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ratings
921
REVIEWS
154
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
222
HELPFUL VOTES
715

  • The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie: Highland Pleasures, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Jennifer Ashley
    • Narrated By Angela Dawe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1466)
    Performance
    (1333)
    Story
    (1335)

    It was whispered all through London society that he was a murderer, that he'd spent his youth in an asylum and was not to be trusted - especially with a lady. Any woman caught in his presence was immediately ruined. Yet Beth found herself inexorably drawn to the Scottish lord whose hint of a brogue wrapped around her like silk and whose touch could draw her into a world of ecstasy.

    Lupdilup says: "FANTASTIC BOOK, NICELLY PERFORMED."
    "What a Fascinatingly Unique Hero"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The plot was typical Victorian romance. But the hero was fascinating. He was institutionalized most of his childhood, and today would have been labeled autistic. At the same time he was the classically good looking and brilliant hero. The heroine had a great sense of humor and chattered mindlessly whenever she was nervous. All of which was lost on the hero. Yet somehow they made the perfect couple. They made the book. Truly a joy to get to know. The narrator was OK. She handled the heroine well, but wasn't quite up to all the Scottish male characters.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Declaring Spinsterhood

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Jamie Lynn Braziel
    • Narrated By Johanna Parker
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (105)
    Performance
    (98)
    Story
    (98)

    Emma Bailey is fed up with the dating scene, and if she hears her mother nag one more time about getting married…well, she’s had it, and she wants everyone to know it. In a moment of clarity (or insanity?), she announces to the world that she will never marry. No husband and no kids; no worries about diapers, driving lessons, or divorce. Her friends are there for her, but they’re also involved in their own lives and loves, so off she goes into a world of casual dating. But what happens when the avowed spinster, the woman who has supposedly tucked her heart into a safe little space, suddenly realizes that her best friend Brian means more to her?

    Guiselle says: "Juvenile and poorly written"
    "Terribly Unlikeable Characters"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Johanna Parker is a fantastic narrator and has narrated several exceptional books. She must not have read this book before narrating it. No one could read this twice.

    The plot hinges on a declaration of spinsterhood by the main character. Thus the title. And she does "declare" it at lunch one Sunday. Then the book continues on exactly as before. Besides providing a few lines of dialog, the book totally ignores what was supposed to be the primary hook of the plot line.

    The mother is emotionally abusive to the daughter. The father is one of those characters we are supposed to see as an upstanding moral Christian. Instead he is a mysogonist who thinks if his daughter would only carry a gun and find a man to guide her, no matter how big a tool the guy is, she would be worthy of his love. No one could be raised by these parents and emerge undamaged. And while the daughter gets angry at them, we are still suppose to believe they are good people worthy of the daughter's love. After all they are Christian, go to church every Sunday and the dad is a preacher. That must mean they are "good." Two words. Jim Jones.

    On a blind date her loving mother made for her, her drunk date makes a sloppy attempt to grope and kiss her in a public place. Even though her dad was also a cop, she is totally helpless against the drunk groper. Her family response? Not -- take a self defense class. No. It is get a conceal and carry license so the next time your mother sets you up on a date with a drunk lech, you can blow his head off. This alone makes this book a great argument for gun control.

    I could not finish the book. There could be no acceptable happy ending. And I was pretty sure the only satisfying ending, her parents getting killed in a violent shoot out, wasn't in the cards.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Without Regret

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By R. L. Mathewson
    • Narrated By Stella Bloom
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (62)
    Performance
    (57)
    Story
    (57)

    Chris Williams is used to making sacrifices. For years he's done his duty by his family and his calling as he awaited the one person that was meant for him. When she finally came into his life, she was nothing like the woman he'd expected. Instead of being the warrior ready to help him protect his family and the humans under his care he got.....

