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Bodiccea

Member Since 2015

38
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 26 reviews
  • 481 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 121 purchased in 2015
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FOLLOWERS
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  • Death at the President's Lodging: An Inspector Appleby Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Michael Innes
    • Narrated By Stephen Hogan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (108)
    Performance
    (57)
    Story
    (57)

    Inspector Appleby is called to St Anthony's College, where the president has been murdered in his lodging. Scandal abounds when it becomes clear that the only people with any motive to murder him are the only people who had the opportunity - because the President's Lodging opens off Orchard Ground, which is locked at night, and only the Fellows of the College have keys.

    connie says: "must love brit academe 'tween the wars"
    "Thankfully the series improves"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    The most convoluted runaround I have waded through in a long time. Yes, I love the classic British mystery but by the end, I was ready to give Mr. Innes a good sound smack. As I said though, the series gets better. I heartily recommend skipping this one.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Dying Breed

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Declan Hughes
    • Narrated By Stanley Townsend
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (22)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    Even the best private eye needs more than a name to find a missing person, but that's all that Father Vincent Tyrrell, the brother of prominent racehorse trainer F. X. Tyrrell, will offer Loy when he comes to him for help. A dwindling bank account convinces Loy to delve into the deadly underworld of horse racing, but fortune soon smiles on him: while working another case, he discovers a phone number linked to F. X. on a badly beaten body left at an illegal dump.

    Sixty Some says: "Irish Angst"
    "Not for the faint of heart but a crackerjack story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    It's a tough book at times but a crackerjack of a story all the same. Stanley Townsend is an amazing narrator; he manages to have very distinct voices for each of the characters. I do sympathize with another reviewer's complaint about "Tommy"s voice. I didn't find it annoying but I can see how someone might.

    The story is one of no little brutality, about how cruelty and betrayal is handed down from one generation to the next. There is a LOT of profanity as well as stories told of past child abuse, rape and violence. It might sound like there isn't much to recommend the book but, in spite of my usual squeamishness, I really did enjoy it. There are a lot of twists and turns to the plot and a lot of sardonic humour.

    Declan Hughes paints a vivid tale that hooked me from the very beginning; I couldn't stop listening until it was finished and when I was, it took me a long time to return to here and now.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Queen of Hearts

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Rhys Bowen
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1257)
    Performance
    (1136)
    Story
    (1136)

    Lady Georgiana Rannoch, 35th in line for the British throne, knows how to play the part of an almost royal - but now she's off to Hollywood, where she must reprise her role as sleuth or risk starring in an all-too-convincing death scene...

    Calliope says: "Good but not her best"
    "Utterly dreadful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I have enjoyed many of Rhys Bowen's books but this particular series has been going downhill recently. This particular one is repetitive and is stepping over the line into pure silliness.

    However, the worst part by a long shot is the narration. The exaggeration of each accent was truly painful. The English posh are okay but, lord love a duck, when she starts on the American and Spanish accents, it's unbearable. In addition, the narrator overacts many of the characters, making them into cartoons. Between the shrill shrieking of the "Queenie" character, the hollering of most of the American characters and then dropping her voice for a few of the male characters, I was constantly turning the volume up and down.

    I know it's supposed to be comical but there is a difference between some broad comedy and knocking all the scenery over for a laugh.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Billy Boyle: A World War II Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By James R. Benn
    • Narrated By Marc Vietor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (119)
    Performance
    (70)
    Story
    (71)

    What's a 22-year-old Irish American cop who's never been out of Massachusetts before doing at Beardsley Hall, an English country house, having lunch with King Haakon of Norway? Billy Boyle himself wonders. Back home in Southie, hed barely made detective when war was declared. Unwilling to fight and perhaps die for England, he was relieved when his mother wangled a job for him on the staff of a general married to her distant cousin.

