Ivan Vorpatril is a survivor. Born in the middle of a military coup, hours after his father was killed in front of his very pregnant aristocratic mother, he was swaddled in borrowed blankets and smuggled out of the war zone as part of a refugee family. Although he has grown into a gorgeous "hunk", he has continued to survive through protective coloring. I thought in the first books his character was only included in the Vorkosigan stories as a foil for his cousin Miles, the physically challenged genius, who accidentally founded a whole Army at seventeen years old. Ivan's name in these stories is often followed by "you idiot".It hasn't stopped his relatives for asking for his reluctant help though.. So I LOVE IT, that Ivan is now the hero in this book, without any tricks such as having him turn from a Clark Kent to Superman. Ivan is still the very ordinary young man who has avoided becoming a focus for a coup in his own times, not by becoming a super warrior on a planet of warriors, but by being an average, guy, just not understanding all of the plots and underplots swirling around him. His over achieving relatives sometimes wonder if he is doing it on purpose, and shake their heads and think not, unless he began fading into the background at five. Hard to do when your are taller, and stronger than everyone else around, even at five. These warrior types should have spent more time around five year olds. The little people are very much personalities even at five. Sorry, I feel as if I've watched, a favorite child grow up and become successful. Lois MacMaster Bujold is a great writer to make her characters that real.
I enjoyed watching Ivan come into his own.
Grover Gardner is one of those magnificent performer's who sounds as though he is someone you've met. No matter what part of the country your from.
I enjoyed the whole book, but the last few pages were made me laugh aloud.
I hope there will be more stories about the Vor world. This author doesn't leave the reader with cliff hangers, like old fashioned B movies or soap operas. She doesn't have to. Her books are so interesting, that although each book is ended with a logical and satisfying conclusion, her world is full of such interesting people that I hope to meet them as often as possible.
First it is important to know that the characters is this book are not at all like Kerry Greenwood's books featuring Phryne Fisher which I also enjoy, and for very different reasons than I like Earthly Delights. I loved the narrator for Earthly Delights, Louise Siversen's voice is low and soothing. I also enjoyed the characters. These are beautiful people whose beauty has more to do with intelligence, tolerance, and a determination to be cheerful in the face of petty annoyances, and rotten problems, without being insipid. They live in an old fashioned apartment building, called Insula after similar buildings in ancient Rome (the ancient originals more like tenements than this elegant building.Corinna has given up a very profitable career as an accountant, as well as a "profitable" husband and big house to move into Insula, and take the bakery on the first floor. Waking at four in the morning to bake fresh bread to fill orders for stores and restaurants and bake muffins for people on their way to work, is for her heaven. She tells us that she will never wear a kitten heel again. Being a very large person we can be happy for her. While she has her share of insecurities she is not confused about her ability to run a small business, and trust her own judgment. Her friends are fortunate in her friendship, and heaven help those she sees as enemies. Corinna needs all the good sense she owns when her before dawn work day isn interrupted by a young woman expiring of an overdose on a heating grate outside her shop door. Corinna calls medics, keeps the victim alive, and is roundly cursed for "stealing the young lady's high". However, from this rather nasty beginning Corinna meets strong Daniel, acquires a ragged assistant, and deals with a slander campaign that effects all of the occupants of the building.
Although the story is character driven, the world Kerry Greenwood describes is consistent from beginning to end. The listener/reader is not jerked out of the story by a character or plot point inconsistent with earlier descriptions. I liked the description of St. Kilda. Living in the eastern United States, I doubt my dream of visiting the city where these characters live will ever be in my budget, but after reading Kerry Greenwood's books I certainly wish it were.
There are several. I love the garden upon the roof of the apartment building with its fish pool, benches and arbors, and its contrasts with the soup run, to make sure the homeless get one hot meal a day. Both of these scenes involve Daniel, whom the reader only knows as a dark mysterious stranger for a good bit of the book.
Obviously Corinna is the most memorable because this is her story. I expect though the favorite character will depend upon the reader. My daughter's favorite of course is Daniel a man so beautiful that Corinna can't believe he wants to be with her. My favorite is the retired professor who listens with silence and empathy to those who tell him their problems. Of course loving realistic magic, I also like the the owner of Sybil's Cave. When Corinna needs practical help, she is always willing to help. Not all of her help involves spells.
This story is a cozy mystery, it deserves the name more than most. The Corinna Chapman stories act upon me like a soothing cup of tea, OK, more like a glass of white wine. I am going to buy as many of these audiobooks as they produce and save them for days when traffic is bad, people are cranky, and I have to do boring mindless tasks.
Yes. Like most people I enjoy reading, and am often startled that the narrators do not sound like the "voices in my head" that my imagination conjures when I read. When I began listening to this I was expecting SCHOLARLY bass. But Holter Graham fits the era of the Kennedy administration, who were very young in comparison to the politicians of the time, and presented themselves as youthful and idealistic. Once I adjusted to the narration I loved it.
There were several moments: that the stories of Joe Kennedy's heavy hand was not a myth, that Jack Kennedy was always in pain and struggling with health issues while presenting his comparative youth as an asset thus presenting himself as athletic and energetic, the moment when I realized that it is impossible to tell if John Fitzgerald Kennedy was idealistic or just practical.
Holter Graham does an excellent job of the different voices in Hunting Ground and Cry Wolf. He moves from Native American male, middle eastern male, middle America female beautifully without pulling the listener from the book and thinking "wow he's really good at that". And more importantly the listener doesn't think "meh, no one sounds like that". This book is obviously very different from those novels, and he handles straightforward narration well.
This is a biography of someone who has been written about more than any politician in recent years, so there was nothing so new that would rise to laughter or tears. It would be a rare person that didn't know exactly how tragically this ends.
The important thing to know about this book is that it covers the early years of Kennedy's life, which allows the reader to see that there is a consistency in Kennedy's presentation of himself both as an "Irish mucker" in prep school, and an astute observer of national and international issues while still an undergraduate at Harvard. Unlike some books that boost sales by concentrating only on the days before, during and following the asasination, or even just the presidency, this one shows the reader how the core people loyal to Kennedy and he to them, became a team. Still I agree with earlier reviewers that at the end of the book we don't really know what Kennedy was like, which is John Kennedy's own criteria for a good biography. But the book is worth reading because it places all aspects of his life in context.
On the very surface this is a light historical romance with a predictable plot and stereotypical characters. And yet, like everything M. C. Beaton writes each character has a twist that takes the reader by surprise and sometimes a laugh. This is part of a series of books based on an ex-housekeeper, gifted with an inheritance, which she uses to travel around England. In her wonderings she deftly, finds jobs for the jobless, homes for the homeless, and love for the loveless. There is no snappy banter, sex beyond a brush of lips, or even a dawn meeting with pistols, or at least not the standard duel. There is an
underlying thread of reality that makes the whole thing just a little unusual.
Standard historical romances come close.
Helen Lisanti is an excellent narrator. She manages to change characters without overpowering the story with so much acting that she pulls the listener out of the story. I enjoyed listening to her.
I laughed at a point that was one coincidence to many.
Just that I am glad M.C. Beaton chose to give up a career in journalism to write novels with some very very dry wit, hidden among the standard plots.
This is a light romantic comedy and a good companion for a boring drive.
Like many of Jennifer Crusie's stories, this book is about two people physically attracted to each other, who enjoy conversations and time spent together, but whose goals and life styles are not just different but clash sharply. I enjoy reading about the way these people learn to appreciate the other person's point of view, compromise on some issues, and agree to disagree on other issues.
As another reviewer stated, Tess Newhart is annoying. But she is also interesting. With apologies to Jane Austen, Tess is something like Austen's Emma. Even Miss Austen said that Emma was someone "whom no-one but myself will much like". These young women want the best for their friends, and they think they know best. Emma wants her friend to marry a prosperous socially well placed man. Tess wants to get her friend away from a socially prominent wealthy lawyer. Unlike Emma and Mr. Knightly, however, one of the differences Tess and Nick have is that while they both like sex, Tess thinks spontaneity is essential. Although Nick doesn't require that a meeting for sex be penciled onto his calendar with his other appointments, beds are still better than the tops of grand pianos, dining tables, and two seater sport cars.
I have to agree with the previous reviewer, Heyer abridged is a shadow of the real thing: and I think it is nostalgia for the original book that makes me like this so much, mentally adding the depths of character that were washed out with the abridgment. I am not sorry I bought this, the narrator is terrific, but if they find an unabridged version I will buy that as well.
Cocaine Blues is the first book in the Phryne Fisher series, but one of the last to be published on audible. Which may be a good thing, because the series gets blazingly better as it progresses. The series is interesting because it addresses a wide range of people and ideas grinding against each other, but the best of whom cheerfully flow through Phryne's dining room, parlor, and (yes) sometimes her bedroom. I never appreciated, until I began this series the amazing social changes that took place in a very short time between the beginning of the 1900s to the end of the roaring twenties. F. Scott Fitzgerald's Bernice did more than just bob her hair.
Phryne Fisher is a young woman living on the edge of a world changing from the Victorian ideas of women as angels in the home, to the young women who drive ambulances in World War I and are thus allowed/forced to do and see things that even five years earlier would be unthinkable for most females. Phryne herself goes from a child in Australian poverty being called "hey you", to a young woman in England called the Hon. Miss Fisher. Her reasons for returning to Australia would make Agatha Christies proud. As the series goes along we find that she has a very good time in spite of any curves life throws her. The books are well researched as to historical accuracy, and I can't wait to see how Kerry Greenwood goes from the roaring twenties to a very angry thirties, and what Phryne will do next.
Tanya Huff greatly expands the concept of Maiden, Mother, and Crone, to say nothing of seventh sons, horned gods and very intelligent dragons Also the next time I go to a second hand store I will be very careful where I put my hands. In this emporium enchantment is to be taken literally.
I will buy and listen to any book with Tanya Huff's name, and I am so gland I chose this one.
While some people find Joan Hickson's fluting English voice trying, i think she is just the way an an aged spinster aunt would sound. Agatha Christie noted many years ago that Joan Hickson is the actress she would choose to portray Jane Marple. In the original books Miss Marple is described as old, not a physically impressive person. She is included in groups out of kindness, and the other members are startled to find that she has opinions at all. Jane Marple knows she is not impressive, she dithers when she speaks and apologies for daring to approach men in authority. The lovely thing is that Miss Marple has no illusions about the views others have of her, but she still values her own worth, intelligent observations, and ability to make logical connections. Miss Marple was born when Victoria was Queen of England, and it shows her conversation and her manner. Joan Hickson's voice matches the old fashioned, straight laced character nicely.
First Sandra Burr is delightful. She differentiates between characters with ease, and listening to her work is refreshing. Her voice has a bubble of amusement which lets the listener understand how the characters can see humor in the most depressing situations without glossing over the dark parts. This is a story of three women past their youth, and discovering that after all the best is yet to be. But even though the plot is superficially about discovering old murder, hidden diamonds, and poisonous secrets, it is also about discovering the characters never stop growing and learning, and under the wit and humor are the way these three women, and the men they love adjust to their new understanding. Oh yes, the sex is great. Experience does count here. This isn't a social studies text book, its a great story neatly woven and fun. I really like this author. She just gets better.
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