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Jay Quintana

Member Since 2015

ratings
34
REVIEWS
24
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
64

  • The Works of F. Scott Fitzgerald: 45 Short Stories and Novels

    • UNABRIDGED (45 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By F. Scott Fitzgerald
    • Narrated By Jay Wohlert
    Overall
    (28)
    Performance
    (25)
    Story
    (23)

    The Works of F. Scott Fitzgerald is a collection of 45 novels and short stories by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald's short stories have themes that not only relate to the problems and culture of the Jazz Age, but were also about the promises and despair encountered by the young, as well as aging. Love and relationships between two mismatched or unlikely characters, such as people who are unlikely to develop a spark of romantic interest between each other, is common.

    C. says: "Worst performance by a reader I've ever heard"
    "No one is exaggerating: the narration is awful."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What would have made The Works of F. Scott Fitzgerald better?

    A better narrator and, assuming there was a director, a better director. The only way to listen to this is at 1.5 X speed. Worse than the blandness of the narrator's voice is his constant miss pronouncement of words and names. It is laughably and, at times, surreally bad.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Since this contained two novels and many short stories, it's hard to say.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Quicker pace and correctly pronounced words and names. How hard was it to consult a dictionary?


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

    The production reeks of amateur hour. You're constantly taken out of the stories because you're scratching your head as to how this got made.


    Any additional comments?

    Trust me, and the other reviewers, on the miss pronounced words and names.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Cover Her Face

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By P. D. James
    • Narrated By Penelope Dellaporta
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (151)
    Performance
    (112)
    Story
    (112)

    Headstrong and beautiful, the young housemaid Sally Jupp is put rudely in her place, strangled in her bed behind a bolted door. Coolly brilliant policeman Adam Dalgliesh of Scotland Yard must find her killer among a houseful of suspects, most of whom had very good reason to wish her ill. Cover Her Face is P. D. James' electric debut novel, an ingeniously plotted mystery that immediately placed her among the masters of suspense.

    Kathy says: "Better Dalgleish stories....but classic PD James"
    "Beautiful writing, average mystery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The writing is wonderful. Succinct, vivid descriptions; witty, erudite dialogue. The mystery, alas, left much to be desired. The motives of some of the characters just didn't ring true to me. So, as far as recommending goes, if they want to read a good mystery, then no. If you just love the sounds of well written sentences, then yes.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    I felt we needed more hints about who the murderer was dropped throughout the book.


    Any additional comments?

    This was, I believe, P.D. James' first book. There's enough promise here that it's no surprise it wasn't her only book. Still, she could've been better. And I'm sure she was.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Steady Running of the Hour: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Justin Go
    • Narrated By Steve West
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (56)
    Performance
    (47)
    Story
    (48)

    In 1924, the English mountaineer Ashley Walsingham dies attempting to summit Mount Everest, leaving his fortune to his former lover, Imogen Soames-Andersson - whom he has not seen in seven years. Ashley's solicitors search in vain for Imogen, but the estate remains unclaimed. Nearly 80 years later, new information leads the same law firm to Tristan Campbell, a young American who could be the estate's rightful heir. If Tristan can prove he is Imogen's descendant, the inheritance will be his.

    E. Borden says: "strong start - but I want all those hours back!!"
    "Promising writer, uneven debut novel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Steady Running of the Hour the most enjoyable?

    The prose is beautiful and the subject matter -- World War I, the early days of Everest expeditions, a mystery inheritance spanning generations -- is interesting.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    I don't think all the lose ends were tied up. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it did leave me with questions that I wanted answered. Of course, this probably was the author's intent.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The meal scene at base camp in Everest. Something about the camaraderie of the men touched me. Especially since they were engaging in something far less destructive than war.


    Any additional comments?

    I felt there were one too many coincidences and the motivation of Imogen bordered on the irrational. Since the separation of Imogen and Ashley is one of the most significant events in the novel, the fact that it didn't seem realistic took away from my listening pleasure.

    All this said, the author writes well and I look forward to seeing what he does next.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • At the Mountains of Madness

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By H. P. Lovecraft
    • Narrated By William Roberts
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (77)
    Performance
    (69)
    Story
    (71)

    At the Mountains of Madness first appeared in 1936, in the February, March and April editions of the American magazine Astounding Stories. One of H.P. Lovecraft’s most chilling works, it draws on Edgar Allan Poe’s Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, as well as Lovecraft’s deep fascination with the Antarctic. The sinister discoveries made by a group of explorers in At the Mountains of Madness are testament to the author’s enormous powers of imagination.

    A. Peterson says: "old-fashioned language made nearly unlistenable"
    "Loved the prose, lukewarm on the story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about At the Mountains of Madness? What did you like least?

