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  • 13
  • reviews
  • 13
  • helpful votes
  • 23
  • ratings
  • Beneath a Scarlet Sky

  • A Novel
  • By: Mark Sullivan
  • Narrated by: Will Damron
  • Length: 17 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,997
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22,570
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22,490

Pino Lella wants nothing to do with the war or the Nazis. He's a normal Italian teenager - obsessed with music, food, and girls - but his days of innocence are numbered. When his family home in Milan is destroyed by Allied bombs, Pino joins an underground railroad helping Jews escape over the Alps, and falls for Anna, a beautiful widow six years his senior. In an attempt to protect him, Pino's parents force him to enlist as a German soldier - a move they think will keep him out of combat.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Best Thing? It Really Happened!

  • By Charles Atkinson on 08-07-17

Great book, amazing that it is a true story!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-03-17

Beneath a Scarlet Sky was a great book, and one that surprised me a little bit. Billed as for fans of All the Light We Cannot See, this is the true story (in novel form) of Pino Lella's war.

Pino Lella was an Italian teenager from Milan in the last years of the Second World War. He and his family, a rich fashion district family still apparently living a good life in 1943, lived regular lives under Mussolini. It was only in 1943, when American bombers started raiding Milan and the surrounding towns (and subsequently when Mussolini was arrested by King Victor Emmanuel III and then freed by the Germans before establishing the Republic of Salo on nearby Lake Garda) that life started to change. Pino was close to turning 18 and life in Milan was suddenly more perilous.

The book begins with Pino in Milan at this pivotal point in the war and his life. It follows him through his time in safety in the mountains (where he ends up becoming involved with the Catholic Underground Railroad - a group of clergymen helping Jews escape over the Alps into Switzerland), then his return to Milan as an Operation Todt soldier (a position his parents and uncle secure for him to keep him off the front lines), to a major injury when his post was bombed that in turn resulted in him being selected as the personal driver of the highest ranking OT general in Italy and "Hitler's left hand", the mysterious General Hans Leyers.

There is love and lost love (much of Pino's existence seems wrapped up in Anna, a lady he meets on the street just before the cinema him and his brother are in blows up, only to re-meet her over a year later as the maid of General Leyers's mistress), there is fighting, adventure, suspense, revenge, and mystery. The book covers it all, rather hard to nail it down in one review, as is the case with a true story life in war.

The narration of the book was a tad more dramatic than I expected, though in hindsight it is understandable given this is a novel based on a true story, not a non-fiction hard history book. The narrator, Will Damron, does an excellent job with the Italian names, really captures the suspense and emotions (especially anger), and only gets a bit depressing when Pino drops to the depths of despair when Anna dies.

What was most remarkable was the raw honesty from Mark T. Sullivan about how the book came to be, and what was involved in uncovering the true story. Sullivan heard about the story the day he contemplated suicide - a point made in the introduction that sets up the novel as somewhat of a personal journey and learning experience just as much as a great story. Alongside that, the fact Pino Lella is a real person and his story is a real story - it is just remarkable, if at times dramatic. I was very thankful for the epilogue that goes through the post-war history of each character - amazing more isn't known about General Leyers.

The construction of the book, with numbered sections within chapters, makes this a good book to listen to. I highly recommend this book! The only reason I'm not giving it 5 stars is because of the comparison to All the Light We Cannot See - it just doesn't quite compare with the magical writing, emotion, and ending that book had, but it's close!

  • Lucky 666

  • The Impossible Mission
  • By: Bob Drury, Tom Clavin
  • Narrated by: Jeremy Bobb
  • Length: 9 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 695
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 646
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 643

From the authors of the New York Times best-selling The Heart of Everything That Is and Halsey's Typhoon comes the dramatic untold story of a daredevil bomber pilot and his misfit crew who fly their lone B-17 into the teeth of the Japanese Empire in 1943, engage in the longest dogfight in history, and change the momentum of the war in the Pacific - but not without making the ultimate sacrifice.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A good picture of the WWII air war in the Pacific

  • By Joshua on 06-07-17

Great story, but some holes

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-09-17

Lucky 666 was an amazing story of Second World War flight innovation, determination, and bravery. This is the story of a rag-tag crew of outcast airmen who go on to take it to the Japanese empire singlehandedly and with characteristic pluck and confidence.

