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Jess

boulder, CO, United States | Member Since 2011

6
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 41 ratings
  • 158 titles in library
  • 19 purchased in 2014
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  • The New Republic: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Lionel Shriver
    • Narrated By Edoardo Ballerini
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (12)

    Ostracized as a kid, Edgar Kellogg has always yearned to be popular. A disgruntled New York corporate lawyer, he's more than ready to leave his lucrative career for the excitement and uncertainty of journalism. When he's offered the post of foreign correspondent in a Portuguese backwater that has sprouted a homegrown terrorist movement, Edgar recognizes the disappeared larger-than-life reporter he's been sent to replace, Barrington Saddler, as exactly the outsize character he longs to emulate.

    Jess says: "Not her best..."
    "Not her best..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Probably not. It's the least favorite of Lionel shriver"s books, for me.


    What could Lionel Shriver have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Nothing. The writing is superb. The subject matter didn't interest me.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The part here the main character's illsuions about his icon are shattered. Can't be too specific because I don't remember.


    Could you see The New Republic being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Sure. It would be on Showtime or HBO. I see Rupert Everett as being the star.


    Any additional comments?

    I like it better when Lionel Shriver's narrator is a woman.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Little Friend

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By Karen White
    Overall
    (346)
    Performance
    (254)
    Story
    (252)

    From the author of The Secret History comes a dark, suspenseful novel of lost childhood. Harriet Dusfresnes is a child in Mississippi, haunted by the murder of her brother when she was just a baby. He was found hanging from a tree in their backyard; his killer was never identified, nor did the family ever recover. Only Harriet's teenage sister might have seen what happened that day, and she has blocked it out from her memory.

    Sam says: "Couldn't put it down"
    "Boring"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    No. It is too mired in detail and full of its own importance. Its just not a good story, and the narrator's southern accent is grating.


    Would you recommend The Little Friend to your friends? Why or why not?

    I would recommend that read or listen to Donna Tarrt's other books, The Goldfinch or The Secret History.


    What three words best describe Karen White’s voice?

    grating


    Was The Little Friend worth the listening time?

    No. I stopped listening after about 4 hours. It wasn't captivating me.


    Any additional comments?

    Too many loose threads and unanswered questions in this overly long book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Desperate Passage: The Donner Party's Perilous Journey West

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Ethan Rarick
    • Narrated By Christopher Prince
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (376)
    Performance
    (302)
    Story
    (302)

    In late October 1846, the last wagon train of that year's westward migration stopped overnight before resuming its arduous climb over the Sierra Nevada Mountains, unaware that a fearsome storm was gathering force. After months of grueling travel, the 81 men, women and children would be trapped for a brutal winter with little food and only primitive shelter. The conclusion is known: by spring of the next year, the Donner Party was synonymous with the most harrowing extremes of human survival.

    Roger says: "I REALLY enjoyed this book"
    "Fascinating, but didn't need to be a whole book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Desperate Passage to be better than the print version?

    Only listened to the audio.


    What other book might you compare Desperate Passage to and why?

    That other book where people eat each other's dead bodies (the plane crash in the mountains that happened in the last 20 years , don't remember the name).


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

    No. The narration was flawless, though.


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

    Cry, a little. I was sad that some people chose to kill and eat their dogs rather than eat the already dead bodies of family members. I don't see eating someone who is dead in order to survive is shameful. I do see killing your faithful dog and eating it is shameful if there is an alternative.


    Any additional comments?

    The book could have been half the length, taking away the digression about cannibalism, which is what people, including myself, are fascinated with, but the cannibalism was not the most important part of the Donner parties journey. To me the interesting aspect was how the survivors and witnesses felt a change in the moral view of the world.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • State of Wonder: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Ann Patchett
    • Narrated By Hope Davis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4367)
    Performance
    (3175)
    Story
    (3174)

    Research scientist Dr. Marina Singh is sent to Brazil to track down her former mentor, Dr. Annick Swenson, who seems to have disappeared in the Amazon while working on an extremely valuable new drug. The last person who was sent to find her died before he could complete his mission. Plagued by trepidation, Marina embarks on an odyssey into the insect-infested jungle in hopes of finding answers to the questions about her friend's death, her company's future, and her own past.

    F. B. Herron says: "Do yourself a favor and listen to this book!"
    "Hope Davis is perfect for this"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. It was more intellectual than a standard bestseller, but it was also gripping, thrilling, unputdownable.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The changing relationship between Mirena and Dr. Swenson.


