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John

ratings
24
REVIEWS
8
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
2
HELPFUL VOTES
10

  • The American

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Martin Booth
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (202)
    Performance
    (105)
    Story
    (108)

    The locals in the southern Italian town where he lives call him Signor Farfalla - Mr. Butterfly - for he is a discreet gentleman who paints rare butterflies. His life is inconspicuous: mornings are spent brushing at a canvas, afternoons idling in the cafés, and evenings talking with his friend, the town priest, over a glass of brandy. Yet there are other sides to this gentleman’s life.... Part thriller, part character study, part drama of deceit and self-betrayal, The American shows Martin Booth at the very height of his powers.

    Ramon says: "Slow start but after a few pages your hooked.
"
    ""the American"Martin Booth: A very Satisfying Read"
    Overall

    One of my favorite books this year. Booth develops this character slowly, like a good friendship should be developed. From the beginning we meet a lonely man, matter of fact, and circumspect about the details of his life.

    First person narratives are my favorites, and this is one of those. Our mystery "American," reveals himself in small slices, just as one might choose to invite someone into one's own life. He's deeply immersed in his secretive craft, and under a watchful eye, his descriptions of his surroundings come alive in the mind of the reader.

    He is a man of secrets, a certain fatalism, limited emotional intimacies, and rather than being amoral about his profession (manufacture of assassin's arms), he articulates a code of ethics above his surroundings. He stands outside the world of normalcy, and describes a consistent world view by which he lives. It's lonely, but has it's own serenity, and above all he is safe from all the things, and people who hurt us in so many ways.

    We meet his customers, and through his eyes we even respect the idealism of their craft. But this solitary man is not without his enemies, and when at last he is run to ground by one of them.... well you'll just have to read the story to see how it ends.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Sycamore Row

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6042)
    Performance
    (5471)
    Story
    (5464)

    Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of lung cancer. He trusts no one. Before he hangs himself from a sycamore tree, Hubbard leaves a new, handwritten, will. It is an act that drags his adult children, his black maid, and Jake into a conflict as riveting and dramatic as the murder trial that made Brigance one of Ford County's most notorious citizens, just three years earlier. The second will raises far more questions than it answers. Why would Hubbard leave nearly all of his fortune to his maid? Had chemotherapy and painkillers affected his ability to think clearly?

    Brock says: "Grisham at his best (again)"
    "Some surprises"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Sycamore Row again? Why?

    yes, assuredly yes


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Sycamore Row?

    Discovery of the brother, discovery of the the maid's family connection


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

    I like Michael Beck's readings of Grisham. The two are inseparable. I liked him in every book I've heard. I have about a dozen Grisham audiobooks


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

    No, too long... but it's good enough to tempt you to try.


    Any additional comments?

    Keep them coming John, and I'll keep listening. I have several Grisham books, that are staple listening when I travel. I know the plot twists, and I still listen to them over and over. I won't tell you which ones. You' have to find your own.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Indian Hill: Indian Hill, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Mark Tufo
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (730)
    Performance
    (693)
    Story
    (681)

    Indian Hill is about an ordinary boy who grows up in relatively normal times but who finds himself thrust into an extraordinary position. Growing up in suburban Boston, Michael enjoys the trials and tribulations that all adolescents go through, from the seemingly tyrannical mother, to girl problems, to run-ins with the law. From there he escapes to college out in Colorado with his best friend, Paul, where they begin to forge new relationships with those around them. It is one girl in particular that has caught Michael's eye, and he alternately pines for her and laments ever meeting her.

    Mark says: "Not anywhere near as good as the zombie series"
    "Couldn't finish it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    whew.. It just was so boring, that I couldn't get into the plot at all


    Has Indian Hill turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Yes


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Sean Runnette?

    no preference. Maybe George Guidall could have gotten me to listen to the whole thing


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    ... just blah


    Any additional comments?

    Probably won't read this author again. but I'm sure he will have fans... Couldn't finish book, have tried several times.. Going to return it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Mayan Secrets: A Fargo Adventure, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Clive Cussler, Thomas Perry
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (522)
    Performance
    (457)
    Story
    (457)

    Husband-and-wife team Sam and Remi Fargo are in Mexico, when they come upon a remarkable discovery - the skeleton of a man clutching an ancient sealed pot, and within the pot, a Mayan book, larger than anyone has ever seen. The book contains astonishing information about the Mayans, about their cities, and about mankind itself. The secrets are so powerful that some people would do anything to possess them - as the Fargos are about to find out. Before their adventure is done, many men and women will die for that book - and Sam and Remi may just be among them.

    A User says: "Best Fargo Book ever!!!"
    "Disappointing: Couldn't finish it."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Use a different narrator. That would have freshened it up. Scott Brick is fine, but he always sounds a bit sardonic, in his affect. He's a good performer, I just like a break from his particular affect.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Clive Cussler and Thomas Perry again?

    Less likely after reading this book. There's just not enough "fiber" in the plot to chew on. I've got two books by Cussler right now besides this


    How could the performance have been better?

    Scott Brick and George Guidall, suffer from over-exposure at this point. Both good performers, but they don't surprise me any more. They respond predictably in all plot parts. That's not a bad thing, they're just over-used at this point.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    dissapointment. Plot was too shallow, too simplistic, too predictable.


    Any additional comments?

    Thank goodness Audible allows returns... This one isn't worth the time to listen to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Personal Memoirs of U.S. Grant: Part 1: The Early Years, West Point, Mexico

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Ulysses S. Grant
    • Narrated By Peter Johnson
    Overall
    (95)
    Performance
    (20)
    Story
    (21)

    Robert W. Gillespie says: "U.S Grant: A Man of Intelligence and Dignity"
    "Great book, easy to listen to"
    Overall

    I'm really enjoying part 1. The writer is so unassuming, so down to earth. You'd think he was part of the "slacker" generation who just "happened into success." The reality is that Grant was least likely to succeed. His stories about the Mexican war, and the politics behind it give a better 1st person narrative of the times than current history books on the same period. I really liked the guy as I listen, and the narrator is pretty easy to listen to also. Proved the old adage that providence plays a part in the affairs of life.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Acts of the Apostles: When the Church Connects to Ultimate Power

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Ellen G. White
    • Narrated By Eddie Hernandez
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (40)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (13)

    You are invited to witness the enormous power of the early church when it connected to the ultimate power. Then you are invited to request and experience it for yourself. You will again witness the enormous power of the early church as you listen to The Acts of the Apostles, a remarkable commentary on the book of Acts. Then you are invited to request it and experience it for yourself and your church.

    Alicia Packard Tornel says: "Inspiring and Uplifting"
    "Great book, poorly divided for navigating chapters"
    Overall

    I've got the full 5 book set, and I don't mind the narrator, or even his occasional mispronunciations. The content is good, and provides a humanizing commentary to the stories we only normally read in King James English in the Bible.
    What I don't like is the chapter split and numbering. It's broken into sections that don't match chapters. If you loose your place, fall asleep listening to the reading and try to find the last place you listened, you're likely to be very frustrated. That's a major defect for me. I like the books, but will look for other providers. I've found other readers, that are worse, with better chapter breaks. Still looking for the right combo.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Broker

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1328)
    Performance
    (278)
    Story
    (278)

    In his final hours in the Oval Office, the outgoing President grants a controversial last-minute pardon to Joel Backman, a notorious Washington power broker who has spent the last six years hidden away in a federal prison. What no one knows is that the President issues the pardon only after receiving enormous pressure from the CIA. It seems Backman, in his power broker heyday, may have obtained secrets that compromise the world's most sophisticated satellite surveillance system.

    Bull says: "Grisham wins a bet."
    "The Broker: My favorite Grisham"
    Overall

    From the beginning of the story through to the end, John leaves you looking for the next exciting step. Told in first person narrative, the story takes you inside the head of a man who's made a transformation from who he was to a very different man. He's a lonely man, and he fills his mind, and time with the details of his surroundings designed to help him survive. As others have suggested, this becomes a great travelogue. And for me that's a huge plus. I enjoyed italy through Backman's eyes. The Broker is not a super-sleuth, and that makes him more human, more approachable than say, a Ludlum or Follett character. We expect (hope) for him to survive, but knowing Grisham plots like "The Summons," and "The Partner," we know that John can provide bitter endings that disappoint our hopes. This one does not. I liked Joel Backman and wanted him to survive. This is one of John's top four or five books in my estimation, and I've read (or heard) nearly every one he's written. I'd like to see this one made into a movie.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Italian Shoes

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Henning Mankell
    • Narrated By Henry Strozier
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (117)
    Performance
    (66)
    Story
    (65)

    With more than 30 million copies of his works published, in 37 languages, award-winning author Henning Mankell may be Sweden's most accomplished novelist. Here he crafts the icy, atmospheric tale of Fredrik Welin, a disgraced surgeon living in exile on a small island. When Fredrik receives a surprise visit from a lover he abandoned decades earlier, he begins the difficult road to redemption.

    E. Golladay says: "Wonderful"
    "Italian shoes: a study in introspection"
    Overall

    A quietly engrossing character development of a man we might know. Mankell describes the hurts of his characters, bound by problems, insecurities. He opens a window into our minds, and exposes our means of coping with life. The narrator does a fine job. A great read. My first taste of Henning Mankell, and I'll look for more.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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