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Toby

Frome, United Kingdom
  • 7
  • reviews
  • 26
  • helpful votes
  • 99
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  • The Green Lama: Unbound

  • The Green Lama Legacy, Book 3
  • By: Adam Lance Garcia
  • Narrated by: Jiraiya Addams
  • Length: 11 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars 1

A brand new, full-length novel starring the master of the mystic arts, the Green Lama. Written by Adam Lance Garcia, this wall-to-wall pulp adventure pits the Green Lama and his friends against the Nazis of the Third Reich and an ancient evil from beyond the stars. Soon to become a true pulp classic, this is an audiobook that belongs in every true pulp fan's library.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Really Rather Tedious

  • By Toby on 07-06-18

Really Rather Tedious

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

Reviewed: 07-06-18

There are some interesting elements and the character of The Green Lama is a fun idea but the collision with the Cthulhu Mythos just doesn't really work here.

  • Murgunstrumm & Others

  • By: Hugh B. Cave
  • Narrated by: Michael A. Slusser
  • Length: 23 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars 2

Crawling forth from the Depression years - from the haunted pages of Strange Tales, Weird Tales, Ghost Stories, Spicy Mystery Stories, Black Book Detective, and elsewhere - Wildside presents an omnibus of vintage nightmares, twenty-six of the best horror tales of Hugh B. Cave.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Just not very good

  • By Toby on 06-03-18

Just not very good

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

Reviewed: 06-03-18

What disappointed you about Murgunstrumm & Others?

Apart from some flashes this was all pretty dull, dated weaker pulp material. Sub-Howard with occasional nods/borrowings of Lovecraftian phrases.

What was most disappointing about Hugh B. Cave’s story?

One or two were quite OK but very repetitive thematically. Characters of very thin card.

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

Not bad but occasional odd pronunciations.

Any additional comments?

At a loss to understand some of the higher ratings given the often weak material.

  • Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell

  • By: Susanna Clarke
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 32 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,444
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,107
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,107

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
  • Harry Potter for Grown Ups

  • By Cosima on 18-11-10

Tedious

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

Reviewed: 16-08-14

What disappointed you about Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell?

Far, far too long. Huge stretches where nothing really happens, not even any character development. Lots of good ideas that didn't really lead anywhere in the end.

Has Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell put you off other books in this genre?

If there is a whole genre of this stuff, then yes.

What does Simon Prebble bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

I have tried to read the book. Simon Prebble's stirling efforts made it bearable.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Disappointment, mainly. It begins well but then goes on seemingly interminably. Overall it's just generally dull.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • A Game of Thrones

  • Book 1 of A Song of Ice and Fire
  • By: George R. R. Martin
  • Narrated by: Roy Dotrice
  • Length: 33 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,891
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,124
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 9,137

The complete, unabridged audiobook of A Game of Thrones. HBO’s hit series A Game of Thrones is based on George R. R. Martin’s internationally best-selling series A Song of Ice and Fire, the greatest fantasy epic of the modern age. A Game of Thrones is the first volume in the series. Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime. And the struggle for the Iron Throne has begun.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A truly brilliant fantasy novel

  • By Qasim on 16-09-11

Just Really Not That Good

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-09-12

Friends have raved about both the T.V. adaption and the series of novels, reviews of both have also been positive across much of the media so I was looking forward to finally discovering what I had missed.
Although Martin delivers some good descriptive prose and weaves a complex plot, ultimately I found this very unsatisfying and not engaging of my interest. I didn't really get to care about the myriad characters and I certainly wasn't going to spend money on Part 2 to find out how the various threads came together, if at all, because I started to get the feeling that Martin's main purpose here was to write a multi-volume Fantasy epic rather than tell an epic tale.
I don't think it's my lack of patience or even Roy Dotrice's narration, which was generally good. I found a lot of the book very derivative in some ways and one can tick off various influences as the story unfolds: Tolkien, Moorcock, le Guin etc. but just not as good. This struck me as very much Emperor's New Clothes.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Consider Phlebas

  • Culture Series, Book 1
  • By: Iain M. Banks
  • Narrated by: Peter Kenny
  • Length: 16 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,859
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,421
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,423

The war raged across the galaxy. Billions had died, billions more were doomed. Moons, planets, the very stars themselves, faced destruction - cold-blooded, brutal, and worse, random. The Idirans fought for their Faith; the Culture for its moral right to exist. Principles were at stake. There could be no surrender. Within the cosmic conflict, an individual crusade....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A Truly Great Sci-Fi Novel

  • By scotty on 09-04-12

Underwhelmed

Overall
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 14-06-11

Having heard and read so many positive reviews of Iain M. Banks' work I was looking forward to this book. Maybe my expectations were too high, maybe I just didn't "get it" but for whatever reason I found this book very ordinary despite the good narration and voice characterisation by Peter Kenny. From the beginning of the story I found it hard to engage with the various characters and by the end of the book I just didn't really care about any of them or the societies they represented. Although the pace was pretty good some of the scenes seemed superfluous such as the episode with The Eaters. I wasn't sure of the purpose of that scene, it almost appeared to be there just to add to the word count. The ending of the book and it's epilogues just seemed to lead to nowhere particularly interesting. Certainly not a dreadful book but also not as good as I had been lead to believe.

19 of 22 people found this review helpful

  • Moriarty

  • By: John Gardner
  • Narrated by: Seán Barrett
  • Length: 9 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 25
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

Forced to flee England and live in America during the 1890s, Professor James Moriarty - arch-enemy of Sherlock Holmes - returns to London in 1900 to find that his huge criminal empire has been infiltrated and plundered by the coming crime boss, Idle Jack Idell. As if this was not enough, he has evidence that one of his closest lieutenants, a member of the self-styled Praetorian Guard, is betraying him.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Victorian Values

  • By Toby on 09-12-09

Victorian Values

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-12-09

John Gardner wrote three novels based around Professor Moriarty's subsequent career after surviving his encounter with Holmes at the Reichenbach Falls. I'd read and enjoyed "The Return of Moriarty" and was certainly not disappointed with this audio presentation of the third book in the series.
Gardner's portrays both Moriarty and the seedy and vicious London underworld of the Late Victorian era in gritty and believable style using real accounts of how the London criminals of the time operated and the slang they used to add verisimilitude.
The reading by Sean Barrett is excellent, good characterization and pace make this a cracking journey through the seamier side Victorian London.
I hope the other novels of the series will be available, preferably with Sean Barrett also reading.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • A Colder War

  • By: Charles Stross
  • Narrated by: Pat Bottino
  • Length: 1 hr and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 22
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 16

Here is a modern novelette in H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos. Imagine David Cronenberg directing Dr. Strangelove, based on a script by H. P. Lovecraft. Imagine an alternate history in which nuclear bombs are not the ultimate weapon, but instead are merely a stepping stone to eldritch technologies accessible through certain trans-dimensional forces first encountered in 1920s Antarctica, technologies that neither the United States nor the USSR can quite contain.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Great Story - Poor Reading

  • By Toby on 30-04-09

Great Story - Poor Reading

Overall
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 30-04-09

A superb story that mixes 80s military paranoia with Lovecraftian cosmic horror in a world where a nuclear holocaust may be preferable to the other weapons the superpowers can unleash.
Sadly, the reading is rather poor - badly paced, almost monotone at times. Due to the speed at which it is read punctuation is ignored in places. Maybe the idea was to capture a feeling of numbed senses and rising hysteria, if so it failed. Overall, one loses the subtleties of Charles Stross' writing beneath the poor delivery. Such a shame with such a good story.

I hope that Audible will produce the same author's excellent books "The Atrocity Archives" and "The Jennifer Morgue" that re-work and develop some of the themes found in "A Colder War", however, if they are produced I hope more attention will be paid to getting the reading right.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful