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Tell the story

Boulder, Co USA | Member Since 2012

  • 14 reviews
  • 81 ratings
  • 322 titles in library
  • 10 purchased in 2015

  • Slow Kill: A Kevin Kerney Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Michael McGarrity
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Things are more complicated than they seam as the suspense builds in this wry and enjoyable police procedural. When Santa Fe police chief Kevin Kerney finds the dead body of hotel magnate Clifford Spalding at a mountain ranch, he has a pretty good idea about who to talk to; the list of suspects isn't long. Spalding had a devious wife who was cheating on him with a known thug, and an embittered ex-wife with mental problems.

    Kathy says: "Close but not cigar"
    "Strong start to boring drivel - a WASTE of time"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I'm not sure who would enjoy a play-by-play of everything from what kind of tie a "non-character" wore, to changing a baby's diaper, to what the detective's wife (who the reader doesn't know from Eve) is doing at work. If one has a low tolerance for irrelevant filler this story will drive you mad. If filler is ok with you as long as it adds ambiance, this story will make you ill.

    What do you think your next listen will be?

    My mind needed a little refreshment so I'm listening to Lee Child's "The Hard Way.

    How could the performance have been better?

    Mr Guidall sounded like he had poorly fitted false teeth much of the time. He did a good job keeping the character's voices straight. If he does have false teeth, I will leave the subject to him and his dentist. If not, leave the whistling saliva voice out.

    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    There were some very good ideas to form interesting stories around, but each died a slow, slooow death.

    Any additional comments?

    There are some authors who should not go anywhere with a tape recorder or dictation software. I think McGarrity is one. He seems to think that minutia is interesting and good writing. It's not. Giving the reader a short history lesson is ok to set the stage, or if it is relevant to the story; but to do it for passing scenery, roadside stops, and suburbs is just lazy filler.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Only the Innocent

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Rachel Abbott
    • Narrated By Sarah Coomes
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    When philanthropist Hugo Fletcher’s dead body is discovered tied to a bed in his London home, Chief Inspector Tom Douglas determines right away that he’s hunting a female killer. Though Fletcher made countless enemies through his work with Eastern European prostitutes, the crime scene reeks of sex and revenge. This murder was personal. Douglas knows Fletcher’s unhappy wife, Laura, should be his prime suspect. She’s definitely hiding something. Something big. But he isn’t convinced it’s murder. Besides, she’s not the only woman with a motive to kill the manipulative billionaire....

    Colorado-reader says: "Sigh... Sigh... Ohhh Sigh..."
    "Sigh... Sigh... Ohhh Sigh..."
    Would you try another book from Rachel Abbott and/or Sarah Coomes?


    What could Rachel Abbott have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Grow up?

    What didn’t you like about Sarah Coomes’s performance?

    She reads like a teenager bemoaning a lost love. She even sighs at the chapter numbers!

    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Only the Innocent?

    I'd have a total rewrite

    Any additional comments?

    I just bought "Only the Innocent" by Rachel Abbot because I saw it advertised on Audible as a good mystery. I'm 10 chapters into it and cannot listen to the immature babbling of grown women bemoaning their lives and loves and... well they just babble. There is no mystery to care about. A man dies at the very beginning, and then two women cannot stop their sighing and immature love stories. I see it as either a book for immature teens (today's teens wouldn't talk to their girlfriends like the two main characters) or a cheap love novel with the picture of a pirate on the cover.
    The narrator makes it even worse. For her, even the chapter numbers are part of a tragedy and deserve the sweet, sweet sighs she is so good at.
    Don't be fooled by the advertising!

    52 of 55 people found this review helpful
  • Every Dead Thing

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By John Connolly
    • Narrated By Jeff Harding
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Former NYPD detective Charlie "Bird" Parker is on the verge of madness. Tortured by the unsolved slayings of his wife and young daughter, he is a man consumed by guilt, regret, and the desire for revenge. When his former partner asks him to track down a missing girl, Parker finds himself drawn into a world beyond his imagining - one where 30 year old killings remain shrouded in fear and lies, a world where the ghosts of the dead torment the living....

    Mike says: "Horrible narration"
    "Terrible Narration, Bad Writing, BORING"
    What disappointed you about Every Dead Thing?

    The story, writing and narration were boring.

    What was most disappointing about John Connolly’s story?

