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Margaret Vance

Buena Park, CA United States

ratings
160
REVIEWS
11
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
5

  • The Elephant Whisperer: My Life with the Herd in the African Wild

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Lawrence Anthony, Graham Spence
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1654)
    Performance
    (1510)
    Story
    (1520)

    >When South African conservationist Lawrence Anthony was asked to accept a herd of "rogue" wild elephants on his Thula Thula game reserve in Zululand, his common sense told him to refuse. But he was the herd's last chance of survival: they would be killed if he wouldn't take them. In order to save their lives, Anthony took them in. In the years that followed he became a part of their family. And as he battled to create a bond with the elephants, he came to realize that they had a great deal to teach him about life, loyalty, and freedom.

    Tango says: "Beautiful story, beautifully written"
    "Must love animal stories"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Elephant Whisperer the most enjoyable?

    If you enjoy listening to stories about animals you will enjoy this book. I learned more about elephants and their struggles to survive.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Learning about how the elephants interact with each other - the family dynamic.


    What about Simon Vance’s performance did you like?

    Nice voice and he read the book like he'd lived the situations.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Handsome Man's Deluxe Café

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated By Lisette Lecat
    Overall
    (84)
    Performance
    (78)
    Story
    (78)

    In this delightful 15th installment, Mma Ramotswe has her hands full both at home and in the office. To add to her current challenges, her devoted partner, Grace Makutsi, has decided to branch out on her own and open The Handsome Man's Deluxe Cafe. But even “Miss 97 Per Cent” can't quite meet all the demands of running a business - not to mention those that a lightning strike makes on her building.

    Jean says: "Enchanting"
    "Not the Best of this series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Alexander McCall Smith and/or Lisette Lecat?

    Yes - I have read all of the #1 Ladies books and enjoyed all of them, but this one seemed to drag and drag. Paragraphs of odd observations that didn't seem to aide in telling the story. Disappointing since - like I said I really enjoyed all the previous books in this series.


    Would you recommend The Handsome Man's Deluxe Cafe to your friends? Why or why not?

    I'd recommend the series but this book was not it's best.


    Was The Handsome Man's Deluxe Cafe worth the listening time?

    Sure.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Prime Minister's Secret Agent: A Maggie Hope Mystery, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Susan Elia MacNeal
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    Overall
    (105)
    Performance
    (94)
    Story
    (93)

    World War II rages on across Europe, but Maggie Hope has finally found a moment of rest on the pastoral coast of western Scotland. Home from an undercover mission in Berlin, she settles down to teach at her old spy training camp, and to heal from scars on both her body and heart. Yet instead of enjoying the quieter pace of life, Maggie is quickly drawn into another web of danger and intrigue.

    Margaret Vance says: "The narration spoils the book"
    "The narration spoils the book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Prime Minister's Secret Agent the most enjoyable?

    The series is interesting and the time period and history described makes for a good read.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Susan Elia MacNeal? Why or why not?

    I like the author but some else needs to narrate.


    What didn’t you like about Susan Duerden’s performance?

    Her cadence and breathy deliver is hard to listen to. There are emphasis where there shouldn't be and her raspy whispery voice is annoying.


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

    No


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Princess Elizabeth's Spy: A Maggie Hope Mystery, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Susan Elia MacNeal
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (350)
    Performance
    (316)
    Story
    (311)

    Susan Elia MacNeal introduced the remarkable Maggie Hope in her acclaimed debut, Mr. Churchill's Secretary. Now Maggie returns to protect Britain's beloved royals against an international plot - one that could change the course of history. As World War II sweeps the continent and England steels itself against German attack, Maggie Hope, former secretary to Prime Minister Winston Churchill, completes her training to become a spy for MI-5.

    A. Dyer says: "Bring back Wanda McCaddon as narrator"
    "The narration is horrible!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about Princess Elizabeth's Spy?

    The narration by Susan Duerden ruins the book. Her uplifting of every word especially at the end of sentences is annoying beyond belief. The main character's voice varies all over the place from high pitch school girl to dusky barmaid. Her Churchill is awful. Her German accent is comical. I see she is narrating the third book - so I won't buy it. Disappointing to start a series and not continue because the narration is so awful. I'm sure in other settings her narration works better but it is distracting and annoying with this material.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Susan Elia MacNeal? Why or why not?

    Possibly -with a differnt narrator.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Some one else reading it. The first book's narrator was very good. Not sure why they switched to some one else.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wicked Autumn: A Max Tudor Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By G. M. Malliet
    • Narrated By Michael Page
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (354)
    Performance
    (299)
    Story
    (303)

    Max Tudor has adapted well to his post as vicar of St. Edwold's in the idyllic village of Nether Monkslip. The quiet village seems the perfect home for Max, who has fled a harrowing past as an MI5 agent. But this new-found serenity is quickly shattered when the highly vocal and unpopular president of the Women's Institute turns up dead at the Harvest Fayre. The death looks like an accident, but Max's training as a former agent kicks in, and before long he suspects foul play.

    Sara says: "A Classic Cozy English Village Mystery"
    "Boring!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about Wicked Autumn?

    I love to read series books - so this one looked promising. I have tried to hang in there in hopes that things will pick up and I'll actually care about the characters, but it's just not happening. Each characater is a cliche. Their interactions with each other are either unpleasant or overly predictable. The description of the village is rehashed from other books. I had to give up and move on to another read before I drove my car off the road due to falling asleep from boredom. Very disappointing.


    Would you ever listen to anything by G. M. Malliet again?

    No


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Michael Page?

    Michael Page read as well as could be expected with the material he had to read.


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

    I liked the housekeeper.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • It Happened in Wisconsin

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Ken Moraff
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    In an America ravaged by the Great Depression, a talented but ragtag baseball team sets out to change the world. Barnstorming the back roads and dusty ballparks of the Midwest, the Racine Robins rally fans to the populist cause, raising money for soup kitchens and strike funds even as they thrill small-town crowds and dazzle opponents on the field. Yet winning the hearts and minds of the people turns out to be easier for the players than facing the twin seductions of love and money, conflicting desires that threaten to derail everything they are fighting to achieve.

    Lynn says: "Life's Reflections"
    "Annoying and Grating"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Ken Moraff and/or Dick Hill?

    The barking radio voice reading of this book was so annoying I couldn't get past the first 2 chapters.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Ken Moraff? Why or why not?

    No


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Yes absolutely.


    Any additional comments?

    The premise of the book sounded interesting but it was ruined by some need to try and bring a 1930's radio cadence to the reading. I kept hoping the story would just get read but it continued to bark at me. I guess there was a reason it was only $8 bucks.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Power Down: Dewey Andreas, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Ben Coes
    • Narrated By Peter Hermann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1641)
    Performance
    (1276)
    Story
    (1281)

    There was one factor that the terrorists didn’t take into account when they struck the Capitana oil platform off the coast of Colombia - slaughtering much of the crew and blowing up the platform - and that was the Capitana crew chief, Dewey Andreas. Dewey, former Army Ranger and Delta, survives the attack, rescuing as many of his men as possible. But the battle has just begun....

    Tommy says: "The best thing to happen since Mitch Rapp!"
    "A conservative republican rant"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    This book was written to justify goverment spying and the military industrial complex. It glorifies killing and justifies profiling. If you like the descriptions of guns and how to use them this is the book for you. The characters were poorly developed and killed off at random. I'm sure there are folks out there that will enjoy the action packed pace of this book, but don't read it for character depth or a positive message. I love series books but I won't read anymore Ben Coes stories. Just not my cup of tea.


    What could Ben Coes have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Nothing.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Peter Hermann?

    Sure


    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Speaking from Among the Bones: A Flavia de Luce Novel, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Alan Bradley
    • Narrated By Jayne Entwistle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (508)
    Performance
    (450)
    Story
    (449)

    Eleven-year-old amateur detective and ardent chemist Flavia de Luce is used to digging up clues, whether they’re found among the potions in her laboratory or between the pages of her insufferable sisters’ diaries. What she is not accustomed to is digging up bodies. Upon the 500th anniversary of St. Tancred’s death, the English hamlet of Bishop’s Lacey is busily preparing to open its patron saint’s tomb. Nobody is more excited to peek inside the crypt than Flavia, yet what she finds will halt the proceedings dead in their tracks: the body of Mr. Collicutt, the church organist, his face grotesquely and inexplicably masked.

    Donald says: "the best Flavia yet!!"
    "Best Flavia de Luce Novel yet!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Speaking from Among the Bones again? Why?

    Yes. It was a fun read with all the characters in place. It is wonderful to read this series and watch Flavia grow up.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    I wouldn't say edge of my seat, but I really wasn't sure who did it until the end.


    Which character – as performed by Jayne Entwistle – was your favorite?

    Flavia of course.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    The ending was stunning. Can't wait until the next one comes out.


    Any additional comments?

    Hurry Hurry Hurry Mr. Bradley - don't keep us waiting too long for the next one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Yes, Chef: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Marcus Samuelsson
    • Narrated By Marcus Samuelsson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (459)
    Performance
    (406)
    Story
    (399)

    It begins with a simple ritual: Every Saturday afternoon, a boy who loves to cook walks to his grandmother’s house and helps her prepare a roast chicken for dinner. The grandmother is Swedish, a retired domestic. The boy is Ethiopian and adopted, and he will grow up to become the world-renowned chef Marcus Samuelsson. This book is his love letter to food and family in all its manifestations. Yes, Chef chronicles Marcus Samuelsson’s remarkable journey from Helga’s humble kitchen to the opening of the beloved Red Rooster in Harlem.

    loix says: "A fun and inspiring civics lesson"
    "Yes Chef"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    No


    Would you be willing to try another book from Marcus Samuelsson? Why or why not?

    Maybe not. His description about the challenges he faced succeeding in a tough industry were interesting. I was not terribly impressed with how he handled some of his personal struggles though.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Marcus has a smooth voice and a nice rhythim to his reading.


    Could you see Yes, Chef being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Sure.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    • Narrated By Suzanne Toren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1672)
    Performance
    (1409)
    Story
    (1448)

    On May 18, 1860, William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln waited in their hometowns for the results from the Republican National Convention in Chicago. When Lincoln emerged as the victor, his rivals were dismayed and angry. Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict over slavery was leading inexorably to secession and civil war.

    Amazon Customer says: "Beautiful, Heartbreaking, and Informative"
    "Ejoyably long listen"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes - fascinating history - amazing to hear how so little has changed in politics.


    What other book might you compare Team of Rivals to and why?

    John Adams - information in the book came from personal letters and diaries - which the Lincoln book also includes.


    What about Suzanne Toren’s performance did you like?

    It was fine. I always prefer when the author reads their own work.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Same as the book


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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