I just couldn't get into this book. I found it confusing - switching to completely different characters in every chapter, half the time I didn't know who they were talking about or how they fit into the whole scheme of things. It had potential as a book, but it never made me care because of the rapid shifting. Sometimes an audible book just grabs you - with this one, I kept having to force myself to concentrate harder and harder to figure out what was going on and the author's story line just wasn't worth the concentration, imho.
I'm surprised that there isn't more mention of the narration of this book. I thought it was outstanding. Very difficult to do an adult and a little boy - made this excellent book all the better.
Having read the Shipping News, I figured this might be a good read with interesting characters and I was not wrong at all. Annie is a master of the descriptive phrase. She doesn't miss a detail. Narration in this book is excellent, adding greatly to the "feel" of the book. My Dad grew up in the Panhandle, so this made this all the more interesting. And it does speak volumes about big industry and our environment, especially telling in today's political atmosphere, where it seems like we are doing our best to gut our environment in a short-sighted frenzy to make a buck.
If you enjoy a "craftsman" of the written word, then you'll love Annie Proulx.
I knew nothing about horse racing when I first started on this book. But it doesnt' really matter - it's more of a story about personalities and a wonderful, gutsy horse. I was also rather astounded to learn the impact horse racing had on the general public in the late 30's. The Superbowl of the period. A great intro to audio books if you haven't listened to one yet. I agree with the one reviewer that it would be nice to see an unabridged version, as I heard in an interview with Laura Hillenbrand that only about 30% of the book is contained in the abridged version. Still, the narration is excellent, you will have tears in your eyes and you will be inspired to read the full book and see the movie this summer. Don't pass this one up!
Preston does it again (also wrote the Hot Zone about Ebola virus) with an outstanding depiction of the current smallpox crisis. If this doesn't send chills up your spine, nothing will. Excellent descriptions of the effects smallpox has on the body and how easily it can spread. He takes you behind the scenes with the real life people working on this problem today. Narration quality - very good. Very highly recommended.
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