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James

Canberra, Australia
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  • Dooku: Jedi Lost (Star Wars)

  • By: Cavan Scott
  • Narrated by: Orlagh Cassidy, Euan Morton, Pete Bradbury, and others
  • Length: 6 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 80
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 75
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 75

Random House presents the audiobook edition of Dooku: Jedi Lost (Star Wars), by Cavan Scott, read by Orlagh Cassidy as Asajj Ventress, Euan Morton as Dooku, Pete Bradbury as Gretz Droom, Jonathan Davis as Qui-Gon Jinn, Neil Hellegers as Ramil, Sean Kenin as Sifo-Dyas, January LaVoy as Jor Aerith, Saskia Maarleveld as Jenza, Carol Monda as Lene Kostana, Robert Petkoff as Ky Narec, Rebecca Soler as Yula Braylon, and Marc Thompson as Yoda. Delve into the history of the sinister Count Dooku in this audio original set in a galaxy far, far away....

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Star Wars returns to audio, with mixed success

  • By James on 01-07-2019

Star Wars returns to audio, with mixed success

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

Reviewed: 01-07-2019

Star Wars has a history of producing excellent full cast audio dramas, beginning with the famous National Public Radio adaptations of the original trilogy, and given that it has been such a long time since there have been any (I think this is the first one since the Disney acquisition), I was very excited to learn that a new one was being made, and even more excited given that the story it would tell would be a long-untold chapter of the saga: the story of how Dooku left the Jedi order (I know there are some works that touch upon Dooku's early history, like Jude Watson's 'Legacy of the Jedi,' which I haven't read, but I believe this is the first time the story has been told in depth). What we ended up getting was a good look into an underexplored corner of the Star Wars universe, which nonetheless left me unsatisfied in a few respects.

First, I have to address what seems to me to be the elephant in the room. Star Wars has a really good track record when it comes to voice acting; the voices in 'The Clone Wars' are of uniformly high quality, the actors all sound just like their film counterparts while still making the roles their own (when you think about it, James Arnold Taylor has spent more time playing Obi-Wan than Ewan McGregor and Alec Guinness combined, for instance). Star Wars audiobooks, too, have benefited greatly from talented narrators, several of whom are represented in the cast of this drama (Marc Thompson, Jonathan Davis, and January LaVoy, all of whom are excellent). The cast of this drama give good performances that bring their respective characters to life, but there's just one major problem: Dooku sounds nothing like Christopher Lee. I don't understand why Lucasfilm didn't, or couldn't, get a good soundalike for the role. Corey Burton, who voices Dooku on 'The Clone Wars,' is excellent and would have been great. Maybe he wasn't available or something, but I'm sure there are many other great choices to be found among the actors Lucasfilm already has a relationship with. Euan Morton gives a perfectly adequate dramatic performance, and I suppose he is mostly playing a younger Dooku (although he doesn't sound like a young Christopher Lee either), but the dissimilarity of his voice from the established voice of the character yanks me straight out of the story, particularly in the framing device scenes, which I think are supposed to take place during or just before the Clone Wars.

