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Denise

Valencia, CA, USA | Member Since 2007

35
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 125 ratings
  • 122 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • Skeletons at the Feast

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Chris Bohjalian
    • Narrated By Mark Bramhall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (56)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (27)

    In January 1945, in the waning months of World War II, a small group of people begin the longest journey of their lives: an attempt to cross the remnants of the Third Reich, from Warsaw to the Rhine if necessary, to reach the British and American lines.

    Simone says: "A Wonderful Story"
    "Not my favorite"
    Overall

    I really like Chris Bohjalian's novels, as I have read several. But I just wasn't moved by this novel. It took a long time for me to get into this story. By the time I finally got a little interested, 3/4 of the book past by. Maybe it's just me, but I just wasn't into it.

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Life of Pi

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Yann Martel
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10783)
    Performance
    (5999)
    Story
    (6045)

    Pi Patel has been raised in a zoo in India. When his father decides to move the family to Canada and sell the animals to American zoos, everyone boards a Japanese cargo ship. The ship sinks, and 16-year-old Pi finds himself alone on a lifeboat with a hyena, an orangutan, a zebra with a broken leg, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger. Soon it's just Pi, the tiger, and the vast Pacific Ocean - for 227 days. Pi's fear, knowledge, and cunning keep him alive until they reach the coast of Mexico, where the tiger disappears into the jungle.

    Theresa says: "Best audio of the year for me"
    "Slow start, fabulous finish"
    Overall

    At first it was hard to get into Pi's life. It was slow, but interesting. It did give backround and set up for why and how such a young boy of 16 could survive the seas for so long. I did enjoy the authors writing and the wonderful narration. As others have mentioned, the story really takes off once Pi is shipwrecked with Richard Parker, a 450 lb Bengal Tiger! Not only did he survive, he survived 227 days. He even repeatedly stated he could not have survived without Richard Parker. I loved the dialogue Pi had with himself and RP. Very humorous in the face of death at every turn. I can absolutely recommend this audiobook to friends.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Help

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Kathryn Stockett
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and others
    Overall
    (27343)
    Performance
    (13950)
    Story
    (13998)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: The most celebrated performance in all of Audible’s history, The Help has nearly 2,000 5-star reviews from your fellow listeners. We hear the print book’s not bad, either. In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women - mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends - view one another.

    Jan says: "What a great surprise!"
    "3 Reluctant Heroes in the Battle of Bigotry"
    Overall

    I knew almost immediately that I was going to like, no make that love, this book. First off, as this is an audible book, the narrators can make or break a story. Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, & Jenna Lamia gave life to the story. I so enjoyed the emotion and life they brought to the book. As far as the story, a stunning debut novel. I will eagerly await her future books.

    The story takes place in 1962 in Jackson Mississippi, just prior to the Civil Rights demonstrations. Segregation is alive in Mississippi. The novel goes back and forth btwn the 3 characters lives and how they are brought together and bond with a common cause....their stories. I only give 5 star scores to books that I will read again. I would even say it is in my top 10 reads. And you will have to read it just to find out Minnie's "PIE" story! I laughed my a** off and giving her air high fives!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Gargoyle

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Andrew Davidson
    • Narrated By Lincoln Hoppe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (231)
    Performance
    (128)
    Story
    (132)

    An extraordinary debut novel of love that survives the fires of hell and transcends the boundaries of time. The narrator of The Gargoyle is a very contemporary cynic, physically beautiful and sexually adept, who dwells in the moral vacuum that is modern life. As the book opens, he is driving along a dark road when he is distracted by what seems to be a flight of arrows.

    Jim "The Impatient" says: "Hell is a choice"
    "Very interesting and unique love story"
    Overall

    I am really drawn to unique stories. This one qualifies. The beginning is a little graphic as it deals with burns. But once that is done, the story moves on quickly. It is about enduring and pure love, but not by 2 beautiful sane people. It is unorthodox as it occurs over 700 yrs.

    The narrator does a good job telling the story and it is quite pleasant to listen to. His accents (Japanese, Icelandic, German, Italian, British) leave a little to be desired, but I could hardly do better.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Time Traveler's Wife

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Audrey Niffenegger
    • Narrated By Fred Berman, Phoebe Strole
    Overall
    (4406)
    Performance
    (1753)
    Story
    (1779)

    Clare and Henry have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was 36. They were married when Clare was 23 and Henry was 31. Impossible but true, because Henry is one of the first people diagnosed with Chrono-Displacement Disorder: periodically his genetic clock resets and he finds himself misplaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity from his life, past and future. His disappearances are spontaneous, his experiences unpredictable, alternately harrowing and amusing.

    Scott says: "Epic Drama & Love Story through Time Travel"
    "This made my Top 5 list for audiobooks!"
    Overall

    William Hope & Laurel Lefkow did a fantastic job as Henry & Clare. Not only did I thoroughly enjoy the story, but the narrators were quite good. They gave life and texture to the characters. I'd actually rather LISTEN to the book then read the hardcopy.

    This is a love story of perserverance and longing of unconventional means. Henry has a problem of unpredictable "Chronodisplacement Disorder"...he time travels. Clare lives linearly. Clare meets Henry for the first time when she is 6, but Henry doesn't meet Clare for the first time until she is 20. Sounds confusing, but the story is really very well crafted despite bouncing back and forth in time. The love story is just in the foreground, as there are more issues investigated in the story. It's pace is steady and consistent. I highly recommend this audiobook to friends and family.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Pillars of the Earth

    • UNABRIDGED (40 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12982)
    Performance
    (5332)
    Story
    (5379)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Got 40 hours to kill? You’ll find the time when you start listening to Lee’s take on Follett’s epic – and widely celebrated – novel of 12th-century England. The Pillars of the Earth tells the story of Philip, prior of Kingsbridge, a devout and resourceful monk driven to build the greatest Gothic cathedral the world has known...of Tom, the mason who becomes his architect - a man divided in his soul...and of the beautiful, elusive Lady Aliena, haunted by a secret shame....

    CynNC says: "Captivating"
    "Great Narration & Story"
    Overall

    I really enjoyed this story. There was constant tension which translates into "page turning" curiosity. I was engaged, basically. I especially enjoyed John Lee's narration. He employed slightly different accents for the characters, so as to distinguish the characters. As many books in audio form that I have listened to, I would have to put him in my top 5. He is that good. Even some of the "mundane" cathedral/achitectural descriptions in the story are not mundane as John Lee narrates them. I give this 4 1/2 stars. A 5 star for me is "Would love to read again". Mr. Lee pushed it from 4 to 4 1/2 stars for me. I am going to download "World Without End" because of he awesome narration. I would definitely recommend this audiobook.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India, and Indonesia

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Gilbert
    • Narrated By Elizabeth Gilbert
    Overall
    (4833)
    Performance
    (1469)
    Story
    (1483)

    Around the time Elizabeth Gilbert turned 30, she went through an early-onslaught midlife crisis. She went through a divorce, a crushing depression, another failed love, and the eradication of everything she ever thought she was supposed to be. To recover from all this, Gilbert took a radical step. She got rid of her belongings, quit her job, and undertook a yearlong journey around the world, all alone. This is the absorbing chronicle of that year.

    Kerry says: "Witty and Wonderful"
    "Better than I expected"
    Overall

    I didn't know exactly what to expect but, I was pleasantly surprised. It is actually narrated BY the author herself, and the narration is one of the best I have ever heard. She is really good! She doesn't sound like she is reading at all, but having a conversation with you, or telling a story from memory. She is a smart and witty writer/storyteller. I have heard the complaints about the "me me me" attitude of the book...but come on, it IS a memoir after all. That said, I enjoyed the book, and I don't generally read memoirs. I would recommend this book to a friend.

    20 of 24 people found this review helpful
  • Salem's Lot

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty
    Overall
    (1714)
    Performance
    (681)
    Story
    (691)

    Stephen King's second novel, Salem's Lot, is the story of a mundane town under siege from the forces of darkness. Considered one of the most terrifying vampire novels ever written, it cunningly probes the shadows of the human heart and the insular evils of small-town America.

    Eileen says: "Classic King on audio - FINALLY"
    "Not my King"
    Overall

    I tried reading this as a teen when it first came out and just couldn't get into it (I loved horror stories). I thought I'd give it another try 28 yrs later. I still couldn't get into it. I like a good scare but this just didn't scare me. I didn't find the characters in the book all that appealing. I've read 2 other King novels and was only mildly interested. I guess I am not a Steven King fan. I'll stick with Bram Stoker's "Dracula" for a good scare!

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Horse and His Boy: The Chronicles of Narnia

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By C.S. Lewis
    • Narrated By Alex Jennings
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1359)
    Performance
    (441)
    Story
    (461)

    On a desperate journey, two runaways meet and join forces. Though they are only looking to escape their harsh and narrow lives, they soon find themselves at the center of a terrible battle. It is a battle that will decide their fate and the fate of Narnia itself.

    Bryan J. Peterson says: "Couldn't turn it off."
    "Good, but not my favorite"
    Overall

    My son and I enjoyed reading/listening to it, but we enjoyed LWW & MN much better. Perhaps this story will become clearer after reading Silver Chair & Last Battle (books 6 & 7).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Magician's Nephew: The Chronicles of Narnia

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By C.S. Lewis
    • Narrated By Kenneth Branagh
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1829)
    Performance
    (571)
    Story
    (587)

    Digory and Polly meet and become friends one cold, wet summer in London. Their lives burst into adventure when Digory's Uncle Andrew, who thinks he is a magician, sends them hurtling to...somewhere else. They find their way to Narnia, newborn from the Lion's song, and encounter the evil sorceress Jadis, before they finally return home.

    Jason says: "An incredible children's series"
    "How it all started"
    Overall

    How did the lamp get into Narnia? Who is the White Witch and how did she come to Rule Narnia? How did Narnia come to be? Why was the Wardrobe special? All these are answered in this first book of the Chronicles of Narnia. My son and I enjoyed it just as much as The Lion, The Witch, & the Wardrobe. The Magician's Nephew will almost stand up on its own, except for a few references made by C.S. Lewis to LWW. If you only read books 1 & 2, it would still be a complete experience. Though, I recommend reading LWW first, then MN. It feels better that way, but that is only MY opinion.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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