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Molly-o

English major. Love to read

Seattle | Member Since 2007

396
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 69 reviews
  • 87 ratings
  • 594 titles in library
  • 10 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
13
FOLLOWERS
86

  • The School of Essential Ingredients

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Erica Bauermeister
    • Narrated By Cassandra Campbell
    Overall
    (155)
    Performance
    (91)
    Story
    (87)

    Once a month on Monday night, eight students gather in Lillian's restaurant for a cooking class. Over time, the paths of the students mingle and intertwine, and the essence of Lillian's cooking expands beyond the restaurant and into the secret corners of their lives, with results that are often unexpected, and always delicious.

    Molly-o says: "Lovely, lovely book"
    "Lovely, lovely book"
    Overall

    This is a wonderful book for these times - a way to remember to slow down, appreciate what we have and just forget for a few hours the bad news we hear every day. It is beautifully recorded and the writing is superb. Its sensuality is another example of what a treat it is to listen to a book.

    17 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • The Paying Guests

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Sarah Waters
    • Narrated By Juliet Stevenson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1159)
    Performance
    (1036)
    Story
    (1044)

    It is 1922, and London is tense. Ex-servicemen are disillusioned; the out-of-work and the hungry are demanding change. And in South London, in a genteel Camberwell villa, a large silent house now bereft of brothers, husband, and even servants, life is about to be transformed, as impoverished widow Mrs. Wray and her spinster daughter, Frances, are obliged to take in lodgers.

    Mel says: "Difference of Opinion"
    "Heaven!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found myself smiling at the strange juxtaposition of walking on a ferry (with all the various activities that go into loading a boat) and the narration of this book as I did so. It was comical because this book ought to be accompanied by a symphony playing while you listen to the exquisite writing that emerges as you put together the very unusual story. Sarah Waters has the gift of language combined with the ability to lay out a story in a way that pulls you in at every page.

    And then there is Juliet Stevenson whom I consider the very best narrator at Audible. I think she might be able to read the phone book and I would listen -- but know this isn't the phone book so the combination is riveting. Not to be missed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Atul Gawande
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (739)
    Performance
    (625)
    Story
    (618)

    In Being Mortal, bestselling author Atul Gawande tackles the hardest challenge of his profession: how medicine can not only improve life but also the process of its ending. Medicine has triumphed in modern times, transforming birth, injury, and infectious disease from harrowing to manageable. But in the inevitable condition of aging and death, the goals of medicine seem too frequently to run counter to the interest of the human spirit.

    George K. says: "A Walk through the Valley of the Shadow"
    "A Basic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I started to write that anybody over 50 ought to read this book, but that isn't true - everybody ought to read this book and wrestle with the idea of the end of life either for ourselves or our parents. Gawande is a superb researcher, a clear writer and he never loses the reader as he educates us about the american way of the end of life. A must read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • An Invisible Thread: The True Story of an 11-Year-Old Panhandler, a Busy Sales Executive, and an Unlikely Meeting with Destiny

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Laura Schroff, Alex Tresniowski
    • Narrated By Pam Ward
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (259)
    Performance
    (234)
    Story
    (231)

    In the tradition of the New York Times best-seller The Blind Side, The Invisible Thread tells of the unlikely friendship between a busy executive and a disadvantage young boy, and how both of their lives changed forever

    Linda says: "Amazing but painful"
    "Couldn't get past the bad writing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book chronicles a wonderful story about a chance encounter between a homeless boy and a magazine executive. Unfortunately, the writing is so weak, including grammatical errors, that I couldn't concentrate on the compelling nature of the story. It should have moved almost by itself - just needed a really good editor. Not my favorite.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nora Webster: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Colm Toibin
    • Narrated By Fiona Shaw
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (125)
    Story
    (125)

    Widowed at forty, with four children and not enough money, Nora has lost the love of her life, Maurice, the man who rescued her from the stifling world to which she was born. And now she fears she may be drawn back into it. Wounded, strong-willed, clinging to secrecy in a tiny community where everyone knows your business, Nora is drowning in her own sorrow and blind to the suffering of her young sons, who have lost their father.

    Doggy Bird says: "Very moving portrait, interesting times"
    "What a gift!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't remember how I found this book, but it popped into my life and, as soon as I finished it, I started it all over again. I know now that I have many other Toibin books that will sustain me through the dark PNWest winter which makes me very happy.

    First of all, the narration on this is phenomenal. I had thought it was more than one person until I went back to check. Fiona Shaw makes this novel come alive and Colm Toibin gives her a lot to work with - beautifully drawn characters, simple but compelling story line and an undercurrent of sorrow turning to coping turning to joy. I loved it.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Some Luck: A novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Jane Smiley
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    Overall
    (161)
    Performance
    (129)
    Story
    (128)

    From the winner of the Pulitzer Prize: a powerful, engrossing new novel - the life and times of a remarkable family over three transformative decades in America. On their farm in Denby, Iowa, Rosanna and Walter Langdon abide by time-honored values that they pass on to their five wildly different children: from Frank, the handsome, willful first born, and Joe, whose love of animals and the land sustains him, to Claire, who earns a special place in her father’s heart.

