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Book Lady

New York | Member Since 2013

  • 5 reviews
  • 22 ratings
  • 217 titles in library
  • 2 purchased in 2015

  • The Sound of Things Falling

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Juan Gabriel Vasquez
    • Narrated By Mike Vendetti

    In the city of Bogot, Antonio Yammara reads an article about a hippo that had escaped from a derelict zoo once owned by legendary Colombian drug kingpin Pablo Escobar. The article transports Antonio back to when the war between Escobar’s Medelln cartel and government forces played out violently in Colombia’s streets and in the skies above. Back then, Antonio witnessed a friend’s murder, an event that haunts him still. As he investigates, he discovers the many ways in which his own life and his friend’s family have been shaped by his country’s recent violent past.

    Melinda says: "'The Damaging Exercise of Remembering'"
    "Narrator makes book or book makes narrator"
    What did you love best about The Sound of Things Falling?

    the combination of the narrator and the prose make it a perfect listen

    Who was your favorite character and why?

    no favorite characters but Elenor Fritz because of Mike's pronunciation and the sonerous way that her husband kept saying it made her memorable. The author doesn't realize her fully and her motives for her abrupt return to the US and then her return when her husband summons her doesn't work

    What about Mike Vendetti’s performance did you like?

    Her captured the mood and voice of the author perfectly. The prose is poetic and sinister, the story romantic and yet ominous and bleak, it's a mirror of the dense jungles and mountainous terrain of Colombia and it's all there in his performance. I listen to the book again just to hear him read it.

    If you could rename The Sound of Things Falling, what would you call it?

    Slouching toward Byzantine --the book is reminiscent of the Yeats poem in its bleakness and beauty and about the end of things, a culture, a people, love.

    Any additional comments?

    Perfect audible experience

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Fear Nothing: Detective D. D. Warren, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Lisa Gardner
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The last thing Boston Detective D. D. Warren remembers is walking the crime scene after dark. Then, a creaking floorboard, a low voice crooning in her ear… She is later told she managed to discharge her weapon three times. All she knows is that she is seriously injured, unable to move her left arm, unable to return to work. My sister is Shana Day, a notorious murderer who first killed at fourteen. Incarcerated for thirty years, she has now murdered more people while in prison than she did as a free woman.

    Charles Atkinson says: "Fascinating look at a killer family!"
    "Fear Nothing--Except Writer's Block"
    What did you like best about Fear Nothing? What did you like least?

    The narrator as always is terrific. I suspect Lisa Garner had this manuscript buried away in a file and under contract obligations to produce a new book dusted it off, updated it, baby Tom is now three, and submitted it--the plot strains credibillity, the characters are flat and it has all the action of an old British Agatha Cristie with everyone pondering did he, she, it do it, while sitting in Dee Dee's living room drinking coffee. The premise is psychologically interesting--two grown daughters of a famed serial killer, one who can feel no pain and is on the outside as a respected psychiatrist, and the other a lifer emprisioned for duplicating dear old dad while just wanting to protect little sis--But somehow Garner's usual psychological probing and suspense gets lost in some plot twists that are so poorly written, motivated, and badly thought out, it'--the prision break and the subsequent stroll through Boston--sounds like Gardner who is usually masterful either has writers' block or an early manuscript and a demanding publisher.Dee Dee, Phil and Alex no longer have individual identities and Dee Dee sounds more like a thrill seeker with an need for adrenilian highs than a conflicted woman with her cop-identity a big part of her coping skills.

    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Whatever it is it won't involve serial killers in Boston

    What does Kirsten Potter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    makes a ridiculously flat story and characters come alive and adds a aura of forboding and suspense and even realism to parts that would be laughable. Some of this sounds like a parady of a bad mystery. "A high rise Boston condo in which the killer is able to disable the carbon monoxide detector and turn on the gas" Really!

    Do you think Fear Nothing needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    Lisa Gardner in the past has written some of the most interesting and complicated, psychologically driven thrillers and DeeDee Waren was becoming a fascinating detective now struggling with motherhood, dependency and toughness--now she's just a mechanism for moving the plot and these are characteristics that allow the reader to know which character is talking.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sleight of Hand: A Novel of Suspense

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Phillip Margolin
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Ten years ago, Horace Blair fell in love with Carrie, the prosecutor during his DUI trial. After a torrid courtship, he persuaded her to marry him and to sign a prenuptial agreement guaranteeing her twenty million dollars if she remained faithful during the first 10 years of their marriage. The week before their 10th anniversary, Carrie disappears, and Horace is charged with her murder. Desperate to clear his name, the millionaire hires one of D.C.'s most brilliant and ruthless defense attorneys - Charles Benedict.