And that brings me to my second gripe, which concerns the story's framing device. The chronology here is a bit confusing to me, but it seems to take place early-ish in Ventress' apprenticeship under Dooku, before she leaves to become a bounty hunter and all that nonsense, and all the Dooku history is told through diary entries and recounting by other characters. I really didn't think this framing device added much other than unnecessary confusion to a story already burdened with lots of characters to keep track of (several generations of Jedi padawans and masters, for instance, many of whom sound quite similar). The different in-universe narrators certainly didn't seem to shape the story in any Rashomonesque way; we just get an interlude with Ventress, she finds her next diary or interlocutor, and the story resumes unchanged (occasionally even relating events that the ostensible narrator did not even witness). Framing the narrative through Ventress seems to me to be an effort to tie 'Jedi Lost' in with the Dave Filoni-led content that's been dominating so much of Star Wars canon lately: 'The Clone Wars,' 'Rebels,' and books like 'Dark Disciple' in which characters like Ventress frequently feature. One feature of the Filoniverse, as you could call it, which I find personally dismaying, is its tendency to over-clutter the Star Wars timeline: Darth Maul comes back to life right before 'Revenge of the Sith,' Ahsoka lives into the original trilogy era, there are Jedi running all over the place causing trouble when they're meant to be all but extinct, and so on. I find the way Ventress is treated in this material to be characteristic of that sort of clutter. She was a Nightsister, then a slave, then a Jedi padawan, then a Sith apprentice, then a bounty hunter, and whatever else. I much prefer the treatment of the character from her original appearance in the Tartakovsky 'Clone Wars' series, where she's just a formidable Sith assassin unburdened with excessive backstory. I thus found her presence weighted this story down, and in particular her interactions with her ghostly Jedi master were a frequent source of confusion (if I, an avid Star Wars fan, have difficulty following this aspect of the story, surely a general audience will also have difficulty). Few Star Wars stories bother with the story-within-a-story structural gimmick, so I'm at a loss as to why the choice was ultimately made to use it here.

My final gripe is that, while 'Jedi Lost' does fulfil the promise of its title, it ends leaving much of the Dooku backstory still untold. I can only imagine there are plans for a follow-up at some point, and I suppose I can't complain about the prospect of more Star Wars audio dramas, though I would have thought one drama would be sufficient for this particular story. Despite an episode or two late in the run of 'The Clone Wars' that explored the character of Sifo-Dyas, many questions remain about his and Dooku's role in commissioning the clone army (questions that I think arose in the first place because of George Lucas' sloppy planning of the prequel trilogy, but fortunately there is a solid history of other writers plugging Lucas' plot holes).

Now, I know I just spent a lot of time nitpicking, but I did enjoy 'Jedi Lost.' As usual with Star Wars audio productions, you have great production quality, with lots of nice sound design and of course plenty of John Williams' music. There were a couple of slightly questionable music choices, but overall it's the usual high standard we've come to expect. I also really liked the insight the story gave into the functioning of the Jedi order in the late Old Republic era. This is an era of Star Wars that I've always been interested in precisely because there aren't supposed to be any "wars" in it; I like seeing how Jedi operate in peacetime, with no Sith Lords bedevilling them. The Star Wars universe has vast potential for imaginative storytelling, and Cavan Scott does mine some of that potential with some cool sci-fi set pieces. Despite my misgivings, I am still glad to see Star Wars return to audio dramas, and if there are to be follow-ups, I eagerly await them.

  • Identity Crisis

  • The 2016 Presidential Campaign and the Battle for the Meaning of America
  • By: John Sides, Michael Tesler, Lynn Vavreck
  • Narrated by: Paul Heitsch
  • Length: 9 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1

Identity Crisis takes listeners from the bruising primaries to an election night whose outcome defied the predictions of the pollsters and pundits. The book shows how fundamental characteristics of the nation and its politics - the state of the economy, the Obama presidency, and the demographics of the political parties - combined with the candidates' personalities and rhetoric to produce one of the most unexpected presidencies in history.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The definitive 2016 breakdown

  • By James on 31-03-2019

The definitive 2016 breakdown

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

Reviewed: 31-03-2019

All the best, most rigorous takes on the currents and forces underlying the 2016 election are contained herein. At this point, three years later, it's highly likely that most political junkies will have already absorbed most of these takes, making the book of marginal novelty, but in the event that one isn't fully up to speed, or needs disabusing of some of the more pernicious myths of 2016 (economic anxiety!) then this book is a one stop shop in a class of its own.

Paul Heitsch's narration is of that stock audiobook sort, but there are sporadic moments where the absurdity of the events of 2016 seems to bring out a little sparkle or chuckle in his delivery.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue

  • By: Mackenzi Lee
  • Narrated by: Christian Coulson
  • Length: 10 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 267
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 259
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 257

Henry "Monty" Montague doesn't care that his roguish passions are far from suitable for the gentleman he was born to be. But as Monty embarks on his grand tour of Europe, his quests for pleasure and vice are in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family's estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • So bloody brilliant

  • By Katie on 24-03-2018

Highly enjoyable fluff!