    Angel Claire says: "Don't waste your credit!!!"
    "Expanded Vocabulary Needed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really like this author. I thought her Neighbors From Hell series was very funny. With polish she could rank with Molly Harper or Janet Evanovich. The first book in this series was pretty good. BUT she has the habit of finding a phrase, usually a term of endearment, and then overuses it to death. In this book the overused phrase was "little mate". It was so overused I found myself waiting for it, then cringing every time I heard it. In most of her other books, while her overuse was annoying I could manage it. In this book though, I was totally overwhelmed. It didn't help that the main characters were totally unlikeable. I couldn't finish this book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Halfway to the Grave: Night Huntress, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Jeaniene Frost
    • Narrated By Tavia Gilbert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5340)
    Performance
    (3681)
    Story
    (3697)

    Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father—the one responsible for ruining her mother's life. Then she's captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unlikely partnership. In exchange for help finding her father, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her battle reflexes are as sharp as his fangs. She's amazed she doesn't end up as his dinner…are there actually good vampires?

    Stephenie says: "Great series. Worth every credit."
    "Bones' Voice is Just Wrong"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I started this as an audiobook then finished it on my Kindle. It was a much better book to read than listen to. The narrator was fine except when she spoke as Bones. She made him sound like Eliza Doolittle's father in the movie My Fair Lady. Except the voice was two octaves higher and Bones must have been on crack. There was absolutely nothing "sexy-vampirish" about him. I couldn't buy the building romance because he sounded like her Cockney grandfather, or great-grandfather. He was an old vampire, but a young man.

    I trust that future books in the series explain how Cat's half-vampire bloodline affects her. Could she stand full sun or could she only come out on cloudy days in the daytime? But the book didn't capture my attention for long enough that I will go further in the series.

    I don't recommend this book, but it wasn't terrible, just mediocre. If you are tempted to read it in audio format - don't. I can't honestly say how much the narrator affected my opinion of the book. If I never attempted the audio version I might have enjoyed it more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Captain Jack's Woman: The Bastion Club Novels

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Stephanie Laurens
    • Narrated By McCallister Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (82)
    Performance
    (77)
    Story
    (76)

    They meet in a clash of swords, drenched in the moonlight of Britain's rugged eastern coast: Captain Jack, his handsome features etched in silver and shadow, his powerful physique compelling "Kit" Cranmer to surrender. He is her dream lover come vividly alive, and his command of the smuggling gang is absolute. His all-knowing gaze penetrates her disguise as the male leader of a rival gang with frightening ease, and his "punishment" with kisses leaves her maidenly modesty in tatters.

    Marian says: "FINALLY!! Captain Jack's Woman"
    "At least there is a plot"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is not a particularly well written book. However, I happen to think Ms. Lauren's is a better writer than many of her contemporaries and I gather those who determine what constitutes a good romance novel and what constitutes a poor romance novel disagree with me. Only one of her books is consistently rated highly by critics. And it wasn't this book, which is one of her earlier ventures as she moved on from writing Harlequin Regency clones.

    But this book is saved by the same thing that saves many of Ms. Lauren's more readable books - there is a plot. It may be far fetched and it may be implausible, but there is a story beyond just the back and forth between two people trying to figure out if they hate each other or love each other. So many books in this genre are about nothing but the relationship, so if the relationship isn't plausible to the reader or if one of the characters isn't particularly sympathetic then the book has absolutely nothing else to fall back on.

    I give Ms. Lauren's credit. This book starts a story arc that carries through another 9 or 10 novels in this particular series, and bleeds into her Cynster and Bride series as well. The plot never overshadows the love story and many times it should be emphasized more than it is. But it is always there, usually in the background, ready to remind the reader that there is more to the story and helping the author avoid dwelling too long on the romance at any given time.

    I thought the narrator did a good job.

    If you read any enjoyed other Lauren's novels, especially the Bastion Club series, then you will enjoy this.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Desperate Duchesses

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Eloisa James
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (337)
    Performance
    (249)
    Story
    (245)

    Welcome to a world of reckless sensuality and glittering sophistication, of dangerously handsome gentlemen and young ladies longing to gain a title, of games played for high stakes, including - on occasion - a lady's virtue. A marquess's sheltered only daughter, Lady Roberta St. Giles, falls in love with a man she glimpses across a crowded ballroom: a duke, a game player of consummate skill, a notorious rakehell who shows no interest in marriage, until he lays eyes on Roberta.

