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MxH

I am a voracious reader of all fiction genres and poetry. I occasionally venture into humor, history, and science. I loathe self-help books.

San Tan Valley, AZ, United States | Member Since 2012

50
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 14 reviews
  • 31 ratings
  • 421 titles in library
  • 45 purchased in 2015
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FOLLOWERS
1

  • Written in Red: A Novel of the Others

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Anne Bishop
    • Narrated By Alexandra Harris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1392)
    Performance
    (1272)
    Story
    (1278)

    As a cassandra sangue, or blood prophet, Meg Corbyn can see the future when her skin is cut - a gift that feels more like a curse. Meg's Controller keeps her enslaved so he can have full access to her visions. But when she escapes, the only safe place Meg can hide is at the Lakeside Courtyard - a business district operated by the Others. Shape-shifter Simon Wolfgard is reluctant to hire the stranger who inquires about the Human Liaison job.

    Angela says: "WOW!!!!! JUST WOW!"
    "Interesting premise hindered by repetition"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was intrigued by the premise of the story but quickly lost interest. I thought the dialogue was repetitive and the storyline boringly predictable. The narrator's performance was fair, but I think her creative talents were hindered by the author's inability to escape circular character exchanges. This storyline might have been improved if written in novella form.

    13 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • The Shadowy Horses

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs)
    • By Susanna Kearsley
    • Narrated By Sally Armstrong
    Overall
    (171)
    Performance
    (155)
    Story
    (155)

    With its dark legends and passionate history, the windswept shores of Scotland are an archaeologist's dream. Verity Grey is thrilled by the challenge of uncovering an ancient Roman campsite in a small Scottish village. But as soon as she arrives, she sense danger in the air.

    Natasha says: "An engaging story"
    "Dull On Every Level"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I never expect Kearsley's novels to awe or inspire me, but they generally fulfill the need for a light read. Sadly, this book is pervasively dull: dull characters, dull romance, and dull attempt at suspense. Narrator was decent. I wouldn't waste a credit on this book or take it along with me as a beach read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Desperate Fortune

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Susanna Kearsley
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren
    Overall
    (262)
    Performance
    (229)
    Story
    (227)

    For nearly 300 years, the cryptic journal of Mary Dundas has kept its secrets. Now, amateur codebreaker Sara Thomas travels to Paris to crack the cipher.... Jacobite exile Mary Dundas is filled with longing - for freedom, for adventure, for the family she lost. When fate opens the door, Mary dares to set her foot on a path far more surprising and dangerous than she ever could have dreamed.

    Lauren says: "Another great story by Susanna Kearsley"
    "Decent Beach Read & Typical Kearsley"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Kearsley fans will recognize her tried and true formula: a mix of historical and contemporary fiction based on romance. The characters and plot points aren't deep, but neither are they overly frivolous. The narrator tends to become piercingly shrill when portraying excitement or tension, but this only occurs four or five times. It's a good choice for light reading: it will occupy the mind for a short while without taking up memory space.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Plague Land

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By S. D. Sykes
    • Narrated By Shaun Grindell
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    In this chilling historical mystery, young girls go missing from a medieval English village, and Lord Oswald de Lacy must find the killer before tragedy strikes again. Oswald de Lacy was never meant to be the lord of Somershill Manor. Dispatched to a monastery at the age of seven, sent back at 17 when his father and two older brothers were killed by the plague, Oswald has no experience of running an estate.

    MxH says: "More Coming of Age & Less Mystery"
    "More Coming of Age & Less Mystery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I thought Skye's writing was clear and concise. The story seemed more of a coming of age story than a murder mystery or thriller. At times the plot was flat, but character development was adequate. The narrator provided distinct voices for different characters without shrillness or overt volume (big personal bonus). Overall, the book was built on a strong foundation, but it would have benefited from a little more excitement.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Siege Winter: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Ariana Franklin, Samantha Norman
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    Overall
    (68)
    Performance
    (63)
    Story
    (62)

    1141. England is engulfed in war as King Stephen and his cousin, the Empress Matilda, vie for the crown. In this dangerous world, not even Emma, an 11-year-old peasant, is safe. A depraved monk obsessed with redheads kidnaps the ginger-haired girl from her village and leaves her for dead. When an archer for hire named Gwyl finds her, she has no memory of her previous life.

    South Carolina Senior says: "Please give us more books!"
    "Pleasant Listen, Above Average Writing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Above average writing especially considering Norman finished Franklin's work after Franklin died. Historical relevance, character development, and plot are nicely balanced. Kate Reading delivers the story and characters with a clear, strong voice. The subject might not appeal to everyone, but the book should be on the list of any reader who enjoys historical fiction set in the Middle Ages.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Inspector of the Dead

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By David Morrell
    • Narrated By Matthew Wolf
    Overall
    (42)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    The year is 1855. The Crimean War is raging. The incompetence of British commanders causes the fall of the English government. The empire teeters. Amid this crisis comes opium-eater Thomas De Quincey, one of the most notorious and brilliant personalities of Victorian England. Along with his irrepressible daughter, Emily, and their Scotland Yard companions, Ryan and Becker, De Quincey finds himself confronted by an adversary who threatens the heart of the nation.