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

Reviewed: 17-02-2019

This was a highly engaging and satisfying historical LGBT romance, which morphs into a transcontinental caper partway through. Being a young adult book, it's horny, but not explicit, which I think is a slight shame; a sex scene or two wouldn't have gone amiss. The adventure caper elements at first seemed to be there just to break up the romantic elements, which I think is a good idea (a full-length romance with no breaks, like 'Call Me By Your Name,' can be a little too heady for me), but the caper ended up being the focus of most of the story. It's quite a good caper though, with layered twists changing the stakes regularly, and a variety of colourful settings and characters. The story also has very modern social sensibilities regarding race and gender and so forth, and it does a pretty good job of not seeming too anachronistic about it. The narrator's perspective of well-meaning but ingenuous white male privilege is well-portrayed. On the subject of the narrator, I recognised in him many of my own worst impulses toward selfishness and insensitivity toward loved ones, making him very relatable to me, and quite literally making his development a guide to virtue, as promised by the title.

Christian Coulson, who was the original Tom Riddle in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, (!) is a perfect narrator for this story. He brings an Eton boy, received pronunciation quality that is entirely appropriate to the character, and he has a frankly very surprising amount of range for all the other characters, making them all sound distinct, sometimes very subtly, and managing convincing French, Catalan, and Spanish accents to boot.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • "Diane...": The Twin Peaks Tapes of Agent Cooper

  • By: Lynch Frost Productions
  • Narrated by: Kyle MacLachlan
  • Length: 45 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19

Re-experience the mystery of Twin Peaks. The Cooper Tapes. The private world of Special Agent Dale Cooper, previously reserved for one woman...Diane, including notes and stories never revealed on television. From the man in the black suit, Twin Peaks in his own words.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • A good recap of the first season

  • By James on 20-01-2019

A good recap of the first season

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

Reviewed: 20-01-2019

This is a good, funny, bite-sized production that encapsulates the first season of Twin Peaks as experienced by Agent Cooper, and relayed to his oft-mentioned-but-never-seen assistant, Diane. Audio from the show is mixed in with new tapes recorded by Kyle MacLachlan. There's not much information here that isn't in the show, and there are no additional insights into the mystery or the characters, but if you want to listen to a fun recap of your favourite moments, and spend a little more time with a beloved character, this will satisfy.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi

  • By: Jason Fry
  • Narrated by: Marc Thompson
  • Length: 11 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 29
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 28

From the ashes of the Empire has arisen another threat to the galaxy’s freedom: the ruthless First Order. Fortunately, new heroes have emerged to take up arms - and perhaps lay down their lives - for the cause. Rey, the orphan strong in the Force; Finn, the ex-stormtrooper who stands against his former masters; and Poe Dameron, the fearless X-wing pilot, have been drawn together to fight side-by-side with General Leia Organa and the Resistance. But the First Order's Supreme Leader Snoke and his merciless enforcer Kylo Ren are adversaries with superior numbers and devastating firepower at their command. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An excellent adaptation

  • By James on 07-10-2018

An excellent adaptation

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

Reviewed: 07-10-2018

I had mixed feelings about the film of The Last Jedi, and I still haven't completely decided whether I liked it or not. But this novelization really can't be faulted; Jason Fry brings out the best of the story, and enlivens the characters. The extra scenes added under the supervision of the film's director Rian Johnson all add wonderfully to the story and the Star Wars universe.

This novelization can be very favourably compared with the previous one, Alan Dean Foster's adaptation of The Force Awakens, which was serviceable, but only skated over the surfaces of many of the characters, leaving them resembling cardboard cutouts of themselves. Here, by contrast, Fry dives deep into the characters and actually allows them to have real feelings. I really appreciated in particular how he portrayed Leia's feelings about her failure to save Alderaan and the Hosnian system, an aspect of her character that I feel is often left criminally underexplored. After all, the destruction of a whole star system with a Death Star-like superweapon does, in a sense, represent a colossal failure on the part of the original trilogy heroes, that all but wipes out their achievement in those films. It makes total sense that Leia would feel the weight of that failure.

I also really enjoyed the way Fry wrote about the Force. His eloquent descriptions of its workings breathed new life into the concept, felt spiritually plausible, and added valuable tidbits to Star Wars' canon, whilst still feeling wholly consistent with things we learned from the prequels. This I suspect has much to do with Fry's background as an author of reference books for the franchise, like the Essential Atlas. His deep understanding of and love for the franchise is clear.

Some of the reservations I had about the film are still present in the story, such as the seemingly-easily-avoidable Poe/Holdo conflict. I think that, given that story, this novelization is perhaps the best possible adaptation; the ability to delve into the characters' motivations gives more justification for their actions and helps the reader suspend disbelief, in a way that's more difficult to accomplish on film.

The icing on the cake for this audio edition is Marc Thompson's narration. Thompson also narrated The Force Awakens' audiobook, and again The Last Jedi is a huge step up. Having a few years to work on his impressions of Rey and Finn, etc after the release of that first film clearly paid off, but that's not the only improvement: Thompson's impression of Carrie Fisher is the best I've ever heard here. For some reason hers seems to be a very difficult voice to imitate, and is one of the few that the Star Wars universe had never really found a good soundalike for. But here Thompson really nails it! All of his voices make this not just an excellent novelization, but an excellent audio production as well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • No One Left to Lie To

  • The Triangulations of William Jefferson Clinton
  • By: Christopher Hitchens, Douglas Brinkley (foreword)
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 4 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

In No One Left to Lie to, a New York Times best seller, Christopher Hitchens casts an unflinching eye on the Clinton political machine and offers a searing indictment of a president who sought to hold power at any cost. With blistering wit and meticulous documentation, Hitchens masterfully deconstructs Clinton's abject propensity for pandering to the Left while delivering to the Right.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • A searing polemic

  • By James on 08-08-2018

A searing polemic

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

Reviewed: 08-08-2018

Hitchens does really skewer president Clinton here. I found myself struggling to remember just what it was that I was supposed to like about his administration; from executing the mentally ill, to gutting welfare, to don't ask don't tell, to wag-the-dog bombing ventures in Sudan and elsewhere, the picture painted is an ugly one. And this is not even to mention the serial sexual misconduct, which liberals were supposed to put up with in exchange for... well, it's not really clear what we got in exchange, after all. The only, admittedly lame, excuse I can offer for Clinton is that, well, the alternative Dole administration might have been in some respects worse.

Now that Bill Clinton's legacy is being reassessed by the left in the Trump era, Hitchens' polemic feels almost as timely as ever. (One wishes he could have stayed around long enough to direct his deadly wit at Trump, though I imagine he'd probably much rather still be dead than bear witness to debasement of the presidency that's at least an order of magnitude greater than anything Clinton was responsible for.) I'm not quite sure what we'd make of Hitchens were he writing today, however; he has this peculiar way of writing where, even though the sympathies of his arguments obviously lie with the powerless, he often sounds almost like a National Review columnist, sort of looking down his nose at people, often women, in a way that I think would rub many present-day readers the wrong way.

And this leads me to the part of the book I found the weakest: his attacks on Hillary. They just didn't seem to stick, to me, at least not to the degree of the attacks directed at Bill, and the mean-spiritedness of many of them seems to leave Hitchens open to charges of misogyny. Near as I can tell, his chief criticisms of Hillary are that she is very busy, so doesn't always have time to talk to people, that she carefully maintains her public persona, and thus to Hitchens she seems "fake" or whatever, and that she's not self-critical. I'm not sure exactly what Hitchens expected from her, but these just seem like qualities of an ambitious public person to me. I'm not sure what would be gained exactly if she were always criticising herself, for instance, or if she were thoughtless and sloppy in how she presented her public image.