    I loved the writing -- ornate, poetic, vivid. I have to say, though, that the story just didn't grip me. At the time it was written, it probably was unique, but it has subsequently been done better by others.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    The narrator keeps telling us how reluctant he is to reveal what he knows he must reveal. Naturally, he does this at the end. It left me underwhelmed.


    What does William Roberts bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He was good.


    Could you see At the Mountains of Madness being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    I suppose it would be a visual spectacle-- Lovecraft does a great job describing this world of ice -- but I don't see the story really hooking people.


    Any additional comments?

    I love Loveraft's style. You have to work a bit to follow, but it's worth it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Main Street

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Sinclair Lewis
    • Narrated By Barbara Caruso
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (89)
    Performance
    (38)
    Story
    (38)

    Widely hailed as a milestone in American literature, Sinclair Lewis' Main Street vividly describes a country on the verge of massive change, with traditional values being threatened by progress. The novel's heroine, Carol Milford, is a highly educated, ambitious woman who plans to join a newly enlightened society. But after marrying a small-town doctor, she finds herself trapped in the role of a dutiful wife. Carol's desires for social change conflict with the security of her comfortable married life, as she struggles to understand the cost of conformity...and rebellion. As relevant today as it was upon its 1920 publication, Main Street is both a masterful piece of writing and a fascinating microcosm of America's social evolution.

    Steve Bird says: "Delightful reading of an excellent book"
    "Thought of stopping 1/3 way in, glad I didn't"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Main Street rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    At first, the story and the protagonist annoyed (and bored) me. There's a mean-spiritedness about both that I found off putting. And yet, the story and the lead character grew on me. As I progressed further into the story, the characters became very real to me. Though difficult to accept at first, I could identify with them. What I initially thought of as mean-spiritedness is Lewis being honest. Not an easy listen, but definitely a worthwhile one.


    What other book might you compare Main Street to and why?

    Madame Bovary. Both have protagonists that long for something that is probably out of their reach.


    Any additional comments?

    At first, I thought the only value of the novel was as a sociological document. A chronicle of a people, time, and place that, frankly, is of interest only to sociologists. But, as mentioned above, the characters really grew on me. I became emotionally involved in their lives.

    Though it is episodic in structure, if you can get through the first third of it, I think you'll find it hard to put down.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Everything Bad Is Good for You

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Steven Johnson
    • Narrated By Jason Culp
    Overall
    (36)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (32)

    From the author of the New York Times bestseller Mind Wide Open comes a groundbreaking assessment of popular culture as it's never been considered before: through the lens of intelligence. Forget everything you’ve ever read about the age of dumbed-down, instant-gratification culture.

    Jay Quintana says: "Wanted to love this, but, not convinced."
    "Wanted to love this, but, not convinced."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Steven Johnson and/or Jason Culp?

    Yes to both. Johnson writes well and Culp's narration breezes along. It was an easy listen. Alas, I just wasn't convinced of the author's claims that watching TV and playing video games has made us smarter. In fact, I'm not convinced that the people who say these things dumb us down are wrong. Believe me, as someone who's watched and played more than my share of TV and video games, I would like nothing more than to agree with the author.


    Did Everything Bad Is Good for You inspire you to do anything?

    Frankly, it made me think of watching less TV and playing fewer video games.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • As I Lay Dying

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By William Faulkner
    • Narrated By Marc Cashman, Robertson Dean, Lina Patel, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (467)
    Performance
    (254)
    Story
    (257)

    At the heart of this 1930 novel is the Bundren family's bizarre journey to Jefferson to bury Addie, their wife and mother. Faulkner lets each family member, including Addie, and others along the way tell their private responses to Addie's life.

    Kristina says: "Faulkner's As I Lay Dying review"
    "Frustrating, annoying, but ultimately satisfying"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to As I Lay Dying the most enjoyable?

    The ending. This was a challenge and I felt like giving up at times, but the last act was satisfying.


    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    They sounded exactly like you'd expect the characters to sound. I'm not from the South, though, so I can't vouch for the authenticity.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I got angry at times listening to this. It was hard to know what was going on. Frankly, I benefited a lot by consulting SparkNotes. I was close to throwing in the towel on this, but, well, I kinda wanted to say I've read a few Faulkners, so I kept at it. It was a good decision because the characters and the story grew on me.


    Any additional comments?