But the book does a bit more than just cover the crew (and this is what earns it 4 stars). It also covers a lot of the history surrounding the Japanese occupation of Indonesia and the islands north of Australia, and what role the USA played in that area while focusing on the European Front. The story of the pilot, Jay Zeamer and his crew is pretty amazing, even though the backstory can be disjointed and the narrative jumps big lengths of time, but the context of the war in the Pacific really helps situate the reasons why such a crew could exist and why their missions were important.

The book all comes down to the "impossible mission," a photoreconnaisance flight over a Japanese stronghold that was outside fighter escort range and that, at the last minute, has another photo mission added in. It results in what was apparently the longest dogfight in Second World War history, some major injuries to the crew (and a death), and a rather dramatic result. I didn't really like the way the fight was described though, seeming to have less action than I expected, feeling more like an epilogue to the story than the main climax.

All in all, a good book, amazing war story, but with some holes I would have liked to see done better.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Very First Damned Thing

  • An Author-Read Audio Exclusive
  • By: Jodi Taylor
  • Narrated by: Jodi Taylor
  • Length: 2 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,643
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,371
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,361

Jodi Taylor reads the long-awaited prequel in her Chronicles of St Mary’s series, as Dr Bairstow struggles to set up St Mary’s as we know it in a world still scarred by the ravages of civil war. Ever wondered how it all began? It’s two years since the final victory at the Battersea Barricades. The fighting might be finished, but for Dr Bairstow, just now setting up St Mary's, the struggle is only beginning. How will he assemble his team? From where will his funding come?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Loved the story. The narration was ehh...

  • By Krista on 12-09-15

Boring and confusing story and author's narration

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-05-17

I was quite disappointed by this short prequel to the Chronicles of St. Mary series. I got the author-read novella from Audible with quite a few other books in the series as the descriptions (mainly of the other ones) seemed really great: what would happen if a bunch of historians actually got the chance to travel back in time to the events they wanted to study? I decided to go chronologically, starting with this prequel before getting into the actual books, as it might give some good background. Unfortunately, it was a random plot with very boring narration.

The author does not have a good voice for narration and story-telling. It was stilted, very few accents, and too soft (or possibly even just a poor quality recording). The story was also very confusing, starting as if all naturally made sense (I suppose this prequel comes with the expectation you will have read the entire series already) and then moving through scenes of poorly-described encounters with people the main character may or may not already know, talking about future events that already happened (but that we the listener/reader don't know?), and with some time travel/history elements thrown in. I was lost, confused, bored, and disappointed. I did read the first book in the series (review to come soon), which features a different narrator, and liked the story better, but don't think this was much of a prequel.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Spell or High Water

  • Magic 2.0
  • By: Scott Meyer
  • Narrated by: Luke Daniels
  • Length: 12 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17,232
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 16,073
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16,058

A month has passed since Martin helped to defeat the evil programmer Jimmy, and things couldn't be going better. Except for his love life, that is. Feeling distant and lost, Gwen has journeyed to Atlantis, a tolerant and benevolent kingdom governed by the Sorceresses, and a place known to be a safe haven to all female time-travelers.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Narrator!

  • By D. Murdock on 03-13-17

Phenomenal narration once again with good story

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-05-17

Another hilarious Magic 2.0 book from Scott Meyer and the best narrator ever, Luke Daniels! What a great romp through the nerdy, geeky, ridiculously implausible world of 20th/21st Century computer hackers-come-medieval wizards.

This time round Martin and Philip are in Atlantis, summoned by a mysterious bowl and reunited with Gwen only to discover a strange time-loop double character (conveniently: Britt the Younger and Britt the Elder) that throws the theories of time and timelines out the window and the even more mysterious plot to kill one (or both?) of them! Oh, and Jimmy/Merlin is making his return to Medieval England while the two are away.