    Mary says: "It should've been a better book"
    "If Jack Reacher were a girl"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Phillip Margolin who writes too infrequently has created an evolving character, Dana Cuttler who could rival Jack Reacher in violence, intelligence, and personality. Margolin's plots are always carefully crafted and following the conventions of a thriller, the reader knows the villain, the suspense is discovering whether the heroine in this scenerio can succeed or be thwarted. In sleight of hand, he pits Dana against the crafty lawyer, magician, Charles benedict and the head of the Russian mob. Even the main murder victim, Carrie Blair has a brief plot turn to thwart Dana. Margolin gives Dana her first staring role in Sleight of Hand--in previous books she was supported by young lawyer Brad Miller--and she doesn't disappoint. To emphasize his point that this is Dana's story, when Dana flies to the Pacific Northwest, she doesn't even contact her friend Brad who has moved off the pages to a quieter lifestyle.
    Margolin shows his control of plot and characters. Even stock characters, the uber-wealthy and powerful, the downtrotten police, the Washington legal eagles, play well in Margolin's skillful analysis,. Charles Bendict is a worthy advesary and a compelling badguy. The set-up that opens the story, a rift on a thirties film noire, is cleverly worked into the plot. Margolin has that same economy of style as Lee Childs (or a very thorough editor) so not a detail dangles.
    And Jonathan Davis is the perfect narrator although his Russian mobster accent sounds a little like somebody in a NY deli. Rather than overdramatizing, his slightly forbodding tone implies more violence, suspense, and action that makes this a "page turner"

    I've never read a Margolin book, they are too good as audio-stories. They only thing missing is why the audible editors don't spotlight them in mystery picks!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Wanted Man: A Jack Reacher Novel, Book 17

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Lee Child
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Four people in a car, hoping to make Chicago by morning. An hour behind them, a man lies stabbed to death in an old pumping station. He was seen going in with two others, but he never came out. He has been executed, the knife work professional, the killers vanished. Within minutes, the police are notified. Within hours, the FBI descends, laying claim to the victim without ever saying who he was or why he was there. All Reacher wanted was a ride to Virginia. All he did was stick out his thumb. But he soon discovers he has hitched more than a ride.

    Daniel says: "10 reasons to skip this Reacher book"
    "complex story"
    Would you listen to A Wanted Man again? Why?

    yes. The story is complex, the writing is brilliant--notbody crafts a sentence like Child's and it is marvelous escapist fiction to listen to.

    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    This is a page-turner. There's the formulaic Child's stock characters with a twist. He doesn't have a chance to bed this lady. The lanquid laconic Reacher who becomes a Rambo character when it's necessary and the descriptive sentences that intrepret the action to describe a gun, a type of construction, good devices to pull back from the action and involve the listner intellectually.

    What about Dick Hill’s performance did you like?

    His tone seems to fit the character

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Stay Close

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Harlan Coben
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Three people living lives they never wanted, hiding secrets that even those closest to them would never suspect, will find that the past never truly fades away. Even as the terrible consequences of long-ago events crash together in the present and threaten to ruin lives, they will come to the startling realization that they may not want to forget the past at all.

    Janet says: "I Had a Hard Time Finishing"
    "scott has drama lessons harlan studies philosophy"
    What would have made Stay Close better?

    Is Scott Brick taking drama lessons? Suddenly, even the menus at fast food restaurants are filled with portends of what--food poisoning? A good reader goes rogue and spoils a slowly unfolding horror story where the every dayness and prosaic ordinariness of upper class suburban NJ unfolds to the evils of Atlantic City.Harlan meanwhile is still doing his subtle rift on Philip Roth was action set in the Pine Barrens, where a memorable Roth character once had a shack and his philosophical probing of love, loss, and the darker side of the human mind. Despite an overly long and melodramatic ending, the plot is rich with complicated characters and enough twists to make it compelling listening. Flair the attorney returns in a minor role and the dark side of Wynn is there in two characters, Ken and Barbie.

    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    Great characters made it worthwhile but a few plot teasers like Megan's mother-in-law's supposed stalker and Dave's hidden past are disappointing.

    What didn’t you like about Scott Brick’s performance?

    Sounds like he has taken drama lessons and is determined to give everything great importance. It becomes distracting. More than reading, he is declaiming.

    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    not one of Coban's best but a good story that could have been better told by both the author and the narrator

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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