I read a few Sherlock Holmes stories many years ago but had no idea that so many were written by Conan Doyle. The stories are of a length that is easy to digest and the excellent narration by Charlton Griffin (tops in my book, up there with Frank Muller and Simon Vance) brings the stories to life with his various character impersonations. I probably like Griffin's narration with a woman's voice the best of any narrator. The women often sound somewhat fickle, but for the late 1800s this wouldn't be too out of step with the times.
The length of each story is such that it can be "read" at a good pace leading to excitement to hear the next story. The voice characterization for Holmes is spot on. Having seen the older movies that featured Basil Rathbone as Holmes, I found myself picturing him as the Holmes character thanks to Griffin's narration.
You will find humor in these stories as well, especially when Holmes must tolerate the incompetence of others around him. At such a cheap price with good audio quality, a top-shelf narration by Griffin, and intriguing stories, this is a must-buy.
I absolutely love Kevin Hearne's style of writing his series of Iron Druid Chronicles. They are laced with lots of humor that is current as well as "aged," yet the humor doesn't distract from the stories.
When you couple Luke Daniels as the narrator with Hearne's style, it's a perfect match. His voice impressions of each character adds to the humor and it's hard to imagine an Iron Druid story without Luke Daniels as the narrator. Luke Daniels is to Kevin Hearne as George Guidall is to Craig Johnson (Walt Longmire series). To use a different narrator would be very hard to get used to.
If you liked the previous books, you will surely like this one just as well. I just hope Kevin Hearne keeps adding more and more books in this series.
I love all things Aloysius Xingu Leng Pendergast. He appears to be much more than a rich, all-knowing, FBI agent that seems to operate outside the rules when it calls for it. I've read all the Pendergast stories and you can't go wrong listening to the narration by either Scott Brick or Rene Auberjonois.
Regarding the narrator, I like Scott Brick's narration, although I will say that for the other books that are narrated by Auberjonois, his performance sounds spot on. I find that Auberjonois is to Pendergast as George Guidall is to Walt Longmire.
In any case, the Preston/Child combination works quite well for the Pendergast series and I've yet to listen to a book that didn't keep me in the car listening past my rush-hour traffic drive for just a few more minutes.
One thing that can really help as it pertains to references to other characters is to know the order that the books were written. I'd recommend reading Brimstone, then The Dance of Death before reading this book, but if this book shows up on sale, BUY IT! You can always listen to it again after hearing the other stories.
Note that The Book of the Dead (this book's review) is part 3 of the Diogenes trilogy so it will of course contain lots of info about Pendergast's criminally insane brother.
The order of the Pendergast books is : Relic, Reliquary, Cabinet of Curiosities, Still Life With Crows, Brimstone (part one of the Diogenese trilogy), Dance of Death (part 2 of the Diogenes trilogy), The Book of the Dead (part 3 of the Diogenes trilogy), Wheel of Darkness, Cemetery Dance, Fever Dream (part 1 of the Helen trilogy), Cold Vengeance (part 2 of the Helen trilogy and one of my favorites), and Two Graves (part 3 of the Helen trilogy).
As with all the other Walt Longmire stories by Craig Johnson, I enjoyed this one as well. This story is different than previous Longmire stories though, and not what I expected. It is more about Longmire determined to get the bad guy no matter what it takes, and less about him joking with his buddy the Cheyenne nation (Henry Standing Bear), and getting bailed out by his close friend in times of need. I've enjoyed past stories that illustrate the interaction between Longmire and his potty-mouthed deputy, his help in the Sheriff's department, and his down-home interaction with the odd assortment of people in his county, but this story heads in a different direction and rather quickly.
Craig Johnson introduces a dose of Indian supernatural experiences that was probably what it would take to bring down an unrelenting psycho killer that is not only dangerous, but creative in his attempts to stop Longmire. Although there is a sprinkling of some humorous discussions among the various characters, this book is about a more focused man - Walt Longmire, that is doing his job above and beyond the call of duty. I kept finding myself saying Walt, wait for the back-up help you need, but no, Longmire wasn't waiting for anyone. He was a man on a mission and would not stop no matter what threats he encountered.
The story seemed short, but then again, I like hearing George Guidall not only narrate the story, but an excellent narrator that brings Walt Longmire to life. The story traverses a different direction than most of the Longmire stories, but I liked it none the less and hope that Craig Johnson has another story ready for me to download soon.
I'm not really in to science fiction, fantasy books, or supernatural subjects. Well, except for Stephen King and Dean Koontz I suppose. But, when I saw Hounded - The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 1 on a list of books that were on sale and read the reviews, I thought I'd give Hounded a try. I loved the book so much that I decided to buy the other two books immediately. That's where Hexed - The Iron Druid Chronicles comes in to play which is the second of three books that are currently found at Audible. My review could apply to the other books equally as well.
I'm sure glad I bought the first book! With the writing style of Kevin Hearne and the absolute top notch reading by Luke Daniels, this is a book you should not miss. Lots of humor, especially between Oberon and his master Atticus - the last Druid on earth, makes this book and the other two (Hammered and Hounded) three of the best stories I've read..... errr, heard... in a couple of years now.
I really didn't expect the stories to be as good as they are since I haven't listened to fantasy before, but what a pleasant surprise. You should just go ahead and buy all three books, Hounded, Hexed, and Hammered and read them in that order since the story line will make more sense. Each one can stand on its own as a great read, but reading them in order will make the journey even more pleasant.
