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R. Pontiflet

retired writer

Fairfield, CA USA | Member Since 2014

152
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 91 reviews
  • 113 ratings
  • 195 titles in library
  • 10 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
22
FOLLOWERS
43

  • When You Dance with the Devil

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Gwynne Forster
    • Narrated By Susan Spain
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (29)
    Story
    (28)

    Fannie Johnson has seen darn near all the world has to offer at her Thank the Lord Boarding House. It is home to a variety of interesting people who regard each other as family. One such is Sarah Jolene Tilman, who is ready to strike out on her own. In stark contrast, Richard Peterson has done more than his share of living and is looking for simpler pleasures. Under Fannie's watchful eye, each will embark on a path of self-exploration and find that life is nothing if not a wildly unpredictable journey.

    Dee says: "I did not want this book to end..."
    "Plenty of Suspense"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story held my interest and offered enough suspense to be a "page turner" ...The central character is very likable and I cared what happened to her. Who her father turned out to be was a good surprise... Interesting story.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • They're Watching

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Gregg Hurwitz
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (549)
    Performance
    (436)
    Story
    (437)

    Patrick Davis is a man with troubles. First his Hollywood dreams crumble, then his storybook marriage hits a snag. Finally, DVDs start being delivered to his house – DVDs which show that someone is watching him and his wife, that the two of them are being stalked and recorded by cameras hidden around and within their house. Then the e-mails start, and someone offers to fix everything, to take the mess his life has become and make it all right. Patrick figures it's the offer of a lifetime.

    Melinda says: "Buzz-z-z-z-z-z-z"
    "Skip This One!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The premise of this story could have been good, not great, but the fluff and the ridiculous twists and turned made it into what Melinda of Utah described as a " long ridiculous rat maze." I wish I had listened to Melinda and passed this one by.

    At one point the main character wondered if he was in a real life version of "The Game" starring Michael Douglas. There were way too many far fetched and unbelievable things that happened. Yes, we suspend our disbelief and accept the entertainment value of a story. But here you must not only suspend your disbelief but taken for granted, insulted, and thought of as stupid and gullible. For me the worst was asking me to believe that a company can come into your home (undercover) and plant 10 or 15 spy cameras and other devices in your walls and everywhere else that you won't notice something out of place or that there won't be a trace of the intrusion! Okay, I know it's possible, but then the story turns around and tells you that after the homeowners are given a "map" of where all the devices are located and ordered to remove them, that one wire was so long that it wrapped 15 feet around walls and by the time the homeowners had all of the devices out, their house was in shambles and the walls were ripped back to the studs! At that point, I knew I was not going to like the rest of story.

    The first 20 (or so) chapters of the story held my interest really well. After that it was a struggle getting through the rest... at the end I didn't care what happened.

    I listened because I wanted to be able to write this review. Before writing this, I took a look at what other reviewers had said. I cringed because it seems that I didn't really pay attention and probably skipped Melinda's review altogether. Well, I tell you now don't skip her review, but most of all, I recommend skipping this book.

    I agree with one reviewer who said that Scott Brick did his best with what he had to work with, and Brick is one of my favorites. But throughout this book, Brick sounded a little whinny! He sounded like the whine of a child who keeps repeating themselves and asking for something he/she has already been denied. Maybe that's because the story kept repeating itself.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mean Streak

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Sandra Brown
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (962)
    Performance
    (840)
    Story
    (853)

    Dr. Emory Charbonneau, a pediatrician and marathon runner, disappears on a mountain road in North Carolina. By the time her husband Jeff, miffed over a recent argument, reports her missing, the trail has grown cold. Literally. Fog and ice encapsulate the mountainous wilderness and paralyze the search for her. While police suspect Jeff of "instant divorce," Emory, suffering from an unexplained head injury, regains consciousness and finds herself the captive of a man whose violent past is so dark that he won't even tell her his name.

    KC in Lexington says: "Ms. Brown's book far exceeds usual quality."
    "A Good Listen!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is my first Sandra Brown read/listen. I was thoroughly entertained! The story had a good bit of mystery. A man helps and injured woman who is at first unconscious but when she comes awake you don't know if the man is being kind and helpful to the injured woman out of the goodness of his heart or does he have ulterior motives. He won't tell her anything about himself, not even his name and the fog has the roads socked-in so he can't drive her to the hospital. Is he glad about the fog? is he wanted by the police? It is difficult to write a review without giving away too much... I understand that this writer previously wrote romance novels. I liked how she was able to weave in some romantic scenes which was hot and sexy but kept the scenes brief. I thought the ending was great for the story... there was mystery right up to the very end.

    Jonathan Davis is on my short list of favorite narrators..... he did an wonderful job with the "hill-billy" characters.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Girl on the Train: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Paula Hawkins
    • Narrated By Clare Corbett, Louise Brealey, India Fisher
    Overall
    (2089)
    Performance
    (1765)
    Story
    (1769)

    Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. "Jess and Jason," she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost. And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good? Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.

    Paula says: "Mind Boggling Thrilling Mystery! Don't Miss It!"
    "Rear Window With A Twist"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story reminded me a little bit of Rear Window with James Stewart and Grace Kelly. Except here the girl sits on a train and circumstances provides her the opportunity to see her favorite couple at a particular time every day and she weaves a story as she envisions their lives to be. The story has a psychological twist as well because it seems that the girl on the train is a rip-rowing alcoholic who gets up every morning, dresses for work and get on the train like she's going to work even though she has been fired from her job for a few months. The "whodunit" outcome was unexpected. But it shouldn't have been because the author provided enough clues earlier on and throughout the story. An interesting and attention holding story... Recommend

    The narrators did an excellent job.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Associate

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Phillip Margolin
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (84)
    Performance
    (30)
    Story
    (33)

    Daniel Ames is an associate at Reed, Briggs, Portland's most prestigious law firm, earning more money than he ever imagined possible. When a charismatic civil litigator sues the firm's biggest client for manufacturing a drug that he claims causes unspeakable birth defects, Daniel is certain the claim has no merit. But as he begins to investigate, his world comes tumbling down around him.

    Marian says: "A fast-paced, fun read"
    "Great Mystery With Court Room Drama"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a great mystery with a good plot. The main character is a young, scared, naïve lawyer who makes silly mistakes but it is the mistakes that drives the story along and develops into a very entertaining listen. Would a real world lawyer do some of the things he did? Most likely not!... but he is scared and fear caused him to do a couple of really stupid things. Just when he thought that he was going to finally get the information that's needed to clear his name only to find out that he's made another mistake -- the reader can see it coming, but it's okay because the story has enough meat on the bones to hold interest. The development of the main characters is done very well that you care about what's going to happen next... how will he clear his name, how will all the threads in the story be weaved into a coherent conclusion. Margolin did a beautiful job of weaving a story inside of a story which is done in one long flashback.

    Scott Brick provided an excellent performance. He did not over perform in any way as he is known to sometimes do.... He is one of my favorites and I think that he hit the mark just right with this performance.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Enemy

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Lee Child
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2805)
    Performance
    (2010)
    Story
    (2010)

    New Year's Day, 1990. The Berlin Wall is coming down. The world is changing. And in a North Carolina "hot-sheets" motel, a two-star general is found dead. His briefcase is missing. Nobody knows what was in it. Within minutes Jack Reacher has his orders: Control the situation. But this situation can't be controlled.

    Corinne says: "Made me really admire Reacher"
    "The Enemy Within"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Another very good Reacher story by Lee Child. This one is very different from most others in the series. Reacher's usual bone crushing fights only happened once which gets him in really hot water because he is still in the military. He has reached the rank of Major and he is an MP with a chest full of medals, even a Silver Star. Nevertheless, he breaks military protocols to find out who is ordering military men, and one military wife, murdered. The story tells how devious Reacher and his female investigator had to be in order to investigate the higher ups in the military hierarchy. We are introduced to his brother Joe and his mother. Reacher and Joe goes to visit their mother in Paris. We are told a lot about his mother's past as a young girl which is surprising and totally unexpected. This story is very convoluted with many minor players, but it ranks high on my Reacher list because it held my complete attention for every minute. A Good Read.... Recommend.

    As usual, Dick Hill provides a superb performance.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The President's Pilot

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Robert Gandt
    • Narrated By Thomas Block
    Overall
    (345)
    Performance
    (311)
    Story
    (309)

    A year and a half into her first term as President of the United States, Libby Paulsen is in a world of trouble. Her controversial agenda has placed her in a doomsday clash with a right wing cabal led by an enigmatic Air Force general. The conspirators will stop at nothing - including assassination - to remove Libby Paulsen from office. When the cabal targets Air Force One, Libby's Presidency - and her life - rest in the hands of a maverick pilot named Pete Brand, a man with whom the President shares a long-smoldering secret.

    Matthew says: "Gives a whole new meaning to Snakes on a Plane!"
    "Narrator's Abilities An Injustice to Story!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story reminded me a little bit of Air Force One with Harrison Ford, except the threats were from inside the White House. I think the story was okay albeit on the light side, but entertaining. A different narrator probably could have given a much better performance. Block's performance/narration was too flat for most of the book. This story had lots of backstabbing between White House staff and the military. As I said, a better, more agile narrator would have elevated the story to a possible 4 or 5 star.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • 24 Hours

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Greg Iles
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (428)
    Performance
    (300)
    Story
    (301)

    24 Hours begins with the perfect family...on the perfect day...about to become trapped in the perfect crime.

    Will Jennings is a successful young doctor in Jackson, Mississippi, with his whole life ahead of him. He has a thriving practice, a beautiful wife, and a young daughter he loves beyond measure.

    Suzn F says: "Exciting Book, so well read"
    "A Very Good Story; Excellent Narrator!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is my first read by Greg Iles and I loved it! The story hooked me from the first paragraph and I couldn't put it down. The story was so intense that there was not a good place to pause or stop listening. I needed to know what was going to happen next. The plot is old but presented in a new and refreshing way. There were edge of seat and nail biting moments from beginning until the very end. Each twist and turn of the story were not telegraphed, so you were always guessing and scared for the mom and dad, and the little girl. I was not disappointed with the ending. In fact the ending was spectacular. It showed the extremes a parent will go to in order to save their child.

    I like thrillers that are lean of characters so it is not complicated by having to keep too many characters sorted out. The story moves forward at all times and the roles of the minor characters helped to facilitate the movement of the story. The main character and villain is Joe. He is evil but his cold-blooded evilness is counter-balanced somewhat by big "kinda slow" Huey. The little girl and Huey were my favorite characters. But in the end, the father became the hero. I like that the Greg Iles wrote the little girl as smart, sensible and clever. She was able to help herself in some ways.

    For me, Dick Hill is the voice of Lee Child's character Jack Reacher. Nevertheless in this story, Dick's voice became an ensemble of different voices. I did realize until after I had finished the story that Dick Hill was the narrator. Dick Hill took his talent of narrating and the performance of this novel to a higher level. A very talented narrator. Highly Recommend

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Sinners & Saints

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Victoria Christopher Murray, ReShonda Tate Billingsley
    • Narrated By Patricia R. Floyd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (138)
    Performance
    (122)
    Story
    (128)

    Award-winning authors Victoria Christopher Murray and ReShonda Tate Billingsley are both beloved for their strong female leads and juicy plotting. In Sinners & Saints, Murray and Billingsley join forces to tell a tale packed with drama, scandal, and redemption. Jasmine Bush and Rachel Adams both want their husbands to be elected president of the National Baptist Association, and they’re willing to use plenty of low-down tricks to win. But when another woman joins the fray, she proves more devious than either of them could imagine.

