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Jennifer R. Golden

Mother Grundy

California | Member Since 2012

8
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 7 ratings
  • 425 titles in library
  • 24 purchased in 2014
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  • Die for Love: A Jacqueline Kirby Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Peters
    • Narrated By Grace Conlin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (88)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (34)

    The annual Historical Romance Writers of the World convention in New York City is calling to Jacqueline Kirby, a Nebraska librarian who desperately desires some excitement. But all is not love and kisses at this august gathering of starry-eyed eccentrics and sentimental scribes. As far as Jacqueline is concerned, the sudden "natural" death of a gossip columnist seems anything but.

    Laura says: "The Perfect Package - Great book, great narration."
    "Jacqueline Kirby Returns"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Grace under fire is the order of the day when Jacqueline Kirby returns, this time to sort out the ills and the ill-matched of a writers' conference for romantic novels. She is her same predictably unpredictable self and manages to find the solution to this mystery with a twist. Peters' characters are quirky and satisfying and Conlin's narration, a great pleasure. She captures Jacqueline's nature with purring, yet brisk tones and gives the other voices individuality. It's a romp that races through cliches without becoming one. While not quite as unique as "The Murders of Richard the III", it remains a satisfying guilty pleasure and thorough enjoyment.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Christie Caper: A Death on Demand Mystery, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Carolyn G. Hart
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (15)

    In honor of Agatha Christie's 100th birthday, mystery bookstore owner Annie Laurance Darling plans a week-long celebration of mystery, treasure hunts, and Christie trivia. But the last thing she or her guests expect is that the scheduled fun and mayhem will include a real-life murder. The unexpected arrival of Neil Bledsoe, the most despised book critic in America, was sure to raise a few hackles. An advocate of hard-boiled detection and gory true crime, Bledsoe drops a bombshell on the devoted Christie assemblage....

    Jennifer R. Golden says: "A Cosy Armchair-Full"
    "A Cosy Armchair-Full"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This amusing mystery has just enough bite to keep it from being too cosy. In fact, the plot revolves around the war between the cosy mystery, as represented by the redoubtable Agatha Christie and the hardboiled, but not challenging, i.e. Mickey Spillane. It's a frolic through Dame Agatha's works, including some lesser known surprises, at a convention lauding her. The characters, although not deep, are also not stereotyped, with the exception of the heroine's somewhat boringly perfect husband. But ignore Max--all too easy to do--and you'll enjoy this frothy, but not fluffy novel. Okay, I guessed the killer half-way through the book, but still had fun. And who doesn't enjoy Christie Redux?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Beekeeper's Apprentice

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Laurie R. King
    • Narrated By Jenny Sterlin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1692)
    Performance
    (1034)
    Story
    (1036)

    In 1914, a spirited American girl named Mary Russell meets a retired Sherlock Holmes in the English countryside. Instantly realizing that Mary is gifted with astonishing deductive powers, the Great Detective emerges from retirement to join her as she tracks down a fiendish assassin.

    Yuriko says: "Wow"
    "A Kinder, Gentler Holmes?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommend this book to anyone who loved The Seven Percent Solution and doesn't take himself/herself or the Holmes Canon too seriously. It's revisionist fun, the Holmes that Conan Doyle might have created if he had been a SNAG (sensivitive, new age guy.) The Beekeeper's Apprentice herself is engaging, quirkly, independent and Holme's uber-bright soul mate. But don't let me spoil anything. Listen to this surprising story of the maddest may/december non-romance ever written about the Great Dectective.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Initiate Brother: The Initiate Brother Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Sean Russell
    • Narrated By Elijah Alexander
    Overall
    (108)
    Performance
    (86)
    Story
    (90)

    Plague and warfare have swept across the Orient, ravaging the ancient kingdom of Wa, devastating the royal line, and leaving a new dynasty on the throne—a new emperor, Akantsu, filled with fear of all who might seek to wrest the empire from his grasp. Among those out of favor with the new liege is the Order of the Botahist Monks, whose mystical powers have enabled them to hold positions as spiritual advisors to the imperial court for nearly ten centuries.

    JPaladin says: "Good book; interesting characters, plot, and arc"
    "FANTASY WITH AN ORIENTAL FLAVOR"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Initiate Brother in three words, what would they be?

    Zen Skywalker Saga


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The initiate brother himself, of course, although the novel is filled with wonderful characters. This is a classic Joseph Campbell hero story set in a fascinating fantasy world evocative of Japanese samurai, Chinese myths and martial arts. It's Star Wars for adults with political intrigue, layered motives and nuanced characterizations. This is no comic book, but a thoroughly conceived, multidimentional world.


    Any additional comments?

    Enjoy the twists of a plot as intricate as one of those carved ivory balls-within-balls where every part moves independently but all are part of the whole.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Venetia

    • ABRIDGED (4 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Georgette Heyer
    • Narrated By Richard Armitage
    Overall
    (262)
    Performance
    (169)
    Story
    (170)

    Venetia Lanyon, beautiful, intelligent and independent woman, lives in comfortable seclusion in rural Yorkshire with her precocious brother Aubrey. Her future seems safe and predictable: Either marriage to the respectable but dull Edward Yardley, or a life of peaceful spinsterhood. But when she meets the dashing, dangerous rake Lord Damerel, her well-ordered life is turned upside down, and she embarks upon a relationship with him that scandalizes and horrifies the whole community.

    Judith says: "Great, but too bad it is abridged"
    "ABRIDGEMENT DISAPPOINTS"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you’ve listened to books by Georgette Heyer before, how does this one compare?

    Venetia is one of Georgette Heyer's best works, but this abridgement, which cuts out all the delightful characters that should weave in and out of the main plot, doesn't do the novel justice. You read Heyer for more than romance and escapism--she is able to weld humor, the nuances of the age, class conflicts and suble social commentary into a genre which she essentially created. No writer since has managed the trick. To abridge this work so brutally cuts out the very aspects of the story which set Heyer apart from and above the run-of-the-romance novel. Wait for an unabridged version to come out!


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Surfeit of Lampreys

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Ngaio Marsh
    • Narrated By Anton Lesser
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (12)

    The Lampreys revel in their eccentricity and entertain their guests with complicated charades. But when one game goes wrong and rich Uncle Gabriel is found murdered in a most grizzly manner, the only person capable of solving the crime is Chief Detective Inspector Roderick Alleyn.

    Yvette says: "Good ... But what did they leave out?"
    "AN OLD FAVORITE FROM THE GOLDEN AGE OF MYSTERY"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Nagio Marsh is perhaps on one of the least well-known of the Golden Age mystery writers, but her plots are always well-knitted and her characters intriguingly quirky. They don't come any more eccentric than the Lamprey family, from whom the title comes, and her device of inserting the shrewd, but unsophisticated New Zealander allows for telling commentary on both the other charaters and English society in a gentle manner. The murder is suitabley gruesome and mysterious,. The murderer is not at all obvious and yet clearly indicated in hindsight, a feat easier to read than to write. I certainly recommend this book as one of the author's best.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Marsh's estimable hero, the upper-class, oh-so-suave Roderick Alleyn, does become a little tiresome, but the fault is in the writing. Alleyn needs a few faults and foibles to be truly lovable. The performance itself is workmanlike and enjoyable.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Crunch Time

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Diane Mott Davidson
    • Narrated By Barbara Rosenblat
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (345)
    Performance
    (223)
    Story
    (228)

    Colorado caterer Goldy Schulz cooks up bigtrouble as she tries to help her longtime friend and fellow chef Yolanda Garcia. When the rental house shared by Yolanda and her irrepressible aunt Ferdinanda is destroyed by arson, the pair move in with cop-turned-PI Ernest McLeod. But then Ernest is shot dead and his house is set on fire, nearly killing Goldy, Yolanda, Ferdinanda, and nine beagle puppies that Ernest had recently rescued from a puppymill. Concerned for her friends, Goldy invites them to stay with her while the sheriff’s department investigates. Yet even Goldy's house isn't safe....

    Jessica Woodman says: "More like slightly soggy time"
    "Entertainment without Tears"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Crunch Time again? Why?

    There is something addictive about Davidson's series, a bit like sinking into a comfortable leather armchair with a cup of hot cocoa and a dash of brandy while you watch a classic movie. You won't be shocked or challenged, but you will relax into a known and perhaps even loved series of characters. I expect to return to Crunch Tim again when a need arises for an escape from the current reality in a pleasant world with just that frisson of evil to keep me from falling into lassitude.


    What about Barbara Rosenblat’s performance did you like?

    Rosenblat does her usual, remarkable job of bringing characters to life with different voices and rhythms. Long may she narrate!


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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