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A Second Chance Audiobook

A Second Chance: The Chronicles of St Mary's, Book 3

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Publisher's Summary

St Mary’s is back and nothing is going right for Max. Once again, it’s just one damned thing after another. The action jumps from an encounter with a mirror-stealing Isaac Newton to the bloody battlefield at Agincourt. Discover how a simple fact-finding assignment to witness the ancient and murderous cheese-rolling ceremony in Gloucester can result in CBC - concussion by cheese. The long awaited jump to Bronze Age Troy ends in personal catastrophe for Max and just when it seems things couldn’t get any worse - it’s back to the Cretaceous Period again to confront an old enemy who has nothing to lose. So, make the tea, grab the chocolate biscuits, settle back and discover exactly why the entire history department has painted itself blue.

©2014 Jodi Taylor (P)2014 Audible Studios

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (1717 )
5 star
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3 star
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Overall
4.6 (1557 )
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2 star
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Story
4.8 (1560 )
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2 star
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Performance
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  •  
    MJ 09-06-14
    MJ 09-06-14 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This series is just gettihg better and better."
    Any additional comments?

    This series is fast becoming one of my favorites. I love the lead character, Max, for her snarky humor, and she is surrounded by a wonderful cast of characters at St. Mary's. There's humor, adventure, history (some interesting re-tellings and speculations) and romance.

    Do yourself a favor and don't start with this book--go back to the first in the series, Just One Damned Thing After Another, and get to know these people from the beginning. You won't be sorry.

    Zara Ramm does a wonderful job of narration--I will look for other books that she reads just to hear her interpretation of them.

    Highly recommended! I can't wait for the next one, which is due out in print in January 2015. I'm hoping the Audible version won't be far behind.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jean the Urban Walker Queens, New York 07-29-15
    Jean the Urban Walker Queens, New York 07-29-15 Member Since 2013

    road show junkie

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "No one can get enough of Dr 'Max' Maxwell"
    Where does A Second Chance rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Outstanding storyline & the narration is {pun intended} pitch-perfect. Zara Ramm IS Max; you can hear how much she loves her character as she bring her to life time & time again.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Second Chance?

    The great cheese roll. I'd like to get my hands on one of those 'I survived' tee shirts. They could write 'duck' on the rear and make it an instant best seller. Followed by the 'Smurf' episode. I listened to both more than once as I started laughing so hard I could not concentrate initially.


    Which character – as performed by Zara Ramm – was your favorite?

    Max - hands down.


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

    Yes. I actually walked totally out of my way several times to get more listening time in. This needs to be a movie.


    Any additional comments?

    I THINK I purchased the first book, 'Just One Damned Thing After Another' during a special sale. It made such an impression on me that I wanted to hear more from & about Max. I already have book 6 on pre-order and starting to mildly panic as I am already starting Book 4 and it's only been a little over two weeks since I first met Max and the quirky crew at St Mary's. Max is such an identifiable and wonderful character; you just want her to be your friend/boss.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    loralou 11-03-14
    loralou 11-03-14

    Mother of teenaged bear, Wife to chaos, Warrior

    HELPFUL VOTES
    76
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    "New favorite author found!"

    Love this series this book was even better than the first one couldnt wait to read the second one finished the third one in a week ( which is a record for me) preordered the fourth one.
    Sent to Troy her long awaited destinations causes her to make a everlasting life changing decision.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sheryl 10-08-14
    Sheryl 10-08-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A series well worth reading"

    Let me start off by saying that I loved the first two books in the series. So, I was a little disappointed that this book didn't thrill me as much as the others. It started off very slow for me and I actually got a bit bored with all the details about Troy (but then, I'm not a history buff). This book just had a different feel to it and I missed the feel of the first two. The second half of the book picked up considerably for me (hence 4 stars instead of 3). I don't like some of the choices Ms. Taylor made and given the end am not sure why she made them in the first place. It was all a bit too heart-wrenching for me and then totally shocking come the final chapters. Regardless, I am still looking forward to reading the next book to see where the storyline goes. I adore these characters and the audio narration by Zara Ramm. I hope book 4 comes out in audio sooner rather than later.

    Just a note- be sure to read the series in order and don't start from the middle. It really won't do the books justice.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jessica 05-15-15
    Jessica 05-15-15 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I love this series!"

