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W. Barron

A voracious reader from the age of five, I'm quite new to audiobooks, but looking forward to hearing some great stories. I loathe vampires.

Richmond, British Columbia Canada | Member Since 2014

1
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 15 ratings
  • 124 titles in library
  • 10 purchased in 2015
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  • The Hippopotamus

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Stephen Fry
    • Narrated By Stephen Fry
    Overall
    (72)
    Performance
    (53)
    Story
    (54)

    Ted Wallace is an old, sour, womanising, cantankerous, whisky-sodden beast of a failed poet and drama critic, but he has his faults too. Fired from his newspaper, months behind on his alimony payments and disgusted with a world that undervalues him, Ted seeks a few months repose and free drink at Swafford Hall, the country mansion of his old friend Lord Logan. But strange things have been going on at Swafford....

    W. Barron says: "Good story, fantastic performance"
    "Good story, fantastic performance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Hippopotamus again? Why?

    Absolutely, because Stephen Fry brings the characters so fully to life.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Hippopotamus?

    The description of the events of the New Year's Day shooting party, from the point of view of two young boys.


    What about Stephen Fry’s performance did you like?

    Everything! Every character was distinct, even people who only had one line of dialogue.


    If you could take any character from The Hippopotamus out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    These characters are the sort of people one prefers to watch from a safe distance, actually.


    Any additional comments?

    This is the first audiobook novel I've experienced, and I can't help but think that, as first reads go, this one sets the bar extremely high. If you've never had Stephen Fry read you a story, doing all the voices, you've really missed out. I listened to the first few chapters while out walking one day, and was thus obliged to perfect the finger-point that perfectly expresses "I'm not laughing at you, but the sounds in my ears" to strangers surprised by the eruption of snorts, hoots, and giggles as they approach or pass.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • I Must Say: My Life as a Humble Comedy Legend

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Martin Short
    • Narrated By Martin Short
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (999)
    Performance
    (871)
    Story
    (862)

    Martin Short takes you on a rich, hilarious, and occasionally heartbreaking ride through his life and times, from his early years in Toronto as a member of the fabled improvisational troupe Second City to the all-American comic big time of Saturday Night Live and memorable roles in movies such as ¡Three Amigos! and Father of the Bride.

    Ty Brady says: "This is what audio books were made for!"
    "An interesting life, compellingly related"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would, because Marty is an interesting and endearing guy, who has led a blessed and interesting life, and the man knows how to tell a story. There's entertainment insider stuff blended with real life stuff, and the combination is just a delight. Also, Martin performs stuff in the audiobook that you just wouldn't get from reading a print book.


    What other book might you compare I Must Say to and why?

    If you enjoyed Amy Poehler's "Yes Please", you'll enjoy this book.


    Have you listened to any of Martin Short’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I haven't. Does he have any others?


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Not really. I enjoyed savouring it over a few evenings, listening before bedtime.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dead Beat: The Dresden Files, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6695)
    Performance
    (5274)
    Story
    (5266)

    When a killer vampire threatens to destroy head of Special Investigations Karrin Murphy's reputation, unless Harry delivers the powerful Word of Kemmler to her, he has no choice. Now Harry is in a race against time to find the Word before Chicago experiences a Halloween night to wake the dead.

    Dan says: "I wish it was about 20 hours longer"
    "Another great story/performance combination"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Jim Butcher's writing is glorious, and James Marsters has an amazing ability to inhabit and animate every single character, regardless of sex, ethnicity, and importance to the story. Combined, they make the whole Harry Dresden series a serious treat to listen to.


    What other book might you compare Dead Beat to and why?

    Any other book in the Dresden series (thus far). They're all delightful.


    Which character – as performed by James Marsters – was your favorite?

    In this book, my favourite character is Waldo Butters. The performance had me laughing and crying, and the character is really endearing.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Absolutely. I think I listened to the first 10 chapters over three nights, and then 11-43 all in one day.


    Any additional comments?

