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Susie

I'm Audible's first Editor-at-Large, the host of In Bed with Susie Bright -- and a longtime author, editor, journo, and bookworm. I listen to audio when I'm cooking, playing cards, knitting, going to bed, waking up, driving, and putting other people's kids to bed! My favorite audiobooks, ever, are: "True Grit" and "The Dog of the South."

Santa Cruz, CA, United States | Member Since 2012

ratings
505
REVIEWS
232
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
201
HELPFUL VOTES
523

  • Dennis Hopper: The Wild Ride of a Hollywood Rebel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Peter L. Winkler
    • Narrated By Greg Itzin
    Overall
    (36)
    Performance
    (30)
    Story
    (30)

    One of America's most intriguing show-business luminaries and true rebels, Dennis Hopper's amazing life was a roller-coaster series of triumphs and failures. Always intent on proving his genius and leaving a legacy, the Emmy-winning and Oscar-nominated Hopper acted in more than 115 movies and four TV series, directed seven films, and passionately pursued an artist's life as a photographer and creator and collector of modern art.

    Susie says: "Sex, Drugs, & Hollywood Money"
    "Sex, Drugs, & Hollywood Money"
    Overall
    Performance
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    I thought I knew Dennis Hopper, but the first chapter of this book left my jaw open— What an incredible childhood! He was lucky to live through it.

    Hopper was “discovered” in Hollywood by falling off a log— it was so easy for him. He would just show up and get attention the minute he walked through the door.

    Winkler spares no private details. “Names are named,” he promises, and they are. You’ll learn every gruesome deal in movie industry, plus the requisite 60s-level sex and drugs. And the art. Of course, the art.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Nowhere in Africa: An Autobiographical Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Stefanie Zweig
    • Narrated By Max Roll
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    Nowhere in Africa is the extraordinary tale of a Jewish family who flees the Nazi regime in 1938 for a remote farm in Kenya. Abandoning their once-comfortable existence in Germany, Walter Redlich, his wife Jettel, and their five-year-old daughter, Regina, each deal with the harsh realities of their new life in different ways. Attorney Walter is resigned to working the farm as a caretaker; pampered Jettel resists adjustment at every turn; while the shy yet curious Regina immediately embraces the country - learning the local language and customs.

    Susie says: "Book Even Better than Oscar-Winning Movie"
    "Book Even Better than Oscar-Winning Movie"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This autobiographical novel operates on several levels: a holocaust memoir a thrilling adventure, and a family drama.

    Driven from Nazi Germany to Kenya, the family must adjust, with varying levels of success, to life in a completely foreign land. They were glad to be safe from the Nazis, but now had to contend with the racism and anti-semitism of their host nation, and the English colonizers, and also the guilt and worry of what was happening in Europe.

    Family dynamics, and the horror and confusion of displacement, are at the heart of this audiobook. The father's haunting guilt, the mother's resistance to change, daughter Regina's embrace of her new land. Africa, from the viewpoint of Regina, seems almost magical and full of possibility, but also completely destabilizing.

    Narrator, Max Roll has a wide variety of accents and personalities to contend with, and he does a superb job of making each voice distinct and alive. He brings pathos to the reading that adds tremendously to the story.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Business Secrets of the Trappist Monks: One CEO’s Quest for Meaning and Authenticity

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By August Turak
    • Narrated By August Turak
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (4)

    In addition to his work as an entrepreneur, corporate executive, and consultant, for the last 16 years August Turak worked alongside the Trappist monks of Mepkin Abbey, watching firsthand as they undertook new enterprises and sustained an incredibly successful business practice. Service and selflessness are at the heart of this 1,500-year-old monastic tradition’s remarkable business success, an ancient though immensely relevant economic model that preserves what is positive and productive about capitalism while transcending its ethical limitations and internal contradictions.

    Susie says: "Succeed in Business without Losing your Soul"
    "Succeed in Business without Losing your Soul"
    Overall
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    Story

    Do you consider business writing heartless at worst, and boring at best? August Turak will change your mind. The rather wildly successful Turak takes his lessons from the monks of the Mepkin Abbey and shows how he brought them to work in his business... Fascinating.

    What I found especially gratifying were the peeks into the cycles of monastic life. Turak has a keen sense of what motivates and drives people and you see it in his observations here; planting, harvesting, meditation, meals, and also the personalities of the monks who lived there.

    Turak narrates himself and does a wonderful job of conveying his interest in the subject and regard for the people he's written about.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • House of Sable Locks

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Schechter
    • Narrated By Priscilla Carson, Roger Frisk
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    In a respectable neighborhood, on the top floor of a beautiful house, crouches the Succubus; by design, and by temperament, she is all that men crave and fear. To the wealthy and privileged men of London, the Succubus is a test they must pass to gain access to the House of Sable Locks, the most exclusive brothel in town. However, to William, a wealthy young man born and raised in India, she is the very essence of his desires.

    Susie says: "An Astonishing Steampunk Fairy Tale"
    "An Astonishing Steampunk Fairy Tale"
    Overall
    Performance
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    Elizabeth Schechter has written a stunner of a an erotic steampunk tale. She explores the roots of eroticism in our psyches, and our turn ons in our fears and in our playfulness. She takes her time revealing nuance and plot, but her confident, sensual prose immediately intrigues.

    The idea of exploring the intersection of man and machine is crucial today. Schechter makes us think about it afresh by placing the question in Victorian England. It's part ghost story, part sic-fi, and thoroughly romantic.

    Priscilla Carson and Roger Frisk add brilliant performances. Carson's mastery of languid pacing in her voicing of the Succubus gave me chills, and Frisk inhabited his characters. Right away, you could here the authority of class, and the insecurity beneath it. I couldn't wait for his capitulation and release.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Wanderlust: A Love Affair with Five Continents

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Elisabeth Eaves
    • Narrated By Erin Bennett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    Spanning 15 years of travel, beginning when she is a sophomore in college, Wanderlust documents Elisabeth Eaves’ insatiable hunger for the rush of the unfamiliar and the experience of encountering new people and cultures. Young and independent, she crisscrosses five continents and chases the exotic, both in culture and in romance.

    Susie says: "Travel for Love and Love of Travel"
    "Travel for Love and Love of Travel"
    Overall
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    Elizabeth Eaves takes you all over the world in this very personal account of her love affair with travel. We see the world through her eyes, but we also see the phenomenon of who we become when we explore a new place alone.

    "I traveled for love, and loved to travel, making it hard to disentangle cause from effect." Eaves's motivation is often love, or lust, and really, there is no "right" way to take a personal journey. She fell in love with who she became when she travelled, and the fulfillment she gained from her affairs along the way.

    Unguarded and truthful, this audiobook helps reveal the siren's song of travel that's been calling all along. I'm ready to ditch my attachments and set out to find the world.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Spacesuit: Fashioning Apollo

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Nicholas de Monchaux
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    When Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped onto the lunar surface in July of 1969, they wore spacesuits made by Playtex: 21 layers of fabric, each with a distinct yet interrelated function, custom-sewn for them by seamstresses whose usual work was fashioning bras and girdles. This book is the story of that spacesuit. It is a story of the triumph over the military-industrial complex by the International Latex Corporation, best known by its consumer brand of "Playtex" - a victory of elegant softness over engineered hardness, of adaptation over cybernetics.

    Susie says: "Supple Triumphs Over Hard"
    "Supple Triumphs Over Hard"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    We are all so inured to the image of the Apollo 11 astronauts in their puffy marshmallow-man space suits, that we forget what sensational achievements those suits were. This is the story of how the elegant, but ultimately impractical designs of military industry were defeated by Playtex, makers of women’s undergarments, the people who knew how to fashion fit.

    Anyone looking for the irony in history here’s your audiobook. It’s filled with moments of deep moral inquiry juxtaposed with the absurd.

    These twenty-one essays, fascinating and funny, describe the suit and its evolution from fashion, manufacture, the absurd things expected of earth-evolved human bodies in outer space, the space race, and more.

    Bronson Pinchot catches all the dry humor in the book and gives a truly entertaining reading of the many passages like the following,

    “Once agreed upon, the only problem came with sizing the most intimate part of the suit assembly, the urinary collection device (UCD) that slid over the astronaut’s penis. After an “incident” with the first astronaut fitted for the device, the UCD’s designations were changed from ‘Small, Medium, Large’ to ‘Large, Extra Large,’ and ‘Extra-Extra Large.’”

    Well, now we know.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Acid Dreams: The Complete Social History of LSD: The CIA, the Sixties, and Beyond

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Martin A. Lee, Bruce Shlain
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (21)
    Story
    (21)

    Few events have had a more profound impact on the social and cultural upheavals of the Sixties than the psychedelic revolution spawned by the spread of LSD. This audiobook for the first time tells the full and astounding story - part of it hidden till now in secret Government files - of the role the mind-altering drug played in our recent turbulent history and the continuing influence it has on our time. And what a story it is, beginning with LSD’s discovery in 1943 as the most potent drug known to science.

    Susie says: "Mind. Blown."
    "Mind. Blown."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    You may THINK you know all about the CIA and its LSD experiments on soldiers and civilians— but you don’t know the half of it.

    Thought the hippies came up with the phrase “trip?” No— it was the military. The CIA was OBSESSED in the Cold War idea of a truth serum, convinced the Soviets had their own, but their experiments went way further. Their perversion will astound you: force-fed acid trips, doses there was no way to come back from, secrets and lies.

    "Acid Dreams" is a thorough and serious book, but it’s full of juicy details and the kind of improbable stories that turn history into entertainment.

    There have been other books about LSD after this, but nothing has surpassed this gem. It should have been on audio long ago. Tune in and turn on!

