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S. R. Gibb

New Zealand | Listener Since 2010

23
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 18 reviews
  • 18 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 2 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • Fall of Giants

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    Overall
    (262)
    Performance
    (232)
    Story
    (234)

    A huge novel that follows five families through the world-shaking dramas of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the struggle for votes for women. It is 1911. The Coronation Day of King George V. The Williams, a Welsh coal-mining family, is linked by romance and enmity to the Fitzherberts, aristocratic coal-mine owners. Lady Maud Fitzherbert falls in love with Walter von Ulrich, a spy at the German Embassy in London.

    S. R. Gibb says: "Disapointing"
    "Disapointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really wanted to like this book. I have been a keen student of 20th century history since high school, 40 years ago.

    Alas I found myself unable to really engage with the characters, finding them rather cardboard cutout. I could not help feeling that each was created purely to act as a vehicle to show key historical moments and most of the conversations they had, tended to give us lengthy history lessons. The fact that they seemed to somehow turn up at key points of world events of the time, I found clunky.
    The book is redeemed to an extent by some great descriptions, the delivery of casulty telegrams being one good scene.
    Overall, while i have no argument with the accuracy of the events portrayed, I feel that Mr Follet may have been better to have reduced the scope of the epic and used history as a background to the characters lives rather than awkwardly dropping them into each significant event. Not a book I could immerse myself in, rather, I skipped along the top, unable to find a way in

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • A Perfect Spy

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By John le Carré
    • Narrated By Michael Jayston
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (13)

    Magnus Pym, counsellor at the British Embassy in Vienna, has suddenly vanished, believed defected. The chase is on for a missing husband, a devoted father, and a life-time secret agent. Pym’s life, it is revealed, is entirely made up of secrets. The race is on to find the perfect spy.

    David says: "The Best"
    "A Masterpiece"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    In my view, his best work. Certainly on a par with Tinker Tailor. The slow unwrapping of the Character with constant flashbacks, the layering, the atmosphere, are the work of a master story teller still at the top of his game. Micheal Jayston as always reads absolutely superbly. Unturnoffable!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Deadly Intent

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Lynda La Plante
    • Narrated By Jilly Bond
    Overall
    (79)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (37)

    Alexander Fitzpatrick is one of the most wanted men in the Western world. A Howard Marks character, but far more dangerous, his wealth, accrued through drug-trafficking, runs into millions. For the past ten years there has been no sighting of him. Has he gone to ground using an alias, or is he dead? When an ex-police officer from the murder squad is found shot in a dank squat, Ann Travis is pulled onto the case. As the body count rises and the investigation becomes ever more complex, suspicion falls on Fitzpatrick.

    Lesley says: "Fast Fun Read"
    "Simplistic but Entertaining."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    In spite of the rather simplistic writing style and slightly 'girls own' reading style of 'Jilly' the very English narrator, I found myself drawn into the story.. Don't expect anything confrontational or layered, just simple easily accessible entertainment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Domestic Violets: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Matthew Norman
    • Narrated By Todd McLaren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (31)
    Performance
    (24)
    Story
    (24)

    Tom Violet always thought that by the time he turned 35, he’d have everything going for him. Fame. Fortune. A beautiful wife. A satisfying career as a successful novelist. A happy dog to greet him at the end of the day. The reality, though, is far different. He’s got a wife, but their problems are bigger than he can even imagine. And he’s written a novel, but the manuscript he’s slaved over for years is currently hidden in his desk drawer while his father, an actual famous writer, just won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. His career, such that it is, involves mind-numbing corporate buzzwords....

    glamazon says: "What a rollicking ride!"
    "A Bit Lightweight"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found the corporate speak part of this book mildly amusing but the book overall rather light weight and ultimately unsatisfying.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Help

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Kathryn Stockett
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and others
    Overall
    (643)
    Performance
    (479)
    Story
    (479)

    Jackson, Mississippi, 1962. Aibileen is a black maid raising her 17th white child. Minny, Aibileen's best friend, is the sassiest woman in Mississippi: a wonderful cook with a gossip's tongue. Graduate Skeeter returns from college with ambitions, but her mother will not be happy until she's married. Although world's apart, Skeeter, Aibileen and Minny's lives converge over a clandestine project that will change the town of Jackson forever.

    paul says: "Skeptical at 1st, Enjoyed every moment"
    "A Masterpiece"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I absolutely loved this book, it succeeds on all levels. Its poignancy and humour interweave seamlessly without seeming to take its self too seriously, totally engaging me with the characters. I generally avoid books with multiple narrators, but they immersed me into the roles and transported me back to Alabama in 1963. I regard this book as one of my top 5 audible downloads ever. (and i do a lot of audible downloading) and probably one of the top ten I have ever read. Kathryn Stockett take a bow! I award you the ultimate New Zealand accolade of 3 chocolate fish.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • God Is Not Great: The Case Against Religion

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Christopher Hitchens
    • Narrated By Christopher Hitchens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (135)
    Performance
    (77)
    Story
    (79)

    With robust clarity, Hitchens frames the argument for a more secular life based on science and reason, in which Hell is replaced by the Hubble Telescope's awesome view of the universe, and Moses and the burning bush give way to the beauty and symmetry of the double helix. God Is Not Great marvels at the possibility of society without religion.

