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Starshine

I'm a journalist, columnist and slave to a great tale, well told.

Santa Barbara, CA, United States | Member Since 2010

3
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 12 ratings
  • 80 titles in library
  • 11 purchased in 2014
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  • The Shipping News

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Annie Proulx
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (69)
    Performance
    (57)
    Story
    (57)

    At 36, Quoyle, a third-rate newspaperman, is wrenched violently out of his workaday life when his two-timing wife gets her just desserts. He retreats with his two daughters to his ancestral home on the starkly beautiful Newfoundland coast, where a rich cast of local characters all play a part in Quoyle's struggle to reclaim his life. As three generations of his family cobble up new lives, Quoyle confronts his private demons - and the unpredictable forces of nature and society - and begins to see the possibility of love without pain or misery.

    Polly says: "Can't Explain Why I Love This Book"
    "Rough listening"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Annie Proulx' prose is purposely stilted, and this author does nothing to make it feel more natural. The book is depressing and it's hard to want to keep listening to the disappointments plaguing this unextraordinary protagonist.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Cuckoo's Calling

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Robert Galbraith
    • Narrated By Robert Glenister
    Overall
    (6627)
    Performance
    (6027)
    Story
    (6033)

    After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: his sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.

    Tracey says: "Unbelievable debut mystery set in London"
    "Really engaging. Amusing, compelling ..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Cuckoo's Calling again? Why?

    I recommended this book to several friends. I didn't expect to love it, but I really couldn't put it down (er, turn it off). Great main characters, colorful portraits of secondary characters, a real mystery until the end. Well-crafted and smartly sewn together.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Fault in Our Stars

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By John Green
    • Narrated By Kate Rudd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11111)
    Performance
    (10199)
    Story
    (10256)

    Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten. Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning-author John Green’s most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.

    FanB14 says: "Sad Premise, Fantastic Story"
    "Listened twice in a row (new for me)"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Fault in Our Stars?

    The characters and their relationships are compelling—familiar but better than real life. Smarter. Braver. I listened to this book myself, then listened again with my family immediately after, on a road trip -- and was happy to do so. I can't say I've ever done that with another book. Narrator was terrific.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Fault in Our Stars?

    The romantic dinner in Amsterdam. The kiss. The eulogy rehearsal.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Leviathan

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Scott Westerfeld
    • Narrated By Alan Cumming
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1213)
    Performance
    (946)
    Story
    (948)

    It is the cusp of World War I, and all the European powers are arming up. The Austro-Hungarians and Germans have their Clankers, steam-driven iron machines loaded with guns and ammunition. The British Darwinists employ fabricated animals as their weaponry. The Leviathan is a living airship, the most formidable airbeast in the skies of Europe.

    Ryan says: "entertaining"
    "Action action action."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Leviathan? What did you like least?

    I LOVED Alan Cumming's performance. He made every character so different and kept along at a great clip, giving credibility to the invented words of this fictional time and place. But the narrative is SO descriptive of the action (which is constant) that I had a hard time keeping up with picturing it all in my head. I kept getting lost as to who was where and who was whom and ... my sons enjoyed it. Kind of a "boy" book, I'm afraid.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Borrower

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Rebecca Makkai
    • Narrated By Emily Bauer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (9)

    Lucy Hull, a young children’s librarian in Hannibal, Missouri, is unsure where her life is headed. That becomes more than a figure of speech when her favorite patron, ten-year-old Ian Drake, runs away from home and Lucy finds herself in the surprise role of chauffeur. The precocious Ian is addicted to reading, but needs Lucy’s help to smuggle books past his overbearing mother, who has enrolled Ian in weekly antigay classes with celebrity Pastor Bob. Lucy stumbles into a moral dilemma when she finds Ian camped out in the library after hours with a knapsack of provisions and an escape plan.

    Andrew says: "Reflective novel--but a distracting reading"
    "Voice ruins it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Rebecca Makkai and/or Emily Bauer?

    By Rebecca Makkai, maybe.


    Would you recommend The Borrower to your friends? Why or why not?

    Not the audibook -- the reader's voice is breathy and juvenile like Amy Adams as a Disney princess. So distracting I couldn't get halfway through the story.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Marriage Plot

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Eugenides
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1742)
    Performance
    (1441)
    Story
    (1434)

    It’s the early 1980s—the country is in a deep recession, and life after college is harder than ever. In the cafés on College Hill, the wised-up kids are inhaling Derrida and listening to Talking Heads. But Madeleine Hanna, dutiful English major, is writing her senior thesis on Jane Austen and George Eliot, purveyors of the marriage plot that lies at the heart of the greatest English novels.

    FanB14 says: "Esoteric, Vapid, Trite"
    "Not a fan of the narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    All of the women in the book are voiced as annoyed and annoying -- I hate them all, and realized halfway through the book that it's not the writing, it's the narrator. Couldn't finish the book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 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
    (668)
    Performance
    (440)
    Story
    (442)

    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.

    loix says: "A sensory feast"
    "How can a chef be such a brilliant writer?!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Blood, Bones & Butter again? Why?

    I'd never listen to any book twice. What a silly question.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The telling is as engaging as the story -- Gabrielle Hamilton is a brilliant writer. If she cooks half as deliciously as she writes, I'd eat at her restaurant every day.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    She reads the book herself, and while her voice at first bugged me (laid-back, low-drama), once I got to know her through her writing, I was grateful to have that full other dimension with which to understand Ms. Hamilton. I like knowing what I'm hearing is never a mistaken interpretation, but EXACTLY how the author intended it to be read.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Take one Bohemian childhood. Sprinkle in wayward teen years. Bring to a boil.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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