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A.Connor

  • 58
  • reviews
  • 61
  • helpful votes
  • 165
  • ratings
  • Jog On

  • How Running Saved My Life
  • By: Bella Mackie
  • Narrated by: Bella Mackie
  • Length: 6 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 300
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 261
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 257

Over the previous decade, Bella had been so paralysed by her fears that exercise was the very last thing on her mind. So that first run didn’t last very long. But to her surprise, she was back out there the next day. And the day after that. She began to set herself achievable goals - to run 5k in under 30 minutes, to walk to work every day for a week, to attempt 10 push-ups in a row. Before she knew it, her mood was lifting for the first time in years, and she had swapped hiding in her house for fresh air, unknown roads and running tracks. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Obviously running is good for you...

  • By alissa on 30-12-18

a ‘must-read’..

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

Reviewed: 19-02-19

Oh this is so good..rock-solid, real & so v ‘normal’. JogOn is the best book Ive ever read on living with anxiety.

  • All Things Bright and Beautiful

  • The Classic Memoirs of a Yorkshire Country Vet
  • By: James Herriot
  • Narrated by: Christopher Timothy
  • Length: 13 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 95
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 84
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 83

Now settled into the sleepy Yorkshire village of Darrowby and married to Helen the farmer's daughter, James Herriot thinks he's finally got himself sorted. But life as a vet in the 1930s was never going to be easy. Quite aside from his unpredictable colleagues, brothers Siegfried and Tristan Farnon, he must contend with new-fangled medical techniques, delivering calves after far too much homemade wine, and a grudge-holding dog called Magnus who never forgets.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Good book spoiled by music

  • By Amazon Customer on 16-11-18

‘perfect stories, gifted story-telling

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

Reviewed: 18-02-19

As a child I’d read & watched & really loved all things JamesHerriot. Now Im grownup, Im enjoying these tales every bit as much; gorgeous gentle humour.
No-one but Christopher Timothy should be allowed any place near the narration - he *is* Herriot, superb!
A beautiful book for all ages.

PS- somebody (prev review ^) on here moans about ‘music’ spoiling the reading..? For heaven’s sake - theres a couple of bars of cheery tunes here & there; no impact, no issue.

  • The Girlfriend

  • By: Michelle Frances
  • Narrated by: Antonia Beamish
  • Length: 12 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,697
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,529
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,525

Laura has it all. A successful career, a long marriage to a rich husband, and a 23-year-old son, Daniel, who is kind, handsome and talented. Then Daniel meets Cherry. Cherry is young, beautiful and smart, but she hasn't had the same opportunities as Daniel. And she wants Laura's life. Cherry comes to the family wide-eyed and wants to be welcomed with open arms, but Laura suspects she's not all that she seems.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Most gripping book I have read in a while

  • By irene on 26-05-17

‘reads (& read) like a high-school essay

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

Reviewed: 29-01-19

Where have all these phenomenal reviews for this book come from - I dont understand? I struggled with characters who between them had about half a ‘dimension’ and plot and dialogue all daft & insubstantial like a shaky stage set.


  • Too Close

  • By: Natalie Daniels
  • Narrated by: Clara Salaman, Sara Stewart
  • Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 572
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 528
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 522

There’s a moment, when you meet someone new, when the connection is so strong that making a friend can feel like falling in love. That’s how it was for Connie and Ness. They met in the park while their children played, and as they talked, they realised they were neighbours. Perhaps it was only natural that they and their families would become entirely inseparable. But when Ness’ marriage ends in a bitter divorce, she is suddenly at Connie’s house all the time. Connie doesn’t have a moment to herself, no time alone with her husband, not a second to chat to her kids.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Couldn’t fault it

  • By Zoe Norton on 28-12-18

best book I've listened to in a very long time

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

Reviewed: 28-01-19

Brilliant in every way, left me feeling stunned, moved, sad. happy... Staggeringly talented writer and perfect narrators. More of this please audible!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • That Was When People Started to Worry

  • By: Nancy Tucker
  • Narrated by: Colleen Prendergast
  • Length: 9 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17

Having conducted over 100 hours of interviews with 60 British women aged 16-25, Nancy Tucker - the author of The Time In Between, an ‘astonishingly good’ (Sunday Times) memoir of a life consumed by eating disorders – explores what it’s like to suffer from serious mental illness as a young woman. With raw honesty, sensitivity and humour, That Was When People Started to Worry examines real experiences of anxiety, self-harm, borderline personality disorder, OCD, binge eating disorder, PTSD and dissociative identity disorder. Giving a voice to those like Abby who can’t speak out themselves, Tucker presents a unique window into the day-to-day trials of living with an unwell mind.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This means you

  • By Mrs. B. A. Smith on 24-07-18

EnidBlyton on acid - awful. This book made me sad.

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

Reviewed: 08-01-19

The idea itself is fine(ish)...from real-person interviewing the author creates amalgam ‘representative’ stories of individual young women living with - sorry *suffering from* - specific mental health problems.
Its clear too from the intro the author is genuinely motivated to (re)present accurately & with meaning..

I dipped into four chapters, willing each to be less gauche & less silly in content & delivery than the one before but couldnt unfortunately, hear a single chapter out; I found this an unfortunate mixup of generalities, stereotypes and infinitely/unhelpfully middle class in orientation.

  • A Ladder to the Sky

  • By: John Boyne
  • Narrated by: Richard E. Grant, Laurence Kennedy, Richard Cordery, and others
  • Length: 11 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 201
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 187
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 186

If you look hard enough, you can find stories pretty much anywhere. They don’t even have to be your own. Or so would-be writer Maurice Swift decides very early on in his career. A chance encounter in a Berlin hotel with celebrated novelist Erich Ackermann gives him an opportunity to ingratiate himself with someone more powerful than him. For Erich is lonely, and he has a story to tell. Whether or not he should do so is another matter entirely. Once Maurice has made his name, he sets off in pursuit of other people’s stories. He doesn’t care where he finds them - or to whom they belong - as long as they help him rise to the top.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Stunning start which descends onto silliness

  • By the typist on 25-08-18

‘love John Boyne but..

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

Reviewed: 17-11-18

‘InvisibleFuries’ remains an all-time delight & Im waiting for the movie; that sparked my fandom for JB.
‘Ladder’ for me jarred in parts, overly-themed & extended; saying that there were elements of pure Boyne in here - beautifully crafted, with a twist.
Structurally this one comprises ‘a story’ followed by ‘the other story’ via a series of what Boyne calls ‘Interludes’; I didnt unfortunately enjoy this.
‘Ladder’s efforts to complete the circle were exhausting & didnt work for me; saying that I will continue to read & appreciate everything Boyne does, for whilst I might not get the stylistics/structure sometimes, I reckon hes a gem of a writer - courageous, upforit, smart as all hell & infinitely humane; he’s a departure and I so appreciate that.

  • The Absolutist

  • By: John Boyne
  • Narrated by: Michael Maloney
  • Length: 8 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 190
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 173
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 170

September 1919: 21-year-old Tristan Sadler takes a train from London to Norwich to deliver some letters to Marian Bancroft. Tristan fought alongside Marian’s brother Will during the Great War, but in 1917 Will laid down his guns on the battlefield, declared himself a conscientious objector and was shot as a traitor, an act which has brought shame and dishonour on the Bancroft family. But the letters are not the real reason for Tristan’s visit. He holds a secret deep in his soul. One that he is desperate to unburden himself of to Marian, if he can only find the courage.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant and deeply touching

  • By Edward Phillips on 13-01-15

what a writer Boyne is..

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

Reviewed: 22-10-18

‘The Heart’s Invisible Furies’ is in my all-time top three - nothing can compare.
On saying that - The Absolutist is beautifully crafted, it grows - and grows & it becomes immense.
Dont be fooled by the gentility & by
a relatively gentle pace..
The Narrator does a truly splendid job - as should be the case presenting a work of Boyne. Excellent. Highly recommended.


  • Wedlock

  • How Georgian Britain's Worst Husband Met His Match
  • By: Wendy Moore
  • Narrated by: Rachel Atkins
  • Length: 13 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24

Wedlock is the remarkable story of the Countess of Strathmore and her marriage to Andrew Robinson Stoney. Mary Eleanor Bowes was one of Britain's richest young heiresses. She married the Count of Strathmore, who died young, and, pregnant with her lover's child, Mary became engaged to George Gray. Then in swooped Andrew Robinson Stoney. Mary was bowled over and married him within the week. But nothing was as it seemed. Stoney was broke and his pursuit of the wealthy Countess a calculated ploy.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gripping

  • By Benjy1702 on 02-02-16

‘wee bit performance-editing would make a difference

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

Reviewed: 19-10-18

‘quite a few mis-reading booboos in this (‘her grief was exasperated by his conduct’); these and other v basic editing bits & bobs do impact on the reading. I wouldnt recommend per the narration.




  • Among You

  • By: Jake Wood
  • Narrated by: Joe Coen
  • Length: 17 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 131
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 118
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 118

Among You is the gripping real-life story of a soldier serving on the front line in Iraq and Afghanistan, and an unforgettable, unflinching account of the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder. Jake Wood lives parallel lives: encased in the glass tower of an international investment bank by day, he is also a dedicated TA soldier who serves on the front line during the invasion of Iraq, later returning to the war zone to conduct surveillance on insurgents.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Not the book I was expecting !

  • By S on 14-01-16

I tried.

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

Reviewed: 16-07-18

I anticipated Jake’s politics would be problematic for me but determined to listen, to be open and to recognise & respect the meaning and impact for him of his experiences & his perspective.
The first section of his journey uncovers significant psychological and emotional vulnerability & need. The most rudimentary psych-fit assessment would make clear this man was not fit for what the military term ‘active service’; Jake himself evidences lack of relevant self awareness & insight.
More than anything for me this book lays bare what we expect to be the case - a forces’ culture & mentality & a raft of systemic protocols & responses that simply fail to assess, understand, anticipate, address & support - as such I found it meaningful.
Jakes perspective on ‘Joe public’ however is consistently uneducated & demeaning - that his girlfriend(s) and cohorts are crass & uninformed in their interests is a reflection of who Jake elects to have in his social and interpersonal circles; not all of us ‘public’ are politically naieve / ‘celebrity-obsessed’.
This book is valid in laying out an individual picture of the devastation of PTSD & shines a bright light on the closed forces’ culture & systems. Jake as an author and a man has like all of us - a lot to learn; at time of writing he is able to acknowledge little of that.
Whilst Im sorry prior to settlement via the forces Jake had to dip into ‘tens of thousands of personal savings’ he shows no understanding & contributes nothing in the relativity of his position.
This is a powerful account & well-told of one mans thoughts and experiences & as such entirely valid. As a systems’ and structures’ account however, Jake’s work doesnt & cant for me, make it - and wont until he learns to respect & recognise ‘Joe Public’ as not lumpen.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Parsnips, Buttered

  • Bamboozle and Boycott Modern Life, One Email at a Time
  • By: Joe Lycett
  • Narrated by: Joe Lycett
  • Length: 3 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,132
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,934
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,919

In this book I have attempted to solve each and every one of life's problems. And I have succeeded. Dear Listener, Using letters, emails, tweets and telegrams I will show you how the things in your life that make you sad, low or anxious can soon appear trivial, insignificant and like a fish. In short, I will butter your parsnips.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Enjoyed

  • By Steve K on 12-02-17

big boy behaving like a baby

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

Reviewed: 18-04-18

‘campastically petulant, good fun.
V short though - ‘might write a letter of complaint about that..