    Michelle says: "Excellent start to a series!"
    "Fluffy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My first Eloisa James. Probably my last. Not bad, just very predictable and not that interesting. It is the epitome of what critics find most appalling about the genre. I don't see anything wrong with reading escapist fantasy. But if this book is anything to go by, Ms. James has several contemporaries who write escapist fantasy far better than she does.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Dark Prince: Author's Cut Special Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Christine Feehan
    • Narrated By Abby Craden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (575)
    Performance
    (453)
    Story
    (461)

    A telepathic hunter of serial killers, Raven Whitney helps to catch some of the most depraved criminals. But her work keeps her from getting close to others, and has drained her body and spirit. In need of rest and rejuvenation, she embarks for a vacation far from home. Mikhail Dubrinsky is the prince of the Carpathians, the powerful leader of a wise and secret ancient race that thrives in the night. From the moment they meet, Raven and Mikhail are helpless to resist the desire that sparks between them. But just as fate unexpectedly brings these life mates together, malevolent forces threaten to destroy them.

    Cam says: "not able to go beyond the 1st of the 3 sections"
    "It was a dark and stormy night ..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I think this is the book that Snoopy spent so many years typing out as he sat on top of his dog house.

    On the old SCTV series, the actor Joe Flaherty used to play a cheesy vampire character named Count Floyd, who spent most of his time trying to convince the audience that something totally silly was actually quite "scarrrrrry" and wiggling his eyebrows. I think the author had Count Floyd in mind when she created these characters. If she tried to make the book sound scary, it might disguise the fact that it was silly.

    Unfortunately it doesn't work this way. Making the narrator speak slowly and ponderously doesn't help either.

    Silly book. I didn't finish it.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Him: Him Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Carey Heywood
    • Narrated By Lucy Rivers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (124)
    Performance
    (109)
    Story
    (111)

    Sarah Miller hasn't been home in seven years. She thought she could stay away forever. If it wasn't for her big brother's wedding, that is. Part of her even feels silly for staying away this long. It's not like anyone even knew what happened. Well, except for him. That guy. The one she compared all others to. The one who set the bar so high no other guy after him could even compete. The one who made her feel like anything was possible. The one she thought she would never be good enough for. The one she spent the last seven years trying to forget.

    Lulu says: "First Chapter says it all"
    "First Chapter says it all"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This entire novel could be told in no more than five sentences. And that is exactly what this author does. She retells the plot over and over and over again. She alternates between the characters currently and when they were in high school. Unfortunately, while she uses different words (sometimes,) the chapters that cover past events repeat themselves, could have been stated once up front, then never repeated again.

    Just like no matter how many times you tell a lie, it doesn't make it true, no matter how many times an author simply repeats herself, it doesn't make a plot.

    Needless to say, I found this to be one of the most boring books I have attempted to read lately. I could not finish it and do not recommend it.

    The most amazing thing though is I understand readers can also be subjected to a second book, that evidently tells the exact same non-plot but from the man's perspective. I've seen lots of so-called novels written by so-called authors that seem to sell, even though there is absolutely no plot. But it is something of a hat trick if Heywood can actually stretch absolutely nothing into two novels. Will readers really buy the second book just because the title changes from Him to Her (talk about original) and there is a cute girl on the cover instead of a cute guy?



    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Royal Escape

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Georgette Heyer
    • Narrated By Cornelius Garrett
    Overall
    (36)
    Performance
    (21)
    Story
    (20)

    Dispossessed of crown and kingdom, crushed and routed at the Battle of Worcester, the young Charles II is forced to flee for his life. Out of the heat of battle, the outlaw king and his tiny party must try to escape to France.

    W.Denis says: "The Great Escape"
    "More of a 17th Century Travelogue than a Novel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It is hard for me to make too many negative comments about a Heyer novel. And I knew what to expect when I started this book. As every reviewer stated, there was very little plot and the tension one would expect in a story about a fugitive attempting to escape from certain death, was definitely lacking. Charles II on the run for his life seemed to approach the world and his predicament with the same joie de vivre and humor as the 19th century courtiers in her Regency comedies of manners. It was obvious that Heyer found him a very sympathetic character and considered his adversaries as simpletons. It was in some ways one of her most "classist" novels, and that is saying a lot.

