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MxH

San Tan Valley, AZ, United States
  • 36
  • reviews
  • 191
  • helpful votes
  • 104
  • ratings
  • Gallows Court

  • By: Martin Edwards
  • Narrated by: Sheila Mitchell
  • Length: 12 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    2.5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars 2

London, 1930. A headless corpse; an apparent suicide in a locked room; a man burned alive during an illusionist's show in front of thousands of people. Scotland Yard is baffled by the sequence of ghastly murders unfolding across the city, and at the centre of it all is mysterious heiress Rachel Savernake. Daughter of a grand judge, Rachel is as glamorous as she is elusive. Jacob Flint, a tenacious young journalist eager to cover the gruesome crimes, is drawn into Rachel's glittering world of wealth and power....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Light Noir

  • By MxH on 04-04-19

Light Noir

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

Reviewed: 04-04-19

I’m glad I listened. It’s not a perfect story nor is the narrator ideal, but it’s a cut above many others.

Mr. Edwards creates a mystery that’s a mix reminiscent of Dashiell Hammett, Dorothy L. Sayers, and Josephine Tey. The suspension is a little drawn out, but a pleasant twist occurs just before it reaches tedium level. The drawn out pace does create a feeling of predictability in the character development, but the cast is many and varied which helps ease the repetition. The narrator performs decently, but listeners should definitely sample the work before buying because one or two portrayals could be annoying to some.

I would recommend this book to a hardboiled/noir fan who wants a lighter read or a cozy mystery fan looking for a little edge.

  • A Mystery at Carlton House

  • By: Ashley Gardner
  • Narrated by: James Gillies
  • Length: 9 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 30

Captain Lacey is drawn into affairs of the highest in the land when his friend Grenville is asked by the Prince Regent to look into odd happenings in his lavish abode of Carlton House.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Just as enjoyable the second time

  • By Kindle Customer on 04-07-19

Another Snooze Fest

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

Reviewed: 03-07-19

I’ve listened to all of the books in this series and was disappointed with the last one; it was a snooze fest. I took a chance on this book despite my disappointment because I’d moderately enjoyed the first 10 books of the series. I shouldn’t have bothered.

The plot is utterly devoid of suspense and bogged down by repetition. Also, the characters seem like cardboard cutouts instead of fully developed individuals.

Sadly, the narrator doesn’t help the story. I’ve always thought the narrator has sounded a bit foppish, but that quality is accentuated by the bland story. Now the characters are boring and sound completely foolish.

I often feel skeptical of serial stories that extend into the teens and beyond because the faults seem to become more prominent as the book numbers increase. The Captain Lacey series certainly has succumbed to this phenomenon. I won’t bother with book 13.

  • The Service of the Dead

  • A Kate Clifford Mystery, Book 1
  • By: Candace Robb
  • Narrated by: Sarah Nichols
  • Length: 7 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16

Political unrest permeates York at the cusp of the 15th century, as warring factions take sides on who should be the rightful king - Richard II or his estranged, powerful cousin in exile, Henry Bolingbroke. Independent-minded 20-year-old Kate Clifford is struggling to dig out from beneath the debt left by her late husband. Determined to find a way to be secure in her own wealth and establish her independence in a male-dominated society, Kate turns one of her properties near the minster into a guesthouse and sets up a business.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Weak and Choppy

  • By MxH on 01-27-19

Weak and Choppy

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

Reviewed: 01-27-19

The plot is choppy and the narrator is wrong for the book.

This book isn’t an easy listen. The narrator isn’t annoying, but her downfall is an almost complete failure to create distinction between characters. This ambiguity makes a choppy plot feel even rougher, and it is a challenge to keep the people and events straight. The plot is also hindered by numerous historical references without context; as a result, I would only suggest this book to individuals with at least moderate knowledge of 14th century England.

The character development also struggles due to the narrator in part, but additionally, the author has created only one dimensional individuals. I felt as if the plot and characters were on parallel lines but were never interwoven.

This isn’t the strongest performance of the author or narrator.

  • A Rustle of Silk

  • By: Alys Clare
  • Narrated by: Richard Attlee
  • Length: 8 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7

1603. Former ship's surgeon Gabriel Taverner is attempting to re-establish himself as a physician in rural Devon but it's not easy to gain the locals' trust and a series of disturbing incidents convinces him that at least one person does not welcome his presence. Called out to examine a partially decomposed body found beside the river, Gabriel discovers he has a personal connection to the dead man.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Solid

  • By MxH on 01-23-19

Solid

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

Reviewed: 01-23-19

This book is solid in all the best ways.

Alys Clare delivers a plot that hits the perfect balance of detail and pace. The storyline is light on suspense, but still has room for the listener to conjecture about the perpetrator. There are a couple plot points that feel a little far fetched, but, hey, it is fiction. The character development is well thought out with Ms. Clare seamlessly tying together the individuals in this book and prospective personalities for future writings. The historical detail is accurate without being heavy handed. Last, the narrator’s skills make this an easy listening experience: no distractions or annoyances (unless you are very particular about Italian accents).

