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Anne Hoag

Anne in Happy Valley

State College, PA | Member Since 2002

ratings
168
REVIEWS
21
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
1
HELPFUL VOTES
57

  • Sacre Bleu: A Comedy d'Art

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Christopher Moore
    • Narrated By Euan Morton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1167)
    Performance
    (1018)
    Story
    (1029)

    In July 1890, Vincent van Gogh went into a cornfield and shot himself. Or did he? Why would an artist at the height of his creative powers attempt to take his life... and then walk a mile to a doctor's house for help? Who was the crooked little "color man" Vincent had claimed was stalking him across France? And why had the painter recently become deathly afraid of a certain shade of blue? These are just a few of the questions confronting Vincent's friends who vow to discover the truth of van Gogh's untimely death.

    John says: "Not Moore at his funniest, but Moore completely"
    "Toulouse-Lautrec, My Kinda Buddy Movie Sidekick"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    Loved Toulouse-Lautrec as the libertine/amateur detective/sidekick! Also enjoyed the inventive and funny mcguffins -- Vernesque steampunk stilts, witch-burning in Chartres, the nutrition in cemetery snails. Jumped the shark a couple times, as with Oscar Wilde and his inspiration for Dorian Gray. Still, all in good fun.


    Any additional comments?

    I'd love to see a sequel where Toulouse-Lautrec solves other fin de siecle mysteries, murders and scandals.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • I See You Made an Effort: Compliments, Indignities, and Survival Stories from the Edge of 50

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Annabelle Gurwitch
    • Narrated By Annabelle Gurwitch
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (31)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (27)

    Actress and humorist Annabelle Gurwitch returns with I See You Made an Effort, a book of essays so wickedly funny it may make you forget your last birthday. Not one to shy away from the grisly realities of middle age, the “slyly subversive” (O: The Oprah Magazine) Gurwitch confronts the various indignities faced by femmes d’un certain âge with candor, wit, and a healthy dose of hilarious self-deprecation.

    Anne Hoag says: "I laughed a lot...for a 53 year old woman"
    "I laughed a lot...for a 53 year old woman"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does I See You Made an Effort rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the best performed, funniest memoirs I've listened to. Right up there with David Sedaris, Kristen Johnson (Guts) and that wonderful British woman (How to Be a Woman, I think).


    What did you like best about this story?

    This is a book for late female boomers -- I was born in 1960 and I think Gurwitch was born in 1961 or '62.


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

    Her cadence, pacing, wry tone.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Capital in the Twenty-First Century

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Thomas Piketty, Arthur Goldhammer (translator)
    • Narrated By L. J. Ganser
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (280)
    Performance
    (242)
    Story
    (241)

    What are the grand dynamics that drive the accumulation and distribution of capital? Questions about the long-term evolution of inequality, the concentration of wealth, and the prospects for economic growth lie at the heart of political economy. But satisfactory answers have been hard to find for lack of adequate data and clear guiding theories.

    Kazuhiko says: "Audio format still useful to get the gist of it"
    "Audiobook not the best format for this work"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Be forewarned, to properly digest this important work one must have the 106 pages of graphs and charts. My tablet screen is not good enough for viewing the .pdfs which comes with the audiobook. Therefore I'd have to print them off -- much less convenient than the handy packaging of an actual book! I'm off to buy the hardcopy now!

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Parrot and Olivier in America

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Peter Carey
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (154)
    Performance
    (57)
    Story
    (58)

    Olivier, an improvisation on the life of Alexis de Tocqueville, is the traumatized child of aristocratic survivors of the French Revolution. Parrot is the motherless son of an itinerant English printer. Born on different sides of history, their lives will be joined by an enigmatic one-armed marquis.

    TX lilbit says: "Like nothing else"
    "Not beach reading, even for Toqueville fans"
    Overall

    Unfortunately, I downloaded this for summer beach reading on the strength of an NPR review. It was far too dense for that. Here it is winter and I'm still "reading" it. Moreover, I never found a way to care about the protagonists, Olivier and Parrot. Aside from that, I enjoyed it as an historical novel and it was interesting to re-think Democracy in America as having been written by a snotty, immature and conceited French aristocrat brat, which now I get he undoubtedly was.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Dead and Gone: Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire Mystery #9

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Charlaine Harris
    • Narrated By Johanna Parker
    Overall
    (3536)
    Performance
    (1776)
    Story
    (1789)

    In her ninth adventure, Sookie has just tied on her cocktail waitress apron for a night's work when a special report comes on the television. The time has come. The wereanimals have revealed themselves.

