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Anne

Member Since 2009

30
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 311 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 37 purchased in 2014
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  • The Art Forger

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs)
    • By B. A. Shapiro
    • Narrated By Xe Sands
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (658)
    Performance
    (570)
    Story
    (575)

    Making a living reproducing famous artworks for a popular online retailer and desperate to improve her situation, Claire is lured into a Faustian bargain with Aiden Markel, a powerful gallery owner. She agrees to forge a painting - a Degas masterpiece stolen from the Gardner Museum - in exchange for a one-woman show in his renowned gallery. But when that very same long-missing Degas painting is delivered to Claire's studio, she begins to suspect that it may itself be a forgery. Her desperate search for the truth leads Claire into a labyrinth of deceit where secrets hidden since the late 19th century may be the only evidence that can now save her life.

    Cynthia says: "The Art Forger"
    "Art Forger"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story of an artist's passion and the history of the art world were entertaining and engaging. Sadly, there really wasn't enough character development for me to care all that much about what happened to the people in the story. The two leads don't seem to have much in common and Claire comes across as emotionally stunted. The slow, breathy, whiney narration does NOT help with this.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Circle

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Dave Eggers
    • Narrated By Dion Graham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (847)
    Performance
    (772)
    Story
    (783)

    When Mae Holland is hired to work for the Circle, the world's most powerful internet company, she feels she's been given the opportunity of a lifetime. The Circle, run out of a sprawling California campus, links users' personal emails, social media, banking, and purchasing with their universal operating system, resulting in one online identity and a new age of civility and transparency. As Mae tours the open-plan office spaces, the towering glass dining facilities, the cozy dorms for those who spend nights at work, she is thrilled with the company's modernity and activity.

    Darwin8u says: "A solid, just not great social network dystopia"
    "The Circle"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Very interesting premise. Mostly liked the characters and situations. Completely plausible but wow, I have never read anything this didactic. The speechifying just went on and on. Though I don't think it's wonderful writing, I do think it's alright speculative fiction and would recommend it to anyone who is interested in the current debates about privacy and the proliferation of social media.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Prisoner of Brenda

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Colin Bateman
    • Narrated By Stephen Armstrong
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (14)

    When notorious gangster "Fat Sam" Mahood is murdered, the chief suspect is arrested nearby. But he seems to have suffered a breakdown. Incarcerated in a mental institution, he's known only as the Man in the White Suit. The suspect remains an enigma until Nurse Brenda calls on Mystery Man, Belfast's finest mystery bookshop owner, to bring his powers of investigation to bear....

    Anne says: "Why do I love the Mystery Man?"
    "Why do I love the Mystery Man?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Stephen Armstrong's deadpan delivery combined of Colin Bateman's hilarious characters is delightful. This installment had plenty of twists and turns and had me hooked from the very beginning. I'm going to go back and listen to them all again. The characters are well developed and the story is fast moving and engaging.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Daemon

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Daniel Suarez
    • Narrated By Jeff Gurner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6788)
    Performance
    (3834)
    Story
    (3861)

    Thousands of autonomous computer programs, or daemons, make our networked world possible, running constantly in the background of our lives, trafficking e-mail, transferring money, and monitoring power grids. For the most part, daemons are benign, but the same can't always be said for the people who design them.

    Erica says: "Possibly The Best Techno-thriller Ever"
    "A good story ruined by terrible characters"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was interested in what the Daemon was doing, how it worked, and what its ultimate goals were and that aspect of the story was pretty good. There were a great many white male characters and the reader went a bit overboard trying to come up with distinctive voices for each and every one of them. It got a bit silly. The stereotypical Square Jawed Super Macho Ex-Military Ultra Patriotic Fearless American Hero thing got really really old as well. The three female characters were even worse. I almost stopped listening several times, but I have to admit I wanted to know what happened in the end. It was kind of worth it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Learn Italian - Survival Phrases Italian, Volume 1: Lessons 1-30

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Innovative Language Learning
    • Narrated By Cinzia Guerriero
    Overall
    (45)
    Performance
    (30)
    Story
    (25)

    Start speaking Italian in minutes, and grasp the language, culture and customs in just minutes more with Survival Phrases - Italian, a completely new way to learn Basic Italian fast! Survival Phrases - Italian will have you speaking with proper pronunciation from the very first lesson and prepare you with cultural insight, travel tips and other information to utterly shock and amaze your friends and family, travel companions and people you meet along the way.

    Deborah says: "Survival Phrases is a great title!"
    "Worked for me"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This really did teach me almost everything I needed to know to spend three weeks in Italy. The phrases "is there a ______ near here?" and "Where is the_____?" and "How much does this/that cost?" and all of the pleases, thank yous, and good evenings were the most helpful. Most of the other lessons were used occasionally and helped me to understand the responses by training my ear to catch what people are saying. The first few listens I could barely identify individual words. This tutorial was well worth the time and money.

    Also note that not "everybody" speaks English in Italy. Our first morning at our first hotel near the Florence Airport met with a hotel desk attendant who didn't speak a word of English. I was able to ask her where I could buy a bus ticket and find a bus stop nearby and ask for a restaurant recommendation. Yay! Highly recommended if you are traveling around by train and bus sans tour group. You will need something more if you are conducting business.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Birthdays for the Dead

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Stuart MacBride
    • Narrated By Ian Hanmore
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (62)
    Performance
    (54)
    Story
    (54)

    Five years ago his daughter, Rebecca, went missing on the eve of her 13th birthday. A year later the first card arrived: homemade, with a Polaroid picture stuck to the front – Rebecca, strapped to a chair, gagged and terrified. Every year another card: each one worse than the last. The tabloids call him The Birthday Boy. He’s been snatching girls for 12 years, always in the run-up to their 13th birthday, sending the families his homemade cards showing their daughters being slowly tortured to death.

    BSquared67 says: "For those who can stomach strong violence"
    "Birthdays for the Dead"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I want a t-shirt that says "I survived listening to Birthdays for the Dead." It was very good, but, yikes, it was difficult listening on occasion.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Still Missing

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Chevy Stevens
    • Narrated By Angela Dawe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1296)
    Performance
    (677)
    Story
    (687)

    On the day she was abducted, Annie O’Sullivan, a 32-year-old Realtor, had three goals: sell a house, forget about a recent argument with her mother, and be on time for dinner with her ever-patient boyfriend. The open house is slow, but when her last visitor pulls up in a van as she’s about to leave, Annie thinks it just might be her lucky day after all.

    Richard Delman says: "A singular voice; a horrendous story."
    "So glad I didn't give up on it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I almost stopped listening very early on thinking it was going to degenerate into some kind of macho torture porn fantasy. Instead it is a deeply felt examination of human emotions that kept me up far too late. I literally could not sleep until her story had been told. I ended up listening to several sections again over the course of several days because the characters actions were so thought provoking, surprising, emotionally wrenching and yet completely believable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Safe House

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Chris Ewan
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (383)
    Performance
    (315)
    Story
    (311)

    When Rob Hale wakes up in hospital after a motorcycle crash, he is told that Lena - the gorgeous blonde woman who was on the back of his bike - doesn't exist. The woman he describes bears a striking resemblance to his recently deceased sister, Laura, but has he really only imagined her? Convinced that Lena is as real as he is, Rob teams up with Rebecca Lewis - a London-based PI who has a mysterious connection to Laura - to follow the clues. He learns that even a close-knit community like the Isle of Man can hide dangerous secrets that will not stay safe forever.

    Dave says: "Intriguing twists and turns"
    "Safe House"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I wanted to like this story and as I listened it kept my attention and I liked the characters and desperately wanted to know who done it. Simon Vance's narration was flawless as usual. As we neared the end, however, I started to think that someone should have explained the theory of Occam's Razor to some of characters. I'll try to not have any real spoilers here, but come on, the plot to cover up this, fake that, kidnap her, implicate them, steal this, destroy that, involve this person and that person AND the other person, all with little tiny bits of information pertaining to a huge convoluted plot. Yikes. No wonder all of the three principle blonde's plots failed so spectacularly. Rocky was cool tho.

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • The Forgotten Garden

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Kate Morton
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4997)
    Performance
    (2798)
    Story
    (2833)

    Thirty-eight year old Cassandra is lost, alone, and grieving. Her much loved grandmother, Nell, has just died and Cassandra, her life already shaken by a tragic accident 10 years ago, feels like she has lost everything known and dear to her.

    avid reader says: "Hours of enjoyable, fun listening"
    "She had me right up until the end."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The reader is wonderful and the story is engaging and entertaining. The device of moving back and forth through multiple time periods and plot lines had me hooked and carried me along with the story right up til part III. Then it degenerated into an exercise in dieu ex machina...actually multiple exercises.

    I would still recommend the story, the characters are wonderfully detailed and believable and I really did want to know "who done it," but be prepared for the last third, which has enough improbable plot devices to make Charlotte Bronte blush.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Robopocalypse: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Daniel H. Wilson
    • Narrated By Mike Chamberlain
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1408)
    Performance
    (1031)
    Story
    (1034)

    In the near future, at a moment no one will notice, all the dazzling technology that runs our world will unite and turn against us. Taking on the persona of a shy human boy, a childlike but massively powerful artificial intelligence known as Archos comes online and assumes control over the global network of machines that regulate everything from transportation to utilities, defense and communication. In the months leading up to this, sporadic glitches are noticed by a handful of unconnected humans - a single mother, a lonely Japanese bachelor, and an isolated U.S. soldier....

    Raxxillion says: "OMG! The hyperbole is the GREATEST EVER!!!!!"
    "Retread of an old story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Although it has been done before (and much much better) I enjoyed the story found it entertaining and it kept my interest. The reader did a fair job but his UK accents are pretty bad and almost every American sounds like they spent varying lengths of time in Texas.

    The real problem is the format. Mr. Wilson wanted to pull of a World War Z but just didn't have the chops. The story is supposed to be made up of interviews as well as "found footage" conversations and communications recorded surreptitiously by CCTV and various electronic devices under control of the Robots. Although the reader gives the characters voices that are easy to tell apart they STILL sound exactly the same. There is WAY too much description, environmental detail and analysis. It didn't take long for it to be apparent that the robots spared only the gifted storytellers.

    It would have been better third person omniscient.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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