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Gail

jackson, NJ, United States | Member Since 2011

ratings
52
REVIEWS
42
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
4
HELPFUL VOTES
34

  • Flight Behavior

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Barbara Kingsolver
    • Narrated By Barbara Kingsolver
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1497)
    Performance
    (1307)
    Story
    (1318)

    Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at 17. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, she encounters a shocking sight: a silent, forested valley filled with what looks like a lake of fire. She can only understand it as a cautionary miracle, but it sparks a raft of other explanations from scientists, religious leaders, and the media.

    Marcia says: "Tough Message Delivered in Silk"
    ""Everything you never wanted to know ...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    ....about Monarch Butterflies, ad nauseam, and then some. Purchasing this book makes me feel a bit taken advantage of. What I signed on for was the story of a disenchanted farmer's wife, as beautifully described in the Publisher's Summary. As it turned out, that publisher's summary was the most engaging paragraph in the entire book, and it wasn't even in the book. What I got, was an endless dissertation on the plight, life and times of the Monarch Butterfly, as a result of climate change ... in full scientific textbook style enggement. Talk about false advertising. I still cannot fathom the almost 5 star review. There needs to be some kind of accuracy rating on these publisher's summaries. . Perhaps, if the publisher wrote this book, it would have been what was promised. . Attempts at a loose story line to buffer what was otherwise a science book, failed. Characters so poorly developed, you just kept waiting for the point of it all. Re-classify this book as a scientific textbook.

    The narration was excellent.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Conversations with God: An Uncommon Dialogue, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Neale Donald Walsch
    • Narrated By Neale Donald Walsch, Edward Asner, Ellen Burstyn
    Overall
    (497)
    Performance
    (319)
    Story
    (310)

    Suppose you could ask God the most puzzling questions about existence, and God would provide clear, understandable answers? It happened to Neale Donald Walsch. Conversations with God is Neale Donald Walsch's account of his direct conversations with God, beginning in 1992 while Walsch was immersed in a period of deep depression. He composed a letter to God in which he vented his frustrations, and much to his surprise, even shock, God answered him.

    Karie says: "Finally!!"
    "Life Changing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If only the organized religions of the planet would teach this content. Throughout the trilogy, I felt an overwhelming sense of truth that made my spirit soar. Share this with everyone you know!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Drunkard: A Hard-Drinking Life

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Neil Steinberg
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (9)

    Chicago Sun-Times columnist Neil Steinberg loved his job, his wife, and his two young sons. But he also loved to drink. Drunkard is an unflinchingly honest account of one man's descent into alcoholism and his ambivalent struggle to embrace sobriety. Sentenced to an outpatient rehab program, Steinberg discovers that twenty-eight days of therapy cannot reverse the toll taken by decades of hard drinking.

    Gail says: "Caution: Triggering Content for Alcoholics!"
    "Caution: Triggering Content for Alcoholics!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Disappointing. There wasn't a lot of context to this story. Basically a diary of drinking days, without much back story to make it all meaningful, and more importantly for me to invoke any sympathy. My guess is the 4 and 5 star ratings come from fellow alcoholics supporting the effort, but this really isn't a book. I was not invested in Neil, and quite frankly found him arrogant and entitled. Of course, this is the disease, which is why some "pre-disease" understanding of who Neil was would have been meaningful.. I would not recommend this book to a recovering alcoholic. Neal's enticing descriptions of his drinks of choice made me want to order up a Jack, and I've never even had one. I'd imagine this book would be very triggering for someone in recovery.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Poisonwood Bible

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Barbara Kingsolver
    • Narrated By Dean Robertson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3081)
    Performance
    (1896)
    Story
    (1912)

    The Poisonwood Bible is a story told by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, a fierce evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959. They carry with them all they believe they will need from home, but soon find that all of it - from garden seeds to Scripture - is calamitously transformed on African soil.

    Lynda Rains Bonchack says: "A long time coming..........."
    "Top Notch Literature, But ...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is brilliantly written. Truly magnificent. However, for me, the book that started with the story of the family of a religious zealot, quickly became a verbose account of Congolese politics. It seemed clear mid way through, that the political message was the prime agenda. This was not the billing I'd signed on for. As a result, I think the story line suffered. Perhaps the abridged version is a better bet.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Cheryl Strayed
    • Narrated By Cheryl Strayed, Steve Almond
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (181)
    Performance
    (158)
    Story
    (162)

    Life can be hard: your lover cheats on you; you lose a family member; you can’t pay the bills. And it can be great: you’ve had the hottest sex of your life; you get that plum job; you muster the courage to write your novel. Sugar—the once-anonymous online columnist at The Rumpus, now revealed as Cheryl Strayed, author of the best-selling memoir Wild—is the person thousands turn to for advice. Tiny Beautiful Things gathers the best of "Dear Sugar" in one place and includes never-before-published columns.

    Melinda says: "A Spoonful of Sugar"
    "A not so tiny beautiful thing ..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If everyone had a "Sugar" in their pocket, a go-to guru, sister, mother, confidante like Cheryl ... what a wonderful resource that would be for those of us that don't. Sugar digs deep to deliver heartfelt, soul-searching advice. No flip "quippy" designed for print answers here.. Sugar responds with painstaking detail, honesty and compassion to questions of all magnitudes. I envision her agonizing for days and weeks over responses, as we see so many of her advice seekers capture her heart. Sugar, will you be my confidante?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Middlesteins: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Jami Attenberg
    • Narrated By Molly Ringwald
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (181)
    Performance
    (152)
    Story
    (154)

    For more than 30 years, Edie and Richard Middlestein shared a solid family life together in the suburbs of Chicago. But now things are splintering apart, for one reason, it seems: Edie's enormous girth. She's obsessed with food - thinking about it, eating it - and if she doesn't stop, she won't have much longer to live. When Richard abandons his wife, it is up to the next generation to take control. With pitch-perfect prose, huge compassion, and sly humor, Jami Attenberg has given us an epic story of marriage, family, and obsession.

    Lisa says: "Great story - Narration leaves A LOT to be desired"
    "Oy Vey"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was hopeful based on the subject matter. Unfortunately, this was a wasted opportunity to explore the deeper side of an issue ... obesity. There is ZERO glimpse into the why of this compulsive over eater's mind. Simply the effects on the oh so superficial family members. There is not a likable character in this book, mostly because there's no character development or depth of story line. I'd pass.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Saint Maybe

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Anne Tyler
    • Narrated By Eric Michael Summerer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (20)
    Story
    (21)

    In 1965, the happy Bedloe family is living an ideal, apple-pie existence in Baltimore. Then, in the blink of an eye, a single tragic event occurs that will transform their lives forever--particularly that of 17-year-old Ian Bedloe, the youngest son, who blames himself for the sudden "accidental" death of his older brother. Depressed and depleted, Ian is almost crushed under the weight of an unbearable, secret guilt.Then one crisp January evening, he catches sight of a window with glowing yellow neon, the Church of the Second Chance.

    Gail says: "MAYBE .... If this book went somewhere."
    "MAYBE .... If this book went somewhere."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What a disappointment. Great concept for a story line and character possibilities that just never went anywhere. I found myself not caring about a single character in this book, where there was so much possibility for more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Freedom: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Jonathan Franzen
    • Narrated By David LeDoux
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3460)
    Performance
    (1186)
    Story
    (1189)

    Patty and Walter Berglund were the new pioneers of old St. Paul - the gentrifiers, the hands-on parents, the Whole Foods generation. Patty was the ideal sort of neighbor, who could tell you where to recycle your batteries and how to get the local cops to do their job. She was an enviably perfect mother and the wife of Walter's dreams. Together with Walter - environmental lawyer, commuter cyclist, total family man - she was doing her small part to build a better world.

    Lawrence says: "Believe the Hype"
    "Depiction of an Millennial American Family"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was not that crazy about this story line, characters or length of this novel, yet I could not stop listening. Franzen writes beautifully. Every word artfully selected in a succinct non-flowery manner that I loved. These characters could describe any dysfunctional Millennial American family, and I do believe this will become a classic cultural period reference in years to come. Franzen captures the era's budding technology, 9/11, entitled youth and dysfunctional familial traits that capture the essence of many current day relationships we all know . For me, the political and nature conservancy issues were a bit overdone. I found myself hoping for more drama in the story line, but suppose the lack thereof was the point. Love this writer!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8055)
    Performance
    (7383)
    Story
    (7391)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "Excruciatingly Verbose!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While beautifully written, and exceptionally performed ... this novel could have been written in 1/2 to 1/3 the time. Go for the abridged version, if available.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Women Who Love Too Much: When You Keep Wishing and Hoping He'll Change

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Robin Norwood
    • Narrated By Ellen Archer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (53)
    Performance
    (48)
    Story
    (50)

    Is having 'somebody to love' the most important thing in your life? Do you constantly believe that with 'the right man' you would no longer feel depressed or lonely? Are you bored with 'nice guys' who are open, honest, and dependable? If being in love means being in pain, this book was written for you. Therapist Robin Norwood describes loving too much as a pattern of thoughts and behavior, which certain women develop as a response to problems from childhood.

    Jeanne Fournier says: "Finally Understand Why I Hurt So Much"
    "Life Altering!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My headline says it all. This book changed the way I look at everything.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Vortex: Where the Law of Attraction Assembles All Cooperative Relationships

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Esther Hicks, Jerry Hicks
    • Narrated By Jerry Hicks
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (541)
    Performance
    (254)
    Story
    (245)

    This audiobook uncovers a myriad of false premises that are at the heart of every uncomfortable relationship issue, and guides you to a clear understanding of the powerful creative Vortex that has already assembled the relationships that you have desired. Abraham will show you how to enter that Vortex, where you will rendezvous with everything and everyone you have been looking for.

    Velanche says: "Different Perspectives"
    "A 2 Million Dollar Bus?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Credibility was lost somewhat for me, after mention of Jerry & Esther's $2M bus. The message is compelling, but the entire book is merely a regurgitation of the same premise in different sentence structures. I got the feeling that the many repetitions of the same theme throughout many of the Hicks' teachings is merely a way to re-brand the same content for money. I hope I'm wrong. There's also an affect to Esther's voice, that gnaws at me, which is why I typically seek other teachers on similar topics.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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