I’ve listened to this book twice in a year, and I’m hopeful more of Ms. Clare’s works will be produced in audio.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Bad to the Bone

  • DI Bliss, Book 1
  • By: Tony J. Forder
  • Narrated by: Greg Wagland
  • Length: 12 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 81
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 73
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 72

A skeletal body is unearthed in a wooded area of Peterborough, Cambridgeshire. DI James Bliss, together with DC Penny Chandler, investigates the case and discovers that the young female victim had been relocated from her original burial site. A witness is convinced that a young female was struck by a vehicle back in the summer of 1990 and that police attended the scene. However, no record exists of either the accident or the reported victim. As the case develops, two retired police officers are murdered. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Very Pleasant Surprise..!!

  • By John on 11-08-18

Ponderous and Dull

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

Reviewed: 01-10-19

I found this book ponderous and dull. The characters lack nuance and are forgettable. The dialogue is flat, irritatingly predictable, and devoid of wit. Last, the plot shows no evidence of finesse. I felt the author used a sledgehammer to carve out the plot instead of a fine artisan’s sharply honed tools.

The narrator was decent: not great and not bad.

I have no desire to listen or read another of Mr. Forder’s books.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Otherwise Engaged

  • By: Amanda Quick
  • Narrated by: Louise Jane Underwood
  • Length: 10 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 764
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 695
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 692

Miss Amity Doncaster, world traveler, is accustomed to adventure and risk. Benedict Stanbridge, a man of science and a spy for the Crown, has faced danger in the darker corners of foreign lands. But they are about to face a threat that is shockingly close to home . . . One does not expect to be kidnapped on a London street in broad daylight.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • One of the Worst Narrations

  • By Elizabeth on 04-27-14

Abysmal and Disconnected

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

Reviewed: 09-12-18

This is the first book I’ve listened to as part of Audible’s Romance Package. I will not continue to subscribe to the package if the other options are as unfulfilling as this book.

The narration is decent; that is the only positive aspect of the book.

The author’s character development is one dimensional so there is no emotional connection between the characters. The plot lacks depth and pacing. And, the most glaring misstep: Ms. Quick forces the plot progression without contextual relevance.

A disconnected and abysmal listening/reading experience.

  • The Marigold Chain

  • By: Stella Riley
  • Narrated by: Alex Wyndham
  • Length: 10 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 100
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 90
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 89

England, 1666; the year all the prophecies said the world would end. For Chloe Hervaux, marriage to wild, unpredictable Alex Deveril offers escape from a home she hates. For Alex, waking up with an epic hangover, the discovery that he has acquired a bride is an unwelcome shock. But while the marriage remains in name only, other forces are gathering. England is at war with the Dutch, and Prince Rupert suspects that sabotage is at work in the fleet. Instructed to find and stop the traitor, Alex enters a dark, secret labyrinth of intrigue.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent romance set during the Restoration

  • By noagnes on 02-23-18

Almost Mediocre

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

Reviewed: 03-14-18

This book isn’t Stella Riley’s strongest effort: character development lacks depth, the pace is plodding, and the efforts at intrigue and suspense completely fall flat. The narrator isn’t my favorite but performs adequately. I would only recommend this book halfheartedly to devoted Stella Riley fans.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Architect of Song

  • By: A. G. Howard
  • Narrated by: Gemma Dawson
  • Length: 12 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 70
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 64
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 62

For most of her life, Juliet Emerline has subsisted, isolated by deafness, making hats in the solitude of her home. Now she's at risk of losing her sanctuary to Lord Nicolas Thornton, a mysterious and eccentric architect with designs on her humble estate. When she secretly witnesses him raging beside a grave, Juliet investigates, finding the name "Hawk" on the headstone and an unusual flower at the base. The moment Juliet touches the petals, a young English nobleman appears in ghostly form.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • I didn't want this listen to end

  • By Dee on 04-04-17

Mindless Drivel

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

Reviewed: 09-12-17

This book only should be read by someone hoping for complete, mindless drivel. The plot and characters lack depth and nuance. Narrator was okay. Don't waste a credit.

  • The Horse Dancer

  • A Novel
  • By: Jojo Moyes
  • Narrated by: Fiona Hardingham
  • Length: 16 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 341
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 308
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 310

A quintessential Jojo Moyes novel about a lost girl and her horse, the enduring strength of friendship, and how even the smallest choices can change everything. When Sarah's grandfather gives her a beautiful horse named Boo - hoping that one day she'll follow in his footsteps to join an elite French riding school, away from their gritty London neighborhood - she quietly trains in the city's parks and alleys. But then her grandfather falls ill, and Sarah must juggle horsemanship with school and hospital visits.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Sorry when it ended!

  • By Sharon Compton on 12-03-17

Seven Hours Too Long

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

Reviewed: 04-21-17

A bland story that drags on far too long; I won't recommend it or listen again.

  • A Madness So Discreet

  • By: Mindy McGinnis
  • Narrated by: Brittany Pressley
  • Length: 9 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 168
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 155
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 155

She keeps it locked away, along with her voice, trapped deep inside a brilliant mind that cannot forget horrific family secrets. Those secrets, along with the bulge in her belly, land her in a Boston insane asylum.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Everything

  • By Nicole B. on 08-20-18

Lacks Depth and Connectivity

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

Reviewed: 04-07-17

The characters lack depth and there is little connectivity between plot points. The author might have improved the plot by using foreshadowing, but I doubt it. I felt I was reading an outline not a novel. The writing is without sophistication and nuance.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful