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Hebby~Bookworm

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Not my favourite by Jeff Strand

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

Reviewed: 10-02-2021

This book had 3 sections. The Romance, the Revenge and the Horror. I really loved the first part of this book, it was similar to many of his more comedic works, like Wolf Hunt and Ferocious. However I found the second and third parts to be a lot more bleak. There was definite horror and I love a bit of gore, but I wish the story had gone in a different direction.

This reminded me of My Pretties and Allison... more bleak in tone and less comedy. I prefer the more comedic books by Jeff Strand.

It was entertaining for sure, and I wanted to find out what happened, I finished it in a day. But overall I was left feeling disappointed because it was very bleak and quite depressing overall. As the blurb states “this is not a love story”, and don’t go in expecting it to be, because you will be disappointed.

Hopefully his next book will be more funny and upbeat.

Kept me interested but left me disappointed at the end.

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

Reviewed: 05-01-2021

There was a lot of tension and suspense in this story, with a feeling of dread the whole way through. It was very disturbing seeing through Oghi’s eyes, the feeling of having absolutely no control over anything in his life.

I don’t know if something was lost in translation, but I felt like there really wasn’t enough information about certain characters and their motivations. Also the way the car crash scene was written, I didn’t really understand what exactly had happened, who was at fault.

The ending left me disappointed unfortunately.

People have compared this to Misery by Stephen King, and I think that is a valid comparison.

There is a similar feeling of dread, but I guess I prefer King’s overt, violent, explicitly explained version more than this, which was more subtle, slow-moving and had ending that didn’t really address the questions raised.

It was definitely thought-provoking but I think it was just a little too subtle for me.



Well that was weird...

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

Reviewed: 15-12-2020

What a strange story.
It had some interesting moments and I did like the main characters, and the friendship and banter between them was good.
The mystery could have done with more explanation, I felt like I have no idea what was going on at the end of the book.

If there is a sequel, I am unsure if I’d give it a go. I probably would, because I love Matt Godfrey’s voice, and also just to see if there is any more explanation as to what the heck is going on!

Not for the faint of heart, there are some unpleasant bits, and if you like your stories tied up in a neat little bow at the end, I’d say this isn’t for you.

Audio quality is atrocious

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

Reviewed: 24-11-2020

I should not have bothered. After reading other reviews I thought “how bad can it be”... I got 10 minutes in and have no idea what was happening.

If you have any issues with your hearing I would not recommend this one, as the audio quality is absolutely terrible.

Also the format seemed quite different to their other radio plays, unlike a story, it was more like a series of news reports... a reporter on the radio followed by an indecipherable broadcast from Antarctica, repeated over and over.

I hope they re-record this story in the same style as the other radio plays they have done, as I really enjoy most of those.

Romance for health nuts

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

Reviewed: 29-09-2020

My first foray into F/F romance... It was not a bad story, I kept listening until the end, although I found the second half to be a real slog to get through.

The characters were okay, I really loved the side character Lucy, but honestly the two leads Rebecca and Spencer were a bit boring and forgettable. Particularly Spencer... I just thought she was too waffly and indecisive and I found her behaviour frustrating.

Also there was a plot point that I found to be a bit too much “in your face”... (the health scare).... I get it, the main character is a fitness instructor, but I felt it was laid on a bit too thick, the idea that eating junk is bad was just really over done.

Also the whole idea that Spencer was “just not very toned” instead of being full on fat was a bit annoying too. Like couldn’t she have actually been chubby or even (gasp!) overweight?! Or is romance for only the fit people?

The more I think about it, the more this book annoyed me.

Give it a go if you like other books by this author, or if you are a fitness guru who likes their romance with no flabby bits, but if you’re not fit and prefer burgers to lettuce maybe give it a miss...

Take that thing out of the freezer!

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

Reviewed: 25-07-2020

Volcano eruption leaves a group of people trapped on a mountain and then Bigfoot attacks.... what’s not to love?

When it began, I thought the characters would be insufferable. It’s basically an eco-village full of hippy, new age types.... seriously, the child had a “placeholder name”, Palomino.

But as vapid and ridiculous as these characters seemed at the start, I think they developed quite well as the story went along, and I actually ended up liking almost everyone.

The story kept along at a good pace, and I thought it was really descriptive without being too slow.

My only issue is that with this being a “found diary” book, there is of course the mystery as to what happened after the diary ends.
It wasn’t as satisfying an ending as if everything was tied up in a neat little bow, but also wasn’t as annoying as other “you decide what happened” endings I’ve read in other books.

The narration was good. I had no issue with Judy Greer’s voice, although I think it’s a shame that she didn’t do Mostar’s accent, it was a little distracting having a European character with an American accent.

I haven’t read World War Z, so I can’t compare it to this, but Devolution did remind me quite a lot of Fantasticland by Mike Bockoven, and if you enjoyed that, I’d say you will probably like this.

Fantastic!

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

Reviewed: 19-06-2020

I have always loved this book, it is clever and funny and a classic book for children. This version is excellent.

A lot of people have complained it their reviews about the narrator’s accent for the Grand High Witch, but compared to the written book, the narrator said the words how they were written, and she had the correct accent, and I had no trouble understanding her at all.
Perhaps because I already knew the book almost by heart, I knew what she was saying. But I didn’t think it was an issue.

I think the narrator did a great job, and if I have any complaint about the book, it’s that there were background sound effects that were unnecessary and a little distracting at times. But that was a minor niggle and not really a problem.

A good yarn

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

Reviewed: 22-05-2020


This story had a large cast of characters and many were quite unique and had modern identities, eg gender-fluid, poly-amorous, Wiccan lesbian couple etc. I’m unsure if this is a true portrayal of demographics in small town America, but I thought that Bill’s response to these identities was very accurate, but at the same time was not insulting. It was a believable insight into the way older generations think about new ideas around gender and identity, and try to assimilate foreign concepts that younger generations accept more easily.

I don’t read mystery or crime novels usually (Kelsey Grammer sucked me in with his soothing voice!), so I’m certainly no expert on them, but I found the mystery to be interesting and compelling and I didn’t know what would happen next.
I figured out the murderer about 2 minutes before the reveal, which I think is a sign of good writing. I’m keen to go back and listen again to hear any clues I missed.

I hope Kelsey Grammer keeps writing, and narrating because he has a great voice and his story was well written and well told.

Compelling but the end was unsatisfying.

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

Reviewed: 31-01-2020

I really enjoyed this for the most part. I didn’t want to stop listening and finished it in less than a day.
But I felt that the set up just didn’t quite deliver what I was expecting in the end.
Marian was an interesting character, but I was hoping from more from her, or a bit more of a climax in the story.

The narrator was fantastic !

Pygmy cover art

Loved it!

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

Reviewed: 17-12-2019

This reminded me a little of A Clockwork Orange actually. It has its own special ‘language’ and had some pretty extreme violence.
It definitely won’t be for everyone, but I really enjoyed it.

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