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Alison

GRANADA HILLS, CA, United States | Member Since 2012

15
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 143 ratings
  • 302 titles in library
  • 71 purchased in 2014
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  • Drop Dead Divas: Dixie Divas Mysteries, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Virginia Brown
    • Narrated By Karen Commins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (123)
    Story
    (124)

    In Dixie Divas, Trinket Truevine, her pal Bitty and their raucous diva friends in the historic small town of Holly Springs, Mississippi, solved the murder of Bitty's ex-senator husband, Phillip. Now, in Drop Dead Divas, the Divas are sleuthing again. Town bad girl Naomi Spencer has been accused of murdering her fiancé, drag-race champion Race Champion. Soon, Naomi turns up dead, too. Talk about a fly in the martini... Join the bawdy fun as Trinket, Bitty and the gang unravel another small-town mystery.

    Karen B. Jinks says: "Cute, loveable southern divas made me giggle"
    "I Couldn't Finish"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    People who enjoyed the first book.


    What could Virginia Brown have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Realistic characters, less focus on the dog.


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

    Great voice animation and southern accent.


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

    Boredom.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Optimist's Daughter

    • ABRIDGED (4 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Eudora Welty
    • Narrated By Eudora Welty
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (31)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (27)

    This story of a young woman's confrontation with death and her past is a poetic study of human relations.

    Teresa says: "Beautiful writing"
    "Beautiful Words, but the most boring story, EVER."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    A plot.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Something light and airy, to clear my head.


    What three words best describe Eudora Welty’s voice?

    Southern. Clacking. Slow.


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

    Very disappointed in this book.


    Any additional comments?

    I kept waiting for something exciting to happen, some twist or mystery. It was a very boring read.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Painter: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Peter Heller
    • Narrated By Mark Deakins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (198)
    Performance
    (180)
    Story
    (180)

    Jim Stegner has seen his share of violence and loss. Years ago he shot a man in a bar. His marriage disintegrated. He grieved the one thing he loved. In the wake of tragedy, Jim, a well-known expressionist painter, abandoned the art scene of Santa Fe to start fresh in the valleys of rural Colorado. Now he spends his days painting and fly-fishing, trying to find a way to live with the dark impulses that sometimes overtake him. He works with a lovely model. His paintings fetch excellent prices. But one afternoon, on a dirt road, Jim comes across a man beating a small horse, and a brutal encounter rips his quiet life wide open.

    Melinda says: "Still Waters Run Deep"
    "I Could Not Listen"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Peter Heller and/or Mark Deakins?

    Maybe


    What could Peter Heller have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Left out the senseless brutality of beating a horse.


    What three words best describe Mark Deakins’s voice?

    Good enough.


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

    Pain and anger.


    Any additional comments?

    I stopped listening about 1.5 hours in, because the author took forever to describe the torture and beating of a horse, and the horses reaction. It was awful, and I just couldn't listen.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Son

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Philipp Meyer
    • Narrated By Will Patton, Kate Mulgrew, Scott Shepherd, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1379)
    Performance
    (1229)
    Story
    (1251)

    Part epic of Texas, part classic coming-of-age story, part unflinching portrait of the bloody price of power, The Son is an utterly transporting novel that maps the legacy of violence in the American West through the lives of the McCulloughs, an ambitious family as resilient and dangerous as the land they claim. Spring, 1849: Eli McCullough is 13 years old when a marauding band of Comanches takes him captive. Brave and clever, Eli quickly adapts to life among the Comanches, learning their ways and waging war against their enemies, including white men - which complicates his sense of loyalty and understanding of who he is.

    Melinda says: "Five Stars for the Lone Star, The Son, & Meyer"
    "Rich and Satisfying!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Son in three words, what would they be?

    Complex. Nostalgic. Brutal.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Peter McCullough, because he agonized over his good fortune, verses the right way to live life on earth.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When Maria Garcia returned to the Ranch, and Peter fell in love with her. His journals were filled with sharp longing; their situation, emotions were raw and haunting.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Were it possible, yes.. but I enjoyed each different chapter, a different character and time frame, converging into the big picture.


    Any additional comments?

    It. Was. Amazing.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10196)
    Performance
    (9333)
    Story
    (9352)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "Great Narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about The Goldfinch? What did you like least?

    Great narration, very lovable and multi-dimensioned characters.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    Popchick!
    The friendship between Theo and Boris. The adept portrayal of them as very functional drug addicts.


    Which character – as performed by David Pittu – was your favorite?

    All of the Barbers.


    Could you see The Goldfinch being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    A series.


    Any additional comments?

