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C.

Santa Fe, NM, United States | Member Since 2005

20
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 13 reviews
  • 14 ratings
  • 832 titles in library
  • 73 purchased in 2014
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  • Founding Gardeners: The Revolutionary Generation, Nature, and the Shaping of the American Nation

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Andrea Wulf
    • Narrated By Antonia Bath
    Overall
    (47)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (25)

    From the author of the acclaimed The Brother Gardeners, a fascinating look at the founding fathers from the unique and intimate perspective of their lives as gardeners, plantsmen, and farmers. For the founding fathers, gardening, agriculture, and botany were elemental passions, as deeply ingrained in their characters as their belief in liberty for the nation they were creating. These stories reveal a guiding but previously overlooked ideology of the American Revolution.

    C. says: ""Outstanding Listen""
    ""Outstanding Listen""
    Overall


    I read Andrea Wulf's first book, "The Brother Gardeners" and was amazed at how a non-fiction book on the history of botany could read like a novel. I am also an avid listener to books and when I saw it available on Audible, I immediately downloaded "The Founding Gardeners". This second book even excels the first one! It's a great history book about the founding fathers of the United States, and the way agriculture and gardening shaped the the country. There are lessons learned in this book not taught in classroom history. Ms. Wulf is a gifted writer and Antonia Bath is the perfect choice to narrate. I have also ordered it in hardback to add to my library of botanical books.

    You don't have to be a plant nut to enjoy this book. I would recommend it to anyone, especially anyone interested in American history. And, I shall enjoy re-listening to it too. A real plus to me.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Long Way Home: Chief Inspector Gamache, Book 10

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Louise Penny
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (763)
    Performance
    (696)
    Story
    (692)

    Happily retired in the village of Three Pines, Armand Gamache, former Chief Inspector of Homicide with the Sûreté du Québec, has found a peace he'd only imagined possible. On warm summer mornings he sits on a bench holding a small book, The Balm in Gilead, in his large hands. "There is a balm in Gilead," his neighbor Clara Morrow reads from the dust jacket, "to make the wounded whole." While Gamache doesn't talk about his wounds and his balm, Clara tells him about hers. Peter, her artist husband, has failed to come home. Failed to show up as promised on the first anniversary of their separation. She wants Gamache's help to find him. Having finally found sanctuary, Gamache feels a near revulsion at the thought of leaving Three Pines. "There’s power enough in Heaven," he finishes the quote as he contemplates the quiet village, "to cure a sin-sick soul." And then he gets up. And joins her.

    David Walker says: "Back in 3 Pines"
    "Excellent but a Bittersweet Experience"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was mid-way through this book when I learned of the narrator, Ralph Cosham's death. What a sad loss to audio book fans. It is hard to imagine Armand Gamache's portrayal by any other person, as well as all the other unique Three Pines characters. My condolences to Mr. Cosham's family and close friends. His voice will be missed by those of us who enjoy audio books, especially those written by Louise Penny.

    This was one of my favorite of the series. Not a cliff hanger such as the last one but still an adventure that any audio fan will be glad to join. I felt like I was part of the search that felt the joy of every good clue and the disappointment when one avenue did not pan out.

    In addition to the compelling love story in this book, it also focuses on the power of friendship and healing. Clara takes on a more assertive persona, which quite suits her. Ruth is still quite the curmudgeon and it is a delight to get to know Garmache's wife, Reine-Marie, a bit better.

    Louise Penny's ability to weave visions of beautiful, remote Canadian landscapes will place the reader/listener in the locations where the story takes place.

    As one other reviewer said, this book does not stand alone. To completely appreciate it, the earlier books should be read/listened to in order to get the full benefit of this wonderful story. And now I am anxious to find out what will happen next. Surely this is not Ms. Penny's last Three Pines novel.

    Highly recommended and looking forward to more.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • To Kill a Mockingbird

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Harper Lee
    • Narrated By Sissy Spacek
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1277)
    Performance
    (1183)
    Story
    (1193)

    Harper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south - and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred, available now for the first time as a digital audiobook. One of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than 40 languages, sold more than 30 million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the 20th century by librarians across the country.

