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Caroline Lawrence

London, England
  • 12
  • reviews
  • 24
  • helpful votes
  • 52
  • ratings
  • Ghost Wall

  • By: Sarah Moss
  • Narrated by: Christine Hewitt
  • Length: 3 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31

A story at once mythic and strikingly timely, Sarah Moss's Ghost Wall urges us to wonder how far we have come from the 'primitive minds' of our ancestors. Teenage Silvie is living in a remote Northumberland camp as an exercise in experimental archaeology. Her father is an abusive man, obsessed with recreating the discomfort, brutality and harshness of Iron Age life. Behind and ahead of Silvie's narrative is the story of a bog girl, a sacrifice, a woman killed by those closest to her, and as the hot summer builds to a terrifying climax, Silvie and the Bog girl are in ever more terrifying proximity.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Could not put this one down!

  • By janien on 10-11-18

Unputdownable!

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

Reviewed: 22-10-18

Unputdownable... if you know what I mean. I loved every minute of this fast-paced and beautifully written account of experimental Iron Age archaeology gone awry.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Lincoln in the Bardo

  • By: George Saunders
  • Narrated by: Nick Offerman, David Sedaris, George Saunders, and others
  • Length: 7 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 670
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 619
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 619

Unfolding in a graveyard over the course of a single night, narrated by a dazzling chorus of voices, Lincoln in the Bardo is a literary experience unlike any other, for no one but Saunders could conceive it. February 1862. The Civil War is less than one year old. The fighting has begun in earnest, and the nation has begun to realize it is in for a long, bloody struggle. Meanwhile, President Lincoln's beloved 11-year-old son, Willie, dies and is laid to rest in a Georgetown cemetery.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Mistake

  • By L on 13-07-17

A stunning memento mori

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

Reviewed: 21-03-17

A stunning, surreal, and sometimes almost unbearably moving meditation on the human condition. The audio version with its faintly barking dog, cawing crows, sighing wind, period music and with every one of the 166 narrators perfect and distinctive, is a tour de force. They say that more books have been written about Abraham Lincoln than about any other historical person apart from Jesus Christ. Was there ever a man as tragic and noble as Lincoln? Sublime.

8 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Out of Africa & Shadows on the Grass

  • By: Isak Dineson
  • Narrated by: Susan Lyons
  • Length: 16 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15

In this audiobook, the author of Seven Gothic Tales gives a true account of her life on her plantation in Kenya. She tells with classic simplicity of the ways of the country and the natives; of the beauty of the Ngong Hills and coffee trees in blossom; of her guests, from the Prince of Wales to Knudsen, the old charcoal burner, who visited her; of primitive festivals; of big game that were her near neighbors - lions, rhinos, elephants, zebras, buffaloes; and of Lulu, the little gazelle who came to live with her, unbelievably ladylike and beautiful.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Perfect for Africa!

  • By Caroline Lawrence on 18-01-17

Perfect for Africa!

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

Reviewed: 18-01-17

Another reviewer complained about the reader but I thought she was perfect. This is a beautifully written and fascinating story but be warned: it's not the love story they made the movie into!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Kenya - Culture Smart!

  • The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
  • By: Jane Barsby
  • Narrated by: Peter Noble
  • Length: 3 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2

Culture Smart! provides essential information, ensuring that you arrive at your destination aware of basic manners, common courtesies, and sensitive issues. These concise guides tell you what to expect, how to behave, and how to establish a rapport with your hosts. This inside knowledge will enable you to steer clear of embarrassing gaffes and mistakes, feel confident in unfamiliar situations, and develop trust, friendships, and successful business relationships.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • A bit dry but some useful info...

  • By Caroline Lawrence on 29-12-16

A bit dry but some useful info...

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

Reviewed: 29-12-16

This audiobook about Kenya was a bit dry but it did include some useful info...

  • The Sorrows of Young Werther

  • By: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  • Narrated by: Jim Donaldson
  • Length: 5 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 10
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 10

The Sorrows of Young Werther was Goethe's first major success, turning him from an unknown into a celebrated author practically overnight. Napoleon Bonaparte considered it one of the great works of European literature. He thought so highly of it that he wrote a soliloquy in Goethe's style in his youth and carried Werther with him on his campaigning to Egypt.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Best before middle age

  • By Mr on 16-08-17

Foreword great, story dated, audio badly read

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

Reviewed: 07-09-14

Would you try another book written by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe or narrated by Jim Donaldson?

Goethe: yes. Donaldson: no.

This was a massive best-seller in the 18th century and I wanted to see what the fuss was about. The introduction is brilliant. The story itself is overly slow and melodramatic for modern tastes. It might have been more enjoyable if the reader had taken a bit more care to study passages first.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Charlotta -- beautiful and full of life -- but a bit one-dimensional.

What didn’t you like about Jim Donaldson’s performance?

He often uses the wrong phrasing which doesn't help when you're trying to understand prose written a few centuries ago. And he often reads one person's dialogue in another characters voice. In addition, words like "foliage" and "whilst" and the German word "Herr" are consistently mispronounced, which is very distracting.

Could you see The Sorrows of Young Werther being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

It would need to be transposed to a different time period to be a success as a movie or TV series.

