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Sandi

Arlington, VA, United States | Member Since 2008

15
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 10 reviews
  • 20 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 12 purchased in 2014
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  • The White Marriage

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Charlotte Bingham
    • Narrated By Kim Hicks
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (0)

    Sunny's mundane country life is changed overnight when handsome, stylish Gray's Bentley breaks down outside her parents' cottage in Rushington. It seems that he may have fallen in love with her. Sunny herself remains unconvinced.

    Sandi says: "Really engaging, but disappointing ending"
    "Really engaging, but disappointing ending"
    Overall

    I really like her books, and this one was no exception, but I feel, in all of her books, that the ending is an anticlimax, as though she has written herself into a corner and doesn't know how to get out, so it just peters out. You're waiting for something big to happen, and aside from the rather lazy plot device of a very convenient death, (this happened in both of her books I have read), nothing happens. It's like you could have predicted the ending from the first page - too predictable. That being said, I really love her characters and aside from the ending, I enjoyed this one.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Love Season

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Elin Hilderbrand
    • Narrated By Christina Delaine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (28)
    Performance
    (25)
    Story
    (26)

    It’s a hot August Saturday on Nantucket Island. Over the course of the next 24 hours, two lives will be transformed forever. Marguerite Beale, former chef of culinary hot spot Les Parapluies, has been out of the public eye for over a decade. This all changes with a phone call from Marguerite’s goddaughter, Renata Knox. Marguerite has not seen Renata since the death of Renata’s mother, Candace Harris Knox, 14 years earlier. And now that Renata is on Nantucket visiting the family of her new fiancé, she takes the opportunity, against her father’s wishes, to contact Marguerite in hopes of learning the story of her mother’s life - and death.

    Leah says: "Super Excellent!!! A must listen!!!"
    "Getting a little familiar"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    After listening to 3 of her books, I've come to expect that every single one will feature 1. Nantucket 2. food obsession (one character is always a chef, restaurant owner or amazing chef/foodie) 3. tragic death (someone's gonna die, or just died, or died years ago, tragically and someone else is haunted by it) and 4. lots and lots of alcohol (champagne, scotch, beer - it's always consumed to excess). I like her books, and the characters are fun, but...she needs to get some new schtick.

    In addition, the narrator was awful, for several reasons: First, she made the character of Margo sound about 95, and she also made Miles sound like he was about 11. In addition: incredibly pretentious way of speaking. What's with throwing in the letter H where none exists? "Porter" pronounced "Port-Her" and "meeting" pronounced "Meet-Hing." Sooo annoying. And, while on the one hand, she pronounced every French word with an incredibly pretentious overly French dialect, on the other hand, she inexplicably pronounced "Hermes" as "Her-meez" instead of the way it is suppose to be pronounced, which is "Air-mez" What narrator wouldn't know the proper pronunciation of a famous designer?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Most Talkative: Stories from the Front Lines of Pop Culture

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Andy Cohen
    • Narrated By Andy Cohen
    Overall
    (354)
    Performance
    (336)
    Story
    (332)

    From a young age, Andy Cohen knew two things: He was gay, and he loved television. Now presiding over Bravo's reality-TV empire, he started out as an overly talkative pop-culture obsessive, devoted to Charlie's Angels and All My Children - and to his mother, who received daily letters from him while he was at summer camp, usually reminding her to tape the soaps. In retrospect, it's hard to believe that everyone didn't know that Andy was gay; still, he remained in the closet until college. Finally out, he embarked on making a career out of his passion for television.

    Roberta says: "If you're depressed, listen to this book!!!"
    "Download it now. Seriously, right now."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Most Talkative rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This book ranks way up at the top. Hysterically funny. A must-listen-to for anyone who loves cable television, all things pop culture, All My Children, Bravo, the Bravo housewives, - and the concept of endlessly pranking one's poor, unsuspecting, gullible, midwest Jewish mom.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    You have to give it up for Andy's Mom, Evelyn Cohen, and his partner-in-crime, Graciela, someone you will wish were your bestie after listening to this book.


    What about Andy Cohen’s performance did you like?

    You know how sometimes you're kinda psyched to have the actual author, especially if they are a celebrity, read their bio? And then you're like "Gah! Did you not listen to yourself? For God's sake, go out and hire a professional!" (I'm looking at you, Lauren Conrad). Well, this is NOT one of those times. Andy Cohen is as fabulous on audio as he is on his "Watch What Happens Live" TV show. An absolute joy to listen to...after recommending this book to everyone, I had to add the caveat that they MIGHT be missing something if they were reading, rather than listening to, this book. Listening to him imitate everyone from his Mom to Real Housewife Lisa VanderPump is hilarious, and you feel throughout the book that he is sitting and chatting with you - or better yet, confiding in you as though the two of you are on a sleepover in high school. Delicious, hysterical.


    Any additional comments?

    Not only is the book laugh-out-loud hysterical (you know that embarrassing moment when you are commuting on the subway or out running and burst out laughing while listening to a book, prompting weird stares from passers-by? Be prepared) - but the book is also a touching narrative on what it is like to be a gay teen in the 80s, long before popular culture and society at large began accepting out and proud gays. In addition, it offers a fantastic look at interning at a national news - and then morning - program, and the rise up the ladder in the burgeoning cable television industry. Download now. Right now.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Enchanted

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Charlotte Bingham
    • Narrated By Stephanie Cole
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    When Kathleen finds a mare in foal, despite the fact that she and her father can barely afford to feed her, they take her in. Tragically the mare dies, leaving an orphan that they name The Enchanted. As the young horse grows up among Ireland's lush pastures, Kathleen loses her heart to him....

    Sandi says: "Charlotte Bingham's best"
    "Charlotte Bingham's best"
    Overall

    I have listened to all Charlotte Bingham's novels available on audiobook, and this was my favorite. A fascinating look into the British racing world, with wonderful Celtic legend thrown in. Has the usual cast of wonderful characters that Bingham always has in her novels (warning: in the beginning, until you get to know them all, you'll have to practically make a chart of all the characters!) Just a wonderful story, and the very exciting descriptions of races are an added bonus. A must-read for anyone who is a horse lover, but anyone who enjoys Bingham's novels will love this one.And Kim Hicks, as usual, does a terrific job, especially with all the accents.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Spring Broke

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Melody Carlson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    In the 86 Bloomberg Place series, four diverse young women with varying levels of faith, differing interests, and unique personal issues share a four-bedroom bungalow in an energetic college town. In Spring Broke, Kendall's housemates help her plan a garage sale to pay off her accumulated shopoholic debt. Megan is trying to decide whether to quit her job and pursue work more meaningful than designing wealthy people's homes.

    Catherine says: "awful narrator"
    "Pro-Life Propaganda Disguised as Chick Lit"
    Overall

    If you are pro-choice, do NOT listen to this audiobook, or you may gag. This book should come with a warning attached - honestly, it is nothing but pro-life propaganda. It comes complete with a girl with an unwanted pregnancy and considering abortion portrayed as a promiscuous, bitchy, materialistic, clueless airhead, while a girl who chose to have her baby (and give it to her parents, who wanted another child) is portrayed - big surprise - as a sweet, caring, extremely intelligent, devout church-goer (because we all know that's how pro-choice and pro-life women ALWAYS are in real life). I honestly tried to hang in there with this, but when the sweet churchgoer was trying to convince the clueless airhead to keep her baby and pulled up pictures on her laptop of unborn babies to show her? I had to bail. Honestly, if this were even-handed, I wouldn't have minded so much...but no. Just a warning. If you're pro-life, you'll love it, though.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Mile in My Flip-Flops

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Melody Carlson
    • Narrated By Danielle Ferland
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (31)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (11)

    In RITA Award-winning author Melody Carlson's light-hearted tale, 30-something Gretchen Hanover learns that renewing a heart takes as much grace as renovating a home. Jilted just before her wedding, she turns to home improvement TV - and ice cream - to soothe her broken heart. And when Gretchen's grand plan to flip a house soon flops, a certain carpenter - at first - only makes matters worse.

    Ellen says: "I do not recommend this one"
    "I thought it was cute"
    Overall

    Good beach listen...I thought it was cute - although I too was taken aback by the whole Christian angle. I have a real interest in houses and remodeling, though, so I loved that.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Charlotte's Lot

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Lara Silverstone
    • Narrated By Marian Pashley, Alistair Barrie
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (3)

    Read by two of the UK’s finest stand ups, Charlotte’s Lot is a light-hearted comedy about an infuriatingly self-centered English housewife who strikes up a relationship with a hideously smug celebrity healer. If you’ve ever had your palm read or your aura re-aligned you’ll know the type. Charlotte thinks she’s got everything: a big house, a husband in ship insurance and a pet cat called Missy…. But it’s all about to go wrong and a transformational journey for this super silly simpleton is about to begin.

    Elizabeth says: "Light and Fun....until..."
    "Not So Much..."
    Overall

    I loved the readers...they were great. But I agree with the other reviewer...these characters are impossible to like, and there are all kinds of red herrings throughout the story that NEVER pan out - you're like "what was THAT all about?" And, the author wrote herself into a corner and had no idea how to end the book. It was one of those shaggy dog "Huh???" endings. Just bizarre.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Somebody to Love?

