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C. Telfair

Audible has changed my life! Dry , itchy eyes were destroying one of my greatest pleasures - reading. Now I am experiencing books again!

Shepherdstown, WV, United States

ratings
229
REVIEWS
216
FOLLOWING
2
FOLLOWERS
259
HELPFUL VOTES
1097

  • The Secret of Shadow Ranch: Nancy Drew Mystery Stories 5

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Carolyn Keene
    • Narrated By Laura Linney
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (80)
    Performance
    (23)
    Story
    (23)

    Nancy Drew arrives in Phoenix, Arizona, eagerly looking forward to a fun-filled vacation at Shadow Ranch, but abruptly finds herself involved in a baffling mystery.

    C. Telfair says: "Long Live Nancy; A Trip Back in Time"
    "Long Live Nancy; A Trip Back in Time"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Nancy Drew was an important part of my childhood. These books helped me to love reading, made me a mystery fan, and (yes!) fostered my feminism, too. For this, I am grateful to all the people who were Carolyn Keene.

    Revisiting Nancy is a mixed-bag experience. Of course, the books are not spectacularly well-written. And, in modern terms, our heroine is pretty traditional. The stories are tame.

    BUT, Laura Linney reads with a respect for the original excitement many of us experienced when reading Nancy Drew. I love the sound effects and the drama in her voice. It's like being a twelve-year-old again.

    If you are in the mood for uncritical nostalgia, go ahead and try "The Secret of Shadow Ranch". Be sure you only select the Drew mysteries that are performed by Laura Linney. Curl up and enjoy a trip back in time!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Code Talker: The First and Only Memoir by One of the Original Navajo Code Talkers of WW II

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Chester Nez, Judith Schiess Avila
    • Narrated By David Colacci
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (508)
    Performance
    (442)
    Story
    (451)

    Chester Nez, the only surviving member of the original twenty-nine Navajo code talkers, shares the fascinating inside story of his life and service during World War II.

    Roxane says: "Interesting Listen for WWII Buffs"
    "Lessons We Learn"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    How is it that some of the people treated most badly in this country end up being some of the best heroes and patriots?

    I know an American woman of Japanese descent who spent years in an interment camp while her two brothers served very honorably in the US Armed Services. She was never bitter, but she has only recently told her story, even to her family.

    Here we have Chester Nez, a boy forced to attend an abusive boarding school, which would forbid him his language, change his name, and denigrate his culture. Yet he - and other Navajos - responded to a call to serve this country that so undervalued his people. He performed extraordinary deeds in the Marines and agreed never to divulge the extent of his service. Amazing.

    This account is told simply and in a most straightforward style. The war sections are interesting, but the book also includes a fascinating account of the early years of this Navajo boy and then his years after the war. The combination makes for more than a story for WWII buffs; it's a true American tale.

    I for one am so glad that Chester Nez finally decided to tell his story. I learned a lot from this book - I recommend it to others.



    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America's Favorite Planet

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Neil deGrasse Tyson
    • Narrated By Mirron Willis
    Overall
    (326)
    Performance
    (226)
    Story
    (226)

    In August 2006, the International Astronomical Union voted Pluto out of planethood. Far from the sun, tiny, and eccentric in orbit, it's a wonder Pluto has any fans. Yet during the mounting debate over Pluto's status, Americans rallied behind the extraterrestrial underdog.

    John says: "A Great Value"
    "Much Ado"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I like Neil deGrasse Tyson (tho he's no Carl Sagan!), and I love the idea of this short book. The first couple of hours have some interesting information about the big bru-ha-ha over the "demotion" of Pluto from planethood.

    But, OMG, after that! I think Tyson may have mentioned by name every single member of every Astronomical Society in the world! Maybe twice! His need to wriggle out of responsibility for disappointing school children and Plutophiles everywhere is at times funny, at times very exasperating - and nearly always repetitous.