    I love that there are so many books in this series. These are the books I reward myself with twice: once when I buy them, and again when I listen to them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jhereg: Vlad Taltos, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Steven Brust
    • Narrated By Bernard Setaro Clark
    Overall
    (755)
    Performance
    (681)
    Story
    (696)

    Vlad Taltos, a mobster and assassin in the magical metropolis of Adrilankha, is given the largest contract of his career, but the job is even more complicated than he expects.

    D says: "Dragons, Assassins, and Intrigue"
    "Great story, wonderful narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The opening narration felt rather flat at first and I was concerned, but then other characters came into play and I realized that the flat affect of the POV character was intentional, and perfectly suitable. The narrator does a huge variety of voices, all consistently, and it brings the story really alive. Terrific combination of book and narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Unclaimed

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Courtney Milan
    • Narrated By Polly Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (175)
    Performance
    (159)
    Story
    (157)

    Handsome, wealthy, and respected, Sir Mark Turner is the most sought-after bachelor in all of London—and he's known far and wide for his irreproachable character. But behind his virtuous reputation lies a passionate nature he keeps carefully in check… until he meets the beautiful Jessica Farleigh, the woman he’s waited for all his life.

    SIMARA says: "Ah the power of love..."
    "Rich, meaty story, narrated by Rebecca de Leeuw"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Courtney Milan's books are always richly detailed, thoroughly thought out, and full of the visual and auditory texture that brings the story off the printed page. This book is no exception. The narration is good, too; Rebecca de Leeuw sounds remarkably like Joanna Lumley at times, and her plummy tones shift to West Country, from female to male, and from one class to another, distinctly and easily. I would definitely listen to more by this narrator. I'd love it if she could do the recording for the third book in the series, because the narrator on that one is terrible.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Persuasion

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Jane Austen
    • Narrated By Juliet Stevenson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1544)
    Performance
    (1162)
    Story
    (1176)

    Anne Elliot has grieved for seven years over the loss of her first love, Captain Frederick Wentworth. But events conspire to unravel the knots of deceit and misunderstanding in this beguiling and gently comic story of love and fidelity.

    Emily - Audible says: "Juliet Stevenson is Simply Amazing"
    "Jane & Juliet - Perfection!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Persuasion in three words, what would they be?

    My favourite book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Captain Wentworth's letter. Best love letter ever.


    Have you listened to any of Juliet Stevenson’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I haven't, but I certainly will!


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made me cry-happy. That love letter, y'know.


    Any additional comments?

    Jane Austen is my favourite author, and Juliet Stevenson is the perfect narrator for Austen's works. Lovely voice, perfectly suited accent, and fantastic acting. Austen blends her dialogue into narrative sometimes, which must be a challenge for the performer. Juliet does a brilliant job with that, and with differentiating the characters, and with the omniscient narrator bits. Five stars all around.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Worth Dying For: A Jack Reacher Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Lee Child
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2875)
    Performance
    (1630)
    Story
    (1629)

    There’s deadly trouble in the corn country of Nebraska... and Jack Reacher walks right into it. First he falls foul of the Duncans, a local clan that has terrified an entire county into submission. But it’s the unsolved case of a missing child, already decades-old, that Reacher can’t let go. The Duncans want Reacher gone - and it’s not just past secrets they’re trying to hide. They’re awaiting a secret shipment, and they have the kind of customers no one can afford to annoy.

    Ed says: "Classic, Kick-Butt Jack Reacher"
    "Didn't care for the narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    A better narrator. I've heard some excellent ones, and this guy isn't one of them.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Lee Child? Why or why not?

    Only with a different narrator.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Dick Hill’s performances?

    Based on this book, no.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment. I've read and enjoyed many of these books in print, but none of the author's wry observation or wit comes across in this narration. None of the characters are particularly differentiated, either. The voice becomes monotonous, and that robs the story of tension.


    Any additional comments?

    I wonder if it's too late for a refund.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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