LISTENER

Kimberley

THORNTON CLEVELEYS, United Kingdom
  • 7
  • reviews
  • 1
  • helpful vote
  • 24
  • ratings
  • The Axeman's Jazz

  • By: Ray Celestin
  • Narrated by: Christopher Ragland
  • Length: 13 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 91
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 90
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 90

New Orleans, 1919. As a dark serial killer - The Axeman - stalks the city, three individuals set out to unmask him. As Michael, Luca and Ida each draw closer to discovering the killer's identity, the Axeman himself will issue a challenge to the people of New Orleans: play jazz or risk becoming the next victim. And as the case builds to its crescendo, the sky will darken and a great storm will loom over the city.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Promising story but poor narration

  • By Christine on 02-09-16

The best murder mystery I've ever experienced

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

Reviewed: 23-04-16

It's a slow burner, but once this plot got going I couldn't stop listening. Superbly told and suspenseful right up to the very last moment, with all the history and charm of New Orleans.

  • Magyk

  • Septimus Heap, Book One
  • By: Angie Sage
  • Narrated by: Allan Corduner
  • Length: 12 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 428
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 249
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 247

Who is Septimus Heap? A lost child? An ordinary hero? A powerful wizard? The Magyk begins here. The first book in this enthralling new series by Angie Sage leads listeners on a fantastic journey filled with quirky characters and magykal charms, potions, and spells. Magyk is an original story of lost and rediscovered identities, rich with humor and heart.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Septimus Heap - Brilliant!

  • By Peter on 27-11-08

Undeniably charming story

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

Reviewed: 22-07-15

Though there were parts of the story that I felt were over-described and under-described respectively, this first book of the Septimus Heap series had an utter charm that was difficult to criticize. Kids will adore the book for sure, and adults who appreciate whimsy and wry humour will forgive the predictable storyline and fall into the journey. The narrator's voices are pleasantly rural for the most part, making for a distinctive and interesting narrative. Overall, an easy and enjoyable indulgence of a book.

  • Amarok

  • By: Angela Townsend
  • Narrated by: Kevin Young
  • Length: 5 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1

Emma's life has been hell since she moved from sunny California to a remote Alaskan town. Abandoned by her father and living with the guilt of causing her mother's death, she makes a desperate dash for freedom from her abusive stepfather. But her planned escape leads to further captivity in a world beyond her imagination. Dragged across the tundra by an evil mountain man and his enormous black wolf, she learns that love can be found even in the most unexpected places.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Heartbreaking, exciting and totally unique.

  • By Kimberley on 18-07-14

Heartbreaking, exciting and totally unique.

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

Reviewed: 18-07-14

As an audiobook, I was totally transported to Alaska in Angela J Townsend's Amarok. I knew I would enjoy it as I already love this author's work, but I was unprepared for how startlingly unique this storyline is. I can honestly say I've never read a book like it before and I relished every moment of this tale of love, hardship, magic and faith. Simply breathtaking.

  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone

  • By: Laini Taylor
  • Narrated by: Khristine Hvam
  • Length: 12 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 562
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 428
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 428

In general, Karou has managed to keep her two lives in balance. On the one hand, she's a 17-year-old art student in Prague; on the other, errand-girl to a monstrous creature who is the closest thing she has to family. Raised half in our world, half in 'Elsewhere', she has never understood Brimstone's dark work - buying teeth from hunters and murderers - nor how she came into his keeping. She is a secret even to herself, plagued by the sensation that she isn't whole.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • ASTONISHING

