I had been looking forward to this audiobook for some time. I'm a big baseball fan, and just loved the movie "Field of Dreams", which was based on this book. As a rule, the book is usually much better than the film made from it, but not this time. Actually, I thought the story was pretty good...or would have been if written by someone else. But the writing is just dreadful. Every other sentence, it seems, contains a simile. At first this was mildly amusing, but as it continues throughout the book, it becomes nothing short of annoying. I did listen to the entire book because I wanted to see where it was going, but the last couple of hours of listening were torture.
I was also less than thrilled with the reader. His voice is grating, and you can hear his intake of breath after almost every sentence. He sounds like he is gasping for air, which also gets to be annoying after a while.
To me, this is the ultimate Grisham novel. Not high literature, but a fun, suspenseful listen. I've read almost all the Grisham books, and this is my favorite. If you haven't read Grisham, this is where you should start. I think it's his best.
I may be prejudiced, but I absolutely LOVED this book. It reminded me so much of my own childhood. I was born in the same year as the author. Like her, I grew up in a suburb of New York city a huge baseball fan. Her memories of playing in the neighborhood mirror my own. And although we are of different religions and rooted for different teams, it doesn't matter. We still have so much in common that it was like reliving my own past.
The reader was very good, but I really would have preferred that the book be read by the author herself. Somehow I think it would have brought even more to the story. Nonetheless, if you were a child of the 50s, you're going to enjoy this book tremendously.
This is a classic. The story of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt has always fascinated me. Doris Kearns Goodwin has done a magnificent job with this. She covers not only the war years, but goes back and gives us the story of these two amazing people from their early childhood, which lets us know how them came to be the people they were in their middle and later years. Even though I didn't really learn much new from this book, I enjoyed every minute of it. I got very caught up in the story, and was dreading the end because I knew that President Roosevelt would die before the end of the war. Silly, I guess, but that's how good the writing was.
The reader was more than adequate. He was able to change his voice enough so that I was always aware of which character was speaking. I just sort of wish that Ms. Goodwin had read the book herself, because I do like her voice. But that's just my own personal taste.
Whether or not you know the history of this time, the book is a definite "must read".
Funny, Touching, Familiar
Being of the same generation and background as Billy Crystal, I related to many of his experiences. His description of his older relatives sounded like he was talking about my own family and his love of the New York Yankees equals my own.
Yes, I've seen him perform and watched several of his interviews on television. The book is very similar to what I've heard from him in the past with a lot of repetition of his old stories. But I didn't mind that at all. His recollections are just as funny/sad/touching when hearing them for the second (or even third) time.
When he talks about missing his father. My own father died over 30 years ago, and I still miss him. You can relate if you've lost a beloved parent.
I think that the best parts of the book are those that he performed in front of a live audience. I sort of wish he had done the whole book that way. But either way, I really enjoyed this book. It made me laugh, cry......and remember my own background as a Jewish kid growing up in New York.
I will definitely listen to it again. I've read the book several times, and could probably quote whole passages of it from memory. But listening was a new experience. The narration was absolutely PERFECT. Linda Stephens gives each character a distinct voice, so that after a while, one forgets that it is the same person reading all the parts. Scarlett's voice can never be mistaken for Melanie's...even when they are having a one on one conversation. When Ms. Stephens reads Rhett's dialog, it seemed that Rhett himself was speaking the words.
When Scarlett returns to Tara, finding her mother dead and her father in shock, this 19 year old formerly spoiled child becomes a responsible woman determined to keep her home and family intact.
I would love to, but the length of the book makes it impossible.
By today's standards, this book is certainly not politically correct. But you must remember that Gone With the Wind was written in 1936, and by a lady from Georgia. Today we shrink at her racist vocabulary and her description of the happy slaves who loved their masters. However I'm guessing that this is the impression Margaret Mitchell had of slavery from hearing stories of the era from older family members and friends who may have lived through that period of time. It is a wonderful recounting of conditions in Georgia from 1861 through 1873, albeit told from an extremely biased point of view. Nevertheless, it's a fabulous novel...not a history...and should be enjoyed as such.
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