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Diane

Woodland, CA, United States | Member Since 2006

9
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 12 reviews
  • 106 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 142 purchased in 2014
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  • Delusion In Death: In Death, Book 35

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By J. D. Robb
    • Narrated By Susan Ericksen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1784)
    Performance
    (1559)
    Story
    (1542)

    It was just another after-work happy-hour bar downtown, where business professionals unwound with a few drinks, complained about the boss, maybe hooked up with someone for the night. Until something went terribly wrong. At first it was just a friction in the air. The noise intensified. The crowd seemed oppressive. Some sharp words were exchanged, some pushing and shoving. Then the madness descended. And after 12 minutes of chaos and violence, 80 people lay dead.

    Lisa says: "Robb, Dallas & Ericksen - what a Fantastic Combo"
    "Another good Dallas story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from J. D. Robb and/or Susan Ericksen?

    I love to listen to the Eve Dallas series and look forward to each new book.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    I found myself more disturbed about the graphic topic of this book than ones in the past. I believe it was because of the believable terrorist attack aspect that made it so uncomfortable. That said, it is still a very good listen maybe all the more so because it was so imaginable.


    Do you think Delusion In Death needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    Just more Eve Dallas


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Beast: Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus, Book 21

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Faye Kellerman
    • Narrated By Mitchell Greenberg
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (148)
    Performance
    (122)
    Story
    (124)

    Throughout his years with the LAPD, Peter Decker has handled a number of tough cases and strange killers. But few of his previous assignments compare to his latest case. When Hobart Penny is found dead in his apartment, the cops think that his pet cat - an adult female tiger - attacked the reclusive elderly billionaire. But it soon becomes clear that the beast that killed the eccentric inventor is all too human.

    Think about this says: "Lacking"
    "Its not what you say its how you say it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    no


    How could the performance have been better?

    The author tells a great story and I like her characters. My issue is with the narrator. His tone is incongruous with the character's situation. When a character should be sounding distressed or concerned, they sound upbeat or happy. In fact, rarely does his tone vary between characters. It is continually upbeat and happy even when a teenage girl is crying or someone has been shot. Also, these are characters from Southern California, LA, to be precise and one of the main characters has a southern twang. All of this distracts from the book. I will be going to the paper versions of books if this narrator is reading.


    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ground to a Halt: A Hemlock Falls Mystery, Book 14

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Claudia Bishop
    • Narrated By Justine Eyre
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (8)

    Hemlock Falls is a pretty little town in upstate New York. Sarah "Quill" Quilliam, with her talent for business, runs the Inn at Hemlock Falls while her sister, Meg, keeps the patrons happy with her culinary abilities. But when it comes to murder, the Quilliam sisters have to rely on other skills - spotting clues, solving crimes, and catching culprits.

    Diane says: "fun and rewarding"
    "fun and rewarding"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would recommend this to someone looking for a light and entertaining read


    Any additional comments?

    I enjoy this series. It is a good solid read. The characters are likable and believable. I do occasionally get annoyed with the protagonist and want her to have more of back bone but it actually works for her overall. I would recommend this series to someone looking to be entertained but not overwhelmed by graphic images.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • What Men Say

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Joan Smith
    • Narrated By Pearl Hewitt
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    When a woman's decomposed body is found in the aging barn of Oxford don Bridget Bennett's estate, Loretta knows her friend Bridget's shock is genuine. Unfortunately, the local constabulary are not so sure. And the tabloid press has a field day. But when the police try to identify the dead woman and any possible connection to Bridget and her devoted husband, only Bridget seems alarmed at what might surface. Loretta tries to piece the puzzle together herself-with little success.

    Diane says: "Dated and disappointing"
    "Dated and disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I am not sure if I can recommend this to anyone really.


    Any additional comments?

    I found this book dated and disappointing. The author seemed to have an agenda about the inequalities that women face in the world a subject I am generally sympathetic to. However the author was heavy handed with her points and made me uncomfortable with the relationships between each character. I like a book that does not tie up the ends in a neat package. Her ending neither had a twist- it was predictable nor did it make me want more. She seemed to have run out of ideas on how to end it so just explained it all at the end. I felt cheated and actually a little angry that I wasted my time on this book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Casual Vacancy

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By J. K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Tom Hollander
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3017)
    Performance
    (2650)
    Story
    (2677)

    When Barry Fairweather dies unexpectedly in his early 40s, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils.... Pagford is not what it at first seems. And the empty seat left by Barry on the town's council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen.

    cristina says: "I was surprised by how much I liked it"
    "Downer"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    This is a well written book but very depressing. But that is not why I only gave it 2 stars. I found even in the Harry Potter series the grown ups not behaving as good parents and often causing pain unnecessarily. This is true in this book also. JK Rowling seems to have a good grasp on the adolescent brain and rational but I feel she diminishes adults and their ability to respond appropriately.
    Also, I appreciate learning about other countries and culture and love to learn through literature. I felt she was weak bringing me into the social structure. As an American reader, it took a bit to understand how the politics influenced the story.
    JK Rowling is obviously a talented writer but her observations skew towards the dark side of adults and the low side of children. It is for this reason that I would not recommend her book. I will not read another.


    3 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Beautiful Mystery: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Louise Penny
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1321)
    Performance
    (1162)
    Story
    (1151)

    No outsiders are ever admitted to the monastery of Saint-Gilbert-Entre-les-Loups, hidden deep in the wilderness of Quebec, where two dozen cloistered monks live in peace and prayer. They grow vegetables, they tend chickens, they make chocolate. And they sing. Ironically, for a community that has taken a vow of silence, the monks have become world-famous for their glorious voices, raised in ancient chants whose effect on both singer and listener is so profound it is known as “the beautiful mystery.”

    Sparkly says: "Engaging, entertaining, and heartbreaking."
    "First rate writing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Beautiful Mystery again? Why?

    I love Louise Penny's Inspector Gamache series and look forward to each of her books. This is no exception. Her narrative and descriptions are full of beautiful images that I can see in my mind's eye. Her characters are fully developed and continue to develop through each book.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I want to savor a good book listening or reading. I would never want to listen in one sitting because I want the time to absorb the writing.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Malice in the Cotswolds

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Rebecca Tope
    • Narrated By Caroline Lennon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    Thea Osborne and her canine companion Hepzie travel to the isolated village of Snowshill for their next assignment, house-sitting Hyacinth House for the mysterious Yvonne Parker. Something doesn't feel right to Thea, who is ill at ease in the village, and soon her intuition is proved to be right. A local boy, Stevie Horsfall, is found brutally strangled, with his mother as prime suspect.

    Diane says: "good read"
    "good read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I enjoyed this book even though at times I wish the protagonist would be more self assured. Perhaps that was what makes her more appealing is that she is not the typical "I am the woman in charge".


    Would you recommend Malice in the Cotswolds to your friends? Why or why not?

    If you want a good solid but not necessarily intellectual mystery read, this will fit the bill.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (153)
    Performance
    (87)
    Story
    (85)

    With millions of copies of his New York Times best-selling No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency mysteries in print across the globe, Alexander McCall Smith is one of the most popular novelists and humorists in the world. Starring the brilliant but bumbling Professor Doctor Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld, The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs is a wonderfully entertaining showcase for Smith's award-winning wit.

    Judy says: "I couldn't finish the book..."
    "disturbing premise and in bad taste"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What would have made The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs better?

    Having a better grasp of how vet and teaching hospitals work. Mr. McCall Smith has always seemed to have a good understanding about his subject even if he does use artistic license. This book lost me totally in his treatment of both the veterinarian world and the dogs.


    Has The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Not at all.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Paul Hecht?

    not the problem


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    I was trying to stay with the author until he surgically removed 2 legs of a dog. I could not listen any further. The whole ludicrous idea that a person could lecture to convention of vets and not know a thing and get away with pushed my credulity. But to be allowed to do surgery with disastrous and a cruel outcome was the end of my listening. I am not a squeamish person but Mr. Mc Call Smith's treatment was insulting to me as a reader and to animal vets in general. I know that some vets can get carried away by their own importance and lose sight of the animals and the humans that own them but this is not the way to address the issue.
    I will admit that I did not listen to hear the end of the book but felt I had wasted enough of my time on it already.


    Any additional comments?

    I wonder what happened to Mr. Mc Call Smith that he stooped to such writing in bad taste

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Spying in High Heels

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Gemma Halliday
    • Narrated By Caroline Shaffer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (364)
    Performance
    (326)
    Story
    (328)

    L.A. shoe designer, Maddie Springer, lives her life by three rules: Fashion. Fashion. Fashion. But when she stumbles upon the work of a brutal killer, her life takes an unexpected turn from Manolos to murder. And things only get worse when her boyfriend disappears - along with $20 million in embezzled funds - and her every move is suddenly under scrutiny by the LAPD's sexiest cop. With the help of her post-menopausal bridezilla of a mother, a 300-pound psychic and one seriously oversexed best friend, Maddie finds herself stepping out of her stilettos and onto the trail of a murderer. But can she catch a killer before the killer catches up to her?

    Annette says: "Very fun listen"
    "unexpected"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Spying in High Heels again? Why?

    I plan on listening to the whole series. I really like the protagonist. She is not a whiner or helpless.She manages to try to work out her jams herself but is smart enough to know that she is in over her head. A little like Stephanie Plum I found myself laughing out loud.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Prime Cut

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Diane Mott Davidson
    • Narrated By Barbara Rosenblat
    Overall
    (71)
    Performance
    (61)
    Story
    (59)

    Known as “the Julia Child of mystery writers,” Diane Mott Davidson cooks up gourmet culinary mysteries sure to please the most discriminating palates. Mystery connoisseurs relish her elaborate plots and fast-paced action amid scenic Colorado settings. The luscious recipes included at the end are icing on the cake. Caterer-turned sleuth Goldy Schulz has an unbelievably chaotic life, but she is uncommonly determined.

    Carol says: "My first Diane Davidson book"
    "not prime"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    The narration was terrible. The person narrating has a smokers voice that is both squeaky and raspy making the performance difficult to listen.


    What was most disappointing about Diane Mott Davidson’s story?

    I found the whining attitude of her protagonist irritating beyond endurance and would have to shut it off just not to get mad.


    How could the performance have been better?

    A different narrater would have made all the difference


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    . I think that the book and plot were engaging except for the whining self deprecation of the protagonist. I will listen to her books because she does have a good way of telling a story and a mystery that is interesting. I just find her main character embarrassing as an adult woman.


    Any additional comments?

    I would again buy this book if it had a different narrator and it was on sale.

    0 of 7 people found this review helpful

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