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Arlene

SAN DIEGO, CA, United States | Member Since 2011

1
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 22 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 50 purchased in 2014
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  • Takedown Twenty: A Stephanie Plum Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Janet Evanovich
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1371)
    Performance
    (1224)
    Story
    (1242)

    Stephanie Plum is back in all-new adventure from #1 bestselling author Janet Evanovich.

    G. House Sr. says: "An improvment over the last -- but not by much"
    "Steph, bingo, Lula, giraffe, Gram & murder: YES!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love Stephanie and the cast of characters in the Plum series. Keep 'em coming. This one has many laugh out loud moments for me. When I listen to a Plum book, I am not looking for an education or "serious literature." I want a mystery, interesting characters, a laugh here and there, and a story that carries me along with it as it unfolds. This one delivers. I'll be listening many more times in the future.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Cuckoo's Calling

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Robert Galbraith
    • Narrated By Robert Glenister
    Overall
    (5906)
    Performance
    (5375)
    Story
    (5388)

    After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: his sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.

    Tracey says: "Unbelievable debut mystery set in London"
    "Rowling's got me again!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I thoroughly enjoyed this story and will listen again. Great characters. Interesting plot. Setting works for me. I hope she will consider a series. She's got an interesting PI, dedicated assistant, lots of factors built in from this first book that will work to enlarge the scope for future stories.

    Cormoran Strike, you're wanted on the job! This job had me interested in learning about you, going along on this case, and wanting you to realize you need this temp.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Time Traveler's Wife

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Audrey Niffenegger
    • Narrated By Fred Berman, Phoebe Strole
    Overall
    (4276)
    Performance
    (1633)
    Story
    (1657)

    Clare and Henry have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was 36. They were married when Clare was 23 and Henry was 31. Impossible but true, because Henry is one of the first people diagnosed with Chrono-Displacement Disorder: periodically his genetic clock resets and he finds himself misplaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity from his life, past and future. His disappearances are spontaneous, his experiences unpredictable, alternately harrowing and amusing.

    Scott says: "Epic Drama & Love Story through Time Travel"
    "I'm The Time Traveler's Groupee"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love this story. The movie, of course, was not nearly as good as the book. But, that's not unexpected. I love how this story unfolds, enveloping me in it completely. I love how it is not a-b-c-d linear; it goes where it wants to go and brings me along every time. Time spent with the Time Traveler and his Wife is time well spent for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Heaven Is for Real: A Little Boy's Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Todd Burpo, Lynn Vincent
    • Narrated By Dean Gallagher
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2590)
    Performance
    (1914)
    Story
    (1953)

    When Colton Burpo made it through an emergency appendectomy, his family was overjoyed at his miraculous survival. What they weren’t expecting, though, was the story that emerged in the months that followed—a story as beautiful as it was extraordinary, detailing their little boy’s trip to heaven and back.

    Jill says: "Heaven is For Real"
    "Heaven in your ears"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While Dad Burpo seems to take longer than needed to get to the real story, I like this book a lot. If you can be a bit patient with Todd's story, you will be rewarded. I think of it a little like Beef Wellington--a pastry covering over a wonderful piece of beef. Todd's own story is that pastry covering--tasty, but puts the reader off from the true story for a little longer than necessary.

    All that aside, I thoroughly enjoy this book and have already listened to it several times since buying it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Twelve Clues of Christmas: A Royal Spyness Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Rhys Bowen
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1800)
    Performance
    (1595)
    Story
    (1586)

    On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me—well, actually, my true love, Darcy O’Mara, is spending a feliz navidad tramping around South America. Meanwhile, Mummy is holed up in a tiny village called Tiddleton-under-Lovey with that droll Noel Coward! And I’m snowed in at Castle Rannoch with my bumbling brother, Binky, and sourpuss sister-in-law, Fig.

    Amazon Customer says: "It was a great Christmas Who-Done-It!"
    "A Royal Spyness Christmas Surprise"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have come to love Lady G. This was a completely fun story, especially in December. I'll be listening to this for many Decembers to come. I thoroughly enjoyed the main and minor characters. And many are true "characters" whose personalities brought anything from chuckles to concerns to belly laughs.

    I like to watch stories unfold. I don't analyze every character or interaction to figure things out before the author's reveal. This story unfolds well. It was very satisfying for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Longbourn

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Jo Baker
    • Narrated By Emma Fielding
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (358)
    Performance
    (332)
    Story
    (333)

    In this irresistibly imagined belowstairs answer to Pride and Prejudice, the servants take center stage. Sarah, the orphaned housemaid, spends her days scrubbing the laundry, polishing the floors, and emptying the chamber pots for the Bennet household. But there is just as much romance, heartbreak, and intrigue downstairs at Longbourn as there is upstairs. When a mysterious new footman arrives, the orderly realm of the servants’ hall threatens to be completely, perhaps irrevocably, upended.