    Sara says: "Takes Times To Develop But Is Really Worth The Effort"
    "Huh?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have liked Jane Smiley in the past - A Thousand Acres was one of my all time favorites. This story is SO slow, so cumbersome and so full of unnecessary detail that I want to scream from the sidelines - "Jane, get on with it!" The premise that she would think her characterization of a child's view of the world would sustain us for a very long time was, in my mind, not a good calculation. I didn't even want to finish this. That doesn't happen very often with me.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Love Life

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Rob Lowe
    • Narrated By Rob Lowe
    Overall
    (821)
    Performance
    (746)
    Story
    (743)

    Love Life serves up another delicious selection of intimate stories and observations from Rob Lowe's life, told with humor, warmth, and brutal honesty. After writing his acclaimed debut effort, Lowe felt he had more stories to share and many more friends to introduce. The result is a touching memoir about the business and craft of acting, the pitfalls of success, family, love, and much more.

    russell says: "He did it again"
    "Not as good as the first"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I never would have read the first one of Rob Lowe's books but I did because my daughter told me I would like it. I loved that one. This one not so much -- I still think he is a great writer and his self-effacing manner in regards to describing his life is so delightful, so one might say "what is there not to love?" It's the story - he preaches a bit too much. He took a good thing and stretched it too thin on another attempt. I will always have a soft spot in my heart for him because I learned quickly in his first book that he is waaaay more than just a pretty face, but this one didn't measure up.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Tale for the Time Being

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Ruth Ozeki
    • Narrated By Ruth Ozeki
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (657)
    Performance
    (586)
    Story
    (585)

    In Tokyo, 16-year-old Nao has decided there's only one escape from her aching loneliness and her classmates' bullying. But before she ends it all, Nao first plans to document the life of her great grandmother, a Buddhist nun who's lived more than a century. A diary is Nao's only solace - and will touch lives in ways she can scarcely imagine. Across the Pacific, we meet Ruth, a novelist living on a remote island who discovers a collection of artifacts washed ashore in a Hello Kitty lunchbox - possibly debris from the devastating 2011 tsunami.

    Karen says: "Engaging story beautifully read"
    "So unusual"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I loved this book. I am not sure I can articulate everything about why,but I will try -- it is a wonderful story and pulls in many,many layers of human angst and resolution at just the right time while keeping the story line sane and magical at the same time. Ruth Ozeki reads it beautifully (not always the case with authors) and the characters are well drawn with a clear and significant plunge into new worlds. It was this - the fact that the book took me to another world. that captivated me

    The fall season is a good time to be transported to another place while a transition is happening before our eyes. Don't miss this one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Franklin and Eleanor: An Extraordinary Marriage

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Hazel Rowley
    • Narrated By Tavia Gilbert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (83)
    Performance
    (46)
    Story
    (46)

    Franklin Delano and Eleanor Roosevelt’s marriage is one of the most celebrated and scrutinized partnerships in presidential history. It raised eyebrows in their lifetimes and has only become more controversial since their deaths. From FDR’s lifelong romance with Lucy Mercer to Eleanor’s purported lesbianism - and many scandals in between - the American public has never tired of speculating about the ties that bound these two headstrong individuals.

    Molly-o says: "Inspired by the facts, not the book"
    "Inspired by the facts, not the book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed this book, but I wouldn't ever recommend it to anyone. I enjoyed it because I wanted to have more of an insight into Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt and thought starting with their marriage was a good beginning. So it was a very personal motivation and it succeeded in that the book does chronicle the marriage, poke into many of the rumors and paint the two main characters as noteworthy to be sure. BUT I now expect my non-fiction forays to be told by a good story teller - I guess I am spoiled, but this book just sort of loped along and relied on its facts rather than its art.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Anthony Doerr
    • Narrated By Zach Appelman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7224)
    Performance
    (6332)
    Story
    (6346)

    Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is 12, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

    Sandra says: "Be prepared to love the characters."
    "I've been waiting for this book all spring!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While I have had some good reads this spring, nothing compares to the joy I have experienced in reading this beautifully written book. One of the first things I thought of when I finished it is that I have to start all over again sometime so I can stop thinking about the content and just bask in its exquisite language and imagery.

    I have read numerous books about World War II and the ones I have liked will stay in my memory for a long time. I have not listened to one as good as The Book Thief until this book, however - funny how they both center on a child's perspective. From the thoughtful characterization to the masterful unfolding of the plot, this is a book that cries out for you to download it right away.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • A Son of the Circus

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Irving
    • Narrated By David Colacci
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (520)
    Performance
    (247)
    Story
    (254)

    Born a Parsi in Bombay, sent to university and medical school in Vienna, Dr. Farrokh Daruwalla is a 59-year-old orthopedic surgeon and a Canadian citizen who lives in Toronto. Once, 20 years ago, Dr. Daruwalla was the examining physician of two murder victims in Goa, India. Now, 20 years later, he will be reacquainted with the murderer.

    connie says: "If you liked "Q+A"..."
    "A good, solid read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have read a lot of John Irving - some very good, some not so good. My favorite book of all time is A Prayer for Owen Meany. He can't write another one of those and I knew that when I started this book. Nonetheless, the characters are very well drawn, quirky, very human and quite Owenesque. I liked this book, the story is solid but it was missing the tight, clearly crafted writing that I think of when I think of Irving. I am glad I read it, but I am not going to run out and tell everybody to read it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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