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Noora

Member Since 2011

8
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 15 reviews
  • 85 ratings
  • 328 titles in library
  • 28 purchased in 2014
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  • The Great Gatsby

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By F. Scott Fitzgerald
    • Narrated By Jake Gyllenhaal
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (158)
    Performance
    (143)
    Story
    (143)

    F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic American novel of the Roaring Twenties is beloved by generations of readers and stands as his crowning work. This new audio edition, authorized by the Fitzgerald estate, is narrated by Oscar-nominated actor Jake Gyllenhaal (Brokeback Mountain). Gyllenhaal's performance is a faithful delivery in the voice of Nick Carraway, the Midwesterner turned New York bond salesman, who rents a small house next door to the mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby. There, he has a firsthand view of Gatsby’s lavish West Egg parties - and of his undying love....

    Jorge Curiel Lopez says: "Nice voice, terrible voice acting."
    "Didn't draw me in"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story failed to draw me in. Maybe it was too short, or maybe it was simply too uninteresting, or maybe it's the dull reading.

    Having the book narrated by a screen actor was not a good idea. It wasn't terrible, but neither was it good. For such a short book they could have picked some really good professional narrator instead.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Little Women

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Louisa May Alcott
    • Narrated By Barbara Caruso
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (409)
    Performance
    (244)
    Story
    (245)

    Most people know this book from the Academy Award-winning motion picture starring Winona Ryder. Now, introduce them to the sparkling American classic behind the movie: a charming portrait of the joys and hardships of the four sisters in Civil War New England. Separated by the war from their beloved parents, these "little women" struggle to find their place in the world.

    Nina says: "definitely worth a listen"
    "I know it's old, but I still can't stomach it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "Morale" shoved down your throat. Women who need men for their fulfillment, and to "fix" their lives. Personality traits treated as terrible faults to be corrected. Women considered "independent" because they're allowed to make a little bit of money, but still most careers are closed to them. And of course women must both marry and have children, or they'll become cranky and miserable when they grow old.

    Yes, I know it was written in 1868 and "things were different back then", but it is still presented as a novel to be read for entertainment rather than a document of how crazy the values were back then.

    I would never, ever let children read this. They might take the "lessons" to heart and become misogynistic little monsters who believe they are progressive and support women's independence.

    Taken as a document of how people and values were 150 years ago, it's fairly interesting and very well written. Narrator does a good job.

    4 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • The Hallowed Hunt

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Lois McMaster Bujold
    • Narrated By Marguerite Gavin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (621)
    Performance
    (252)
    Story
    (255)

    The half-mad Prince Boleso has been slain by a noblewoman he had intended to defile. It falls to Lord Ingrey kin Wilfcliff to transport the prince to his burial place and to bring the accused killer, Lady Ijada, to judgment. The road he travels with his burden and his prisoner is fraught with danger. But in the midst of political chaos, magic has the fiercer hold on Ingrey's destiny, and Ijada herself may turn out to be the only one he dares trust.

    Rose says: "Magic and Kingship in the Land of the Five Gods"
    "Enjoyed the story, but not the narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Hallowed Hunt isn't quite on par with Curse of Chalion or Paladin of Souls, but still a very nice book. I would happily give it another "overall" star, if it wasn't for the narrator.

    The narrator does a poor job. Many times her reading doesn't match the description, like if the book reads "Good morning, she said happily" the narrator might read "good morning" so that it doesn't sound happy. Also she puts the emphasis and pauses wrong or splits up sentences, garbling them up. One or two little mistakes in a book I could live with, but these were too frequent to be acceptable from a professional narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • I Will Fear No Evil

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Anthony Heald
    Overall
    (362)
    Performance
    (297)
    Story
    (306)

    As startling and provocative as his famous Stranger in a Strange Land, here is Heinlein’s grand masterpiece about a man supremely talented, immensely old, and obscenely wealthy who discovers that money can buy everything.

    Lisa says: "Not Heinlein's best - but still good"
    "Horrible. I should have read the reviews."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The author's views on gender and sexuality are so out of date that it makes me sick. Sure, the book is old, but it's not nearly old enough to be forgiven.

    This story is rather like a late night fantasy of some hormonal teenager who simply doesn't know yet how people work (or doesn't care, for the sake of the fantasy). Such manuscripts should be buried at the bottom of the drawer, found 15 years later by the author, read with great agony and embarrassment, and then burned.

    I picked this up at a sale, otherwise I might have noticed the earlier reviews. I thought I couldn't go wrong with picking a Heinlein. I was wrong.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Germinal

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Emile Zola
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    Overall
    (47)
    Performance
    (23)
    Story
    (22)

    A father and three of his seven children work brutal hours in a mine, facing hazards such as landslides, fire, and poisoned air, to scrape together enough money for food. When their lodger, Étienne, shares ideas about a workers' revolt, the family gradually embraces his plans. Soon the settlement is aflame with resolve to strike for better wages and working conditions. Savage and horrifying events ensue as miners clash with management and with each other.

