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Joan

Rice, VA, United States | Member Since 2013

125
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 60 reviews
  • 149 ratings
  • 803 titles in library
  • 21 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
7

  • And the Mountains Echoed

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Khaled Hosseini
    • Narrated By Khaled Hosseini, Navid Negahban, Shohreh Aghdashloo
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2769)
    Performance
    (2433)
    Story
    (2427)

    Khaled Hosseini, the number-one New York Times best-selling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, has written a new novel about how we love, how we take care of one another, and how the choices we make resonate through generations.

    FanB14 says: "Does the End Justify the Means"
    "The narrations added to the story's authenticity"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Another beautiful story by Khaled Hosseini. Like his other books, it is filled with sadness, hope and the importance of family. Unlike other readers who did not care for the narrations, they added so very much to the story. All the voices were understandable to me and made the story come alive. This is a story that spans generations and how the endless wars in Afghanistan have resulted in many levels of futility.

    14 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Breakfast with Buddha: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Roland Merullo
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1149)
    Performance
    (986)
    Story
    (984)

    When his sister tricks him into taking her guru on a trip to their childhood home, Otto Ringling, a confirmed skeptic, is not amused. Six days on the road with an enigmatic holy man who answers every question with a riddle is not what he'd planned. But in an effort to westernize his passenger---and amuse himself---he decides to show the monk some "American fun" along the way.

    Mary McCarthy says: "a thoughtful and often hilarious journey"
    "Fabulous!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Had never heard of this author before and got the book on a daily deal or some kind of special offer. Am I glad I did!! What a delightful, profound, funny listen. I couldn't stop listening and when I did, found myself thinking about what the book had to say. Am looking forward to reading other things by this author. And the narrator......what a great job of various accents and getting just the right timing to things. Excellent all around.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mightier than the Sword

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Archer
    • Narrated By Alex Jennings
    Overall
    (523)
    Performance
    (451)
    Story
    (445)

    Harry Clifton is more successful than ever as a novelist, and has just been elected president of PEN Britain. He learns of a writer in Russia whose memoir of life inside Stalin's palace has landed the writer in prison for life, his book taken off shelves and destroyed. Harry becomes obsessed with freeing the writer and telling his story. His wife Emma, meanwhile is the chair of Barringtons Shipping, having escaped a plot to destroy their company by bombing one of their luxury liners, and now the company is thriving.

    Ruth M. Penson says: "Better then the last one!"
    "OMG - Waiting for Next in Series!!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Clifton Chronicles just keep getting better!!! Just when I think there can't be any more twists or turns, they they are! Another interesting addition to a well-written series. If you liked the last ones, absolutely read this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Solomon's Song: The Australian Trilogy, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Bryce Courtenay
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    Overall
    (1635)
    Performance
    (1112)
    Story
    (1109)

    Here is the story of two families, branches of the Solomons, transported to an alien land. Both branches eventually grow rich and powerful. But through three generations, the families never, for one moment, relinquish their hatred for each other. This novel is also the story of Australia, from its beginnings to its coming of age as a nation.

    Anne says: "Breathtaking!"
    "Sure wish there was Book 4!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love Bryce Courtney and really enjoyed Books 1 and 2 of this trilogy. Book 3 was not so enjoyable but I stuck with it because well, it's Courtney! Way too much war during the second 1/2 and too many questions at the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12388)
    Performance
    (11216)
    Story
    (11243)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "Very depressing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was on the best sellers lists for so long I figured I'd give it a go. I finished, thank goodness, and wished I hadn't bothered. Yes the story was well written and there were many thoughtful passages. Yet overall, this was a very grim story of an abused and neglected young man. There is no happy ending here. You just listen and listen and listen and wonder why the main character didn't just jump off a bridge.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Secret Agent

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Joseph Conrad
    • Narrated By David Horovitch
    Overall
    (143)
    Performance
    (130)
    Story
    (128)

    Our agent, a man named Mr Verloc, minds his own business while he keeps his shop in London's Soho, alongside his wife, who attends to her aged mother and disabled brother. Their lives are turned upside down when Verloc is reluctantly employed to plant a bomb and destroy an observatory in London. What was once the perfect bomb plot inevitably turns awry and Verloc, his family and his associates are forced to face the consequences.

