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Elise

SOMERVILLE, MA, United States | Member Since 2011

ratings
14
REVIEWS
14
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
1
HELPFUL VOTES
4

  • Homecoming: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Bernhard Schlink
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    A child of World War II, Peter Debauer grew up with his mother and scant memories of his father, a victim of war. Now an adult, Peter embarks upon a search for the truth surrounding his mother's unwavering but shaky history and the possibility of finding his missing father after all these years. The search takes him across Europe, to the United States, and back.

    Judith Seaboyer says: "Another Homer appropriation"
    "The middle dragged on"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    An interesting soul searching "adventure," but the middle of the book dragged on a bit.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Power of One

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Bryce Courtenay
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    Overall
    (2643)
    Performance
    (1471)
    Story
    (1476)

    Born in a South Africa divided by racism and hatred, this one small boy will come to lead all the tribes of Africa. Through enduring friendships with Hymie and Gideon, Peekay gains the strength he needs to win out. And in a final conflict with his childhood enemy, the Judge, Peekay will fight to the death for justice.

    Bob says: "Compelling story lifted higher by the narration"
    "A modern Charles Dickens"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Power of One is the story of a strong willed orphan with everything going against her in Dickensian England except her cunning and amazing ability with an abacus. But behind her rise to success is the equally cunning, but also unscrupulous and miserly Jewish fencer of stolen goods and leader of the underworld, the only one willing to give her a chance. And thus Mary, while pure of heart, must compromise herself to get ahead.

    The intricate story line and depth of characters made for a great read, and Bower's reading captured the author's voice and those of the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Seamstress

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Sara Tuvel Bernstein, Louise Loots Thornton, Marlene Bernstein Samuels
    • Narrated By Wanda McCaddon
    Overall
    (348)
    Performance
    (318)
    Story
    (312)

    Told with the same old-fashioned narrative power as the novels of Herman Wouk, The Seamstress is the true story of Seren (Sara) Tuvel Bernstein and her survival during wartime. This powerful eyewitness account of survival, told with power and grace, will stay with listeners for years to come.

    Karen says: "Thankfully a happy ending to the nightmare"
    "A Holocaust Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Perhaps I've read too many Holocaust stories, but this one was just another to add to the list. Sara Tuvel is an amazing human being with an exceptional strength of character, and it is amazing that she survived to tell her story and live a fulfilling life thereafter, as many of the few who survived. The reading, however, was not exceptional. McCaddon's accent was unconvincing and became rather annoying.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • My Heart Is an Idiot: Essays

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Davy Rothbart
    • Narrated By Davy Rothbart
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (14)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (13)

    Davy Rothbart is looking for love in all the wrong places. Constantly. He falls helplessly in love with pretty much every girl he meets - and rarely is the feeling reciprocated. Time after time, he hops in a car and tears across half of America with his heart on his sleeve. He’s continually coming up with outrageous schemes, which he always manages to pull off. Well, almost always. But even when things don’t work out, Rothbart finds meaning and humor in every moment.

    Elise says: "A good quick read"
    "A good quick read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a fun story to read. There was nothing particularly deep or intricate, but the writing was fun and carefree, which made for a pleasant listen. I almost finished it in one sitting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Twelve Tribes of Hattie (Oprah's Book Club 2.0)

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Ayana Mathis
    • Narrated By Adenrele Ojo, Bahni Turpin, Adam Lazarre-White
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (535)
    Performance
    (463)
    Story
    (458)

    A debut of extraordinary distinction: through the trials of one unforgettable family, Ayana Mathis tells the story of the children of the Great Migration, a story of love and bitterness and the promise of a new America. In 1923, 15-year-old Hattie Shepherd flees Georgia and settles in Philadelphia, hoping for a chance at a better life. Instead, she marries a man who will bring her nothing but disappointment and watches helplessly as her firstborn twins succumb to an illness a few pennies could have prevented.

    Suzn F says: "Hattie and her Family Tragically Flawed"
    "Interesting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The different stories, each written from the perspective of a different character and time period, made for an interesting read. Also, Hattie and her children lived fascinating lives with clear connections to the history and culture of the time. However, the story line did not draw me in sufficiently.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jarhead: A Marine's Chronicle of the Gulf War and Other Battles

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Anthony Swofford
    • Narrated By Anthony Swofford
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (186)
    Performance
    (24)
    Story
    (24)

    In his New York Times best-selling chronicle of military life, Anthony Swofford weaves his experiences in war with vivid accounts of boot camp, reflections on the mythos of the marines, and remembrances of battles with lovers and family.

    A User says: "Candid view of a marine and modern war"
    "Interesting tid-bits"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It was fascinating to hear the truth from a real live modern war veteran who served in what appeared to be the lowest ranks of our marines. Still, the different scenes did not tie together all that well, and his jumping around in time did not help.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mockingjay: The Final Book of The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26137)
    Performance
    (20080)
    Story
    (20264)

    Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena live, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge....

    Sue Schreiber says: "A very satisfying ending"
    "Sell-out."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Collins definitely sold out to the crowd appealing action scenes in this sequel, leaving very little to think more deeply about. I even had to skip ahead in order to keep my interest.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Catching Fire: Hunger Games, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (28679)
    Performance
    (21926)
    Story
    (22066)

    Katniss Everdeen continues to struggle to protect herself and her family from the Capitol in this second novel from the best-selling Hunger Games trilogy.

    FanB14 says: "Dissent Rules"
    "Definitely not as good as #1."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Collins seems to have had a harder time filling up the pages in this sequel. The ratio of plain action scenes to thought-provoking moments rose significantly. Disappointing after such a decent start.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (33934)
    Performance
    (25120)
    Story
    (25463)

    Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone out to make sure you don't live to see the morning? In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by 12 outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

    Teddy says: "The Book Deserves The Hype"
    "Did it all fit together quite right?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm usually not a fan of adventure, but Collins' gory killing scenes did not scare me away, and the underlying criticisms of our society kept my brain working. Still, I am not completely convinced that all the fighting scenes quite fit with the rest of the story. Some were a bit over the top and frankly out of sync with an otherwise extremely well-crafted saga. I wonder if Collins sacrificed some of the thought-provoking elements of her story, to pander to an audience mesmerized by blood and guts.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Interpreter of Maladies

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Jhumpa Lahiri
    • Narrated By Matilda Novak
    Overall
    (394)
    Performance
    (195)
    Story
    (200)

    With accomplished precision and gentle eloquence, Jhumpa Lahiri traces the crosscurrents set in motion when immigrants, expatriates, and their children arrive, quite literally, at a cultural divide. The nine stories in this stunning debut collection unerringly chart the emotional journeys of characters seeking love beyond the barriers of nations and generations.

    Jennifer says: "Novel-amazing; Audio-mediocre"
    "Wonderful writing, but lacking plot."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I guess I should have expected a collection of short stories to lack plots, but it made it hard to finish the entire collection. Lahiri has a wonderful way with words and she has great insight into the particulars of people's lives that are often overlooked, but I need a little more plot to each story to satisfy me.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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