I came to this book not knowing what to expect. The story itself is a series of complex intertwined pieces spanning around 50 years, encountering some of the same characters at different stages of their lives. Jennifer Egan has a wonderful turn of phrase and the stories have stuck with me after I finished the book.
The reader of the audiobook, Roxana Ortega, manages to convey all the different characters with subtlety and depth. I listen to a lot of audiobooks, and I set a pretty high bar for narrators, especially when it comes to "character" voices. This was brilliant.
This is a fascinating story but the fact that it's translated I think led to some confusing passages. The narrator also didn't delineate the characters well, which sometimes made it harder to follow who was speaking and what was going on.
This is a beautiful, complex story. The narrator managed to keep it pacy and distinguished the characters brilliantly. I was engaged through all the twenty something hours of it, which is really quite a feat for a narrator.
The plot is so intricate, you'll want to concentrate to keep track of it, but it's so clever, I was amazed it was her first novel.
This mildly amusing narrative seems like an extended version of a McSweeney's article. The narrator however really takes the biscuit. Just a sample of the words mispronounced in this book: hirsute, eponymous, wunderkind, denizens (and that was after I started taking notes). This was rather distracting, and the wit itself was as I said, rather a page's worth squeezed into an entire book.
This is a change for Oates, and I was so involved - it is whatever the audible equivalent of a "page turner" is! I couldn't stop listening to it, wanting to get to the solution to the mystery.
Grover Gardner's reading is occasionally distracting: on a couple of occasions he pronounces JOSIAH (one of the main characters) as JOSHUA. He also mispronounces "idyll".
However, his characterisation of the different figures in the book is very good, he manages to avoid the trap of some male narrators of putting on a weird falsetto for female characters.
The story is set in Princeton, NJ, in 1905, when a sequence of inexplicable - possibly demonic - events begins. This is during Woodrow Wilson's tenure as president of the university, and he turns out to be quite an irascible and petty individual, which offers some sly humor. Grover Cleveland, Upton Sinclair, Jack London, Mark Twain and other luminaries are also involved.
Ghosts, trances, outbreaks of murderous madness, and voices from the beyond: if you're a fan of the historical and gothic in fiction, get this.
The author has done a great job of mixing historical research into the treatments of cancer with his own experiences as a physician. Some of the accounts of early cancer surgery are hard to listen to, but the description of how treatments and attitudes have changed are fascinating. It's long but kept me involved all the way.
Robin Miles does a great job of characterising all the different people who appear in this book. The story is of African Americans who moved from the South to northern states between the 1920s and the 1960s.
However, as an audiobook it is rather slow and episodic (it's 22 hours) as we hear the same things over again, and would have been better read on the page.
I didn't know much about Kristen Johnston before listening to this book. She comes across as a smart, self-deprecating, and genuinely funny woman. Her story of addiction and recovery isn't cast as "woe is me" but truly self aware. There were parts where I was laughing out loud. She's honest about her flaws and problems, and by the end I wanted to be her friend. A great listen.
This is a tightly-written thriller from the creator of the Law&Order TV franchise. The hero, Jeremy Fisk, is an intelligence agent with the NYPD, working on antiterror strategies. When a plane hijacking is foiled, he starts to investigate whether there is a bigger plot at hand.
I enjoyed this book and Peter Ganim's narration is clear and vivid, and I look forward to the next book in this series.
This book is an interesting interpretation of the Western genre, set in Oregon and California during the gold rush. I found the story compelling and the reader really gave the characters depth.
Eli, the narrator. He was sympathetic while being flawed.
He did a wonderful job of interpreting the different characters through nuances of speech.
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