Comparing books 1 and 2 of this series, I'd have to say book 1 was perhaps a bit more novel and had all the fun stuff that comes with time travel, computer nerds, and people posing as wizards. The battle at the end was great, the magic spell creations were funny, and the Martin the Apprentice/Philip the Teacher relationship was spot on. The second book may lack a bit of the plot sturdiness, but is possibly a bit funnier (Ampix was hilarious) and the narration is even better (is that even possible?!).

I think the increased role of the two federal agents made the book a solid performance from Meyer, but the attempt at keeping two/three stories going at the same time (1: Atlantis, and then 2.a: Jimmy in the 21st century with the agents followed by 2.b: his return to England) left the murder plot a bit weak. The fact that there were two Britts, the timey-ness around that possibility, and the relationships between Philip/Britt the younger and Martin/Gwen a bit forced. But then again, not really expecting high quality dramatic fiction here, and it did exactly what I hoped for in the end!

  • Above All Things

  • By: Tanis Rideout
  • Narrated by: Emily Gray
  • Length: 11 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 29
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 29

In 1924 George Mallory departs on his third expedition to reach the summit of Mount Everest. Left behind in Cambridge, George's young wife, Ruth, along with the rest of a war-ravaged England, anticipates news they hope will reclaim some of the empire's faded glory. Through alternating narratives, what emerges is a beautifully rendered story of love torn apart by obsession and the need for redemption.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Two narrators would be better but remarkable story

  • By Ben on 05-12-17

Two narrators would be better but remarkable story

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-12-17

3.5 stars.

I actually quite liked this story of George Mallory's final attempt at climbing Mt. Everest. I didn't think I would as it seemed less a historical narrative than a romance. And while much of the book did focus on the relationship between George and Ruth, his wife, that plot line was very interesting and well done while the action and adventure of climbing the mountain was enough to keep me interested in balance. Much of the climbing was still about reminiscing the romance and what was left behind, but I liked how it was done.

The book is written from three points of view: 1. Ruth at home seemingly narrating as letters written to George (or just speaking to him), 2. George as a main character within the climbing team (and sometimes as writer of letters), and 3. Andrew "Sandy" Irvine, a member of the climbing party who narrates in the first-person and through letters or flashbacks. The audio book can make this a bit confusing at times, but the technique was a fun one to deal with as the story unfolds. (I'll also mention that the timeframe is mainly of Ruth quite late in George's journey whereas George and Sandy are very much in the present or reflecting back long before the journey)

Sandy was a bit of a surprise, I didn't expect someone else outside the relationship to be so involved in the telling of it. And Sandy isn't simply a different set of eyes on George and Ruth (he has no comment on Ruth, really). Instead we get a lot of Sandy's backstory and personal relationships with a friend, his mistress (who is his friend's father's ex), and his mother - people who do not seem at all connected to the main storyline. I wonder if they are meant to create juxtaposition for the driven George character, or if the author simply needed "something else" for the story. Only a few times did I want the story to go back to George (or Ruth, though less so), but I did want it once or twice.

The audio book presented some problems, notably that the narrator seemed inappropriate for some characters. Though well read, and with a good British accent suitable for the era/people, I did wonder if a male narrator at least for the male voices (I'd say between half and two thirds of the book) would have been better. Emily Gray's portrayal of George felt lacking and flat, the forced low voice not matching the mental image I had of the man (though I liked the portrayal of Sandy). Of course a male narrator for Ruth would not have felt appropriate either. There were moments at the beginning where I thought she was going too fast, but it didn't detract from my enjoyment.

The story is quite amazing - how these men attempted to climb a mountain wearing tweed and hob-nail boots, and frowning upon using oxygen after so many failures...wow. And the deaths of some porters (and the memory of deaths of crew mates from previous expeditions) was very well portrayed. The alternating narratives took away from this being an action book, but did a great job of bringing the emotions into the story. I was most impressed with the portrayal of George's thought process of why he was doing it (it comes more in the second half of the book) and how it was "for" Ruth, even though the whole book shows how Ruth never felt that and never wanted that. She just wanted her husband, he seemed to just want the mountain, yet in some ways he was only doing it for her. It still left me shaking my head, even though I am a fan of those sorts of adventures and explorations - at least in historical accounts.

There was a lot of sex in this book. I don't know why that surprises me when at it's heart it is a book about tragic romance, but when I think of the coldest, highest mountain on Earth I don't think of sex! It was well crafted, and not a negative, but surprising in some way.

I would give the book 4 stars, if only just for keeping my attention through the unique alternating perspectives, but the audio book only deserves 3 stars as the narrator struggled at times with the portrayal of George and because those alternating perspectives caused some confusion at times.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Last Days of Night

  • A Novel
  • By: Graham Moore
  • Narrated by: Johnathan McClain
  • Length: 13 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,986
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,691
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,673

New York, 1888. Gas lamps still flicker in the city streets, but the miracle of electric light is in its infancy. The person who controls the means to turn night into day will make history - and a vast fortune. A young untested lawyer named Paul Cravath, fresh out of Columbia Law School, takes a case that seems impossible to win. Paul's client, George Westinghouse, has been sued by Thomas Edison over a billion-dollar question: Who invented the lightbulb and holds the right to power the country?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Favorite book of 2016

  • By Taryn on 12-19-16

Interesting story, slightly too quick to anger

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-04-17

I really enjoyed this historical fiction novel about the legal battle between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse over the patent to the incandescent lightbulb. Now, we all know Edison invented the bulb, but what is the real story? Did Edison copy someone else? Can others still have the right to manufacture similar bulbs? What if they ran on a completely different type of power?

What's amazing is this book is based quite significantly on true events. Westinghouse and Edison were engaged in legal battles over patents and manufacturing for over a decade in the late 1800s. The character of Paul, the lawyer, and Agnes, his love interest, are more fictional, used to tie the story together and provide some drama, but are real people involved in New York society around that time (and Paul was a lawyer for Westinghouse too). The history is phenomenal, and makes me want to learn more about these characters.

The only downside to the book was that Paul seemed a bit too quick to anger, very single minded without being able to see the larger context of the legal battle or his own relationship. He needed others to explain things to him, even Edison and Westinghouse explaining their own sides and giving up their own information without Paul seeming able to pull it together himself. The only downside to the recording was the narrator's complete inability to do any sort of foreign words (French especially). I would listen to this again, but may prefer to read it instead.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The War That Ended Peace

  • The Road to 1914
  • By: Margaret MacMillan
  • Narrated by: Richard Burnip
  • Length: 31 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 710
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 648
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 637

From the best-selling and award-winning author of Paris 1919 comes a masterpiece of narrative nonfiction, a fascinating portrait of Europe from 1900 up to the outbreak of World War I.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Detailed review of 1882 to 1914

  • By smarmer on 04-06-14

Hard core history, very in-depth

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-04-17

I listened to this book while driving from Whitehorse to Victoria. The book was really interesting: dense history packed with a whole lot of information about the First World War that I didn't know about. The audio was decent, a strong British reader, though the tempo was a bit slow. Pronunciation of names was amazing.

The book itself was a lot to take in. Listening to a work of serious history such as this may not have been the best idea as names, places, and timelines started blending together. It was also difficult to concentrate on the book's flow while driving (I would not recommend trying to listen to 6-8 hours of this per day!). The content is well-researched, detailed, and organized in a clear manner. I liked the way MacMillan focused on what led to war as it showed a much more intricate dynamic that depended much more on personal dynamics than I had expected. Amazing to think that the world leaders of the day could be so influenced by vanity, blind unwillingness to accept competence in others, and a lack of understanding of the basics of their positions (though I suppose recent events may show that can still happen today...).

I would recommend this book to experienced history students, as to get the most out of it you need to be really interested in the subject matter and know a bit about the First World War and the geopolitical framework of the early 1900s.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Ivory Vikings

  • The Mystery of the Most Famous Chessmen in the World and the Woman Who Made Them
  • By: Nancy Marie Brown
  • Narrated by: Tony Ward
  • Length: 10 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 24
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 21
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 21

In the early 1800s, on a Hebridean beach in Scotland, the sea exposed an ancient treasure cache: 93 chessmen carved from walrus ivory. Norse netsuke, each face individual, each full of quirks, the Lewis Chessmen are probably the most famous chess pieces in the world. Harry played Wizard's Chess with them in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. Housed at the British Museum, they are among its most visited and beloved objects.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing history but slightly dramatic reader

  • By Ben on 03-04-17

Amazing history but slightly dramatic reader

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-04-17

This remarkable in-depth exploration of the history of 78 small chess pieces is a lot more than an archaeological history. It manages to weave the history of the late Viking age into art history, the history of chess, the history of the medieval church, the history of commerce in Europe, the history of literature, and the history of archaeological debate. Nancy Marie Brown expertly weaves these diverse topics together by following the pieces on the chess board, using the art and military history of the age to determine the date of the relevant pieces, and in turn connecting that to their creation. The insight into Icelandic history and literature, which is often overlooked in past academic works on the Chessmen, provides a unique insight into the way, for example, a rook would be fashioned after a berserker or a bishop would have powerful range of movement and be at the king's side. These are all tied into Icelandic experience and history so that, Brown argues, it proves the pieces were made in Iceland by Margaret the Adroit. Brown's book is a history, but it is written using some journalistic techniques as well, she having interviewed some of the main characters who have brought this Icelandic theory to the fore in the previous decade. The argument for Icelandic origin is compelling, logical, and well laid out. The history is interesting, engaging, and presented in an accessible way. Overall, a really well-written look into a unique piece of historical detective work and well worth the read.

I got the Audible version of this book, and the narration was clear and easy to follow, though the narrator takes slightly dramatic pauses before a quotation. I could listen to it easily, but he wasn't my favourite reader, seeming to be a bit over the top. The book's complex Icelandic history and jumps between Nordic lineages would probably be better suited to a physical book, just so you can go back and make sure you know who is actually being talked about, but if you can listen without distractions and have an interest in the subject matter, you'll be able to follow along just fine.

  • The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet

  • Wayfarers, Book 1
  • By: Becky Chambers
  • Narrated by: Patricia Rodriguez
  • Length: 15 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 220
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 204
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 205

Firefly meets Mass Effect in this thrilling self-published debut! When Rosemary Harper joins the crew of the Wayfarer, she isn't expecting much. The Wayfarer, a patched-up ship that's seen better days, offers her everything she could possibly want: a small, quiet spot to call home for a while, adventure in far-off corners of the galaxy, and distance from her troubled past. But Rosemary gets more than she bargained for with the Wayfarer.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Can't say enough good things about this

  • By Amazon Customer on 07-28-17

Good little sci-fi book, more about relationships

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-04-17

Good little sci-fi book that deals more with the relationships between people (and species) than with space battles or even space travel. While yes, it all happens in space and is about space travel, it was a really interesting look into how a crew of very mixed characters would get along and make it through challenges together. The narrator for this book was also a major factor of me rating it this high. She did the human voices exactly as I'd imagine them and the alien ones were funny and strange, just like sci-fi should be. One good thing about the book was it made me compare the situations in the plot to the real world I live in, which is what good sci-fi should do. There were a lot of easily-identifiable situations, relationships and choices. But there were also things that, when you read deeper, were great insights into life. Lots of things I could see related to Trump, or to the racial struggles around the world, to politics and economics. All in all a good listen, kept me entertained and even had me thinking at times!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Ruby Red

