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Mikko

EspooFinland
  • 9
  • reviews
  • 25
  • helpful votes
  • 19
  • ratings
  • The Mission Song

  • By: John le Carré
  • Narrated by: David Oyelowo
  • Length: 11 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 164
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 154
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 150

Bruno Salvador has worked on clandestine missions before. A highly skilled interpreter, he is not a stranger to the Official Secrets Act. But this is the first time he has been asked to change his identity – and, worse still, his clothes – in service of his country.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Mission Song

  • By Hywel on 03-03-15

good voice

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

Reviewed: 22-04-15

Guaranteed Le Carré and a good reader except for the occasional trait to silence down when reciting complex documents in the story - that is very confusing when walking outside in noisy environment

  • Music and Monarchy

  • By: David Starkey, Kate Greening
  • Narrated by: David Starkey, Ric Jerrom
  • Length: 11 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5

Tying-in with a four-part BBC TV series presented by David Starkey, this audiobook offers a new history of Britain through music, showing how the Royal Court shaped the musical landscape of Britain.

Many of our current musical symbols of nationhood - from the Last Night of the Proms to football terraces erupting in song - have their origins in the way the Crown deliberately shaped the national soundtrack.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • For both history and music buffs

  • By Mikko on 01-12-13

For both history and music buffs

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

Reviewed: 01-12-13

What made the experience of listening to Music and Monarchy the most enjoyable?

I have watched the TV series and thought there would not be much of general interest to add. How wrong I was, there seems to be an endless path of background and pertaining side stories. The narration was almost at the same level as in the TV series.

What other book might you compare Music and Monarchy to, and why?

I haven't experience of any similar audiobook. I have purchases a hard copy of a book 100 objects in history which was a companion to th BBC TV series, but there are many differences: that book focused on the 100 items whereas this one had a freer spirit.

Which character – as performed by David Starkey and Ric Jerrom – was your favourite?

David Starkey.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, better to digest in smaller portions.

  • The Hunger Games: Hunger Games Trilogy, Book 1

  • By: Suzanne Collins
  • Narrated by: Carolyn McCormick
  • Length: 11 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,223
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,590
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,603

Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone out to make sure you don't live to see the morning? In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by 12 outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great book, robotic reading.

  • By Rhiannon on 15-05-12

Kind of interesting also for adults

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

Reviewed: 01-12-13

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

Hunger Games is such a well-known tale that it almost is a part of everyman's need to know. Especially this first part is well written (in comparison to the peer group) so I would recommend it to everyone above 15 or so.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Hunger Games: Hunger Games Trilogy, Book 1?

The basic concept of post-rebellion word with districts kept in strict obedience by the capital is well presented. The games themselves have been described in easy to read and exciting way.

What about Carolyn McCormick’s performance did you like?

The narrator had a pleasant voice and not too much personifications between the characters. A well balanced reading.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, it was.

  • The Way We Live Now

  • By: Anthony Trollope
  • Narrated by: Timothy West
  • Length: 32 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 565
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 408
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 402

In this world of bribes, vendettas, and swindling, in which heiresses are gambled and won, Trollope's characters embody all the vices: Lady Carbury is 'false from head to foot'; her son Felix has 'the instincts of a horse, not approaching the higher sympathies of a dog'; and Melmotte - the colossal figure who dominates the book - is a 'horrid, big, rich scoundrel...a bloated swindler...a vile city ruffian'. But as vile as he is, he is considered one of Trollope's greatest creations.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic! Fantastic!

  • By Sharon on 15-11-09

Better than TV

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 23-12-12

Trollope has not been translated to my native tongua (Finnish) so I got to know this great novel through the BBC TV adaptation with David Suchet as the star. The adaptation took rather many liberties in polarising the issues and drama. The novel is superior to the screenplay, more nuances and verisimilitude.



Timothy West is even to me well-known actor with genuine wit. He omits the often annoying strong impersonations ie he does not try to speak high for females or anything like that. Still, he paces the characters very well and lives out their psychology engagingly. He has a most plesant voice and diction.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • The Fry Chronicles

  • An Autobiography
  • By: Stephen Fry
  • Narrated by: Stephen Fry
  • Length: 12 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,931
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,778
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,756

This dazzling memoir promises to be a courageously frank, honest and poignant read. It will detail some of Fry's most turbulent and least-well-known years, with writing that will excite you, make you laugh uproariously, move you, inform you, and, above all, surprise you.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Hours of delighted listening

  • By Mary on 21-09-10

As good as it gets

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 14-03-11

The most engaging voice talent there is reasing his witty memoirs of events previously unknown to me in surroundings which everybody has heard of (English public schools and Cambridge) - as listening for pleasure goes, it doesn't get any better than this.