    John Connelly forgot to turn it in to his editor! I know this author can write, but he seems to think he can write the same bloody, gory scene over and over without boring his readers. I don't mind a little blood and guts, but how many times can I listen to a person being "flayed" and the face removed before it becomes a ho-hum occurance? His sentence structure was a joke! You have to hear (or see) it to understand. So, fellow readers and listeners, here are excerpts from the first 4.5 minutes minutes of chapter 48:
    "It was the kind of day that leads lovers to fight"
    "The city fell away and the sound and the landscape became one"
    "a sheet of plastic slapped dryly... the lines holding it sang... it made the screen door knock at its frame like a tired visitor"
    Last but not least,my favorite:The man next to me ate
    "with the concentrated effort of a bad lover, egg yolk tinging his skin like sunlight reflected from a buttercup" WOW!
    Is it a joke? Sunlight reflected from a buttercup? Lines singing and doors knocking like tired visitors? All this is strung together in only one or two pages. 4 ½ minutes. Mr Connolley is not so famous and successful that he doesn't need a good editor. Most of all, he is far too enamored with his own words.

    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Jeff Harding?

    No Idea. Find someone who can pick up the pace now and then (People are being murdered, for Goodness sake!) But, not a narrator who has done all the recent good mysteries.Some are over used. And please, not someone with a British accent unless it's a British novel.

    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disgust. A waste of time with gory scenes repeated over and over and over and over ....

    Any additional comments?

    I have observed that many authors lose touch with their editors when they are successful. Perhaps the editors are afraid they will lose a successful author so they don't speak up. Or the authors just will not listen to their editors. But this book could have been one third shorter, and possibly very good, with a good editor and a decent narrator. Connolly got away with it this time because his past books were pretty good. But I will think twice before buying any of his future work

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sleeping Dogs

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Thomas Perry
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    He came to England to rest. He calls himself Michael Shaeffer, says he's a retired American businessman. He goes to the races, dates a kinky aristocrat, and sleeps with dozens of weapons. Ten years ago it was different. Then, he was the Butcher's Boy, the highly skilled mob hit man who pulled a slaughter job on some double-crossing clients and started a mob war. Ever since, there's been a price on his head. Now, after a decade, they've found him.

    Toni says: ""Utterly unpredictable""
    "Fast paced and well written"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes... depending on the friend. I didn't need to have read any of the previous "Butcher's Boy" stories to find this book lots of fun.

    What did you like best about this story?

    The characters were developed early and none of the back-story was badly inserted (many authors don't master this)

    Which character – as performed by Michael Kramer – was your favorite?

    The Butcher's boy, by any other name.

    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, but not mandatory.

    Any additional comments?

    This was the first book I read of this series, and was excited to read the others; unfortunately the prior books did not measure up.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Detroit: An American Autopsy

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Charlie LeDuff
    • Narrated By Eric Martin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In the heart of America, a metropolis is quietly destroying itself. Detroit, once the richest city in the nation, is now its poorest. Once the vanguard of America’s machine age - mass production, automobiles, and blue-collar jobs - Detroit is now America’s capital for unemployment, illiteracy, foreclosure, and dropouts. With the steel-eyed reportage that has become his trademark and the righteous indignation that only a native son can possess, journalist Charlie LeDuff sets out to uncover what has brought low this once-vibrant city, his city.

    Stacee says: "Great performance, squandered opportunity"
    "The ONE book to read this year."
    Where does Detroit rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Definitely the top 3. Maybe number 1 for making a difference in my life! I have never rated a book as the "ONE to read"; I would feel uncomfortable making that decision for anyone else. This book, however, is a gift, especially to Americans, from any state. Internationally, others will glimpse a snapshot of the U.S. they never expected.

    What other book might you compare Detroit to and why?

    "The Orphan Master's Son", though it was very different and a work of fiction. The truth's revealed and the impact of the 2 stories are immense. I loved every word of "Detroit" as the author took me to a new, different world, within the very world I live in.

    Have you listened to any of Eric Martin’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, but he was perfect for this book.

    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It was good enough to, but I took breaks just to do the book justice and allow it to sink in. I needed time, occasionally, just to think about the reality of the story.

    Any additional comments?

    Very few authors can write non-fiction as engrossing as fiction. Charlie LeDuff is gifted in this rare talent! Really, no matter what you usually read, this book will grip you. I love a fast paced thriller with believable heroes and complex story lines; but "Detroit" was as much a page turner as any of them.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Sycamore Row

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of lung cancer. He trusts no one. Before he hangs himself from a sycamore tree, Hubbard leaves a new, handwritten, will. It is an act that drags his adult children, his black maid, and Jake into a conflict as riveting and dramatic as the murder trial that made Brigance one of Ford County's most notorious citizens, just three years earlier. The second will raises far more questions than it answers. Why would Hubbard leave nearly all of his fortune to his maid? Had chemotherapy and painkillers affected his ability to think clearly?

    Brock says: "Grisham at his best (again)"
    "Up there with the best- and narrated perfectly!"
    Would you listen to Sycamore Row again? Why?

    The story is intricately written and well produced.

    What other book might you compare Sycamore Row to and why?

    A time to kill, of course. There have been several Grisham books I did not like and had stopped reading his work for a while. This book brought me back!

    Have you listened to any of Michael Beck’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    He's always good.

    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    If I could have I would have!

    Any additional comments?

    I'm going to give Grisham another chance- He is at his peak!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • My Story

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Smart, Chris Stewart
    • Narrated By Elizabeth Smart
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    On June 5, 2002, 14-year-old Elizabeth Smart, the daughter of a close-knit Mormon family, was taken from her home in the middle of the night by religious fanatic, Brian David Mitchell and his wife, Wanda Barzee. She was kept chained, dressed in disguise, repeatedly raped, and told she and her family would be killed if she tried to escape. After her rescue on March 12, 2003, she rejoined her family and worked to pick up the pieces of her life.

    Erin says: "Uplifting?"
    "Oh, Elizabeth. There are so many layers unexplored"
    Would you try another book from Elizabeth Smart and Chris Stewart and/or Elizabeth Smart?

    No. It was a sad combination of shallow writing and an horrific experience.

    Would you be willing to try another book from Elizabeth Smart and Chris Stewart ? Why or why not?

    No. The editing and structure were not continuous. The reader is pushed in time from future to present to past to present; always, always, landing in a puddle of Elizabeth's defenses.

    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    She reads well, if she were reading a bedtime story to a child. A professional might have been able to expose more of the emotions Elizabeth seemed to be trying to convey. Her voice is too childish to convey anger or fear or even the righteous indignation that she is certainly entitled to.

    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from My Story?

    The editor should have stopped her from using the sentence, "And then he raped me." I don't need a play by play of sex. A rape is a multifaceted experience for any woman or girl. There was more to say than "He took me in the tent and raped me." At the very least, the revulsion of having to look at a dirty grown man's penis and the fear that she would lose her virginity to this monster should have been part of this horrific act on a child. The editor and co-writer failed to get Elizabeth to open up. Constantly saying that she hated or feared her captor did not convey the effects of those emotions on a fourteen-year-old girl.

    Any additional comments?

    I really wanted to like this story, and I think there will be plenty of stars awarded her by deeply religious people who simply want to uphold her writing as they uphold her faith. I cannot be one of those readers because I hope Elizabeth reads some of the more critical reviews and, even if not for publication, allows herself to feel and explore more deeply. This is a story that Elizabeth chose to write. If she was not ready to reveal any of herself to herself and the world, then it was not time to tell her story. I sincerely wish her well and hope that she learns introspection as a tool toward a lifetime of healing.

    9 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • The Orphan Master's Son: A Novel of North Korea

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Adam Johnson
    • Narrated By Tim Kang, Josiah D. Lee, James Kyson Lee, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Pak Jun Do is the haunted son of a lost mother - a singer “stolen” to Pyongyang - and an influential father who runs Long Tomorrows, a work camp for orphans. There the boy is given his first taste of power, picking which orphans eat first and which will be lent out for manual labor. Recognized for his loyalty and keen instincts, Jun Do comes to the attention of superiors in the state, rises in the ranks, and starts on a road from which there will be no return.

    Lisa says: "The most compelling listen I've ever owned"
    "THE Most Important Fiction You will EVER Read!"
    Would you listen to The Orphan Master's Son again? Why?

    Yes. Absolutely. It's important to remember that evil is dangerous and does exist in humans and their governments; those who believe that "making nice" with evil will bring the world to peace are naive, and perhaps equally as dangerous.

    What other book might you compare The Orphan Master's Son to and why?

    The Gulag Archipelago was arguably as important, but the Orphan Master's Son is much more engaging and easily read. Read it as non-fiction. Then think twice about chemical weapons.

    Which scene was your favorite?

    The scenes portraying the families' fear of each other within the family. The scenes of North Koreans holding themselves as superior to all others and stealing citizens of other countries. These are not folk tales.
    My own father told me these stories in the mid-1970s as an explanation as to why we should NEVER have a treaty with North Korea. I was a naive "Peace-nic" and thought he must be exaggerating.
    He was an intelligence officer (translate: spy) who won metals for discovering the very secret tunnels used as described in this book.

    If you could rename The Orphan Master's Son, what would you call it?

    The Other Reality. Yes, they really do believe that all other countries are evil and inferior. They also have no qualms about destroying each and every one of us.

    Any additional comments?

