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The Elder Ice: A Harry Stubbs Adventure

Narrated by: Brian J. Gill
Series: The Harry Stubbs Adventures, Book 1
Length: 2 hrs and 58 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (15 ratings)

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Summary

In this novella set in 1924 London, ex-boxer Harry Stubbs is on the trail of a mysterious legacy. A polar explorer has died, leaving huge debts and hints of a priceless find. His informants seem to be talking in riddles, and Harry soon finds he isn't the only one on the trail - and what he's looking for is as lethal as it is valuable. The key to the enigma lies in an ancient Arabian book and it leads to something stranger and more horrifying than Harry could ever imagine.

Harry may not be an educated man, but he has an open mind, the bulldog persistence and fists like pile drivers - useful assets when you're boxing the darkest of shadows.

The story of mystery and horror draws on H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu Mythos and is inspired by Ernest Shackleton's incredible real-life adventures.

©2014 David Hambling (P)2016 David Hambling
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable story read by an annoying reader

An enjoyable little romp with the supernatural in the 1920s. Liked the story but the reader have some of the oddest pronunciation I've ever heard. The main character is an ex'boxer from Norwood who at times sounds like Prince Charles. He says Herry instead of Harry amongst other things and it's quite wearing. Would be excruciating for a full length novel.

2 people found this helpful

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A thoroughly enjoyable book

This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

I was a little unsure of whether I would enjoy this book at first. After starting it I very quickly became enthralled by it.

It is a curious combination of just enough historical accuracy pertaining to Shackleton and the time period, mixed with a nice amount of fiction based on classical stories.

I find myself anticipating the next book in the series. This is a nice introduction with just enough action to keep you wanting to read/listen.

The narration is well done and the accents and language are just right (not too cockney).

2 people found this helpful

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Down but not out..

Excellent little supernatural tale with HP Lovecraft leaning and an unusual protagonist in the lumpen shape of Harry Stubbs, ex boxer, debt collector and now work for, what he thinks is respectable law firm, lucky for us this is not the case.
Hope to hear more of Harry's adventures soon.

2 people found this helpful

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A Curious Tale

This was my first foray into the world of the Lovecraft Genre and I really enjoyed it, the story was engaging and easy to follow. I would read listen to this author again.

The only mar on an otherwise excellent listen was the readers slightly dodgy English regional accents and his mispronunciations of basic words, almost as if he was from New England USA.

Excellent audio book!y

2 people found this helpful

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Great fun, and lots of influences to explore

It's as good as the other reviews say. Fun characters, and lots of references and ideas from various sources of history, literature, natural history and pulp fiction. These references are a hat-tip to those who are already familiar with them, and interesting things to explore for those who do not.
I like that even casual references and ideas mentioned turn out to be integral to the plot, and are more than nice gloss on a good story.
I look forward to the rest of the series.

1 person found this helpful

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Profile Image for Aaron
  • Aaron
  • 20-02-18

A Great Lovecraftian Adventure

I’m a big fan of Lovecraftian horror books, so this (with its great cover artwork) piqued my interest. I’m glad I took a chance on it as I enjoyed it quite a bit. 

The action scenes were probably my favorite part of the book. I’m usually picky about how the action scenes are described and portrayed as it can make or break a book for me, but thankfully, the author David Hambling did a great job depicting the fights that Harry Stubs finds himself partaking in.

I also found the story’s progression and pacing to be well executed. The buildup of the characters and their backstories lead to a great final chapter that was well worth it. The only criticism I could think of was it was too short. Hopefully its future books expand on the story, and the main character Harry Stubs, even further.

I found Brian J. Gill’s performance to be very good. He exceled at the different accents between characters and made it a joy to listen to. I’ll be adding him to my list of Narrators to consider when making future purchases.

This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

2 people found this helpful

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  • The Bookwyrm Speaks
  • 23-10-17

A noir mystery crossed with Titus Crow!

Harry Stubbs, Great War vet and former boxer, works for a prestigious London law firm, collecting debts and doing some investigative work for them. While looking into collecting large debts from the estate of famed explorer Ernest Shackleton, Harry approaches Shackleton's brother, a low end antique shop owner, to see if he had any ideas about any hidden assets. Harry gets a cold reception, and is let in on the fact that Shackleton spent money like water, and was always in debt. He also mentions he is the last person Ernest would confide in, since he has a criminal background, and Ernest had grown distant from him. Harry realizes this is a dead end and goes into work to update his employers about his progress.