    Kim says: "Great Book, Great Narrator!"
    "Pride and Prejudice is Industry and Diligence"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love this! It goes along the P&P story line but lets the reader get to know and understand Hill and the others important to but on the periphery of the original story. While obviously a fabrication of someone many eras beyond the author, Baker has a feel for these characters and presents story lines that make sense, are surprising, and engaging. I love this!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wicked Business: Lizzy and Diesel, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs)
    • By Janet Evanovich
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (583)
    Performance
    (522)
    Story
    (523)

    Lizzy Tucker’s once normal life as a pastry chef in Salem, Massachusetts, turns upside down as she battles both sinister forces and an inconvenient attraction to her unnaturally talented but off-limits partner, Diesel. When Harvard University English professor and dyed-in-the-wool romantic Gilbert Reedy is mysteriously murdered and thrown off his fourth-floor balcony, Lizzy and Diesel take up his 20-year quest for the Luxuria Stone, an ancient relic believed by some to be infused with the power of lust.

    Lorena says: "Not her best"
    "Accent that double"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love Janet Evanovich's series with Stephanie and Diesel. However, moving from Jersey to Mass, the accents are VERY different...except with this reader. I enjoy her work in Jersey. But, she needs better work on the regional accents. The main character came from Virginia--not a southern note heard. She works with Massachusetts--Salem at that!--people and they all sound like her! I know she can do better. Especially since she's working with fun material that people already enjoy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Kitchen House: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Kathleen Grissom
    • Narrated By Orlagh Cassidy, Bahni Turpin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6754)
    Performance
    (4729)
    Story
    (4714)

    Orphaned while onboard ship from Ireland, seven-year-old Lavinia arrives on the steps of a tobacco plantation where she is to live and work with the slaves of the kitchen house. Under the care of Belle, the master's illegitimate daughter, Lavinia becomes deeply bonded to her adopted family, though she is set apart from them by her white skin. Eventually, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, where the master is absent and the mistress battles opium addiction.

    B.J. says: "Good, but with reservations"
    "Moving book that moves!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book grabbed me from the opening moments and did not let go until well after it ended. It is emotionally a seesaw--highs and lows that change unexpectedly throughout the almost 13 hours.

    The pacing is great! The story moves well. I appreciated there was no "downtime" where I wished something would happen. Something was always happening.

    I loved the characterizations. The main and minor characters were individual with easily understood dispositions, personalities, appeals, and revulsions. There were many times while listening that I was mentally cheering for some and booing other characters. I was completely drawn into their plantation world before the Civil War.

    With the main character being an orphaned Irish girl whose parents died on the ship from Ireland, Lavinia grabbed my heart and never let go. That the ship's captain was a plantation owner surprised me. His bringing her to his plantation as an indentured servant seven years old had never crossed my mind as a possibility. Growing up with a toe in the Big House world and mostly in the slave population gave Lavinia's story even more poignancy.

    If you are a reader who enjoys period pieces, you will enjoy this book. If you are a reader who enjoys good characters in a well paced story, don't miss this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Near-Death Experience and Journey into the Afterlife

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Eben Alexander
    • Narrated By Eben Alexander
    Overall
    (1670)
    Performance
    (1454)
    Story
    (1468)

    On November 10, 2008, Dr. Eben Alexander was driven into coma by a disease so lethal that only 1 in 10,000,000 survive. Seven days later, he awakened with memories of a fantastic odyssey deep into another realm that were more real than this earthly one - memories that included meeting a deceased birth sister he had never known existed. Dr. Alexander deployed all his knowledge as a scientist to find out whether his mind could have played a trick on him. In its shutdown state, there was no way it could have.

    Kelly says: "Compelling"
    "Science Meets Spirit"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Proof of Heaven?

    I cannot say I loved the book, but I did enjoy it. I am happy that I bought it and will eventually listen to it again.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I enjoyed learning about his turnaround regarding life after death.


    Which character – as performed by Eben Alexander – was your favorite?

    Himself. He did a nice job with all the characters, but it was easy to know that when he spoke of his experiences, it was his truth.


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

    No, but it was thought-provoking. I'm not a cryer. It's a rather serious book, not much into humor.


    Any additional comments?

    At times, it got a little more detailed about the science than I would have preferred. But, it was not off-putting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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