"The Scarifyers: The Thirteen Hallows"
by Simon Barnard & Paul Morris
Multicast performance starring: David Warner, Terry Molloy, Gareth David-Lloyd, David Benson, Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Ewan Bailey, David Bickerstaff & Nick Scovell
Produced by Cosmic Hobo Productions
1 Hour 53 Minutes
Before beginning the review of this book, I should explain a bit about how I determine which book will be read or heard next. I get many books sent to me to be reviewed either the physical book (either hardcover or paperback) an electronic version to read on my Kindle or audiobooks (which I get through faster due to the ease of listening and my long commutes). These books are sent by the publishers or the authors themselves. However, there is one website I go to when I want to pick out a good book just for myself. That site is the audiobookjukebox.com website. They have reviews of audiobooks from a variety of people (including myself) which I can browse through and find a book. What is even better for audiobook bloggers they have the "Solid Gold Reviewer" program in which bloggers can sign up and request specific books from a variety of publishers.
This audiobook came from that program. I saw the listing and thought it looked interesting plus it was about two hours in length. I thought this would be a short fun book. All this was determined by the title and the cover picture. I had absolutely no idea what the book was going to be about or the quality, I was simply intrigued. So I get the audiobook, load it up on my iPod and I'm good to go. I had to wait a while before I got to it and one day I'm looking to start a short book and remembered this one. Within the first few minutes, I wondered why I didn't start listening earlier, then remembered how I came across the book and that I didn't know much about it. Immediately this book struck me as a cross between a Douglas Adams story and a Doctor Who adventure. The combination of humorous events and characters made for a great way to spend two hours listening to an audiobook.
Once I started the book I didn't want to stop, but as you know real life steps in and other things demand attention. During one of the as-few-as-possible breaks I decided to look more into this book and became more and more excited about what I had launched myself into. The Scarifyers series is an audio series on BBC radio and this title is the 8th in a continuing series. The voices were all great but what stood out for me in this audio were the voices of David Warner and Gareth David-Lloyd. While all the performers in this production were awesome and fun to hear, these two stuck out because I've been a fan of their work for a while, especially David Warner since his appearance in the movie "Tron." Gareth David-Lloyd sticks out because I'm also a fan of the "Torchwood" television series and enjoyed his character in that series, Ianto Jones.
Another thing I found fascinating is that "The Scarifyers," is also a comic book series, along with the audio adventures. The stories are set in 1936 and 1937, they originally followed the exploits of DI Lionheart and ghost-story writer Professor Dunning, as played by Nicholas Courtney and Terry Molloy. David Warner replaced Nicholas Courtney after Courtney's death in 2011.
This production of "Thirteen Hallows" begins when a haunted chess set causes consternation at the British Chess Championships, and a horse magically materializes in Kettering Agricultural Museum, MI:13 are called to investigate.
Harry Crow (David Warner) and Professor Dunning (Terry Molloy) follow the trail of inexplicable happenings to an unremarkable terraced house in South Wales, home to the mysterious Mr Merriman (David Benson). He’s very old, and very mad; that is soon learned to be an act and that Mr. Merriman is better known as, oh wait, no, I won't spoil it, you'll have to listen for yourself.
Meanwhile, in the South West of England, famed archaeologist Ralegh Radford (Ewan Bailey) is on the verge of the greatest discovery of the age. Britain’s Tutankhamen, the press are calling it. But what he certainly isn’t expecting to unearth is boisterous 1400-year-old knight Glewlwyd Gafaelfawr (Gareth David-Lloyd) who is alive and confused at how much time has passed.
As Crow and Dunning unravel an unlikely plot to resurrect Britain’s greatest-ever hero, King Arthur, the race is on to stop sinister forces, the Nazis from finding "The Thirteen Hallows of Britain."
Great acting, sound effects and humorous adventures make this audio performance one to add to your list of fun listening.