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pilot

Listening to books makes my mundane tasks so much more palatable.

East Coast | Member Since 2008

39
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 44 ratings
  • 281 titles in library
  • 34 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
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  • This Is How You Lose Her

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Junot Díaz
    • Narrated By Junot Díaz
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (438)
    Performance
    (379)
    Story
    (385)

    The stories in This Is How You Lose Her, by turns hilarious and devastating, raucous and tender, lay bare the infinite longing and inevitable weaknesses of our all-too-human hearts. They capture the heat of new passion, the recklessness with which we betray what we most treasure, and the torture we go through - "the begging, the crawling over glass, the crying" - to try to mend what we've broken beyond repair. They recall the echoes that intimacy leaves behind, even where we thought we did not care.

    josh says: "Good collection of short stories"
    "Cheating with a fresh voice"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Junot Diaz's writing is extremely fresh, new, and immensely entertaining. Yunior, the recurring narrator throughout most of these stories, is a character unlike any other I've come across. The writing here, especially the Dominican street talk, is vivid.

    While I liked the book overall, I gave the story itself only three stars. For me, the stories, detailing Yunior's romantic relationships, and the inevitable breakups, got a little repetitive. I really liked the stories about Yunior's childhood, the coldness of his father, the mother's obliviousness, and the stories of Rafa's (Yunior's brother) sad end. Yunior's chronic infidelities are interesting at first, but I eventually just got tired of hearing about them in almost every story. In one of the last stories, Yunior claims to have cheated on one long-time girlfriend over 50 times. At that point, the reader has read so much about cheating that it elicits only a shrug.

    The writing is so good here. I just wish other characters would have had more voice, and that relationship issues other than infidelity would have figured into the stories.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Magician's Assistant

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Ann Patchett
    • Narrated By Karen Ziemba
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (658)
    Performance
    (377)
    Story
    (379)

    When Parsifal, a handsome and charming magician, dies suddenly, his widow Sabine - who was also his faithful assistant for 20 years - learns that the family he claimed to have lost in a tragic accident is very much alive and well.

    glamazon says: "Patchett Has It"
    "Not a bad book, but not the author's best"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I absolutely adored two other books by Ann Patchett: State of Wonder and Bel Canto. If you are new to the author, pick one of those books as your introduction. I would give both five stars.

    This book wasn't bad at all, but I had a hard time caring as much about the characters. There was a little too much "magic" in this book for me in the form of very involved flashbacks that bordered on magical realism. I could also never really understand why the very appealing heroine would decide to spend decades of her life so intimately connected with her gay husband who was openly in love with another man.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Exclusive Interview: Jim Atlas with James Lee Burke on William Faulkner

    • UNABRIDGED (16 mins)
    • By James Lee Burke
    • Narrated By James Atlas
    Overall
    (450)
    Performance
    (264)
    Story
    (266)

    In this exclusive interview, bestselling author and two-time Edgar-award winner James Lee Burke shares insights about William Faulkner gleaned from a lifetime of study of the author and his work.

    Barry says: "Cute freebie"
    "Enjoyable, but far too short"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    16 minutes was simply not enough. There were some interesting vignettes-- but not much more. I appreciate that Audible offers the interview for free, but it would be much more worthwhile to offer a longer format that could be more substantive. I'd like to hear more from James Lee Burke, so why not give him a full half hour?

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Train Dreams: A Novella

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Denis Johnson
    • Narrated By Will Patton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (66)
    Performance
    (58)
    Story
    (58)

    Robert Grainer is a day laborer in the American West at the start of the 20th century—an ordinary man in extraordinary times. Buffeted by the loss of his family, Grainer struggles to make sense of this strange new world. As his story unfolds, we witness both his shocking personal defeats and the radical changes that transform America in his lifetime.

    Geoff says: "A compact epic"
    "Beautiful and haunting writing- worth many listens"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Train Dreams again? Why?

    The narration by Will Patton is truly excellent, and the writing is mesmerizing. This book is particularly recommended if you have any connection, however remote, to the Pacific Northwest. The story makes one reflect on the harshness of life in remote communities, and the writing was so strong the words quickly flowed by, leaving beautiful, sad images. You can finish the book in a couple of hours, but the images remain long afterwards.


