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Kathy

Davis, CA, United States | Member Since 2008

340
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 164 reviews
  • 378 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 22 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
58

  • Defending Jacob: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By William Landay
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3560)
    Performance
    (3031)
    Story
    (3026)

    Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney in his suburban Massachusetts county for more than 20 years. He is respected in his community, tenacious in the courtroom, and happy at home with his wife, Laurie, and son, Jacob. But when a shocking crime shatters their New England town, Andy is blindsided by what happens next: his 14-year-old son is charged with the murder of a fellow student.

    Shauna says: "Defending Jacob"
    "Well put together story--finished in 2 days"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While Grover Gardner doesn't have a wide range of voices, he certainly nailed the father's character in this compelling story providing for us a thoroughly convincing narration. This story certainly brings up several very interesting questions, among them whether violence is inherited or environmental and just how far a person will go in believing their child's innocence. This story never lagged and provided a satisfying and believable ending. Highly recommended listen!

    14 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • The Hot Rock: The First Dortmunder Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Donald E. Westlake
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (151)
    Performance
    (92)
    Story
    (97)

    John Dortmunder and company are hired by an U.N. African Ambassador to steal the famed Balabomo Emerald from the hands of a rival African country. But their daring and clever burglarly goes awry, and the emerald slips through their fingers. Undaunted, Dortmunder chases the gem by plane, train and automobile in hot pursuit of the hot rock.

    William says: "Dortmunder is on his game in this fun introduction"
    "Actually, let's make that 3 1/2 stars!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It is difficult to rate a book that just isn't your type of book, but you know that it could be a great read for a different type of listener. I have come to realize that I am just not into comedy capers and bumbling thugs like in The Hot Rock. However, if YOU are, this book may be right up your alley.

    What is really strange is that as I started listening, I quickly realized that I already knew the story. For the life of me, I cannot figure out why--did I read the paperback or see the movie? Who knows? But it shows that twice, I decided that this book sounded fun and I wanted to experience it.

    The narrator does strange things. You hear an African character speaking in what you have come to identify as an Indian accent (another reviewer calls it Pakistani). You hear what you think is a classic New York accent with shades of Ohio in it. The main character, Dortmunder, seems to have no accent at all.

    If you can let this go and are looking for something light, with laughs, this book could be what you are looking for. I don't want to bash it. It just isn't my style.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Nerd's Guide to Being Confident

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 54 mins)
    • By Mark Manson
    • Narrated By Fleet Cooper
    Overall
    (363)
    Performance
    (321)
    Story
    (318)

    Everyone knows confidence when they see it; but seemingly no one can actually describe what goes into it or how to get it. The Nerd's Guide to Being Confident is an unconventional way of looking at one of the most basic and obvious human traits and what one can do to gain a little more of it without feeling like a phony. Laughter included.

    Harvey says: "do not wast your time"
    "Not totally devoid of value"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Written for young men, I think the author provides a couple of good insights into gaining self-confidence. However, it is mostly fluff and will not help anyone gain insight into their own problematic behaviors or what they themselves may be lacking.

    Read this very short lecture simply for amusement and not as a self-help book!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Touching the Void

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Joe Simpson
    • Narrated By Daniel Weyman, Andrew Wincott
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (49)
    Performance
    (47)
    Story
    (49)

    Joe Simpson, with just his partner, Simon Yates, tackled the unclimbed West Face of the remote 21,000-foot Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes in June of 1995. But before they reached the summit, disaster struck. A few days later, Simon staggered into Base Camp, exhausted and frostbitten, to tell their non-climbing companion that Joe was dead. For three days he wrestled with guilt as they prepared to return home. Then a cry in the night took them out with torches, where they found Joe, badly injured.

    Marci says: "Wonderfully told true story"
    "Frightening, emotional & heart-warming true story!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I saw the movie and have never been able to get the story out of my mind. Touching the Void is a true story, a miracle of sorts--a mountaineer left for dead by his climbing partner and his incredible struggle to live. I have always wondered how this could have happened and more particularly, how Joe and Simon felt about what happened. Specifically, how did Joe Simpson feel about his climbing partner after the ordeal? How did Simon Yates react when he learned Joe was still alive when he abandoned him. You can't rely on a movie to tell the real story but you can rely on this book's narrative. It includes segments also by Joe's climbing partner, Simon Yates.

    This is an incredible story, beautifully written and very moving. The narration was excellent and I highly recommend this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Witness

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Nora Roberts
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6687)
    Performance
    (5810)
    Story
    (5788)

    Daughter of a cold, controlling mother and an anonymous donor, studious, obedient Elizabeth finally let loose one night, drinking too much at a nightclub and allowing a strange man’s seductive Russian accent to lure her to a house on Lake Shore Drive. The events that followed changed her life forever. Twelve years later, the woman now known as Abigail Lowery lives alone on the outskirts of a small town in the Ozarks. A freelance programmer, she works at home designing sophisticated security systems.