Any additional comments?

Choose a more modern translation and get someone like Alfred Molina to read it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Ben-Hur

  • By: Lew Wallace
  • Narrated by: Lloyd James
  • Length: 23 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3

An American classic, Ben-Hur is both a vivid historical epic and the powerful story of one man's spiritual journey from slavery to vengeance to redemption. Born the son of a Jewish nobleman, Ben-Hur is condemned to the galleys for life for accidentally dislodging a piece of tile that falls on the Roman procurator. He is betrayed by his best friend, manages to escape his imprisonment, and gains revenge and glory before the cheering multitudes in the chariot races at the Roman circus in Antioch.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Spoiled by choppy editing

  • By Caroline Lawrence on 18-12-13

Spoiled by choppy editing

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

Reviewed: 18-12-13

Would you recommend Ben-Hur to your friends? Why or why not?

This recording was very frustrating as every edit chops off part of a word and pulls you out of the story.

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

The reader also mispronounces quite a few words. Sestercii is wrongly pronounced Sess-ter-see-eye instead of Sess-ter-see! I want my money back!

Any additional comments?

A recording this shoddy should be highly discounted!

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Volcano Lover

  • A Romance
  • By: Susan Sontag
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Van Dyck
  • Length: 14 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7

The Volcano Lover follows the fortunes of a British ambassador, the ravishing woman he marries, and the young British admiral with whom she falls in love. Set in 18th-century Naples and based on the lives of Sir William Hamilton, his celebrated wife Emma, and Lord Nelson, the novel is peopled with many of the great figures of the day.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Splendid Prose

  • By Leon on 25-11-16

The Passion of Hamilton, Nelson, Emma & Vesuvius

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

Reviewed: 12-11-13

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

The "Volcano Lover" of the title is Sir William Hamilton, the envoy from England to Naples in the late 18th century. He is a collector and scholar, and soon fascinated by Vesuvius looming across the Bay. He makes many excursions up its flanks and watches when it erupts. The story really kicks in during part two when he meets Emma. She becomes his wife and soon Admiral Horatio Lord Nelson's mistress. Some brilliant descriptions of Naples under the French, life at sea and the fascinating passion of big Emma and little Nelson for each other, and their affection for her husband. The quirky style never explicitly names the main characters but calls Hamilton "The Cavaliere", Emma "The Cavaliere's Wife" and Nelson "The Hero". Sontag's staccato style takes a little getting used to but is worth the effort. Apart from some mispronunciations, Jennifer Van Dyck reads very well.

Lonesome Dove cover art
  • Lonesome Dove

  • By: Larry McMurtry
  • Narrated by: Lee Horsley
  • Length: 36 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 141
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 117
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 118

Larry McMurtry's American epic, set in the late 19th century, tells the story of a cattle drive from Texas to Montana, a drive that represents not only a daring foolhardy adventure, but a part of the American Dream for everyone involved.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A wonderful surprise

  • By Lindsey on 15-12-12

Uva uvam vivendo varia fit!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 23-11-12

36 hours of pure pleasure. This is the perfect reading of a superb book. If you liked the TV series and/or book this audio version is a wonderful way of taking a dust bath in the sagebrush dry humour of Larry McMurtry's world. It will make you grin so much you'd think you'd "just discovered teeth." As amusing, intriging, poignant and unpredictable as Lonesome Dove's Latin motto: Uva uvam vivendo varia fit.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Iliad

  • By: Homer, Stephen Mitchell (translator)
  • Narrated by: Alfred Molina
  • Length: 16 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 18
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 16

A man seduces another's wife then kidnaps her. The husband and his brother get a gang together to steal her back and take revenge. The woman regrets being seduced and wants to escape whilst the man's entourage resent the position they have been placed in. Yet the battle lines have been drawn and there is no going back... Not the plot of the latest Hollywood thriller, but the basis of The Iliad - the Greek classic that details the war between the Greeks and the Trojans after the kidnapping of Helen of Sparta.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Tedious Brilliance

  • By Jason on 06-06-14

Brilliant intro; Fab translation; Great reader

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-02-12

A wonderful translation of Homer's epic poem read by Alfred Molina, but for me the best thing was translator Stephen Mitchell's long introduction on what makes this book such a Classic. Inspirational!

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Right Ho, Jeeves

  • By: P. G. Wodehouse
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Cecil
  • Length: 6 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 221
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 174
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 175

When Tubby informs his fiancee that her new hat makes her look like a Pekingese, she is naturally incensed. But it is when he questions the validity of the story of her narrow escape from a beastly, hungry shark that the engagement is firmly called off. But love is in the air for Gussie Fink-Nottle. He abandons his beloved newts to court the new object of his affections, the dreamy and romantic Miss Madeline Bassett. He is dressed as Mephistopheles...and it appears that even the Devil can rely on Jeeves.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Absolutely wonderful

  • By A G R on 03-02-13

Absolutely spiffing!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-07-10

Jonathan Cecil gets five out of five stars for a flawlessly enthusiastic reading of this Jeeves & Wooster story. He even gets a Stephen Fry/Hugh Laurie thing going for those who loved the ITV miniseries from the 90's. Absolutely spiffing!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful