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  • 28
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  • Tubing

  • By: K. A. McKeagney
  • Narrated by: Elisabeth Miles
  • Length: 9 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 18
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 18

Polly, 28, lives in London with her 'perfect-on-paper' boyfriend. She works a dead-end job on a free London paper.... Life as she knows it is dull. But her banal existence is turned upside down late one drunken night on her way home, after a chance encounter with a man on a packed tube train. The chemistry between them is electric, and on impulse they kiss, giving in to their carnal desires. But it's over in an instant, and Polly is left shell-shocked as he walks away without even telling her his name. 

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Casual racism aside, not a bad read. Weak ending.

  • By D on 04-03-19

Casual racism aside, not a bad read. Weak ending.

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

Reviewed: 04-03-19

I liked the narrator but I was truly offended by her portrayal of a Black woman from South London and the accent she adopted whenever that character (Alisha) was present. I get that people from London can be racists and will make remarks about Black People in a flippant manner, but within the first 3 minutes of meeting Oliver, he came across as a racist fool and I was immediately put off. Especially since his remark had no bearing on the rest of the story and just felt like the author simply wanted to be "cheeky" for no reason. Charlotte also turned out to be racist fool but that doesn't matter since we barely see her and even though she turns out to have been the catalyst to all the tubing drama, we never really get to know her and that reveal was rather flat.

I don't know if the author intentionally wanted her rich, white, entitled characters to also be racists or if this comes from her own real life but I feel like my ears were accosted every time the narrator tried to sound "Black" and I have no idea why the only Black character in the story had to be from South London with that specific kind of accent in the first place. It feels like the author's own real life bias is spilling out into the book. Nevermind the fact that the only reason Alisha's character ever popped up was to offer advice, comfort or defend the main character - typical Black Best Friend nonsense. She only exists to support Polly. This book should have been set in the 80s. Very offensive but in the most unoriginal way.

The characters were all unlikeable and underdeveloped and the plot really made no sense. However, the author clearly enjoyed writing those sex scenes and I have to say I found the concept of Tubing surprising and intriguing. Had the rest of the story been written as well as those sex scenes this could've been an enjoyable book. But unfortunately it was a mess. The end was pathetic, super rushed with loose ends and the part with Polly's anorexia was disturbing and not handled well. It felt like the author seemed to know more about public sex than this very serious eating disorder. I really wish writers would do a bit more research and not gloss over serious illnesses like this. Next time just focus on what you're really excited about (in this case, obviously the public sex and anonymous hook ups) and leave the serious stuff to someone else to write. Sorry, definitely returning this one.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Housewife

  • By: Valerie Keogh
  • Narrated by: Emma Newman
  • Length: 9 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 27
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 27
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars 27

“There’s no place like home.” That’s what I tell myself as I pull another flawless meal from the oven. This perfect house on a quiet street was supposed to be my sanctuary, a place to recover. But everything changed the moment I saw that woman in the charity shop. She triggered something dark, buried deep within my memory.... 

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Weak characters. WEAK ENDING.

  • By D on 02-03-19

Weak characters. WEAK ENDING.

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

Reviewed: 02-03-19

I am not a fan of books that portray women as hysterical or emotional. I'm even less of a fan of books that equate emotional women to mentally unstable women. This is lazy writing. Completely unoriginal and unimaginative. The vague references to "the clinic" where Diane stayed after her baby's death were just insulting. When writers don't do their research about mental health and the treatment involved it truly makes me angry. Diane was a weak character who cried and drank wine every 30 seconds. It was exhausting listening to her be so pathetic. Then suddenly in the last 2 minutes of the book she becomes super mom and manages to narrowly avoid having her daughter taken to another country? Ridiculous. Everything about this book was ridiculous. If someone is stalking you, call the police don't crash your car. And why was it never addressed that Pam had let Emma out of the house? Pam really seemed to have it out for Diane and her children. It's ridiculous that Paul still wanted to be with her. As if he never cared about his children at all. Then again. Paul wasn't a well developed character. None of the characters were developed. They were all static, boring one dimensional space fillers. I didn't even care about Emma to be honest. I kept hoping for some kind of redeemable quality in Paul. But no, he was complete trash. Like, why would he want to be with a woman like Pam after what she did? And why did the book end just as Diane seemed to be getting interesting? This book was not good. I don't trust this author to do anything better. There was nothing heart pounding or even remotely intriguing about this book but I shouldn't be surprised given the lame book title. Good grief.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • The Accident

  • By: C.L. Taylor
  • Narrated by: Jenny Funnell
  • Length: 9 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 349
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 313
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 312

Fast paced and suspenseful, The Accident is perfect for fans of Before I Go to Sleep, Gone Girl, and Sophie Hannah. A gripping psychological thriller about the deadly secrets your children can keep.... Sue Jackson has the perfect family, but when her teenage daughter, Charlotte, deliberately steps in front of a bus and ends up in a coma she is forced to face a very dark reality. Retracing her daughter's steps, she finds a horrifying entry in Charlotte's diary and is forced to head deep into Charlotte's private world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • tense!!!

  • By MR on 03-05-15

Interesting concept with a disappointing ending

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

Reviewed: 25-02-19

Though I liked the quality of the narrator's voice I fear she failed to deliver the appropriate amount of emotion during crucial moments in the book. It was during those times when I became so frustrated with the character that it made me almost root for her failure. And what was with all the fainting and blacking out? It felt very forced like the author was trying to make Susan unreliable but it just made her come off as weak and hysterical. That made it hard to believe her capable of solving a soduko puzzle, much less a mystery involving her comatose daughter.

I liked the concept of the book. But unfortunately I hated all of the characters, especially Susan. The only bits I truly enjoyed were the flashbacks and the diary entries. The abuse was a bit heavy handed but the writing was much better somehow. Since the summary kind of hinted at this, I think this book would've been far more enjoyable had there been more juxtaposition between Charlotte's diary entries and Susan's. It would have made a far more interesting and intimate mystery and we could've weaved in the whole James / Michael storylines earlier on instead of tacking on a rushed explanation in the end. Also, there would have been a lot more opportunity for twists and turns and we could've actually gotten to know Charlotte through her diary entries. Maybe we would've been able to sympathise with her.

The part about Brian being a politician could've been explored more since his position was part of the reason why Charlotte did what she did. But unfortunately it was glossed over and by the end of book no amount of explaining is going to convince me that his job is important enough to motivate a teenager to sacrifice herself for the sake of her dad. I doubt, based on the little development Charlotte was given, she'd be savvy enough to understand the implications of a sex tape for her dad's job. So that should not have been an excuse. She was foolish enough to trust a strange man she'd met in a club, she'd be foolish enough not to have the foresight of thinking about her parents or the consequences of her actions. Let's keep it consistent please.

Like I said, the best parts were in the flashbacks. The present day stuff was mostly annoying. And it's such a crutch to use Susan's mental health as an excuse for no one to believe her. Ugh.

And what's with books featuring British children making them seem like horrible little monsters? Are British teenagers really so awful???

  • The Suspect

  • By: Fiona Barton
  • Narrated by: Clare Corbett, Mark Meadows, Sian Thomas, and others
  • Length: 10 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 483
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 444
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 444

When two 18-year-old girls go missing in Thailand, their families are thrust into the international spotlight: desperate, bereft and frantic with worry. What were the girls up to before they disappeared? Journalist Kate Waters always does everything she can to be first to the story, first with the exclusive, first to discover the truth - and this time is no exception. But she can't help but think of her own son, whom she hasn't seen in two years, since he left home to go travelling.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Kate's Muddied Waters

  • By Simon on 29-01-19

Nice twists that were ruined by bad narration.

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

Reviewed: 15-02-19

I thought this book was well written. Just your basic crime drama. Super explanatory and perhaps with too many characters but overall a nice, average story. I figured out most of the twists early on but that's because this book was very formulaic and by the numbers. It did not take away from my enjoyment of the story.

What did take away from my enjoyment was some of the narration. I'm a huge Clare Corbett fan and I usually get books because of her narration. As usual, she was great and the only bright spot in the book. Mark Meadows was not memorable but was ok. However, the other two female narrators kept taking me out of the story. They just didn't fit with rest of the book. I was especially frustrated with whoever narrated the Alex character. That dry, deadpan voice grated on my nerves. There was just no LIFE IN HER Voice. I don't understand how one voices an 18 year old girl but sounds like she's reading Bible scriptures or the weather forecast. My goodness, it's a story! Please don't ruin what could have been an enjoyable experience with such a monotonous tone. I got so frustrated that I just started skipping her parts in the book. Good grief.

I don't mind that the characters all felt a little underdeveloped and I didn't actually care about any of them (ha, maybe that's how the Alex narrator felt) because I really like unraveling the mystery and finding our whodunnit and why. But it would have been nice if there'd been one interesting character with whom I could relate or at least care about. I think the part about the officer (police chief?) whose wife died was a nice try but overall it felt forced as we never met the dying wife so... Ah well she died. That whole B story felt forced and I found it a bit tedious to get through. But I always hate when crime thrillers try to give us insight or back story for the detectives etc. I don't care about the detectives. I just want to know whodunnit and why. Give me back story on the victims and culprits and stop with the unnecessary filler information.

I like Fiona Barton's writing. Her story concepts are good and the summaries are usually enough to get me to buy the book. But I'm never quite satisfied in the end. There's just always something a little lacking in the story that leaves me feeling a bit empty.