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

    I've seen her on tv. I'll look for her again on audio. She had a remarkable ability to do all sorts of different voices and accents.


    If you could take any character from State of Wonder out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Easter, to find out what became of his life after the book ends.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gone Girl: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Gillian Flynn
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan, Kirby Heyborne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19883)
    Performance
    (17801)
    Story
    (17862)

    It is Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick's clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn't doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media - as well as Amy's fiercely doting parents - the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he's definitely bitter - but is he really a killer?

    Teddy says: "Demented, twisted, sick and I loved it!"
    "Tons of Fun"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Gone Girl?

    I listened to this book with my 10 yr old son on a 7 hour car ride. We were so gripped by the story that we stayed in the driveway to keep listening to it even after we got to our destination.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Totally on the edge of my seat. The different stories from the male protaginist and the female protagonist were enthralling. SO fun.


    What about Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne ’s performance did you like?

    They captured the characters perfectly. The acting was flawless.


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

    Laugh.


    Any additional comments?

    Will be looking out for this author and narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Dance to the Music of Time: First Movement

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Anthony Powell
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    Overall
    (503)
    Performance
    (302)
    Story
    (294)

    Anthony Powell's universally acclaimed epic encompasses a four-volume panorama of twentieth century London. Hailed by Time as "brilliant literary comedy as well as a brilliant sketch of the times," A Dance to the Music of Time opens just after World War I. Amid the fever of the 1920s and the first chill of the 1930s, Nick Jenkins and his friends confront sex, society, business, and art.

    Jennifer says: "A Masterpiece on All Counts"
    "Dated, hard to follow"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Anthony Powell fans, I guess


    What could Anthony Powell have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Nothing. It seems like it was a great book for the times, but is now irrelevant, to me at least.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I didn't listen past the first hour.


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

    The narrator kept me listening, but the story couldn't sustain me.


    Any additional comments?

    Won't be listening to Anthony Powell again, but would like the same narrator reading something else.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Family Fang

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Kevin Wilson
    • Narrated By Therese Plummer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (658)
    Performance
    (565)
    Story
    (563)

    Performance artists Caleb and Camille Fang dedicated themselves to making great art. But when an artist's work lies in subverting normality, it can be difficult to raise well-adjusted children. Just ask Buster and Annie Fang. For as long as they can remember, they starred (unwillingly) in their parents' madcap pieces. But now that they are grown up, the chaos of their childhood has made it difficult to cope with life outside the fishbowl of their parents' strange world.

    B. Westman says: "Surprisingly Deep"
    "annoying, cutesy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Maybe someone else would enjo it. For me it was way too cutesy and trying to be eccentric.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Probably a book by Margot Livesey or Lionel Shriver


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

    Thr narrator was not at fault for my overall bad review. She did the best she could do with this story.


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

    The narrator. I didn't listen past the first hour, though.


    Any additional comments?

    Just not my style. I bought it becase it was $.95. I love that Audible offers refunds. It makes me unafraid to try a new author.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Don't Know Much About American History

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Kenneth C. Davis
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman, Jonathan Davis
    Overall
    (65)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (14)

    In his trademark question-and-answer style, Davis introduces our ancestors who settled the East and expanded the West, as well as those who had been living here all along. His sure touch brings the drama and excitement of the American story vividly to life.

    Mark says: "An enjoyable look into our past"
    "perfect for my 10 yr old"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Don't Know Much About American History?

    The simplicity


    Any additional comments?

    I also boughtDon't know much about Hisrory, which is more for adults, but I found this kid friendly version easier to follow and memorize. My son really liks it, and is able to recall details after listening. he wasn't able to do that with "Don't Know Much about History.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Tess of the d'Urbervilles

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Thomas Hardy
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (116)
    Story
    (117)

    Young Tess Durbeyfield attempts to restore her family's fortunes by claiming their connection with the aristocratic d'Urbervilles. But Alec d'Urberville is a rich wastrel who seduces her and makes her life miserable. When Tess meets Angel Clare, she is offered true love and happiness, but her past catches up with her and she faces an agonizing moral choice.

    Ilana says: "Beautiful and Heartbreaking"
    "perfect narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Tess of the d'Urbervilles to be better than the print version?

    yes


    What other book might you compare Tess of the d'Urbervilles to and why?

    Mayor of Casterbridge and jude the Obscure, same sns of the inexorable destiny


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

    Th mood, the voices, he was amazing


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The hazards of pride


    Any additional comments?

    All Hardy books should be read by Simon Vance

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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