The unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, read by the actor Kevin T. Collins with Eve Bianco and featuring original music by Michele McGonigle. Is falling in love the beginning . . . Or the end? In Ethan Wate’s hometown there lies the darkest of secrets. There is a girl. Slowly, she pulled the hood from her head. Green eyes, black hair. Lena Duchannes.
There is a curse. On the Sixteenth Moon, the Sixteenth Year, the Book will take what it’s been promised. And no one can stop it. In the end, there is a grave. Lena and Ethan become bound together by a deep, powerful love. But Lena is cursed and on her sixteenth birthday, her fate will be decided. Ethan never even saw it coming.
©2013 Kami Garcia,Margaret Stohl (P)2013 Penguin Publishers Limited
His voice was very clear and expressive, he was able to put on various accents for different characters that made the story flow better and his reading sound more authentic
The occasional sound effects were a great addition, but (from the perspective of a performing musician) the music was terrible. It was often out of time, repeititive or just cringeworthy. It's a very small complaint, but nonetheless annoying to hear the same poorly played song repeated for the millionth time.
"An identity crisis of a book, with audio-problems"
This book has an identity crisis. It doesn't know if it wants to be:
- a love story (a la Twilight) between a boy and a girl who's unpopular and different in some way;
- or a coming of age story of a boy learning to stand up to the different pressures and expectations of his parents, his mammy-style housekeeper, his friends, assorted bullies and the small-town mentality;
- or, a boy trying to understand the mysteries of his family - his mother's work, his father's reclusiveness, his housekeeper's superstitions;
- or, a guide to the dark arts in the deep South;
- or, a girl's coming-of-age story, her tale of grappling with issues of identity and abandonment, acceptance of her true nature, being different, bullied, etc.;
- or, the story of fantastical clan and their family issues, their powers, etc.;
- or, the story of an historical couple and their tragic love (though the reader gets dumped into their climax without getting to know and care for them).
So the authorS (part of the problem?), just throw it all together. I also have some issues with the writing, the lack of psychological reality in a boy who lost his mother mere months ago (not a spoiler), and think it needs a good edit.
There is also an audio problem with this version. Every so often - I'm guessing when the characters have some sort of mental flashback - the audio goes almost silent and there's a vague murmuring noise in the background. I've tried maxing the volume on these parts (only to be deafened when story resumes at normal recording volume), but still can't make out what's being said. Very irritating.
I'm sorry I wasted good money on this one.
"Interesting and a little bit different!"
I really enjoyed listening to, the voices being made to match the accents of the characters was a nice touch and the music and some sound effects helped add to the mood and immerse in the situation.
It was nice to have it coming from a make point of view and the fact that neither of the main characters were automatically the 'OMG I must date them they're so hot!' types. Although some of the magic still seems a mystery I think there is a reason for this and it will be explained later on. I look forward to the other 3!
"Audiobook or Drama production?"
If I choose an "audible book" I expect just that. A book read aloud by a good actor who if they are good can produce a range of voices - so much so that if done well you are quite oblivious of the change of characters voices from male to female. That's a fairly simple want. What I do not like is when sound effects and music are added turning it into a dramatic production. "Beautiful Creatures" was such a production. I found the constant insertion of music and sound effects intrusive and annoying. If I want the full works I'll buy a film. The storm effects on this audio were so invasive that it was difficult at times to hear the text clearly.
I have been using audiobooks for about 20 years now - on cds and now on downloads. An audiobook in my opinion should be just the spoken word. What can we expect next - poetry reading with sound effects
and a cast of thousands?
Perhaps it would be helpful if you could indicate in the write up that there are such additions then old purists like myself will know "to steer clear"
"Interesting!!! a good read...."
I really enjoyed the book and when I heard that last sentence, I wondered if it was leaving a door open for a sequel and immediately checked back here. Now I just have to wait for the rest of the trilogy and hope they are as engaging and entertaining!
This was geared towards the Twilight lot, but it was still a good listen. I really like it when it's almost like a radio play and they add sound effects, I find it brings much more of an atmosphere to the ears!
Typical boy meets girl, nobody understands them kind of thing; but added deep South history which made it more interesting.
So I've just finished this book and sadly it has left me completely underwhelmed. It was strangely reminiscent of Twilight in that it was love at first sight, teenagers wanting to die for one another instantly after meeting and all that. Only the protagonist is male this time and the love interest is a marginally deranged witch, excuse me, caster, who awaits fate's decision of whether she's good or evil.
