I haven't been moved to write a review before, but I was gripped by an urge to make sure everyone knows how awesome this audible book is. The narrator was brilliant, with just the right amount of dry humor to really bring the characters to life. It was hard to differentiate voices at first, especially since there are two "narrators" who are the same person at different times, but it wasn't long before I was finding any excuse to plug in and listen to The Rook. So maybe the accents aren't perfect sometimes, but I absolutely loved Susan Duerden's narration, and the book is well-written, gross, humorous, intriguing, inventive, fresh, and fun. Absolutely wonderful.
Having read a good slew of urban fantasy/paranormal, I wasn't expecting anything new. But despite being a mash-up of the X-Men and MI5, there was so much that was original to me in this novel. The characters were wonderful. The various "powers" that people have are so inventive. I don't know how the author even came up with half of it.
Rook Thomas was brilliant. She came to life for me.
Ah geez. The idiot with the duck. I was laughing and absolutely cringing. Never thought it possible to feel emotionally attached to an clairvoyant duck.
Do it. Just do it.
Audio junkie, caffiene addict, anglophile & a bit of a wino.
The narrator was fantastic! The story flowed, and was hillarious, smart - well writen. Since listening I have both read the book, recommended it...ok... INSISTED that my friends read/listen to it immediately, assigned it for book club and listened to it....AGAIN! Its that good and fresh, dramatic, creative and funny.
So many memorable moments that made me laugh out loud in the car...on the sidewalk...in the supermarket...got some weird looks.
Mi-6, meet the X-men. I DO hope and pray they make a movie of this book!
Retired RN High end of middle age or short end of old age! Adore Christian fiction, sci-fi fantasy, and mysteries.
The twists and turns/imagination.
Her voice was soothing, yet became animated when the story was.
A really good book for anyone who likes this genre!
I read with my ears...
Okay, all the characters in this story are pretty hardcore, but (without giving anything away) most of the ladies in this story are truly bad-ass. What is it about smart, powerful women with authority that does it for me?
Imaginative, creative, fantastical, unpredictable and gripping. Those are qualities in a story that keep me interested and The Rook had them all. I highly recommend this book.The narrator overall did a good job and by no means would I dissuade you from this story by the few and fairly petty criticisms I have with the narration. You will notice early in the story she has a peculiar way of ending a sentence. Not sure how to describe it, but you will hear it. If you can get used to that (like I did), then you will be fine. The next issue I have is that she blasts through the witty jokes without any inflection to let you know a joke has just come and gone. It's difficult to recognize sarcasm without inflection. The humor is classically British, dry and clever which I love, but she reads it in a manner that makes it difficult to recognize when the character is being sarcastic or humorous. The only other thing was that her American accent for a character made me wince a little (I know, petty).
There are enough unforeseen and imaginative twists in the story that keep your attention and make you happy you can't guess the next move. Just when you think you know what's going to happen next- "Well, she is clearly going to need to..." POW! Twist... Woah... Cool... Loved it.
I listen to books all day long. The books I love have great characters. If I give a book 4 or 5 stars, it's worth a listen.
I enjoyed it every bit as much as I did the following books.
14 by Peter Clines
Extinction Machine by Jonathan Maberry
A Dance with Dragons by George R.R Martin
Ghost Story: The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher
Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
Daniel O'Malley's gives his characters such substance, you feel as if you really know them. Some you like...some you hate.
Myfanwy (pronounced mif-an-e) Thomas wakes up in a wake of bodies without a single memory, a series of letters introduces her to her body and her life at the Chequy (pronounced shack-ay) an agency in the UK that controls paranormal and extra terrestrial entities from entering every day human life.
There's intrigue, increasingly peculiar abilities, and ever escalating situations that drive the listener through this debut novel, well enough. The first few chapters are interesting and the overall movement of the story pushed me forward but I felt that the main character was inconsistant and not very interesting, although she's not supposed to be interesting. That being the case I was left with the feeling 'why am I supposed to care about what happens?' The increasingly useless letters from her body's past inhabitant take away from the pull of the story and don't add enough texture to make them worthwhile. Unfortunately, I don't think this author is being true to who this character could be and ultimately this hurt the story for me. Also, there are a peculiar number of references to vomiting throughout the book that stood out as being needless and lame.
Susan Duerden worked at creating different voices and covered the characters annoying petty complaining pretty well. Her accent, within the dutch characters, could get thin at times but I thought she held it together quite well. Overall she did a good job of keeping me in the story.
There are some interesting moments and the mystery element was well played but overall this feels like set-up for something bigger (that could get better), this appears to be the first of a series as Mr O'Malley is writing another one as I write this. I wouldn't recommend it as it stands now but there's room for growth in a series, I probably won't be traveling down that road myself.
A five star rating is a rare occurrence from me, as is a one star rating. I primarily listen to sci-fi though I will branch out occasionally. Political satire/comedy and I did manage to laugh my way through that whole E.L. James series... you know the one...
The Rook really is an excellent book, and is more impressive because it is the first book in this authors stable. A lot of creative ideas and concepts came together. I look forward to the next novel... which if his website is any indication he just finished a first draft of and has sent it on to agent and editor for perusal.
Kowalski, someone's looking at my profile. Find them. Rico, time for boom boom. Private, send the family a funeral bouquet.
I can't believe this is this the author's first published book. Everything about it was a pleasure. The narration was perfect. It was a pleasure to listen to the story get woven together.
The narrator did a great job.
It may just be some of the more recent books I have read, or listened to, but listening to this story, I was pleased that the author described things well enough that I did not later have to question, nor get annoyed by the author trying to remind me of something yet again.
I really enjoyed the story, including the back stories earmarked as letters to the main character. The only one exception is I felt the ending was rushed and abrupt. The author added several twists that kept the story interesting, and seem to scurry a bit to close off loose ends at the end.
Although I have not read the print version of "The Rook", I would venture to say that the audio adaptation is superior. - It may be may favorite audio book....EVER. See the section about Susan Duerden (the narrator). to learn why.
Neverwhere - by Neil Gaiman - The way the author provides you with cynical characters, to balance out the magic and fairytale-ish-ness, is super similar.
I was also reminded of Terry Pratchett and Christopher Moore - All the silly supernatural guys (there seems to be a lack of silly lady sci-fi writers - unless we venture into vampire/werewolf territory - Which I will admit to doing, on occasion.).
I have to say that I do prefer british silliness to Moore's American variety - This strange preference only made me love this book even more - Although the author is apparently Australian, the book is perfectly English!
Susan Duerden had the perfect vocal range and acting abilities to nail EVERY character (including the overweight, skinless, male belgian). The superb narration was the shining star on this xmas tree of a novel.
The book would have been lit up and pretty on it's own - But, it would never have truly been complete, until you balanced teetering on the edge of a random piece of furniture, and R-E-A-C-H-E-D out with your "never-before-so-short-arms", and carefully placed the star perfectly on the tippy-most-top of this book.
Absolutely. I wanted to know everything about the Chequy, IMMEDIATELY, as I am sure Rook Thomas did as well.
I have NEVER written a review on audible before. I have never felt any desire to. I think I needed to love listening to a book so much, that I was compelled to spend my valuable time reviewing it - This was such a book!
A fun, adventurous, and addictive listen. Full of court intrigue, treasonous supernatural government agents, and magical creatures of all kinds.
Although this book is filled with fantastical characters, some with abilities beyond compare, it manages to dodge the number one problem of the fantasy/sci-fi genre - taking oneself too seriously. - MAGIC IS SILLY!!
Daniel O'Malley portrays this fact beautifully, throughout his story.
He has penned a fantasy novel with the perfect balance of silliness and the supernatural.
I will listen to this one again and again.............and I'm not usually that kind of girl!!