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Melinda

Melinda UT Member Since 2009

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  • "Umbrage and Umberto; Peanut Butter ..."

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    I love/hate Umberto Eco. "Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself..." There are very few authors as complex and knowledgeable; there are even fewer that can challenge and inspire as Umberto Eco. I have re-read, cross referenced, and researched, as much while reading his books as when writing my dissertation--but isn't that what great writers do for us? They expand us. And, while I always feel a bit obtuse reading Eco, I always come away enlightened. His mind is an encyclopedia, all-encompassing, his wit is delightful and at the same time biting and hilarious.

    Prague Cemetery's plot is intricate to say the least--19th century European espionage, conspiracy theories, Freemasons, Jesuits, Illuminati, Hitler, Dumas, Hugo, "Froide", Satanists, the New World Order and the Elders of Zion. All the more fascinating because of Eco's background in Semiotics, and the VERY interesting "A Note From the Author" wherein Eco personally explains the characters actually existed! [*see Amazon.com site to read this letter to the 'Dear Amazon Readers']. The story is told by a vitriolic schizo character with "a soul so dark as to cast a shadow in hell'; he could easily be a monster straight out of Eco's On Ugliness. Within 30 min. the mystery narrator ("pleased to meet you, hope you guess my name, woo woo.") offends, criticizes, disgusts, and outrages every race, nationality, ethnicity, sex, and religion--his only complimentary words used to describe the gourmet dishes he savors. Perhaps my only complaint: with such powerful elements and such an engrossing storyline, I'd have appreciated less venom--but I hope Eco never conforms to my personal predilections! (And wouldn't a recipe companion be too fabulous!)

    Undeniably a difficult read (for me at least), and not meant for people that tend to be easily personally insulted. It's meant to be disturbing, it's meant to agitate some brain cells. Kirkus review probably summed it up best with this one word: HUMDINGER. While The Name of the Rose remains my favorite Eco novel, I found Prague Cemetery absolutely fascinating and will enjoy the personal prerequisite second, possible third, listen. George Guidall does a lovely job of narrating the translation, as if you are reading beautiful Italian with your English brain.

    Persevere; I think of my mother saying to me, "Sit down and practice that piano! One day you'll thank me!" Read Eco and you'll thank yourself.

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    The Prague Cemetery

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Umberto Eco
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (254)
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    (219)
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    Whether it’s a critically acclaimed novel or provocative collection of essays, every work from best-selling author Umberto Eco is a highly anticipated publishing event. The Prague Cemetery is set amid conspiracy-rich 19th century Europe, where intrigue abounds—and where a lone, evil genius may be pulling all the strings.

    Melinda says: "Umbrage and Umberto; Peanut Butter and Jelly"
  • "The Bee's Knees and So Much More"

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    The Chaperone simultaneously depicts the changing social culture during the 1920's, as well as the feminist self-awakening of small town Wichitan, Cora Carlisle. The author uses actual historical events, places, and people to shuffle us through this momentous era - almost Forest Gump style - with recognizable period icons gliding along in Cora's backdrop like pictures in a scrapbook of her life, (flapper girls, bathtub gin, the Jazz age, racism and the KKK, women's suffrage, birth control, etc.). These fascinating images embellish Cora's recollections; they are recognizable, relatable, and immediately draw in the listener. The most exciting vehicle in Cora's transforming journey is the famous silent film star Louise Brooks, who is used more as a catalyst for the stoic Cora's introspection, and a representative image (and result) of rebellion, than a co-star in the book.

    This book is immediately enchanting and breezy with nicely shaped characters, that coincidentally represent different personal pathways in this changing time (almost allegorical); sometimes appearing a little too convenient, a little too token--but understandably necessary to carry this story in its evolution. The pacing was a little bothersome...initially, I enjoyed being able, while I listened, to compare where we are now with our social mores, how we are still struggling with some of the same issues and restrictions; later, the story seemed to jump ahead, speed up, step back, and skip over important details. Moriarty so skillfully lays out the images and feelings of the era, the vivid streets of New York, the tumultuous social clashes, and I would have liked for her to use that talent to tell us more about the war, the depression, the Dust Bowl (which would have made a book double the size - but would have been all right with me; call me selfish).

