Maybe not. While the narrator does the voices very well, she is so boring & almost monosyllabic when reading the narration, that I almost stopped listening at one point (I'm glad I didn't). I'm sure I'd have flown through this had I read it, because its a cute story & very interesting from the cultural aspect, but the voices wouldn't have been so good, when only in my head.
Mrs. Ali, because she's not only wise to the world, but knows how to approach each situation with great thoughtfulness. Although I loved most of them.
Hmmmm...probably any of them, as long as we went to a good Indian restaurant!
A fun "read", if you can wade through/put up with the narrator for the first half (which has more narration, I think, & therefore more of the narrator's boring interpretation) & wait until the "good stuff" starts. Very cute story & culturally fascinating; I can't wait to read more of the author's books!
What a sweet but deep, beautifully-read, true story. Jon Katz chronicles time with his Border Collie Izzy & Labrador Retriever puppy Lenore as he traverses the ups & downs of life on his farm & in volunteer hospice work, w/these wonderful dogs by his side. I'm always trepidatious when reading a book with dogs, as too many end with the dogs dying. This does NOT, though a few people you meet along the way do. So, there are some tears while listening, but the narrator has such a lovely, gentle way of "telling" this story, that the tears come with smiles. Yes, the author wrote them that way, but another narrator might have read them in such a way that the words would have come out harsher, so I'm giving props to the narrator.
If you like dogs, you will like this book. Many extra tales (tails?!) about other animals on the farm are tucked in here-and-there, and they will bring you smiles. An uplifting book. Two thumbs up!
This is a FABULOUS tale, beautifully written & terrifically narrated. I almost don't want to write anything more, as those 10 words are all that's needed for this review, I think. But I know I'd put a "not helpful" vote if I read a review so nebulous as that, so let me see if I can elaborate in a meaningful manner...
THE MARTIAN is the story of an astronaut left for dead on Mars when in fact, against all odds & even though telemetry measuring his temperature, pulse, & respirations reported no pulse or respirations, he was alive. The fact that telemetry did measure his body temperature as normal demonstrated, to the other crew members, that the telemetry was operational (if one has just died, one's body temp is that which it was at death; it takes a while for the body to lose enough heat to reach room temperature), so the crew who abandoned our "Martian" made the right decision in leaving his "dead" body behind, in order to save the remainder of the crew.
Anyway, when the "Martian", our protagonist, does realize he is still very much alive, yet alone, with no way to contact anyone, he sets out to figure a way to keep himself alive until he can be rescued...a number of years in the future! Extremely inventive, "field expedient", thoughtful, observant, brilliant, and downright funny, this astronaut is someone I'd love to know. Following his life on Mars via his log is addictive; I had a very difficult time turning off this book when I absolutely HAD to do something that didn't allow for my listening. It's also one of those books I was, paradoxically, loathe to listen to for too long, because the longer I listened, the closer I'd come to the end!! Makes no sense, but there you have it. If I could give this book 10 stars, I would.
Ten stars to the READER, too! He brought forth all the warmth, humor, fear, anger - humanity - exactly right, & is probably a large reason why I liked the protagonist so much. The narrator also did a FANTASTIC job with all the other voices & accents he had to do - not once did I get the sense that he was condescending towards a particular culture/sex/area of the U.S., etc., which I often feel when narrators do certain accents. Where not perfect, this narrator gave the sensibility of those accents, with affection.
As to the technical language which many reviewers either mentioned or didn't like...I thought it was one of the things that made this book even more interesting, and also made it believable. Never was there any time when I thought, "enough, already!" with the science. I think it is written in such a manner that most can follow it, & if not able to fully understand, at least appreciate it & gather the gist of what is going on. This book was not written with only the scientist in mind; the opposite I think, in fact. I believe the author did a masterful job of balancing between the layperson & scientist's level of understanding, & made it so we both can make sense of & enjoy the details.
GET THIS BOOK NOW! As of this review, I have 395 books on Audible, & this is truly in the top 10%!
What a wonderful story. Yes, this is a "children's" book, but I'm 53 & loved it. Children will love this story, too but, like all good Disney animated movies, astute adults might learn/absorb even more.
The protagonist is a joyous AND joyful, wonderful, marvelous child who loves life & school & his family &...everything!...& also doesn't realize his peers think he's a "loser". This book sends a powerful message, but not the "ram it down your throat" kind of message so many pc books of late attempt. This story will burrow under your skin & become a part of you - 'in a good way'.☺️
I say I want more...but I also believe a sequel would dilute this tale, much as the sequel to "Stargirl" did for me; although very good, it wasn't a good sequel. If it had been written as a stand-alone w/a different-named protagonist, I would have bought into it more.
Anyway, if you liked "Stargirl", you'll like "Loser". If you LOVED "Stargirl" (as I did), then you'll LOVE "Loser"! What a wonderful storyteller Mr. Spinelli is. What talent/acuity/skill/dexterity/gifts he has been blessed with.
PLUS! Who can pass up the chance to hear "Carl Showalter" (Steve Buscemi) from "Fargo" narrate?! How cool is that?! Something to keep in the back of your mind & grin about while you listen (he does a stellar job, too - just hits every mark).
Worth a WHOLE credit, even though so short; THAT'S how terrific I think "Loser" is.
Too bad that this well-written story's best part is the title & cover photo; the rest was exceedingly boring, & I absolutely, positively could not care a whit less for even one of the main characters. Wimpy, asinine, selfish, absurd, avaricious, deceitful, lame, corrupt, hypocritical, "poor victim me"-ish...& these are descriptions for the GOOD guys. I know I already said it, but it needs to be "sent home" - this book was B.O.R.I.N.G. Unless you need something to cure your insomnia, save your money/credit.
This is a fabulous book with a very new (to me) story; a protagonist who is so truly simple that he's mistaken for a genius. "Chance the Gardener", dressed in hand-me-down - yet expensive, lovely, & hand tailored - clothes gets misunderstood as "Chauncey Gardener", & away we go. Chance's views on gardening happen to make wonderful metaphor for the nation & world's financial & poitical woes. The less he speaks, the more leaders in world politics & business/finance thinks what he "says", through what they deem as pregnant pauses or speaking louder through one's silence than through words, is profound. When he answers "I don't read newspapers; I watch tv" (SORTA SPOILER ALERT: cuz he doesn't read) to a reporter's query on which newspapers he reads, he almost starts a journalistic revolution. This is a brilliant book, & hilarious - just not in a "haha" manner. The plans for Chance at the end of the book will leave you with a grin on your face. Gets you thinking & wondering...
I think it was not until about the second half when I started to get interested in this book. Many said they liked it, so I held on as if for dear life & it finally lived up to its promise. I love how the story actually is a circle of sorts, & how the female protagonist is finally SORTA SPOILER ALERT! vindicated, after a life of utter awfulness. And how the priest is shown for who he was. I do think the narrator added to the boredom I felt with the first half; I've heard her in other books - certainly nothing offensive in her voice - but it kind of makes me bored/sends me into a stupor, after a while.
It is sad, but in Ireland in those times - & up until fairly recently (at least a third through my life) - priests were The Rule in their parishes & so many were pretty freaking cruel, petty, & legalistically (religion-wise) vainglorious. This is not a reflection or condemnation/judgement on the Catholic Church as a whole (please don't take it that way!!), but on those men during that time in that place (though the Catholic Church could appear pretty darned anti-woman during that time, too, but w/some compassion, which the priests of whom I speak appeared to have none). Not every priest there was like this of COURSE, but a large amount - enough to develop a culture of this thinking & action - from speaking w/many, many people & from reading great mounds of documents & historical tomes (stories like "Philomena" corroborate this, too). These men worked by deciding what THEY thought was right & proper & deciding who THEY thought were damned (& acting accordingly), rather than prayerfully asking for God's will to be done & leaving judgement to Him. Some of the reason for this is explained, in the book, via the politics after independence, which gave the priests - even put them so they had to take on - much more power in that arena than I believe Pope Francis would ever agree is healthy or holy - or what their mission entailed. ("Did it w/the best of intentions" is one of the most odious sentences in the English language, I believe. Nope - means YOU did what YOU wanted, w/o true thoughtfulness & compassion & definitely not what the "helpee" wanted or needed; just a way to make one look pious & give one a way of playing the victim if that "help" was not wanted.) All that time & way of being is distilled into the female protagonist's life, & done well. So, this novel can also be looked at as part historical, as well as the story of torment & redemption & acceptance &...some compassion coming to one man - late, perhaps, but still there when he could still use it (though I don't agree with his SPOILER ALERT! decision to not tell her!!!)
I would not suggest using a whole credit for this, but if under maybe $8, this would be an interesting listen to someone who likes early-20th Century Irish (Republic Of, esp.) stories with a bit of history thrown in.
Very fun, can be creepy at times...& not at all (well...until the end, that is!😁) abt zombies. Just in case you want a zombie novel or just in case you DON'T want a zombie novel...it's NOT a zombie novel! It's a well-performed, wry look at all the real atrocities, scary diseases, weather patterns, & urban legends that...are NO. Legends, that is. True, people! Even many of the things we were (& still are) taught in school or are generally accepted as true, by almost everyone, are debunked, disabused, unmasked, exposed. My only complaint is that the narrator, though he reads beautifully & allows us to hear the humor, here, seemed like he must've been trying for a VERY large bonus if he could read this in half the time others could. Setting it at 75% just gives you that weird, echoing reading it always seems to, so just get your fast ears on or your finger near the "go back 30 seconds" button. This is a 👍.
Many, many better reviewers than I have written eloquently on why you MUST read/listen to this book. My comments, then, have to do with the narrator.
Why oh why do so many fawn over George Guidall? He sounds EXACTLY the same in each book he narrates - pacing, emphasis, tone, and even spitting. Yes, spitting. I wouldn't want to be within a few feet of him as he speaks, as he always sounds as if there is saliva at the front of his tongue & mouth. Instead of swallowing, he allows us to hear the little breaks he uses to swish more saliva to the front, so he can go on spitting out the words. Gag.
I also think his narration style is boring. Just boring. The first time I ever listened to a book read by him, the slow, soporific, and lugubrious tone actually fit the story. Then I heard him read a book that was funny, or should have been; his reading sounded the same as when he read the first book, with no chance for real humor peeking through. I'm not saying he has to sound jolly, but geez! Others can let you hear humor without sounding excessively mirthful. His readings always seem almost funereal.
Many years have passed since then, and I'm still disappointed whenever a book I wish to listen to is narrated by ol' GG. Most of the time - like with this book - I can get past it (& it IS appropriate for the theme of this book), but that wet mouth with all the extraneous spitting sounds have me swallowing excessively, as if to help him along, throughout the reading.
I know all the GG fans out there will mark me down as "unhelpful", but I'm hoping Mr. Guidall reads this & all the many other very similar reviews of him, gets over his bad self, & starts swallowing as well as learning other techniques for bringing life to an audiobook.
Wow! What an excellent book! If I hadn't known this was written in 1959, I would've thought it was new! The first of the "SHTF" books, way before its time, this is a novel about what happens to a small area of Florida after the Russians drop nuclear bombs all over the US. (They take out our prez & congress, so this can't be totally, bad, right? LOL! AND - see what I mean that this could be about today? Russians/Putin are/is acting like they did back during the Soviet days. Like anyone ever thought they had really changed.)
Truly - read this book! It is so interesting & such a good story. Don't be worried that this is some political novel, or written in a documentary style, or all about moralizing, or anything. It's a great story with appealing characters & even some rather fun/innovative ways to deal with being cut off from the rest of civilization.
I was frustrated that they didn't figure out a way to use a bike to charge the batteries. Duh! Even Gilligan did this. Heehee. In all seriousness, the bike method is very doable & not difficult, & was the one thing I think the author overlooked that would've helped his characters (I'm writing this as if they are real! That says much about this book, too, I believe) ...but then again, that was good for the story.
GET THIS BOOK! IT'S FABULOUS!
While not quite as good as the first in the series (too much time spent on The Girlfriend, feeling her up, & getting into her pants...I have nothing against any of those, but they don't, as written, feel like they are part of this story. Jarring, out of place, like the scenes were shoehorned in to make romance readers like these books, perhaps?), this was still a fun listen. I wanted more of the stories about patients & the practice, & not quite as much about trips to the Big City & hospital there, nor (obviously, from what I've already said) on The Girlfriend (think the first book got the balance there just right). However, I'd still recommend this as a follow-up to the first (this is much more enjoyable for having read the first - really shouldn't be read out of order, even if written so you could), & have already bought the third book. A Herriot-esque book w/people instead of animals, & set in the 60s, rather than the 30s & 40s. I do love the narrator, & especially his take on "Kinkey", the housekeeper. ☺️ She gives out 3 of her recipes at the end, so have pencil & paper ready!!
No, not in the running for a Pulitzer, but still very fun & a great way to pass the time while doing other tasks.
As to the people who were offended by the use of "blue" language, yes, it still is in there, though maybe not as many f-bombs. HOWEVER - the cussing is in no way gratuitous! It is truly how the person speaking WOULD speak, in that situation, & all cussing is used where you would hear the words, naturally. The author wouldn't be giving you a true look at an Irish country village if he left out the rather inventive curses! Some words that are thought awful here in the States ("shite", for "s**t") are thought of as more low-level cussing - like "damn" would be here - in Northern Ireland. If you only like your world Lysol-ed, then I guess this isn't for you. If you like the world As Is, then I think you'd love this!
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