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Just

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, IL, United States

12
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 8 ratings
  • 57 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • The Genius of Dogs: How Dogs Are Smarter than You Think

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Brian Hare, Vanessa Woods
    • Narrated By Fred Sanders
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (73)
    Performance
    (66)
    Story
    (67)

    Brian Hare, dog researcher, evolutionary anthropologist, and founder of the Duke Canine Cognition Center, and Vanessa Woods offer revolutionary new insights into dog intelligence and the interior lives of our smartest pets. In the past decade, we have learned more about how dogs think than in the last century. Breakthroughs in cognitive science, pioneered by Brian Hare, have proven dogs have a kind of genius for getting along with people that is unique in the animal kingdom.

    Just says: "Barking Up The Wrong Tree"
    "Barking Up The Wrong Tree"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Yes, I would make the contents of the book, more supportive of the title.


    What was most disappointing about Brian Hare and Vanessa Woods ’s story?

    The title lead me to believe it would be stories supportive of the idea that Dogs are Geniuses (much like the book "Dogs That Know When Their Owners Are Coming Home" by Sheldrake). Instead it comes across as an anthropological dissertation of domestication in wolves, feral dogs and canine pets. Interspersed in that information (which is very well presented, yet seemingly inappropriate) are examples of how dogs are, and are NOT, geniuses. There just doesn't seem to be any logical flow to the book or its content, so for the moment I stopped listening to it.


    What about Fred Sanders’s performance did you like?

    It was easy to listen to and didn't take away from the subject matter. (I've listened to books where the narrator's voice was annoying and so I was always reminded it was being read to me.)


    Was The Genius of Dogs worth the listening time?

    Yes, because the anthropological information and research findings, though disjointed and contradictory, are well presented and convincing.


    Any additional comments?

    Maybe if I had the hard copy of the book I could see the index layout and understand the authors logical flow for the information, and having that would also allow me to have a reference in the future for the anthropology parts of the book.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Hollywood Madonna: Loretta Young (Hollywood Legends)

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Bernard F. Dick
    • Narrated By Cira Larkin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (9)

    Hollywood Madonna explores the full saga of Loretta Young's professional and personal life. She made her film debut at age four, became a star at fifteen, and many awards and accolades later, made her final television movie at age seventy-six. This biography withholds none of the details of her affair with Clark Gable and the daughter that powerful love produced. Bernard F. Dick places Young's affair in the proper context of the time and the choices available to women in 1935.

    Just says: "Dry, but informative"
    "Dry, but informative"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Bernard F. Dick and/or Cira Larkin?

    Dick does a thorough examination of the life and times of Lorretta Young, so much so however, that the overabundance of details made it a little dry. Larkin's voice was smooth and appropriate for chronicling such a glamorous Hollywood starlet and her tone and treatment of the text made the wealth of facts much more palatable. I would listen to another one of her narrations, but probably not one of Dick's works.


    Would you recommend Hollywood Madonna: Loretta Young (Hollywood Legends) to your friends? Why or why not?

    Probably not, unless they had a real interest in Loretta Young specifically or wanted to learn more about the lifestyle of starlets from that era.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    No one part of the book stood out for me.


    Did Hollywood Madonna: Loretta Young (Hollywood Legends) inspire you to do anything?

    Listen to it until the end.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • At the City's Edge

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Marcus Sakey
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (63)
    Performance
    (17)
    Story
    (17)

    Just back from the war in Iraq with problems of his own, Jason Palmer didn't recognize the gangbanger who jumped him, and after escaping, he was willing to live and let live - until his older brother was murdered. Amidst the charred ruins of his brother's bar, fire investigators find darker spots. Spots mean accelerant, and accelerant means arson.

    David says: "Impressive"
    "Literary Gem"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up At the City's Edge in three words, what would they be?

    Extremely well written


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Sakey does a great job of introducing sinister characters early on in his books who commit a crime, then disappear into the background. By doing this readers are always on edge as to when the character is going to surface to cause more trouble. And he also does a great job of establishing early on, main characters who are flawed but likeable, so you care what happens to them. This mixture of characters you care about and looming threats are what make Sakey's books suspenseful.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When the ex-solder pretends he's a cop so he can enter the well protected house of a drug lord to question him.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    I don't know, something that plays off the fact that the main characters where family and the great lengths someone will go to when a child is threatened.


    Any additional comments?

    I think this is one of the best literary works of suspense I've read (actually listened to). The descriptions Sakey uses to paint the visual pictures of the story were amazing.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Scar Tissue: Seven Stories of Love and Wounds

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Marcus Sakey
    • Narrated By Marcus Sakey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    An anthology of seven short stories, including "The Desert Here and the Desert Far Away” (nominated for Thriller and Macavity awards), “The Days When You Were Anything Else”, “No One”, “Gravity and Need”, “As Breathing”, “Cobalt”,and “The Time Before the Last”. These stories of men and women pushed to - and beyond - the ragged edge demonstrate why National Public Radio declared Sakey writes “crime drama for the 21st century.”

