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A. Musser

30-something engineer and audiobook addict.

Atlanta | Member Since 2013

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HELPFUL VOTES
  • 10 reviews
  • 17 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 12 purchased in 2014
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  • Reconstructing Amelia

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Kimberly McCreight
    • Narrated By Khristine Hvam
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (489)
    Performance
    (438)
    Story
    (442)

    When Kate, single mother and law firm partner, gets an urgent phone call summoning her to her daughter's exclusive private school, she's shocked. Amelia has been suspended for cheating, something that would be completely out of character for her over-achieving, well-behaved daughter. Kate rushes to Grace Hall, but what she finds when she finally arrives is beyond comprehension. Her daughter is dead.

    FanB14 says: "Gossip Girl"
    "Predictable but endearing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Reconstructing Amelia rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    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.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Reconstructing Amelia?

    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.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    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?


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Probably something about picking your friends carefully or the dark side of friendship.


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Divergent

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Veronica Roth
    • Narrated By Emma Galvin
    Overall
    (15544)
    Performance
    (14067)
    Story
    (14160)

    In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue - Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is - she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

    Grant says: "It's not for me. Loved it anyway."
    "Very enjoyable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    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).

    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
    (24065)
    Performance
    (18011)
    Story
    (18068)

    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"
    "I wanted to love it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Before I Go to Sleep: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By S. J. Watson
    • Narrated By Orlagh Cassidy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (552)
    Performance
    (451)
    Story
    (453)

    "As I sleep, my mind will erase everything I did today. I will wake up tomorrow as I did this morning. Thinking I'm still a child. Thinking I have a whole lifetime of choice ahead of me...." Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love - all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may be telling you only half the story. Welcome to Christine's life.

    Tim says: "Couldn't put this book down!"
    "Enjoyable listen"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Allegiant: Divergent Trilogy, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Veronica Roth
    • Narrated By Emma Galvin, Aaron Stanford
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6676)
    Performance
    (6134)
    Story
    (6191)

    What if your whole world was a lie? What if a single revelation - like a single choice - changed everything? What if love and loyalty made you do things you never expected? The explosive conclusion to Veronica Roth's #1 New York Times best-selling Divergent trilogy reveals the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of listeners in Divergent and Insurgent.

    Teddy says: "I hate it when this happens"
    "I hated the narrator they used for Tobias' voice"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5905)
    Performance
    (5610)
    Story
    (5620)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"

    Brian says: "Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped"
    "This is in my top 5 list!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Book Thief

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Markus Zusak
    • Narrated By Allan Corduner
    Overall
    (7630)
    Performance
    (5845)
    Story
    (5863)

    It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist: books.

    Shannon says: "Word Thief"
    "A beautifully written story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I am really glad I listened to a friend and purchased this book. The characters are so well developed and it's impossible not to fall in love with them. The narration is spectacular and the story really brought alive the plight of the people living in Germany during the war for me. Also, I was intrigued by the idea that the entire story is narrated by death. At times death's narration was a little esoteric and seemed to muddle the story. I had kind of hoped that death would have played a larger role in the book. He explains why he took an interest in one specific character and there's a good reason for it. But I don't feel like that character ever confirmed that she did see him. And I kind of felt like that was an aspect that wasn't explored to its full potential. My only complaint is that I wanted more of an epilogue. I wanted to know more about what happened to each character after the final scene in the book. I don't want to provide any spoilers so I will just say this: there is one character in the book that I particularly wanted to know about at the end. The author doesn't tell you. You have enough information to know what the possibilities were and I think this is intentional since those that would have known the character in this story if it were 'real life' likely also wouldn't have known how his story ended. But I did wish for more of a conclusion.

    I waffled between giving the story 3 stars or 4 stars. Overall, it was worth the listen.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • 14

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10555)
    Performance
    (9581)
    Story
    (9601)

    There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s.

    Magpie says: "Super solid listen!!"
    "Do You Need to Completely Depart from Reality?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I listened to this book on a car trip and it did its job of keeping me awake. I was drawn in and captivated by the characters and the pace of the suspense in the early chapters of the book was perfect....but the last quarter of the book had me raising one eyebrow and repeatedly asking "who thought of this?" I will freely admit that I am not a huge Sci-Fy fan. But I liked the way the mystery in the book was introduced and the idea of harmonics appealed to my engineer brain. But...then the book took a departure...a huge leap. A leap that was too far for my head. I don't want to spoil the story for anyone and it really did keep me entertained, it just kind of went off the rails for me toward the end. I would have more appreciated more of the level-headed pace and believable plot over the crazy place the author took us. But, if you need a book to keep you awake on a drive, this should do it.


