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Beth Anne

i like to read. i like to listen.

Philadelphia, PA, United States | Member Since 2012

97
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 88 reviews
  • 121 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 74 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
19

  • Where'd You Go, Bernadette: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Maria Semple
    • Narrated By Kathleen Wilhoite
    Overall
    (2251)
    Performance
    (2016)
    Story
    (2015)

    Bernadette Fox is notorious. To her Microsoft-guru husband, she's a fearlessly opinionated partner; to fellow private-school mothers in Seattle, she's a disgrace; to design mavens, she's a revolutionary architect, and to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, simply, Mom.

    Then Bernadette disappears. It began when Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette's intensifying allergy to Seattle - and people in general - has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands.

    S says: "One of my top 10 listens of the year!"
    "Hysterical story with a bit of mystery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Where'd You Go, Bernadette again? Why?

    Yes. I think going back and listening through again would uncover some facts that solve the mystery that I missed the first time around.


    What other book might you compare Where'd You Go, Bernadette to and why?

    I haven't read anything like this. I don't usually like books that are this lighthearted and I never read books that are funny.


    What about Kathleen Wilhoite’s performance did you like?

    Her interpretation of Bee was fantastic -- it was perfectly on point. Also was surprised at her singing. Quite lovely.


    Who was the most memorable character of Where'd You Go, Bernadette and why?

    Honestly, I think that Audrey was the most memorable. Her growth in the story is great.


    Any additional comments?

    This book was fantastic, I urge anyone who loves good stories to purchase this...even if it doesn't seem like "their kind of book." I was pleasantly surprised at how much I loved it.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Valley of Amazement

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Amy Tan
    • Narrated By Nancy Wu, Joyce Bean, Amy Tan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (956)
    Performance
    (844)
    Story
    (856)

    Shanghai, 1912. Violet Minturn is the privileged daughter of the American madam of the city's most exclusive courtesan house. But when the Ching dynasty is overturned, Violet is separated from her mother in a cruel act of chicanery and forced to become a "virgin courtesan." Half-Chinese and half-American, Violet grapples with her place in the worlds of East and West - until she is able to merge her two halves, empowering her to become a shrewd courtesan who excels in the business of seduction and illusion, though she still struggles to understand who she is.

    Pamela says: "Just could NOT get past the ugliness"
    "disappointing and not worth the hype"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    honestly i expected more from amy tan. i dont know why. i've only read one other book by her (joy luck club), and i really did enjoy that one...but its been 6 years since i read it -- and 25 years since she wrote it. thats a lot of time, and a lot of other novels, that i've missed. but i guess because she's so prolific, and so popular, i figured that this novel was bound to be another amazing story. i kind of didn't feel that way.

    to be frank, i found the story to drag on and on...with all of the main characters making all of the same mistakes over and over and over again. without learning or growing.

    Violet is one of the dumbest female protagonists i have ever encountered. i kept grimacing over every choice she made, every person she trusted, every word she uttered. she kept saying 'i'm smart' 'i am clever' 'i could figure a way' -- and i wanted to scream back at here - no you aren't!!! you really really aren't! her story took way to long to unfold. leaving precious little time to get through the other two women's stories, which then felt rushed and cut short. Lulu was semi-interesting....but as i said, i felt i didn't get to really invest myself in her story because it was told so quickly and so near to the end of the novel -- i knew that it was being told only to move the story along to the ending.

    obviously i don't know anything about being a courtesan in turn of the century China...how would i. and this story did give you an interesting look into that lifestyle, whether chosen or forced upon a woman. it was extremely graphic in it's sexual encounters -- which didn't bother me -- but i also didn't find those scenes necessarily helped to move the plot along. they were a bit gratuitous.

    what frustrated me the most in this novel was the two child kidnappings that took place. the complacency of both mothers was astounding...like they lost an old silk scarf -- not a child from their own womb! there was no lamenting except a few words here and there 'i long for my daughter' 'i think about her all the time.' but that didn't seem like what was going on. it seemed, to me, that each woman was moving along with her life without looking back....without giving any effort to rescue her poor child. perhaps it was the times, or the country they were in, but i found the fact that no recourse was even attempted frustrating and bothersome. then the ending comes, everyone hugs and "we can all live happily moving forward and love each other again" -- it was just ridiculous.

    to end, this book was frustrating, and drawn out, and overall disappointing to me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Museum of Extraordinary Things: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Alice Hoffman
    • Narrated By Judith Light, Grace Gummer, Zach Appelman
    Overall
    (244)
    Performance
    (217)
    Story
    (217)

    Coney Island: Coralie Sardie is the daughter of the impresario behind The Museum of Extraordinary Things, a boardwalk freak show that amazes and stimulates the crowds. An exceptional swimmer, Coralie appears as the Mermaid in her father's "museum", alongside performers like the Wolfman, the Butterfly Girl, and a 100-year-old turtle. One night Coralie stumbles upon a striking young man photographing moonlit trees in the woods off the Hudson River.