    This is a great series. If you have listened to the previous books, you will like this one as well. It has all of the really dark bits, the really funny bits, the craziness that is St Mary's. This one ended in a way that I'm not sure I like, but I believe that the next one will be amazing and will totally make up for it. Let me be clear, it wasn't badly written, it just went in a direction I wasn't prepared for. It is still Jodi Taylor writing a great story and Zara Ramm narrating in her most excellent and awesome way. Looking forward to starting the next one right away!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gwen K. 01-20-15
    Gwen K. 01-20-15 Member Since 2016

    gwenkz

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Did anyone notice a change at chapter 16"
    What did you love best about A Second Chance?

    I have enjoyed the first three books in this series and hope it continues for a long while. I love the combination of adventure and humor with a little romance.


    What does Zara Ramm bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I think Zara Ramm is a wonderful reader and I have enjoyed listening to her on the first two books and the first 15 chapters of this book, but as I was driving in my car today we switched to chapter 16 and to my ear there was a different reader. The voice was off and the cadence was different. I am still in chapter 16 so I do not know if this continues but I am interested to know if anyone else has experienced this, since I have not seen another reader credited and no one else has mentioned it.


    Any additional comments?

    I love this series and Zara Ramm and I hope she continues to read, voice act, not sure what the right word is, but she adds to the experience for me.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    john 05-24-16
    john 05-24-16 Member Since 2015

    Always looking for a great series/author to follow.

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    "Nice story but big plotholes"

    This is a really interesting story line with a unique device for getting into history. Unfortunately just when you relax and start to enjoy it the main protagonists do something completely out of line for their character yanking you uncomfortably out of the suspension of disbelief

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bradford Chico, CA, United States 05-17-16
    Bradford Chico, CA, United States 05-17-16 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I'm hooked!"

    Great narration of a well crafted story. I'm doing a jump to the next one ASAP!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robin 01-10-16
    Robin 01-10-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    336
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    "Darker and stranger entry in the series"

    This book starts with the fall of Troy described in graphic detail (with more detail thrown in later) and there are other violent interludes. It also becomes very weird with some kind of alternate timelines. I guess Taylor needed more ways to throw conflict into Max's life. I still enjoyed it, especially the narration by Zara Ramm. It ends in a cliffhanger so I have no choice but to go on to the next book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sheryl 11-12-15
    Sheryl 11-12-15

    Kavetch, CA

    HELPFUL VOTES
    33
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    "A very good addition to the St Mary's series"

    First of all, read the stories in sequence. This is number three, after Just One Damned Thing and A Symphony of Echoes. There are also 3 very "short stories" that are fun and just add to the quick trips through time that can be read pretty much any time. There is too much prior "history" that you will need to understand to truly enjoy this installment.

    I did like the book, but the story is a little disappointing. Although Jodi Taylor's flowing and descriptive writing continues beautifully in A Second Chance, the story seemed to jump around a bit (literally and figuratively!). As one reviewer states, the author can't make up her mind as to the type of story she wants to write. But don't get me wrong, I still recommend it as a must listen in the series.

    As we follow the adventures of St. Mary's, we find the H&H in another fantastic point in history (The Trojan wars). Unfortunately, as the story unfolds and as the jumps are made, I did not really like the progression of the love story between Max and Leon. It seems to me the author can't decide if the romance should carry on and for how long. However Max does experience the same conflict within herself and her commitment to Leon. The stolen moments between the two leave the reader wanting. Also, the position Max takes in one major event depicts her unyielding adherence to the law of jumping through history damn the emotional consequences. I found it unbelievable. But admittedly that is likely because I selfishly wanted a different result to the confrontation between Max and Chief Ferrell. In the end, there are some unexpected twists, and the book pulls at a few heartstrings. I will definitely keep me reading this series.

    There are introductions of new characters, one of which is Prof. Peterson. I felt his back story needed more explanation and development. Some events at St. Mary's, like the blue historians were head scratchers, but most of the high-jinx of the crazy historians and residents bring forth Taylor's dry wit and humor at which she is so talented. I will never tire of her pure mastery of the English language and ability to draw a vivid picture for the reader of what each place in time could have truly been like. She has strong structure and pacing in the story as told in the first person. That for me is tantamount to the small story flaws in this case.

    The narration by Zara Ramm, as in the other installments, is superb and adds immensely to the story. So, overall, a four star rating instead of three.

    Very well worth a read, especially for St. Mary's followers.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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  • Roobarb
    uk
    5/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "this made me cry"

    I cried twice!

    but saying that, I just can't leave it alone. where's the next one?

