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Ronna

ratings
166
REVIEWS
165
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
84
HELPFUL VOTES
392

  • A Winter Dream

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Richard Paul Evans
    • Narrated By Fred Berman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (69)
    Performance
    (64)
    Story
    (62)

    Joe is forced out of the family business by his jealous siblings. Moving on to another company, he soon becomes chief advisor to the CEO. But when the economy turns, Joe's siblings need his help to save the family business. Based on the Old Testament story about Joseph and the coat of many colors and including a love story, A Winter Dream can be embraced for its message of forgiveness by believers and nonbelievers alike.

    Susan says: "Full of heart, emotional depth & wisdom"
    "Great contemporary reselling of the Joseph story!"
    Overall
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    A WINTER DREAM is a modern parable based on the Biblical story of Joseph and his family. In this story, Joseph's father is a Vietnam war hero who now runs a very successful advertising agency in Colorado.

    When Joseph comes up with a winning slogan for a bank campaign, his father's congratulations and pride lead him to pass on his Vietnam's bomber jacket to Joseph rather than the eldest son. This becomes the last straw for his older brothers.

    This creative re telling continues, with the addition of an intriguing love interest who further complicates Joseph's life. As in the Biblical story, love, loyalty and forgiveness are the basis of life changing events for everyone. Excellently repurposed story for today's readers!!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Holiday Buzz: A Coffeehouse Mystery, Book 12

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Cleo Coyle
    • Narrated By Rebecca Gibel
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (23)
    Story
    (23)

    At the Great New York Cookie Swap, pastry chefs bake up their very best for charity. Clare is in charge of the beverage service, and her famous Fa-la-la-la Lattes make the gathering even merrier. But her high spirits come crashing down when she discovers the battered body of a hard-working baker's assistant. Police suspect a serial attacker whose escalating crimes have become known as "the Christmas Stalkings". Clare'sboyfriend, NYPD detective Mike Quinn, finds reason to believe even more sinister forces are involved.

    Ronna says: "Cookies can be murder"
    "Cookies can be murder"
    Overall
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    Clare Cozy and almost all of our favorite Village Blend Coffeehouse characters are back in a holiday mystery while they are celebrating with cookie events with cookies from around the world. Moirin is a new young Irish employee that everyone enjoys. She bakes the cookies for the coffeehouse, but actually works at the bakery that developed the cookies. She's a music lover too, but sadly, she's bludgeoned to death at a cookie festival event. Clare found her body and is determined to find her killer with a little help from her boyfriend, family, and her baristas.

    I love this series for so many reasons. The Cleo Coyle writing team always adds numerous interesting facts, local information, and yummy sounding recipes to their mysteries. In this one, there are added characters that are a take off from reality TV that are a laugh and a half. The mystery is compelling with clues on every page. We also hear more and more about Clare's love life with her, Detective Mike Quinn, who is on a secret duty in Washington, DC. One of my very favorite cozies done in audio. The spoken accents add so much to my enjoyment of this series. Looking forward to the new one in this series coming in November 2014.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Shots Fired: Stories from Joe Pickett Country

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By C. J. Box
    • Narrated By Chandler David
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (18)

    From C. J. Box, the New York Times-bestselling author of the Joe Pickett novels, comes a thrilling book of suspense stories about the Wyoming he knows so well - and the dark deeds and impulses that can be found there. Over the course of eighteen books, C. J. Box has been consistently hailed for his brilliant storytelling and extraordinary skills at creating character, suspense, and a deep sense of place. All of those strengths are in the ten riveting stories - three of them never before published - that make up Shots Fired.

    justin says: "That's odd...a THREE star review within 3 hours???"
    "CJ Box masterful in the short stories too"
    Overall
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    If you're a fan of CJ Box like I am, you must read everything that he writes. I'm generally not a fan of short stories, but every one of these is a winner. Especially appreciated the one that was a required 1000 words--no more and no less. Box's efficiency with just the right words made it interesting and complete.

    There are also a few that were previously only released for e readers, and I know a few people who were disappointed in not being able to read these before. A couple revolve around Joe Picket and Nate. Also a very interesting one "Pronghorns of The Third Reich" that was written around an actual picture from history.

    Great listening to them on Audible. David chandlers continues to do an excellent job narrating Box's works.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Wrong Girl

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Hank Phillippi Ryan
    • Narrated By Ilyana Kadushin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (15)

    Hank Phillippi Ryan presents a spine-chilling, heart-wrenching suspense novel that explores a terrifying scenario striking at the heart of every family. Does a respected adoption agency have a frightening secret? Tipped off by a determined ex-colleague on a desperate quest to find her birth mother, Boston newspaper reporter Jane Ryland begins to suspect that the agency is engaging in the ultimate betrayal - reuniting birth parents with the wrong children.

    Ronna says: "Overworked child services leads to greed & murder"
    "Overworked child services leads to greed & murder"
    Overall
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    This second book in the Investigative reporter, Jane Ryland, series is greatly aided by the knowledge that Hank Phillippi Ryan, a TV reporter herself, has in how a story is developed through personal investigations, police procedurals, and keeping all your sources available for inside information.

    Jane is working for a floundering Boston newspaper when her friend, Tucker, asks her to help her. Tucker has been matched up with her birth mother and they are getting along beautifully, until Tucker finds out that she's been matched with the wrong woman. At the same time, Jane's boss sends her out on a story of a murdered woman, also being investigated by her secret boyfriend, Jake, on the Boston police force. These investigations slowly collide in a larger investigation of the Brannigan Agency that matches adoptees and birth mothers, the foster care system, Child Services, and greedy individuals.

    The pace and building atmosphere of this story are superb in creating great tension and plot that made me feel that I was deeply involved with these people's lives. The problems that are present in the extremely overworked child and foster care system were aptly used in creating a very believable, but deeply troubling plot for this mystery. Definitely a memorable book. I listened to this on audio and believe that added a great deal to my enjoyment of this book !

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Boiled Over: A Maine Clambake Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Barbara Ross
    • Narrated By Dara Rosenberg
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (11)

    For Julia Snowden, the Founder's Day summer celebration in Busman's Harbor, Maine, means helping her family's clambake company to prepare an authentic taste of New England seafood. Any Mainer will tell you that a real clambake needs wood for the fire... so why is there a foot sticking out of the oven?

    Ronna says: "Families ties can be murder"
    "Families ties can be murder"
    Overall
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    Julia Snowden left her high powered New York job to help her family keep the Snowden Family Clambake making a profit, but she still plans to return to her "real" job. She's already helped in one murder investigation, getting her boyfriend out of trouble. Now on the Founder's Day committee, she comes to the docks to check on the Snowden families giant Clam baking oven, just to find a human leg hanging out of the fire and her newest young employee, Cabe, running away from the scene. Drawn into the investigation once again, Julia sets out to prove that this nice young kid, Cabe, is definitely innocent.

    I really have been enjoying this series. I like the atmosphere and food descriptions of the Maine coast and all of it's seafood. The cast of returning characters have really grown on me, and the situations and clues to this new mystery are done with suspense that kept me guessing, but definitely led me to the solution. I listened to this on audio and enjoyed the narration.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Clammed Up: A Maine Clambake Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Barbara Ross
    • Narrated By Dara Rosenberg
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Julia Snowden returned to her hometown to rescue her family's struggling clambake business - not to solve crimes. But that was before a catered wedding on picturesque Morrow Island turned into a reception for murder. When the best man's corpse is found hanging from the grand staircase in the Snowden family mansion, Julia must put the chowder pot on the back burner and join the search for the killer. And with suspicion falling on her old crush, Chris Durand, the recipe for saving her business and salvaging her love life might be one and the same…

    Ronna says: "Clambakes can be deadly!!"
    "Clambakes can be deadly!!"
    Overall
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    This new Maine Clambake Series starts off with a hanging body at a wedding. Not a good thing for a wedding celebration or the Snowden Family Clambake Company. Julia Snowden has left her high power job in New York to try and keep her family's floundering business from going under. Everything has been invested to keep it going, including her Mom's house, their boat, and the island where they have their clambakes.

