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AUSTIN, TEXAS, United States | Member Since 2010

  • 4 reviews
  • 38 ratings
  • 217 titles in library
  • 18 purchased in 2014

  • The Imperfectionists

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Tom Rachman
    • Narrated By Christopher Welch

    Set against the gorgeous backdrop of Rome, Tom Rachman’s wry, vibrant debut follows the topsy-turvy private lives of the reporters, editors, and executives of an international English-language newspaper as they struggle to keep it - and themselves - afloat. This hilarious and poignant look at the struggles of print news will establish Rachman as one of the 21st century’s most perceptive talents.

    Debra says: "love it"

    I usually love "linked" story collections, but would go with "Let the Great World Spin" or "Olive Kitteridge" instead.

    7 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Little Failure: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Gary Shteyngart
    • Narrated By Jonathan Todd Ross
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    After three acclaimed novels - The Russian Debutante's Handbook, Absurdistan, and Super Sad True Love Story - Gary Shteyngart turns to memoir in a candid, witty, deeply poignant account of his life so far.

    Shteyngart shares his American immigrant experience, moving back and forth through time and memory with self-deprecating humor, moving insights, and literary bravado. The result is a resonant story of family and belonging that feels epic and intimate and distinctly his own. Provocative, hilarious, and inventive, Little Failure reveals a deeper vein of emotion in Gary Shteyngart' s prose.

    HRD says: "I loved this book - funny, sad, all that nonsense"
    "Almost as good as Super Sad True Love Story"

    Jonathan Todd Ross did a great job bringing Gary's work to life. If I had been reading instead of listening, I might have struggled with the Russian words, so this was a good one to listen to. The ending falters a bit, becoming the typical "how I became a successful writer" story, which is why it was a four-star and not a five-star listen. This is a fairly negligible complaint, because most of the book is excellent.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Ben Fountain
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman

    A ferocious firefight with Iraqi insurgents at "the battle of Al-Ansakar Canal" - three minutes and forty-three seconds of intense warfare caught on tape by an embedded Fox News crew - has transformed the eight surviving men of Bravo Squad into America's most sought-after heroes. For the past two weeks, the Bush administration has sent them on a media-intensive nationwide Victory Tour to reinvigorate public support for the war. Now, on this chilly and rainy Thanksgiving, the Bravos are guests of America's Team, the Dallas Cowboys....

    Melinda says: "Oh-ooo Say, Can We See?"
    "Could have used a change of scenery"

    Engaging writing, well observed and funny. But the premise--a group of American soldiers being honored at a Cowboys' game--couldn't quite sustain an entire novel. Lots of throat clearing and speechifying, and some unpleasing repetitions of action and event. A really wonderful concept wasn't quite as wonderful a listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Marriage Plot

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Eugenides
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    It’s the early 1980s—the country is in a deep recession, and life after college is harder than ever. In the cafés on College Hill, the wised-up kids are inhaling Derrida and listening to Talking Heads. But Madeleine Hanna, dutiful English major, is writing her senior thesis on Jane Austen and George Eliot, purveyors of the marriage plot that lies at the heart of the greatest English novels.

    FanB14 says: "Esoteric, Vapid, Trite"
    "Franzen/DFW wannabe"

    Loved Eugenides' other books, but "The Marriage Plot" felt like a bad knockoff of Franzen's "Freedom" (re: college love triangle). And on the subject of ripping off better writers, Eugenides bases one of his lead characters on David Foster Wallace. Leonard is a super-smart bandana-wearing tobacco-chewing bipolar prodigy. I don't know if Eugenides intended this as homage or what, but it felt cheap and obvious.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful

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