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Mike Murphy
    Switzerland
    11/18/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great balance between fun and fear"

    The Historians at St.Mary’s have a straightforward approach to discovering what really happened at an historical event, they get in a POD, travel back in time and take a shufftie at what’s going on.

    Of course, that means that they risk getting abducted, maimed or killed by the locals or simply by their own clumsiness, but they are a plucky lot who are willing to take their chances and get on with things in their own anarchic way.

    The lead Historian, Madeleine Maxwell, “Max”, is the embodiment of what a St. Mary’s Historian should be: insatiably curious, unthinkingly courageous, capable of great compassion but implacable in dealing with those she sees as evil.

    She’s come a long way from her rookie days in the first book, “Just One Damned Thing After Another” when she had “damaged misfit” written all the way through her like “Brighton” in a bar of rock.

    She is a leader: doing the detailed planning, wrangling the St. Mary’s mob into almost acting as a team, winning the respect and even the love of her people. She’s getting her personal life together after a series of disasters.

    Of course, in a Jodi Taylor novel, where every silver lining has a cloud, this degree of happiness and accomplishment can only mean that Max is doomed. Which indeed she is, though I won’t disclose her fate here.

    The St. Mary’s books really are chronicles, describing events in the order that they happened, although, with time travel involved, the timeline can still have twists and turns in it. In “A Second Chance”, we follow the intrepid Max to Sir Issac Newton’s London, the fall of Troy and the battle of Agincourt. There are also a few unexpected side trips that you’ll have to read the book to find out about.

    Troy has been a long-term obsession for Max. She wants to know if Greek soldiers really hid in the belly of a wooden horse and how they stayed hidden and how they got out and whether Helen’s face really launched a thousand ships, and hundreds of other things, so going there is a big deal and is described at length. What I enjoyed most about this part of the book was that, while original, plausible, surprising answers are given to all these questions, their importance fades as the scale of human suffering becomes clear. Max and her team spend months in Troy before the siege, sharing the way of life of the people only to it strangled by the siege and shattered by the assault on the city. The killing, rape, enslavement and greed-driven destruction hits home hard. This is not some Homeric glorification of war, but a description of the human cost of the phrase: “Troy fell.”

    Towards the end of the book, after Agincourt, Max’s life takes a strange, world-changing, series-altering turn that finally explains the title, “A Second Chance.” This twist makes me certain that the next St. Mary’s book will be different from its predecessors. I’m looking forward to seeing what Jodi Taylor does with it.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • H. Paisley
    isle of man
    9/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I loved it"

    I really enjoyed this book. I stumbled upon the series by accident and have now listened to the first three (plus a short) in four days. Its a good job I can carry it round with me, or I'd be stuck in the house forever! Some other reviews have not been quite so good, but it really worked for me. Maybe that's because I'm a romantic and much, much prefer the happy ending. Made me cry, made me laugh out loud - and when you're out in the garden digging, that can be dangerous! Within one hour of finishing it, here I am back at Audible, getting the next one. What more can I say? Ah, I know - Zara Ramm is excellent too.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Alan
    Loughborough, United Kingdom
    5/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Unexpected twist"

    Builds on the earlier books with new twists and turns an enjoyable listen pushing the realms of time travel.
    The ending means you have to go straight out to by the next one.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • SHADOW smash
    5/4/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Another mind boggling tale of love and loss"

    Each book in the series gets more and more tangled in history and now time dimensions! Not a book to fall asleep with - you'll never find where you got to!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Amy G
    4/28/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Keep them coming!"
    What does Zara Ramm bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    She does an excellent job of portraying a written character's sense of humour and it comes across very well.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Definitely the ending as it was told really well.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • UsefulThings
    3/26/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I love this series .."

    another wonderfully witty and entertaining installment, very well read yet again. Will be starting on no.4 shortly..

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Stina
    Uppsala, Sweden
    3/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very good!"

    This third book lived up to all expectations and was brilliantly narrated. Perfect! Everything I could have hoped for. Great.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Miss M H Elvin
    3/1/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "It's on repeat"

    From the opening of the first book all the way through I've loved it.
    The story is clever imaginative and comes back to humour at all the right times.
    It's beautifully read too. I love her light quirky voice. Thank you

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Loz
    JERSEY, United Kingdom
    1/30/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fab 3rd part!"

    Fantastic, believable, funny, sad, educational, memorable - can't ask for much more! I love these books - the writing, narration and the learning - bring on the next one :)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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