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Prsilla

Retired to mountains of California. Sell on eBay as Prsilla. No TV. Volunteer in wildlife rehab. Knit, sew or embroider while listening.

Member Since 2007

335
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 92 reviews
  • 128 ratings
  • 649 titles in library
  • 28 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
5
FOLLOWERS
39

  • Flight Behavior

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Barbara Kingsolver
    • Narrated By Barbara Kingsolver
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1580)
    Performance
    (1380)
    Story
    (1391)

    Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at 17. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, she encounters a shocking sight: a silent, forested valley filled with what looks like a lake of fire. She can only understand it as a cautionary miracle, but it sparks a raft of other explanations from scientists, religious leaders, and the media.

    Marcia says: "Tough Message Delivered in Silk"
    "ALMOST AS GOOD AS PRODIGAL SUMMER, ALMOST"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is top drawer literature -- by a young woman of our own times. I think the story was harder to craft than Prodigal Summer where the pieces fit together and are so wonderfully thought out; that book took me several listens to get -- and, well, that would be my desert island book if I needed one. This book was perhaps more ambitions; the elements were more difficult to deal with -- an hypothetical natural phenomenon, and a nearly hopeless family structure going back generations. A completely happy ending would have been phoney. The ending we get is plenty good.

    I love Kingsolver's use of words and her own reading which gets the accent of her own people, even as she is educated and speaks standard English. Even if she didn't get the accent of the doctor very well, she did okay, and it would be a shame to let an actor try to read her Appalachian characters. As I listened, I wondered how many edits that took and imagined her choosing the exact words. The writing is a treat with exquisite descriptions and situations.

    I wanted to cry when Dellarobbia and Cub were Christmas shopping in the dollar store and also having a fight. They kept picking up possible gifts for their precious children, and everything they could remotely afford was inadequate trash. Anybody who doesn't know about poverty might get a feel for it here. It seemed that their whole lives were "You can't get there from here!" All the characters seem trapped by poor choices in the past. I wondered if Dellarobbia was going to fall for Ovid, make a fool of herself, etc. But I recently had a similar experience with a married man who was at a higher level and much more fortunate circumstances. I loved being with him and felt lifted by the new vistas he showed me in a perfectly innocent chat during a four-hour drive. I had not met such an interesting man in decades -- never mind that he went home to a wife! And that is how I believe Dellarobbia felt. Having Ovid's wife show up -- and to see what a pistol she is and how happy he is with her -- that put things in place. Developments toward the end show me what loving parents can do if they bend every prayer and effort to improve the lives of their kids if not their own. The story is quite pithy at family level with secrets coming out and people taking their stands. Several re-listens will only be a richer experience for all this.

    Oh, yeah, the book is full of butterflies and ecology and sheep farming. I almost fell out of my chair when mother-in-law Hester got out her niddy-noddy and was weighing and winding yarn! They dyed yarn, and Dellarobbia saved the life of a lovely black female lamb. Some listeners thought there was too much boring ecology preaching, but Prodigal Summer has a bit of that, and science is complicated. We used to ask my physician father questions at the dinner table; he always took a long time to answer because he knew the complications we couldn't imagine. I say let's let Kingsolver educate us a little while she's telling a great story. Let's not be knee-jerk with eyeliner like the awful TV anchor woman. But I begin to blather. Get the book!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • You are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Jen Sincero
    • Narrated By Jen Sincero
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (761)
    Performance
    (701)
    Story
    (703)

    Bestselling author, speaker, and world-traveling success coach Jen Sincero cuts through the din of the self-help genre with her own verbal meat cleaver in You are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life. In this refreshingly blunt how-to guide, Sincero serves up twenty-seven bite-sized chapters full of hilariously inspiring stories, life-changing insights, easy exercises, and the occasional swear word.

