This book is a good book, a compelling story, believable and likable characters, but it's predictable. So, I waivered between giving it 3 and 4 stars for the story. But I really did enjoy the story even if there weren't any twists or turns that I found thrilling or exciting.
I think the dynamics of the clubs at the school are really interesting. It's hard to understand the dynamic of "mean girls" and why they do some of the things they do but this book really explores why girls that aren't mean would take part in hurting others.
My favorite scene is a scene where Amelia is with her best friend Sylvia and describes her in her internal monologue. I can't remember the exact words she says but it was something along the lines of "Her heart is huge and wreckless." I can relate. Who doesn't know someone (or maybe is someone themselves) that falls in love easily and quickly and jumps in with both feet?
Probably something about picking your friends carefully or the dark side of friendship.
It's a good listen, the narrator is great and does an excellent job of capturing the tone and inflections of high school girls....that "attitude" they all seem to be infected with.
The writing was excellent (judging solely from the audiobook, I have not read the print version) and good writing can cover a multitude of sins. It gives the characters more depth, allows you to get to know them slowly as if meeting someone in real life. It gets you really invested in each of the characters before the main plot happens so you feel like you're in it with them. Even the beginning where the author was laying out the background and introducing you to the characters, it didn't feel like it was dragging to me because the author took such care with the writing. The narrator did an excellent job.
This is the first book I've listened to by Sarah Waters but I'd be interested in listening to others based on my experience with this one.
No, but she is an excellent narrator and her accents didn't seem fake or forced. I very much appreciated the narration.
I found it stayed with me even when I wasn't reading. I thought about how I would perform in the scenarios faced by the characters. Would I be strong or weak and would I have given in to the suggestions of someone I was in love with in that kind of scenario or would I have kept my head about me and been more logical and rational? I could see bits of my own personality in the two main characters in the story. I felt anxious mirroring the main character's anxiety as she dealt with the aftermath of the choices she and her friend made. I even felt the color drain from my face a few times reading the story when I was worried they'd be exposed. I don't want to reveal too much but because the author took such care to introduce us to the characters and I found parts of their personality similar to mine, I felt involved in the plot more than I would typically for this type of story.
While I wouldn't put it in my list of favorite books ever, it was one that held my attention and I found myself pondering it even after I finished listening to it. I would recommend it with the only caveat that the reader may find the beginning a little slow. I found the writing was eloquent enough that I didn't mind the time the author took to lay the ground work for the story.
I used to read Jodi Picoult all the time but her writing started feeling sophomoric and I found myself getting bored with her work. I almost didn't buy this book except that another commenter noted that she also felt that Picoult was sophomoric and that this book really exceeded her expectations. I have to admit, it exceeded mine as well. I loved it. I thought about it when I wasn't listening and looked forward to my commute to have time to listen to it. I feel like this guided review would force me to reveal too much about the plot so I will just say that it's a fantastic book. It's the best book I've read by Picoult. I loved it. I loved every second of it.
This book felt like it just stopped instead of ended. Like the author wasn't sure how to end the story so she wrote until she just decided she was done. I was kind of surprised when it ended because it felt incomplete somehow. I'm not sure the last bit of the book that occurs in the spring time felt related to the main plot of the book. It almost felt like two different short stories smacked together.
No, this was the first but I did enjoy the narrator's soothing voice. However, her voice was SO soothing that I couldn't listen while driving if I was tired because she'd soothe me right to sleep!
Well, it did feel incomplete somehow but I don't think I'd want to read a follow-up.
It's possible that the author intended for the story to feel like it ended without giving the reader closure to mirror the feelings of the book characters about the child but it just felt incomplete.
Probably not to most people. Most of my friends would find this book depressing in spite of the compelling nature of the story.
I can't think of another book but I might compare it to the movie Awakenings.
The way the main character's voice changes as he changes isn't something I would have really considered probably if I was reading the story. It probably enhanced the story to have those verbal cues.
No. The plot was compelling but not in the kind of way that kept me from putting it down. I already had a good idea of how it would end.
It's a story that did make me think and the plot was compelling but I felt kind of depressed about it when I was finished.
The plot was kind of "meh" for me. But, I listen to books while driving and the story did at least hold my interest enough for me to not be tempted to turn it off in favor of the radio. If you're looking for elegant literary prose and a through-provoking and compelling plot, this isn't your book. If you're looking for a pretty easy listen (like a beach read), this will probably fit the bill just fine.
