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Laura

Bothell, WA, USA

19
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 12 reviews
  • 84 ratings
  • 88 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • Splendid Solution: Jonas Salk and the Conquest of Polio

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Kluger
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (170)
    Performance
    (87)
    Story
    (88)

    Salk became a cultural hero and icon for a whole generation. Now, at the fiftieth anniversary of the first national vaccination program, and as humanity is tantalizingly close to eradicating polio worldwide, comes this unforgettable chronicle. Salk's work was an unparalleled achievement, and it makes for a magnificent listen.

    Tim says: "Excellent book"
    "Fascinating story!"
    Overall

    I loved this book! It has just the right amount of technical detail, but doesn't overwhelm. Jeffrey Kluger is an excellent science writer. I also found interesting that the "politics" of medical research were similar in the first half of the 20th century to what they are now. I recommend this book to all who are interested in how this horrible disease of children was finally conquered.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tamsin

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Peter S. Beagle
    • Narrated By Peter S. Beagle
    Overall
    (25)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (6)

    Arriving in the English countryside to live with her mother and new stepfather, Jenny has no interest in her new surroundings, until she encounters things on this ancient estate with ties to another world, one darker and older than anything she's ever experienced, and meets a friend in greater pain than any she has ever known.

    Debbra says: "Pleasant"
    "Keeps your interest..."
    Overall

    I really liked the story, specially the beginning, before the title character shows up, to tell the truth... The dynamics of the family forming out of the two divorced parents with children is very well done. I almost wish the Tamsin part of the story hadn't been there. But overall, the book is interesting, and one does wonder what will happen at the end. One big drawback I felt was that the book being read by the author was not a good thing. After all, the story is told from the first person by a teenage girl, it's odd to hear a mature man's voice!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Pompeii: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Robert Harris
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1226)
    Performance
    (302)
    Story
    (302)

    All along the Mediterranean coast, the Roman Empire's richest citizens are relaxing in their luxurious villas, enjoying the last days of summer. But the carefree lifestyle and gorgeous weather belie an impending cataclysm, and only one man is worried. The young engineer Marcus Attilius Primus has just taken charge of the Aqua Augusta, the enormous aqueduct that brings fresh water to a quarter of a million people in nine towns around the Bay of Naples. His predecessor has disappeared.

    Marty-Seattle says: "Brought my visit to Pompeii back to life"
    "Fascinating"
    Overall

    I really enjoyed the author's weaving of history and the adventures of Attilius the aquarius. The details about the eruption follow the description given by Pliny who was actually there. And you have to wonder how the hero is going to survive when he is in the wrong place at the wrong time... Very worth listening to. It encouraged me to find out more about volcanos and Vesuvius in particular.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Amulet of Samarkand: The Bartimaeus Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Jonathan Stroud
    • Narrated By Simon Jones
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2057)
    Performance
    (879)
    Story
    (883)

    Nathaniel is eleven-years-old and a magician's apprentice, learning the traditional art of magic. All is well until he has a life-changing encounter with Simon Lovelace, a magician of unrivaled ruthlessness and ambition. When Lovelace brutally humiliates Nathaniel in public, Nathaniel decides to speed up his education, teaching himself spells far beyond his years. With revenge on his mind, he masters one of the toughest spells of all and summons Bartimaeus, a five-thousand-year-old djinni, to assist him.

    Randy says: "Terrific Trilogy"
    "Excellent!!"
    Overall

    I loved this book! Not only is the book excellent, the narrator is great at doing all the different voices. I had to laugh out loud several times, specially during the Bartimaeus chapters. I really recomment this book to readers of all ages. Also the other two in the trilogy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ireland

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Frank Delaney
    • Narrated By Frank Delaney
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (632)
    Performance
    (172)
    Story
    (170)

    One evening in 1951, an itinerant storyteller arrives unannounced at a house in the Irish countryside. In exchange for a bed and a warm meal, he invites his hosts and their neighbors to join him by the wintry fireside, and begins to tell formative stories of Ireland's history. Ronan, a 9-year-old boy, grows so entranced by the storytelling that, when the old man leaves abruptly under mysterious circumstances, the boy devotes himself to finding him again.

