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Diana - Audible

Thinker Meets Explorer

Member Since 2009

117
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 12 reviews
  • 43 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 2 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
7
FOLLOWERS
275

  • The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Narrated By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4450)
    Performance
    (2104)
    Story
    (2103)

    In The Tipping Point, New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell looks at why major changes in society happen suddenly and unexpectedly. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a few fare-beaters and graffiti artists fuel a subway crime wave, or a satisfied customer fill the empty tables of a new restaurant. These are social epidemics, and the moment when they take off, when they reach their critical mass, is the Tipping Point.

    Marian Hanganu says: "Exceptional!"
    "My tipping point…for audio"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Malcolm Gladwell’s The Tipping Point was the first book I ever listened to, well at least completely. I had a hard time grasping all the characters and unfolding plot lines in fiction at first – and had listened to the beginnings of some novels as many as seven times – before I fell in love with being read to in The Tipping Point.

    I’m not sure if it was Gladwell’s fascinating concepts, or the feeling as if he was talking right with me, but I remember listening the whole way through, alone at home, one quiet autumn night.

    …And the rest is history. I’ve listened to many more books since then – both fiction and nonfiction – but this one will always remain a favorite of mine.

    20 of 22 people found this review helpful
  • Gone Girl: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Gillian Flynn
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan, Kirby Heyborne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (15701)
    Performance
    (13928)
    Story
    (13962)

    It is Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick's clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn't doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media - as well as Amy's fiercely doting parents - the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he's definitely bitter - but is he really a killer?

    Teddy says: "Demented, twisted, sick and I loved it!"
    "Didn't think I'd like it, but couldn't put it down"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I brought Gone Girl on a trip with me to London, and while I enjoyed the sights there, I also couldn't put this book down when I got back to my hotel each night. I didn't like the wife Amy's voice at first - she felt a little too self-absorbed and flippant - but as the mystery unfolded, I could see just why.

    Like the couple at the center of this novel, you somehow get sucked into their dysfunctional marriage and cannot let go until the very (twisted) end.

    This was my first time listening to Gillian Flynn, and it won't be the last--she has a fresh, eye-opening way of shedding insight into marriage and relationships. (Just listen to the "cool girl" passage--it's worth your credit alone.)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • What Happened to Cass McBride?

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Gail Giles
    • Narrated By Andy Karl, Khristine Hvam, Joshua Swanson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (52)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    What happened to Cass McBride? That's the question everyone is asking - her father, who finds her gone and her room violated; Ben Grey, the detective who catches the case; even Cass herself, who awakens from a drugged sleep with a walkie-talkie taped to her hand in a cold, dark...coffin?

    Kathy says: "Outstanding in every way!"
    "Listened in one sitting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was one of the first books I listened to for book club at Audible, and surprisingly I couldn't put it down. (I finished it on one car ride back to my family home.) Actually make that a car ride, trip to the grocery store, and late-night finish once I was home. I wanted to find out about what happened to Cass and, more importantly, why.

    So much so that I didn't even notice the supermarket stock man who offered me a shopping cart (after my handheld basket was overflowing). Good thing because I had more time to listen - and shop - after that!

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Boomerang: Travels in the New Third World

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1796)
    Performance
    (1487)
    Story
    (1499)

    The tsunami of cheap credit that rolled across the planet between 2002 and 2008 was more than a simple financial phenomenon: it was temptation, offering entire societies the chance to reveal aspects of their characters they could not normally afford to indulge. The Greeks wanted to turn their country into a pinata stuffed with cash and allow as many citizens as possible to take a whack at it. The Germans wanted to be even more German; the Irish wanted to stop being Irish.

    Andy says: "we may not be the most stupid kids on the planet"
    "An easy intro to the global financial crisis"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I’ve always found the financial crisis difficult to understand, particularly when it comes to the global level. But Michael Lewis makes it entertaining and easy-to-understand through his firsthand account of the larger-than-life characters from five nations: Iceland, Greece, Ireland, Germany, and (last but not least) the US.

    The story of Iceland was especially fascinating – I remember a business acquaintance there who had to fly with thousands in cash shortly after the 2008 meltdown. Lewis not only explains the cause behind the collapse, but also the reasons for the rise of cheap credit in a nation that once made its fortune in fishing.

    Dylan Baker’s conversational tone makes it feel like Lewis is talking right to you, and he gets the occasional notes of sarcasm just right too. I’ll definitely be listening to more from him, and Lewis.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Still Life

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Louise Penny
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1877)
    Performance
    (1251)
    Story
    (1259)

    Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and his team of investigators are called in to the scene of a suspicious death in a rural village south of Montreal. Jane Neal, a local fixture in the tiny hamlet of Three Pines just north of the U.S. border, has been found dead in the woods. The locals are certain it's nothing more than a tragic hunting accident, but Gamache smells something foul in these remote woods.

    Sydney says: "a gentle mystery"
    "Settling into life in Three Pines"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I first started this series with the fifth novel, The Brutal Telling, which quickly drew me into the quiet charm – and unexpected intrigue – of Quebec’s Three Pines. A rural village south of Montreal, this community is home to a host of all-too-human characters, my favorite being the mysteries’ hero: the tough yet compassionate Chief Inspector Armand Gamache.

    Listening to Still Life was like a reunion with close friends, made even more intimate by Ralph Cosham’s around the fireplace-esque narration. This is a series for those who like their mysteries well-written, their protagonists multilayered, and their murders offstage. I can’t wait to listen to the next, A Fatal Grace.

    18 of 18 people found this review helpful
  • Old Man's War

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By William Dufris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3612)
    Performance
    (2577)
    Story
    (2604)

    John Perry did two things on his 75th birthday. First, he visited his wife's grave. Then he joined the army. The good news is that humanity finally made it into interstellar space. The bad news is that planets fit to live on are scarce - and alien races willing to fight us for them are common. So, we fight, to defend Earth and to stake our own claim to planetary real estate. Far from Earth, the war has been going on for decades: brutal, bloody, unyielding.

    Michael says: "As good as Heinlein"
    "A welcome listening challenge"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Audible’s editors thought it would be fun for each of us try a genre we haven’t listened to before, and for me it was sci-fi. Our resident expert on the topic, Steve, recommended John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War as a place to start—and what a start it was! Filled with space battle, technology of the future (including new and improved bodies), characters you’ll care about, and even a heart-tugging love story, this book was a great way to ease into the category. One of the things I loved most was Scalzi’s insights into what makes us human. Or as he says, “Part of what makes us human is what we mean to other humans and what they miss about us.”

    16 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • Please Look After Mom

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Kyung-Sook Shin, Chi-Young Kim (translator)
    • Narrated By Mark Bramhall, Samantha Quan, Janet Song, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (175)
    Performance
    (113)
    Story
    (112)

    On a family visit to the city, Mom is right behind her husband when the train pulls out of Seoul Station without her, and she is lost, possibly forever. As her children argue over how to find her, they each recall their lives with her. Have they lived up to her expectations? Was she happy? Through the piercing voices of daughter, son, and husband, and through Mom’s own words in the novel’s shattering conclusion, we learn what happened that day, and explore an even deeper mystery—of motherhood itself.

    Diana - Audible says: "A moving family portrait"
    "A moving family portrait"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What would you do if your mother suddenly disappeared? And how would it make you feel: Guilty? Helpless? Exhausted? Kyung-Sook Shin poses this question in her power-packed and emotionally-gripping novel exploring the desires and heartaches of motherhood – and one family’s relationship with their mom.

    The excellent narrator cast brings to life the voices of each family member and expertly navigates Shin’s unique second-person point of view. While this perspective takes getting used to, it’s worth the effort. This is a beautiful and life-changing novel that deserves all the praise and awards it’s won so far.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Informationist: A Vanessa Michael Munroe Novel, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Taylor Stevens
    • Narrated By Hillary Huber
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1324)
    Performance
    (729)
    Story
    (741)

    Vanessa “Michael” Munroe deals in information - expensive information - working for corporations, heads of state, private clients, and anyone else who can pay for her unique brand of expertise. Born to missionary parents in lawless central Africa, Munroe took up with an infamous gunrunner and his mercenary crew when she was just fourteen. As his protégé, she earned the respect of the jungle's most dangerous men, cultivating her own reputation for years until something sent her running. After almost a decade building a new life and lucrative career from her home base in Dallas, she's never looked back. Until now....