    I've listened to many audiobooks, this was definitely one of the more challenging ones. Had to hit the rewind button quite often.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Solaris: The Definitive Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Stanislaw Lem, Bill Johnston (translator)
    • Narrated By Alessandro Juliani
    Overall
    (2475)
    Performance
    (2033)
    Story
    (2054)

    At last, one of the world’s greatest works of science fiction is available - just as author Stanislaw Lem intended it. To mark the 50th anniversary of the publication of Solaris, Audible, in cooperation with the Lem Estate, has commissioned a brand-new translation - complete for the first time, and the first ever directly from the original Polish to English. Beautifully narrated by Alessandro Juliani (Battlestar Galactica), Lem’s provocative novel comes alive for a new generation.

    Burns says: "A comment on negative reviews"
    "Interesting premise, reads too often like a manual"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I'm no expert on life in the universe, but Lem's depiction of extraterrestrial life sounded plausible. So, if a friend were interested in this subject, I'd recommend the book. If he or she wanted an entertaining read, I wouldn't.


    What could Stanislaw Lem and Bill Johnston (translator) have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    I wish the depiction of Solaris was suggested rather than painstakingly detailed. It was hard to follow all the scientific discourses. It felt like these meandering, jargon-filled passages comprised at least half the book.


    What does Alessandro Juliani bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He was by far the best thing about this. Were it not for his performance, I wouldn't have finished the book.


    Did Solaris inspire you to do anything?

    I'm not sure if inspired is the right word, but it did prompt me to do some internet research so I could fully understand what Lem was trying to say here.


    Any additional comments?

    I honestly wanted to like this book. I'm a huge PKD fan. Lem, I believe, said PKD is the best American novelist. So I'm automatically inclined to like Lem's work. PKD may not have the science correct, but he knows how to tell a story. His stories sail along, never finding any doldrums. This wasn't the case for me with Solaris.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Suspended Sentences: Three Novellas

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Patrick Modiano
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot, Sean Runnette, Arthur Morey
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (16)

    In this essential trilogy of novellas by the winner of the 2014 Nobel Prize in Literature, French author Patrick Modiano reaches back in time, opening the corridors of memory and exploring the mysteries to be encountered there.

    Donald says: "Reflections on adolescence in Paris"
    "About memories and impressions, not plot"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Suspended Sentences in three words, what would they be?

    Impressionistic. Subtle. Sad.


    What did you like best about this story?

    You're going to have to really work because nothing's straight forward. This isn't Hemingway or Chekhov. At times, one wonders where the author's going, but you understand what Modiano's saying at the end of each story.


    Any additional comments?

    The reason I rated the narration 3, is because it's the average of the narrators. Arthur Morey - 5 stars. Sean Runnette - 4 stars. Bronson Pinchot - 1 star. I've heard Pinchot narrate other books and loved those performances, but here, he reads with a French accent! It's annoying! It takes the focus off the book and puts it on the narrator. Bad idea.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By K. M. Weiland
    • Narrated By Sonja Field
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (31)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (27)

    Let outlines help you write a better book! Writers often look upon outlines with fear and trembling. But when properly understood and correctly wielded, the outline is one of the most powerful weapons in a writer's arsenal.

    Andrea M Reutzel says: "Just what I needed!"
    "Great listen, probably best for "beginners""
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Outlining Your Novel the most enjoyable?

    Felt like I was having a conversation with the author.


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

    First time I've listened to her. She did a great job, so this most likely won't be my last time.


    Any additional comments?

    Having read a lot of books on writing, there's nothing new here. I'm of the opinion, though, that it doesn't hurt to have these lessons burned into your memory. And the writing and the narration make this such a delightful listen that it was well worth my time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The World Is Bigger Now: An American Journalist's Release from Captivity in North Korea

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Euna Lee, Lisa Dickey
    • Narrated By Janet Song
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (20)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (13)

    On March 17, 2009, Lee and her Current TV colleague Laura Ling were working on a documentary about the desperate lives of North Koreans fleeing their homeland for a chance at freedom when they were violently apprehended by North Korean soldiers. For nearly five months they remained detained while friends and family in the United States were given little information about their status or conditions. South Korean by blood, Lee was branded a traitor by her North Korean captors....

    Anon says: "Really great book - Sadly lots of religious jargon"
    "Delivers on what's promised. Read full title."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The World Is Bigger Now?

    The beginning, where we learn about the experiences of the North Koreans who've made it to China. Frankly, this was much more interesting then the arrest, captivity, trial, and release of the two Americans.


    Any additional comments?

    If you want to learn about North Korea, there are better books -- Nothing to Envy and The Aquariums of Pyongyang. Here, you learn a lot about Euna Lee -- her childhood, her family, her faith -- and not so much about North Korea. I'd prefer that it were reversed, but that's on me. The book delivers what it advertises. When it says it's "a story about faith, family, and forgiveness" it's not kidding. If, like me, you're an atheist, you'll do a bit of eye rolling all the times God is mentioned.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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