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Aaron P. Lazar

mystery writer

Geneseo, New York, United States | Member Since 2010

41
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 34 reviews
  • 70 ratings
  • 220 titles in library
  • 35 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • Sticks and Scones

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Diane Mott Davidson
    • Narrated By Barbara Rosenblat
    Overall
    (54)
    Performance
    (48)
    Story
    (47)

    Catering Elizabethan fare to Aspen Meadow’s elite at an authentic castle brought from England is a dream come true for Goldy. But the day of the luncheon, Goldy is rudely awakened by a shotgun blast through her living room window. As the day goes on, she finds a murder victim floating in a stream on castle property, watches someone close to her get shot, and begins to see the ghost that haunts the castle. Instead of a welcome opportunity, this job has suddenly become a waking nightmare.

    Aaron P. Lazar says: "A Delightful Listen!"
    "A Delightful Listen!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Sticks and Scones in three words, what would they be?

    A delightful mystery. (that's not fair, I have so much more to say, LOL)


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Sticks and Scones?

    There were so many great scenes, but I really loved the last scene where Goldy is running from her assailant and ends up jumping in the moat, then slogging through the snow to find help. Great action!


    Have you listened to any of Barbara Rosenblat’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, but I must say this woman has a great deal of talent! Her accents were outstanding, her voices all different, I absolutely loved her voice and interpretations. I loved the accent she used for Suki (sp?), the wife of the castle owner.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Tom and Goldy finally talked about the elephant in the room - Tom's old girlfriend.


    Any additional comments?

    This was my first Goldy Schultz mystery, and I really enjoyed it. I didn't care for the recipes, however, since they seemed very unhealthy and fattening! Made me want to go off my diet, which is bad for a diabetic, LOL. But it was fun cooking alongside Goldy, regardless. ;o)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rise to Power: The David Chronicles, Volume 1

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Uvi Poznansky
    • Narrated By David George
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    Here is the story of David as you have never heard it before: from the king himself, telling the unofficial version, the one he never allowed his court scribes to recount. In his mind, history is written to praise the victorious—but at the last stretch of his illustrious life, he feels an irresistible urge to tell the truth. In the first volume, Rise to Power, David gives you a fascinating account of his early years, culminating with a tribal coronation. Rooted in ancient lore, his is a surprisingly modern memoir.

    Aaron P. Lazar says: "Tomorrow's Literary Classic - Today!"
    "Tomorrow's Literary Classic - Today!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like about this audiobook?

    Uvi Poznansky's lyrical writing pulled me into this historic story with such power, realism, and poetry that I was immediately drawn into the scenes. I felt immersed in the battles and drenched in my enemies blood. I felt myself swagger over the battlefields in armor and helmet, carrying a spear, exultant in anticipated victory. But that was just one of the aspects of this tale. More than anything, I was deeply intrenched in David's mind and thought processes throughout the entire story. What a ride!


    How has the book increased your interest in the subject matter?

    Frankly, I've never been interested in this type of story - historical, biblical, drama or epic tales. I am a passionate fan of mysteries and suspense, mostly in the current day. But when another book is written by this outstanding author, I would definitely read or listen again!


    Does the author present information in a way that is interesting and insightful, and if so, how does he achieve this?

    Interesting - absolutely! Insightful - almost frighteningly so. How this author puts herself in the mind of such a man astonishes me. Her ability to think and speak like a man -- and a man living many centuries ago -- was formidable. Ms. Poznansky portrayed David's inner thoughts better than most men of this generation could possibly have done. Kudos!


    What did you find wrong about the narrator's performance?

    Nothing - this narrator was outstanding and on target. His voice changed and matured as the character aged. I loved his interpretation of each character, and his amazing range of voices was delightful. I'd listen to him read the newspaper, to tell the truth. Great job, Mr. George. I do wish, however, that my daughter (Melanie Lazar Carbonneau) had written the music for the song that was performed over and over again ("Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands..") I think she could have provided a more interesting musical theme!


    Do you have any additional comments?

    I am often reluctant to read or listen outside of my normal, very predictable genre. But I'm glad I did. I can see this book (and others written by Ms. Poznansky) offered in the future as classic literature in future writing or reading classes. Truly, I think this book will become a global classic. Thank you, Ms. Poznansky, for taking such care with your writing and production. This was a stellar production.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mind Games: Cassie Scot, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Christine Amsden
    • Narrated By Melissa Reizian Frank
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    Evan broke Cassie's heart two months ago, and she still doesn't know why. She throws herself into family, friends, and her new job at the sheriff's department, but nothing helps. The only thing that finally allows her to heal and move on is the love of a new man, mind mage Matthew Blair. Cassie finds him... irresistible. Matthew may also be the only one who can help keep the non-magical residents of Eagle Rock from going crazy over the murder of a beloved pastor's wife.

    Aaron P. Lazar says: "Another Great Cassie Scot Tale!"
    "Another Great Cassie Scot Tale!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Mind Games the most enjoyable?

    I loved "coming home" to Cassie and her life after enjoying the first two books in the series narrated by the same actor, Melissa Reisian Frank. It's difficult to keep the second, third or fourth book in a series as fresh and interesting as the first book, but in this case, Ms. Amsden has done a wonderful job. It was fun to see Cassie's role in the community and politics expanding, to meet more community members, and to see that she is indeed, capable of being "almost" taken advantage of by a mind mage. Seeing her vulnerability made her more endearing. I do not know this imaginary world of magic except through Ms. Amsden's books (I read mysteries and thrillers aside from this) but she has made it a very real world. I find myself accepting the outlandish with a sage nod, because it is handled so well in this series. I also continue to want to "slap both main characters upside the head" as they say, because they drive me crazy with their blind focus. What is wrong with Evan? Why wouldn't he want to relinquish that which isn't his if he loves her? (no spoilers here) And why can't Cassie see he loves her? He has shown her in all but one way. She is really still very young, however, and that's the answer. They're both kids, in their early twenties, and this is not surprising behavior for this age group. So again, very realistic in that sense. My favorite part of the story was when Cassie discovered a big secret about her past and started brewing her own concoctions. Although I was a little confused that her mother could still infuse magic into them even though she was originally a "drained" woman who had lost all her magic. (It may have been because she was currently pregnant with magical twins.) I also loved the scene where she found her own strength and stood up to the horrible men who claimed to be Christian but who were veritable monsters in disguise. Great scene, perfect for the temperament of the series.


    What other book might you compare Mind Games to and why?

    Both Cassie Scot books - Cassie Scot: Paranormal Detective, and Secrets and Lies are great companion books. I do recommend reading/listening to them in order!


    What about Melissa Reizian Frank’s performance did you like?

    Ms. Frank's voices are consistent from book to book which is nice, again, like "coming home" to a world you know and have missed. I enjoy her unique voices for all of the characters.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Cassie warned Evan of the upcoming danger, and where he told her he loved her in spite of the fact that she despised him.


    Any additional comments?

    The triangle of Matt, Cassie, and Evan was most interesting - great angles here. And I loved the "surprise" in the Sheriff's office staff - no spoilers, but it was a nice twist!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cover of Snow: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Jenny Milchman
    • Narrated By Cassandra Campbell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (34)

    Waking up one wintry morning in her old farmhouse nestled in the Adirondack Mountains of New York, Nora Hamilton instantly knows that something is wrong. When her fog of sleep clears, she finds her world is suddenly, irretrievably shattered: Her husband, Brendan, has committed suicide. The first few hours following Nora’s devastating discovery pass for her in a blur of numbness and disbelief. Then, a disturbing awareness slowly settles in: Brendan left no note and gave no indication that he was contemplating taking his own life.

    Marian Konop says: "so disappointing"
    "Outstanding Winter Thriller!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Cover of Snow?

    I loved the taut suspense and lush sense of place. I already adore The Adirondacks, and winter is one of my favorite seasons, so this book was a real pleasure to listen to. The characterizations were superb, the writing smooth and interesting, and the fast paced action never let me take a deep breath. Loved that.


    What other book might you compare Cover of Snow to and why?

    This book was actually very unique, but perhaps it could be in the same category as Joan Hall Hovey's THE DEEPEST DARK.


    What about Cassandra Campbell’s performance did you like?

    Cassandra's voices were distinctive and consistently recognizable, and I felt the emotion of the character through her narration. Outstanding job!