    I believe that this book just about sums up why our society has become so anti-intellectual. Scholars argue and backbite and fret about the "masses" daring to have opinions.

    And there is Pluto, still in the heavens and not the slightest bit concerned!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Windigo Island: Cork O'Connor, Book 14

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By William Kent Krueger
    • Narrated By David Chandler
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (29)

    The award-winning author of the best-selling Cork O’Connor series, William Kent Krueger pens novels with pulse-racing suspense. In Windigo Island, the corpse of an Ojibwe girl washes ashore, and locals at the Bad Bluff reservation believe it to be the work of the mythical Windigo. But the dead girl’s friend is also missing, and sheriff-turned-PI Cork O’Connor will brave any danger to bring her home.

    C. Telfair says: "All Saints"
    "All Saints"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love the characters in Krueger's Cork O'Connor series. They are mostly back for this adventure, and, as always, adventure it is!

    The story line involves rescuing girls of Ojibwe ancestry from the evils they often find when they run away from the reservation. As young as 13 or 14, they are often enticed into lives of prostitution and have nowhere to turn for safety. This brings Cork, along with Jenny and Henry and others, into the dangerous world of the Lake Superior docks in Duluth.

    As is usually evident in this series, there's a spiritual element involving the "Windigo," a demon of myth and, in this case, a real man and his cohorts. Cork, Henry, and Jenny face physical danger and their personal devils and anxieties along the way.

    So, the story moves along, and we are happy to be in the company of these people. My one concern is that Cork and his family (and extended family) have all become quite saintly. I miss the old conflict that Cork had with his wife. Henry has always served as the conscience of this world, and his spirituality and wisdom are believable and inspiring (although his physical exploits at nearly 100 stretch the imagination). I'm not quite ready to accept that all the characters have joined him in perfection.

    Not sure where such flawless characters can go from here!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Classical Mythology

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Elizabeth Vandiver
    Overall
    (298)
    Performance
    (265)
    Story
    (261)

    These 24 lectures are a vibrant introduction to the primary characters and most important stories of classical Greek and Roman mythology. Among those you'll investigate are the accounts of the creation of the world in Hesiod's Theogony and Ovid's Metamorphoses; the gods Zeus, Apollo, Demeter, Persephone, Hermes, Dionysos, and Aphrodite; the Greek heroes, Theseus and Heracles (Hercules in the Roman version); and the most famous of all classical myths, the Trojan War.

    Matt says: "Very Informative and Entertaining"
    "Enlightening and Entertaining"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "Classical Mythology" is one of "The Great Courses" doing what this series does best in several ways:

    1) Elizabeth Vandiver is a well-qualified, pleasant-voiced, and obviously enthusiastic lecturer. Her command of the subject and interest in conveying it to the listener is evident.

    2) There's lots for the general listener to learn. My husband and I have listened to the entire course during driving trips. We are perhaps just a bit more-than-average in our acquaintance with Greek mythology through history and literature. We're experiencing the "Percy Jackson" series with our grandson just now and enjoying that very much. This course serves as a great reminder and review of the knowledge we have/had, as well as lots of new information about the gods, heroes and tales of ancient Greece.

    3) Professor Vandiver shares her opinions and even her biases. It's fantastic when listeners can pause the presentation to debate and even argue some of the points made by a teacher. Makes for a thought-provoking and involving experience.

    4) It's unforgettable in lots of ways. The course brings insight into how our society today is still affected by these stories. Vandiver points out ways in which these myths have influenced modern archaeology, psychology, politics, and literature from Shakespeare to comic books.

    Highly recommended as a useful and fun listen!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Crescendo

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Deborah J Ledford
    • Narrated By Christina Cox
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (49)
    Performance
    (46)
    Story
    (47)

    As the only female Native American officer on the Bryson City, North Carolina police force, Inola Walela, must always play her A game. Allbets are off when during a routine traffic stop the passenger insists her sonhas been kidnapped but is struck by a car before Inola can glean any hardfacts. An altercation ensues and Inola's partner is felled by a bullet-possiblyfrom her gun.

