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Sandra R. Merrill

Observer, reader, knitter.

Mpls., MN | Member Since 2013

6
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 6 reviews
  • 6 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 8 purchased in 2014
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  • Influential Magic: Crescent City Fae, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Deanna Chase
    • Narrated By Gabra Zackman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (35)
    Performance
    (33)
    Story
    (32)

    It's tough being a faery in New Orleans, a city fraught with vampires...especially when their very existence drains your life force. Willow Rhoswen, owner of The Fated Cupcake and part-time vampire hunter for the Void is having a rough week. Four years after her twin brother's mysterious death, Willow's life is threatened and the director saddles her with a new partner-her ex-boyfriend, David. To her horror, he's turned vamp, which causes her physical pain whenever she touches him

    Leiah says: "A potential new favorite on my UF shelf"
    "Must read paranormal intrigue"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I recommend this book. Deanna Chase weaves intriguing stories, with great characters and eventful situations. There isn't a character, good or evil I did not want to hear more of.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Influential Magic?

    The most memorable moment is when Willow discovers family secrets and deeper intrigue tying her family with a powerful vampire ruler and family.


    Which character – as performed by Gabra Zackman – was your favorite?

    I liked all the characters, but, I would have to say David is my favorite. It's hard not to put the Heroine Willow first.


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

    I cannot say I had an extreme reaction, but I was very captured by the story and cannot wait for the sequel. I was in suspense a couple of times, pulling for the characters, worrying through situations.


    Any additional comments?

    Deanna is one of my most favorite authors, I have all of her books and Look forward to her future books.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Smuggler's Moon: The Raveneaus in Cornwall, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Cynthia Wright
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (15)

    Feisty Julia Faircloth is used to managing the lives of her eccentric relatives, so when darkly dangerous Lord Sebastian Trevarre arrives in Bath and proposes to her shy sister Sarah, she switches places with the bride to save her from a shockingly carnal wedding night. Against his better judgment, Sebastian consummates a marriage to the most provoking, appealing woman he's ever known, and then is forced to live with her in his neglected yet enchanting estate on the coast of Cornwall.

    Amazon Customer says: "A New Hero to Love---and the Return of a Favorite"
    "Lovely historical quest of love, life & redemption"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Smuggler's Moon again? Why?

    Yes, with its lovely historical background of Cornwall and a bit of Bath, and how smuggling was a revolutionary act of survival against the Kings taxes. I enjoyed the journey of redemption in life, how love can come to us if we let it, stubborn Libertines and headstrong ladies, I would find this enjoyable to listen to again.
    I encourage others to purchase and enjoy Smuggler's Moon.


    What other book might you compare Smuggler's Moon to and why?

    There are many historically based books about smuggling and pirating, the up and down sides of this life choice, however, right now I may compare it to "Sliver Storm" there are familial ties in family, shipping, standing against governmental tyranny as well as love coming to fruition aboard a ship at sea. Women who are strong and independent, standing for what they believe against headstrong, stubborn and wary men.


    What about Rosalyn Landor’s performance did you like?

    I enjoyed listening to Rosalyn Landor. Her accent fitting the characters and country, she has a nice voice, not grating like some and reads rather smoothly; that is important. She moved smoothly between characters and scenes, adding to the voice emotively very well. Sometimes I find myself avoiding a book or having trouble listening to a book because it sounds too mechanical or abrasive, not sure how to explain it.


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

    Yes, Andre's own night time reflection and then conversation with Devon on the discovery that Sebastian is Andre's son were all poignant moments, but I would have to say that the conversation on parentage between Andre and Sebastian was quite moving and seemed healing for both of them.


    Any additional comments?

    I think I would have like a bit more of an Epilogue, a bit more wind up to the story, I know that Sebastian and Julia planned to re-marry, but maybe a bit of a wrap up of, possible children, how some of the other family members progress; there were hints of such things, I just felt the need for a little more meat to that part.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Tempest: The Raveneau Novels, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Cynthia Wright
    • Narrated By Emily Beresford
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Newport heiress Catherine Beasley Parrish has been groomed all her life to marry an English duke. However, when she meets Adam Raveneau, the latest in a long line of Raveneau rakes and a newly created viscount, Cathy awakens to a destiny worth fighting for. Although Raveneau insists that he is not marriage material, he is in desperate need of funds to restore Tempest Hall, his crumbling family estate on Barbados. And when Cathy begs him to save her from the toad-like duke her mother intends her to marry, Adam realizes that they may be able help each other.

    Amazon Customer says: "The Next Generation, Just as Wicked as the Last"
    "love and adventure in Barbados"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Tempest rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Tempest is ranks in the top tier with my other Cynthia Wright audiobook, Silver Storm. There is depth and growth of characters with a vibrant Barbadian background.Definite must have for your audio library.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I have a difficult time choosing a favorite character, with a loving, all knowing older cook who has been in the family for generations. Such s treasure. Adam and Cathy have so much growing and learning to do, so they can truly come together. Both characters endear themselves to the reader, that it is hard to choose between them. Normally I can say I have a definite favorite, but not this time, in a way, they were each others catalyst for growth and healing.


