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J NEILL

  • 21
  • reviews
  • 108
  • helpful votes
  • 67
  • ratings
  • The War of the World

  • History's Age of Hatred
  • By: Niall Ferguson
  • Narrated by: Saul Reichlin
  • Length: 34 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 46
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47

The world at the beginning of the 20th century seemed for most of its inhabitants stable and relatively benign. Globalising, booming economies married to technological breakthroughs seemed to promise a better world for most people. Instead the 20th century proved to be overwhelmingly the most violent, frightening and brutalised in history, with fanatical, often genocidal warfare engulfing most societies between the outbreak of the First World War and the end of the Cold War. What went wrong?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant

  • By Frank Bowman on 07-12-17

Genius

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

Reviewed: 04-02-18

Dr Ferguson never lets you down. This should be required reading for every modern history student. Its logical, challenging and sets aside much of what you consider as fact. Get it, and free your attitudes to conflict in this century.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Artemis

  • By: Andy Weir
  • Narrated by: Rosario Dawson
  • Length: 8 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,005
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,671
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 5,661

Jazz Bashara is a criminal. Well, sort of. Life on Artemis, the first and only city on the moon, is tough if you're not a rich tourist or an eccentric billionaire. So smuggling in the occasional harmless bit of contraband barely counts, right? Not when you've got debts to pay and your job as a porter barely covers the rent. Everything changes when Jazz sees the chance to commit the perfect crime, with a reward too lucrative to turn down.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Jazzed Up Sci-Fi Crime Caper

  • By Simon on 15-11-17

Great Fun - what a movie it would make.

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

Reviewed: 04-02-18

Its great, scientifically accurate, I have a masters in Physics, good characters that were three dimensional, a story that you just knew was heading for a climax and again, the science is right!! Such an achievement. It must have taken months of research and the story - cowboy hero on the moon. What could be better. Get it, enjoy it.

  • The Outcasts of Time

  • By: Ian Mortimer
  • Narrated by: Barnaby Edwards
  • Length: 12 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 781
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 723
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 722

December 1348: With the country in the grip of the Black Death, brothers John and William fear that they will shortly die and go to Hell. But as the end draws near, they are given an unexpected choice: either to go home and spend their last six days in their familiar world or to search for salvation across the forthcoming centuries - living each one of their remaining days 99 years after the last. John and William choose the future and find themselves in 1447, ignorant of almost everything going on....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Imaginative, thought-provoking historical fiction

  • By Kirstine on 13-10-17

What a great idea for a book - genius

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

Reviewed: 04-02-18

sadly the ending chapter let me down. I will not spoil it, as 95% of the book is mesmerising, and well worth listening to. But Ian, I have followed you for years. You could have done better.

  • They Hanged My Saintly Billy

  • By: Robert Graves
  • Narrated by: Philip Franks
  • Length: 10 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 8

On 14 June 1856, after a scandalous and extremely high-profile trial, Dr William Palmer was hanged for the poisoning of his friend John Parsons Cook. The case was one of the most infamous of its time, and as the twelve-day trial unfolded, accusations of no less than fourteen murders came to light.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Breathtakingly good

  • By J NEILL on 12-05-16

Breathtakingly good

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

Reviewed: 12-05-16

Firstly the audio production is masterful. Perhaps the best of near 1100 books I have listened to. It’s a dramatic performance as you listen to a complex story unfold. Its recited in the 1st party and the setting is time suitable, sounding and using expression’s that would have been used in 1830. I knew Robert Graves was good, but gracious, he is a real genius. The story starting slowly drags you in to disparate lives destined to collide, and like a Shakespeare tragedy you can see it coming but no one else seem to notice. Its fantastic, enthralling and to my shame I left it in my library for close on two years before listening. What a fool I was. I would put it up there with Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell. It’s a classic that somehow fell through the bars. Get it, and prepare to be entertained.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Trafalgar Gambit

  • Ark Royal, Book 3
  • By: Christopher G. Nuttall
  • Narrated by: Ralph Lister
  • Length: 14 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 389
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 369
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 369

Humanity is losing the war. The once-mighty space navies have been crippled, officers and crew have been stretched to the limit and Earth herself has come under heavy attack. The end cannot be long delayed. For Admiral Smith and the crew of HMS Ark Royal, the stakes have never been so high. The one hope is to make contact with alien factions that might oppose the war. But, as Ark Royal sets off on a desperate diplomatic mission, it rapidly becomes clear that there are both human and alien factions that wish to fight the war to the bitter end...

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • ultimately bland

  • By D. Deeks on 10-02-17

The space movie you just wish they could make.

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

Reviewed: 21-02-15

What can I say, great story, believable characters, good pseudo-science. A wonderful boys own listen in the car. Get it, love it and get the next.

