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kathleen

Estill Springs, TN, United States | Member Since 2009

1
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 9 ratings
  • 252 titles in library
  • 20 purchased in 2014
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  • Peony in Love: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Lisa See
    • Narrated By Janet Song
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (349)
    Performance
    (125)
    Story
    (123)

    For young Peony, betrothed to a suitor she has never met, lyrics from The Peony Pavilion mirror her own longings. In the garden of the Chen Family Villa, amid the scent of ginger, green tea, and jasmine, a small theatrical troupe is performing scenes from this epic opera, a live spectacle few females have ever seen. Like the heroine in the drama, Peony is the cloistered daughter of a wealthy family, trapped like a good-luck cricket in a bamboo-and-lacquer cage.

    L. Swartz says: "Unusual and excellent book"
    "Saddened by story, fascinated by culture"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?


    What was most disappointing about Lisa See’s story?

    I recognize that this is a personal distaste, and maybe it's because I want things to "work out", but I can't stand the plot-line of missed connections! "If only...." and things like that. But, it is a crucial part of the plot so it can't really be changed.


    Was Peony in Love worth the listening time?

    I...actually stopped listening after a certain point in the story. I put it away and didn't pick it up again for a long time. Once I did though, I was absolutely fascinated by Chinese death rituals and beliefs surrounding the afterlife. I ostensibly picked this book because I read Snow Flower and the Secret Fan and LOVED it so I was looking forward to another great book by Lisa See. I found myself unable to get invested in the story after a certain point, I was just so turned off. But then I found out I was going to go live in Hong Kong for a year, so I decided to give it another try. Learning about Chinese culture through this book was the best part about it for me--the story, eh. For me, not so much.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Dance with Dragons: A Song of Ice and Fire: Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (49 hrs)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Roy Dotrice
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13509)
    Performance
    (11859)
    Story
    (11911)

    Dubbed the American Tolkien by Time magazine, George R. R. Martin has earned international acclaim for his monumental cycle of epic fantasy. Now the number-one New York Times best-selling author delivers the fifth book in his spellbinding landmark series - as both familiar faces and surprising new forces vie for a foothold in a fragmented empire.

    Ryan says: "Enjoyable, but a lot of setup"
    "Dotrice is back, and so are your faves!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to A Dance with Dragons again? Why?

    Yes! Worth a re-read because so much is going on.


    Any additional comments?

    Most of my favorite characters are BACK, and so is favored narrator Roy Dotrice. Another amazing audiobook and new installment to the Song of Ice and Fire series. Can't wait for more!

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Feast for Crows: A Song of Ice and Fire, Book IV

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By John Lee
    Overall
    (4269)
    Performance
    (2477)
    Story
    (2502)

    It is not long before the survivors, outlaws, renegades, and carrion eaters start to gather, picking over the bones of the dead and fighting for the spoils of the soon-to-be dead. Now in the Seven Kingdoms, as the human crows assemble over a banquet of ashes, daring new plots and dangerous new alliances are formed, while surprising faces, some familiar, others only just appearing, are seen emerging from an ominous twilight of past struggles and chaos to take up the challenges ahead.

    Aaron says: "No Roy Dotrice"
    "Give Lee a Chance!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to A Feast for Crows again? Why?

    Yes, but only if I was re-reading the entire series. This is by far the slowest of the books, but important things happen so don't miss it!


    What three words best describe John Lee’s performance?

    nice try, friend. Many, many people were upset by the Narrator switch. Roy Dotrice had health issues and was unable to perform this audiobook. I, too, was a bit disappointed when I realized there had been a narrator switch but I have heard Lee reading other books so I gave him a chance. He pronounces a few things differently but overall it's still a good audiobook. We just get so attached to certain narrators so a switch is disjarring; however, Dotrice is back in the next book so have no fear!


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

    Initially I was excited by this one, but it is a bit slow and the characters in this book are not my favorites. But they return in the next and the events are related, so it's still important to read! I didn't want to listen in one sitting but i did want to finish it so I could get to the next one!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stardust

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman
    • Narrated By Neil Gaiman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2823)
    Performance
    (1323)
    Story
    (1331)

    Tristran Thorn has lost his heart to the hauntingly beautiful Victoria Forester. One crisp October night, as they watch, a star falls from the sky, and Victoria promises to marry Tristran if he'll retrieve the star and bring it back for her. It is this promise that sends Tristran on the most unforgettable adventure of his life.

    R. BREEN says: "Witty and magical"
    "New to audiobooks? Start here."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Stardust to be better than the print version?

    I never read the print version, but I love this book. It was actually the first audiobook I ever listened to (checked out from the library) and I was hooked. Gaiman's narration is perfect and this is a great introductory audiobook for anyone who is just starting out.


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

    Yes! I love them all. He is a wonderful narrator and really makes it his business create the best audiobook possible, the best listening experience possible. His dedication to this type of reading/listening experience is inspiring. This book is a fantastic first listen.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Game of Thrones: A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Roy Dotrice
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (27161)
    Performance
    (20909)
    Story
    (20991)

    In a time long forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons off balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. As the cold returns, sinister forces are massing beyond the protective wall of the kingdom of Winterfell. To the south, the king's powers are failing, with his most trusted advisor mysteriously dead and enemies emerging from the throne's shadow.

    DCinMI says: "Review of First 5 Books"
    "The very BEST of Fantasy Fiction"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about A Game of Thrones?

    The world that George R.R. Martin sucks me into. My friend had been trying to get me to read the books for a while but I put him off, then I watched the first season of the HBO series (I know, I know) and then went through these books sooo fast! The complex characters, their development and the events in this book that set up for the sequence of events in the rest of the series are all hallmarks of great fantasy and great reading.


    What other book might you compare A Game of Thrones to and why?

    You could compare the intricate world with Tolkein's middle earth, that I think is the most common comparison.


    What about Roy Dotrice’s performance did you like?

    It feels like I'm sitting by a fire listening to a wizened old man weave a tale of deception, corruption, love, revenge, and lust.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tai-Pan: A Novel of Hong Kong

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By James Clavell
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (784)
    Performance
    (465)
    Story
    (464)

    After the British seize Hong Kong following the first Opium War, the owners of two competing trading companies seek to destroy each other, both professionally and personally.

    Cy Judge says: "A great audio book"
    "Like Asia & Historical Fiction? Clavell's your guy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Tai-Pan rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Tai Pan is fantastic but lengthy, but then again so are most of Clavell's books. It's not the greatest audiobook I've listened to but it's far from the worst.


    What other book might you compare Tai-Pan to and why?

    Any of the other books in his Asian Saga. I have only read two, Tai-Pan and Shogun. They are based on real people and real events, but you learn so much about the cultures and histories. I moved to Hong Kong for a year so I was looking for some good books to read and remembered he had written one. I read Shogun a few years ago and loved it--but only managed one successful re-read. They are L O N G.


    What does John Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The voices! John Lee is great with the accents and reading in character. Sometimes I have a hard time really imagining what people are supposed to sound like, so John Lee brings them to life for me.


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

    My only extreme reaction was OMG this book is so long... towards the end I get a bit fatigued and take more breaks. But I was sucked in so it wasn't a boring story, just felt like I had been reading for-ev-er.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Neverwhere

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman
    • Narrated By Neil Gaiman
    Overall
    (6347)
    Performance
    (3123)
    Story
    (3148)

    Richard Mayhew is an unassuming young businessman living in London, with a dull job and a pretty but shrewish fiancée. Then one night he stumbles upon a girl lying on the sidewalk, bleeding. He stops to help her, and his life is changed forever. Soon he finds himself living in a London most people would never have dreamed of: a city of monsters and saints, murderers and angels. It is a world that exists entirely in a subterranean labyrinth of sewer canals and abandoned subway stations.

    Thomas says: "Neverwhere is Great"
    "More Genius from Neil Gaiman"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Neverwhere again? Why?

    YES. I love Gaiman's imagination and his storytelling. One of the best storytellers out there. Anytime I want to escape into some fantastic fiction, 9 times out of 10 I'm picking up a Neil Gaiman book.


    What other book might you compare Neverwhere to and why?

    Stardust, in that it also brings a seemingly normal guy into a previously unknown world lurking just beyond. There are adventures and wonderful characters that make you smile with their wit and all around fun.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I love all of the Market scenes, and when they are in the labyrinth towards the end.


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

    Pure, elated joy.


    Any additional comments?

    If you are new to Gaiman I highly recommend this book or Stardust. Also, I LOVE his narration. I love his voice--it's... mellifluous! delicious!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Christopher Moore
    • Narrated By Fisher Stevens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2906)
    Performance
    (1454)
    Story
    (1462)

    Verily, the story Biff has to tell is a miraculous one, filled with remarkable journeys, magic, healings, kung fu, corpse reanimations, demons, and hot babes. Even the considerable wiles and devotion of the Savior's pal may not be enough to divert Joshua from his tragic destiny. But there's no one who loves Josh more (except maybe "Maggie," Mary of Magdalan) and Biff isn't about to let his extraordinary pal suffer and ascend without a fight.

    Hope says: "A Worthy Book, indeed"
    "A book to make you laugh, think, and imagine"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Lamb the most enjoyable?

    This book really got me imagining what the Life of Christ might have been like. This is fiction, but there is a lot of contextual information that gives you a picture of the times. I enjoyed the humor of Christopher Moore and caught myself grinning several times throughout.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Biff is, of course, fantastic. I love Balthazar too, and Josh. I loved their humanity.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Fisher Stevens has kind of a cartoony voice... There were times when he would slow down at the end of a paragraph and I found that distracting.


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

    I had started reading the print book a while back and then decided to switch to audio. I listened to this book on a road trip and found myself sitting in the car in driveways and parking lots. When it got to the point where Josh begins his ministry it kind of slowed down a bit for me and I wasn't as interested, but from the beginning to that point I was really into it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Definitely Dead: Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire Mystery #6

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Charlaine Harris
    • Narrated By Johanna Parker
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3585)
    Performance
    (1884)
    Story
    (1894)

    Wedding fever has come to Bon Temps, Louisiana! Unfortunately, buxom, blonde, beautiful, and telepathic cocktail waitress Sookie is not the bride-to-be, so she takes the opportunity to travel to New Orleans on family business. As heir to the estate of her newly dead cousin Hadley, Sookie unearths a big secret. Soon it becomes clear that more than a few people will do anything to stop Sookie from looking into Hadley's past.

    cmclien says: "More is revealed"
    "Great story, great narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Definitely Dead the most enjoyable?

    Johanna Parker does excellent narration. She brings Sookie and the other characters to life (ha) wonderfully. I'm from the South and a lot of times when people try to imitate a Southern accent it just ends up sounding hokey, but she sounds "normal" to me.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Charlaine Harris blends mystery, intrigue, and romance together to draw you in and get you invested in the characters.


    What about Johanna Parker’s performance did you like?

    Non-hokey accent!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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