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Minta

Amelia Island, FL United States

ratings
226
REVIEWS
12
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
20

  • 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
    (353)
    Performance
    (316)
    Story
    (318)

    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!"
    "I listened to this twice in a row!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes! This is such a fascinating slice of (fairly) recent history, but so few (until now) knew anything about it. If you already saw the movie, this will fill in many, many details for you - as well as delineate what was theatrical license to make the movie flow & what, in the movie, was portrayed exactly like it happened. If you haven't seen the movie, you'll love this book, too! As I said, I listened to this twice in a row & might listen again, soon, as each time I picked up on something different. A true-life spy thriller, with all the bells & whistles.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When the author went back to where the diplomats were staying, & they'd all gotten into character for the roles of their lives.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    How many people and how much planning, at the CIA, goes into POSSIBLE situations that MAY erupt around the world (made me proud). Plus, all the details that might change from moment to moment on something as seemingly innocuous as an entry visa, & what "our people" do to keep on top of those details. I love all the minutiae/idiosyncrasies/technicalities of real spy work. :)


    Any additional comments?

    I saw the movie at the theater twice (which I never, ever, ever do...which shows how fabulous I thought it was!), wanted to know all the details one couldn't learn from the movie, & therefore used a credit for the audiobook. I am so glad I did, as the story has loads more to it, and the narrator keeps it moving. I kept having to remind myself that the author wasn't sitting with me, telling me his story!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Keep Quiet

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Lisa Scottoline
    • Narrated By Ron Livingston
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (465)
    Performance
    (403)
    Story
    (407)

    Jake Whitmore is enjoying a rare bonding moment with his 16-year-old son, Kurt, when disaster strikes. They get in a terrible car accident that threatens to derail not only Kurt’s chances at college, but his entire future. Jake makes a split-second decision that saves his son from formal punishment, but plunges them both into a world of guilt, lies, and secrecy. Just when Jake thinks he has everything under control, a malevolent outsider comes forward with the power to expose Jake’s secret.

    Jen says: "I Can't Keep Quiet Because it's Sooo Good!!!"
    "Could've been so good. Could've."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Not unless she had nothing else to listen to.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Lisa Scottoline again?

    Yes - I've read other books by her, & really liked them - just not this one.


    Any additional comments?

    This book was very, very well-written, as are all of Scottoline's books, & I really, truly, absolutely wanted to love it. Instead, I hated the way it hung me up on tenterhooks from almost page one, without relief. Hour after hour, no reprieve in sight, one can become mentally & emotionally exhausted. I did something I just don't do, & loaded other books to listen to during the same time period, giving myself a break from this book at least every hour. I finished it only because that is what I do, unless a book is VERY poorly written.

    As to the characters, I hated the mother, unequivocally. She's a b***h to end all b***hes, & one of the most obdurate, implacable, self-righteous characters I've ever had the displeasure of reading. As well, there are multiple situations where she, as a judge (of all people), should have known about/been aware of dangers, issues, & topics, yet she was clueless, & thus the book's credibility was lost. A judge who is held in such high esteem by her peers would surely know SPOILER ALERT! that since she had motive for wanting to kill someone, & since she had been seen arguing w/that someone the night he was killed, that these actions just might make her a suspect. Instead, she continued to do things that made her look even more suspicious/guilty, & was flabbergasted that her actions might be thought dubious, or that anyone would think this of her. Give me a break. I mean, really?! A judge, who deals with the criminal justice system every day? Snort.

    I'm having a difficult time rating this story; like I said, it's extremely well-written, but it still left me feeling resentful towards the author; I wasted too much time & expended too much emotional energy on this. SPOILER ALERT!! The "tied up in a bow", bland, feeble, & vapid ending was just the last straw. Too glib, & it fell flat. It should be only 2 or 2.5 stars, but the talent it took to write this is so well-honed that I have to give the extra half star for the work. Don't waste your money or credit. I

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Gods of Guilt Part 2

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Peter Giles
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    Mickey Haller gets the text, "Call me ASAP - 187," and the California penal code for murder immediately gets his attention. Murder cases have the highest stakes and the biggest paydays, and they always mean Haller has to be at the top of his game. When Mickey learns that the victim was his own former client, a prostitute he thought he had rescued and put on the straight and narrow path, he knows he is on the hook for this one. He soon finds out that she was back in LA and back in the life.