    Samuel (Skip) Feinstein says: "Terrific Cop Stuff"
    "A Familiar Profile"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Inola Walela must be the best name ever! Along with a solid plot, fast-moving action, and intriguing characters, that's a good reason to give "Crescendo" a try.

    We have seen it before, of course. The female cop - a misfit, conflicted, complicated character with secrets in her past. She's hesitant to commit to a personal relationship, she rarely confides in anyone, and she's unsure of herself and her position in the Department. Most of the men on the squad don't fully trust or accept her. Her dedication to solving her case, however, and exceptional skills make her a good cop, and she's willing sometimes to break the rules in pursuit of justice.

    Still, Inola and her fellow characters are appealing, and the story grabs you fast. Ledford is a good writer, and Christina Cox narrates with clipped, no-nonsense enthusiasm and considerable skill. I'm definitely willing to continue with this new series.

    My one reservation is whether, in the summer of 2014, we are becoming a little less trustful and accepting of the well-meaning cop who may exceed and/or misinterpret authority. In fictionl, we have accepted much in law enforcement that is more questionable when presented in the real streets of New York City or St. Louis. Will (and should) that make stories like this less popular?





    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Corinthian

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Georgette Heyer
    • Narrated By Georgina Sutton
    Overall
    (51)
    Performance
    (50)
    Story
    (50)

    The accomplished Corinthian Sir Richard Wyndham is wealthy, sophisticated, handsome ,and supremely bored. Tired of his aristocratic family constantly pressuring him to get married, he determines to run away after meeting the delightful, unconventional heroine Penelope Creed. Penelope - literally - falls into his life late one night as she hangs from the window of her aunt's house - she too attempting to escape the pressures of forced marriage.

    Carol says: "Fun on the Run"
    "Any 'There' There?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read all Georgette Heyer's books a long time ago, but I couldn't remember this one. Now I know why.

    Pen Creed is one of Heyer's very young heroines. She's plucky, determined, willful and naive. And this seems to be her appeal to a polished, educated, experienced-but-bored man of the world. Lucky for her, he is also an honorable and principled guy, for we are quickly aware that, without him, she would be in a pack of trouble!

    So much so that her innocence borders on stupidity and her willfulness approaches heartlessness. Now, this is not so common in the ladies of Georgette Heyer. Generally, the reader/listener can forgive the youthful wayward actions and enjoy the depth and heart of even the youngest characters. In "The Corinthian", you come to suspect that either Sir Richard will become completely bored with Pen pretty quickly or he's not all that bright himself.

    Either way, this does not add up to prime Heyer. Even her usual attention to the eccentric "minor" characters is subdued here, as though even her heart was not in writing this particular story. She must have needed the money, or faced an impractical deadline. Even a dedicated Georgette fan can skip this one. Try "Sylvester" or "Venetia" or "Sprig Muslin" instead.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Hamlet, Prince of Denmark: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By A. J. Hartley, David Hewson
    • Narrated By Richard Armitage
    Overall
    (332)
    Performance
    (314)
    Story
    (314)

    It is a tale of ghosts, of madness, of revenge - of old alliances giving way to new intrigues. Denmark is changing, shaking off its medieval past. War with Norway is on the horizon. And Hamlet - son of the old king, nephew of the new - becomes increasingly entangled in a web of deception - and murder. Beautifully performed by actor Richard Armitage ("Thorin Oakenshield" in the Hobbit films), Hamlet, Prince of Denmark takes Shakespeare’s original into unexpected realms, reinventing a story we thought we knew.

    Robert says: "Fantastic whether you like Shakespeare or not!"
    "Something Rotten in Denmark..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story


    …But not entirely what we have always thought!

    Shakespearean purists may object, but, as the authors point out in the epilogue, Shakespeare himself wasn't a purist. He borrowed and changed and molded stories to the stage.

