Do not waste valuable time or credits on this work. The plot is childish, the characters one-dimensional, and the story-line entirely predicable. The uninspired dialog seems written almost entirely without the benefit of adjectives. The reader is forced to wheedle her way through the simplistic narrative with little opportunity to demonstrate her vocal range due to the characters? flattened affect. I would say that the book was written for preteens, except that the bird children indulge in sexual escapades that are inappropriate for adolescent readers and embarrassing for a more mature audience due to the author's artless presentation.
After 8+ hours, I still didn't have a feeling for the characters or the story. Clancey gave me no reason to care about any of them.
Virginians from the wine country don't sound like that. And, neither does anyone else in America! The reader's fake Virgina drawl sounded something like Deputy Dawg's little cartoon pal "Muskey". Her male voices sounded like a little girl mimicking her daddy. The real mystery here is why on earth, the publisher used this reader. The book wasn't so hot to start with but that reader killed off any possible enjoyment.
I am so sorry I wasted my credits on this book - I think I was taken-in by the publisher's hype. Anyway, this is an endless disconnected diatribe dwelling on the inequities among the residents of the City of Los Angeles and highlighting the moral depravity of the age. Oh, nothing very interesting, just meanness, homosexuality and crime all without passion or motivation. The book is interspersed with historical "fun facts" about the city which bear no apparent relationship to rest of the book. Maybe these are provided to make-up for the lack of a real plot. Most of the time, the reader's voice contains a cynical lilt which sounds very much like my teenage son trying to be cool. Occasionally however, the reader slips into a frenzy and screams at the listener. In case you didn't get it the first time, the author repeats some lines - a literary gimmick which he overuses. Oh, and beware of the musical interludes which are jarring, discordant and engineered to have breaks in the middle. Thanks to the music and the reader, this book wasn't even an effective sleep aid.
This is one book I think would have been much better as an abridgement. Often, the author catches-up the reader with little synopses of what just happened in recent pages - in case your attention wandered, I guess. And indeed the book did not hold my attention very well; the plot was simple, predictable and gimmicky. The characters were drawn with broad strokes. I had difficulty believing that the same author wrote this book and the “Odd” series.
Long after the 2008 elections "Dreams From My Father" will still be a superb book written by a young man with the courage to frankly expose his deepest thoughts regarding racial identity and its impact on the American family and our social fabric. Whether you believe you can support Mr. Obama's bid for the Presidency or not, reading his book will provide a deeper understanding of the man who could become our first African American President.
While I found a few of the internal monologues over-long, I belive my time was well-spent reading this book. About the author as reader - as a life-long listener of talking books for the blind, I had no difficulty following Ms. Morrison's rendition of her work, tracking the characters, and the shifts in the story. In particular, she read with sufficient range and emotion to keep me interested in the book and her reading did not interfere with my ability to freely interpret the story for myself. I find that amateur readers often over dramatize. In the case of this powerful story, I imagine Ms. Morrison understood that the story was weighty enough without added emotion.
Ugh! Read on, if you like the idea of rapacious sex with a dead man. But, be prepared to never again enjoy Scott Joplin’s beautiful music without visions of him humping his way into eternity. Sadly, this dime store novel tarnishes Mr. Joplin's legacy by magnifying his human frailties solely to provide a vehicle for an otherwise dull story. This book left me wondering why it warranted even a passing mention in Ear to the Ground.
Unlike American Gods, Anansi Boys is a bedtime story, a fable for adults. Most likely, the audiobook is an improvement over the printed version because this book was meant to be read and sung aloud. Gaiman delivers his message with wit and humor that doesn't blunt its power. Anansi Boys left me searching for another audiobook by Neil Gaiman (and sadly disappointed). Anansi Boys is a beautifully produced book. Gaiman is fortunate that Lenny Henry was available to provide his work its voice; I cannot imagine another reader doing it justice. Still hungering for more, I searched for another audiobook read by Lenny Henry; and again, I was disappointed. It is hard to believe that such a gifted reader has produced only one audiobook for Audible. Anansi Boys also includes some of the most delightful music I've heard on a recorded book and the book is precisely edited with exacting timing. Altogether, it is a work of art that is a delight to hear (or read through the ears).
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