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Quatermass Lives

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  • reviews
  • 4
  • helpful votes
  • 14
  • ratings
  • Doctor Who: Fortunes of War

  • 6th Doctor Audio Original
  • By: Justin Richards
  • Narrated by: Colin Baker
  • Length: 1 hr and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4

Colin Baker reads this original adventure featuring the Sixth Doctor, set in the First World War. 'You've seen what happens, Mark. You know what time can do if it's damaged.' Travelling alone for once, the Sixth Doctor elects to return to Earth and the First World War. There he must solve, once and for all, a mystery he unearthed in earlier incarnations. Someone has been interfering to alter the course of the war - but to what end? 

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • A vey disappointing ending

  • By Quatermass Lives on 09-19-18

A vey disappointing ending

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

Reviewed: 09-19-18

Having thoroughly enjoyed the previous two parts, I was looking forward to the resolution of a gripping and, in places, chilling story. Now I wish I'd let part two's cliff hanger continue to hang.

There is an ending, after a fashion. But to call it an anticlimax would be misleading - rather, it's a cop out straight out of the "and then the little boy woke up" school of storytelling, into and around which Colin Baker ladles what feels like an endless, lachrymose soliloquy on morality, which serves no purpose beyond dragging things on for a lot longer than they needed to.

Still, if you've ever wondered how the Doctor would combat an army of zombies, listen on; while fans of both Michael Moorcock and Hawkwind might enjoy what one assumes is author Richards' tribute to "Black Corridor," only with "time" standing in for space.

Otherwise... think of "Men of War" and "Horrors of War" as a tale that never ends, and give part three a very wide berth,

  • Fated

  • Alex Verus Series, Book 1
  • By: Benedict Jacka
  • Narrated by: Gildart Jackson
  • Length: 10 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 5,387
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,964
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4,972

Alex Verus is part of a world hidden in plain sight, running a magic shop in London. And while Alex's own powers aren't as showy as some mages, he does have the advantage of foreseeing the possible future-allowing him to pull off operations that have a million-to-one-chance of success. But when Alex is approached by multiple factions to crack open a relic from a long-ago mage war, he knows that whatever's inside must be beyond powerful.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Harry Dresden meets the Temple of Doom

  • By Jessica on 05-15-14

Excellent book, disappointing narration

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

Reviewed: 05-15-18

I'll start by saying how much I enjoy this entire series in book form, and I was excited to visit its audio equivalent. Unfortunately, try as I might, I could not enjoy the narration - particularly when the reader attempts to speak for other characters. His Luna is especially bad; his usual voice raises a few octaves, but abandons any attempt at actual speech patterns - just a long, high pitched monotone.

Other voices follow this same template... some high, some low... so no matter how involved in the story you may be, you're always waiting for the next character to say something, and you're brought straight back down to earth again.

I may give another volume in the series a go... this is the first, so perhaps the reader gets better as time goes along. But it'll be a while before I do.

  • The Tractate Middoth

  • By: M. R. James
  • Narrated by: David Suchet
  • Length: 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 58
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 56
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 55

A young librarian receives a request for an obscure Hebrew book from a sinister gentleman, unaware of its contents. Montague Rhodes James was a noted British mediaeval scholar and provost of King's College, Cambridge (1905–1918) and of Eton College (1918–1936). He is best remembered for his ghost stories which are widely regarded as among the finest in English literature.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fun ghost story about relatives no one wants.

  • By Ellenaeddy on 08-08-15

James and Suchet - a winning combination

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

Reviewed: 01-30-18

Any additional comments?

Having watched Mark Gatiss's TV adaptation of this story recently, and found myself very underwhelmed, I turned to the master and all is again right with the world. There are many TV, radio and audiobook adaptations of James's stories, but Suchet's are definitely among the best. His voice possesses just the right amount of suspense - close your eyes and you can imagine yourself in the presence of James himself, reading one of his own stories.

It's a short listen, but a thrilling one.

  • Oh Whistle and I'll Come to You, My Lad

  • By: M. R. James
  • Narrated by: David Suchet
  • Length: 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 391
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 352
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 353

The story tells the tale of an introverted academic who happens upon a strange whistle while exploring a cemetery on the East Anglian coast. When blown, the whistle unleashes a supernatural force that terrorises its discoverer. Montague Rhodes James was a noted British mediaeval scholar and provost of King's College, Cambridge (1905–1918) and of Eton College (1918–1936). He is best remembered for his ghost stories which are widely regarded as among the finest in English literature.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Not great, not bad....

  • By Doug on 07-13-17

You can't go wrong with James... or Suchet

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

Reviewed: 01-30-18

What did you love best about Oh Whistle and I'll Come to You, My Lad?

There are many TV, radio and audiobook adaptations of James's stories, but Suchet's are definitely among the best. His voice possesses just the right amount of suspense - close your eyes and you can imagine yourself in the presence of James himself, reading one of his own stories.

It's a short listen, but a thrilling one.

  • The Doctor Who Audio Annual

  • Multi-Doctor Stories
  • By: BBC
  • Narrated by: Nicola Bryant, Anneke Wills, Matthew Waterhouse, and others
  • Length: 2 hrs and 20 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 10

For two decades, from the mid-1960s to the mid-1980s, every fan of the Doctor hoped to find The Doctor Who Annual in their Christmas stocking. Larger than life and twice as colourful, the stories within were exuberant - and often charmingly naive - in their take on 'the children's own programme which adults adore'. Here, for the first time on audio, Peter Purves (Steven), Anneke Wills (Polly), Geoffrey Beevers (the Master), Matthew Waterhouse (Adric) and Nicola Bryant (Peri) read a selection of these tales.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • A mixed bag of stories

  • By Quatermass Lives on 01-30-18

A mixed bag of stories

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

Reviewed: 01-30-18

Was The Doctor Who Audio Annual worth the listening time?

