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Michal

I live in Scottsdale, Arizona. I have 5 grown children, play ukuele exercise, and read.

Scotsdale, AZ, United States | Member Since 2009

100
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 46 reviews
  • 131 ratings
  • 358 titles in library
  • 31 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Mark Haddon
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    Overall
    (4236)
    Performance
    (1937)
    Story
    (1955)

    Fifteen-year-old Christopher Boone has Asperger's Syndrome, a condition similar to autism. He doesn't like to be touched or meet new people, he cannot make small talk, and he hates the colors brown and yellow. He is a math whiz with a very logical brain who loves solving puzzles that have definite answers.

    Robert says: "Endearing. Pathos, humor, reality, and insight."
    "Very insightful!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time?

    I found the thought processes of the boy amazing. I found myself aching for the parents who find themselves in a similar situation.


    What other book might you compare The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time to and why?

    I can't think of any other.


    Which character – as performed by Jeff Woodman – was your favorite?

    The young boy.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I listen in the car, so can't really answer this one.


    Any additional comments?

    I wasn't sure that I wanted to read/listen to this book. But I have a friend who has an autistic child. So I was curious. I must admit that I was amazed at the humor and heartbreak that was revealed in this book. I highly recommend it.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Paying Guests

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Sarah Waters
    • Narrated By Juliet Stevenson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (343)
    Performance
    (317)
    Story
    (314)

    It is 1922, and London is tense. Ex-servicemen are disillusioned; the out-of-work and the hungry are demanding change. And in South London, in a genteel Camberwell villa, a large silent house now bereft of brothers, husband, and even servants, life is about to be transformed, as impoverished widow Mrs. Wray and her spinster daughter, Frances, are obliged to take in lodgers.

    Cainaan says: "Stunning"
    "Excellent-but long"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Paying Guests in three words, what would they be?

    Be careful what you wish for! (I know that's more than 3 words)


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I didn't really have a favorite character. All were well developed.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Not wanting to have a spoiler, but my favorite was when a uttered wish came true.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Answering this question would reveal spoilers, but I thought the trial was fascinating.


    Any additional comments?

    Be aware that the topic of this book is about alternative lifestyles. While that may offend some readers, this is an excellent book about the search for love.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Leaving Time

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Jodi Picoult
    • Narrated By Rebecca Lowman, Abigail Revasch, Kathe Mazur, and others
    Overall
    (848)
    Performance
    (776)
    Story
    (784)

    Refusing to believe that she would be abandoned as a young child, Jenna searches for her mother regularly online and pores over the pages of Alice's old journals. A scientist who studied grief among elephants, Alice wrote mostly of her research among the animals she loved, yet Jenna hopes the entries will provide a clue to her mother’s whereabouts. Desperate to find the truth, Jenna enlists two unlikely allies in her quest.

    Jan says: "Pickiest Reader Would Be Willing to Give 6 Stars"
    "Loved this book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Leaving Time the most enjoyable?

    I've read most of Jodi Picoult's books, and I've enjoyed them all. I always learn something. The plight of the elephants was such a learning experience for me. I simply had no idea. The storyline keep me interested all the way to the end.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The education about the elephants.


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

    Yes, and she's very easy to listen to.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It's too long to listen to at one sitting, but I did look forward to getting back in my car to listen each time.


    Any additional comments?

    This is an amazing book. The care and research that went into the background were fascinating. Loved the book

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By John Lahr
    • Narrated By Elizabeth Ashley
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (12)

    Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh gives intimate access to the mind of one of the most brilliant dramatists of his century, whose plays reshaped the American theater and the nation's sense of itself. This astute, deeply researched biography sheds a light on Tennessee Williams's warring family, his guilt, his creative triumphs and failures, his sexuality and numerous affairs, his misreported death, even the shenanigans surrounding his estate.

    Jean says: "Riveting"
    "I was glad when it was over"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from John Lahr and/or Elizabeth Ashley?

    Not really sure! I guess it would depend on the topic.


    Has Tennessee Williams turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Not at all.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Elizabeth Ashley?

    I think the narrator was choosen because of her gravely voice. Maybe it was supposed to be similar to Tennessee? Who knows. But after hours and hours, her voice started to drive me nuts.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Maybe.


    Any additional comments?

    I didn't hate this book! But I didn't enjoy it either. Everyone knows Tennessee was a drug addict and a homosexual.,but so many hours just got old. I might have enjoyed an abridged version better. I would only recommend this book version to an absolute devout Tennessee fan. If you're not, I would pass on the book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Painted Horses

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Malcolm Brooks
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (28)

    Painted Horses sends a dauntless young woman on a heroic quest, sings a love song to the horseman's vanishing way of life, and reminds us that love and ambition, tradition and the future, often make strange bedfellows. It establishes Malcolm Brooks as an extraordinary new talent.

    Michal says: "Beautifully written"
    "Beautifully written"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    It's a modern day western. While I don't usually read westerns, this book came highly recommended by the Arizona Republic. I liked the story line of city girl vs. cowboy.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Catherine! She's smart, educated, driven and stubborn. .


    What about Julia Whelan’s performance did you like?

    She did a good job of capturing the feel of the cowboys-this is an interesting talent for a woman to read a male cowboy's voice :-)


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I loved John H.


    Any additional comments?

    I must admit that I didn't like the ending. I won't spoil it for anyone because I really enjoyed the book-just not the ending.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Anthony Doerr
    • Narrated By Zach Appelman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1840)
    Performance
    (1653)
    Story
    (1654)

    Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is 12, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

    Annie M. says: "Time well spent"
    "Good story, but!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Anthony Doerr and/or Zach Appelman?

    Maybe. This was an okay story, but I just felt it took too long to tell the story. I was bored in many places.


    Would you recommend All the Light We Cannot See to your friends? Why or why not?

    Probably not. Maybe if it had been a shorter story.


    Did All the Light We Cannot See inspire you to do anything?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    Candidly, I was glad when I finished it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • China Dolls: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Lisa See
    • Narrated By Jodi Long
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (196)
    Performance
    (179)
    Story
    (182)

    It's 1938 in San Francisco: A world's fair is preparing to open on Treasure Island, a war is brewing overseas, and the city is alive with possibilities. Grace, Helen, and Ruby, three young women from very different backgrounds, meet by chance at the exclusive and glamorous Forbidden City nightclub. Grace Lee, an American-born Chinese girl, has fled the Midwest with nothing but heartache, talent, and a pair of dancing shoes. Helen Fong lives with her extended family in Chinatown, where her traditional parents insist that she guard her reputation like a piece of jade.

    Mary says: "Need a different reader!! Where is Janet Song??"
    "Needed a different reader"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    No. The reader read too slow, and I found my mind wandering at numerous places during the story. I've loved all the books by Lisa See, and I was so eager for this book to come out that I had it on my Outlook. But this story just seemed to lack something.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Lisa See? Why or why not?

    Maybe, but not from this reader.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Jodi Long?

    janet Song did a great job on the previous books, but I really think the pace of the reading was the problem.


    Was China Dolls worth the listening time?

    Not really. I should have waited for some of the other reviews to post.


    Any additional comments?

    I truly believe that Lisa See was trying to portray an important time in our history, and I did find that interesting. I can't really comment on how I would have felt if I had actually READ the book instead of listening to this reader. I'll have to check Amazon for other's opinions on the book. For me, it was the reader that ruined this book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Frog Music: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Emma Donoghue
    • Narrated By Khristine Hvam
    Overall
    (177)
    Performance
    (149)
    Story
    (152)

    Summer of 1876: San Francisco is in the fierce grip of a record-breaking heat wave and a smallpox epidemic. Through the window of a railroad saloon, a young woman named Jenny Bonnet is shot dead. The survivor, her friend Blanche Beunon, is a French burlesque dancer. Over the next three days, she will risk everything to bring Jenny's murderer to justice - if he doesn't track her down first.

    Taryn says: "Donoghue + Hvam = entertainment"
    "Never finished it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I give a book about 4 hours to get me. After that, if I still don't care about the characters, I'm done. I'm was bored bored bored.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    China Dolls


    How could the performance have been better?

    Story


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Troop

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Nick Cutter
    • Narrated By Corey Brill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (438)
    Performance
    (412)
    Story
    (412)

    Once every year, Scoutmaster Tim Riggs leads a troop of boys into the Canadian wilderness for a weekend camping trip - a tradition as comforting and reliable as a good ghost story around a roaring bonfre. The boys are a tight-knit crew. There’s Kent, one of the most popular kids in school; Ephraim and Max, also well-liked and easygoing; then there’s Newt the nerd and Shelley the odd duck. For the most part, they all get along and are happy to be there - which makes Scoutmaster Tim’s job a little easier.

    Charles says: "Engrossing"
    "OMG Excellent book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Troop in three words, what would they be?

    Always take your cell phone! (Yes, I know that's more than 3 words)


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Troop?

    The helicopter hovering over the boys near the end.


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

    His voice and reading cadence was perfect. Kept the stress and fear at the correct limit.


    If you could take any character from The Troop out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Max, just to hear his read on the whole experience


    Any additional comments?

    I read/listened to this book because it was the book of the month recommendation from the Arizona Republic. Didn't really think it would appeal to me, but I literally sat in my car several times to listen to a scene play out. Excellent book. Very tightly written.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Invention of Wings: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Sue Monk Kidd
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Adepero Oduye, Sue Monk Kidd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6669)
    Performance
    (6045)
    Story
    (6044)

    From the celebrated author of The Secret Life of Bees, a magnificent novel about two unforgettable American women. Writing at the height of her narrative and imaginative gifts, Sue Monk Kidd presents a masterpiece of hope, daring, the quest for freedom, and the desire to have a voice in the world - and it is now the newest Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 selection. Hetty “Handful” Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.

    Jan says: "Historical Fiction - beautifully quilted!"
    "This was a terrific book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Invention of Wings the most enjoyable?

    I typically have learned to stear away from Oprah books. They tend to be one theme, and I have found that tiresome! This book is still the theme of the whites mistreating the blacks, but the story is based on 2 real sisters and their life. It's fantastic. I deeply cared about all the characters, and I eagerly turned it on each day to see what happens next. For once Oprah got it right!


    What other book might you compare The Invention of Wings to and why?

    It's a historically based novel. The main characters actually exist-although this is a fiction based on these real characters.


    Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favorite?

    Lettie! She was amazing, and I so admired her strong character.


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

    Many parts made me laugh, but some parts also made me wince.


    Any additional comments?

    The readersr were also fantastic. They captured the voices expertly.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Husband's Secret

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Liane Moriarty
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3636)
    Performance
    (3259)
    Story
    (3271)

    Imagine that your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret - something with the potential to destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others as well. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive....

    Margaret says: "Escape to the land down under..."
    "Never ever cared about any of these people"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I have no idea as it wasn't even interesting.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    The Goldfinch


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Read the book just way too slow. I mean waaaayyyyy too slow.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Husband's Secret?

    Make me care about the characters. Frankly, I never ever cared about any of them.


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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