    Amazon Customer says: "WONDERFUL - FABULOUS - OVER THE TOP"
    "Devious Divas!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It's a low-down dirty shame the depths that the "saints" of the church will sink to in order to get what they want. The divas' deviousness is unlimited in their fight to become the First Lady of the National Baptist Association.

    Yes, this novel is a "hot mess" but entertaining and enjoyable. If you are looking for something that's not too deep, something that will give you a few good laughs, this novel is a good investment. I have read a few of Victoria Murray's novels and I have enjoyed them. This novel, I believe, was a bit more entertaining for me because it was my first time encountering Rachel Adams and Cecilia King. It was fun learning about them.

    Of course, the performance by the fabulous Patricia Floyd was stellar!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Suspect

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Robert Crais
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4504)
    Performance
    (4008)
    Story
    (4009)

    LAPD cop Scott James is not doing so well, not since a shocking nighttime assault by unidentified men killed his partner, Stephanie, nearly killed him, and left him enraged, ashamed, and ready to explode. He is unfit for duty - until he meets his new partner. Maggie is not doing so well, either. The German shepherd survived three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan sniffing explosives before she lost her handler to an IED and sniper attack, and her PTSD is as bad as Scott’s. They are each other’s last chance.

    Jacqueline says: "Gripping Page Turner!!"
    "A Well Written Mystery~Great Narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was my first Robert Crais read and expect that I will be looking for more of his novels. I thought that MacLeod Andrews provided a great performance but will be following another reviewer's recommendation about narrators of other books by Crais.

    I truly enjoyed this mystery about murder, post traumatic stress disorder, and the training of a K9 Team. Maggie is the dog who knows what it means to live in a "Pack." James is the severely injured, nearly killed, policeman who eventually learns to live in a Pack. The story grabs you by your collar and does not let go until the end, and then you want to read more! I especially liked how Robert Crais told us what Maggie was thinking and how he weaved the two view points together. I would not call this "a story about a dog" but a story about the development of love between a dog and a man with a murder mystery as the vehicle. It's a satisfying story. Recommend...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Jack Reacher: One Shot: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Lee Child
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (323)
    Performance
    (293)
    Story
    (292)

    Six shots. Five dead. One heartland city thrown into a state of terror. But within hours the cops have it solved: a slam-dunk case. Except for one thing. The accused man says: You got the wrong guy. Then he says: Get Reacher for me. And sure enough, from the world he lives in - no phone, no address, no commitments - ex–military investigator Jack Reacher is coming. In Lee Child’s astonishing new thriller, Reacher’s arrival will change everything.

    Mark says: "The book is better than the movie (surprised?)"
    "Get Reacher For Me!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was my first introduction to the Reacher novels. I had read the Reader's Digest abridged version about 7 years ago and when I saw that audible had the unabridged version, I had to get it because the story had stayed with me and wanted to know more about it.

    This storyline is good... six shots fired and five people are dead but the target is only one. The story is somewhat complex and involved but Reacher unravels the complexity. Reacher uses his instincts, experience and military investigative training to get to the bottom of the who and why of this story.

    The accused asked for Reacher because he knows that Reacher will not stop until the case is solved and the villain brought to justice. Reacher and the accused know each other because they were in military at the same time for a brief period. However, Reacher is not a friend of the accused. He thinks the accused is guilty but the accused sister continually begs him to help her brother. As usual, the story develops in a way that tweeks Reacher's instincts.

    I have read several of the Reacher novels. I have purposefully not read those which were not narrated by Dick Hill. To me, Dick Hill is the voice of Jack Reacher and yes, I can tell his voice is older in the latest novels but I can overlook because he is still very, very good... His performance is still among the very best I've heard and I have listened to many novels... Highly Recommend

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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