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Anonymous

Member Since 2008

17
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 6 reviews
  • 54 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 57 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
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  • Restless

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By William Boyd
    • Narrated By Rosamund Pike
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1076)
    Performance
    (255)
    Story
    (250)

    It is the summer of 1976 in Oxfordshire, England, and someone is trying to kill Sally Gilmartin. The only person she can trust is her daughter, Ruth, a young single mother struggling with her own demons. Now Sally must tell her daughter the truth: She is actually Eva Delectorskaya, a Russian émigré recruited for the British Secret Service in 1939.

    Susianna says: "Favorite Book of 2007"
    "Best audiobook I've ever heard"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I haven't read this book on paper, though I've listened to it about half a dozen times, so I really don't know how much of my love affair with the story is about William Boyd, and how much to Rosalind Pike's narration.

    She is just insanely good -- her reading of the book is intelligent, which can't be underestimated in narration, since its absence is always so cringey. Pike understands the characters and portrays them with sensitivity and respect, and her accents etc are pitch-perfect.

    Huge kudos to Boyd as well, of course. The story is a ripsnorter -- war, espionage, betrayal, intrigue... gave me real insight into two historical contexts that he made fascinating and rich.

    I listen to audiobooks constantly and have for years. I've listened to hundreds, and this is hands down the best in terms of narration and story. Do yourself a favour.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Broken Teaglass

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Emily Arsenault
    • Narrated By Eileen Stevens, Oliver Wyman, Therese Plummer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (654)
    Performance
    (188)
    Story
    (193)

    The dusty files of a venerable dictionary publisher, a hidden cache of coded clues, a story written by a phantom author, an unsolved murder in a gritty urban park: all collide memorably in Emily Arsenault's magnificent debut, at once a teasing literary puzzle, an ingenious suspense novel, and an exploration of definitions: of words, of who we are, and of the stories we choose to define us.

    Ed says: "Enjoyable Book with Great Characters"
    "Production flawed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am baffled by the production decisions made for this audiobook.

    Whose idea was it to approach narration in such a disjointed way, whereby a female narrator steps in to deliver just the female dialogue (while the male narrator adds an infuriating "she said" etc to the end) -- and vice-versa. I've enjoyed multiple-narrator books before (notably The Time Traveller's Wife) but in those cases the narration followed a narrative structure where characters alternate point of view chapters.

    People fail to understand that the experience of an audiobook is not meant to be equivalent to a trip to the theatre. It's closer to reading, and the narrator and producers' job is to get out of the way and let you forget you're listening to an audiobook the same way your forget you're reading a book on paper. Every self-conscious jolt between narrators reminds you that it's an artificial process -- in this case far more artificial than the usual, which is really just storytelling.

    I'm convinced that whoever thought this approach could contribute to listeners' enjoyment of the book has never listened to an audiobook.

    Not a bad story but almost impossible for me to appreciate.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Freedom

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Jonathan Franzen
    • Narrated By David Ledoux
    Overall
    (185)
    Performance
    (86)
    Story
    (86)

    Freedom comically and tragically captures the temptations and burdens of too much liberty: the thrills of teenage lust, the shaken compromises of middle age, the wages of suburban sprawl, the heavy weight of empire. In charting the mistakes and joys of Freedom's intensely realized characters, as they struggle to learn how to live in an ever more confusing world, Franzen has produced an indelible and deeply moving portrait of our time.

    Thom says: "Great Portrait of Liberal America Today"
    "Brilliant"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I loved this book utterly. Franzen's characters have stayed with me in the weeks since I listened and the environmental issues explored in the novel really had an impact on me.

    Often, even when I really enjoy a book I find it leaves my head immediately when I finished. This was an engaging and lasting experience for me, and I highly recommend it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Slap: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Christos Tsiolkas
    • Narrated By Alex Dimitriades
    Overall
    (88)
    Performance
    (55)
    Story
    (58)

    At a suburban barbecue, a man slaps a child who is not his own. This event has a shocking ricochet effect on a group of people, mostly friends, who are directly or indirectly influenced by the incident. In this remarkable novel, Christos Tsiolkas turns his unflinching and all-seeing eye onto that which connects us all: the modern family and domestic life in the 21st century.

    Annabelle says: "Engaging book - reading a bit patchy."
    "Didn't do it for me"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I just don't get what people went nuts for with this novel. I am the exact demographic of his characters, right down to location, and just found it embarrassing and sometimes loathsome. The sex scenes were gratuitous and constant, the characters unlikeable and the plot laboured.

    The good things I can say about this book is that it did get a little better towards the end, that Alex Dimitriades did a great job with the character of Manolis, and that I liked Connie and thought her backstory was really interesting and well-drawn. But these few aspects weren't enough to make the world Tsiolkas created one I'd like to revisit.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • On Borrowed Time

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs)
    • By David Rosenfelt
    • Narrated By Chris Ensweiler
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (145)
    Performance
    (80)
    Story
    (81)

    Richard Kilmer is head over heels in love with Jennifer Ryan, who takes him home to meet her parents, where she accepts his marriage proposal. While visiting, they set out on a nostalgic drive up to Kendrick Falls. On their way, a freak storm rolls in, Richard loses control of his car, and it rolls. When the storm clears in a matter of seconds, Jen is gone. Richard can't find her, and neither can the police who respond to the scene.

    A User says: "Not enough dogs!"
    "Not enough dogs!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A bit of a departure for Rosenfelt. I'm so used to the Andy Carpenter/Grover Gardner combo that this came as a bit of a surprise, but it was a good read.

    The premise was fascinating, and despite an inevitable disappointment in its resolution, I was very keen to see it through. And I didn't guess the twist, even though I was looking out for it.

    Nice work by the narrator, Chris Ensweiler. Seamless and unnoticeable like all good narration.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Alias Grace

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs)
    • By Margaret Atwood
    • Narrated By Shelley Thompson
    Overall
    (39)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    Sixteen years have passed since Grace was locked up for the cold-blooded murder of her employer and his housekeeper. She now claims to have no memory of the murders, so an amnesia expert tries to find out if she is innocent.

    A User says: "Let down by recording quality"
    "Let down by recording quality"
    Overall

    This is a wonderful book, and flawlessly narrated.

    Unfortunately I was totally frustrated by the errors in the digitisation of the recording. At approximately 1:20 there is clearly a chunk of the story missing; this happens at various other points in the narration. Late in the book there is a real problem, with some mangled speech and 'side eight' (or something) included.

    I wrote to Audible about this but received no reply. Disappointing.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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