    Nicole says: "A great book"
    "If you're in the mood for a romance/adventure tale"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Not my typical genre, romance. However, I got this one on sale, as it had consistently good reviews. Sometimes, it is good to mix it up as to not get into a rut. It was a very easy, pleasant listen with just enough extra intrigue (besides the romance) to keep me interested and coming back for more.

    Nora Roberts certainly has expertise at the love scenes, and I it appears she knows when enough is enough. At least, for me, that is.

    Like another reviewer, the main character, Abigail, spoke very much like Temperance Brennan in the Bones tv show. It didn't detract too much for me, although I've come to associate that way of talking with autism! Abigail certainly is not autistic, but she did have a very stilted childhood, so I guess her speech can be understood in that way.

    While not my favorite type of read, I think The Witness is good enough to recommend, particularly for romance fans.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • What Alice Forgot

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Liane Moriarty
    • Narrated By Tamara Lovatt-Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (899)
    Performance
    (803)
    Story
    (800)

    What would happen if you were visited by your younger self, and got a chance for a do-over?Alice Love is twenty-nine years old, madly in love with her husband, and pregnant with their first child. So imagine her surprise when, after a fall, she comes to on the floor of a gym (a gym! she HATES the gym!) and discovers that she's actually thirty-nine, has three children, and is in the midst of an acrimonious divorce.

    Judy says: "Unforgettable! I loved this story!"
    "Delightful listen!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I spent about three days immersed in Alice's story. It's all about amnesia, marriage, divorce, infertility, having children--life! Basically, it is what I call a "relationship book." No monsters, no non-stop action, no murders. However, there certainly was a slowly unfolding mystery. The story held me spellbound, and I never lost interest.

    I was particularly charmed by the narrator, Tamara Lovatt-Smith. Her delightful Australian accent, along with a perfect take on Alice's personality, made me love listening to this story. Her voice remained in my head the next day after I had finished my listen.

    If I had a minor quibble, it would be that Ms. Lovatt-Smith should learn how to do different voices to make the narration a little easier for listeners. I am sure this will come in time.

    The next time I get the craving for a "relationship" book, I will certainly turn to Liane Moriarty. And hopefully, to Ms. Lovatt-Smith.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Caine Mutiny

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Herman Wouk
    • Narrated By Kevin Pariseau
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (720)
    Performance
    (627)
    Story
    (626)

    Having inspired a classic film and Broadway play, The Caine Mutiny is Herman Wouk's boldly dramatic, brilliantly entertaining novel of life—and mutiny—on a Navy warship in the Pacific theater. It was immediately embraced upon its original publication as one of the first serious works of American fiction to grapple with the moral complexities and the human consequences of the Second World War. In the intervening half century, this gripping story has become a perennial favorite, selling millions throughout the world, and claiming the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

    James says: "Even Better than the Movie"
    "Perfection!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have had this audiobook in my library for several months. I found Wouk's two other masterpieces (Winds of War & War and Remembrance) superb and was a little worried this book would not live up to my expectations.

    Well, I needn't have worried. I found this book to be similarly enthralling and a really exceptional listening experience. I can't imagine a better combo than Herman Wouk and Kevin Pariseau. Pariseau really understands Wouk's characters and narrates them expertly.

    Wouk's characters are well-developed as usual. Their motivations and behaviors I found totally believable. I really cared what happened to them and often felt I was right there with them in the moment. This story is by no means predictable, and more than once I found myself surprised at the turns it took. Now that I have finished the book, I often find myself thinking back to the ending in particular, wanting to know more, reluctant to say goodby to Willie and his comrades.

    The Caine Mutiny is much more than just a war story. This book is not only for men who can't stop reminiscing about the war. I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for an engrossing and rewarding listening experience.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Where'd You Go, Bernadette: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Maria Semple
    • Narrated By Kathleen Wilhoite
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1850)
    Performance
    (1656)
    Story
    (1651)

    Bernadette Fox is notorious. To her Microsoft-guru husband, she's a fearlessly opinionated partner; to fellow private-school mothers in Seattle, she's a disgrace; to design mavens, she's a revolutionary architect, and to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, simply, Mom.

    Then Bernadette disappears. It began when Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette's intensifying allergy to Seattle - and people in general - has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands.

    S says: "One of my top 10 listens of the year!"
    "The current flipped my canoe!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    You know, it is very difficult to continue against the current. Some times it is so strong it tips your boat. What is it with me that I can't enjoy this book? It isn't even a mild dislike--I can't stand it. I have gone back to it three times and each time, I cringe. It is fascinating how much I dislike it.