    I really enjoyed this book as the mystery took a few twisting turns and the conclusion was different but very believable. Also enjoyed the emphasis on family sticking together--those by blood and those by long time friendships. The hints at future romantic entanglements between a few of the characters left me wanting to get right into the next book. Recipes were included, and the food descriptions in the book made me feel like I was right there at the clambake. Winning start to this new series!

    I listened to this on audio and really enjoyed the added dramatics. I'm finding that cozy reads are really fun to listen to as well as to read.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Reading Circle

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Ashton Lee
    • Narrated By Kate Baldwin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    Welcome to the quirky town of Cherico, Mississippi, where potluck meetings at the local library provide a feast for mind and stomach alike. . .If some folks had their way, the Cherico library would have shut down long ago. Councilman Durden Sparks aims to divert funding to a cause dear to his heart - and his wallet.

    Ronna says: "Can Maura Beth keep the library open?"
    "Can Maura Beth keep the library open?"
    Overall
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    The Cherry Cola Book Club of Cherico, Mississippi is on it's one year reprieve from Councilman Spark's determination to close the town's library down and use the funds to build his "Legacy", an industrial park--(THE CHERRY COLA BOOK CLUB). But librarian, Maura Beth Mayhew, still has tricks up her sleeve and a growing number of friends and patrons who are backing her efforts to keep the library open.

    As with the first book, there's interesting information on just what it takes to keep a library open. There's also an intriguing discussion of another book, FOREST GUMP, that gets it's members lives and view points front and center. The characters are becoming much more developed, with some romances and secrets revealed. The southern charm, humor, and gumption continues making this a terrific read. Secrets revealed give this story the bases for lots more books in this series--I hope!!

    I listened to the Audible version of this book which added lots of enjoyment to an already great read!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Cherry Cola Book Club

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Ashton Lee
    • Narrated By Marguerite Gavin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (16)

    In a small town in Mississippi, a young, upbeat librarian has been given an ultimatum: increase the library’s circulation dramatically or close its doors. Maura doesn’t just start a book club; she gets involved in unique and unexpected ways with her patrons. She entertains and advises, she has potluck dinners, and life in the town begins to imitate art. The patrons begin to relate their own lives to the work of writers like Margaret Mitchell and Harper Lee. In moving and personal ways, Maura helps them deal with such subjects as long-lost love and a brush with death.

    Ronna says: "Library book club full of "characters""
    "Library book club full of "characters""
    Overall
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    If you love your library and reading books, this is an excellent take on keeping a library going. This story is witty, informative, and full of southern small town charm. The Cherry Cola book group in Mississippi, was born out of desperation when librarian, Maura Beth Mathew finds that a crotchety city councilman wants to close down the library and use those funds to start a commercial area. If numbers of library users and library events don't raise, the library closes.

    The characters who make up the book group are quite interesting and diverse. Their discussions of Gone With The Wind and To Kill A Mockingbird cover everything from history to personal issues, with great warmth and lots of humor. Of course, the councilman's contributions are definitely meant to foil the fun.

    I really enjoyed this book, learning a lots about libraries and librarians, but mostly I enjoyed all the characters and their creative efforts to keep their library the center if their community and a treat in their lives. I listened to the audio version of this book and thoroughly enjoyed it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The City

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Dean Koontz
    • Narrated By Korey Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (170)
    Performance
    (156)
    Story
    (155)

    There are millions of stories in the city - some magical, some tragic, others terror-filled or triumphant. Jonah Kirk’s story is all of those things as he draws listeners into his life in the city as a young boy, introducing his indomitable grandfather, also a "piano man"; his single mother, a struggling singer; and the heroes, villains, and everyday saints and sinners who make up the fabric of the metropolis in which they live - and who will change the course of Jonah’s life forever. Welcome to The City, a place of evergreen dreams where enchantment and malice entwine.

    justin says: "How exactly a 2-star review with 4 hours???"
    "Simple but profound coming of age story"
    Overall
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    It's very difficult for me to pin point why I enjoy Koontz's writing so much, but I thoroughly enjoy every book of his that I have read. It's the way he turns a phrase, and seven words are actually better than one word in his writing. He takes simple thoughts and makes them sound profound. He makes me think with just the simplest statements. For example, in THE CITY, he says numerous times, "no matter what happens, everything will be all right in the end.". For most people's belief systems, this is very true, but I never thought of it in such a straight forward way.

    THE CITY is basically the coming of age story of a young African American boy, Jonah Kirk, born in the late 40's. He tells his life story around the events of the day. He's a musical prodigy from a musical family. Though his father had left the family when Jonah was very young, circumstances happen where his father's actions actually have a profound affect on Jonah's life.

    It's difficult to say any more about this story without giving spoilers, so I'll just say that Koontz still remains one of my favorite authors and I think that it's definitely worth any serious reader's time to enjoy the style and stories of Koontz. I listened to this on Audible which I believe enhanced this story because it seemed as though Jonah was actually talking about his own life.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Death of a Kitchen Diva

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Lee Hollis
    • Narrated By Tara Ochs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26)
    Performance
    (22)
    Story
    (23)

    Single mom Hayley Powell is barely keeping her leaking roof over her head when her boss at the Island Times gives her a new assignment - taking over the paper's food column. Hayley's not sure she has the chops - she's an office manager, not a writer, even if her friends clamor for her mouth-watering potluck dishes. But the extra income is tempting, and Hayley's chatty first column is suddenly on everyone's menu - with one exception. When rival food writer Karen Appelbaum is found face-down dead in a bowl of Hayley's creamy clam chowder, all signs point to Hayley.

    lola says: "protagonist was boring"
    "Newspaper recipe writer cozy mystery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Small town newspaper office manager, Hayley Powell, finds a little extra income by taking over her newspaper's food recipe column. She's in competition with the town's larger newspaper's foodie columnist. When they both come out with the same recipe for clam chowder tongues wag. Worse still, when Hayley goes to confront her competitor, she finds her dead on the floor with her spilled chowder. Being the main murder suspect sends Hayley on a dangerous path to prove her innocence.

    This start to a new cozy series has potential, but needs to improve to win me over. Hayley's parenting skills have a lot to be desired. Though my biggest issue was that the murderer really wasn't discussed enough in the book to give the reader a chance to discover who they were. The recipe columns were perhaps the best part of the book. Will give the next in the series a try before deciding to continue with this series or not.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Gods of Gotham

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Lyndsay Faye
    • Narrated By Steven Boyer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (521)
    Performance
    (446)
    Story
    (450)

    It is 1845. New York City forms its first police force. The great potato famine hits Ireland. These two seemingly disparate events will change New York City. Forever.... Timothy Wilde tends bar near the Exchange, fantasizing about the day he has enough money to win the girl of his dreams. But when his dreams literally incinerate in a fire devastating downtown Manhattan, he finds himself disfigured, unemployed, and homeless. His older brother obtains Timothy a job in the newly minted NYPD, but he is highly skeptical of this new "police force".

    Joanne says: "A wonderful book"
    "Beginning of New York detectives"
    Overall
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    In 1845 New York, the city is full of contention because of all the Irish immigrants coming to America to escape the potato famine. Everything is blamed on Catholicism, with numerous tracts written laying every ill at their feet. There are some who want to help the poor and downtrodden and those who push for conversion to Protestantism before help will be given. But life goes on anyway possible. The houses of prostitution and the political party meetings are gathering places for the powerful and poor alike. Within all this is the beginning of the New York "coppers"-- policeman who try to keep order within the city.

    Timothy Wilde was a barman until a tremendous fire burned a large part of the city. His politically minded, fireman, older brother got him a job as a "copper". When a ten year old girl, covered in blood, comes running and hollering down the street--"they're going to tear him to pieces", Timothy begins an adventure that also starts the beginning of a detective force that will investigate crimes rather than just try to keep the peace. An adventure that will test everything within him.

    Religious, political, and other tensions are played out very well in this mystery . Chapters are headed by quotes from the times. The life styles of the people is very different but earlier similar to today in some places. The characters drew me into the story immediately. Though I suspected the culprits, I was still spellbound with the story. Definitely good historical atmosphere written into a compelling mystery. I listened to the audio version, which added a lot to my enjoyment of this book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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