Later that night, after a night at the pub, harry is attacked by four Irish ruffians. Harry beats them using his skills, but realizes he might be onto something, since they let it slip this is about his latest case. This leads him onto a wild chase, as he tries to track down one lead after another. The speed of discoveries picks up, and Harry is drawn into a conspiracy older than history. The revelations about what Shackleton really discovered are mind boggling, and it brings into question humanity's place in global pecking order! The secrets of our deep past are revealed, and its certain not to be a good revelation.

All in all, this is a very well written book. Exciting fight scenes, a mystery older than written history and engaging characters really help. The characters are well drawn out, especially Harry. His past as a boxer and soldier are both brought into play effectively, as are his investigative skills and all around tenacity. The other characters are well drawn out as well, although Harry is definitely the star of the show. The setting is well described, and you get a real feel for what 1920's London society felt like. You can really get behind and root for Harry.

The narration is handled by Brian Gill in a memorable performance. He really nails the various British accents, and brings all various characters to life. His narrative style is smooth and steady, and he has great pacing. He can really suck the listener into the story. Top marks on this work.

Any reader that is into Brian Lumley's Titus Crow, Matthew Davenport's Andrew Doran or Ari Marmell's Mick Oberon books should take a look at this series. You won't be disappointed.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Old ManParker
  • 14-03-20

Brilliant! - I highly recommend this book!

The Eldar Ice: A Harry Stubbs Adventure ( book I )

"The Eldar Ice" = "At the Mountains of Madness"

I love Lovecraft.
I love H. P. Lovecraft. I discovered HP Lovecraft in high-shool, along with heavy metal music, and I have been an annoyingly enthusiastic fan of both ever since. I’ve read everything Lovecraft’s written.

Now I hunt for stories and books that take place in the literary mythology that he invented. In his life time Howard Phillips Lovecraft invited other writers to write with-in the worlds he created with his mythos characters, alien-gods, monsters and inter-dimensional - creatures, and thus he started an unending generation of literature in his dark universe. A feat no other writer has ever duplicated.

“The Eldar Ice” is one such book, and a very good one too.

I really enjoyed the lead character, Harry Stubbs. Harry is a retired boxer looking for another trade. His skills as a fighter, and his large muscular physique, make him a fresh take apart from the usual bookish professors in Lovecraft tales. Here’s a character who can punch his way out of a sticky mess, even one with very inhuman monsters.

What’s better than a creepy horror story in H.P. Lovecraft’s mythos? A creepy horror story in H.P. Lovecraft’s mythos with some action thrown in, I say! That is exactly what’s on the menu in these Harry Stubbs books.

Without sacrificing the mood, or the time period, in H.P. Lovecraft’s mythos original tales these stories all take place just after the turn of the century. Limited technology makes hunting the unknown so much creepier through dark foggy London streets.

It’s a smart well written story. Also of note; we are lucky to have a very good narrator make the tale come alive with out taking it over. The only problem I have with "The Eldar Ice: A Harry Stubbs Adventure" is that it’s too short.

I highly recommend this book.

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  • mlsimmons
  • 05-10-19

New-to-me author, had a good time with Harry

The author contacted me about reviewing this book. I haven’t read many books like this one, as I don’t read a lot historical stories, but I do love a good mystery, so I thought I would give this one a try. My understanding is that this has a Lovecraft aura to it. As I’ve never read Lovecraft, I can’t comment on it, but seems to be a common theme from others who’ve read this work. There is also the Cthulhu mythology in the story.

Harry Stubbs is former military and boxer, turned collections agent. Here, Harry is asked to investigate the now deceased Ernest Shackleton. He is to find out what or if Shackleton found anything when he was exploring Antarctica. Stubbs gets more than he bargains for with this investigation. He is chased by assassins and more, when he was expecting just digging up information without much, if any, danger.

This is a short story, coming in at less than three hours. But it is a full and complete story, taking place in the 1920s. As I’ve said, I don’t read much historical stories, but you can really feel the research that the author did with this story. Mostly, I noticed his research into Antarctic explorations (and that of the Arctic as well), boxing and even the occult of the times. I really fell into the story and the history that went along with it. It made me want to read more about the early explorers of Antarctica.

Harry Stubbs is also a great and fully developed every-man type of character. I really liked Harry. I felt he really wanted to do a good job for his employer and better his station in life, as a guy without a huge amount of education. He wants to see this investigation thing become a bigger part of his role, instead of just being muscle to collect on debts.

If you like stories with science fiction and investigations, set in the past, this is a great story for you to try.