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

    I didn't laugh or cry, but was struck by the vividness of the writing.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • War and Peace, Volume 2

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Leo Tolstoy
    • Narrated By Neville Jason
    Overall
    (498)
    Performance
    (281)
    Story
    (282)

    War and Peace is one of the greatest monuments in world literature. Set against the dramatic backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, it examines the relationship between the individual and the relentless march of history. Here are the universal themes of love and hate, ambition and despair, youth and age, expressed with a swirling vitality which makes the book as accessible today as it was when it was first published in 1869.

    Tad Davis says: "A long book, but at least the chapters are short"
    "A long but worthy listen"
    Overall

    This is a terrific novel, and the narrator is one of the best I have heard to date. Neville Jason changes between the character seamlessly. His reading is dramatic, but not over-the-top.

    Obviously the story is a commitment, but it is a worthy one. Get through the first few hours and you will be hooked.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fathers and Sons

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Ivan Turgenev
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (12)

    When Arkady Petrovich comes home from college, his father finds his eager, naïve son changed almost beyond recognition, for the impressionable Arkady has fallen under the powerful influence of the friend he has brought with him. A self-proclaimed nihilist, the ardent young Bazarov shocks Arkady's father by criticizing the landowning way of life and by his outspoken determination to sweep away traditional values of contemporary Russian society.

    Ilana says: "Why Turgeniev is quickly turning into a favourite"
    "A wonderful story, and a good listen"
    Overall

    I don't have any complaints about this audio book. The story is timeless. I think many a reader will hear echoes of their former selves in the characters of the two young men.

    The narration was quite good-- no frills, straight-forward and well-suited to the book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Brothers Karamazov

    • UNABRIDGED (34 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Fyodor Dostoevsky, Constance Garnett (translator)
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (291)
    Performance
    (189)
    Story
    (189)

    The Brothers Karamazov tells the stirring tale of four brothers: the pleasure-seeking, impatient Dmitri; the brilliant and morose Ivan; the gentle, loving, and honest Alyosha; and the illegitimate Smerdyakov: shy, silent, and cruel. The four unite in the murder of one of literature's most despicable characters - their father. This was Dostoevsky's final and best work.

    David says: "A long work and a great work, but boy is it long"
    "Narrator Better Suited to Reading Vampire Stories"
    Overall

    The narrator's reading voice is very dark and haunting, and frankly, a little overdone. The story has been fantastic, and I've gotten used to the narrator's voice when he reads for male characters. However, his voice for the female characters is like nails on a chalkboard to me--- almost offensively high pitched and absolutely grating.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Moonstone

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Wilkie Collins
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (540)
    Performance
    (287)
    Story
    (290)

    No, the "Moonstone" isn't a celestial relic, it's a gigantic yellow diamond of unearthly beauty that was given to Rachel Verinder as a present on her 18th birthday - and stolen that very night! Betteredge, one of the most beloved butlers in English literature, is the focus of this seminal detective novel, which examines how one family's life is turned upside-down by the theft. And find out why the answers to all of life's problems can be found in the pages of Robinson Crusoe.

    Catherine says: "One of the best readings ever"
    "Not bad, but not nearly my favorite"
    Overall

    I suspect Wilkie Collins fans will greatly enjoy this book. If you are big fan, ignore my criticisms below. My chief complaint is with the story itself rather than the audiobook. Without spoiling the story, I'll say only that I thought the plot and ending were rather silly, with a series of far-fetched circumstances and bizarre twists at the end. I greatly preferred Wilkie Collins' "Woman in White" audiobook because it is a darker, yet more interesting story with better plot development.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Absalom, Absalom!

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By William Faulkner
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (216)
    Performance
    (140)
    Story
    (139)

    Absalom, Absalom! tells the story of Thomas Sutpen, the enigmatic stranger who came to Jefferson township in the early 1830s. With a French architect and a band of wild Haitians, he wrung a fabulous plantation out of the muddy bottoms of the north Mississippi wilderness.

    pilot says: "A long, enjoyable listen"
    "A long, enjoyable listen"
    Overall

    This was the first Faulkner novel I attempted to read/listen since high school (when I thought I'd never read Faulkner again). With that said, I found this audiobook to be really excellent, and I plan to buy more of Faulkner's books. The reader was crisp, clear, and fit the book perfectly. Warning: this story/ plot line may be difficult to follow. If one is unfamiliar with the story, I recommend consulting some sort of plot chronology because it makes the listening experience a lot more enjoyable. (google University of Virginia and Absolom)

    30 of 30 people found this review helpful

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