  • Killing Cupid

  • By: Mark Edwards, Louise Voss
  • Narrated by: Bea Holland, Oliver J. Hembrough
  • Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 91
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 80
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 79

Alex Parkinson is in love with his writing tutor, Siobhan. He has never loved anyone like this, but how can he convince Siobhan that they are meant to be together? So Alex stalks her on Facebook and finds out where she lives, buys her presents using her own credit card and sends her messages telling her exactly what he wants to do to her. He breaks into her house, reads her diary and secretly listens to her while she takes a bath. Isn't that what all lovers do?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Twisted Reflections of Self-Awareness

  • By Simon on 26-11-16

Absolutely ridiculous

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

Reviewed: 06-02-19

The prologue tricked me into believing this would actually be a good book but as soon as I got into the story I quickly realized I'd just wasted my last credit on a book that would surely only succeed in helping me overcome my insomnia.

My biggest problem with the book is the two main characters using journal entries as a device to tell their stories. Really? Is anyone really keeping detailed journal entries these days that aren't blogs? Do they really talk about murder and stalking so openly? I find it hard to believe and, also a little too convenient for the plot. I accepted the whole diary thing in books like "Gone Girl" and "Sometimes I Lie" because those books were written in a way that made the diaries make sense without feeling forced. This book did not achieve that at all.

It was also completely distracting everytime we went from Alex's journal entries to the other girl. Neither character was very likeable or relatable but also the performances from both narrators were so jarringly different that it always took me a few minutes to get back into the story after each chapter.

Many parts of this book were just laughable and so far fetched I'm actually surprised I got through it. The end was such a let down. Was this a love story or a thriller? I honestly don't get it. I wasn't in suspense nor was I in love so maybe it was an entirely different story altogether.

What really happened here? I'm not sure but I'm starting to feel like the authors are completely overhyped.

  • Friends Like These

  • By: Sarah Alderson
  • Narrated by: Ellie Heydon, Jasmine Blackborow
  • Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 67
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 60
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 60

We all know someone like Becca. She has the job everyone wants, a designer wardrobe, a hot-shot lawyer boyfriend, holidays to exotic locations. And she flaunts her perfect life all over social media. It drove her colleague Lizzie mad, but she couldn't stop looking. They were never really friends - and yet Lizzie knew everything about her. Or did she? When chance and a terrible mistake pull Lizzie back into Becca's orbit years after they lost touch, she'll realise that you can't always believe what you see online...and that finding out the truth might be the worst thing you can do.   

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • The narration ruined the entire experience.

  • By D on 28-01-19

The narration ruined the entire experience.

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

Reviewed: 28-01-19

I knew this book would annoy me and it did not disappoint. I assumed the story would be very basic and that I would be able to figure out all the "twists" and "surprises" early on and I was ok with that. I was looking for something simple to help me fall asleep. But I found the narrator (I'm not sure if there were two? If so they sounded exactly alike) to be so annoying. All of her characters sounded just like her only they spoke with some kind of weird, slurred drawl like they were drunk or something. Seriously, why did The detectives, James and Autumn all sound alike?! It would have been fine for one character voice but she did it for ALL of the characters and that just about drove me mad. So I ended up hating all of the characters including the two main girls.

I also found this book to be repetitive. The interrogation screens were exactly the same and offered no new information. Honestly, you could have cut out the whole of chapter 25. Also, none of these characters were fully developed or likeable. I wanted this book to be fun, simple and surface but with the narration and repetitive writing I was mostly irritated.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The One

  • By: John Marrs
  • Narrated by: Clare Corbett, Vicky Hall, Simon Bubb, and others
  • Length: 11 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,233
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,139
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,135

How far would you go to find The One? One simple mouth swab is all it takes. A quick DNA test to find your perfect partner - the one you're genetically made for. A decade after scientists discover everyone has a gene they share with just one other person, millions have taken the test, desperate to find true love. Now, five more people meet their Match. But even soul mates have secrets. And some are more shocking - and deadlier - than others....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I absolutely loved this book!!

  • By Daisy on 02-06-17

Interesting concept but not well executed.

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

Reviewed: 24-01-19

I liked the idea of finding THE One Through a DNA match blah blah blah and I really would have enjoyed seeing how Ellie's story played out had it not kept getting interrupted by all the other storylines. There were too many different characters for me to care about and I kept getting confused about who was what and where. And because of the varying reactions different people had to their match I couldn't really imagine what to would feel like or be like to meet the person "genetically designed" for me. So that made it hard to fully accept this story or invest in any of the characters. This would have worked better had the author stuck with one storyline. Then things wouldn't have felt so rushed in the end. The pros and cons of having this app/program could have been shown throughout the story instead of explained in one chapter and we could have explored the idea of having a match would be better or worse for society. Instead, I followed the stories of different characters from different parts of Europe (American accents and accents for other cultures were sadly not represented in the story, Hmmm) and because those stories were rushed and not fully developed I was left feeling empty and not at all satisfied with their conclusions. Also, I didn't like any of the narrators except, of course, Clare Corbett, who is always a delight to listen to. I didn't totally hate this book but I'm not sure it was worth a credit. Will still try some of the author's other work.

  • The Good Samaritan

  • By: John Marrs
  • Narrated by: Elizabeth Knowelden, Charlotte Cole, Matthew Lloyd Davies, and others
  • Length: 11 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 218
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 200
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 201

The people who call End of the Line need hope. They need reassurance that life is worth living. But some are unlucky enough to get through to Laura. Laura doesn’t want them to hope. She wants them to die. Laura hasn’t had it easy: she's survived sickness and a difficult marriage only to find herself heading for forty, unsettled and angry. She doesn't love talking to people worse off than she is. She craves it. But now someone’s on to her - Ryan, whose world falls apart when his pregnant wife ends her life, hand in hand with a stranger.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Problem Like Laura

  • By Simon on 21-04-18

Finished in one night!

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

Reviewed: 24-01-19

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I haven't loved a book this much since Alice Feeny's "Sometimes I Lie." It's on the same level with its unreliable narrator and her mental issues leaving us to question alongside her what was real and what was not. There were so many twists and turns and every time I thought things would go one way they went another. Somehow Laura was both terrifying and sympathetic at the same time. And I still don't know what to believe about her back story and childhood experiences. I loved it to the end although I only enjoyed the performance of the main character. The other narrators were a bit flat for me and kept pulling me out of the story. But overall the best book I've listened to in a very long time. Would definitely read more of the author's work.

  • Because She Loves Me

  • By: Mark Edwards
  • Narrated by: Napoleon Ryan
  • Length: 11 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,003
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 908
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 903

When Andrew Sumner meets beautiful, edgy Charlie, he is certain his run of bad luck has finally come to an end. But as the two of them embark on an intense affair, Andrew wonders if his grasp on reality is slipping. Items go missing in his apartment. Somebody appears to be following him. And as misfortune and tragedy strike his friends and loved ones, Andrew is forced to confront the frightening truth.…

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Good ending

  • By Michael on 11-01-17

Hard to put down. But the end was disappointing.

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

Reviewed: 07-01-19

It's a well written book. I was definitely intrigued by the characters. But the bizarre wtf twist at the end totally put me off. I like a good twist ending but I don't like being outright lied to as was the case in this book. The narrator made it seem like had he made different choices in the beginning of the story it would have made a difference on the outcome, which wasn't the case. Should've just kept it simple instead of trying to be extra. But overall I enjoyed the book. I think the narrator was a bit annoying though. He kept pausing in weird places.

  • The Rumour

  • By: Lesley Kara
  • Narrated by: Clare Corbett, Sian Thomas, Roy McMillan
  • Length: 7 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 287
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 259
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 258

Rumour has it that a notorious child killer is living under a new identity, in their sleepy little town of Flinstead-on-Sea. Sally McGowan was just 10 years old when she stabbed little Robbie Harris to death 48 years ago - no photos of her exist since her release as a young woman. So who is the supposedly reformed killer who now lives among them? How dangerous can one rumour become? And how far will Joanna go to protect her loved ones from harm, when she realises what it is she’s unleashed?

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Can we ever have a book without hysterical women?

  • By Alice on 06-03-19

Pointless mild racism was off putting

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

Reviewed: 31-12-18

I love Clare Corbett and got this book for her performance. The story isn't much, I thought it sounded like an interesting concept but in the end it didn't really have that many surprises or high stakes. I found the main character to be annoying actually, what with her need to constantly comment on Michael's "black skin." If the author was trying to describe Michael she might have tried humanizing him. After all, people of color (Black people) don't actually have black skin. Descriptive words like caramel, honey, sun-kissed or even chocolate might have helped where Michael's description was concerned. Honestly, I don't know if it was the author who was revealing her own bias or if it was the author's intention to make her lead character so glaringly ignorant but it all made me very uncomfortable and took me out of the story. Even the part where the character hinted at her mom's possible racism was quite grating given none of that was actually vital to the story. Poor Michael wasn't even developed enough to warrant this much attention. He literally could've just been any random guy with a British accent and it wouldn't have mattered what he looked like since we never actually learn anything about him, his family, his background. Overall, the story was flat. I can't see anyone really caring that much about something that happened so long ago to the point where the culprit had to go in hiding. Completely unbelievable. Think I'll have to return this book.

3 of 8 people found this review helpful