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i. Ski

Duluth, Minnesota | Member Since 2015

168
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 59 reviews
  • 383 ratings
  • 733 titles in library
  • 19 purchased in 2018
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
6

  • Blood, Bones & Butter: The Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Gabrielle Hamilton
    • Narrated By Gabrielle Hamilton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1050)
    Performance
    (785)
    Story
    (789)

    Before Gabrielle Hamilton opened her acclaimed New York restaurant Prune, she spent twenty fierce, hard-living years trying to find purpose and meaning in her life. Above all she sought family, particularly the thrill and the magnificence of the one from her childhood that, in her adult years, eluded her. Hamilton’s ease and comfort in a kitchen were instilled in her at an early age when her parents hosted grand parties, often for more than one hundred friends and neighbors.

    Mel says: "A Little Prickly--But Yummy"
    "You don't need to be a foodie to love this book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was really surprised at how much I enjoyed this book -- I thought it was going to be one of those "my life in the kitchen" books, but I was really wrong. It is a wonderful autobiography -- describing family events leading to life events leading to life decisions, all centering around good food. I am going to listen to this again in a few months! Wonderfully written, narrated by the author.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Woman in the Window: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By A. J. Finn
    • Narrated By Ann Marie Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8832)
    Performance
    (8157)
    Story
    (8125)

    Anna Fox lives alone - a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times...and spying on her neighbors. Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, mother, their teenaged son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, sees something she shouldn't, her world begins to crumble. And its shocking secrets are laid bare.

    Debra says: "An excruciating listen."
    "Plodding, dreadful knock-off of Hitchcock films"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Ugh! This is a dreadful book. Who-did-it is telegraphed in the first few chapters. The narrator has only one tone -- faux tension. The plot is a mash of Vertigo, Rear Window, and Psycho. In the post book interview, the author admits he was influenced by Hitchcock. I think he was not influenced enough. He misses the subtle plotting and tight editing of a Hitchcock film. Nothing about Hitchcock was derivative -- everything about this book is.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Totally Unscientific Study of the Search for Human Happiness

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Paula Poundstone
    • Narrated By Paula Poundstone
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (785)
    Performance
    (735)
    Story
    (729)

    Is there a secret to happiness? Beloved comedian Paula Poundstone conducts a series of "thoroughly unscientific" experiments to find out, offering herself up as a guinea pig and recording her data for the benefit of all humankind. Armed with her unique brand of self-deprecating wit and the scientific method, in each chapter Paula tries out a different get-happy hypothesis.

    Diana says: "Contemplative, with bursts of laughter"
    "We all have a little Paula in us"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I often listen to audiobooks when I can't sleep and I found myself wanting to wake up my bed partner to laugh with me over various segments of this book. Poundstone writes about everyday life -- about aspirations for children, about striving for illusory self-improvement, and about balancing career and family. She has a unique comedic voice. She is witty and smart and does not need to rely on profanity to advance her humor. Poundstone is courageous and honest about her life. Some of the fun of this book is identifying with her Most of us have experienced our own ineptness and been embarrassed by it. Poundstone celebrates hers in the best comedic sense.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Suspect

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Michael Robotham
    • Narrated By Simon Prebble
    Overall
    (1376)
    Performance
    (1139)
    Story
    (1131)

    After a woman is brutally slain, investigators bring psychiatrist Joe O'Loughlin in for expert consultation. Joe is shocked to discover the dead woman is a former patient of his who cried rape when he rebuffed her sexual advances. Citing doctor/patient confidentiality, Joe hides this information. But the truth emerges, and suddenly he is the prime suspect.

    Kelly says: "reviewers love it or hate it -- i loved it"
    "Wow! A worthy plot, unlikely pairing of characters"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Thanks Audible for the "first in series" sale --- I have discovered a new favorite mystery series. Suspect is well plotted and has great tension -- did he or didn't he? It has surprise twists and turns, and a flip from bad to good in one of the protagonists. I'd like to write more, but that would spoil the book for listeners. Trust me, this is a good book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Flowers from the Storm

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Laura Kinsale
    • Narrated By Nicholas Boulton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2294)
    Performance
    (2143)
    Story
    (2145)

    He's a duke. He's a mathematical genius. He can't talk and he's locked in a lunatic asylum. Only a modest Quaker girl can reach him, but when she helps him to escape, she's swept into his glittering aristocratic world, her life torn apart by his desperate attempt to save himself.

