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Alan Winterrowd

Boomcoach

Bluffton, IN USA | Member Since 2006

79
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 22 reviews
  • 148 ratings
  • 579 titles in library
  • 37 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
4

  • A Christmas Carol: A Signature Performance by Tim Curry

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Charles Dickens
    • Narrated By Tim Curry
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4154)
    Performance
    (1958)
    Story
    (1956)

    A Signature Performance: Tim Curry rescues Charles Dickens from the jaws of Disney with his one-of-a-kind performance of the treasured classic. Our listeners loved this version so much that it inspired our whole line of Signature Classics.

    Nanci says: "Superb story and reading!"
    "A classic story read with joy"
    Overall

    While there are a myriad of TV and movie versions of this wonderful tale, most eliminate the darker and more thoughtful parts of the story. Hearing it read in its entirety, and by a favorite actor of mine, is truly a joy.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Skin Game: A Novel of the Dresden Files, Book 15

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5219)
    Performance
    (4942)
    Story
    (4924)

    Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, is about to have a very bad day.… Because as Winter Knight to the Queen of Air and Darkness, Harry never knows what the scheming Mab might want him to do. Usually, it’s something awful. He doesn’t know the half of it… Mab has just traded Harry’s skills to pay off one of her debts. And now he must help a group of supernatural villains - led by one of Harry’s most dreaded and despised enemies, Nicodemus Archleone - to break into the highest-security vault in town, so that they can then access the highest-security vault in the Nevernever.

    D says: "Hold onto your staff; Harry’s back."
    "A bit of a disappointment"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have read and listened to the Dresden series and have enjoyed it, looking forward to each new book, so I was excited when a new book became available.

    By the mid-point of the book, I found myself checking the time on the audiobook to see how much longer it was going to be. The first half of the book, in particular, is tedious and formulaic. Harry is filled with angst, Harry is getting his but kicked by practically everything he meets, etc, etc, fifteen books, same stuff. It gets old, especially the angsty whining. They last third of the book moves well and is interesting, but not enough to salvage the book.

    There is quite a bit of character expansion for the Dresdenverse as a whole, but the book seems more interested in the meta story and forgot that there was supposed to be a story to tell in this book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Execution of Sherlock Holmes:: And Other New Adventures of the Great Detective (Unabridged)

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Donald Thomas
    • Narrated By John Telfer
    Overall
    (108)
    Performance
    (95)
    Story
    (98)

    Drugged, manacled, condemned to a dank cell in the depths of London's infamous Newgate prison, the world's greatest literary detective awaits execution by a vengeful crew of formidable enemies. Escape is impossible; death, a certainty. But not for Sherlock Holmes, who, in a stunning display of intellect and derring-do, will elude his hangman's noose and live to fiddle, spy, and ratiocinate another day.

    J. Waggoner says: "Not the "real" Holmes, but reasonably close"
    "VIctorian minutae, poor pastiche"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book contains five longish short stories, the first of which is pretty good, the remainder vary from mediocre to tediously poor. To his credit, the author has spent a good amount of time studying the Victorian era, but at several times he goes into long boring displays of this study, like an 8 year old explaining his Pokeman deck to an uninterested adult.

    The author does a double dose of Holmsian name-dropping, enough to make it a drinking game if you wish. On the other hand, Thomas seems to have a poor grasp of Doyle's classic characters:

    Holmes is more waspish and insulting than I would prefer, but falls within a reasonable continuum of interpretation. Audible has an excellent three volume Holmes set in which Charles Griffin does a much more acerbic interpretation of Holmes, using Doyle's own words.

    Watson gets significantly poorer treatment. While Doyle's Watson often shows frustration with his gifted friend, Thomas's Watson whines continuously, ignores instructions, and seems more angry with Holmes than loyal to him.

    The poorest treatment, however, is reserved for Mycroft Holmes. Thomas should have created a third Holmes brother if he was going to create a completely new character. Doyle gives Holmes an older brother who is Sherlock's intellectual equal, but too lethargic to do his own legwork; a man who at times "is the British Government" and is deeply involved in the intelligence community. Thomas gives us a whiny, petty functionary, who is worries about Sherlock embarrassing the family and has the brains of a newt.

    In the end, to paraphrase Monty Python, this is not a book for reading, this is a book for standing back and avoiding.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hallowe'en Party

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Agatha Christie
    • Narrated By John Moffatt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (80)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (35)

    Mystery writer Ariadne Oliver chaperones a Halloween party for a group of teenagers, one a talkative lass known for telling tall tales. In fact, Ariadne hears Joyce Reynolds brag that she has witnessed a murder. But when Joyce is found drowned in an apple-bobbing tub, Ariadne wonders if the girl was too close to the truth, and too close to a killer. Unmasking the culprit is a job for Hercule Poirot.