So don't even think about it (as this 62 year old reader did), just go buy the books and enjoy them one after the other. I can't wait for the next book and hope that Luke Daniels continues to narrate the story because he is Atticus, and Oberon, and all of the other character voices that he reads so very well. Absolutely great books!!!
I really enjoyed the previous two Keller stories by Lawrence Block, especially the first book Hit Man. Robert Forster read the first story and I had an initial impression of Keller based on the narrator's rendering of the character which was very good, especially given his New York accent. Lawrence decided he would read the second book (Hit Parade) and I don't think that was such a wise idea since although I really enjoy him as a writer, narrating is not his forte. I found his narration to be distracting from the story line and perhaps it would sell better if he was able to remake the story using Robert Forster as the narrator.
Then the third book Hit and Run came along and Richard Poe narrated the story. He too has a kind of gravelly voice which fit the story OK, but to be honest, I like Robert Forster a little better as the narrator. Nothing against Richard Poe as a narrator though since I still think he did a good job and I didn't ding the book due to him as the narrator. His narration as Dot was certainly very good.
I enjoyed this book, although at times, and it seems to be Keller's style, I got a little tired of Keller over-thinking situations. There's a point where his over-thinking becomes annoying such that I found myself near the end of the book saying out loud - just call the darn phone number and cut it out already. It was a novel idea in the first book (Keller over-thinking things), and it wasn't too bad in the second book, but his over-thinking in this book went a little further than I liked since if it wasn't about stamps, it was about a girlfriend, or Dot, or should he check his apartment, or a stolen car, or any number of things that would pop up.
I think that if Lawrence was to reel back the over-thinking by perhaps 50% for each situation in this book it would've been just right. Perhaps as part of the character development he sees Keller as wanting to get out of the hit man business and it's Keller over-thinking things that has become more extreme, and suggesting that yes, he should probably get out of this line of work. I hope Keller doesn't exit the hit man business since he's an interesting hit man that seems to have an impulsiveness that is timely and quite brutal when the time arrives.
I think the book could've headed towards the final stretch a little more smoothly around the final character that had caused so many problems for Keller. Surely "just call me Al" deserved the "attention" that characters less worthy received.
I "read" a lot of books using Audible, and although I tend to listen to classic stories such as Dickens mixed with Lee Child, John Sanford, some Stephen King and a variety of other non-fiction books, this story turned out to be a real gem.
When I first played the story I thought I made a mistake and that it was a kiddie book. Not so! I'm over 60 years old and found the book to be very entertaining in an odd way that kept me glued to the story. A child raised by graveyard inhabitants is not your everyday book. Especially when the main character can use "skills" learned from the dead to protect himself from the living that have bad intentions.
Can you imagine being raised by ghosts (that's a rather simplistic name after reading this book) from many years past and learning all the things that they knew when alive and even when dead? Well, with the help of this story and the author's excellent narration, you might just get a glimpse of what could be, maybe even might be, if we're lucky.
First off, some folks didn't like the reader's voice but once I got used to it (by the end of the first CD), I found it OK and thought the reader did a pretty good job with the various characters. I'd listen to another book read by the reader.
The story has some twists and turns to be sure, but Will (and most everyone else) needed to attend a class on communication skills. I found myself wanting to wring his neck for being so stupid and not just talking straight up when asked a direct question. When he did answer questions, they were sarcastic when it didn't seem appropriate for the character.
It also seemed a little unbelievable that his brother would never bother to contact him given how close they were supposed to be.
Even with the frustrating dysfunctional communication skills of all the characters, I found myself sitting in the car listening "just a few minutes more" which is the sign of a good book.
I found this story to be fast paced and very enjoyable. I really do like Paul Michael as a reader (think he's the best), but the new narrator - Erik Bergmann did a fine job. I like any of the Jon Smith Covert One stories and this one folded in quite well with other Ludlum books. This book brings us in to the world of Russian leaders with an agenda to take over the old Soviet Union countries and unite them once again. Then there's the billionaire that plans to make a buck trying to poison the people throughout the world that would reveal the Russian leader's plans. This story, as in others, includes a nasty bad-guy that seems to be a good match for Smith and a new woman cohort named Devin. Randy Russel is also back as a CIA member trying to determine what's going on while operating from the side. At least until she teams up with Smith near the end of the story. Too bad Peter Howell couldn't be added in to the story since I enjoy his role in other stories by Ludlum. My favorite Ludlum stories are The Janson Directive and The Paris Option. Moscow Vector isn't quite as good as these two, but still a very good book on its own.
Another wonderful book by Charles Dickens. A Tale Of Two Cities shows a more bleak side of the French Revolution where fanaticism and nationalism merge to illustrate how many things can be taken to the extreme and to the detrement of the original purpose. The characters are a somewhat sad lot, each with their cross to bear, and yet at the right time, they show their strengths in ways you would not expect.
I especially like Dickens' ability to use similitudes to convey a sense of "being there." His characterization of the "resurrecter" going "fishing" was absolutely brilliant. I often found myself laughing out loud as he describes the characteristics of the various members of the story as well as the places, and even a cobblestone road. Dickens has such a colorful way of describing a setting that you almost feel as though you are there with him noticing the small things that illustrate the fiber of the subject at hand. I found myself wanting to hear just a little bit more at the end of the story, but then again - he's the master.
Be sure you download this book in the highest quality since the audio may sound muddy and you may lose some of the narrator's crispness which could distract from this wonderful book. You may also feel just a little bit lost near the beginning but things will come together in the right amount of time.
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