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Helen Esdaile

  • 26
  • reviews
  • 9
  • helpful votes
  • 91
  • ratings
  • Knots and Crosses

  • By: Ian Rankin
  • Narrated by: James Macpherson
  • Length: 6 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 51
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 46
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 46

'And in Edinburgh of all places. I mean, you never think of that sort of thing happening in Edinburgh, do you...?' 'That sort of thing' is the brutal abduction and murder of two young girls. And now a third is missing, presumably gone to the same sad end. Detective Sergeant John Rebus, smoking and drinking too much, his own young daughter spirited away south by his disenchanted wife, is one of many policemen hunting the killer.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not sure about this series yet

  • By Julia on 05-05-2016

Hard going

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

Reviewed: 18-07-2019

Such a shame this series uses this narrator. It was just too difficult to stay engaged. I endured but the lasting memory of the story is the terrible intonations in the narration.

  • Gone Girl

  • By: Gillian Flynn
  • Narrated by: Julia Whelan, Kirby Heyborne
  • Length: 19 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 783
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 715
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 714

Who are you? What have we done to each other? What will we do? Just how well can you ever know the person you love? These are the questions that Nick Dunne must ask himself on the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary, when his wife Amy suddenly disappears. The police immediately suspect Nick. Amy's friends reveal that she was afraid of him, that she kept secrets from him. He swears it isn't true. A police examination of his computer shows strange searches. He says they aren't his. And then there are the persistent calls on his mobile phone.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Slow to start and pace was a bit too slow for me

  • By Henry on 30-06-2016

Not the worst, not the best

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

Reviewed: 09-04-2019

The first half had me intrigued. And then it just got a bit silly. A lot of unbelievable stuff and stupid police.

  • The Clockmaker's Daughter

  • By: Kate Morton
  • Narrated by: Joanne Froggatt
  • Length: 17 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 444
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 418
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 417

In the summer of 1862, a group of young artists led by the passionate and talented Edward Radcliffe descends upon Birchwood Manor in rural Oxfordshire. Their plan: to spend a secluded summer month in a haze of inspiration and creativity. But by the time their stay is over, one woman has been shot dead while another has disappeared; a priceless heirloom is missing; and Edward Radcliffe’s life is in ruins. Over 150 years later, Elodie Winslow, a young archivist in London, uncovers a leather satchel containing two seemingly unrelated items.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Pacey and enjoyable

  • By Lyn on 26-09-2018

Don't think I can endure it...

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

Reviewed: 05-02-2019

I think this story is going to be predictable, it's heading that way.
Narration is quite whiny and immature sounding which is putting me off.
I'm a couple of hours in and bored.

  • The Winter King

  • The Warlord Chronicles, Book 1
  • By: Bernard Cornwell
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Keeble
  • Length: 19 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 63
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 58
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 58

Uther, the High King of Britain, has died, leaving the infant Mordred as his only heir. His uncle, the loyal and gifted warlord Arthur, now rules as caretaker for a country which has fallen into chaos - threats emerge from within the British kingdoms while vicious Saxon armies stand ready to invade. Uther, the High King of Britain, has died, leaving the infant Mordred as his only heir. His uncle, the loyal and gifted warlord Arthur, now rules as caretaker for a country which has fallen into chaos - threats emerge from within the British kingdoms while vicious Saxon armies stand ready to invade.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Another great book by Bernard Cornwell

  • By Lee on 30-07-2016

A long haul

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

Reviewed: 06-01-2019

I’ve wanted to read Bernard Cornwell for a while and just found this to be too hard going. It meanders without much point.

  • A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

  • By: Dave Eggers
  • Narrated by: Dion Graham
  • Length: 13 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars 3
  • Performance
    2.5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars 3

Dave Eggers scored a worldwide phenomenon with this memoir that topped national best-seller lists and has since become a staple for summer reading and book clubs. A compelling voice for Generation X, Eggers hererecounts his early 20s, caring for his younger brother after their parents’ unexpected deaths and his endeavors in a variety of media.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Staggering boredom & neurosis

  • By Helen Esdaile on 20-12-2018

Staggering boredom & neurosis

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

Reviewed: 20-12-2018

Dave tries really hard to be edgy and interesting but in reality he is very conservative and dull. Terrified of breaking rules and suffering irritating neurosis about his brother he comes across as very ordinary.

