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BookReader

Chicago, IL, United States

130
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 107 reviews
  • 158 ratings
  • 1001 titles in library
  • 45 purchased in 2014
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  • Lavender Morning

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Jude Deveraux
    • Narrated By Barbara McCulloh
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (153)
    Performance
    (134)
    Story
    (131)

    Jocelyn Minton is a woman torn between two worlds. Her mother grew up attending private schools and afternoon teas, but she married the local handyman. After her mother died when Joce was only five years old, her father remarried into his own class, and Joce became an outsider - until she met Edilean Harcourt. Although she was sixty years Joce's senior, Miss Edi was a kindred soul who understood her like no one else ever had. When Miss Edi passes away, she leaves Joce all her worldly possessions, including an eighteenth-century house and a letter with clues to a mystery that began in 1941.

    Amazon Woman says: "Very Captivating"
    "Lavender Morning Review"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Audiobook Review. Lavender Morning is the story of a girl who inherits a large home in Maine from her mentor, an elderly woman the main character has spent her life adoring. The story reveals the mentor's life, WWII fiction, and the main character's search for explanations. I'll not provide any spoilers beyond this fundamental information, which you'll get from simply reading a blurb. The story is a touching memoir to this elderly lady, her unrequited love of WWII. It's not a good audiobook, in my opinion. There is way too much use of the word 'said', distracting ... it may not be annoying in print as a reader tends to skim over extraneous words, but in audio format it makes me lower the star rating. Jos said, Luke said, said Jos, said Luke ... not every line of dialogue, but it sure seemed like it, and it took away from the story.

    Sort of interesting, in the sections that involved WWII action, to envision the characters as young and beautiful people, in love during a violent time. Those sections are part of a story/diary written by the elderly woman. As these stories are read in the form of 3rd and 1st person stand-alone Chapters, I've some problem with the point of view sometimes being that of other people and this woman writing about it...confusing imagery. She's relating feelings and emotions of men and other characters speaking about herself as a young woman. How would she know what they thought or did when she wasn't present? A bit picky, but I shook my head in wonder at what up and coming writers today would get crucified for...why would an agent or publisher let Devereaux get away with this approach? Well, because she's Jude Devereaux, no other reason. People will spend money on Jude Devereaux books, which is all the publisher/agent cares about. If you like romance novels and can look beyond that which by some standards is considered "bad writing", you'll probably enjoy Lavender Morning. However, I don't think the Jude Devereaux style is something you should emulate if you're attempting to get published today and you're an unknown. You'd be toast.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The 9th Girl

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Tami Hoag
    • Narrated By David Colacci
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (739)
    Performance
    (647)
    Story
    (657)

    On a frigid New Year’s Eve in Minneapolis, a young woman’s brutalized body falls from the trunk of a car into the path of oncoming traffic. Questions as to whether she was alive or dead when she hit the icy pavement result in her macabre nickname, Zombie Doe. Unidentified and unidentifiable, she is the ninth nameless female victim of the year, and homicide detectives Sam Kovac and Nikki Liska are charged with the task of not only finding out who Zombie Doe is but who in her life hated her enough to destroy her. Was it personal? Or could it just have been a crime of opportunity?

    Sires says: "Not Fond of Narrator, Characters Sterotypical"
    "The 9th Girl"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Tami Hoag might have a crush on Channing Tatum … maybe? Not sure mentioning a current Hollywood heart-throb in a book, at least twice, is a good idea. Someone picks this book up in forty years and they’ll have no idea who she’s talking about. That said, The 9th Girl, is a decent police procedural. Not giving anything away that isn’t revealed within the first few pages. A teenaged girl pops out of a trunk in front of a party-limo that can’t avoid hitting her. The story moves on from this point, i.e., who is she? Why was she in the trunk? What caused the caustic burns on her face? What’s with the tattoo? The investigation proceeds through suspicions of parents, frustrated cops, deceptive teenaged angst.

    The characters are oversimplified images, not fully rounded. It’s hard to root for anyone in particular. The cops act like cops, type-a and hard-boiled. The teenagers act like teenagers, hate everything and everybody, shave their heads and have earrings in their lips. Mothers are like mothers with cubs. Dads are stoic and distant. Nobody stands out.

