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Sara N.


  • Winter of the World: The Century Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Winter of the World picks up right where the first book left off, as its five interrelated families - American, German, Russian, English, Welsh - enter a time of enormous social, political, and economic turmoil, beginning with the rise of the Third Reich, through the Spanish Civil War and the great dramas of World War II, up to the explosions of the American and Soviet atomic bombs. As always with Ken Follett, the historical background is brilliantly researched and rendered, the action fast-moving, the characters rich in nuance and emotion.

    Tim says: "Brilliant Sequel"
    "Answers for a cold war generation."
    What made the experience of listening to Winter of the World the most enjoyable?

    John Lee's impeccable linguistic transitions.

    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Lloyd won my heart early on, with his youthful enthusiasm for political idealism and his undying pursuit of what he believed in, in spite of the collapse of everything he knew of the world he lived in, across borders and over time.

    Which scene was your favorite?

    Carla's ability to know intuitively what a rape would have done to Rachael, and yet willingly take that personal nightmare on herself, physically and emotionally, made her the hero she proved to be in so many ways, throughout the impoverishment of family and neighbors, and degradation of homeland.

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

    Forget your childhood recollections and your history lessons. Here's the fluid, seamless unfolding of events that molded the world as we know it today.

    Any additional comments?

    We all have favorites books, for whatever reason, but here is a book that is justified in being chosen as an all time favorite. Ken Follett had been a lifelong favorite author for one of his earlier works, but this is in a league of its own. It was an amazing research undertaking, and a piece worthy of being called a masterpiece in areas of history, sociology, culture, economy, warfare and knowledge of the human spirit.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sycamore Row

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of lung cancer. He trusts no one. Before he hangs himself from a sycamore tree, Hubbard leaves a new, handwritten, will. It is an act that drags his adult children, his black maid, and Jake into a conflict as riveting and dramatic as the murder trial that made Brigance one of Ford County's most notorious citizens, just three years earlier. The second will raises far more questions than it answers. Why would Hubbard leave nearly all of his fortune to his maid? Had chemotherapy and painkillers affected his ability to think clearly?

    Brock says: "Grisham at his best (again)"
    "Performance tells the story"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    After downloading this audiobook I was tempted to return it and go back to reading. It's difficult to understand how a fine writer like Grisham could allow someone like Michael Beck to ruin his books. Poor reading, terrible timing, and inability to read ahead in order to drop his voice where the sentence or thought ends. His narrative is so distracting I don't know if I'll be able to get through the whole book.

    Would you be willing to try another one of Michael Beck’s performances?


    Did Sycamore Row inspire you to do anything?

    It inspired me to return the audiobook in favor of reading it the story myself.

    Any additional comments?

    A good reader can elevate a good story to an even better one. A poor performance can ruin a story, no matter how good. As a long-time user of Audible books, I've heard good and bad, and this is one of the poorest. In addition to having poor timing and poor understanding of the content, this man uses a grating, simpering voice to suggest female parts, which is not only insulting but hard to listen to. His southern accent is poor, and his ability to sustain each voice non-existent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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