Narration
This is my first time with Brian J. Gill narrating a story. I thought he did a good job with the accents and different voices of the characters. He really brought Harry to life in this story. I would listen to him narrate more stories.

**I received a free copy of this book and voluntarily chose to review it.

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  • Scooter
  • 10-06-19

Outstanding!

Outstanding entry to the series. I look forward to reading the rest of the Harry Stubbs books and can only hope that the narrator continues throughout.

The narrator’s voice was perfect, the story enthralling and quite frankly was over much too soon.

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  • superstardrifter
  • 05-10-18

Great listen!

Well then. This was a very short audiobook (only coming in at about 3 hours) so this review is probably going to be pretty short as well!

This follows the exploits of Harry Stubbs, a former boxer and now solicitor who specializes in collecting on debts. He ends up following quite a mystery after investigating a rumor that Ernest Shackleton, despite being very much in debt at the time of his death, had found and brought back something priceless on one of his earlier Antarctic expeditions. Dun… dun…. duuuuuuuuuuunnnnn.

The prose was quite well done, and the story was well written. A fair amount of historical research regarding Shackleton’s expeditions went into this story, which was nice. A fair bit of boxing knowledge was in there too. I think it could have been a tad longer, but at the same time, I don’t mind a short audiobook to accompany an afternoon of work, and the story did wrap itself up before the end of the book. It wasn’t too short, I just wish it was longer is all.

This audiobook is narrated by Brian J. Gill, and I will tell you that if he didn’t do the introduction to the audiobook in his natural accent, I would have had no clue that he wasn’t British. He performed this one absolutely beautifully, making each character unique and bringing them all to life with really great accents. Very entertaining, at any rate. Doctor Evans, the tardigrade doctor was my favorite character. So excited about tardigrades! So, so excited.

It’s refreshing when you get a self-published audiobook that has such great narration. I listen to many of them, and have found many with such good narration, but there were also quite a lot that weren’t so good, so I’m always curious when I pick up one where it’ll fall on that spectrum. This one is on the really good side, so hooray! :D

All told I had a really good 3 hours with this one. It was quite an entertaining listen, with some really interesting and unique ideas that were presented really well. All and all, I think I can safely say that I had 4/5 stars of a good time with this one.

*This honest review is based on a free review copy of the audiobook.

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  • Montzalee W
  • 03-09-18

A great adventure..djinn, tardigrade, Polar trips!

The Elder Ice: A Harry Stubbs Adventure
By: David Hambling
Narrated by: Brian J. Gill
Series: The Harry Stubbs Adventures, Book 1
Terrific adventure of Harry trying to solve a mystery but there is more to this then he was told! If you like steam-punkish, 1920's London story with supernatural elements, this might be for you! I enjoyed it. A great first book to meet Harry and introduce the series.
The narration was excellent for this type of book!

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  • Mary Karowski
  • 06-03-18

New additions to the Cthulhu tales

Huge fan of H.P. Lovecrafts Cthulhu myth. This is a great story with a lot of influence from that great writer and the mysterious dark gods he revealed to
Us. A must for any and all fans of those two. The writer gives us a glimpse of new stories with more to
Come and the narrator delivers it in a proper dark and gritty style. I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

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Profile Image for Bikram Agarwal
  • Bikram Agarwal
  • 27-02-18

Didn't quite like it.

What was most disappointing about David Hambling’s story?

I wouldn't say the story was bad or even disappointing... it was just.. uninspiring / non-entertaining for me. As I kept listening to it, I didn't find any aspect of it "thrilling" or exciting. It was more or less laid back and steady flowing. I didn't find the characters engaging or the plot engrossing. It maybe just me, since I see other reviewers have liked the story.

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

I have the same complaint as others - accent. The narrator does some weird accents for different characters and it doesn't go well.

Any additional comments?

I received this audiobook for free from the author / narrator / publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.

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  • jstep
  • 25-02-18

A fun, Lovecraftian novella

The Elder Ice by Davind Hambling is a fun escape from reality. In the style of HP Lovecraft, Hambling takes us on a wild ride throughout 1924 London, with Harry Stubbs, ex-boxer turned debt collector and detective. I loved the idea of the story, with the origins of the story based around a dangerous treasure that Ernest Shackleton found while on one of his many explorations. Without giving away any spoilers, I'll just say that if you're a Lovecraft fan, you'll likely enjoy this book very much.

Brian Gill did a good job with narrating this novella. He's easy to listen to and understand, and does a good job with the various voices of the many characters. I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher for an honest review.