The narration doesn't help, so whiny.

  • Beartown

  • By: Fredrik Backman
  • Narrated by: John Sackville
  • Length: 13 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 188
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 174
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 175

Beartown is a small town in a large Swedish forest. For most of the year it is under a thick blanket of snow, experiencing the kind of cold and dark that brings people closer together - or pulls them apart. Its isolation means that Beartown has been slowly shrinking with each passing year. But now the town is on the verge of an astonishing revival. A bright new future is just around the corner. Until the day it is all put in jeopardy by a single, brutal act. It divides the town into those who think it should be hushed up and forgotten, and those who'll risk the future to see justice done. 

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Sound check

  • By Amazon Customer on 05-02-2018

A slow burner

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

Reviewed: 09-09-2018

I didn’t think I’d be interested in what is essentially a story of hockey. But this book is much more than that. I feel better for reading it.
A wonderful look into a small town and the personalities and complexities that make it tick.

  • Crime on the Fens

  • DI Nikki Galena, Book 1
  • By: Joy Ellis
  • Narrated by: Henrietta Meire
  • Length: 7 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 155
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 147
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 147

DI Nikki Galena: A police detective with nothing left to lose, she's seen a girl die in her arms, and her daughter will never leave the hospital again. She's gotten tough on the criminals she believes did this to her. Too tough. And now she's been given one final warning: make it work with her new sergeant, DS Joseph Easter, or she's out.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Predicatable soap opera

  • By Leanne Mifflin on 10-05-2017

I tried, I failed

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

Reviewed: 25-06-2018

Such hard going. The story is not very riveting and the narration is very harsh and irritating.
Not my cuppa

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Ruin

  • By: Dervla McTiernan
  • Narrated by: Aoife McMahon
  • Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,629
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,514
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,517

Galway 1993: Young Garda Cormac Reilly is called to a scene he will never forget. Two silent, neglected children - 15-year-old Maude and five-year-old Jack - are waiting for him at a crumbling country house. Upstairs, their mother lies dead. Twenty years later, a body surfaces in the icy black waters of the River Corrib. At first it looks like an open-and-shut case, but then doubt is cast on the investigation's findings - and the integrity of the police. Cormac is thrown back into the cold case that has haunted him his entire career - what links the two deaths, two decades apart?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fabulous!

  • By Anonymous User on 16-03-2018

Good but not exceptional

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

Reviewed: 26-04-2018

I liked this book but it is not the twist and turn other reviewers would have you believe.
As an Australian I found the Aussie/South African/New Zealand accent annoying.
Overall an ok read but not extraordinary.

  • All the Pretty Horses

  • The Border Trilogy, Book 1
  • By: Cormac McCarthy
  • Narrated by: Frank Muller
  • Length: 10 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 52
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52

John Grady Cole is the last bewildered survivor of long generations of Texas ranchers. Finding himself cut off from the only life he has ever wanted, he sets out for Mexico with his friend, Lacey Rawlins. Befriending a third boy on the way, they find a country beyond their imagining: barren and beautiful, rugged yet cruelly civilised.... A place where dreams are paid for in blood.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Profound and poetic.

  • By Thomas on 19-03-2019

Outstanding

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

Reviewed: 15-04-2018

I don’t have the skill to write a review deserving of this book.
Extraordinary, heartbreaking, brutal and raw.
I am forever changed.

  • 12 Rules for Life

  • An Antidote to Chaos
  • By: Jordan B. Peterson
  • Narrated by: Jordan B. Peterson
  • Length: 15 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,503
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,011
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,983

What are the most valuable things that everyone should know? Acclaimed clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson has influenced the modern understanding of personality, and now he has become one of the world's most popular public thinkers. In this book, he provides 12 profound and practical principles for how to live a meaningful life, from setting your house in order before criticising others to comparing yourself to who you were yesterday, not someone else today.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fascinating Read

  • By Christopher on 21-01-2018

I thought this might be good. I was wrong.

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

Reviewed: 21-03-2018

I bought this book after seeing interviews with the author. I am really disappointed as it is a rambling mess. I think I’m up to rule 5 but I can’t think what it is, not can I recall any of the previous rules.
There was a lot of bible quoting and dead Russian author quoting and a lot of droning.
Not for me.