    Writing, in my opinion, begins with character development … followed with plot. Something is skewed in The 9th Girl, and although I had no trouble sticking with the story, something was just …. off.

    Okay mystery, but not one of Hoag’s best. Narration was fine.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Midnight Bayou

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Nora Roberts
    • Narrated By James Daniels, Sandra Burr
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1143)
    Performance
    (939)
    Story
    (941)

    Declan Fitzgerald had always been the family maverick, but even he couldn't understand his impulse to buy a dilapidated mansion on the outskirts of New Orleans. All he knew was that ever since he saw Manet Hall, he'd been enchanted - and obsessed - with it. So when the opportunity to buy the house comes up Declan jumps at the chance to live out a dream.

    Phyllis S. Mike says: "Not the Norm"
    "Midnight Bayou"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Close to 600 audiobook reviews, read by James Daniels and Sandra Burr, originally published in 2001, the unabridged version of Midnight Bayou is just under ten hours of listening. Typical Nora Roberts, i.e., a nice curl-up-on-the-sofa story. Not deep, not life changing.

    The Roberts formula shines through the story. Take a dilapidated old plantation mansion in New Orleans, a young Boston lawyer (Burned out at a young age, which is a story in itself, I would think.), throw in a stubbornly independent, albeit beautiful, local, a few ghosts, a little southern Louisiana superstition and voodoo, some reincarnation … and ta-da … you have a winner.

    Nice narration, fun listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Innocent Ones: A Thriller

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Robert Gregory Browne
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (169)
    Performance
    (149)
    Story
    (152)

    Assistant District Attorney Beth Crawford and her sister, Jen, take a much needed vacation in Baja California, but the fun in the sun doesn't last long when Jen disappears without a trace on the streets of Playa del Sol. Now Beth must navigate the underbelly of a city she doesn't know, and the only one who can help her is Nick Vargas, a disgraced newspaper reporter on the trail of a dangerous and deadly cult with big plans for its annual celebration...on the Day of the Dead.

    shelley says: "Another winner from Robert Gregory Browne"
    "The Innocent Ones"
    Overall
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    Any additional comments?

    Two parallel stories begin this tale. One centers on a scandalized journalist, Vargas, seeking to recover a shattered career by investigating a mass murder near the Mexican border. The other surrounds two sisters on a cruise, one a Holly-Go-Lightly named Jen, the other a straight laced attorney, Beth. The sudden disappearance of Jen in a Mexico port of call, sends Beth into a frenzy of searching. You’ll wonder how the author can possibly bring these two, completely unique, story lines together into a uniform plot. He does, very well. This is a page-turning thriller.

    Read by the incredible Scott Brick, the story is approximately eleven hours of listening. Scott could read a cookbook and make it spellbinding; he uses his stellar talent in joining with Robert Browne to make a good book even better. Fun listen. Surprised that there aren’t more audio reviews; less than 50 at this writing. Lot’s of planning went into this story and all the pieces come together nicely. Enjoyed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Pines

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Blake Crouch
    • Narrated By Paul Michael Garcia
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2040)
    Performance
    (1857)
    Story
    (1853)

    Wayward Pines, Idaho, is quintessential small-town America — or so it seems. Secret Service agent Ethan Burke arrives in search of two missing federal agents, yet soon is facing much more than he bargained for. After a violent accident lands him in the hospital, Ethan comes to with no ID and no cell phone. The medical staff seems friendly enough, but something feels…off. As the days pass, Ethan’s investigation into his colleagues’ disappearance turns up more questions than answers. Why can’t he make contact with his family in the outside world? Why doesn’t anyone believe he is who he says he is? And what’s the purpose of the electrified fences encircling the town? Are they keeping the residents in? Or something else out? Each step toward the truth takes Ethan further from the world he knows, until he must face the horrifying possibility that he may never leave Wayward Pines alive…

    Linda B says: "Well done story"
    "Pines"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Pines is close to nine hours of listening, read by Paul Michael Garcia. There are close to 2000 reviews on Audible at this writing, and the book has a four-star rating. Not likely there is much I can add to what has already said, the story is a page-turner. A secret service agent is dispatched to a small town to investigate the disappearance of fellow agents.

    The book should be part of a Sci-Fi listing, because although Pines is a thriller, the tale involves time leaps and the macabre. Any lovers of Dean Koontz or Stephen King out there? Pines is in the same vein. The main character goes through several physically abusive situations, more than necessary, in my opinion. Lots of narration defining his aches and pains … I actually muttered ‘I get it!’ a time or two, and fast-forwarded through repetitive torture scenes that were a bit gratuitous and added nothing to the plot.

    Paul Michael Garcia does a great job, good narration.

    Don’t expect a Tom Clancy/Vince Flynn type thriller or a Tami Hoag crime procedural - Pines is Sci-Fi, through and through. But, good Sci-Fi! Enjoyable listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • First to Kill

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Andrew Peterson
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3001)
    Performance
    (2094)
    Story
    (2091)

    When you're the best at what you do, it's not always easy to walk away. Nathan McBride was retired. The trained Marine sniper and covert CIA operative had put the violence of his former life behind him. But not anymore. A deep-cover FBI agent has disappeared along with one ton of powerful Semtex explosive, enough to unleash a disaster of international proportions. The U.S. government has no choice but to coax Nathan out of retirement.

    Ed says: "Sniper thriller par excellence"
    "First to Kill"
    Overall
    Performance
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    Any additional comments?

    Dick Hill. One of the best! Sorry to say, First to Kill isn’t one of the best. The lead character, Nathan McBride, will remind you of another type A, take no prisoners, kick-ass, fundamentally soft-hearted former military dude. Maybe it’s the fact that Dick Hill narrated First to Kill. If you read primarily via audiobook format, such as I, Connelly’s Jack Reacher is brought to mind. Hill is the voice of Reacher in all of that series, as far as I know.

    First to Kill is a thriller, centering on high-level politics and skullduggery covertly pulling our main character into a revenge laced situation. Lot’s of characters to keep track of, a few twists, but the bad-guys are well known throughout. Mild love interest interspersed … just because it’s expected, I guess. Didn’t add anything to the story. A little trouble holding my interest and sadly, I didn’t rewind, just kept moving forward.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Night Sins

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Tami Hoag
    • Narrated By Jennifer Van Dyck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (98)
    Performance
    (85)
    Story
    (87)

    A peaceful Minnesota town, where crime is something that just doesn’t happen, is about to face its worst nightmare. A young boy disappears. There are no witnesses, no clues — only a note, cleverly taunting, casually cruel. Has a cold-blooded kidnapper struck? Or is this the reawakening of a long-quiet serial killer?

    A User says: "Another Great book from Tami Hoag"
    "Night Sins"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Night Sins, read by Jennifer Van Dyck, is approximately twenty hours of listening. Too, long, in my opinion. The author could have accomplished as much with two-thirds of the text. The story centers on the abduction of Josh, a little boy in a small Minnesota town. This kidnapping occurs on the same day that a new agent arrives as a replacement. Slamming through a good-old-boy network of cops, our MC is typical of the women of the 90s. Carrying a huge feministic chip on her shoulder, her abrasive attitude is a modus operandi throughout the novel that I personally found annoying.

    Originally published in the mid nineties, the feminist attitude is understandable; women in general were pounding against glass ceilings throughout all businesses, and in this novel, in a small town police department. The MC is a bit too caustic in her zeal, however, which makes her an unlikeable character.

    The crime story mystery is the most interesting part of the story. A number of suspects float through the tale, including the father of the boy and the local priest. The love story, a relationship between the local chief and the newbie main character, is very forced. Normal people are not quite as volatile with people they love, especially during that initial heart-thumping time of early romance. As written in Night Sins, this affair comes across in phony with contrived dialogue, and includes gratuitous sex scenes adding nothing to the plot. A not-so-bad crime procedural or poorly written artificial romance … not sure.

    The reader does a good job, clear diction, etc. A bit coached, I think, to convey the snarky attitude of the MC.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • All Our Yesterdays

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Cristin Terrill
    • Narrated By Meredith Mitchell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (252)
    Performance
    (227)
    Story
    (229)

    "You have to kill him." Imprisoned in the heart of a secret military base, Em has nothing except the voice of the boy in the cell next door and the list of instructions she finds taped inside the drain. Only Em can complete the final instruction. She's tried everything to prevent the creation of a time machine that will tear the world apart. She holds the proof: a list she has never seen before, written in her own hand. Each failed attempt in the past has led her to the same terrible present - imprisoned and tortured by a sadistic man called "the doctor" while war rages outside.

    Lauren says: "Great adventure - couldn't put it down!"
    "All Our Yesterdays"
    Overall
    Performance
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    Any additional comments?

    Bought this book because of an Audible.com ‘Daily Deal’ special. The description given doesn’t make it clear that this is a young adult book. Lot’s of childish angst and a bit too juvenile prose for my taste. Sorry, couldn’t finish beyond the first few hours of listening.

    I can’t condemn the book, it’s just that the valley-girl-teenaged behavior just grated. Even character names had me rolling my eyes :-). Life’s too short. But, if you’re under fourteen, you might love it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Arthur C. Clarke
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1238)
    Performance
    (786)
    Story
    (795)

    It has been 40 years since the publication of this classic science-fiction novel that changed the way we look at the stars and ourselves. From the savannas of Africa at the dawn of mankind to the rings of Saturn as man adventures to the outer rim of our solar system, 2001: A Space Odyssey is a journey unlike any other.

    Douglas says: "The Movie Makes More Sense Now"
    "2001"
    Overall
    Performance
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    Any additional comments?

    What can be said that hasn’t been said … cliché though it may be, is accurate. The most enlightening part of this story is the prologue read by Arthur C. Clarke himself. The creation of the novel in close collaboration with Stanley Kubrick’s movie production was news to me, and fascinating.

    The story itself is read by Dick Hill, just under seven hours in length, released in 2008 - just prior to Clarke’s death.

    Worth the credits. The movie now make more sense and I look forward to watching it again. Enjoyed!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Skin Gods

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Richard Montanari
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (154)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (32)

    It is the steaming heart of summer in the City of Brotherly Love. Back on the force after taking a bullet during the arrest of a sadistic murderer, Detective Kevin Byrne warily returns to police headquarters. He cannot shake the memory of the Rosary Killer's innocent victims or his growing sense that the evil has not been vanquished. And when he and his partner, Detective Jessica Balzano, are called in on a bizarre case, Byrne's gravest suspicions are confirmed.

    Cathleen says: "Ok...he got me!"
    "The Skin Gods"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Read by Scott Brick, The Skin Gods is just over thirteen hours of listening. A crime drama, the evil doer re-creates murder scenes from dark movies, the first of several being the shower scene from Psycho - the old Alfred Hitchcock classic with a young Janet Leigh. He replaces the original scene with his snuff work and returns the VHS to the local video rental store (remember those?). Thus begins The Skin Gods.

    Frankly, I had a bit of trouble with this novel, maybe it’s the horrific murder recreation. It’s pretty gruesome, ergo, I would squirm, then fast-forward a few times. The cops are desperate, the killer relentless. No character is the type-a macho dude or dude-ette to root for, neither a cop nor the bad guy. Just one frustrating situation after another. Not a bad story, by any means, but not my “cup ‘o tea”.

    Scott Brick, as usual , is terrific. So, there’s that.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Second Ship: The Rho Agenda, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Richard Phillips
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1243)
    Performance
    (1128)
    Story
    (1141)

    In 1948, an alien starship crash-landed in the New Mexico desert and brought with it the key to mankind’s future. Code-named the Rho Project, the landing was shrouded in secrecy, and only the highest-ranking US government and military personnel knew it existed. Until now....

    Mike From Mesa says: "Terrific story"
    "The Second Ship"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    The Second Ship is approximately twelve hours of listening, read by MacLeod Andrews. Over 1000 audiobook reviews can be found on Audible.com. The story surrounds the visit to earth by an alien civilization. One ship is known to exist by the government and media. The Second Ship is known only to three teenagers who stumble upon it accidentally. Keeping their secret, they delve into the mystery and are suddenly gifted with unusual abilities. The purpose and implications of The Second Ship is the basis for this young adult tale as the teens scramble to avoid governmental agents, school supervision, well-intended parents, and a few bad-ass fellow students.

    Don’t hesitate to let the kiddies listen to a fun SciFi adventure. MacLeod Andrews is a pleasant listen with a wide variety of voices.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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