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Kristi Richardson

An old broad that enjoys books of all types. Would rather read than write reviews though. I know what I like, and won't be bothered by crap.

Milwaukie, OR, United States | Member Since 2011

  • 208 reviews
  • 225 ratings
  • 782 titles in library
  • 104 purchased in 2014

  • The James Thurber Audio Collection: Fables and Selected Stories by James Thurber

    • ORIGINAL (3 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By James Thurber
    • Narrated By Keith Olbermann

    "My father was in the hospital and every night when I visited him, I read aloud to him. James Thurber. And one night he said, 'You really should do that on your show,' and I said, 'Dad, it’s a television newscast. I’d love to, but how could it possibly fit?' And he said, 'How often have I ever suggested anything for your shows?' And I remembered that he never had. But I also reminded him that there were things like copyrights and bills, to which he said, 'Try it. You never know.'"

    Kristi Richardson says: "James Thurber and Keith Olbermann? Wonderful!!!"
    "James Thurber and Keith Olbermann? Wonderful!!!"

    I remember James Thurber from high school when we did a play called "The Unicorn in the Garden". I enjoyed that so much I read some other short stories he had written like, "The Night The bed Fell" and the different fables he wrote.
    All of these and more are included here and for the most part they really hold up today.

    Keith Olbermann's introduction explains that he read these to his dying father in the hospital and his father told him he should do this for a living. So this selection is lovingly done with his father in mind.

    I can't recommend this enough. It will have you falling on the floor laughing!


    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Snow Queen

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 14 mins)
    • By Hans Christian Andersen
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan

    This classic tale is a fantastical fable of two dear friends - one of whom goes astray and is literally lost to the north woods, while the other undertakes an epic journey to rescue him. This charming, strange, and wonderful story is a timeless allegory about growing up and the challenges of staying true to one's self, and it served as the wintry inspiration for the blockbuster hit Frozen.

    linda forrest says: "great"
    "Thanks Audible for my Christmas present!"

    Hans Christian Andersen was one of my favorite authors growing up. I loved his Ugly Duckling and Little Mermaid stories. The story of the Snow Queen is another top notch tale.

    We all know "Frozen" was based on this story, but only in the fact that there was a Snow Queen in it. This story is more like the old animated tale with Sandra Dee's voice as Gerda searching for her best boy friend Kai who after getting a shard of magic glass in his eye and heart runs off with the Snow Queen. Every day he is with the Queen he becomes deader to reality and the possibility of happiness. Can Gerda save him with her love?

    As Gerda makes her way towards the Snow Queens castle she has many adventures and makes more friends, my favorite is the Little Robber Girl who wants Gerda to live with her and be her friend but finally lets her go on her quest to save Kai.

    This is a lovely story and a wonderful read by Julia Whelan.

    Thanks, Audible!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Path to Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson

    • UNABRIDGED (40 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Robert A. Caro
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    This is the story of the rise to national power of a desperately poor young man from the Texas Hill Country. The Path to Power reveals in extraordinary detail the genesis of the almost superhuman drive, energy, and ambition that set LBJ apart. It follows him from the Hill Country to New Deal Washington, from his boyhood through the years of the Depression to his debut as Congressman, his heartbreaking defeat in his first race for the Senate, and his attainment, nonetheless, at age 31, of the national power for which he hungered.

    David C. Daggett says: "The Best of all Biographies"
    "“If you can’t come into a room & tell right away.."

    “If you can’t come into a room and tell right away who is for you and who is against you, you have no business in politics.”

    I knew when I undertook this project of reading the four part biography of Lyndon Baines Johnson that I was in for a long haul. What I wasn't sure of? Whether it would be agony or ecstacy! I'm happy to report that it is the latter.

    Mr. Caro does not write a whitewashed version of LBJ's life but it's not a hatchet job either. He puts all the flaws and good that Mr. Johnson did from his birth until FDR's death.

    The good about Mr. Johnson was his identifying with the poor people in the state of Texas. He was born fairly poor and I believe that is why his drive to succeed was so strong. He loved his mother and had a love/hate relationship with his father. He was a workaholic and expected his people to do the same.