    Mary says: "Best Kept Secret"
    "Not for me"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    1. I found the protagonist, Billy Boyle, to be unlikeable. If I got into a conversation with him at a party, I'd be looking for an escape route in about 10 minutes. He's both rude and boring, an intolerable combination. He's not particularly intelligent, has no humor and is too shallow to make his obnoxiousness interesting.

    2. The writing seems rather "entry-level" to me. The dialogue is dull, the characters and action predictable. There is very little character development. Billy Boyle is heavily drawn as a Yank in jolly olde England, all stereotypes dragged out. It seems like the author is trying to make sure that he sounds SO American, to the point where his dialogue strikes me as affected, rather than natural.

    3. The narrator's Boston accent didn't work for me at all. It sounded to me like the accent I would do if I was trying to mock the Kennedy's, and I'm not much of an impressionist!

    The idea for the series seems like a good one but the execution is lacking.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Poet

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Buck Schirner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4054)
    Performance
    (2639)
    Story
    (2627)

    Our hero is Jack McEvoy, a Rocky Mountain News crime-beat reporter. As the story opens, Jack's twin brother, a Denver homicide detective, has just killed himself. Or so it seems. But when Jack begins to investigate the phenomenon of police suicides, a disturbing pattern emerges, and soon suspects that a serial murderer is at work.

    Tom says: "Is Connelly the Best Crime Writer Or What?"
    "Not for the gentle readers"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This might be a great book but I couldn't finish it. If you are squeamish about cruelty and graphic descriptions, you'll want to give this a miss.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Death Dance

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Geraldine Evans
    • Narrated By Gordon Griffin
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    Detective Inspector Joseph Rafferty has just left his wedding rehearsal when Sergeant Dafyd Llewellyn calls to say that a local man has come home to find his wife dead – strangled – on the kitchen floor. Adrienne Staveley is soon revealed to be a woman with many secrets. Was she killed by her husband? Did one of her lovers do the deed? Rafferty can’t help but think it a wonder that someone hasn’t tried to murder her before.

    Bodiccea says: "Sooooooo tedious"
    "Sooooooo tedious"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I am not a person who requires car crashes or bodies dropping per minute in order to stay entertained. I enjoy a slower, thoughtful book. But this book is just too much. It is not slow and thoughtful, it is repetitive to the point of monotony.

    It is a police procedural in the series featuring Inspector Joe Rafferty. He and Sergeant Llewellyn are stymied by a murder investigation that doesn't seem to be going anywhere. The problem for the reader is there is chapter after chapter of the same thing - going back to question the same people, having nothing to show for it, bemoaning the lack of movement. It's not remotely interesting.

    I've read several books of this series and have become increasingly irritated by the characters, which are not all that likeable. Rafferty comes across as not only spineless but ridiculously illogical, dragging his feet taking action on something that any other person would have jumped into immediately. His fiancee nags him incessantly. I found myself muttering, "Explain to me again why you want to marry this woman?" Sergeant Llewellyn is constantly holier-than-thou, his cousin Nigel always untrustworthy and slimy. Honestly, I just wanted to bang all their heads together on a number of occasions. I can't find one character to relate to in this book.

    I am done with this series. Some of the earlier books I found at least a bit amusing but this one was just a slog. The best thing I can say about it is that it is inoffensive - faint praise indeed. And life is just too short to waste on books that are this irritating.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Amy Falls Down: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Jincy Willett
    • Narrated By Amy McFadden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (345)
    Performance
    (299)
    Story
    (302)

    Amy Gallup is an aging novelist and writing instructor living in Escondido, California, with her dog, Alphonse. Since recent unsettling events, she has made some progress. While she still has writer's block, she doesn't suffer from it. She's still a hermit, but she has allowed some of her class members into her life. She is no longer numb, angry, and sardonic: she is merely numb and bemused, which is as close to happy as she plans to get. Amy is calm. So, when on New Year's morning she shuffles out to her backyard garden to plant a Norfolk pine, she is wholly unprepared for what happens next. Amy falls down.

