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What a wonderful start to the Beaumont and BEASLEY series!
Private Eye, Nick Beasley, spends his time proving that monsters and magic don’t exist, but his latest case could change everything. Is it possible that everything Nick has believed in is not exactly they way things really are?
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and I have voluntarily left this review.
Would you consider the audio edition of The Beast of Talesend to be better than the print version?
In a way, simply for the amazing dramatic performance. There is definitely a level of fun derived from that, which makes it a fantastic experience! I did however love reading the book itself (I'm a written-word kind of person) so it's hard to decide. In a way, I love them both equally; in another way, this is the perfect way to experience the story, so give this audio version a try if you can, because it's just SO fun!
What other book might you compare The Beast of Talesend to and why?
I don't know if I CAN compare it to any other book... It's kind of its own thing. Hilariously-written fairytale spoof in an alternate 1920s (with fairytales as history), and equally thrilling, surprising, and funny.
Which character – as performed by Richard Ready – was your favorite?
Cordelia was amazingly well portrayed, and I loved feeling like I knew her better. Nick was excellently done as well.
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
When Crispin and Nick look out for each other, despite their squabbles. ^_^ And a certain spoiler-infused event at the end when Nick makes a terrible choice.
Any additional comments?
I have flailed elsewhere (in my Amazon review) about how much I love this book, and this time I’m here to talk about the absolutely delightful audiobook version.
I remember thinking, when I heard about the audio version, that The Beast of Talesend would make a positively fantastic audiobook. Add to that a British narrator and the levels of fantastic go through the roof. Fast-forward to my ecstatic reaction when the author offered me a chance to listen to the audiobook and review it. I gladly accepted, started listening to it right away, and . . . Oh, was I ever NOT disappointed!
The light, fun, humorous, fairytale quality of this book, makes it the perfect audiobook, and the Britishness reminded me of my favorite audiobooks from when I was younger. The Beast of Talesend audiobook is perfection. :D
I don’t listen to audiobooks often these days (though I used to). They’re not always convenient for me, and these days I generally prefer to absorb stories through physically reading printed words with my eyes, you know? Otherwise my mind can wander and I miss important details, which drives me up the wall. (Not through the roof. Through the roof is a good thing in this case; up the wall isn’t.) I have listened to many audiobooks over time, but don’t as much anymore, except in extreme cases of really, really wanting to listen to one for some reason. Like this one.
In this case, the reasons were twofold: 1) I already had read The Beast of Talesend and loved it and wanted to re-read it anyway (never mind that it was only three months since I read it the first time), and 2) I listened to a sample and the narrator has a fabulous British accent.
I’m one of those shallow (erm, that is, blessed with good taste. *cough*) people who absolutely loves accents, and as an American who primarily lives in fictional worlds created by authors from the British Isles, accents which are English, Irish, Scottish, etc., are my favorites. Mr. Richard “Spanners” Ready has a fabulous British accent which was so fun to listen to, and that alone would have made this audiobook splendid.
HOWEVER, he’s also an amazing narrator, and the book was a delight to hear read by this fellow. He does different voices for all the characters, which was SO fun, and some with different accents as well. His narration as Nick Beasley (the main character who tells the story in a somewhat dry and totally funny way) was brilliant, and for some reason I particularly liked his depiction of Cordelia—she was spot-on! Actually, all the characters were. THEY WERE AMAZING! The acting/performance brought the story and characters to vivid life, and I simply LOVED that! It was like watching a movie… just… you know… listening to it instead. In a way, this is better, because you get the audio-drama quality BUT can still imagine everything appearing the way your imagination wants to paint it. And this narrator’s way of bringing the characters to life only adds to that. :) He drew out so much of the character interactions, drama, excitement, and humor in the BEST way. It was fantastic and so fun!
Narrator quality varies in audiobooks, and I would say there are lots who are okay or even good, but not so many who are the best of the best. Out of the many narrators I’ve heard over time, I’d put Richard Ready in my top five with a very select few who are outstanding. He’s delightful to hear, and a narrator of true quality. :)
One or two characters sounded a little different than I, personally, had imagined (I think of Crispin with a higher voice and Whitlock with a lower voice; though both were great in the audio), and one area in the beginning was slightly rushed-feeling to listen to. But those are literally my only “complaints” (and very unimportant ones at that), because overall this audiobook was PERFECT and an absolute delight. I LOVED IT!
Some of my family was listening in while I listened to this, and we all had the best time. :D It’s also handy that it’s a shorter book—only a little over 4 hours long, so it was just right to listen to without feeling like it was going to take an age. I’ll probably even listen to it again sometime (What? The shock! Unheard of!) because it’s THAT fun.
Overall, my reaction: read this book, people! Better yet, have Richard Ready read it to you, because he’s fantastic. :D (And, great—now I want an audiobook of book 2, The Tomb of the Sea Witch…)
(I was given an Audible.com code for a free download of this audiobook from the author. I was not required to write a positive review, and these opinions are entirely my own.)