Author: Louis L’Amour
Performed by MacLeod Andrews
Released March 2019 by Random House Audio
Category: Western Adventure, Audiobook Review
For years Milo Talon had been riding the outlaw trail, looking for a man who had betrayed his family. Only Hank Rossiter wasn’t the man he had been: old now and blind, Rossiter was trying desperately to hold on to a small ranch to support his daughter, Barbara. Suddenly Talon found himself in the middle of a range war, siding with the man he’d marked for payback. But had Rossiter really changed? And could his daughter be trusted by either of them?
In the mood for something different as I looked through the new releases on Audible, I saw The Man From The Broken Hills narrated by MacLeod Andrews. It fit the bill perfectly, although I didn’t realise at the time it was part of a series. As it happens, it can easily be read, or listened to, as a standalone.
Author: Dervla McTiernan
Performed by Aoife McMahon
Published: Little, Brown Book Group and released on Audible March 2018.
Category: Crime, Murder, Mystery, Suspense, Audiobook Review
On his first week on the job, Garda Cormac Reilly responds to a call at a decrepit country house to find two silent, neglected children waiting for him – fifteen-year-old Maude and five-year-old Jack. Their mother lies dead upstairs.
Twenty years later, Cormac has left his high-flying career as a detective in Dublin and returned to Galway. As he struggles to navigate the politics of a new police station, Maude and Jack return to haunt him.
Twenty years earlier rookie Garda Cormac Reilly discovered the body of Hilaria Blake in a dilapidated old house. He was sent out on what he thought would be a minor domestic call.
Author: Nora Roberts
Performed by Julia Whelan
Published by Brilliance Audio December 2018
Category: Dystopian, Fantasy, Post Apocalyptic, Audiobook Review
They look like an everyday family living an ordinary life. But beyond the edges of this peaceful farm, unimaginable forces of light and dark have been unleashed.
Of Blood and Bone picks up the story over a decade after the Doom decimated the population and gave rise to the dark in Year One. Fallon Swift’s thirteenth birthday is approaching fast.
Innes Munro has the ability to “read” a person’s past simply by touching them, but her gift comes with a heavy price: her freedom. Forced to stay at desolate Castle Girnigoe, Innes never expects to be drawn to the wounded warrior who haunts its dark passages and challenges her at every turn.
Fifty years previously four small pieces of a stone relic, the Wheel of Lugh, were brought to Scotland. Each fragment held a special gift but together, the four pieces would hold a terrible power if they were to fall into the wrong hands. The bearers of the tablets had sworn an oath, to travel to the farthest reaches of Scotland to keep the pieces of the relic separate. Continue reading
When Mark and Heather Smythe saved Earth from the conquest-hungry Kasari Collective, they thought their work was done. But the world’s vast new government continued its quest to make extraterrestrial contact. And now, as a new gateway is activated to welcome the Kasari, whom world leaders take to be benefactors, only the Smythes stand a chance of countering their planet’s invasion and subjugation by a race of ruthless conquerors.
The Altreian Enigma continues the ongoing saga and again, three main storylines run concurrently in three different worlds. Jennifer, now a crack soldier and General Dgarra’s aide-de-camp, is involved in the Koranthian battle with the Kasari, while Raul maintains command of the appropriated Kasari space ship, ready and waiting to help out when needed. Continue reading
- Author: John Buchan
- Performed by Robert Powell
- Released: September 2007 by Audible Studios
- Category: British Literature, Spy, Espionage
When Richard Hannay offered sanctuary to the man he found on his doorstep, he took the first step on a trail of peril, murder, and espionage.
I first read this book years ago and enjoyed it, so when I saw an Audible edition at just under four hours long I decided it was time to revisit this classic. This adaptation stays true to the original as far as I remember, unlike the films. Although the language is obviously dated by today’s standards, the writing is good and it’s still enjoyable for what it is, a good spy story of its time. Continue reading
- Author: JD Robb
- Performed by Susan Ericksen
- Released: February 2017 by Brilliance Audio
- Category: Science Fiction, Crime, Romance
As NY Lt. Eve Dallas and her billionaire husband Roarke are driving home, a young woman—dazed, naked, and bloody—suddenly stumbles out in front of their car. Roarke slams on the brakes and Eve springs into action.
It amazes me that with a series containing this number of books, evil can appear in so many varied forms. The subject matter is grim, abuse – both physical and sexual, by someone targeting young and happily married couples (with the exception of the first.) Continue reading
Highland warrior Alexander MacPherson has lost his wife. When he agreed to take Kenna Mackay as his bride to advance his clan’s power in the north, he expected a bit of an adjustment. He didn’t expect the sharp-tongued beauty to run away on their wedding night. Still, Alexander wants his runaway bride…and he has the sneaking suspicion that she wants him, too.
After a prank backfired and years of father/daughter misunderstandings, independent and headstrong Kenna MacKay fled her marital home on the night of her wedding to Alexander Macpherson. Their marriage was arranged to unite the two clans. For the past six months she has been training in the skills of healing with the nuns at Glosters Priory. Kenna and her cousin, Emily, are attending a birth in the village when they are kidnapped by the Macpherson brothers in a determined attempt to bring Kenna and Alexander together again. Left alone, the attraction ignites. Continue reading
Jennifer Smythe escapes Earth’s invasion by the insidious Kasari race, hijacks an alien starship, and survives the deadly passage through a wormhole.
But escape is short-lived…
Back on a divided Earth, Jennifer’s brother, Mark, and Jack “the Ripper” Gregory wage their own war against the Kasari.
Although this is the first of the Rho Agenda Assimilation trilogy, the books do follow on from the Rho Agenda Inception and the Rho Agenda series, both of which give lots of insight into the development of the characters and, of course, fill in the previous storylines. Continue reading
From acclaimed thriller-suspense novelists Heather Graham and Jon Land comes a story of action, mystery, and the endurance of young love.
Twenty-four hours. That’s all it takes for the lives of two young people to be changed forever.
Eighteen year old Alex Chin, popular star football player, was adopted by a Chinese couple, Li and An Chin, when he was a baby. Football is his passion and with plenty of scholarship offers, he believes he has a bright future ahead. His tutor, Samantha Dixon, is about to graduate and plans an internship with NASA, working with Dr Thomas Donati. All is going well for both of them until a head injury on the football field lands Alex in hospital. An initial CT scan shows something strange, and when Alex has a follow-up the bulbs in scanner burn out and the glass casing shatters. Then Alex’s doctor is murdered. And when Sam finds Alex’s parents dying in their home and have a run in with the non human attackers, she and Alex go on the run with help from Alex’s guardian, Raiff, who has been in the background, keeping an eye on him, knowing this day would come sooner or later. Continue reading
A father from Chicago takes a road trip to the city of Whitehorse, in Yukon Territory, with his wife and son. During the car ride, they reveal to the boy their harrowing experience surviving a horrific plane crash in the wilderness ten years before, which is how the boy, in fact, came to be born.
When the invitation arrived to attend a ceremony about to be held in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, honouring the victims and survivors of the plane crash that almost cost the lives of his family, he decided it was time. His son deserved to know what happened to his parents. The trip will take several days by car, neither he nor Kerry would get on a plane again. They can use the time to tell Jackson the whole story. Continue reading
- Author: Blake Crouch
- Performed by Luke Daniels
- Released: September 2016, Published by Brilliance Publishing
- Category: Time Slip Thriller, Crime, Suspense
On Christmas Day in 1893, every man, woman, and child in a remote gold mining town disappeared, belongings forsaken, meals left to freeze in vacant cabins – and not a single bone was ever found. One hundred thirteen years later, two backcountry guides are hired by a history professor and his journalist daughter to lead them into the abandoned mining town, so they can learn what happened.
The story begins in 1893 with a mule skinner arriving in Abandon to find a ghost town. He’d been there only two weeks ago delivering supplies and the town was thriving and full of activity. Now the streets were deserted with the snow laying in drifts. Then he sees a young girl with a revolver, and it’s the last thing he ever sees. Continue reading
- Author: Blake Crouch
- Performed by Jon Lindstrom
- Published: August 2016 by Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd
- Category: Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Thriller, Love Story
“Are you happy with your life?” Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious. Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits. Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.”
Have you ever wondered what your life might be like had you chosen to follow a different path? The author takes the concept of Schrödinger’s cat and parallel universes to create a complex and conjectural science fiction/fantasy story which surprises, horrifies, challenges and gives pause for thought. Continue reading
A new fantasy-adventure trilogy about a misfit twelve-year-old with a dangerous destiny to fulfill, a mystical time walker who is sent to protect him, and a maniacal villain with a deadly vendetta that began two hundred years ago in the heart of the Old West.
Outlaws of Time is a mix of adventure, legend and fantasy, set in the Arizona desert where twelve year old Sam Miracle is in foster care at the St Anthony of the Desert Destitute Youth Ranch (SADDYR) run by the Spaldings, who agreed ‘to guardian absolutely any boy the state of Arizona might be willing to send them (along with a check.)’ According to the Spaldings, Sam was the worst boy they’d ever fostered. Firstly because Sam got totally lost in powerful and detailed waking dreams. Dreams that seem so real they’re like recollections from his past, which confuses Sam no end. Added to that, the bones in Sam’s arms have been so damaged that they are incapable of movement, fused at the elbow, and sometimes very painful. Continue reading
Twenty years ago, six Penn students shared a house, naively certain that their friendships would endure—until the death of their ringleader and dear friend Bea splintered the group for good. Now, mostly estranged from one another, the remaining five reluctantly gather at that same house on the eve of what would have been Bea’s fortieth birthday.
It’s almost twenty years since six students, Bea, Lindy, Catherine, Annie, Owen and Colin, spent their last night together at Pennsylvania University. The proposed reunion and time capsule was Bea’s idea, the letters they wrote to their forty year old selves cataloguing hopes for the future; where they’ll be, what they want to achieve. They were all going their separate ways the next day, Catherine and Owen to married bliss, Lindy and Annie to New York and Colin to medical school. Bea wanted be certain they’d always be close, a family. Continue reading
Her eyes are wide open. Her lips parted as if to speak. Her dead body frozen in the ice…She is not the only one.
When a young boy discovers the body of a woman beneath a thick sheet of ice in a South London park, Detective Erika Foster is called in to lead the murder investigation.
The story opens with a chilling and atmospheric prologue, which is excellent, diving straight into the action with the murder of beautiful young socialite, Andrea Douglas-Brown. Her body is found by long term unemployed Lee Kinney, who has to work under the new legislation in order to draw his dole money. He secured a job as a council gardener at the Horniman Museum and discovered more than he bargained for when arriving for work one snowy morning. Continue reading
Before borders were drawn, before treaties were signed, before wars were waged anew, before the great kingdoms of the Remnant were even born and the world of old was only a hazy slate of memory told in story and legend, a girl and her family fought to survive.
Although this is a prequel it can be read as a standalone novella. I haven’t yet read any of the Remnant Chronicles so I’m not sure of the connection to the series. From what I can gather the characters in this don’t feature in the main storyline and are, perhaps, ancestors. Continue reading
Sandman Slim returns in a stunning, high-octane thriller filled with the intense kick-ass action and inventive fantasy that are the hallmarks of New York Times bestselling author Richard Kadrey.
After saving the world once more Stark is suffering from PTSD like symptoms, which isn’t helping his general demeanour. He is working for Thomas Abbot, the Augur of the Sub Rosa. His next job for Abbot involves uncovering council members who might be tied in with Wormwood Investments. Wormwood are into money and power, any way they can get it, no holds barred. Abbot also wants help in locating a friend’s missing son, a job that Stark passes on to Candy, who works for Julie’s detective agency where Stark used to work, before he got fired. Stark has not got a good track record when it comes to working for a living. Possibly a hangover from being Azazel’s slave Downtown, when the Hellion held the ultimate power over him. Continue reading
Based on true events, That Bright Land is the story of a violent and fragile nation in the wake of the Civil War and a man who must exorcise his own savage demons while tracking down another.
