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Montclair, NJ, United States | Member Since 2008

  • 13 reviews
  • 132 ratings
  • 302 titles in library
  • 14 purchased in 2014

  • The Palace of Illusions

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
    • Narrated By Sneha Mathan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The novel traces the princess Panchaali's life, beginning with her birth in fire and following her spirited balancing act as a woman with five husbands who have been cheated out of their father's kingdom. Panchaali is swept into their quest to reclaim their birthright, remaining at their side through years of exile and a terrible civil war involving all the important kings of India.

    Richard says: "timeless story"
    "Good but better with some background"

    I wouldn't rate this as one of my favorite audio books, but I think this is perhaps because I don't have much background in Hindu mythology or Indian culture. The story is told well, but seems a bit odd without that context.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • 11-22-63: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson

    On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

    Kelly says: "I Owe Stephen King An Apology"
    "Enjoyable and thought-provoking"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes - it is a good story well told

    Which scene was your favorite?

    I particularly enjoyed the ending of this audio book, which did a good job making sense of the entire book and tying things together.

    Any additional comments?

    I enjoyed this book but do feel it could have been edited down a bit - there were parts that I felt received more detail than necessary, at the expense of the pace of the book. I also felt (as often with King's books) that there was more violence than perhaps served the plot; though the ending made me change this opinion somewhat.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Discovery of Witches

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Deborah Harkness
    • Narrated By Jennifer Ikeda
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Deep in the stacks of Oxford's Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library.

    haesel says: "Where was this woman's editor?"
    "Don't read this if you don't like vampires"

    It's really my own fault I didn't particularly care for this book - maybe if I hadn't read my daughter's copies of the Twilight series I would have liked it more - but it is yet another rehash of the "I've fallen in love with a vampire who doesn't trust himself with me but I know he loves me so much he will never hurt me" thing. Noble vampire, and a woman who loves him enough to put her life in his hands, etc. I'm tired of women falling in love with vampires and all the weird sexual/blood sucking tensions- and I guess I hadn't realized that this was another of those books. I got halfway through and couldn't finish. But if that's your thing, go for it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mockingjay: The Final Book of The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena live, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge....

    GS says: "Conflicting Emotions"
    "Much better than expected"

    Having read several negative reviews, I was expecting to be disappointed, but I thought it was the perfect ending to the series. It's always been a dark, cautionary story, in which the humor was the type you hear at a funeral - laughter in the face of misery. In this book Katniss really grows up and comes to understand the true nature of her world, and it isn't pretty, but who having read the other two would expect it to be? I liked the ending very much and thought it was pitch-perfect. Anything more fairy-tale like would have felt wrong, given everything the characters have been through.

    And the narrator, as in the two others, is wonderful.

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • South Sea Tales

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Jack London
    • Narrated By Lloyd James
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Most readers are familiar with Jack London's stories of the frozen northland, such as White Fang and To Light a Fire, but many critics feel he should be equally acknowledged for his fascinating stories of the South Pacific. Here is another remote corner of the world, a background for his magnificently colorful and entertaining Tales of the South Pacific.

    Christina says: "Be prepared - it's from another time"
    "Be prepared - it's from another time"

    While Jack London was an amazing writer, these stories haven't stood the test of time too well. It's hard for a modern reader to get past the racism - which is pretty constant - including the liberal use of the "n" word. If you're able to listen to it as a product of its time, great - but for kids? It's got an "audible kids" intro, and I don't think I'd want my kids to listen to this without a whole lot of discussion.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Nobody's Fool

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Richard Russo
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Divorced from his own wife and carrying on halfheartedly with another man's, saddled with a bum knee and friends who make enemies redundant, Sully now has one new problem to cope with: a long-estranged son who is in imminent danger of following in his father's footsteps. With its sly and uproarious humor and a heart that embraces humanity's follies as well as its triumphs, Nobody's Fool is storytelling at its most generous.

    Steve says: "Russo is a genious."
    "Good book - good narration"

    This book draws you in - the main character is as much the town as the "Nobody's Fool" of the title. Very enjoyable with lots of those moments when you recognize the truth in the writing - thought provoking. However, if you are looking for a fast pace with lots of action this probably isn't the book for you. The narrator did a very good job.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Abide with Me

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Strout
    • Narrated By Bernadette Dunne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In the late 1950s, in the small town of West Annett, Maine, a minister struggles to regain his calling, his family, and his happiness in the wake of profound loss. At the same time, the community he has served so charismatically must come to terms with its own strengths and failings, faith and hypocrisy, loyalty and abandonment, when a dark secret is revealed.

    Kathryn says: "Understated and powerful"

    I really enjoyed this book - so much in fact that I listened to it twice. Elizabeth Strout captures characters just like those we have all met, and gives the little New England town in the book a personality of its own. It's both a novel with a good story - of a minister in a small town recovering from the death of his wife and dealing with the problems of his congregation - and a thoughtful book. The ideas -- which are big ones such as the nature of God, forgiveness and redemption, euthenasia -- are all there, but in a lovely approachable way so that you can wrestle with them as much or as little as you like.

    The narration was fine and unobtrusive - which is perfect for this type of book.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Help

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Kathryn Stockett
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Bahni Turpin, Octavia Spencer, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Why we think it’s a great listen: The most celebrated performance in all of Audible’s history, The Help has nearly 2,000 5-star reviews from your fellow listeners. We hear the print book’s not bad, either. In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women - mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends - view one another.

    Jan says: "What a great surprise!"
    "Really enjoyable."

    The three talented narrators really make this book. Their distinct voices make it very clear whose story is being told. To me The Help is perfect for an audiobook - interesting story, well-written, but not so crazily complex that I need to rewind if I miss a little detail. And I escaped into that world when I listened. Loved it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • World Without End

    • UNABRIDGED (45 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In 1989 Ken Follett astonished the literary world with The Pillars of the Earth, set in 12th-century England. Readers and listeners ever since have hoped for a sequel. At last, here it is. Although the two novels may be listened to in any order, World Without End also takes place in Kingsbridge, two centuries after the townspeople finished building their exquisite Gothic cathedral. The cathedral is again at the center of a web of love and hate, greed and pride, ambition and revenge.

    Laura says: "Repetitive, but still enjoyable"

    If you like history or like good storytelling, you won't like this. Nothing against the narrator - he's fine. But if this book hadn't been written by a famous author it would never have been published. Cardboard characters with 21st century mentalities, walking through a world that sounds lifted from a middle school world history textbook. These characters somehow miraculously are responsible for all the big innovations of their time. If you read Pillars of the Earth, you will find basically the exact same characters here, thinly disguised. A waste of time and audio credits!

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Our Mutual Friend

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Charles Dickens
    • Narrated By David Timson

    A mysterious boatman on the Thames, a drowned heir, a dustman and his wife, and a host of other Dickens characters populate this novel of relationships between the classes, money, greed, and love. The 58 characters are presented with remarkable clarity by David Timson.

    A. Millard says: "A Masterpiece"

    Very enjoyable - this narrator brings every one of the characters to life.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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