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  • The Tenderness of Wolves

  • By: Stef Penney
  • Narrated by: Siobhan Redmond
  • Length: 5 hrs and 26 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 72
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 25
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 25

Winner of the Costa Book of the Year, 2006.
Shortlisted for the CWA Ellis Peters Dagger Award, 2007.

Canada, 1867: As winter tightens its grip on the isolated settlement of Dove River, a woman steels herself for the journey of a lifetime. To clear her son's name, she has no choice but to follow the tracks from a dead man's cabin and head north into the forest and the desolate landscape that lies beyond it.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A poignant tale and a page turner

  • By Linda on 22-12-07

Annoying

Overall
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-01-12

I didn't enjoy this book much, but before I list the negatives, let me say that amongst the positives is the fact that it's atmospheric and 'different', in that it's set in a snowy 1860s Northern Canada. I loved the feeling of being transported to a distant time and place. The topics dealt with are adult and important. However, I found Stef Penny's style of writing hard to cope with: Though I certainly don't like having everything explained to me in the minutest detail, Penny tries to be so clever in her writing that it becomes difficult to know at any time which character she is referring to or writing about and as such she even becomes misleading at times. I had to listen to the first 30 minutes twice in order to get a grip on the start. Add to this the fact that the novel is written from two perspectives: a) in the first person ("I", a Mrs Ross) and b) in the third person ("he, they etc") and that the persons concerned are often referred to differently depending on whose perspective it is written from (e.g. Donald/Mr Moody, Mrs Ross/the woman). The result is that I had to spend an inordinate amount of energy on something as simple as following the plot. An added complication is that Siobhan Redmond's narration contains few obvious gaps that are otherwise needed to demarcate the switching between two such modes and to highlight other natural breaks in the story. The result is one long, confusing, foggy mess. At the time I downloaded the book I didn't realise it was an abridged version and agree that, in this format, there are plenty of things left hanging, unexplained and unresolved. But still, I would not spend time on listening to the whole unabridged version because I was so annoyed by the end of the book that I was looking forward to it ending and couldn't even be bothered who the murderer was and who had been right'd and wrong'd and so on. Also there was little suspense. In short, this style of writing and audio production is not clever; it's just annoying.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Nonsense on Stilts

  • How to Tell Science from Bunk
  • By: Massimo Pigliucci
  • Narrated by: Jay Russell
  • Length: 16 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 45
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 14

Why do people believe bunk? And what causes them to embrace such pseudoscientific beliefs and practices? Noted skeptic Massimo Pigliucci sets out to separate the fact from the fantasy in this entertaining exploration of the nature of science, the borderlands of fringe science, and - borrowing a famous phrase from philosopher Jeremy Bentham - the nonsense on stilts.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good, but...

  • By MISS on 04-01-12

Good, but...

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-01-12

This is a book that I like, as the subject matter is right up my alley, but I must say I have stopped listening to it as the style of narration gets bothersome after a while. The narrator speaks with a 'staccato' voice that cannot possibly reflect his normal mode of speaking. A few minutes is fine, but after a while becomes tiring. It's a bit like listening to a robot and a bit as if the narrator thinks we won't be able to understand what he says if he speak normally instead of in this artificial and disjointed fashion he has invented. That nonwithstanding, if you don't mind this, then do definitely consider buying it as Pigliucci talks a lot of sense and deserves to be heard.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Mr Stink

  • By: David Walliams
  • Narrated by: David Walliams, Matt Lucas
  • Length: 3 hrs and 20 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 533
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 360
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 361

"Mr Stink stank. He also stunk. And if it was correct English to say he stinked, then he stinked as well….” Chloe sees Mr Stink every day, but she’s never spoken to him - which isn’t surprising, because he’s a tramp, and he stinks. But there’s more to Mr Stink than meets the eye (or nose), and before she knows it, Chloe has an unusual new friend hiding in her garden shed.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Mr Stink by David Walliams

  • By Janice on 02-03-12

Great entertainment

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-11-11

I loved this book. The fact that Matt Lucas and David Walliams both do the voices of the various characters makes the book come alive, and if, like me, you're a fan of Little Britain you will no doubt relish hearing their voices in this setting. Though it's not a dramatized play, it gives the audiobook a flavour of this, complete with sound effects and is as such perfect for children of all ages, like me.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Snowdrops

  • By: A. D. Miller
  • Narrated by: Kevin Howarth
  • Length: 6 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 175
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 50
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 49

A riveting psychological drama that unfolds over the course of one Moscow winter, as a thirty-something Englishman’s moral compass is spun by the seductive opportunities revealed to him by a new Russia: a land of hedonism and desperation, corruption and kindness, magical dachas and debauched nightclubs: a place where secrets - and corpses - come to light only when the deep snows start to thaw...

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Book

  • By Monika on 14-04-11

Atmospheric

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-11-11

I enjoyed this book. The writing/narration is very atmospheric and made me imagine I was really there, in modern day Russia, and it rekindled my curiosity about the place. However, it was too easy to see where the story was going, both on the main character's personal and professional level, so I didn't feel a great deal of suspense or tension. Still, it is a book that will stay with me and one that I reckon would look fantastic on the silver screen one day, given the right actors and screenplay adaptation.