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Seattle, WA, USA


  • Shopgirl

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Steve Martin
    • Narrated By Steve Martin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Grammy Nominee for Best Spoken Word Album
    Mirabelle, the "shopgirl" behind the glove counter at Neiman Marcus, is slightly lost, off-kilter, and shy. But there's something about Mirabelle. Steve Martin reads this charming novella. Hear an interview with the author and browse more Martin.

    Julie Rosenthal says: "Loved it"

    I know that I should have done a better job of managing my expectations when I settled into my car to listen to Steve Martin's "Shopgirl." Over the years, I have admired how the author has managed to keep a strong following while at the same time continuing to push into more "mature" projects. That said, I found myself a bit disappointed by the story of Mirabelle the Shopgirl.

    Mirabelle is the saleswoman at the counter of the glove department of Nieman Marcus. Mirabelle is a small-town girl fighting depression and loneliness in Los Angeles. She is in her mid-twenties, feeling her way through her post-college awkwardness in a city that doesn't know what to do with a shy artist from Vermont.

    We follow Mirabelle through two romantic relationships. One with a wealthy businessman and another with a slacker in the guitar amplifier business. The meat of the book is found in the inner-thoughts of the characters who are all feeling their way through the politics of sex, commitment, love, and relationships. Interestingly, I found that the descriptions of the thoughts of the secondary characters were more fully explored than those of the main character. I suspect that the thoughts of the male characters came more easily to the author. Somehow, I found the thoughts of the shop-girl herself to be largely caricatures of what men think that women are probably thinking. I'd be interested to hear the comments of women that have read this book.

    I doubt that I would have even considered this book had it not been for my familiarity of Steve Martin. That being said, it was a nice non-challenging book to listen to while commuting. Don't come expecting the Steve Martin of The Three Amigos. Don't come expecting the Steve martin of The Spanish Prisoner either.

    13 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • TimesTalks - Bill Murray: Comic Valentine

    • ORIGINAL (1 hr and 39 mins)
    • By Bill Murray, Lynn Hirschberg

    Bill Murray left college to join the comedy troupe The Second City in Chicago and went on to be a writer and guest performer on Saturday Night Live from 1977 to 1980, for which he won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing in a Comedy, Variety, or Music Series. Since then he has appeared in more than 40 films.

    Bob says: "The laughter that won't stop."
    "The laughter that won't stop."

    Just a quick review on this one. This might've been a 4-star selection had it not been for the never-ceasing honking laughter from the interviewer, Lynn Hirschberg. If you can get past that, Bill Murray shines as you'd hope he would.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Protector

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By David Morrell
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki

    Cavanaugh, a former member of Delta Force, is hired by a brilliant scientist named Prescott who needs protection from a drug lord seeking the highly addictive drug he has invented. At least that is what Cavanaugh is led to believe. After Cavanaugh trains the scientist in escape and evasion, the unthinkable occurs: Cavanaugh's team is viciously attacked and entirely wiped out - and Prescott seems to be in collusion with the attackers.

    Barbara A. Russell says: "Excellent story, not a dull moment."
    "An 11 Hour Chase-Scene"

    If you enjoyed the movie "Die-Hard" and want more of the same, this is the book for you. Other reviewers here have noted that this book would make a good movie, and they are probably right. If you are looking for a well-writen book with an intricate plot or interesting characters, however... you should just click on by.

    It's evident that the author knows how to write well. If not, there would be no other way to stretch this into an eleven hour chase scene. The truth is, you could probably skip over full hours of this book and pick up just about where you left off... chasing somebody or being chased.

    I cannot say that this is the worst book that I've ever listened to, but I'm not convinced that it's the book that made me listen. In fact, the narrator Stephan Rudnicki might be the only reason that I made it through the entire book. Like he's proven in his other narrations (Ender's Game, for example), he's able to walk the fine line between acting and narrating without becoming too dramatic or distracting.

    8 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Envy

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Sandra Brown
    • Narrated By Victor Slezak
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    New York book editor Maris Matherly-Reed knows a best seller when she sees one - even if it is just a tantalizing partial manuscript submitted by a writer identified only as P.M.E., with the return address of an obscure island off the Georgia coast. Maris is intrigued enough to search for him.

    DMHVetSurveyor says: "Envy"

    I purchased this book after reading all of the glowing reviews here... and now that I've finished listening, I'm somewhat puzzled. While this was a decent book, it definitely didn't live up to my expectations. I found the plot to be slow and the characters to be caricatures. Goods guys are sincere. Bad guys are evil. And crusty cantankerous (crippled) guys? Why, you know that they really have a heart of gold, right?

    Like a couple other reviewers here, I found the sex scenes unnecessary, but for a different reason. They were mostly absurd. I definitely wouldn't characterize them as porn or x-rated like other reviews... I just kind of thought they were filler and had to wait through them until the plot continued. I found myself talking out loud to my car stereo on several occasions saying: "okay, okay... we know they get it on... let's get on with the story now".

    It would be misleading to say that I disliked this book. The writing was adequate. The narration wasn't terrible. I just don't know that it was worth fifteen hours of my time.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Undertaker's Widow

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Phillip Margolin
    • Narrated By Jason Culp

    This riveting tale of betrayal, blackmail, and murder from the best selling author of The Burning Man and Gone But Not Forgotten is full of suspense at its finest, with surprising twists and turns, erotic undertones that can quickly turn deadly, and most of all, a keen sense of the inner workings of the American justice system.

