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Bury St Edmunds, United Kingdom
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  • reviews
  • 31
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  • 6
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  • The Late Scholar

  • By: Jill Paton Walsh
  • Narrated by: Gordon Griffin
  • Length: 9 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 243
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 227
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 227

When the fellows at an Oxford college appeal to Peter Wimsey to resolve a dispute, he and Harriet are happy to oblige. The dispute between the two passionate parties is evenly balanced, that is, until several of the fellows unexpectedly die. And the causes of death bear an uncanny resemblance to the murder methods in Peter's past cases - methods that Harriet has used in her novels.…

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Not as good as a DL Sayers but better than nothing

  • By Claire on 15-05-14

If you like Wimsey you should try Paton Walsh

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

Reviewed: 09-11-14

If you could sum up The Late Scholar in three words, what would they be?

Heartwarming, inevitable, closure

Who was your favorite character and why?

As usual Harriet Vane stands forth here and her characterisation develops even further. Paton Walsh is a really good writer. She needs to be to follow DL Sayers and some of the early books when she picks up the story are a bit wooden. In this one, however, she is starting to relax and the story and the people flow better through the plot.The one thing I find challenging is that she continues to give the relationship between Wimsey / Vane and Bunter a dynamic that I rubs me up the wrong way. Yes it's now post war but it's a bit forced.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

The Late Scholar is a bit like a pair of old slippers, warm, comfortable and good for sitting by the fire.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Rendezvous with Rama cover art
  • Rendezvous with Rama

  • Rama, Book 1
  • By: Sir Arthur C. Clarke
  • Narrated by: Peter Ganim, Robert J. Sawyer - introduction
  • Length: 9 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 102
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 24
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24

At first, only a few things are known about the celestial object that astronomers dub Rama. It is huge, weighing more than ten trillion tons. And it is hurtling through the solar system at inconceivable speed. Then a space probe confirms the unthinkable: Rama is no natural object. It is, incredibly, an interstellar spacecraft. Space explorers and planet-bound scientists alike prepare for mankind's first encounter with alien intelligence.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Book, poorly read

  • By Benjamin on 15-02-09

One of the best Sci Fi books written - seriously!

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

Reviewed: 09-11-14

Where does Rendezvous with Rama rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

The imagination displayed in this book is mind blowing. When you think that it was written in 1973! Man was still walking and driving on the moon at that time.
He extrapolates a future, populates it, designs a whole world in a spaceship that is the size of Greater London and then lets you explore it.
So his characterisation is not as strong as you might like. But the scope he gives you to think about what he is describing is fantastic.
There are two great books about the first contact with aliens.
This one and Larry Niven's 'Mote in God's Eye'. I can never decide which is better.

Any additional comments?

As an example of the power of the thinking here I have clipped in this section from Wikipedia…

"Clarke invented the space study program which detects Rama, Project Spaceguard, as a method of identifying near-Earth objects on Earth-impact trajectories; in the novel it was initiated after an asteroid struck Italy on 11 September 2077, destroying Padua and Verona and sinking Venice.
A real project named Spaceguard was initiated in 1992, named after Clarke's fictional project. After interest in the dangers of asteroid strikes was heightened by a series of Hollywood disaster films, the United States Congress gave NASA authorisation and funding to support Spaceguard."

This man helped to make things happen by telling the world what they would look like.

Expand your mind and listen to this book.

  • A Good Year

  • By: Peter Mayle
  • Narrated by: Tim Pigott-Smith
  • Length: 6 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 107
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 81
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 81

Max Skinner is a man at the heart of London's financial universe until his employers embark on a little asset-stripping of their own. Himself. Amid the grey London drizzle, there is one potential ray of sunshine: Max's Uncle Harry has left him his estate in his will, an eighteenth-century chateau and vineyard an hour's drive from Avignon.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Good Year. By Peter Mayle.

  • By Edward on 07-04-09

When you need to relax this is just perfect

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

Reviewed: 09-11-14

What did you like most about A Good Year?

In this book Peter Mayle delivers great fun, great characters and you can just relax and let your mind enjoy it. The plot is not huge, the pace is medium, you laugh at his descriptions of wonderful meals and the sybaritic parts of life but it's FUN.

