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Troy, Michigan | Member Since 2008


  • Howards End

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs and 1 min)
    • By E. M. Forster
    • Narrated By Emma Thompson

    At the heart of Forester's masterpiece lie two families: the wealthy and business-minded Wilcoxes and the cultured and idealistic Schlegels. When the beautiful and independent Helen Schlegel begins an impetuous affair with the ardent Paul Wilcox, a series of events is sparked: some very funny, some very tragic, that results in a dispute over who will inherit Howards End, the Wilcoxes' charming country home.

    Deborah says: "Something's Missing in this Abridged Version"
    "Something's Missing in this Abridged Version"

    Emma Thompson is a wonderful reader, and the book has a timeless quality. It's unfortunate that this version is abridged. As a result, I missed many key points in the story. The central theme, "only connect" is totally missing from this version.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • 11-22-63: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson

    On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

    Kelly says: "I Owe Stephen King An Apology"
    "King's Most Mature Work -- Couldn't Put it Down!"

    This may be the best...most mature...and most beautiful novel King has ever written. It's long -- yet it reads like a suspense novel. The characters and story grabbed me, and Craig Wasson's AMAZING reading took my breath away. I didn't want it to end, yet I couldn't stop listening.

    There's no good-vs-evil, no black-and-white thinking here. It's much more complex...much more believable. King must have done meticulous historical research and contemplated hundreds of "what if" scenarios. I love history, and have always been fascinated by counterfactual history. This novel is the ultimate example of that.

    Most importantly, I really cared about these characters -- and that's what makes a book unforgettable for me. I'll be thinking about this one for a long time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Room: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Emma Donoghue
    • Narrated By Michal Friedman, Ellen Archer, Robert Petkoff, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma. Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, but what she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

    Kathleen says: "A truly memorable read"
    "Simply Amazing"

    "Room" is one of the best novels I've ever read. It is suspenseful -- but also beautiful, moving, and insightful. I don't think I'll ever forget it. I can't say much more without giving away the plot. But seeing the world through the eyes of five-year old Jack was like seeing the world for the first time. I couldn't put the book down, and I didn't want it to end. Jack and his mother will be with me for a long time.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Fall of Giants: The Century Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee

    Ken Follett's World Without End was a global phenomenon, a work of grand historical sweep beloved by millions of readers and acclaimed by critics. Fall of Giants is his magnificent new historical epic. The first novel in The Century Trilogy, it follows the fates of five interrelated families - American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh - as they move through the world-shaking dramas of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the struggle for women's suffrage.

    Louis says: "Loved it and learned alot."
    "Wide in Span and Historial Detail, Great Narration"

    I really enjoyed Fall of Giants. It gave me a chance to time travel and get inside the head of a diverse group of people during WWI. Follett was very successful in portraying the many, very diverse viewpoints of the people in that era (common folk, laborers, nobility, Socialists, conservatives, liberals, politicians, men, and women -- from at least five or six different countries). If you're not interested in history, you will be bored by this book. The characters debate and discuss their varying views -- sometimes at length. But I found it fascinating, enlightening, and enjoyable.

    The strength of the book was it's wide span and perspective...not to mention it's historical detail. But I think it's difficult for a book to have BOTH great span and great depth. And this book did lack some depth, particularly in the characters. When there are so many characters, it's hard to fall in deeply in love with any one of them. And while I liked and cared about these characters, I didn't connect with them as deeply as those in "Pillars." Still, I eagerly look forward to the next book in this series!

    A word about the Reader/Narrator: Once again, John Lee has done a brilliant job. I can't imagine anyone else who could have portrayed SO many different accents -- American, Canadian, Welsh, various classes of British, German, and Russian, etc.. He switched back and forth from one accent to the other with seeming ease. Once again, Lee has demonstrated why he is my favorite Reader of audiobooks!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Jane Boleyn: The True Story of the Infamous Lady Rochford

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Julia Fox
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In a life of extraordinary drama, Jane Boleyn was catapulted from relative obscurity to the inner circle of King Henry VIII. As powerful men and women around her became victims of Henry's ruthless and absolute power - including her own husband and sister-in-law Queen Anne Boleyn - Jane's allegiance to the volatile monarchy was sustained and rewarded. But the price for her loyalty would eventually be her undoing and the ruination of her name

    Marie says: "Well Worth Listening To"
    "Fascinating and well researched"

    It is so refreshing to read a book about Tudor history that is based in fact, not speculation. But it was also riveting. I couldn't put it down.

    This book was way more interesting -- and more factual -- than the tedious and highly speculative novel "Wolf Hall" (by another author). Julia Fox was careful with her facts, yet this book read like a novel.

    The reader, Rosalyn Landor, was superb. I highly recommend "Jane Boleyn" to anyone interested in Tudor history.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Wolf Hall

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Hilary Mantel
    • Narrated By Simon Slater
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In the ruthless arena of King Henry VIII's court, only one man dares to gamble his life to win the king's favor and ascend to the heights of political powerEngland in the 1520s is a heartbeat from disaster. If the king dies without a male heir, the country could be destroyed by civil war. Henry VIII wants to annul his marriage of twenty years, and marry Anne Boleyn.

    S. Marie says: "A unique perspective of history"
    "He said? WHO said?"

    This was one of the rare times that I really wished for an abridged version. I appreciate the writer's meticulous research and historical detail -- but this book was way, WAY too long.

    Although I'm an avid reader of Tudor history, I found myself getting confused...and bored! To be fair, I think the book is probably less confusing in its printed form.

    As another reviewer mentioned, Mantel has a bad habit of writing "He said" before every quote, without indicating who is talking. I had to keep rewinding, and found myself yelling, "Who said? WHO said?!!" at my iPod.

    On the plus side, this book had some wonderful insights and was beautifully written. But it needed some major editing. I would have enjoyed it more at 1/2 it's length. The narrator, btw, was fantastic. Somehow, I got through it to the end, but I was frankly glad to finish it!

    23 of 30 people found this review helpful
  • The One Two Three of God

    • ABRIDGED (4 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Ken Wilber

    Is it possible to develop an all-inclusive vision of God that can satisfy scientists, philosophers, and priests at the same time, one that can help you deepen your own connection to the divine? It is, teaches best-selling author Ken Wilber, if you are able to understand the "1-2-3" of God.

    Michael says: "Highly Recommended"
    "Many "Ah-ha" Moments for me!"

    I have to disagree with a previous reviewer who saw this discussion as a rehash of Wilber's other books. Yes, it builds on his four-quadrant, multi-stage framework. But here, he adds another dimension to his work.

    It would have been really confusing for most listeners if he hadn't reviewed his AQAL model in this discussion. I know I would have been lost if I hadn't read six of his other books. In fact, if you are a novice to Integral philosophy, this is not the best place to begin. "A Theory of Everything" is a good primer. Start there, but DO come back to this one!

    Bottom line: Listening to this talk definitely deepened my understanding of integral spirituality! I highly recommend it.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Anne Bronte
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson, Nadia May
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Just as Anne had to use a male pseudonym in order to publish, Helen Graham, the novel's protagonist and a battered wife, must assume an alias in order to gain freedom from her suffering. With her young child, Helen takes up residence at Wildfell Hall, shrouding her past in secrecy, yet earning the attentions of a young, unmarried country gentlemen.

    Joseph R says: "What if Darcy had gone over to the Dark Side?"
    "A 19th Century Tina Turner"

    This novel was way ahead of its time. To our modern sensibilities, we may wonder why the lead character put up with her husband so long. But put it in 19th Century context, and we're struck by how remarkable was her streak of independence. Readers of the time were shocked the themes, and the novel was not considered appropriate reading for ladies. It deals with "modern" themes -- alcohol abuse, infidelity, and codependence.

    Some have drawn similarities between the husband character and Mr. Darcy in Jane Eyre. But I think it's the female lead in this story that is similar to Mr. Darcy. Like Darcy, she's a mysterious character, haunted by her past. I'll say no more about that to avoid a spoiler!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Jane Eyre [Brilliance Edition]

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Charlotte Bronte
    • Narrated By Susan Ericksen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    After a sad and neglected childhood as an orphan, Jane Eyre was hired by Edward Rochester as governess for his ward. Jane was pleased with the quiet country life at Thornfield, with the beautiful old manor house and gardens, with the book-filled library, and with her own comfortable room. But there were stories of a strange tenant, a woman who laughed like a maniac, and who stayed in rooms on the third floor.

    bebe says: "a book that can be heard/read again and again"
    "Rediscovering Jane"

    I read this book when I was young, and enjoyed it just as much -- if not more -- this time. The narrator was fantastic. Didn't want it to end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mansfield Park

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Jane Austen
    • Narrated By Frances Barber
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    When Fanny Price is sent to live with her wealthy relations at Mansfield Park she seems shy and withdrawn beside her witty and vivacious cousins. But Fanny's steadfast and purposeful character makes her an indispensable part of the household. As the others become entangled in a maze of flirtation and intrigue, it is only Fanny whose deep but secret love for Edmund Bertram remains true despite his fascination with her brilliant but frivolous cousin Mary.

    Wanda S Sauerland says: "ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL"
    "Very enjoyable"

    Loved the book. Loved the reader. Was sorry to say goodbye to these characters.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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