    Anne Hoag says: "High expectations not met"
    "High expectations not met"
    Overall

    I'm a devoted fan of the series and my expectations may be unreasonably high. I love Ms. Harris' characters and the Louisiana she offers readers. I was certainly entertained, but disappointed on several counts. Strengths: The dialogue quality is excellent in this installment. The tone of the book is darker but appropriately so given FDTW foreshadowing. Some foreshadowing in previous books realized quite nicely(e.g., fairy dangers, were reveal). Bill does more than pine. You get more Eric than in past books and I loved it that he talks a lot. And while there is a major relationship development early in the book, there wasn't anything new revealed about their depth of feeling for one another. If FDTW gave you hope for a big, squishy "talk," you'll be disappointed. There's plenty of satisfying dialogue between E and S, but well, I think after waiting out 4 books, we deserved more. I suppose my beef is with the loads of ink spent in clearing old subplots, removing secondary characters and inserting placeholders. I agree it was time to pare down the cast, I was just jealous that every page spent on that stuff was one less page devoted to Sookie's men. Still, I thank Ms. Harris and don't know what I'll do with myself waiting for the next book.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Trace: A Scarpetta Novel

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Patricia Cornwell
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    Overall
    (44)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (5)

    In Trace, Kay Scarpetta travels to Richmond, Virginia, at the odd behest of the recently appointed Chief Medical Examiner, who claims that he needs her help to solve a perplexing crime. When she arrives, however, Scarpetta finds that nothing is as she expected: her former lab is in the final stages of demolition; the inept chief isn't the one who requested her after all; her old assistant chief has developed personal problems that he won't reveal; and a glamorous FBI agent meddles with the case.

    Susan says: "Not Up to Scarpetta Standards"
    "Unabridged Always Better"
    Overall

    Ever wonder about the difference between an abridged audio book and the real thing? I did an experiment and listened to both. I'll never choose the abridged version of any audio book again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Collected Stories

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Oscar Wilde
    • Narrated By Frank Muller
    Overall
    (14)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Whether it's a 300-year-old ghost who's scared out of his wits, a tenderhearted statue with a mission of mercy, or the suave Lord Savile who cannot commit a crime, the characters in these stories by witty Oscar Wilde make the tales priceless delights. Absurd, ironic, poignant, or scathing, these small gems of the storyteller's art are sure to become favorites. This collection, narrated by Frank Muller, includes "Lord Arthur Savile's Crime," "The Model Millionaire," "The Nightingale and the Rose," and more.

    Anne Hoag says: "Very Poor Recording"
    "Very Poor Recording"
    Overall

    I would read anything by Wilde, but listening to this poor recording was torture.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Michael Lewis
    Overall
    (891)
    Performance
    (187)
    Story
    (191)

    Moneyball is a quest for something that money can't buy: the secret of success in baseball. The real jackpot is a cache of numbers collected by a brotherhood of baseball enthusiasts: software engineers, statisticians, Wall Street analysts, and physics professors. These numbers prove that the traditional measure of success for players and teams are fatally flawed. This information has been around for years, and nobody paid it any mind. And then came Billy Beane, General Manager of the Oakland A's.

    Steven says: "Best Audible Book Yet"
    "And I don't even like baseball."
    Overall

    Became an instant fan of Lewis' in the 1980s with Liar's Poker. It was about mortgage bonds (snore) so when I learned this one was about baseball (louder snore), I wasn't put off at all. Lewis could write about vanilla pudding and I'd read it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Special Topics in Calamity Physics

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Marisha Pessl
    • Narrated By Emily Janice Card
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (591)
    Performance
    (221)
    Story
    (226)

    This is a darkly hilarious coming-of-age novel and a richly plotted suspense tale told through the distinctive voice of its heroine, Blue van Meer. After a childhood spent moving from one academic outpost to another with her father, Blue is clever and possessed of a vast lexicon of knowledge. But when a drowning and the shocking death of a teacher lead to a confluence of mysteries, Blue is left to make sense of it all with only her gimlet-eyed instincts and cultural references to guide - or misguide - her.

    Jeanie says: "Over 21 Hours of Bliss..."
    "Donna Tartt's little sister?"
    Overall

    Others' comparisons with Tartt's The Little Friend and The Secret History are right on. A fun mystery , the denouement of which I didn't see coming, and yet the plot isn't even the most interesting facet of the book.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Classic German Short Stories, Volume 1

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Friedrich Schiller, Johann Peter Hebel, and others
    • Narrated By Charlton Griffin
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    German short stories began in the late 18th century as brief, beautifully written moral fables. In the following century, style evolved toward realism in parallel with that of other European literature. From the lofty idealism of Goethe to the searing verisimilitude of Mann, German writers of all styles have left us some of the most arresting profiles of the human condition ever conceived.

    Ian says: "Enjoyable"
    "Poor Recording"
    Overall

    Wish the recording had been of higher quality.

    2 of 8 people found this review helpful

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