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Audiobook Review – Seven Years – Dannika Dark

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seven yearsSeven Years
Author: Dannika Dark
Series: #1 in the Seven series
Rating: ☆ ☆ ½

Narrator: Nicole Poole
Run Time: 11hrs and 24min
Audiobook Producer: Tantor Media
Audiobook Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ½

Review Copy Provided by Tantor Media

!Warning Spoilers!

Description:
Seven years ago, my world ended.
Seven years later, my new life began.

It’s been seven years since Lexi Knight lost her brother in a tragic accident. On the anniversary of his death, her brother’s best friend shows up unexpectedly – a man she hasn’t seen since the funeral. He is no longer the boy Lexi once knew, but a dangerous-looking man with tattoos and dark secrets. He broke her trust and abandoned her family, yet what he reveals makes it impossible to stay angry. Lexi has been secretly infatuated with Austin since childhood, so finding out he’s a Shifter just makes him sexier. Dammit.

Austin Cole has returned to the city where he grew up, and just in time. He’s lived a hard life these past seven years, and the shadows of his past are threatening to destroy Lexi’s family. It’s time that she learned the truth about her brother, but there is a shocking twist that Austin never saw coming. Now he must protect her family when her mother and sister wind up in mortal danger. Will Lexi learn to accept the truth about who he is, and can Austin salvage a relationship from the ruins of their past?

Destiny will find you.

Review:
Out of all the books in the paranormal category for the Armchair Audies, this is the one that had me worried the most about the listening – which is kind of funny, since this kind of paranormal romance is normally right up my alley – but I had previously tried to read the book last year and ended up putting it aside around 50%. Most of my concerns about the book had to do with the world building (or lack there of) and where the story was going. However, earlier this year, the audiobook started to be mentioned more and more in several of the Audiobook groups on Goodreads and people seemed to really like the narration. So when it was nominated for an audie, i figured that i would give it another chance, since I know that often not so good books can be made more enjoyable with the right narrator. Unfortunately for me, while Nicole Poole made the book slightly more enjoyable, it was a struggle for me to finish listening.

For me, my biggest issue with this listen was (as with my previous attempt) the world building. Lexi was just a normal girl (or so she thought) and then all of a sudden, she discovers their are shifters in the world and not only that, that she is one. And she just takes it all in stride…i mean, i don’t know about you, but if i found out that I was a shifter, I would probably freak the shit out. From there, I just had trouble with any suspension of disbelief – i mean, i know that is required when reading books with paranormal elements, but yeah, I just didn’t understand the world that the author had created and that for me made the book a struggle. Honestly, I do think that the story in general had potential, if the world building had been stronger/more developed. But with the number of people that enjoyed this book, then maybe its just me.

I feel kind of bad for Nicole Poole, because to me no matter what she did, I felt that she was working with a substandard book and I had a hard time judging her fairly because of my lack of enjoyment for the storyline. That being said, I think she has a lot of strengths as a narrator – she had a diverse range of voices for the different characters. Her pacing seemed to be spot on (but that being said, i did consider speeding it up in a few places to just get the book moving). I even didn’t really have an issue with her male narrations, which for me, is often where I have issues – male narrators sometimes struggle with female voices and vice versa. But her narration of Austin was solid – it didn’t seem to be too wishy-washy (for lack of a better word) with solid tenor intonation throughout. She also did a good job with the narration of Lexi’s little sister, which is also something that I have found narrators struggle with, the little kid which out it being too high-pitched and babyish. The audiobook production by Tantor Media was the same high quality that I’ve come to expect from them, based on my previous experiences.

Overall, while Nicole Poole’s narration was solid and I gave it a solid 3.5 stars, unfortunately, it couldn’t counter-act a substandard story, which I only gave 2.5 stars. While others enjoyed Seven Years and the subsequent books in the series, it just didn’t work for me. But hey, that is what makes reading (and listening awesome), not everything works for everyone, which is why its great that there are so many options out there.

