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G. Steele

Thanet, UK
  • 7
  • reviews
  • 15
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  • 96
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  • Aurelio Zen, Book 1
  • By: Michael Dibdin
  • Narrated by: Michael Kitchen
  • Length: 10 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 60
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 55
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54

A powerful industrialist, Ruggiero Miletti, is kidnapped. Inspector Zen is transferred to Perugia to take over the case - but finds that there are many obstacles in his way. The local authorities see him as an interloper, and the victim’s family, one of the most powerful in Italy, seem content to let Miletti languish in the hands of his abductors. Zen has crossed swords with the establishment before - and lost. Can he succeed this time?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Idiosyncratic Narration

  • By S on 12-03-14

Good story hampered by terrible reading.

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

Reviewed: 23-05-17

I like Michael Kitchen as an actor but on this audiobook he fails to make the grade. His rendition of the narrative and badly paced and pays little attention to the punctuation, instead reading section of text with no connection to the rest of the sentence. Only the dialogue is well performed.
That notwithstanding, the story is excellent. When I was able to get past the delivery the book is a nicely written investigation which should appeal to those who like their detective fiction to be a little political and intelligent.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Last Wish

  • By: Andrzej Sapkowski
  • Narrated by: Peter Kenny
  • Length: 10 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,249
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,083
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,075

Geralt is a witcher, a man whose magic powers, enhanced by long training and a mysterious elixir, have made him a brilliant fighter and a merciless assassin. Yet he is no ordinary murderer: his targets are the multifarious monsters and vile fiends that ravage the land and attack the innocent. He roams the country seeking assignments, but gradually comes to realise that while some of his quarry are unremittingly vile, vicious grotesques, others are the victims of sin, evil or simple naivety.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Surprisingly witty, funny and all round Amazing.

  • By Fraza92 on 27-04-15

A Worthy Opening To A Legend.

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

Reviewed: 17-05-17

I thoroughly enjoyed this, both the intriguing book and the excellent reading. It has enhanced my appreciation for and enjoyment of the Witcher game series from CDPR, while also standing alone as a book well worth adding to your collection. I appreciate now what inspired CDPR to create what they have.
This should particularly appeal to fans of the old school (1st & 2nd edition) Warhammer RPG or just to those looking for something well written but less Tolkien-orientated.

  • The Black Prism

  • Book One of Lightbringer
  • By: Brent Weeks
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 21 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 896
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 811
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 811

Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that preserves a tenuous peace. But Prisms never last, and Guile knows exactly how long he has left to live: Five years to achieve five impossible goals. But when Guile discovers he has a son, born in a far kingdom after the war that put him in power, he must decide how much he's willing to pay to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Entertaining Intelligent Story

  • By narshil on 14-10-16

A Great Book, Now With A Good Reader

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

Reviewed: 08-11-16

When I first listened to The Black Prism it was a different reading and while I enjoyed the book it was in spite of the reading. Simon Vance has changed that and elevated this excellent renaissance-fantasy into my favourites list.
Guns, magic, lies, monsters, drama, romance - this book has it all. If, like so many, you missed out on Weeks' first series because of the start of The Way Of Shadows then rest assured that this is far more accessible and may even convince you to give the Night Angel books another go.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Skull Throne

  • The Demon Cycle, Book 4
  • By: Peter V. Brett
  • Narrated by: Colin Mace
  • Length: 23 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,570
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,445
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,445

In the grand tradition of George R.R. Martin and Robert Jordan, Sunday Times best-selling author Peter V. Brett continues his critically acclaimed Demon Cycle with the next dramatic instalment: The Skull Throne. The Skull Throne of Krasia stands empty. Built from the skulls of fallen generals and demon princes, it is a seat of honour and ancient, powerful magic, keeping the demon corelings at bay. From atop the throne, Ahmann Jardir was meant to conquer the known world, forging its isolated peoples into a unified army to rise up and end the demon war once and for all.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The stuffing in the middle?

  • By Robyn on 29-09-15

Good but could be better.

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

Reviewed: 29-05-15

This is a good continuation of the story but Brett seems to have been taking George RR Martin lessons. While much in this book is highly enjoyable and I appreciate it's Empire Strike Back qualities - this is hardly a glorious triumph for the good guys - there are times when I just want to slap the protagonists and I almost started rooting for the demons.

  • Enchantress

  • Evermen Saga, Book 1
  • By: James Maxwell
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 17 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 546
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 501
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 501

Ella and her brother, Miro, are orphans, their parents killed long ago in the ongoing struggle against the mad Emperor. From the day Ella witnesses an enchanter using his talents to save Miro from drowning, she knows what she wants to be. But the elite Academy of Enchanters expects tuition fees and knowledge. Determined, Ella sells flowers and studies every book she can. Meanwhile, Miro dreams of becoming one of the world's finest swordsmen, wielding his nation's powerful enchanted weapons in defense of his homeland.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Better than mediocre, less than brilliant

  • By Frances on 21-06-15

Inspiring Fantasy.

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

Reviewed: 14-05-15

If any role-players want to know how a multi-threaded campaign runs, its like this. The characters spend much of the book apart but their actions affect one another in ways only the reader sees - until they come back together at the end.
A thoroughly enjoyable listen, and an interestung world set-up.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Shadow Rising

  • Wheel of Time, Book 4
  • By: Robert Jordan
  • Narrated by: Kate Reading, Michael Kramer
  • Length: 41 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,111
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 873
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 875

The seals of Shayol Ghul are weak now, and the Dark One reaches out in The Shadow Rising, book four of the Wheel of Time, as The Shadow is rising to cover humankind. In the Stone of Tear, the Lord Dragon considers his next move. It will be something no one expects, not the Black Ajah, not Tairen nobles, not Aes Sedai, not Egwene or Elayne or Nynaeve. Against the Shadow rising stands the Dragon Reborn.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Where do we go from Here?

  • By William Clements on 11-01-12

A series finally finding its feet.

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

Reviewed: 09-03-15

Though patchy in book one, this series rewards staying with it into later books. As the author finds his feet the story begins to come together and what started as an uninspiring mish-mash becomes an epic series with the feel of a good D&D campaign.
Not the unique masterwork Jordan was after but still well worth a read/listen.

  • Theft of Swords

  • Riyria Revelations, Volume 1
  • By: Michael J. Sullivan
  • Narrated by: Tim Gerard Reynolds
  • Length: 22 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 524
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 482
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 481

Acclaimed author Michael J. Sullivan created instant best sellers with his spellbinding Riyria Revelations series. This first volume introduces Royce Melborn and Hadrian Blackwater, two enterprising thieves who end up running for their lives when they’re framed for the death of the king. Trapped in a conspiracy bigger than they can imagine, their only hope is unraveling an ancient mystery - before it’s too late.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great, brilliant. A must for fantasy lovers

  • By Patricia on 07-07-14

Excellent book and a joy for gamers.

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

Reviewed: 21-06-13

Firstly, let me clarify that I rarely - if ever - give 5* reviews. I like to have somewhere to go if next week I hear a better book so four stars should be treated as an "excellent".

Michael J Sullivan's work is a joy to listen to, especially since Tim Gerard Reynolds does such a good job on it. There are a couple of errors but nothing that slightly better editing wouldn't have fixed and he has instantly shot into my list of favourite readers, alongside people such as Steven Pacey and Toby Longworth. The stories in this volume hit all the right fantasy tropes without overusing any or feeling too cliched and the characterisations are interesting and well rounded. I like the heroes and loathe the villains just as I'm obviously supposed to. The stories motor along reasonably well and there are just enough twists to stop them getting predictable and dull. Overall an enjoyable, workmanlike performance from both writer and narrator.

My review title said this was a joy to gamers and I stand by that. If there are any role-players reading this review then I urge you to buy this audiobook, you'll not find another book which feels more like a game session. The heroes act like PCs, the better PCs at least, and this is a grand inspiration to have playing while you write up plot for something like Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder or even Rolemaster.

As a final note, congratulations to the narrator for not having the dwarf speak with a cod Scottish accent, I never understood that. Tolkein's dwarves were obviously Welsh in inspiration and yet there is an inexplicable trend to make dwarfs Scottish. I am very glad that doesn't occur here.

7 of 10 people found this review helpful