    S. Marie says: "A wonderfully read history of Ireland"
    "Tiresome and too long"
    Overall

    Even the first story within the story I thought was too long. The "main plot" becomes quagmired in all the "stories" that are part of this book. I was able to guess rhe answer to all the "surprises" the author had laid for the reader. Couldn't care less what became of the unlovable characters. I ended up fast-forwarding thru the last few stories because I couldn't stand it anymore. Good premise, but not executed well. I had higher expectations...

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Tales of the Alhambra: A Series of Tales and Sketches of the Moors and Spaniards

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Washington Irving
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    Overall
    (74)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (15)

    Written in 1831, Irving's dreamlike description of the Alhambra, the beautiful Moorish castle that defined the height of Moorish civilization, and the surrounding territory of Granada remains one of the best guidebooks to the region and one of the most entertaining travelogues ever written.

    William says: "Wonderful Stories"
    "An interesting place, The Alhambra..."
    Overall

    It was interesting to read about Spain and the Alhambra as it was so long ago. The characters are well drawn, the stories are fascinating. My only complaint would be the lisp and monotonous tone of the reader. That almost put me off when I first started to listen to the book. I would still recommend it, I did get used to reader eventually.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Memoirs of a Geisha

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Arthur Golden
    • Narrated By Bernadette Dunne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3632)
    Performance
    (959)
    Story
    (968)

    In a voice both haunting and startlingly immediate, Nitta Sayuri describes her life as a geisha. Taken from her home at the age of nine, she is sold into slavery to a renowned geisha house. Witness her transformation as you enter a world where appearances are paramount, virginity is auctioned to the highest bidder, women beguile powerful men, and love is scorned as illusion.

    Stephanie says: "Best Book in a while"
    "A little slow going at first..."
    Overall

    I have to admit I got rather tired of the first third of this book. I wanted to get this part over with and start delving into the "secret world of the geisha". There's really not too much of that in this book. But it does get more interesting once the heroine begins her geisha studies, and it does have a satisfactory ending, in my opinion.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Grass for His Pillow: Tales of the Otori, Book Two

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Lian Hearn
    • Narrated By Kevin Gray, Aiko Nakasone
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2740)
    Performance
    (623)
    Story
    (620)

    The exhilerating tale of Takeo continues in book II of the internationally best-selling Tales of the Otori trilogy, a sweeping saga set in a mythical, medieval Japan.

    RacerX says: "Good book. First one was better"
    "Better than first book!"
    Overall

    I enjoyed the continuing story of Takeo and Kaede. This book is even better I think because it builds up the characters and they grow up thru the hardships they have to endure. As in the first book, the descriptions are beautifully detailed and make you feel like you're there.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Across the Nightingale Floor: Tales of the Otori, Book One

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Lian Hearn
    • Narrated By Kevin Gray, Aiko Nakasone
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6096)
    Performance
    (2239)
    Story
    (2247)

    A tour-de-force novel set in ancient Japan filled with passion, fantasy, and feuding warlords. The first volume in the highly anticipated Tales of the Otori trilogy.

    Jody R. Nathan says: "Wonderful epic story"
    "Fascinating setting in feudal Japan"
    Overall

    I found the setting fascinating, the descriptions of the characters and environment so detailed I felt I was there. It's hard not to like the characters in this book. I also enjoyed the male voice for Takeo's chapters and the female voice for Kaede's chapters. It's a refreshing change from other novels set in this timeframe and always set in a European culture context.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Haunted Ground

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs)
    • By Erin Hart
    • Narrated By Jennifer McMahon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (466)
    Performance
    (181)
    Story
    (180)

    When farmers cutting turf in an Irish peat bog make a grisly discovery, the perfectly intact body of a young woman with long red hair, archaeologist Cormac O'Callaghan and pathologist Nora Gavin are thrown together by their shared scientific interest in human remains. Because of the preservative effect of the bog, it is difficult to tell whether the body has lain there for two decades, two centuries, or two millennia.

    Sara says: "Archeology, Folklore and Mystery in Ireland"
    "Really fascinating mysteries"
    Overall

    Just finished listening to Haunted Ground. The two mysteries in the story are really fascinating. I learned about bog bodies, and the book inspired me to do some research on the subject on the Web. These are truly fascinating. The characters in the book are very well drawn. I found myself really caring for them, and really involved in their emotions as the answers were revealed. The ending has a surprise twist in it which is totally unexpected. I highly recommend this book, and look forward to more by the same author. And I should mention the narrator's voice and accent are wonderfully suited to the Irish setting and voices of the characters.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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