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Shapfell

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Riveting story and narration.

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

Reviewed: 12-11-19

I found myself binge listening to this book. Although I had heard of i, and thought I knew the story, it turns out not. Hardy has way of drawing the reader into the story, weaving the characters together like a tapestry. Tony Britton brings those characters to life brilliantly. He takes on the dialect of each character so convincingly that at times I happily floundered in understanding of what had been said. But that added to the atmosphere and authenticity of those times. I have become a real fan of this author and now also of the narrator. Highly recommended to all who love the English prose and classic stories.

Gripping Story

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

Reviewed: 03-02-19

When I read the first book in the Jackman and Ellis series I was a bit disappointed in the lack of character development. But soon it was the story that drew me in and so listened to next two books before this one. I feel like I am beginning to know the characters now but that is almost irrelevant as the story line is so gripping. Can’t wait for the next in the series.

Riveting

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

Reviewed: 17-01-19

Riveting from start to finish. She comes across as a very intelligent and determined person who although coming from humble background and a poor area of Chicago she never forgot any of this on her rise to be one of Americas First Ladies. Her family sacrificed a lot for both her and her brother to gain a good education and she took that opportunity to be 'good enough' and to make them proud. Although very different in personality from her husband it is obvious there is a great deal of love and respect between them that allows them their space to achieve their own goals as well as joint ones. Loved this book.

Harrowing story

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

Reviewed: 01-11-18

It’s a harrowing story, well written, and with superb narration by Richard Armitage. It’s a book that should be used in schools so that children know the horrors of happened during a war where so many people of all faiths and countries lost their lives. It also shows the human will to survive against unbelievable cruelty and inhumanity.

Better as the Book

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

Reviewed: 14-06-18

I read this in book form several years ago and enjoyed it so much I decided to listen to it in Audible. Somehow it didn't have the same impact. I found the narrator quite lazy, as if she was reading it to herself. I became bored very early on, couldn't get involved in the story, and decided I would probably not finish it in its Audible form. The two stories got lost in Audible somehow. It needed someone of the calibration of narrator Davina Porter to bring the characters to life.

Excellent

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

Reviewed: 28-03-18

Peter May goes back to Shetland in this book. He obviously has more affinity with this place than Bejing in the China Series. I was enthralled from the opening storyline. A man who has no memory of who he is is not an original theme but Mr May works it in well.
I love the way he weaves in actual historical facts which results in me googling them to learn more. I feel educated as well as entertained.
Peter Forbes narration is near perfect, as in the Blackhouse Books.
Having just listened to the first book in the China Series it's hard to believe the same author wrote both. This one is a gem.

Not His Best

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

Reviewed: 28-03-18

I'm a big fan of Peter May after reading his Blackhouse Trilogy and I can say that if I had read this first I would have missed out on reading the others. The narrator, Peter Forbes, has a mammoth task trying, and failing, to deliver American and Chines accents to perform as well as English. For a Scotsman, with a wonderful brogue, his deadpan style delivery just doesn't pull it off. The characters are not interesting enough and I was bored well before the end.
I realise these China Series books were written earlier than Blackhouse Books but there is non of the compelling storyline, or development of characters, that I had expected

Brilliant Narration

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

Reviewed: 21-03-18

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

Compelling. Evocative. Spellbinding

Who was your favorite character and why?

Finn McLeod of course. A flawed and troubled character who somehow draws us in to his world of dark and troubled past

Have you listened to any of Peter Forbes’s other performances? How does this one compare?

All three Blackhouse books. Can't think of anyone doing a better job.

Any additional comments?

A fabulous trilogy of books that I have read and listened to and still want more.