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At first I was really thrown for a loop with the first chapter and wasn't sure I was going to continue, but I'm all the happier that I did now that I finished it.
First I thought I was listening to a Victorian novel and didn't realize that it was modern-day till they mentioned cars. as an American who has spent most of his life reading books by European authors I have to admit that to me this is the most English novel I've ever listened to and I love it for that because it enthralled me in ways I didn't think a book could.
The one the thing I find most compelling about this novel is that the other took time to show that the non-human characters where just like everyone else and there non human nature can be covered up as little foibles and eccentricities that you see in people around you everyday. I have never seen it done so well most authors will have their characters put on normalcy like a paper mask that disappears so quickly that you wonder why the author even bothered. while in this one by the end of the novel you wonder except for a few notable exceptions if all these events are actually just mundane and you're making them out to be much more than they are.
the only things I disliked in this novel was that it took too long for the main character to get over the scaredy-cat poor me stage end the authors inconsistency with the main character's priorities.
overall I give it a Solid 4 out of 5 stars.
14 of 14 people found this review helpful
Andy Caplet is a struggling reporter who is socially awkward and easily frightened. Only because the normal reporter for the crime beat was injured by being thrown from a speeding car (implied that he had been gambling or a mafia encounter …) Andy is given the assignment to work with Inspector Hobbes. From that moment onward, Andy is caught in a whirlwind of mystery and intrigue. Of course, it does not help that Andy’s imagination runs away with him – he’s seeing trolls, ghouls, witches, and vampires at every turn. Then again, considering he finds himself in a freshly dug grave conversing with two ghouls and the inspector enjoys raw meat and bones, and then there is the housekeeper that collects teeth … perhaps his imagination is NOT running wild… and it seems that perhaps Inspector Hobbes has a secret of some sort.
They have to work together to solve the mysteries and unusual circumstances surrounding the robberies and a murder that are occurring throughout the town.
Wilkie Martin writes a clever crime mystery with comedy and a good deal of fantasy mixed in. One cannot help but laugh out loud at some of the antics Andy finds himself in! This is the perfect pair of crime solvers and partners in law! One cannot help but be charmed by the story and the characters.
Martin develops his characters fully, with a depth that enables the listeners to connect with them. Martin is also vivid in his descriptions placing the listener into the book.
Tim Campbell, the narrator, was equally awesome in his talented reading. Campbell became immersed in the book to the point that it was difficult to tell where he left off and the characters began. His ability to give the appropriate voice and personality to the characters was spot on; I loved hearing how his voice would become squeaky whenever Andy found himself in hot water and how confident Hobbes sounded.
If you enjoy mystery and some fantasy characters, then this is the book for you.
I encountered no audio issues and the production of this audiobook was smooth.
Audiobook was provided for review by the publisher.
Please find this complete review and many others at my review blog.
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26 of 27 people found this review helpful
The story is great - plenty of twists and you feel that you’re experiencing each twist with ‘Andy’. The characters are well built and interesting and I will happily listen to the rest of the series.....
The narrator does a great job giving distinct voices for each of the characters and it is well paced and clear to listen to.
However! Whilst Tim Campbell might sound authentically British a lot of the time - he does have some very odd pronunciations - that almost hurt! Andy’s voice is written as less posh than it is read and I found this a little jarring too.
9 of 10 people found this review helpful
Any additional comments?
The story itself is great, as is the writing and the characters. Initially I really liked the narrator too but then I noticed his odd pronunciations on certain words, 'thot' instead of 'thought' was the worst one, it came up a lot and once I had noticed it, it was like a little annoying poke each time, then other words like 'brek-fest' 'reck-ed' (record) just as two examples. It really spoiled it for me and I stopped listening, going to buy the physical book instead so I can finish the story!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
The greatest part of this story was the characters you DON'T follow. Hobbes is a fascinating character that is left just out of reach of the reader. Mrs Goodfellow is a mysterious delight. Trolls, ghouls, menacing bar owners and hearse driving dwarves abound, entertaining us and offering smiles.
But we follow Andy. A 37 year old bumbling idiot who I thought for the greater part of the book had to be 18. He does nothing to show the reader how on earth he had made it this far in life. I assume he is meant to be comic relief, yet there is never a NEED for it. The story, whilst enjoyable, never requires a tension break... Just a break from Andy. An emotionally stunted man, he does nothing to gain the readers liking and constantly feels like he has only ever tripped into situations, making us feel like peeping Toms into the world of Hobbes.
Hobbes makes it worth it, though. I wanted to follow this character and the narrators gravely voice gives Hobbes the feeling of larger than life.
All in all, a firm 3 stars. Perhaps a hard copy would read more pleasantly, as the narrator does pace the story like a drama, leaving any comedy to the crickets.