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K Cornwinkle

Say something about Yusef. Uh...he was a great horn player?

San Francisco, CA USA | Member Since 2008

218
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 38 reviews
  • 106 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 20 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
10
FOLLOWERS
21

  • Overseas

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Beatriz Williams
    • Narrated By January LaVoy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (271)
    Performance
    (240)
    Story
    (239)

    When twenty-something Wall Street analyst Kate Wilson attracts the notice of the legendary Julian Laurence at a business meeting, no one’s more surprised than she is. Julian’s relentless energy and his extraordinary intellect electrify her, but she’s baffled by his sudden interest. Why would this handsome British billionaire—Manhattan’s most eligible bachelor—pursue a pretty but bookish young banker who hasn’t had a boyfriend since college?

    Cassie says: "I WANT ONE!!!"
    "Chick Lit and Romance plus Sci-Fi"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I wasn't ready for the first two (particularly the trembling lips and broad shoulders parts) and it doesn't do for me. The narrator is great and the premise has recently become fascinating to me -Replay in particular. I'd compare and contrast Overseas with The Mirror by Marlys Millhiser which has similar time travel and a female lead; even has fainting, and while it has romance, it's farther from a romance novel. January LaVoy is great!

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • Rogue Code: A Jeff Aiken Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Mark Russinovich
    • Narrated By Johnny Heller
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (129)
    Performance
    (122)
    Story
    (122)

    Michael Lewis’ Flash Boys revealed how high-frequency trading has created a ruthless breed of traders capable of winning whichever way the market turns. In Rogue Code, Mark Russinovich takes it one step further to show how their grip on high finance makes the stock market vulnerable to hackers who could bring about worldwide financial collapse.

    Kelps Leite de Sousa says: "Watch out as it may make you paranoid..."
    "Dull dull dull"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    and a bit trite. And it is not the embedded quasi-technical information that makes it so -I am reasonably familiar with information system security. The plot just doesn't seem to have weight or momentum -the characters are not there. Couldn't finish it. The saving grace for me was learning High Frequency Trading. It is horrifying prevalent and - still accounts for 50% or more of all trades and seems to add fragility to the markets. I can't articulate why taking profits (only a billion or so a year) from algorithm driven almost instant trades seems so wrong to me so I guess I'll go off and read Michael Lewis. Johnny Heller seemed wrong for the part.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Pennies for Hitler

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Jackie French
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    It's 1939, and for Georg, son of an English academic living in Germany, life is full of cream cakes and loving parents. It is also a time when his teacher measures the pupils' heads to see which of them have the most 'Aryan'- shaped heads. But when a university graduation ceremony turns into a pro-Nazi demonstration, Georg is smuggled out of Germany to war-torn London and then across enemy seas to Australia where he must forget his past and who he is in order to survive. Hatred is contagious, but Georg finds that kindness can be, too.

    K Cornwinkle says: "This could be a Bryce Courtenay novel"
    "This could be a Bryce Courtenay novel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    particularly with the excellent Humphrey Bower narrating. Though, unlike Courtenay, there aren't any big plot twists; it reads like someone's autobiography. Just before starting it, I met someone who had been sent away to boarding school at age 5 and I was obsessing with how this must have felt (and I remembered reading in Ted Turner's autobiography that he went away at4(?). Pennies gives a believable glimpse of a world far away from parents as seen by a child.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Mine: Northwest Passage 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By John A. Heldt
    • Narrated By Aaron Landon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    Joel Smith is a cocky, adventurous young man who sees the world as his playground. But when the college senior, days from graduation, enters an abandoned Montana mine, he discovers the price of reckless curiosity. He emerges in May 1941 with a cell phone he can't use, money he can't spend, and little but his wits to guide his way. Stuck in the age of Whirlaway, swing dancing, and a peacetime draft, Joel begins a new life as the nation drifts toward war. With the help of his 21-year-old trailblazing grandmother and her friends, he finds his place in a world he knew only from movies and books.

