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CARLISLE, MA, United States | Member Since 2013

  • 3 reviews
  • 5 ratings
  • 69 titles in library
  • 4 purchased in 2015

  • Rin Tin Tin: The Life and the Legend

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Susan Orlean
    • Narrated By Susan Orlean
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    "He believed the dog was immortal." So begins Susan Orlean’s sweeping, powerfully moving story of Rin Tin Tin’s journey from orphaned puppy to movie star and international icon. From the moment in 1918 when Corporal Lee Duncan discovers Rin Tin Tin on a World War I battlefield, he recognizes something in the pup that he needs to share with the world. Rin Tin Tin’s improbable introduction to Hollywood leads to the dog’s first blockbuster film and, over time, the many radio programs, movies, and television shows that follow.

    Sandra L. Hackett says: "Hire a narrator!"
    "Very disappointing"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I usually love this type of book using popular culture to bring history alive. this was boring, poorly written, poorly organized. I thought Orleans was an acclaimed I was listening there were so many points where she could have made this a great story, but it read like a term paper, a list of chronological events.

    What could Susan Orlean have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Better research, bring your characters to life, put me in the historical context, give the book a real narrative voice.

    Would you be willing to try another one of Susan Orlean’s performances?

    No. Bad decision to have the author read, really flat performance.

    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Rin Tin Tin?

    I would have made lee a real person, made this into a story. As it is, it was repetitive and flat. There's really good narrative nonfiction being written (Boys in the Boat being a recent great one)., this one isn't in the same league.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America's Great Migration

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Isabel Wilkerson
    • Narrated By Robin Miles, Ken Burns
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In this epic, beautifully written masterwork, Pulitzer Prize–winning author Isabel Wilkerson chronicles one of the great untold stories of American history: the decades-long migration of black citizens who fled the South for northern and western cities in search of a better life. From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson interviewed more than a thousand people, and gained access to previously untapped data and official records, to write this definitive and vividly dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves.

    Lila says: "Superior non-fiction"
    "Narrative nonfiction at its best!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, I definitely would. This book is an amazing work of nonfiction. Her research was amazing and the way she developed our three main characters was beautiful. We cared about them through every moment of her struggle. As others have stated, the book did need to be edited more - there were many sections that were repetitive. Sometimes I almost felt the book came from several serializations as she felt the need to bring us up to speed with characters, incidents, history that she'd already stated. For such an amazing work, it does trouble me that her publisher and editor didn't pay more careful attention to these details.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Warmth of Other Suns?

    I think Dr. Foster's drive out of LA to CA will stick with me. I cried as he attempted to find a motel to spend the night, struggled with him to stay awake when he realized he'd have to keep driving. These scenes captured the injustices of America during this period. I read afterwards that the author had recreated this...perhaps this is why she was able to capture the scenes so well.

    Which character – as performed by Robin Miles – was your favorite?

    Dr. Foster was probably my favorite - although there were many times I didn't like him. His obsession with appearances was troubling at times and it seems to me resulted in some bad decisions. But his ambition, his flair for the dramatic - all made for an entertaining storyline.

    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There were many - I think the violence and fear of the times came through as she described the story behind Ida Mae's and George's need to flee to the north. Both were fearful for their own safety and how can we not be ashamed that people were made to feel this way.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Ben Fountain
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    A ferocious firefight with Iraqi insurgents at "the battle of Al-Ansakar Canal" - three minutes and forty-three seconds of intense warfare caught on tape by an embedded Fox News crew - has transformed the eight surviving men of Bravo Squad into America's most sought-after heroes. For the past two weeks, the Bush administration has sent them on a media-intensive nationwide Victory Tour to reinvigorate public support for the war. Now, on this chilly and rainy Thanksgiving, the Bravos are guests of America's Team, the Dallas Cowboys....

    Mel says: "Oh-ooo Say, Can We See?"
    "One of the best I've read in a while!"
    Where does Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This one is near the top. I think I enjoyed the audio more than I would have the book - I'd have been tempted to skip over some of the dialog - and definitely wouldn't have had all the voices so distinctly in my head.

    What other book might you compare Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk to and why?

    Not sure - war and football wouldn't be my go-to kind of book, but I read about this as one of the year's best fiction reads. It didn't disappoint. Amazing, laugh-out-loud funny at times, could bring you to tears at others. I don't have a personal perspective on war, but his depictions of Billy, his friendships, his family, his memories all seem very true to me. I kept thinking that this book would make a great movie - all the while our characters are trying to get their movie made. This speaks volumes to me - a book that takes place in one day at a football game that can develop characters, scenes, conflicts, suspense...enough for a movie is an amazing feat.

    Have you listened to any of Oliver Wyman’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No - at times I thought his narration was a bit over the top...unnecessarily.

    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No - don't think I could sit still for that long, but I definitely had some driveway time as I wanted to finish a particular part.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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