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  • 60
  • helpful votes
  • 13
  • ratings
  • The First Deadly Sin

  • By: Lawrence Sanders
  • Narrated by: Marc Vietor
  • Length: 24 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,043
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 839
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 859

One of the most popular suspense novels of all time. A well-dressed man stalks the high-class neighborhoods of New York City. He is armed with an ice axe. His victims are strangers. And one cop, Captain Ed Delaney must solve a series of bizarre, gruesome murders that defy logic or method. This shocking story has captured the imaginations of millions like no other modern thriller.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Evening with an old friend!

  • By 9S on 06-13-11

Wonderful audio book

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

Reviewed: 01-05-16

First, the story was extremely well done. Held my attention, I binge listened to this. Vocal characterizations were very well done.

The only negative is that the narrator has, in unconscious moments, a bit of a New England sound, which catches just a bit in the New York dialogue. Oops, slipped through there... Nevertheless, I thought the combination of narrator with this particular story was fine.

  • Agnes Grey

  • By: Anne Brontë
  • Narrated by: Emilia Fox
  • Length: 6 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 276
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 222
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 217

Having lost the family savings on risky investments, Richard Grey removes himself from family life and suffers a bout of depression. Feeling helpless and frustrated, his youngest daughter, Agnes, applies for a job as a governess to the children of a wealthy, upper-class, English family. Ecstatic at the thought that she has finally gained control and freedom over her own life, Agnes arrives at the Bloomfield mansion armed with confidence and purpose.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Loved it

  • By Kerry on 05-22-10

Perfect combination

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

Reviewed: 10-31-15

Anne is my favorite Bronte, the one who is real, not romantic. Agnes Grey is a beautiful novel. It's tight. Long but not too long, there is nothing irrelevant, no filler in this book.

Emilia Fox is perfect, the perfect narrator for this. Her characterizations are flawless, her voice is pleasant, and there is no sense of her reading a book, only telling a story.

Perfect.

  • Shirley

  • By: Charlotte Bronte
  • Narrated by: Anna Bentinck
  • Length: 25 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 235
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 175
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 173

Set in the industrialising England of the Napoleonic wars, a period of bad harvests, Luddite riots, and economic unrest, Shirley is the story of two contrasting heroines and the men they love. One is the shy Caroline Helstone, trapped in the oppressive atmosphere of a Yorkshire rectory, whose life represents the plight of single women in the 19th century. The other is the vivacious Shirley Keeldar, who inherits a local estate and whose wealth liberates her from convention.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • "As Romantic As Monday Morning"

  • By Joseph R on 09-15-09

I don't really like Charlotte Bronte

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

Reviewed: 10-28-15

Of the Brontes, I only like Anne, who is more realistic. Charlotte and Emily were so romantic, are full of filler, and seem deeply invested in relationships we would consider abusive or, at the very least, unequal. However, this was a book club read, so I read it.

I thought I'd like the narrator, but I didn't. She was too slow. Her male voices, particularly with a French accent, were so slow as to make me scream. I often turned off the audio and went back to the book, so I could make progress at a better pace. I felt she had odd pauses and her narration didn't match the way the book was written. In fact, I often...felt...myself...thinking of...William Shatner...

I'm exceedingly glad I paid so little for the audiobook as part of a "buy the Kindle book and get the narration for...". I'd return it if I'd paid full price.

Apparently I'm an exception, given all the five star reviews, but unless you are into really excessive language, page after page of classical references in "journals" about the person loved, and very high pitched female voices (because they're young and soft, you know), I'd pass on this.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Picture of Dorian Gray

  • By: Oscar Wilde
  • Narrated by: Greg Wise
  • Length: 9 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 101
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 55
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 57

Oscar Wilde's enduring masterpiece, this fable of innocence and corruption, purity and decay has become a true classic. The beautiful, narcissistic Dorian Gray, torn between the influence of cynical hedonist Lord Henry Wotton and tortured artist Basil Hallward, sells the beauty of his soul in exchange for external perfection. Ultimately, he cannot escape the disfigurement of sin. Wilde's remarkable wit and memorable, epigrammatic lines dazzle in audiobook form!

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Very Well Done- Great Narrator

  • By IRP on 06-10-10

A very mixed bag

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

Reviewed: 07-19-15

Would you try another book from Oscar Wilde and/or Greg Wise?