    Thomas says: "An Excellent Piorot Mystery"
    "A well delivered favorite"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am a big Agatha Christie fan, and have most of the audiobooks available here on Audible. While Hugh Fraser has been my favorite narrator for a long time, John Moffat blows this book out of the water. He delivers distinct characters, but may be at his best when reading non-dialog portions of the text.

    This is one of Christie's later stories, and is one of her best. Character development is very strong and the storytelling and the plotting show a mature professionalism. This avoids most of Christie's more overused trope's delivering a unique experience. A must read/listen for any devoted Christie fan!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dark Worlds of H. P. Lovecraft, Volume One

    • ORIGINAL (3 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By H. P. Lovecraft
    • Narrated By Wayne June
    Overall
    (285)
    Performance
    (236)
    Story
    (227)

    Hailed by literary critics as the inventor of modern-day horror, H. P. Lovecraft is the cultivating force behind such modern writers as Robert Bloch, Wes Craven and Stephen King. The Dark Worlds of H. P. Lovecraft, Volume One is a collection of his best-known tales narrated for the first time by Wayne June and includes both "The Dunwich Horror" (published in the summer of 1926) and "The Call of Cthulhu" (published in the summer of 1928).

    Edward says: "Excellent Series for those who love Lovecraft..."
    "Fantastic, bother story and reader"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Two of Lovecraft's best known classic stories are given a horrific, terrifying life in this reading. While I feel the exquisite disquiet that Lovecraft's best works cause are best felt from reading the stories oneself, Wayne June does an amazing job with these stories. I look forward to getting the rest of the collection!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dust and Shadow: An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Lyndsay Faye
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1480)
    Performance
    (1132)
    Story
    (1125)

    Breathless and painstakingly researched, this is a stunning debut mystery in which Sherlock Holmes unmasks Jack the Ripper. Lyndsay Faye perfectly captures all the color and syntax of Conan Doyle’s distinctive nineteenth-century London.

    connie says: "the best of both Holmes"
    "Combines two favorites"
    Overall

    As a longtime Holmes fan and also a little bit of a Ripperologist, this book was too tempting to pass up. Lyndsay Faye gets the voice of Watson near pitch perfect. It was not long before I was simply immersed in the story, without consciously thinking about the fact that it was a pastiche. The author also does not fall into the trap of spending too much time on Holme's "parlor trick" readings of minutia.

    The most serious issue, for an author, in a Holmes vs Ripper story, is "if Holmes succeeded, why don't we know about it?" Faye handles this issue with a new, and intriguing style.

    A note about the reader. Simon Vance is quickly becoming a favorite of mine, here on Audible. He can handle various ages, genders and accents with ease, creating characters that feel individual and who never grate on the nerves or bring the listener out of the book and back to the reader.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Tuesday Club Murders: 13 Miss Marple Mysteries

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Agatha Christie
    • Narrated By Joan Hickson
    Overall
    (231)
    Performance
    (142)
    Story
    (142)

    The unifying premise for this short-story collection is the Tuesday Club: six people who meet socially one evening at Jane Marple's home and then decide to meet regularly each Tuesday night to solve a mystery that a group member must relate.

    moonshroob says: "The Queen of Crime & the best Miss Marple, Joan!"
    "I love Miss M, but ..."
    Overall

    I love Miss Marple mysteries, overall I think they are better written than Christie's other works. I am also a fan of Joan Hickson's interpretation of Miss M, on television. I expected to fully enjoy this book. Unfortunately, Hickson's voice is very weak for an audiobook reading, and she does not do a very good job of portraying the characters.

    The other problem with this book is that the stories are not particularly interesting. All are told in the past tense, while the "Club" is taking tea, and they tend to turn of fairly obscure points. Overall, they tend to be, and I hate to say it, boring.

    I can listen to Miss Marple's novels over and over again, but I have had a hard time getting through this collection once.

    4 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • The Clocks

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Agatha Christie
    • Narrated By Robin Bailey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (65)
    Performance
    (24)
    Story
    (25)

    Wilbraham Crescent baffles Special Branch investigator Colin Lamb; he can't find number 61. But he's in the right place at the right time when pretty Sheila Webb runs screaming from a flat and falls into his arms. Inside, a murdered man's body goes cold while authorities puzzle over the six clocks that surround his body - four of which are stopped at 4:13... and a blind woman denies she knew the dead man or that she rang for Sheila. Colin's only hope to clear the girl is his old friend Hercule Poirot.

    Alan Winterrowd says: "A very poor Poirot story"
    "A very poor Poirot story"
    Overall

    The narration, while not by the comfortably familiar Hugh Fraser, is adequate, but the story wanders insipidly around. Dame Agatha tries to inject some spy thriller content (never her strong suit) into a mystery and then drops Hercule Poirot into it to try to make a story out of the resulting muddle.

