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Elbara

ratings
15
REVIEWS
9
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
2
HELPFUL VOTES
31

  • Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Susannah Cahalan
    • Narrated By Heather Henderson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1228)
    Performance
    (1104)
    Story
    (1111)

    In 2009, Susannah Cahalan woke up in a strange hospital room strapped to a bed, under guard, and unable to move or speak. Her medical records - from a month-long hospital stay of which she had no memory - reported psychosis, violence, and dangerous instability. Yet, only weeks earlier she had been a healthy, ambitious twenty-four-year-old, six months into her first serious relationship and a sparkling career as a cub reporter

    Eric Schurr says: "Very scary, real story, superbly written and rea"
    "Alarmingly Instructive"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A fascinating story, well-narrated. This is the second book I've read in the space of a year where persistent, even heroic efforts by persons close to someone suddenly manifesting mental illness to find the right doctors and treatment have discovered an underlying physiological cause that, when treated, restored the patient to a normal life. The other book was "Saving Sammy: Curing the Boy Who Caught OCD." It is alarming to think of all those diagnosed with schizophrenia, obsessive compulsive disorder, etc., and consigned to numbing drug treatment and mental institutions who might also be victims of ailments that, if properly diagnosed and treated, would give them a productive life rather than dooming them to the shadows. It cries out for better research into possible physiological causes for the most serious and disabling mental illnesses.

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • Rogue Island

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Bruce DeSilva
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman, Bruce DeSilva
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (823)
    Performance
    (639)
    Story
    (633)

    Liam Mulligan is as old school as a newspaper man gets. His beat is Providence, Rhode Island, and he knows every street and alley. He knows the priests and prostitutes, the cops and street thugs. He knows the mobsters and politicians--who are pretty much one and the same. Someone is systematically burning down the neighborhood Mulligan grew up in, people he knows and loves are perishing in the flames, and the public is on the verge of panic.

    Michael Jacobi says: "Classic Whodunnit"
    "Witty and Winning!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Delightful book -- full of interesting characters, dark humor, and social/political commentary delivered with a deft touch. Terrific narrator -- local color is spot on. Oh, and a good story too. I even enjoyed some oblique potshots at my august alma mater. All in all, highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Prep

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Curtis Sittenfeld
    • Narrated By Julie Dretzin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (210)
    Performance
    (163)
    Story
    (164)

    This New York Times best-seller is a funny and poignant coming-of-age story, a dead-on examination of adolescent angst, and a sharp criticism of America’s social structure. Fourteen-year-old Lee Fiora enrolls at the prestigious Ault School of Massachusetts and is surrounded by beautiful, wealthy students. She immediately feels like an outsider, but manages to carve out a niche for herself. Then everything falls apart when Lee’s private thoughts become public information.

    Lorraine says: "Easy & Enjoyable Listen"
    "I can't believe I listened to the whole thing!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't expect all protagonists to be fully likeable, but Lee Fiora is one of the most self-absorbed, insensitive, imperceptive and downright tedious characters I've encountered. It's hard to believe that anyone so dim could have gotten into a prestigious prep school, much less with a scholarship, and even less that she would become the best friend of the most liked girl in her class. Somewhere I read a recommendation for this book as being better than another one I was considering. Can't remember what that was, but if this is really the case, I certainly don't want to! As a public school graduate who attended an Ivy League school, I don't have any reason to be defensive of prep schools, but I will say that even the "villains" in this book are more interesting than the "heroine." The book drones on far too long, and I kept thinking I should just stop listening. Maybe I kept at it thinking it would get better, but it didn't.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Involuntary Witness: Guido Guerrieri Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Gianrico Carofiglio
    • Narrated By Sean Barrett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (749)
    Performance
    (657)
    Story
    (658)

    A nine-year-old boy is found murdered at the bottom of a well near a popular beach resort in southern Italy. In what looks like a hopeless case for Guido Guerrieri, a Senegalese peddler is accused of the crime. Faced with small-town racism, Guido attempts to exploit the esoteric workings of the Italian courts. The voice of Sean Barrett brings this gritty Italian detective series to life.

    dumbclub says: "Excellence"
    "Intriguing and Informative"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    New to this author, I found the book absorbing, original and a welcome change from the sadly formulaic mysteries by more local authors that I have sometimes inadvertently purchased. Notable features include (a) well drawn and interesting characters and situations, (b) insight into an Italian legal system quite different from our own (sometimes jarringly so), and (c) a satisfactory resolution without any apparent compulsion to tie up all the loose ends (e.g., whodunit?). A refreshing experience that leaves me eager to read more of the author's work.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Price of Politics

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Bob Woodward
    • Narrated By Boyd Gaines
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (243)
    Performance
    (199)
    Story
    (199)

    Based on 18 months of reporting, Woodward's 17th book The Price of Politics is an intimate, documented examination of how President Obama and the highest profile Republican and Democratic leaders in the United States Congress attempted to restore the American economy and improve the federal government's fiscal condition over three and one half years. The Price of Politics addresses the key issue of the presidential and congressional campaigns: the condition of the American economy.

    Graham says: "Making the Sausage"
    "Painfully, Alarmingly Bor-r-ring!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I thought it was difficult and exasperating to live through the manufactured debt ceiling crisis on the outside, as a citizen, watching our political "leaders" give priority to playing their own ideological games over the national, and indeed international, interest. None of the players come off well, least of all the Obama White House, so I'm glad I listened to most of this after the election. Whether this coloration reflects reality or just Woodward's preferences and ease of access to sources is open to question.

