Kathy Bates' narration makes me forgive this for being an abridged work. I didn't realize it was abridged when I bought it and likely would not have bothered if I had. I am glad I made the error.
Aside from being abridged this is not one of King's stronger works but is clearly King and strong enough when not compared against some of his greater works. It deals with the familiar themes of good vs. mindless evil though in this case it is more clearly a case of a god touched child (a la The Shining) vs. that evil than some of his other works.
What elevates this is the excellent use of music and chilling sound FX coupled with Kathy Bates' masterful narration. If you're a King fan and haven't experienced this title before you could do far worse than spending roughly eight hours with these characters and Bates' deft narration.
The story is okay but fairly boring, there is a great deal of world building which is obligatory when introducing a world like this, however, it is presented in a fairly dull manner. This is very much an A leads to B leads to C kind of story in spite of trying not to be.
The main character's abilities alternate from mundane to god-like with little justification. The cast is competent and I hope, going forward, if this particular series is continued the writing will improve.
First off ignore the reviews complaining that this is a full cast dramatic production, clearly those persons didn't read the description.
This is competently executed, the performers are very good however the production is slightly lacking. While there are appropriate dramatic musical cues the background sound is lacking in complexity and presence, in a busy city like London let alone during the events of the story there are very few times when a person would be speaking in literal silence. Anyone used to productions from the BBC or Bigfinish will notice a difference.
The writing is somewhat simplistic and the twist pretty easy to guess.
The real highlights are Freema Agyeman and Andrew Scott. They both turn in solid performances though I think Scott edges ahead of Agyeman a bit. This may be due to his character simply having more depth and 'screen time' as well.
It's definitely worth a credit. I look forward to more Audible Dramas and hope the production quality improves.
This and it's sequel are difficult to describe without spoilers or doing the tale and it's incredibly believable characters a disservice (trust me I knew these guys in high school and have beers with them annually, at least it feels like it!) you'll lose and gain faith in the hapless average joe leads again and again. This is a delightfully horrific, zinging tale that is truly creative and unique. In a world where horror fans are hip deep in softcore creature porn claiming to be horror, where zombies and werewolves are about as frightening as dated wallpaper (for the most part) David Wong's horror is desperately needed.
The story is tightly crafted though it doesn't feel it at times (this is part of its charm, just as you want to strangle the leads or walk away ...well you'll see) convoluted but purposefully, disturbing and gross rife with intellectual horrors and gut churning instinctive toe curling fears it is a refreshing and sharp edged entry in modern horror.
Spend your credit you will NOT be disappointed.
The book claims Wicca is 4000 years old, it's less than a hundred. Also judging from the timing of its release and its stupid claims of thousands of satanist covens taking over America and College Kid USA it was probably a contributor to the famously debunked 'satanic panic'. It's an interesting listen best accompanied by a large quantity of skepticism and common sense, mostly as an example of one period and perspective in the occult /paranormal movement in the Eastern U.S.
The narrator was really the highlight but he couldn't rescue the content.
As the author is and the story isn't set in North America (dialogue clues). However, that said, the narrator is competent enough though he sounds as though he's reading to children. The story however, is fantastic and moving I highly recommend it. It's a unique dystopian vision of a world populated by children used as fodder for an invasive force bent on processing the children into creatures used as pawns in a literal battle to the death 'game'.
This too follows the adventures of showbiz personnel and their adventures with employment. This seems to have more production value than the first though that may be more of a strength than a weakness as part of the charm of the original was its off the cuff visceral presentation. All in all an entertaining and charming series of tales.
presentation of several performers and their various firings. Some justified all amusing. A quick fast paced listen sure to elicit some chuckles the material ranges from the dry to the raunchy but all is quite entertaining. If you enjoy this seek out it's somewhat more staged and produced sequel
As the savvy reader may suspect this work revolves around whether or not one man spoke to another in the midst of war and passed on a warning.
A taught interesting discussion between two giants of history and science debates the morals of necessity and war and the foibles of memory.
Well worth the price of admission with excellent nuanced performances by all parties.
Three characters, Nancy, a mother struggling with the unexplained disappearance of her ten year old daughter, Ralph a loner and monster, and Agnetha Godsdottir, a scientist trying to find an answer.
The opening is jarring and confusing, possibly intentionally. The use of a mic effect for some of Dr. Godsdottir's scenes is useful in that it grounds the location and audience of the passages. While Agnetha's scenes sometimes jar and we're treated to more of her personal life and the wreckage thereof than is strictly useful or interesting the character is made more human for it. Jeffrey Donovan (Burn Notice, Touching Evil etc) is masterful as Ralph managing the vocalizations and accent beautifully. He's quite a vocal chameleon.
The theme of being frozen and in a way thawed runs throughout the play.
Nancy, the mother frozen in time by the loss of her daughter is crushed and freed by finding her.
While Godsdottir is caught like a bug in amber warring with grief and guilt in her personal life away from the horrors she is steeped in daily in her professional life.
And Ralph, emotionally frozen and separate from the rest of humanity be default earns no favors when his thaw comes.
This is in no way clean or light or easy fare and at the end there aren't even any heroes or villains there's just people and baggage and that's the point.
Well worth a credit though due to length I would recommend an outright purchase. You won't be disappointed.
That said the presentation is well done and I enjoyed it, however, the narration was well done until it came to ANY dialogue between the main characters (all children) at which point the narrator chose the obnoxious tactic of making his voice soft, squeaky, or soft and squeaky to differentiate between them. The most obnoxious of these was for the only young female character, Cordelia Cook. Her voice is described as a monotone in the book and not only is it not a monotone but the squeaky nature of the reading of her dialogue is almost unbearable at times.
This is one of my favorite books and I read my copy until the cover fell apart so I'm willing to concede that I may be biased to some degree however the irritating vocal choices bothered me so much that I found I had to force myself to finish the book.
Listen to the preview before buying.
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