    Which character – as performed by Emily Beresford – was your favorite?

    Again, I was not able to clearly favor either Adam or Cathy over the other. I felt equal endearment to both and wanted to encourage both.


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

    My heart melted completely. This story was so endearing, the characters had so much possible hope within and around them. I felt joy when their flawed, but loving world came together?.


    Any additional comments?

    At times I wondered , while listening to this book, if Andre and Devon from Silver Storm had not been reincarnated within Adam and Cathy to come together again. The similarities were calling to me. Cathy and Devon both had older brothers who died at sea, they were free spirits, lived in coastal New England towns and were sheltered. Adam was descended from Andre, had his looks, moodiness, was hurt by parental infidelity, knew sailing, how to use swords and had ties to tropical island homes. Such a beautiful story!
    I recommend this and any story by Cynthia Wright.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Cuckoo's Calling

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Robert Galbraith
    • Narrated By Robert Glenister
    Overall
    (5782)
    Performance
    (5258)
    Story
    (5272)

    After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: his sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.

    Tracey says: "Unbelievable debut mystery set in London"
    "Innocent Death"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Cuckoo's Calling again? Why?

    This story would be a definite listen again, or read again. the characters are human, with flaws and their weaknesses bring it to life. As you are drawn into the story, you relate to the characters, you are drawn into the mystery and can't help but become a part of the moment.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The flawed characters drew me in, The story kept me present with it, and the mystery made me consider the possibilities.


    Which character – as performed by Robert Glenister – was your favorite?

    Cormoran Strike is human flawed, but decent. He is scarred by life, he is struggling, but does not let those around him down. Cormoran is rebuilding himself and you are drawn in to his character, his strengths, his many weaknesses and his process through his journey, that pulling force that draws him forward in solving this case.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Deaths calling for Justice


    Any additional comments?

    It was great to be a gumshoe and follow Cormoran, You are drawn to believe in him.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Falling for Frederick

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Cheryl Bolen
    • Narrated By Amy McFadden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Her second day doing doctoral research in the basement archives of Siddley Hall, England’s grandest Tudor home, American Antonia Townley finds the hall’s curator - with a knife plunged into his chest. Police suspect Antonia of being the killer because of two insignificant - to her - reasons, the first being the pesky matter of her fingerprints on the murder weapon. Then there is the unfortunate e-mail she had sent to her sister, saying she would kill for the curator’s job.

    Sandra R. Merrill says: "Intrigue and the Monstrance/Hidden Catholics"
    "Intrigue and the Monstrance/Hidden Catholics"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Falling for Frederick in three words, what would they be?

    Historical, mystery, Adventure


    What other book might you compare Falling for Frederick to and why?

    In some ways it reminds me of a Dan brown Thriller, in that it traces a lost symbol or artifact of religion, but no to the extent that it delves into religion. As the persecuted Catholic families of England hid, they hid their artifacts as well. This book is a treasure hunt across England to find such a treasure.


    Which character – as performed by Amy McFadden – was your favorite?

    Antonia was my favorite character. It was fun to follow her adventure, be there in her research and look for the monstrance. Her research in the archives, manor houses and libraries of Europe is wonderful.


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

    The story make you think, ponder and consider the possibilities. very enjoyable.


    Any additional comments?

    A wonderful reading adventure that keeps you thinking.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Silver Storm: The Raveneau Novels, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Cynthia Wright
    • Narrated By Emily Beresford
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (36)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    Dashing and dangerous Andre Raveneau is the Revolutionary War's most reckless privateer captain when Devon Lindsay stows away aboard his ship after her Connecticut town has been burned by the British. Raveneau sardonically agrees to deliver her to her childhood sweetheart in Virginia but doesn't count on his own potent attraction to the enchanting, courageous Devon. Through high adventure, swashbuckling sea battles, and the colorful history of America's revolution, the couple battles the fiery passion that binds them together.

    Corlis Ciji Ware says: "Audible Version of "Silver Storm" is terrific!"
    "Revolutionary war adventure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Silver Storm the most enjoyable?

    Andre and Devon's story leads you into the battles and scenery in early America, as you travel along the American Eastern seaboard.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The people and places in History come to life and you feel like a part of it.


    Which character – as performed by Emily Beresford – was your favorite?

    Devon was the most memorable character, as you watch her come of age and move into adulthood, she maintains her vision of life and it's priorities.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    The Alpha Sea Captain and his guilty pleasure.


    Any additional comments?

    Andre was a strong character who was at times so controlling he was hard to like, but quite redeemable in the end. He kind of gets over himself and his painful childhood to see clearly the love surrounding him and man up. The story drew me in and kept me wanting more.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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