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Leslie

Sausalito, CA, United States | Member Since 2009

67
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 32 reviews
  • 76 ratings
  • 232 titles in library
  • 10 purchased in 2014
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  • The Power of the Dog

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Don Winslow
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    Overall
    (530)
    Performance
    (325)
    Story
    (331)

    This explosive novel of the drug trade takes you deep inside a world riddled with corruption, betrayal, and bloody revenge. From the streets of New York City to Mexico City and Tijuana to the jungles of Central America, this is the war on drugs like you've never seen it.

    Leslie says: "Amazing Novel, Excellent Narration"
    "Amazing Novel, Excellent Narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As I've seen in other comments on this book, I wasn't sure I wanted to get into a heavy book on the drug wars, but it had such good reviews I decided to check it out.

    This is a very, very good novel! Well written, great dialogue, thought-provoking political insights, personal dramas. It is sometimes quite heavy, but worth it. There are a lot of characters and a lot of details, so can be a little hard to follow if you aren't paying attention, but the story flows quite well, so for the most part, it isn't a problem.

    The narration is absolutely the top. Amazing how this narrator switches effortlessly between Italian Mafia to Mexican to Anglo accents. Perfect delivery and timing on the dialogue and story.

    One of the best novels I've listened to!

    14 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • Feral Sins: Phoenix Pack, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Suzanne Wright
    • Narrated By Jill Redfield
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1640)
    Performance
    (1510)
    Story
    (1530)

    Taryn Warner is a wolf shifter with extraordinary healing skills - and serious problems. First, her father is determined that she mate for life with a wolf shifter named Roscoe Weston, whom the feisty Taryn can’t stand. To make matters worse, she’s also been kidnapped by Trey Coleman, a dangerous alpha male from another pack. And as much as she wants to resist Trey, Taryn is incredibly, maddeningly attracted to him.

    Paige says: "Surprised they didn't check my ID"
    "It's very hot - some reservations though"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Feral Sins? What did you like least?

    OK. I have to admit that this novel is very hot. The sex is very hot. The story is actually not too bad for a typical paranormal erotic romance novel. (I don't like formula novels - it's a love-hate thing for me. I am a romantic, but I don't agree with most of the formula story lines and long for stories that are more original.)


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    No comment, really. It's pretty easy to predict what an ending will be in this kind of novel.


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

    I don't think I've heard her before. The narration was very good.


    Did Feral Sins inspire you to do anything?

    Um, well. I don't think I'll discuss it in public!


    Any additional comments?

    I was bothered by the possession / dominance of the story. This seems to be typical in most romance novels. Personally, I don't get it and I'm disturbed by the encouragement of painting women as being strong ---but in the end want to find a man to submit to and even if they verbally say they don't want something in the end they really do. This one really pushed that far with the whole Alpha Wolf male. I often found myself feeling a bit creeped out.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hard As It Gets: A Hard Ink Novel, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Laura Kaye
    • Narrated By Seraphine Valentine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (163)
    Performance
    (149)
    Story
    (151)

    Trouble just walked into Nicholas Rixey's tattoo parlor. Becca Merritt is warm, sexy, wholesome, pure temptation to a very jaded Nick. He's left his military life behind to become co-owner of Hard Ink Tattoo, but Becca is his ex-commander's daughter. Loyalty won't let him turn her away. Lust has plenty to do with it too. With her brother presumed kidnapped, Becca needs Nick. She just wasn't expecting to want him so much.

    L.W. says: "Good Story...."
    "Can't wait for the next book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Hard As It Gets the most enjoyable?

    I enjoyed the dialogue and characters. Nicks brother Jeremy is great. Of course the growing, hot intimacy and love between the main characters is the most compelling.


    What other book might you compare Hard As It Gets to and why?

    This does follow the basic romance novel formula and had most of the typical story lines of woman meets man, there's some reason they don't get together at first - or some reason that would keep them apart. It has a bit of the possessive "you are mine" type storyline - but this one differs in that the formula is there, but it's much more palatable than most. (I like romance novels, but wish - oh how I wish most weren't an insult to being an intelligent, independent woman who is also a romantic. I tire of reading formula novels. I think most of these authors all attended the same seminar on how to write romance novels.

    In Hard As It Gets, I found the characters to be likeable and the romantic situations to be more believable than most. She does a good job of building characters.


    What about Seraphine Valentine’s performance did you like?

    Her performance was excellent. She really gave the characters life. I like the way she took her time narrating Becka so you got the feel of her being fresh and honest, but also fun. She was good at changing the pace of the story to suit what was happening.


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

    Well, to be honest, It made me steamy! It's very, very hot and sexual. The dialogue did make me grin sometimes.


    Any additional comments?

    I wonder how she will handle the second book in the series. If it will continue the story between Becka and Nick or if she will use this world, but concentrate on a different couple as many romance series do. After all, you only Fall in love once — usually! I hope she continues with Becka and Nick. I liked them. I've started listening to it again.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Spirit of Steamboat: A Walt Longmire Story

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Craig Johnson
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (350)
    Performance
    (323)
    Story
    (316)

    "It' s a question of what you have to do, what you have to live with if you don't." Sheriff Walt Longmire is reading A Christmas Carol in his office on December 24th when he's interrupted by the ghost of Christmas past: a young woman with a hairline scar across her forehead and more than a few questions about Walt' s predecessor, Lucian Connally. Walt doesn' t recognize the mystery woman, but she seems to know him and claims to have something she must return to Connally.

    C. Telfair says: "Welcome Holiday Diversion"
    "Nice little filler for Walt Longmire fans"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This novella will be a must for fans of the Walt Longmire series. As one person commented, it's not terribly suspenseful, but as always it's well written and performed. There's a bit of history as well. I had never heard of the horse named Steamboat. The story is very nicely balanced and concluded.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • My Bluegrass Baby

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Molly Harper
    • Narrated By Amanda Ronconi
    Overall
    (946)
    Performance
    (883)
    Story
    (876)

    Sadie Hutchins loves her job at the Kentucky Tourism Commission. Not only could her co-workers double as the cast of Parks and Recreation, but she loves finding the unusual sites, hidden gems, and just-plain-odd tourist attractions of her home state. She’s a shoo-in for the director’s job when her boss retires at the end of the year…until hotshot Josh Vaughn shows up to challenge her for the position. Josh is all sophisticated polish while Sadie’s country comfort, and the two have very different ideas of what makes a good campaign.

    Diana Turmenne says: "Made me want to visit Kentucky!"
    "Does snarky dialogue make up for a forumla plot?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have really enjoyed some of Molly Harper's novels. The Naked Werewolf series was my favorite, "And One More Thing" was enjoyable. Then I read one of her vampire books and did not enjoy it. I decided to give this one a try even though I was on the fence about it.

    Here's the thing:
    Molly Harper can definitely come up with fun, snappy dialogue, and Amanda Ronconi is the perfect narrator for her books, but the story itself is a light-weight formula romance. I found myself wondering if the fun dialogue was enough to balance the absolutely predictable, transparent, formula plot-line. It would be nice if Molly Harper could use her gift for snarky, plus quirky characters AND dig deeper into a real story. THAT would be a great listen.

    Still, if you just want something really, really light weight to fill the time while you are on the treadmill (etc.) this may fit the bill.

    This was also a really short book. I recommend not wasting your credit on it. Buy it on sale or on a month where you've used your credits, since this is relatively inexpensive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Cuckoo's Calling

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Robert Galbraith
    • Narrated By Robert Glenister
    Overall
    (4799)
    Performance
    (4370)
    Story
    (4380)

    After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: his sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.

    Tracey says: "Unbelievable debut mystery set in London"
    "Enjoyed this book. Look forward to more."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This reminds me of a bit of a traditional hard-boiled PI movie. You'd expect it to be a 1940's B&W movie - although in modern times. The main character isn't as slick as a Humphrey Bogart. In fact, his life is a bit of a mess. Come to think of it though, isn't that usually a characteristic of a traditional PI?

    The characters feel very real. One of those books that you miss when you finish it and look forward to the next in the series. (I hope it's going to be a series?)

    If I have one criticism, the book sometimes became a long series of interviews with suspects. While it didn't really drag, it would be nice to bring a little more action to the writing.

    The writing is very good and the narration is excellent. Well-worth your credit!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Midnight Riot: Peter Grant, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Ben Aaronovitch
    • Narrated By Kobna Holdbrook-Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (962)
    Performance
    (866)
    Story
    (868)

    Probationary constable Peter Grant dreams of being a detective in London's Metropolitan Police. Too bad his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit, where the biggest threat he'll face is a paper cut. But Peter's prospects change in the aftermath of a puzzling murder, when he gains exclusive information from an eyewitness who happens to be a ghost. Peter's ability to speak with the lingering dead brings him to the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale....

    Nancy J says: "I LOVE this Book!"
    "Excellent. Very different."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have to admit that I'm not a big fan of urban fantasy. I'm not sure why, but it generally just doesn't grab me. I was a little on the fence about this one at the beginning. If this was just an urban fantasy, I would probably just stop at this novel and not continue with the rest of the series, but there were several elements that have won me over.

    Very clever story. Reminds me of a hipper, Londoner, Dan Brown. Full of history of London, references to history, literature, etc. but not in a way that drags down the story.(Which btw, I though Dan Brown's Inferno was often derailed by too much travelogue.)

    Very well-defined main character. I suppose it's because I'm not a writer, I'm always surprised that people can write so convincingly about something they haven't lived. I was conviced this author must be an ex-policeman and half ethnic. He's so good at writing in details that - at least I - can't imagine he would have come up with otherwise.

    Excellent writing and dialogue. Delightful.

    Excellent narration. Wow did this narrator do a great job. I hope they never get a different narrator for this series. He could get very fast though and for someone who isn't British, I sometimes had to stop and re-listen to sections. This might not be the best choice of story to listen to if you are busy doing something else.

    A refreshingly good novel.

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

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Stephenie Meyer
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4864)
    Performance
    (2499)
    Story
    (2536)

    Earth has been invaded by a species that takes over the minds of human hosts while leaving their bodies intact. But Melanie Stryder refuses to fade away.

    Keith says: "Great story in a genre only touched upon before"
    "Sad it's over!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I started the book a little unsure. I didn't like the main character at first- or rather her role as an alien taking over a human, but I think this is intended. She becomes very likable.

    I became very engrossed in the story. There are interesting moral dilemmas that come up and it's not always clear who the "bad guys" are. I'm longing for a 2nd book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Suspect

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Robert Crais
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3644)
    Performance
    (3254)
    Story
    (3253)

    LAPD cop Scott James is not doing so well, not since a shocking nighttime assault by unidentified men killed his partner, Stephanie, nearly killed him, and left him enraged, ashamed, and ready to explode. He is unfit for duty - until he meets his new partner. Maggie is not doing so well, either. The German shepherd survived three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan sniffing explosives before she lost her handler to an IED and sniper attack, and her PTSD is as bad as Scott’s. They are each other’s last chance.

    Jacqueline says: "Gripping Page Turner!!"
    "Excellent! Story was riveting."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Suspect in three words, what would they be?

    Dog Lover's Must


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Suspect?

    When Maggie the dog explores her new home. We experience it from her point of view as a dog.


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

    I believe this is the first thing I've listened to narrated by him. The narration is excellent. This book deserves to be listened to.


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

    The scene in Afghanistan with the dog, Maggie. My eyes teared up!


    Any additional comments?

    This would make a fantastic movie! I hope it gets made someday.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Hell Is Empty: A Walt Longmire Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Craig Johnson
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1244)
    Performance
    (1022)
    Story
    (1018)

    Spur Award-winner Craig Johnson has garnered critical acclaim for his Walt Longmire mysteries. In this riveting seventh entry, Wyoming’s Absaroka County sheriff, Walt Longmire, is pushed beyond his limits. When three hardened convicts escape FBI custody in a mountain blizzard, an armed psychopath leads them up Big Horn Mountain. As Longmire struggles to track their treacherous ascent, he’ll need all the help he can get from the tribal spirits of the towering summit.

    Susan says: "Transcendental"
    "Least favorite in series, but still good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't think this is much of a spoiler, but warning that I do describe vaguely a scene of the story.

    In the first book in this series, there was a scene where he is in a snow storm on a mountain and I thought it was handled perfectly. Not too heavy-handed and still quite believable. This book takes that idea and stretches it into nearly the entire book. Although from a writing experiment perspective it had some interesting ideas, as a story it felt too drawn out. Even so, I love this series and if you're a fan, you'll want to read it.

    Narration as always is excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Halfway to the Grave: Night Huntress, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Jeaniene Frost
    • Narrated By Tavia Gilbert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5032)
    Performance
    (3400)
    Story
    (3419)

    Half-vampire Catherine Crawfield is going after the undead with a vengeance, hoping that one of these deadbeats is her father—the one responsible for ruining her mother's life. Then she's captured by Bones, a vampire bounty hunter, and is forced into an unlikely partnership. In exchange for help finding her father, Cat agrees to train with the sexy night stalker until her battle reflexes are as sharp as his fangs. She's amazed she doesn't end up as his dinner…are there actually good vampires?

    Benoibe says: "Surprised! SPECTACULAR AND SEXY!"
    "Accent was unbearable, story just OK"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I chose this from the reviews that said they loved this series. I tend to like the paranormal/romance genre, but this one didn't do anything for me. It may be mostly due to the narration.

    The English accent used for "Bones" the vampire was unbearable. I almost couldn't finish the book. Tavia Gilbert's voice for him sounded more like a middle aged fish wife than a sexy vampire. This character has been ruined for me. Be sure to listen to the sample to see if you can tolerate it. Aside from that character, the narration was fine. I suppose it is difficult for an American woman to do male cockney accent, but this just didn't work.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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