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Lee

Newton Abbot, United Kingdom
  • 15
  • reviews
  • 35
  • helpful votes
  • 87
  • ratings
  • Catalyst (Star Wars)

  • A Rogue One Novel
  • By: James Luceno
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 11 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,297
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,213
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,214

The must-have prequel novel to Rogue One: A Star Wars Story - the upcoming film, set before the events of Star Wars: A New Hope, that reveals the untold story of the rebel effort to steal the plans to the Death Star!

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Scene setter

  • By Tad on 12-12-16

Solid prequel to Rogue One

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

Reviewed: 08-01-17

I thoroughly enjoyed CATALYST.

I don't usually read/listen to this sort of thing, I have to say but I enjoyed Rogue One and the idea of spending some more time in that world was too good to turn down.

This is a sombre, political tale about the Orson Krennic's manipulation of Galen Erso, a good man duped into creating an Imperial Super-Weapon. I've read that some found it boring but to me, sustained space battles and explosions are less interesting to listen to than the duplicitous manoeuvrings of Krennic and Tarkin, the struggles of the Erso family and their conscience or the realisation of creeping Imperial totalitarianism.

The story, by some necessity, ends with more of a whimper than a bang but does it with enough elegance and charm that it just about satisfies. It did feel slightly rushed after the slow pace that preceded and could have been handled a little more dramatically.

I feel I need to pick up Rogue One's adaptation to really get a sense of completion but as a companion piece, it's a solid and fascinating story and I'd recommend picking it up.

The narrator: Jonathan Davis was excellent!! Hints at accents and intonations of the established characters really helped make the story come alive. The whole listen was incredibly clear and entertaining throughout. 5 stars.

  • Murder

  • By: Sarah Pinborough
  • Narrated by: Steven Crossley
  • Length: 10 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 39
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 38
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 37

Dr Thomas Bond, Police Surgeon, is still recovering from when Jack the Ripper haunted the streets of London - and a more malign enemy hid in his shadow. Bond and the others who worked on the gruesome case are still stalked by its legacies, both psychological and tangible. Now the bodies of children are being pulled from the Thames, and Bond is about to become inextricably linked with an uncanny, undying enemy.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gruesome, creepy and satisfying

  • By Beccameriel on 31-03-15

The Mayhem Continues...

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

Reviewed: 02-06-16

Where does Murder rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It was very good. I wasn't really intending to listen to it at the time and put it on to remind myself of the world in which it's set as it's a sequel to Mayhem. I couldn't switch it off and now I've just finished it. Excellent.

What other book might you compare Murder to, and why?

It's a sequel to Mayhem so there's that but it's set in the familiar world of Victorian England, around the time of the Ripper and Torso murders. For that, I'd recommend: 'They All Love Jack' and 'The Autobiography of Jack The Ripper'.

Which character – as performed by Steven Crossley – was your favourite?

The main character, Dr Bond but also Andrews - though the whole cast was portrayed excellently.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I don't want to give anything away so I can't really respond other than to say the Author isn't afraid to kill her darlings.

Any additional comments?

Credit worthy indeed!

  • The Night Stalker

  • The Life and Crimes of One of America's Deadliest Killers
  • By: Philip Carlo
  • Narrated by: Jeff Harding
  • Length: 22 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 135
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 117
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 117

Twenty-five years after Richard Ramirez left 13 dead, paralysing the city of Los Angeles, his name is still synonymous with fear, torture, and sadistic murder. Philip Carlo's US best seller The Night Stalker, based on three years of meticulous research and extensive interviews with Ramirez, reveals the killer and his horrifying crimes to be even more chilling than anyone could have imagined.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent True Crime. Shocking and Insightful.

  • By Lee on 12-03-14

Excellent True Crime. Shocking and Insightful.

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

Reviewed: 12-03-14

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

Definitely. It was horrifying at times but it would have done a disservice to the victims to attempt to soften Ramirez' vile acts. The writing moved along at a pace and a lot of it kept you on the edge of your seat but it never felt at the expense of detail.

