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Ross Henderson

Ontario Canada | Member Since 2011

3
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 5 reviews
  • 19 ratings
  • 143 titles in library
  • 7 purchased in 2015
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  • The Polish Officer

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Alan Furst
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (280)
    Performance
    (135)
    Story
    (132)

    New York Times best-selling author Alan Furst is internationally renowned as master of the European espionage thriller. Unfolding in September of 1939 as Hitler's Wehrmacht ravages Warsaw, The Polish Officer reveals the daring mission of a Captain in the Polish underground intelligence service.

    Charles Lawton says: "Insight into a dark era"
    "Disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Alan Furst and/or George Guidall?

    After listening to the three Furst books read by Daniel Gerrol which I really enjoyed, this was a disappointing experience. I did not enjoy Guidall's preformance.


    If you’ve listened to books by Alan Furst before, how does this one compare?

    I did not find either the story or characters as engaging as in the other Furst books I have listened to, however Guidall's preformance may have tainted my view of the book.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Guidall is apparently very popular and I find this hard to understand. There is little range in his voice and it lacks any vitality. After Gerrol, who is superb, Guidall's preformance seems dull and tiresome. He has a very grandfatherly voice.


    Was The Polish Officer worth the listening time?

    If you like Guidall you will likely like this as well.


    Any additional comments?

    I will give Guidall another chance on another Furst novel, but if his preformance is as lack-luster as it is here I'll likely give up on the series. I do hope that Gerrol narrates future Furst books.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Man Without Breath

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Philip Kerr
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    Overall
    (158)
    Performance
    (141)
    Story
    (141)

    Berlin, March, 1943. A month has passed since the stunning defeat at Stalingrad. Though Hitler insists Germany is winning the war, commanders on the ground know better. Morale is low, discipline at risk. Now word has reached Berlin of a Red massacre of Polish officers in the Katyn Forest near Smolensk. If true, the message it would send to the troops is clear: Fight on or risk certain death.

    Charles says: "Disappointing narration"
    "A Great Disappointment"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I am a great fan of the Gunther series, and have listened to the Berlin Noir trilogy narrated by John Lee many times. Hecht's reading is awful. Bernie's wit and sarcasm are lost in Hecht's gravelly, weary monotone. Furthermore, I found the storyline simply not engaging and very slow-moving. I never did finish it - I simply could not bear to listen to Hecht for the last 3.5 hours...at that point I didn't care who the killer was, I just wanted to move on.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Winter of the World: The Century Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6302)
    Performance
    (5350)
    Story
    (5366)

    Winter of the World picks up right where the first book left off, as its five interrelated families - American, German, Russian, English, Welsh - enter a time of enormous social, political, and economic turmoil, beginning with the rise of the Third Reich, through the Spanish Civil War and the great dramas of World War II, up to the explosions of the American and Soviet atomic bombs. As always with Ken Follett, the historical background is brilliantly researched and rendered, the action fast-moving, the characters rich in nuance and emotion.

    Tim says: "Brilliant Sequel"
    "Fall of Giants this is not!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I found Fall of Giants highly enjoyable but this sequel simply did not work for me. Bringing all the children of the characters in the first book together in the second is preposterous and strains the 'suspension of disbelief' too far. Further, the story sags badly; in the first instalment you spend hours of mind-numbing boredom in Buffalo, where everyone speaks with a grating Bronx accent (?) - the female American accents are particularly awful. I hung on for 7 hours but then bailed out. I'm going to return it, something I've never done in many years of being a member. I would add that John Lee is one of my favourite readers but he should do some study of American accents...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Kraken Wakes

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By John Wyndham
    • Narrated By Alex Jennings
    Overall
    (20)
    Performance
    (18)
    Story
    (19)

    Journalist Mike Watson and his wife, Phyllis, trace it back to the strange showering lights they noticed on the final day of their honeymoon cruise; lights which appeared to land and disappear into the water. Reports mount of similar sightings all over the world. Governments embark on missions to investigate the sea, but ships disappear and diving crews never return to the surface. Something deep in the ocean does not want to be disturbed.

    Ross Henderson says: "Something of a Disappointment"
    "Something of a Disappointment"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I had loved this book when I read it some 30 years ago, but upon revisiting in audio form it I was quite disappointed. While the basic story line is good I found the writing style very dated and slow moving. The dialog between husband and wife is particularly hard to take; very stiff, upper class English diction, and the endless "darling, darling, darling" as they address each other is at times nothing short of grating. But I struggled through it and it does pick up in the last quarter. It has however caused me to reconsider purchasing the other Wyndham works.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • March Violets

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Philip Kerr
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (557)
    Performance
    (334)
    Story
    (333)

    Hailed by Salman Rushdie as a "brilliantly innovative thriller-writer", Philip Kerr is the creator of taut, gripping, noir-tinged mysteries set in Nazi-era Berlin that are nothing short of spellbinding. The first book of the Berlin Noir trilogy, March Violets introduces listeners to Bernie Gunther, an ex-policeman who thought he'd seen everything on the streets of 1930s Berlin - until he turned freelance and each case he tackled sucked him further into the grisly excesses of Nazi subculture.

    King says: "Nazi Noir"
    "Marvellous Noir Thriller Delivered Beautifully"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    In 20 years of listening to audio books I would rate this as one of the top five I have heard. Kerr's story is wonderful and I won't give a precis of it here. I had read the books many years ago, and as I had loved them I was interested to see how they would translate into audio form; the result is a masterpiece. John Lee's delivery is superb! His tone, inflection, voices and characterization are exceptional. I can not recommend this book too highly. I looked forward with great anticipation to the daily commute to and from work so as to dive back in.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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