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Lynn

Brookline, NH, United States | Member Since 2006

12
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 10 reviews
  • 134 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 8 purchased in 2014
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  • Tell the Wolves I’m Home: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Carol Rifka Brunt
    • Narrated By Amy Rubinate
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (424)
    Performance
    (385)
    Story
    (388)

    1987. There’s only one person who has ever truly understood fourteen-year-old June Elbus, and that’s her uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss. Shy at school and distant from her older sister, June can only be herself in Finn’s company; he is her godfather, confidant, and best friend. So when he dies, far too young, of a mysterious illness her mother can barely speak about, June’s world is turned upside down. But Finn’s death brings a surprise acquaintance into June’s life - someone who will help her to heal....

    Lynn says: "Authentic and Compelling"
    "Authentic and Compelling"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book goes back to the 80s when fear and ignorance about AIDS brought out the worst in people. That is the backdrop to this story, but the heart of it is about love and acceptance.

    June, the main character, is a fifteen year old girl coping with the loss of her uncle - the one person she felt truly understood her and accepted her for who she was. It is about the loss of her sister as the two girls, once extremely close, begin to make their separate ways in the world. And, it is about the loss of her image of her mother as she starts to see her as a person, complete with flaws. June has to let go of these things to be able to accept herself.

    At the same time she is letting go, a new friend comes into her life. This person sees her clearly, in a way that unnerves her and puts the question of who she is and who she is capable of loving front and center.

    The author handles the intensity of these relationships and the depth of emotions in a gentle and authentic way, allowing you to feel the pain of those adolescent years as you experience June's struggles. The voice of the character (and the narrator) rings true, and I found myself lost in the story and brought back to experiences in my life where acceptance by others was as crucial as acceptance of myself.

    I highly recommend this book. I appreciated that it touched on heavy subjects without becoming maudlin. It is well-paced, well-read, and easy to become immersed in.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Broken for You

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Stephanie Kallos
    • Narrated By Anna Fields
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (392)
    Performance
    (87)
    Story
    (87)

    When we meet septuagenarian Margaret Hughes, she is living alone in a mansion in Seattle with only a massive collection of valuable antiques for company. Enter Wanda Schultz, a young woman with a broken heart who has come to Seattle to search for her wayward boyfriend. Both women are guarding dark secrets and have spent many years building up protective armor against the outside world.

    Barbara says: "Wonderful story of mending and redemption"
    "A good summer listen - nothing wrong with it"
    Overall

    This book was an easy, breezy, summer read. A bit predictable, a few story lines that sounded a little familiar, and characters that you loved, but were not tremendously deep or distinctive. At the end of the day, I would say I truly enjoyed the book, but it is not one I'd run out and tell everyone I know to read/listen, nor do I think it will stick in my memory. I think it has a place in your library for when you're in the mood for something requiring a relatively low investment of effort - and we all need that every now and then!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Little Princes: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Conor Grennan
    • Narrated By Conor Grennan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (496)
    Performance
    (343)
    Story
    (352)

    In search of adventure, 29-year-old Conor Grennan traded his day job for a year-long trip around the globe, a journey that began with a three-month stint volunteering at the Little Princes Children's Home, an orphanage in war-torn Nepal. Conor was initially reluctant to volunteer, unsure whether he had the proper skill, or enough passion, to get involved in a developing country in the middle of a civil war. But he was soon overcome by the herd of rambunctious, resilient children.

    Angela says: "Amazing experience + Inspiring tale"
    "Compelling, Funny, Sad, Inspirational"
    Overall

    I took a chance on this - a book on a subject matter I knew nothing about, by an author I'd never heard of, and read by the author (usually NOT a good thing in my experience). I am so glad I did. I have been telling everyone I know to listen (if possible) and read it (if not). This is the kind of book that stays with you long after the final chapter, and breaks into your thoughts at the oddest moments, making you want to say to whomever will listen, "Oh, and I was just listening to this book about "lost" children in Nepal. Have I mentioned it to you already?" I have been an avid audiobook fan now for about 9 years and this is the first time I have ever felt compelled, at the completion of a book, to re-start it right away and listen to it through a second time.

    So, if you know nothing about: Nepal, its government, the civil war or child trafficking, Conor Grennan will "educate" you through his humorous, self-deprecating, and ultimately inspirational memoir about his time there and the children who literally changed the course of his life. Are there other good folks out there doing similar work (or even helping larger numbers of children and their families)? Certainly. Are there other "adventure" memoirs that put the authors in greater peril so your nails are bitten to the quick? I'm sure of it. But I loved the voice that Conor brought to his tale, which allowed you to hop aboard and take the journey with him. My only complaint is that it had to end. Obviously, I highly recommend it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs)
    • By Laura Hillenbrand
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10939)
    Performance
    (6957)
    Story
    (6989)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Seabiscuit was a runaway success, and Hillenbrand’s done it again with another true-life account about beating unbelievable odds. On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean and disappeared, leaving only a spray of debris and a slick of oil, gasoline, and blood. Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared.....

    Anastasia Burke says: "Hillenbrand could make even laundry fascinating!"
    "Captivating"
    Overall

    This is not a subject I would ordinarily choose to read about, but the author's storytelling capabilities and impeccable research made it a homerun. If you're skeptical because you're not a war buff, or a fan of biographies, drop your baggage on the ground and give it a try.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Zora Neale Hurston
    • Narrated By Ruby Dee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (902)
    Performance
    (458)
    Story
    (455)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Zora Neale Hurston’s classic novel begs to be read aloud, and Ruby Dee answers the challenge with utter perfection, capturing the wide range of characters and their diverse accents with grace and power. Their Eyes Were Watching God is the luminous and haunting novel about Janie Crawford, a Southern Black woman in the 1930s, whose journey from a free-spirited girl to a woman of independence and substance has inspired writers and readers for close to 70 years.