    I can't end without mentioning one of the most important underlying issues; the sexual abuse of Louise. I haven't read Louise's own account of her childhood, or testimonies to the 15 yr. old's psychological maturity, but, I know that being routinely sexually abused from the age of 9 yrs. old would not create a 15 yr. old girl that is cool, savvy, and spunky--as Louise was portrayed. The author hints at the self-destruction, and the reader follows the logic that she was a self-driven, uncannily beautiful woman, at ease with her sexuality and ahead of her times, when in reality, a background of such extreme abuse would sadly play itself out throughout a victimized person's life--and that was what was so heartbreaking about, and destructive to, Louise.

    A touching and entertaining read I highly recommend. Elizabeth McGovern does a beautiful job, giving each character the emotional depth and individuality needed to do justice to such a huge story. You can't go wrong picking this one; a classic in the making.

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    The Chaperone

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Laura Moriarty
    • Narrated By Elizabeth McGovern
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1993)
    Performance
    (1758)
    Story
    (1744)

    >The Chaperone is a captivating novel about the woman who chaperoned an irreverent Louise Brooks to New York City in 1922, and the summer that would change them both. Only a few years before becoming a famous actress and an icon for her generation, a 15-year-old Louise Brooks leaves Wichita to make it big in New York. Much to her annoyance, she is accompanied by a thirty-six-year-old chaperone who is neither mother nor friend. Cora Carlisle is a complicated but traditional woman with her own reasons for making the trip.

    Amanda says: "Perfection."
  • "Paris: The Novel (is that helpful?)"

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    [Why not ignore that awesome stalker just waiting, finger poised over the *no* help button?]

    After this enjoyable experience, I intend to look up other books by this author. Rutherfurd did an admirable job condensing 700 plus years of history, from several different class perspectives, in Paris: The Novel--although "condensing" may seem an odd word to use when referring to an almost 39 hour book. But the information is as significant and as impressive as the book's girth.The tangled machinations of politics, religion, social position, etc., was intriguing, given added color by the personalities entwined in the years of rich history. The timelines that crossed America's progression with where Paris was at a particular place in it's historic march fascinated me, reminding me that we are a young country in comparison. The embellished dialogue sometimes seemed staged to facilitate passages of information, as is often the case with this kind of historical fiction (an great-aunt takes her very young children on a Sunday afternoon stroll, giving quite a lengthy discourse on the history of the Louvre, or Notre Dame) but so much information is given that I enjoyed these episodes (that reminded me a little of following the knowledgeable group-guide with the flag). With such an abundance of information, I'm sure that even the most erudite Francophiles will be enlightened.

    *Please allow me: To you who follow certain reviewers just for the sole purpose to vote no after reading their reviews, usually before even reading them at all...just stop reading them; follow someone else; write your own freaking reviews that enlightens us all as to what IS helpful; gut-up. There are reviewers that don't write anymore and now I understand why. Keep some dignity and class in this "community". "Mean people suck." ( I'd give that statement a *yes this was helpful.*)

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    Paris: The Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (38 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Edward Rutherfurd
    • Narrated By Jean Gilpin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (252)
    Performance
    (225)
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    (224)

    Internationally best-selling author Edward Rutherfurd has enchanted millions of readers with his sweeping, multigenerational dramas that illuminate the great achievements and travails throughout history. In this breathtaking saga of love, war, art, and intrigue, Rutherfurd has set his sights on the most magnificent city in the world: Paris. Moving back and forth in time across centuries, the story unfolds through intimate and vivid tales of self-discovery, divided loyalties, passion, and long-kept secrets of characters both fictional and real, all set against the backdrop of the glorious city.

    Kathi says: "Rutherfurd's "Paris"--C'est très bien!"
  1. The Prague Cemetery
  2. The Chaperone
  3. Paris: The Novel
  4. .

A Peek at Teddy's Bookshelf

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Bronx, NY, United States 93 REVIEWS / 96 ratings Member Since 2011 1066 Followers / Following 22
 
Teddy's greatest hits:
  • Water for Elephants

    "This is what Audiobook should be..."

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    This book was a home run all over! Excellent narration, superb storyline, engaging and interesting characters, great imagery and poignant.

    The reviews for this book are indicative of how excellent a book this really is. The entire book was done so incredibly well! When I first got this book I didn't really know what to expect, in fact I didn’t even know there was a movie about the book and had I known I probably wouldn’t have got the book due to my aversion at times to overhyped books turned movies... Good thing though because I would have missed out on a very good read...

    I found myself fascinated with how the Sara Gruen (the author) introduced Jacob at 23 and at 90 or is it 93 (you'll get it when you read to it). The different struggles with Jacob at these two different stages of life is manoeuvred quite will and interwoven immaculately with the main storyline. I like how the author was able to introduce the topic of growing ‘old and irrelevant’ at one end of the spectrum and being ‘young and impetuous’ at the other end. In both stages (the young and old Jacob) the common thread is tragedy and loss in a sense but eventually finding one’s place once more.

    The myriad of characters are all very interesting (as one can expect from a circus) and the relevant characters were all developed quite well! I found all the major and minor characters fascinating... Rose Marie, Uncle Al, Marlena, Camel, Walter, August... I honestly didn’t think any of these characters were short changed in terms of character development in this book and you get to peer into each of them even if it’s just a bit.

    Unlike a lot of books that tend to run on incessantly, providing you with seemingly useless details, Water for Elephants doesn't do that. Nor was it too short, it doesn’t leave you thinking that aspects of the books were rushed. It hit that sweet spot that so many books miss some times... that clear, nice balance of not being too long but not being too short and yet still leaves you wanting more. It has its sobering moments that make you nod silently in approval and smiles inwardly leaving you to go through the book a little slower, not wanting to miss the salient, poignant points being mentioned. It of course also has those nail biting moments that makes you sit up a little bit straighter and has you rushing the book trying to figure out what’s next and how everything is going to unfold. The closure at the end of the book was poignant enough and very fitting, but yet I wanted it to continue because it was just so good.

    Narration like this is what makes Audible titles and Audiobooks in general worth listening to. David LeDoux portraying John in his 20's was great but John Randolph Jones portraying John in his 90's is AMAZING! I like multiple narrated books and this certainly did not disappoint in any way, shape or form. Inflections were on par, strength of tone was excellent and pacing was superb... A better cast they could not pick and they brought life to these characters in a way I doubt much other narrators could.

    I would recommend this to anyone. Excellent writing, pitch perfect narration, engaging story, poignant life truths, sobering in all the right areas, fun in others, great timing, great character development and a very fitting closure. GREAT STUFF!

  • Boleyn Inheritance

    "Great Book"

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    I love these books that are narrated by three persons! Along with 'The Help' that I rave about constantly, the 'Boleyn Inheritance' is one of those. Exquisite writing, matched with beautiful narration made this book a joy to listen to. I must say though, the only reason this book does not get 5 stars across of board is because I listened the Abridged version (by mistake of course because I normally never listen to Abridged books unless I must). The narration in the Abridged book was just plain better, the one here is great, superb, beautiful, but the other one is in fact better. Do not let that stop you from getting this book though! I would also suggest you give 'The Other Boleyn Girl' a listen too prior to this if you can because this builds so well from it.

    Overall... if you like Historical Lit set in that Renaissance period... You will LOVE this book!

  • The Other Boleyn Girl

    "Phillipa Gregory Takes You There"

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    It's hard not to find Phillipa Gregory skills downright envious at times. She has a way of taking you there that all writers try to do and only the really good ones are able to achieve outright. This is the type of title that you can sit back in a dark room and allow yourself to be taken there. I was taken there many a times just listening to the narrator, listening to the engrossing story.

    The story of Mary Boleyn (the other Boleyn girl) is one of pure intrigue. You cannot help but pity her and how she seemed to be used and manipulated for his family's ambition. She seemed genuinely an honest woman, a true 'rose' of the court despite what she seemed to be doing to Catherine of Aragon, she did still seemed subservient to the queen at the time. Anne Boleyn's character takes a new light in the book and see a woman somewhat blinded by ambition who is thrust in a situation that she simply could no longer control. You see the transformation of the King from a handsome young man to a cruel old man. You see the constant struggle of George Boleyn with his marriage to Jane and his sexuality. The uncle... Uncle Howard... you see the start of his treachery which carries over to "The Boleyn Inheritance". You also see the fall of the strong and majestic Queen Catherine of Aragon. The entire story itself is enthralling.

    The narrator does a really good job. I thought I was listening to Mary herself throughout the book, or at least how I think Mary would sound in my mind. She does a very good job of taking you to that moment in time, you sense the childish romanticism as a teenager and her maturing into a woman, a mother, you can feel her fear as things in the court became more dangerous... Absolutely beautiful narration in short.

  • The Help

    "Exceeded Expectations! Movie pales in comparison.."

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    Books are supposed to transport you to another world and or time, books are to leave you in a sense of awe and make you feel the raw emotion in that moment. That is what books are supposed to do and in the world of modern literature, a lot of books only give you part of it. While listening The Help, I was not only transported to another time but I also felt the struggles of the different characters, from the quick witted, fiery Milly, to the regal Aibileen and the rebellious Skeeter resonated with you. You even could not help root for the minor characters in the book. The only shortcoming in the book stems from the fact that you simply wanted to hear more. It was not that anything was lacking, but you get so enthralled with the story yourself you cannot help but wish there was another maid to hear from or another chapter to listen to or another DA meeting.

    The movie does not do the book justice, even though the movie in itself was simply a good watch, the Audiobook was downright excellent. The narrators embodied the characters so well and they gave you a good visual impression of the book era and world that the book took place in. I regret that the movie missed such pivotal parts in the movie like the discovery of Milly, the dynamics of the relationship between Skeeter and her boyfriend in the book and a number of important scenes that characterized Aibileen and Skeeter's friendship. The stories of some of the minor maids got a bit 'watered down' as a result of a need to have commercial appeal in the movies while in the book the relationship was identified quite clearly.

    Every portion of the book is a must listen and even the very last portion of the book (the section where the author speaks about her life, the book itself and how the book came to be) was also a very poignant part in the story.

    Without a doubt one of the most excellent Audiobooks that I have had the pleasure of listening to!

Ryan

Ryan Somerville, MA, United States 07-11-11 Member Since 2005

Gen-Xer, software engineer, and lifelong avid reader. Soft spots for sci-fi, fantasy, and history, but I'll read anything good.

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14
  • "A beautiful nightmare"

    14 of 14 helpful votes

    Brutally violent, Blood Meridian turns the 19th century American West into a kind of hellish but hauntingly beautiful dreamscape, through which a gang of mercenaries wanders, killing without aim or reason. There is no comfort to be found anywhere in this novel, which overturns all Old West Myths, leaving only a stark, maddening world in which man exists on the edge of nihilism, "civilization" an illusion. The characters are almost opaque, reduced to actions in minimal dialogue. Even the language seems intended to confound and discomfit the reader, mixing arcane, half-forgotten scientific and philosophical terms with passages that sound almost like something from the Bible.

    Yet, McCarthy is the definition of a powerful writer. His prose is hypnotic, the book's scenes affecting the reader as much by their eerie beauty and lyricism as by the horror and violence contained within. Their images will stick around in your head for days. The Judge, a monstrous, demihuman prodigy at the center of novel, whose amused, philosophical queries about whether or not the scenes around him represent man in man's natural state, is one of the more memorable characters I've come across in fiction.