    Minta says: "He's back!"
    "He's back!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Michael Connelly has come back to us after a few so-so books; this one is a winner! I was on the edge of my (proverbial - I mostly walked, cleaned house, & cooked while listening to this☺️) seat through much of this, was kept guessing, & totally bought into the characters & story. Michael Haller, the "Lincoln Lawyer", has been one of my favorite law-novel characters since the first, & I've fallen in love all over again. The narrator does a wonderful job; not once did I think his reading was less than stellar, & I'm mightily picky when it comes to narrators. You do not have to have read the previous books to enjoy this one, although it is always fun knowing the background. Connelly, however, wrote a fully stand-alone book here, so don't think you shouldn't read this if you haven't read the others. I do think you'll want to, after you've read/listened to this, but nothing in "The Gods of Guilt" is a spoiler for the earlier books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Funny Girl: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Nick Hornby
    • Narrated By Emma Fielding
    Overall
    (100)
    Performance
    (91)
    Story
    (90)

    Set in 1960's London, Funny Girl is a lively account of the adventures of the intrepid young Sophie Straw as she navigates her transformation from provincial ingnue to television starlet amid a constellation of delightful characters. Insightful and humorous, Nick Hornby's latest does what he does best: endears us to a cast of characters who are funny if flawed, and forces us to examine ourselves in the process.

    ILAN COHEN says: "Delightful surprise !"
    "Fab first 9 hrs. so can forgive the last 1.3 hrs."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I loved this. Loved it, loved it, loved it, & then "meh", but that was ok since the rest was so fab. Hornby is obviously an astute watcher of people, as he picks up on details that make his characters real. I wish the narrator didn't almost whisper (most of) her lines. That seems to be how "posh" people (or those who wish to be thought of as "posh"...) narrate, these days; it's just irritable, after a while, to us listeners, with all that breath behind each word. But, if you liked any of Hornby's other books, you will like this, I PROMISE, & the whisper-reading will melt into the background of this tale.

    13 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • An Irish Country Doctor Part 2: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Patrick Taylor
    • Narrated By John Keating
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Barry Laverty, M.B., can barely find the village of Ballybucklebo on a map when he first sets out to seek gainful employment there, but already he knows that there is nowhere he would rather live than in the emerald hills and dales of Northern Ireland. The proud owner of a spanking-new medical degree and little else in the way of worldly possessions, Barry jumps at the chance to secure a position as an assistant in a small rural practice.

    Minta says: "An Irish version of Herriot, but w/people.☺️"
    "An Irish version of Herriot, but w/people.☺️"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is an adorable story, & I'm truly looking forward to the next in the series! It's the tale of a brand-spanking-new physician who is hired as an assistant in a Northern Ireland country medical practice, not far from Belfast. His boss is gregarious, loud, & does many things quite differently than newbie learned in med school, & of course newbie thinks his way is the only way. Hilarity doesn't quite ensue - it's not a slapstick-y book (much better) - but it is fun, makes you laugh, & you learn the ins-&-outs of a small Irish village, complete w/eccentrics, snobs, lay-abouts, & hard working, good people, all through the story of the medical duo treating their bodies, hearts, & minds. Perhaps this isn't a Pullizer-winning tale, but if you liked James Herriot, Maeve Binchy, or even "The Vicar of Dibley", I'm sure you'll find taking a break w/the village of Ballybucklebo from all the stresses of life (& possibly even from that Very Serious reading list through which you've been plowing...) time well spent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (1281)
    Performance
    (1097)
    Story
    (1111)

    Moneyball reveals a quest for something as elusive as the Holy Grail, something that money apparently can't buy: the secret of success in baseball. The logical places to look would be the giant offices of major league teams and the dugouts. But the real jackpot is a cache of numbers collected over the years by a strange brotherhood of amateur baseball enthusiasts: software engineers, statisticians, Wall Street analysts, lawyers, and physics professors.

    Gordon Lamb says: "Excellent Book, Outstanding Narration, Sloppy Edit"
    "Interesting even for a non-baseball fan!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Moneyball again? Why?

    Probably not, but I would read it. I am not a baseball fan (& know next to nothing about the statistics of baseball - I just know ERA, RBI, etc. from crossword puzzles!😜), but I watched & loved the movie, & so decided to give the audiobook a try. The story & premise behind the concept that totally changed how baseball teams are put together now (or at least, how SMART GMs put their teams together, now...), I found not only fascinating, but downright funny, at times! I even cheered aloud for the A's & Billy Beane (I LOVE how he makes money for his team, & also how he gets other GMs to want specific players & trades...when they weren't even in the market!), but the details with all the statistics and baseball argot were a bit difficult for me to follow. This is where reading it, in a physical book, would have helped. HOWEVER, I still truly enjoyed it; one can just let details of the stats slip by, and listen to - & enjoy! - the story.


    What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

    He has a pleasant voice, & I've liked him in other books...but he DOES tend to read each book with the exact same tone & sense of foreboding (in a baseball book???). He needs to listen to readers like Davina Porter & Gerard Doyle, to hear how the best readers change their narration with each story.


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

    Oh, yes...but that would be giving away the end!


    Any additional comments?

    Even a non-baseball fan, or non-reader of sports books can enjoy this tale, if s/he likes listening to stories of paradigm shifts & the people who were instrumental in those shifts. It's fun!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Her Royal Spyness: A Royal Spyness Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Rhys Bowen
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren
    Overall
    (5153)
    Performance
    (4431)
    Story
    (4412)

    Georgie, aka Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, cousin of King George V of England, is penniless and trying to survive on her own as an ordinary person in London in 1932. So far she has managed to light a fire and boil an egg... She's gate-crashed a wedding... She's making money by secretly cleaning houses... And she's been asked to spy for Her Majesty the Queen.

    Alice says: "Happy addition to a difficult genre"
    "No real spying - but fun premise, anyway!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Her Royal Spyness again? Why?

    Yes, if I didn't have anything else to listen to & needed something to make me laugh. A cute story; a fun, light read. I like the whole premise of the poor royal relation, & reading some about the "inside" of that life in the 1930's.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Maybe Tristram, just for his voice!


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

    The narrator is good - but just that. Her accent is not the proper "U" accent she should have for the main character, & that certainly hurt this rendition. Her Irish accent is believable...to me. However, I'm not as up on my Irish accents as I am my English accents. 😁

    Overall, though, it was still easy to listen to and she is certainly a fun narrator (her reading of Tristram's voice had me laughing out loud! 😊). I'd definitely listen to her again! It's just that this book would've been a bit more enjoyable w/the correct royal-upper-class accent.


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

    Laugh. No crying - like I said, it's a fun, light read.


    Any additional comments?

    This book should have another title. The main character really does no spying - just meets the person she's supposed to "spy" on, & sort of does a little detective work - but it is still a cute book. I wouldn't use a credit on it, but I'd tell interested listeners to go ahead and buy it when in a deep discount! I think I paid $3.95-$5.00 for it, and it was worth that amount, for sure. I'd listen to more in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Devil Wears Prada

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Lauren Weisberger
    • Narrated By Bernadette Dunne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1248)
    Performance
    (325)
    Story
    (331)

    Andrea Sachs, a small-town girl fresh out of college, is hired as the assistant to Miranda Priestly, the successful editor of Runway magazine. Andrea finds herself in an office that shouts Prada! Armani! Versace! at every turn. As things escalate from the merely unacceptable to the downright outrageous, Andrea begins to realize that the job a million girls would die for may just kill her. And even if she survives, she has to decide whether the job is worth the price of her soul.

    Howard says: "You won't be able to stop the player"
    "Love the book, not the narrator!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about The Devil Wears Prada? What did you like least?

    The best? The inside look at the craziness of Big Fashion & the people who think that's the only thing that makes life worth living. It's funny.

    The least? Probably how the author is just as snotty as her boss, by painting all Southerners as "rednecks" & worse - all a bunch of uneducated, bigoted hicks, blah, blah. Weisberger is apparently unaware of the irony. "It's ok to be bigoted towards Southerners, because they AREN'T we fabulous, oh-so-intellectual & better-than-the-rest Northeasterners." Otherwise, it's a fun read, if you can ignore the author's own near-sightedness...AND the awful narration. Bleagh. If this is your first time with the book, I'd read it, rather than listen. Only listen if you've already read the book & liked it - you should then be able to get around the narration.

    The narrator's voice is far too old to read for a 22-year old. She is just not believable as the main character, & is lousy with accents. A little too breathy (not "sexy breathy" - which would've been worse) - as if she's attempting to soften the start of each word. Prim & proper. For a 22-year old New Yorker? Get real; I'm not buying it.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Bernadette Dunne’s performances?

    Maybe (but not likely)...if the narrator is supposed to sound like a mature woman. But she sounds like a narrator for a prim romance or a how-to manual, & since I don't usually listen to either, I'm not likely to want her as the narrator for the books I like.


    Could you see The Devil Wears Prada being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    It WAS made into a movie! 😝

    A TV series? Nah...it'd be the same thing, over & over. It would turn into a soap opera.


    Any additional comments?

    I did really like the book when I first read it, which is why I bought the audio version when it was on sale. I'm glad I did, but I'm also glad I already liked the book, because if I'd listened to it first, I would have wondered what all the hype was about. The narrator (ok, I know I'm going on & on about her!) really did change the whole "tone" of the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • House Rules

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Jodi Picoult
    • Narrated By Mark Turetsky, Nicole Poole, Andy Paris, and others
    Overall
    (3397)
    Performance
    (1574)
    Story
    (1585)

    One of America’s most popular authors, Jodi Picoult has earned a reputation for crafting riveting, topical fiction. In House Rules she examines how being different can have dire consequences. Teenager Jacob Hunt has Asperger’s syndrome. A forensic science wizard, he follows his scanner to show up at crime scenes and give law enforcement officials his advice.

    Charlotte says: "Great book until the ending"
    "I couldn't stop listening!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of House Rules to be better than the print version?

    Yes; the narrators brought the book so alive - gripping story - and hearing from each character's voice clinched it. Sometimes when this method is used, it's hokey - but not this time! Listen to this book! It's engrossing, enlightening, gut- and heart-wrenching, had me holding my breath for long stretches (breathe!), yet never lost my interest, & made me almost want to scream, at times, because I wanted a particular character to notice/find out/ask something. The story was brought that alive, that I felt I could almost contact a character!


    What was one of the most memorable moments of House Rules?

    Oh, there were so many memorable moments. When Jacob testifies, when you find out why the book has its particular title, the prom story; so many moments made me tear up, so many had me laughing, & others had me on the proverbial edge of my seat. I'd find more things to do, just so I could keep listening; my kitchen has never been so spotless! Ha!😄


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

    They bring the characters so alive - things they stress I'm not sure I would have picked up on - & perhaps moments of humor were funnier because of the narrators' interpretations. Plus, I wouldn't have gotten my kitchen so clean! 😜


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

    So many did. Just learning about Jacob & his Asperger's moved me, & the ending had me in tears, w/tenderness. (But this isn't "chick lit", by any stretch.) Hearing from Jacob's brother & how he had to take on the role of big brother, Jacob's school days, the bullying, & those big headphones! I'm not sure there was a moment when I wasn't moved, in one way or another.


    Any additional comments?

    I bought this book
    1) because a friend is a huge Jodi Picoult fan & I kept telling my friend I'd read one of Picoult's books,
    2) great reviews, &
    3) because I'm interested in the autistic spectrum, & Asperger's, in particular.

    I now
    1) want to read/listen to other Picoult novels,
    2) can't rave enough about this book,
    3) have a greater knowledge & even more empathy w/those w/such conditions (who are the whole family, as the condition impacts all), &
    4) want to listen to this book again - something I rarely do, this soon after I finish a book! Usually, if I re-listen, it's years later.

    I also want potential listeners to know that even though the main character has Aspergers, this is not a book about Aspergers; this is an absorbing story w/a character who has Aspergers. Please don't let that aspect put you off, if you are not usually a fan of such books.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Black Box: Harry Bosch, Book 18

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Michael McConnohie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2193)
    Performance
    (1854)
    Story
    (1835)

    In a case that spans 20 years, Harry Bosch links the bullet from a recent crime to a file from 1992, the killing of a young female photographer during the L.A. riots. Harry originally investigated the murder, but it was then handed off to the Riot Crimes Task Force and never solved. Now Bosch's ballistics match indicates that her death was not random violence, but something more personal, and connected to a deeper intrigue. Like an investigator combing through the wreckage after a plane crash, Bosch searches for the "black box", the one piece of evidence that will pull the case together.

    Amazon Customer says: "Disappointing"
    "Good story, horrendous narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Black Box again? Why?

    No - not w/this narrator. He made me feel like I was back in elementary school, listening to a film strip. This man was NOT the right pick to narrate this book! It was like he was instructing the listener. I almost stopped listening after the first chapter - in fact I did, originally - but then found myself stuck somewhere w/o anything else to listen to. The story was a good, solid Harry Bosch novel - not one of Connelly's best, but still one I'd recommend for another Bosch fan. To read.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Michael McConnohie?

    Almost anyone else...even a woman! (The lady who reads the Sue Grafton's novels?!) Someone who sounds like Harry - kind of gruff but approachable, at the same time. I wish I knew names of narrators I've listened to w/the "right" voices. The narrator should be telling you a story - be a part of the story - not instructing you.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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