  • Ruby Red Trilogy, Book 1
  • By: Kerstin Gier, Anthea Bell (translator)
  • Narrated by: Marisa Calin
  • Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,551
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,397
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,401

Gwyneth Shepherd's sophisticated, beautiful cousin Charlotte has been prepared her entire life for traveling through time. But unexpectedly, it is Gwyneth who, in the middle of class, takes a sudden spin to a different era! Gwyneth must now unearth the mystery of why her mother would lie about her birth date to ward off suspicion about her ability, brush up on her history, and work with Gideon, the time traveler from a similarly gifted family that passes the gene through its male line, and whose presence becomes, in time, less insufferable and more essential.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A suspenseful, funny YA with stellar narration!

  • By Anna on 11-18-11

Good YA fiction, but some plot holes

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-04-17

** spoiler alert ** Ruby Red was a fun, quick, easy read. After reading a more serious book (A House in the Sky), I needed something light and silly, and this was up on an Audible sale for the first in a series.

The story is of Gwyneth, the cousin of Charlotte who is the next in the long line of time travellers. The ability to time travel is genetic, a mystery gene passed through two families and connected (in some way) to the carrier's date of birth that becomes active when the carrier is 16. But only when prophesied by the Guardians... I think. Ok, some of the plot is a bit confusing, but the idea of genetic time travel is interesting, especially when all of the sudden you realize Charlotte isn't the actual gene carrier! Instead, with no training or understanding of what is happening, Gwyneth begins jumping back for 20 minute trips to the 18th Century!

After finding out she is actually the time traveller the family has been expecting, this normal school girl must navigate the mysteries of both surviving random trips to the past (if she travels back while in the second floor of a building in the present, will she drop 20 feet in the 1800s?) and discovering the mysteries of the secret society guarding the time travellers and fully ingrained into the family history (and drama). Oh, and did I mention that the time travel can be controlled (or at least regulated) by the chronograph, an ancient device that "runs on" the gene carrier's blood (or uses it to activate the controls) and, when loaded with the blood from all 12 time travellers, will reveal some big secret or power - and that the original chronograph was stolen by Lucy and Paul, two of the previous generation, leaving the two final time travellers (Gwyneth and the slightly older brooding hunk Gideon) to travel back and get everyone's blood to complete the circle and reveal the power with a new chronograph?! Stealing the chronograph means Paul and Lucy are stuck in the past, but also are pitted against Gideon and Gwyneth in a cross-century race to control the destiny of the chronograph. And could Paul and Lucy be Gwyneth's real parents...? This all happens across centuries, but only about three or four days in the present, right after Gwyneth starts travelling.

There is a bit more young adult fiction drama in this book than I'm used to in what I normally read. Oh my goodness, he's sitting close to her and she's blushing, the world is going to end! Haha, but it's fun still fun, and doesn't quite overpower the plot (though can distract from figuring out the mystery when the discussion gets sidelined by intense internal dialogue about his moody eyes and who he likes better). Thinking about the book from a young adult perspective, however, these interjections are not over the top and provide good insight into Gwyneth's sudden change while also being a regular 16 year old girl. Her relationship with her best friend, Leslie, who also becomes her researcher, was an interesting one. I thought they were setting up an actual relationship between them, with some of the word choice, but it seems it remains as best friends by the end of the book.

What isn't made clear in this book is what the mysterious power is that will be revealed by completing the chronograph's blood work. Instead of having its own self-contained resolution, the book ends just as the plot thickens (in the case as Gideon and Gwyneth get ambushed by Paul and Lucy and new revelations are made that may tie into the fact Gwyneth can see ghosts). Means I need to get the next book in the series and keep reading this YA series!

The narrator of this series, Marisa Calin, is great. Her beautiful English and variety of accents is worth listening to alone, but she crafts decent voices together to make the series better. Sometimes her male voices sound a bit like she's trying to speak in whale (long, drawn-out, low, over-pronounced...). I'm shocked to find out she actually trained and lives in New York (though I don't know when she moved from the UK to US). I'd listen to other works she's narrated.