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Charles

Member Since 2005

89
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 161 ratings
  • 543 titles in library
  • 26 purchased in 2014
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5

  • The History of Love

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Nicole Krauss
    • Narrated By George Guidall, Barbara Caruso, Julia Gibson, and others
    Overall
    (1037)
    Performance
    (374)
    Story
    (388)

    Nicole Krauss' first novel, Man Walks Into a Room, was shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times Book Award and her short fiction has been collected in Best American Short Stories. Now The History of Love proves Krauss is among our finest and freshest literary voices.

    KLBrookline says: "Beautiful story, beautifully written."
    "Wow"
    Overall

    This is the best book I've read in a very, very long time. The first sentence made me laugh, the last one made me cry, and throughout the rest of the book I think I experienced every emotion known to man. The story is shared between three different characters, all of whom were portrayed splendidly. I can't say enough about this book. After reading it, I actually purchased it for family members - it was that good. I cannot recommend it enough (but I can certainly try). Buy it buy it buy it!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Theory of Relativity

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Jacquelyn Mitchard
    • Narrated By Jacquelyn Mitchard
    Overall
    (20)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    At 24, Gordon McKenna thinks he's already heard the worst news of his life when he learns that his sister Georgia is fatally ill. Then Georgia and her husband die in a car accident, leaving behind their baby daughter, Keefer. Gordon and his parents are able to survive their sorrow only by devoting themselves to the care of the beloved one-year-old.

    Charles says: "Loved It"
    "Loved It"
    Overall

    When I found out (after having downloaded the book) that the author herself was going to be reading it, I nearly put it down. In the world of audio books, an author who thinks that they have as talented a voice as they do a pen has serious ego issues. Putting the book down would have been a huge mistake in this case, though. The story is touching, the author (in this case)<i>actually does</i> have a talent for reading her own story and I wholeheartedly recommend the story based on its own merits.

    This is a great story about family and love, coming of age, and the struggle to claim what is rightfully yours, regardless of the seemingly endless obstacles that may stand in your way. I was cheering during the high point of the book and utterly reminiscent at the very end. In the end I thought that this book was brilliantly written, beautifully portrayed and skillfully delivered.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Hannibal Rising

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Thomas Harris
    • Narrated By Thomas Harris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (636)
    Performance
    (214)
    Story
    (214)

    Hannibal Lecter emerges from the nightmare of the Eastern Front, a boy in the snow, mute, with a chain around his neck. He seems utterly alone, but he has brought his demons with him. Hannibal's uncle, a noted painter, finds him in a Soviet orphanage and brings him to France, where Hannibal will live with his uncle and his uncle's beautiful and exotic wife, Lady Murasaki.

    Terry says: "Needs Professional Voice"
    "Disappointed"
    Overall

    I can't say that I liked this book. I definitely wasn't enthralled. The book left much to be desired and I kept finding myself asking "But Why?" and "What???" and "Well, what about...?" I <b>have</b> to compliment Harris' narrating performance though. As an avid audible listener, I've found that most books whose narrator also happens to be the author are rather disappointing in the narrating area. That wasn't the case here. Harris did a great job putting you in the story with his accurate voices and proper inflections. It was the <i>content</i> that wasn't fulfilling. To qualify all of this, I should say that I'm a huge Hannibal Lector fan, and have read (and loved) the first several books on his character. This short read, however (as I've already insinuated), was a bit disappointing in the way of Thomas Harris magic. So, really, even if you're a huge Hannibal fan, don't expect too much out of this book. You'll only be disappointed.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Road

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Cormac McCarthy
    • Narrated By Tom Stechschulte
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6063)
    Performance
    (2641)
    Story
    (2677)

    America is a barren landscape of smoldering ashes, devoid of life except for those people still struggling to scratch out some type of existence. Amidst this destruction, a father and his young son walk, always toward the coast, but with no real understanding that circumstances will improve once they arrive. Still, they persevere, and their relationship comes to represent goodness in a world of utter devastation.

    Steven says: "Spellbinding"
    "Oh my goodness"
    Overall

    In the world of literature, Cormac McCarthy is a God among men. Unfortunately, his name isn't exactly as popular as it ought to be. Here is a man who lives his life at the pool where we all go to find our words, and yet this last week was the first time I'd ever heard of him and it took considerable searching to find a book by him that I was willing to take a chance on. I'm disappointed (and terribly so) that I haven't read more of his books, but we'll get there, I assure you. The Road, McCarthy's latest book, takes place in a post mass-destruction event (Nuclear War, perhaps? McCarthy never elaborates, and it doesn't seem terribly necessary) era, and it focuses on a father and son who realize as winter is coming on that despite the father's ongoing illness, they have to travel south to the warmer coast, where the "father" (I keep calling him that, because McCarthy never actually names him in the book) hopes to find more food and warmer weather. I know, reading my own description of the book's premise now, that it doesn't <i>sound</i> terribly interesting, but look, I'm begging you. Buy the book. Just buy it. Buy it on audio tape (my personal favorite way to devour a good book. The right narrator can make all the difference, as it does in this book). Look, one knows subconsciously that we've heard every word that will be used in a book before we ever pick it up. It's the mastery of putting those words together in such a way that makes the reader feel as though they've never heard any one of the words, ever, ever before. It is in this sense that McCarthy is such a genius. I was marveling at the fashion in which he used simple phrases like "the boy" and "the man". <i>He's that good</i>. I'd make just about any excuse to listen to the lyrical and beautiful style that Cormac writes in again, and I'm sure I'll do it soon.

    83 of 90 people found this review helpful

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