Redondo Beach, CA, United States
First let me start by saying...I loved this book! I loved the pace, the story, the history of the family and the history of medicine. Amazing! This book starts off with the story of Rebbecca Skloot (the author) and how she first questioned the life behind the name her professor quickly mentioned during a class. Her questions about the name grew into an obsession in finding out about Henrietta Lacks and the woman behind the cells that helped push modern medicine.
Rebbecca tells the story with compassion, understand and with a bit of naive along with the help of Deborah Lacks, the other Lacks children, friends, and family members.
There are few books out there that can be medically informative and hold my attention. I don't think any book has done that. EVER!
The narrators Cassandra Campbell and Bahni Turpin read this book with the easy and non-acting I love. They were in the book telling the story without acting the story out.
The best part of this audiobook was the interview at the end of the book with Rebbecca Skloot.
This has will be on my list of best reads for 2012.
I have never ever heard of this book and found it when I did a search for audiobooks narrated by Kate Rudd. You know Kate! She narrated The Fault In Our Stars! I loved her work with that book so much it made me purchase this one solely based on her work (and the price of course).
This story centers around Sarah Striker, a young high school graduate who moves to San Francisco to make some money to help pay for her father's cancer treatment. At the time of her leaving Kansas City, Mo. San Francisco is on the verge of the 90's internet boom and there are new and exciting things popping up everywhere. Like cafe's offering internet and computer usage.
This story was not a huge hit for me. There were a few things I was not really into. Most of the male authors I have read that write from a female perceptive seem to get women. Really get them in an errie kinda way. It's like they become a women while writing the book. I didn't have that feeling at all with this book. Sarah just seemed to be so one dimensional and have no real interest. She just hung out with friends who had interesting drug habits and almost surreal lives. I found it hard to connect with her and I really wanted to. Also, I am not really into the young drug addicts slowly killing themselves stories. (a la Trainspotting). Those kinds of characters are everywhere in this book and in Sarah's life. Is that normal for a non-drug using 18-ish young girl from Missouri to get hooked into that crowd and stay clean the whole time?
There were some great points to this story. Really! One, the overall topic of where and who created ADD as well as the behind the scenes of the big pharmaceutical companies was extremely interesting. I have to say now I don't look at their commerical the same way anymore. I have no idea if the author based the story point on real information but it seems real to me. Second, Kate Rudd (narrator) did a good job. In the beginning of the book she was not as "ON" as she was toward the middle and end of the audiobook. So far, The Fault In Our Stars is by far her best.
I will be looking at other audiobooks by her.
This is a classic pre-TV story just like the radio shows from the 40's and 50's. There are a few non PC (politically correct) descriptions of Asians here and there. The action and the narrator had me hooked. Great listen with sound effects and all! It was a blast from the past.
For this book I got both the audiobook and the e-book for FREE! So I got to read and listen at the same time. This was an introduction to the Chaos Walking Trilogy and I like how this story starts. I think I might get the series. I wish there was a little more information about Viola's parents but the story is well put together for a prequel. The narrator did a good job as well.
There not a lot of books I have been completely WOW'ed by. And I don't read that many children books too! But this children's book WOW'ed! me. I love every single thing about it. The story of 5th grader Auggie who was born with a major facial deformity is told with so much care, love and tenderness that I don't know where to begin.
There are so many real and true story lines in this book. When a family is confronted with caring for a special needs child there are good days and completely bad days. The author wrote this book as if she was the mother of that family. When a child with special needs is enrolled and attends a regular school there are issues of bullying, kindness or lack of kindness among the kids and not to mention the parents of those kids. All of those issues and so many more are addressed by the author, R.J. Palacio with nothing short of thoughtfulness. I love how the book is told from Auggies point of view and then later you get a chance to hear the same situation from the point of view of the other kids involved. Nothing short of PERFECT because each supporting character has so much to add to the story and they are very well written.
BRAVO! To the narrators of this audiobook. You all did an outstanding job.
I have to say to you guys...I cried at the end of this book. It has a great ending and I don't think it could have ended any other way.
This book should be required reading to middle school kids all over the world.
This has to be by far my most favorite book this year.
Hands Down A Five Star Read!
"I think there should be a rule, that everyone in the world should get a standing ovation at least once in their lives" ~August from "Wonder" by R. J. Palacio
If this book was not picked by my book club, I don't think I would have read it at all. It would have been on my list of books I would love to read once everything else is done. That is sad but Memoirs are on the bottom of my "To Read" list. But dang! I am so glad I read this book.
First, Sonia Sotomayors' story is an inspiration. As an Hispanic woman growing up in the South Bronx to a non-English speaking family, Sotomayor in bodies the traditional American Dream. After the death of her father, the family struggled not just with cultural issues but financial as well. Not unlike what a lot of families are dealing with today. Sonya Sotomayor is completely unlike the other Supreme Court Justices. In fact, she is completely unlike most of the members of Congress, the Senate and Capital Hill employees. She was not groomed from birth to attend law school, she did not create a resume of ladder climbing moves. Sonya Sotomayor was blessed with making heartfelt decisions that lead her to her seat on the Supreme Court. I think it's amazing to hear a childhood dream come to fruition. It's just so....inspiring!
There were some parts of the book that were simply captivating. Listening to her memories of her family get togethers, school days, and trips to Puerto Rico were perfectly written and made me feel like I was listening to an aunt tell me stories of her past. But then the law teacher of her life took hold here and there. Sonya Sotomayor has the talent of switching between conversation of lawyers and law students and the every day people on the street. There were times I felt smart because I was right there with her. But then she would switch over to law student mode and I was left behind. There were not many parts in the book where this happened and she always brought it back to regular conversation. LOL! Regular is the only word I can think of at the moment.
The narrator, actress Rita Moreno did an excellent job narrating this audiobook. I don't think I could have cast a better person. Sonya Sotomayor reads the intro and it's nice to hear her actual voice.
I feel smarter and wiser for having read this book.
Where do I start with this review? First, let me say that I was very hesitant to get this because there were a few words associated with this book that I didn't want to experience. Words like "cry", "tear jerker", "heart strings". You get my meaning right? OK. But I figured it was a quick 7 hour audiobook that I could knock out in a week during my commute to and from work. I finished this in two days. This book pulled me straight out of my reader's burn out.
In my opinion the words that should be associated with this book are "brilliant", "smart", and "real". I love everything about this audiobook and I am happy to say this is the first 5 star "Love It!" of 2013.
Ok, let's start with the plot of 16 year old Hazel, with Stage 4 thyroid cancer in a kind of remission. I am always amazed when men write from the perceptive of a young teenage girl and get it ALL right! Everything about Hazel screams teen. John Greene got Hazel and her self-conscience moments, falling in love, relationship with her mom, and even her thoughts on what to wear right! Bravo!
Hazel's relationship with hot Augustus Waters, who she met at a cancer kid support group is unique and special. Their relationship is something that total resonated with me. I am not one of those women who was blessed with meeting her soulmate in high school. I have been "dating" forever!!!! So when Hazel (not going to spoil it) talks about the math of their relationship, I get it! There is something almost tangible about a relationship you have with someone that time, space and others can't explain or put a generic definition too!
The story follows perfectly. The character's are smart and real. The plot pulls you into the cancer kid world and the emotions are everywhere!
Now let's talk about the narrator Kate Rudd. Oh Kate! Kate! Kate! All I have to say is...."And the Oscar for best performance of an actress in an audiobook goes to KATE RUDDD!!" *standing ovation* *applause*. Kate is Hazel or at least she was in this audiobook. Kate did not just read the book but she lost her breathe when Hazel was talking like a person with lungs full of fluid would. She gave perfect accents to different characters and even the men had clearly distinct voices. Every emotion the writer put in the book Kate pulled it out, wrapped it up and delivered it to the readers with a bow on top.
There is one thing I want to talk about that this book made me think about. You know when you are feeling down about life or a situation you might be going through. And a friend, co-worker, partner, BFF tells you.."If you think you have it bad, at least your _______" (Insert tragic situation or disease) Why is that ok? Why is some else's misery, suffering, pain, disease suppose to make us feel better about ourselves? Would you tell an average looking person.."Well at least your not ugly?"
I think you are to appreciate your health, your life, family and friends where they are now and not because of someone else's journey isn't perfect. I'll get off my soap box now. *stepping down* (Even though there are so many things I want to say about this book.)
Get this book! Read it! Listen to it! And then pass it on!
This is an audiobook of a one man reading his short story in front of an audience. I was in the mindset from the cover that there would be more than one but..oh well. The story is funny at times and you can hear the audience give the polite laughter at the times the jokes were not funny. Interesting story and could be the beginning of a good novel.
This is not an audiobook but the audio from the stage play. I am glad I got to hear it. The story is very cute and reminds me of As You Like It by William Shakespeare. A book I Love! I am going to make it a point to go see this one. The cover needs work.
This is the second book I have read by Octavia Butler. And I have to say that this one was darker than Kindred. This book was dark yet gripping.
This book is was written in a journal style of a teenager named Lauren Olamina. The only daughter of a neighborhood preacher in 2024, California. The world has changed and violence, poverty, hunger is everywhere. Did I say violence? Wheww! I had to take a minute and stop here and there due to the graphic nature of the violence in this book. I think I am kinda ok with a bad guy (character) getting murdered, raped, or burned but when it happens to children in a book it seems to take my breath away. And not in a good way. The violence in 2024 does not discriminate at all. Young, old, men and woman are victims in this book.
But for some reason I was hooked to find out what happens to Lauren in this desperate landscape. Lauren's dream of creating an Earthseed community builds up as she travels from her home to a new Northern community. This is the backbone and the silver lining in the book that keeps the reader interested. I found myself worrying for Lauren and the people she meets along the way.
I really enjoyed the thoughtfulness of Octiavia Butler's writing. As I was listening to the book I could sense Octavia was giving us a glimpse of the future with a dose of the extreme terrible on top. What would happen if the $4.00 a gallon gas jumped to $40.00 a gallon? I for one would have to quite my job. Then what?
If you have a strong constitution and can handle violence in all forms then you might find this a great read.
This is my third Amy Tan book. I have not read a novel from her in years and this book helped me to remember why she is one of my favorite authors. Amy Tan has a timeless writing style. That is the only way I can describe it. She doesn't write overly poetic or too simple. Amy Tan writes with a unique style that is perfect in every way. Her Chinese voice and American Chinese voice interchange with ease.
This book addresses mother-daughter relations and the complexes feelings involved. Ruthie is the daughter most of us are. At times, our mom's are not making any sense to us, other times we are just fitting them into our busy lives, while we trying to be mothers to our kids.
I love reading books about historical Chinese culture, like Snow Flower and The Secret Fan and The Concubine Saga. This book mixes the past with the present of the women in one family. From generation to generation the reader gets to see why things are the the way they are in one family. Why does Ruthie's mom think she going to be punished?
I like the way Amy Tan makes the sequence of events follow so easily in this book. You can see the cause and effect in each chapter.
The only reason I am taking a star away, is this book did not have me hooked like her other book Saving Fish From Drowning. Was I missing something? I think it was just the slow start in the beginning. It gets me every time.
Overall, a good read.
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