Let's take it as a given that Dickens was a great writer. Even if you have read the book in hardcover, consider listening to it. Simon Vance's narration is the best I've heard in the 200+ books I've bought. He brings the colorful characters to life.
I've liked all of the Shardlake books for their history and cleverness, Crossely is a great narrator. He, of course, is Matthew Shardlake, I wouldn't be able to listen to a Shardlake book if Crossely wasn't the narrator. I did think this book was a bit too long.
I found the story a good one. I did not find the premise to be plausible though I see some reviewers did not. The writing style was fine. Nothing special but straightforward.
The protagonist is as the Audible blurb says, “deeply flawed.” I second that. He isn’t a drunk as many detectives are. I was going to call him a sociopath, but checking the traits of sociopaths (sometime charming, delusional), he isn’t that. I think antisocial fits the bill. He doesn’t like anyone. He is rude. He is lazy and irresponsible for the first half of the book. As the book nears its end, he improves a bit, but he really isn’t the least bit likeable.
I give the narrator a rating of 4. Overall, he is excellent. The one downside is that the Danish accents he affects makes is hard to distinguish one character from another. One reviewer suggests simply using the narrator’s native English. Still, the Danish accent does give the English listener a Danish ambience, which is nice.
Memoirs read by the author are special. Amanda L. does a good job telling her story. Amanda, and others who travel the world with reckless disregard of others, engender mixed feelings in me.
One gets an intimate view of what it is like to be a hostage. Things that occur are not surprising to anyone who reads the news but an unflinching first hand account. Amanda L. has taken an amazing tour of some of the most dangerous places in the world. One cannot help admire her bravery and inquisitiveness.
That said, I could not help but be troubled by her trip to Somalia. She admits it was a mistake, but most would have known that at the outset. She put her family through a terrible ordeal. She endangered others.
I didn't and don't dislike her. I admire her and I admire the work she has done since her release to help the women of Somalia. Still, my admiration is tinged with a bit of sadness that these events occurred.
The book is well worth a listen.
A bit too long is my only complaint. Well, also, for me the book wasn't the equal of "I've Got Your Number" and "Can You Keep a Secret?".
I’m a big fan of Donna Leon so I had to try this book. First, I listened to an hour of the book. Then I went to other pursuits. Two months later, I tried again and made it all the way by stubborn perseverance. While well written and wonderfully narrated, the story is simply not very interesting. One follows the protagonist’s research about an 18th century composer/prelate of sorts, which I found I didn’t care about. The protagonist’s travails as the hired researcher to go through the papers of the composer are only mildly interesting. I’ll stick with Bruneti.
I love Willig's other books. This one, however, didn't do it for me. Too much romance, too little history.
Good story, interesting characters, good character development, and life in rural Quebec new to me. I will buy more of her books.
I trusted the author's reputation on this purchase. That plus an interest in the workings of the underground railroad. I found it rather boring. I kept listening with one ear so to speak since much was uninteresting to me. There is a lot, really a lot, of quilt making discussions. Some of the reactions of the English girl to life in America in 1850 are interesting, like how rude rocking chairs may seem. Runaway slaves do not appear until the last 1/2 hour of part one. The treatment of the issue I found mildly interesting.
Not sure what I think. Three of the stories are quite interesting. One (the future) is ok. One, I can't even say what it involves. The writing is excellent. The narration as well, But,in one of the stories, the hillbilly-like accent and odd vocabulary sat ill with me. I had to skip over it to the next story.
The narrator's Irish accent was too thick, too strong for me. A bit was ok, but after a couple of hours, I had to give up.
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