    All of that said though, it is still a well written book and she managed to stretch out a six week adventure in rural England with a predetermined ending into a readable and lengthy book. I know that Heyer has a reputation as a stickler for accuracy in historical detail, but I have no idea how much of this story is true, beyond the battle itself, the king, Wilmot and the fact that they did eventually escape to France. But she certainly presented a plausible and believable tale of what very well might have happened.

    I usually enjoy Cornelius Garrett's narration on Heyer novels. But he always has to make at least one character have a very annoying lisp. He did it in this book as well, and I found it even more annoying than usual.

    I still recommend the book. But go into it with your eyes open. This does not have the plot, pace or conclusion of other Heyer books, whether her romances, mysteries or other historical fiction.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Black Moth

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Georgette Heyer
    • Narrated By Julian Rhind-Tutt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (65)
    Performance
    (59)
    Story
    (59)

    When the dashing Jack Carstares is unfairly accused of cheating at cards, he leaves the country in disgrace. Returning some years later disguised as a highwayman, his reappearance heralds a dramatic chain of events that includes a Duke, a damsel, a duel, and not one, but two kidnappings. Written when she was just 17, The Black Moth was Heyer’s first novel, but it bears many of the hallmarks of her later romances, being vivid, witty, and peppered with historical insight.

    Carol says: "Heyer's First Book--Melodrama in Spades"
    "Published When Heyer Was Just Seventeen!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you read this book and keep in mind that Heyer was 17 when it was published, which means she was probably 16 when it was written, you must consider it a masterpiece. It is not one of her best books, it is far more melodramatic than her later work. But in it you see the earliest example of her genius. It is a fully formed novel, with a fairly complex plot, multiple well developed characters, and complex relationships. In her later work, her intelligent, witty, humorous and sparkling dialog is unmatched. And we get numerous glimpses of it in The Black Moth.

    Her attention to detail and her obvious knowledge of the styles, manners, customs and general history of the mid-18th century was astounding. A schoolgirl may have been expected to have a good knowledge of the government and wars of that time, but Heyer knew details about fashion, manners, actual people and custom that would have required extensive research, especially in the pre-Internet days of the early 20th century.

    I read These Old Shades and Devil's Cub prior to reading The Black Moth, so I had a firm impression of the Duke of Avon's character. (He has a different Dukedom in the Black Moth). But those books also offered enough of the back story of the duke that I knew what to expect when I read The Black Moth. But I was surprised at just what an excellent job Heyer did of portraying the villain. He was indescribably evil and wonderfully fascinating. And she had the good sense to make her hero just as wicked and wonderful in his own way as the villain. So many times a great villain overshadows a wimpy hero and it is hard to understand why the heroine chose the good guy instead of the bad guy. In this book, the "good" guy was just "bad" enough, he was equally intriguing.

    The narration was great as well.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Our Tempestuous Day: A History of Regency England

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Carolly Erickson
    • Narrated By Simon Prebble
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    The tumult and opulence of England’s Regency era burst from the pages in this work of literary nonfiction by acclaimed author Carolly Erickson. When dementia forces King George III to vacate his throne, the kingdom slips into a decade marked with excess, scandal, and riots. King George has suffered bouts of mental instability before, but in 1810 he shows no signs of recovering. Public and government business halts as word of his condition leaks out. Hoping to control the crisis, Parliament appoints the king’s unpopular son Prince George IV as Regent or caretaker.

    Lulu says: "User Friendly, But Not too Lightweight"
    "User Friendly, But Not too Lightweight"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is not a scholarly historical piece. The author spends too much time telling us how the regent "feels" and writes as though she was a witness to King George's mental deterioration. But it presents a great snapshot of history during a very specific decade in a way that is easy to follow, yet still has enough fact and detail that most readers can walk away learning something new about the time period. And while the book spends a great deal of time on the celebrities and main events of the decade, Waterloo, Napoleon, Byron and the Prince Regent, it also provides detail on "celebrities" of the time that are not household names today and also talks about events that occurred beyond those that are covered in a English history textbook. And through the writings of actual eyewitnesses of the period - regular people - we get a better idea of the day-to-day lives of those who lived through the period that were not poets, generals or royals.

    If you are looking for a broad overview of this time, a book that is understandable to a reader without a degree in English history, this is a good book for you. And as usual, Simon Prebble's narration makes it fun to listen to.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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