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sam

Riverside, RI, United States | Member Since 2011

21
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 14 ratings
  • 75 titles in library
  • 7 purchased in 2014
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  • The Member of the Wedding

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Carson McCullers
    • Narrated By Susan Sarandon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (206)
    Performance
    (184)
    Story
    (182)

    The best way to experience this classic of the American South is by joining five-time Academy Award nominee and Best Actress winner Susan Sarandon (Dead Man Walking, Thelma & Louise) as she guides the listener on a journey through the anguish of adolescence and isolation.

    FanB14 says: "It's a Classic People"
    "One of my favorite books"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Member of the Wedding the most enjoyable?

    This has long been a favorite book of mine and since I have read it several times, it probably would not have been one I would have downloaded but I so love Susan Sarandon I could not resist. She did not disappoint and did a wonderful job speaking in the mind of young Frankie Adams. I would certainly recommend this title to anyone.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Dinner: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Herman Koch, Sam Garrett (translator)
    • Narrated By Clive Mantle
    Overall
    (875)
    Performance
    (766)
    Story
    (773)

    It's a summer's evening in Amsterdam, and two couples meet at a fashionable restaurant for dinner. Between mouthfuls of food and over the polite scrapings of cutlery, the conversation remains a gentle hum of polite discourse - the banality of work, the triviality of the holidays. But behind the empty words, terrible things need to be said, and with every forced smile and every new course, the knives are being sharpened. Each couple has a 15-year-old son. The two boys are united by their accountability for a single horrific act; an act that has triggered a police investigation and shattered the comfortable, insulated worlds of their families.

    Jane says: "Dining at its most distubing"
    "This was completely overrated"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I got this because it had been billed as a "European Gone Girl." It was not. It was badly written drivel. His supposedly brilliant descriptive passages dragged on and on. The characters (all of them) were completely detestable from the word go. At least with Gone Girl you start out liking the characters and then not liking them and ultimately kind of ambivalent. The author tried desperately to get us to like or at least some of the motivation for some of the things that happen but I never liked any of them.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Herman Koch and Sam Garrett (translator) again?

    Seems unlikely. The whole thing left me with a bad taste in my mouth and not just because of the events in the actual story. I can deal with dramatic horror. This just left me feeling manipulated.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Dinner?

    The whole first section in which he goes on ad nauseum about the food, the restaurant and the patrons.


    Any additional comments?

    I think the narrator tried to add extra "drama" by slowing down his reading when things were supposed to feel "suspenseful." It was more annoying than effective.

    I finished this book because I "paid" for it with one of my credits. But I would suggest saving credits for something more worthwhile.

    15 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • 'Tis

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Frank McCourt
    • Narrated By Frank McCourt
    Overall
    (700)
    Performance
    (308)
    Story
    (306)

    Listen as Frank tells in his own inimitable voice his story of how at the age of 19 he traveled from Limerick to New York in pursuit of the American dream. Despite the abundance of unsolicited advice he gets to "join the cops" and "stick to his own kind", Frank knows that he should educate himself and somehow rise above his circumstances.

    Stanley says: "A second delightful helping"
    "Even better than Angela's Ashes"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up 'Tis in three words, what would they be?

    Funny, intelligent and human.


    What other book might you compare 'Tis to and why?

    This sort of reminded me of "Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal" by Jeanette Winterson. I am sure it has something to do with their northern accents but both of their stories are up-by-the-boot-straps rag-to-riches stories that are funny and inspiring. And I feel like I can understand the role that story telling played in both authors' salvation.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a very listenable story and I enjoyed it thoroughly.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Book of Jonas

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Stephen Dau
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (12)

    Jonas is 15 when his family is killed during an errant U.S. military operation in an unnamed Muslim country. With the help of an international relief organization, he is sent to America, where he struggles to assimilate-foster family, school, a first love. Eventually, he tells a court-mandated counselor and therapist about a U.S. soldier, Christopher Henderson, responsible for saving his life on the tragic night in question.

    Kathy says: "Hard to summarize"
    "I bought this on a whim"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Book of Jonas in three words, what would they be?

    compeling


    What about Simon Vance’s performance did you like?

    Great! I love Simon Vance.


    Any additional comments?

    I read this book several months ago and I am surprised sometimes at how well it has stuck with me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dog Stars

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Peter Heller
    • Narrated By Mark Deakins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (974)
    Performance
    (866)
    Story
    (867)

    Hig survived the flu that killed everyone he knows. His wife is gone, his friends are dead, he lives in the hangar of a small abandoned airport with his dog, his only neighbor a gun-toting misanthrope. In his 1956 Cessna, Hig flies the perimeter of the airfield or sneaks off to the mountains to fish and to pretend that things are the way they used to be. But when a random transmission somehow beams through his radio, the voice ignites a hope deep inside him that a better life exists beyond the airport.

    Melinda says: "Absolutely Stellar!"
    "Better than the reviews I had read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. While I was prepared for the sparse language by all the reviews I read I actually felt like it added to the narrative rather than detracted from it. I thought when he was writing in short sentence fragments that it seemed more like a log entry or diary entry which seemed fitting considering some of the emotional terrain he was treading. And then sometimes it read like modern poetry which was also fitting since before the disaster he had been a poet.


    Any additional comments?

    I really liked this book and I am not a huge aficionado of post-apocaplyptic stories. I feel like the book has stayed with me longer than I expected.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Along the Way: The Journey of a Father and Son

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez, Hope Edelman
    • Narrated By Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (335)
    Performance
    (303)
    Story
    (304)

    In this remarkable dual memoir, film legend Martin Sheen and accomplished actor/filmmaker Emilio Estevez recount their lives as father and son. In alternating chapters—and in voices that are as eloquent as they are different—they narrate stories spanning more than 50 years of family history, and reflect on their journeys into two different kinds of faith.

    CyndiLooWho says: "Hartwarming and Captivating but Fix the Audio!"
    "A pretty good story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Have you listened to any of Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have not listened to any of their other audio work. I am familiar with their voices from the screen work they have done.


    Any additional comments?

    The audio editing was still a little messed up where if doubled back on itself but I was prepared for that from other reviews I read. They still hadn't fixed it when I got the book.

    I thought this was a pretty good book. Martin Sheen's writing is a little better than Emilio Estevez's. He tends to be a little precious both in the content and in the delivery. But I really enjoyed the frank nature of the story they tell and I am glad I got this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Year of Magical Thinking

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Joan Didion
    • Narrated By Barbara Caruso
    Overall
    (1270)
    Performance
    (405)
    Story
    (408)

    "Life changes fast....You sit down to dinner and life as you know it ends." These were among the first words Joan Didion wrote in January 2004. Her daughter was lying unconscious in an intensive care unit, a victim of pneumonia and septic shock. Her husband, John Gregory Dunne, was dead. The night before New Year's Eve, while they were sitting down to dinner, he suffered a massive and fatal coronary. The two had lived and worked side by side for nearly 40 years.

    Darwin8u says: "Sharp, sometimes funny, but always clear & precise"
    "Very Helpful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Year of Magical Thinking?

    I have had a year in which some momentous changes rocked my own world and reading a book like this was useful in reminding me that we are all prisoners of


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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