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Bake.

Newcastle, Australia
  • 12
  • reviews
  • 1
  • helpful vote
  • 21
  • ratings
  • The Casual Vacancy

  • By: J.K. Rowling
  • Narrated by: Tom Hollander
  • Length: 17 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 227
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 209
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 208

When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early 40s, the town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty facade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils.... Pagford is not what it first seems. And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic

  • By Lindal Brown on 06-08-2016

Challenging

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

Reviewed: 12-04-2019

Though some of the writing felt a bit over the top, and perhaps unnecessarily gratuitous in places, the story is gripping, and challenges the reader to think about perception, discrimination, and the true shape of people's characters and soul. The narrative forced this listener to contemplate how messed up society is in so many ways, and to ruminate on one's own role in becoming part of the solution or the problem.
Worth listening to if you're willing to listen to an intense amount of swearing (perhaps it was necessary in order to add authenticity to the story), and if you're after a tragic tale rather than a feel-good drama.

  • Lucky Man

  • A Memoir
  • By: Michael J. Fox
  • Narrated by: Michael J. Fox
  • Length: 5 hrs and 30 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 39
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 36
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 36

In September 1998, Michael J. Fox stunned the world by announcing he had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease: a degenerative neurological condition. In fact, he had been secretly fighting it for seven years. The worldwide response was staggering. Fortunately, he had accepted the diagnosis and by the time the public started grieving for him, he had stopped grieving for himself.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent, truly excellent

  • By Denis Tamplin on 10-04-2016

Brilliant

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

Reviewed: 19-03-2019

Michael J. Fox's memoir is an extremely well written and well read book. I was so engrossed in every part of his story that I wished the book were twice as long. Perhaps it is, since this is an abridged version.
I give this 5 stars, and this will not be the last time I listen to this audiobook, it brought a lot of clarity to my own outlook on life as a whole.

  • Moby-Dick

  • By: Herman Melville
  • Narrated by: Frank Muller
  • Length: 21 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 32
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 27

Labeled variously a realistic story of whaling, a romance of unusual adventure and eccentric characters, a symbolic allegory, and a drama of heroic conflict, Moby Dick is first and foremost a great story. It has both the humor and poignancy of a simple sea ballad, as well as the depth and universality of a grand odyssey.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Glad I finally read this book

  • By Bake. on 26-02-2019

Glad I finally read this book

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

Reviewed: 26-02-2019

So many people have applauded this book, so that I finally listened to it on audiobook.
I'm glad I now have; there are moments of exquisite and inspired writing. I just wish that I hadn't had to wade through chapters of boredom, in which whales, ships, etc. are described in painful and boring detail, resulting in the story being put on hold so that the author could indulge in a lecture.
Despite the boring chapters, I'm still glad I've now listened to the book. The narrator did an admirable job of the challenging narrative.

  • Dodger

  • By: Terry Pratchett
  • Narrated by: Steven Briggs
  • Length: 9 hrs and 20 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 37
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 32
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 32

Dodger is a tosher – a sewer scavenger living in the squalor of Dickensian London. Everyone who is nobody knows Dodger. Anyone who is anybody doesn’t.But when he rescues a young girl from a beating, suddenly everybody wants to know him.And Dodger’s tale of skulduggery, dark plans and even darker deeds begins.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Just fabulous to listen to

  • By Suzi on 08-04-2017

Great Story

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

Reviewed: 26-02-2019

Entertaining, intriguing and humour-laced story. Well narrated, well-paced, great mix of action and thoughtfulness.
Dodger is such a likeable underdog character, I was cheering for him from the start.
Five stars.

  • The Sending

  • The Obernewtyn Chronicles, Book 6
  • By: Isobelle Carmody
  • Narrated by: Isobelle Carmody
  • Length: 23 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 66
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 64
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 64

'It came to me then, like a chilly draught from an unseen gap that I had always known in my deepest heart that it would be like this, a slipping away from a life full of people I had come to love, in a place I had helped to shape, in a land I had helped to free.' The time has come at last for Elspeth Gordie to leave the Land on her quest to find and stop the computer machine Sentinel from unleashing the deadly Balance of Terror arsenal. But before she can embark on her journey, she must find a lost key.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Can you finish Darkfall series now...? I. CARMODY

  • By BoniDee on 21-02-2019

Unnecessarily too long with too many boring parts

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

Reviewed: 31-05-2018

I thought the first three books of this series were great, but the only reason I'm still reading these is because I have to know how it all ends. These latest books in the series are filled with long, unnecessary and boring chunks of information and soliloquising, unless you're the kind of reader that enjoys reading page after page of someone thinking to themselves. Make that overthinking. It's starting to read like a neurotic diary. Far too much is over-explained in the narrative, as though readers cannot join any dots themselves, or as though we need constant reminding of what happened in previous books. If the repetitive information is for the sake of new readers starting the series at this book, then they really should just go back and read the other books first. It's disappointing to see a series with a good premise and plot get dragged down by monotonous narrative. I really don't need the main character thinking about something from every possible angle for three pages, and constantly mis-interpreting everyone's actions, especially her bond-mate's, just get on with the story. I also wish so much that this weren't narrated in first-person; the story could be so much more dynamic if it weren't completely through the eyes and mind of Elspeth, and pages and pages wouldn't have to be wasted on her being told what happened by another character who was there. Ugh. Such a pity, because there actually is just enough interest every now and then to keep me from giving up on it completely. I'm dying to know what happens to Dragon.

  • The Stone Key

  • The Obernewtyn Chronicles, Book 5
  • By: Isobelle Carmody
  • Narrated by: Isobelle Carmody
  • Length: 29 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 75
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 69
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 70

Friend becomes foe and trust is a thing of the past when the Misfits' most relentless enemy, on the cusp of ultimate revenge, turns Elspeth's world upside down. When Farseeker Guildmistress Elspeth Gordie sets out from Obernewtyn to travel to Sutrium at the end of Wintertime, she quickly learns that not everyone welcomes the changes brought about by the rebellion. Captured by an old and vicious enemy, she is drawn into the heart of the Herder Faction, where she learns of a terrible plot to destroy the west coast.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Exciting developments in the Obernewtyn Chronicles

  • By Emma on 27-03-2019

Worth the listen, but should be a shorter story.

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

Reviewed: 12-04-2018

I'm enjoying the series, but I do have a few complaints.

First a compliment. Isobelle Carmody narrates her own story very well, and the plot is quite intriguing and the characters are great.

However, I feel like too much time is spent on over-expounding Elspeth's thoughts, and I find my own thoughts going 'okay okay, I get it, move on!'

I think the story could be told better if it wasn't a first-person narrative, especially since a lot of the action scenes are told to Elspeth by another character, since she wasn't there herself. I think the action scenes would be so much more exciting if we could be there in the narrative rather than receiving a brief (the only time the story actually becomes brief) rundown by a character that was there.

On the whole, I feel like too much text is dedicated to over-explaining things, but I have to remind myself that this is fiction for teenage readers, and I'm reading it as an adult. Even so, I think if I were a teenager reading this I'd be able to make the connections between certain aspects of the story without it being over-explained so much.

One other little thing is that it feels a bit shallow that every character so far in the story who believes in the 'Lud' deity is either a horrible person, a complete nitwit or a repressed and scared peasant who obviously hasn't thought things through properly.

Despite those gripes, I'm still enjoying the series on the whole, perhaps that's why I get so impatient for events to proceed without the main character's soliloquy getting so much in the way.

Three stars.

  • The Keeping Place

  • The Obernewtyn Chronicles, Book 4
  • By: Isobelle Carmody
  • Narrated by: Isobelle Carmody
  • Length: 22 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 76
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 72
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 72

After a kidnapping, Elspeth Gordie and the Misfits are forced to join the rebellion against the oppressive Council, using their extraordinary mind powers. But Elspeth must also seek out clues left by the long-dead seer, Kasanda, vital to her quest to destroy the Beforetime weaponmachines. One clue is lost in the past, forcing Elspeth to travel the Dreamtrails, stalked by a terrifying winged beast, with the cat, Maruman, as her guide and guardian. Only there can she learn more of the Beforetimer Misfits and their enemy, Govamen.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Too long.

  • By Jenifer on 18-04-2017

Well worth listening to

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

Reviewed: 02-04-2018

Well worth listening to (or reading), even though I felt that there was quite a bit of rambling in places and reminding of events from previous books in the series. I found myself often getting impatient for some action throughout the book, and yet it's a well thought out story with rich and intriguing elements. The characters that populate the book are excellent and appropriately endearing or loathsome. I also find myself getting annoyed at the main heroine's unwillingness to deal swift justice to her enemies. I'm looking forward to the next novel. Although it's a series more for teenage readers and as such gets slightly predictable in places for adult readers, it's enjoyable with believable dialogue, and I think Isobelle Carmody does a very good job of narrating her own story. I appreciate that Isobelle doesn't make her voice sound slow and jock-like when she reads the dialogue of the male characters, which is something that is irksome in many other narrators.

  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame

  • By: Victor Hugo
  • Narrated by: Bill Homewood
  • Length: 22 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 6
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 6

In the grotesque bell-ringer Quasimodo, Victor Hugo created one of the most vivid characters in classic fiction. Quasimodo's doomed love for the beautiful gypsy girl Esmeralda is an example of the traditional love theme of beauty and the beast. Yet, set against the massive background of Notre Dame de Paris and interwoven with the sacred and secular life of medieval France, it takes on a larger perspective.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Literary Masterpiece

  • By Bake. on 10-01-2018

A Literary Masterpiece

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

Reviewed: 10-01-2018

Despite several tedious chapters in which Hugo indulges in his ulterior motive of promoting architecture, which in no way serves the plot or story, the novel as a whole is a gripping gothic tale full of heart-wrenching pathos and acute observation of the follies of humanity.
Well narrated, well worth the listen.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Fatal Tree

  • Bright Empires, Book 5
  • By: Stephen R. Lawhead
  • Narrated by: Simon Bubb
  • Length: 10 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 11
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 9

It started with small, seemingly insignificant wrinkles in time: A busy bridge suddenly disappears, spilling cars into the sea. A beast from another realm roams modern streets. Napoleon’s army appears in 1930s Damascus ready for battle. But that’s only the beginning as entire realities collide and collapse. The questors are spread throughout the universe. Mina is stuck on a plain of solid ice, her only companion an angry cave lion. Tony and Gianni are monitoring the cataclysmic reversal of the cosmic expansion.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Still worth the read

  • By Bake. on 30-11-2017

Still worth the read

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

Reviewed: 30-11-2017

I would have preferred a more gripping ending to this excellent series, it seemed to plod along a bit too slowly for my liking, and at no point did the plot give me that delicious sense of tension that things might not work out okay, but I still enjoyed enough to keep going. I don't think it was as strongly written as the rest of the series though, I really felt there needed to be more conflict or suspense, perhaps even a bit more humour. Still, all in all a good read, and the series as a whole is very well done.

  • The Shadow Lamp

  • By: Stephen Lawhead
  • Narrated by: Simon Bubb
  • Length: 11 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 8

The quest for answers - and ultimate survival - hinges on finding the cosmic link between the Skin Map, the Shadow Lamp, and the Spirit Well. The search for the map of blue symbols began in a rainy alley in London but has since expanded through space and time and includes more seekers. Kit, Mina, Gianni, Cass, Haven, and Giles have gathered in Mina's 16th-century coffee house and are united in their determination to find a path back to the Spirit Well.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • An original, gripping and intelligent series

  • By Bake. on 26-10-2017

An original, gripping and intelligent series

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

Reviewed: 26-10-2017

Not quite as great as the first three books in the series, the pace was a bit slow for my liking, but I'm still excited to see how this all ends, it has me intrigued.