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Liverpool, United Kingdom
  • 10
  • reviews
  • 51
  • helpful votes
  • 59
  • ratings
  • Infinite

  • By: Jeremy Robinson
  • Narrated by: R.C. Bray
  • Length: 10 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 295
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 281
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 279

The Galahad, a faster-than-light spacecraft, carries 50 scientists and engineers on a mission to prepare Kepler 452b, Earth's nearest habitable neighbor at 1400 light years away. With Earth no longer habitable and the Mars colony slowly failing, they are humanity's best hope. After 10 years in a failed cryogenic bed - body asleep, mind awake - William Chanokh's torture comes to an end as the fog clears, the hatch opens, and his friend and fellow hacker, Tom, greets him...by stabbing a screwdriver into his heart. This is the first time William dies.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • performance better than the story

  • By Nautilus on 02-02-18

Showed potential, then fell flat

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

Reviewed: 03-08-18

started well, very well read, turned a bit clunky but maybe acceptable, and then fell flat on its face. Snatches defeat from the jaws of victory.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Bone Clocks

  • By: David Mitchell
  • Narrated by: Jessica Ball, Leon Williams, Colin Mace, and others
  • Length: 24 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,029
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,877
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,870

One summer's day in 1984, teenage runaway Holly Sykes encounters a strange woman who offers a small kindness in exchange for 'asylum'. Decades will pass before Holly understands what sort of asylum the woman was seeking.… The Bone Clocks follows Holly's life: not so far out of the ordinary, yet punctuated by flashes of precognition, visits from people who emerge from thin air, and brief lapses in the laws of reality.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Too many different readers

  • By S. Hunt on 09-09-15

Breathtaking. Exquisite.

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

Reviewed: 04-03-17

Using several excellent first person narrators, Mitchell's book gripped me from the start. The complexity of the bigger stories .... a bitter conflict, and also a wider warning about the potential / likely consequences of the greed & selfishness of human society are also knitted together through the life of Holly, the sometimes lead character, sometimes key minor character, of this epic tale. Would make for a stunning re-imaging as a high concept TV or movie mini-series of up to eight hours which I would love some network to follow up on. The first part covers a pivotal moment in Holly's early life. But no spoilers here about how much more complex & far ranging issues gradually crystallize & build to a climax.

  • Annihilation

  • Southern Reach Trilogy, Book 1
  • By: Jeff VanderMeer
  • Narrated by: Carolyn McCormick
  • Length: 6 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 458
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 428
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 426

Area X has been cut off from the rest of the continent for decades. Nature has reclaimed the last vestiges of human civilisation. This is the twelfth expedition. Their group is made up of four women: An anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader; and our narrator, a biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain and collect specimens; to record all their observations, scientific and otherwise, of their surroundings and of one another; and, above all, to avoid being contaminated by Area X itself.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Poor reading

  • By Lawrie Roboto on 04-02-18

The Jury is out ....

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

Reviewed: 03-07-16

Having reached the end of the first book in the series I'd agree with one coolest I read that suggested it was a bit like Margaret Atwood re-writing 'Roadside Picnic". There were some aspects of the prose that I wasn't entirely happy with & feel a bit of editorial work would help. So would I recommend it? Yes, but with reservations. It's a flawed work, & a bit short. Kind of sketchy in places ..... tho to be fair this is better than being over-written, & the sketchiness the authir would reasonably argue was largely deliberate. An omnibus edition will probably follow in a couple of years & be more satisfying as such. I am interested enough to see if the author has the ideas to lead this to a satisfactory resolution, which was obviously never going to be the point with a first volume.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Ultima

  • By: Stephen Baxter
  • Narrated by: Kyle McCarley
  • Length: 21 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 348
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 323
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 324

Fresh from his latest collaboration with Terry Pratchett on the Long Earth sequence Stephen Baxter now returns to the mysteries and challanges first hinted at in his acclaimed novel PROXIMA. In PROXIMA we discovered ancient alien artifacts on the planet of Per Ardua - hatches that allowed us to step across light years of space as if we were stepping into another room. The universe opened up to us. Now in ULTIMA the consequences of this new freedom make themselves felt.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Why, I remember once on campaign...

  • By Alan Nixon on 22-09-16

Rewarding & epic sequel

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

Reviewed: 14-02-15

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

With some of the ideas & characters introduced in the prequel, Baxter raises the game by a significant factor, moving from a lethal universe to a lethal multiverse. There's a lot of characterisation ..... of both the multiverse's and the old & new characters. As the story evolves & the cast grows & increases in depth of characters & their interactions, there are some big ideas to take on. Sometimes the plot slows down to take time to build on the characters & scenes, but I felt this was done so well that, although I was desperate to move forward in the storyline, I was also relishing the very rounded sense of characters. As an example, I started off being really annoyed at the cliché's of the Roman characters, only to gradually grow very interested in them, as more and more nuances of their individual personalities were layered up. Please read this review in conjunction with my review of 'Proxima'

What did you like best about this story?

Gradual character development in an epic storyline that reaches a satisfactory conclusion.

Which character – as performed by Kyle McCarley – was your favourite?

The Centurion Quintus Fabius. But really there are lots of characters to appreciate.

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

I dedicated several days in a row on a beach to it, and in a few weeks I will go back to the start and go thru it again.

Any additional comments?

Proxima, the prequel, only hints at how much further Baxter takes this epic. I found it a delight, and hope, tho don't expect, that it could make a very successful TV boxed-set series. Think 'Game of Thrones' but based on hard science fiction & parallel universes, rather than fantasy. Not that I think that there is likely to be a producer/director team likely to have the balls to take on such a project, tho Joss Whedon could probably see it's potential, and do it justice, not least since the female characters are co-dominant with the male characters, & well fleshed out.

  • Proxima

  • By: Stephen Baxter
  • Narrated by: Kyle McCarley
  • Length: 17 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 529
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 497
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 498

The very far future: The Galaxy is a drifting wreck of black holes, neutron stars, chill white dwarfs. The age of star formation is long past. Yet there is life here, feeding off the energies of the stellar remnants, and there is mind, a tremendous Galaxy-spanning intelligence each of whose thoughts lasts a hundred thousand years. And this mind cradles memories of a long-gone age when a more compact universe was full of light...

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Compelling story, odd accent

  • By Gadget on 24-01-15

An appertiser for the (stronger) 'Ultima'

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

Reviewed: 14-02-15

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

Outstanding tho imperfect. There are aspects of the story that I thought were flawed (like the flawed selection of the colonists, which delivered dramatic tension, but was unlikely to have been the basis in reality. That said, this is Baxter in good form, setting up a bigger story that tips a nod & a wink to some of his favourite themes, but with a fresh re-imaging. There is also a couple of new concepts that, as ever, Baxter is ahead of the game in suggesting. That said, this is very much a taster for the epic sequel.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Uri ....He's complex & imperfect & I wanted the books to explore his character further than they did. There are old & new characters in the sequel/conclusion that become very interesting.

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

The reader's accent/pronunciation has been noted as 'not quite right' by several people. There were times when I found his voice quite uncomfortable. However I would like to give Kyle due credit, in that his voice seemed to fit so much better in the epic follow up book, 'Ultima'. I can't work out if this is because I adjusted, or he upped his game, or because the wider cast of characters & scenario's in the sequel better matched his voice. Probably a little of each of these.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

In an uncaring universe, time is running out.
Incidentally, for the sequel book, I would 'upgrade' the tag to:
In a lethal multiverse, time is running out.

Any additional comments?

Actually it very much feels like it should be a boxed set. You could easily make three seasons out of the two books. If it got past the pilot, and if it built an audience in Season 1 (the end of this book) there is potential for Baxter & a team of writers to expand this to up to 7 or more seasons, as the story could actually be enhanced by the addition of revisions to include other intermediate 'verses. And just to be grandiose, there is even potential to write beyond the end of the two books....tho it is important to note that both books do have appropriate and self-contained endings.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Solaris

  • The Definitive Edition
  • By: Stanislaw Lem, Bill Johnston - translator
  • Narrated by: Alessandro Juliani
  • Length: 7 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 787
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 645
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 646

At last, one of the world’s greatest works of science fiction is available - just as author Stanislaw Lem intended it. To mark the 50th anniversary of the publication of Solaris, Audible, in cooperation with the Lem Estate, has commissioned a brand-new translation, unabridged for the first time, and the first ever direct translation from the original Polish to English. Beautifully narrated by Alessandro Juliani ( Battlestar Galactica), Lem’s provocative novel comes alive for a new generation.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Blown away!

  • By Peter on 16-07-11

A pleasnt surprise

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-09-11

I struggled with reading this for my book club (even though I was familiar with the excellent film adaptation from a few years ago). So despite already owning an earlier edition as a book, I wanted to see if it worked any better on the new audible version. It does. It is still a flawed and dated book, but the new translation is exremely well rendered by Alessandro Juliani and may well deserve it's claim to be the definitive edition.

8 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • The Windup Girl

  • By: Paolo Bacigalupi
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 19 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 272
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 193
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 196

Anderson Lake is a company man, AgriGen's Calorie Man in Thailand. Under cover as a factory manager, Anderson combs Bangkok's street markets in search of foodstuffs thought to be extinct, hoping to reap the bounty of history's lost calories. There, he encounters Emiko...Emiko is the Windup Girl, a strange and beautiful creature. One of the New People, Emiko is not human; instead, she is an engineered being, creche-grown and programmed to satisfy the decadent whims of a Kyoto businessman.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great story - Narrator on Valium

  • By David on 06-04-14

Breathtaking

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-02-11

I'm two thirds the way through this novel, but I feel sufficiently confident thus far to post some comments. It's easy to appreciate why it has won significant awards.
Whereas I did not enjoy other works by the author, I may have to re-read and give them a second chance after this book.
It's hard not to use superlatives to describe 'Wind-up Girl'. From the start, this book is, in my subjective opinion, fascinating, stunning and visionary. I think some significant credit is also due to the excellent narration of Jonathan Davis (who, I'm noting, does a good job on several other books)
A twenty second century Bangkok is richly described and experienced through the lives of the central characters.
By moving between several characters whose lives intersect the novel keeps a freshness going between chapters.
It's not a hard science SF novel, in that the author does not get bogged down in the science of genomics, but neither does he commit any major howlers in his inferences and extrapolations. The characters are well fleshed and the story has a realistic progression. An entirely original work, though with perhaps more than a nod toward the works of other great authors such as Phillip.K.Dick. I anticipate that this will see a major cinematic adaptation at some point.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Stalin Ate My Homework

  • By: Alexei Sayle
  • Narrated by: Alexei Sayle
  • Length: 8 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 390
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 255
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 252

Very funny and (almost) stranger than Alexei's fiction....Alexei knew he was doomed to be different the day he was taken to see Sergei Eisentein's Alexander Nevsky instead of Walt Disney's Bambi. Born on the day that egg rationing came to an end, Alexei grew up with his parents and the Soviet Weekly. Each year they holidayed in Eastern Europe, where they were shown round locomotive factories and the sites of Nazi atrocities.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Punchy, Delightful

  • By John on 24-09-10

Punchy, Delightful

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 24-09-10

Alexei Sayle delivers a very accessible autobiography of his early life up to the age of 17. Using a very punchy writing style that doesn't dawdle or drag out stories, but rather packs in a series of coherent anecdotes that sometimes leave you wanting to know more, but certainly not getting lost in unnecessary detail and self indulgence. He is dry, honest, and self-effacing in his observations about himself. As such, I felt the book was packed full of pathos, and was often sad and touching. That said, I have rarely laughed out loud so much on the two long train journeys over which I listened to his captivating naration. Although he is at times quite ascorbic in his observations of his nearest and dearest, he is never cruel or bitter, except perhaps in the admissions of his own failings.
Full of the stuff that an ordinary flawed life is full of, and giving some account of how he would become such a unique anti-hero of the modern entertainment world. A wry and guilty pleasure. Not something I would normally listen to. So glad I did.

11 of 12 people found this review helpful

Slaughterhouse-Five or The Children's Crusade cover art
  • Slaughterhouse-Five or The Children's Crusade

  • A Duty Dance with Death
  • By: Kurt Vonnegut
  • Narrated by: Ethan Hawke
  • Length: 5 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 237
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 143
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 141

Kurt Vonnegut's absurdist classic introduces us to Billy Pilgrim, a man who becomes 'unstuck in time' after he is abducted by aliens from the planet Tralfamadore. In a plot-scrambling display of virtuosity, we follow Pilgrim simultaneously through all phases of his life, concentrating on his (and Vonnegut's) shattering experience as an American prisoner of war who witnesses the firebombing of Dresden.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Quite remarkable

  • By SDY on 09-11-12

Suprisingly accessible and enjoyable

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 28-05-10

I'd agree with previous reviewers that Ethan Hawke has nailed the naration perfectly. The book has a well written forward by the author also read by Ethan Hawke. I would also add that there are a couple of pleasant suprises hidden in the afterwards.
I'd previously only encountered the film of the book. Interesting to note that the film turned out to be a very fair representation of the book. I thought the book would be a struggle, but really, it's a breeze, at least in this spoken format, probably because KV had, prior to publication, gone thru so many re-writes as to make it not far off a masterpiece. So it goes!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Snow Crash

  • By: Neal Stephenson
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 17 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 913
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 722
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 725

Neal Stephenson is a blazing new force on the sci-fi scene. With the groundbreaking cyberpunk novel Snow Crash, he has "vaulted onto the literary stage." It weaves virtual reality, Sumerian myth, and just about everything in between with a cool, hip cybersensibility - in short, it is the gigathriller of the information age.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Perfect Blend

  • By R on 23-09-10

A Manga mini-whirlwind

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 19-01-10

No plot spoilers here. My book club recently agreed this as a 7.5/10. As an audiobook it's well read, and, when I bought it, extremely good value. The storyline has minor flaws and the characterisation is argueably two-dimensional..but the author does an excellent job of telling an entertaining yarn with thoughtful and witty situations and asides in an overall entertaining package. This would obviously make a great Manga comic, and that is, I'm told, exactly what the author intended. In that sense the lack of depth of characterisation is understandable....in cartoon form this would be easier to allow the reader to infer. You get a lot for your money here...with some of the details and asides that flesh out this concievable (slightly sardonic) dystopia being enough to constitute a novella on their own. In the end, it doesn't necessarily deliver more than it promises, but it certainly doesn't deliver less.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful