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Lesleigh

Devout reader. Teacher by trade, currently acting as executive assistant to the Centers of Attention, Harper and Quinn. Lucky wife and mom currently living as an expat in Shanghai, China.

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6
REVIEWS
6
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  • Joseph Anton: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Salman Rushdie
    • Narrated By Sam Dastor, Salman Rushdie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (206)
    Performance
    (180)
    Story
    (175)

    On February 14, 1989, Valentine's Day, Salman Rushdie was telephoned by a BBC journalist and told that he had been "sentenced to death" by the Ayatollah Khomeini. For the first time he heard the word fatwa. His crime? To have written a novel called The Satanic Verses, which was accused of being "against Islam, the Prophet and the Quran". So begins the extraordinary story of how a writer was forced underground, moving from house to house, with the constant presence of a police protection team.

    Lynn says: "Informative, Timely"
    "A must-read if you love Rushdie's work"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I fell in love with Rushdie's work when I was a 17-year-old freshman at college. My most difficult class was a junior level course called Modern Studies which required me to read 13 novels in 12 weeks. The first on the long list was Rushdie's Haroun and the Sea of Stories. I fell instantly and completely in love. That novel remains on my high atop my list of favorite (and most recommended) books of all-time, and I even fought to include it when I became a teacher myself, many years later.

    I devoured Rushdie's bibliography over a number of years. As a teacher, I also researched his personal story and biographical materials. I was fascinated by him as a man, and continued to read his essays and writings as he continued to write.

    This novel finally lifted the veil and gave the the story of Rushdie's fatwa from his own mouth. And it is just as interesting as I thought it would be. History buffs and lovers of literature will find the story compelling. Those interested in reading about the struggles of artists under the oppression of religious regimes for free speech would be equally engaged. However, it is worth mentioning that I do believe my background in Rushdie's work helped to ground me as I listen to this title. I am not sure how the experience would differ if I had not had that prior knowledge.

    All together, this book is one I continue to recommend to friends who read non-fiction titles.

    And, while you are at it, go select Haroun and the Sea of Stories and Midnight's Children as well. Rushdie does not disappoint.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Racketeer

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By J.D. Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3871)
    Performance
    (3268)
    Story
    (3250)

    Given the importance of what they do, and the controversies that often surround them, and the violent people they sometimes confront, it is remarkable that in the history of this country only four active federal judges have been murdered. Judge Raymond Fawcett has just become number five.... Nothing is as it seems and everything’s fair game in this wickedly clever new novel from John Grisham, the undisputed master of the legal thriller.

    Ed says: "Grisham Light"
    "I wanted to like it. Really."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I am really not sure. The book seemed to have two different stories, though they did intertwine sloppily at the end, and neither of them was very compelling. The first half of the novel was summarized in the titles information, and the second half seemed fairly implausible.Still, the characters were interesting and kept me listening. And I did wonder how the two stories would come together at the end. I am guilty of comparing Grisham to himself, and he is just not up to par here. Which he himself admits in the postscript when he says that he did little to no research of this story (maybe why it seems so implausible as a story.)


    Would you ever listen to anything by John Grisham again?

    Probably. I am a sucker for a "beach read" when I need escapist literature, and I still think that Grisham has talent in that arena. I am hoping he finds some fire and inspiration to drive him to write yet another thrilling story.


    Did J.D. Jackson do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Yes, I did think the narrator did a good job. Nothing spectacular, but compelling enough to keep me listening when I was nodding off in some sections.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Frustration? Anticipation with little payout? Ennui? Yeah, one of those.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stories I Only Tell My Friends: An Autobiography

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Rob Lowe
    • Narrated By Rob Lowe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3206)
    Performance
    (2519)
    Story
    (2511)

    A teen idol at 15, an international icon and founder of the Brat Pack at 20, and one of Hollywood's top stars to this day, Rob Lowe chronicles his experiences. Never mean-spirited or salacious, Lowe delivers unexpected glimpses into his successes, disappointments, relationships, and one-of-a-kind encounters with people who shaped our world over the last 25 years. These stories are as entertaining as they are unforgettable.

    N. Belle says: "Great Book and Great Story"
    "Remarkable stories and unexpected depth"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Stories I Only Tell My Friends rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the most surprising listens I have had. I have long been a fan of Rob Lowe's work, and knew a little of his biography, but this book had me surprised even when listening to stories I thought I already knew. Having Lowe read the audiobook is fabulous, not simply because his voice is so compelling, but because it really does feel as if he is telling the listener, his friend, stories from his life and work.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The content? I know it sounds silly, but Lowe has many poignant stories that concern other famous persons and historical figures; stories that did not might have made the news on the surface level, but Lowe uncovers a human back story that is compelling.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    The book has both highs and lows. I did giggle a few times- especially at tales of meeting Martin Sheen for the first time and filming The Outsiders- and many moments compelled a more serious emotional reaction.


    Any additional comments?

    A quick listen that had me eating more when it was over. Well-read and compelling. The title can easily be listened to in sections if needed.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Gone Girl: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Gillian Flynn
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan, Kirby Heyborne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (15637)
    Performance
    (13869)
    Story
    (13903)

    It is Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick's clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn't doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media - as well as Amy's fiercely doting parents - the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he's definitely bitter - but is he really a killer?

    Teddy says: "Demented, twisted, sick and I loved it!"
    "Victim of overhype, but a solid listen"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, I would. But I would be careful to tell them that it is not for those who like conventional storylines, and that people sometimes are upset by the ending.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Gone Girl?

    Oh, I can think of two. The beginning of Part Two, where the point-of-view switch jars the listener and forces her to question assumptions made previously. And the hotly debated ending of the novel.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    The duel narrator model worked well for this title, but I thought that both narrators were lacking in passion in some portions of the story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • David Sedaris Live at Carnegie Hall

    • ABRIDGED (1 hr and 14 mins)
    • By David Sedaris
    • Narrated By David Sedaris
    Overall
    (1156)
    Performance
    (278)
    Story
    (276)

    If you are driving, pull over. If you are at work, close your door, unless you don't mind your colleagues seeing you doubled over, in tears, on your office floor. With this recording, taped before a delirious sold out audience at Carnegie Hall, you are there as David Sedaris performs new stories from his upcoming book. A parrot who mimics an ice maker, lovers quarreling over a rubber hand, and a Santa Claus who moonlights from his job as bishop of Turkey, the cast of characters is like no other.

    Richard says: "Material that exists on other books."
    "I woke my husband with my laughter."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up David Sedaris Live at Carnegie Hall in three words, what would they be?

    Hilariously woven stories


    What was one of the most memorable moments of David Sedaris Live at Carnegie Hall?

    Oh, the story about Sedaris' day of work being retold at the dinner party in Paris. I won't spoil it for others, but the essay had my husband and I discussing what constituted a "hand" for a few days.


    What about David Sedaris’s performance did you like?

    His tone and inflection, along with his comedic timing. When listening, I felt as if I were sitting with Sedaris myself.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I actually woke my husband the first night I listened while trying to muffle my laughter. He instantly put the title on his "to read" list.


    Any additional comments?

    A wonderful re-listen- the second time is as funny as the first! And a good choice if you want an appetizer of Sedaris before setting down to devour one of his more lengthy books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • When You Are Engulfed in Flames

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By David Sedaris
    • Narrated By David Sedaris
    Overall
    (3944)
    Performance
    (1388)
    Story
    (1385)

    Once again, David Sedaris brings together a collection of essays so uproariously funny and profoundly moving that his legions of fans will fall for him all over again. He tests the limits of love when Hugh lances a boil from his backside, and pushes the boundaries of laziness when, finding the water shut off in his house in Normandy, he looks to the water in a vase of fresh cut flowers to fill the coffee machine.

    Kelley says: "Smokin'"
    "A solid listen"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does When You Are Engulfed in Flames rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Sedaris is wonderful as usual, and he brings his stories to life as he reads. A good choice when you need something to pick you up from a funk. If you have not read Sedaris before, know that his humor can sometimes come from serious places, so not for those looking for simply light fare.


    Have you listened to any of David Sedaris’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This title is not my favorite by him, but it had me laughing and smiling along as I listened. I might have looked like an idiot, giggling to myself as I ordered coffee in the mornings.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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