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Coming Out Atheist: How to Do It, How to Help Each Other, and Why

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Greta Christina
    • Narrated By Greta Christina
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (17)
    Story
    (17)

    Coming out as an atheist is a powerful, liberating act. It makes life better for you, for other atheists, and for the world. But telling people you're an atheist can be risky. What are the best ways to do it? And how can we help each other take this step? In this compassionate, friendly, down-to-earth how-to guide, popular author of Why Are You Atheists So Angry? 99 Things That Piss Off the Godless and blogger Greta Christina, offers concrete strategies and guiding philosophies for coming out as an atheist.

    NateHevens says: "Absolutely Perfect"
    "All the Motivation You'll Need"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    When I asked Greta Christina to write and record for Audible “Why are You Atheists so Angry?” I had no idea the tremendous response it would get. It remains one of the best-selling books I’ve produced here at Audible.

    “Coming Out Atheist” is a worthy successor. Greta reaches out to those who need encouragement and tells the experiences of those who took the plunge to let their friends, family and colleagues know what they really believe and who they truly are.

    Greta is like a best friend offering, stories, advice, sympathy, and motivation to come out.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Thousand Pieces of Gold

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Ruthanne Lum McCunn
    • Narrated By Emily Zeller
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    Lalu Nathoy's father called his thirteen-year-old daughter his treasure, his "thousand pieces of gold," yet when famine strikes northern China in 1871, he is forced to sell her. Polly, as Lalu is later called, is sold to a brothel, sold again to a slave merchant bound for America, auctioned to a saloonkeeper, and offered as a prize in a poker game. This biographical novel is the extraordinary story of one woman's fight for independence and dignity in the American West.

    Richard says: "Stunningly excellent both story and narration"
    "A Women's Studies Classic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This historic novel, based on a true story, brings to life the often untold story of a woman’s Chinese immigrant experience.

    During a famine, adored daughter, Lalu, is sold into slavery to save the family, re-sold and brought by a madame to America, sold again to gamblers, and then gains her freedom through a benefactor in a poker game.

    Let me say this again: this was a true story!

    There are many passages describing life in the new world and mining camps that show how brutal and hard life in China, then Idaho was. It would be easy to assume that Lalu, re-named “Polly” was as passive as those thousand pieces of gold she’s compared to, but she’s made of stronger stuff. She’s treated like a commodity, but retains a solid core and determination to find freedom and happiness, which eventually, she does.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Dark Alliance: The CIA, the Contras, and the Crack Cocaine Explosion

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Gary Webb
    • Narrated By Christian Rummel
    Overall
    (97)
    Performance
    (84)
    Story
    (89)

    In July 1995, San Jose Mercury-News reporter Gary Webb found the Big One - the blockbuster story every journalist secretly dreams about - without even looking for it. A simple phone call concerning an unexceptional pending drug trial turned into a massive conspiracy involving the Nicaraguan Contra rebels, L.A. and Bay Area crack cocaine dealers, and the Central Intelligence Agency.

    Lucien says: "Rude Awakening"
    "Bigger than You Thought"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    “So that they may know at what altars their communities were sacrificed.”

    This book is going to blow your mind. Some conspiracies are worse than the rumors.

    In the early nineties, while investigating the Crack pandemic in L.A., Gary Webb was led further and further down the rabbit hole, finding evidence of the CIA’s involvement in drug trafficking to fund the Iran Contras everywhere he looked.

    Webb pursued this story with exhaustive investigation, at the expense of his career. He was hung out to dry by the San Jose Mercury News when the government pushed back, but he collected his research and published this book.

    Dark Alliance confirms all your worst suspicions about the CIA and the US’s secret wars. Funding their wars with the money and blood of the nation’s most downtrodden communities. Nicely done Reagan.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Donnie Eichar
    • Narrated By Donnie Eichar
    Overall
    (111)
    Performance
    (102)
    Story
    (100)

    In February 1959, a group of nine experienced hikers in the Russian Ural Mountains died mysteriously on an elevation known as Dead Mountain. Eerie aspects of the incident—unexplained violent injuries, signs that they cut open and fled the tent without proper clothing or shoes, a strange final photograph taken by one of the hikers, and elevated levels of radiation found on some of their clothes—have led to decades of speculation over what really happened.

    Bruce says: "Fascinating and compassionate investigation"
    "Something Out There"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Before coming across this audiobook, I’d never heard of the disappearance of Soviet students in the Ural Mountains known as Dyatlov Pass Incident, but the mystery reeled me in. It might as well be an idea for a Twilight Zone, or X-files script.

    Nine young, healthy, experienced hikers set out on a trek through the Urals, set up camp, and then flee their tent without proper gear, or even their shoes. Their bodies are later found frozen and injured. Why did they leave?

    Donnie Eichar, who narrates himself, wanted to know too, so he set out in their footprints to solve the riddle. His book offers an investigation that gives a heartbreaking portrait of these doomed hikers, the search for them afterwards, and his own inquiry.

    His conclusions may not have settled all the questions surrounding the Dead Mountain incident, but the story getting there is as engrossing as any unsolved mystery.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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