    Amazon Customer says: "Good at times"
    "One Listen Changed My Life!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've been trying for 50 years (as an adult) to get my life together. I've read all the books and when I could remotely afford to, I went to seminars and airy-fairy weekends. This youngster comes along and in just a couple of hours gives me back a condensed version of all this wisdom in a way that made me want to -- uh, do the rest of my life like I mean it and tell it like it is. I'm selling on eBay and after a power outtage my computer would not start. I called around and was called "Ma'am" in a way that meant disrespect and told I need a new computer. I finally found someone who said he would replace the starter button for $20, but he did not call back as promised and got upset when I called to check on his progress. Three days went by. I am churning with Jen's awesome input about quit telling your stories (my car broke down; my computer runs Windows XP; I was the family scapegoat; I'm low-income; I'm probably too old and too fat, etc.) and take charge! Decide! Get up and do it! Well, then she offers many ways to get up and do it! She offers all kinds of easy strategies to "get there" from here, break it down into doable chunks, if you're really up for the trip. I tried a little meditation, asked God what to do with my Friday, and called the computer guy to say I want it today, fixed or not. When I got there, he gave me hell and watched me carry the huge CPU out to my car. I drove to another storefront which purported to be woman-owned. This precious Minnie Driver look-alike admired my old computer, got busy and gave me a "veterans discount." The shop was busy. I was happy to wait, thinking without the inspiration of Jen's neat book, I'd have been a victim and never met this wonderful computer goddess! Turned out she's the single mom of a two-year-old. She jumped out of an airplane at Burning Man to marry her true-love in 2008. They had crossed the country to live out west. He died two years ago sky-diving, may not have met his daughter. His widow keeps going, using what she learned from him to run his computer repair shop. And completed jobs are lined up on a shelf with their cords wound neatly on top of invoices ready for pick-up by pleased owners! It feels SO MUCH better to push out love and admiration than to sit grumbling in the gutter! . . . Jen says to envision, to dream. I know I don't have the money to travel; seen a lot already; I'm probably washed up for travel. Oh, no! They were talking on NPR about travel on the Dalmatian Coast which my parents had loved. Suddenly I listen with new ears thanks to Jen; I really want to see all that, try the foods, walk on the beaches! . . . The computer lady is going to install upgrades for me. Then I can do FB. If I still want to! Meanwhile some people ganged up on me in a FB group. It really hurt. I lost friends. I had the clarity to see their silly games and bail -- take care of myself, move on!

    This is a powerful book! Jen has heard all the excuses. She knows all the traps. She talks fast giving all kinds of ideas in a great tumble of words. She touches on all kinds of problems that can hang us up for months or years. I have been diagnosed depressed and have kicked my meds. I know about depression, family pressure, music performance anxiety. Jen offers help for all these things. She has had the courage in her own life to try all sorts of wild and crazy things. She uses the F-word. As do I. To hell with people who turn off their ears and brains, stopped by a couple of word choices! She's had her own rock band and been to India. She has a website. Go see, watch her spiel on the home page. I believe a listen to this book would lift someone of any age, either sex, any body type, any ethnicity -- anyone who is not having the life they had hoped for. And I'm only on the second listen. Thank you, Jen! I love you!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Kerry Patterson
    • Narrated By Joseph Grenny
    Overall
    (568)
    Performance
    (485)
    Story
    (490)

    Perhaps once a decade, a book comes along that transforms people's lives in a very real, measurable way. This is one of them. Crucial Conversations exploded onto the scene 10 years ago and revolutionized the way people communicate when stakes are high, opinions vary, and emotions run strong. Since then, millions of people have learned how to hold effective crucial conversations and have dramatically improved their lives and careers thanks to the methods outlined in this book. Now, the authors have revised their best-selling classic to provide even more ways to help you take the lead in any tough conversation.

    Michael says: "There is something useful here"
    "NOT GOING TO SOLVE MY MAIN PROBLEM, VERY YANG"
    Overall
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    I got this book in hopes it would help me deal with my subsidized senior housing manager when it's time for recertification. I can't afford to live anywhere else. Most people who rent can manage to get along with their landlord. I certainly have over 50 years at 17 addresses. This is very different. This woman says "might-could" and "would've went" and thinks every car has a Cadillac converter! She knows nothing of right and wrong -- only who she likes, who she doesn't like, and what she can get away with! A sappy faith-based organization hired her and now provides no guidance at all. They have ignored my certified letters. The annual crunching of numbers to determine next year's rent will take place mid-November. And continue into the New Year! Torture by paperwork! I am educated and a military veteran. I have an ideal regarding respect and even-handed treatment of everyone. In the military we are Sergeant Jones and Major Smith. Everyone has a job adding up to defense of our country. Last year I finally got a sizable settlement from a VA case. I had to disclose it to the manager during recertification. She had no idea how to handle it. I suggested she present the question to her superiors. I insisted I did not want it treated as gambling winnings because the VA had garnished my government checks by mistake. The money had always been mine. She turned to her assistant and commented, "This one gets a little money and she gets all excited!" . . . I still have nice things, though a low income. The manager goes into people's units when they are out. She gave away the television set in our front room to a favorite. I have received three written "lease violations," the most recent for using profanity! This was on the word of one of her favorites, pure hearsay. I do get extremely frustrated at times, and I am convinced the F-word has its good uses.

    As I listen to this smart-aleck, fast-talking narrator make it all sound like a piece of cake, I am getting a headache and while the listen has shown me how "un-safe" my manager feels, I don't know how to tell her I am not judging her bad English. I married a man who used sub-standard English when he was weary -- but he was honest and had a heart of gold! That is the difference! I have discovered this woman in blatant lies; she enjoys creating upset and uncertainty. She gets off on creating stress, tightening rules, fixing new requirements. She calls residents in to sign a many-paged new lease without telling us what changes have been made! I have vowed handle that differently next time.

    The book gives examples of behavior and dishonesty that I think are exaggerated. If I cut someone off in traffic, it's a coordination problem -- not that I'm a jerk! And I would be sorry, not rationalizing like crazy. The people in some of the examples are really bad.

    I think these ideas will help me deal with a pissy woman in the knitting group. I feel sure it would help anyone holding a job, in a marriage or close relationship, or a homeowner with problem neighbors. Then again, this manager uses the cameras she has placed everywhere to micro-manage the maintenance man. I've no idea what he would do. No, I'm glad if the book helps all those brittle yuppies having their conferences. [I did flash on a lawyer I tried to work for who mumbled and scribbled, such that nobody really knew what he wanted, and evidently nobody had the guts to tell him just that.] I'll probably listen to the rest. For now, I'm bailing and will go back to old-fashioned techniques like meditation and exercise to cope.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Diddakoi

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Rumer Godden
    • Narrated By Lynda Bellingham
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Kizzy was a diddakoi, a half-gypsy, but the more the children at school tormented her, the more determined she was not to become one of ‘them’ - gorgios. And as long as she had her Gran, and Joe the old horse, she would be all right. But then Gran died and faithful old Joe was sent to the knackers - and Kizzy to the gorgios.Luckily, in the midst of all this misery and interference, there were some people who loved Kizzy as she was - and with them this lonely little outcast found a true home at last.

    Alifa says: "The Diddakoi"
    "A Sweet Book About Lifestyles, Horses, Respect"
    Overall
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    Story

    I am a Rumer Godden fan, and this book did not disappoint! The general plot is classic: a misfit kid that nobody really understands or wants, do-gooders, "social services," prejudice and preconceived notions of the good life and how kids should be brought up. The little girl is a gypsy in England many years ago. Gypsies continue to challenge people all over the world! In Spain they beg pitifully, whining on the subway stairs, holding a sedated half-grown "baby" in their lap. I have heard of kidnapping and medical imprisonment of an adult in Northern California where the alleged gypsy perps have obscure foreign names, light skin and impressive credentials. Pretty scarey! In this story, it would be easy to judge the "nice" people who try to take charge of the child without contaminating their own lives. I enjoyed learning some of the different attitudes of the gypsies -- cleanliness rules akin to keeping kosher! This would be great family listening, maybe on a road trip. There's a little girl whose precious grandmother has died, rough and disgusting relatives who steal the treasures and burn the grandma's caravan, a rich and handsome Englishman, a dear old horse named Joe, way too many new clothes, nice people at the school, and one brave young woman who actually has an extra bedroom and agrees to give the child a home. And a delicious slowly-emerging romance that will take care of everything for this little girl. In the listen, we learn that men can indeed cook and clean very well -- and not to pour gasoline on a fire. Also that brown people aren't dirty -- a loving God made them that way and it won't wash off! -- and differences are just that, differences, not better or worse. But Rumer Godden doesn't preach; she didn't say all that; I did. Rumer Godden wrote a very nice book. Enjoy!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Brimstone Wedding