    Bob says: "A solid Audible selection"
    "A solid Audible selection"

    You probably won't be astounded when you find out "whodunnit", but this is an enjoyable book nonetheless. No loose ends and a somewhat believable plot.

    I was a little unsure at first with the narration. He seemed a bit slow and deliberate, but I quickly became accustomed to the pace. Also... did anybody else happen to notice that they seemed to switch narrators about half-way through the book? It was either a different person, or they prodded the original reader into a faster pace (and with a higher pitched voice). Not too distracting, it just caught my attention.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Back Story

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Robert B. Parker
    • Narrated By Joe Mantegna
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In 1974, a revolutionary group calling itself the Dread Scott Brigade held up the old Shawmut Bank in Boston's Audubon Circle. Money was stolen. And a woman named Emily Gordon, a visitor in town cashing traveler's checks, was shot and killed. No one saw who shot her. Despite security camera photos and a letter from the group claiming responsibility, the perpetrators have remained at large for nearly three decades. Now it's up to Spenser to solve her murder.

    Ruth says: "...he's Baa-a-ack!"
    "you know what you're gonna get"

    I think that I have listened to every "Spenser" novel that's available on Audible. It isn't so much that they are fantastic books... it's more that they are predictable in their high-quality. I tend to listen to these short Robert B. Parker novels between larger books... enjoying a mostly mindless story before undertaking another long listen.

    Joe Mantegna continues his entertaining portrayal as Spenser... one that he's also become known for in made-for-TV movies. As a side-note, the voices that he gives his female characters in his readings never fail to amuse me. I particularly enjoy when he attempts to pull off a rendition of a woman trying to seduce Spenser. Those laughs alone make the commute fly by quickly.

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • Demolition Angel

    • ABRIDGED (6 hrs)
    • By Robert Crais
    • Narrated By Patricia Kalember

    The latest thriller from the best selling author of L.A. Requiem is a real blast to listen to! Follow L.A.'s retired bomb squad technician Carol Starkey when she returns to investigate a series of explosions that are meant to target who else but her!

    Bob says: "Made to be a movie"
    "Made to be a movie"

    If you're looking for a nice light read that's well-written, this is just the book for you. Just don't expect to be dazzled. It should be no surprise at all that this book is being made into a movie.

    There is one serious flaw here, though. None of the characters are very likable. You go through the entire book, and don't really care much whether the main character lives or dies.

    If you're new to Robert Crais, I'd strongly suggest that you wait to read this book until you've finished the Elvis Cole series. Go check out 'The Monkey's Raincoat'.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Killing Pablo: The Hunt for the World's Greatest Outlaw

    • ABRIDGED (6 hrs)
    • By Mark Bowden
    • Narrated By Mark Bowden

    Killing Pablo is the inside story of the brutal rise and violent fall of Colombian cocaine cartel kingpin Pablo Escobar. Also from Bowden: the best selling Black Hawk Down.

    Bob says: "Relevant Accessible History"
    "Relevant Accessible History"

    As somebody who uses Audible to make my commute bearable, I have the tendency to gravitate mostly towards mindless fiction to make the time pass... and base my reviews primarily on how successful books do with that criteria.

    That being said... this is a book that isn't mindless, but still kept me captivated. It's a facinating look into both American policies in Central America as well as techniques that are used in tracking people. I have thought about this book frequently during the recent hunts for Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. I was very surprised how hit-and-miss the technologies seem to be.

    The author does a good job in presenting the details of the situations without making personal judgement on the characters involved, but does so in a manner that isn't school-bookish.

    Well done.

    27 of 28 people found this review helpful
  • Potshot

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs)
    • By Robert B. Parker
    • Narrated By Joe Mantegna

    Boston P.I. Spenser is back! He's traveled west to investigate a murder in Potshot, Arizona, a former mining town reborn as a hangout for Los Angeles millionaires. A motley band of thieves, lead by The Preacher, is wreaking havoc, and Spenser must find a way to beat the gang at their own dangerous game.

    Daniel says: "A 'POTSHOT' at Potshot"
    "Same ol' Spenser"

    If you've read any Spenser novels before, you probably don't really care about the reviews... you're going to read (or listen to) it anyways.

    That being said... you won't be disappointed by Joe Mantegna's reading of these books, although I found the accents that he gives the female characters hysterical. The "he said, she said" comment of the previous reviewer is valid, but I didn't find it overly distracting.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The King of Torts

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    As Clay Carter digs into the background of his client, a young man charged with a random street killing, he suddenly finds himself in the middle of a complex case against one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, looking at the kind of enormous settlement that would totally change his life - that would make him, almost overnight, the legal profession's newest king of torts...

    Lisa says: "The King of Torts"
    "Nothing New Here"

    Let me begin by saying that I think I've either read or listened to every book that Grisham has written. Let me continue by saying that I haven't really enjoyed many of them. I consider his books to be perfect beach, airplane, or commuting material. This book is no different.

    No, you won't really like the main character. You won't feel sorry for him when things start going badly for him. You know where the story is going after listening to the first half hour.

    Reading a Grisham book is like watching an episode of a television drama. You're not expecting high-brow intellect or overly thought-provoking moral dilemmas. You listen to Grisham because it's a fast-paced story that makes the time fly by.

    He delivers that again here.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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