Tag Archive for David Tennant

Des

Des dir. Lewis Arnold (ITV, 2020) A three-part miniseries about 1980s serial killer Dennis Nilsen, played by David Tennant. The production remains true to life and derives its impact from Nilsen’s acute emotional remove—an unsettling detachment rendered darker still by his harangues in favour of due process.    

Never and Forever

Never and Forever by Cressida Cowell (Hodder, 2020); audiobook read by David Tennant (Bolinda, 2021) The finale of Cowell’s Wizards of Once series proves both cathartically climactic and something of a let-down, the extended codas drawing attention to a bloated cast of characters and the padding these provide. Nonetheless, a rousing MG adventure, elevated in audiobook form.    

How to Train your Dragon

How to Train your Dragon by Cressida Cowell; audiobook read by David Tennant (Hodder, 2004) A simple, self-contained beginning to what would become a long and fantabulous series. Cowell introduces us to Hiccup, a brainy Viking in a world of boneheaded heroism and deadly dragons. The story, though predictable in its arc, is magical in the telling.    

Knock Three Times

Knock Three Times by Cressida Cowell (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2019); audiobook read by David Tennant (Bolinda, 2020) Magic, conflict, adventure and silliness. This third instalment of Cowell’s Wizards of Once series treads water to an extent but also moves elements into place for a dramatic finale in books to come. David Tennant’s audiobook reading is as exuberant…

Twice Magic

Twice Magic by Cressida Cowell (Hodder, 2018); audiobook read by David Tennant (Hachette Audio, 2018) Although the world is fantabulous and 13-year-old protagonists Xar and Wish are full of zest, this second instalment of Cowell’s wizards and warriors series reads as if emoting the climax, not merely the early unfolding, of their great adventure. Fun but overdone.    

Spies of Warsaw

Spies of Warsaw (BBC, 2013) Although criticised for its lack of suspense, ‘Spies of Warsaw’ in fact delivers tension in abundance – on a smaller, personal scale, not the artificially heightened nonsense so often grafted onto productions. The acting is top-notch, and David Tennant makes himself beguilingly French.    

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service by Ian Fleming (Jonathan Cape, 1963); audiobook read by David Tennant (AudioGO, 2012) Bond’s attitude to women remains unconscionable, but in other respects Fleming gives him a greater depth and vulnerability here than in other books (and certainly the films). The writing has refinement above its genre, and gains added respectability through David Tennant’s reading.…