What follows is a lot of angst, talk of destiny and loads and loads of talk about eternal love. Honestly, if you loved Twilight and are looking for something frighteningly similar you might actually enjoy this one. If you are, however, looking for any sort of substance, deeper meaning or even just a hint or realism, you should look elsewhere. The characters are flat, their actions predictable. The author has created a very black and white world. Characters are either good or evil, there is no middle ground.
All the adults are keeping the teenagers in the dark 'for their own good', however one wonders how any of the misinformation the teens are given could possibly protect them. It just doesn't make a lot of sense, in my opinion. I know that the author is trying to keep the mystery going but if she can only do that by making all the adults behave completely irrationally then she's not very good at creating a believable world.
Right so in short, read this if you love Twilight and just want something you don't have to think about. Consider it entertainment of similar value as cheap telly and you may even end up feeling satisfied. I shall not be reading the sequels. The weird cliffhanger at the end just annoyed me.
An excellent, gripping story from the very first line, beautifully compiled and narrated very well with multiple voices which are very believable to be different characters would highly recommend to any fans of light fantasy such as the twighlight series or hunger games. A light tale of conflicting emotions.
"SUPERB version, better than actually reading it!"
Yes definitely. It is a terribly long book to actually read, but listening in bursts with this amazing narrator made all the difference to my experience. This is how an audio book SHOULD be done, I was they were all like this!
My full review from Goodreads and Amazon is in the comments section below, but in all honesty there wasn't a single thing about this book that I didn't like. It's a superb start to what I hope will continue to be an exciting series and a world that I am already desperate to get lost in again with this stunning narration.
Not yet no, but on the basis of this book I am very much looking forward to listening to all the others in the Caster Chronicles series, and after that I will be seeking Kevin T Collins out to see what other stories he has read! I could listen to that voice forever.
Don't watch this film, listen to the audio book!
The film version of this book does not even begin to compare to the novel itself. If you want a richer experience than just the print version, don't go buy the film, come and get THIS instead.
My review from Goodreads:
I listened to the audio version of this book as narrated by Kevin T. Collins, and I'm so glad I did. To be honest I could have happily just carried on listening to the lives of Ethan, Lena and the casters every week for the rest of my life, there was something so joyous and comforting in this writing that it always made my smile like an idiot whilst I was listening in. You can imagine how glad I am that I have over 50 more hours to listen to with the sequels!!
Okay so first to the characters. I am in love with Macon Ravenwood. That is all. I have never encountered such a perfectly formed, savant yet damaged gentleman in literature. He is a tremendous triumph of characterisation and a fellow who will stay with me for a long time after reading. The other cast of characters have also been tremendous, especially the Sisters and their squirrels! I don't usually connect with the hero of the story, but Ethan was one heck of a protagonist with a stunningly honest teenage boy voice that I found refreshing and funny.
As for the plot, I now understand why people say the screenwriters butchered it in the film! This plot was so much better than the filmic one and made so much more sense. I loved the way it unfolded and connected all previous parts of the tale. I know you might look at it in the book store and think 'oh, that book's too long for me', but I felt every part of this plot was rich, enjoyable and totally necessary in order to have the full experience you get at the end of the events.
This book is rated 5 STARS and highly recommended, go get a copy and get lost in the world of the casters!
As for me, I'm on to audiobook 2!
Having been a fan of Twilight and Hunger Games I was expecting this book to be a similar read. The connection between the two lead characters was a little lack lustre. The story didn't seem to flow effectively.
The end event was not particularly dramatic and as that was what the whole plot was leading up to, the description of what happened was not very clear.
The main characters were described well but the supporting one weren't even necessary to the story.
Her other family members, his Dad and some of the school kids.
"An Intriguing Read!"
As Beautiful Creatures is the first audio book I have downloaded and listened to, it is difficult to say.
There were several memorable moments, but I don't like giving spoilers.
I liked his narration and his attempt to perform all the voices with their owners personalities. He made the book interesting.
I would have liked to have listened to it all in one sitting, but it's a near impossibility due to the length of each part. Plus the fact that I had to go to work!
I haven't quite finished the audible story, but I have read the book. I am now looking forward to reading the next book in the series as soon as I can.
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