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs)
    • By Grace Slick
    • Narrated By Grace Slick
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    Discover what it was really like during, and after, the summer of love - and how one remarkable woman survived it all to remain today as vibrant and rebellious as ever. Grace Slick was the original "great rock diva." As the lead singer of Jefferson Airplane, which produced the classics "White Rabbit" and "Somebody to Love," she was at the forefront of the '60s and '70s counterculture. Now, in her inimitable voice, she offers a revealing portrait of the complex woman behind the rock-outlaw image, and delivers a behind-the-scenes view of rock's grandest stages.

    Sandi says: "Abridged books - Ugh! Not enough detail!"
    "Abridged books - Ugh! Not enough detail!"
    Overall

    First of all, abridged versions of books - and especially abridged versions of celebrity autobiographys - should be avoided at all cost. As is the case here, what you get is a jumpy, choppy narrative where huge chunks are missing. And since most of us listening to this will have at least a passing familiarity with Grace Slick, you'll find yourself saying "Wait a minute - what about...?" It's a bit difficult to judge this, because we don't know what Slick herself left out and what is being left out simply because it's the "abridged" version.

    That being said, Slick's reading is rather flat and dull, and I found her constant unapologetic (even at age 60-something) ramblings about her childish antics a bit silly. She's definitely a rebel without a cause, unless you count shocking people simply for the sake of shocking them a "cause." Yawn. At least some of the other hippies of the time where trying to shock people into doing something about ending the Vietnam War, not just hoping to get a reaction by using the F-word and wearing silly, inappropriate getups.

    There are some definite gems here, such as her account of her one-nighter with Jim Morrison and her plan with Abbie Hoffman to dose Richard Nixon with LSD at a White House tea (!) but I definitely found myself wanting more. And there is very little about her daughter (again, the fault of Slick or the abridged version?), which I was interested in: how does the daughter of Grace Slick rebel? By becoming a Republican debutant? We'll never know, unless it's in the unabridged book.

    All in all, if you're interested in this period in musical history (and it is fascinating), I recommend reading David Crosby's autobiography "Long Time Gone" and the book "Hotel California" (neither, sadly, available on audiobook) or listening to "Laurel Canyon" (available on Audible). Much more satisfying.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Ticket to Ride: Inside the Beatles' 1964 and 1965 Tours that Changed the World

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Larry Kane
    • Narrated By Larry Kane
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (53)
    Performance
    (23)
    Story
    (23)

    Ticket to Ride recounts broadcast journalist Larry Kane's travels with the Beatles during their first North American tour. The book provides an intimate look at the Fab Four and contains original interview recordings with the band conducted during the tour.

    William says: "A Ticket To Ride"
    "A great taste of Beatlemania from the inside"
    Overall

    It's obvious Larry Kane thought quite highly of The Beatles, although it is equally obvious that John was his favorite, Paul his least favorite (contrast that to Geoff Emerick, who wrote "Here, There and Everywhere," who favored Paul over John). You definitely get the flavor of the whole Beatlemania thing, and a highlight is listening to the actual tapes at the end of the audiobook and hearing the Beatles in their own words. Kane's reading is a little dry, but overall a fascinating listen. Beatles fans will love it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Here, There, and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles

    • ABRIDGED (7 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Geoff Emerick, Howard Massey
    • Narrated By Martin Jarvis
    Overall
    (166)
    Performance
    (71)
    Story
    (72)

    Geoff Emerick was only 15 years old when he began working with the Beatles as assistant engineer for their early classics "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and "She Loves You". Incredibly, at the age of 19, he was promoted to full engineer, taking the helm for the group's groundbreaking album Revolver. Ten months later, he joined forces with the Beatles for the recording of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, hailed by Rolling Stone as the greatest album ever made.

    Sandi says: "A Must For Any Beatles Fan"
    "A Must For Any Beatles Fan"
    Overall

    This book was absolutely riveting. While I was listening to this book, I was simultaneously reading "Lennon" by Cynthia Lennon, John Lennon's first wife. I found that her accounts of what was going on at home were matching up perfectly with Emmerick's accounts of what was happening in the studio, which for me lent quite a bit of credibility to the book.

    Not only do you get really interesting detail about the creation of iconic songs we all know by heart, but you get an interesting look at the Beatles from a totally different perspective than what we have gotten in the past. Other biographies deal with aspects of their careers and personal lives that have pretty much become legend; we've heard it all before,and some of it is mere conjecture. But this is stuff we've never heard before. Emmerick was in the studio with them every day, working with them as they recorded their albums, witnessing their interaction...it's like being a fly on the wall during their recording sessions. I found I had to keep running to the computer, putting on the headphones, and listening to the songs I had just read about - now saying "wow, yes, I can hear that effect!"

    The British narrator does a supurb job, and I had to remind myself that this was not the author speaking, such was his authentic reading. Even if you are not an avid Beatles fan, this is a fascinating book.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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