What did you like best about this story?

The first part of the book, the investigation, that was fascinating and shocking. The second part, the court case, sagged a little due to the length of the trial but was still always fascinating.

What does Jeff Harding bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

He was excellent and brought a lot of heart to the reading. Parts of the book, like the trial, could have dragged with a lesser reader but he brought the whole thing to life, giving characters voices and personalities that really created a sense of you 'seeing' it happen.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The crimes themselves were horrendous and hearing what he put people through and the repercussions throughout their families, was heartbreaking at times. Almost as shocking were the seemingly endless line of women who wanted to be with Ramirez, despite knowing what he'd done. That was a fascinating and quite disturbing insight into the human
psyche.

Any additional comments?

Excellent true crime, in depth, exciting, intriguing and expertly read and written. Highly recommended.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • All the President's Men

  • By: Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein
  • Narrated by: Richard Poe
  • Length: 12 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 200
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 175
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 173

Beginning with the story of a simple burglary at Democratic headquarters and then continuing with headline after headline, Bernstein and Woodward kept the tale of conspiracy and the trail of dirty tricks coming - delivering the stunning revelations and pieces in the Watergate puzzle that brought about Nixon's scandalous downfall. Their explosive reports won a Pulitzer Prize for The Washington Post and toppled the president. This is the book that changed America.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow!

  • By Lee on 14-12-13

Wow!

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

Reviewed: 14-12-13

Where does All the President's Men rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Right up there. 5 stars.

What was one of the most memorable moments of All the President's Men?

The whole thing is memorable. Tense, intriguing and exciting and of course, very concerning.

What about Richard Poe’s performance did you like?

It was perfect. Clear and easy on the ear, it's read with an unhurried authority and weight that matched the seriousness and tension of the tale.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It's pretty breathtaking and heartbreaking too. It also makes you wonder who the new Woodward and Bernstein's would be these days and if any newspaper or publisher would have the belief and balls to stand by such reporting. The Washington Post folk were heroes.

Any additional comments?

I wasn't sure about getting this audiobook as I was already familiar with the story but the writing style and narration is so fascinating from the get go that I was hooked and cannot wait to recommend this to everyone I know. The 12 hr book just flew by without ever outstaying it's welcome. It really was excellent. Go listen!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Ice Man

  • Confessions of a Mafia Contract Killer
  • By: Philip Carlo
  • Narrated by: Michael Prichard
  • Length: 19 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 230
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 216
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 215

Top Mafia hit man. Doting father. For 30 years, Richard 'the Ice Man' Kuklinski led a double life beyond anything ever seen on The Sopranos, becoming one of the most notorious professional assassins in American history while hosting neighbourhood barbecues in suburban New Jersey. Kuklinski was Sammy 'the Bull' Gravano's partner in the killing of Paul Castellano, John Gotti hired him to kill his neighbour and he was also intimately involved in the killing of Jimmy Hoffa. He conducted this sadistic business with cold-hearted intensity, never disappointing his customers.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A must listen for true crime fans

  • By Frank Cummins on 12-12-18

An excellent listen - if you can take it.

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

Reviewed: 14-12-13

Where does The Ice Man rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Very good. It was very interesting and very gruesome but I did start to wonder about the veracity of some claims towards the end.

What does Michael Prichard bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Michael Prichard was excellent. He brought the whole thing to life and the distinctions between characters were clear and well judged.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

It's a hard listen at times due to the nature of the crimes but a glimpse into the underworld and mind of a truly cold killer is darkly fascinating. It was very easy to get lost in the story and to feel a sense of real unease when Kuklinski started to get ticked off with someone.

Any additional comments?

