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Marianne

PETERSHAM, MASSACHUSETTS, United States | Member Since 2018

32
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 40 reviews
  • 90 ratings
  • 135 titles in library
  • 8 purchased in 2018
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  • The Aspern Papers

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Henry James
    • Narrated By Jonathan Epstein
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (56)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (39)

    The Aspern Papers, one of Henry James best-known shorter works, is based on a story he heard about a collector of Shelley's manuscripts who attempted to acquire valuable letters from a mysterious old woman living in Florence. Set in beautiful Venice, James' elegant tale of suspense and romance takes the reader down the canals and inner chambers of a bygone era.

    Ron L. Caldwell says: "One of the great novellas"
    "Brilliant entry level Henry James"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Aspern Papers again? Why?

    Yes, it is an almost perfect short story.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The writing is wonderful and the suspense holds until the end


    What about Jonathan Epstein’s performance did you like?

    He is a terrific reader and should be asked to read more classics. He is intelligent and sensitive


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Miss Bordereau catches the narrator searching for her papers


    Any additional comments?

    an excellent version

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Imperium: A Novel of Ancient Rome

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Robert Harris
    • Narrated By Simon Jones
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2220)
    Performance
    (1466)
    Story
    (1474)

    When Tiro, the confidential secretary (and slave) of a Roman senator, opens the door to a terrified stranger on a cold November morning, he sets in motion a chain of events that will eventually propel his master into one of the most suspenseful courtroom dramas in history.

    Everett Leiter says: "Engrossing read"
    "Most gripping "
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    have always wanted to read about Cicero and Caesar and Robert Harris brings them to life

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Robert Lowell, Setting the River on Fire: A Study of Genius, Mania, and Character

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Kay Redfield Jamison
    • Narrated By Jefferson Mays
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (54)
    Performance
    (46)
    Story
    (47)

    In this magisterial study of the relationship between illness and art, the best-selling author of An Unquiet Mind, Kay Redfield Jamison, brings an entirely fresh understanding to the work and life of Robert Lowell (1917-1977), whose intense, complex, and personal verse left a lasting mark on the English language and changed the public discourse about private matters.

    Margaret C. Neumann says: "Review of Robert Lowell by Kay Jamison"
    "Fabulous and fascinating"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Robert Lowell, Setting the River on Fire rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Although in many ways a tragic biography of one of Americas great poets, the reading is so intelligent and sensitive it makes the whole experience come to life


    What other book might you compare Robert Lowell, Setting the River on Fire to and why?

    dont know


    Which character – as performed by Jefferson Mays – was your favorite?

    robert Lowell


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    Jefferson Mays is a terrific reader

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Last Founding Father: James Monroe and a Nation's Call to Greatness

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Harlow Giles Unger
    • Narrated By Michael McConnohie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (502)
    Performance
    (418)
    Story
    (413)

    In this lively and compelling biography, Harlow Giles Unger reveals the dominant political figure of a generation. A fierce fighter in four critical Revolutionary War battles and a courageous survivor of Valley Forge and a near-fatal wound at the Battle of Trenton, James Monroe (1751 - 1831) went on to become America's first full-time politician, dedicating his life to securing America's national and international durability.

    Robert Bartel says: "Readable, but more hero worship than history"
    "Over generous biography of a 2nd rate president"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Harlow Giles Unger and/or Michael McConnohie?

    Unger is a good writer but this book is not as good as his biography of John Marshall.
    He tries to make Monroe into a greater man then he was. Monroe was a very poor man's Madison, who's hero and mentor was Jefferson.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The most interesting was Monroes relationship to Jefferson and Madison.
    The least interesting is Monroe the man.


    Did Michael McConnohie do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Not really, he is a very ordinary reader who I would not necessarily choose to hear again


    Do you think The Last Founding Father needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    Not unless Unger takes a more critical view of Monroe and a less antagonistic one to his enemies in the Federalist party


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Bostonians

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Henry James
    • Narrated By Flo Gibson
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Henry James' fascinating love triangle involves a male chauvinist, an ardent feminist, and the lovely gifted pawn, Verena Tarrant. As always, James' descriptions and dialogue delight from beginning to end!

    AR says: "Accessible Early James"
    "Quite a good James novel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    No, Flo Gibson is not a good reader.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Olive Chancellor is a fascinating character


    What didn’t you like about Flo Gibson’s performance?

    Flo Gibson's voice is very odd. Many of my friends will not buy anything read by her.

    It is time that you rerecorded James. The best reader of his work is John Wood, who reads THE PORTRAIT OF A LADY


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    A tragic comedy.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Conclave: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Robert Harris
    • Narrated By Roy McMillan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (474)
    Performance
    (428)
    Story
    (430)

    The pope is dead. Behind the locked doors of the Sistine Chapel, 118 cardinals from all over the globe will cast their votes in the world's most secretive election. They are holy men. But they have ambition. And they have rivals. Over the next 72 hours, one of them will become the most powerful spiritual figure on earth.

    Steve says: "An unusual mystery"
    "Gripping, completely compelling"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Conclave again? Why?

    Yes, probably in a year or 2. Robert Harris' books are so good.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    They were all good and McMillan is excellent at the variety of characters


    Which character – as performed by Roy McMillan – was your favorite?

    McMillan is an exceptional reader with an actors ability to give nuance and variety to a books heroes and villains .


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    no


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Dennis Boutsikaris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8549)
    Performance
    (7559)
    Story
    (7546)

    Forty years ago Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky wrote a series of breathtakingly original studies undoing our assumptions about the decision-making process. Their papers showed the ways in which the human mind erred systematically when forced to make judgments about uncertain situations. Their work created the field of behavioral economics, revolutionized Big Data studies, advanced evidence-based medicine, led to a new approach to government regulation, and made Michael Lewis' work possible.

    Jane says: "I loved learning about two very smart men."
    "Fascinating tale"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Undoing Project rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Cant really say. This is the first Michael Lewis book I have listened to and it is good.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Undoing Project?

    Dont know


    What about Dennis Boutsikaris’s performance did you like?

    He is a good no nonsense reader


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No, but it made me think.


    Any additional comments?

    I think you need to update your questions. There is no point in trying to rank an audio book as the subjects vary so much. The reader/performer is so important that sometimes I will not buy an audio book because the reader is not good enough

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Prime Minister

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Anthony Trollope
    • Narrated By Timothy West
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (253)
    Performance
    (228)
    Story
    (224)

    Plantaganet Palliser, Prime Minister of England - a man of power and prestige, with all the breeding and inherited wealth that goes with it - is appalled at the inexorable rise of Ferdinand Lopez. An exotic impostor, seemingly from nowhere, Lopez has society at his feet, while well-connected ladies vie with each other to exert influence on his behalf - even Palliser’s own wife, Lady Glencora.

    Liz says: "Wonderful!"
    "Utter heaven"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Prime Minister?

    It is a gripping story of politics and family


    What did you like best about this story?

    The plot is exciting


    What does Timothy West bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Timothy West is the most marvellous reader of Trollop


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    All of it


    Any additional comments?

    Keep using actors to read books, they are so much better at brining the stories alive

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Swimming Pool Library

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Alan Hollinghurst
    • Narrated By Samuel West
    Overall
    (175)
    Performance
    (116)
    Story
    (117)

    This novel centres on the friendship of William Beckwith, a young gay aristocrat who leads a life of privilege and promiscuity, and the elderly Lord Nantwich, who is searching for someone to write his biography.

    Peregrine says: "Strong stuff"
    "Beautifully written and timeless story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Swimming Pool Library again? Why?

    Yes, Holinghusrt is a wonderful writer and Sam West is a brilliant reader with a wide ranging ability to express character through his different use of accent.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Swimming Pool Library?

    Anything to do with Nantwich, which was very touching.


    What about Samuel West’s performance did you like?

    His voice and wide range ability of accent, male, female, west Indian, English.


    If you could take any character from The Swimming Pool Library out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    James, he comes across as charming and knowledgable


    Any additional comments?

    Please will you ask Sam West to record Holinghust's LINE OF BEAUTY.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Avid Reader: A Life

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Robert Gottlieb
    • Narrated By Robert Gottlieb
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (124)
    Performance
    (117)
    Story
    (115)

    After editing The Columbia Review, staging plays at Cambridge, and a stint in the greeting-card department of Macy's, Robert Gottlieb stumbled into a job at Simon & Schuster. By the time he left to run Alfred A. Knopf a dozen years later, he was the editor in chief, having discovered and edited Catch-22 and The American Way of Death, among other best sellers. At Knopf, Gottlieb edited an astonishing list of authors, including Toni Morrison, John Cheever, Doris Lessing, and John le Carré - not to mention Bruno Bettelheim and Miss Piggy.

    Steve M says: "A Lifetime of Reading and Editing"
    "Book addiction"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Avid Reader rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I have listened to so many wonderful books, but this is the story of a boy/man/person
    who inhales books from an early age


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Avid Reader?

    Reading War and Peace in 14 hours


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Playing with a yoyo while standing outside his building after being ordered outside to play as a child


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    yes, but can't


    Any additional comments?

    This is the sort of book for people who devour books

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Washington Square (Recorded Books Edition)

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Henry James
    • Narrated By John McDonough
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26)
    Performance
    (20)
    Story
    (19)

    Henry James’ stories are classic gems of subtle wit and irony. Set in the exacting social landscape of New York City at the turn of the century, Washington Square is the tale of a wealthy but shy young woman caught between conflicting family expectations. John McDonough’s warm narration traces her remarkable inner journey.

    Marianne says: "Henry James is a hoot"
    "Henry James is a hoot"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Washington Square (Recorded Books Edition)?

    This edition brought out the deep and sly humour in this an early work of the master.


    What other book might you compare Washington Square (Recorded Books Edition) to and why?

    can't think


    Have you listened to any of John McDonough’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Yes, he is the perfect reader for James. He has an old New England voice which gets the pronouncation of the vowels perfectly. A male Katherine Hepburn


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    A bit long, but I would if I could


    Any additional comments?

    This reading really brings alive an amusing tale by a master storyteller

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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