    Jessica and Will says: "Not contemporary fluff"
    "Just the kind of sardonic wit I love"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I loved this book. I loved Amy. I loved her refusal to care about so many of the things our society worships. I loved her dog. I loved her ability and willingness to look at both herself and the absurdity of modern life, in particular the world of writers, with honesty.

    If I was going to compare Willett's writing to anyone, it might be Fran Lebowitz, but not quite so cutting.

    Highly recommended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Unstuff Your Life: Kick the Clutter Habit and Completely Organize Your Life for Good

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Andrew J. Mellen
    • Narrated By Andrew J. Mellen
    Overall
    (1407)
    Performance
    (1171)
    Story
    (1142)

    Arguably the most organized man in America, Andrew J. Mellen has created unique, lasting techniques for streamlined living, bringing order out of chaos for a client list that includes attorneys, filmmakers, and even psychologists. With Unstuff Your Life! he puts his powerful program in the hands of his widest audience yet.

    Angela says: "My lightbulb moment"
    "Useless as an audio book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This may or may not be a great book for organizing your life but I can tell you after a couple of chapters - it is useless as an audiobook. The author suggests you do several writing exercises, answering a very long list of questions about your feelings with regards to "stuff" but goes through the list of questions very quickly. Later there is a long list of words you can choose from to decribe your core values. It wouldn't be so bad if there was an e-book companion, or if you could buy the Kindle book to go along with but that is not an option. If you want to give it a try, I strongly suggest you buy a hardcopy.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Heirs and Graces: A Royal Spyness Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Rhys Bowen
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1740)
    Performance
    (1562)
    Story
    (1554)

    As 35th in line for the throne, Lady Georgiana Rannoch may not be the most sophisticated young woman, but she knows her table manners. It's forks on the left, knives on the right - not in His Majesty's back….

    Nancy says: "Enjoyable light murder mystery"
    "Blah, blah, blah"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I don't mind a light mystery but my word, this was just intolerable. There is absolutely nothing even remotely natural about the characters or dialogue. The performance borders on histrionic and the accents near-mockery. I was looking for some light fare but this is unadulterated cotton candy and made me nauseous. I couldn't wait for it to be over.I have enjoyed other entries in this series which were silly but not sick-making.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Fashion in Shrouds

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Margery Allingham
    • Narrated By Francis Matthews
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (15)

    Both the skeleton and the corpse have died with suspicious convenience for Georgia Wells, a monstrous but charming actress with a raffish entourage. Georgia's best friend just happens to be Valentine, a top couturière and Campion's sister. In order to protect Valentine, Campion must unravel a story of blackmail and ruthless murder....

    Anne says: "Wonderful performance, dated story"
    "Leaves a nasty taste in one's mouth"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    There I was, making my way slowly through this series, enjoyable the affable, comical and thoughtful Albert Campion when suddenly this story rears its ugly head. While the plot is adequate, the author has gone out of her way to write some seriously weird dialogue that makes every character (except for the young boy) obnoxious in the extreme.

    The female characters seem to be written solely for the author to set up in humiliating situations and the male characters are SO misogynist that it would almost be laughable if it wasn't so insulting to men and women. Yes, I know the book was published in 1938 but surely even then it would be considered shocking and revolting for a brother to suggest to his sister that she needs "a good rape"!

    One of the men dumps his girlfriend to have a blatant affair with her friend and then, without a word of explanation or apology, returns to her to propose marriage, or perhaps indentured servitude would be a better description. She is a highly successful designer and the romantic bastard tells her he'll marry her on the condition that she gives up her entire life to him, become his possession (his exact words) and that this arrangement will be strictly a one-way street. She simply cannot wait to agree to this wonderful bargain. These are just a couple of examples; there are plenty more.

    Francis Matthews does an excellent job of narrating, and he has my sympathy. There is not nearly enough story to distract from the grotesque relationships. I don't know what Ms. Allingham was ingesting while composing this one but I am going to do my best to forget it and hope that the next in the series will return to some semblance of reality.Thoroughly NOT recommended.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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