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Fort Worth, TX, United States

  • 5 reviews
  • 8 ratings
  • 136 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014

  • The Future of Us

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Jay Asher, Carolyn Mackler
    • Narrated By Steven Kaplan, Mary Ellen Cravens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    It's 1996, and less than half of all American high-school students have ever used the Internet. Emma just got her first computer and an America Online CD-ROM. Josh is her best friend. They power up and log on - and discover themselves on Facebook, 15 years in the future. Everybody wonders what their Destiny will be. Josh and Emma are about to find out.

    Cheryl says: "Fascinating concept, entertaining story"
    "Fascinating concept, entertaining story"

    This was weirdly unbelievable, but a lot of fun to listen to. The basic idea is that a boy gives a girl a free AOL CD In 1996 and when she logs on, she finds herself looking at FaceBook 15 years into the future. She sees her own profile and believes that her future self is unhappy so she changes current decisions and then logs on again to see if her future is any better. Her friend Josh likes what his future looks like, so he keeps trying to stop Emma from changing things.

    The story was fun and unique. I really enjoyed it. One of my favorite scenes was when they read a Facebook comment that said something like "Looking at the planets....poor Pluto" and Josh says "What the hell happened to Pluto?" Funny.

    I bumped off one star for just a couple of quirks that weren't quite right. For example, in 1996, the GUI Internet was a little further developed worldwide than the AOL-only version in the book. The characters acted like the Internet was new. Also, there were a few times when the author led the characters toward unnatural decisions that I had a hard time swallowing. Nothing huge, just like when they realized they could see their futures, rather than diving into everything in the short online time that they had, they suddenly decide "Let's not look anymore today." It wasn't realistic. If you could see into the future and you're not sure if the web page will be there the next time you log on, are you going to just turn it off? It's not a huge thing, but enough that I couldn't justify a full five stars.

    I'd definitely recommend the book, even for adults who were around 15 years ago and remember the time period.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Shelter: A Mickey Bolitar Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Harlan Coben
    • Narrated By Nick Podehl
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Mickey Bolitar’s year can’t get much worse. After witnessing his father’s death and sending his mom to rehab, he’s forced to live with his estranged uncle Myron and switch high schools. A new school comes with new friends and new enemies, and lucky for Mickey, it also comes with a great new girlfriend, Ashley. For a while, it seems like Mickey’s train wreck of a life is finally improving - until Ashley vanishes without a trace. Unwilling to let another person walk out of his life, Mickey follows Ashley’s trail into a seedy underworld that reveals that this seemingly sweet, shy girl isn’t who she claimed to be.

    Ted says: "Flat,Dull, Sophomoric, Absurd... Unlikable"
    "Lacks feasibility and a solid plot"

    I didn't know that this was a spinoff from an adult series. Based on reviews, Harlan Coben is a talented and popular writer who decided to give YA a try. If Coben is as good as his fans indicate, it didn't show in Shelter. Perhaps he should have started with a standalone novel with a fresh storyline. This book was all over the place; the actions were unrealistic and even ridiculous in some places. Some of the characters like Spoon and Ema could have been likeable, but I didn't really get a chance to know them. The rest of the characters were absurd, even Uncle Myran, who apparently was from Coben's previous books. The storyline never passed the "who cares" test. Why did we care about saving Ashley? We never met her and only heard bad things about her. She got a few lines in the end and that's it. As for Mickey, he too could have been likeable if he wasn't so stupid. I mean really, you go to an old lady's house, try to break in and call out "Hello! Bat Lady!" His actions were forced and silly. "I tried to open the door but there was no doorknob." Huh?? Too many times he said "I didn't know what to do." Um...isn't that what the author is for? To tell the characters what to do? How can you NOT know what to do? Anyway, I apologize to Coben. I think he's probably a great writer. This story just wasn't good.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • On What Grounds

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Cleo Coyle
    • Narrated By Rebecca Gibel

    Clare Cosi used to manage the historic Village Blend coffeehouse…until she opted for quieter pastures and a more suburban life. But after ten years and a little friendly cajoling from the owner (a fresh pot of Jamaican Blue Mountain was all it took), she's back to the grind. With a sprawling rent-free apartment directly above the Village Blend, her cat Java by her side, and plenty of coffeehouse redecorating ideas, Clare is thrilled to return to work. Until she discovers the assistant manager unconscious in the back of the store, coffee grounds strewn everywhere.

    Cheryl says: "Good clean murder mystery"
    "Good clean murder mystery"

    I enjoyed the story. I learned a lot about coffe and craved it all the time while I listened to this book. I did not like the introduction of the ex husband into the plot. That just felt awkward. But I loved all the rest. Rebecca Gibel did a nice job narrating. She wasn't the greatest at male voices, but I guess that's hard to pull off when you're a woman. I do think it's a mistake narrators typically make. Women try to over-narrate men (by making them sound kind of dumb) and men try to use high pitched voices that make female characters sound like cartoons. It wasn't the worst male-voice impression I've ever heard. In fact, Gibell is one of the better narrators.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • A Stolen Life: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Jaycee Dugard
    • Narrated By Jaycee Dugard

    "In the summer of 1991 I was a normal kid. I did normal things. I had friends and a mother who loved me. I was just like you. Until the day my life was stolen. For eighteen years I was a prisoner. I was an object for someone to use and abuse. For eighteen years I was not allowed to speak my own name. I became a mother and was forced to be a sister. For eighteen years I survived an impossible situation. On August 26, 2009, I took my name back. My name is Jaycee Lee Dugard. I dont think of myself as a victim. I survived...."

    Daniel says: "Terrific"

    I wasn't sure how to rate this book. I hate to give the story a 5 star, because of course it was a horrible story. Unfortunately, that horror was real for poor Jaycee, who did a wonderful job writing and narrating this nightmare. To be honest, it was difficult to listen to, not because the story wasn't engaging, but because of what the child had been through. But I kept thinking, she had to live through it. She didn't have the option to turn it off just because it was unpleasant. Because of that, I stuck it out. Jaycee is a brave young woman to come out like this. I am glad she made the decision. To stand proud despite the tramatic cards dealt her. I hope she decides to become a full time writer, so she can write about happier things, stories she doesn't have to live through, books she can close when she feels the need.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Everwild: Skinjacker Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Neal Shusterman
    • Narrated By Nick Podehl
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Going against Mary Hightower's wishes, Nick, "the chocolate ogre" is slowly trying to reach every kid in Everlost to hand each and every one a coin, which will release them from Everlost. Mikey McGill and Allie have joined a band of skinjackers who have more of an impact on the living world then any other inhabitant of Everlost. Except Mikey can't skinjack and Allie can - and there is a very good reason.

    Allie is not actually dead.

    Kelli says: "great book"
    "Should have stopped at Everlost"

    I've been reading other reviews about this book, hundreds of them. Most of the reviews praise the book's brilliance. Did I even read the same book as these reviewers? I've read (or listened to) a handful of Shusterman's books. I gave them all five stars. He has quite an imagination. A good storyteller. That is why Everwild was such a huge disappointment. I liked Everlost but didn't really like the character of Mary, who was way too creepy for my taste. No problem since she was a villain and only appeared occasionally. This book had way too much Mary and not enough of the Nick and Allie who we'd grown so attached to in book 1. The points of view for this book were all over the place. The subplots were all over the place. I felt like I was the skinjacker. Allie and Nick were a disappointment. They were so strong and clear minded in Everlost; in Everwild, however, they were useless. I never understood the purpose of Milos. First he likes Allie, and then he likes Mary. It's like Shusterman didn't know himself who to hook him up with. Nick wasn't much better, vowing to destroy Mary even though he kind of, sort of loved her. Ugh. Halfway through, I still intended to give it a 3-star. But it just kept going downhill. In fact, the whole storyline went way past unbelievable and straight to ridiculous. Yes, I know it's fiction. But GOOD fiction can seem believable no matter how unlikely the situation. I held out, though, because I had high hopes that the ending would make up for my incessant boredom and irritation. Unfortunately, the ending was consistent with the rest of the book--confusing, erratic, and inconclusive. Everlost should have been a stand-alone novel, not a trilogy. I look forward to Shusterman's other books, but I don't think I can suffer through another skinjacker sequel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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