Probably not. The plot seemed a little sophomoric for my taste.
The narrator was the high point of the book for me. Her accents were great and her voices for the many different women in the story were perfect. I could easily identify who was talking by the voice she used which is pretty impressive considering how many female characters there are.
Nope. This is not an inspiring book at all. Just a story.
The ending felt a little weird. After the climax of the book, it felt like it took a little too long to wrap up the story. The author tried to create a little inter-family post-climax drama and it sort of fell flat in my opinion. I don't think it was necessary and I think she skimmed far too lightly over the inevitable legal trial. The ending could have been much better but it just felt like it fizzled out.
I read this because the movie was coming out and my girlfriends were all excited as each of them read the story. The premise pulled me in instantly and Tris becomes a character that is easy to love. I really enjoyed the audiobook but don't expect to read just the first book of the series and part ways if you're not impressed. They leave off on both of the first two books at a place that doesn't wrap up the story so you can't just stop, you have to keep going. This is a three-book commitment or nothing. If you're the type that enjoyed The Hunger Games, you'll enjoy this series. I liked the characters and the premise better than the Hunger Games but I found the ending disappointing (and I didn't like the third book of the Hunger Games either).
If I'm being honest, I really WANTED to love this book. I wanted to watch the series and I thought understanding the story would be a benefit. But I found looooong stretches of the book terribly dull. I decide that I will just watch the series without listening to the rest of the audiobooks. I need an audiobook to have a bit more forward momentum between climaxes.
I listened to this after listening to an audiobook that REALLY blew my socks off (The Martian by Andy Weir in case you're looking for an excellent listen) so it had its work cut out for it because I knew that whatever I chose wasn't likely to live up to the one I'd just finished. The reviews convinced me. I liked the narrator although her men's voices get kind of nasal and makes me automatically presume all the men are snobby and a bit unlikable when I don't think that's the author's intent. I wish she'd used a better voice for one of the male characters. I found him unlikable because of the voice and I think the story would have had more of the impact the author intended if I'd liked him more.
However, the story is compelling. The main character is likable. It does a good job of keeping the forward momentum. The narrator speaks clearly and understandably. I did enjoy the book. I liked the way the story played out at the end but the "wrap up" after the climactic event felt a little cheesy.
My biggest complaint is that the author doesn't leave tiny little seeds of subtle clues throughout the book of what is going to play out. Instead there's one big "hint" and I caught it and so I immediately knew what the plot twist would be, but I wasn't totally sure how it would play out exactly. I've been debating whether or not the hint would be as obvious to everyone because to me, it felt like a giant beacon of "LOOK AT THIS UNUSUAL CIRCUMSTANCE, THIS WILL BE IMPORTANT LATER!" which is almost as frustrating as authors who leave hints far too esoteric and subtle for anyone to catch. I've realized that if at the end of a book with a twist, I don't have the urge to go back and re-listen/re-read the little seeds of information that lead up to the twist, I don't feel like the author did a very good job of it. And I did not have that feeling with this book. They felt too obvious and too placed to blend into the story seamlessly.
That said, the writing is good. The main character is an author and so her own writings in the book reflect her ability to translate feelings into words easily, but I felt that her writings were often unrealistically long and intricate given the situation that the author wanted us to believe. Seemed too convenient that any time she wanted to write something important in secret, she magically got alone time to do it. I think it would have added to the plot and the suspense if there were at least a few overly hasty notes or interrupted thoughts in the main character's journal.
Overall, I would recommend this book.
This final book in the Divergent series was the most disappointing. I still enjoyed the overall story but I have 3 complaints:
1. It should have just been one long book. The series didn't divide the books up in a way that you could enjoy each as it's own stand-alone story. That is a HUGE pet peeve of mine. If you can't pick up book two and get enough info. to read it without book 1, it should be one book, not a series.
2. I hated the narrator's voice for Tobias. He talked just a little too slow and sounded overly technical. Tobias was kind of a rough and tumble guy with a sweet side and the narrator never was able to capture all the pieces of his personality. He sounded flat.
3. The ending could have been way better. I understand why the author did what she did but it wasn't the choice I would have made.
I finished this audiobook in less than 2 days. I could think of nothing else. I am an engineer and this book tickled my brain with the science and technology while still using it
to further the plot. It was one of the most compelling books I have ever listened to and I found myself sitting here just pondering it for hours after it was finished.
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