  • Of Human Bondage, Volume 1

  • By: W. Somerset Maugham
  • Narrated by: Charlton Griffin
  • Length: 13 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 11
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 2

Of Human Bondage is one of the greatest novels of modern times, and it is certainly Maugham's greatest achievement. It was published in 1914, when Maugham was at the height of his creative powers. The story concerns Philip Carey, afflicted at birth with a club foot, and his passionate search for truth in a cruel world. We follow his growth to manhood, his educational progress, his first loves, and the wrenching tragedies and disappointments that life has in store for him.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Narrator spoilt this for me

  • By Andria on 23-12-07

Of high quality

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 14-03-11

W.S.Maugham has himself described himself as being of the first row of second rate writers. Be it how it may, but this is his magnum opus, and of high quality. Interesting, engaging and also entertaining. I feel he is on the same level of depth and authority as Marcel Proust in describing with unerring skill the most detail traces of man-woman relationships. Still, Maugham is more compact and readable being true to best English literary traditions.

The narrator is, overall, of high quality as well: very clear, stylish and easy to ear. However, his style of perfoming the female voices is for acquired taste, they all sounded ackward and off-putting. This works well, I think, with Mildred, less so with many others.

  • The Gods of Mars

  • Mars Series #2
  • By: Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • Narrated by: Gene Engene
  • Length: 8 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 2

This is the second audiobook in the "Mars Series". After the long exile on Earth, John Carter finally returns to his beloved Mars. But beautiful Dejah Thoris, the woman he loves, has vanished.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Who can explain...

  • By Mikko on 01-02-10

Who can explain...

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-02-10

...the magical pleasure of these books? Clumsy style, illogical plots, hot beauties among brutes and the occasional saving knight; not something you can take seriously. Yet I have been in their spell since my early teens (am in my 40's now), and Gene Engene's reading gave a smooth path back to Barsoom of my memories.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Short Stories

  • The Nostalgia Collection
  • By: Jerome K. Jerome, Louisa May Alcott, Saki
  • Narrated by: Stephen Fry, Barbara Leigh-Hunt, Edward Hardwicke, and others
  • Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 21
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 11

CSA Word continues its ever-popular series of classic short stories, featuring writers such as Jerome K. Jerome, Louisa May Alcott and Saki, read by such respected and revered readers as Derek Jacobi, Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Tour de force, no red line

  • By Mikko on 21-01-10

Tour de force, no red line

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 21-01-10

As the writing and narrating goes, this is a real tour de force, every track is worth several repetitions, and even if you have not yet read more from the writers of these stories, you will feel the urge for it !

As a collection, however, it seems to lack the red line - the tone of the stories and the style of the narrators (and vice versa !) is as uneven as it gets. Maybe it is just this confeti or firework like quality that has been sought after, but it made the continuous listening impossible, had to stop after each story before plunging into a totally new environment of the following one.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Stephen Fry Presents a Selection of Anton Chekhov's Short Stories

  • By: Anton Chekov
  • Narrated by: Stephen Fry
  • Length: 1 hr and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 72
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 41

"Chekhov is probably better known in Britain for his plays than for his prose. For many, however, it is his short stories that mark the high water of his genius. It might at first glance be hard for those not used to his style of narrative to see what the fuss is about - and fuss there is: for most authors and lovers of literature Chekhov is incomparably the greatest short story writer there ever was."

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Humor & tales from the past.

  • By Wras on 14-01-18

Virtuoso

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 21-01-10

Anton Chekhov's short stories are more numerous than his plays but harder to appreciate: as plays they are economical with means - no fireworks of plot here - but the absence of actors means there is little emotion to balance the close minute observations of the world. Here, Stephen Fry offers magnificient show, that almost elevates the stories to the emotional level of playacting on stage, though he seems never to go over the top; it is a cearfully studied and controlled performance with a feel of great spontanity at the same time.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful