Bound to End Badly, written by R. L. Tiochta, is a superb example of dark romantic comedy. Set in Derby (UK), and follows Peter and Maze as they stumble through the dating scene and ever so slowly towards each other. Tiochta gives us alternating glimpses into the lives of Peter and Maze, where something isn't quite right... and not just because there's a serial killer on the loose.
For a story… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 26th of November, 2021
One Must Tell the Bees, by J. Lawrence Matthews, tells the story of a very young Sherlock Holmes before he was Sherlock. His brother Mycroft uses his influence to get young Holmes into a job in America. What follows is an exceptionally well-told tale weaved together with a history lesson around the end of the American civil war, the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, and the capture of John Wilkes Booth.
The… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 24th of November, 2021
This far into the Hard Luck Hank series, it's hard to review without feeling like I'm repeating myself. As always, time has moved on, and Belvaille has changed once again. The nobles are (mostly) gone, and the remaining inhabitants are scratching out a living in any way they can. Life in the Post Colmarian Confederation Colmarian Confederation (yes, that's the title of confederation now) is hard. New laws are being… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 19th of November, 2021
Continuing my journey of the Hard Luck Hank series in audiobook, next up was Stank Delicious. Each book in the series reinvents the world of Hank just a little. In this case, everything has moved on a few years since the events of the previous books. Nobles are bedded in even deeper into Belvaille, and Hank is scratching out a living once more as a go-between.
Cliston, Hank's Dredel Led butler,… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 14th of November, 2021
With a style reminiscent of classic cinematic British romps, Let the Swine Go Forth by Auriel Roe ably carries on that tradition. A story of a rather hapless headmaster in a (very) foreign land, leading a group of teachers that embody the seven deadly sins. Starting a new international school in a country run by a ruthless dictator... things were never going to be easy.
Tristram Randolph takes the role of… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 9th of November, 2021
I picked up Sweep - The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier for a couple of reasons. One, the story sounded REALLY good, and two, I was looking for something that might appeal to my kids. The story of a chimney sweep and her golem set in London in the 1800s sounded too good to pass by, so I grabbed it and plugged in my earbuds.
The… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 8th of November, 2021
Monster is the second book by A. Lee Martinez I've purchased in a few months, and I suspect I'll have more in my collection before long. In the mood for something monstery, I jumped into this Scooby-Doo style adventure where magic and monsters are real. Just most people don't tend to notice them.
Judy is working the late shift at an out-of-the-way convenience store when a yeti appears in the freezer… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 5th of November, 2021
The Prince Has No Pants, written by Matthew Howry, has been sitting in my list of audiobooks to buy eventually for a while now, and when it came up in the 2-for-1 sale on Audible, I grabbed it plus a bunch of others I'd been mulling over. The premise is right smack in the types of books I've been enjoying recently, and after listening to it, I'm hoping to hear… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 1st of November, 2021
Much like the first books in the series, book 3 of the 24/7 Demon Mart, Angel Trouble by D.M. Guay, hardly pauses for a breath as Lloyd, DeeDee, and Kevin careen from one insane catastrophe to another. Massive props to the narrator too, who had to pronounce Zackumzaphielhermesiappotholonian multiple times.
At least Guay cut him some slack and let the fallen Angel of Death (well, one of them) have a… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 30th of October, 2021
After finishing book 3, it was straight onto book 4 of the Hard Luck Hank series - Suck My Cosmos. Belvaille has moved on yet again and is now moving towards an aristocracy. Hank only manages to still live there because he's the oldest living continuous citizen and the toffs seem to enjoy that.
Assisted by the universes most sought-after butler, a Dredel Led (robot) named Cliston, Hank finds his… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 25th of October, 2021
I thought it about time I get back to the stack of Hard Luck Hank audiobooks I bought in one go and book three Hard Luck Hank: Prince of Suck by Steven Campbell is where I'm up to. I always find it easy to come back to ol' Hank and slip back into the universe as if I'd never left.
Since the last book, a good three-quarters of a century has… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 23rd of October, 2021
In Imprisoned Online (Gaming the System), written by P.A. Wikoff, the future of humankind looks rather bleak. In Wikoff's future, humans have nerfed the planet to the point where it's not safe to go outside without a breathing unit and a permit. They stay indoors, playing the next big computer game that comes along.
A society that's a little reminiscent of Idiocracy, but sort of a cross where intelligent… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 20th of October, 2021
How to Defeat a Demon King in Ten Easy Steps, is a short, fun litRPG written by Andrew Rowe that uses one of my favourite plot devices at the moment - that is unconventional methods of level and skills progression. Forget fighters, wizards, bards, or barbarians. Instead, we get a "Bag Mage", basically a class for merchants and couriers to carry stuff.