    Please know that I was tear-gassed during Viet-Nam war protests and do not regret it. That said, this book should be read by every American and citizen of the free world. These people are dangerous. Adam Johnson has an important message for us and we should take it very seriously.
    This book deserves the awards it received!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Survivor in Death: In Death, Book 20

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By J. D. Robb
    • Narrated By Susan Ericksen

    No affairs. No criminal connections. No DNA. No clues. Eve Dallas may be the best cop in the city - not to mention having the lavish resources of her husband Roarke at her disposal - but the Swisher case has her baffled. The family members were murdered in their beds with brutal, military precision.

    Cherita says: "Rocks!"
    "Snivel, snivel, repeat, repeat, Boring, Boring."
    What disappointed you about Survivor in Death?

    You know the phrase "Deep down inside", referring to someone who really is supposedly nice or loving, but just doesn't show it? Is the concept worth almost 400 pages? "Survivor in Death is devoted to, and has every conversation, about this ridiculous adolescent attitude.

    The main character, Eve, is continuously reassuring herself or being reassured by others. And I mean CONTINUOUSLY. Now, just in case Eve (or J. D. Robb) didn't get it the first 300 times, I'd like to add: "You can do it, you are alright, just let it go, everybody knows you are a good person, DEEP DOWN INSIDE."

    It's enough to make you nauseous after the first time, but every chapter? Come on J.D. have a heart for the reader too! Making them endure pages and pages, chapter after monotonous chapter, of contemplating and mulling and dwelling on Eve’s past, and present, and her pain, or her man, or psychiatrist, contemplating with her…

    But then, thank goodness, Robb gives Eve a quick break for sex with the man who must be insane to even be there. And the pillow talk is about, what? Poor Eve. Poor Eve. We must protect poor Eve.

    This could have been an intriguing story if only Robb had gone on with the story. But for all those hundreds of pages, no solid progress is made in the case for the readers to do some crime solving of their own.

    Has Survivor in Death turned you off from other books in this genre?

    First, what genre would it be? Possibly Romance Novels? In that case, yes. I am totally turned off from the genre of Romance Novels masquerading as Mystery Fiction. In this, I think Robb has a genre all of her own and I am very turned off by it.

    I became certain of Robb's unique genre, when I had an unexpected wake-up call!

    It happened right after starting Part 2.: I forgot to press ‘pause’ when I stopped listening (about a half-hour before). I put the earplugs in and prepared to rewind--- but I had not missed a thing! Eve was, again, dwelling on her damaged childhood, and the man who loved her anyway, and how wounded she was, and how to go on with life, and how strong she must be, and on and on and on.

    Yes, readers, she was fine. She would be strong and fine. Fine. Deep Down Inside. Fine. Strong. OMG

    I don't know who these people are who gave this book 5 stars. I'm perplexed. I guess we won't be best friends and that's ok.

    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    She could have recommended editing Robb's redundancy, but that's not her job. She was fine.

    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    If it weren’t for the narrator it would be unlistenable. She did well with the material given to her with passable accents and gender changes.

    Any additional comments?

    Readers, I am so hurt, so deeply wounded. I will never, ever, read this woman, J. D. Robb again. I now carry that with me. But I must be strong. I will, yes, WILL get past it. Yes, readers, I am all the more determined!

    Deep down inside, I know I am strong. As long as others believe in me I can be strong for them too. I will not allow this book back into my life, or question whether this terrible experience will rule me! I will let only one man love me, and he alone will know me...

    Oh. Sorry. I got carried away. It happens. But unlike J. D. Robb I did not get carried away for hundreds of pages, and then have the audacity to sell it.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog: And Other Stories from a Child Psychiatrist's Notebook

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Bruce D. Perry, Maia Szalavitz
    • Narrated By Danny Campbell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    What happens when a young child is traumatized? How does terror affect a child's mind---and how can that mind recover? Child psychiatrist Bruce Perry has treated children faced with unimaginable horror: genocide survivors, witnesses to their own parents' murders, children raised in closets and cages, the Branch Davidian children, and victims of family violence. In The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog, he tells their stories of trauma and transformation.

    Marilyn says: "Changed a Sixth-Grade Teacher's Life"
    Would you try another book from Bruce D. Perry and Maia Szalavitz and/or Danny Campbell?

    NO I was fooled by the title. The author writes like a high school lecturer. This could have been a great read, but way too much lecturing.

    How could the performance have been better?

    Even given the dry material, I still think a little emotion could have been exuded.

    Was The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog worth the listening time?

    No- it just keeps you waiting for SOMETHING interesting.

    Any additional comments?

    Advise: Hire a ghost writer.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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