Some of the claims made felt like they were starting to stretch reality a little bit, especially his dispatching of folks by rats and sharks that supposedly left zero trace. Also, the writer seems to rephrase the exact same paragraph when it comes to talking about Kuklinski's wife and kids. By the end of the book it was getting a little ridiculous. That said, I couldn't put it down and found it compelling listening. I would definitely recommend.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • John Wayne Gacy: Defending a Monster

  • By: Sam L. Amirante, Danny Broderick
  • Narrated by: Robin Bloodworth
  • Length: 14 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 77
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 68
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 68

“Sam, could you do me a favor?” Thus begins a story that has now become part of America's true-crime hall of fame. It is a gory, grotesque tale befitting a Stephen King novel. It is also a David and Goliath saga - the story of a young lawyer fresh from the public defender's office whose first client in private practice turns out to be the worst serial killer in our nation's history. This is a gripping true crime narrative that reenacts the gruesome killings and the famous trial that shocked a nation.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Horrible writing

  • By Kelvin on 18-07-13

Fascinating

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-03-13

A grim but fascinating story with real insight into the crimes, the US legal system and Gacy himself.

The book lost some momentum towards the end but on the whole it was a great listen and very well narrated. Recommended to anyone interested in True Crime.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Them: Adventures with Extremists

  • By: Jon Ronson
  • Narrated by: Jon Ronson
  • Length: 8 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,594
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,423
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,413

Them began as a book about different kinds of extremists, but after Jon had got to know some of them - Islamic fundamentalists, neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klansmen - he found that they had one oddly similar belief: that a tiny, shadowy elite rule the world from a secret room. In Them, Jon sets out, with the help of the extremists, to locate that room. The journey is as creepy as it is comic, and along the way Jon is chased by men in dark glasses, unmasked as a Jew in the middle of a Jihad training camp, and more.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Well-read, witty and weird

  • By Anna on 23-12-12

Excellent

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-02-13

This was the first book I read by Jon Ronson so it's always had a special place in my heart. Years on it's still as brilliant as I remember, especially now hearing the author narrate.

The world has changed a lot since this book was written but rather than being dated it's an interesting flashback to extreme politics and conspiracies theories, pre-9/11.



Later events have put a very different complexion on the subjects of this book. Some positive, some negative but it's a fascinating listen throughout.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

The Burning Bridges Tour cover art
  • The Burning Bridges Tour

  • By: Maria Bamford
  • Narrated by: Maria Bamford
  • Length: 41 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 5
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 3

Maria Bamford speaks in many voices. No, She is not an impressionist, unless you count the stellar impression of her mom. Maria feels her high-pitched voice does not command respect, as a result, she has taken on many voices to help her tell her wickedly funny jokes. Decidedly off-beat, Maria has a wide-eyed innocence that comes shining through on this, her debut recording.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A brilliant standup

  • By Amazon Customer on 01-09-13

Awesome

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-02-13

I love her. She's hilarious and leftfield and brilliant, even with the diet coke hump and the whiskers.

Unwanted Thoughts Syndrome cover art
  • Unwanted Thoughts Syndrome

  • By: Maria Bamford
  • Length: 50 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 4

Almost an hour of hilarious stories told with characters in her inimitable, idiosyncratic style. Maria Bamford is well-known from her two Comedy Central Presents specials, two critically acclaimed and strong-selling albums, her role in The Comedians of Comedy, and in Fox's series Sit Down, Shut Up, from the talk-show circuit, and from extensive touring.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Endearing and funny

  • By Karrigan on 14-07-10

Something special here...

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-02-13

"High voice. Low voice. Yeah, we get it, Lady!!!"



Maria Bamford is properly brilliant. Weird and inspired and most of all very, very funny. Buy this - and the Burning Bridges tour.

  • Lost at Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries

  • By: Jon Ronson
  • Narrated by: Jon Ronson
  • Length: 15 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,689
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,490
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,480

Jon Ronson is fascinated by madness, extraordinary behaviour and the human mind. He has spent his life investigating crazy events, following fascinating people and unearthing unusual stories. Collected here from various sources (including The Guardian and GQ America) are the best of his adventures.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • More please Jon

  • By Matthew on 03-11-12

Superb

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-02-13

Consistently excellent, I would (and do) recommend anything by Jon Ronson. This is fascinating, insightful, funny and chilling. A 5 star listen.