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Robert

Bettendorf, IA, United States | Member Since 2004

10
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 49 ratings
  • 558 titles in library
  • 35 purchased in 2014
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  • The Other Woman

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Hank Phillippi Ryan
    • Narrated By Ilyana Kadushin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (79)
    Performance
    (61)
    Story
    (62)

    Jane Ryland was a rising star in television news…until she refused to reveal a source and lost everything. Now a disgraced newspaper reporter, Jane isn’t content to work on puff pieces, and finds herself tracking down a candidate’s secret mistress just days before a pivotal Senate election. Detective Jake Brogan is investigating a possible serial killer. Twice, bodies of unidentified women have been found by a bridge, and Jake is plagued by a media swarm beginning to buzz about a “bridge killer” hunting young women. As the body count rises and election looms closer, it becomes clear to Jane and Jake that their cases are connected….

    Amazon Customer says: "Badly Flawed Production Ruined it For Me"
    "Yawn…"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    A better narrator might have helped the incredibly ridiculous story. More likable characters and a more believable plot might have also helped - although I really felt this book was irredeemable.


    What could Hank Phillippi Ryan have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Created characters that I cared about. None of these people seemed real or likable to me. The main character seems to bumble her way to a big story.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    This book was set in Boston, yet not one character had a Boston accent. In fact, it was hard to tell one from the other because they all sounded essentially the same.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment would be the primary feeling. The author is apparently an award-winning television journalist and may be a great reporter but it would take a large sum of money to get me to read/listen to another one of her books.


    Any additional comments?

    I never felt this book had any focus or purpose. The lead character had integrity, I guess, because she wouldn't sleep with the cop she really liked because it would have violated her journalistic ethics and put her job at risk. But other than being ethical, she does not seem exceptional in any other way. Likewise, each of the other characters seem to have their own problems that kept me from caring about them. This may just a matter of taste, but I found this whole experience unfortunate. This is one of the few Audible books that I have not liked at least a little bit.

    The amazing thing was that, at the end, best-selling author Lee Child interviewed the author and told her how great he thought the book was. The interview was more interesting than the book but it sounded like it was recorded on a bus based on the amount of extraneous background sounds.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Erik Larson
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2395)
    Performance
    (1764)
    Story
    (1766)

    The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America’s first ambassador to Hitler’s Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history. A mild-mannered professor from Chicago, Dodd brings along his wife, son, and flamboyant daughter, Martha. At first Martha is entranced by the parties and pomp, and the handsome young men of the Third Reich with their infectious enthusiasm for restoring Germany to a position of world prominence. Enamored of the “New Germany,” she has one affair after another....

    Patrick says: "compelling father-daughter story"
    "Nazi Trivialities"
    Overall

    The Beatles sang: "Come on, if you please, I got no time for trivialities." If you've got no time for trivialities, I strongly suggest you skip this banal, uninspiring account of a third-rate ambassador and his slutty daughter in 1930s Berlin. Erik Larson can be praised for Devil in the White City, and Stephen Hoye somehow managed to sound engaged in this documentation of dinner parties and other unimportant events. By the end of the book (after the part about happy horses, the byproduct of which would be happy horse-hockey, I guess), it begins to dawn on the main characters that Hitler is somewhat of a homicidal monster, but most of the book makes these folks look naive in the extreme. Perhaps you can forgive them because, after all, they didn't much like the Jews anyway. My rating was 2 stars because 1 1/2 wasn't an option.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Caught

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Harlan Coben
    • Narrated By Carrington MacDuffie, Danny Campbell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (925)
    Performance
    (305)
    Story
    (305)

    Seventeen-year-old Haley McWaid is a good girl, the pride of her suburban New Jersey family, captain of the lacrosse team, headed off to college next year with all the hopes and dreams her doting parents can pin on her. Which is why, when her mother wakes one morning to find that Haley never came home the night before, and three months quickly pass without word from the girl, the community assumes the worst.

    Linda says: "It's Coben at his best!!"
    "Latest and Last"
    Overall

    I have listened to and greatly enjoyed several Harlan Coben books but his latest will be my last. What a disappointment! The plot is ridiculously fantastic. The big catch phrase is "Dead is dead." How enlightening. I couldn't work up an interest in let alone empathy for any of the characters, all of whom said and did odd things. If you happen to be in AA, this might be a good gift for the rest of your group - anti-alcohol and pro-forgiveness are two themes, which actually might not have been bad had they not been handled in such a heavy handed manner.

    This was a real contrast to the last three books I listened to, Lion by Nelson DeMille, Innocent by Scott Turow and Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes, all of which were excellent. I should add that the narrator of this book - while I don't envy what she had to work with - did nothing to improve on the written word.

    Overall, a waste of several hours of listening time.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Karl Marlantes
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4385)
    Performance
    (2540)
    Story
    (2541)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: A performance so poignant, we gave Bronson Pinchot (yes, Balki from Perfect Strangers) our inaugural Narrator of the Year award.... In the monsoon season of 1968-69 at a fire support base called Matterhorn, located in the remote mountains of Vietnam, a young and ambitious Marine lieutenant wants to command a company to further his civilian political ambitions. But two people stand in his way.

    Zachary says: "Matterhorn"
    "Great read"
    Overall

    This is one great book you won't regret reading or ever forget. The writing is first class and the narration brings each character to life. Don't miss this.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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