I'm picky about my narrators, and I think Kruper did a wonderful job.
Any book that combines high adventure, romance, and tragedy but still manages to come off hopeful.
Jori. Loved that hint of an accent.
WHAT IT'S ABOUT
While Kanvar searches for his grandfather, Kumar Raza faces a savage Great White dragon that attacks his village. With no armor and only a fishing spear, Raza fights the white dragon but is mortally wounded in the battle. Raza's youngest son, Denali, must find a way to save his father and bring him safely out of the frozen wasteland. Lost in a blizzard, hunted by a pack of wolves, followed by a Great White dragon hatchling, Denali must use all his wit and skill to survive.
Another hit by Shelley. I listened to the audiobook, and Tren Sparks does a wonderful job again bringing the characters to life, especially the dragons. This is a continuation of the tale begun in Blue Dragon and White Dragon is just as action packed as the first book. It's filled with on-the-edge-of-your-seat action as Kanvar goes in search of his grandfather.
It's such a deliciously twisted family. I'm not into Game of Thrones kind of awfulness, greed and viciousness for its own sake. The characters in the Dragonbound series have understandable reasons--mostly--for how they act, although they are certainly still flawed. The bad reputation the Naga (those who bond with dragons and become linked with them) have is justly earned. Their mind-control power is something easy to abuse, and their arrogance has not diminished.
I give it 4 1/2 out of 5 stars, rounded up. The story has a good resolution with some healing for the family, though it seemed to happen a little too quickly in the end. Some things that have been festering that long take a long time to heal. But the baby white dragon was precious.
I received an audiobook in exchange for an honest review.
WHAT IT'S ABOUT
What if the person who knew you best and loved you most forgot your face, and couldn’t remember your name? A nursing facility is everyone's solution for what to do about Sara, but her husband, Jack, can't bear to live without her. He is committed to saving his marriage, his wife, and their life together from the devastation of Alzheimer’s disease. He and Sara retired years ago to the house of their dreams, and operated it as a Cape Cod bed and breakfast named Blue Hydrangeas. Jack has made an impossible promise: He and Sara will stay together in their beautiful home no matter what the disease brings. However, after nine years of selfless caregiving, complicated by her progressing Alzheimer’s and his own failing heart, he finally admits he can no longer care for her at home. With reluctance, he arranges to admit her to an assisted living facility. But, on the day of admission, Sara is having one of her few good days, and he is unable to follow through. Instead, he takes them on an impulsive journey to confront their past and reclaim their future. In the end, he realizes that staying together at any cost is what truly matters.
I'll rate this 4 1/2 and round it up to 5 stars.
This is a gentle, tender story of an elderly couple facing the monster that is Alzheimers. The book is filled with flashbacks that are interspersed with the current day story, when Jack is finally faced with the reality that he cannot continue to care for his beloved wife by himself--it's literally killing him.
Through those flashbacks, the reader is able to see the woman Sara had been and understand why Jack worked so hard to convince himself that he could cling to their old way of life. But Alzheimers is a terrible disease that steals away not just the memories of the loved one with it but the person they used to be, all while letting slip in little glimmers of that loved one. Just to enough to tease that she was really still in there. Somewhere.
It's a scary tale for me because my husband's father and several of his aunts and uncle have had Alzheimers. I could be in Jack's position some day. I learned a lot from the story, things I didn't know before, but the "education" I received helped me to understand the disease better. Now I can only pray I won't have to use it first hand.
WHAT IT'S ABOUT
Meet Jane and Austen. First there's Jane—an impractical, starry-eyed wedding planner; if love can’t match what she’s read in a book, she doesn't want it. And then there’s Austen—a pragmatic, logical-to-a-fault financial consultant; even if he were interested in someone, he wouldn't know. The two have one thing in common: they can’t leave each other alone. Jane believes that if Austen could just experience a fairy tale romance, he would secretly love it. And Austen’s pretty sure that if one of Jane’s beloved heroes escaped from the pages of her dog-eared novels, she’d run and hide. Both are about to be proven right. When the rivals are called on to help a friend plan the biggest wedding of the year, an entire resort full of colorful wedding guests descends upon them—many sharing uncanny similarities to characters in a Jane Austen novel. It doesn't take long before Jane gets everything she thinks she wants. After all, too much of a good thing can’t be all that bad, right? But when Jane’s life turns upside down, the only one she can turn to is Austen; though he’s got his own troubles of the heart…and she's afraid that he's enjoying them more than he should.
I've only read a couple of Jane Austen books and seen a couple of the films for other books, so I didn't get all there references, but Fowers made it work anyway. The story is a delightful mishmash of Jane Austenish characters set in a modern wedding center/bed and breakfast patterned after the places in Jane Austen books.
It took me a little while to warm up to Austen, and the story took a long time to play out, but it had a complex cast of characters (Austen did write 6 books, after all, and most of them contributed) so it really required that. And Austen totally grew on me. But was he ever an emotional tease. I wanted to strangle him a few times.
And Jane, in her role of wedding planner and trying to be pleasant and helpful to the guests, ended up being a doormat in the first half of the book. Fortunately, she finally comes into her own ... and it's sweet justice. I felt bad for Janes too because she was so desperate that her romantic visions of things led her to make a lot of mistakes. I loved that both she and Austen learned from each her--she became more practical and he more romantic. That's what any good romance is about. I will be looking for other audiobooks by Fowers.
