This book was frustrating and yet the story was told in such a way, I could not stop listening. It was frustrating in that I wanted to scream to the characters, "Get out of this relationship NOW!" It was also sad in that this is not fiction. On the other hand, it is also hopeful. The author eventually sees the light and goes on to a successful life although it is a life without her beloved sister, Amy.
I felt background story leading up to Amy's murder was exceptional - full of detail and reflection by the author. I was, however, disappointed in that the book's description said it also dealt with understanding why these abusive relationships were tolerated so long. After Amy's murder, it just seemed to stop abruptly. I felt the author came up a little short in this area. I would have liked more insight into her mindset. She talked about wanting acceptance from men all through the book and clearly she blames her father, but I would have liked more analysis of this area at the end. I think it would be helpful for young women who could potentially end up in abusive relationships to see the abuser for what they are and to get out before things progress to something serious.
All in all, this was a great listen. The narrator is excellent and I believe that can make all the difference when listening to a book verse reading it.
The sex in this book is not enough to warrant all the hype about the novel. This is one of the most poorly written books I have ever listened to or read. It reads like something a high school student might write wishing to shock the reader! I wish I had started counting the "oh my", "holy s*#%" and "holy f@#*" comments just to satisfy my curiosity as to how much these "literary" phrases were used! Not only was the writing sophomoric, it was clearly written by a much older person. The main characters engage in email conversations (complete with the headers and salutations read out completely - really?) People who graduated from college in 2011, as the main character did, DO NOT have conversations through email - they text! Also, I don't think there is a recent college graduate on the planet that went through four years of college without their own computer - please! This author is clearly way out of touch. Even the sex could have been more imaginative.
I thought the performance was very poor. The narrator made Anna sound like a Valley Girl ditz. The narration was so slow it drove me crazy at first. Then I discovered that with my new Andriod app, you can adjust the speed. I turned it up to 1.5 and it actually sounded normal!
I had heard this was a great book, but it did not live up to the hype. I felt like the story was just wandering and the ending was just okay. On top of that the narrator used the same voice (old man like) for characters that were not supposed to be aging because of the magic of the circus. I found it confusing at times. The concept for the book is fresh, but it just didn't excite me much.
He has a great reading voice, but he is clearly too old to be narrating for young characters.
Not really. I found myself wishing it was over instead of wishing it would never end.
At first, I wasn't sure I liked the reading pattern of Jeannette Walls, but soon it became apparent that it contributed to defining the main character of Lily. I soon felt swept up in the story and couldn't wait to listen to more. The American southwest and an era I knew little about came alive in vivid color, smells, and so much more. This was a great listen.
The only thing I liked about this book was that I learned a lot about Frank Lloyd Wright and his work. Unfortunately, he comes across as a modern day U.S. Congressman with his "I do what I want" attitude about life and especially women. Frank's women all come across as whiney and manipulative. I also did not like that the book is told from the last wife forward. At times it was difficult to follow. This was complicated by the footnotes being read in the text giving the book as feel of backtracking even more. While this footnote information was generally educational, it disrupted the flow of the book. I could barely finish this listen and wouldn't except that I needed something to entertain me on a really long road trip! Don't bother!
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The story is haunting and makes you think about the profound impact a single day or event or friendship can have in our lives. The relationships between Larry and Silas, the races, and life in the late 70s/early 80s and today make the story. On top of a beautifully written book, the narration is some the best I've heard - a pleasure on every level.
I love history and politics, but this novel just beats it up in places - too much! It is to the point that at times it detracts from the story. Since this is a trilogy, I understand why it ends so abruptly with minimal wrap up, but it seems there was little climatic action in the plot. I did learn a lot about World War I. Unfortunately, this read like a novelized history book.
Anna Quindlen has an amazing way with words. The greatest joy in listening to this book was her prose. The story is described so well, you truly feel for the characters as though you were going through the experience. It is, however, unbelievably sad. Be warned!
Terrific story, learned a lot about South Africa and you can see it with the words, excellent narrator! I highly recommend this listen!
This book just never seemed to really get going. It was a though the author was trying to make a point, but never got around to making it clear. The worst part was the narrator. She talked so slow and emphasized ever punctuation mark. It was like having your first grade teacher read to the class. I could hardly stand it at first. This might be a better read than a listen. I would not bother downloading it.
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