    Bernadette is just plain silly and insensitive and unbelievable. Is it just terminal quirkiness or mental illness? I know she is supposed to be creative and clever and funny, but it just doesn't come off that way for me. And the tirade against Seattle? I think you would have had to live there to get your laughs from that. A tirade which goes on way too long. Like a comedy routine.

    To make it all worse, I have no fondness for this narrator at all. So, there you have it. My rant about a book everyone else seems to love. Almost everyone.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Serpent's Tooth: A Walt Longmire Mystery, Book 9

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Craig Johnson
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1185)
    Performance
    (1060)
    Story
    (1057)

    In this ninth installment in the award-winning and New York Times best-selling Walt Longmire mystery series, the Wyoming sheriff follows his cowboy code of ethics in a religious range war that strikes a little too close to home.

    Dave says: "Craig Johnson's best!"
    "Paddling against the current again"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I would rate it a solid 3 1/2 stars, but no more. I am way out of sync with the other reviewers on this one and am wondering why. What am I missing?

    I thought the narration was perfection for all the characters. George Guidall did a masterful job and I can imagine no one else doing as well.

    However, I found the story somewhat slow moving and do I dare say--not so interesting? As I got toward the end, it got a little more involving for me. It is not that I haven't experienced Walt Longmire. I watched some episodes on television, the few that I found, and really enjoyed them. I was just expecting to care a little more.

    My bad.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Prairie Nocturne

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Ivan Doig
    • Narrated By Scott Sowers
    Overall
    (66)
    Performance
    (49)
    Story
    (49)

    National Book Award finalist Ivan Doig writes about Big Sky country with raw authenticity. Set during the 1920s, Prairie Nocturne finds Susan Duff, the young songbird from Doig’s Dancing at the Rascal Fair, now a middle-aged singing coach living in Helena. When her old flame, Wes Williamson, asks her to mentor his black chauffeur, Monty, she agrees. But racial tensions erupt when Susan’s private lessons with Monty attract the attention of the KKK.

    Kathy says: "Not to my liking!"
    "Not to my liking!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have enjoyed Doig's books in the past. Dancing at the Rascal Fair was just wonderful. This one, not so wonderful. None of the characters were likeable or interesting enough to hold my imagination. The story moves along as slow as molasses. Life is too short to waste on a book you don't care about. I am quitting after listening for 6 hours.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Mysterious Island

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Jules Verne
    • Narrated By Berny Clark
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (213)
    Performance
    (189)
    Story
    (191)

    Based on the true story of Alexander Selkirk, who survived alone for almost five years on an uninhabited island off the coast of Chile, The Mysterious Island is considered by many to be Jules Verne’s masterpiece. “Wide-eyed mid-nineteenth-century humanistic optimism in a breezy, blissfully readable translation by Stump” (Kirkus Reviews), here is the enthralling tale of five men and a dog who land in a balloon on a faraway, fantastic island of bewildering goings-on and their struggle to survive....

    Tad Davis says: "Wonderful novel, mediocre translation"
    "Everything from nothing!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It isn't very often that I finish an audiobook and walk around with a grin from ear to ear, chuckling. This book really grew on me and it was so much fun. I really enjoyed the characters and miss them now that the book is finished.

    First, what this book isn't. Do not expect a-thrill-a-minute pace, do not expect sea monsters, vampires, or zombies. Do not expect political correctness--think of where we were in the 70's, 1970's, that is.

    What this book is. It is a very well-done, old-fashioned survival tale. It is an all-male adventure that includes and all-knowing engineer and his African manservant, a seaman, a reporter, and a young teen boy. In addition, there is the indispensable dog, Top, and the orangutan, Joop, who wears a dinner jacket in his role as servant. The guys are stranded on a Pacific island after escaping imprisonment of sorts by the Confederates during the Civil War by stealing a hot air balloon and blowing away in a hurricane. They crash land with nothing but the shirts on their backs, but no matter, they have an engineer with them! This book is not a comedy, by any means, but is genuinely funny and I wonder how the excellent narrator could keep from laughing. Somehow he did keep from laughing and turned out the best possible narration for this book, narrating with total seriousness.

    This book is a gem that takes a little patience to get a feel of where it's going. Once you do, just sit back, take it easy, and enjoy it. And just when you think you have figured it out, you will be hit with a twist that will make it ever more enjoyable. That is assuming you have not read EVERY review and particularly the one by the person who just has to, oh-so-innocently, include spoilers in their reviews.

    You got nothing to loose and a lot of listening fun if you get this book!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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