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Val Pope

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Miriam Margolyes is a genius!

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

Reviewed: 21-09-18

Oh, my word, what a brilliant reading of this Dickens classic by a consummately skilled performer. Every single voice sounds totally convincing and someone who can make the odiously twee Esther appealing deserves a medal as big as a frying pan. Even that basket of keys jingling away every time Esther sets foot in Bleak House (possibly the most irritating part of the novel) is rendered tolerable by a very slight tongue-in-cheek hint that the narrator finds Esther as irritating as I do. Top marks for that!
Lady Deadlock is superb, Guppy is idiotic , Tulkinghorn is terrifying, little Flite is tragically pathetic - every single character is credible and every character is given a voice that matches what's in the reader's imagination when reading the book in cold print. This is a serious tour de force by a brilliantly talented actor, The audio is worth every penny of the purchase price and I'll listen to it again and again. Thank you Ms Margolyes and thank you Audible for a brilliant Dickensian treat.

7 people found this helpful

Brilliant

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

Reviewed: 24-04-18

Second time out for Benson the ex-con turned barrister and what an excellent sequel to John Fairfax’s debut novel.
Tightly plotted; elegantly written and a cast of characters who are totally credible. Daniel Weyman’s narration is wonderful and my only regret is that we have to wait for Benson’s next case.
A superb new series. Read both of them, then read them again. And again. This author is up there with the crime-writing greats.

4 people found this helpful

Brilliant!

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

Reviewed: 29-08-17

An absorbing story, obviously written by an insider and all the better for that. I loved the characters, was intrigued by the plot, genuinely cared about the outcome and relished the writing style.
The narrator was excellent, too.
Please write the next instalment soon!

2 people found this helpful

Brilliant!

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

Reviewed: 31-03-16

This is probably the best known of Dickens' novels and this unabridged reading is absolutely first class. T he narrator manages to bring very well-known characters to new life. The accents are varied: the basic narration ( David's voice) is convincing both as a young boy and mature man. It's just a wonderful listen. The most difficult thing with Dickens is bringing out the humour, the Micawbers and the redoubtable Miss Mowcher made me laugh out loud. Imagine Lily Savage and Lenny Henry! The sad parts are sad, the funny parts are funny and the dramatic bits are totally convincing. Buy it! You'll listen to it again and again.

6 people found this helpful

What a disappointment

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

Reviewed: 25-11-15

Would you try another book written by Dorothy L Sayers or narrated by Jane McDowell?

I've read all of D L Sayers' novels. They are superb. This narrator has managed to make them mediocre.

Who was your favorite character and why?

In this particular novel, the characters of Lord Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane are as usual outstanding

How did the narrator detract from the book?

A lacklustre narration; monotonous and strangely paced; totally unconvincing 'voices' and utterly lacking any sense of the period. So dull, in fact, that it sent me to sleep within minutes of pressing 'start', every time I tried to listen to it. And what on earth was the narrator thinking when she pronounced Lord Peter's name as Peter 'DETH BREDDON' Wimsey?

If this book were a film would you go see it?

Only if this narrator's voice featured in no way whatsoever.

Any additional comments?

I did hesitate about downloading this version, because I have Ian Carmichael's recordings of Strong Poison and Gaudy Night, the first of the Vane/Wimsey trilogy and the BBC dramatized versions of Busman's Honeymoon and The Nine Tailors and enjoy listening to all of them very much indeed. I saw that reviews of this new narrator on the Audible site were less than enthusiastic,but I decided to take a chance on listening to Busman's Honeymoon in the unabridged non-dramatized format . I really wish I hadn't bothered. The fact that almost all the Sayers Wimsey novels are now narrated by Jane McDowell sadly means I can't look forward to adding these novels to my Audible collection. I'm so disappointed.

13 people found this helpful

Well worth a read

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 18-02-12

Don't worry about the magic stuff. This is a very entertaining listen and a really well crafted story. It's Harry Potter with teeth. And policemen. And jazz. What more could you ask for? A vampire? OK - there's even a vampire, who cooks a mean Eggs Benedict. If you liked Rivers of London, you'll like this one just as much, if not more.

A good listen

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 24-01-12

I enjoyed this reading very much indeed, although I don't think this is one of King's best novels. The narrator's ability to 'do the voices' made it a very enjoyable experience - better than reading it in print form. Raul Esparza really is good! I know I shouldn't have ended up admiring Andy and 'The Chef' so much (not very nice people at all) but their voices were great!
Anyway - check it out, but if it's apocalyptic stuff you're after, then 'The Stand' wins the theme stakes by a mile. Pity Audible hasn't got that available. If they ever do, then it has to be Esparza to do the narrative. Can't wait!

Worth a listen

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-12-11

I enjoyed the print version of this book very much, but the audio version isn't as sinister, I'm afraid. I think it's because King wrote this one in short (VERY short, sometimes) chapters, which work in print but not in audio. That said, it's a good story and has kept me entertained over two very long car journeys.

1 person found this helpful

A Good Try

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-12-11

This multi-voiced mix of narration and drama doesn't always work, I'm afraid. The story is a classic sci-fi and if you know it then you won't be disappointed by the unabridged version as far as content is concerned. However, it was quite irritating to have the characters' voices interpreted in differnet ways, in a 'cut 'n' paste' audio. On the plus side, the SFX were great.

Back on Form

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-12-11

Stephen King's books are almost always 'good reads', but this is the master back on top form. A superbly crafted story that evokes the world of 'ago' (1958 - 1963) quite brilliantly. I remember the Kennedy assassination and wondered how King would manage to deal with the event. He deals with it very neatly indeed! NO spoilers here - you'll have to download it to see exactly how he does it. The narration is brilliant - why doesn't Crag Wasson do all King's stories for Audible?
If you don't download this, you're missing something very special indeed.

15 people found this helpful