The more I think about this book, the more I love it. I also love that Ruth Ozeki narrated the book, and after the book ends, she tells the listener that when she writes, she reads it aloud to hear the words. That recording the book allowed her to be sure the text is "read" with the inflection she intended, which is impossible in print. She also suggests checking out the print version, since it contains footnotes and, I think, an appendix, which are impossible to convey in audio format.
I'm not one to write detailed reviews of books. But I will tell you I loved Nao (when I finished the book, I thought about the book in her voice) and her great-grandmother, Jiko, and her great-uncle, Harukami #1. I also don't usually comment on beautiful writing and such, but I felt it more than I normally do, and it swept me away. Like on a wave. Or in a current. Or a gyre. Like the gyre, current, waves that brought Nao to Ruth. And to me, and maybe you.
This is a ridiculous story. Marie Antoinette "Nellie" Courtright is a beauty courted by George Custer, Bill Hickock and two Earp brothers, in addition to a host of non-famous beaus. She works for Buffalo Bill Cody, gets the best of Jesse James, meets Billy the Kid and General Sherman, and witnesses the gunfight at the OK Corral.
I enjoyed this because it's funny, and Annie Potts' narration is perfection. She made me want to keep listening. It would be a quick read on paper, but it's so much better, and time well spent, on audio.
I bought the book first, intending to read it. I downloaded the free first chapter, too, and after listening to Kirsten Potter's narration, I had to listen to it. I made the right choice. I really liked the story of three sisters reuniting after their mother's diagnosis of breast cancer, and Ms. Potter's performance enhanced it.
I need to be able to hear the story, even when the narrator whispers. If I have to turn the volume all the way up just to be able to almost hear the whispering, that's a very bad performance and production. You can imagine what happens: after the whispering, the normal narration blasts your ears away like a horrible commercial. I also didn't like the characterization of Mr. Moundshroud. He sounded bored. I've never considered Mr. Moundshroud to be bored by the
It was a complete disappointment. I hoped to have fun with my son listeining to a Halloween story we both enjoy. This was not to be. Perhaps the dramatized version available on Audible is better. The old cartoon from the early '90's definitely is.
This is a book that I would have liked better if I'd read it instead of listening to it. The pace is very quick and there were so many characters. If you lose your concentration at the wrong time, you'll be rewinding like I did--wait, who is she? If I'd had the photos that are in the book, it would have greatly enhanced the story. I tried to find photos online, on Mr. Perry's site, but I had to go to the library for the full experience. Not all the photos in the book are online.
Still, it's a fun read for fans of Chicago, like me. I wish there weren't two chapters on Leopold and Loeb. I know Maurine Watkins, etc., covered their story, but still...too much.
I'm glad I listened.
I loved the premise of magic's return to England, and the suggestion that magic is thoroughly English (Napoleon is quite unsuccessful in his search for a French magician, and Mr. Strange & Mr. Norrell are renowned throughout Europe). The depth of magical history Ms. Clarke has created thrilled me. It was a crushing disappointment to be unable to read more about the Raven King. I wished for a companion book just about him. This story pleased me as both fantasy and historic fiction.??Simon Prebble's narration is pitch-perfect. Each of the characters come to life under his care. I fell in love with so many characters.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.