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Judith

Falls Church, VA, USA

57
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 16 reviews
  • 142 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • The Broker

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1381)
    Performance
    (320)
    Story
    (320)

    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."
    "This book is nothing like Grisham's others"
    Overall

    I liked this book a little bit, but it is nothing like Grishams other books. Over half of it is a slow repetition of a man trying to learn Italian. This is interesting for a few days, but after a while it starts to sound like a tourist guide.

    Grisham himself admits he has a love affair with Italy, and it shows. He loves to talk about Italy until it seems as though you're reading your friend's description of the slides of his trip to Italy.

    The last few chapter are good. They finally take one back to the story line and the suspense holds your attention, but it certainly isn't riviting. Grisham wrote another book that is nothing like his others - A Painted House - which I thoroughly enjoyed. But, in my opinion, unless you are an Italian enthusiast, you may find this book a bit flat.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • A Thousand Splendid Suns

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Khaled Hosseini
    • Narrated By Atossa Leoni
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4992)
    Performance
    (1231)
    Story
    (1233)

    Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss, and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them, in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul, they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation.

    David says: "Somber but gripping"
    "Fascinating, Serious and Disturbing"
    Overall

    This book is fascinating, but some of it is difficult to read. This should not discourage you from reading the book. It is beautifully written and most of the characters are very real and fully formed. This is a MUST read and will become a classic, much as Khaled Hosseini first book, Kite Runner, has become.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Thirteenth Tale: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Diane Setterfield
    • Narrated By Bianca Amato, Jill Tanner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4679)
    Performance
    (1573)
    Story
    (1582)

    All children mythologize their birth... So begins the prologue of reclusive author Vida Winter's beloved collection of stories, long famous for the mystery of the missing thirteenth tale. The enigmatic Winter has always kept her violent and tragic past a secret. Now old and ailing, she summons a biographer to tell the truth about her extraordinary life: Margaret Lea, a young woman for whom the secret of her own birth remains an ever-present pain.

    PA Law says: "Haunting and beautiful tale"
    "A Delightful, Dark Tale"
    Overall

    I don't believe there was a dull moment in this novel for me. Like the main character in the story, I prefer a tale that has a beginning, a middle, and a real ending. There is no doubt that these are all present in this book. I would highly recommend this as a very enjoyable read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded, August 27, 1883

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Simon Winchester
    • Narrated By Simon Winchester
    Overall
    (508)
    Performance
    (172)
    Story
    (174)

    The legendary annihilation in 1883 of the volcano-island of Krakatoa (the name has since become a by-word for a cataclysmic disaster) was followed by an immense tsunami that killed nearly 40,000 people. Beyond the purely physical horrors of an event which has only very recently become properly understood, the eruption changed the world in more ways than could possibly be imagined. Dust swirled round the world for years, causing temperatures to plummet and sunsets to turn vivid.

    rwise says: "Great subject, great writing, great voice"
    "Wonderful book"
    Overall

    There is not a single boring paragraph in the entire book. The author covers a myriad of subjects, directly and indirectly related to the Krakatoa eruption. Each chapter is fascinating. The reader is so in tune with the spirit of the book that he seemed to have written it himself. And, after checking with the book information, I see that he did! I'm glad I didn't miss this one.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The First Man in Rome

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Colleen McCullough
    • Narrated By Jill Tanner
    Overall
    (332)
    Performance
    (53)
    Story
    (56)

    Author of the beloved classic The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCullough creates sweeping sagas that are unparalleled in their drama and emotional grandeur. Now she carries listeners into the pageantry and passion, politics and intrigue of ancient Rome. Cunning and ambition were prized in this vast and powerful empire, but what would it take to win its highest honor, to be First Man in Rome?

    Jessica says: "Best Historical Fiction Ever"
    "Very Good Book"
    Overall

    I thoroughly enjoyed this very long book. The author uses fresh contemporary language and a style that brings Rome up to date. At first I was a little distracted by this approach, but it became clear that the author's style gives one a very realistic picture of the times and the people. The romance, the intrigues and murders keeps the story moving. The only parts I found hard to get through were some of the battles. But even these were often interesting because of the great characters. All in all, it was a terrific read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Hungry Tide

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Amitav Ghosh
    • Narrated By Firdous Bamji
    Overall
    (223)
    Performance
    (51)
    Story
    (57)

    Internationally best-selling author Amitav Ghosh, winner of the Pushcart Prize and numerous other prestigious accolades, pens a sweeping novel full of romantic adventure. Favorably compared to the masterworks of Joseph Conrad and V.S. Naipaul, The Hungry Tide is an atmospheric tale set in a world of wondrous sights...and terrible danger.

    Elizabeth says: "One of the Best Audio Books I've Read"
    "Very enjoyable"
    Overall

    This novel was fascinating. The characters were well drawn, and the reader actually cares what happens to them. The plot held my attention from start to finish. The ending was satisfying, unlike so many novels. The extreme fascination with dolphins was a bit "off key" in this otherwise excellent read.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Shadow Divers: Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of WWII

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Robert Kurson
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2050)
    Performance
    (531)
    Story
    (533)

    In 1991, acting on a tip from a local fisherman, two scuba divers discovered a sunken German U-boat, complete with its crew of 60 men, not too far off the New Jersey coast. The divers, realizing the momentousness of their discovery, began probing the mystery. Over the next six years, they became expert and well-traveled researchers, taught themselves German, hunted for clues in Germany, and constructed theories corrective of the history books, all in an effort to identify this sunken U-boat and its crew.

    Douglas says: "GRIPPING!"
    "Good Read"
    Overall

    I didn't think I'd enjoy this book about diving shipwrecks, but it was excellent. It was so well written that I enjoyed every sentence. I even enjoyed the credits and explanations of the author's research after the story was over. At some points in the story, the suspense is so great I had to stop listening for awhile. Even though the main characters are full of flaws and insecurities, they seemed quite heroic and special after all they accomplished and cared about.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Kite Runner

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Khaled Hosseini
    • Narrated By Khaled Hosseini
    Overall
    (6436)
    Performance
    (1764)
    Story
    (1782)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Never before has an author’s narration of his fiction been so important to fully grasping the book’s impact and global implications. Taking us from Afghanistan in the final days of its monarchy to the present, The Kite Runner is the unforgettable story of the friendship between two boys growing up in Kabul. Their intertwined lives, and their fates, reflect the eventual tragedy of the world around them.

    Joseph says: "A storyteller's story"
    "Unforgettable"
    Overall

    The writer of this book is very talented. I haven't read many books that are so compelling and so haunting. Some of the scenes are heart breaking. I'll put it on my list of best books ever.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Curse of Chalion

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Lois McMaster Bujold
    • Narrated By Lloyd James
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2069)
    Performance
    (884)
    Story
    (892)

    Amidst the decaying splendor and poisonous intrigue of Chalion's ancient capital, Cazaril is forced to confront not only powerful enemies but also the malignant curse that clings to the royal household, trapping him, flesh and soul, in a maze of demonic paradox, damnation, and death for as long as he dares walk the five-fold pathway of the gods.

    Pete says: "Excellent Fantasy... Epic in feel, finite in pace"
    "What a satisfying read."
    Overall

    I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and didn't want it to end. Don't be put off by the little bit of magic in the story. The fantasy is a fairly minor element, and the characters are delightful and well drawn. One can almost imagine that the magic is merely the medical innocence of a long ago age. The gentle humor keeps the story lively. I will look forward to reading another book by this author if it becomes available.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Library of Congress Series on Digital Future: Lecture One, Blogs with David Weinberger (11/15/04)

    • ORIGINAL (1 hr and 33 mins)
    • By David Weinberger
    Overall
    (215)
    Performance
    (21)
    Story
    (23)

    On November 15, 2004 in Washington, D.C., David Weinberger, former senior internet adviser to the Howard Dean presidential campaign, discussed how weblogs work & their value in gathering knowledge. He is now at Harvard University's Berkman Center for Internet & Society, where he is working on a book about how the digital age is changing the way information is organized & classified. First in a series.

    Victoria says: "Very Interesting"
    "This is Great."
    Overall

    I didn't expect to like this. I just downloaded it to test my MP3 player. But since I had it, I thought I'd listen for a few seconds. I couldn't stop listening. It is fascinating. The explanation of how language (and thus knowledge) is organized and how it is being drastically changed by the web is not as obvious as it might seem. This speech is easy to understand. The speaker uses a lot of examples and funny analogies to get his point across. I'm going to look for more of his work.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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