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Barbara Vine
    • Narrated By Juliet Stevenson
    Overall
    (56)
    Performance
    (31)
    Story
    (31)

    Unlike the other residents of Middleton Hall, Stella is elegant, smart and in control. Only Jenny, her care assistant, knows that she harbours a painful secret, and only she can prevent Stella from carrying it to the grave. As the women talk, Jenny pieces together the answers to many questions that arise: Why has she kept possession of a house that her family don’t know about? What happened there that holds the key to a distant tragedy?

    N. says: "Stevenson + Vine/Rendell = good audiobook"
    "Ruth Rendell and Juliet Stevenson . . . Wonderful!"
    Overall
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    Story

    This book written by a master and read by a master narrator is to be savored a bite at a time like a box of chocolates -- or gobbled whole overnight! I didn't gobble it whole; however I stayed with the last several hours and was left in a real funk! The story is about a sweet old lady who is only in her early 70's but is dying of cancer. Her care-giver in a pricey nursing home thinks the old lady is interesting. A real love and care grows between them. There are plot details that would be missed by listeners who "gobble"! The medical details are minimal. Both women have been married and had a lover on the side. Their stories are inter-twined with no confusion between the two. The listener cares about both -- with Genevieve's (the care-giver) story progressing in real time and Stella's (the old lady) told in flashbacks and on cassette after she is gone. This is a true horror story! Ruth Rendell is clever and subtle and quite delicious!

    Juliet Stevenson is superb narrating Jane Austen. In this story she gets to holler and talk like some unkempt hausfrau in a dirty housecoat. She's an actress! I appreciate the silences after some shocking fact is revealed and between sections. At first Genny sounds like real disadvantaged trash. As the story progresses, we learn that she looks up words and studies classical music and art (to impress the cultured lover) and as she reaches to improve her knowledge, her voice softens. She takes on some of the fastidious "great lady" qualities of her patient, Stella, even as we learn that Stella was considered and treated as "a little nothing" in her own prime!

    I feel like I know these people. Right away I sent for a reading copy of the book to go to my elderly English friend, Anne, living in Alabama. (She gobbles!) This is a book to set aside as a real treat on a long weekend or New Year's Eve when you don't have a date. Enjoy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Known World

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Edward P. Jones
    • Narrated By Kevin Free
    Overall
    (480)
    Performance
    (97)
    Story
    (92)

    Henry Townsend, a black farmer, bootmaker, and former slave, has a fondness for Paradise Lost and an unusual mentor, William Robbins, perhaps the most powerful white man in antebellum Virginia's Manchester County. Under Robbins's tutelage, Henry becomes proprietor of his own plantation, as well as of his own slaves. When he dies, his widow Caldonia succumbs to profound grief, and things begin to fall apart.

    Rachel says: "wonderful and highly recommended"
    "Challenging but Most Worthwhile!"
    Overall
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    Story

    Some people had a hard time with this author jumping back and forth in time, linking up all the people. I did at first, thinking, Oh, gosh, now who is this? And what color are these people? And what relationship? There are long scenes in which you simply follow one character. When I found myself not paying enough attention, I just backed up or moved to a different activity for awhile. I have only listened once -- with several back-ups! I want to get the print book. I found Edward P. Jones through the recent marketing trick in which authors told about their own favorite authors. I sifted and took notes, and came out with paydirt like this! I am pursuing African-American authors for new personal reasons. I called the suicide hotline one night recently and a man answered. I told him, "I'm going through something absolutely outrageous and it reminds me of what black people have put up with for a long time and while I'm white, if you're black, I think you can really help me!" A man's soft voice answered, "I am black." I wanted to know how black people cope, how they get up in the morning and feel hopeful. How they deal in their own interior lives with hoo-rah and nonsense coming from unworthy people who nonetheless are in positions of power, people jerking us around in our immediate personal lives, little Nazis. The conversation we had was extremely helpful, freeing me to do the most healing and beneficial thing for myself because "we could come back in ten years and maybe nothing would have changed!" This seems to me at first like giving up. Then I realized I was going into tailspins trying to write letters and getting involved in situations not my own immediate business. Emotional energy is limited.So let's save it for the poetry, music, color.