    The bad was pretty overwhelming. He was ruthless and would do anything to win, that meant spying on his friends and reporting back to the President. He gained control of all the money for the Democratic Party in one election and used it to help his friends and get rid of his enemies. He was a lousy husband in my opinion.

    I believe the time I took to read this first book is time well spent. I will take a break before reading the next one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Revival: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By David Morse
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In a small New England town, over half a century ago, a shadow falls over a small boy playing with his toy soldiers. Jamie Morton looks up to see a striking man, the new minister. Charles Jacobs, along with his beautiful wife, will transform the local church. The men and boys are all a bit in love with Mrs. Jacobs; the women and girls feel the same about Reverend Jacobs - including Jamie’s mother and beloved sister, Claire. With Jamie, the Reverend shares a deeper bond based on a secret obsession.

    Thug4life says: "Not fit for a King"
    "“People say that where there’s life, there’s hope,"

    “People say that where there’s life, there’s hope, and I have no quarrel with that, but I also believe the reverse.
    There is hope, therefore I live.”

    I loved this book. Stephen King returns to what he does best, scaring you to death, (or in this case away from death as far as you can go!)

    You love the characters in this book and want Jamie to survive but dread what is in store for him. The minister, carney, rev, and special electricity man is likeable at times, but by the end of the book you really just want him dead and gone forever.

    The cures the man does have consequences for those he heals. If you knew then what you know now, would you still want to go through with it? These are quandaries that King makes you think about.

    Organized religion does not do well in this book. It's not attacked directly but subtly by inference that sinks in as you get involved with the storyline. I'm agnostic so it didn't bother me, but it may others that are easily bruised.

    This book reminded me of H.P. Lovecraft and his pervasive sense of dread that oozes out of this novel. The first third of the novel is not scary but the knowing that it's coming is wonderful. The final two chapters made me so happy I finished this book in the light of day, as I think it was the scariest thing I have ever read.

    David Morse did a great job of giving the characters their voice.

    This is one of my favorite Stephen King books!

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Everything I Never Told You: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Celeste Ng
    • Narrated By Cassandra Campbell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Lydia is dead. But they don't know this yet.… So begins the story in this exquisite debut novel about a Chinese American family living in a small town in 1970s Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee; their middle daughter, a girl who inherited her mother's bright blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together tumbles into chaos.

    colprubin says: "Character Novel"
    "Amazon's Book of the Year!"

    This is not the kind of book I usually read, but as a member of the Ford Audiobook club I was given a copy.

    The story revolves around a family that tragically fails to express their feelings and beliefs and when a horrible calamity ensues they are all tested beyond all boundaries.

    We have James, the father, a Chinese American who just wants to fit in.

    Marilyn, the mother, a woman who yearns for more than being a mother.

    Nathan, the son, a disappointment to his father because James is reminded of himself.

    Lydia, the cherished daughter, a blue eyed girl that both parent's pin all of their hopes on.

    Hannah, the youngest, hiding in the shadows of a family that doesn't have room for anyone else.

    Jack, the bad boy, neighbor fits into the story as the one that may have all the answers.

    It's a beautifully, haunting story with a definite ending that some newer novels lack. At times, you find little love for these people that are operating at cross purposes, but in the end you come to love them all and mourn their tragedy with them.

    I cried openly in the last two chapters and it was a catharsis cry that brings you to a feeling of promise and hope for a better day.

    Hug your near and dear ones, you never know what tomorrow will bring.

    22 of 23 people found this review helpful
  • Edge of Eternity: The Century Trilogy, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Throughout these books, Follett has followed the fortunes of five intertwined families - American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh - as they make their way through the twentieth century. Now they come to one of the most tumultuous eras of all: the enormous social, political, and economic turmoil of the 1960s through the 1980s, from civil rights, assassinations, mass political movements and Vietnam to the Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis, presidential impeachment, revolution - and rock and roll.

    Elisa says: "Some good, some bad"
    "Greater igorance, stronger opinions!"

    The final chapter in the Century Trilogy by Ken Follett is what an epic is all about. The most important factor is that you care about the people whose history you are reading. There are five families in this series (American, German, British, Welsh and Russian) and you emphasize with them all. This story details the 50's through the modern day, so it is a time I am familiar with because I lived it also.

    The absolute best part of this book was the Cuban Missile Crisis as told by the Americans, Cubans, and Russians. It was riveting! I knew how it worked out, but never knew all the steps and what the reasoning was on the different sides for their movements.

    The rise of the Berlin Wall and separations of families was an ongoing story that personalized the agony they must have gone through. When Communism falls and the Berlin Wall along with it, you are so happy and drawn in to that era, it's mesmerizing. I cried.

    So much history to remember in this volume, Civil Rights, Assassinations of JFK, MLK, and RFK, The Beatles, Watergate,Iranian Hostages, and the rise of Jihadists. Things that were barely touched on were the 9/11 attacks, the Space race, Iran-Contra, and the election of Barack Obama. Even so, this is an all encompassing book of the past 65 years of the world.

    This was a wonderful and fitting conclusion to this Trilogy. We cared for these families and the individual people in them and rooted for them to come out okay in the end. I loved this book and can't wait to see what Mr. Follett might serve us next.

    John Lee as always does a great job in his narration. (Think Sean Connery).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Conservative Nanny State: How the Wealthy Use the Government to Stay Rich and Get Richer

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Dean Baker
    • Narrated By Sandra Swafford

    In his new book, economist Dean Baker debunks the myth that conservatives favor the market over government intervention. In fact, conservatives rely on a range of "nanny state" policies that ensure the rich get richer while leaving most Americans worse off. It's time for the rules to change. Sound economic policy should harness the market in ways that produce desirable social outcomes: decent wages, good jobs, and affordable health care.

    Vladimir says: "An eye opening book"
    "Tax breaks to businesses or the poor? Which way?"

    The premise of the book is the Conservatives in the United States have been able to frame the discussions on budget by claiming that they want less government, and the Liberals want more. In reality both want as much government, it's just the Conservative's want their government to protect the business interests and the 1% with tax breaks, protectionism and corporate welfare. The Liberals want the government to help the middle class and poor.

    Things that did soak through my addled brain were:
    1. We need to stand up to the Conservatives and re frame the discussion on their "less government" stance.
    2. One of the reasons our healthcare system is in trouble is the salaries paid to doctors are higher than any where else in the world and the fact the government frowns on too many doctors from other countries practicing here. Same for lawyers and CEO's salaries are out the roof.
    3. Mr. Baker wants to do away with patents and install a system of vouchers so entrepreneurs can be paid for their work. (Didn't understand where the money would come from, but understand the idea that people like Bill Gates made an exorbitant profit from his patents.)

    The best part of this book is the new ideas that are coming to change the way we do business. I am not sure if they will all work but I welcome the innovation.

    I enjoyed the narration and liked the way the footnotes were handled.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • White Fang

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Jack London
    • Narrated By Bob Thomley
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Jack London's classic adventure story about the friendship developed between a Yukon gold hunter and the mixed dog-wolf he rescues from the hands of a man who mistreats him. White Fang is a companion novel and thematic mirror to London's best-known work, The Call of the Wild.

    Kristi Richardson says: ""The law is: Eat or be Eaten""
    ""The law is: Eat or be Eaten""

    I have read this book before but never listened to it. This was a great listen while working in the garden and doing my needlework.

    This book is a companion piece to Call of the Wild in the fact that it tells the opposite story. The story of a wolf who survives hardship and misery only to experience love and trust in his later years.

    All is told from the wolf's point of view and except for Black Beauty I have never read a better attempt than this.

    Bob Thomley is a great narrator who reads with great emphasis and empathy.

    White Fang lived such a harsh life and I really was pulling for him to overcome that and find peace.

    I love this book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Agent to the Stars

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The space-faring Yherajk have come to Earth to meet us and to begin humanity's first interstellar friendship. There's just one problem: They're hideously ugly and they smell like rotting fish. So getting humanity's trust is a challenge. The Yherajk need someone who can help them close the deal. Enter Thomas Stein, who knows something about closing deals. He's one of Hollywood's hottest young agents.

    C. Paget says: "excellent"
    "What do you do with Jell-O?"

    This is a fun read, but there are some very serious issues discussed. Isn't that what the best Science Fiction is about?

    In the here and now, if you were an alien how would you present yourself to earth? You'd need an agent, right? That is the premise for this quirky book about Hollywood and aliens. Some things to think about: Is it okay to take over a dog's body who died of a heart attack? How about a human's?

    Wil Wheaton, (John-boy of the Stars) is the narrator to this work and he does a stand-up job. He's funny when he needs to be and serious when it counts. Well done, Mr. Crusher!

    I had never read any of John Scalzi's books and it looks like I will keep an eye out for more of his nerdy humor and timely stories.

    Worth the time to listen!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • All the King's Men

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Robert Penn Warren
    • Narrated By Michael Emerson

    The fictionalized account of Louisiana's colorful and notorious governor, Huey Pierce Long, All the King's Men follows the startling rise and fall of Willie Stark, a country lawyer in the Deep South of the 1930s. Beset by political enemies, Stark seeks aid from his right-hand man Jack Burden, who will bear witness to the cataclysmic unfolding of this very American tragedy.

    Eric Berger says: "Marvelously written and read"
    "Man is conceived in sin and born in corruption ..."

    "Man is conceived in sin and born in corruption and he passeth from the stink of the didie to the stench of the shroud. There is always something...”
    I loved the lyrical writing in this story of Willie Stark and Jack Burden. It was a beautiful tragedy and the only reason I give it 4 stars is the fact that it has a happy ending which does not fit the tone of the rest of the novel.

    Based loosely on Louisiana Governor Huey Long's life and death this book won the Pulitzer Prize in 1947.

    It has wonderful characters and the storyline is consistent and enlightening on the South of the 30's to 40's. Instead of feeling like a dated story it feels like you have stepped back in time and been welcomed in with open arms.

    The narrator does a good job on this book.

    It's a classic that you will never forget.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • What Hath God Wrought: The Transformation of America, 1815 - 1848

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Daniel Walker Howe
    • Narrated By Patrick Cullen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In this addition to the esteemed Oxford History of the United States series, historian Daniel Walker Howe illuminates the period from the Battle of New Orleans to the end of the Mexican-American War, an era of revolutionary improvements in transportation and communications that accelerated America's expansion and prompted the rise of mass political parties.

    Amazon Customer says: "Excellent"
    "A great overview of this time period!"

    This is a long book at about 34 hours but worth the time it took to listen. I knew little about the time period of 1815-1848 in the history of our country which is a shame because lots of things happened in this timeframe. This won the Pulitzer Prize in 2008 and is one of the Oxford History of America series.

    I have seen people claim a liberal bias in this book. I can't say I saw that but it is harsh on conservative darling Andrew Jackson with good reason. He destroyed the banking system, disregarded the Supreme Court rulings, and shipped the Cherokee and other natives off to the reservations in the infamous Trail of Tears. Polk doesn't get much sympathy from him either. The Mexican War seems to have been a more unpopular war than even Viet Nam. We were the aggressor in that one.

    I think it is important to read many histories on the same topics and get a well rounded picture instead of only reading Glenn Beck or Bill O'Reilly's histories.

    John Quincy Adams is the hero of this book. He wasn't a very good President but he was a wonderful statesman who stood up for the underdog (Amistad) and never quit. In fact, he died giving a speech on the Mexican War in the House of Representatives.

    This book covers a lot of religious history. The Mormon's, the Great Enlightenment, the Second Great Enlightenment, the start of the Shakers, the Oneida Cult, the Transcendentalist movement, the Baptist, the Seventh Day Adventist all began in this period. It takes up many chapters in this book but is necessary to understand what was happening in the country.

    I also learned how European white male centered this country was and how this affected the way we treated Hispanics, Blacks (slave and free), Catholics, Jews and women. Thank goodness we have grown into our Constitution.

    Samuel Morse's first telegram to Congress was the quote "What hath God wrought" which the author made the title of his book. He emphasized the great transportation and communication changes that came about in these few years.

    The narrator was fine for the most part except for his few pronunciation errors in words like "Willamette" that could be jarring at times.

    A great overview of this time period and well worth the time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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