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Charles

Battlement Mesa, Colorado, United States | Member Since 2001

48
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 8 reviews
  • 30 ratings
  • 673 titles in library
  • 16 purchased in 2014
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  • The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows
    • Narrated By Paul Baymer, Susan Duerden, Roselyn Landor, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3338)
    Performance
    (1504)
    Story
    (1506)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: The best book club you’ve never heard of – but will be eager to join, courtesy of a full cast of true characters. January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she's never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb....

    Kent says: "MUCH better than I ever expected! Give it a try!"
    "What a delightful story!"
    Overall

    Have you ever started a book and having just settled into it recognized that it is a gem? This is such a book: a love story played against the background of the Nazi occupation of Guernsey. Characters are well-drawn and endearing. I want to go to Guernsey to get to know them. No doubt, the tourist bureau of Guernsey will be inundated next summer. This is a book written for audio presentation. The various voices reading the individual letters make the story vivid in a way that reading alone could not. This will go on my list of best book recommendations.

    30 of 33 people found this review helpful
  • Twelve Years a Slave

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Solomon Northup
    • Narrated By Richard Allen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (20)
    Story
    (22)

    Twelve Years a Slave is the harrowing account of a black man, born free in New York State, who was drugged, kidnapped, and sold into slavery in 1841. Having no way to contact his family, and fearing for his life if he told the truth, Solomon Northup was sold from plantation to plantation in Louisiana, toiling under cruel masters for 12 years before meeting Samuel Bass, a Canadian who finally put him in touch with his family, and helped start the process to regain his freedom.

    Seneca says: "Very important narrative undermined by the narrato"
    "Narrator, Richard Allen, Excellent"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Twelve Years a Slave?

    The story is gripping. The narrator brings it to life.


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

    Marvelous voice for the main character


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Gate House

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Nelson DeMille
    • Narrated By Christian Rummel
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1150)
    Performance
    (391)
    Story
    (394)

    When John Sutter's aristocratic wife killed her mafia don lover, John left America and set out in his sailboat on a three-year journey around the world, eventually settling in London. Now, 10 years later, he has come home to the Gold Coast, that stretch of land on the North Shore of Long Island that once held the greatest concentration of wealth and power in America, to attend the imminent funeral of an old family servant.

    Andrew Stone says: "DeMille writes another excellent book!"
    "Two books in one"
    Overall

    "The Gold Coast" and "The Gate House" are two halves of one story. I read "The Gold Coast" first, but it is not necessary since that story is completely retold in flashbacks during the first half of "The Gate House." Present again are John and Susan Sutter; reunited at the funeral of an old family servant. Present also, is Anthony Bellarosa, son of the Mafia Don, Frank Belarosa. In &"The Gold Coast", Susan had killed Frank Bellarosa, her lover, in a fit of spurned passion. John and Susan still have feelings for each other but the menace of Anthony's vendetta darkens their reunion. Antipathy of in-laws commanding the considerable leverage of their hundred million dollar estate is a counterpoint to the physical peril they face from the Mafia prince. This is another very good read from a master story teller.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Lisey's Story

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Mare Winningham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1538)
    Performance
    (569)
    Story
    (576)

    Lisey Debusher Landon lost her husband, Scott, two years ago, after a 25-year marriage of the most profound and sometimes frightening intimacy. Scott was an award-winning, best-selling novelist, and a very complicated man. Early in their relationship, before they married, Lisey had to learn from him about books and blood and "bools". Later, she understood that there was a place Scott went, a place that both terrified and healed him, could eat him alive, or give him the ideas he needed in order to live.

    A. Jack says: "Vintage, Mature SK"
    "He just gets better"
    Overall

    This is not your early Stephen King. He is more seasoned and grows better with time.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Truman

    • UNABRIDGED (53 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By David McCullough
    • Narrated By Nelson Runger
    Overall
    (433)
    Performance
    (69)
    Story
    (71)

    The life of Harry S. Truman is one of the greatest of American stories, filled with vivid characters and dramatic events. In this riveting biography, acclaimed historian David McCullough not only captures the man, a more complex, informed, and determined man than ever before imagined, but also the turbulent times in which he rose, boldly, to meet unprecedented challenges.

    Erik says: "Thoroughly enjoyable"
    "Very gratifying"
    Overall

    Fifty-three hours is daunting in an audiobook. I just finished and found not a tedious phase in the entire work. I grew up in Jackson County, near Independence Missouri and was privileged to accompany my high school debate team to talk with President Truman about our debate topic, foreign aid, at his library in 1958. I found him exactly as described in this biography. As far as I could tell, there was nothing that he would have wanted to do more, at that time, than to talk to high schoolers about their debate topic. He was as warm and gracious to us as a friendly uncle. Later, I supposed that he was just being a good politician. Now, Mr. McCullough’s book informs me that the President so enjoyed being with people that everyone who met him came away with the feeling I had. I was privileged to have met him and now am immensely pleased that he most likely, really enjoyed meeting me too.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Godless: The Church of Liberalism

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Ann Coulter
    • Narrated By Elizabeth White
    Overall
    (385)
    Performance
    (77)
    Story
    (79)

    Godless is the most explosive book yet from #1 New York Times best-selling author Ann Coulter. In this completely original and thoroughly controversial work, Coulter writes, "Liberals love to boast that they are not 'religious', which is what one would expect to hear from the state-sanctioned religion. Of course liberalism is a religion.

    Kenneth says: "Somebodies ears are burning"
    "8/10ths of a good book"
    Overall

    As the closing piece on the NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams intoned solemnly that while he respected the right of free speech for all, Ann Coulter, in her new book, had “gone over the line” in questioning the motives of the New Jersey 9/11 widows who publicly condemned the government’s failure to detect and stop the 9/11 attacks. I decided to download this book to see what Mr. Williams choler was all about. It gave me a chuckle find that Ms. Coulter suggested that the liberal religion made saints out of people who had sustained a significant loss and then employed them as “human shields” to propound liberal dogma. Their “moral authority” made them invulnerable to dispute or question. Brian Williams and Hillary Clinton responded exactly as Ms. Coulter predicted. They did not dispute the accuracy of her proposition but condemned the profanity inherent in her raising questions about these icons.

    The fundamental premise of this book is that flakey liberals are as blindly committed to liberal dogma as flakey fundamentalists are to theirs. Ms. Coulter is outrageous in the way she presents her ideas but so is James Carville. Both have ideas that are worth serious consideration. Outrageous is how they get noticed.

    The book was thought provoking and entertaining until she got to the final section on evolution. Her point there is that the concept of spontaneous mutation and natural selection, while compelling, is not coherent enough to be taken as fact. This point is conceded by most thinking people today. She takes the final two hours of the recording to beat this issue to death. My advice: listen to and enjoy Ms. Coulter’s outrageous, entertaining and, yes, thought provoking banter until she gets about 10 minutes into her discussion of evolution. By that time she will have said all she has to say on the subject. Turn off the machine and move on to another audio book.

    6 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • The Kite Runner

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Khaled Hosseini
    • Narrated By Khaled Hosseini
    Overall
    (6823)
    Performance
    (2126)
    Story
    (2145)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Never before has an author’s narration of his fiction been so important to fully grasping the book’s impact and global implications. Taking us from Afghanistan in the final days of its monarchy to the present, The Kite Runner is the unforgettable story of the friendship between two boys growing up in Kabul. Their intertwined lives, and their fates, reflect the eventual tragedy of the world around them.

    Joseph says: "A storyteller's story"
    "A novel better heard than read"
    Overall

    Rather than reading this well-written and touching story, I am glad I listened to it. The reading by the author, an unpolished narrator with slightly accented English, seemed to make this first person exploration of a man's agonized discovery of himself exquisitely real.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Broker

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    Overall
    (1463)
    Performance
    (387)
    Story
    (388)

    In his final hours in the Oval Office, the outgoing President grants a controversial last-minute pardon to Joel Backman, a notorious Washington power broker who has spent the last six years hidden away in a federal prison. What no one knows is that the President issues the pardon only after receiving enormous pressure from the CIA. It seems Backman, in his power broker heyday, may have obtained secrets that compromise the world's most sophisticated satellite surveillance system.

    Amazon Customer says: "Why all the bad reviews?"
    "Not Great But Not That Bad"
    Overall

    I downloaded this book because it was Grisham. Then I read the reviews. Listening to the book, I was pleasantly surprised. It is nowhere near my favorite Grisham novel but it is not that bad. Anyone who thinks the premise is implausible should read "Charlie Wilson's War" to see how implausible the truth can actually be. I did have trouble integrating the character of the amoral, pre-prison Joel, the broker, with the vulnerable and sensitive after-prison Marco. But, for an interesting yarn that will not stimulate much after-reading introspection, this is okay.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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