This book is super fun. It's fast paced, light, smart and seamlessly crafted. Gentlemen Of The Road reminds me what it was like when I was a little kid bookworm, devouring trashy paperback adventures from cover to cover.
As a child, old pulp serials were the best thing ever. John Carter, Conan, Tarzan - these books whisked me through their pages with knuckle biting adventure - but somehow you always knew the hero would come out on top, despite his (always his) nagging personal doubts, and the overwhelming odds. The simple characters, and almost familiar plots set in exotic locations thrilled me.
Revisiting the novels as an adult, the experience soured. I found them tedious, xenophobic, sexist, and full of horrid cliches. Truly one of those sad moments of lost innocence.
However, this book captures everything my itty-bitty self adored in those old adventures. Chabon perfectly reinvents the flare and simplicity of bold men and women, clever rapscallions, and cruel villains - all dueling in another time and place. And it ditches all the anachronistic manure found in the old pulps. And it's beautifully written, with a voice that effortlessly glides the reader across the exotic locale and fast paced action.
Pros and cons of the audio version: while the audiobook loses the great spot illustrations of the printed edition, it makes up for that with Andre Braugher's reading. His pacing and the texture of his voice perfectly enhances this story.
Hyperion was solid sci fi. Well, a bit corny and odd in spots, but mostly inventive, engaging, and thoroughly fun. I even enjoyed the ending, which seems a love-it-or-hate-it kind of thing.
I was excited to see what was going to happen in The Fall of Hyperion - the second chapter of the wild world of the Shrike!
As the story progressed, my anticipation was replaced with mild disappointment. The story lines muddled together in a complicated baroque jumble. Towards the middle of the book, I kept thinking that I'd accidentally rewound the story, but it was just that the author kept saying the same thing over and over. Plus, although I'm a fan of metafiction and allusions to classic literature, this book's heavy handed eruditism felt embarrassingly self conscious. Wasn't sure I cared about the characters anymore. Things just kept happening to them, and they didn't seem actively engaged in their future, so neither was I.
Just like Harry Potter... Only with lots of weird descriptions of naked children having suggestive conversations. Ew!
The story is, at best, meandering and mediocre, leaving me with a sour feeling. I'm a sci-fi and YA fan, but barely made it through this book, ever hopeful of discovering some redeeming quality. I never found any.
Hilarious reading of a comedy classic! Among the best of the Jeeves books, full of slapstick, wit and plot twists - if you are unfamiliar with Woodhouse, this is a great place to start. Jonathan Cecil's reading adds lively sparkle to the absurdist ramblings of the not-so-sharp aristocrat, Bertie Wooster.
I listen to audiobooks at work, and it's a rather subdued environment. This book keeps me choking back laughter until tears stream from my eyes - even with repeat listens.
Caveat: if you're not a fan of British humor and send-ups of the Downtown Abbey set, this is not for you. But I bet that if you've gone far enough down the rabbit hole to visit this book's page, "Right Ho, Jeeves" is just your thing.
HHhH is a vivid and emotional retelling of an almost unbelievable true story, and kept me in suspense, ready to find out what happened next. I greatly enjoyed the voicing of both author and reader. (And translator.)
Strictly speaking, this book doesn't just tell the story of heroic WW2 soldiers and horrible Nazi think tanks. While that is the main thrust of the narrative, the book includes a rich view of the political and social climate, enriching the overall world of the story. By meandering into beginnings of other equally fascinating stories, Binet provides connective tissue of each historic thread. And he does so in a way that is extremely interesting, rather than a distraction from the main story. Continuing with the postmodern form, we're also let in on the author's personal obsessive information hunt, nagging creative insecurities, and life difficulties. What fun to hear about his process of making the novel!
I found the story both a thoughtful retelling and an engaging page-turner… Is "page-turner" an appropriate word for audiobooks?
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