What about Time Pigott-Smith’s performance did you like?

The performance is well paced and he gets the french right without being either patronising or silly.

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

I listened to this driving home from work over a week and it set me up for a relaxed evening.

Any additional comments?

Download it, enjoy it, relax.

  • Imperial Earth

  • By: Arthur C. Clarke
  • Narrated by: Mike Grady
  • Length: 9 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 27
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 25

Set in 2276, Imperial Earth is the fascinating odyssey of Duncan Makenzie, travelling from Titan, a moon of Saturn, to Earth, as a diplomatic guest of the United States. Duncan’s initial challenge is to prepare for the 500-million-mile trip to Earth. Once there, he is caught up in a sweep of new experiences - including the social whirl of Washington, a strange visit to a carefully preserved ancient city, and a search for the woman he loves.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Classic Sci Fi - even predicts the Ipad!

  • By S on 09-11-14

Classic Sci Fi - even predicts the Ipad!

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

Reviewed: 09-11-14

Where does Imperial Earth rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is one of the better audio books I have downloaded. The narrator reads it well and does a good job of bringing the story to life

What was one of the most memorable moments of Imperial Earth?

One of the best bits, on hearing it now after 20 years, is the predictions ACC made in technology. The communications gear is a little bizarre but with a very little imagination you can see the world of 21st century smart phones in his visualisation.

Any additional comments?

When this was published I did not rate it as one of his best but listening now ACC shows a depth of imagination that leaves you breathless.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Whose Body?

  • Lord Peter Wimsey: Book 1
  • By: Dorothy L. Sayers
  • Narrated by: Jane McDowell
  • Length: 6 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 145
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 133
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 131

It was the body of a tall stout man. On his dead face, a handsome pair of gold pince-nez mocked death with grotesque elegance. The body wore nothing else.Lord Peter Wimsey knew immediately what the corpse was supposed to be. His problem was to find out whose body had found its way into Mr Alfred Thipps' Battersea bathroom.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Terrible performance

  • By Nicky on 12-04-15

More work on pronunciation please

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

Reviewed: 09-11-14

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

I have been waiting for a reading of the Lord Peter Wimsey books for a long time and down loaded this with glee. It is the first of the series so it seems that the originators are doing it the right way and starting from the beginning.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The narrator seems to think that the characters all gabble. They are all done in funny voices, at odd pitches and even odder speeds. Yes - Lord Peter's speech is affected and speedy but she really gets him wrong I think.
The worst thing is the lapses in pronunciation. Lord Peters college is Balliol. His time at Oxford is fundamental to the man, the stories and so much of what is to come. It is pronounced Bail - e - ol. The narrator says Bal i ol.
I really worry when she gets to Magdalen, not wanting to be maudlin about it but my expectations are low.
Another is when Lord Peter is looking around the roof of the mansion flats and checks what the narrator calls 'the leeds'. She means 'the leads'; the word comes from the lead used to make the channels and downpipes in traditional buildings, now often stolen.

The lady has a lovely voice. When just narrating it resonates and could do Harriet Vane well later. Meanwhile PLEASE stop gabbling and research the words before launching into the next one?

25 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • The Mote in God's Eye

  • By: Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle
  • Narrated by: L J Ganser
  • Length: 20 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 423
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 280
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 286

The Mote In God's Eye is their acknowledged masterpiece, an epic novel of mankind's first encounter with alien life that transcends the genre. No lesser an authority than Robert A. Heinlein called it "possibly the finest science fiction novel I have ever read".

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Narrator killing this great book

  • By Karen on 04-02-16

The best 'First Contact' novel ever

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 13-04-13

I first read this book 20 years ago and was totally engrossed. It mixes a great mix of characters in a struggling future Empire of Man with the effects of the sudden discovery - at last - of a totally alien race.

It combines great entertainment with thought provoking situations. The background to it is a really logical and believable science.

I think it's the best thing that Niven has written or co-written and that's a big claim.

The reading is OK - a strong American accent but then that represents the racial background of the lead character Roderick Blaine. The pace is good and him pronunciation is right too.



This is a long, engrossing listen that will draw you into the sequels.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful