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Sher from Provo

Utah | Member Since 2015

2287
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 330 reviews
  • 521 ratings
  • 794 titles in library
  • 26 purchased in 2018
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FOLLOWERS
317

  • Mockingjay: The Final Book of The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (37577)
    Performance
    (30323)
    Story
    (30578)

    Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena live, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge....

    Sumit G. says: "Conflicting Emotions"
    "A Warning for Our Time"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Katniss Everdean is a hero. I love this character. She is a survivor, but she survived with class. She kept her humanity intact in a crazy world. I am wondering how I would do under the same circumstances.

    I read Elie Weisel's must-read autobiography, "Night", just after I finished "Mockingjay". Weisel was a jewish teenager when he was taken by the Germans to Auschwitz. He doesn't know why he survived to tell the tale, but he did. The comparison of these two stories hit me hard, and I didn't know which was worse, the true story or the fiction. I think, as bad as Katniss had it, Elie Weisel had it worse. How can we treat other human beings so badly? It is way, way out of my ken, and yet, our society is edging closer and closer to that sort of thing every minute of every day.

    The Hunger Games trilogy is a warning to us to hold on to what we have, and most especially, hold on to our humanity.

    As always, Carolyn McCormick is an outstanding narrator.

    47 of 61 people found this review helpful
  • Free: Bob Honey Who Just Do Stuff

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Pappy Pariah
    • Narrated By Sean Penn, Frances McDormand, Ari Fliakos, and others
    Overall
    (3369)
    Performance
    (3060)
    Story
    (3061)

    By turns tender and terrifying, Bob Honey Who Just Do Stuff captures America on the verge of political upheaval in 2016 and introduces us to a man who just might be able to save us from the oncoming horror. Yes, Bob Honey - carnival carny, sewage specialist, and government operative, among other occupations - has spent years in preparation, crisscrossing the world in the employ of a mysterious government program that pays in small bills.

    agreenbuddha says: "Just friggin weird man..."
    "Horrible"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I didn’t make it too far before I realized I could not finish it. Really, it is horrible. Sorry I couldn’t give it a better rating.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Salem's Lot

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1935)
    Performance
    (904)
    Story
    (910)

    Stephen King's second novel, Salem's Lot, is the story of a mundane town under siege from the forces of darkness. Considered one of the most terrifying vampire novels ever written, it cunningly probes the shadows of the human heart and the insular evils of small-town America.

    Eileen says: "Classic King on audio - FINALLY"
    "Not his best"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I usually love Stephen King, but this is not his best. It lacked in so many areas that I don't know where to start. I did not care one bit about the characters, the "monsters" seemed way too unrealistic, the plot was weak, even the quality of the writing wasn't that great. He got all "James Jones" on us and started adding -ly to any old word to turn it into an adverb, and it got annoying in a big hurry. And the ending was horrible. I know that is King's weak spot anyway, but this was unbearable. There is only one King novel I disliked more than this one, but gratefully have forgotten its name. It had something to do with using people for batteries. Tommyknockers? No matter. I'll stick to the likes of the Dark Tower series, which I have loved so far, through the 5th book.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • From Here to Eternity

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By James Jones
    • Narrated By Elijah Alexander
    Overall
    (263)
    Performance
    (206)
    Story
    (208)

    Diamond Head, Hawaii, 1941. Pvt. Robert E. Lee Prewitt is a champion welterweight and a fine bugler. But when he refuses to join the company's boxing team, he gets "the treatment" that may break him or kill him. First Sgt. Milton Anthony Warden knows how to soldier better than almost anyone, yet he's risking his career to have an affair with the commanding officer's wife. Both Warden and Prewitt are bound by a common bond: the Army is their heart and blood...and, possibly, their death.

