I adore Clavell's books, his Asian epic. His characters are always real and believable; even if you don't like one, you're still interested in him.
The reading was masterful; he captured the Tai-Pan's Scots burr perfectly. The Chinese-accented voices he also did very well, though I rather wish MayMay's voice had been a little lighter and sweeter.
I will listen to this brilliant piece again and again.
I am a rabid fan of Nelson DeMille's books, and have listened and re-listened to the adventures of John Corey and Kate Mayfield many times. I can't decide between Lion's Game, Nightfall, or Wildfire for a favorite, and that's just for the Corey/Mayfield books -- for all DeMille's books, which would I choose as favorite? Word of Honor? General's Daughter? The outdated but still wonderful Charm School? Or back to Lion's Game?
Whichever I would choose for a favorite, Panther would come near the end of my list. I was thrilled at first when Paul Brenner (from General's Daughter & Up Country) appeared, and I thought I recognized Chet from Word of Honor -- I love these Big Chill sort of books that bring together characters from other books.
But Panther didn't go anywhere! The Guided Review option asked me about making a movie of this book -- I can't think how it would be done, as 95% of the book occurred inside Corey's head. Now I'm very much in favour of the introspection DeMille uses so skillfully for character development, but it didn't work for me to use introspection as the PLOT -- especially in a DeMille book, where I expect action, and (even more importantly) development of the other characters. Paul Brenner was left a one-dimensional shadow, and the Panther himself never emerged as a real character.
I hope that's not the last Corey/Mayfield -- it's a sour note to end on!
I love audiobooks because I used to have to decide whether I would read OR do the needlework I love (currently quilting). With audiobooks I can do BOTH at once!
I was not completely thrilled by Roy Dotrice's performance; I simply don't care for his voice, and there was a voice that he used for The Imp and a few other characters that just grated on my ears. Also, the editing wasn't terrific, and there were at least a dozen places where a paragraph was read, a pause, then the paragraph repeated.
I adored how GRR Martin handled the witch/sorceress who promised Dani she would save her husband's life ... the seeming disappointment then the ingenious way Dani used the witch's power -- wonderful!
The story is magnificent. I like big sagas, long books, and series -- the Song of Ice & Fire will keep me happy for weeks!
The Help has everything: it's exciting and thoughtful, introspective and funny, and most of all TRUE. I usually avoid audiobooks narrated by a cast, but this one worked beautifully. The different Southern accents were differentiated sensitively and without condescension. A truly marvelous book!
I loved 'The River God', and hoped Wilbur Smith would write a sequel. Even though all his peeps were gone, I wanted to know what Taita did in his later years! 'Warlock" certainly tells that. The characters are true, the writing fluid and fluent, the story engrossing, just not quite as enthralling as 'River God'. They're great together though!
Nelson Demille's books are reliably excellent, but Word of Honor has extra gifts for we who remember the Vietnam Era so well. The story shows how the poison that was the Vietnamese War continues to sicken and destroy, even decades later. Those of us who remember the time will be taken back to those terrible days, when there were no heroes anywhere. Veterans of combat beware -- memories will be triggered and, as Nelson Demille shows us, nobody got out of Vietnam with his soul unscathed.
To people who were born later, this book will give some idea of the terrible questions of that time, and some of the reasons why Vietnam was a war that we lost over and over and over again. Word of Honor explores the limits of the human spirit, both dark and bright.
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