    Actually, this book inspires me to do some writing, myself. Mr. Jones has a wonderful writing style, telling what a character was thinking about, who did what, who said what, but not many adjectives or even adverbs. When shocking things happen, they simply happen. This makes them more shocking. I have not read Hemingway in a while, but Mr. Jones is spare like Hemingway. And yet he pulls together a rich and colorful "known world". I see patterns of intense jealousy when some people show tremendous talent as well as good work ethic. Still happening! Strong women and weak women. Hierarchies based on energy, intelligence, inspiration -- and color. Men and women praying for all they are worth. The woman weeping as she milks the wonderful cow. The bride who is given a slave girl for a wedding gift and never actually frees her, despite saying she is against slavery! The good white man who had blackouts and might have lived longer except for a bad tooth. The ordinary house with a stairs that didn't creak and the woman living there who always had a tablecloth -- that came from intelligence, industry and refinement. I relished the way a few people got away to fresh vistas and to un-dreamed-of joy and fulfillment.

    I've sent for this author's two short story collections in print because I don't do so well listening to stories and I have a huge wish list anyway. I do hope this author is percolating another good book!

    I found Kevin Free a perfect narrator for this book and many others -- I have him neck and neck with Humphrey Bower, another favorite. He can do Irish and white gentlemen and low-life truly evil good ol'boys and sweet black people and uninspired black people. The reading is seamless. You forget he's reading. Great clarity, no mispronunciations. I had to google his name . . . oooh, dimples too! Thank Heaven we live in a time when talent and industry can be recognized, enjoyed and rewarded.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By William Davis
    • Narrated By Tom Weiner
    Overall
    (1943)
    Performance
    (1660)
    Story
    (1639)

    Since the introduction of dietary guidelines calling for reduced fat intake in the 1970s, a strange phenomenon has occurred: Americans have steadily, inexorably become heavier, less healthy, and more prone to diabetes than ever before. After putting more than two thousand of his at-risk patients on a wheat-free regimen and seeing extraordinary results, cardiologist William Davis has come to the disturbing conclusion that it is not fat, not sugar, not our sedentary lifestyle that is causing America’s obesity epidemic—it is wheat.

    Jim "The Impatient" says: "Raw vegetables, eggs, meat and cheese"
    "LIFE-CHANGING TRUTH WE DESPERATELY NEED TO HEAR"
    Overall
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    Yeah, I give 5 stars to fiction writers, too. I'm a doctor's daughter. In the 1940's Dad, an osteopath, survived terminal TB to begin his practice in Bakersfield, CA of dustbowl fame. He told his overweight patients to eat God's food. Our milk man brought certified raw milk to the front door. And I grew up (and later OUT) on Oroweat Honey Wheat Berry bread! Meanwhile, I was learning to follow recipes, first sifting the flour and leveling it in the measuring cup with a knife and to win blue ribbons at the county fair! Betty Crocker! And tonight I felt Dad was listening with me, telling me to pay attention because for sure the big boys have really done it now! However, Dr. Davis does point out that wheat was originally modified for greater yield, in hopes of feeding a hungry world. Greed has certainly taken over -- greed and stupidity and not really caring about people. I love this book! Thank you, Dr. Davis!

    Tom Weiner reads very well. I have no scientific background. I had to just sit and listen, almost holding my breath to take it all in, almost as though it were in a foreign language. And yet, Mr. Weiner makes the following as easy as possible. The book is also well written. I loved the story about the President of the Soupbone Club. My dad would comment, "Oh, he's a walk-off!" [It seems God was making people one afternoon and left some sitting on the fence to dry and their heads off a little way. When He came back next day, they had walked off. Without their heads.] I am already following Dr. D'Adamo's Blood Type Diet plan and as I work with wildlife and love animals, I am vegan or at least vegetarian. While listening, I realized I would have to turn on my oven and look around for recipes, ask questions at my health food store and try a lot harder to cook well for myself. Dr. Davis is loving. He says more than once that people are genuinely trying to follow food guidelines, but . . . and I for one don't FEEL like exercising! My love handles ache. I live in HUD housing and the Powers that Be bring us charity junk food. Well, I just put aside a lot of it to take back to the "free" table for someone who really needs it. . . . When I think of the decades of "good" breakfasts I had, getting up so early and not wanting to go to those jobs, slightly sickened by the wheat? Maybe so. Dr. Davis mentions several specific ailments I have already suffered. . . . I don't have precious little kids to feed, but I do have long-lived parents and grandparents, baby birds to go feed, good things yet to do. Thank you, Dr. Davis, for giving me hope. And for the PDF with great recipes. As the girl said, "Because I'm worth it!"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tess of the d'Urbervilles

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Thomas Hardy
    • Narrated By Mary Sarah
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    The story of Tess Durbeyfield, a low-born country girl whose family find they have noble connections. In 2003, the novel was listed at number 26 on the BBC's survey The Big Read. Scandalous when first published in part because it challenged the sexual mores of Hardy’s day. One of the most important works of English literature. Brilliantly read by Mary Sarah Agliotta.

    Rosemary says: "Great novel, but read very quickly"
    "Maddening Bad Reading by Angliotta -- Can't Listen"
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    Story

    I've had this book for awhile and have already suffered with that Angliotta person trying to read Jane Austen. She rushes and swallows the last part of every important word. The neighbor's 7-year-old would do a better job.; Anyone at all would do a better job. I'm bailing for now and look forward to hearing Davina Porter do the work justice.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Robert Olen Butler
    • Narrated By Robert Olen Butler
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (25)
    Performance
    (22)
    Story
    (22)

    Robert Olen Butler's lyrical and poignant collection of stories about the aftermath of the Vietnam War and its impact on the Vietnamese was acclaimed by critics across the nation and won the Pulitzer Prize in 1993. This edition includes two subsequently published stories - "Salem" and "Missing" - that brilliantly complete the collection's narrative journey with a return to the jungles of Vietnam.

    Prsilla says: "RARE AND WONDERFUL STORIES!"
    "RARE AND WONDERFUL STORIES!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The author, a white man who served in Vietnam, was the perfect person to read these wonderful stories. He pronounces everything properly and moves along in a comfortable way. I had recently listened to a novel about a stolen painting -- 32 hours of the main character being drunk or stoned. When the next day it won the Pullitzer Prize, I was ready to scream in the street! This book, however, is so deserving! This writing is so rich. Most of the stories are told from the viewpoint of a Vietnamese person,man or woman, elderly or younger, usually a Vietnamese who came to the U.S. -- usually Lake Charles, Louisiana -- to settle. Not all the stories are about war at all. Some are about family life, co-workers, romance, trying to fit the old teachings and ideals into the new American framework.

    I thought I already knew too much about Vietnam. I have a half-Vietnamese step-daughter who un-friended me on FaceBook, who got into serious drugs, whose daughter photographed her pregnant belly in the bathroom to show all of FaceBook, etc. etc. As the third wife, I listened to sickening stories of cutting down our tortured soldiers in the jungle, the naughty little lizard who uses the F-word. I've been screamed at by a Vietnamese-American boss one-third my age. . . . Americans tend to assume that brown people who don't understand English probably don't have much to say anyway. Butler shows how wrong this is as he paints the most subtle thoughts of his sweet and interesting characters.

    These stories call for more than one listen -- and not more than two stories at a sitting! They're pungent! And sometimes funny. Among my favorites was the sleepy girl at the restaurant and Mr. Cohen. I also loved the ending of the one about bringing grandpa home from the airport, how the family prepared a feast and was so excited to have this dear old man come to live with them after many years of separation. How could the husband offer some kind of healing to his wife? Listen and see! These stories are a treasure. Thank you, Mr. Butler!