The non-Hitchens narrator is a pretty perfect match for providing that smarmy quality that Hitchens had, so his jokes land well, and the rest provides that Hitchens flavour.

In all, this book probably is a bitter pill for progressives to swallow, but a valuable one, in helping us come to reckoning with the Clinton years. Republicans have shown that they have absolutely no shame when it comes to hypocrisy over presidential private behaviour, so hopefully Democrats can keep the lessons of the Clinton era in mind, beyond just this particular political moment.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Silence of the Lambs

  • 25th Anniversary Edition: Hannibal Lecter, Book 2
  • By: Thomas Harris
  • Narrated by: Frank Muller
  • Length: 10 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 123
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 117
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 115

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Thomas Harris’ legendary best-seller, Audible presents The Silence of the Lambs, with a new introduction written and read by the author himself. An FBI trainee. A psychopath locked up for unspeakable crimes. And a serial killer getting ever closer to his latest victim... Seeking insight into the deadly madman she must find, FBI rookie Clarice Starling turns to Dr. Hannibal Lecter, a monster cannibal held in a hospital for the criminally insane.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An excellent reading of an excellent book

  • By Taylor on 25-10-2016

A first-rate thriller with excellent narration

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

Reviewed: 05-04-2018

Harris really knocks this one out of the park. His protagonist, the totally-unflappable Clarice Starling, is tremendously likeable and well-portrayed. Hannibal Lecter is, of course, an all-time classic villain, and the monster-of-the-week serial killer this time around is suitably chilling and discomfiting. Modern audiences will probably find the treatment of transgenderism somewhat uncomfortable, but Harris does at least make a clear, if awkward, effort not to sensationalise the subject. Though the plotting is structured around the thriller formula, Harris still managed to hit me with surprise after surprise, and I was totally riveted through the whole thing.

Frank Muller's narration is nothing short of stellar. He captures all of the characters with their various voices and accents perfectly. I also found Harris' short introduction to be illuminating, even if I'm not sure quite how much of it is actually true.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Depends What You Mean by Extremist

  • Going Rogue with Australian Deplorables
  • By: John Safran
  • Narrated by: John Safran
  • Length: 8 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 418
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 386
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 384

No one turns up where they're not wanted quite like John Safran. In this hilarious and disorienting adventure, he gets among our diverse community of white nationalists, ISIS supporters, anarchists and more, digging away at the contradictions that many would prefer be left unexamined. Who is this black puppet master among the white nationalists? And this Muslim fundamentalist who geeks out on Monty Python? Is there a secret radicalisation network operating in John’s own Jewish suburb?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Nasally voices are my thing

  • By Anonymous User on 12-07-2017

Safran's unique voice tackles radicals

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

Reviewed: 22-03-2018

Due to the charged subject matter, this may be a difficult listen for many people, and there is probably something in here to challenge almost everyone, including me. Safran breaks some of the seemingly inviolable rules we have for talking about racism, particularly post-Charlottesville: "there are good people on both sides?" Well, Safran does talk to some sympathetic, misguided characters who found themselves on the side of nationalists and islamophobes. He also talks to a lot of really vile, hate-filled people, but with a surprising lack of the sort of moralising to the audience one might expect. It's as though Safran gets that his audience already knows that racism and ISIS are bad, and feels that he can skip stating the obvious.
What he focuses on instead are the often surprising, criss-crossing faultlines in the culture wars over race, religion, and identity, which are easily glossed over in our search for simple narratives. The radical left's antisemitism problem is something that particularly irks Safran; he shows repeated contempt for their tendency to dismiss antisemitic attacks committed by Muslims as "non-structural violence."
His observations about the homophobia that persists in many otherwise-left-leaning non-white immigrant communities has proved prescient: in the national marriage equality survey, Chris Bowen's immigrant-packed, safe Labor seat was one of the few electorates to vote no.
Lest anyone think that Safran gives Israel a free pass, there are also vignettes with an IDF-loving, Trump-supporting gym owner, and at several other points Safran turns his probing gaze inward, not sparing himself from the scrutiny he applies to others.
The book at times feels like a loose collection of anecdotes, rather than points in service of an overarching argument, and that's because it *is* a loose collection of anecdotes. But Safran does seem to have a point, that point being that there is hypocrisy on both the far right and the far left, and that the conflicts that we think are so simple actually have so many facets, factions, and axes, and the motives of the principal players are not always stated upfront. As Safran might put it, it's not just the Jews that are wily.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Star Trek: Discovery: Desperate Hours

  • By: David Mack
  • Narrated by: Susan Eisenberg
  • Length: 9 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 23
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 21
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 21

Aboard the Starship Shenzhou, Lieutenant Michael Burnham, a human woman raised and educated among Vulcans, is promoted to acting first officer. But if she wants to keep the job, she must prove to Captain Philippa Georgiou that she deserves to have it.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • A neat episode with basic narration

  • By James on 04-11-2017

A neat episode with basic narration

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

Reviewed: 04-11-2017

This is a mostly satisfying episode from early in the unseen seven-year mission of the Shenzhou, that ties in effectively with the Enterprise crew from the era of 'The Cage.' The plot is obviously an excuse for Spock and Burnham to interact, in a way that they obviously couldn't on a live-action TV show, but their interactions are entertaining and insightful enough, and gave an early hint as to the directions the Discovery series would eventually go.
Burnham's interactions with the Shenzhou crew display perhaps a surprising amount of tension even at this early stage of her story (which I suspect has more to do with reproducing the tone of the series than actually attempting to paint a longer arc for her character). Specifically, her relationship with Saru borders uncomfortably on bullying, and her propensity for insubordination to Captain Georgiou is clearly signposted.
The weaker parts of the story IMO are the depictions of Vulcan reasoning. Too often I feel that Vulcans are written sort of lazily, as just guys who say buzzwords like "logical" and "rational" a lot, but whose reasoning is not actually all that sophisticated, valid, or sound (I think it would help if writers actually had a background in philosophy, but maybe this is asking too much). This is pretty much the case here, as a reader who stops to think for a second about the arguments Spock and Burnham make to each other would find it pretty easy to poke holes in them, particularly if the reader knows anything about deductive fallacies.
As regards narration, Eisenberg doesn't do any different voices for the characters (the closest she gets is one accent for one of the walk-on Starfleet officers), so one can't really say that she captures the essence of any of the colourful Trek characters in the story, though her narration is clear enough. One unforgivable error that yanked me right out of the story was when she said "casual relationship" instead of "causal relationship," the difference being only two swapped letters, but a VERY different meaning! I'm not sure if that error was original to the text, or if it arose from her misreading, but it was glaring nonetheless.
In summation, if you are interested in seeing more of the seven years that Discovery gave us only a glimpse of, and furthermore seeing some of the rougher edges between the canon of The Original Series and Discovery smoothed over somewhat, then this will probably satisfy. I'd recommend getting it in print over audio if you can, so that you can hear the voices of Leonard Nimoy, Majel Barrett, Michelle Yeoh, and Doug Jones, etc. in your head, instead of merely one narrator doing one voice.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Subtle Knife: His Dark Materials Trilogy, Book 2

  • By: Philip Pullman
  • Narrated by: Philip Pullman, cast
  • Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 304
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 280
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 280

The thrilling second book in Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy, read by the author and a full cast. In this stunning sequel to Northern Lights, the intrepid Lyra Silvertongue and her daemon, Pantalaimon, find themselves in a shimmering, haunted other world – Cittagazze where soul-eating Spectres stalk the streets and wingbeats of distant angels sound against the sky. Here she meets twelve-year-old Will Parry, a fugitive from a third universe.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great full-cast dramatisation

  • By James on 01-09-2017

Great full-cast dramatisation

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

Reviewed: 01-09-2017

The lead kids are both convincing, Pullman is a great narrator, and other cast members like the witches are strong also.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful