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Janice

LODI, CA, United States

37
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 18 reviews
  • 24 ratings
  • 66 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • Eye of the Red Tsar: A Novel of Suspense

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Sam Eastland
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    Overall
    (240)
    Performance
    (80)
    Story
    (80)

    Shortly after midnight on July 17, 1918, the imprisoned family of Tsar Nicholas Romanov was awakened and led down to the basement of the Ipatiev house. There they were summarily executed. A decade later, one man lives in purgatory, banished to a forest on the outskirts of humanity. Pekkala was once the most trusted secret agent of the Romanovs, the right-hand man of the Tsar himself. Now he is Prisoner 4745-P. But the state needs Pekkala one last time.

    Sara says: "Wow What a Book"
    "Great Mystery and Intrigue"
    Overall

    Overall I enjoyed this story. The characters are believable, and the main character - Piccoula - is likeable. The story kept me in suspense and Piccoula's investigative skills were great to follow. I enjoyed the backdrop of communist Russia. The only thing that I found difficult was how this book took and actual event - the murder of the Romanov's - and twisted in the fictionalized events. I kept wanting to refer to what I had read in historical accounts, which varied in many ways. If I had no knowledge of the Romanov story prior to reading, I would have rated Eye of the Red Tsar a 5. If you are a history buff, you may not find it quite as enjoyable.

    4 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Faithful Place: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Tana French
    • Narrated By Tim Gerard Reynolds
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3820)
    Performance
    (2190)
    Story
    (2195)

    New York Times best-selling author Tana French has won the prestigious Edgar, Barry, Macavity, and Anthony awards. As her third novel featuring the Dublin Murder Squad opens, 19-year-old Frank Mackey is waiting in vain for Rosie, who he’s supposed to run away to London with. But when she doesn’t show, Frank leaves Dublin without her—thinking never to return.

    Buffalogal says: "Incredible"
    "Can't get enough of Tana French!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    When I first realized that the main character was Mackey, I almost didn't download it. I loved Tana French's first two novels, so I went ahead and purchased The Faithful Place. I AM SO GLAD I DID! The Faithful Place is my favorite of the three that French has written so far. Mackey is definitely easier to relate to in this one. His famly and background explain a lot about his character and add depth. The conflict within his family is heart-breaking and the mystery surrounding the disappearance and death of his girlfriend from long ago left me guessing. The narrator was excellent, though his Irish brogue isn't as thick as the narrators in the previous novels. Even if you don't like Mackey's character in The Likeness, this is a must read for any Tana French fan.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Stolen Life: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Jaycee Dugard
    • Narrated By Jaycee Dugard
    Overall
    (1417)
    Performance
    (1060)
    Story
    (1060)

    "In the summer of 1991 I was a normal kid. I did normal things. I had friends and a mother who loved me. I was just like you. Until the day my life was stolen. For eighteen years I was a prisoner. I was an object for someone to use and abuse. For eighteen years I was not allowed to speak my own name. I became a mother and was forced to be a sister. For eighteen years I survived an impossible situation. On August 26, 2009, I took my name back. My name is Jaycee Lee Dugard. I dont think of myself as a victim. I survived...."

    Daniel says: "Terrific"
    "Honest yet sad..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    After purchasing this audio book, it took me a while to actually listen to it. I wasn't sure if I really wanted to know the details of the horrible life that Jaycee Dugard had to live during her captivity. Jaycee does not hold back - she is very honest in describing the things that Phillip Garrido did to her and how difficult it was to live. To hear directly from her what her thought process was and how she managed to make it through this time was very interesting. I liked hearing Jaycee narrate her own book, and I admire her strength. However, it is a difficult story to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Grave Goods

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (509)
    Performance
    (229)
    Story
    (227)

    England, 1176. Beautiful, tranquil Glastonbury Abbey - one of England's holiest sites, and believed by some to be King Arthur's sacred Isle of Avalon - has been burned almost to the ground. The arsonist remains at large, but the fire has uncovered something even more shocking: two hidden skeletons, a man and a woman. The skeletons' height and age send rumors flying - are the remains those of Arthur and Guinevere?

    Irenehope says: "Third is Second"
    "Great story, awesome narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the third in the series. It was typical Ariana Franklin. The story was good, not my favorite but definitely worth the read. If you like historical thrillers you will enjoy this one. If you read Franklin's other novels in this series and enjoyed them, you will not be disappointed. The twists were great and even the new characters were enjoyable. The narrator is awesome! If you have read the first two, you have to read this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Likeness

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Tana French
    • Narrated By Heather O'Neill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3059)
    Performance
    (1948)
    Story
    (1953)

    Tana French's debut, In the Woods, hit the New York Times best-seller list and drew rave reviews from the Times (London) and Booklist. Picking up six months later, this riveting sequel finds Detective Cassie Maddox still scarred by her last case. When her boyfriend calls her to a chilling murder scene, Cassie is forced to face her inner demons. A young woman has been found stabbed to death outside Dublin, and the victim looks just like Cassie.

