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Agiliteve

Western New York | Member Since 2009

40
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 5 reviews
  • 6 ratings
  • 397 titles in library
  • 14 purchased in 2014
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  • Invisible Murder: A Nina Borg Mystery, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Lene Kaaberbøl, Agnete Friis, Tara Chace (translator)
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren
    Overall
    (73)
    Performance
    (61)
    Story
    (60)

    In this feverishly anticipated follow-up to 2011’s critically acclaimed The Boy in the Suitcase, Danish Red Cross nurse Nina Borg doesn’t realize she is putting life and family on the line when she tries to treat a group of sick Hungarian gypsies who are living illegally in a Copenhagen garage. Nina has unwittingly thrown herself into a deadly nest of the unscrupulous and the desperate, and what is at stake is much more terrifying than anyone had realized.

    Avid Reader and Listener says: "Lots of thrills!"
    "Clever story, sloppy production, not a fave"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Kaaberbol and Friis are very adept at weaving together the stories of multiple characters and points of view into a story with good forward momentum. I have to say, though, that I find the principal character in this book and the last, Nina Borg, to be fairly unappealing and not at all an individual I can identify with or root for.

    The audiobook is sorely in need of editing. The narrator will re-read a section more than once, occasionally interjecting "Oh! He's supposed to be Hungarian!" or something like that. I'm also not fond of her transition from reading to overacting in tense plot moments.

    All in all, although the plot is good, I would find it hard to recommend this overall.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Brutal Telling: A Three Pines Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Louise Penny
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1434)
    Performance
    (996)
    Story
    (994)

    As autumn descends upon Three Pines, a stranger is found murdered in the village bistro and antiques store at the center of town. No one admits to knowing the murdered man, but as secrets are revealed, chaos begins to close in on the beloved bistro owner, Olivier. What past did he leave behind, and why has he buried himself in this tiny village?

    Marie says: "Satisfying but sad"
    "Perhaps the best Gamache/Three Pines Mystery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I started reading this series with The Beautiful Mystery, which is actually the eighth (and at the time I'm writing the most recent) of the books. After finishing it, I immediately turned to the first book in the series and was a bit disappointed to find that an element of the ominous tone that hung over Beautiful Mystery was in Still Life as well, and that it continued into A Fatal Grace. A loved the plots and the richly developed characters but felt a bit uneasy about that backstory that haunted Gamache.

    It was enjoyable to learn more about the principal residents of Three Pines in the next two books, which also had satisfying plots. But with The Brutal Telling Penny has given us her most complex psychological tale of the first five, existing on its own with no intrusions from Gamache's past hovering in the background. Not as disturbing as a Ruth Rendell psychological thriller, thankfully, but a thoughtful exploration of how human failings can intrude on even the most idyllic circumstances.

    Ralph Cosham's narration has been pitch perfect in all these books and I look forward to the rest. I harbor the suspicion, however, that The Brutal Telling may remain my favorite.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Before the Frost: A Kurt and Linda Wallander Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Henning Mankell
    • Narrated By Cassandra Campbell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (207)
    Performance
    (110)
    Story
    (107)

    Just graduated from the police academy, Linda Wallander returns to Skane to join the police force, and she already shows all the hallmarks of her father - the maverick approach, the flaring temper. Before she even starts work she becomes embroiled in the case of her childhood friend, Anna, who has inexplicably disappeared.

    Anthony says: "Worst Narration Style EVER"
    "Successful transition to Linda Wallendar POV"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Although we've met Linda Wallendar in previous books in this series, she comes fully to life in this volume. Mankell shifts easily to writing from her point of view, and shows us a character who shares many personality traits with her father, but is still uniquely her own.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Unfortunately, the narrator, Cassandra Campbell, makes Kurt Wallendar a completely unlikable character. In this book he is seen for the first time from his daughter Linda's perspective, and while the character Linda is well aware of his shortcomings, she recognizes that they are part of the package that makes him a successful detective. Not so for the narrator, who clearly finds nothing redeeming in Kurt. I suspect that anyone being introduced to the series for the first time with this volume would be disinclined to read any of the other books where Kurt Wallendar is the protagonist, given the thoroughly unpleasant personality she projects onto him.


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

    Yes.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sovereign: A Matthew Shardlake Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By C. J. Sansom
    • Narrated By Steven Crossley
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (499)
    Performance
    (356)
    Story
    (353)

    Barrister Matthew Shardlake is faced with the most terrifying threat in the age of Tudor England: his own imprisonment in the Tower of London. Harsh autumn winds stir the English countryside as King Henry VIII, along with a thousand soldiers and his fifth wife, Catherine Howard, make their way from London to York after a violent uprising.

    Eric C says: "Excellent Historical Mystery"
    "Another winner in the Shardlake series!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Without a doubt. I enjoyed Sansom's intricate plotting, including multiple interweaving story lines and several equally plausible suspects at each crisis along the way. The vivid descriptions of the Royal Progress added color in a way that went beyond just background, becoming integral parts of the plot.


    What about Steven Crossley’s performance did you like?

    Crossley is consistent in his presentations of each character, his voice is enjoyable, and he moves from one character to another with ease. He is particularly good with the principals; his voice reflects their personalities well.


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

    Absolutely! It was well paced, with a great sense of the development and resolution of each plot point.


    Any additional comments?

    Hurray for Sansom and Crossley!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Feast for Crows: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Roy Dotrice
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10242)
    Performance
    (9414)
    Story
    (9468)

    Few books have captivated the imagination and won the devotion and praise of readers and critics everywhere as has George R. R. Martin’s monumental epic cycle of high fantasy that began with A Game of Thrones. Now, in A Feast for Crows, Martin delivers the long-awaited fourth book of his landmark series, as a kingdom torn asunder finds itself at last on the brink of peace . . . only to be launched on an even more terrifying course of destruction.

    Pi says: "Jarring change in Dotrice's performance"
    "Depressing!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    This story really lags in places and introduces a TON of new characters while completely igoring some of the most interesting characters from the previous books. The author crushes all hope whenever possible and gives the reader nothing, and no one, to cling to. I find myself having no reason to continue to follow the plot. Expect all respectable characters to die a brutal death and all evil or deeply flawed characters to succeed, if only for a short time. All of the characters are severely injured whether it be physical pain or emotional pain, no one is safe! This book is filled with pain, sadness, injustice and detailed descriptions of each.


    What could George R.R. Martin have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Martin could allow a decent character to achieve a goal once in a while. Readers like to relate to the characters and he brutalizes every one of them which makes the reader feel brutalized, hopeless and ultimately DEPRESSED!


    Which character – as performed by Roy Dotrice – was your favorite?

    I enjoyed several characters until Martin savaged them and then killed them off. He really knows how to detach his audience...brutalize or murder their favorite characters. It's easy to let go of the plot when that happens.


    Did A Feast for Crows inspire you to do anything?

    This book inspired me to search for a different author.


    38 of 46 people found this review helpful

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