The Audiobook Review of Fawkes, by Nadine Brandes
Updated: Jul 27, 2019
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Last month I listened to the audiobook version of Fawkes by Nadine Brandes. I had approximately 22 hours of driving over four days, and this seemed like the perfect way to read this much-loved and talked about fantastical retelling of the story of Guy Fawkes. I was so inspired by the narration, and my new microphone that I decided to do an all audio-focused review! (You can read it below or listen to it here)
So I’ll just put it out there. I claim to not like historical novels, but man am I ever eating those words. I am becoming converted to the old side folks. There is a plethora of fan-girl and fan-boy reviews already out there about this novel, and for good cause. This is a must-read. But why not include one more. So here is mine.
A little summary…in the event that you are strange and have not heard about this book:
A young man, Thomas Fawkes is desperate to cure the stone plague that has blinded him in one eye. To do this, he must first get a color mask. And the only one who can give him this mask is his father, the famed Keeper and fighter Guy Fawkes. He travels to London to find him and quickly becomes a trusted member of a secret plot to kill the King, a much despised Igniter.
What did I think:
Quality of Writing: 5/5
So the story itself is fantastic! But you likely already knew that. The writing is vivid, imaginative, and ingenious in the way it all comes together in the end. I picked up so many valuable tricks and techniques for dialogue tags and building tension.
Attributes of Hope: 5/5
Can we say allegory? I didn’t even really understand what people meant when they said this. Here is the definition, if you are in the same club:
allegory: a representation of an abstract or spiritual meaning through concrete or material forms; figurative treatment of one subject under the guise of another. (compliments of dictionary.com)
But come on! This is a textbook on the subject! Now that I know the definition, enough said.
Turn Paging Effect: 5/5 …with a caveat
This book kept me engaged from color school to final battle. However, I was warned that the beginning may be a little slow. I didn't experience this at all, but the reason may be because of Oliver J. Hembrough, the audiobook narrator for Fawkes. This guy is genius wrapped in about twenty different voices. I have listened to a fair number of audiobooks, and sometimes the narrators fall flat in their interpretations or they don't voice characters consistently, but every once in a while a narrator adds this extra level of magical fairy dust to an already amazing book. Guys, I have been trying my skills with narrating and it is SOOOO hard. With Oliver, you barely notice that it’s just one guy jumping form narrator, to Thomas, to Guy, to Emma?!? I mean come on! He sounds better as a girl than I do! So double thumbs dancing in the air for both Nadine Brandes, whoever decided to cast Oliver J. Hembrough, and Oliver himself.
Alright, with that said, what do you guys think?
Did you read Fawkes in paper, e-book, or audiobook?
(Did you like the audio-review format?...when it comes..ha! )
Have you read any other stellar narrators that I can drool over and learn from??