Overall, yes. The stories are taken from different editions of the show's annual Xmas tie-in book, dating back over 50 years, including several from before the Doctor's back story had been formulated. This can lead to occasional inconsistencies. It's also worth remembering that not every writer was a Doctor Who "expert," so some stories feel like regular SF tales, with the Doctor grafted into place. But the stories themselves are entertaining, the narration is generally spot on, and it's almost... almost... as much fun as settling down with one of the original publications.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Cyberman 2

  • By: James Swallow
  • Narrated by: Mark McDonnell, Hannah Smith, Barnaby Edwards, and others
  • Length: 4 hrs and 59 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4

Across the planet, the silver legions stand impassive in every city; mankind has sacrificed its freedoms for the sake of a distant conflict against its android creations, and now the price must be paid. On the streets, in the depths of space, a web of lies and deceit draws ever tighter, and the lines between human and android, between enemy and ally, are blurred. Only one choice remains - resist or surrender.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Not what I expected

  • By Ron A. Parsons on 10-07-18

A Cyber-classic

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

Reviewed: 01-30-18

Where does Cyberman 2 rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Definitely one of my favorite Big Finish releases

What did you like best about this story?

The storyline is powerful, the performances are excellent. It's the Cybermen as we remember them.

Any additional comments?

Not every Big Finish production hits the mark, but this is one that grabs you from the outset

  • American Heiress

  • The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst
  • By: Jeffrey Toobin
  • Narrated by: Paul Michael
  • Length: 15 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 977
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 887
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 893

Jeffrey Toobin has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1993 and is the senior legal analyst for CNN. In 2000 he received an Emmy Award for his coverage of the Elian Gonzalez case. He is the author of The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court, which spent more than four months on the New York Times best seller list. Before joining The New Yorker, Toobin served as an assistant United States attorney in Brooklyn, New York. He lives in Manhattan.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Insightful, Essential

  • By RB Vancouver on 08-19-16

Overwrought and smarmy

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

Reviewed: 01-05-18

What disappointed you about American Heiress?

It’s a fascinating story - if you’re thinking of buying this, you already know that. But it’s narrated as though it were the crassest reality tv show, and the text itself is so clearly trying to impress us with its “understanding” of the events and the characters that it’s hard to even listen.

Has American Heiress turned you off from other books in this genre?

No, but I won’t be listening to any more by either the author or the narrator

Any additional comments?

It took me a long time to get round to listening to this - I was really looking forward to spending an extended period with the book. The anticipation was a lot better than the reality.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Shada

  • Doctor Who: The Lost Adventure
  • By: Douglas Adams, Gareth Roberts
  • Narrated by: Lalla Ward
  • Length: 11 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 567
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 535
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 532

The Doctor's old friend and fellow Time Lord Professor Chronotis has retired to Cambridge University - where nobody will notice if he lives for centuries. But now he needs help from the Doctor, Romana, and K-9. When he left Gallifrey he took with him a few little souvenirs - most of them are harmless. But one of them is extremely dangerous. The Worshipful and Ancient Law of Gallifrey isn't a book for Time Tots.It must not be allowed to fall into the wrong hands.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Like uncovering a lost treasure

  • By Amazon Customer on 05-03-12

The greatest Shada yet

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

Reviewed: 10-08-16

Any additional comments?

For a variety of reasons that are too well-known to reiterate, Shada is best known as the lost, or uncompleted Doctor Who classic. The novel both erases the lost and justifies the classic - it's an astonishing story, so much more in-depth and developed than past attempts at reconstruction have shown, while Lalla Ward's narration brings an extra touch of "familiarity" to what might otherwise be one of the most un-Doctor Who-like adventures the Docto ever had.

  • V for Vendetta

  • By: Alan Moore
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 9 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,431
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,070
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,065

Imagine a Britain stripped of democracy, a world of the not-too-distant future in which freedom has been surrendered willingly to a totalitarian regime which rose to power by exploiting the people's worst fears and most damning weaknesses.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Visceral Vindictive Vicarious Vicissitudes?

  • By John on 09-06-08

If you loved the graphic novel or the movie...

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

Reviewed: 10-08-16

Any additional comments?

If you want to know how 1984 could have ended (had George Orwell been into happy endings), this comes vey close to telling you. A masterpiece in every medium it has appeared in

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Master and Margarita (Dramatized)

  • By: Mikhail Bulgakov
  • Narrated by: David Catlin, Thomas Cox, Lawrence DiStasi, and others
  • Length: 1 hr and 45 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars 17
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 15

A full-cast dramatization of the classic Russian novel. Satan and his retinue, including a seven foot tall skinny fellow with a pince-nez , an obnoxious cigar smoking black cat and a beautiful naked vampire visit Moscow in the 1920s, taking with them chaos and insanity where ever they go.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • As great as it ought to be

  • By Quatermass Lives on 10-08-16

As great as it ought to be

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

Reviewed: 10-08-16

What made the experience of listening to The Master and Margarita (Dramatized) the most enjoyable?

For the same reason I've read the book so many times - because it's a fabulous story, delivered here with such enthusiasm and gusto that the characters come to life the moment they open their mouths.

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

You don't have a choice - it draws you in immediately!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful