a better narrator, such as Frank Muller
The narrator, Casaletto, did a dreadful job with English accents. I gave up after a couple of chapters.
Extreme dissapointment with the narrator.
Very interesting premise. Mediocre execution. Follett is a very good writer and I can see him getting the idea for this book and thinking "I MUST write this" and then even after it was clear it was not to be a great book, he thought "I must FINISH this." Therein lies his mistake.
I'll make three points:
1. I don't "look ahead" when reading a suspense novel like this. I don't try to figure out what will happen next. Instead, I prefer to let the story teller do their job and just let it come to me. In this book, I could not help but see the obvious. I won't say there weren't any surprises, but the few unexpected turns were contrived and hard to believe.
2. Readers can make a story better or worse than it really is. In this book, I can't tell whether Tom Casaletto had any impact, but I won't look for any other books he's voiced.
3. SEX. Yes, there is sex in this book. Unfortunately, listening to it described here is like listening to your sainted grandmother give an account of her first experience. In most cases, the anatomy is referred to by it's proper name and with about as much passion as a role call. I literally had to skip the last sex scene because it was too painful to bear.
If you decide to get this book just remember one thing--once the Pan Am Clipper takes off, it's a long flight.
I cannot believe that this was written by a best-selling author! This was some of the most trite, overdone yet simple-minded writing I have ever read. I thing the listening made it worse. The author did a very fine job with all the accents, although they were very heavy on stereotype, but the narration was absolutely emotionless. And fast... I checked more than once to see if the speed on my device was set too fast. This was a bad book made simply awful by horrid narration.
Many parts of the audio book are in short, choppy sentences and the narrator, Tom Casaletto does not help the pattern of the structure. His narration becomes choppy also and does not hold a good balance to the rhythm pattern of the sentences.
Tell us about yourself!
Normally I love Ken Follett's books but I found the I had a hard time following what exactly was happening. The narrator is stilted and unexciting in his narrative. I'm sorry I purchased the audiobook.
I've enjoyed several Ken Follet stories but, after the first couple painful hours, I started fast forward, thinking that certainly it had to get better. It never did. Tired plot line, the standard old "passengers on the liner (or train)". The characters are not interesting and I never cared a whit about them. Especially bad is the character Lady Magaret and her caricature of a British wealthy fascist family. Spare yourself, and the credit - avoid this one. (For an example of a great "passengers on a train" story, see the movie TransSiberian - don't know if they have an audiobook of that, but simply referring to it as an example of the genre well written.)
Lover of good ideas
Ken Follett has to be one of the best writers of our time. This is another novel that is rich in character development, story line, suspense, the opposition of good and evil and characters that face moral choices that affect others in the novel.
Well worth the read.
I love Ken Follet, I think he is a very talented writer and this was a pretty good book. However, this narrator was horrible. Every sentence was ended like it was either a question or an exclamation. I have to assume it wasn't written this way.
Sorry... this one wasn't worth listening to. Story was weak. Narrater even weaker... was read like a news report from '60 minutes'. Ken Follet has written a lot of good titles... this wasn't one of them! (Have you listened to World Without End?)
My only complaint is that when the narrator did the female voices he sounded like he stepped out of a monty python sketch. But the book is compelling enough to overlook this.
I actually found myself making excuses to sneak off and listen to one more chapter.