    Leslie says: "a pleasure"
    "Brilliant"
    Overall

    An unbelievably compelling story, characters that could walk off the page and set down next to you, and a narrator that did all of that justice with the most amazing voice. I would highly recommend this book, and in particular, the audio version.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Randy O. Frost, Gail Stekeete
    • Narrated By Joe Caron
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (584)
    Performance
    (361)
    Story
    (362)

    What possesses someone to save every scrap of paper thats ever come into his home? What compulsions drive a woman like Irene, whose hoarding cost her her marriage? Or Ralph, whose imagined uses for castoff items like leaky old buckets almost lost him his house?

    Joann says: "Utterly fascinating"
    "Not Quite"
    Overall

    I think these authors struggled to find the balance between an academic piece of work, a self-help guide, and a case study approach to a fascinating illness. The book had moments of highly engaging and insightful content, but this lack of clear identity made it a less than stellar read. The narrator was also mediocre at best, monotonous at points and struggled with an attempt at a feminine pitch at times.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Medium Raw: A Bloody Valentine to the World of Food and the People Who Cook

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs)
    • By Anthony Bourdain
    • Narrated By Anthony Bourdain
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1766)
    Performance
    (1023)
    Story
    (1002)

    In the 10 years since his classic Kitchen Confidential first alerted us to the idiosyncrasies and lurking perils of eating out, much has changed for the subculture of chefs and cooks, for the restaurant business and for Anthony Bourdain. Medium Raw explores those changes, tracking Bourdain's strange and unexpected voyage from journeyman cook to globe-traveling professional eater and drinker, and even to fatherhood. Bourdain takes no prisoners as he dissects what he's seen.

    Andy says: "entertaining but not as good as kitchen conf."
    "Opiniated, Brash, but Funny and Authentic"
    Overall

    This is not a book that will stick with you for the long-term, and the language is not for the faint of heart, but.... It is classic Anthony Bourdain. A little self-centered, a little indulgent, a little exaggerated for effect, but entertaining nevertheless. The chapter towards the end where he follows a day in the life of the seafood prep cook at Les Bernadin shows that Anthony, above all, respects the craft of cooking for others, and has a soft spot in his heart for those who respect it, too. I enjoyed the book for what it was, and think his fans will, too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Major Pettigrew's Last Stand: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Helen Simonson
    • Narrated By Peter Altschuler
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2397)
    Performance
    (1116)
    Story
    (1107)

    You are about to travel to Edgecombe St. Mary, a small village in the English countryside filled with rolling hills, thatched cottages, and a cast of characters both hilariously original and as familiar as the members of your own family. Among them is Major Ernest Pettigrew (retired), the unlikely hero of Helen Simonson's wondrous debut. Wry, courtly, opinionated, and completely endearing, Major Pettigrew is one of the most indelible characters in contemporary fiction.

    txkimmers says: "A great surprise"
    "A Lovely Visit"
    Overall

    Visiting Edgecombe Saint Mary through the perspectives of the characters in Major Pettigrew's Last Stand was a lovely trip. The characters include the dignified and proper (but sufficiently human and flawed) Major Ernest Pettigrew, his late-in-life romantic interest, Pakistani shopkeeper Mrs. Ali, and his insufferable, self-centered son, Roger. They all shine in the backdrop of this quaint English village. Although this is a typical small town "escape" kind of book in many regards, I found the issues the characters faced substantive enough to warrant some deeper introspection without becoming maudlin or heavy. Very well read, well paced, and a good book to help pass a tiresome commute.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio: How My Mother Raised 10 Kids on 25 Words or Less

    • ABRIDGED (4 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Terry Ryan
    • Narrated By Terry Ryan
    Overall
    (121)
    Performance
    (17)
    Story
    (19)

    Evelyn Ryan was an enterprising woman who kept poverty at bay with wit, poetry, and perfect prose during the "contest era" of the 1950s and 1960s. From her frenetic supermarket shopping spree - worth $3,000 today - to her clever entries worthy of Erma Bombeck, Dorothy Parker, and Ogden Nash, Evelyn Ryan's story shows how a winning spirit will triumph over the poverty of circumstance.

    Deena says: "Totally Delightful!"
    "When will I learn???"
    Overall

    99% of the time, I am disappointed when an author reads their own book, and this time was no exception. I'm sure I would have loved this book if I'd read it (rather than listened to it), but the reader, who is the author, is the most monotone reader EVER. It is a humorous memoir, but she manages to suck the lifeblood from the story at every turn. I also think the jingles that are an integral part of the story are just better to look at on a page than to listen to, ironically, as many of them have word plays that you really ought to slow down to truly appreciate. Finally, it is totally my fault, but I didn't realize this was an abridged version, which just ain't the real thing. Save your $ and check this one out of your local library in print.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Escape

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Carolyn Jessop, Laura Palmer
    • Narrated By Ann Marie Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (534)
    Performance
    (206)
    Story
    (207)

    When she was 18 years old, Carolyn Jessop was coerced into an arranged marriage with a total stranger - a man 32 years her senior. Merril Jessop already had three wives. But arranged plural marriages were an integral part of Carolyn's heritage: She was born into and raised in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), the radical offshoot of the Mormon Church.

    Cheryl D says: "Like a train wreck you can't turn away"
    "Eye Opening"
    Overall

    I cannot believe that this has been happening in my country! Jessup's tale is horrifying yet hopeful. I thought the pace was a bit uneven throughout, and started slow, but the injustices mount until you reach saturation levels and know the escape must be imminent. It was not the best read book I've downloaded, but not the worst either. Would recommend.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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