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    When Nora Hamilton wakes to find her husband dead one winter morning, it's just the beginning as one secret after another is revealed during a wild roller coaster ride through the snowy mountains.


    Any additional comments?

    I listen to a lot of "good," books, but this really stood out as one of the best in a long, long time. I keep thinking of the story - days later - and that's always a good sign! Thanks for a wonderful listen. ;o)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • On What Grounds

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Cleo Coyle
    • Narrated By Rebecca Gibel
    Overall
    (371)
    Performance
    (318)
    Story
    (320)

    Clare Cosi used to manage the historic Village Blend coffeehouse…until she opted for quieter pastures and a more suburban life. But after ten years and a little friendly cajoling from the owner (a fresh pot of Jamaican Blue Mountain was all it took), she's back to the grind. With a sprawling rent-free apartment directly above the Village Blend, her cat Java by her side, and plenty of coffeehouse redecorating ideas, Clare is thrilled to return to work. Until she discovers the assistant manager unconscious in the back of the store, coffee grounds strewn everywhere.

    Pam says: "Stands out"
    "My first Cleo Coyle book - good stuff!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was my first Cleo Coyle mystery - I found it quite enjoyable and a fun listen (audio book). There was a little too much "coffee talk" for me, but I totally understand that coffee is the theme of this series and it was very well done. Great characters, scene setting, and action!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Here, There, and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles

    • ABRIDGED (7 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Geoff Emerick, Howard Massey
    • Narrated By Martin Jarvis
    Overall
    (167)
    Performance
    (72)
    Story
    (73)

    Geoff Emerick was only 15 years old when he began working with the Beatles as assistant engineer for their early classics "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and "She Loves You". Incredibly, at the age of 19, he was promoted to full engineer, taking the helm for the group's groundbreaking album Revolver. Ten months later, he joined forces with the Beatles for the recording of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, hailed by Rolling Stone as the greatest album ever made.

    Sandi says: "A Must For Any Beatles Fan"
    "Wonderful Insight into an important era in history"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My only regret with this book was that it couldn't be paired with the actual Beatles' songs that it referred to - but I totally fixed that problem by keeping all my music on my iPhone. Each time I learned more about a song, I listened to it several times, trying to catch the new details that were so amazing to understand.

    I lived through this era as a young teen and will never forget the magic of The Beatles. Thank you for providing such amazing insight in such an entertaining fashion! Well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mythos: Mer Chronicles, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Heather McLaren
    • Narrated By Angela Rysk
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    True love was the last thing David Cooley expected to find in the Bahamas, but the moment he laid eyes on Faren Sands, he knew he had found the girl of his dreams. How could he know she was a mermaid from the lost island of Atlantis?

    Aaron P. Lazar says: "For the Young, or Young-at-heart!"
    "For the Young, or Young-at-heart!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Mythos: Mer Chronicles, Book 1, is a delightful fantasy romp under and above the ocean that propels listeners/readers through mystical lands. With a strong nod toward The Little Mermaid, this story goes far behind that particular movie's theme, which was slated for a younger audience, and would be appropriate for those kids who watched the Disney classic as children, but are now teens or older. Note: There were a few violent scenes which made this not appropriate for sensitive or younger readers, such as bodies without limbs, a bloody war scene, etc, but most of this story is magical and beautiful.

    The characters were distinct and memorable, which strong voices and natural dialog. Told from various points of view, the reader/listener is brought into the current day life of a young mermaid ("Mer"), named Faren Sands, who falls for a human, much to her father's dismay. But there's much more than just a star-crossed lovers' story here, it's about various species, their links to Atlantis and more, and their centuries-old feud that leads to an ultimate bloody battle on the beach.

    My favorite character was Faren Sands little sister, Cindle (sp? I listened so I'm not sure of spelling!), a sweet and brave young lady with intellectual challenges and a great big heart.

    In addition to the romance, thrills, action, and great tension in this story, there is also a sprinkling of of poetry within its pages that moved me deeply, particularly some of the descriptions of the sea. It's clear that the author, Ms. McLaren, has a passionate relationship with the ocean, and the talent to share that love with her readers/listeners.

    I also thoroughly enjoyed the heartfelt thank yous at the end of the book, which showed the author's love for her family.

    Well done, Ms. McLaren. This is just the start of a what promises to be a very successful series!



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hooked

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Polly Iyer
    • Narrated By Francesca Townes
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    High-priced call girl, Tawny Dell boasts a client list that's part Fortune 500, part Five Families. With a PhD in art history and a tidy chunk of money stashed offshore, she hangs up her G-string with plans to retire to a Mediterranean island to open a gallery. Lincoln Walsh, NYPD sex-crimes investigator, has other ideas. He wants Tawny to work undercover at a high-class bordello to discover if a murdered call girl worked there.

    Listen While I Work says: "Fun characters, great writing and narration"
    "Brilliant Thriller, Full of Unexpected Surprises!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Hooked?

    This is a slick, sassy, sexy thriller that kept me on the edge of my seat throughout. I fell in love with the characters, who in spite of their failings were incredibly memorable and unique. No for those seeking pure and wholesome stories, this examines the seedy underbelly of the call girl world in New York City, but it isn't what you might expect. This book was full of humor, intrigue, and romance. One of the most amazing parts of this story was the author's ability to transform a sleazy character who would normally be hated by most decent people, into the "normal" world, and have you, the listener, accept and care about him in spite of his misdeeds. I loved the main characters, of course. Lincoln was a guy's guy - wonderful, with a complex and compelling backstory. Tawny was also a great heroine, in spite of her checkered past. You couldn't help but love her, and at least partially understand how she ended up in this world. What really shocked me, however, was how Ms. Iyer made me LOVE the guy who ran the whorehouse (Benny) and even care for the Mafia Kingpin. I never would have imagined this - but this author pulled it off, brilliantly.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    There was never a moment to rest - Tawny was in danger from the moment the book started. Excellent suspense and tension!


    What about Francesca Townes’s performance did you like?

    I have listened to many narrators. But Ms. Towne's performance was among the VERY best I've ever heard. Every voice was distinct and unique, and I never got confused as to who was speaking. I loved her voices, especially Benny and Lincoln. Outstanding work. I'd like to see more books narrated by this superb actor.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I felt sorry for the lover of Colin, Richie. He was a big, dumb, obedient schmuck who just did as he was told and thought everything would be "okay." Another one of the many characters I enjoyed in this book!


    Any additional comments?

    I highly recommend this taut thriller for anyone who loves the written word - it is so tightly written, it flows so naturally, the dialog is so on target - it's just a spectacular piece of fiction.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Cold Comfort

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Ellis Vidler
    • Narrated By April Grace Lowe
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    After she's dumped by her faithless fiancee, Claire Spencer abandons her dreams of a family of her own. Instead, she plots her solo course and settles for a quiet life as an independent Williamsburg shop owner. So how does she become a killer's target? Sometime security consultant Riley, burned out, stung by his ex-wife, and haunted by a young girl he couldn't save, vows never to work with women again. But when a thug tries to kill Claire and she winds up in Riley's arms, his plans go all to hell. Knowing she's in danger, his protective instincts won't let him walk away.

    Monty says: "Thrilling story, gripping narration"
    "A Non-Stop Thrill Ride!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Cold Comfort again? Why?

    I'm saving it in my library and will probably come back to listen to all of Ellis Vidler's book in the future. They are great books.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I really loved Ben Riley, a man's man. The guy was complex, strong as a bull, and smart. Claire was a good protagonist, but she kept making me mad at her. LOL. She seemed to want to run head long into trouble without thinking about her safety, and I could see why Riley would get frustrated with that. I also loved some of the minor characters like the old geezer who let them come into his cabin (and share his moonshine) after the swamp scene, and even the Senator in the end. All of the characters stood out as very unique and special - I never got confused as to who was who!


    What does April Grace Lowe bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    April did a good job differentiating the characters. I liked her male voices, but I felt her female voice was a little too "wobbly" in places. I mean that she made Claire sound afraid more than I would have liked - does that make sense? Overall, though, a great job. (there were several chapters in the end where the edits weren't done correctly - chairs scraping, etc. but I think this was probably an uploading error - wrong chapters? That's why I gave the performance a 4 instead of a 5)


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I loved the tense action scenes - and the constant twists and turns. I couldn't wait to get back to the story, especially when things were heating up like crazy in the end of the story! That swamp scene will stay with me for a long time. Wonderful imagery!


    Any additional comments?

    I loved the step by step unraveling of Claire's past life - each revelation was more and more surprising, and I kept rooting for her to find her roots and family. It was a great mystery, great suspense, great thriller, and romance. All in one! Wonderful job, Ms. Vidler!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Haunting Refrain: The McGuire Women

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Ellis Vidler
    • Narrated By Jodie Bentley
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (5)

    Suspense, a little romance, a touch of paranormal…Photographer Kate McGuire hopes for a little fun in her life when she joins a parapsychology experiment - visions of murder aren't part of the plan. Then her eccentric friend Venice, a complication all by herself, leaks the story to a reporter, and Kate's life turns upside down. The police don't take her seriously, but the murderer does. Kate's distrust of the press causes her to clash with the one person who can help her - the skeptical reporter who got her into trouble in the first place.

    Listen While I Work says: "Haunting indeed!"
    "Lovely blend of mystery, paranormal, and suspense!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Haunting Refrain rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Definitely among the top and most entertaining!


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Haunting Refrain?

    I love the visions that Kate lived through - very realistic, yet spooky. The element of water/trees was revealed very nicely in the end when the body was found, in a unique and fascinating way. I also loved the scene when she broke into the villain's house, there were some very tense moments!


    Which character – as performed by Jodie Bentley – was your favorite?

    Jodie was outstanding - all of her voices were so unique. I think I particularly loved her Venice voice - that character was written beautifully and she played her well. Kudos to both author and narrator!


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

    Absolutely! But then again, I wanted to savor it, to make it last. So that made it perfect to listen to on morning walks and driving to and from work. Delightful!


    Any additional comments?

    Ms. Vidler is a very talented writer, whose prose flows smoothly and whose dialog feels natural and real. I kept wanting the main character, Kate, to get "with it" and use digital photography, since she still developed film in the darkroom, but I thought perhaps the book was written before digital was widely available. I'll forgive Kate that! LOL. But I really enjoyed the tension, the suspense, the local color, the wonderful characters, and the satisfying ending. Thank you, Ms. Vidler, for another great listen!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Apart from Love

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Uvi Poznansky
    • Narrated By David Kudler, Heather Jane Hogan
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Secrets, passion, betrayal… Written with passionate conviction, this story is being recorded by two of its characters: Ben, a twenty-seven years old student, and Anita, a plain-spoken, spunky, uneducated redhead, freshly married to Lenny, his aging father. Behind his back, Ben and Anita find themselves increasingly drawn to each other. They take turns using an old tape recorder to express their most intimate thoughts, not realizing at first that their voices are being captured by him.

    Aaron P. Lazar says: "A Literary Masterpiece!"
    "A Literary Masterpiece!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I already have, several times actually. This book is totally out of my usual genre (mysteries/thrillers) and probably falls most squarely in the literary fiction category, but I was completely blown away by its beauty and pathos. The quality of the writing is absolutely top notch, and when that is coupled with two supremely talented narrators, the combination is riveting.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I loved the current tense in which the vignettes were told, alternating between Anita and Ben, and the immediacy of the sensations one experiences when listening. The voices are so authentic, the dialog just perfect. I am so in awe of David Kudler's ability to interpret the written word. He is astoundingly good. And Heather Jane Hogan is equally as talented - her Southern accent was impeccable! I've become instant fans of both narrators.


    Which character – as performed by David Kudler and Heather Jane Hogan – was your favorite?

    That's really tough, because I loved Anita, Ben, Lenny, and the three aunts. But I guess if I was forced to choose, I'd pick Anita. She was so honest and real, no pretenses. She'd been through so much. My heart broke for her in many scenes.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    So many moments... but I think one of the most moving was when Ben went to visit his mother in the nursing home. So sad, so heartfelt...


    Any additional comments?

    I really loved this book, and I think it should win lots of literary fiction awards. It's just so powerful. But I didn't like the ending! Too much was left open, and I didn't get that warm, fuzzy feeling I crave. (Okay, so I'm a happy ending kind of guy). I think it could have ended shortly after Ben was kicked out of the house - this might have been a good point if there was not to be a happy ending! Aside from being disappointed that I didn't get to see the characters living happily at the end of the story, this book, its amazing narrators, and the beautiful scenes will stay with me for many years to come.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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