This author does a good job weaving a coming of age story with family histories and the spiritual side of life. The story is interesting and fast moving with just enough character development to keep the story going. The narrator has a smooth voice that was engaging and varied with the different characters. If you like stories about World War II, spirits, and angels, you should like this story. It's not going to win the Novel Prize for Literature, but it should keep you entertained for eight hours or so.
I went to Iceland and toured it recently and I thought this would be a nice complement to that trip. I was right. I don't want to give away the story here - almost anything is a spoiler - but suffice it to say that the author uses seemingly unrelated incidents in the book to resolve the mystery. It's kind of quirky in that regard, but ultimately satisfying. Having been to Iceland it was easy for me to recognize the settings and appreciate the characters. Audible has this book a part of a series, but it seems to be a stand alone story in my opinion. The narrator did a nice job with the Icelandic names and place names. So the bottom line - this book is unusual for a mystery, but satisfying. I gave it four stars because the first half of the book was a bit confusing. I'm not sure if there was another way to write it, but I'm glad I stuck with it.
Although another reviewer spoiled the mystery, I read this novel anyway since I enjoyed the author's other works. This book was a bit different in that some of the characters I liked from past books were not in this one. For example, Pap was used as a tracker with no mention of Dave. I suppose the author is retiring the character although there is an opening to continue the series. The book did have the usual humor in it which made it worth reading. I hope Bo Tully returns with a new adventure as I already miss him.
This book is not written just for chemists or physicians. It is written in layman's terms and the author simply tells a story. It's more like a novel than a history book. It is a fascinating look at what can only be described as a world spanning saga of the invention of the first antibiotics. The author looks not only at the main characters in the search for a miracle cure for bacteriological infection, but shows it all in the context of the world that we all live in. I really like nonfiction that reads like a novel because I learn so much along the way. I am not a scientist, but I can appreciate the scientific method much more now after this book. The narrator did a superb job and was not dull in the least. If you like nonfiction that really is stranger and more unbelievable than fiction, this book is for you! If you have a friend who is a chemist or physician, then you have a perfect gift!
This novel is based on actual events. The Holocaust provides the background to this story and it shows how so many millions of people were affected and those effects still condition our society today. I am sure that this story was repeated time and again as victims of the Nazis tried to reconnect to family members who were lost in chaos upon chaos at the end of the war and the following years. One thing that this novel has in it is art and how it was used as a weapon against the Nazis. If you are an artist or appreciate art and art history, this book provides an alternate path of interest for you other than the plot. I enjoyed this book as it reveals how our shared humanity forms a true bond with every person on the planet. There are two main characters who tell the story and the publisher wisely chose to use a male narrator for the man and a female narrator for the woman. This really aids in clarity to an audible book. If you're interested in the Holocaust and another "branch" of it, then this is a good book for you. I certainly enjoyed it.
These shorter books are a great listen and worth a laugh or two. McManus has a knack for one liners that are really pretty clever and funny. As the series progresses, the reader learns to like the characters more and more. I was a little concerned that the latest narrator was different, but he got the job done and seemed to get in the spirit of things. This mystery is a little different than the others - simpler. If you're looking for a Nobel prize winner, you need to look somewhere else. If you're looking for a lighthearted mystery with some funny characters, then you've come to the right place.
This book is probably best read from a printed book rather than audio. Why? Because it's written in a kind of "stream of consciousness" manner that uses the elderly character's dementia as the vehicle that tells the story. Confused? So was I. I recently visited the Hermitage in St. Petersburg (Leningrad) so I thought this would be a good book about how the museum's art work survived the cruel siege. However, it really wasn't that kind of book. The setting is present day America, but the protagonist's mind keeps slipping back to the siege of 1941. Because of the seamless and without warning changes from present day to 1941, the book was confusing. Because of that, I would recommend this book in the form of a printed book. The author had some great descriptions of paintings and the paintings' emotional connection to the protagonist. The ending was abrupt and did not resolve anything for the character's family members. It was as if the author got tired of writing and just quit. At any rate, the narrator did a superb job, but the story was just okay. I think the author's idea to use an elderly person's dementia as a tool to introduce flashbacks was very clever, but it was empty at the end because the other family members were left in the dark regarding the character's past life. So I give this book 3 stars, it was okay, but could have been a lot better.
This book really gives one an appreciation for what the "Greatest Generation" accomplished under such dire circumstances. You don't have to be a sports fan to like this book, although the information on rowing and boat making is fascinating. The story is well thought out and extremely well written. The performance by Edward Herrmann is outstanding, as he always is. I received the printed version as a Christmas gift and it was nice to see the photos that come with printed books. I do wish Audible would have some links to photos, maps, etc that audio book lovers could have access to. The book is very inspiring and uplifting - not just a sports story. It's for anyone that has to overcome formidable obstacles in order to meet goals and objectives. This story is similar to "Unbroken" and the main character in "Unbroken" appears briefly in this book as well. I give this book my highest rating.
I'm not sure if I should say, "Spoiler Alert" as this is not a novel or even a current event narrative with a surprise ending, but this review may give away something that the reader would rather enjoy on his or her own. This is an intriguing story about the author's attempt to place a lampshade discovered at a garage sale in Post Katrina New Orleans at Buchenwald during the Holocaust. The author does a great job in weaving background stories associated with all of the characters and locales of his book. The one thing that was a bit over the top for me was the author's treatment of George W Bush during Katrina. It got very preachy and I thought it was not necessary to the story. I'm not sure what the author was trying to put forth as a message about New Orleans itself. I couldn't tell if he thought it was a treasured gem of a city or a dump given over to drug addicts and murderers who walk around in a city where life is cheap. Whatever. But getting back to the lampshade, the author does spin a good tale that reveals very good circumstantial evidence that the lampshade is indeed a valuable primary artifact of the Holocaust. But there is no proven "chain of custody" that positively places the lampshade in Germany in the 1940's. For that reason, the recognized Holocaust museums and experts refused to accept the lampshade into their collections. Maybe DNA testing will advance someday to the point that the lampshade can be placed in a specific place and time - that is the author's hope.
Finally, the narrator was very good for this story. His voice was not the usual Audiobook narration voice, so it took me a little while to get used to it, but he did a very good job.
The title and subtitle are actually good descriptions of the contents of this book. The author does some exhaustive research for the noble purpose of "leaving no man behind." He uses the literary device of alternating chapters with one chapter spinning the historical narrative of what occurred on the Greenland Icecap in World War II, and the other chapter describing events that are ongoing throughout the book. The book was published in a timely manner to include the mission to locate a lost aircraft and the remains of the three men aboard it. As a side note, the author has a blog that keeps readers informed of ongoing developments since the publication of the book. The author does a fine job of reporting facts in a narrative format that keeps the readers' attention. The author is also the narrator of the audiobook. I am always skeptical when authors try to perform their own narrations, but I was pleasantly surprised. As much of the book is written in the first person, the author as audio narrator is natural provided that the author is a good reader - and he is. The story is one that is worthy of the telling and I'm so happy that I read the story.
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