    As someone with experience in both legislative and fiscal matters in Washington, I found the level of detail excruciating and am amazed that I actually plowed through it all, albeit not always with full attention. Now I realize that what can seem fascinating if you're on the inside is only tedious and frustrating to those in a more real world. The constant barrage of proposals for multi-billions and trillions of expenditure cuts, along with the [to me] incomprehensible resistance to including revenue increases and even more to allowing the debt ceiling increase, left me dazed and groping for some semblance of what all this means in the real world.

    I'll end with two observations: The first is one I have often felt, which is fury at George W. Bush and those who went along with him in Congress for throwing away in a nano-second the hard-won surplus of the Clinton years in favor of an irresponsible insistence on both guns and butter, huge tax cuts and enormous increases in military/security spending. The second is a new one. Previously I had felt some regret that many of Bob Woodward's books are available only in abridged versions from Audible. Now I realize that this is a blessing. If only this one had been abridged, it might have been bearable.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • New Tricks

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By David Rosenfelt
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (894)
    Performance
    (428)
    Story
    (427)

    Andy Carpenter gains possession of an adorable Bernese puppy whose owner was brutally murdered. Few can rival Andy's affection for dogs, and he will do whatever it takes to insure that this little pup doesn't fall into the wrong hands. However, his playful new friend is valued by several people, many of whom are willing to resort to violence to get what they want.It will take more than Andy's usual courtroom theatrics to save this dog, including a little help from his beloved Golden Retriever, Tara.

    John says: "New Tricks"
    "Love this Series."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I had enjoyed all of the earlier books in this series but hadn't read a new one in a while, so I happily picked up a couple in the last sale. What a treat it was to return to the dry humor and entertaining life of sporadic defense lawyer Andy Carpenter, combined with genuinely interesting insights into court case development and trial techniques. It's refreshing to find a mystery story that doesn't take itself too seriously or dwell at length on blood and gore. One feature I particularly like is that the relationships with other parties involved in the case, including policemen, prosecutors, even deep down Judge "Hatchet", are cordial and understanding, a nice change from the "loner in opposition to all forces in authority" model that dominates much of this literature. Grover Gardner does a perfect job of portraying Andy Carpenter and his observations of himself and the personalities and circumstances revolving around him -- and Gardner seems to enjoy every minute of it. Plus I'm not in essence a dog lover, but it's easy to appreciate the dogs that, err..., "people" this series!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cliff Walk: Liam Mulligan, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Bruce DeSilva
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (176)
    Performance
    (153)
    Story
    (149)

    Prostitution has been legal in Rhode Island for more than a decade; Liam Mulligan, an old-school investigative reporter at dying Providence newspaper, suspects the governor has been taking payoffs to keep it that way. But this isn’t the only story making headlines… a child’s severed arm is discovered in a pile of garbage at a pig farm. Then the body of an internet pornographer is found sprawled on the rocks at the base of Newport’s famous Cliff Walk.

    Richard Delman says: "DeSilva and Workman are addicting."
    "Rhode Island Well-Read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Good follow-up to Rogue Island. Paints a wryly amusing picture of the seamy side of our smallest state, and also of the sad state of our newspaper industry. Engaging and original characters; reasonably engrossing plot. Narrator does an excellent job with local accents which greatly enhances the experience. For those interested in a good listen and an intriguing view of Rhode Island, perhaps especially those who attended an occasionally-maligned "elitist" university there, this book is a great find.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The City When It Rains

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Thomas H. Cook
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    On a rainy night in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen, a woman throws a doll from the fifth-floor window of a gutted tenement, then leaps herself. From his own apartment a few blocks away, freelance photographer David Corman listens to the radio reports as they come over his headset. Corman is a man at the edge, threatened with eviction, besieged by his wife’s attempt to regain custody of their daughter, yet reluctant to give up the life that permits him to roam the night. In the woman’s dying fall, he sees the chance to sell a story....

    Elbara says: "Disappointing and irritating."
    "Disappointing and irritating."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The City When It Rains?

    From the description, I thought I would like this book, but I found it irritating and unrealistic. In particular, I found the main character unsympathetic -- self-absorbed, self-destructive and uncommunicative. I got very tired at his answering virtually every direct question or comment with a shrug and being rude to people who were trying to be helpful. Perhaps his single-minded pursuit of his "art" and of the somewhat lame "mystery" was supposed to make him seem noble, but it came to grate on me, especially since it led him to neglect his child and didn't exactly strengthen his custody argument. Also, the rain was a "damper"!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Death Comes to Pemberley

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By P. D. James
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (872)
    Performance
    (725)
    Story
    (743)

    It is 1803, six years since Elizabeth and Darcy embarked on their life together at Pemberley, Darcy’s magnificent estate. Their peaceful, orderly world seems almost unassailable. Elizabeth has found her footing as the chatelaine of the great house. They have two fine sons, Fitzwilliam and Charles. Elizabeth’s sister Jane and her husband, Bingley, live nearby; her father visits often; there is optimistic talk about the prospects of marriage for Darcy’s sister Georgiana. And preparations are under way for their much-anticipated annual autumn ball.

    Michelle says: "Not As Interesting as Print Reviewers Suggested"
    "The Worst of Everything"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This book sounded most promising, but sadly, it contains neither the wit and polish of Jane Austen nor the craftsmanship of P.D. James's other mysteries. Instead it is an odd jumble of preciosity, sentimentality and clumsiness of plotting that makes one wonder what Ms. James had in mind in undertaking this work. It certainly does not do justice to the Jane Austen tradition, rendering Lizzie a virtual non-entity and her sisters merely props to a flimsy murder tale that winds up in an unconvincing maze of improbable occurrences reflecting the worst of the English style of mystery writing. Rosalyn Landor does a valiant job of staying awake and rendering the characters, such as they are, reasonably well, but no narrator can rescue a weak book that promises far more than it delivers.

    17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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