I have listened to Anne Flosnik before, and had decided then to never again buy a book that she had narrated. Unfortunately, I didn't notice that she was the narrator for this one, which popped up as a $4.95 sale.
She is just so nauseatingly expressionless, and enunciates her words so unnaturally, and she never, ever, EVER, changes the cadence of her words.....it is actually painful to listen to her. Like nails on a chalkboard, her voice just makes me cringe. And from reading some other reviews about her performance, I know I am not alone in this opinion.
The story might have been OK, I guess, but I'll never know, since I was so distracted by the narration that I couldn't finish it.
A different story, a different author and a different narrator.
Not in a million years!
ANYONE else...this narrator's voice was just plain flat. But I have to say that the best narrator in the world could not have made me like this audiobook. The sex was too explicit, the dialogue too vulgar, the writing too amateurish, and the premise too unrealistic. All that, and no story either.....complete disappointment.
Pretty much all of them...or at least those I listened to. I quit after about 2 hours. Kept hoping it would improve, but it didn't. Didn't want to waste my time seeing if it ever would. Bought it on a Daily Deal, but even at a lower price, it was a waste of money. I'll be returning it.
This audiobook appears to me to have targeted teens and young adults. I just hope they are smart enough to recognize that this is not what a real relationship is like. If they don't, I really pity them.
I was somewhat disappointed in this audiobook. The story was OK - a bit predictable - and although not the best romance I've ever read, it was certainly not the worst. I did start out slowly and confusingly, but got better towards the end. But the worst part was the narration.
I gave Heather Wilds two stars instead of one only because there is no denying she has a very pleasant voice. Unfortunately, it is was woefully expressionless most of the time - or maybe melancholy is a better description. She was simply reading the book out loud. There were no real character distinctions and although I could usually tell if it was a man or a woman speaking, because she did at least change her pitch for that, I certainly could not distinguish between characters of the same sex. Same tone, same volume, same speed all the time, regardless if it was an action scene, a romantic encounter, or heated argument. There WAS no heat, or passion, or amusement, or frustration, or sadness, or fear, or any other emotion expressed in her voice. The monotony of all this made it a very dull listen for me...I will not download another book narrated by HW unless she improves dramatically. I'll give her a few years and then we'll see.
Finally, which is probably more the fault of the recording team than the narrator.... no real pauses during scene changes. I found myself repeatedly rewinding to find out what was going on - not something I typically do. Very irritating.
My recommendation is to buy the book instead.
I thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook, and I think the narrators did a fabulous job of bringing the characters to life. The story is compelling and the characters are just plain wonderful - very well done. I also learned about the German occupation of the Channel Isles during WWII, something I had previously known little about.
It is everything all the others have said about it, so I will not repeat their comments.
This audiobook it is definitely worth the time an credit, and if you haven't read it yet, you should - you will not be disappointed! It is now one of my top ten!
Highly, highly, HIGHLY recommended!
I bought this primarily for my Mom, who is great poetry lover, so she could listen to it in my car during long trips. I thought it would be short enough that I wouldn't be bored...I have never cared for poetry, or so I thought.
What a complete surprise....this is an absolutely outstanding piece of work!
I listened to it all in one sitting...I couldn't turn it off. I laughed, and I wept....and all of it made me think. This is a wonderful collection. I was so stunned at the depth of emotion I experienced listening it that I had to write this review immediately to inform other like-minded individuals of what they've been missing.
I was vaguely familiar with some of the poems, but I never quite understood them when reading them in print. What a difference HEARING them has made to my perspective! Listening to Michael Caine, and Judi Dench, and Ralph Fiennes and all of the others was a real pleasure. The emotions conjured up by these virtuoso readers has really opened my eyes to how powerful poetry can be. The order that they were presented was very appealing as well, starting with poems about birth and childhood, through those about romantic love and war and middle age, to those about old age and death. And managing to end such a collection on a hopeful note was truly inspiring. I just loved it!
I may never attempt to READ poetry again, but I fully expect that I will LISTEN to this collection many times in the future.
I'd like to express my thanks to another reviewer, ESK from Russia, for taking the time to list all of the poems, their authors and the name of the readers. Very helpful.
This is a treat to the soul....HIGHLY recommended.
I cannot sufficiently express how thrilled I was to see another Georgette Heyer novel released to Audio. And with an entirely new narrator, no less!
I have read Georgette Heyer's novels for decades, and have never tired of the wit, humor, adventure and romance she brought to her stories, despite having read and re-read every single one of them over the years (I have worn out the books!). She is my all-time favorite romance author, and I have downloaded every unabridged audiobook on Audible, and continuously check for new ones, since there are ~20 more that are not yet available. In my opinion, they should all be considered classics, since, IMHO, none of today's romances hold a candle to her books.
The Black Moth, her very first novel, was written when she was just a teenager. It expresses all of the charm of her future novels, and of the 40+ romance novels she wrote, is one of my top 5. The story is well told, and includes a charming aristocrat forced by circumstance into becoming a highwayman, a beautiful heroine just waiting to be rescued, a depraved but omniscient villain, a guilt-ridden brother and his spoiled wife, and countless other characters who bring the story to life. Written in the Georgian Period (1750's), GH uses her unsurpassable flair for describing the clothing, manners, and characters of the period to paint a scrumptious picture of each scene, whether it be a kidnapping, a society ball, or a duel.
This new narrator, Julian Rhind-Tutt, did an excellent job of portraying the male characters, and his interpretation of the Duke of Andover was just perfect (I wish he would re-record THESE OLD SHADES (my #1) - since his voice is suited perfectly for the Duke of Avon in that novel - superior tone, but not foppish or nasal, like Cornelius Garrett's narration). He was not quite as good at the female voices, but all in all, he did a satisfactory job with them as well. I quite liked him.
To Audible.....PLEASE acquire the rest of GH's novels! I am sure I am not the only one out there looking for them. But stay away from the Abridged versions - to miss ANY of GH's words is simply a crime.
This is, hands down, the best series on Audible.
This review is long overdue (I first listened to it in 2010), and I cannot avoid repeating things that have already been said. I am just one of many grateful reviewers.
Outlander is the first book in a very long, detailed, and utterly absorbing saga centered about 2 wonderful people and their extended families and friends (and enemies). The series contains adventure, history, war, family, and of course, passion and love. And it all revolves around 2 people named Jamie and Claire as they travel through Scotland, England, France, the Caribbean, and America. And every now and then, Claire travels through time. It spans not only decades, but centuries. It is absolutely wonderful and I can hardly wait for the next book, scheduled for release in late fall 2013.
The narration of the entire series by Davina Porter is utterly flawless. Perfect accents (particularly Scottish), different voices for a very long list of characters, both male and female, and the capability to portray any emotion you can imagine. The best female narrator I've ever come across...
But it is the story itself that captures the imagination.....Diana Gabaldon is the maestro of story telling. I am in awe that one person could have such an endless and diverse imagination as to create such fabulously detailed characters, and settings, and historical anecdotes. Her historical research is obvious. And accurate. She is simply sublime.
If you have not listened to Outlander, or the 6 books that follow it, I cannot urge you strongly enough to try it. You won't have any regrets, I promise....and you'll be waiting with bated breathe for #8, just like I am!
This is the third Laura Kinsale book I've listened to of the three that are currently available on Audible. What a great find!
I'd never heard of Laura Kinsale, and decided to buy these books when I saw them in the "people who bought this also bought" section under one of Georgette Heyer's books (one of my all-time favorites). I am so glad I did...
All three of Ms Kinsale's books are unusual but very, very enjoyable. Her characters are flawed, but oh, so real! Not like the picture perfect, often self absorbed characters in many other romances. She puts real emotions into her characters, gives them real goals and aspirations, and expresses them so well that you feel what they feel. The frustration, anger, fear and desperation that the Duke endures at the lost of control over his life is so raw in this book that you just want to cry for him - extremely well done. I also learned quite a bit about how mentally afflicted people, or, as in this case, presumed mentally afflicted people, were treated in the 19th century (glad I live in the 21st!).
The narrator did a fantastic job, and it couldn't have been easy, especially in this book, where so much of the main character's speech was affected by his medical condition. NIcholas Boulton's interpretation of the story, and of the emotions, was extremely well done. He does accents very well too (mainly in the other 2 books). He's one of the best male narrators I've heard to date, and I've listened to a lot of them.
I hope Audible gets more audiobooks by LS and narrated by NB....I will buy every one of them! I haven't enjoyed anything as much since I listened to Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series, narrated by Davina Porter. Although quite different, all 3 Laura Kinsale books have the same excellence of story and the same quality of narration.
The story was so-so at best - I have certainly read many better, even by this same author. The female lead was naive and timid one minute, and a regular shrew the next. She was also illogical beyond belief, even when she wasn't "pretending". The male lead suffered from frustration throughout, trying to figure her out. I just couldn't see what they saw in each other. The romance was never convincing to me.
The "mystery" part of this story was only sketchily drawn out, and included very little detail or character development. That's another reason I think this would be better if read.....easier to turn back the pages to see who was who.
But I believe the biggest part of my disappointment was due to the narrator, who was just plain annoying. Nice voice, but no real distinction between the characters. And wherever the author wrote, "she whispered", or "he whispered", that is exactly what the narrator did. I can't fault her for trying to follow what the author wrote, but I think it would have been better if she just lowered her voice rather than actually whispering. Also, I couldn't tell if the book was intended to be as "tongue in cheek" as the narrator portrayed. She used the same tone for every situation, whether it was humor, panic, fear, anger, sadness or just plain serious conversation. All she did was change the volume. Very difficult to interpret what was going on.
I didn't care for this one....the story was so-so at best, and littered with so many modern day phrases that it took away from the reason I read romances in the first place - escapism.
He was "fired up", or he "gave it a shot", or "she messed him up"....there were plenty more phrases like this, and they just weren't in keeping with the dialog of a 13th century person. I found it both distracting and irritating.
The characters were superficial, and had little, if any, depth. The main female character was very wishy-washy....I didn't like her at all. The overall impression I got was that this book was written hurriedly, as if to meet a deadline, by a rather young author...one without access to a thesaurus. Disappointing listen.
I thought the narrator was pretty good though, given what she had to work with....
But I will not download any more books by this author.
I listened to the Winter Sea, and thought it was pretty good, but this one just didn't appeal to me. I thought it was confusing...perhaps it would have been better if I'd read the book, and could refer back to pervious pages to get it straight. The narrator made no real distinctions between any of the characters, and I couldn't keep track of who was who.
Like others stated in their reviews, I bought this audiobook because of its supposed similarity to Diana Gaboldon's Outlander series. Sorry, but there is just no comparison. Outlander is a diamond, and this was a poor attempt at a lump of coal. The story did not conjure up any emotion in me - I just didn't really care what happened and I was glad when it was over. No real adventure, negligible romance, and a hint of history...even the time travel bit was poorly done - certainly nothing to hold my interest.
The changes in the narrator's volume, at times so soft as to be almost whispering, was irritating. Her voice would be better suited to reading a book of children's fairy tales - she spoke in a voice that seems more suited to a character like Snow White or Cinderella - very soft and sugary sweet with absolutely no depth or character to it. Not my cup of tea.
I will be returning this one.
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