    And it's a good story! This novelization, without the familiar speeches, proves that the basic tale still holds attention and gives the authors a great opportunity for expanding characters and plot features.

    I'll admit I bought this primarily to hear the wonderful voice of Richard Armitage, and he certainly does not disappoint. As with all excellent narrations, the listener quickly forgets she/he is experiencing the voice of one person, and we are drawn into the action and the characters effortlessly.

    I love this take on the old story. There's depth of emotion here, and the characters and actions make sense in a new way. Anyone who's enjoyed Tom Stoppard's "Rosencratz and Guildenstern Are Dead" should appreciate the twists and turns in this version as well.

    As a wonderful bonus for those of us who have longed for deeper and better-realized female characters in Shakespeare's plays (tho we know we've had no right to expect it), Hartley and Hewson endow the women of Elsinor with brains and sensible motives and actions.

    It's refreshing and different and beautifully read.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Etiquette & Espionage: Finishing School, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Gail Carriger
    • Narrated By Moira Quirk
    Overall
    (1184)
    Performance
    (1089)
    Story
    (1096)

    Fourteen-year old Sophronia is the bane of her mother's existence. More interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper etiquette at tea - and god forbid anyone see her atrocious curtsy - Mrs. Temminnick is desperate her daughter become a proper lady. She enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

    But little do Sophronia or her mother know that this is a school where ingenious young girls learn to finish all right - but it's a different kind of finishing.

    Lynne Phelps says: "Fans of the Parasol Protectorate, Rejoice!"
    "Finished"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I thought I would really like this. It started out well: a great premise, witty and feisty female protagonists, and the author has all her vampires and werewolves in a row!

    Then, not much. The promising characters just never came to life for me. The tone became increasingly more arch than witty, the situations contrived. No heart.

    Too bad.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Kiss Before Dying

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Ira Levin
    • Narrated By Mauro Hantman
    Overall
    (380)
    Performance
    (340)
    Story
    (342)

    Now a modern classic, as gripping in its tautly plotted action as it is penetrating in its exploration of a criminal mind, it tells the shocking tale of a young man who will stop at nothing--not even murder--to get where he wants to go. For he has dreams; plans. He also has charm, good looks, sex appeal, intelligence. And he has a problem. Her name is Dorothy; she loves him, and she's pregnant. The solution may demand desperate measures.

    karen says: "Nothing like a classic....."
    "Lip smacking good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What fun to discover a classic that has not come my way before. Loved everything about this: the plot, the structure, and the narrator.

    Levin's story is riveting, featuring a very believable bad guy with mind boggling self confidence and resourcefulness. The book is structured around three episodes, each one with memorable characters and building suspense, capped by surprise. And the narrator guides us well, bringing it all to life.

    If I'd been reading this, I'm sure I'd have skipped ahead to find out the ending - love that that's a lot harder in Audible versions!




    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Neverwhere [Adaptation]

    • ORIGINAL (3 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman
    • Narrated By Christopher Lee, James McAvoy, Natalie Dormer, and others
    Overall
    (963)
    Performance
    (916)
    Story
    (909)

    A BBC Radio six-part adaptation of Neil Gaiman's best-selling novel, starring James McAvoy as Richard and Natalie Dormer as Door. Beneath the streets of London there is another London. A subterranean labyrinth of sewers and abandoned tube stations. A somewhere that is Neverwhere....

    Gayle says: "Superb"
    "Never Better!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It's been years since I read (and absolutely loved) "Neverwhere." This is a terrific way to re-discover a fantasy classic.

    Others have mentioned the perfect performances here. They are wonderful, and the work has been lovingly and beautifully adapted for radio (and Audible).

    If you read the book, dive into this version of "Neverwhere". If you haven't yet experienced Gaiman's crazy world, take a moment to get used to the accents and the background noises, and enter. Like radio, it's presented in episodes - but be prepared to stay up late listening to all of them in one sitting! It's that good!

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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