I like Oscar Wilde very much. The Portrait of Dorian Gray is a bit of a mixed bag, however. Wilde is at his best when he's pity, with flashes of brilliant insight or humor. TPODG is supposed to be against vanity and selfishness, and yet it is exactly a picture of Wilde's own vanity and selfishness. He can't cut back on his words, can't shorten his descriptions. He wants you to know how many things he knows, how superior he is in his taste and judgement to you, the reader. It could be written in half the words, and perhaps it should have been. It's the only thing Wilde ever wrote that I found myself bored by.

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

I was sadly disappointed in Greg Wise. I chose his reading because I like the tone of his voice best. His characterizations, however, left me somewhat cold. I found it dreary rather than sensual and exotic.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Small House At Allington

  • By: Anthony Trollope
  • Narrated by: Timothy West
  • Length: 23 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 421
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 310
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 308

The spirited Lily Dale, who longs to be loved, is devastated when her fiancé, the self-interested Adolphus Crosbie, jilts her for the aristocratic Lady Alexandrina. Although heartbroken, Lily still loves Crosbie and believes she must remain single despite him being unworthy of her affections. Even when the more deserving John Eame, presents himself she is still unable to see past her feelings for Crosbie. Meanwhile, Lily's sister Bell is also under pressure to marry for money, not for love.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Timothy West is perfect for Trollope!

  • By Tad Davis on 05-22-09

Wonderful story performed fabulously

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

Reviewed: 05-11-15

What about Timothy West’s performance did you like?

There are more than enough reviews summing up the book and discussing Trollope, so let me simply say I love this period of literature, and Thackeray, Trollope, and Austin did some very good work. I really enjoyed this work of Trollope in particular. Some of his books have bored me. This did not, which may be in part because of the truly brilliant performance by Timothy West. Normally the performance of female characters by male actors interrupts my enjoyment (as well as females doing male voices), but West simply glides through like a swan on an open lake. He is perfect. I can't stress this enough! He sounds exactly like Trollope looks!

I can say unquestionably that Timothy West is my favorite narrator so far. Did I mention that he's perfect? Oh, I guess I did.

Perfect.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Noir

  • Three Novels of Suspense
  • By: Richard Matheson
  • Narrated by: Robertson Dean
  • Length: 12 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 51
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 46
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 47

Noir contains three classic thrillers by Richard Matheson, the grand master of suspense. Originally published in the 1950s, at the very beginning of Matheson’s distinguished career, these page-turning classics are finally on audio for your listening pleasure. Now listeners everywhere can savor three unforgettable tales of crime, corruption, and cold-blooded murder.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not quite what I expected, and I expected more

  • By MontiLee on 07-09-13

These haven't traveled well

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

Reviewed: 11-24-14

What disappointed you about Noir?

The female characters are just plain insultingly stupid and vapid and the males' relationships with them are paternalistic and angering. In the first story, a woman is "bad" because she killed the husband who was regularly raping her. She of course doesn't have enough backbone to stand up for herself, and you can't really figure out why these men are in love with her. Besides her looks, she's nothing. In the second story, the "good" woman is too stupid to catch what's going on and do anything effective, while the "bad" (read slutty) woman has any sense or intelligence. I've given up listening to the third, when once again there's a "good" woman who's basically a dope.

Would you ever listen to anything by Richard Matheson again?

Certainly not early work. Hell House was quite good, but even then there was some serious deficiency in the female characters.

What three words best describe Robertson Dean’s performance?

He's good for narration, but I can't stand his vocal characterizations, especially of women. I may be alone on this, but I'd rather have a book read "straight" without vocal characterizations than have men acting as women, and doing it so badly. If the sentence is, "Davy, she said" I don't need a silly female voice, I know a woman said it. It doesn't really bring anything to the performance. That's a universal complaint I have with audiobooks, both female narrators reading as male and male narrators reading as female.

Any additional comments?

The stories are each overlong, much longer than they needed to be. They certainly show Matheson's style, even this early, but should have had some serious editing.

  • The Woman in White

  • By: Wilkie Collins
  • Narrated by: Josephine Bailey, Simon Prebble
  • Length: 25 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,130
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,815
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,829

One of the greatest mystery thrillers ever written, Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White was a phenomenal best seller in the 1860s, achieving even greater success than works by Charles Dickens. Full of surprise, intrigue, and suspense, this vastly entertaining novel continues to enthrall audiences today.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gripping novel, excellent production

  • By David on 01-18-11

Good book, poor audiobook

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

Reviewed: 10-14-14

Would you consider the audio edition of The Woman in White to be better than the print version?

I'm still listening to this because it's useful to have Whispersync, and I can listen while I do other things. But the audiobook performance does not add to the book; instead it takes away from it. I find myself listening to the performance negatively, rather than focusing on the plot and writing.

