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J. Hoare

reads for fun

Australia | Member Since 2012

4
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 9 ratings
  • 36 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
3
FOLLOWERS
1

  • Prince of Thorns: Broken Empire 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Mark Lawrence
    • Narrated By Joe Jameson
    Overall
    (157)
    Performance
    (145)
    Story
    (145)

    Prince of Thorns is the first volume in a powerful new epic fantasy trilogy, original, absorbing and challenging. Before the thorns taught me their sharp lessons and bled weakness from me I had but one brother, and I loved him well. But those days are gone and what is left of them lies in my mother's tomb. Now I have many brothers, quick with knife and sword, and as evil as you please. We ride this broken empire and loot its corpse.

    lum says: "Dark, violent, sarcastic and unapologetic about it"
    "A dark violent tale"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was starting to worry that audio book delivery of fantasy titles would never be as enjoyable as wading through a paperback. However I am pleased to say that the combination of Mark Lawrence's tale and Joe Jameson's narration has reassured me that audio book fantasy can deliver a quality product.

    This is a dark and violent tale of an angry young man with no fear. The story twists and turns as we learn that what is on the surface is not always the real story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Gregory Maguire
    • Narrated By John McDonough
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4742)
    Performance
    (2371)
    Story
    (2403)

    Heralded as an instant classic of fantasy literature, Maguire has written a wonderfully imaginative retelling of The Wizard of Oz told from the Wicked Witch's point of view. More than just a fairy tale for adults, Wicked is a meditation on the nature of good and evil.

    Kathleen says: "It's not easy being green"
    "Hard work for the unprepared"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I disliked this from the first instant. At one stage I thought that the story was growing on me but that soon passed and I only finished because its a book club book and I had nothing better to listen too during my commute to work.

    I am sure there are clever people out there who will swear that this book is wonderful, the writing wonderful and full of morals and messages. I will maintain my view that this book is self indulgent drivel.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Ambassador's Mission: Traitor Spy Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Trudi Canavan
    • Narrated By Richard Aspel
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (349)
    Performance
    (290)
    Story
    (291)

    Sonea, former street urchin, now a Black Magician, is horrified when her son, Lorkin, volunteers to assist Dannyl in his new role as Guild Ambassador to Sachaka, a land still ruled by cruel black magicians. When word comes that Lorkin has gone missing Sonea is desperate to find him, but if she leaves the city she will be exiled forever, and besides, her old friend Cery needs her help.

    breckoz says: "Been a While"
    "I should have stuck with the written word"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read the Black Magician's Trilogy and enjoyed it very much. However I fear that in switching to an audio book for the follow up titles I have messed with the pictures and sounds that I developed in my head for this world.

    The narration simply did not fit well with my preconceptions of what the story should be about and I found myself being annoyed with the telling of the story.

    The writing and story line in this next instalment of the series is not as strong as the first trilogy. Introducing some of the characters sexual preferences has been done rather clumsily and struck me as tokenism.

    I will pursue this second trilogy but think I will switch back to the written word to complete the story.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • King of Thorns: Broken Empire 2

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Mark Lawrence
    • Narrated By Joe Jameson
    Overall
    (104)
    Performance
    (95)
    Story
    (95)

    The second book in the Broken Empire series, Lawrence takes his young anti-hero one step closer to his grand ambition. To reach greatness you must step on bodies, and many brothers lie trodden in my wake. I’ve walked from pawn to player and I’ll win this game of ours, though the cost of it may drown the world in blood…The land burns with the fires of a hundred battles as lords and petty kings fight for the Broken Empire. The long road to avenge the slaughter of his mother and brother has shown Prince Honorous Jorg Ancrath the hidden hands behind this endless war. He saw the game and vowed to sweep the board. First though he must gather his own pieces, learn the rules of play, and discover how to break them. A six nation army, twenty thousand strong, marches toward Jorg's gates, led by a champion beloved of the people. Every decent man prays this shining hero will unite the empire and heal its wounds. Every omen says he will. Every good king knows to bend the knee in the face of overwhelming odds, if only to save their people and their lands. But King Jorg is not a good king. Faced by an enemy many times his strength Jorg knows that he cannot win a fair fight. But playing fair was never part of Jorg’s game plan.

    J. Hoare says: "Darkness continued."
    "Darkness continued."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This second instalment of the Broken Empire trilogy is as entertaining as the first but as Jorg has grown up he has mellowed somewhat. (of course everything is relative, Jorg being mellow still means his heart and soul remains as black as pitch).

    Mark Lawrence has become a favourite author of mine and his excellent story has been well interpreted by Joe Jameson.

    I note that the third instalment of the trilogy is not being published until August 2013. Lets hope that Audible are able to secure Joe Jameson's services to narrate the upcoming instalment so we don't have to wait too long for the next instalment of this great trilogy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Caleb's Crossing

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Geraldine Brooks
    • Narrated By Jennifer Ehle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (45)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (36)

    Caleb Cheeshateaumauk was the first native American to graduate from Harvard College back in 1665. Caleb's Crossing gives voice to his little known story. Caleb, a Wampanoag from the island of Martha's Vineyard, seven miles off the coast of Massachusetts, comes of age just as the first generation of Indians come into contact with English settlers, who have fled there, desperate to escape the brutal and doctrinaire Puritanism of the Massachusetts Bay colony.

    Marion says: "Caleb's Crossing a Challenge"
    "A beautiful story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Caleb's Crossing?

    I enjoyed Caleb's tale as told by Bethia Mayfield who in her own headstrong way set him up to receive the gifts of knowledge but at a significant cost.


    What about Jennifer Ehle’s performance did you like?

    Jennifer Ehle was excellent in this role.


    Any additional comments?

    Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Plain Truth

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Jodi Picoult
    • Narrated By Christina Moore, Suzanne Toren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1302)
    Performance
    (523)
    Story
    (524)

    The discovery of a dead infant in an Amish barn shakes Lancaster County to its core. But the police investigation leads to a more shocking disclosure: circumstantial evidence suggests that 18-year-old Katie Fisher, an unmarried Amish woman believed to be the newborn's mother, took the child's life.

    Susan says: "Plain good!"
    "A pleasant story without being too plain."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Plain Truth again? Why?

    Generally re-reading (and now re-listening) is not my style but if I had nothing better to do with some hours I would not be adverse to hearing this book again.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I liked the juxtaposition of the two worlds, Amish and Corporate America.


    Any additional comments?

    Enjoyable to listen to, this was a departure from what I would normally choose to read but I would certainly recommend this as a light read/listen to others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Water for Elephants

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Sara Gruen
    • Narrated By David LeDoux, John Randolph Jones
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (14451)
    Performance
    (6745)
    Story
    (6824)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Some books are meant to be read; others are meant to be heard – Water for Elephants falls into the second group, and is one of the best examples we have of how a powerful performance enhances a great story. Nonagenarian Jacob Jankowski reflects back on his wild and wondrous days with a circus. It's the Depression Era and Jacob, finding himself parentless and penniless, joins the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth.

    Kindle Customer says: "Great Narration!!"
    "A new twist on running away with the circus."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Water for Elephants the most enjoyable?

    I felt the the two narrators did an excellent job with their respective parts of the book. The voices matched my mental pictures of the story line.


    Any additional comments?

    This is the first audio book I have listened to in a long time and first time to review so I resisted the urge to give five stars lest the next book I listen to is even better! However I would happily recommend the audio book to anyone as its a great story and well narrated.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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