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Carolyn L

knitter, weaver, spinner

Northern California | Member Since 2009

ratings
15
REVIEWS
9
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
9

  • On Thin Ice: Ice Series, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Anne Stuart
    • Narrated By Xe Sands
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (82)
    Performance
    (70)
    Story
    (74)

    In the latest entry in Anne Stuart's exciting Ice series, when Finn MacGowan escapes from captivity in Latin America, taking with him feisty American heiress Elizabeth Pennington, the pair encounters even more trouble as they try to make their way toward safety.

    Alisa says: "Great addition to a very good series."
    "A great escape!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed this novel very much, in spite of its obvious problems. For me, this book was the same kind of escapist fun as "Romancing the Stone".

    It was fairly well written, but not very well edited. Ms. Stuart is clearly an experienced and skilled writer, but she needed editorial help with some internal inconsistencies. There was also enough cliche in her dialogue to become distracting at points.

    The narrator was able to portray the different characters convincingly with the possible exception of the scene with "the bull"; although, I am not sure this was her fault since that scene was so contrived.

    Overall, this was a flawed but very enjoyable book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Maze Runner: Maze Runner, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By James Dashner
    • Narrated By Mark Deakins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3158)
    Performance
    (2689)
    Story
    (2722)

    When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his first name. His memory is blank. But he's not alone. When the lift's doors open, Thomas finds himself surrounded by kids who welcome him to the Glade - a large, open expanse surrounded by stone walls.

    Word Nerd says: "Great Book"
    "School Librarian is Not Impressed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from James Dashner and/or Mark Deakins?

    I only listened to this book because my students want it in my library. I was not impressed by James Dashner at all. Mark Deakins did good job creating character with his voice where none was written. I would listen to another story read by Mark Deakins.


    Would you ever listen to anything by James Dashner again?

    I would check the reviews carefully before listening to another book by Dashner.


    What about Mark Deakins’s performance did you like?

    Mr. Deakins did a good job expressing emotion and personality with his accents and inflection.


    What character would you cut from The Maze Runner?

    Maze Runner does not really have personalities. The character development is so weak that it is impossible to like or dislike any of the characters. Mr. Deakin's narration made Newt appealing.


    Any additional comments?

    I will listen to the other 2 novels because I need to know what these books are about for my job, but this is an awfully tedious listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Outlander

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (17394)
    Performance
    (11593)
    Story
    (11486)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: An all-time Audible favorite that mixes historic fiction, adventure, and romance with one of the most fascinating literary devices: time travel. Outlander introduces an exhilarating world of heroism and breathtaking thrills as one woman is torn between past and present, passion and love. In 1945, former combat nurse Claire Randall returns from World War II and joins her husband for a second honeymoon. But their blissful reunion is shattered....

    Lulu says: "The Reason for the Existence of Audio Books"
    "What's all the hubbub?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    The protagonist behaved in an unrealistic fashion. She didn't seem to recognize the gravity of situations such as being accused of witchcraft. She was impulsive to the point of endangering herself and others, and didn't seem to learn from her mistakes. Also, I was hoping for more historical detail in this book. What did people wear, how did they speak what were the many small details of life that can make historical fiction so interesting.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    I did not finish the book.


    What aspect of Davina Porter’s performance would you have changed?

    The narrator was far too cheerful in her depiction of the various perils our heroine finds herself in.


    Did Outlander inspire you to do anything?

    I am afraid this book was not to my taste.


    Any additional comments?

    I do not understand why this series has become so popular. "Outlander" was not terrible or offensive. It struck me as your basic "bodice ripper".

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Time of Death: Induction: A Zombie Tale

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Shana Festa
    • Narrated By Sarah Tancer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (30)
    Performance
    (30)
    Story
    (30)

    In a few short days, 37-year-old Emma Rossi's hard work will finally pay off. She will don her cap and gown and graduate with a degree in nursing, but not before she loses her first patient and is confronted with a new reality. In Cape Coral, Florida, a storm approaches. The dead are coming back to life. And they're hungry.

    Secret Squirrel says: "Zombiriffic"
    "Legally Blonde meets the Zombie Apocalypse"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I did not finish listening to this book because I found the characters and narrator so annoying.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Shana Festa? Why or why not?

    I have the impression that this book is the writer's first book. Authors improve over time so I would be willing to try another book, but I would read the customer reviews very carefully!


    What three words best describe Sarah Tancer’s voice?

    "MEAN" , " HIGH SCHOOL", "GIRL". OK, that was four words, but high school is one concept, even if it is two words.


    Was Time of Death worth the listening time?

    This book was not for me, but I can imagine that many other listeners might really enjoy it.


    Any additional comments?

    This book was no better or worse than a number of other escapist books I have listened to, but it was not to my taste. I am writing this review so that other people with similar tastes can save their money and purchase something they might find more enjoyable.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • DEAD: The Ugly Beginning

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By TW Brown
    • Narrated By Andrew McFerrin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (360)
    Performance
    (339)
    Story
    (339)

    The unthinkable has happened. The dead are walking! Humanity's fragile thread may be reaching its bitter end. Individuals and groups struggle to survive...some at any cost. Will there be anybody left? Or, is this just...The Ugly Beginning?

    Mike Naka says: "extremely graphic and brutal"
    "In a word... mysoginistic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would not. The book is well written enough to draw a reader in, but does not deliver. The characters are not well developed, in particular the female characters.


    Would you recommend DEAD: The Ugly Beginning to your friends? Why or why not?

    No. Zombie stories can work on many levels. This one fails at every level except to depict a world in which male brutality is the norm.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    As another reviewer pointed out, the narrator did not do well with women's voices or accents. He misused so many words that it was difficult to tell if the book needed editing, or the narrator was not paying attention.


    Was DEAD: The Ugly Beginning worth the listening time?

    No. I kept listening until halfway through book three because I kept expecting some resolution. I got to a point where I was so disturbed by the violence against a 13 year old girl that I checked online to see what happened to her and decided I couldn't listen anymore. I wish I had saved the money and kept these images out of my head!


    Any additional comments?

    I am a big fan of apocalyptic fiction and have a high tolerance for the gruesome. This series goes beyond my tolerance and skates into the arena of torture porn.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Rise Again Below Zero: Rise Again, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Ben Tripp
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (147)
    Performance
    (134)
    Story
    (133)

    Billions died and rose again, hungry for human flesh. When the nightmare reached Sheriff Danielle Adelman's small mountain community of Forest Peak, California, it was too late for warnings . . . forcing her to lead a small group of survivors out of hell, all the while seeking her estranged runaway sister at any cost.

    Mike Naka says: "wow! much, much better than expected!"
    "Wow!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found both parts of this story to be excellent. The characters were consistent, believable and interesting. The story was suspenseful. The reader was outstandingly talented and well suited to the book.

    The protagonist was a war veteran. Her response to the "zombie apocalypse" seemed to be in line with what I have read about the hardships of soldiers who return home. I found her emotional responses to be very believable, but have no "reality check".

    More... a good supernatural book lends itself to metaphor and in this case, the zombie infection worked as drug addiction, cultural ennui, and the creepy American yearning to live forever.


    I am very impressed by this author, and hope that he continues to produce.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rise Again: A Zombie Thriller

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Ben Tripp
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (374)
    Performance
    (341)
    Story
    (337)

    Filled with adventurous human drama-and shocking inhuman horror - Rise Again is a vivid and powerful debut novel of the zombie apocalypse.

    Tilo says: "This book is really good"
    "Wow...Dude can WRITE!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book was surprisingly well written. I enjoy a good zombie apocalypse book, no matter the quality; but this book was very well written! The characters are well drawn and believable. I am not a war veteran, so I cannot speak to the authenticity of the post combat emotions expressed by the protagonist, but I had no trouble suspending my disbelief. I cared what happened to the characters in this story.

    This novel reminded me of the first time I saw "An American Werewolf in London" because it was simultaneously funny and really disgusting. As I was listening to the novel I alternated between expressions of disgust and laughter.

    Kristen Potter, the reader, was well cast for this reading. She gave life to the characters and made them real and accessible.

    Overall, I really enjoyed this audio book and would recommend it to any zombie fan, as well as folks who are just looking for a well written, fun, audiobook.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Chill Factor: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Sandra Brown
    • Narrated By Stephen Lang
    Overall
    (773)
    Performance
    (226)
    Story
    (230)

    Cleary, North Carolina, is a sleepy mountain town, the kind of place where criminal activity is usually limited to parking violations. Not so, lately. Four women have disappeared from Cleary over the past two years. And there's always a blue ribbon left near the spot where each of the women was last seen. There are no bodies, no other clues, and no suspicion as to who their abductor might be. And now, another woman has disappeared without a trace.

    Susan says: "I'd have peeked at the ending ..."
    "I was not able to suspend my disbelief...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the second of Ms. Brown's books I have listened to and I experienced the same problem with both. The characters make such idiotic choices that I found myself annoyed for most of the book. I won't detail the bad choices because I don't want to spoil the story for other listeners who might enjoy her writing style better than I did. I will summarize by saying that a character who had nothing to lose by telling the truth lied repeatedly, and another character somehow fell in love with him in spite of his duplicity?!!!

    To her credit, Ms. Brown does a good job of plotting. I finished the book simply to find out how everything would work out.

    The narrator was quite good. Stephen Lang created different voices for each of the characters and was particularly good with the villain's voice.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Summoning: Darkest Powers, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Kelley Armstrong
    • Narrated By Cassandra Morris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (563)
    Performance
    (320)
    Story
    (325)

    "My name is Chloe Saunders and my life will never be the same again. All I wanted was to make friends, meet boys, and keep on being ordinary. I don't even know what that means anymore. It all started on the day that I saw my first ghost - and the ghost saw me."

    Jennifer A. Peurifoy says: "Impressive"
    "a new take on "teen-supernatural angst""
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This trilogy was a fun listen. It moved along quickly, but there was plenty of explanation for new developments and enough plot to hold everything together. Ms. Armstrong is quite a skilled writer.

    I liked the characters. I am a parent and taught middle school and high school for a number of years and these characters acted like real teens, rather than cardboard imitations. They all had likeable, but human characters with believable flaws. The idea of teens with out of control supernatural powers worked really well as a metaphor for the intense feelings that young people go through as they become adults.

    The reader was an excellent choice for this story. Her voice is high, like that of a young girl, but expressive. She did a good job of differentiating between the various voices in the story.

    Potential buyers should be aware that this trilogy feels more like one long book that has been broken into a trilogy in order fit into the current trend. The books really don't stand alone and I would have been frustrated if they were not all available.

    I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys supernatural fiction or a good story about how hard it is to grow up and figure out who you are.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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