    Michael says: "Really on a Different Level"
    "LOVE TANA FRENCH!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Likeness is the second in the series by Tana French with the character, Cassie Maddox. This one starts about 6 months after the case that is depicted in the first novel, In the Woods. While I liked In the Woods, I was a little disappointed with the ending. The Likeness did not disappoint at all. French's writing is current, and she writes a good story. The characters are well-rounded and relatable. French brings them to life - warts and all. Cassie's internal struggle is believable, and gives her depth. The language is current, and the story flows easily.

    The plot is excellent. I wasn't totally sure of how it would end - though I had narrowed down "who did it" pretty close. I especially liked the occasional reference to the previous book. Someone who hasn't read In the Woods could still read this one with no problem - the references were subtle and like finding a prize every now and then. For example, at the end of In the Woods, Ryan tells about a call where there was no voice on the end, then a hang up - then in The Likeness, Cassie makes a call and hangs up.

    The narrator is good. At first I didn't know if I would like her, but by the end of the book - I cannot imagine any other voice as that of Cassie Maddox. There is an Australlian accent that is pretty bad, but it is not a main character, and everything else is perfect. I'm now a huge Tana French fan and can't wait to read her next one!!!!!!!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • In the Woods

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Tana French
    • Narrated By Steven Crossley
    Overall
    (5043)
    Performance
    (3070)
    Story
    (3070)

    As dusk approaches a small Dublin suburb in the summer of 1984, mothers begin to call their children home. But on this warm evening, three children do not return from the dark and silent woods. When the police arrive, they find only one of the children, unable to recall a single detail of the previous hours.

    Twenty years later, the found boy, Rob Ryan, is a detective on the Dublin Murder Squad and keeps his past a secret. But when a 12-year-old girl is found murdered in the same woods, he and Detective Cassie Maddox find themselves investigating a case chillingly similar to the previous unsolved mystery.

    Amazon Customer says: "A near-flawless audiobook (but for one thing...)"
    "Good book. Great charaters. Awesome narrator."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    In the Woods by Tana French was a surprisingly good book. I'm always a little tentative about trying out new authors, so I was thrilled to find myself in the middle of an exciting novel with characters that I really connected to. In fact, I would have given the story and overall a five if the ending wasn't so disappointing. Hopefully some of the loose ends will be resolved in future books. The characters were well-written, I felt like I knew them all intimately. I loved the interplay between the main character and his partner - the way they worked together was realistic and entertaining. The double plot - the current day murder and the detectives childhood tragedy - worked well together. They were entertwined masterfully and kept me on the edge of my seat waiting for what would come next. I just downloaded Tana French's next novel and can't wait to start it!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Romanov Prophecy

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Steve Berry
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (470)
    Performance
    (197)
    Story
    (194)

    In 1917, Nicholas II, Tsar of Russia, was executed by revolutionaries. Now, in response to the collapse of the country's economy, the people have voted to instate a new Tsar, one who will be chosen from the descendents of Nicholas II. But a powerful group of Western businessmen want to make sure he is a candidate they can control, and hire African-American lawyer Miles Lord, with his knowledge of Russian language and history, to check the background of their chosen man.

    Christopher says: "This was well worth it."
    "Great Read..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Romanov Prophecy takes the reader on an exciting whirlwind escapade that travels from Russia to the U.S. in a Bourne-esque fashion. I have always been fascinated by the tragedy of the Romanov assasination and the hope that two of the children survived - and this novel played on that interest with a plot reminiscent of the Da Vinci Code. There are many twists and turns, an age-old prophecy, cryptic messages, and a secret society.

    The characters are well-formed and believable. The language is easy to read and flows nicely. The narrator is excellent. He does a great Russian accent and easily transitions from that to the southern accent. He has the perfect voice for a historical thriller with a government conspiracy thrown in. I never became bored or had a hard time following along. This is an excellent audio that I highly recommend.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Emperor's Tomb

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Steve Berry
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1163)
    Performance
    (468)
    Story
    (464)

    The tomb of China’s First Emperor, guarded by an underground army of terra-cotta warriors, has remained sealed for more than 2,000 years. Though it’s regarded as one of the greatest archaeological sites in the world, the Chinese government won’t allow anyone to open it. Why? That question is at the heart of a dilemma faced by former Justice Department operative Cotton Malone, whose life is shattered when he receives an anonymous note carrying an unfamiliar Web address.

    Jackie says: "Fascinating Ride!"
    "Interesting story - cliche' characters"
    Overall

    While I am fascinated by Chinese history and love thrillers/mysteries that are set in this area of the world, the characters detracted from what should have been an excellent novel. The descriptions and actions of the main characters were interesting, but the dialogue is contrite and reminds me of a bad movie. The actions scenes were predictable - and there was very little surprise. Some of the monologues about Chinese emperors and dynasties went on a bit long - even I became a bit bored. I did enjoy the descriptions of the Chinese artifacts and tombs. I also found the background of the terracotta army fascinating. The narrrator was pretty good. It is a good read, but I wouldn't pay full price for it.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mistress of the Art of Death: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1092)
    Performance
    (364)
    Story
    (363)

    In medieval England, four children have been murdered, and the townsfolk blame their Jewish neighbors. The doctor chosen to investigate is a woman, Adelia. As she examines the victims and retraces their last steps, she must conceal her true identity in order to avoid accusations of witchcraft. Along the way, she's assisted by Sir Rowley Picot, a man with a personal stake in the investigation. A former Crusader knight, Rowley may be a needed friend - or the fiend for whom they are searching.

    Irenehope says: "History-Mystery of the Year & its only March"
    "Medieval "Bones" or "Crossing Jordan""
    Overall

    Mistress of the Art of Death is a medieval version of Crossing Jordan or Bones. The main character is a woman doctor/coroner during a time period that viewed women as "less than" and expected them to make babies and cook. She struggles between being detached and scientific as she experiences myriad feelings within the small town of Cambridge. As a who-done-it, I thought I had figured out who the murderer was only to find out I was wrong. The other characters in the book have depth and are well-rounded. I became invested in each of them. The details about life in a time that had no technological advances were fascinating. The narrator does a fantastic job.. Her accent does not detract from the story - in fact, it adds to it. She even does well on the male voices. The only negative I could see was that it did go on a bit long after the murderer was discovered - but once I reached the end I understood why and am looking forward to more adventures with this character.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo: The Millennium Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Stieg Larsson
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (23658)
    Performance
    (10243)
    Story
    (10324)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: How do you one-up a book that’s already a global literary phenomenon? Hire Simon Vance to (flawlessly) interpret the loves, lives, and murders of Sweden’s cold and secret-filled world. A spellbinding amalgam of murder mystery, family saga, love story, and financial intrigue. It's about the disappearance 40 years ago of Harriet Vanger, a young scion of one of the wealthiest families in Sweden.

    Pamela Murphy says: "COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN"
    "Disappointing. Great story dragged down by details"
    Overall

    The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo is a good story dragged out too far to make it truly enjoyable. I was very torn between whether I should turn off the book because it was so long and tedious or I should hang in there with the hope that the conclusion would redeem the first 17 chapters of unending minutia. Whle the last third was excellent - it still did not make up for the first two-thirds.

    On the positive side, Larson is an excellent writer. The characters are so well-written and detailed that the reader has a vested relationship with each one. The plot is meticulous and no detail is left unturned. Each character's history and thought process is thoroughly laid out. Unfortunately, it is this attention to detail that comes back to haunt the author. While there is some graphic imagery that can be disturbing, I believe it contributes to the storyline and is well within reason.

    Some of the character background is gratuitous, and one-third of the book could be cut down to a more concise version that keeps the reader involved and doesn't become boring.

    There are actually two separate plots that are carried through - (1) a murder mystery, and (2) a David and Goliath fight between a major corporation and a financial journalist. I believe that it is the massive detail put into explainng the financial story that drags down the entire book.

    I really wanted to enjoy this book. I was excited about starting it and was expecting a well-written and intellectual story. I was severely disappointed and almost gave up during Chapter 16. I can't recommend spending money on this title. If you have any available credits, it may be worth it if you are willing to hang in there until the end. Otherwise, The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo is disappointing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Confession: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Scott Sowers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3565)
    Performance
    (1277)
    Story
    (1295)

    An innocent man is about to be executed. Only a guilty man can save him. Travis Boyette is such a man. In 1998, in the small East Texas city of Sloan, he abducted, raped, and strangled a popular high-school cheerleader. He buried her body so that it would never be found, then watched in amazement as police and prosecutors arrested and convicted Donté Drumm, a local football star, and marched him off to death row.

    Suzn F says: "I confess, I loved it!"
    "I see another movie on the way!"
    Overall

    Grisham's new book is an excellent work that I could not stop listening to! The Confession is written in typical Grisham fashion, along the line of A Time to Kill, The Chamber and The Rainmaker. The characters are realistic and the narrator captures the essence of each personality. The plot is both intriguing and maddening. The subject is controversial - an accused murderer less than one week away from execution. When a man walks into a pastor's office and states he is the real killer - the rush to stop the execution and determine if the man is truthful or crazy begins.The twists and turns kept me on edge and I experienced an entire array of emotion from anger to incredulousness to sadness. Anyone who is a John Grisham fan MUST READ The Confession. For those who have never read a Grisham novel, this one will start you on an obsession to read all of his books. If I could have given 10 stars... The Confession would have them all!

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful

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