    Mark says: "God is not great is great"
    "Great book Bad Narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Would have enjoyed the book much more if the narration had not been so appalling. Mr Hitchens may be a great investigative writer, but he should definitely not narrate his own book. Sounded most of the time as if he was doing a quick skim read in the hope of finding something interesting, which was a pity because if you can get past the narration, its a great book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The French Lieutenant's Woman

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By John Fowles
    • Narrated By Paul Shelley
    Overall
    (380)
    Performance
    (160)
    Story
    (163)

    At Lyme Regis on the Dorset coast, a young Victorian amateur palaentologist, Charles Smithson, is struck by a solitary figure standing at the far end of the Cobb, staring out to sea. It is Sarah Woodruff, known to the locals as 'poor Tragedy' since her apparent liaison with a French sailor who has since deserted her. Although Charles is already engaged to a young heiress, he is immediately beguiled and eventually infatuated with Sarah.

    Darwin8u says: "Writes with a sharp elegance that is breathtaking"
    "Brilliant"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I had seen the movie which was okay, but the book has so many more layers. The entwining of the story, some history of social attitudes during the victorian era, and even some gentle humour make the whole experience a delicious feast that infuses with the sights and aromas of victorian rural England
    If you have even the least interest in the victorian era, read this book. The narration is great too. Overall I award this book the the ultimate prize ...... 3 chocolate fish.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Freddy and Fredericka

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Mark Helprin
    • Narrated By Robert Ian Mackenzie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (350)
    Performance
    (77)
    Story
    (80)

    Best-selling, critically acclaimed author Mark Helprin's work has drawn favorable comparisons to an elite group of literary legends, including James Joyce, Franz Kafka, Edgar Allan Poe, and Thomas Mann. Helprin's sheer comic brilliance shines in this ingenious farce.

    Chris says: "God save Craig-Vyvyan! I liked it."
    "Like a Marathon"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is the literary equivilent of a sleeping pill. A third of it could have been removed without any loss to the story. It just seemed to go on and on and on in a kind of literary montotone. I cant imagine how it received the accolades that it did, which was the reason I downloaded it. There are a few laugh out loud moments, but they are miniscule desert islands in a seemingly enless sea of nothing much. Totally putdownable, and a great idea wasted.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Leopard: A Harry Hole Thriller, Book 8

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Jo Nesbo
    • Narrated By Sean Barrett
    Overall
    (147)
    Performance
    (110)
    Story
    (109)

    In the depths of winter, a killer stalks the city streets. His victims are two young women, both found with twenty-four inexplicable puncture wounds, both drowned in their own blood. The crime scenes offer no clues, the media is reaching fever pitch, and the police are running out of options. There is only one man who can help them, and he doesn’t want to be found.

    S. R. Gibb says: "Absolutely Fantastic"
    "Absolutely Fantastic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Thrillers were never my genre of choice before discovery of the Millenium series. I tended to find them too much to a formula resulting in a degree of samness
    Like many I suspect, I went wandering in the literary wilderness of a world without Salender on completion of the series (and a second listen). I found Joe Nesbo on the reccommendation of a friend and have no hesitation in applying the accolade of my review title to all the ones I have read so far, The Snowman, The leopard and The Redeemer.
    In many ways these stories are better even than the Milenium series, especially if you take Salender out of the mix. Holer is a great main character, sufficiently floored without being a train wreck, and the writing is tight and well drawn.
    Two Ticks, two gold stars, and that most extreme of accolades awarded here in New Zealand, a chocolate fish!

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Memory of Running

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Ron McLarty
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2762)
    Performance
    (971)
    Story
    (962)

    In late 2003, in his column in Entertainment Weekly, Stephen King called The Memory of Running "the best novel you won't read this year." This glowing endorsement of the audiobook resulted in Ron McLarty receiving a $2 million two-book deal from Viking Penguin. Also, Warner Brothers has shelled out big bucks for the movie rights to The Memory of Running, for which McLarty will write the script.

    Neal says: "Funny and Fascinating, A Wonderful Book"
    "Wow"
    Overall

    I absolutely loved this book. His push bike pace trip across the States as he draws and colours in the charachters is like a beautiful, slowly eaten banquet. This is a book finely crafted from the rough clay of a family story and along the way you will meet ordinary people that show you dont need a story to be action packed to give it pace. Gentle, but nice, like sitting under a shady tree by a bubbling clear stream on a summers day.
    I was inititially worried about him narrating his own story, but as we rode with him it became just right.
    Mr Ron McLarty, two ticks and a gold star

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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