LISTENER

S. Bowman

Oxford, UK
  • 8
  • reviews
  • 4
  • helpful votes
  • 16
  • ratings
  • American Kingpin

  • The Epic Hunt for the Criminal Mastermind Behind the Silk Road Drugs Empire
  • By: Nick Bilton
  • Narrated by: Will Damron
  • Length: 12 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1,159
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,070
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1,068

From New York Times best-selling author Nick Bilton comes a true-life thriller about the rise and fall of Ross Ulbricht, aka the Dread Pirate Roberts, the founder of the online black market Silk Road. In 2011, Ulbricht, a 26-year-old libertarian idealist and former Boy Scout, launched 'a website where people could buy anything anonymously, with no trail whatsoever that could lead back to them'. He called it Silk Road, opened for business on the Dark Web, and christened himself the Dread Pirate Roberts.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Absolutely gripping

  • By S. Bramble on 23-12-17

Wow!

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

Reviewed: 24-04-18

I had recently listened to Dreamland about opioids and then with the current scandals with Facebook and other online kingdoms I was drawn to this book. It reads like a mystery and got me through loads of car hours, housework and workouts. Fascinating!

  • Speaker for the Dead

  • By: Orson Scott Card
  • Narrated by: David Birney, Stefan Rudnicki
  • Length: 14 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 777
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 613
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 617

In the aftermath of his terrible war, Ender Wiggin disappeared, and a powerful voice arose: the Speaker for the Dead, who told the true story of the Bugger War. Now, long years later, a second alien race has been discovered by Portuguese colonists on the planet Lusitania. But again the aliens' ways are strange and frightening...again, humans die. And it is only the Speaker for the Dead, who is also Ender Wiggin the Xenocide, who has the courage to confront the mystery...and the truth.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Probably my favourite book ever

  • By V. S. on 23-06-05

Second Time Listen and Still Much to Love and Learn

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

Reviewed: 28-01-18

I don’t relisten to books often but found myself recently needing something familiar and comfortable to help me get through our move. It’s been over 10 years since last time I heard Speaker and this time in my life it yet again had so much good to remind me of. Worth the listen. I wish more people in the UK knew of Orson Scott Card and would give him a try. I’ve told people about him but still have few people to talk with about his books.

  • The Return of the Native

  • By: Thomas Hardy
  • Narrated by: Nicholas Rowe
  • Length: 13 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 23
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23

In the remote wildness of Egdon Heath, the crossed love affairs and marriages of a small group of people are played out against the background of nature’s beauty and indifference to mankind. Through a series of vivid incidents and encounters, The Return of the Native moves in a relentless drive towards tragedy, as the plans and dreams of the lovers miscarry, defeated by chance, or destiny or self-deception. In their unhappy stories, Hardy gives us a powerful dramatization of his bleak philosophy, his belief in man’s helplessness before the malevolence of the universe.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The best of Hardy - magical!

  • By Miss Clare Weightman on 14-10-16

Hardy with a not-so-depressing ending

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

Reviewed: 07-10-16

If you can wade yourself in through the first hour or two then I guarantee you will become engaged. If you are familiar with Victorian writing you will know what you are getting into. If you are unfamiliar with Victorian writing, this story is character driven with a bit of drama, tragedy and mercy pulling the story along.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell

  • By: Susanna Clarke
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 32 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,716
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,366
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,367

Winner of the British Book Awards, Newcomer of the Year, 2005.

English magicians were once the wonder of the known world, with fairy servants at their beck and call; they could command winds, mountains, and woods. But by the early 1800s they have long since lost the ability to perform magic. They can only write long, dull papers about it, while fairy servants are nothing but a fading memory.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Pleasingly long

  • By Felix on 24-08-05

Magically delightful

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

Reviewed: 16-05-15

If you liked The Night Circus, you will like this. Long but worth the time invested. And from what I hear, the BBC miniseries, written by the Dr Who writers, is going to be great!

  • The Martian

  • By: Andy Weir
  • Narrated by: R. C. Bray
  • Length: 10 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 17,006
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 16,008
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 15,979

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive - and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plainold "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Exhilarating adventure. Brilliantly executed.

  • By Kaggy on 30-08-14

Edge of my seat!

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

Reviewed: 21-01-15

What made the experience of listening to The Martian the most enjoyable?

The story is so unique and the narration is just delightful that i found the character really endearing.

What other book might you compare The Martian to, and why?

A book about the Old Wild West where survival was unsure and yet ingenuity and resourcefulness counted for everything.

What about R. C. Bray’s performance did you like?

Just loved it!

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

Yes! Even the bits about growing potatoes kept me engaged and wanting to know what happened next.

  • The Long Way Home

  • Chief Inspector Gamache, Book 10
  • By: Louise Penny
  • Narrated by: Adam Sims
  • Length: 12 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 88
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 84
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 82

Former Chief Inspector of Homicide, Armand Gamache, has found a peace he'd never imagined possible, away from the front line of the police and in the tranquil village of Three Pines. But when his friend Clara Morrow asks for help, he can't bring himself to refuse her, despite the old wounds it threatens to re-open. Clara's husband, Peter, is missing, having failed to come home on the first anniversary of their separation, as promised.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Absorbing

  • By Gillian on 08-03-15

Not her best story but a satisfying finish

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

Reviewed: 21-01-15

What did you like most about The Long Way Home?

Gamache is always my favourite part of any of Penny's stories. I also liked that in this they travelled out of Three Pines, was starting to get a bit tired of that place.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Gamache

What about Adam Sims’s performance did you like?

Adam Sims brings this book to life! His narration made this story that much more enjoyable. And he is very good at the English and French accents.

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

Not necessarily but yes it is compelling.

  • Visitors

  • Pathfinder Series, Book 3
  • By: Orson Scott Card
  • Narrated by: Kirby Heyborne, Emily Rankin, Stefan Rudnicki
  • Length: 16 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 49
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 47

Rigg’s journey comes to an epic and explosive conclusion as everything that has been building up finally comes to pass, and Rigg is forced to put his powers to the test in order to save his world and end the war once and for all.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent listen

  • By Guy wickenden on 18-01-17

No other way to end it, I guess

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

Reviewed: 21-01-15

If you could sum up Visitors in three words, what would they be?

Good, science-fiction and finished

Who was your favorite character and why?

It is hard not to like Rig.

Have you listened to any of the narrators’s other performances? How does this one compare?

I really like Stefan Rudnicki, to me he has become the voice of Orson Scott Card. The other two actors fit the roles they played too. Overall, this combination of actors brought more life to the story.

  • Rena's Promise

  • A Story of Sisters in Auschwitz
  • By: Rena Kornreich Gelissen, Heather Dune Macadam
  • Narrated by: Heather Dune Macadam
  • Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 29
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27

"I do not hate. To hate is to let Hitler win." - Rena Kornreich Gelissen. On March 26, 1942, the first mass transport of Jews - 999 young women - arrived in Auschwitz. Among them was Rena Kornreich, the 716th woman numbered in camp. A few days later, her sister Danka arrives and so begins a trial of love and courage that will last three years and 41 days, from the beginning Auschwitz death camp to the end of the war.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful story but awful reader

  • By S. Bowman on 21-01-15

Wonderful story but awful reader

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

Reviewed: 21-01-15

The story is very inspiring if you can endure the reader. I think the author recorded it at home on her personal computer without any guidance and it shows. Her vocal inflections are forced and annoying. I would love to hear this story performed by a professional with some experience!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful