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ana

BALTIMORE, MD, United States | Member Since 2011

21
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 13 reviews
  • 78 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 13 purchased in 2014
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  • The White Princess: Cousins' War, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Philippa Gregory
    • Narrated By Bianca Amato
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (396)
    Performance
    (366)
    Story
    (361)

    The newest novel from #1 New York Times best-selling author and "queen of royal fiction" (USA Today) Philippa Gregory tells the passionate story of Elizabeth of York, daughter of the White Queen, who gets caught in the middle of a battle for the crown of England. A princess from birth, Elizabeth fell in love with Richard III, though her mother made an arranged betrothal for her with the pretender to the throne: Henry Tudor. When Henry defeats Richard against all odds, Elizabeth has to marry the man who murdered her lover in battle.

    FanB14 says: "Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow"
    "disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I agree with most reviews, so I'll just go to the point...too long, repetitious, tedious.
    I couldn't wait to finish it, which is the first time I feel this way about a Phillipa Gregory book. Bianca Amato made it worth listening to it.
    Since this is historical fiction and NOT HISTORY, I won't try to criticize the facts and her view of them, only the way she chose to present them.
    Hearing "The Boy" in every other sentence was extremely irritating.
    Too bad. It was a fascinating period of history.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Written in My Own Heart's Blood: Outlander, Book 8

    • UNABRIDGED (44 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1030)
    Performance
    (965)
    Story
    (958)

    Hurtled back through time more than two hundred years to 1743 Scotland, Claire Randall finds herself caught in the midst of an unfamiliar world torn apart by violence, pestilence, and revolution and haunted by her growing feelings for a young soldier, James Fraser.

    April says: "not enough stars..."
    "Disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've loved the series, reading and listening to it more than once. Gabaldon does an exceptional job researching and creating. This time, though, it felt like repetition of other books. Long, boring, uninteresting dialogs, scenes and characters. Too many story lines which serve only to add pages and confuse the listener. (sometimes I took notes to remember who was who). "Passing through the stones" used to be fascinating, now, it's just like a revolving door. I couldn't wait to finish the book. Unfortunately, I'm sure I'll listen to the next one...
    Davina Porter was the star, even more than in previous books. I felt I kept on listening just to enjoy her voice.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Princes of Ireland: The Dublin Saga

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Edward Rutherfurd
    • Narrated By Richard Matthews
    Overall
    (537)
    Performance
    (199)
    Story
    (201)

    The saga begins in tribal, pre-Christian Ireland during the reign of the fierce and mighty High Kings at Tara, with the tale of two lovers whose travails cleverly echo the ancient Celtic legend of Cuchulainn. From that stirring beginning, Rutherfurd takes the reader on a powerfully imagined journey through the centuries. Through the interlocking stories of a memorable cast of characters we see Ireland through the lens of its greatest city.

    jack rose says: "FANTASTIC!"
    "lost interest"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have read all of Rutherfurd's books and so far, my favorites are Sarum and Russka.
    (this is the first time I listen to one).
    Yes, the characters are difficult to keep track of, and for that reason, I keep notes of who is whose son, etc. It has always been a great help.
    The first half of the book I found fascinating, however, by the last 8 or so hours, I had lost interest, mainly because of all the political detail and couldn't wait for it to end. The story at times gets extremely slow and excessively detailed. I love History and I love Ireland and Mr. Rutherfurd is truly a master, but this was a little bit too much for me.
    The narrator does a great job.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Ivanhoe

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Sir Walter Scott
    • Narrated By Michael Page
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (255)
    Performance
    (171)
    Story
    (177)

    Wilfred, knight of Ivanhoe, the son of Cedric the Saxon, is in love with his father's ward, Rowena. Cedric, however, wishes her to marry Athelstane, a descendant of the royal Saxon line, whom Cedric hopes will restore the Saxon succession. With a colorful cast of chivalric knights and fair ladies, this action-filled novel comes complete with feats of derring-do, the pageantry of a tournament, and a great flame-engulfed castle - all of which makes it the most enthralling of Scott's creations.

    Bill Dewey/Reclaiming Quarterly says: "Great Adventure, Good Rendition"
    "I'm trying !!!!!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As a foreign born and English not being my native language, I'm having a hard time following the narration because of the use of vocabulary and accent of the times. I'm half way done and I'm now taking a break. I read mostly Historical Fiction and love the British accent, but this is a bit too much for me. The same happened with Niccolo Rising, which I returned because it was almost painful to listen to. Oh, welll...!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Other Side of History: Daily Life in the Ancient World

    • ORIGINAL (24 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Robert Garland
    Overall
    (835)
    Performance
    (753)
    Story
    (746)

    Look beyond the abstract dates and figures, kings and queens, and battles and wars that make up so many historical accounts. Over the course of 48 richly detailed lectures, Professor Garland covers the breadth and depth of human history from the perspective of the so-called ordinary people, from its earliest beginnings through the Middle Ages.

    Mark says: "Tantalizing time trip"
    "Outstanding !!!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If History has ever seem boring and dry to you, this is a truly incredible opportunity to find out what you have been missing. Extremely well researched, easy to follow, fun to listen at times, painful at others, but never dull. Professor Garland makes it so clear and human. He is the teacher that makes you love History. I will listen to it again...and probably again...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Blind Justice

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Anne Perry
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (121)
    Performance
    (105)
    Story
    (104)

    In Blind Justice, mystery abounds in London as Hester Monk, wife of Thames River Police Commander William Monk, questions Abel Taft - a charismatic preacher accused of extortion. Taft appears guilty as sin, but his trial explodes when a star witness drops a bombshell that has the Monks scrambling to save their dear friend Oliver Rathbone.

    Nancy J says: "Excellent Victorian Mystery /Legal Thriller"
    "couldn't put it down"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've been reading Anne Perry for years, always enjoying her books. With audiobooks now, Davina Porter makes them more alive and addictive.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Pavilion of Women

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Pearl S. Buck
    • Narrated By Adam Verner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (93)
    Performance
    (76)
    Story
    (74)

    On her 40th birthday, Madame Wu carries out a decision she has been planning for a long time: she tells her husband that after 24 years their physical life together is now over and she wishes him to take a second wife. The House of Wu, one of the oldest and most revered in China, is thrown into an uproar by her decision, but Madame Wu will not be dissuaded and arranges for a young country girl to come take her place in bed.

    Lorna says: "Flawlessly beautiful!"
    "Not as good as expected"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Interesting insight into the rural high class pre-revolution China, both in their every day lives and their strict cultural structure.
    Started confusing but engaging, getting to know the different characters and personalities.
    Madame Wu started as a wise, kind head of the household, only to turn into an overly exaggerated fountain of goodness and wisdom. Could not understand the origin of such deep love for Andre, considering the limited time the novel puts them together. Andre is another over the top wise and generous soul. Her constant thoughts of him ended up boring me and couldn't wait for the book to end.
    The narration was fine, but I might have enjoyed it more narrated by a woman.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Testament of Mary

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Colm Toibin
    • Narrated By Meryl Streep
    Overall
    (246)
    Performance
    (227)
    Story
    (224)

    Meryl Streep’s performance of Colm Tóibín's acclaimed portrait of Mary is hailed by the New York Times Book Review as “an ideal audiobook,” presenting the three-time Academy Award-winner in “yet another great role.” Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Colm Tóibín's The Testament of Mary presents Mary as a solitary older woman still seeking to understand the events that become the narrative of the New Testament and the foundation of Christianity. In the ancient town of Ephesus, Mary lives alone, years after her son's crucifixion. She has no interest in collaborating with the authors of the Gospel. They are her keepers, providing her with food and shelter and visiting her regularly. She does not agree that her son is the Son of God; nor that his death was "worth it"; nor that the "group of misfits he gathered around him, men who could not look a woman in the eye," were holy disciples. This woman who we know from centuries of paintings and scripture as the docile, loving, silent, long-suffering, obedient, worshipful mother of Christ becomes a tragic heroine with the relentless eloquence of Electra or Medea or Antigone, in a portrait so vivid and convincing that our image of Mary will be forever transformed.

    C. Telfair says: "A living, breathing woman"
    "from a non believer..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A very touching, human account of an event that has no contemporary writers.
    Mary is a mother, above all. Her son is taken away from her, she has no power over him.
    His actions and companions get him in trouble with the law.
    Divine ?...Human ?...it doesn't matter. Her pain, regret and guilt are real.
    I'll listen to it again. It's so powerful.
    Meryl Streep deserves ten stars and more. She makes Mary talk directly to you as if sharing a cup of coffee.
    It didn't change my beliefs, but just the same, it gave me goose bumps.

    18 of 19 people found this review helpful
  • The Autobiography of Henry VIII

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Margaret George
    • Narrated By David Case
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (279)
    Performance
    (150)
    Story
    (149)

    Margaret George's novel brings into focus the larger-than-life King Henry VIII, monarch of prodigious appetites for wine, women, and song.

    Amy M. Walts says: "Perfection!"
    "Best audiobook ever"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It doesn't matter how much you have read about Henry VIII, this book makes him a real man, with desires, anger, excesses, love, lust, fear... The author makes us even empathize with him, seeing things from his selfish, sick, royal, human point of view. Some times I found myself agreeing with his twisted reasoning, scary, but the mark of an excellent writer.
    Out of all the books I've listened to, this is by far my favorite.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Dirty Job

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Christopher Moore
    • Narrated By Fisher Stevens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4135)
    Performance
    (1429)
    Story
    (1444)

    People start dropping dead around Charlie, giant ravens perch on his building, and it seems that everywhere he goes, a dark presence whispers to him from under the streets. Strange names start appearing on his nightstand notepad, and before he knows it, those people end up dead, too. Yup, it seems that Charlie Asher has been recruited for a new job, an unpleasant but utterly necessary one: Death.

    colleen says: "I loved it!"
    "just not for me."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Wanting a change of pace to my usual listening and a bit of comic relief to the stress of the holidays I chose the absolutely wrong book. I don't mean to be a book critic, just to say I did not find it funny, the narrator's fast style left me even more stressed out. After trying a few chapters, it just got worse.
    Not my cup of tea.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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