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Member Since 2011

  • 3 reviews
  • 39 ratings
  • 113 titles in library
  • 2 purchased in 2015

  • Notes From a Small Island

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Bill Bryson
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty

    Grab your umbrella and join best-selling author Bill Bryson for a grand tour through the heartland of the United Kingdom. As he wanders through tiny villages and bustling cities, his irreverent travelogue will keep you laughing out loud and eager to explore what lies just around the next corner. Before he returns to the United States after nearly two decades on British soil, Bryson decides to take a farewell jaunt through his adopted homeland. But his plans to neatly traverse the island by foot, bus, and train are soon thwarted.

    Sharon says: "Appallingly badly read"
    "dated, but fun"
    If you could sum up Notes From a Small Island in three words, what would they be?

    dated (1995)

    Would you be willing to try another book from Bill Bryson? Why or why not?

    sure -- Bryson is good fun.

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

    It's ok. He gives a sort of dorky, American perspective to it.

    Any additional comments?

    I had actually hoped for a more modern perspective on Britain, so I was somewhat disappointed. But it was good fun, aside from that problem.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Orphan Master's Son: A Novel of North Korea

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Adam Johnson
    • Narrated By Tim Kang, Josiah D. Lee, James Kyson Lee, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Pak Jun Do is the haunted son of a lost mother - a singer “stolen” to Pyongyang - and an influential father who runs Long Tomorrows, a work camp for orphans. There the boy is given his first taste of power, picking which orphans eat first and which will be lent out for manual labor. Recognized for his loyalty and keen instincts, Jun Do comes to the attention of superiors in the state, rises in the ranks, and starts on a road from which there will be no return.

    Lisa says: "The most compelling listen I've ever owned"
    "Sanctimonious author produces a sadistic narrative"
    Would you try another book from Adam Johnson and/or the narrators?

    No. I certainly agree that North Korea is a terrible and oppressive regime, but it cannot have been accurately portrayed in this depressing story.

    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Something cheerful.

    What three words best describe the narrators’s voice?

    Several narrators, and they were good at their jobs.

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

    Depression. I'm sure life in North Korea is bad, but this is not an accurate depiction; it's a horror story. The author gives an "Afterward" in which he pompously talks about how his fiction depicts (his thoughts about) what life is really like. I don't buy it. His imaginary scenes of torture and masochism are his own fantasy. I'm glad he had fun, but only a few readers are likely to share his pleasures. (Together with those whose hatred for North Korea leads them to take pleasure in this kind of fairy tale.)

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Death Comes to Pemberley

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By P. D. James
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    It is 1803, six years since Elizabeth and Darcy embarked on their life together at Pemberley, Darcy’s magnificent estate. Their peaceful, orderly world seems almost unassailable. Elizabeth has found her footing as the chatelaine of the great house. They have two fine sons, Fitzwilliam and Charles. Elizabeth’s sister Jane and her husband, Bingley, live nearby; her father visits often; there is optimistic talk about the prospects of marriage for Darcy’s sister Georgiana. And preparations are under way for their much-anticipated annual autumn ball.

    Michelle says: "Not As Interesting as Print Reviewers Suggested"
    "Dreadful, gaspy read."
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Not really -- certainly not as worthwhile as a regular PDJames book.

    Would you recommend Death Comes to Pemberley to your friends? Why or why not?

    No. Same answer.

    Any additional comments?

    The story is not as bad as the negative reviews claim that it is. It's not great James, but it's not terrible.

    However, Landor has a very annoying habit of giving a tiny gasp in almost every paragraph, and in literally EVERY paragraph that is a quotation from a character in the novel. This mannerism isn't noticeable at first, but starts to grate after a while. It's as if the only way she can think of making a statement sound important is to give a little at the end of the sentence. Arghh.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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