  • By @Scattered_Laura on 11-10-11

A writer to love for the rest of your life

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

Reviewed: 08-02-14

If you read one fantasy book this year PLEASE make it this one.
I saw a lot of people raving over this story and when it appeared on my recommendations, I decided to get myself the audio version from Audible and delve right in to Karou's world. And I am SO glad I did. As with most audio books it has taken me a while to reach the end of this book, but now that I have: I have to say that 12.5 hours was NOT enough. I'm so glad there are sequels!!!
Daughter of Smoke and Bone is an epic story of fantastic beasts, an incredible war and an epic, mysterious love story that just keeps unfolding, showing you more hidden gems of amazing writing and talented storytelling in every single chapter. Characterisation is superb: even the characters that I hate, I still had to love their creation and existence (Thiago for one). The human and non-human characters are all so relatable and perfectly described so that I could picture the whole adventure really clearly in my mind.
I know from experience that this book can come off looking like just another YA fantasy love story from the outside, but once you're inside this story it's a whole 'nother thing! This book is a whole world to step into that you'll never want to leave: beautiful, joyous, tragic and so powerful that I'll be thinking about Karou, Brimstone and Akiva for a very long time to come! I can't wait to get some more storytelling from Laini Taylor - she is a writer to love for the rest of your life.
I would also like to particularly mention the outrageous talent of the narrator of this book, superb voices that really made me feel every iota of emotion in the story and did wonders to really clearly characterise each individual.

  • Angus MacBain and the Island of Sleeping Kings

  • By: Angela Townsend
  • Narrated by: Molly Elston
  • Length: 6 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1

Angus MacBain is unaware that his ancestral roots hail from an ancient sect of Scottish kings. When his dying grandfather gives him a dragon pendant, thirteen-year-old Angus learns of a legacy that will take him across an ocean to the island of Iona and thrust him into a heritage he did not know he had. He soon discovers that his mother, whom he had believed dead, is really a seal fairy, in hiding from a dangerous enemy.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • If you loved Harry Potter, say hello to Angus!

  • By Kimberley on 02-01-14

If you loved Harry Potter, say hello to Angus!

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

Reviewed: 02-01-14

I listened to the audiobook of this novel via audible and I am so glad I chose to spend December's credit on it! The American narrator does her absolute best with the English and Scottish accents, though being a Brit myself it took me a while to get used to her BBC style pronunciation. The character's voices are well delivered and it was a thoroughly enjoyable way to hear the story told.

As for the story itself, I was thrilled from start to finish by the fast paced action set in a cleverly crafted world of Celtic mythology. Angela J. Townsend has taken familiar and favourite fantasy concepts and reworked them into her own version of Scots myth that is inventive and totally enthralling. The story constantly keeps you guessing as to what Angus is going to uncover next and there was never a dull moment in the whole journey.

The character I enjoyed the most was Fane. He is enigmatic and charming, perfectly filling the role of the exposition character with whimsy and amusement. Every time he re-emerged into the story I was thrilled to see him and he never let me down for entertainment value. Also fabulous was Vanora, an uppity girl who befriends Angus right from the off and sticks by him with a thirst for adventure. She was an excellent addition to the plot and their affection for each other was endearing and sweet.

Angus himself holds a special place in my heart because he is not a perfect hero by any means. He is a sweet boy who's well aware of his faults and being privy to his innermost fears was heartbreaking and wonderful to read. Out of character for me, actually, to get teary over books, but in the last two chapters of the tale I really found myself choking back a little sob because I had connected so much with him during the story.

My only regret is that there isn't another book to carry straight on with, although this tale was wrapped up perfectly at the end to keep you satisfied as you wait for more. If you're a fan of Harry Potter then the spirit of this book will definitely enthral you, though I dare say it's a much faster ride to enjoy and the Celtic flavour gives it a cultural value that I would prize far higher than 'The Philosopher's Stone'. In terms of a first book in a series, I enjoyed Angus MacBain and the Island of Sleeping Kings more than Harry Potter, so when Angela J. Townsend continues this series I can only anticipate with glee how much more fabulous it can get!