    While ACs stories are not always believable, they are rarely as cobbled together and irrational as this one. There is a reason why this was not recorded until many of the best, and even good, AC stories have already been done.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • 4:50 from Paddington: A Miss Marple Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Agatha Christie
    • Narrated By Joan Hickson
    Overall
    (173)
    Performance
    (68)
    Story
    (69)

    For an instant, the two trains ran side by side. In that frozen moment, Elspeth McGillicuddy witnessed a murder. She saw the body crumple. Then the other train drew away. Everyone but Miss Jane Marple was willing to dismiss her friend's distraught report. Diligently studying train routes, timetables, and tracks, Miss Marple imagines where the body might be. Her detective genius includes playing the little-old-lady card and, ultimately, winning the challenge of wits.

    Carl Smith says: "Love Joan Hickson"
    "Very good story, decent narration"
    Overall

    Let me begin by saying that I love Joan Hickson's television portrayal of Miss Marple. She was the perfect MM. Her readings, however, are much less impressive. Her voice is not strong, and her characterizations can be very weak. Having said that, she does a solid, if not great, job on this audiobook. Her renditions of the two younger boys in the story are especially well done.

    The story is excellent, showing Christie at the top of her form. While there are only a few strong characters in the story, Christie makes the most of them. The mystery is involved, red herrings are flopping around, and the denouement is one of my favorites. "The Body in the Library" is a better Christie audiobook, but this one is certainly worth your time and money.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: Volume One (Dramatised)

    • ORIGINAL (2 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Bert Coules, Andrew Sachs
    • Narrated By Full Cast, Clive Merrison
    Overall
    (38)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    In the 56 short stories and four novels Arthur Conan Doyle wrote about his great detective, there are many passing references to successful cases that are never actually written about. These four stories, written by the main dramatist on the complete BBC Radio 4 Sherlock Holmes canon, imaginatively flesh out the cases behind those references, to wonderful effect. As in the complete dramatised canon, Clive Merrison plays the great sleuth, with the role of Doctor Watson played by Andrew Sachs.

    Die Falknerin says: "Didn't you always wonder?"
    "For the Holmes fan seeking more"
    Overall

    As a Holmes fan who has been through the canon, and enjoys pastiches, these four stories were a joy to listen to. To begin with, they have much of the same team that produced the wonderful Sherlock Holmes radio adaptations, including Clive Merrison as Sherlock Holmes, a role he excels in. Here Bert Coules brings us new stories, based on mentions within the canonical tales. Andrew Sachs ably replaces the late Michael Williams as Dr. Watson. While I prefer Williams, Sachs, along with Merrison and good writing, provides the chemistry between Holmes and Watson that is so crucial to the enjoyment of the listener.

    The stories are all solid, if not spectacular, pastiches.

    The Madness of Colonel Warburton is good. Involving Holmes in a case involving spiritualism is always fun, given Conan Doyle's interest in the same.

    The The Star of the Adelphi is the weakest, but also includes a nod and a wink to the Holmes fan in the play and the author mentioned.

    The Saviour of Cripplegate Square brings up a Victorian era practice not too terribly well known about. The connection to the canon comes late, but is all the more effective for it.

    The Singular Inheritance of Miss Gloria Watson includes one serious flaw, but it would be a spoiler to mention it. Otherwise it is a good story, and another in which the canonical connection is slipped in late in the day.

    In the end, these are not as good as the BBC's canonical productions from the 90's (available on Audible). But the stories are as good as the better Rathbone/Bruce radio shows of the 40's, and the performances are excellent.

    Another side note about the cast. For this old punk rock fan, it was fun to find out that the Toyah Wilcox I enjoyed in the 80's plays Miss Gloria Watson of the 4th episode.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Moving Finger: A Miss Marple Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Agatha Christie
    • Narrated By Martin Jarvis
    Overall
    (84)
    Performance
    (43)
    Story
    (41)

    No one warned Jerry and Joanna that vile, anonymous letters were being sent to various villagers and, indeed, they soon receive such a letter themselves. A letter, of course, is only harmful if a recipient takes it so seriously she kills herself-which happens soon after the story begins. And then there is a murder. Is this the result of a letter, or of a deranged mind that fears discovery? Jerry Burton is out of investigative ideas when Miss Marple appears, ready to solve the crime.

    Alan Winterrowd says: "This will keep you guessing"
    "This will keep you guessing"
    Overall

    An excellent whodunit with a very surprising ending. Be warned, Miss Marple fans, while MM solves the mystery, she only appears late in the book and does little more than provide a solution. Her absence is not missed, as the story drives itself forward very well. Very well read, with good characterizations.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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