New York, NY, United States | Member Since 2006
I love books that bring a different perspective to historical events, and this one about a young Australian war widow peeked my interest. I didn't know Australia fought in WWII. This book feels like a retelling of actual events, but it's not. It begins with Grace, the widow, describing what she finds out 40+ years later was how her husband died. It's an interesting way to start the story, the problem is since I know how it ends, it feels like the story never engages. I kept waiting for "the other thing" to emerge, but it never does. It really is about Grace's 40+ year reluctant journey to finding out what happened to her first husband.
The movie is very good, but so is the book. It's the rare case where both are good because both are done very well. Don't think that because you seen the film, though, you know the story. You don't. Don't listen to this before you go to bed, you'll stay awaking wanting to hear what happens. This is Stephan King at his best.
Frank Muller's performance is exactly right for this. He takes you on this journey!
The best thing about this listen is Colin Firth. He has a very pleasing voice and brings the characters to life. It's a joy of a listen. I hope he does more books.
However, it is typical Graham Greene. Don't get me wrong, Graham Greene is a great writer. He brings people and places to life in a way no other writer can. But as always with Greene, a character who was raised Catholic, but no longer believes, prays to God and a miracle occurs. The character then goes thru an inner struggle questioning who they are and what they believe. If you like reading struggles of faith, you will love this book.
I personally find the subject boring. I've read the struggle before in Greene's work and just can't invest in the character's dilemma even though I like them and want them to succeed.
If you've not read Innocents Abroad, this is a great way to experience it. Many don't read this and it is one of Twain's hidden gems. It is Twain at his best, "Is he dead?" The first time I read it, it made me laugh out loud in public places. If you have travelled at all you will enjoy it. If you travelled to these places you'll get an extra bang out of it. Human nature is timeless and there is no better proof of it than the observations of a master. He gives the straight dope on traveling in Holy Land.
For a long time the only version of "Innocents Abroad," was narrated by Flo Gipson. The first time I heard it, I thought it was horrible. But I've listened to it more than once, it makes great bed-time listening. I downloaded this version because it was narrated by a man, but I have to say, I think Flo Gipson captured Twain's irreverent tone better than Grover Gardner. Grover Gardner has a more pleasing sounding voice than Flo, though. So it's a toss-up.
The characters are beautifully portrayed and with the love story happening very naturally in the course of life. It's Georgette Heyer at her best. She writes children so beautifully. If you're looking for a light listen that won't set your teeth on edge, this is for you. Clifford Norgate is easy to listen to and does a good job with both male and female characters. The Grand Sophy was my favorite, but this recording has made this one my Heyer favorite. Good bedtime listening.
When I read this book I liked it, but I like the audio version better because you hear all the Egyptian names pronounced. I have a good understanding of Greek and Roman mythology, but know almost nothing about Egyptian mythology and culture. This book has awakened my curiosity.
The narrators could be better. Kevin Free does an adequate job, but his accents are hard to listen to. Katherine Kellgren sounds like she is shouting everything. Overall, I could follow the characters no matter who was narrating. This is a good a bedtime listen if you turn the volume down a bit.
This book would appeal to all ages.
This is a great listen. It is not the movie, but the performance by Dick Cavett is destined to be a legend in "kiddom." The subtle sound effects add a dimension to this that will delight both young and old. The book is a group of short stories that cover several types of special occasions; the "dogs stealing the holiday meal" incident is much funny in the book. Jean Shepherd is a superb writer. At 3 hours it makes a great Christmas Eve listen. Turn off the TV and the lights and listen while your own family Holiday magic surrounds you.
The book is a group of short stories so you don't have to listen to them all and you don't have to listen to them in order. The "Red Rider BB Gun Story," is first.
I found this gave me a greater appreciation for the film because the essence of each story is wove into one story in the film. I use it when teaching adaptation in my screenwriting classes because it's so well done.
Listen to a sample and I know you'll want to download it.
I've been waiting for several years for Audible to have Gone with the Wind available. I was very excited to finally download it. However, Linda Stephens is disappointing as the narrator. I was hoping for a narrator with a more dynamic voice; a female Jim Dale. I had hoped she would grow on me as I listened, but she always sounds wrong. She is not a bad narrator, she's just wrong for this book. I was hoping for a narrator who could bring GWTW to life Juliet Stevenson does for Jane Austin's work or Gwendoline Yeo does for the Joy Luck Club. I'd even prefer a male narrator if he was able to capture the essence of Scarlet. Still this is worth downloading. Perhaps someone who does not have definite ideas about Scarlet O'Hara would be find with this narrator.
Christian Moerk is a true wordsmith. The story pulls you in from the first and is difficult to turn off. The first listen should not be before bed because it will keep you awake.
The story always surprises you. The characters spring to life and you feel you could pick them out of a crowd. You want to have a pint at the corner pub with them.
There is music in the prose that it capitalized brilliantly by the narrators Stephen Hoye and Justine Eyre. I liked them both but was always a little sad when one of Justine's sections was over.
I will listen to this many times over.
I downloaded this book because I enjoyed listening to the Georgette Heyer novels and thought I'd try other romances--a genre I've always found hard to read. It was on the main page of Audible, and I thought I'd take a chance. I like Simon Prebble. I only wish I had that credit back. The prologue is mildly interesting, but it lacks credibility. It sets you up to believe the female love interest is a different, more interesting character, but she turns out to be an uninteresting, 2D, red-haired English girl left on the shelf too long. There is a certain amount of suspension of disbelief that goes along with this genre, but this book leaps over that line. The female love interest enters the story out of the blue with very flimsy reasoning as to why she is there. It doesn't make sense, and I can't go with it.
The vapid descriptions and MarySue like thoughts of the main characters resemble no human being I've ever encountered. I just don't don't believe it. The cliches make my skin crawl. I may have been able to go with the story if this were better written, but I can't. Sex scenes are awkward in the hands of the best writers but deadly in the hands of the less gifted, and this book is a great example of that.
Simon Prebble does an admirable job of trying to bring the text alive, but it was DOA. I can't take his reading of the poorly written sex scenes with so much gusto. It's as if I'm listening to a dramatization of a 13-year-olds idea of a historic romance. I've listened to Simon Prebble's other work and enjoyed it thoroughly. His performance is unintentionally comical because of the writing.
In a nutshell, the prologue makes a promise the rest of the story doesn't keep.
This is the first book from Audible I've not finished and don't intend to.
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