    Greg White says: "Excellent Time Travel / Romance"
    "Oh, this could have been a good alternate history"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I liked the premise, and the eve of WWII period piece details were good as Josh gets transported back in time from 2000 to 1941.
    Marginal character development -this has more than a touch of romance novel; Josh is almost perfect in appearance and deeds. Some odd anachronisms in the details and language. I was happy enough to finish it and can even imagine reading a sequel (my standards aren't all that high...) but I did find myself rolling my eyes at some of the language and plot holes.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7458)
    Performance
    (6842)
    Story
    (6847)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "If we’re just talking story, kid, you got it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    late in the book Theo remembers or imagines his father saying. And for all else, this IS an intriguing and entertaining story. Picaresque, it ranges from Theo’s coming of age in a forlorn Las Vegas suburb with his inexorable friend Boris to Manhattan and the furniture buying habits of the very rich. Of the many startling but believable coincidences, major and minor, I give one example: The Goldfinch painter and Rembrandt student Carel Fabritius died young in a huge powder magazine explosion in 1654 and, early in this book his painting is in an explosion at the Met in New York. (The painting is amazing and a most elegantly simple masterwork. I want to see it in the Hague someday).

    Like complex clockwork, the story needs all of the small pieces that add up to 32 hours. Some scenes could even have gone longer; more could have been said and it would have been okay. There is a delicacy to the detail of description and narrative that I find appealing. I have always loved picaresque novels most of whose plot twists seem far less plausible than these.

    The narration is great. I am speaking with Ukrainian eccent all the time now I finish book. A good listen.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Sleeping Dictionary

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Sujata Massey
    • Narrated By Sneha Mathan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    The term "sleeping dictionary" was coined for young Indian women who slept with British men and educated them in the ways of India. Set between 1925 and the end of World War II, The Sleeping Dictionary is the story of Kamala, born to a peasant family in West Bengal, who makes her way to Calcutta of the 1930s. Haunted by a forbidden love, she is caught between the raging independence movement and the British colonial society she finds herself inhabiting.

    K Cornwinkle says: "It is a romance but..."
    "It is a romance but..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    the setting and events of pre-partition India (1930-1947), mainly Calcutta, and the early horrifying picaresque plot take it farther.

    The heroine, born Pom, is terrifically honorable yet she is tormented throughout by having to keep her origins and early life a secret. A few easily swallowed implausibilities in her early life kept me aware that this was fiction. Lovely descriptions of her world -colors, scents, textures, food. The hero is missing some dimensionality -while she does describe him, I found I could not picture him and his origins and early motivations -he works for what is in part a secret police organization- are not revealed

    I sometimes felt that I was being told the story by someone who, had been part of the Brahmin elite and was somehow narrating someone else's story rather than someone who rose from a very low caste. In a way, it is a credit to Sujata Massey, who did not live in this culture or near this era that she channels the product of some elite Indian boarding school.

    Glad I read it.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6135)
    Performance
    (5833)
    Story
    (5842)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"

    Brian says: "Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped"
    "Engineering Thriller -recommended"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    or, to some, Engineering Porn. There aren't many thrillers that use this much mostly plausible science and engineering. Like so many books, the ending, while appropriate, felt a bit rushed and less complete than the earlier shenanigans
    R.C. Bray is perfect. More than any recent audiobook I can remember, he WAS the main character, Mark Watney, stranded on Mars yet cracking wise in the most dire of straits.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Orphan Master's Son: A Novel of North Korea

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Adam Johnson
    • Narrated By Tim Kang, Josiah D. Lee, James Kyson Lee, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1079)
    Performance
    (934)
    Story
    (942)

    Pak Jun Do is the haunted son of a lost mother - a singer “stolen” to Pyongyang - and an influential father who runs Long Tomorrows, a work camp for orphans. There the boy is given his first taste of power, picking which orphans eat first and which will be lent out for manual labor. Recognized for his loyalty and keen instincts, Jun Do comes to the attention of superiors in the state, rises in the ranks, and starts on a road from which there will be no return.

