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Debra Garfinkle

author of books for teens and children

ratings
153
REVIEWS
39
FOLLOWING
10
FOLLOWERS
8
HELPFUL VOTES
78

  • Argo: How the CIA and Hollywood Pulled Off the Most Audacious Rescue in History

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Antonio Mendez, Matt Baglio
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (364)
    Performance
    (322)
    Story
    (325)

    On November 4, 1979, Iranian militants stormed the American embassy in Tehran and captured dozens of American hostages, sparking a 444-day ordeal and a quake in global politics still reverberating today. But there's a little-known footnote to the crisis: six Americans escaped. And a midlevel agent named Antonio Mendez devised an ingenious yet incredibly risky plan to rescue them. Armed with foreign film visas, Mendez and an unlikely team of CIA agents and Hollywood insiders traveled to Tehran....

    Minta says: "I listened to this twice in a row!"
    "Better Than the Movie"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I listened to the audiobook before I saw the movie. I preferred listening to the nonfiction account of the mission in Iran and other fascinating CIA missions rather than the Hollywood-ized version of events for the movie. The truth really was amazing and there was no need to fictionalize it.

    Antonio Mendez is a hero and I'm glad he got the credit he deserved.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Dad Is Fat

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Jim Gaffigan
    • Narrated By Jim Gaffigan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2824)
    Performance
    (2549)
    Story
    (2536)

    In Dad is Fat, stand-up comedian Jim Gaffigan, who’s best known for his legendary riffs on Hot Pockets, bacon, manatees, and McDonald's, expresses all the joys and horrors of life with five young children - everything from cousins ("celebrities for little kids") to toddlers’ communication skills ("they always sound like they have traveled by horseback for hours to deliver important news"), to the eating habits of four-year-olds ("there is no difference between a four-year-old eating a taco and throwing a taco on the floor").

    Sean says: "Good for Gaffigan fans - better for expecting dads"
    "Sweet and very funny"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I listened to this book twice. It's very sweet and very funny, and listening to how he raises five very young children in a two-bedroom apartment made me appreciate my own easier life!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Summer

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Edith Wharton
    • Narrated By Grace Conlin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (77)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    Wharton's most erotic and lyrical novel, Summer explores a daring theme for 1917, a woman's awakening to her sexuality. Eighteen-year-old Charity Royall lives in the small town of North Dormer, ignorant of desire until the arrival of architect Lucius Harney. Like the succulent summer landscape in the Berkshires around them, Charity's romance is lush and picturesque, but its consequences are harsh and real.

    Angelynn J says: "Excellent first audible purchase!"
    "My favorite Wharton book so far"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the third book of hers I've read. It's the least depressing, which is a good thing in my opinion. E. Wharton wrote beautiful prose and also knew how to tell a fast-paced story. My book club had a very lively discussion about class, gender, marriage, nature, and other interesting issues raised by this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Marie Kondo
    • Narrated By Emily Woo Zeller
    Overall
    (1142)
    Performance
    (915)
    Story
    (899)

    Despite constant efforts to declutter your home, do papers still accumulate like snowdrifts and clothes pile up like a tangled mess of noodles?Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you'll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever.

    Rebecca says: "I both love and hate this life changing book"
    "Life-changing Indeed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I listened to this book several months ago-- twice. It's short and entertaining and easy to follow. Most importantly, it's changed my life. In the last few months, I've decluttered my bedroom closet, linen closet, hall closet, dresser drawers, bathroom, bookshelves, junk drawer, and office. Next up are the kitchen and garage. I feel so much better with my possessions winnowed down and organized. The book really has brought me joy.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Devil in the Junior League

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Linda Francis Lee
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (539)
    Performance
    (328)
    Story
    (328)

    Mercedes Hildebrand Ware is a member beyond reproach...until her life begins to unravel. When her husband betrays her, steals her money, and runs off to places unknown, it's something Frede would prefer to keep under wraps. The last thing she needs is to become fodder for the JLWC gossip mill. And to make matters worse, there's only one person in town who stands a chance at helping her get revenge - Howard Grout, a tasteless, gold-chain-wearing lawyer who has bought his way into Frede's tony neighborhood.

    bebe says: "Loved it"
    "Funny!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a very funny, fast-paced book about a Texas socialite who loses her husband and money but finds herself. Though it's not the deepest book, it's very entertaining. The narrator does a fantastic job. She makes every character unique and has terrific comic timing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Birds and the Bees

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Milly Johnson
    • Narrated By Becky Hindley
    Overall
    (95)
    Performance
    (83)
    Story
    (81)

    Romance writer and single mum Stevie Honeywell has only a week to go till her wedding when her fiancé Matthew runs off with her glamorous friend Jo MacLean. But Stevie knows exactly how to win her man back. Adam MacLean is aslo determined to get back his lady, Jo. All he needs to do is convince Stevie that they should team up – a prospect neither of them finds attractive, seeing as each blames the other for the mess they now find themselves in.

    Jan says: "Enjoyable read"
    "Really Fun Romance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I took my dog for an extra long walk, ironed, and did other chores to give me excuses to keep listening to this audiobook. It's a fast-paced, sweet, funny love story with a wonderful, well-developed protagonist. If you're a fan of Sophie Kinsella, I bet you'll be a fan of this book too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Flip: The Inside Story of TV’s First Black Superstar

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Kevin Cook
    • Narrated By Mirron Willis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    When The Flip Wilson Show debuted in 1970, black faces were still rare on television, black hosts nonexistent. So how did Clerow “Flip” Wilson go from Jersey City grade-school dropout to national celebrity, heralded on the cover of Time as “TV’s first black superstar”? Flip is a candid, entertaining biography of a consummate comedian who changed the face of American popular culture. Kevin Cook chronicles Flip’s meteoric rise through the Chitlin’ Circuit of segregated nightclubs to his breakthrough on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show to his hit variety show, on which he created outrageous and hilarious characters.

    Debra Garfinkle says: "Fascinating Entertainer and Individual"
    "Fascinating Entertainer and Individual"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is an entertaining and well-researched biography of Flip Wilson, a popular and groundbreaking African-American TV star.

    Flip Wilson's life was fascinating. After Flip's mother abandoned him and his eleven siblings when he was seven years old, Flip had to tough it out in foster homes, juvenile hall, and in relatives' homes. He lied about his age in order to serve in the Korean War. Then he spent many years trying to make it as a comedian in an era in which African-Americans were openly discriminated against. He found huge success as the star and writer (along with Richard Pryor and George Carlin) of his own TV variety show, making millions and then semi-retiring and raising his children. He became a Vegas headliner, a motorcyle enthusiast, and a hot air balloon pilot.

    The author paints a full picture of Flip Wilson, showing his good sides and his bad sides. This audiobook is fast-paced, yet also thoughtful and inspiring.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Catching Fire: Hunger Games, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (32293)
    Performance
    (25093)
    Story
    (25289)

    Katniss Everdeen continues to struggle to protect herself and her family from the Capitol in this second novel from the best-selling Hunger Games trilogy.

    FanB14 says: "Dissent Rules"
    "Terrific Story Narrated by a Prissy Old Schoolmarm"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love Suzanne Collins' colorful characters, creative world-building, and exciting plot twists.

    I'm surprised a better narrator was not chosen for this bestselling book. The narrator sounded old and prissy, with a vague English accent at times, like Madonna's when she's trying too hard. She sounded more like Dana Carvey's Church Lady on Saturday Night Live than a brave teenage hunter.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Good House: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Ann Leary
    • Narrated By Mary Beth Hurt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1618)
    Performance
    (1458)
    Story
    (1452)

    The Good House tells the story of Hildy Good, who lives in a small town on Boston's North Shore. Hildy is a successful real-estate broker, good neighbor, mother, and grandmother. She's also a raging alcoholic. Hildy's family held an intervention for her about a year before this story takes place - "if they invite you over for dinner, and it’s not a major holiday," she advises "run for your life" - and now she feels lonely and unjustly persecuted. She has also fooled herself into thinking that moderation is the key.

    Mel says: "Soberingly Funny"
    "Great Story and Great Narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story of an alcoholic realtor in a small Massachusetts town is not for those who love fast-paced action and adventure novels. But if you like character-driven novels with humor, heart, and depth, you'll love this book. The main character and all the characters are shown as unique human beings, with individual talents, good qualities, and serious flaws. And the small town setting really comes alive.

    After reading this novel, I understood a lot more about living in a small town, fishing, suffering from alcoholism, being a realtor in a one-person shop, owning horses, and, well, being human. I can't wait to read Leary's other books.

    Also, Mary Beth Hurt did a fantastic job narrating this book. She's one of the best narrators I've heard.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Coreyography

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Corey Feldman
    • Narrated By Corey Feldman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (403)
    Performance
    (374)
    Story
    (377)

    In this brave and moving memoir, Corey Feldman is revealing the truth about what his life was like behind the scenes: His is a past that included physical, drug, and sexual abuse, a dysfunctional family from which he was emancipated at age fifteen, three high-profile arrests for drug possession, a nine-month stint in rehab, and a long, slow crawl back to the top of the box office.

    R. J. Melton says: "Heartrending Loss of Innocence"
    "Self-serving"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Corey Feldman had it hard. His parents were awful and he was sexually abused as a teen. I felt really bad for him and admire him for speaking up now about the abuse.

    But he still blames virtually all of his adult behavior on other people. Almost every time he took a hard drug, he says someone duped him into it or at least worked hard to convince him. According to him, he was a devoted friend/boyfriend/husband, but was continually let down by others. He's outraged that Michael Jackson had the gall to accuse him of wanting to write about him in a book; yet this book spends a lot of time doing just that. Almost every schlocky movie Feldman did was because he was desperate for money or was fooled into believing it would be a good film when he signed onto the project, according to Feldman. It's just excuse after excuse.

    He brags about his current artistic and financial successes and charitable endeavors, but if you Google him you'll find him partying on multiple recent occasions with what look like cheap prostitutes and read that his landlord is trying to evict him for nonpayment of rent.

    He had a very difficult childhood, but now that he's in his forties I believe it's time for him to take responsibility for his actions instead of blaming everyone else. I like memoirs to be honest and open. This one seemed to have a lot of subterfuge.

    15 of 18 people found this review helpful
  • The Humans: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Matt Haig
    • Narrated By Mark Meadows
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (153)
    Performance
    (135)
    Story
    (137)

    The critically acclaimed author of The Radleys shares a clever, heartwarming, and darkly insightful novel about an alien who comes to Earth to save humans from themselves. When an extraterrestrial visitor arrives on Earth, his first impressions of the human species are less than positive. But as time goes on, he starts to realize there may be more to this weird species than he has been led to believe. Eventually, the narrator sees hope and redemption in the humans' imperfections and begins to question the very mission that brought him there.

    cristina says: "Adorable alien story"
    "Fun Plus Depth"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed this imaginative, fast-paced novel in which an alien takes over the body of a British mathematician and develops feelings for and complicated relationships with the man's wife and son. It's a lot of fun as the alien learns about life on Earth, makes wry, sometimes painfully truthful observations about human beings, and starts to appreciate our world. It got a bit preachy at the end, but over all this is a really entertaining novel with depth.

    Also, the narrator gave a lively, well acted performance.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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