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Ronald

Silver Spring, MD, United States | Member Since 2008

1
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 63 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 8 purchased in 2014
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  • Underworld

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Don DeLillo
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (106)
    Performance
    (90)
    Story
    (89)

    Nick Shay and Klara Sax knew each other once, intimately, and they meet again in the American desert. He is trying to outdistance the crucial events of his early life, haunted by the hard logic of loss and by the echo of a gunshot in a basement room. She is an artist who has made a blood struggle for independence.

    Ruth Ann Orlansky says: "CYBEX burned into my eyes"
    "Hard to make sense of"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about Underworld?

    There are excellent vignettes, but that is all there is. It is a huge work, but just consists of unrelated snippets. I kept waiting for everything to come together but it never does. It is very confusing, so maybe I just missed it! One thing that I hated is that all of the characters talk the same way. It is not only the narration, but the words and phrases are the same, and they all have the same way of repeating themselves. It is really terrible!


    Which character – as performed by Richard Poe – was your favorite?

    Couldn't say.


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

    Yes, it has some great parts, that are very evocative of the time, and people. The beginning is great, but don't except it to ever again rise to that level.


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Shadow of the Wind

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Carlos Ruiz Zafon
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis
    Overall
    (1632)
    Performance
    (676)
    Story
    (688)

    Barcelona, 1945: Just after the war, a great world city lies in shadow, nursing its wounds, and a boy named Daniel awakes on his 11th birthday to find that he can no longer remember his mother's face. To console his only child, Daniel's widowed father, an antiquarian book dealer, initiates him into the secret of the Cemetery of Forgotten Books, a library tended by Barcelona's guild of rare-book dealers as a repository for books forgotten by the world, waiting for someone who will care about them again.

    Katherine says: "Great With One Exception"
    "I could not finish it--endless monologues by whom?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The Shadow of the Wind?

    It started well, but then degenerated into endless monologues by no character--it did not even seem to be a narrator. They went on and on and were completely uninteresting. I finally gave up.


    What was most disappointing about Carlos Ruiz Zafon’s story?

    The endless monologues of "background materials" and fictional history.


    What three words best describe Jonathan Davis’s voice?

    OK but gets monotonous, like the story


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

    It started well. The outline of the plot is probably interesting and good. But the execution is terrible.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Junot Diaz
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis, Staci Snell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2155)
    Performance
    (889)
    Story
    (897)

    Things have never been easy for Oscar, a sweet but disastrously overweight, lovesick Dominican ghetto nerd. Oscar dreams of becoming the Dominican J. R. R. Tolkien and, most of all, of finding love. But he may never get what he wants, thanks to the Fuku: the curse that has haunted Oscar's family for generations, dooming them to prison, torture, tragic accidents, and, above all, ill-starred love. Oscar, still waiting for his first kiss, is just its most recent victim.

    Kathleen says: "Fabulous listen"
    "Sad sordid story with no redeeming value"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    The historical bits are interesting, but the plot is awful.


    What was most disappointing about Junot Diaz’s story?

    Foul mouthed pointless angst


    What does Jonathan Davis and Staci Snell bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Good characterizations but reading would have been faster. I kept thinking I must get better with so many good reviews.


    What character would you cut from The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao?

    All the male characters.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Family Fang

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Kevin Wilson
    • Narrated By Therese Plummer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (626)
    Performance
    (532)
    Story
    (530)

    Performance artists Caleb and Camille Fang dedicated themselves to making great art. But when an artist's work lies in subverting normality, it can be difficult to raise well-adjusted children. Just ask Buster and Annie Fang. For as long as they can remember, they starred (unwillingly) in their parents' madcap pieces. But now that they are grown up, the chaos of their childhood has made it difficult to cope with life outside the fishbowl of their parents' strange world.

    B. Westman says: "Surprisingly Deep"
    "Wonderful reading wonderful story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Family Fang in three words, what would they be?

    can't stop thinking


    What did you like best about this story?

    can't stop laughing


    Any additional comments?

    The epilogue wasn't necessary--detracts from the story. Should have ended before.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Feast for Crows: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Roy Dotrice
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7953)
    Performance
    (7288)
    Story
    (7315)

    Few books have captivated the imagination and won the devotion and praise of readers and critics everywhere as has George R. R. Martin’s monumental epic cycle of high fantasy that began with A Game of Thrones. Now, in A Feast for Crows, Martin delivers the long-awaited fourth book of his landmark series, as a kingdom torn asunder finds itself at last on the brink of peace . . . only to be launched on an even more terrifying course of destruction.

    Pi says: "Jarring change in Dotrice's performance"
    "Terrible narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from George R. R. Martin and/or Roy Dotrice?

    Roy Dotrice did a wonderful job with books 1-3, but with book 4 he totally changed the voices. The female voices are awful. It would be better just to read them without voices. Some reviews seem to be of a different edition. I will not liste to book 5 probably because the reading is so bad for book 4. The story itself is gripping, though not as good as books 1-3.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Roy Dotrice’s performances?

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Bloodsucking Fiends: A Love Story

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Christopher Moore
    • Narrated By Susan Bennett
    Overall
    (2078)
    Performance
    (929)
    Story
    (947)

    A striking red-head, 20-something Jody is attacked and transformed into a vampire while walking home one night in downtown San Francisco. Befriending 19-year-old Tommy, Jody tries to understand her new undead life, but trouble finds her when the cops start suspecting Tommy of being a local bloodsucking serial killer.

    SHEILA says: "Bloodsucking FUN!"
    "Great reading, great story"
    Overall

    This is a light tale that made me laugh. Well read, and perfect to a T. Don't expect anything deep or thought provoking.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Corrections

    • ABRIDGED (9 hrs)
    • By Jonathan Franzen
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    Overall
    (681)
    Performance
    (129)
    Story
    (133)

    The Corrections is a grandly entertaining novel for the new century - a comic, tragic masterpiece about a family breaking down in an age of easy fixes. Richly realistic, darkly hilarious, deeply humane, it confirms Jonathan Franzen as one of our most brilliant interpreters of American society and the American soul.

    Charles says: "A memorable book; flawless narration"
    "Shouldn't have been abridged!"
    Overall

    I should just blame myself for not seeing the "Abridged" tag, but this is a great reading of a great book, except that much of the best stuff is left out. The book is so chopped up by the cutting it doesn't make much sense.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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