    Lisa says: "The most compelling listen I've ever owned"
    "Hmmm...I liked this very much but"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It is an important and good thing that this book gives readers a glimpse of the true horror of DPRK. But ultimately this is a story (as Adam Johnson tells us in an afterward) and while I think it intends to show us how REAL people suffer, the fantastical, which makes it such a great read, makes the characters stay on the page.
    The narration is super. James Kyson Lee as the voice of the PA system in every home -reminded -irony in some way no?- of the disembodied PA voice in M.A.S.H.
    I had tried to post a review with a bunch of links in it. A no-no I guess. North Korea information sites and Kim Jong Il's movie star mistress, Song Hye-rim's Wikipedia page.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Uncommon Carriers

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By John McPhee
    • Narrated By John McPhee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (85)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    From Pulitzer Prize-winner John McPhee, author of The Founding Fish, comes the fascinating story of an often overlooked, yet vitally important part of America. This first-hand account of the transportation sector features evocative portraits of the men and women who deliver our consumer and industrial goods.

    Stacey says: "Entertaining!"
    "I love John McPhee -a National Treasure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    His story in last week's New Yorker about his penchant for collecting errant golf balls prompted me to start relistening to this. We had originally listed on a cross country drive so the story of the chemical tanker was perfect. Then, in Wyoming, the BNSF coal train segment was playing as we drove quite close to Powder River where the coal conveyor belt starts. It is a (dryly) FUNNY book (his narration makes it more so) with just the right amount of his personal bias built into the lush descriptions of all these folks who MOVE things.
    This is one of the few books I leave on my phone permanently.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Red Sparrow: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Jason Matthews
    • Narrated By Jeremy Bobb
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1069)
    Performance
    (964)
    Story
    (968)

    Drafted against her will to become a "Sparrow" - a trained seductress in the service, Russian intelligence officer Dominika Egorova is assigned to operate against Nathaniel Nash, a first-tour CIA officer who handles the CIA's most sensitive penetration of Russian intelligence. The two young intelligence officers, trained in their respective spy schools, collide in a charged atmosphere of tradecraft, deception, and inevitably, a forbidden spiral of carnal attraction that threatens their careers and the security of America's valuable mole in Moscow.

    Melinda says: "Sexy Saucy Spies"
    "Who said spy stories were finished?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First, thank you Melinda. I follow you eagerly. I don't read too many thrillers or spy stories but I trust your judgement and was not disappointed.
    This book feels real and feels contemporary. I can imagine it happening now ~12 years later. The Служба Внешней Разведки and the CIA are still at it -not surprising but somewhat out of sight these days. This book is taut, entertaining, and generally well written -Mr. Matthews uses language well. And it makes one think about the geopolitics that for many of us are normally in the background (though Syria is kind of highlighting Russia's ever-present ambitions.) Serious implications for us what with Russia still holding 3000+ nukes. The two main characters, Nate and Domenika are somehat unbelievable but really, suitable for the story. At the end of each chapter is the recipe of something described earlier. A cute twist, not disruptive and it made me hungry.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Scourge of God: A Novel of the Change

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By S. M. Stirling
    • Narrated By Todd McLaren
    Overall
    (464)
    Performance
    (242)
    Story
    (246)

    Rudi MacKenzie continues his trek across the land that was once the United States of America. His destination: Nantucket, where he hopes to learn the truth behind the Change that rendered technology across the globe inoperable.

    Chris says: "Well Done!"
    "A bit better than The Sunrise Lands"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    but still jolted by Mr. McLaren's mispronounciations. How about sluff for slough and rimpoch for rimpoche? Oh, and folks are still barring their teeth.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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