    Ben Miller says: "Amazing imagery"
    "A modern book but over a hundred years old"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    You may have heard about it in literary history class, but in order to really appreciate it you must read it. This is raw realism, undisguised mud, blood and sweat. People applaud writers like George RR Martin for adopting a "rough" style, but it's not a new invention. More than a hundred years ago writers like Zola turned their backs to the romantic worlds of Dickens and Dumas, got rid of the perfume and make-up, and pushed the reader out into the muck of the real world. This book could have been written yesterday and still be considered great. The fact that it's from the 19'th century makes it brilliant.

    The story isn't half bad either. In fact, it's really good.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • War and Peace

    • UNABRIDGED (61 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Leo Tolstoy
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    Overall
    (1221)
    Performance
    (679)
    Story
    (670)

    Often called the greatest novel ever written, War and Peace is at once an epic of the Napoleonic wars, a philosophical study, and a celebration of the Russian spirit. Tolstoy's genius is clearly seen in the multitude of characters in this massive chronicle, all of them fully realized and equally memorable.

    Diana says: "Glad I finally decided to read it"
    "A very very long book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is very long. I usually enjoy a good long book, but this one wasn't long in any good way. It was simply very long. It took me a couple of months to get through it. Bits and pieces are brilliant, but not everything and there was simply too much of it.

    The narrator is great. The sample made me hesitate, but after a couple of minutes I got used to him and after a while couldn't imagine the book with any other narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Revelation Space

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Alastair Reynolds
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1581)
    Performance
    (1106)
    Story
    (1111)

    Nine hundred thousand years ago, something annihilated the Amarantin civilization just as it was on the verge of discovering space flight. Now one scientist, Dan Sylveste, will stop at nothing to solve the Amarantin riddle before ancient history repeats itself. With no other resources at his disposal, Sylveste forges a dangerous alliance with the cyborg crew of the starship Nostalgia for Infinity. But as he closes in on the secret, a killer closes in on him because the Amarantin were destroyed for a reason.

    Eoin says: "Defeated"
    "Nice story, but narrator let me down"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I liked the story, it wasn't overly deep but I enjoyed the "world" and will probably get the next book in the series too.

    However, I feel the narrator let me down. John Lee is one of my favorites, but this time he made too many accents that just sounded phony.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Magician's Guild: The Black Magician Trilogy: Book One

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Trudi Canavan
    • Narrated By Richard Aspel
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (975)
    Performance
    (610)
    Story
    (619)

    Sonea is caught up in a confrontation between the hated Guild magicians and the angry youth of the slums. To her dismay, she discovers that she possesses the same powers as the reviled magicians. To avoid capture, she must seek protection from the city's feared underworld, The Thieves. In return, she must use her powers for them, but her magic never seems to do quite what she intends it to.

    Jeremy says: "The book is like a wooden roller coaster..."
    "Too predictable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story is way too predictable and the characters are mostly stereotypes. There's no depth behind their opinions or actions. Malicious bad guy is malicious because, well, he just is that kind of guy. Good guy is good because, well, I have no idea why.

    These straight forward stereotypes make the plot very predictable. Something happens, how would the stereotypical malicious guy react to that? Well, that's exactly what he does and thus moves the plot forward a bit. How would stereotypical good guy react in that situation? Okay, he reacts exactly like that and moves the plot forward. Considering the cover says this is the first book in a trilogy you can easily guess the overall direction and goal. Repeat until you have arrived there.

    This book might be okay for younger readers or otherwise inexperienced readers who haven't yet started to expect more from a plot and the characters.

    I like the narrator but I think a female narrator would have been better since the main character is female.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • My Man Jeeves

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By P. G. Wodehouse
    • Narrated By David Thorn
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (143)
    Performance
    (126)
    Story
    (130)

    Wodehouse introduces us once again to the "wonder butler" Jeeves, who, as usual is able to solve any and all of Bertie Wooster's endless problems with ease and finesse. And he also introduces us to a character not dissimilar to Bertie . . . by name of Reggie. Such fun to follow Jeeves in the hijinks!

    Noora says: "Brilliantly narrated light reading"
    "Brilliantly narrated light reading"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A lovely comic light reading. The book consists of several independent episodes, ideal for when you want some short "bedtime stories".

    The narrator is brilliant.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Outlander

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (17354)
    Performance
    (11557)
    Story
    (11449)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: An all-time Audible favorite that mixes historic fiction, adventure, and romance with one of the most fascinating literary devices: time travel. Outlander introduces an exhilarating world of heroism and breathtaking thrills as one woman is torn between past and present, passion and love. In 1945, former combat nurse Claire Randall returns from World War II and joins her husband for a second honeymoon. But their blissful reunion is shattered....

    Lulu says: "The Reason for the Existence of Audio Books"
    "Not even a particularly interesting romance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found both the story and characters too predictable and shallow. Not even the romance was particularly good. I still have no idea why the heroine fell in love with the hero, and the intimate scenes were uninteresting. If it's supposed to be a romance novel, it fails miserably for me.

    I'll give it some credit for having a heroine who is quite the opposite of a "damsel in distress" yet without being any kind of super hero.

    If you want lots of hours of light "reading", please go ahead. At least it's long and not overly boring. It's just not overly great either. I'm going back to reading real historical novels and real fantasy instead.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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