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ZiggyZ

ratings
14
REVIEWS
13
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
61

  • Istanbul Passage: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Joseph Kanon
    • Narrated By Jefferson Mays
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (237)
    Performance
    (180)
    Story
    (183)

    A neutral capital straddling Europe and Asia, Istanbul has spent the war as a magnet for refugees and spies. Even American businessman Leon Bauer has been drawn into this shadow world, doing undercover odd jobs and courier runs for the Allied war effort. Now, as the espionage community begins to pack up and an apprehensive city prepares for the grim realities of postwar life, he is given one more assignment, a routine job that goes fatally wrong, plunging him into a tangle of intrigue and moral confusion.

    Maine Colonial says: "What choice do you make when all options are bad?"
    "I'm a sucker for anything about Istanbul . . ."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    The prose was a bit turgid . . . . but it was a pretty good thriller.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I like anything about Istanbul, and the protagonist was put in an interesting and difficult situation.


    How could the performance have been better?

    The reader adopted some very strange pronunciations for for the names: Leon was "Lay-OWN" and Alexei was "Alex-AY". It bugged me constantly. I didn't mind that he didn't try to fake women's voices. Overall the narration was fine and didn't particularly add or detract except for the weird names.


    Do you think Istanbul Passage needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No, it was enough.


    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Night Circus

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Erin Morgenstern
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6117)
    Performance
    (5431)
    Story
    (5429)

    The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

    Pamela says: "The circus of your dreams"
    "Fascinating story, wrong reader for this book."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Absolutely the wrong reader - Marco and Celia are young adults, yet he makes Marco sound like an elderly man throughout the book. Celia no better. He isn't a bad reader, just not for these characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nicholas Nickleby: Dickens on Dickens

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Charles Dickens
    • Narrated By Gerald Dickens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    Charles Dickens' Nicholas Nickleby performed by his great-great-grandson Gerald Dickens. A tale that brings to life the adventures of Nicholas Nickleby as he meets the wicked Wackfors Squeers, the theatrical Crumbles, and the cheerful Cheerybyle Brothers (to name a few). Complete and unabridged.

    ZiggyZ says: "Wonderful narration of a wonderful novel!"
    "Wonderful narration of a wonderful novel!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Gerald Dickens is a wonderful narrator! I am sorry that Audible / Amazon do not seem to have chosen his readings for the Whispersynch versions. It is still easy to follow along on the Kindle version by using the table of contents. But frankly, reading it to myself is much less engaging than listening to Mr. Dickens.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Eighty Days: Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bisland's History-Making Race Around the World

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Matthew Goodman
    • Narrated By Kathe Mazur
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (43)
    Performance
    (37)
    Story
    (37)

    On November 14, 1889, Nellie Bly, the crusading young female reporter for Joseph Pulitzer’s World newspaper, left New York City by steamship on a quest to break the record for the fastest trip around the world. Also departing from New York that day - and heading in the opposite direction by train - was a young journalist from The Cosmopolitan magazine, Elizabeth Bisland. Each woman was determined to outdo Jules Verne’s fictional hero Phileas Fogg and circle the globe in less than eighty days.

    Susan says: "Who knew?"
    "Engaging and interesting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read a lot of history, especially American history, but I was barely aware of Nellie Bly and her story until I read this book. I really enjoyed reading it. An easy and engaging listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sycamore Row

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7743)
    Performance
    (6988)
    Story
    (6989)

    Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of lung cancer. He trusts no one. Before he hangs himself from a sycamore tree, Hubbard leaves a new, handwritten, will. It is an act that drags his adult children, his black maid, and Jake into a conflict as riveting and dramatic as the murder trial that made Brigance one of Ford County's most notorious citizens, just three years earlier. The second will raises far more questions than it answers. Why would Hubbard leave nearly all of his fortune to his maid? Had chemotherapy and painkillers affected his ability to think clearly?

    Brock says: "Grisham at his best (again)"
    "A great page-turner with a great moral!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    John Grisham manages to give us the best of both worlds. Over the years my consumption of trashy mystery novels and thrillers has fallen off a lot, but sometimes I just want a page-turner. But this was a page-turner with a great story and a great message. Really enjoyed it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6954)
    Performance
    (6365)
    Story
    (6371)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "Couldn't put it down, couldn't wait for it to end!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A riveting story but ultimately interminable and cloying. By the last few hours I was really wishing that Theo would OD or anything just to make him shut up! If it had been half as long it would have been a great story. Perfect narrator, too bad he had to play an amoral professional victim who overthinks everything to death. I'm glad I stuck it out, but I think this book is somewhat over-rated.

    11 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • The History of the Bible: The Making of the New Testament Canon

    • ORIGINAL (6 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Bart D. Ehrman
    Overall
    (41)
    Performance
    (36)
    Story
    (35)

    What different kinds of books are in the New Testament? When, how, and why were they written? And why did some books, and not others, come to be collected into what Christians came to consider the canon of scripture that would define their belief for all time? With these 12 lectures, get a fast-moving yet thorough introduction to these and other key issues in the development of Christianity.

    eric says: "Very informative"
    "Good but no better than FREE iTunes U courses!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Prof. Ehrman is a respected scholar, and the lectures are very interesting. Only thing is, iTunes U has very similar material for free. Right now I'm listening to a course on the NT from Yale University. Audible / Amazon should give these away or at least dramatically reduce the prices.

    Go to iTunes U and get lots of great courses for nothing!

    11 of 32 people found this review helpful
  • Jerusalem: The Biography

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Simon Sebag Montefiore
    • Narrated By John Lee
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (115)
    Story
    (117)

    Jerusalem is the universal city, the capital of two peoples, the shrine of three faiths; it is the prize of empires, the site of Judgement Day and the battlefield of today’s clash of civilizations. From King David to Barack Obama, from the birth of Judaism, Christianity and Islam to the Israel-Palestine conflict, this is the epic history of three thousand years of faith, slaughter, fanaticism and coexistence. This is how Jerusalem became Jerusalem, and the only city that exists twice - in heaven and on earth.

    Ethan M. says: "In-depth and gripping history of 3,000 years"
    "Good book NEEDS WHISPERSYNCH!!! Come on Amazon!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It is a very long book. I have both the Kindle and Audible versions but they don't synch. Ridiculous. But I really like the book, am reading for teh second time.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Splendid Solution: Jonas Salk and the Conquest of Polio

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Kluger
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (159)
    Performance
    (77)
    Story
    (78)

    Salk became a cultural hero and icon for a whole generation. Now, at the fiftieth anniversary of the first national vaccination program, and as humanity is tantalizingly close to eradicating polio worldwide, comes this unforgettable chronicle. Salk's work was an unparalleled achievement, and it makes for a magnificent listen.

    Tim says: "Excellent book"
    "Interesting and brought back memories"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was a small child when this story was playing out and remember receiving my Salk vaccine shots at the age of 5 quite clearly! My best buddy when we were five was the son of a physician who contracted polio. So, this book brought back vivid memories.

    It was very interesting, very detailed but always for a purpose. The narration was excellent. One annoying issue that was not the reader's fault: at the end of each chapter, there was not even a split-second pause before the next chapter was announced; sometimes the "Chapter XX" actually seemed to cut off the last word of the previous chapter. Not sure what that was about, but it was distracting each time it happened.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The End of the Affair

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Graham Greene
    • Narrated By Colin Firth
    Overall
    (2395)
    Performance
    (2201)
    Story
    (2193)

    Graham Greene’s evocative analysis of the love of self, the love of another, and the love of God is an English classic that has been translated for the stage, the screen, and even the opera house. Academy Award-winning actor Colin Firth (The King’s Speech, A Single Man) turns in an authentic and stirring performance for this distinguished audio release.

    Emily - Audible says: "Colin Firth Kills It"
    "Colin Firth has ruined it for every other narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    OMG I never want to listen to another audio book unless it is read by Colin Firth! Just amazing. He makes each character distinctive without resorting to phony accents or odd intonations. It is a wonderful book, but I would listen to Colin Firth read the phone book!

    After recently listening to a couple of excellent new novels (And the Mountains Echoed and The Orphan Master's Son) that were ruined, or nearly so, by heavy, inappropriate (the Greek characters in And the Mountains Echoed were read by a man with what sounded like a Slavic accent) or even made up (I'm convinced none of the readers of The Orphan Master's Son can possibly talk like that in real life) accents, listening to The End of the Affair is a stunning experience.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • And the Mountains Echoed

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Khaled Hosseini
    • Narrated By Khaled Hosseini, Navid Negahban, Shohreh Aghdashloo
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2176)
    Performance
    (1933)
    Story
    (1918)

    Khaled Hosseini, the number-one New York Times best-selling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, has written a new novel about how we love, how we take care of one another, and how the choices we make resonate through generations.

    FanB14 says: "Does the End Justify the Means"
    "Wonderful book; what's up with the narration?!?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is an absolutely wonderful book! Everyone should read it. But what's up with the current trend (also manifested in the Audible performance of The Orphan Master's Son) of narrators with heavy and difficult to understand but unidentifiable accents?!? It makes it really difficult, and what is the point?

    33 of 50 people found this review helpful

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