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Sheila Rooks

Sheila

Charlotte, NC | Member Since 2007

32
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 24 reviews
  • 150 ratings
  • 577 titles in library
  • 73 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
2

  • Aunts Aren't Gentlemen

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By P.G. Wodehouse
    • Narrated By Jonathan Cecil
    Overall
    (248)
    Performance
    (135)
    Story
    (137)

    On doctor's orders, Bertie Wooster retires to sample the bucolic delights of Maiden Eggesford. But his idyll is rudely shattered by Aunt Dahlia who wants him to nobble a racehorse. Similar blots on Bertie's horizon come in the shape of Major Plank, the African explorer, Vanessa Cook, proud beauty and 'moulder of men', and Orlo Porter, who seems to have nothing else to do but to think of sundering Bertie's head from his body.

    Charla says: "Always entertaining! Excellent Narration"
    "Utterly charming"
    Overall

    One of the most entertaining and delightful renderings of Wodehouse. The narrator doesn't miss an iota of the wit and charm of the work.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Hellion and the Highlander

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Lynsay Sands
    • Narrated By Marianna Palka
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (429)
    Performance
    (249)
    Story
    (244)

    Lady Averill Mortagne learned to control her fierce temper as a young girl. But if her father insists on parading her before one more English lord who looks askance at her flame-colored hair, she'll simply scream! Her only respite is the time she spends with Kade Stewart, the wounded Scot her brother brought home from the Crusades. Who could have imagined a Highland warrior would be the only gentleman around?

    Candyce says: "Another great one by Lynsay Sands"
    "Well written"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Hellion and the Highlander rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    While the narration is not the best, the plot and characters are engaging. I have listened to the trilogy multiple times.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Lady Averill is compassionate, clever, and devoted to her husband's well-being.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Marianna Palka’s performances?

    Her narration was not enjoyable.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    As a part of the Highlander trilogy, I would highly recommend it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Masterful Mr. Montague: Casebook of Barnaby Adair, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Stephanie Laurens
    • Narrated By Napoleon Ryan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (65)
    Performance
    (55)
    Story
    (57)

    Montague has devoted his life to managing the wealth of London’s elite, but at a huge cost: A family of his own. Then the enticing Miss Violet Matcham seeks his help, and in the puzzle she presents him, he finds an intriguing new challenge professionally…and personally. Violet, devoted lady-companion to the aging Lady Halstead, turns to Montague to reassure her ladyship that her affairs are in order.

    KJ says: "Good story, poor narration."
    "Not up to snuff"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The Masterful Mr. Montague?

    The verve to Laurens' writing appears to be diminishing over time. This book was fairly formulaic. I had looked forward to a book dedicated to the fabulous man of business, so my expectations were high. This definitely did not meet them.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Stephanie Laurens again?

    I have multiple of her works on audio and find them a relaxing get-away. Many of the early Cynster books are a treat. Laurens' works are not high literature, but a respite from reality.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Napoleon Ryan?

    Simon Prebble is the definitive Cynster series narrator. While his narration can be over-the- top, so are the books. His tongue in cheek style compliments the material to perfection.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Masterful Mr. Montague?

    While enjoying the interactions of the Adair and Stokes couples, both mingling and as partners, I really wasn't interested in their repeated bedroom scenes. They were not the focus of the book.


    Any additional comments?

    Ms. Laurens appears to need fresh inspiration to return to her former writing success.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Sum of All Kisses

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Julia Quinn
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (154)
    Performance
    (133)
    Story
    (135)

    Hugh Prentice has never had patience for dramatic females, and if Lady Sarah Pleinsworth has ever been acquainted with the words shy or retiring, she's long since tossed them out the window. Sarah has never forgiven Hugh for the duel he fought three years earlier, the one that forced her cousin into exile, nearly destroying her family. But when the pair is forced to spend a week in close company, they discover that first impressions are not always reliable. And when one kiss leads to two, three, and four, the mathematician may lose count, and the lady may, for the first time, find herself speechless.

    Sheila Rooks says: "Smythe-Smiths Continued"
    "Smythe-Smiths Continued"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Sum of All Kisses the most enjoyable?

    Rosalyn Landor provides a fabulous narration. Her interpretations of dialogue and character inflection are spot-on. She captures the nuances of every line.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Hugh and Sarah are equally engaging.


    What does Rosalyn Landor bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Having actually read the book prior to the audio version's being available, I truly appreciate the depth that well done narration can bring to all aspects of a work.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Julia Quinn's books are not deep, metaphysical works; however, the dialogue, plot twists, and inter-connectedness make reading each book in the series like a visit with a well-loved friend.


    Any additional comments?

    This work is best enjoyed as part of the Smythe-Smith series since each book shares characters.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Ransom: Highlands' Lairds, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs)
    • By Julie Garwood
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (590)
    Performance
    (546)
    Story
    (550)

    In the dark days after the death of Richard the Lionhearted, lives and lands would fall into upheaval at the hands of a power-hungry British ruler and his violent minions. One victim of the scourge is innocent Gillian, who is a mere child when the cruel and ambitious Baron Alford slaughters her father and tears her family apart. Alford, determined to recover a jeweled box for the despotic King John, is furious when the precious treasure slips through his fingers - only to be lost for more than a decade.

    ~~ DARA ~~ says: "Love the Highlands' Lairds"
    "Completely Enjoyable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Ransom in three words, what would they be?

    Unlikely Romance and Humor


    What did you like best about this story?

    While introducing a new heroine, the story revisits many of the characters from the prior novel _The Secret_, which is extremely engaging. It offered the chance to see Judith and Ian's outcomes while the exploits of Gillian and Brodick unfold.

    It is not serious literature, but ever so diverting!


    What about Susan Duerden’s performance did you like?

    Her performance was quite solid and the pacing was on target.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Garwood is known for staging quirky weddings. The marriage of Gillian and Brodick equals or exceeds her standards for humor.


    Any additional comments?

    Having a stressful job makes me so appreciate books that offer a bit of escapism, a bit of historical perspective, and a bit of humor. These are trademarks of Garwood historicals.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Scandal's Bride

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Stephanie Laurens
    • Narrated By Simon Prebble
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (503)
    Performance
    (315)
    Story
    (326)

    Stephanie Laurens authors USA Today best-selling historical romances such as A Rake's Vow and Devil's Bride. Lauren's Scandal's Bride is the hot and exciting third novel in her riveting Bar Cynster series.

    Candace says: "Surprisingly Funny!!!"
    "One of Lauren's Best"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Scandal's Bride to be better than the print version?

    Simon Prebble's narration of the Cynster series is outstanding. His abilities give the Cybster novels an extra dimension that ratchets them to a different sphere.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The mix of mysticism, action, mystery, and eroticism is unique within the Cynster series. Richard's character complies with the norms of the family male, yet he is devoted to service as well as being a dominant force.


    What does Simon Prebble bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His narration is tongue in cheek at times while adhering to the spirit of the novels. This isn't a scholarly work, and he "works" the Romance novel aspect.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The couple's evolution, especially after the near-death experience, is moving.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a fun, sensual read that is pure escapism.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Methuselah's Children

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (272)
    Performance
    (241)
    Story
    (248)

    After the fall of the American Ayatollahs as foretold in Stranger in a Strange Land and chronicled in Revolt in 2100, the United States of America at last fulfills the promise inherent in its first Revolution: for the first time in human history there is a nation with Liberty and Justice for All. No one may seize or harm the person or property of another, or invade his privacy, or force him to do his bidding. Americans are fiercely proud of their re-won liberties and the blood it cost them; nothing could make them forswear those truths they hold self-evident. Nothing except the promise of immortality…

    Rey says: "Another brilliant work by RAH"
    "Heinlein Classic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Methuselah's Children again? Why?

    Methuselah's Children is the prequel to the classic Time Enough for Love, which then spawned The Number of the Beast, The Cat Who Walks Through Walls, and To Sail Beyond Sunset. This novella introduces a host of characters and the all important Howard Project.


    What does MacLeod Andrews bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The narration was clear and crisp. With a mild hearing loss, this is much appreciated.


    Any additional comments?

    As one of the "Big Three" authors of science fiction's puberty, this is well worth the investment and time listening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Lady Most Willing...: A Novel in Three Parts

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Julia Quinn, Eloisa James, Connie Brockway
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (173)
    Performance
    (157)
    Story
    (156)

    When Laird Taran Ferguson's nephews refuse to wed and secure his birthright, he takes matters into his own hands, raiding a ball and kidnapping four likely brides - a bonny lass, an heiress with a slight reputation problem, a rich English beauty, and a maiden without a name or a fortune. But which one is ready to fall in love with the Scottish lord?

    SandyH says: "Funny, Funny, Funny!"
    "Surprisingly delightful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Lady Most Willing... again? Why?

    I have listened to this multiple times to recaputure the wit, laughter, and emotion of the piece. It is not a heavy philosophical treatise; it's FUN reading.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The combination of writers (Quinn, James, and Brockway) provides a "story within a story" which allows the reader to shift gears and focus on different charaters while staying true to the overall theme of the book. The psyches of the heroes and heroines are explored and all their characters are dynamic. The surprise ending was absolutely delightful.


    Which character – as performed by Susan Duerden – was your favorite?

    I was particularly drawn to the plights of Fiona and Oakley. Their wounded spirits were cauterized and expanded. Love those HEAs.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The surprise at the end of the book sealed this as a favorite and repeat listen.


    Any additional comments?

    There are times that a bit of psychic relief can be a balm. I truly ascribe to Keane's "Dying is easy, comedy is hard."

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Secret: Highlands' Lairds, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Julie Garwood
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1117)
    Performance
    (1015)
    Story
    (1020)

    Judith Hampton was as beautiful as she was proud and loyal. Her dear Scottish friend from childhood was about to give birth, and Judith had promised to be at her side. But there was another reason for the journey from her bleak English home to the Highlands: to meet the father she had never known, the Laird Maclean. Nothing prepared her, however, for the sight of the Scottish barbarian who was to escort her into his land...Iain Maitland, laird of his clan, a man more powerfully compelling than any she had ever encountered.

    CAROLYN says: "MEDIEVAL HIGHLAND ROMANCE AT IT'S BEST"
    "Great novel/poor narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Having read and re-read the Garwood classic, I was enthusiastic in purchasing the audio version. Previous Garwood historicals have been well done; however, the narrator's renditions drove me to distraction.

    Garwood spend considerable time researching information about Medieval customs and the Church. Certain descriptions were appaling and enlightening at times.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The bond between Judith and Frances Catherine was extraordinary.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Susan Duerden’s performances?

    No


    Was The Secret worth the listening time?

    If one can get past the narration and focus on the excellent plot, it is well worth the expenditure.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie: Highland Pleasures, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Jennifer Ashley
    • Narrated By Angela Dawe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1528)
    Performance
    (1387)
    Story
    (1389)

    It was whispered all through London society that he was a murderer, that he'd spent his youth in an asylum and was not to be trusted - especially with a lady. Any woman caught in his presence was immediately ruined. Yet Beth found herself inexorably drawn to the Scottish lord whose hint of a brogue wrapped around her like silk and whose touch could draw her into a world of ecstasy.

    Lupdilup says: "FANTASTIC BOOK, NICELLY PERFORMED."
    "Asperger/HFA Hero"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie in three words, what would they be?

    Hero with autism


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie?

    As an educator who works with people who are on the spectrum, I was taken aback to read about the "medical interventions" of the period. It was not a humane period for those who were not neuro-typical.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Overall development of emotion in the protagonist. Ian was transformative.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It was an enjoyable, thought provoking listen. The narrator did a very fine job.


    Any additional comments?

    The entire series seems to be well done.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Capture of the Earl of Glencrae: A Cynster Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Stephanie Laurens
    • Narrated By Matthew Brenher
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (308)
    Performance
    (271)
    Story
    (269)

    Headstrong Angelica Cynster is certain she'll recognize her fated husband at first sight. And when her eyes meet those of a mysterious nobleman, she knows beyond a doubt that he's the one. But her heart is soon pounding for an entirely different reason - when her hero abducts her! The eighth Earl of Glencrae has no choice but to kidnap Angelica, the one Cynster sister with whom he hadn't wanted to tangle. But to save his castle and his clan, he must persuade her to assist him - and he's prepared to offer marriage to seal the deal!

    Amazon Customer says: "Absolutely love Stephanie Laurens & Cynster books"
    "Pleasing trilogy summation"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Capture of the Earl of Glencrae rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    While it's not a deep and meaningful experience, it's frothy escapism.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Capture of the Earl of Glencrae?

    The initial interactions of the two main characters were well written.


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

    After years of Simon Prebble's narration of the Cynster sagas, I'm sorry to report that the new voice does not quite meet his previously recordings.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    For a lark, it's an engaging addition to the Cynster lore.


    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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