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Etienne

33 year-old pharmacist, organic chemist and musician.

Coaticook, QC, Canada | Member Since 2011

21
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 19 reviews
  • 47 ratings
  • 202 titles in library
  • 32 purchased in 2014
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  • The Caine Mutiny

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Herman Wouk
    • Narrated By Kevin Pariseau
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (987)
    Performance
    (858)
    Story
    (860)

    Having inspired a classic film and Broadway play, The Caine Mutiny is Herman Wouk's boldly dramatic, brilliantly entertaining novel of life—and mutiny—on a Navy warship in the Pacific theater. It was immediately embraced upon its original publication as one of the first serious works of American fiction to grapple with the moral complexities and the human consequences of the Second World War. In the intervening half century, this gripping story has become a perennial favorite, selling millions throughout the world, and claiming the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

    James says: "Even Better than the Movie"
    "The finest of the finest"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Most probably the best narration I have ever had the chance to experience. Of one of the greatest novels ever written.

    15 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • The Pale House: Gregor Reinhardt, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Luke McCallin
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (36)
    Story
    (34)

    German intelligence officer Captain Gregor Reinhardt has just been reassigned to the Feldjaegerkorps - a new branch of the military police with far-reaching powers. His position separates him from the friends and allies he has made in the last two years. And he needs them now more than ever. While retreating through Yugoslavia with the rest of the army, Reinhardt witnesses a massacre of civilians by the dreaded Ustaše - only to discover that there is more to the incident than anyone believes.

    john says: "Excellent picture of the Balkans during Nazi occup"
    "A new star among historical novelists?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Mr Luke McCallin has given a new life to the Nazi historical novel genre (predictable and badly ageing). The Pale House will hook you with its in-your-face realism and challenging intrigue. Unsettling dark details are often but unceremoniously flashed throughout the narrative until the reader becomes used to it, giving the story a haunting "noir" atmosphere. Gregor Reinhardt follows confusing leads into a murder investigation as the camera follows him through what quickly evolves into a living, monstrous character in istelf : Sarajevo, 1945.

    Contrary to what I've read elsewhere, I do not think it is necessary to read The Man from Berlin before this sequel. The writing is much more confident, the mood more cristallized and the understanding much more deeper than before. This painting of Sarajevo in 1945 is a beautiful work of art for people with an appreciative sense of the unique and the genial.

    I must admit I was deeply impressed with The Pale House. 4 stars well deserved (5 stars are reserved for Classics on my own personal scale!).

    I must give five stars to Mr. John Lee, who somehow managed to narrate The Pale House with the distinctively German feel and Prussian formality this English-language text commands. What a tour-de-force!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Plum Island

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Nelson DeMille
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2730)
    Performance
    (1999)
    Story
    (1989)

    Wounded in the line of duty, NYPD homicide cop John Corey is convalescing in rural eastern Long Island when an attractive young couple he knows is found shot to death on the family patio. The victims were biologists at Plum Island, a research site rumored to be an incubator for germ warfare. Suddenly, a local double murder takes on shattering global implications - and thrusts Corey and two extraordinary women into a dangerous search for the secret of Plum Island....

    DERALD says: "Great on par with" LION'S GAME""
    "A classic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have never, ever, laughed out loud this much while reading a book. I laughed when I first read the paper version in 2003 and then again a few years later when I read it for the second time.

    Are jokes still funny the third time around? When Scott Brick's narrating Plum Island, they are.

    I read Plum Island a grand total of four times over the course of ten years. It is THE novel I periodically go back to pump some humor back into my life.

    Murder, bugs, pirates, a cynical retired cop making stupid sexist comments... this novel has it all!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Playing for Pizza: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Christopher Evan Welch
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (675)
    Performance
    (150)
    Story
    (154)

    Rick Dockery was the third-string quarterback for the Cleveland Browns. In a championship game, to the surprise and dismay of everyone, Rick actually got into the game and then provided what was arguably the worst single performance in the history of the NFL. Overnight, he became a national laughingstock and, of course, was immediately cut by the Browns and shunned by all other teams. But against enormous odds, Arnie finally locates another team that will have him: the mighty Panthers of Parma, Italy.

    Patti says: "Give Him A Break!"
    "Endearing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the perfect novel to read under the sade of a tree on a warm, lazy summer day. You should time things so the last few chapters are read during sunset and the book ends when the sun is gone.

    It is that kind of story : very light yet not shallow, delicious and touching. This short novel stayed on my mind for much longer than I expected.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Man from Berlin: Gregor Reinhardt, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Luke McCallin
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (69)
    Performance
    (64)
    Story
    (64)

    In war-torn Yugoslavia, a beautiful young filmmaker and photographer - a veritable hero to her people - and a German officer have been brutally murdered. Assigned to the case is military intelligence officer Captain Gregor Reinhardt. Already haunted by his wartime actions and the mistakes he's made off the battlefield, he soon finds that his investigation may be more than just a murder, and that the late Yugoslavian heroine may have been much more brilliant - and treacherous - than anyone knew.