    Just says: "His other works are even better!"
    "His other works are even better!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Scar Tissue in three words, what would they be?

    Pleasantly disturbing plots


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The ex-con bartender character hooked me into that story because of the father / daughter plot.


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

    He has a pleasant speaking voice and it actually seemed like he was able to change it up depending on the story or character.


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

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    It kills me to give Sakey less than 5 stars for Scar Tissue, but compared to his other books that I've read like "The Blade Itself" and "The Amateurs", this one is not quite as great. That being said, I must say that in at least three of the stories he did do a great job of getting me to think about what happens next to the characters after I read the strange twist at the end of the stories. He also did his usually exceptional job of helping me visualize scenes and events and feelings using descriptions that were fresh, highly imaginative and very effect. They were so creative I was tempted to start keeping a list, but I didn't want to stop listening long enough to do that.Sakey is a magician when it comes to creating characters (good or bad) who immediately draw your concern and he is very effective at crafting disturbing situations and subplots around them so you remain uncomfortable throughout the entire book. I marvel at how quickly, yet subtly he manages to get me hooked. Sakey is probably my favorite modern fiction writer and I'm looking forward to listening to his book, At The City's Edge, that he mentioned in Scar Tissue.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Chris Kyle, Scott McEwan, Jim DeFelice
    • Narrated By John Pruden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2923)
    Performance
    (2642)
    Story
    (2633)

    From 1999 to 2009, U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle recorded the most career sniper kills in United States military history. The Pentagon has officially confirmed more than 150 of Kyles kills (the previous American record was 109), but it has declined to verify the astonishing total number for this book. Iraqi insurgents feared Kyle so much they named him al-Shaitan ("the devil") and placed a bounty on his head.

    William says: "Rough and tumble Texas boy makes USA proud"
    "A pleasant surprise!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does American Sniper rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It was one of the best.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I was interested mainly in hearing about the mind and actions of snipers. What I got in addition to that was information about how Navy Seals train, the brotherhood they share with each other, how Chris Kyle's military career affected his family (in the words of his wife) and the fascinating details of what goes through the minds of soldiers caught in a fire fight. It was fascinating.


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

    I haven't. But just from this one performance I would certainly listen to others he's done. His Texas accent was so believable I thought Chris Kyle was narrating the story. I wondered, after finishing the book if the accent was put on or not. If it was, Pruden is a master narrator.


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

    Neither, but it kept me riveted to the story and I was anxious to hear more.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm glad I stumbled upon this book. I've been recommending it to many of my friends.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Split Second

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By David Baldacci
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (3522)
    Performance
    (1724)
    Story
    (1719)

    Michelle Maxwell has just blown her future with the Secret Service. Against her instincts, she let a presidential candidate out of her sight to comfort a grieving widow. Then, behind closed doors, the politician whose safety was her responsibility vanished into thin air.

    John says: "Listen again"
    "No Wonder It's On Sale..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I enjoy heart-pounding thrillers and this just isn't one. I don't know anyone who might enjoy buying a thriller that doesn't thrill.


    Would you ever listen to anything by David Baldacci again?

    No. His writing is ineffective.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    The narration was good, but the production company shouldn't, out of nowhere, start playing some cheesy background music in the middle of dialog between one of the main characters and his old girlfriend. It made me think the chapter was over or the first section of the book was finished.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Confusion and disappointment.


    Any additional comments?

    The book starts out with a murder and a kidnapping, then goes on to develop the characters more through

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Plan B: A Nick Heller Story

    • UNABRIDGED (46 mins)
    • By Joseph Finder
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    Overall
    (699)
    Performance
    (367)
    Story
    (372)

    An original short story by Joseph Finder, New York Times best-selling author of Buried Secrets and Vanished. "Plan B" finds private spy Nick Heller in Barcelona, Spain, on a rescue mission. The target: a walled compound with state-of-the art-security. The object: a teenage girl, held against her will.

    laall says: "Where's the rest?"
    "Well-written, and Narrated, Suspense"
    Overall

    I just finished listening to this and thoroughly enjoyed the writing, narration and story. Finder doesn't waste words like other authors whose story lines get needlessly lost within an overuse of descriptions (e.g. Jay Lake in the audio book "In the Forests of the Night"). Joseph Finder keeps his writing clean and to the point, but still descriptive enough to help his readers imagine the scenes and characters. I liked the way Holter Graham narrated the story, effectively using accents to differentiate the characters. And the story kept me engaged from the beginning all the way through the final twist at the end. One minor, negative is that a part or two in the story were slightly unbelievable, similar to the Mission Impossible TV series where every seemingly unexpected event was somehow expected by the hero. Though he does give logical explanations, to help avoid lose ends. I look forward to more works from Finder.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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