    Make no mistake, Blood Meridian is filled with powerful questions, about morality, about evil, about humanity's need for violence and dominance, about the nature of God, and so forth. Sometimes these questions are expressed explicitly, usually by the Judge, but mostly, they swirl just beneath the surface of the nightmare, challenging the reader to peer into the abyss and examine them. Though we don't live in such lawless times anymore, the distance from our safe doorsteps to the modern equivalent of a gang of roving, murderous scalpers may be shorter than we think.

    McCarthy will certainly never be an author to everyone's taste, and not with this work, but Blood Meridian has made a few critics' "Best of the 20th Century" lists for a good reason. This is a first-rate work of modern literature.

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    Blood Meridian: Or the Evening Redness in the West

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Cormac McCarthy
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1035)
    Performance
    (514)
    Story
    (517)

    Author of the National Book Award-winning All the Pretty Horses, Cormac McCarthy is one of the most provocative American stylists to emerge in the last century. The striking novel Blood Meridian offers an unflinching narrative of the brutality that accompanied the push west on the 1850s Texas frontier.

    Chris says: "Bleak but Fascinating"

What's Trending in Historical:

  • 4.8 (26027 ratings)

    The Help

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Kathryn Stockett
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26027)
    Performance
    (12682)
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    (12723)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: The most celebrated performance in all of Audible’s history, The Help has nearly 2,000 5-star reviews from your fellow listeners. We hear the print book’s not bad, either. In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women - mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends - view one another.

    Jan says: "What a great surprise!"
  • 4.8 (21 ratings)

    Flashman and the Redskins: Flashman, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By George MacDonald Fraser
    • Narrated By David Case
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (20)
    Story
    (19)

    The seventh volume of the Flashman Papers records the arch-cad's adventures in America during Gold Rush of 1849 and the Battle of Bighorn, in 1876. This installment describes his acquaintance with famous Indian chiefs, American soldiers, frontiersmen, and statesmen.

    William says: "Another good one!"
  • 4.8 (19 ratings)

    The Snow Goose (BBC Radio 4: Classic Serial)

    • ORIGINAL (57 mins)
    • By Paul Gallico
    • Narrated By Steve Mackintosh, Georgia Groome, Deborah Findlay, and others
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (17)

    A BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Paul Gallico’s The Snow Goose by Nick Warburton, starring Steven Mackintosh.

    When Open Book asked various authors to champion a favourite neglected classic on the programme, Michael Morpurgo chose The Snow Goose - perhaps no surprise, with his own story 'War Horse' depicting a friendship between a boy and his horse which takes them both into the horror of World War I.

    Elizabeth says: "The Book is better"
  • 4.8 (16 ratings)

    Sophie's Dilemma: Daughters of Blessing, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Lauraine Snelling
    • Narrated By Stina Neilsen
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    Award-winning historical novelist Lauraine Snelling delivers a compelling sequel to A Promise for Ellie. When 17-year-old Sophie abandons her North Dakota family in 1901, she never dreams tragedy will turn her again toward home. But she fears the loved ones she hurt will reject her - and that she'll never love again.

  •  
  • 4.9 (13 ratings)

    H.M.S. Surprise: Aubrey-Maturin Series, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Ric Jerrom
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    H.M.S. Surprise, the third in O'Brian's acclaimed Aubrey-Maturin series, follows the variable fortunes of Captain Jack Aubrey's career in Nelson's navy, as he attempts to hold his ground against admirals, colleagues, and the enemy, and accepts a commission to convey a British ambassador to the East Indies. The voyage leads him and his friend Stephen Maturin to the strange sights and smells of the Indian subcontinent, and through the archipelago of Spice Islands where the French have superiority.

    Katy says: "A well spoken story."
  • 4.9 (11 ratings)

    Two Testaments: Secrets of the Cross Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Musser
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (9)

    Love for war's victims keeps them apart. Will love for each other see them through? The slightest spark will ignite an explosion. And the tinderbox of broken political and racial relations in 1960s France and Algeria provides plenty of kindling. In the midst of the chaos, Gabriella Madison guards the orphans in her care while battling jealousy with Anne-Marie Duchemin, David’s former flame who has recently arrived in Castelnau, France.

    Patrick says: "Great great series!"
  • 4.8 (10 ratings)

    My Dear I Wanted to Tell You

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Louisa Young
    • Narrated By Dan Stevens
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (8)

    Set on the Western Front, in London and in Paris, My Dear I Wanted to Tell You is a moving and brilliant novel of love, class, and sex in wartime, and how war affects those left behind as well as those who fight.

    Robyn says: "special praise for the narrator"
  • 5.0 (10 ratings)

    Queens' Play

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Dorothy Dunnett
    • Narrated By Andrew Napier
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    This is the second book in the famous Lymond Chronicals by Dorothy Dunnett, exploring the intricacies of 16th century history through the exploits of the soldier Francis Crawford of Lymond. In Queens Play, Crawford is despatched to France and embarks on a nightmare game of hide and seek in the court of Henri II...

    Suzanne says: "A wonderfully complex, satisfying story"
  • Ragtime

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By E. L. Doctorow
    • Narrated By E. L. Doctorow
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (167)
    Performance
    (86)
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    (87)

    The story opens in 1906 in New Rochelle, New York, at the home of an affluent American family. One lazy Sunday afternoon, the famous escape artist Harry Houdini swerves his car into a telephone pole outside their house. And almost magically, the line between fantasy and historical fact, between real and imaginary characters, disappears.

    connie says: "too good for words"
  • The Invention of Wings: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Sue Monk Kidd
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Adepero Oduye, Sue Monk Kidd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2383)
    Performance
    (2174)
    Story
    (2166)

    From the celebrated author of The Secret Life of Bees, a magnificent novel about two unforgettable American women. Writing at the height of her narrative and imaginative gifts, Sue Monk Kidd presents a masterpiece of hope, daring, the quest for freedom, and the desire to have a voice in the world - and it is now the newest Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 selection. Hetty “Handful” Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.

    Jan says: "Historical Fiction - beautifully quilted!"
  • The Book Thief

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Markus Zusak
    • Narrated By Allan Corduner
    Overall
    (5855)
    Performance
    (4224)
    Story
    (4243)

    It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist: books.

    Shannon says: "Word Thief"
  • The Things They Carried

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Tim O'Brien
    • Narrated By Bryan Cranston
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (580)
    Performance
    (533)
    Story
    (534)

    Hailed by The New York Times as "a marvel of storytelling", The Things They Carried’s portrayal of the boots-on-the-ground experience of soldiers in the Vietnam War is a landmark in war writing. Now, three-time Emmy Award winner-Bryan Cranston, star of the hit TV series Breaking Bad, delivers an electrifying performance that walks the book’s hallucinatory line between reality and fiction and highlights the emotional power of the spoken word.

    Melinda says: "Heavy Load"
  •  
  • Dragonfly in Amber

    • UNABRIDGED (39 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8044)
    Performance
    (4755)
    Story
    (4777)

    New York Times best-selling author Diana Gabaldon enchanted scores of fans with Outlander, her electrifying historical saga set in 18th-century Scotland. Now this sequel sweeps listeners back into the past as Claire relates more of her perilous sojourn there with her Scottish warrior husband, James Fraser. Twenty years after her strange journey back in time, Claire has returned to Scotland with her daughter, determined to share with her the secret she has harbored since her time travel.

    Daniel says: "Finally! The unabridged version is here!"
  • The Help

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Kathryn Stockett
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26027)
    Performance
    (12682)
    Story
    (12723)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: The most celebrated performance in all of Audible’s history, The Help has nearly 2,000 5-star reviews from your fellow listeners. We hear the print book’s not bad, either. In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women - mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends - view one another.

    Jan says: "What a great surprise!"
  • The Iron King: The Accursed Kings, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Maurice Druon
    • Narrated By Peter Joyce
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (50)
    Performance
    (46)
    Story
    (47)

    From the publishers that brought you A Game of Thrones comes the series that inspired George R.R. Martin’s epic work. France became a great nation under Philip the Fair - but it was a greatness achieved at the expense of her people, for his was a reign characterised by violence, the scandalous adulteries of his daughters-in-law, and the triumph of royal authority.

    Sydney says: "Historical Goodie"
  • Voyager

    • UNABRIDGED (43 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6829)
    Performance
    (4072)
    Story
    (4046)

    Set in the intriguing Scotland of 200 years ago, the third installment in the romantic adventures of Jamie and Claire is as compelling as the first. Now that Claire knows Jamie survived the slaughter at Culloden, she is faced with the most difficult decision of her life. She aches to travel back through time again to find the love of her life, but, in order to do that, she must leave their daughter behind.

    Kathy says: "Hurry up! I want them all!"
  •  
  • The Golem and the Jinni: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Helene Wecker
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1722)
    Performance
    (1586)
    Story
    (1589)

    Helene Wecker's dazzling debut novel tells the story of two supernatural creatures who appear mysteriously in 1899 New York. Chava is a golem, a creature made of clay, brought to life by a strange man who dabbles in dark Kabbalistic magic. When her master dies at sea on the voyage from Poland, she is unmoored and adrift as the ship arrives in New York Harbor. Ahmad is a jinni, a being of fire, born in the ancient Syrian Desert. Trapped in an old copper flask by a Bedouin wizard centuries ago, he is released accidentally by a tinsmith in a Lower Manhattan shop.

    Jefferson says: "Fine Romantic Urban Historical Immigrant Fantasy"
  • A Breath of Snow and Ashes

    • UNABRIDGED (57 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    Overall
    (3253)
    Performance
    (2798)
    Story
    (2778)

    A Breath of Snow and Ashes continues the saga of 18th-century Scotsman Jamie Fraser and his 20th-century, time-traveling wife, Claire. The year is 1772, and the rift between Britain and its American colonies has put a frightening word into the minds of all concerned: revolution. In the backwoods of North Carolina, violence has already reared its ugly head, as cabins have been burned to the ground. To preserve the colony for King George III, the governor pleads with Jamie to bring the people together and restore peace. But Jamie has the burden of knowing that war cannot be avoided.

    jerry says: "Unabridged!"
  • The Pillars of the Earth

    • UNABRIDGED (40 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11970)
    Performance
    (4400)
    Story
    (4429)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Got 40 hours to kill? You’ll find the time when you start listening to Lee’s take on Follett’s epic – and widely celebrated – novel of 12th-century England. The Pillars of the Earth tells the story of Philip, prior of Kingsbridge, a devout and resourceful monk driven to build the greatest Gothic cathedral the world has known...of Tom, the mason who becomes his architect - a man divided in his soul...and of the beautiful, elusive Lady Aliena, haunted by a secret shame....

    Judith says: "Couldn't Take My Buds Out"
  • The Fiery Cross

    • UNABRIDGED (55 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3466)
    Performance
    (3037)
    Story
    (3025)

    The year is 1771. Claire Randall is still an outlander, out of place and out of time. But now she is linked by love to her only anchor: Jamie Fraser. They have crossed oceans and centuries to build a life together in North Carolina. But tensions, both ancient and recent, threaten members of their clan. Knowing that his wife has the gift of prophecy, James must believe Claire, though he would prefer not to. Claire has shared a dreadful truth: there will, without a doubt, be a war.

    Dawn says: "THANK YOU!!!"
  • The Green Gauntlet

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By R. F. Delderfield
    • Narrated By Jonathan Oliver
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Paul and Claire Craddock have grown older in years - but not in spirit. World War II is over. But there are new battles to be fought and won. The new property laws enable speculators to reap huge profits from agricultural lands, and Paul’s livelihood is threatened. With the help of his family, Paul struggles to preserve the happiness and peace he has built up over the years. In doing so, he comes to discover deeper, richer ties with those around him....

  • Shame and the Captives

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Thomas Keneally
    • Narrated By Paul English, Heather Bolton
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    On the edge of a small town in New South Wales, far from the battlefields of the Second World War, lies a prisoner-of-war camp housing Italian, Korean and Japanese soldiers. For their guards and the locals, many with loved ones away fighting, captive or dead, it is hard to know how to treat them - with disdain, hatred or compassion? Alice, a young woman leading a dull life on her father-in-law's farm, is one of those with a husband held prisoner in Europe.

  • Empire of Sand

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Robert Ryan
    • Narrated By Ralph Lister
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    As the future of Europe is being decided in the muddy trenches of the Western Front, Lieutenant Thomas Edward Lawrence is thousands of miles away, toiling in the map room of the British Army’s general headquarters in Cairo. But the young intelligence officer has big ideas - none bigger than his vision of a unified Arabia free of its Ottoman rulers. Before T. E. Lawrence can become Lawrence of Arabia, however, he must first contend with the notorious German spy Wilhelm Wassmuss.

  • Roots: The Saga of an American Family

    • ABRIDGED (14 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Alex Haley
    • Narrated By Avery Brooks
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    It begins with a birth in an African village in 1750, and ends two centuries later at a funeral in Arkansas. And in that time span, an unforgettable cast of men, women, and children come to life, many of them based on the people from Alex Haley's own family tree. When Alex was a boy growing up in Tennessee, his grandmother used to tell him stories about their family, stories that went way back to a man she called the African who was taken aboard a slave ship bound for Colonial America.

  •  
  • Signal Red: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Robert Ryan
    • Narrated By Ralph Lister
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    In August 1963, a Royal Mail train traveling between Glasgow and London was forced to make an unscheduled stop. Led by a charismatic jewel thief, a gang of fifteen unarmed men boarded the train, incapacitated the driver, and made off with more than 2 million. Divided equally, it was more than enough money for them to disappear forever—if they could all keep quiet. Incensed by the brazenness of the crime, Scotland Yard investigators employed every means they could think of to get the thieves to turn on one another.

  • The Steady Running of the Hour: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Justin Go
    • Narrated By Steve West
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    In 1924, the English mountaineer Ashley Walsingham dies attempting to summit Mount Everest, leaving his fortune to his former lover, Imogen Soames-Andersson - whom he has not seen in seven years. Ashley's solicitors search in vain for Imogen, but the estate remains unclaimed. Nearly 80 years later, new information leads the same law firm to Tristan Campbell, a young American who could be the estate's rightful heir. If Tristan can prove he is Imogen's descendant, the inheritance will be his.

  • Yukon Gold

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By M. & M. Lehman
    • Narrated By Gene Engene
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Prim and proper Becky Hurst leaves the frontier town of Seattle and travels alone to the Yukon to join her ne'er-do-well husband. But things don't turn out like she planned. Becky learns worldly truths that were suppressed while sheltered in her parents' home. Her survival is soon linked to her quick wit and new found prowess with firearms. Proper manners fall by the wayside as she grows stronger and trailwise, challenging the wilderness on its own terms. Becky learns to survive and endure in a man's world, but at what cost...

  • Ramage's Diamond

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Dudley Pope
    • Narrated By Steven Crossley
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    The youngest captain in His Majesty's Navy, with a reputation for landing impossible assignments, Lord Ramage is dispatched to the Caribbean islands of Martinique and Diamond Rock. The mission seems humdrum: barricade the French within Fort Royal. But sent to sea in the Juno with a crew grown restless and undisciplined under the prior commmand of a drunk, Ramage realizes his vessel may not be up to battle with the French.