  • Beautiful Creatures

  • By: Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl
  • Narrated by: Kevin T. Collins
  • Length: 17 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 316
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 250
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 254

Is falling in love the beginning...or the end? In Ethan Wate’s hometown there lies the darkest of secrets. There is a girl. Slowly, she pulled the hood from her head. Green eyes, black hair. Lena Duchannes. There is a curse. On the 16th Moon, the 16th Year, the Book will take what it’s been promised. And no one can stop it. In the end, there is a grave. Lena and Ethan become bound together by a deep, powerful love. But Lena is cursed and on her 16th birthday, her fate will be decided. Ethan never even saw it coming.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • An identity crisis of a book, with audio-problems

  • By Elinor Dashwood on 16-04-13

SUPERB version, better than actually reading it!

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

Reviewed: 29-09-13

Would you consider the audio edition of Beautiful Creatures to be better than the print version?

Yes definitely. It is a terribly long book to actually read, but listening in bursts with this amazing narrator made all the difference to my experience. This is how an audio book SHOULD be done, I was they were all like this!

What did you like best about this story?

My full review from Goodreads and Amazon is in the comments section below, but in all honesty there wasn't a single thing about this book that I didn't like. It's a superb start to what I hope will continue to be an exciting series and a world that I am already desperate to get lost in again with this stunning narration.

Have you listened to any of Kevin T. Collins’s other performances? How does this one compare?

Not yet no, but on the basis of this book I am very much looking forward to listening to all the others in the Caster Chronicles series, and after that I will be seeking Kevin T Collins out to see what other stories he has read! I could listen to that voice forever.

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

Don't watch this film, listen to the audio book!
The film version of this book does not even begin to compare to the novel itself. If you want a richer experience than just the print version, don't go buy the film, come and get THIS instead.

Any additional comments?

My review from Goodreads:

I listened to the audio version of this book as narrated by Kevin T. Collins, and I'm so glad I did. To be honest I could have happily just carried on listening to the lives of Ethan, Lena and the casters every week for the rest of my life, there was something so joyous and comforting in this writing that it always made my smile like an idiot whilst I was listening in. You can imagine how glad I am that I have over 50 more hours to listen to with the sequels!!

Okay so first to the characters. I am in love with Macon Ravenwood. That is all. I have never encountered such a perfectly formed, savant yet damaged gentleman in literature. He is a tremendous triumph of characterisation and a fellow who will stay with me for a long time after reading. The other cast of characters have also been tremendous, especially the Sisters and their squirrels! I don't usually connect with the hero of the story, but Ethan was one heck of a protagonist with a stunningly honest teenage boy voice that I found refreshing and funny.

As for the plot, I now understand why people say the screenwriters butchered it in the film! This plot was so much better than the filmic one and made so much more sense. I loved the way it unfolded and connected all previous parts of the tale. I know you might look at it in the book store and think 'oh, that book's too long for me', but I felt every part of this plot was rich, enjoyable and totally necessary in order to have the full experience you get at the end of the events.

This book is rated 5 STARS and highly recommended, go get a copy and get lost in the world of the casters!

As for me, I'm on to audiobook 2!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Cabin Pressure, The Complete Series 1

  • By: John Finnemore
  • Narrated by: Stephanie Cole, Roger Allam, Benedict Cumberbatch
  • Length: 2 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1,728
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,278
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1,273

John Finnemore (Dead Ringers & Mitchell & Webb) has written this brilliant new sitcom starring Stephanie Cole, Roger Allam & Benedict Cumberbatch. Cabin Pressure is set in a small airline business. The flipside of the glamorous world of international airlines.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Cabin Pressure

  • By Elizabeth on 14-07-09

Sublime comedy

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

Reviewed: 03-09-13

Would you consider the audio edition of Cabin Pressure, The Complete Series 1 to be better than the print version?

There is no print version, so definitely!

What was one of the most memorable moments of Cabin Pressure, The Complete Series 1?

Douglas and Martin's first address to the passengers! Unmissably funny!

What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

All the voice actors are superb comedians and hilariously witty.

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

The worst things don't happen at sea, they happen at MJN Air.

Any additional comments?

Don't start listening to this show unless you are ready to hurtle through 4 series of amazing writing and hilarious comedy!