 
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Posted by on May 8, 2016 in Audiobook Review, Review

 

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Audiobook Review – Lycan Fallout 2: Fall of Man – Mark Tufo

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fall of manLycan Fallout 2: Fall of Man
Author: Mark Tufo
Series: #2 in the Rise of the Werewolf series
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ½

Narrator: Sean Runnette
Run Time: 11hrs and 23min
Audiobook Producer: Podium Publishing
Audiobook Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Review Copy Provided by Audiobook Producer

Description:
Mike is back. Devastated by his loss he strikes out on a doomed journey to wipe the earth of the Lycan scourge, with his faithful companion Oggie by his side. Bailey, a distant relative of Mike’s best friend BT, joins him but for different reasons. Azile struggles to reign him in, while a world already pushed to the edge begins its fall over the precipice. When all is lost, can anything ever be won? Join Mike on another epic adventure as he fights foes both new and old

Review:
Every year when I listen to my chosen armchair audies nomination, there is at least one book that I discover, that not only is totally new to me but one that never would have crossed my path. But Fall of Man has so far (after listening to multiple books in several categories) that book for me in 2016. I’ll admit that while I like dystopia type stories, those that are based around a nuclear holocaust type scenario, typically don’t pique my interest, but this was intriguing with the mix of both werewolves and lycan, which in Rufo’s world are 2 separate/distinct beings (one good and one evil).

I was a bit concerned as I started to listen to the Fall of Man because it is the second book in a series. Especially when the description of the book ending with “Join Mike on another epic adventure as he fights foes both new and old” – I had to wonder, what Mike gotten up to in the previous book? words like epic were used, so i expected something that was a roller-coaster of a ride and Tufo didn’t disappoint – while the narration of Fall of Man was 11hrs long, it definitely didn’t feel like it. There was very much a journey-ish feel to the story – as Mike traveled through a country that had been destroyed and was trying to recover. I think one of the more interesting scenes to me was when Mike used a rifle to shoot at invaders that were encroaching on territory – but as technology they were so far advanced from anything that was currently in existance, but Rufo had a way of writing the scene that it reminded me of when I was learning to shoot my rifle when preparing for deployment a few years ago – the adjustment of the sights, aiming firing, fixing again, etc.

Sean Runnette is another new to me narrator that i have encountered during this years Armchair Audies, although he has an extensive backlist (like 200+ audiobooks extensive) – although since the majority of them are in the sci-fi/fantasy realm so not necessarily a genre i listen a lot to. That being said, he had a very smooth reading style that just sucked you in. i felt like I was on the journey with Mike – seeing the world that had been destroyed through his eyes; fighting the lycans and making friends with the werewolves. The speed and pacing of Runnette’s narration was perfect – there are times where I want to speed up or slow down the audible app, but in this case, i didn’t.

The audiobook producer of Fall of Man – Podium Publishing – was also new to me, but i found that the audio was high quality and well produced. Looking at their website, they have lots of audios I would be interested in listening to from many new to me and familiar narrators (hello, R.C. Bray). So I know they will be on my list in the future.

For me Fall of Man was what I am terming my surprise listen of the 2016 Armchair Audies. An unknown author and narrator to me but both of whom I will pick up again in the future. Overall, I gave 3.5 stars for the story itself and 4 stars for narration.

 

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Armchair Audies Overview – Paranormal

Armchair Audies

So a little bit delayed with my third and final post in the my Armchair Audies Overview series, but something you got to save the best for last (or do you?). Paranormal is the second category that I reviewed last year and overall it was one of the strongest ones for nominees (IMHO). I had a REALLY hard time picking what book was going to be the winner, and it also opened me up to a bunch of new authors that I had never before heard of (several of who I have read more of since then). I’ll admit that I was excited to see that Seth Skorkowsky (author)/R.C. Bray (narrator) got a nomination for the second book in the Valduan series (the first one was one of my top ranked nominees last year).

The PARANORMAL Nominees are…

the dead houseThe Dead House – Dawn Kurtagich
Narrator: Charlotte Parry and Christian Coulson
Audiobook Publisher: Hachette Audio

Description:
Part-psychological thriller, part-urban legend, this is an unsettling narrative made up of diary entries, interview transcripts, film footage transcripts and medical notes. Twenty-five years ago, Elmbridge High burned down. Three people were killed and one pupil, Carly Johnson, disappeared. Now a diary has been found in the ruins of the school. The diary belongs to Kaitlyn Johnson, Carly’s identical twin sister. But Carly didn’t have a twin . . .

Re-opened police records, psychiatric reports, transcripts of video footage and fragments of diary reveal a web of deceit and intrigue, violence and murder, raising a whole lot more questions than it answers.

Who was Kaitlyn and why did she only appear at night? Did she really exist or was she a figment of a disturbed mind? What were the illicit rituals taking place at the school? And just what did happen at Elmbridge in the events leading up to ‘the Johnson Incident’?

Initial Thoughts
One of my favorite listens recently was Anna Dressed in Blood, a YA mystery and the description of The Dead House kind of gives me the same vibe. The idea of a story being told through letters is something that I enjoy, because it makes for a different approach that can be either hugely successful or a total fail. Both the author, as well as the narrators are new to me and I’m intrigued to see how the dual narration will play out – how will the narration be split between the male/female narrator.

hounacierHounacier – Seth Skorkowsky
Narrator: R.C. Bray
Audiobook Publisher: Audible Studios

Description:
Eleven years ago, atheist MALCOLM ROMERO met a god. Now he’s a demon-hunting voodoo priest armed with a holy machete named Hounacier.

After the murder of his mentor, he returns to New Orleans to catch the killer. But more is at stake when Malcolm finds himself betrayed, and his holy blade stolen. Now Malcolm’s only hope to save his soul and to recover HOUNACIER, is the Valducan knight sent to kill him, MATT HOLLIS, the wielder of the holy revolver DÄMOREN.

Initial Thoughts:
ok, so i’ll admit, I did a bit of a fan girl dance when I saw Hounacier had been nominated this year. Damoren was one of my top ranked picks last year and I bought this one when it was released a few months ago (but as my norm, I hadn’t had a chance to listen to it yet…) It was something different in the urban fantasy realm, that is so often dominated with the kick-ass female trope (don’t get me wrong, I like them as well, but they can get a bit tiring after a while). I can’t wait to see how the adventures that started in Damoren continue

fall of manLycan Fallout 2: Fall of Man – Mark Tufo
Narrated: Sean Runnette
Audiobook Publisher: Podium Publishing

Description:
Mike is back. Devastated by his loss he strikes out on a doomed journey to wipe the earth of the Lycan scourge, with his faithful companion Oggie by his side. Bailey, a distant relative of Mike’s best friend BT, joins him but for different reasons. Azile struggles to reign him in, while a world already pushed to the edge begins its fall over the precipice. When all is lost, can anything ever be won?

Initial Thoughts:
So my initial thought from reading the description – who is Mike and why is he back? I know that this is bk 2 in a series, but I also know that I don’t have time to go back and listen to the previous book, so i’m hoping that it can function ok as a stand-alone. I’ll admit that I was intrigued by the description and that it was likely something that would catch my eye if I was browsing audible titles. The narrator is new to me but from looking at Audible, he has a pretty substantial backlist for me to check out if i like his narration.

seven yearsSeven Years – Dannika Dark
Narrator: Nicole Poole
Audiobook Publisher: Tantor Media

Description:
Seven years ago, my world ended.
Seven years later, my new life began.

It’s been seven years since Lexi Knight lost her brother in a tragic accident. On the anniversary of his death, her brother’s best friend shows up unexpectedly – a man she hasn’t seen since the funeral. He is no longer the boy Lexi once knew, but a dangerous-looking man with tattoos and dark secrets. He broke her trust and abandoned her family, yet what he reveals makes it impossible to stay angry. Lexi has been secretly infatuated with Austin since childhood, so finding out he’s a Shifter just makes him sexier. Dammit.

Austin Cole has returned to the city where he grew up, and just in time. He’s lived a hard life these past seven years, and the shadows of his past are threatening to destroy Lexi’s family. It’s time that she learned the truth about her brother, but there is a shocking twist that Austin never saw coming. Now he must protect her family when her mother and sister wind up in mortal danger. Will Lexi learn to accept the truth about who he is, and can Austin salvage a relationship from the ruins of their past?

Destiny will find you.

Initial Thoughts:
So this is really the one book in this category that I am skeptical about because I tried to read it a year or so ago and didn’t make it past about the 20% stage. I’ve also heard some reviews of the audiobook and it seems that several people felt the same way as I did on my initial attempt to read. But I am willing to give it a second try – here’s hoping…

white trash zombieWhite Trash Zombie Gone Wild – Diana Rowland
Narrator: Allison McLemore
Audiobook Publisher: Audible Studios

Description:
Angel crawford has buried her loser past and is cruising along in undead high gear–that is, until a murder-by-decapitation sends her on a hazardous detour. As Angel hunts for the killer, she uncovers a scheme that would expose zombies to the public and destroy the life she’s built, and she’s determined not to rest until she finds out who’s behind it.

Soon she’s neck-deep in lies, redneck intrigue, zombie hunters, and rot-sniffing cadaver dogs. It’s up to her to unravel the truth and snuff out the conspiracy before the existence of zombies makes headline news and she’s outed as a monster.

But Angel hasn’t quite escaped the pill-popping ghosts of her past–not with an illicit zombie pharmaceutical at her fingertips. Good thing she’s absolutely sure she can handle the drug’s unpredictable side effects and still take down the bad guys…or maybe she’s only one bad choice away from being dead meat–for real this time.

Angel knows a thing or two about kicking ass, but now the ass she needs to kick might be her own

Initial Thoughts:
I’ve heard about this series on and off over the last few years, but I’ll readily admit that zombie fiction normally isn’t my thing – and here’s hoping that book 5 in the series will act decently on its own because I don’t have the listening (or reading time) to get back to the rest of the books. The narrator, Allison McLemore, has a relatively small repitoire of audiobooks out there, but enough to maybe check out more by her in the future depending on how White Trash Zombie Gone Wild Plays Out.

Initial Predictions:
1. Hounacier – Seth Skorkowsky
2. The Dead House – Dawn Kurtagich
3. White Trash Zombie Gone Wild – Diana Rowland
4. Lycan Fallout 2: Fall of Man – Mark Tufo
5. Seven Years – Dannika Dark

 
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Posted by on March 5, 2016 in Armchair Audies, Listening Events

 

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Audiobook Review – Suffer the Children – Craig DiLouie

Audies nominee paranormal

suffer the childrenSuffer the Children
Author: Craig DiLouie
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Narrator: R.C. Bray
Run Time: 11hrs 26min
Narration Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Description:
Suffer the Children presents a terrifying tale of apocalyptic fiction, as readers are introduced to Herod’s Syndrome, a devastating illness that suddenly and swiftly kills all young children across the globe. Soon, they return from the grave…and ask for blood. And with blood, they stop being dead. They continue to remain the children they once were…but only for a short time, as they need more blood to live. The average human body holds ten pints of blood, so the inevitable question for parents everywhere becomes: How far would you go to bring your child back?

Review:
WARNING: Book contains scenes that may be nightmare inducing to parents of young children
It is very rare that I need to pause listening to a book mid-way through for a mental break, but Craig DiLouie’ Suffer the Children made me do just that. I’ll be upfront and say that horror is normally not a genre I would pick up, although there are some authors that I will stick my toes into that field just for them (and I guess the same could be said for narrators I enjoy). In fact, this book never would have crossed my reading/listening path, if it hadn’t been nominated for an audie in the Paranormal category but I am so glad that I had the opportunity to listen to it.

First things first, this isn’t your normal vampire fare (or how vampire fare has come to be written recently) – if I had to draw parallel’s it is much more like the old school dracula type vampire, rather than the new romance-y ones. There was nothing nice/romantic about these but that being said, there wasn’t anything really original about the vampires either. For me, the draw in the book was more the philosophical take on how far would you go – it reminded me a lot of the questions asked in the morality class I took in college – if you had to kill 5 or 1 which would you pick? what was the solution for the greater good. I don’t necessarily know if that was what DiLouie was trying to convey in the book (I have a feeling that it was), but that is where my mind went. The prevailing question – what would you do for just one more hour, one more day with your children? I’m not a parent and the idea of having to make that choice is just horrific to me, I can’t imagine who someone who is a parent and listening to this would react.

I will say that I wasn’t expecting the book as it did – although that ending kind of makes sense…it kind of makes me wonder what happens next…

R.C. Bray, once again, brought his skillful narration to the book and it was via this that I felt myself cringing in places and ending up having at least one nightmare during the course of listening. (BTW, tweeting that to an horror author will get you a huge thanks…lol). Having listened to Bray narrate several books in different sub-genres (sci-fi; urban fantasy and now paranormal/horror), its safe to say that he is going to be an auto-buy/listen in the future. Its hard to peg exactly how his narration worked – maybe the fact that I found myself physically cringing in places as I heard his narration of different parts or the fact that I was so invested in what happened to the different characters that hearing what happened to them made me sit in my car in shock for a good 20 minutes one day.

Both the book and the narration were a solid 4 stars for me and I know that I will be checking out more work by DiLouie in the future (even if his writing scares the beejeebers out of me at times). Hopefully with more narration by R.C. Bray in the future.

 
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Posted by on April 20, 2015 in Armchair Audies, Audiobook Review

 

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Audiobook Review – The Girl With All The Gifts – M.R. Carey

Audies nominee paranormal

girl of all giftsThe Girl With All The Gifts
Author: M.R. Carey
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Narrator: Finty Williams
Run Time: 13hrs and 4min
Production Company: Hachette Audio
Narration Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Review Copy Provided by Hachette Audio

Description:
Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite, but they don’t laugh.

Review:
The Girl with all the Gifts is a book that I have seen show up in my various blog feeds for a good six months now probably. I kept meaning to read it (or listen to it), but for some reason never had which I guess was great timing, because when I saw it was nominated for an Audie in the Paranormal category, I jumped on the opportunity. I will say this, take the description and just ignore it because that encompasses about the first 20 pages of the book and then you are in for a roller coaster of a ride. The first half was a bit slow (at least in places), but about 6 hours in it started to pick up and the rest was much a continual on-the-go. Although I will say it is really hard to write a review for this without divulging spoilers – because every little thing that occurs from the description on, contributes to the overall story.

I really enjoyed how the author managed to integrate different elements from Greek mythology into the story, along with the current zombie craze (and I feel safe saying that even if its technically a spoiler, because its revealed uber early on). I will say that I’m normally not a zombie fan, because for the most part, they turn out to be a less than entertaining kill kill kill fest – whereas the Girl (or Melanie as she is called) seemed to be much more thinking and developed. I was a tad disappointed with (for me) how the ending played out – based on reviews that I had read, I think I was just expecting a lot more. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t bad and everything was complete – I just expected more – which is why the story itself only got 4 stars, rather than the 5 it was leaning towards early on.

Flinty Williams was a new narrator to me but it won’t be the last time that I listen to her. Imagine my shock when I googled her name (because I wanted to see if she had twitter so I could tweet that I was listening to her) and found out that she was Dame Judy Dench’s daughter…right there, that just solidified my like of her. I thought that she did really well with Melanie’s POV’s – they sounded like a younger girl (although you never really know how old Melanie truely is). I also liked her narration for the SGT (since that is what he was called the majority of the book) – Ms Williams was able to give a gruffness (for lack of a better word) to his voice that I would expect from a military person. I will admit that her narration for the 2 main females – the teacher and the Dr – kind of blended together after a while – but thankfully, they weren’t talking a lot together, so I could at least keep them separate that way.

I also gave the narration of The Girl with All Gifts 4 stars and will be intrigued to check out more books by the author in the future/ more stuff narrated by Ms Williams.

 
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Posted by on April 2, 2015 in Armchair Audies, Audiobook Review

 

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Armchair Audies – Overview – Paranormal

Armchair Audies

Whoo-hoo! Yes, I’m doing a funky trying to dance in my seat at work without making it too obvious 😉 because this is one of my favorite posts of the year. This is the third year that I have participated in the Armchair Audies. In past years, I have listened to and reviewed the books in the Romance category, but my disappointment with the nominations this year (hello, James Patterson really!) lead me to look at other categories that I would be interested in. And of course, one is never enough 😉 So for 2015, I will be listened to and reviewing 2 categories – Paranormal and Erotica. Both of these categories are once which I dabble in when it comes to both listening and reading (although I will debate whether Erotica is the correct term for the category, more like Erotic Romance, but that is a discussion for another day).

So without, further a-do – here is the list of the books nominated in the Paranormal Category and my initial thoughts on each:

PARANORMAL
damorenDamoren – Seth Skorkowsky – Narrated by R.C. Bray
A secret society of monster hunters. A holy revolver forged to eradicate demons. A possessed man with a tragic past. A rising evil bent on destroying them all.

MATT HOLLIS is the current wielder of the holy weapon, Dämoren. With it, he stalks and destroys demons.
A secret society called the VALDUCANS has taken an interest in Matt’s activities. They see him as a reckless rogue—little more than a ‘cowboy’ corrupted by a monster—and a potential threat to their ancient order.
As knights and their sentient weapons begin dying, Matt teams up with other hunters of his kind such as LUIZA, a woman with a conquistador blade; ALLAN, an Englishman with an Egyptian khopesh; MALCOLM, a voodoo priest with a sanctified machete; and TAKAIRA, a naginata-swinging Samurai.
As the hunters become the hunted, they must learn to trust one another before a powerful demonic entity thrusts the world into a terrible and ageless darkness.

Initial Thoughts: I typically enjoy Urban Fantasy and I’m looking forward to a book where the Urban and Fantasy are more focused on that the romantic elements that seem to be prevalent in other books (don’t get me wrong, I like/love romance, but sometimes a girl needs more). The idea of a Holy Weapon is intriguing. I’ve listened to R.C. Bray before (of note, this is the first of 3 nominations featuring him in this category) and look forward to listening to more by him.

girl of all giftsThe Girl with All the Gifts – M.R. Carey – Narrated by Finty Williams
Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite, but they don’t laugh.

Inital Thoughts: A short and sweet synopsis which is intriguing. Several people I know have either read or listened to the audiobook and it seems to be either a love book or a hate book, very few seem to fall in the mid-range. Finty Williams is a new narrator to me, which is exciting.

pleasure dark princePleasure of a Dark Prince – Kresley Cole – Narrated by Robert Petkoff
A DANGEROUS BEAUTY…
Lucia the Huntress: as mysterious as she is exquisite, she harbors secrets that threaten to destroy her — and those she loves.
AN UNCONTROLLABLE NEED…
Garreth MacRieve, Prince of the Lykae: the brutal Highland warrior who burns to finally claim this maddeningly sensual creature as his own.
THAT LEAD TO A PLEASURE SO WICKED….
From the shadows, Garreth has long watched over Lucia. Now, the only way to keep the proud huntress safe from harm is to convince her to accept him as her guardian. To do this, Garreth will ruthlessly exploit Lucia’s greatest weakness — her wanton desire for him.

Initial Thoughts: Of all the nominations in this category this is the only author/narrator combo that I am completely familiar with. I’ve been listening to Robert Petkoff’s narration of Cole’s Immortals After Dusk series since they started to release them in audio. So far I haven’t found one that I dislike yet.

a second chanceA Second Chance – Jodi Taylor – Narrated by Zara Ramm
St Mary’s is back and nothing is going right for Max. Once again, it’s just one damned thing after another. The action jumps from an encounter with a mirror-stealing Isaac Newton to the bloody battlefield at Agincourt. Discover how a simple fact-finding assignment to witness the ancient and murderous cheese- rolling ceremony in Gloucester can result in CBC – concussion by cheese. The long awaited jump to Bronze Age Troy ends in personal catastrophe for Max and just when it seems things couldn’t get any worse – it’s back to the Cretaceous Period again to confront an old enemy who has nothing to lose. So, make the tea, grab the chocolate biscuits, settle back and discover exactly why the entire history department has painted itself blue …

Initial Thoughts: This is another new author/narrator combo to me – from the description is sounds like a quirky type novel that I typically enjoy – I’m a fan of time travel (if done right), especially if its historical. Although I’m still underdecided (or need to verify) whether I need to read the previous 2 books first.

suffer the childrenSuffer the Children – Craig Dilouie – Narrated by R.C. Bray
Suffer the Children presents a terrifying tale of apocalyptic fiction, as readers are introduced to Herod’s Syndrome, a devastating illness that suddenly and swiftly kills all young children across the globe. Soon, they return from the grave…and ask for blood. And with blood, they stop being dead. They continue to remain the children they once were…but only for a short time, as they need more blood to live. The average human body holds ten pints of blood, so the inevitable question for parents everywhere becomes: How far would you go to bring your child back?

Initial Thoughts: Of all the nominations in the category, this is the one I am probably dreading the most. The idea of an illness wiping out all the children around the world is just freaky…added to that the returning from the dead (hello, zombies) and the need for blood…But I have faith that RC Bray’s narration will carry me through (ok, that sounded totally cheesy but you get the point).

yeserday's goneYesterday’s Gone, Season One – Sean Platt, David Wright – Narrated by R.C. Bray, Chris Patton, Brian Holsopple, Ray Chase, Maxwell Glick, Tamara Marston
On October 15 at 2:15 a.m. everyone on Earth vanished.
Well, almost everyone.
A scattered few woke alone in a world where there are no rules other than survival… at any cost.
A journalist wanders the wretched reality of an empty New York, in search for his wife and son.
A serial killer must hunt in a land where prey is now an endangered species.
A mother shields her young daughter from danger, as every breath fills her with terror.
A bullied teen is thrilled to find everyone gone. Until the knock on his door.
A fugitive survives a fiery plane crash. Will he be redeemed, or return to what he’s best at: the kill?
An eight year old boy sets out on a journey to find his missing family. What he finds will change him forever.
And there’s a few people who aren’t surprised that this happened at all. In fact, they’ve been dreaming about this day for years.
These survivors aren’t alone…

Someone or something is watching them.
And waiting…

Strangers unite.
Sides are chosen.
Will humanity survive what it never saw coming?

The only certainty is that Yesterday’s Gone.

Initial Thoughts: I’ll be the first person to admit that I’m not a fan of serialized work, because for the most part, they end in cliff-hangers which irk me and authors (in general) seem to draw them out. However, since this is more as a TV show style serial with a fixed number of episodes, I’m intrigued enough – and the cast of narrators, led once again by RC Bray will make this a unique listen. Bray is the only one of the 6 narrators who I have listened to in the past.

Pre-Listening Predictions:**
1. The Girl with All the Gifts – M.R. Carey; Narrated by Finty Williams
2. Damoren – Seth Skorkowsky; Narrated by R.C. Bray
3. Pleasure of a Dark Prince – Kresley Cole; Narrated by Robert Petkoff
4. Suffer the Children – Craig Dilouie; Narrated by R.C. Bray
5. Yesterday’s Gone, Season One – Sean Platt, David Wright; Narrated by R.C. Bray, Chris Patton, Brian Holsopple, Ray Chase, Maxwell Glick, Tamara Marston
6. A Second Chance – Jodi Taylor; Narrated by Zara Ramm

**predictions are complete random based on book descriptions, and personal opinion of authors/narrators

Stay Tuned for the Erotica Summary – Coming Next!

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2015 in Armchair Audies

 

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Audiobook Review – Dangerous Destiny – Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie Brockmann

dangerous destinyDangerous Destiny
Authors: Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie Brockmann
Series: #.5 in the Night Sky series
Narrator: Melanie Brockmann
Run Time: 1hr 16min

Review Copy Provided by Publisher via Audiobook Jukebox

Description:
I know her.
Know her from inside the dreams. Inside those terrible, murderous, bloody dreams. I’ve heard her-screaming, her voice mixing in an awful chorus with all those other girls. Little girls.

Please, God.
That’s what one of the little girls keeps saying, in the dream that is not just a dream. Please, God.
But I know better. There’s no escaping this fate. This is destiny.
I must kill Skylar.

Skylar Reid is the new girl at school. Her mom just moved them to Florida—aka The Land of the Living Dead where the average age of her new neighbors was seventy-five—to start over. Skylar is not a fan of the change or her total lack of friends. Until she meets Calvin, a funny, sarcastic boy who doesn’t let being in a wheelchair stop him from verbally shredding their preppy classmates. Skylar’s just about to decide her new school’s not a total loss when an odd girl wearing an oversized trench coat in the murderous Southern heat declares, “You’re one of us.” And then tries to kill her.

Review:
I’ve been a fan of Suzanne Brockmann’s since I picked up her Harlequin series based around SeAL’s (Tall, Dark and Dangerous) as a teenager and while my enjoyment of her books has waxed and waned over the years – I typically knew what I was in for when I picked up a copy. So when I saw that she had co-authors a YA book series with her daughter, I was intrigued. It was the first time, that I know of, that she had delved into the YA realm (although in previous books, she had a good handle on writing kids) – so I was curious to see how it played it. Being as it was the prequel to a new series and only about 60pages, there wasn’t a lot of room for substantial world building, the book itself relied more on the hint of things to come, to hopefully make the reader interested in picking up the later books. All you really glean about Skyler (the female main character) is that she has some kind of super-power that is going to come into play later on in the series. I don’t know, I just felt like I couldn’t get invested enough in the series based on the short prequel storyline – I probably would have been better off picking up the full-length first book in the series and then going back and reading the prequel, because based on what I read, I would be hesitant to pick up later books in the series.

As an avid audiobook listened, I am also always on the lookout for new narrators, but typically tend to be skeptical of authors narrating their own works. So when I saw the Melanie Brockmann, the co-author had narrated the book, I was concerned and worried, but I figured since the book itself was short, and so was the narration (only just over an hour) – that even if the narration wasn’t that good, I could survive. So I decided to plunge on in. Within about 20 minutes (so about 1/6 of the book), I knew I had made a mistake. I found the narration to be monotonous and dragging – there was no real distinction between the various characters (and I realize that the book was told in first person, but there still needed to be some inflection or something to differentiate the characters). Honestly, I was glad that the book was so short, but if it hadn’t been, I probably would have DNF’d it – but I stuck with it but unfortunately, it just didn’t work for me.

If I continue the series in the future (and that is still up in the air), it will be by reading it because I noticed that the same person narrates at least the first book in the series. Overall, the story got 2.5 stars and the narration only 1 star, for a 2 star rating overall. If you do consider reading/listening to this series, I would recommend reading.

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2015 in Audiobook Review

 

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