  • Hellfire

  • By: James Holland
  • Narrated by: Saul Reichlin
  • Length: 17 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 48

August, 1942. North Africa. The desert war hangs in the balance. When the commander of the Eighth Army, General Gott, is killed, it's clear that foul play is at work. An impenetrable Axis spy circuit is compromising any hope the Allies have of stemming the Nazi tide. Jack Tanner, recovering from wounds in a Cairo hospital, is astonished to receive a battlefield commission which will propel him into a very different world when he returns to action. Fit once more, he finds himself facing the full onslaught of Rommel's latest offensive.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • What a fantastic good old fashioned adventrue

  • By J NEILL on 02-02-15

What a fantastic good old fashioned adventrue

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

Reviewed: 02-02-15

I just love this series of stories. After obtaining this title on spec, I have subsequently gone back to the start and purchased the lot. Fast, full of action, well narrated and magical. Just like a 'Commando' picture story book but updated by HBO. Our hero is square jawed, honest and a fighting man. His motley platoon, a collection of misfits and characters that are all redeemed by courage and loyalty. It's the Victor comic for grown up boys, and I say again, a great story, well written and so accurate. It will keep you captivated, waiting to see how Sgt Tanner solves the next problem the German Army puts in front of him. I cannot recommend it highly enough. Well done.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • South

  • The Story of Shackleton's Last Expedition, 1914-1917
  • By: Sir Ernest Shackleton
  • Narrated by: Steven Crossley
  • Length: 14 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22

As war clouds darkened over Europe in 1914, a party led by Sir Ernest Shackleton set out to make the first crossing of the entire Antarctic continent via the Pole. But their initial optimism was short-lived as ice floes closed around their ship, gradually crushing it and marooning twenty-eight men on the polar ice. Alone in the world's most unforgiving environment, Shackleton and his team began a brutal quest for survival.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Truly Magnificent

  • By J NEILL on 12-09-13

Truly Magnificent

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

Reviewed: 12-09-13

I first read this account in a 1971 hard back edition. I have read it several times since and now I listen to it. It really is one of the most thrilling and magnificent stories of determination, courage and stress management I have ever had the joy to share. A two year mission cut short before it even starts by bad luck, the elements turning on you with a savage vengeance, no food or resources, a map two compasses and a sextant. No sun for months and a 2000 mile walk into the 40 below zero wind pulling several half ton boats across the ice.

Frost bit, hunger, exhaustion and above all courage. From simple ordinary men thousands of miles from home. No radio, no air support, no one even knows you’re in such distress yet. You will be dead before they even know you’re missing. But Shackleton kept this team alive. Feats of navigation that cannot even be simulated now. Seamanship that defies all understanding, but above all a will to survive and a determination to lead.

Perhaps we are now too cynical and sophisticated for such a story? And then I remind myself again, this is not fiction its fact. This is courage and adventure and leadership at its best. Written in real time from the diary kept diligently by the great man himself. Dump everything he said before the march across the ice. Where we are going even gold is worthless. But keep your diaries, if dying is the last thing we do, I want the world to find it didn't happen without a fight.

Get it, listen to it. It really will change your character for the better.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Micky Flanagan: What Chance Change? (Complete Series)

  • By: Micky Flanagan
  • Narrated by: Micky Flanagan
  • Length: 1 hr and 50 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 372
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 253
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 252

Cockney comedian Micky Flanagan's debut radio show charts the ups and downs of his life, from Billingsgate fish porter to successful stand-up comic and from Sunblest to panini, tabloids to broadsheets and the street party to the dinner party. Each week's episode focuses on a different decade of Micky's life, and he regales us with autobiographical stories told through stand-up comedy. In between the laughs, the programme goes behind the scenes with short interviews that give an insight into Micky the man.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Funny and Entertaining

  • By Scott on 15-05-12

A documentary from Micky

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

Reviewed: 14-06-13

Great comedian. But a life story and analysis of the working class?? My father was a welder and my mom a cleaner for social services. I never made it to comedian, but it did take a degree in medicine and retired rome the army a colonel. Micky, its not engaging enough, and to make it to comedian?? Your not a role model old chap. If I want a social history listen, I will down load Andrew Marr.

0 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Don't You Believe It!

  • Exposing the Myths Behind Commonly Believed Fallacies
  • By: Herb Reich
  • Narrated by: Michael Kramer
  • Length: 4 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    2.5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars 2

Our cherished culturally shared beliefs stem from a variety of sources, many of which propagate old wives' tales, myths, self-serving fantasies, innocent fallacies, or sheer nonsense. It is a cliche that history is written by the victors. But Don’t You Believe It! will demonstrate that it is also written by teachers, by newsmen, by heirs, by hucksters, and occasionally by someone who has a lousy memory or an axe to grind.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Not that challenging

  • By J NEILL on 14-06-13

Not that challenging

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

Reviewed: 14-06-13

I can not help but observe the idea is a great one, but the items of interest brought so well to my notice are well known by most people I think. Even what could be 'Exclusive' American issues were reasonable well known as errors. But, it was not sold as a great intellectual effort, Just a little to light for me. But I do think many would really enjoy it. Please cut out the "Don't believe it" lead in. After 50 times its very irritating. We know why we have the audiobook.

  • Painting the Darkness

  • By: Robert Goddard
  • Narrated by: Michael Kitchen
  • Length: 20 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 233
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 187
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 186

On a mild autumn afternoon in 1882, William Trenchard sits smoking his pipe in the garden of his comfortable family home. When the creak of the garden gate heralds the arrival of an unexpected stranger, he is puzzled but not alarmed. He cannot know the destruction this man will wreak on all he holds most dear.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Goddard at his best

  • By Kirstine on 26-03-13

Written well, and engaging from first page to last

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 13-04-13

This is what makes Goddard one of the best writers of fiction alive today. And I do not say that lightly. He paints an innocent picture with believable characters so calmly and well timed. The story, starting plainly becoming more complex and interwoven until all you assumed was, might not be. The plots are so believable and put a mirror to the human condition so well. I have never found a poor piece of work by Goddard and have been reading his books since 1978.

Get it, you will enjoy it. Andy McNab it is not. Goddard shows you how complex ordinary life can get. So if you like a complex believable story with real flawed and human characters each with failing's, courage, hope and regret. This is for you.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful