Mixed Feelings about Hunting

Review: Hunting in Bruges

by E.J. Stevens
narrated by Melanie A. Mason and Anthony Bowling

Pick it up on Amazon
Hunting in Bruges, by E.J. Stevens, narrated by Melanie A. Mason and Anthony Bowling

This audiobook production was really outstanding! But sadly, the story disappointed me a bit.

This story is an award-finalist, so obviously I don’t really know what’s good. But let me list the problems I had with the story:

  1. The secret of the protagonist’s new companion, the “mysterious stranger”, is apparent pretty early on. Yet Jenna herself only figures it out in the second half of the book. The reason for that felt very weak to me. I know this is a tool that some people love (knowing something that the protagonist doesn’t), but for me, it just doesn’t work. It made me think she’s a bit daft πŸ™
  2. The story didn’t have a very good flow. The pacing was off for me and I found it difficult to figure out where we were going and what the point of everything was.
  3. Jenna is a very serious young lady. Her companions try to banter and flirt but she only gets super annoyed and would seriously prefer to be ambushed. This bothered me because it just made her not very likeable. Of course not every protagonist has to crank out the jokes. But her reaction to her friends flirting and joking felt way too harsh.

On to some positive aspects. A female protagonist, and one male, one female sidekick? That was already awesome in Buffy and it makes for a great slayer.. uhh.. Hunter team! The paranormal concept of vampires using a glamour to appear attractive was creative. Damn bloodsuckers don’t always have to be perfect!

Now that I’m done, I can say that the storyline overall has some good substance. But it took me a long time to finish this and I interrupted it for two other audiobooks because I was bored. “Hunting in Bruges” just didn’t grab me. The pace picked up a bit in the second half though.

As I said initially, the audio production was fantastic. It was a new to me concept and I truly wish everyone would do it like this! Melanie A. Mason is the main narrator. The story is told entirely from Jenna’s point of view so that makes sense. But the bonus is, that Anthony Bowling is narrating all male characters’ lines. Not only are both narrators really great, with very distinct voices, but the editing is done very well, so the men’s lines fit in seamlessly. The narration itself was very captivating.

I so wanted to love this audiobook. Because it’s a great Urban Fantasy concept and the production is so amazing. But I just can’t. When it comes to Hunters, I prefer Nava Katz.

 

Publisher’s summary

Finalist for the 2017 Raven Award for best urban fantasy.
The only thing worse than being a hunter in the fae-ridden city of Harborsmouth, is hunting vampires in Bruges.

The medieval city of Bruges is quaint, but the local Hunters’ Guild is understaffed, the canals are choked with dead bodies, and there’s no shortage of supernatural predators as likely suspects.

On second thought, maybe Bruges isn’t so bad after all.

With a desire to prove herself, protect the innocent, and advance within the ranks of the Hunters’ Guild, Jenna Lehane hits the cobbled streets of Bruges with blades at the ready. Someone, or something, is murdering tourists and dumping their bodies in the city’s scenic canals. With the help of a mysterious stranger, Jenna begins to piece together clues that are dotted throughout the city like blood spatter.

Determined to stop the killings, Jenna delves into a bloody local history that only raises more questions – but some secrets are best left buried. Jenna must put her combat training to the test as she struggles to unearth the truth about an ancient enemy.

 

*ARC*

I want to thank Audiobookworm Promotions. I received this audiobook at no-cost from them in exchange for an honest review. And while I do believe that it’s only human to look more kindly on things that we’ve gotten for less money than they’re worth, I feel very strongly about giving you my honest opinion and recommendations on this website. Because of that I am convinced this review – just like all my other reviews – is 100% honest and would be the same, had I bought this audiobook myself.

 

Oooh-Factor:

Jenna has some romantic feelings and there’s a little bit of flirty banter between the other characters, but this isn’t a sexy one.

 

Audio-Factor:

Audiobook > Book
Definitely. This might be worth listening to for the fantastic production.

 

Pick it up here:

Audible audiobook “Hunting in Bruges”

 

15 comments on “Mixed Feelings about Hunting

  1. I haven’t actually tried an audiobook before and it’s sad because I badly want to, I just can’t. I hope your next read will be a better one! Great review.

      1. Because signing up to have an account and get audiobooks requires the use of a credit card and as a student – even for working adults – it is really not as “normal” or “usual” for us here to have and use credit card than it is in the US. Only some people use them. 😩

      2. I’m so sorry I’m only replying now! WordPress put your comment in spam πŸ™
        I can help you with that! You don’t need any payment information to set up an audible account with which you can listen to ARC’s. If you message me on Facebook or Twitter I can give you a few websites that exchange free audiobooks for reviews.
        Your national audible (like .co.uk) should also offer other payment options. You can simply use your Amazon account to log in there and sign up for a subscription.

  2. Totally get your consternation! This type of review is extremely difficult for me to write yet you have handled it with aplomb. Well Done!

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