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Gavin

Novelist and screenwriter; formerly BBC reporter and interviewer. TV and Film scripts include Mists of Avalon, Legends of Earthsea,The Borrowers,Small Soldiers, War and Peace, Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, Dunkirk.

Santa Monica, CA, United States | Member Since 2004

ratings
18
REVIEWS
8
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
2
HELPFUL VOTES
22

  • Inferno: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Dan Brown
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10058)
    Performance
    (9109)
    Story
    (9188)

    In the heart of Italy, Harvard professor of symbology, Robert Langdon, is drawn into a harrowing world centered on one of history’s most enduring and mysterious literary masterpieces: Dante’s Inferno. Against this backdrop, Langdon battles a chilling adversary and grapples with an ingenious riddle that pulls him into a landscape of classic art, secret passageways, and futuristic science. Drawing from Dante’s dark epic poem, Langdon races to find answers and decide whom to trust...before the world is irrevocably altered.

    Livia says: "Formulaic and Hard to Finish...."
    "Piffle."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Dan Brown and/or Paul Michael?

    Da Vinci Code was fun. This isn't.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Dan Brown? Why or why not?

    No. He seems to be a one-hit wonder. And he writes very badly.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Power House

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By John Buchan
    • Narrated By Peter Joyce
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    John Buchan's hero Edward Leithen chances upon a worldwide plan for domination. With his own life (and those of his friends) depending on the outcome of his struggle, he engages in combat the anarchic brain behind "The Power-House". The author, despite being very busy in Public Service, wrote over 50 books during his life, but his particular talent was for writing fast-moving adventure stories. The Power-House, a good example of this genre, was first published in 1916.

    Gavin says: "Buchan discovers thrillers"
    "Buchan discovers thrillers"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The book shows John Buchan discovering, before The 39 Steps, how to create the modern thriller.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The evocation of Edwardian England.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Capital

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By John Lanchester
    • Narrated By Colin Mace
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (120)
    Performance
    (100)
    Story
    (103)

    It’s 2008, and things are falling apart: Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers are going under, and the residents of Pepys Road, London - a banker and his shopaholic wife, an old woman dying of a brain tumor and her graffiti-artist grandson, Pakistani shop owners and a shadowy refugee who works as the meter maid, the young soccer star from Senegal and his minder - are receiving anonymous postcards reading "We Want What You Have." Who is behind it? What do they want?

    Lynda Rands says: "Wonderful characters, great story"
    "Modern London revealed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Capital rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Near the top.


    What other book might you compare Capital to and why?

    Little Dorrit - because of its panoramic view of London.


    What does Colin Mace bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    A splendid performance.


    Any additional comments?

    Lancaster understands economics and empathizes with human beings. As a result he creates a pictures of the inhabitants of a London street you both understand and believe in. A splendid book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Island of Sheep: A Richard Hannay Thriller, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By John Buchan
    • Narrated By Peter Joyce
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (9)

    The last of John Buchan’s thrillers and the final appearance of Richard Hannay now in retirement reverie deep in the comfortable Cotswolds.However, he and Sandy [Lord Clanroyden] are roused to action once more to help the son of a recently deceased treasure hunter, called Haraldsen. The heir is receiving threats from Lancelot Troth, a man who believes himself ill treated financially by Haraldsen’s father and seeks revenge and reparation.

    Gavin says: "A splendid thriller from the dawn of the genre"
    "A splendid thriller from the dawn of the genre"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Buchan's ability to make you feel as if you are in the most beautiful parts of the British countryside is unsurpassed. The action is entertaining, the prose splendid.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Box of Delights: The Adventures of Kay Harker

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By John Masefield
    • Narrated By Richard Mitchley
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (4)

    The second and best-loved of two classic titles in children's literature. Returning home from school for the Christmas holidays, young Kay Harker meets the mysterious Punch and Judy Man, Cole Hawlings, who asks him to protect a magical box. The box is a means of travelling into the past and Kay’s old adversary, the villainous magician Abner Brown, will stop at nothing to possess it. With mystery and mayhem all around him, Kay must begin a new and more perilous quest to return the box to its rightful owner.

    Gavin says: "A magical book superbly performed"
    "A magical book superbly performed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Box of Delights?

    The evocation of a magical, snowy Christmas deep in the British countryside where the past and present intermingle over buttered eggs and roaring fires. Funny, charming and utterly original.


    Any additional comments?

    The author, John Masefield, became Poet Lauriet. As you listen to this, you can see why.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Prester John

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By John Buchan
    • Narrated By Peter Joyce
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    What is sinister preacher John Laputa doing on a remote Scottish shore in the moonlight hours? Young David Crawfurd and his friends are lucky to escape with their lives when they disturb his rituals. Years later David travels to Africa and meets the minister again, this time in company with the evil Henriques.

    Gavin says: "Cracking yarn of Empire, splendidly told"
    "Cracking yarn of Empire, splendidly told"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Prester John the most enjoyable?

    Great story; great writing;great reading, with all the right accents.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Its narrative pace and literary skill


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The finale in the treasure cave


    Any additional comments?

    It's riddled with the racist and imperialist attitudes of the time - it was published in 1910. The Portugese particularly come in for a lot of stick, but the portrait of Prester John apprently inspired many African freedom fighters, and once you set the outdated views aside, it's one of the great adventure stories, up there, almost, with Treasure Island.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Guns of August

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Barbara W. Tuchman
    • Narrated By Nadia May
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1181)
    Performance
    (618)
    Story
    (608)

    In this Pulitzer Prize-winning classic, historian Barbara Tuchman brings to life the people and events that led up to World War I. This was the last gasp of the Gilded Age, of Kings and Kaisers and Czars, of pointed or plumed hats, colored uniforms, and all the pomp and romance that went along with war. How quickly it all changed...and how horrible it became.

    Mike From Mesa says: "Wonderful"
    "Eye-opening"
    Overall

    A fascinating account of how world war one began. funny, appalling, extraordinary stories of the men and women who brought the world to Armageddon. And very well read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Round the Bend

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Nevil Shute
    • Narrated By John Telfer
    Overall
    (76)
    Performance
    (58)
    Story
    (60)

    When Tom Cutter hires Constantine Shaklin as an engineer in his air-freight business, he little realises the extraordinary gifts of his new recruit. Shaklin possesses a religious power which inspires everyone he meets to a new faith and hope for humanity. As Cutter’s business grows across Asia, so does Shaklin’s fame, until he is widely regarded as a unifying deity. Though he struggles to believe Shaklin is indeed divine, Cutter too finds solace in his friend’s teachings, and commits to passing on his message.

    Gavin says: "A wonderful book"
    "A wonderful book"
    Overall

    This is a gripping story, superbly told in uncluttered prose, about aviation, love and religion. The performance is splendid, all the accents spot on, and the overall effect totally satisfying. You are carried along by the adventure, and in the end, as well as being entertained and moved, you realise you've been thinking about the big questions, like what we believe and why we believe it. Highly recommended!

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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