Tucked away in the beautiful mountains of New Mexico.
It's a tough call, but I think I actually liked this book more than "Fierce Invalids..." It was fun and certainly had me laughing out loud in places. I'd listen to this book a second time.
The story was good but the sound quality was awful. I almost returned it after 20 minutes of listening but I really wanted to hear this one based on other reviews. You do eventually get used to it and the voice actor's version of Larry Diamond makes it worth it.
I love the gentleman who did the narration; great vocal changes, but the recording was so echo-ey that I had to listen to it at full volume occasionally. :(
This book, like other Tom Robbin books I've read, has a character that does most of the talking, expounding as if he/she is absolutely the only possessor of a deep understanding of some form of unusual facet of life or nature. I like the premise of this book but not the delivery so much. I believe if Tom Robbins used action instead of soliloquies I'd say "great book!"
I enjoyed this crazy story while it lasted but felt unsatisfied when it was all over. Just stange in the end, although I did enjoy the ride most of the time.
I found this book to be thoroughly UNenjoyable. Once again, Tom Robbins has populated a narrative with depressingly unlikable characters, each burdened by a vast array of disturbing idiosyncrasies. Based upon the rave reviews that Robbins' works often receive, I had hoped that "Fierce Invalids" was merely a freakish aberration that had deluded readers into lauding a comic farce for its shear eccentricity. Instead, it seems clear that a perverse universe is an integral element of Robbins' "style". I shall not be fooled again by clever titles or the misguided ravings of fanatical Robbins worshippers. The emperor has no clothes. This book is simply terrible--road kill on the literary freeway. Passersby are tempted to stare in grotesque fascination but my advice is to resist these urges at all cost! Robbins writing style is littered throughout with awkwardly bizarre turns of phrase and alliteration so heavy-handed that it one would think the text was written by a freshman English major who just discovered how to use a thesaurus.
Barry Bostwick's clumsy narration only adds to the overall displeasure. While Bostwick is a talented actor, his amateurish bludgeoning of this text only establishes how very talented professional narrators really are. Bostwick wildly pitch poles between reverberant shouts and inaudible whispers requiring the listener to remain ever poised above the volume controls and the rewind buttons to even understand much of the dialogue. His voice characterizations are sadly inept, reducing one female voice to a breathy whisper and others to poor impressions of W.C. Fields and Harvey Firestein.
There are many fine audio books available. This is not one of them.
This was one of the worst audio books ever! The reader( who I like as an actor) was terrible and his accents of women made me cringe. This was my book club selection so I was forced to finish it. Perhaps reading it would have been better - the audio editor should have been fired.
I was very disappointed by this book. Most of the time I was confused about what exactly was going on. The only interesting parts were when Gwenodyn is bating to trap the monkey with banana popsicles and the VERY detailed accounts of her sexual adventures. I hated the ending. The author just kinda of threw out the ending as if it was an after-thought. Also, the person chosen to read this book was a terrible choice. I am sure it had a little to do with it being an older recording; but, a woman should have read this book. It would have added so much more since the main character was a woman.
At the time I downloaded this book only Format 3 was available, which is a big step down in audio quality from other audiobooks in my Library. Eventually, I got used to the muffled sounds, but it is far from ideal.
Minor Spoiler Alert:
Tom Robbins develops interesting, believable characters and amusing situations in Half Asleep in Frog Pajamas, my first Robbins read, and he has a knack for churning out unexpectedly clever metaphors. I love the second person narration. But, about 3/4 of the way through the book, he uses the characters as mouthpieces to lecture on ridiculous theories of aliens and ancient civilization. This dialogue seemed forced, and my interest in the book waned, but I have stuck with it.