***I received a copy of the audiobook in exchange for an honest review.
I have listened to a bazillion audiobooks since that's where I do most of my reading anymore. I can't rank these things.
One of the most compelling things in the story--for me--was that it's based on real life. It was quite an eye opener for me, as I lived Bryan's experiences with him and his epically awesome wife Nedra. I'm a positive person, so I really related with his view of life. Such a huge thing for someone his age to do. I would only have asked for a little more of what those thoughts were as he lay on that beach for so many hours.
I loved his time in the hospital with the other guys. It was great to see the prankster things they pulled, showing that their injuries hadn't consumed their lives. It was different, yes. Very different. But it would be easy in their feet to give up and decide life could never be good. Bryan is proof that attitude is everything.
Probably Nedra and Bryan tie in that for me. As I mentioned, his positive attitude was inspiring. But so was Nedra's. It was no small thing that she willingly--knowing exactly what it would mean since she was his nurse--took on the responsibility of caring for a man who was so severely limited. And yet she did, and they've had a wonderful (though hard) life. But who doesn't have a hard life? Just because it's hard, doesn't mean it can't also be wonderful.
I was already listening to another audiobook on my iPod and thought I would listen to this online at work. I got so sucked into the story, I had to stop listening to that other book so I could finish this one.
I'm a huge fan of the Dragonriders of Pern series, and the link between the dragons in Blue Dragon was a little reminiscent of it. The Blue Dragons have more flaws though, and there's a lot of internal conflict between the races. And the humans.
Dharanidhar really grew on me. I loved the way Sparks did the internal (mental) dialogue. He did a great job with letting me differentiate who was speaking by his characterization. I would so listen to other books narrated by him.
I hope Sparks is going to do the other books in the series.
Such a fun and varied list of stories.
I'd heard a little bit about this title but not more than it was a series of short stories inspired by Christmas carols. It's set up like an advent calendar, so you can read (or, in my case, listen to the audiobook) and have a different story for each day leading up to Christmas Day. I will listen to this again next year for sure.
What a delightful treat it was.
Bowersox read her own story, and she did a fabulous time. She did better than many "professional" narrators I'd listened to. I would listen to another book by her.
When Mick finally quits being an idiot. I almost stopped listening because I was so mad at him. But I'm glad I kept listening because I would have stopped just before he found his brains--and his heart.
The characterizations were excellent, and it was fun to hear the author's interpretation of the story.
No, but I yelled a few times about it to my husband. :D
This book drove me nuts! Bowersox wrote totally engaging characters. When one of them does something stupid--and like real people, they do stupid things--I wanted to stop reading. But those dang characters had me wrapped around their little fingers, and I had to keep on to find out what happened next. Very satisfying ending. I'm really glad I hung in there.
Kick a** heroine
Schmidt writes beautifully. She painted the scenes so I felt like I was there. The dialogue was realistic, and she did well with some of the differences between the way the Brits speak English and the way Americans do, especially with Danielle's English cousin's use of slang.
If Tristan Hunt decides to read the phone book, I'm in! Fabulous reader. Loved his accents--he did American really well. Loved the way he handled the various scenes and gave a slight though fun twist to the voices of some of the more common characters. I hate when male readers take the female voices too high and make them almost a mockery. Tristan does the females voices very well.
I did a lot of housework I wasn't planning to do just so I could finish listening to it.
Now, for the story. I had a serious case of deja vu in the beginning because there are some rather pronounced similarities to the Twilight series. Bella was a klutz. Danielle got lost easily. Ethan reminded me sometimes of Edward, but with an English accent.
HOWEVER, I got over those feelings rather quickly. This book is another twist on vampires, and I found it entertaining. The story has a few exciting scenes (an especially good one toward the end), but it is very much a story about how two very different people fall in love. If you're a romance reader searching for lots of action--both dangerous and in bed--you'll want to keep that in mind. It's a clean romance, but there are plenty of swoonworthy kisses and modest touching.
I'm glad there are other books coming because we're given some hints that Danielle's dreams can sometimes be more than just dreams. And what Danielle felt prompted to paint seemed suspicious to me at one point, kind of like foreshadowing.
I really enjoyed this story and look forward to the other audiobook. I sure hope Tristan is narrating those too.
Definitely. I loved this book, and the characters completely engaged me. I come from Irish stock, and I know the history of their terrible treatment in America. I listened to the audiobook, and my husband would catch pieces of it. He was appalled. Exactly. The narrator was wonderful!
This book has a resolution, of sorts, but it's obvious the tale's not finished. I'm not a fan of love triangles, and this book is one of the reasons why. Eden has created two really excellent men. Know that story is not going to end well for one of them broke my heart.
I had some issues with the logic of some of the characters, but that could have been as much foibles of humanity as anything else. I'm only frustrated because I have to wait for the next book to come out in audiobook too!
One of my favorites!
Kaladin is my favorite for sure. I struggled a little caring for Shallan's story, but it's the lead up to the next book, so I can be patient.
Kate and Michael are two of my favorite readers. I came to know them when they did the Wheel of Time series. Now when I see their names in association with a book, I know I'm in for a treat.
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