    aaron says: "Genius on Every Level"
    "Boring and tiresome!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I can't believe this author has been so successful. This is a poorly written book. It drags beyond belief, and he makes up his own adverbs by adding "-ly" to any imaginable word. It got so irritating that I could hardly finish. So why did I? I had heard that it is about the bombing of Pearl Harbor, but it took 3/4 of this big book to get to that part, and then it was mostly about collateral damage and little about the actual harbor. Then the rest of the book went back to dragging. The subject matter was mainly how drunk can you get, and how often, and how many times you can get laid. Such entertainment! The protagonist was supposed to be pining to be a bugler, but he did so little pining for that job I couldn't believe it. Being a musician myself, I know what it is to have the desire to play an instrument and to be frustrated in not being able to. No way did he care about his bugle. I think I care more about that lonely bugle than any of these characters. They just never went anywhere. Well, except to bed with each other. What disappointment. I could go on and on, but, unlike this book, I won't.

    The narrator was not my fave either. He mispronounced so many words that should have been obvious, or at least, if unfamiliar, he should have looked up. His normal reading voice was fine, but his characterizations were horrible, especially Stark. I wanted to choke him!

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Don Quixote

    • UNABRIDGED (39 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Miguel de Cervantes
    • Narrated By David Case
    Overall
    (98)
    Performance
    (45)
    Story
    (47)

    It's the classic adventure of a madman: the "renowned Don Quixote de la Mancha". He attacks windmills, believes a peasant girl to be a lady, and fancies that he is a knight-errant, dedicated to righting wrongs and rescuing damsels in distress.

    Amazon Customer says: "Get This Version: Absolutely the Best Narrator"
    "A True Classic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm glad I finally got around to reading this masterpiece. I'm not sure what I expected, but it isn't quite what I thought it would be. It is charming and full of surprises. It is actually a collection of stories told by various characters that Don Quixote meets on his journey of being a Knight Errant. He is as interesting a character as you are likely to find in literature of the time, or even since it was written back in 1605. I must add that the ending took me by surprise. I admit I wanted it to end differently, but really, how could it?

    I have a version that is partly in Spanish that I am now eager to read. I think I can handle it.

    I know narrator David Case (aka Frederick Davidson) is considered to be an acquired taste, but really, they just don't get any better than he is. His characterizations are without equal. If you haven't "acquired the taste," maybe now is the time to give him a try. This book would be a good place to start.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • I Am Malala: How One Girl Stood Up for Education and Changed the World

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Malala Yousafzai
    • Narrated By Archie Panjabi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7312)
    Performance
    (6572)
    Story
    (6558)

    When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala's miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York.

    Jan says: "So much more than expected..."
    "Amazing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is an amazing story told by an amazing young woman. It is true hat one person can change the world. Malala proves that!

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Up from Slavery

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Booker T. Washington
    • Narrated By Noah Waterman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1233)
    Performance
    (1088)
    Story
    (1084)

    Booker T. Washington fought his way out of slavery to become an educator, statesman, political shaper, and proponent of the "do-it-yourself" idea. In his autobiography, he describes his early life as a slave on a Virginia plantation, his steady rise during the Civil War, his struggle for education, his schooling at the Hampton Institute, and his years as founder and president of the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, which was devoted to helping minorities learn useful, marketable skills.

    Mickens says: "Reality Check!"
    "He overcame so much!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have nothing but the utmost respect for this man. I'm not sure if I would have had that kind of courage to keep going on in a similar circumstance. He did what so many of us hope to do with our lives-- make an impact on people's lives.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Deborah Blum
    • Narrated By Coleen Marlo
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1991)
    Performance
    (1453)
    Story
    (1442)

    In The Poisoner's Handbook, Blum draws from highly original research to track the fascinating, perilous days when a pair of forensic scientists began their trailblazing chemical detective work, fighting to end an era when untraceable poisons offered an easy path to the perfect crime.

    Aaron - Audible says: "CSI eat your heart out"
    "It's not a novel."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't know why I thought this was going to be a mystery novel. It is about mysteries but it is definitely not a novel. It is about the history of lethal poisonings since about 1820 or so, and how people learned to use them for nefarious purposes.

    It all started when science came up with ways to extract and mix chemicals for various reasons. Some intent was strictly for the good of others, such as trying to help people by drinking radium every day because of promises of improved health. Only after a certain accumulation of the poison within their bodies did they start to die off. Other concoctions were mixed up for the purpose of undetectable murder.

    During this period of time and into the 20th century, tests to discover the poison in a corpse became more and more sophisticated so that murder by poison was not as easy as it once was.

    And so much more. It was largely due to the work of two men, Norris and Gettler, that forensic toxicology became a respected form of helping to solve crimes. They should be honored for their work.

    In spite of this turning out not to be a novel, I was fascinated by it. So much went on that I never realized. I was horrified by many of the things I read about, but being a history buff, I was still interested in poison and its history. There is much to learn from this book. I think most people would enjoy reading it.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Handmaid's Tale

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Margaret Atwood
    • Narrated By Claire Danes
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26284)
    Performance
    (23954)
    Story
    (23957)

    Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead, serving in the household of the enigmatic Commander and his bitter wife. She may go out once a day to markets whose signs are now pictures because women are not allowed to read. She must pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, for in a time of declining birthrates her value lies in her fertility, and failure means exile to the dangerously polluted Colonies. Offred can remember a time when she lived with her husband and daughter and had a job, before she lost even her own name....

    Heather says: "A heartwrenching story read absolutely brilliantly"
    "Very dark and depressing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a dystopian novel that sort of has mankind reverting to puritanical values with a few twists. Because of all the pollutants in the environment, women are finding it harder and harder to carry babies to term. Even if they do, there is a high chance of the baby being malformed. Healthy children are taken from parents, a typical man and woman cannot live together, as women who have the physical possibility of bearing children are placed in isolated housing for special treatment.

    I think the narrator, Claire Bloom, could be very good, but there was not a lot of opportunity to really show what she could do since the whole tenor of the story is gloomy and doomy.

    It is a dark story that I was not quite ready for so soon after reading A Fine Balance, also a very dark story. Ok, ready for something uplifting.

    2 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Coraline

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman
    • Narrated By Neil Gaiman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3239)
    Performance
    (2292)
    Story
    (2297)

    In Coraline's family's new flat are twenty-one windows and fourteen doors. Thirteen of the doors open and close. The fourteenth is locked, and on the other side is only a brick wall, until the day Coraline unlocks the door to find a passage to another flat in another house just like her own.

    Jim "The Impatient" says: "A DEAD SPIDER THE SIZE OF A SMALL CAT"
    "A great moral to the story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I think this story is perhaps more apropos now than it was when first written. By that I mean that we tend to ignore each other in our society in favor of getting on our phones to find out what other, often less personal people are doing on social media or by just wasting time browsing around the internet. Perhaps it will take losing the things we hold dear before we can see the meaninglessness in what we tend to do with so much of our time. For Coraline, the false world she found herself in seemed at first like a better place. It was everything she thought she wanted until she realized the hollowness and meaninglessness of the "other mother". Life is too short to give such power to people and things that crowd out the real people and relationships that we will eventually realize are what and who we want in our lives.

    I am as a rule not in favor of authors reading their own books (oddly, they are rarely good readers), but Neil Gaiman does a pretty good job, other than the fact that he read incredibly slowly. Thank goodness I could turn the speed up a couple of notches to make it more pleasant to listen to.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Day of the Jackal

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Frederick Forsyth
    • Narrated By Simon Prebble
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3375)
    Performance
    (2912)
    Story
    (2894)

    One of the most celebrated thrillers ever written, The Day of the Jackal is the electrifying story of an anonymous Englishman who in, the spring of 1963, was hired by Colonel Marc Rodin, operations chief of the O.A.S., to assassinate General de Gaulle.

    Thomas Allen says: "Quite a chase!"
    "Disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was looking forward to a good thriller/suspense novel, but this one is too brutal and frankly pointless for my taste. Darn. I wanted to like it. Even Simon Prebble's narration couldn't save it for me. I made it half way and decided I didn't want to spend any more time on it.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful

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