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Patti

Chittenango, NY, United States | Member Since 2003

584
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 282 reviews
  • 499 ratings
  • 760 titles in library
  • 24 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
55

  • The Piano Tuner

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Daniel Mason
    • Narrated By Richard Matthews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (194)
    Performance
    (47)
    Story
    (45)

    In October 1886, Edgar Drake receives a strange request from the British War office: he must leave his wife and his quiet life in London to travel to the jungles of Burma, where a rare Erard grand piano is in need of repair. On his journey to Burma, Edgar encounters prophets and thieves, soldiers and tale-spinners, and an enchanting woman as elusive as the surgeon-major who owns the piano will turn out to be. Edgar encounters a place more mysterious and dangerous than he could ever have imagined.

    David says: "The absolute best in reading, a true classic!"
    "Good Story, Bad Ending"
    Overall

    This story was absolutely fascinating to me. The information on Britain's presence in India, the art of piano tuning, and all the other details the author painstakingly included made it a learning experience as well as entertainment. The narrator did an excellent job telling the story.

    But as it was coming to a conclusion, I became nervous about how it was going to end. Few clues were given. When I did finish it, I understood why. A sad reality of writers is the difficulty of tying it all up in the end. Mr. Mason did not do this at all. It was an awful ending and left me frustrated. Why would this moral, innocent, and straight forward man do this? It did not fit.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Maids of Misfortune: A Victorian San Francisco Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By M. Louisa Locke
    • Narrated By Cynthia Wallace
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (67)
    Performance
    (63)
    Story
    (62)

    It's the summer of 1879, and Annie Fuller, a young San Francisco widow, is in trouble. Annie's husband squandered her fortune before committing suicide, and to pay off a debt, one of his creditors is now threatening to take the boardinghouse she owns. Annie also has a secret. She supplements her income by giving domestic and business advice as Madam Sibyl, one of San Francisco's most exclusive clairvoyants, and one of her clients has died. The police believe his death was suicide, but Annie believes he was murdered.

    KarenB says: "Enjoyable story, annoying narration"
    "Much Better Alternatives"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was hoping for more from this book (and ultimately the series). There is not a lot of depth in the storyline or the characters. Their lives and actions are very simple, with none of the richness that makes a story interesting. There is a good mystery with a number of possible choices and a twist or two. However, never once was I disappointed to stop listening temporarily.

    To make it all worse, as most others have noted, the narration was absolutely awful. It sounded like the efforts of character differentiation were too extreme. Her normal voice would have been fine. But many of the voices were fake sounding and certainly overly dramatic, and that should have been noted (and changed) during production.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Light Between Oceans: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By M. L. Stedman
    • Narrated By Noah Taylor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1329)
    Performance
    (1169)
    Story
    (1150)

    In 1918, after four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia to take a job as the lighthouse keeper on remote Janus Rock. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes only four times a year and shore leaves are granted every other year at best, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel.

    Sandra says: "Wonderful story.....terrible narrator."
    "It's Already Been Said"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Many other reviewers have commented on the poor quality of this narration. What a shame because this story deserved better than that. I was fascinated by the uniqueness of this dilemma and couldn't wait to hear more. But that was contrasted with the frustration of not being able to understand what was being said. I am all for authenticity of accents, but that doesn't mean quality should be lost: poor enunciation and dropping volume at the end of the sentence being the most significant deficits.

    But for all the richness and detail that went into character development and setting the stage for this drama, the author really blew it at the end. The climax that should have been never quite made it. I don't want to spoil it but there was a significant turnabout at the end that was told briefly with no significant detail or explanation. And then that end went on for two groaning segments that did not bring it together. What a disappointment. I want to scream "Let's have a do-over!"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dugard
    • Narrated By Bill O'Reilly
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2156)
    Performance
    (1918)
    Story
    (1924)

    More than a million listeners have thrilled to Bill O'Reilly's Killing Lincoln, the can't-stop-listening work of nonfiction about the shocking assassination that changed the course of American history. Now the anchor of The O'Reilly Factor recounts in gripping detail the brutal murder of John Fitzgerald Kennedy—and how a sequence of gunshots on a Dallas afternoon not only killed a beloved president but also sent the nation into the cataclysmic division of the Vietnam War and its culture-changing aftermath.

    Kristina says: "MUST READ/LISTEN"
    "Nothing of Substance New"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Having been around the block a few times, I have been exposed to much that has been published both about Kennedy's life as well as his death. This book did not deliver much of anything different. That being said, O'Reilly does a great job narrating and it is a good story bringing a number of points together. So if you haven't read or heard a lot about this time of life, this is a good place to start.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Vig: A Dismas Hardy Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By John Lescroart
    • Narrated By David Colacci
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (163)
    Performance
    (103)
    Story
    (105)

    A beautiful woman paid it with her body. A seedy lawyer used somebody else's money. It's the vig - the exorbitant interest mob loan sharks take on their money. Now, in the city by the Bay, everyone has to pay.