What other book might you compare The Woman in White to and why?

The Woman in White is a mystery from the 1800's. Well done, with a few annoyances which are due in particular to different viewpoints in 2014 from those in the 1800's, it holds your attention and keeps you going right along, forgetting that the soup is burning.

Would you be willing to try another one of Josephine Bailey and Simon Prebble ’s performances?

Simon Prebble is adequate, but Josephine Bailey is not pleasant to me at all. Her characterizations are disasterous. The Count is Italian, and she gives him an almost German accent. Better to simply read it than attempt to act and fail. I certainly won't get another of hers.

Any additional comments?

I definitely recommend this early romantic mystery as a book, but if wanting it in audio format, find another version.

  • The Fellowship of the Ring

  • Book One in The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
  • By: J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Narrated by: Rob Inglis
  • Length: 19 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 34,118
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31,209
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 31,299

The Fellowship of the Ring, the first volume in the trilogy, tells of the fateful power of the One Ring. It begins a magnificent tale of adventure that will plunge the members of the Fellowship of the Ring into a perilous quest and set the stage for the ultimate clash between the powers of good and evil.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • At last - The Definitive Recording!

  • By L. N. on 10-10-12

Love the story, narration, not so much

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

Reviewed: 07-21-14

If you could sum up The Fellowship of the Ring in three words, what would they be?

Heroic quest epic.

What did you like best about this story?

This has always been one of my favorite stories, from childhood. It's always delightful to reread it.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Rob Inglis?

I don't know who I would prefer, but Rob Inglis is just not working for me. He did The Hobbit. Now I've got three LOR rings with him, and I just don't like his characterizations or the way he emphasizes his sentences. Plus, he's slow. Yes, you can speed it up a bit, but then it's off.

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

Yes.

26 of 31 people found this review helpful

  • The Great Poets: Alfred Lord Tennyson

  • By: Alfred Tennyson
  • Narrated by: Michael Pennington
  • Length: 1 hr and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 100
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 85
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 83

The 200th anniversary of the birth of Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809 - 1892), one of the most popular of poets, is celebrated in 2009. Works such as The Charge of the Light Brigade, Crossing the Bar and Tears, Idle Tears have made him an internationally famous figure, and the second most quoted writer of all time (after Shakespeare).

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • One of the most popular Victorian poets

  • By ESK on 01-07-13

Beautiful poetry well narrated

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

Reviewed: 06-27-14

Would you consider the audio edition of The Great Poets: Alfred Lord Tennyson to be better than the print version?

I love Tennyson, have always loved reading him. When I listened to the initial sample I thought eh, what the heck. But after a longer listen, I was sucked in. I don't actually like Michael Pennington's voice, but he makes this poetry more beautiful.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Great Poets: Alfred Lord Tennyson?

Morte d'Artur. I've read it before and been moved. However, I was listening to this book as I grocery shopped, and suddenly found myself actually crying during Morte d'Artur! Had to hide in a corner until I got myself under control.

Any additional comments?

I would strongly recommend this well recorded, clear audiobook for those who already love, or want to be introduced to, the Romantic poets.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Mansfield Park

  • By: Jane Austen
  • Narrated by: Wanda McCaddon
  • Length: 14 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 730
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 637
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 640

Shy, fragile Fanny Price is the consummate "poor relation". Sent to live with her wealthy uncle Thomas, she clashes with his spoiled, selfish daughters and falls in love with his son. Their lives are further complicated by the arrival of a pair of witty, sophisticated Londoners, whose flair for flirtation collides with the quiet, conservative country ways of Mansfield Park.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Nicely narrated

  • By SLB on 06-16-14

Nicely narrated

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

Reviewed: 06-16-14

Would you listen to Mansfield Park again? Why?

It's likely I would listen to this again. I enjoyed it more this time, both reading on my Fire and listening at the same time, than I have previously.

What other book might you compare Mansfield Park to and why?

Mansfield Park is a typical Austin satire on manners and morals of British society and can be compared pretty much to any of her others. Those who like Austin might find themselves liking Thackeray's *Vanity Fair*, too. I consider him a superior author to Austin.

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

Her voice has character, but character that matches the story and doesn't distract from it. Her characterizations are (generally) well done, and sometimes very well done.

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

My last reading of Mansfield Park didn't impress me much, so I was surprised to find that this time I did want to keep going until it was done. I got much more out of it, perhaps because of my own level of maturity increasing, as well as Wanda McCaddon's narration.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful