last duty to perform: to put down on tape the tragic story of Imogen's grandmother.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A good holiday listen

  • By blueskythinker on 21-07-10

A good holiday listen

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 21-07-10

This is the first of Jonathan Coe's books I've listened to and I enjoyed it. I understand it is not typical of his other work.
The story unfolds through a series of descriptions of photographs in which Rosamond reveals the history of her family. I felt the story fizzled out rather toward the end but the narration is first-class.
I listened to this on holiday and it fitted the bill well. Not too demanding and interesting enough to hold one's attention.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Various Haunts of Men

  • Simon Serrailler 1
  • By: Susan Hill
  • Narrated by: Steven Pacey
  • Length: 14 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,242
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 831
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 831

A woman vanishes in the fog up on "the Hill", an area locally known for its tranquillity and peace. The police are not alarmed; people usually disappear for their own reasons. But when a young girl, an old man, and even a dog disappear, no one can deny that something untoward is happening in this quiet cathedral town.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An unusual way to start a series

  • By Linda on 27-06-14

An aural 'page-turner'!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 19-01-09

I downloaded this book as I had just finished reading Susan Hill's 'The Beacon' which I thought was excellent.

I thoroughly enjoyed The Various Haunts of Men. A lot of attention is paid to giving us fully rounded characters and at first I thought this amount of detail was a bit too much but I can see it being helpful to support the plotlines through three books. I feel as if I know these characters pretty well now and I'm sure the other two books in the series will benefit from this earlier knowledge.
The plot is very good although I agree with an earlier reviewer that there are a few loose ends left dangling at the end of the book.
The narration is superb and fits the characters very well indeed.
I have just downloaded Pure in Heart and I'm very much looking forward to it. If it's as good as this first book in the trilogy I'm in for a treat!

  • Shatter

  • By: Michael Robotham
  • Narrated by: Sean Barrett
  • Length: 14 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,535
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 925
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 923

A naked woman is perched on the edge of Clifton Suspension Bridge weeping into a mobile phone. Clinical psychologist Joseph O'Loughlin is only feet away, desperately trying to talk her down. She whispers, 'you don't understand,' and jumps. Later, Joe has a visitor - the woman's teenage daughter, a runaway from boarding school. She refuses to believe that her mother would have jumped off the bridge - not only would she not commit suicide, she is terrified of heights.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gripping!

  • By blueskythinker on 13-12-08

Gripping!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 13-12-08

This is the first I had heard of this author and I am very impressed.
The story has well rounded characters and moves along at a gripping pace. I listened to it more quickly than I've listened to other books, mainly because I was so drawn in to the story.
It certainly isn't a 'relax before you go to sleep' story!
The narration is excellent.
Of you enjoy Peter James' books I'm sure you'll like this.
I would thoroughly recommend this book and I shall be downloading more by this author..

27 of 27 people found this review helpful