Geraldine Brooks takes the character of the March family patriarch, Papa March, from Little Women and remakes both him and his beloved Marmie in her own image. I suppose that's the beauty and power of writing -- we can all become a little godlike. Unfortunately Brooks' remix takes two sweet and noble characters from a timeless novel and drags them through the mire until they are barely recognizable. I found that disturbing and disconcerting. On the other hand, the story that Brooks tells was engaging enough to keep me listening to the end. The story stands strongly enough on its own -- it doesn't need the gimmick of recreating a well known and well loved children's classic to get our attention. I wish Brooks had realized that. I think it would have made a more powerful novel.
This book started out well -- interesting and intriguing. But the writer seemed to be in love with the sound of her own "voice" -- and took forever to tell a story. I think she was trying to make the story suspenseful, but it just seemed tedious to me. Almost stopped listening a few times -- and if I had it in paperback I would have just skipped to the end to find out what happened. Oh, well. No more Tana French for me.
This was a fascinating and engaging novel. I loved it. However, the narrator's pronunciation was so stilted and unnatural that it was very distracting to the story. It was as if she felt that because the main character was from the 1700's she needed to use these awkward pronunciations -- overemphasizing her t's and pronouncing the lettter A instead of a. For example, I laid A book on the table. Not sure what was in the narrator's mind, but it came across as overdone and self-indulgent.
I enjoyed every minute of listening to this book. The intrepid Maisie Dobbs is once again on the case investigating the murder of an American solder who enlists as a cartographer for England during the war. There's intrigue, romance, and suspense that kept me interested from start to finish.
I had to make myself finish listening to this book. It has very little plot. Nothing happens. Honestly it's hard to believe but really NOTHING happens in this book. If this had been Anne Tyler's first novel, rather than a later one I don't think it would have been published. My recommendation -- read The Accidental Tourist (again if you've already read it). You'll enjoy it more and won't be wasting your time.
The Help is a fascinating novel and the narrators enhance the novel with their expressive and excellent performances. I laughed and cried, and thoroughly enjoyed every listening minute. This is one that is not to be missed!
Honestly, I wanted to like this book because I was taking an 8 hour car trip and it was the only book I had to listen to. However, I have to say that the plot was implausible, the characters were annoying and unlikable and the author was so focused on details that she often let the plot unravel as she delved into the details and background. By the end I didn't like any of the characters and just wanted to finish the book.
I enjoyed this book and looked forward to listening to it each time I had the opportunity. The resolution was a bit long-winded but I really have no complaints -- a very enjoyable book to listen to. Very Funny.
Elizabeth Sastre is a wonderful narrator. She does an amazing job with the various accents, both british and Bangladeshi, and really made this book come alive (as much as possible). Unfortunately, I can't give the same high marks to the book itself. While I really appreciated the glimpse into the lives of Bangladeshi immigrants in London, I found the plot line dragged on and on and was at times, quite depressing to read. I can usually get through an audio book, even if it is something I might put down if I was ready a paper copy, but this one was a real challenge to get through...
From the annoying fake Irish accent of the narrator, to the endless descriptive passages of the pathetic life of the narrator and how disgusting it is to live in a NYC apartment full of roaches, this book is NOT worth it! I listened for 3 hours -- nothing happened -- so I stopped listening. Save your money for something good!
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