    L. Calder says: "Captivating historical fiction+Hoffman interview!"
    "riveting story with captivating characters"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    i was absolutely riveted by this story. while the historical nature of the story seemed like a bit of a departure for Hoffman, the magical quality of the story was shining with every word written. i think Hoffman always has a way with words, and when her story is so captivating and her characters are so tormented the blend becomes a perfect novel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Never List

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Koethi Zan
    • Narrated By Kristen Sieh
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (93)
    Performance
    (86)
    Story
    (84)

    For years, best friends Sarah and Jennifer kept what they called the "Never List" - a list of actions to be avoided. But one night, against their instincts, they accept a cab ride with grave consequences. For the next three years, they are held captive with two other girls in a dungeon-like cellar by a connoisseur of sadism. 10 years later, at 31, Sarah is still struggling to resume a normal life, unable to come to grips with the fact that Jennifer didn't make it out of that cellar. Now, her abductor is up for parole and Sarah can no longer ignore the twisted letters he sends from jail.

    Kali says: "Eerie similarities to Cleveland kidnappings..."
    "smart thriller with the right amount of everything"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    this book was great. it had just the right amount of intensity and mystery, just the right amount of drama, just the right amount of deviance and brutality, and it was just the right length.

    the story was interesting, with empathetic characters who are tortured (excuse the pun) by their past and trying to figure out a way to move on while having to revisit their old wounds. it's fast paced, there's no time wasted in getting to the final climax where all the twists and mysteries are resolved or revealed.

    it's a perfect creepy crazy story of female victims trying to figure out the realities and overcome the horrors what happened to them.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Alex: The Commandant Camille Verhoeven Trilogy

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Pierre Lemaitre
    • Narrated By David Rintoul
    Overall
    (57)
    Performance
    (49)
    Story
    (51)

    Alex Prevost - kidnapped, savagely beaten, suspended from the ceiling of an abandoned warehouse in a tiny wooden cage - is running out of time. Her abductor appears to want only to watch her die. Apart from a shaky eyewitness report of the abduction, Police Commandant Camille Verhoeven has nothing to go on: no suspect, no leads, and no family or friends anxious to find a missing loved one. The diminutive and brilliant detective knows from bitter experience the urgency of finding the missing woman as quickly as possible - but first he must understand more about her.

    Paul says: "A Dark Story"
    "good if you like fast paced thrillers with twists"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    intense story with a lot of great twists that really kept it moving. every time you get to a resolution, you realize that it's just the beginning of another crazy turn in the story.

    there were definitely some cultural differences in the plot and in the writing, but they didn't detract from the intensity of the story.

    as a character, Alex was well developed and had a lot of depth and interest. the way her story unfolds through her narration and through the investigation surrounding her kidnapping is layered in such a way that til the very last few pages you are still guessing...which makes for a good mystery.

    worthy read for people who like this type of novel.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Daniel James Brown
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (983)
    Performance
    (896)
    Story
    (906)

    Daniel James Brown's robust book tells the story of the University of Washington's 1936 eight-oar crew and their epic quest for an Olympic gold medal, a team that transformed the sport and grabbed the attention of millions of Americans. The sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the boys defeated elite rivals first from eastern and British universities and finally the German crew rowing for Adolf Hitler in the Olympic games in Berlin, 1936.

    Janice says: "Do you believe in miracles??"
    "interesting story of american pride and crew"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    i'm not a sports person, and i'm not really a non-fiction book person...and yet, i found this story interesting and really quite enjoyable.

    it's an American pride story, an underdog story, a story of resiliance and hope and and brotherhood. it was not only enlightening and educational, but really exciting. it's a piece of our nation's olympic history that I had no idea about but am glad that i now do.

    go usa.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sycamore Row

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7866)
    Performance
    (7092)
    Story
    (7091)

    Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of lung cancer. He trusts no one. Before he hangs himself from a sycamore tree, Hubbard leaves a new, handwritten, will. It is an act that drags his adult children, his black maid, and Jake into a conflict as riveting and dramatic as the murder trial that made Brigance one of Ford County's most notorious citizens, just three years earlier. The second will raises far more questions than it answers. Why would Hubbard leave nearly all of his fortune to his maid? Had chemotherapy and painkillers affected his ability to think clearly?

    Brock says: "Grisham at his best (again)"
    "predictable but good writing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    grisham is a good writer. definitely keeps you interested and introduces you to a vast and various group of characters. while the book was pretty predictable (both hubby and i figured out what was going on around chapter 3), it wasn't boring..and i didn't mind watching the story unfold in the courtroom.

    for my first foray into grisham i guess it was a bit underwhelming, but this guy obviously churns out novels with interesting characters and well thought out stories that are really perfect to translate into films.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. Mercedes: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Will Patton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2081)
    Performance
    (1963)
    Story
    (1958)

    In the frigid pre-dawn hours, in a distressed Midwestern city, hundreds of desperate unemployed folks are lined up for a spot at a job fair. Without warning, a lone driver plows through the crowd in a stolen Mercedes, running over the innocent, backing up, and charging again. Eight people are killed; fifteen are wounded. The killer escapes. Mr. Mercedes is a war between good and evil, from the master of suspense whose insight into the mind of this obsessed, insane killer is chilling and unforgettable.

    Marci says: "King and Patton create a winning combo"
    "different genre for King, perfectly executed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    i loved this book.

    the tried and true detective story as told my the master Stephen King just works.

    i love King's writing, whether or not it involves the supernatural aspects. the story delivers. the characters deliver. it kept me on the edge of my seat wondering whether good or evil would indeed prevail, you never know with King; and i loved every thrilling second of it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Vacationers

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Emma Straub
    • Narrated By Kristen Sieh
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (70)
    Performance
    (63)
    Story
    (61)

    For the Posts, a two-week trip to the Balearic island of Mallorca with their extended family and friends is a celebration: Franny and Jim are observing their thirty-fifth wedding anniversary, and their daughter, Sylvia, has graduated from high school. The sunlit island, its mountains and beaches, its tapas and tennis courts, also promise an escape from the tensions simmering at home in Manhattan. But all does not go according to plan.

    RueRue says: "Bland"
    "excellent narration, great summer book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    what a satisfying novel.

    family has turmoil. family goes on two week vacation to Mallorca. family forced all together to confront turmoil. family comes out the other side.

    i rooted for this family. i wanted everything to turn out ok. every single character was spot on...each of them had parts to love, and parts to hate. just like a regular family. the writing was easy, floating along between characters unraveling all the complexities of each of them...

    great book.

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

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Rainbow Rowell
    • Narrated By Laura Hamilton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (520)
    Performance
    (457)
    Story
    (458)

    Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder, coworkers at The Courier, know the newspaper monitors their office e-mail. But they still spend all day sending each other messages, gossiping about their coworkers, and baring their personal lives like an open book. Jennifer tells Beth everything she can’t seem to tell her husband about her anxieties over starting a family. And Beth tells Jennifer everything, period. Meanwhile, Lincoln O’Neill still can’t believe that it’s his job to monitor other people’s e-mail.

    Julie says: "Just what I'd hoped for"
    "cute but not great"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    this was cute, but no eleanor and park. kinda silly, kinda obvious...but cute enough.

    Rainbow Rowell writes this type of book really well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fourth of July Creek: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Smith Henderson
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews, Jenna Lamia
    Overall
    (39)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (34)

    After trying to help Benjamin Pearl, an undernourished, nearly feral 11-year-old boy living in the Montana wilderness, social worker Pete Snow comes face-to-face with the boy's profoundly disturbed father, Jeremiah. With courage and caution, Pete slowly earns a measure of trust from this paranoid survivalist itching for a final conflict that will signal the coming End Times. But as Pete's own family spins out of control, Pearl's activities spark the full-blown interest of the FBI, putting Pete at the center of a massive manhunt from which no one will emerge unscathed.

    Melinda says: "The Ghost of Tom Joad & the Wrath of Grapes"
    "absolute must read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    i can safely say that this has been my favorite book that i have read this year...and probably up there in my top reads in the past few years. this book was so heavy. and so amazing.

    what an incredible cast of characters. most of which you rooted for even though they weren't all that 'good' in a conventional sense. there was such a deep sadness that rooted through every single person the story encounters. sadness and despair. each of the families (children) that the main character, Pete, is tasked to help as a social worker are desperate and depressed sometimes depraved.

    i don't know what to say. i loved it so much it was one of those books that i never wanted to end.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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