This is the first review I???ve written in the more than seven years I???ve been an Audible member. I have listened to over 300 audio books when you consider the ones I got on actual tape before joining Audible. THIS IS THE ONLY ONE I COULD NOT FINISH!! Believe me, I tried to get thru this stinker three different times.
I am a huge King fan. I???ve read or listened to EVERYTHING he???s written. I appreciate all of his different styles: from the horror that everyone thinks is all he writes, to the realistic fiction of Rose Madder. Heck I even liked his story about nothing more than some kids playing little league baseball. I am a fan. That was not nearly enough to get me thru this maddeningly terrible story.
Whats so bad? Well as you can see from all of the other bad reviews, nothing happens. But, honestly that???s not enough for me to hate a book. If the characters are great or one of a dozen other reasons I can get into a book without a lot of plot. This is a book in which nothing happens and it happens very badly. Ok, so my wife and I have some cutesy little nicknames for each other and some silly terms we use to reference things that have happened in our lives. We think it???s funny. I wouldn???t expect anyone else to agree nor would I subject them to listening to it for hours. Yet that???s exactly what happens in this book!! The couple in the story instead of saying the F word say Smuck. Smucking this Smucking that, Smuckety Smuck. The first several hundred times this happens in the first hour of the book I thought ???that kinda cute I guess???. I now think King was playing a joke on us to see if he could get us to yell out the actual F word by over using a substitution for it. This and soooo many other weird little idiosyncrasies just constantly take you out of the story. Oh yea, what story?!
The last time I tried to get thru this thing was on a long flight, I literally opted to listen to a screaming baby.
There is almost no story. Protagonist is an unpleasant and cliched beautiful social climbing manipulator. As for plot, she does something that's not all that bad, eventually gets found out, and it proves to be no big deal. More than anything else its about art collecting. If you have always wanted to understand and get an inside look into the world in which a painting could sell for hundreds of thousands one year and then several millions the next, then this is the book for you. (spoiler alert - people want things more if they believe other people want it)
There is a scene early in the story where an outsider to the art world asks the main character to explain how and why the super rich buy and sell art at such ridiculous prices. She explains it and he is mildly interested. That sums up exactly how I felt about this book, mildly interested.
First let me say, I never write reviews. I felt compelled however by this Audio-book to warn other potential listeners. I have never heard a worse narrator in the seven years I've been an Audible subscriber. And, I must add, I am not generally picky about the reader. When other reviewers have complained about a given narrator I have usually not even noticed the things that bother many others. Not so with this. Her delivery is so flat, so soul-less, so dead pan, so completely devoid of emotion I cant imagine that people didn't talk her out of reading her own book. Of course that is her right, but it is our right not to be subjected to hours of droning monotone. There were many times in the story where I could recognize the beauty and emotion of the writing but the almost comically dull delivery of the Narrator constantly took me out of the story. Imagine Ben Stein's boring guy character reading poetry and you will be close to what you would get from sitting through all one thousand hours of this audio-book. Read it, don't listen to it.
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