    I felt the story was longer than needed, too much philosophical commentary.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Longbourn

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Jo Baker
    • Narrated By Emma Fielding
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (455)
    Performance
    (423)
    Story
    (422)

    In this irresistibly imagined belowstairs answer to Pride and Prejudice, the servants take center stage. Sarah, the orphaned housemaid, spends her days scrubbing the laundry, polishing the floors, and emptying the chamber pots for the Bennet household. But there is just as much romance, heartbreak, and intrigue downstairs at Longbourn as there is upstairs. When a mysterious new footman arrives, the orderly realm of the servants’ hall threatens to be completely, perhaps irrevocably, upended.

    MP says: "Extraordinary book (even w/o Pride & Prejudice)"
    "I couldn't finish"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about Longbourn?

    No real plot or intrigue. I listened to 10 chapters, yet wasn't hooked in to the story.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Jo Baker again?

    No.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Emma Fielding?

    She was fine.


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

    Disappointment.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Follow the River

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By James Alexander Thom
    • Narrated By David Drummond
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (359)
    Performance
    (305)
    Story
    (305)

    Mary Ingles was 23, happily married, and pregnant with her third child when Shawnee Indians invaded her peaceful Virginia settlement in 1755 and kidnapped her, leaving behind a bloody massacre. For months they held her captive. But nothing could imprison her spirit. With the rushing Ohio River as her guide, Mary Ingles walked one thousand miles through an untamed wilderness no white woman had ever seen.

    Marie says: "Amazing tale of survival"
    "A bit too painful..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    The story, perhaps. But the entire package, No.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of David Drummond?

    A woman.


    Do you think Follow the River needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No, it was a very complete depiction.


    Any additional comments?

    Written like a novel, it is in fact an historical account of a woman's capture and brave escape from the Choctaw Indians, circa 1752. I thought it was a VERY good story, interesting and captivating. I give it a three because the accurate depiction of her escape and sojourn back home was incredibly painful to read. My heart ached and I cried, and it went on Forever. Forever. She just kept suffering and it wore me down. I continued to read because I wanted her to get home safely, but it was torture for about five hours.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Dave Eggers
    • Narrated By Dion Graham
    Overall
    (304)
    Performance
    (205)
    Story
    (208)

    Dave Eggers scored a worldwide phenomenon with this memoir that topped national best-seller lists and has since become a staple for summer reading and book clubs. A compelling voice for Generation X, Eggers hererecounts his early 20s, caring for his younger brother after their parents’ unexpected deaths and his endeavors in a variety of media.

    Darwin8u says: "Parts I loved, Parts I hated but Playfully Kinetic"
    "Enough Already."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Teenagers, maybe young adults.


    What could Dave Eggers have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Stayed focused. Made Christophers' experience more believable.


    Any additional comments?

    I feel badly that this is a true story, heartbreaking is right. But I just don't believe the interplay between brothers.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Legion

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3672)
    Performance
    (3320)
    Story
    (3389)

    Stephen Leeds, AKA 'Legion,' is a man whose unique mental condition allows him to generate a multitude of personae: hallucinatory entities with a wide variety of personal characteristics and a vast array of highly specialized skills. As the story begins, Leeds and his 'aspects' are drawn into the search for the missing Balubal Razon, inventor of a camera whose astonishing properties could alter our understanding of human history and change the very structure of society.

    Joshua says: "The only flaw..."
    "Could not endure the first chapter."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Brandon Sanderson and/or Oliver Wyman?

    No.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Brandon Sanderson again?

    No.


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

    The performance was fine, the story was clumsy.


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

    Huge disappointment.


    Any additional comments?

    I could only listen for 30 minutes, had to delete the download.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The White Tiger: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Aravind Adiga
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1979)
    Performance
    (814)
    Story
    (811)

    Balram Halwai is a complicated man. Servant. Philosopher. Entrepreneur. Murderer. Balram tells us the terrible and transfixing story of how he came to be a success in life - having nothing but his own wits to help him along. Through Balram's eyes, we see India as we've never seen it before: the cockroaches and the call centers, the prostitutes and the worshippers, the water buffalo and, trapped in so many kinds of cages that escape is (almost) impossible, the white tiger.

    With a charisma as undeniable as it is unexpected, Balram teaches us that religion doesn't create morality and money doesn't solve every problem.

    Mark P. Furlong says: "Entertaining, thought-provoking, darkly funny"
    "It's a Wild Ride!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of The White Tiger to be better than the print version?

    Yes, the narration in authentic accents makes this a very engaging read, I felt transported to India.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The White Tiger?

    When the protagonist took the money and escaped his servant life. I wondered if he could actually pull it off, I thought he would be a servant for the rest of his life, but he surprised me.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No, it was very rich and worked perfectly for my 45 minute commute.


    Any additional comments?

    The narration really brought the story to life; I could feel, taste, smell, see and hear the various people and places.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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