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Tracy Hoffmann

Downingtown, PA USA | Member Since 2007

16
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 12 reviews
  • 76 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 24 purchased in 2014
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  • The Hangman's Daughter

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Oliver Pötzsch, Lee Chadeayne (translator)
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1304)
    Performance
    (1159)
    Story
    (1152)

    When a dying boy is pulled from the river with a mark crudely tattooed on his shoulder, hangman Jakob Kuisl is called upon to investigate whether witchcraft is at play in his small Bavarian town. When more children disappear and an orphan is found dead with the same mark, the mounting hysteria threatens to erupt. Before the unrest forces him to torture and execute the woman who aided in the birth of his children, Jakob must unravel the truth.

    goddess_of_pipework says: "Fascinating"
    "Wish I'd read the book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a great book, very engaging, but the narrator was just awful! Lacking any inflection, he rattled on in a monotone, even when describing some really harrowing bits of the story. Still well worth a listen, I wish I'd read the book, since I think I would have given this a 5-star rating. The narrator almost killed it for me.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7443)
    Performance
    (6827)
    Story
    (6832)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "Not a fan"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    This book is way too impressed with itself. The descriptive writing bludgeons the listener to death. If you didn't get a sense of the narrator's despair about his mother's death, don't worry, you'll get another 500 pages of similar writing to catch up. Not sure how the narrator drowns his misery in drugs and alcohol? Again, no worries, there are plenty of chapters of very descriptive writing to clue you in. This book needed an editor with the courage or the permission to remove at least half of this tedious novel. Not sure I want to invest another 10 hours to finish this book, but I'm sure I'll be short of credits at some point and will come back to it. There are so many good books out there, I'm not sure why anyone would spend the time on this. I didn't find it Dickensian or anything close. I love Dickens. He sets up his characters and moves the plot along. This book never does.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Not sure, but have lined up a couple of new listens, including a JD Robbs novel, just to listen to something that moves along and reaches a conclusion before I get another year older.


    Which character – as performed by David Pittu – was your favorite?

    Hobbie was one character that was welled played and seemed well written.


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

    Good heavens, let's hope not! It would just be a pathetic soap opera of despair.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Desires of the Dead: A Body Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Kimberly Derting
    • Narrated By Eileen Stevens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (76)
    Performance
    (61)
    Story
    (60)

    The missing dead call to Violet. They want to be found.Violet can sense the echoes of those who've been murdered and the matching imprint that clings to their killers. Only those closest to her know what she is capable of, but when she discovers the body of a young boy she also draws the attention of the FBI, threatening her entire way of life. As Violet works to keep her morbid ability a secret, she unwittingly becomes the object of a dangerous obsession.

    Farrell says: "Interesting Idea but....."
    "Just awful! Pre-teen bodice clutcher."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Don't waste a credit or your time on this awful attempt at copying what Charlaine Harris has already done so well. If the idea of locating dead bodies interests you, check out Ms. Harris' Harper Connelly stories, but don't bother with this mess of a book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Lodger: A Tale of the London Fog

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Marie Belloc Lowndes
    • Narrated By Lorna Raver
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (129)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (28)

    An elderly couple living in Victorian London struggle against despair as their small resources dwindle. When an eccentric and mysterious gentleman answers their advertisement for a lodger, they celebrate. But as women begin dying at the hands of "The Avenger", they start to suspect something too horrific for words.

    Pamela says: "enjoyable"
    "Just dreadful."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Couldn't wait for this one to be over. The story, what there was of it, was boring and I just wanted to smack the main characters silly. You have a creepy boarder who gives you a bunch of money for rent in advance and you don't want to upset the apple cart when you suspect he's a serial killer? Gimme a break. The performance was equally drab, with an American putting on British accents for the various characters. Save your credit!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Little Bee: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Chris Cleave
    • Narrated By Anne Flosnik
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1455)
    Performance
    (740)
    Story
    (740)

    British couple Andrew and Sarah O'Rourke, vacationing on a Nigerian beach in a last-ditch effort to save their faltering marriage, come across Little Bee and her sister, Nigerian refugees fleeing from machete-wielding soldiers intent on clearing the beach. The horrific confrontation that follows changes the lives of everyone involved in unimaginable ways.

    Katerina says: "Good book, well told"
    "Just too dull"
    Overall

    This book never really got going. I never connected with any of the characters and the storyline's skipping back and forth in time did nothing to enhance the drama. I don't know what all the secrecy is about, either, but the plot never lived up to the hype. Skip this book. There are so many worth the listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Sculptress

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Minette Walters
    • Narrated By Sandra Burr
    Overall
    (67)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (29)

    Everyone knows Olive Martin, the huge and menacing woman who was found five years ago with the carved-up bodies of her mother and younger sister. Everyone knows how she pleaded guilty to murder at her trial. And everyone knows not to anger the Sculptress even now that she is safely locked in prison for a minimum of 25 years.

    Kathy says: "Good story, poor narration"
    "Top-notch crime fiction"
    Overall

    Unlike the other review here, I didn't find the romantic plot twist a distraction from the story. The twists and turns of the narrative were first-rate and the plot kept me guessing until the last few chapters. Great stuff and a terrific listen.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Help

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Kathryn Stockett
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26743)
    Performance
    (13381)
    Story
    (13426)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: The most celebrated performance in all of Audible’s history, The Help has nearly 2,000 5-star reviews from your fellow listeners. We hear the print book’s not bad, either. In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women - mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends - view one another.

    Jan says: "What a great surprise!"
    "Extraordinary!"
    Overall

    These characters are so clearly drawn, you feel that you could step into the book. Pitch perfect narration, a storyline that doesn't quit and the realization that you may have learned something about human relations that you didn't know before make this a must-have audiobook.

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

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Christopher Moore
    • Narrated By Euan Morton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2137)
    Performance
    (951)
    Story
    (968)

    Pocket has been Lear's cherished fool for years. So naturally Pocket is at his brainless, elderly liege's side when Lear demands that his kids swear to him their undying love and devotion. Of course Goneril and Regan are only too happy to brownnose Dad. But Cordelia believes that her father's request is kind of...well...stupid, and her blunt honesty ends up costing her her rightful share of the kingdom and earns her a banishment to boot.

    Michael says: "Mr Moore does it again."
    "Witty, naughty and human"
    Overall

    Picked this up on a whim and must say I was glad I did. "Fool" is funny and clever, in a very midevil way. A good story, packaged with a great narrator, makes for a terrific listen. Pocket is a wonderful protagonist, who manages to poke fun at himself as often as the other characters. Am looking forward to listening to more of Mr. Moore to see if the magic is just with this book/narrator or if he is to become a new favorite.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Little Giant of Aberdeen County

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Tiffany Baker
    • Narrated By Carrington MacDuffie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (393)
    Performance
    (132)
    Story
    (134)

    Truly Plaice, an overly large and ungainly girl, is the polar opposite of her sister, Serena Jane, the epitome of feminine perfection. With their parents dead, Truly and Serena Jane are separated: Serena Jane to live a life of privilege as the future May Queen and Truly to live on the outskirts of town, the subject of constant abuse and humiliation.

    Tracie says: "Pretty good - but could have been Truly good!"
    "Might have been a better read than listen..."
    Overall

    The narrator really did an injustice to this story. I think I might have enjoyed reading it, but the narration made the characters seem dim-witted and dull. Not sure if Ms. McDuffie was going for a northern NY accent or what, but her inflections just sounded like a Bronx cheer. The story line was interesting and I think the review about not being able to sympathize with the characters had more to do with the narrator than the author. Don't waste a credit, pick it up at the library.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Story of Edgar Sawtelle

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By David Wroblewski
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2839)
    Performance
    (750)
    Story
    (753)

    Born mute, speaking only in sign, Edgar Sawtelle leads an idyllic life with his parents and an unusual breed of dogs on their farm in remote northern Wisconsin. But when tragedy strikes the Sawtelle family, Edgar flees to the surrounding wilderness. He comes of age in the wild, fighting for his survival and that of the three yearling dogs who follow him.

    Ella says: "Just OK"
    "Yawn! Possibilities left behind."
    Overall

    This book had some great potential, but for some reason, just when the story got moving, the author sidled off the track and refused to have the characters engage around the issues presented. The story didn't really end, it just stopped. No resolution, just an ending, which left many here dissatisfied. Not a great listen, either, as the reader's monotone did little to enhance the story. The drone did match the monotony of much of this book, though. Look elsewhere for a stimulating read.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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