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books and music

Tucson, AZ United States | Member Since 2014

  • 5 reviews
  • 10 ratings
  • 156 titles in library
  • 5 purchased in 2015

  • The Lewis Man

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Peter May
    • Narrated By Peter Forbes

    An unidentified corpse is recovered from a peat bog on the Isle of Lewis, Scotland. News of the discovery soon reaches Fin Macleod. However, since swapping his life in Edinburgh for a quiet existence on Lewis, such mysteries are no longer a concern for the former Detective Inspector. Or so he thought. The sequel to the Blackhouse which was selected for the WH Smith Richard and Judy Bookclub, and the second book in the Lewis triology.

    dumbclub says: "Visit the Outer Hebrides"
    "Great story, great reader"

    I've been a fan of Peter May's Enzo series, but never listened to one. I was delighted to see a new series and downloaded Lewis Man because the first in the series was abridged (why??).

    This is a fantastic listen. The reader has a Scottish brogue, just enough to fit the characters, and his reading is seamless and clever. The mystery itself sounds like a conventional body in the bog, but it is anything but. Sad stories abound, but the characters are more than the troubled pasts they reveal. And the descriptions of the Hebrides makes me think that despite the rain and fog, it's my next vacation destination!

    Can't recommend highly enough!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Crossing Places

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Elly Griffiths
    • Narrated By Jane McDowell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    When she's not digging up bones or other ancient objects, Ruth Galloway lectures at the University of North Norfolk. She lives happily alone in a remote place called Saltmarsh overlooking the North Sea and, for company; she has her cats Flint and Sparky, and Radio 4. When a child's bones are found in the marshes near an ancient site that Ruth worked on ten years earlier, Ruth is asked to date them.

    Sara says: "An atmospheric creepy mystery set in Saltmarsh"
    "Great story; flawed narration"

    This is the first time I have listened to this author and this reader. It was an engrossing story, a wonderful sense of place, and great characters. And with one exception, the narrator was as good as the story. That exception was the dreadful Scandinavian accent that was totally unnecessary for the character: the descriptions of him were more than sufficient for you to see him as the Viking hippy character he was. But even with that jarring note, I loved this book.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Sashenka: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Simon Montefiore
    • Narrated By Josephine Bailey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In the best-selling tradition of Dr. Zhivago, Sophie's Choice, and The Island, this is an epic story of revolution, passion, and betrayal - and one woman whose extraordinary secret lies hidden for half a century.

    Alexis says: "Fascinating Historical Thriller About A Dark Time"
    "Great story; bad reader"

    I love good historical fiction, and despite some implausible plot twists, this was a really good novel about the Russian Revolution, Stalinism and the aftermath. Particularly illuminating was the whole thread about how obsessive the true believer Bolsheviks were.

    But, and it's a big "but", the narrator's fake Russian accents were so bad and such a major distraction that I almost quit, several times. When just narrating, she was fine, but the accents were appallingly bad. Since we know they weren't speaking Russian-accented English, why not simply continue with her normal accent? It was particularly troublesome because it made the characters, when speaking, much less credible.

    I would recommend this book, with that caveat.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Garden of Evil

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By David Hewson
    • Narrated By Saul Reichlin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In a hidden studio in Rome, an art expert is found dead in front of one of the most beautiful paintings Nic Costa has ever seen - an unknown Caravaggio masterpiece. But before long, tragedy will strike Nic far closer to home. The main suspect's identity is known, but he remains untouchable, protected by a fleet of lawyers and a sinister cult known as the Ekstasists.

    Kelly Howard says: "Hewson delivers again"
    "for art lovers"

    After listening to this book, I was ready either to hop on a plane and head for Rome, or to sign up for a very expensive tour that purported to follow in Caravaggio's footsteps. Hewson's novels keep getting better, and this one is fabulous, but, if you don't like paintings, history, art history or mysteries that link history with the plot, this isn't for you. It does require some attention to not only a somewhat improbable plot, but also quite detailed analysis of Caravaggio as a painter and historical figure. The attention is well-rewarded, as Nic Costa gets better and better--more complex, more interesting, and always on the verge of some new phase of his life.

    The reader is great; the pace is fine, and the plot, though improbable, keeps racing along.

    A thoroughly enjoyable book to listen to. And I think Hewson is generally better as an audiobook than a written one, so you can savor his sense of place.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Chopin Manuscript: A Serial Thriller

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Lee Child, David Corbett, Joseph Finder, and others
    • Narrated By Alfred Molina
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    15 thriller masters. 1 masterful thriller! Former war crimes investigator Harold Middleton possesses a previously unknown score by Frederic Chopin. But he is unaware that, within it's handwritten notes, lies a secret that now threatens the lives of thousands of Americans. As he races from Poland to the U.S. to uncover the mystery of the manuscript, Middleton will be accused of murder, pursued by federal agents, and targeted by assassins.

    BSquared67 says: "A rollicking thriller"
    "a kick to listen to"

    I had no idea what to expect, but this was a really good "read." While occasionally the different voices didn't mesh, and the plot took gigantic leaps, I thought it worked. Because of the different authors, this wasn't a linear plot, and was often incredible. But many thrillers are. Part of the satisfaction came from listening to what the next author did to keep the complex plot from totally exploding.

    Alfred Molina was good, but his reading was not varied enough for the character changes.

    I listen to many audio books, read lots of thrillers and mysteries, and I'd try another serialized, multi-author work in a minute after listening to this one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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