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Kristina

Kristina B

Portland, OR, United States | Member Since 2010

1
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 5 reviews
  • 30 ratings
  • 263 titles in library
  • 35 purchased in 2014
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  • Wool Omnibus Edition (Wool 1 - 5)

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Hugh Howey
    • Narrated By Minnie Goode
    Overall
    (1427)
    Performance
    (1298)
    Story
    (1296)

    This is the story of mankind clawing for survival, of mankind on the edge. The world outside has grown unkind, the view of it limited, talk of it forbidden. But there are always those who hope, who dream. These are the dangerous people, the residents who infect others with their optimism. Their punishment is simple. They are given the very thing they profess to want: They are allowed outside.

    Charles says: "Unique"
    "Solid, emotional story. Enjoyable performance."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story has both a decent plot arc and a compelling cast of characters. Howey does a really good job of describing emotional situations and settings alike in painstaking detail. I feel like I was there.

    A lot of folks complained about the performance in these reviews (at least recent ones). I see what they're referring to - Goode does "do" voices in a way that can sometimes seem a bit forced, but overall I thought she did a really great job of portraying a wide range of characters. Either gender reading the opposite gender is frequently a challenge, and I've heard it done really badly. Goode's method is risky, and sometimes it fails, but it didn't grate on me like it apparently grated on some listeners.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Embassytown

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By China Mieville
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (470)
    Performance
    (348)
    Story
    (352)

    China Miéville doesn’t follow trends, he sets them. Relentlessly pushing his own boundaries as a writer—and in the process expanding the boundaries of the entire field—with Embassytown, Miéville has crafted an extraordinary novel that is not only a moving personal drama but a gripping adventure of alien contact and war. In the far future, humans have colonized a distant planet, home to sentient beings famed for a language unique in the universe, one that only a few altered human ambassadors can speak....

    D says: "must hear to fully appreciate."
    "Oh, Mieville."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    So, I gave this 3 stars, and that's not very good. That said, I think this book is probably amazing, but it's just so complicated. Mieville bit off a lot with this exploration of language using aliens. You need to be a reader/listener who can listen to an audiobook attentively enough that you do not miss details. Because I promise you, if you zone out or lose focus, you will have to rewind! For that reason, I feel like this is not a good choice to listen to as an audiobook as opposed to reading as text.

    The performance is a little tough for me. The reader is British. I am not British, but I've certainly listened to plenty of audiobooks narrated by British people and enjoyed them. However, in this case, the performance seemed a bit of a British accented drone to me, which made the complex material all that much more difficult to follow in audio format.

    My husband and I had long talks after both listening to this book, so despite my negativity here, it is an intellectually stimulating book. If you like Mieville in general you may enjoy this book, but it's not an easy listen.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • 14

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12115)
    Performance
    (11002)
    Story
    (11028)

    There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s.

    Magpie says: "Super solid listen!!"
    "A fun summer read!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was recommended to me by a friend as a fun summer read, and she was right! Fast-paced, a little weird (a compliment from me), but not too deep. The reader was pretty good and switched between characters well enough.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dark Places: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Gillian Flynn
    • Narrated By Rebecca Lowman, Cassandra Campbell, Mark Deakins, and others
    Overall
    (4733)
    Performance
    (3955)
    Story
    (3975)

    Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in "The Satan Sacrifice of Kinnakee, Kansas". As her family lay dying, little Libby fled their tiny farmhouse into the freezing January snow. She lost some fingers and toes, but she survived, and famously testified that her 15-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, Ben sits in prison, and troubled Libby lives off the dregs of a trust created by well-wishers who've long forgotten her.

    Glenda Jeffers says: "Riveting but brutal"
    "Excellent!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is Flynn's sophomore effort, and it's the best of her 3 books, in my opinion. You really get pulled into the setting and the thoughts of the main character. It's unapologetically gritty, and sometimes cringe-worthy. But in a good way. The main character is not likable, but as in Flynn's other books, the characters are somehow simultaneously unpleasant and engrossing. You're pulling for them in the end, even if you wouldn't want to necessarily spend any time with them. There's an unusually large cast of readers, but they do a great job, and I actually had a hard time telling some of them apart. I like it when the reader doesn't distract.

    This is worth a listen! That's all I'll say here so you can enjoy the twists and turns for yourself.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sharp Objects

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Gillian Flynn
    • Narrated By Ann Marie Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3714)
    Performance
    (2983)
    Story
    (3006)

    Words are like a road map to reporter Camille Preaker's troubled past. Fresh from a brief stay at a psychiatric hospital, Camille's first assignment from the second-rate daily paper where she works brings her reluctantly back to her hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls.

    Kelley says: "I agree with Stephen King"
    "Dark, unsettling, delicious"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Sharp Objects again? Why?

    Flynn really writes broken characters well. Her main characters all (so far) have a dark twist, and this is no exception. This book is noir at its best. Quite modern but also timeless. I want to say it's a fun read, but I guess that really depends what you consider fun! If you don't like dark topics or deep explorations of people who are not very happy, this is not for you. But if you do or you think you might, Flynn is pretty good at what she does. The performance on this one is also quite good.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I liked the fearless exploration of taboo topics, and [SPOILER] I liked that it didn't have a happy ending.


    What about Ann Marie Lee’s performance did you like?

    I like a reader that fades away and allows you to feel immersed in the story. This reader did that very well. She did males without being hokey about it (a common pitfall), and she conveyed the bleak attitude of the main character very well without turning me completely off or boring me.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Maybe not in one sitting, but I did listen in two days.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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