Jacob Ballard arrives at Alexander’s Station, North Carolina on his way to Warm Springs. He was to meet with one of a few contacts whose names he’d been given in Washington City by his uncle, Governor Zeb Vance. Under the pretence of investigating and assessing veterans’ disability claims, Jacob was charged with finding out who was targeting and murdering veterans who fought for the Union. Returning to his birthplace held no appeal for Jacob, nor did the task he’d been set. Continue reading
- Audiobook Review
- Author: Ann Cleeves
- Performed by Kenny Blyth
- Released: May 2015 by Macmillan Audio
- Category: Crime, Suspense, Thriller
A group of old university friends leave the bright lights of London and travel to Unst, Shetland’s most northerly island, to celebrate the marriage of one of their friends to a Shetlander. But late on the night of the wedding party, one of them, Eleanor, disappears – apparently into thin air.
As Caroline and Lowrie’s hamefarin’, the Shetland leg of their wedding celebrations, winds down, Caroline’s friends, Polly and Eleanor with their respective partners, return to their rented cottage. It’s midsummer, a time of prolonged dusk, known as the simmer dim. In the strange light earlier in the evening, Polly saw a young girl dressed in white on the shoreline. Continue reading
- Audiobook Review
- Author: Ann Cleeves
- Performed by Kenny Blyth
- Released: March 2013 by Isis Publishing Ltd
- Category: Police Procedural, Mystery
Dead Water is the fifth book in Ann Cleeves’ Shetland series – now a major BBC1 drama starring Douglas Henshall, Shetland.
When the body of journalist Jerry Markham is found in a traditional Shetland boat, outside the house of the local public prosecutor, down at the Marina, young Detective Inspector Willow Reeves is drafted in to head up the investigation.
Despite my preference for starting a series from book one, I’m beginning with this one, which is actually book five. I’ve watched and enjoyed each season of the TV series, Shetland, and so I’m very familiar with the cast of characters. There are some differences between the two, mainly in Jimmy Perez’s looks and back story. Kenny Blyth, the narrator, is excellent and has a lovely Scottish lilt, which fits in well with the story and adds authenticity. Other accents are convincing too. The narrator of the four previous books has a middle to upper class English accent which I didn’t find engaging or appropriate for the setting. Continue reading
A dying wish. A family divided. A love that defies the law.
Set in a vivid alternate reality and peopled with complex, deeply human characters on both sides of the day/night divide, Elizabeth Fama’s Plus One is a brilliantly imagined drama of individual liberty and civil rights, and a fast-paced romantic adventure story.
Following the flu pandemic of 1918, the medical profession was divided into day and night teams in order to cope with the scale of the disease. Before long this segregation was widened to encompass the whole population, which served to slow and eventually stop the spread of the flu, and continued even after the epidemic was over in order to increase efficiency and production. Those who live and work during the night hours are known as Smudges, those more privileged who live in daylight hours are Rays. Lives are rigidly controlled and restricted. Phones are controlled and tracked. The laws are strictly upheld and any misdemeanour is punishable. Continue reading
Daniel Byrne spent ten years as a Vatican investigator, scrutinizing and debunking miracle claims – until he burned that life to the ground when one investigation shook his faith and revealed disturbing earthly conspiracies. Determined to find the truth, he steps into a new life of secrets and lies, joining a powerful group that wields hidden influence over world events.
Daniel infiltrates a covert government facility and uncovers a bizarre new strain of the Plague that seems to flood the minds of its victims with visions of the future. Teaming up with disgraced physician Kara Singh, a woman beset with inexplicable visions of her own, Daniel traces the root of this deadly pathogen around the globe, and discovers a terrifying truth.
Daniel Byrne, excommunicated priest and ex Vatican investigator, who exposed fraudulent miracle claims, is now working for the Fleur-de-Lis Foundation, a rival of the corrupt Council for World Peace, a very misnamed organisation. Continue reading