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

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Anne Brontë
    • Narrated By Mary Sarah Agliotta
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (74)
    Performance
    (66)
    Story
    (65)

    Probably the most shocking of the Brontës' novels, this novel had an instant and phenomenal success and is widely considered to be one of the first sustained feminist novels. A mysterious widow, Mrs. Helen Graham, arrives at Wildfell Hall, a nearby old mansion. A source of curiosity for the small community, the reticent Helen and her young son Arthur are slowly drawn into the social circles of the village.

    i. Ski says: "A good story ruined by the narrator"
    "CLASSIC NOVEL BOTCHED BY A WRETCHED NARRATOR!"
    Overall
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    Audible sort of, um, lost my first review. I know they got it because on Day 2 when I checked, they said it was being looked at. That was over a week ago. Now, the best they can do is tell me to rewrite it! Mary Sarah Whatzername is still a terrible reader who is still in a hurry and doesn't know how to pronounce paroxysm and a number of other good English words! I agree with the other reviewer who suggested this narrator had to "use the facilities" and they wouldn't let her out of the recording booth until she finished the book! It's two hours shorter than the other version I just finished listening to.

    So here you are, audible! I will give dear Anne Bronte's masterpiece a good review under the other version. In listening to that version with male and female narrators including Ms. Agutter, a number of new truths came out that I completely missed in Ms. Agliotta's breathy, hurried rendition. Every word is beautiful!

    This was $1.95 absolutely wasted!

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Misquoting Jesus

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Bart D. Ehrman
    • Narrated By Richard M. Davidson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1918)
    Performance
    (1106)
    Story
    (1110)

    When world-class biblical scholar Bart Ehrman first began to study the texts of the Bible in their original languages he was startled to discover the multitude of mistakes and intentional alterations that had been made by earlier translators. In Misquoting Jesus, Ehrman tells the story behind the mistakes and changes that ancient scribes made to the New Testament and shows the great impact they had upon the Bible we use today.

    R. J. Monts says: "a (mostly) balanced discussion"
    "HOW JESUS CAME TO SPEAK IN RED ENGLISH WORDS!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a serious book, well-narrated and a not difficult listen for regular lay-persons of any religious preference. The author is quite neutral, matter-of fact, though with a Protestant born-again background. You could sit there with your King James on your lap, scribbling furious notes. Or you could just keep knitting and listen twice as I did. I don't like the title at all. It suggests a flippancy or jokester element that is not in the book. We are all misquoting Jesus simply because the original texts are lost and nobody had a tape recorder running when Jesus was teaching. His first listeners and everyone since have done the best they could. Really.

    The author is a fine scholar who built on his youthful passion for Bible study and went so far as to learn the original languages and immerse himself in the absorbing study of ancient documents, second-guessing the old scribes, reasoning through all the whys and wherefores. What this book does is impress the lay-person with how much he doesn't know, can't know, and has to trust the scholars about. Mr. Ehrman gives fascinating specific examples of the kinds of mistakes that were made over centuries of copying -- some accidental, some deliberate tweaking in a time before printing presses or copy machines. There was no respect for copyright. If material was being dictated, a word that sounded similar might be substituted inadvertantly.

    I majored in English, so studied Chaucer and Shakespeare. I understood that the King James Bible was not telling me to go in my clothes CLOSET to pray among the boots and tennis shoes, although that could be a good place. I also came through a rigorous Sunday School and Bible study regimen as a kid. One college required four units of religion for graduation. That expanded my understanding. A visit to the un-Holy Land helped as well. This author does not speak down to anyone. He manages to include all of us as his friends and fellow students. I stayed interested. I can only imagine how difficult it would be to decide where to stop in taking up this study. Does an eager young person learn Latin, Greek and Hebrew and start studying old documents -- or does she learn enough to appreciate the more thorny passages, the major puzzles, and then proceed to ministerial life? This is the stuff of entire lifetimes! I have to think of the people who want to learn the computer, starting with bits and bytes and ones and zeros. They don't understand that they can learn to click a mouse and be gaming on FaceBook by suppertime! At any rate, this is a book I think the whole family would enjoy together, although I would never ever insist any child sit and listen! The old folks could play it on a road trip and the kids pick up a bit by osmosis. Even a teen would best find this subject gently for himself. The author gives a history of this study of Biblical texts so that we can investigate further to our heart's content. Huge subject! Absorbing listen!

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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