Our hero, Yui Shaw, doesn't want to wait around… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 10th of October, 2021
Two Necromancers, a Bureaucrat, and an Army of Golems, by L. G. Estrella, is the "publisher's pack" of the first two books in the Unconventional Heroes series. I feel it is aimed at a younger audience than the bracket I fall into, but that didn't stop me from enjoying it!
These were a fun, easy to listen to pair of humorous fantasy books that follow the adventures of Grand Necromance Timothy… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 5th of October, 2021
I picked up both books in the Tower of Babel series during a recent Audible sale on a bit of a whim. I was trawling through Reddit, looking for some recommendations when someone mentioned SpeedRunner, written by Adam Elliott. Without doing much more research than finding it, ten bucks later and both were in my library.
Honestly, at first blush, I thought perhaps I'd made a mistake. The book started off… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 28th of September, 2021
Wyrd Gods, written by Susana Imaginario, contains more gods and minor deities than you can poke a stick at, and early on I realised I had to pay close attention or else I'd get lost. There's a lot going on, with Greek gods scheming against Norse gods, and vice-versa, with our heroine, Illena caught in the middle.
Most of the story of Wyrd Gods (pronounced "weird" if you're wondering... means "fated')… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 26th of September, 2021
Between the Layers, written by Danielle Palli, is the third book of the Data Collectors trilogy in a series that took me by surprise in the first book and sucked me right into the world created by Palli. These books blend magic and sci-fi while still being very down to earth and are filled with such an interesting and unique cast of characters.
In book three, Lucene and her pals deal… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 24th of September, 2021
The Dungeon Crawler Carl books continue to keep me entertained, even after multiple re-listens. Book four - The Gate of the Feral Gods - is no different. The author Matt Dinniman continues to amaze me with how much sheer plot he can weave into a story while delivering unique situations on each level of the dungeon.
Dinniman sprinkles in the clues throughout the story, with sometimes seemingly non-meaningful items having a… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 20th of September, 2021
Being a fan of the first two books in the Cinnamon Bun series by RavensDagger, I jumped at the chance of pre-ordering book three when it appeared on Audible. Still enjoyable but seemingly much slower than the first two while still being within the same ballpark for length.
The story keeps going from where book two left off, with Broccoli, Amaryllis, and Awen heading to the Nesting Kingdom, home of Amaryllis,… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 19th of September, 2021
I picked up Grand Theft Astro, written by Scott Meyer, for nothing as part of my Audible Plus subscription, and while the story was mostly enjoyable, I'm on the fence as to if I'd have enjoyed it knowing I'd spent a credit on it.
The story follows the... allegedly... greatest thief of all time, Baird. Allegedly because that's all the cops have on her as she's quick to remind everyone. Infected… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 13th of September, 2021
Felonious Monk, written by William Kotzwinkle, is a touch of Scorsese-esque Goodfellas and Casino rolled up with something like hard-boiled, dark humour. If you're a fan of bodies being dropped at every opportunity, disposed of in interesting ways, including the old favourites mixed in with new-age hippie spiritual nonsense, then this book is for you.
Tommy Martini is or rather was a monk. After accidentally killing someone, he retreated to Mexico… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 5th of September, 2021
While looking through what books were on Audible Plus, to my surprise, books 4 and 5 in the Firefly series popped up. Always happy to get more Firefly stories, so nabbed them both. In this one, Generations, written by Tim Lebbon, the established Firefly universe is expanded a little more as we learn about how the humans of the Earth that was packed up and moved out.
This story focuses heavily… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 5th of September, 2021
Taro, written by Blue Spruell, is a reimagining of several Japanese folk tales featuring a young hero named Taro. I'll admit, I'm not familiar with any of the source material, so I've no idea how close or how much this leans into the original material.
For me, this was an endearing young-adult adventure where warlords of feudal Japan are battling for control of the country. Rescued from certain death by a… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 31st of August, 2021
Silent Hunters, a Warhammer 40,000 book written by Edoardo Albert, is a dark story filled with atrocities committed by some seriously messed-up aliens, a story of redemption for a Chaplain of the Carcharodons Astra, and a story of hope for a slave and her son.
The story itself is fairly well split between the Carcharodon's hunt for an ancient relict, a slab of void glass of unknown power, and of the… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 28th of August, 2021
Orconomics: A Satire, written by J. Zachary Pike, lives up to its title! A humorous satire of orc, dwarves, elves and other fantasy folks in a world where the world of heroes and monsters is being run into the ground by large corporations.
I struggled, initially, to get into this book, but the longer I listened, the more it sucked me in, to the point I was fully engrossed by the… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 25th of August, 2021
Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain, written by A. Lee Martinez, is probably one of the more interesting titled books I've read in a while. I kept reading good things about Martinez, so I thought I'd jump onto this one during a recent two-for-one sale Audible was running.
While not as laugh-out-loud as I thought the story would be, it's a solid story sitting well in the pulpish style of humorous… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 16th of August, 2021
24/7 Demon Mart, written by D.M. Guay is off-the-wall nuts. It's virtually non-stop crazy situations happening to poor protagonist Lloyd Wallace. He's a slacker, a loser, up to his eyeballs in debt with no aspirations beyond drinking slushies, playing Xbox and masturbating.
He is oblivious to much of what is going on around him, even once he finds out the truth of the 24/7 Dairy Mart and the strange goings-on.… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 11th of August, 2021
Nightbringer - The Chronicles of Uriel Ventris, written by Graham McNeill, was my first experience in the Warhammer 40,000 universe, and I have got to say, I enjoyed the heck out of it. I knew of it as a tabletop game that used miniatures and involved space marines, but that was the extent of what I knew.
As it turned out, it's been around for decades and not only has a… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 6th of August, 2021
The Outlands, written by Tyler Edwards, is a decent dystopian/post-apocalyptic story set in the future where humans now live in giant walled cities under a protective dome to keep out the toxins and the other nasties outside their walls. Only a handful exist, like the megacities idea in Judge Dredd, and each apparently specialising in something (kind of like Hunger Games), although we spend all of the book inside Dios.
Jett… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 3rd of August, 2021
They Called Me Mad, written by J Pal, is a humorous litRPG story set in the "real world" where aliens have landed and have turned planet Earth into a reality TV series. Being in the same vein as Dungeon Crawler Carl, I thought I'd enjoy this book a lot more than I did.
Yes, the story was fun, but I never had the sense any of the characters were in any… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 31st of July, 2021
Keymaker's Daughter, written by Anya Stassiy, is an interesting urban fantasy with the gods of ancient Greece as the theme. A tad slow to start off but stick with it and you'll be rewarded with a story with heroes and heroines to root for as they try to save the world.
Aurora, daughter of a famous lock maker, is drawn into the scheming of the gods when her father mysteriously vanishes… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 24th of July, 2021
The Case of the Haunted Haunted House, written by Drew Hayes, is the second book in the 5-Minute Sherlock series featuring Sherman Holmes and Joel Watson. This book was a lot more "mystery" orientated than the first. Fair enough, the first book set the world and its characters in play, an origin story of sorts. This book, though, got into the typical Doyle style of a mystery to solve.
And… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 18th of July, 2021
Evertrue, written by Jill London, is a feel-good fairytale adventure. Now, I'll admit to having help reviewing this one. I enlisted my youngest daughter to listen along with me. I knew without even asking that she enjoyed it. Giggling away as the story unfolded, she was hooked on it.
Even though it's short at a little over an hour and a half, we had to listen over a number of sittings.… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 13th of July, 2021
The Urban Legion, written by Dave Agans, pulls together about every urban legend you've ever heard of (and some you probably haven't) into a conspiracy-nuts ultimate fantasy. In this book, Agans world is one where all those legends have a basis in truth, but cartels (such as the truffle cartel) are working to keep it all suppressed.
This wasn't a bad story, but it did seem to wander around a lot… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 9th of July, 2021
Stuff and Nonsense (Threadbare #1), written by Andrew Seiple, is a tale of a little toy golem trying to be the best teddy bear friend to his little girl that he can be. This entirely charming innocent teddy bear golem starts life with underdeveloped int stats but better than average wisdom. He learns quick and his stats climb up unnoticed by his creator or most anyone around him.
He befriends… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 5th of July, 2021
Rule of Cool, written by Matthew Siege, is a fun romp along with the "bad guys", in this case, the lowly NPCs of Gearblins (and a few other races but the main characters are Gearblins). As you can expect, the NPCs are none too happy with their lot in life. Unable to fight back, back talk, or even dream.
Raze is the protagonist of the story. Chained to a desk in… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 29th of June, 2021
Hard Luck Hank: Basketful of Crap, written by Steven Campbell, is the second book in the Hard Luck Hank series and continues the misadventures of poor old Hank. The space station Belvaille has changed a lot since the first book, thanks to the deal Hank worked out.
Gone are the gangs, mostly. Those that are left are fighting for the scraps now the galactic corporations have taken over and using the… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 26th of June, 2021
Hard Luck Hank: Screw the Galaxy, written by Steven Campbell, is a series of humorous science fiction books that I've enjoyed (in Kindle format) for a long time. Up until the recent Audible sale, I'd resisted buying them as an audiobook because I couldn't quite reconcile the voice of Hank with the character I'd built up in my head over the years.
I'm still having difficulty, but it'd been too long… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 25th of June, 2021
The Lost Art of Magic, written by John Kovacich, is a coming of age story set (mostly) in the swamps of Louisiana and tells the story of Destiny Boutin, a young girl who lives with her nana. Her family has a long, rich heritage of being descended from witches from long ago, with only the faintest hints of magic ability now left.
The book opens with a bang, where Destiny is… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 23rd of June, 2021
Mid-Lich Crisis, written by Steve Thomas, is a tale of a Darruk, a lich (basically an undead mage) with a single, somewhat noble pursuit of saving the world through any means necessary. Unfortunately, he's constantly thwarted at every opportunity by his arch-nemesis, a barbarian intent on repeatedly killing Darruk.
This was an enjoyable story, maybe not as funny as I thought it was going to be but a good listen overall.… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 20th of June, 2021
In the Forest of the Lost and Found, written by K.D. Van Brunt is a wilderness survival thriller with some (at first) rather unlikeable characters. Allyssa Baylor, her younger sister Grace and younger brother Nick all reluctantly leave their privileged suburban lifestyle for a week worth of camping in the middle of nowhere.
Most of the characters, Allyssa (Allie) in particular are initially hard to bond with. They are the epitome… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 18th of June, 2021
Exterminate All the Brutes, written by Sven Lindqvist, is no doubt an important story that needs to be told, but I couldn't get past around chapter 25. The audio production is completely un-edited, filled with tripped up words, long pauses, multiple retakes, and other things that should have been edited out before publishing.
The narrator, Melissa Todd, has a pleasant voice to listen to but has been severely let down by… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 17th of June, 2021
Dreadnought, written by April Daniels, revolves around fifteen-year-old Danny Tozer in a city where being a superhero is a legitimate job possibility. Designated at birth as male, Danny knows this is a mistake. She wants nothing more than to shed the life she has and live her life as it was meant to be. Her wish, of course, is granted, and so begins her journey.
Note - part of this… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 15th of June, 2021
Cinnamon Bun: Volume 2, written by RavensDagger, continues the adventures of Brocolli Bunch and Amaryllis as they make, well, Brocolli makes, friends of everyone she encounters, and blissfully making her way through the world.
This was a no-brainer for me after how much fun the first book was. In this book, the due becomes a trio with the addition of Awen, a shy human girl who needs to escape the clutches… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 13th of June, 2021
The Impossible Girl, written by Lydia Kang, set in 1850s New York, where medical science is advancing thanks to the study of cadavers. Unfortunately, these are hard to come by legitimately, and here we find Cora Lee and her band of resurrectionists - grave robbers by any other name.
Cora lives a double life out of necessity. Not only are cadavers useful for medical study, but an entirely second industry is… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 11th of June, 2021
The Case of the Damaged Detective, written by Drew Hayes, is a fun new take on homages to Sherlock Holmes. There have been plenty in the past, and no doubt more in the future. This one sees a man, Sherman Holmes, who believes himself to be a descendent of the fictional detective.
He has no memory of who he used to be, but he's damn sure he's now the worlds greatest… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 8th of June, 2021
Galaxy Outlaws, written by J. S. Morin, is unashamedly a love note to the TV show Firefly (cancelled too soon!) but not so much that you feel cheated or like it's fan fiction. Instead, what we get is an interesting take on the universe where magic and machines play a big part... and don't always play nicely together.
While the blurb pegs Carl as the main character, it's hard to pin… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 7th of June, 2021
Try as I might, I just couldn't get into Call Numbers by Syntell Smith. Set in mid-nineties New York, this book failed to hold any real interest for me.
There were a few times where I thought it was picking up, but it never quite got there. I want to give it the benefit of the doubt. I honestly don't think it was a terrible written story overall, but it… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 7th of June, 2021
Cinnamon Bun, written by RavensDagger is a light, wholesome LitRPG adventure of a teenage girl named Broccoli Bunch who finds herself in a new world where monsters, level-ups, and dungeons crawls are a thing.
I couldn’t but love the character of Broccoli. She’s an eternal optimist, seeing the best in everyone and every situation – even those that are trying hard to kill her. After accepting the quest invitation to help… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 3rd of June, 2021
Death Gets a Book, written by Frank J Edler, is probably the weirdest book I've had the pleasure of listening to in a while. The story revolves around Vincent Death, the latest Grim Reaper to get recruited, after dying horribly at a genuine Tijuana donkey show. If you don't know what that is... well, engage "incognito" mode before Googling it.
What follows is a hilarious tale of life after death for… Read More Reviewed by: Morgan Hobbes Reviewed on: 29th of May, 2021