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A.

Member Since 2010

3
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 80 ratings
  • 162 titles in library
  • 13 purchased in 2014
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  • Night’s Master: Tales from the Flat Earth, Book One

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Tanith Lee
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    Overall
    (35)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (33)

    Long ago when the Earth was flat, beautiful, indifferent Gods lived in the airy Upperearth realm above; curious, passionate demons lived in the exotic Underearth realm below; and mortals were relegated to exist in the middle. Azhrarn, Lord of the Demons and the Darkness, was the one who ruled the night, and many mortal lives were changed because of his cruel whimsy. And yet, Azhrarn held inside his demon heart a profound mystery which would change the very fabric of the Flat Earth forever.

    Kat Hooper says: "A gothic fairytale"
    "Excellent book, repetitive narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    How could the performance have been better?

    This book's narrator tends to sap the story of its power with her repetitive, very contrived sounding style of performance. She reads each sentence in the exact same sequence of intonation, over and over again. If I was musical I could literally chart the notes for you - the same 5 or 6, again and again, sentence after sentence. Very tiring to listen to. I suppose some may find this sing-song and comforting, or compelling in some way; but for me, it just blankets the book's rich words with a monochrome, monotonous feel.


    Any additional comments?

    I've read this book twice before on paper, and it's one of Tanith Lee's best. I highly recommend the entire Flat Earth series from her. Definitely read it in actual book form if you can, though, to better hear the varied voices of each character: the audiobook performance may drown these out for you.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Zora Neale Hurston
    • Narrated By Ruby Dee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (829)
    Performance
    (397)
    Story
    (393)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Zora Neale Hurston’s classic novel begs to be read aloud, and Ruby Dee answers the challenge with utter perfection, capturing the wide range of characters and their diverse accents with grace and power. Their Eyes Were Watching God is the luminous and haunting novel about Janie Crawford, a Southern Black woman in the 1930s, whose journey from a free-spirited girl to a woman of independence and substance has inspired writers and readers for close to 70 years.

    Leslie says: "a pleasure"
    "Yes"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A beautiful book - so much more amazing than any description or synopsis I've read.
    Ruby Dee gives a perfection narration.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Girl Boy Girl: How I Became JT LeRoy

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Savannah Knoop
    • Narrated By Emma Woodbine
    Overall
    (22)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    The JT LeRoy scandal is a story of our times. In January 2006, the New York Times unmasked Savannah Knoop as the face of the mysterious author JT LeRoy. A media frenzy ensued as JT's fans, mentors, and readers came to terms with the fact that the gay-male-ex-truck-stop-prostitute-turned literary-wunderkind was really a girl from San Francisco, whose sister-in-law wrote the books.

    A. says: "Fascinating memoir, awful narration"
    "Fascinating memoir, awful narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Savannah Knoop (the face of JT Leroy) turns out to be a fascinating young woman. Fluent in Thai, self-sufficient, accomplished student of capoeira, grassroots fashion designer and genderqueer - in many ways, she strikes me as a lot more interesting than Laura Alpert (the literary and aural voice of JT Leroy).

    Sadly, the narration is awful. The reader is clearly trying to affect a teenager's voice, but it comes off as babyish and naive, more like a 12 year old's than a 19 year old's; and Savannah Knoop's written voice is much more intelligent than that. This is definitely a book I'd recommend reading in print; but if that's not an option for you, the audiobook is still worth a listen for the content alone.

    4 stars for the book
    1 star for narration

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Prince of Tides

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Pat Conroy
    • Narrated By Frank Muller
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1830)
    Performance
    (1031)
    Story
    (1030)

    Spanning 40 years, this is the story of turbulent Tom Wingo, his gifted and troubled twin sister Savannah, and their struggle to triumph over the dark and tragic legacy of the extraordinary family into which they were born.

    Ella says: "A "Prince" amongst novels"
    "Pompous and ridiculous"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm a huge fan of over-the-top when it's gorgeous and shocking and pays for its literary misdemeanors with raw beauty, but this book is little more than half-assed soap opera. I'd easily overlook all the implausibilities if the main character wasn't such so tiresome. Too bad too - there were decent moments and glints in the eyes of some characters. And the world absolutely needs more discussion and books written about the particular trauma he and his family went through, but it's better done elsewhere.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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