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Kate

Dedham, MA, United States | Member Since 2005

ratings
180
REVIEWS
20
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
5
HELPFUL VOTES
37

  • The Drowning Girl

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Caitlin R. Kiernan
    • Narrated By Suzy Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (223)
    Performance
    (202)
    Story
    (201)

    India Morgan Phelps - Imp to her friends - is schizophrenic. Struggling with her perceptions of reality, Imp must uncover the truth about her encounters with creatures out of myth - or from something far, far stranger....

    Diane says: "A Modern Haunting"
    "Brilliant, complex and not for the simple-minded"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Drowning Girl again? Why?

    Yes I think this was one of the most remarkable books I have ever read.


    What did you like best about this story?

    This is an honest book and one about profound vulnerability. It is beautifully written.


    Which character – as performed by Suzy Jackson – was your favorite?

    Imp


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    S
    E
    V
    E
    N


    Any additional comments?

    This is not a book for folks who lack compassion or are bigots when it comes to the mentally ill or lesbians. For anyone else, it is not a trivial book and stylistically it will not be everyone's cup of tea but it is one of the most remarkable books I have ever read.

    14 of 16 people found this review helpful
  • Tabula Rasa: Roman Empire Series, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Ruth Downie
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (20)

    The medicus Ruso and his wife, Tilla, are back in the borderlands of Britannia, this time helping to tend the builders of Hadrian's Great Wall. Having been forced to move off their land, the Britons are distinctly on edge. Then Ruso's recently arrived clerk, Candidus, goes missing. A native boy thinks he sees a body being hidden inside the wall's half-finished stonework, and a worrying rumor begins to spread. When soldiers ransack the nearby farms looking for Candidus, Tilla's tentative friendship with a local family turns to anger and disappointment.

    C. L. Ortiz says: "Love Downie as usual, but ANGRY with Vance"
    "Great historical mystery with wonderful dry humor"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The time period is not commonplace and the characters are charming.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Tabula Rasa?

    An unfortunate surgery.


    Which character – as performed by Simon Vance – was your favorite?

    Ruso


    Who was the most memorable character of Tabula Rasa and why?

    I always look forward to what Ruso and Tilla are up to.


    Any additional comments?

    Lovely mystery, characters and dry humor.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fool's Assassin: Book One of the Fitz and the Fool Trilogy

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Robin Hobb
    • Narrated By Elliot Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (72)
    Performance
    (64)
    Story
    (62)

    FitzChivalry - royal bastard and former king’s assassin - has left his life of intrigue behind. As far as the rest of the world knows, FitzChivalry Farseer is dead and buried. Masquerading as Tom Badgerlock, Fitz is now married to his childhood sweetheart, Molly, and leading the quiet life of a country squire. Though Fitz is haunted by the disappearance of the Fool, who did so much to shape Fitz into the man he has become, such private hurts are put aside in the business of daily life, at least until the appearance of menacing, pale-skinned strangers casts a sinister shadow over Fitz’s past...and his future.

    Momma Zion says: "Switching to Kindle version."
    "Excellent start for a new trilogy."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The Fool may be my favorite character of all time because he is so unique, lovable and profoundly moving. That being said, Fitz carries the story with his integrity and rich inner life. Bee is also fascinating and lovable.


    What does Elliot Hill bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Elliot Hill was a good choice and allowed me to listen to the book during every free moment when I could not read it. I found the accent for the Fool wrong and at that point switched over to the hardcover edition. I simply prefer Paul Boehmer's narration.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Please don't make a movie. Books are much better.


    Any additional comments?

    I have missed Fitz and the Fool a great deal and was so sad when I finished the Tawny Man series. I admit to a mild concern that this book would be a letdown. Instead, this novel exceeded my high expectations.

    I found the storytelling wonderful and the nearly 700 pages flew by. Robin Hobb is truly gifted at world building and creating intriguing plots. I fell in love with the new character Bee. I had the Audible edition to listen to but I succumbed to the lovely U.K. edition when I saw it in London at Loncon 3. I listened to the audio version while falling asleep, walking, & flying from London. I thought I could pace myself but I read it whenever I had a free moment. The narrator for the audio version is good but reading the story is better. I cannot wait for the next book to come out

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • It

    • UNABRIDGED (44 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Steven Weber
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4535)
    Performance
    (3268)
    Story
    (3293)

    They were just kids when they stumbled upon the horror of their hometown. Now, as adults, none of them can withstand the force that has drawn them all back to Derry, Maine, to face the nightmare without end, and the evil without a name.