    If you’ve listened to books by Peter Clines before, how does this one compare?

    This is the first Peter Clines book I've read and I probably won't seek him out as one of my favorite authors. He just seemed to leap too far for me.


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

    Ray was a good narrator and the voices he did at the end of the book were great. My biggest complaint is that Veek's voice sounded just like the super's voice and one was supposed to be Indian and the other German I think? Listening to him do the antagonist's voices (trying not to give too much away) at the end was great - although I'm sure it left him with a sore throat.


    Could you see 14 being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    I pictured Tim as a young Tommy Lee Jones and I pictured Roger as a long-haired and unshaven Bradley Cooper. Aarti Mann would play Veek and Seth Green is actually who I pictured for Nate. I pictured Brittany Snow (with blue hair and an attitude) for Xela.


    Any additional comments?

    Good build up to the mystery but the answer just went a step too far for me. I prefer sci-fy that is based a little closer to reality.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 11-22-63: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson
    Overall
    (17226)
    Performance
    (15301)
    Story
    (15254)

    On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

    Kelly says: "I Owe Stephen King An Apology"
    "Excellent Story - Will make you think...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does 11-22-63 rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This book is in the top 5 audiobooks that I've listened to. I really loved the story. I loved how well-researched the story was. I found myself on-line frequently while listening to research the actual history. King does a great job of exploring the potential implications of time travel.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favorite character was definitely George/Jake. He seems so level-headed, positive, and good-natured that you trust him to do the job he set out to do. He's easy to root for.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    My favorite scene was the end of the book. I don't want to ruin it for anyone, but there's a sort of bittersweet ending.


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

    The book made me really think which is a huge positive for me. If I spend time laying awake at night pondering a story, that's the sign of a really great book. This book isn't a typical Stephen King horror. Instead, this book is optimistic, exciting, and very well researched and well-written. The only complaint I have is about the narrator. He did an excellent job, I just think he was an unusual choice. The main character in the story is supposed to be 35 and the narrator's voice makes him sound older. I kept forgetting he was only supposed to be 35. However, despite the mental block of thinking he sounded older, he did a great job. His northern accents were great. The only voice that really annoyed me was his voice for Sadie. However, the story was compelling enough that I could overlook the terrible drawl. The way the narrator makes Sadie say "honey" was like nails on a chalkboard for me. But I just had to hear the end of the story. And I'm glad I stuck it out because it's one of the best books I've ever listened to.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • It

    • UNABRIDGED (44 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Steven Weber
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4388)
    Performance
    (3126)
    Story
    (3150)

    They were just kids when they stumbled upon the horror of their hometown. Now, as adults, none of them can withstand the force that has drawn them all back to Derry, Maine, to face the nightmare without end, and the evil without a name.

    Parola138 says: "I thought I was desensitized"
    "Better Late than Never"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about It?

    I listened to this book because I really wanted to listen to 11/22/63 and a reviewer suggested that one should listen to IT first because of a parallel in the books in the City of Derry. (Now that I've listened to both books, I can assure you that one does not need to listen to IT to enhance the story in 11/22/63). I don't usually like horror books but I have to admit that this book really held my attention and kept me involved right until the end. Plus, I love how long it is. The bargain hunter in me really likes to maximize my entertainment hours for the credits. The best part of this audiobook, by far, was the narrator. There could be no better narrator for this story. He was perfection.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of It?

    The entire story was memorable. It truly is a great book that keeps you invested from beginning to end and this one really did.


    What about Steven Weber’s performance did you like?

    Steven Weber was the most amazing narrator that I could have ever imagined. His performance was nothing short of spellbinding. I really hope to listen to other recordings by Weber.


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

    It was a scary book. I don't typically read horror books and I've never been a huge Stephen King fan. I couldn't listen to this at bedtime. I had to leave myself enough time to watch a sit-com or something to reset before going to bed so I wouldn't have bad dreams.


    Any additional comments?

    Great performance, excellent story if you like a good scary story. It's super long but Weber's performance combined with King's story-telling ability will keep you coming back.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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