Hello, it’s been a while since I posted any audiobook reviews, mainly because I’ve been mostly listening to podcasts recently. This morning, doing the dishes, I had the BBC’s In Our Time, “The Picts” on, although in general I’m mad about the paranormal and weird stuff. I won’t be doing this regularly, don’t worry, but I wanted to just give some of these a shoutout because they put their content out for free and deserve some recognition. I highly recommend you check out –
Strange Matters (I even became a Patreon subscriber to this one), which looks at strange disappearances, unsolved murders, UFO’s, Black-Eyed Kids, Dyatlov Pass etc.
Unexplained with Richard MacLean Smith, which also has a book to go with it now. I’ll be attending a talk by the author in Balloch Library next week with my daughter, really looking forward to it. Again, that podcast covers UFOs, ghosts, Mary Celeste etc.
Astonishing Legends, covers topics in much more detail. They’ve done episodes about Bigfoot, the Betz Sphere which I’d never even heard about until I listened to that (very interesting!) and hauntings.
Nightmare 365 is a newer one I’ve discovered. A couple of young guys, brothers actually, just chatting about things like JFK, the Flatwoods Monster and the Georgia Guidestones. I’ve signed up to be a Patreon subscriber to this one too. They even do the show live on Youtube if you’re into that sort of thing.
All of those are interesting, some are quite funny, all are worth checking out and don’t cost a penny unless you want to pay for extra bonus episodes. You can get a free Podcast app like Podbean, Google Podcasts or BeyondPod and just search for each show. Then simply look at the titles of each episode and download the ones that take your fancy, for FREE! Take a listen, you’re bound to find some interesting stuff!
As a result of those cool podcasts, I only have one audiobook review this time – Mary Anne by Daphne Du Maurier. I’ve become a huge fan of Du Maurier’s writing, really enjoying Rebecca and The Scapegoat in particular, so I thought I would give this one a go. The narrator does a good job but to be honest this is a book I struggled to get through. Not a lot happens for most of it and it’s rather long which just adds up to a kind of boredom and wish to get to the end.
It follows the titular hero who is a clever young girl at the start, looking to drag herself up from the low place in the world she’s been born into. Being very attractive, you can guess where this leads. Men fawn over her as she becomes a woman and the book is really about her growing although Mary Anne is not that likeable a character (something Du Maurier’s creations often have in common). She becomes a prostitute although there’s never any graphic descriptions of what she actually does with the men she entertains, it’s all very polite and pleasant. Then she falls for one of her royal clients and the story develops from there (no spoilers).
Like Mary Anne, her royal lover isn’t very nice and I found myself not really caring about either of them, because they’re both selfish, rather stupid, and never happy with their lot (again, all traits I’ve noticed in other books from the author). Everything just plods along until the end, although it does get a little more entertaining about half way in, when the court trials start.
I wouldn’t recommend you start with Mary Anne if you’re thinking of checking out Du Maurier’s work – start with Rebecca.
Now! What’s happening with my own work? Well, Song of the Centurion, the sequel to The Druid, is coming along well and I’m almost finished the first draft. Another few writing sessions and I’ll be able to start editing, so it’s looking good for a summer release as I’d hoped. It’s been held up a little because Lucia, my standalone Roman slave-girl novel, had to be edited. As you probably know, Audible have bought the rights to produce the audiobook so I’ve been working with their editor to tighten it up. That’s mostly finished now though, and then they will start recording. The audiobook will hopefully be out sometime later in 2019, with the Kindle and paperback versions to follow 6 months after that.
After those two books are finished I only have plans to continue writing the Warrior Druid of Britain Chronicles but that, of course, might change if a particularly great idea hits me, as it did with Lucia!
Have a great spring everyone, and look out for The Druid audiobook appearing very soon too!