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Miss

Magpie

Holywell, United Kingdom

6
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 2 reviews
  • 15 ratings
  • 66 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • The Pillars of the Earth

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (220)
    Performance
    (159)
    Story
    (150)

    The Pillars of the Earth tells the story of Philip, prior of Kingsbridge, a devout and resourceful monk driven to build the greatest Gothic cathedral the world has known... of Tom, the mason who becomes his architect - a man divided in his soul... of the beautiful, elusive Lady Aliena, haunted by a secret shame... and of a struggle between good and evil that will turn church against state, and brother against brother.

    Alan says: "Very very surprised"
    "Modern tripe"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The Pillars of the Earth?

    The predictable one-dimensional characters, the predictable and unneccessary laciviousness, the lack of authenticity and the predictability.


    What could Ken Follett have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Not written it.


    Did John Lee do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Yes, except his Welsh accent was all wrong (I'm from North Wales, we don't speak like extras from Gavin and Stacey, we don't call our fathers 'Da' - hate it when the whole of Wales is charicatured as South Wales - we're far more lyrical up here - Bryn Terfel, Rhys Ifans - listen to their accents).


    What character would you cut from The Pillars of the Earth?

    All but Aliona and Tom Builder.


    Any additional comments?

    I was so looking forward to listening to this, I love historical fiction, but there was nothing here which immersed me in the past, it was a modern story coincidentally set in 10th Century, with modern language, modern characters and modern sensibilities. It was beyond bad, really. I stuck with it until about three-quarters of the way through (admittedly, I increased the speed on my iPod to get through it more quickly) but the nastiness of the characters, the predictable way they acted, the vicarious pleasure Mr Follet seemed to take in the depravity shown towards women, it angered me and made my skin crawl. I abandoned the listen without regret.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The House at Riverton

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Kate Morton
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    Overall
    (2696)
    Performance
    (1764)
    Story
    (1762)

    Summer 1924: On the eve of a glittering Society party, by the lake of a grand English country house, a young poet takes his life. The only witnesses, sisters Hannah and Emmeline Hartford, will never speak to each other again....Winter 1999: Grace Bradley, 98, one-time housemaid of Riverton Manor, is visited by a young director making a film about the poet's suicide. Ghosts awaken, and memories, long consigned to the dark reaches of Grace's mind, begin to sneak back through the cracks.

    Cathy says: "superbly written mystery"
    "Can't listen any more"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Apart from being fairly tedious, I cannot fathom why this book is being read by an Australian, so many mispronunciations - these affect me like fingernails being scraped down a blackboard and I can't listen any more. If you're reading a book about England in the 1920's you should learn the correct way of pronouncing English; particularly how it would have been spoken in that era (before Holywood got its pseudo intellectual hands on it). Marquis is not pronounced marquee - except in French, valet is not pronounced valle, except in French, privacy is not pronounced as a form of private but of privy - globally. If you're not anal and pedantic like me then you may enjoy this but I had to give up after two chapters for fear there may be a lieutenant in it! By the way, I have nothing against Australian accents, Arthur Upfield's Bony novels are amongst my favourite audio books and I relish hearing the authentic Australian-English in those.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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