    Parola138 says: "I thought I was desensitized"
    "The Library Police. It is too long/weak climax."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about It?

    I finished this because I was stubborn. Sections involving the children's storyline were good but overall the novel was too long for my tastes. I enjoyed "The Library Police" more and would recommend that instead of It. I was bothered by some of the grating racism of one of the "good" guys. The climax and followup scenes were not that believable.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Stephen King again?

    Maybe


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Steven Weber?

    Yes


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    King captures the nostalgia of childhood.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Seven Kinds of Hell: Fangborn, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Dana Cameron
    • Narrated By Kate Rudd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (108)
    Performance
    (99)
    Story
    (101)

    When archaeologist Zoe Miller’s cousin is abducted by a vicious Russian kidnapper, she must come to grips with a haunting secret. Unknown to even her closest friends, Zoe is not entirely human. She is a werewolf and a daughter of the "Fangborn", a hidden race of werewolves, vampires, and oracles. Zoe’s attempt to rescue her cousin leads her on a quest for artifacts - including Pandora’s Box, an object of world-ending power.

    Tracey says: "A beastly Lara-Croft-Lite series first"
    "Enjoyable start to a new series."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Seven Kinds of Hell in three words, what would they be?

    I enjoyed this novel. Zoe Miller is a likable protagonist. The story is fun, light and well done. I loved Cameron's colonial noir short stories and the Emma Fielding series. Paranormal is not my favorite genre but Cameron pulls this off and I liked the archaeology theme.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    No. The pathos in her voice should have been dialed down.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • In Bed with a Highlander

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Maya Banks
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1338)
    Performance
    (1221)
    Story
    (1233)

    Ewan McCabe, the eldest, is a warrior determined to vanquish his enemy. Now, with the time ripe for battle, his men are ready and Ewan is poised to take back what is his-until a blue-eyed, raven-haired temptress is thrust upon him. Mairin may be the salvation of Ewan's clan, but for a man who dreams only of revenge, matters of the heart are strange territory to conquer.

    marlene says: "Steamy as only a Maya Banks can be!!!"
    "Tired, derivative story. Dreadful narration."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Original plot and characters. A storyline that is not contrived.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    I listened to The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane. It had a very good balance of an original story and interesting characters. Howe has a nice writing style and Kellgren did a fine job as the narrator. There was even romance - one I liked.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The narrator was not up to the task of keeping in character. One minute she had a faux Scottish accent, the next a bland American one.


    What character would you cut from In Bed with a Highlander?

    The question is which one to keep in? I cannot think of any except for a secondary child character.


    Any additional comments?

    I rarely buy romances. I decided to try this one because it was on sale and had so many 5 star reviews. Why anyone would give this a 5 stars is beyond me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Fairy-Tale Detectives: The Sisters Grimm

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Michael Buckley
    • Narrated By L. J. Ganser
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (715)
    Performance
    (511)
    Story
    (524)

    The recently orphaned Sisters Grimm find out from their Granny, who they thought was dead, that they're descendents of the legendary Brothers Grimm. Now they must take over the family responsibility of being fairy tale detectives in a town where fairy tales are real. Their first case: a giant is destroying the town and it may have something to do with a boy named Jack and a certain famous beanstalk.

    Tina says: "Funny twists"
    "OK for kids"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    This is for kids but not so much for adults who enjoy the YA for straightforward storytelling, fun and sense of wonder.


    Has The Fairy-Tale Detectives turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No.


    Which character – as performed by L. J. Ganser – was your favorite?

    The narration was fine but no one character wowed me.


    Any additional comments?

    There are a number of YA books I enjoy relaxing with (most recently Allen Steele's Apollo's Outcasts which is not currently at Audible but worth reading). Alas, The Fairy-Tale Detectives cute but not the sort of YA that worked for me but I think kids may like it.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • A Dog Named Boo: How One Dog and One Woman Rescued Each Other - And the Lives They Transformed Along the Way

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Lisa Edwards
    • Narrated By Meredith Mitchell
    Overall
    (47)
    Performance
    (37)
    Story
    (39)

    The last thing Lisa Edwards needed was a new dog. But when she came across an abandoned litter on Halloween, her heart went out to the runt who walked into walls and couldn't steady his feet. Lisa - healing from past abuse and battling constant pain from a chronic medical condition - saw a bit of herself in little Boo. And when he snuggled, helpless, against her, she knew he was meant to be hers. The dunce of obedience class with poor eyesight and a clumsy gait, Boo was the least likely of heroes. Yet with his unflappable spirit and boundless love, Boo has changed countless lives through his work as a therapy dog.

    Pamela Dale Foster says: "Soothing, relaxing, inspirational"
    "Moving story but repetitive at times."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up A Dog Named Boo in three words, what would they be?

    A kind women loves her husband and dogs.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    A sensible and bittersweet ending.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    In general the theme of love and and the desire to work with the dogs as intelligent beings instead of mastering them as beasts.


    Any additional comments?

    This could have been a great book with a bit more editing. There were times when it was repetitive and would have been improved by some of the biographical information saved for a second book. I think Lisa Edwards and her husband Laurence are to be greatly admired for being so patient with Boo. I had never heard of cerebellar hypoplasia and it is amazing how well they did by Boo in giving him what he needed. While I knew that therapy dogs were good for people, I was amazed by some of the stories she related about how effective the dogs were.

    I recommend this book for people who are recovering from abusive childhoods. I also recommend this book for those who love dogs or helping people with disabilities

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • 1225 Christmas Tree Lane: Cedar Cove, Book 12

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Debbie Macomber
    • Narrated By Sandra Burr
    Overall
    (382)
    Performance
    (329)
    Story
    (331)

    Beth Morehouse expects this Christmas to be one of her best. Her small Christmas-tree farm is prospering, her daughters and her dogs are happy and well, and her new relationship with local vet Ted Reynolds is showing plenty of romantic promise. But... someone recently left a basket filled with puppies on her doorstep, puppies she’s determined to place in good homes. That’s complication number one. And number two is that her daughters Bailey and Sophie have invited their dad, Beth’s ex-husband, Kent, to Cedar Cove for Christmas.

    Anne Roberts says: "Confusing"
    "I would need a lobotomy to enjoy this."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about 1225 Christmas Tree Lane?

    It is saccharine and vapid,


    What could Debbie Macomber have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Not bothered to write it.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Drop the forced cheeriness. Performed it as camp.


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

    Amazement that such domestic shlock sells.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Ghost Story

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Peter Straub
    • Narrated By Buck Schirner
    Overall
    (283)
    Performance
    (259)
    Story
    (258)

    For four aging men in the terror-stricken town of Milburn, New York, an act inadvertently carried out in their youth has come back to haunt them. Now they are about to learn what happens to those who believe they can bury the past - and get away with murder. Peter Straub's classic best seller is a work of "superb horror" (Washington Post Book World) that, like any good ghost story, stands the test of time - and conjures our darkest fears and nightmares.

    Jaimie says: "Great Story! The Best of Peter Straub"
    "Good story. Cranked up the audio speed."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to another book narrated by Buck Schirner?

    Maybe


    Any additional comments?

    I can see why this is favorite book for many. It is intelligent and imaginative. The atmosphere is superb. I purchased a hardcopy of the book and read about 90% of it. I picked up the audio version because it was on sale and I was having a hard time finishing because of a busy schedule and for me, it was not quite a page-turner. I found the narrator to be to slow, so I sped up the reading speed on my iPod which worked out fine and glossed over some of the shortcoming of the narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Small Hand

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Susan Hill
    • Narrated By Cameron Stewart
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (38)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (36)

    Late one summer evening, antiquarian bookseller Adam Snow is returning from a client visit when he takes a wrong turn. He stumbles across a derelict Edwardian house, and compelled by curiosity, approaches the door. Standing before the entrance, he feels the unmistakable sensation of a small cold hand creeping into his own, ‘as if a child had taken hold of it’. At first he is merely puzzled by the odd incident but then begins to suffer attacks of fear and panic, and is visited by nightmares.

    Kate says: "Ranks right up there with The Haunting."
    "Ranks right up there with The Haunting."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What about Cameron Stewart’s performance did you like?

    Credible narration.


    Any additional comments?

    The Small hand is my favorite type of ghost story. It is not overly drawn-out or gory, simply a curious story with a pinch of the supernatural.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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