    Booklover says: "Fabulous narration, excellent writing"
    "Solid 1st novel of WWII Nazi officer in Sarajevo"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Very good first novel by this author. Read it. Here's why :

    What attracted me to this book are the few but positive reviews and -- most importantly -- the fact that the story takes place in Sarajevo in 1943. It is an unusual (exotic?) combination of time and place for a novel about a murder investigation. I find many of the modern attempts at publishing historical novels end up featuring bland/overused stories disguised as something new, missing yet another opportunity to tell us what it was like during those days.

    The Man From Berlin did not fufill my apprehensions : it was entertaining, original, fascinating and un-pretentious. The narrator did a very good job of speaking with just a touch of a German accent and his intonation fit the style. I learned a lot about the sad and complex history of the peoples of the Balkans. For instance I learned that Sarajevo, today the capital city of Bosnia & Herzegovina, was forced to be included in the short-lived Nazi puppet-state called "Independant State of Croatia" and that the Croat pro-Nazi party (the Ustaše) was in charge. A significant number of ethnic Croats were enrolled in German SS divisions made sure Germany's politics were carried out locally. While many atrocities were commited, the author wisely chose to mention it clearly and not dwell emotionally on the subject. The Nazis are favorite villains in fiction and I applaud Mr. McCallin for not feeding the trolls in this work. The subject of Jews cannot be avoided and the author did a very graceful job at casting an era-appropriate view of Hitler's most known ethnic policies.

    There are many bad historical novels out there, and quite a few ordinary ones too. The Man from Berlin was a gamble for me. I will definitely be following this author in the future.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Stalin Epigram: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Robert Littell
    • Narrated By John Lee, Anne Flosnik
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (72)
    Performance
    (21)
    Story
    (20)

    The Stalin Epigram is a masterful rendering of the life of Osip Mandelstam, one of Russia's greatest poets of the 20th century. His heroic protest against the Stalin regime---particularly his outspoken criticism of the collectivization that drove millions of Russian peasants to starvation---finally reached its apex in 1934. When he composed a searing indictment of Stalin in a 16-line poem, secretly passed from person to person through recitation, the poet was arrested.

    Brian says: "A reaction, not a review: Brilliant"
    "An authentic work of Art"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I bought this book in the hope to get a feel of how it was like to be living in Moscow during the Great Purge. Never had I hoped to find such a gem.

    Reading 'The Stalin Epigram' over the course of three or four weeks, slowly, savouring it, was on of those experiences that left a mark in my mind and in my soul. It cristallized my understanding of the Soviet dream and how it skidded out of control under Stalin's regime. The sights, the sounds, the smells and, above all, the fear of this era are beautifully and intelligently put down on paper often with a disconcerting economy of words. It left me convinced the author is portraying the truth (or as close as it gets) of what life in the Soviet Union was like during those dreadful, crazy times.

    As the book revolves around the art of poetry, the narrative features many different instances where symbolism is delicately disguised and once I learned to look for it, I begun appreciating the novel in a whole new different way. For this reason and many others, I know I will read it again, which is something I try to do as little as I can (since there are too many books and life it too short). I know to look for things I have missed the first time.

    This is a sad, sad story. However it must be told to the whole world that this happened. I applaud and I thank Mr. Littell for his powerful yet humble effort at portraying the life of the poet Mandelstam who, like 20 million other intellectuals, workers, peasants, bureaucrats, children, elderly etc. became crushed under Stalin's fist.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Child 44

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Tom Rob Smith
    • Narrated By Dennis Boutsikaris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1835)
    Performance
    (713)
    Story
    (712)

    It is a society that is, officially, a paradise. Superior to the decadent West, Stalin's Soviet Union is a haven for its citizens, providing for all of their needs: education, health care, security. In exchange, all that is required is their hard work, and their loyalty and faith to the Soviet State. But now a murderer is on the loose.

    Melvin says: "Terror from all sides."
    "USSR during the 1950s for modern Westerners"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I went as far as 6 hours into this book before I decided had enough. While some historical details and settings are accurate (as far as I know, being interested in the subject of the USSR during and after Stalin), the sterotypes portrayed in the novel are so boring and the main characters are completely un-believable.

    Picture an MGB officer who's been denunciated by someone under the chain of command in order to get a promotion after said agent is found guilty of being a spy and shot. Now picture this same MGB officer pondering whether or not he should try to convince his superiors he did nothing wrong. Let's accept the fact he neither gets shot on the spot, nor gets sent in exile to a camp in Siberia (for some reason). Instead he gets demoted and is forced to join the local militia in an industrial city in the Urals. Upon moving into the city, he starts questioning an official state report concerning the murder of a young teenager and decides to re-open the investigation on his own. When his boss finds out, he proceed to warn not to do any harm to his reputation or that of the men under his command or else he'll kill him. This isn't Harry Bosch ladies and gentlemen, this is Soviet Russia right after the passing of Stalin.

    And that's when I stopped reading. The characters and what they touch/who they talk with are so blatantly Westernized it's laughable. I can only imagine the ex-MGB officer fleeing from his old co-workers in a ZIL limousine stolen from a PolitBuro member, dodging in between the statues of Josef Stalin and the endless queues of grim Soviet citizens waiting in front of a state-owned grocery store for a piece of bread or a few drops of cooking oil while supersonic Tupolev bombers fly in formation over the Kremlin to attack the rebel agent on specific orders of the Secretary General of the Party.

    If you are looking for good USSR historical fiction, look elsewhere.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Doctor Sleep: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Will Patton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7186)
    Performance
    (6661)
    Story
    (6677)

    Stephen King returns to the characters and territory of one of his most popular novels ever, The Shining, in this instantly riveting novel about the now middle-aged Dan Torrance (the boy protagonist of The Shining) and the very special 12-year-old girl he must save from a tribe of murderous paranormals. This is an epic war between good and evil, a gory, glorious story that will thrill the millions of hyper-devoted fans of The Shining and wildly satisfy anyone new to the territory of this icon in the King canon.

    D says: "The sequel to the book; not the movie"
    "The side story is actually the main story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book, about the adult Dan Torrance using his shining ability to meet a person and then fighting off a horde of evil "shiners", is actually more -- a LOT more -- about his process of drinking, hitting the bottom of the barrell and then coming off through the Alcoholic Anonymous.

    What makes this story special we have a glimpse of King's positive story with the Alcoholic Anonymous organization. The author poured himself (no bad pun intended here I swear) into this side story and told it like only a drinker who went through hell and then came out bruised and scarred can. It was an eerily personal tale from S.K., especially when reading the very last scene involving someone who dies after having been hit by a speeding car (driven by a drunk driver). I was personally touched by Dan Torrance's long journey to recovery following years of drinking. For that reasonI give 4 stars.

    Hadn't it been for that and had it been only about the tale of the True Knot, I probably would have given 3. It felt like the King had to write about Dan Torrance (which he did wonderfully) but decided at the last second he should also be fighting monsters.

    I'm sure King is still capable of something completely new, very profound and very different from what he's ever written. I'm quite convinced (and I hope) it's what's coming next.

    Nevertheless, Doctor Sleep is, as always, beautifully written. The man could write for pages about some random person sitting at the table drinking coffee and reading tje papers and it'd STILL be fascinating to read.

    The narrator wasn't bad, but I wish they'd chosen another one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Running Blind: Jack Reacher, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Lee Child
    • Narrated By Jonathan McClain
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1394)
    Performance
    (1239)
    Story
    (1231)

    Across the country women are being murdered by a killer who leaves no evidence, no fatal wounds, no signs of struggle, and no clues to a motive. They are, truly, perfect crimes. In fact, the only thing that links the victims is the man they all knew: Jack Reacher.

    Debbie says: "Not My Favorite Reacher..."
    "Horrible."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It was a pain to listen to. I still have 4 hours of listening to go and I don't want to listen anymore. On top of a passable storyline, this may be the poorest narration I've ever heard. Full of exaggerations and skewed facts (like acetone described as a thick liquid... it's less viscous than water), I felt stupid for even keeping on listening to it for so long.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Black Box: Harry Bosch, Book 18

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Michael McConnohie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2099)
    Performance
    (1780)
    Story
    (1764)

    In a case that spans 20 years, Harry Bosch links the bullet from a recent crime to a file from 1992, the killing of a young female photographer during the L.A. riots. Harry originally investigated the murder, but it was then handed off to the Riot Crimes Task Force and never solved. Now Bosch's ballistics match indicates that her death was not random violence, but something more personal, and connected to a deeper intrigue. Like an investigator combing through the wreckage after a plane crash, Bosch searches for the "black box", the one piece of evidence that will pull the case together.

    Amazon Customer says: "Disappointing"
    "Worst narrator ever in the Bosch series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'll add my voice to the hundreds of others : Who on Earth made the decision to have that book read by such an inept narrator??!

    I want my money back. I barely made it to the end, and by then I was counting the minutes left. I NEVER would have thought I'd make such a critic of a Bosch novel... I read them all on paper and then I bought all the audiobooks.

    We ALL want Len Cariou back. Please hear the fans, we are the ones buying the books and paying for the product. We have a say!

    Etienne Dauphin, Coaticook, QC

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Stieg Larsson
    • Narrated By Saul Reichlin
    Overall
    (1862)
    Performance
    (921)
    Story
    (940)

    Forty years ago, Harriet Vanger disappeared from a family gathering. Her body was never found, yet her uncle is convinced it was murder - and that the killer is a member of his own family. He employs journalist Mikael Blomkvist and the tattooed, truculent computer hacker Lisbeth Salander to investigate. When the pair link Harriet's disappearance to a number of grotesque murders from forty years ago, they begin to unravel a dark and appalling family history.

    Joe says: "worthwhile"
    "Good characters, excellent narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What a great duet of main characters. I just love the setting - Sweden - a country we don't hear enough of. The story is interesting in itself. What's better is the atmosphere, the intrigue and the characters. The narrator does an impressive job too.
    5 stars well deserved, and I'm buying the whole series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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