    Marcheta says: "Haunting and Fascinating Crime in Victorian London"
    "Historical accuracy, one dimensional characters."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The author took great pains to achieve historical accuracy (he pompously describes his efforts in the afterword), unfortunately, character development suffers. I was hoping the characters would be fleshed out in the second book, but they remained one dimensional. I knew exactly how each character would react in every situation. I began to experience tedium and boredom after the first hour. I did finish the book, but I won't read or listen to a subsequent book. This book might be enjoyed by a reader who favors fiction heavy with historical detail.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Murder as a Fine Art

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By David Morrell
    • Narrated By Matthew Wolf
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (174)
    Performance
    (163)
    Story
    (163)

    Thomas De Quincey, infamous for his memoir "Confessions of an English Opium-Eater", is the major suspect in a series of ferocious mass murders identical to ones that terrorized London 43 years earlier. The blueprint for the killings seems to be De Quincey's essay "On Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts". Desperate to clear his name but crippled by opium addiction, De Quincey is aided by his devoted daughter, Emily, and a pair of determined Scotland Yard detectives.

    Amy says: "Historical Fact + Fiction = Gothic Mystery"
    "Solid Read."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Heavy in the true crime arena with some gaps in character development. Overall, solid read with decent narration. I will read the next book in the series and hope for more character development.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Jilted

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Ann Barker
    • Narrated By Anne Cater
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    When Eustacia Hope is jilted at the altar, her parents decide to save her reputation by sending her to stay with her godmother, Lady Agatha Rayner, a clergyman's widow. Eustacia's mother warns her to have nothing to do with Lady Agatha's brother, the notorious Lord Ashbourne, nor with his son, Lord Ilam.

    Lulu says: "A Pleasant way to pass the time"
    "Passably enjoyable."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Anne Baker certainly isn't Georgette Heyer, but Ms. Baker does possess a clear writing style that surpasses many contemporary regency romance authors. It isn't a standout book but overall, a pleasant listening experience without gross sentimentality or hyper-sexuality.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Keeper of Lost Causes: Department Q, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Jussi Adler-Olsen
    • Narrated By Erik Davies
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2032)
    Performance
    (1781)
    Story
    (1777)

    Jussi Adler-Olsen is Denmark's premier crime writer. His books routinely top the bestseller lists in northern Europe, and he's won just about every Nordic crime-writing award, including the prestigious Glass Key Award-also won by Henning Mankell, Stieg Larsson, and Jo Nesbo. Now, Dutton is thrilled to introduce him to America.

    L. O. Pardue says: "Fantastic New Scandinavian Series!!"
    "Strengths outweigh the flaws"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The book does have a few flaws: the hint of a southern drawl in the narrator's Danish accent, some small holes in the plot, and one too many noir cliches (the cliches may be due to translation). Nevertheless, the strengths, detailed character development, deep plot twists, and a sprinkle of humor, outweigh the weaknesses.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Silent Sister: Riley MacPherson, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Diane Chamberlain
    • Narrated By Susan Bennett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3277)
    Performance
    (2815)
    Story
    (2809)

    In The Silent Sister, Riley MacPherson has spent her entire life believing that her older sister Lisa committed suicide as a teenager. Now, over twenty years later, her father has passed away and she's in New Bern, North Carolina cleaning out his house when she finds evidence to the contrary. Lisa is alive. Alive and living under a new identity. But why exactly was she on the run all those years ago, and what secrets are being kept now?

    Taryn says: "Not My Cup of Tea"
    "Unoriginal and overly contrived."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The plot is predictable. The dialogue is forced, witless, and without charm. The narrator's work does not rise above simply ok. An underwhelming book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Raven Black: Book One of the Shetland Island Quartet

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Ann Cleeves
    • Narrated By Gordon Griffin
    Overall
    (466)
    Performance
    (415)
    Story
    (418)

    It is a cold January morning, and Shetland lies beneath a deep layer of snow. Trudging home, Fran Hunter's eye is drawn to a splash of color on the frozen ground, ravens circling above. It is the strangled body of her teenage neighbor, Catherine Ross. The locals on the quiet island stubbornly focus their gaze on one man - loner and simpleton Magnus Tait.

    MxH says: "Couldn't find a weak point."
    "Couldn't find a weak point."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am stingy with five star reviews, but five stars it must be for this book. It wasn't perfect, but there weren't any weak points. Kudos to an author who writes a mystery with near perfect tempo, strong character development, and an intriguing plot. And, Cleeves accomplishes this without overt gore, profanity, or sexuality. I hope subsequent books in the series do not become rote. Audible, please more Cleeves.

    23 of 26 people found this review helpful

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