    Denise says: "UGH!!!"
    "What a start!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I started listening to The Informationist while taking the train home on a Friday – usually the time I close my eyes and unwind after a full week. But this time my imagination was captured by Taylor Stevens’ tough-as-nails, mysterious new action heroine: information specialist Vanessa “Michael” Monroe. Some say her character is a bit over the top – too much of a butt-kicking Angelina Jolie – but what I find most interesting about her is Stevens’ own cult history past woven into Monroe’s intimate knowledge of the wilds of Africa. Hilary Huber’s cool and sultry tone fits Monroe’s character, and I’m looking forward to more from them in The Innocent.

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • One Day

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By David Nicholls
    • Narrated By Anna Bentinck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (929)
    Performance
    (518)
    Story
    (519)

    It's 1988 and Dexter Mayhew and Emma Morley have only just met. They both know that the next day, after college graduation, they must go their separate ways. But after only one day together, they cannot stop thinking about one another. As the years go by, Dex and Em begin to lead separate lives. And yet, unable to let go of that special something that grabbed onto them that first night, an extraordinary relationship develops between the two.

    Kathy says: "Great book, bad ending"
    "A love story that stays with you"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As my fellow editor and One Day fan, Emily, can attest, I couldn’t stop talking to her about this book while I was listening to it. I was initially drawn to the book after hearing so many great things about it, and it wasn’t long before I found myself sucked into it—listening every chance I got in the car rides to and from work, while preparing dinner, and also reading the print copy before bed.

    I don’t want to spoil the ending or big moments for you, so I’ll just say that this is one of those grand novels that pull you in and have you rooting for a seemingly unlikely couple: the hedonistic antihero Dex and his brief college lover-turned-lifelong friend Emma.

    For me, Anna Bentinck was THE voice of the idealistic, feminist, and ever-searching Emma – and captured Dex’s cool and aloof baritone quite perfectly too. I’m curious as to how Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess will interpret their characters in the film of One Day.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Amy Chua
    • Narrated By Amy Chua
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (636)
    Performance
    (375)
    Story
    (380)

    All decent parents want to do what's best for their children. What Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother reveals is that the Chinese just have a totally different idea of how to do that. Western parents try to respect their children's individuality, encouraging them to pursue their true passions and providing a nurturing environment. The Chinese believe that the best way to protect your children is by preparing them for the future and arming them with skills, strong work habits, and inner confidence.

    Diana - Audible says: "Surprisingly touching (and well-read)"
    "Surprisingly touching (and well-read)"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As an Asian American, I read my share of Tiger Mother articles debating the merits of Amy Chua’s tough love, but for-the-best-of-her-children approach to parenting. And while many of these articles depicted Chua as a relentless dragon lady-type mom, none of them prepared me for some of the touching stories she actually had to tell in Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.

    Now don’t get me wrong – Chua did force her daughters to practice the violin, for hours, on family vacations – but she also confesses to feelings of loss and doubt when she’s just not sure if she’s doing the right thing, the best thing for her daughters.

    In the end, whether you agree with her or not, you’re sure to take away some helpful insights about seeing and bringing out the best in your son or daughter. And if Chua’s assured first-time narration is any indicator, the hard work may just pay off after all.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Faithful Place: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Tana French
    • Narrated By Tim Gerard Reynolds
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3517)
    Performance
    (1916)
    Story
    (1919)

    New York Times best-selling author Tana French has won the prestigious Edgar, Barry, Macavity, and Anthony awards. As her third novel featuring the Dublin Murder Squad opens, 19-year-old Frank Mackey is waiting in vain for Rosie, who he’s supposed to run away to London with. But when she doesn’t show, Frank leaves Dublin without her—thinking never to return.

    Buffalogal says: "Incredible"
    "Kept me listening until 3 AM"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was my first introduction to Tana French and her love-‘em-or-leave-him Dublin detective Frank Mackey. And what an introduction it was—I couldn’t stop listening to this book until the very end (which for me, happened to be at 3 AM!).

    The plot is a zinger – a suitcase from a long-disappeared lover shows up at Mackey’s family home – and new narrator Tim Gerard Reynolds does a fabulous job with bringing the detective’s fieriness and his hometown’s Irish accents wonderfully to life.

    I can wait for the next novel, Broken Harbor, out July 24. Until then, I’ll be catching up on In the Woods and The Likeness.

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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