    John says: "Worthwhile"
    "Boring"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The narrator does a fine job and I thought initially this would be an interesting listen. It's just too hard to follow. Maybe I haven't paid close enough attention. Still, I felt lost as I went from chapter to chapter. Just not enough substance to hold my interest.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Secret Wisdom of the Earth

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Christopher Scotton
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff
    Overall
    (66)
    Performance
    (54)
    Story
    (55)

    After witnessing the death of his younger brother in a terrible home accident, 14-year-old Kevin and his grieving mother are sent for the summer to live with Kevin's grandfather. In this peeled-paint coal town deep in Appalachia, Kevin quickly falls in with a half-wild hollow kid named Buzzy Fink who schools him in the mysteries and magnificence of the woods. The events of this fateful summer will affect the entire town of Medgar, Kentucky.

    Mel says: "Loved it in Spite of..."
    "Beautiful Poingnant thought provoking"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I didn't know what to expect with this book and am so glad I decided to give it a listen. This will be one of those books that I will think back on. The characters were so beautifully described both in what they said and did. And the author didn't lay it all out in order. The book switched back and forth which added sweet mystery to the lives of the characters. This is a really good book and I do hope the author keeps up his good work. The narrator also did an excellent job.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Code Name Verity

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Wein
    • Narrated By Morven Christie, Lucy Gaskell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2456)
    Performance
    (2200)
    Story
    (2201)

    Code Name Verity is a compelling, emotionally rich story with universal themes of friendship and loyalty, heroism and bravery. Two young women from totally different backgrounds are thrown together during World War II: one a working-class girl from Manchester, the other a Scottish aristocrat, one a pilot, the other a wireless operator. Yet whenever their paths cross, they complement each other perfectly and before long become devoted friends. But then a vital mission goes wrong....

    Suzn F says: "Haunting, Beautiful, Exquisite, Special Book"
    "Tried Twice Based on Reviews - then threw in towel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I tried, really, to get into this book. Felt I hadn't been paying attention so rewound to beginning after an hour in. Many reviewers suggested things perk up in the middle. Maybe so but I have more to do with my time. This was just too slow and tedious.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Big Little Lies

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs)
    • By Liane Moriarty
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7537)
    Performance
    (6605)
    Story
    (6605)

    Pirriwee Public's annual school Trivia Night has ended in a shocking riot. One parent is dead. The school principal is horrified. As police investigate what appears to have been a tragic accident, signs begin to indicate that this devastating death might have been cold-blooded murder. In this thought-provoking novel, number-one New York Times best-selling author Liane Moriarty deftly explores the reality of parenting and playground politics, ex-husbands and ex-wives, and fractured families.

    horslovr says: "Very entertaining!"
    "Lots of Whiney Elementary School Moms"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    By the time I made it to the end of this book, I realized there was a very important message. But getting to that point was, at times, torturous. I've generally made it a point in my life to avoid the types of women characterized in this book......mostly stay at home moms who are obsessed with themselves and their children and who are quick to pass judgment on any women who are not of their ilk. I nearly didn't finish the book. While the narrator did an excellent job, she was too excellent!!! She brought these complaining women to life! However, this is a very clever book and I ended up listening for the conclusion. The book redeemed itself. Not sure I'd recommend it. Again, these women, save for Jane, were just too full of themselves.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • My Antonia

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Willa Cather
    • Narrated By Jeff Cummings, Ken Burns
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (655)
    Performance
    (432)
    Story
    (445)

    Through Jim Burden's endearing, smitten voice, we revisit the remarkable vicissitudes of immigrant life in the Nebraska heartland, with all its insistent bonds. Guiding the way are some of literature's most beguiling characters: the Russian brothers plagued by memories of a fateful sleigh ride, Antonia's desperately homesick father and self-indulgent mother, and the coy Lena Lingard. Holding the pastoral society's heart, of course, is the bewitching, free-spirited Antonia.

    Tammy says: "Enthralling!!"
    "A Most Beautiful Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Such a wonderfully written book. I tend to listen to mysteries or high drama and was pleasantly surprised to find how much I enjoyed this story. The descriptions of both the characters and the land made the story come alive. In a time when most things are so 'in your face' the time spent listening to My Antonia was like a mini vacation. So glad for the opportunity to hear a sweet American classic. And the reader was excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Without Fail

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Lee Child
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3392)
    Performance
    (2597)
    Story
    (2592)

    Jack Reacher is approached by a Secret Service agent who needs a favor. "I want to hire you to assassinate the Vice President of the United States," she asks. She is the newly appointed head of the VP's security detail and wants Reacher to try to penetrate her team's shield. He has the skills and the stealth and no one knows him. How else can she be sure her protection is truly effective?

    Joseph says: "Series is getting better."
    "Reacher Can Do No Wrong!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love Jack Reacher!! I don't care how corny the plot may be or how predictable the outcome, I am totally entertained by the Reacher books! Dick Hill is his usual excellent self. Go for it!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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