The story is a fun one of Horatio Hornblower type set in future space-faring human society. Narrator is very good. The only thing that bothers me is her pronunciation of Manticoran (adjectival form referring to the home planet of the heroine, Manticore) as Man-tick-or-an. However, as Ms. Johnson is only following Mr. Weber's pronunciation notes, she can't be blamed. (Mr. Weber later said something to the effect that he must have been having a senior moment at the time, and the error was his. Very graciously, I might add.) It does jar, however, which is the only reason I'm not giving the book 5 stars.
Normally, I like David Weber's stories and read with delight the two precursors to this series (about Stephanie Harrington and the tree cats). However, there were too many instances in this book where characters were simply talking to each other; no action, just talk. The action sequences were good and the story line is good but there was too much of the characters merely talking to each other.
The problem is that now I have a strong hesitation about going any further in this series. I don't care to read (or listen to) any more conversations.
Delete chapter 29 completely. spending half my drive listening to pseudo-science explanations of imaginary space drives between the climactic on-planet and off-planet sections was infuriating to say the least. It added nothing at all to the story.
Using the F words (both of them) to show 1st F) bigotry by a haven merchant captain toward a "slightly built" Manticoran officer enforcing his right to inspect the ship, and the 2nd F) to show anger for something unremarkable were both very jarring and almost caused me to stop reading. A good f-bomb isn't a deal-breaker for me at all, however using it jarringly when spoken by the wonderful reader for something rather benign shows a lack of class. Using the other F word to impart a slur to a person who seemed gay because they were not heavily muscled or overweight was just embarrassing for the author and gays and skinny people and living people.
Stop the pre-teen angst when describing the title character Honor. There were at least 10 mentions of her face, features, lack of beauty (all a not-to-subtle humble brag) and about her general appearance in the first couple chapters and it continued. It made her sound like she spend the day looking in the mirror bemoaning her strong cheekbones and the comment that her looks lead her to her to cut her hair off since it obviously didn't matter to her lack of beauty to have "hair like a man".
The blunt politics of the world Honor inhabits is full of buffoons and wise old sages, nothing in between. The stereotypical Liberal vs. Conservative in government was typical evil vs. good, stupid vs. smart, emotional versus reasoned claptrap that shows the author's lack of finesse.
Chapter 29 was mind-numbing.
The insistence of having a "tree cat" clinging to the main character's shoulder for no apparent reason is just odd. The cat didn't seem to do anything except paint Honor as a bit of a kook. Maybe if it was something besides a cat... that lived in trees... and liked celery.
Honor Harrington was the only character with any depth.
The story was good, the interplay between characters showed promise.
Yes i will and have recommended this book to friends
Horatio hornblower cs forrester
I purchased the book when it first came out. Then I purchased the paperback. Then I purchased more copies and gave them to my friends. Finally, I chose On Basilisk Station as the first audiobook I ever purchased. I've read the book numerous times, and anjoy it every time. Listening to the book is like lying back and letting it flow into you. I have purchased a number of audiobooks since, but Basilisk is still my favorite, and I don't hesitate to recommend it to others. Of all the Harrington books Weber has written I think it's one of the finest.
Honor Harrington, without a doubt. When I first met her on the pages of Weber's book I thought she represented all that is fine and noble about womens' emancipation. I still find her so.
I loved the way she interpreted the book. For my money, she is the perfect reader and foil for Honor Harrington.
I listened to it in two sittings. I simply can't absorb it all at once, even though I was familiar with the story. But once started, I could hardly stop.
My son recommended Audible Books to me because he was buying and using them both in the car and on the train in a long commute to Toronto. I resisted the idea at first, because I am an avid reader (a book a day at least), and thought I wouldn't much like just sitting still and listening! How wrong I was! Audible Books have taken me back to my childhood when my mother used to read to me, and to the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) Stage series of one-hour dramas. I never failed to listen to those broadcasts, and even today I can remember some of them. They were the beginning of a lifelong interest in literature, and directly responsible for me becoming a writer and editor myself.
Listening to Audible Books has also made me realize that I learn more, and remember more when I hear the books narrated as opposed to just reading them, especially if I have already read the book. They also allow me to analyze the books better, because the narrator has to read through all the boring bits which as a reader I usually skipped. In skipping the boring bits I almost always missed some important facet of the story. In fact the audiobooks have such a powerful impact on me I often dream whole sequences from them, almost word for word, when I am asleep at night.
Another factor is that hearing non-fiction books read allows me to understand them better. I have sampled a number of them, not bought any yet , but I am looking at Will Durant's A History of Western Philosophy, which I used as a text in college. I bet I could get straight A's on any exam, oral or written, after listening to that book read to me.
Which brings me to one other point. Your narrators (even when they make pronunciation mistakes) are able to bring the driest of books alive. That is a great, great talent. Some are better than others, but none are bad. Congratulate them all for me!
Fanatical Endurance Athlete, who listens to a lot of books while training.
This story was slow moving but provided ample detail to allow the science behind the plot to be believable. This alone makes this book a recommendation for all science fiction buffs.
Probably the most important aspect was real people. No character was safe and many died in the course of the story. It meant that no one was safe from the plot.
Honor Herrington was the understandably the best character. Although, she at times she didn't sound as forceful as a leader of her stature should.
Not particularly. The narrator read as if she was reading a book to a child; Honor came off as something of a goody-goody at times, and I would have enjoyed the ship's cat more if it actually did anything. That bit was shades of that gods-awful "catalyst." Barf. So, if the narrator hadn't been so--what, didactic? prissy? condescending? I would have enjoyed the book.
The narrator. Yeesh, I can't think of anything but that voice.
Narrator could sound like she was actually narrating, not just reading the book at a children's hour.
No. It would have to stand in line behind Jack Campbell and Lois McMaster Bujold, just for starters.
Not bad if you're desperate and have run out of Scalzi, Bujold, Correia, sort of thing.
Even if something was mis-pronounced,it didn't bother me a bit. I have listened to other books narrated by Allyson Johnson and always enjoy her performances
someone who loves tedious details.
no. he had good plot and character ideas. but it was basically boring.
It would make a good movie.