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Normal, IL, United States | Member Since 2011

  • 5 reviews
  • 24 ratings
  • 188 titles in library
  • 1 purchased in 2015

  • Joshua

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By John S. Wilson
    • Narrated By Jonathan Yen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    He had to keep moving, that the man instinctively knew. He had to get away, from the rioting, the lawlessness, the killing. Away from the brutal gangs that ruled the highways. Then there was the boy that he found along the way, an orphan with no place to go. He couldn't leave the child behind; that would be murder. Together they had to make their way across the razed landscape of post-collapse America, west to where there was safety, a chance to begin again. If only they survived the journey.

    c_soul says: "Very gritty & real story of survival!"
    "Not What I Hoped For"
    What disappointed you about Joshua?

    The performance was very stagnate. There was a lack of underlying emotion in the actor. When the story said something like "The man was getting angry," the actor didn't necessarily sound angry or not angry enough.

    The story line had potential but it was simplistic. I am a Christian, but this was very "Christian-ese."

    Has Joshua turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Not necessarily, but I may be less likely to trust the "You might like" recommendations.

    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Jonathan Yen?

    I'm not sure.

    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Joshua?

    I might not have cut anything but the story could have been more robust -- seen also from Joshua's perspective.

    Any additional comments?

    I'm not sure what the point of always referring to the main character as "the man" was. It felt awkward. If the idea was that it could be "anyone," it fell far short of it.

    0 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Someone Knows My Name

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Lawrence Hill
    • Narrated By Adenrele Ojo
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Aminata Diallo is the beguiling heroine of Lawrence Hill's Someone Knows My Name. In it, Hill exquisitely imagines the tale of an 18th-century woman's life, spanning six decades and three continents. The fascinating story that Hill tells is a work of the soul and the imagination. Aminata is a character who will stir listeners, from her kidnapping from Africa through her journeys back and forth across the ocean.

    Ariela says: "Rich in history and moral messages"
    "Couldn't Stop Listening!"
    What made the experience of listening to Someone Knows My Name the most enjoyable?

    I loved the depth of the story and the feeling with which Aderele Ojo read it. I could picture every aspect and felt the weight of the slavery upon one who thought she was safe because she was born free. It moved me to hope and outrage and back again.

    What did you like best about this story?

    Mina was such a beautiful character -- alternating feisty and heartwarming. In parts she was a "victim" of slavery, but she never gave up struggling to be free, to be the master of her own fate. She was smart and resilient and if she were real -- someone I would love to meet.

    Have you listened to any of Adenrele Ojo’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have only listened to one other of Adenrele Ojo's performances and it was a minor role in the performance. I can honestly say that I cannot wait to hear her again. She is extremely expressive and a joy to listen to.

    Who was the most memorable character of Someone Knows My Name and why?

    Aminata is the main character, but that isn't it what makes her the most memorable. Her wisdom is what makes her the most memorable. I was particularly touched with her recognition of the importance of "knowing someone's name." This was a gift she could give to others. Most of her life she had to make do with having her name shortened because others were (in my opinion) to lazy to learn it. In this sense she was dehumanized. But she took care with other's names and gave them the gift of not being forgotten. I loved towards the end when she has that gift given back to her in an unexpected way.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Storyteller

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Jodi Picoult
    • Narrated By Mozhan Marno, Jennifer Ikeda, Edoardo Ballerini, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Jodi Picoult's poignant number one New York Times best-selling novels about family and love tackle hot-button issues head on. In The Storyteller, Sage Singer befriends Josef Weber, a beloved Little League coach and retired teacher. But then Josef asks Sage for a favor she never could have imagined - to kill him. After Josef reveals the heinous act he committed, Sage feels he may deserve that fate. But would his death be murder or justice?

    Suzn F says: "The Baker, The Nun, The Virgin and The Monster"
    "Breaking out of the Mold!"
    If you could sum up The Storyteller in three words, what would they be?

    Inspiring! Relevant! Thoughtful!

    What other book might you compare The Storyteller to and why?

    In many ways, this reminds me of Sarah's Key. I suppose some of it is that they both deal with WWII, but I think both challenge the reader to think more deeply about human nature and the depths we can sink to but also to see the hope of change.

    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    They all did an excellent job in narrating the story. I appreciated the use of multiple narrators to reflect different characters. They performed with great emotion.

    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Parts made me want to cry. I do not know how one can bear witness (granted this is fiction but it is based on facts) to the horrors of WWII and not feel remorse or horror or sadness. It also made me think about how I define myself. Sage defines herself in one way and fails to see all of the other facets of herself. We get to see her understand herself and her grandmother and the world.

    Any additional comments?

    It as seemed for awhile that the author has had a mold: family, hospital, law suit. In this book the author breaks away from that in a new and fresh way.

    Definitely a book worth a second, third, or fourth listen!

    The book also awakened me to the fact that there are Nazis (discovered or hidden) still in the United States. It made me do a little research. Sure, their country of origins do not want them back, but should they really be allowed to continue to collect Social Security and such? If their crimes had been known, they would not have been allowed in. They have in effect acted fraudulently and defrauded the US government and her citizens. Doing nothing seems like a crime for us as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Captive in Iran: A Remarkable True Story of Hope and Triumph amid the Horror of Tehran's Brutal Evin Prison

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Maryam Rostampour, Marziyeh Amirizadeh, John Perry
    • Narrated By Patty Fogarty
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In Captive in Iran, Maryam and Marziyeh recount their 259 days in Evin. It’s an amazing story of unyielding faith - when denying God would have meant freedom. Of incredible support from strangers around the world who fought for the women’s release. And of bringing God’s light into one of the world’s darkest places - giving hope to those who had lost everything, and showing love to those in despair.

    Gina says: "Inspirational and Uplifting"
    "Repeated Refrain"
    Would you try another book from the authors and/or Patty Fogarty?

    I would not buy another book from the authors. They repeat the same things over and over. I know it is a true story, but the constant repetition made it feel like we were plodding along.

    However, I do think that Patty Fogarty did a good job narrating.

    What was most disappointing about the authors’s story?

    As I stated above, the most disappointing thing was the repetition. I am a Christian, but the book was very "Christian-ese." The same words, phrases, stories were told over and over again. They prayed. They witnessed to the other prisoners. They stood up to their captors. They served.

    Did they have any moments of despair? I do not mean that they doubted God, but I do believe that in such a situation one might wonder if they could continue.

    I would have been interested to know more about their families while the authors were held captive.

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

    She brings inflection and emotion that would be missed if just reading the same thing over and over.

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

    It does make me sad that their are places in the world where people can be treated this way, that a government can be so corrupt.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The 5th Wave

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Rick Yancey
    • Narrated By Brandon Espinoza, Phoebe Strole
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    After the first wave, only darkness remains. After the second, only the lucky escape. And after the third, only the unlucky survive. After the fourth wave, only one rule applies: Trust no one. Now, it's the dawn of the fifth wave, and on a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs from Them. The beings who only look human, who roam the countryside killing anyone they see. Who have scattered Earth's last survivors. To stay alone is to stay alive, Cassie believes, until she meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan Walker may be Cassie's only hope for rescuing her brother - or even saving herself.

    FanB14 says: "Not Your Typical YA Dystopian Fare"
    "How do you survive when anyone can be the enemy?"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. I really enjoyed it.It was a good story that kept moving. It was clear that the aliens had a psychological understanding of humans that was chilling. It was also chilling how much each human desired to be rescued and instead of trusting themselves they abdicated.

    Loved way the perspectives changed.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of The 5th Wave?

    I was most enthralled twice -- when the main character is forced to discover just how far she will go to survive and with the unlikely and tender alliance she develops. I also liked the symbolism of the necklace.

    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Phoebe Strole did an excellent job. I was less enthused by Peter Espinoza. I know he had to do multiple characters, but he was less believable as the high school jock.

    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?


    Any additional comments?

    I would love to see what happens next!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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