    🇺🇸☔DARA says: "~COMPELLING!!~ Love This Author! Love This Book!"
    "Complex story, wonderful reader"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Sometimes, the synergy between author and narrator makes for a compelling listen. This is one of those books. While it falls in the genre of romance, the appeal of Flowers in the Storm is much broader -- how those who had strokes were treated (or not) when moral explanations for illness prevailed, how rigid some religious groups could be in handling behavior that offended them, and how families schemed to improve social or financial standing during the time of George III. Nicholas Boulton's resonant voice is perfect for the tale.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Into the Water

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Paula Hawkins
    • Narrated By Laura Aikman, Imogen Church, Daniel Weyman, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9246)
    Performance
    (8383)
    Story
    (8364)

    A single mother turns up dead at the bottom of the river that runs through town. Earlier in the summer, a vulnerable teenage girl met the same fate. They are not the first women lost to these dark waters, but their deaths disturb the river and its history, dredging up secrets long submerged. Left behind is a lonely 15-year-old girl. Parentless and friendless, she now finds herself in the care of her mother's sister, a fearful stranger who has been dragged back to the place she deliberately ran from - a place to which she vowed she'd never return.

    Mel says: "Don't Hold Your Breath"
    "Convoluted story telling not suitable for audio"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I confess I was a marginal fan of The Girl on the Train. I felt that it was disordered in its telling -- a style I find overly self-conscious and "arty" without helping the plot. Hold on to your hats, Nellie, Into the Water is The Girl on steroids! If you like confused plots, this is for you. Each section is told by a different character, some from the past and from the present. Plot clues are given and then dropped only to be picked up a few hours of listening later. In my view, this book has been hyped to extremes and I suspect there are quite a few people who don't find the plot worth it (misogyny anyone) and the characters beyond credibility.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Turning Angel

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Greg Iles
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2885)
    Performance
    (2526)
    Story
    (2520)

    As two of the most prominent citizens of Natchez, Drew Elliott and Penn Cage sit on the school board of their alma mater, St. Stephen's Prep. When the nude body of a young female student is found near the Mississippi River, the entire community is shocked - but no one more than Penn, who discovers that his best friend was entangled in a passionate relationship with the girl and may be accused of her murder.

    Pat M. says: "Southern accents are best left to Southerners..."
    "A gut-wrenching mystery with a difficult focus"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Having had a chance to reflect on all 5 of Greg Iles' Penn Cage novels, I find this one the most difficult. On the surface, it involves gambling and drugs, but underneath the surface, it is sexual slavery and gruesome, illegal dog fighting. Perhaps it is my midwestern upbringing that makes it difficult to accept this degree of cruelty in our world.

    I am not arguing against listening to this book -- just prepare yourself for a listening experience that goes in unexpected directions. Our hero and heroine rise to the challenges, and all is (sort of) well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Quiet Game

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs)
    • By Greg Iles
    • Narrated By Tom Stechschulte
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3917)
    Performance
    (3611)
    Story
    (3598)

    When former prosecutor Penn Cage returns to his hometown of Natchez, Mississippi, he doesn't find the peace he desperately craves. He finds that his own father is being blackmailed by a corrupt ex-cop. And when Penn investigates, he uncovers a murderous secret - and the small town's violent past.

    R. Pontiflet says: "Complex and Good Courtroom Drama!"
    "Fantastic first book in series of worthy mysteries"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have now completed the 5 major books in Greg Iles' Penn Cage series, so have the benefit of a much longer term perspective. This mystery, the first in the series, is riveting and compelling -- it introduces the central characters: Penn Cage, Katelyn Masters, Dr. Tom Cage, and a host of very bad KKK/Double Eagle people who have been responsible for death and mayhem in Natchez, Tenn. and neighboring communities. There is a good balance between the search for justice and the perils that an honest search poses in a corrupt political system. Most of us are familiar with the courageous actions of Freedom Riders and those who marched and fought for Civil Rights in the 1960's and beyond. This book places us in the late 1990's, racial repression has become more sinister and embedded in life in the South. I highly recommend -- clear the decks, you will be absorbed by this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mississippi Blood: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Greg Iles
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2806)
    Performance
    (2578)
    Story
    (2562)

    The endgame is at hand for Penn Cage, his family, and the enemies bent on destroying them in this revelatory volume in the epic trilogy set in modern-day Natchez, Mississippi - Greg Iles' epic tale of love and honor, hatred and revenge that explores how the sins of the past continue to haunt the present.

    Taryn says: "Good ending to the trilogy"
    "A fitting ending to this story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have avidly listened to all 5 of the major Penn Cage books (there is an intermediate book, 3.5 that I have avoided). My attention has been subsumed by this series, so much so that my husband thought I had another man in my life. I did! This final book ties up many loose ends, yet still leaves some questions about the Double Eagles and their reign of terror in Mississippi. Also, Penn's father is still in prison and he has a serious health problem and a few enemies still pulling strings, so who knows, there may be a 6th.

    Scott Brick is an excellent narrator, but a bit too breathy and dramatic to pull off the Southern twang necessary for all of the characters. That is a minor consideration.

    My recommendation to all listeners is to start at the beginning and do the 125 hours of listening necessary to complete the series -- you will organize many things in home offices, closets, and kitchens. That is what I have been doing for two weeks!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Bat: The First Inspector Harry Hole Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Jo Nesbø
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1515)
    Performance
    (1370)
    Story
    (1376)

    Before Harry took on the neo-Nazi gangs of Oslo, before he met Rakel, before The Snowman tried to take everything he held dear, he went to Australia. Harry Hole is sent to Sydney to investigate the murder of Inger Holter, a young Norwegian girl who was working in a bar. Initially sidelined as an outsider, Harry becomes central to the Australian police investigation when they start to notice a number of unsolved rape and murder cases around the country. The victims were usually young blondes. Inger had a number of admirers, each with his own share of secrets, but there is no obvious suspect.

    Byron says: "First Harry Hole finally translated into English!!"
    "The beginning of Harry Hole"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am glad I had read other, better Harry Hole books (The Snowman is a favorite) before reading this one. Nesbo has developed as a writer and Harry has become more sympathetic and multi-dimensional since this first book -- something we can appreciate. There is not the tension of morals that Harry experiences in later books, and his overt alcoholism (without insight) does not make him a likeable person in this first story. The antagonists are the usual lot -- drug dealers, prostitutes, bad cops, and Australian mobsters. There is a good exploration of the second class treatment of Australian Aboriginal people -- a social struggle that is still evident in modern Australia.

    If you are a Nesbo fan, read this as a marker for how a writer's plotting evolves with experience.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Trespasser: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Tana French
    • Narrated By Hilda Fay
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6940)
    Performance
    (6398)
    Story
    (6362)

    Being on the murder squad is nothing like Detective Antoinette Conway dreamed it would be. Her partner, Stephen Moran, is the only person who seems glad she's there. The rest of her working life is a stream of thankless cases, vicious pranks, and harassment. Antoinette is savagely tough, but she's getting close to the breaking point. Their new case looks like yet another by-the-numbers lovers' quarrel gone bad. Aislinn Murray is blond, pretty, groomed to a shine, and dead in her catalogue-perfect living room, next to a table set for a romantic dinner.

    lesley says: "A literary mystery"
    "Excellent story badly narrated"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Audible listeners know that a bad narration can kill a great story. Hilda Fay is totally wrong for this mystery. First, she is incapable of changing her vocal qualities enough to give a credible narration of male and female voices. This is a tragedy, because French is an excellent writer who deserves a GREAT narrator.

    About the story: a complex tale about a disheartened detective who has one last chance to prove she can do the job, which involves the murder of a woman by a shy man who apparently stalked her prior to killing her. I won't say more because it might spoil the book. As usual, French delves into the motivations of the detectives pursuing a case as those of the victim and possible murderers.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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