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Debbie Duncan

San Francisco Bay Area | Member Since 2011

19
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 12 ratings
  • 157 titles in library
  • 16 purchased in 2014
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  • See You at Harry's

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Jo Knowles
    • Narrated By Kate Rudd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (11)

    Twelve-year-old Fern feels invisible. Her dad is forever planning how to boost business at the family restaurant. Her mom is constantly going off to meditate. Her sister, Sarah, who’s taking a year off after high school, is too busy finding ways not to work, and her brother Holden is totally focused on his new "friend". And then there’s Charlie: three years old, a "surprise" baby, and the center of everything. If it wasn’t for her friend Ran, there would be nowhere to turn. Ran is always calm, always positive.

    Debbie Duncan says: "Heartwarming, heartbreaking"
    "Heartwarming, heartbreaking"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about this story?

    I loved these characters, especially Fern and her brothers and sister. I could just see them at Harry's. Jo Knowles makes this family come alive as they deal with life and all its challenges and, as it turns out, tragedies. Kate Rudd is a brilliant reader, too.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • My Beloved World

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Sonia Sotomayor
    • Narrated By Rita Moreno
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (539)
    Performance
    (460)
    Story
    (468)

    The first Hispanic and third woman appointed to the United States Supreme Court, Sonia Sotomayor has become an instant American icon. Now, with a candor and intimacy never undertaken by a sitting Justice, she recounts her life from a Bronx housing project to the federal bench, a journey that offers an inspiring testament to her own extraordinary determination and the power of believing in oneself.

    Jean says: "Overcoming proverty via education"
    "Can I be Sonia Sotomayor's BFF?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does My Beloved World rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    My Beloved World is up there in my top five or six audiobooks, along with Angle of Repose; Tim Robbins's The Great Gatsby; Code Name Verity; and Crossing to Safety. I didn't want it to end.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I love Sonia's spirit, her perseverance in spite of all the obstacles she had as a child. I feel as if I really know her - and that's rare for a U.S. Supreme Court Justice. I appreciate that.


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

    Rita Moreno does a fabulous job. I have not heard any of her other readings.


    Any additional comments?

    I am so glad Barack Obama nominated Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. I cannot imagine a better choice! Her story is so inspiring, I want every kid to read My Beloved World or listen to it.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Slouching Towards Bethlehem

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Joan Didion
    • Narrated By Diane Keaton
    Overall
    (131)
    Performance
    (122)
    Story
    (118)

    Universally acclaimed from the time it was first published in 1968, Slouching Towards Bethlehem has been admired for decades as a stylistic masterpiece. Academy Award-winning actress Diane Keaton (Annie Hall, The Family Stone) performs these classic essays, including the title piece, which will transport the listener back to a unique time and place: the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco during the neighborhood’s heyday as a countercultural center.

    Victoria Wright says: "Didion deserves better."
    "Diane Keaton takes California out of Joan Didion"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Book: absolutely. Audiobook: not at ALL.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    Didion's amazing ability to describe time, place, characters.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Let me count the ways! San Bernardino (first story's setting, mentioned in the second sentence and about a dozen times after that) has never been called "San Bern-dino." Merced is not "MURSE-ed." Sausalito is not "Souse-alito." These are real towns, important to the script (if you will). Correct pronunciation should not be optional!

    Diane Keaton isn't the first I've heard pronounce Washington "Warshington," but ... really? In a professional production? Was no one directing? Editing? Audible should be embarrassed.


    Any additional comments?

    This recording needs to be corrected if Audible continues to sell it. I have bought and listened to dozens of audiobooks; none has been this bad. As another reviewer noted, Didion deserved better. So do Audible's customers. I had to stop listening and go buy the paperback book before Diane Keaton completely ruined it for me.

    15 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Around the World in 80 Days

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Jules Verne
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (591)
    Performance
    (276)
    Story
    (279)

    Shocking his stodgy colleagues at the exclusive Reform Club, enigmatic Englishman Phileas Fogg wagers his fortune, undertaking an extraordinary and daring enterprise to circumnavigate the globe in 80 days. With his French valet Passepartout in tow, Verne's hero traverses the far reaches of the earth, all the while tracked by the intrepid Detective Fix, a bounty hunter certain he is on the trail of a notorious bank robber.

    Gary says: "Fabulous narration for Verne Classic"
    "Jim Dale + a classic? Take me away!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Around the World in 80 Days rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This translation is better than any print version I've found, and was a joy to listen to. It now holds a permanent place on my iPod.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Passepartout carried the day, the trip, the story.


    Which character – as performed by Jim Dale – was your favorite?

    My favorite line: Jim Dale as Passeparout exclaiming, "That takes the biscuit!"


    Any additional comments?

    I very much appreciated the comments at the end from Tim Ditlow of Listening Library, putting the book in context of the time in which it was written and also giving listeners a history of his company.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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