    Alan says: "Stunning"
    "Outstanding"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Since To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my all time favorite books, I could not resist the opportunity to purchase this audio book, especially with Sissy Spacek as the narrator. And, Wow, just Wow. Harper Lee had already proven many years ago that this is a great novel and Ms. Spacek certainly delivered as the narrator. I am sure I will listen to it again. It is just one of those books that one "enjoys the journey".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Speaking from Among the Bones: A Flavia de Luce Novel, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Alan Bradley
    • Narrated By Jayne Entwistle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (506)
    Performance
    (448)
    Story
    (447)

    Eleven-year-old amateur detective and ardent chemist Flavia de Luce is used to digging up clues, whether they’re found among the potions in her laboratory or between the pages of her insufferable sisters’ diaries. What she is not accustomed to is digging up bodies. Upon the 500th anniversary of St. Tancred’s death, the English hamlet of Bishop’s Lacey is busily preparing to open its patron saint’s tomb. Nobody is more excited to peek inside the crypt than Flavia, yet what she finds will halt the proceedings dead in their tracks: the body of Mr. Collicutt, the church organist, his face grotesquely and inexplicably masked.

    Donald says: "the best Flavia yet!!"
    "Love Flavia!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is one of the best of Alan Bradley's books about Flavia de Luce and her adventures. As always, Flavia's precocious ways get her in and out of trouble but she always prevails. I have both read and listened to the books and as long as Jayne Entwistle is the narrator, I will always prefer listening to them. She is the perfect voice for Flavia.

    This book had it all: Mystery, intrigue, history and humor. The surprise ending leaves Flavia fans anxious for the next book. Can't wait.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Lewis Man

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Peter May
    • Narrated By Peter Forbes
    Overall
    (141)
    Performance
    (125)
    Story
    (123)

    An unidentified corpse is recovered from a peat bog on the Isle of Lewis, Scotland. News of the discovery soon reaches Fin Macleod. However, since swapping his life in Edinburgh for a quiet existence on Lewis, such mysteries are no longer a concern for the former Detective Inspector. Or so he thought. The sequel to the Blackhouse which was selected for the WH Smith Richard and Judy Bookclub, and the second book in the Lewis triology.

    dumbclub says: "Visit the Outer Hebrides"
    "WOW! Excellent!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If Peter May's words could be turned into a painting, he would be considered a modern day master. And, Peter Forbes' compelling narration has convinced me that this book needs to be heard as long as Mr. Forbes is narrating it.

    I could see the sky, feel the rain and the wind crashing on the shore and smell the peat. I wanted to reach out to comfort Talmod MacDonald who endured such hardships in his youth, only to relive those times in his confused state of dementia at the end of his life. The main character Fin, comes across as sensitive and strong. Mr. May and Mr. Forbes portray each character in the book to perfection.

    The Blackhouse was excellent and as soon as I had read it, I promptly downloaded The Lewis Man and was delighted that it is unabridged. Like other reviewers, I agree with their assessment. While The Blackhouse is great, The Lewis Man is superb. I am looking forward to Book #3. Thank you Peter May and Peter Forbes for sharing your incredible talents.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • I Am Half-Sick of Shadows: A Flavia de Luce Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Alan Bradley
    • Narrated By Jayne Entwistle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (471)
    Performance
    (422)
    Story
    (417)

    It’s Christmastime, and the precocious Flavia de Luce—an eleven-year-old sleuth with a passion for chemistry and a penchant for crime-solving—is tucked away in her laboratory, whipping up a concoction to ensnare Saint Nick. But she is soon distracted when a film crew arrives at Buckshaw, the de Luces’ decaying English estate, to shoot a movie starring the famed Phyllis Wyvern.

    Frobertimus says: "The Character who brought me back to Cozy Mystery"
    "Another Great Flavia de Luce Adventure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Alan Bradley's precocious heroine, Flavia de Luce is refreshing. His books are definitely originals, including the titles. I have enjoyed all of Mr. Bradley's books, both in print and audio, and Jayne Entwistle's narration is flawless and perfect for all the characters, especially Flavia's. Please, whoever decided narrators, I beg you to do all possible to keep Ms. Entwistle as the narrator of this series.

    For anyone who has not read any of the Flavia de Luce books by Mr. Bradley, I recommend starting with the first one, "Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" and continue to read/listen to them in order. While each book can stand alone, a deeper appreciation for the characters is achieved by reading each book in the order they were written.

    Previous Flavia adventures had her riding all over the countryside around Bishop's Lacy on her trusty bicycle, Gladys. I am Half Sick of Shadows is set almost entirely in the big, deteriorating mansion the de Luce's call home and Gladys has been put away for the winter. A parade of strangers and locals find themselves trapped in the mansion on Christmas Eve due to a huge snowstorm....and there is a murder to solve! Flavia does her usual magic with chemical concoctions and her keen deductive mind to come up with the answers, but not without some hard knocks along the way.

    If there had been more stars to add to the ratings, I would have done so.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Taken: An Elvis Cole - Joe Pike Novel, Book 15

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Robert Crais
    • Narrated By Luke Daniels
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (623)
    Performance
    (540)
    Story
    (538)

    When Nita Morales hires Elvis Cole to find her missing adult daughter, she isn’t afraid, even though she’s gotten a phone call asking for ransom. She knows it’s a fake, that her daughter is off with the guy Nita will call only “that boy,” and that they need money: "Even smart girls do stupid things when they think a boy loves them." But she is wrong....

    R. Conley says: "One of the best"
    "One of the best Elvis Cole/Joe Pike Novels"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have read or listened to all of the Cole/Pike books by Robert Crais and am a big fan. Taken was one of his best. Human trafficking is one of the most despicable offenses that man commits against his fellow man and Crais exposes it in all its ugliness. But with Cole's quirky personality, the book is not so dark as to be depressing. Like all of Crais' books, they keep moving, never becoming bogged down in sub-plots or details that take away from a book. Luke Daniels' narration was excellent,

    I recommend this listen and recommend all books by Robert Crais.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • A Stranger in Mayfair: Charles Lenox Mysteries Series #4

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Charles Finch
    • Narrated By James Langton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (48)
    Performance
    (42)
    Story
    (43)

    Returning from a continental honeymoon with his new wife, Lady Jane, Lenox is asked by a colleague in Parliament to consult in the murder of a footman, bludgeoned to death with a brick. His investigation uncovers some unsettling facts about the family he served and a strange, second identity that the footman himself cultivated.Going into the boxing clubs and public houses, the Mayfair mansions and servants' quarters of Victorian London, Lenox gradually realizes that an old friend may be implicated in the footman's death. Soon a suspect is arrested, but Lenox has his doubts.

    Kathi says: "Very good, but not great"
    "Good but not the best of the series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Charles Finch's books are good for a light read. In A Stranger in Mayfair, the author seems to be trying to determine a way his main character, Charles Lennox, can be a Member of Parliament AND a private detective. This dilemma got in the way of an otherwise good story.

    I have read all 5 in his Charles Lennox series and this one is my least favorite, although it is still a good listen and did not deter me from going back to listen to the latest in the series, Burial at Sea, which will keep me coming back for more.

    While I have enjoyed James Langton's narration of books by other authors, for some reason his voice for Charles Lennox seems to contradict the strong, determined, yet gentlemanly character that Mr. Finch's writing portrays. With Langton's characterization, Lennox comes across as very mannerly, yet a bit weak. But since I have enjoyed several other books narrated by Mr. Langton, his narration of the Charles Lennox books will not deter me.

    I would recommend listening/reading these books in the order written to enjoy the unfolding story of Charles Lennox's life.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Pop. 1280

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Jim Thompson
    • Narrated By John McLain
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (38)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (33)

    Nick Corey is a terrible sheriff on purpose. He doesn't solve problems, enforce rules or arrest criminals. He knows that nobody in tiny Potts County actually wants to follow the law and he is perfectly content lazing about, eating five meals a day, and sleeping with all the eligible women. Still, Nick has some very complex problems to deal with. Two local pimps have been sassing him, ruining his already tattered reputation.

    Scopelabs says: "WOW i found by accident"
    "Not Recommended"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Perhaps I do not understand pulp fiction but I found this a waste of time....yet I did listen to the entire book, which was mercifully short....hoping that it would improve. It didn't.

    The writing was sophomoric, the characters were one-dimensional and the point that the main character was basically a bad person could probably have been made in a one-page essay.

    I should not fault the performance of the narrator, considering the plot and the prose he had to work with, but the book was irritating and unfortunately the narrator, John McLain, did not have the advantage of a good plot or good dialog. I would give Mr. McLain another chance with a different author but regardless of how highly regarded Mr. Jim Thompson is held as an author by others, I would not waste my time or money reading another book written by him, although I do hate to speak ill of the departed. Thankfully this book was on sale and I purchased it rather than wasting a credit.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Death in Ecstasy

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Ngaio Marsh
    • Narrated By James Saxon
    Overall
    (76)
    Performance
    (49)
    Story
    (49)

    The victim was a deeply religious initiate who had trained for a month for her last ceremony. She was also a very beautiful woman. But Cara Quayne had provoked lust, jealousy - and murder. Roderick Alleyn suspected that more evil still lurked behind the Sign of the Sacred Flame....

    Elizabeth says: "Classic detective fiction"
    "Typical Marsh"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Many of Ngaio Marsh's books are perfect for light, fun listening. The elegant Superintendent Roderick Alleyn never disappoints. Death In Ecstasy delves into the strange world of alternative religion and those poor souls gullible enough to believe.

    This book is typical of many of Ms. Marsh's plots....introduce the characters, someone dies under questionable circumstances and the police are called. Superintendent Alleyn appears on the scene with his loyal sidekick Inspector Fox. They interview all the witnesses and soon deduce the death is not by natural causes and call in their Scotland Yard scene of crime experts. Then everyone is gathered together for Mr. Alleyn to announce the murderer and the motive.

    Not all of Ms. Marsh's books follow this formula, such as Artists in Crime or a Clutch of Constables, which are among the best of her books and feature in his lovely, famous artist wife, Agatha Troy. But even when they do follow the formula, they are still fun and light hearted. If you are looking for a deep, intriguing storyline with sub-plots, this book is not for you. But if you just want some light, fun listening, you will find this entertaining.

    James Saxon narrates many of Ms. Marsh's audio books, and does an excellent job. I have sought out other books narrated by him and always enjoy his portrayals of the characters.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Brading Collection

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Patricia Wentworth
    • Narrated By Diana Bishop
    Overall
    (85)
    Performance
    (73)
    Story
    (75)

    Lewis Brading loves only one thing - his collection of jewels. Not only are the gems extremely valuable but also every piece has a fascinating and bloody history attached to it. However Lewis is a frightened and difficult man who sees thieves around every corner. When he asks Miss Silver for help, she gives him some sound advice and turns him away. A few days later, she receives a letter from him, again asking for help. But it is too late. In the morning paper is the news of his murder.

    Kathleen Rogers says: "Lovers of classic British mystery, rejoice!"
    "Good light mystery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoy Patricia Wentworth's books and believe Diana Bishop is an ideal narrator. Ms. Wentworth's main protagonist, Miss Maude Silver evokes visions of Agatha Christie's Miss Jane Marple. I always enjoy a bit of a light mystery after reading or listening to several more intense books and Ms. Wentworth's books fills that niche. The plots are usually predictable but the descriptions of the English countryside, villages or large cities are very well done and one can easily visualize Miss Silver.
    If you are interested in reading books with thought provoking plots or prefer multi-layered sub-plots, then this book is not for you. Usually the "whodunit" is difficult enough to figure out but if you do, it is still pleasant reading. The Brading Collection was enjoyable and suited my mood at the time especially after reading several Minette Walters and Denise Mina books...both great but both a bit on the dark side.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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