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  • Joseph Anton: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Salman Rushdie
    • Narrated By Sam Dastor, Salman Rushdie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    On February 14, 1989, Valentine's Day, Salman Rushdie was telephoned by a BBC journalist and told that he had been "sentenced to death" by the Ayatollah Khomeini. For the first time he heard the word fatwa. His crime? To have written a novel called The Satanic Verses, which was accused of being "against Islam, the Prophet and the Quran". So begins the extraordinary story of how a writer was forced underground, moving from house to house, with the constant presence of a police protection team.

    Lynn says: "Informative, Timely"
    "This really suffers from a bad narrator"
    What disappointed you about Joseph Anton?

    The narration.
    Rushdie;s telling his autobiography in the third person.
    His inability to see how he contributed to horrible interpersonal problems.
    The feeling that most of the time he was in hiding he made lists of people wh supported him and those who did him wrong

    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The narrator's "voices" as he does 'characters' is just awful, It continuously yanks you out of the story and back to the fact that you're listening to an audio book. Especially disturbing as he imitates Marianne Wiggins, Rushdie's wife, but it is universally oafish

    What character would you cut from Joseph Anton?

    Ugly portrayal of his wife.

    Any additional comments?

    If Rushdie had written in the first person, he mght have realized how whiny he sounds in much of the book

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • California: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Edan Lepucki
    • Narrated By Emma Galvin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The world Cal and Frida have always known is gone, and they've left the crumbling city of Los Angeles far behind them. They now live in a shack in the wilderness, working side-by-side to make their days tolerable despite the isolation and hardships they face. Consumed by fear of the future and mourning for a past they can't reclaim, they seek comfort and solace in each other. But the tentative existence they've built for themselves is thrown into doubt when Frida finds out she's pregnant.

    Joel says: "Not Deserving of The Colbert Bump"
    "I guess since it is fantasy, anything goes . . . ."
    Would you try another book from Edan Lepucki and/or Emma Galvin?

    Overall, the characters' behavior is too illogical and impetuous. They behave in inexplicable ways and in the end, the novel falls apart because you have to think, "No, she wouldn't do that" or, "He wouldn't say that"

    I thought Emma Galvin was one of the more successful readers I have heard.She is consistently clear and doesn't try accents or "voices". You can easily follow a conversation that different characters are speaking, but it isn't because of "ACTING!".

    Has California turned you off from other books in this genre?

    I am not a huge fan of speculative fiction. This novel had received such interesting notices in advance, that I was intrigued. Having completed this, I am less likely to attempt more of it.

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


    Do you think California needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I was too happy to leave California in the dust. And I live here. There was a lot of potential that was left unfulfilled. I kind of feel that the novel was rushed and could have used more time to have been developed and the characters to be fleshed out/ made to behave consistently.

    Any additional comments?

    Honestly my problem is with the book, not the recording

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • So Cold the River

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Michael Koryta
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    It started with a documentary. The beautiful Alyssa Bradford approaches Eric Shaw to unearth the life story of her father-in-law, Campbell Bradford, a 95-year-old billionaire whose childhood is wrapped in mystery. Eric grabs the job, even though the only clues to Bradford's past are his hometown and an antique water bottle he's kept his entire life. In Bradford's hometown, Eric discovers an extraordinary past.

    Vicki says: "Incredible!"
    "Hard to place the blame in this mess"
    What disappointed you about So Cold the River?

    It is hard to know what the problem is with this--writing? performance?.

    Would you ever listen to anything by Michael Koryta again?

    The sort of "folksy" writing veers into the ridiculous. While the plot is theoretically interesting, the phrasing veers into pomposity so frequently that it is impossible to stay with the story.

    I've heard so much about Koryta and this book in particular, I was very excited to see for myself. I cannot understand why anyone who cares about writing was interested in this book.

    What didn’t you like about Robert Petkoff’s performance?

    So over the top. The voice of the villain is ridiculous. While he can handle the "normal" characters, when he goes into the the villian's voice it is so incredibly ludicrous that it makes it nearly impossible to listen to the book.

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

    Laughably bad. Trite, predictable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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