    Patti says: "Okay but..."
    "Okay but..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book didn't quite hold my interest. I found my mind wandering frequently while listening. It might have been my issue but regardless, I was not thoroughly impressed with this story and found myself wishing it was over.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • An Echo in the Bone: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (45 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5783)
    Performance
    (3955)
    Story
    (3964)

    Jamie Fraser knows from his time-traveling wife Claire that, no matter how unlikely it seems, America will win the Revolutionary War. But that truth offers little solace, since Jamie realizes he might find himself pointing a weapon directly at his own son - a young officer in the British army. And Jamie isn't the only one with a tormented soul - for Claire may know who wins the conflict, but she certainly doesn't know whether or not her beloved Jamie survives.

    Charles says: "Read all of Gabaldon's stuff before this one"
    "Difficult to Follow"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What I loved about this installment in the Outlander series is the variety of story lines. We are following Brianna and Roger back in modern times, Lord John and his son and family, Ian and his trials along with some new friends, and of course Claire and Jamie. What I did not like is that going back and forth, the time line did not stay consistent. It truly got difficult keeping track of what happened, especially when names from the past are brought back up.

    Davinia Porter as always does such a stupendous job narrating!!

    And lots of cliff hangers are left to start up the next book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Books That Have Made History: Books That Can Change Your Life

    • ORIGINAL (18 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Rufus J. Fears
    Overall
    (130)
    Performance
    (119)
    Story
    (119)

    Why do "Great Books" continue to speak to us hundreds and even thousands of years after they were written? Can they deepen our self-knowledge and wisdom? Are our lives changed in any meaningful way by the experience of reading them?Tackle these questions and more in these 36 engaging lectures. Beginning with his definition of a Great Book as one that possesses a great theme of enduring importance, noble language that "elevates the soul and ennobles the mind," and a universality that enables it to "speak across the ages," Professor Fears examines a body of work that offers extraordinary wisdom to those willing to receive it.

    Kristi Richardson says: "A course that will open you to new ideas."
    "Not What I Expected"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was my second "course." As much as I absolutely loved the first one, this course was a huge disappointment. I expected more of a literature appreciation type discussion of great titles. This, however, was the instructor just telling the story of his favorite books. Yeah, every so often he brings up his list of characteristics of why a book is great, but there is not the literary discussion I craved. His narration was animated, for sure telling a good story. But when bringing up the discussion points was awful.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Story of Dr. Dolittle

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Hugh Lofting
    • Narrated By David Case
    Overall
    (686)
    Performance
    (590)
    Story
    (598)

    No one loves and understands animals like the eccentric 19th century physician Dr. Dolittle, who masters animal language with the help of Polynesia the parrot. After his human patients desert him, the kind-hearted doctor finds his calling in practicing animal medicine, and his fame spreads far and wide. When a terrible epidemic breaks out among monkeys in Africa, Dr. Dolittle sets out to save them, accompanied by some of his favorite pets.

    Stacey says: "Has racist undertones"
    "Charming"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Charming children's story. Introduction was full of praise for the author, but Iam not quite sure the story was worth all that praise.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Down River: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By John Hart
    • Narrated By Scott Sowers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (619)
    Performance
    (300)
    Story
    (294)

    Adam Chase has spent the last five years in New York City trying to erase his worst memories and the scorn and abandonment of his family. Then a phone call from his best friend awakens in him a torrent of emotion and pain. Having left North Carolina and its red soil for good, he never thought returning would be easy - and being remembered as a murderer doesn't help much.

    Donald says: "Best Audiobook Ever"
    "Worthwhile But Lacking"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There is nothing to sway any real passion either way about this story. Adam was wronged with a murder trial but found innocent. The town apparently disagrees with that finding. He goes away but comes back. The twists and turns that follow are largely not believable. Or involves something that I don't care about. The explanation for why it all happened (and I won't spoil the ending) is the craziest of all. Truly good police work would have discovered some of it out. But apparently that is what this town was lacking, and that definitely includes Robin, Adam's lover.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Duty to the Dead: A Bess Crawford Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Charles Todd
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (282)
    Performance
    (183)
    Story
    (182)

    The daughter of a distinguished soldier, Bess Crawford follows in his patriotic footsteps, volunteering to serve her country as a nurse during the Great War. In 1916 she promises Lieutenant Arthur Graham that she will carry his dying request to a brother. When Bess arrives at the Graham house in Kent, Jonathan Graham listens to his brother's last wishes with surprising indifference.

    Anne says: "Terrific period mystery"
    "Not Bad But Not Real Good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Everything about this title is mediocre. The narration is fair but male voices are significantly lacking. The storyline is good enough but has so many "Really?" type moments that is just isn't credible. It never appears as if the heroine is in danger, but the storyline just wouldn't' go that way! The characters were likable but still middle-of-road. I just wouldn't bother with title.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Red Chamber

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Pauline A. Chen
    • Narrated By Grayce Wey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (29)

    When orphaned Daiyu leaves her home in the provinces to take shelter with her cousins in the Capital, she is drawn into a world of opulent splendor, presided over by the ruthless, scheming Xifeng and the prim, repressed Baochai. As she learns the secrets behind their glittering facades, she finds herself entangled in a web of intrigue and hidden passions, reaching from the petty gossip of the servants' quarters all the way to the Imperial Palace.

    Robin says: "excellent story, of chinese origin"
    "Good Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you like ancient Chinese literature, this is a book for you. Despite the difficulty of strange names, it is easy to follow the players. Three young women's lives come together by way of family connections. Times go from plenty to poverty. The women have no power yet they are the ones to strategize their survival. Narration is well done.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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