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Sarah

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada | Member Since 2005

20
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 27 reviews
  • 43 ratings
  • 306 titles in library
  • 35 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
2

  • Expecting Adam: A True Story of Birth, Rebirth, and Everyday Magic

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Martha Beck
    • Narrated By Joyce Bean
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (40)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    From the moment Martha and her husband, John, conceived their second child, all hell broke loose. They were a couple obsessed with success. After years of matching IQs and test scores with less driven peers, they had two Harvard degrees apiece and were gunning for more. But the dream had begun to disintegrate. Then, when their unborn son, Adam, was diagnosed with Down syndrome, doctors, advisers, and friends in the Harvard community warned them not to keep the baby.

    Sarah says: "Uncomfortably Honest"
    "Uncomfortably Honest"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A brutally honest account of coming to terms with having a disabled child and how life changes, both the good stuff and the bad. There were moments of discomfort but I realize that’s not because the author was being inappropriate or rude, but because she was relaying honest truths, and sometimes such truths are hard to hear.

    The book progressed well and had that uncommon quality of not wanting to put it down but afraid to hear the rest. A very good read for people with children with disabilities because it reassures you that even when you have awful thoughts about your “broken” child, you’re not the only one who has ever thought that about your child, and that’s okay.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Sugar Detox: Sugar Detox Program to Naturally Cleanse Your Sugar Craving, Lose Weight and Feel Great in Just 15 Days Or Less!

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 19 mins)
    • By Samantha Michaels
    • Narrated By Caroline Miller
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (5)

    Sugar Detox: Sugar Detox Program to Naturally Cleanse Your Sugar Craving, Lose Weight and Feel Great in Just 15 Days Or Less! is a program designed to be easily incorporated into our busy schedule while providing all the practical tools necessary to support and rejuvenate our bodies. The effect is transformative: nagging health problems will suddenly disappear, extra weight will drop away, and for the first time in our lives, we will experience what it truly means to feel healthy.

    Sarah says: "Nothing special here"
    "Nothing special here"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There was a real focus on medical reasons for sugar addiction as opposed to emotional reasons. Adrenal fatigue, chronic fatigue syndrome, menopausal/andopausal etc. There were quizzes at the beginning and nothing really applied to me because I eat too much sugar out of boredom, habit, emotion and control.

    The sugar detox plan is... *drumroll* don't eat sugar.
    The plan is pretty much mediterranean foods and south beach mixed together. Nothing new in this book, not worth the credit. Also recommends supplements that I'm not keen on.

    I do like that it's pretty concise though.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Price of Silence: A Mom's Perspective on Mental Illness

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Liza Long
    • Narrated By Karen White
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    In The Price of Silence she takes a devastating look at how we address mental illness, especially in children, who are funneled through a system of education, mental health care, and juvenile detention that leads far too often to prison. In the end she asks one central question: if there's a poster child for cancer, why can't there be one for mental illness? The answer: the stigma.

    Sarah says: "Good insight but long winded"
    "Good insight but long winded"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Probably not. She can pretty much sum it up in a five minute tv interview. There is a lot of theoretical philosophical talk and the interesting anecdotes that make the book good are too far between.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    Cut it in half. Dont try to be an expert in things your not and stick to talking about your family and experiences.


    How could the performance have been better?

    The narrator was very poor and didn't flow well. It was frustratingly choppy.


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

    God no.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Heft

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Liz Moore
    • Narrated By Kirby Heyborne, Keith Szarabajka
    Overall
    (1531)
    Performance
    (1383)
    Story
    (1386)

    Forrmer academic Arthur Opp weighs 550 pounds and hasn’t left his rambling Brooklyn home in a decade. Twenty miles away in Yonkers, seventeen-year-old Kel Keller navigates life as the poor kid in a rich school and pins his hopes on what seems like a promising baseball career - if he can untangle himself from his family drama.

    Deborah says: "Mesmerizing Performance"
    "A really intriguing story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about this story?

    I really liked the descriptions the author used and the suspence of how story lines played around the fringes and integrating but it's just a tease.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The scene of Kel taking off from school after his breakdown. The imagery was fantastic.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Roots: The Saga of an American Family

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Alex Haley
    • Narrated By Avery Brooks
    Overall
    (2113)
    Performance
    (1222)
    Story
    (1241)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: A masterpiece like none other, Brooks’ powerful performance of Haley’s words has been known to leave listeners in tears. It begins with a birth in an African village in 1750, and ends two centuries later at a funeral in Arkansas. And in that time span, an unforgettable cast of men, women, and children come to life, many of them based on the people from Alex Haley's own family tree.

    Kevin says: "Powerful"
    "So boring..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    It was so dry, boring, long. I didn't make it too far into this novel.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Partials

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Dan Wells
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (504)
    Performance
    (448)
    Story
    (453)

    The human race is all but extinct after a war with Partials - engineered organic beings identical to humans - has decimated the population. Reduced to only tens of thousands by RM, a weaponized virus to which only a fraction of humanity is immune, the survivors in North America have huddled together on Long Island while the Partials have mysteriously retreated. The threat of the Partials is still imminent, but, worse, no baby has been born immune to RM in more than a decade. Our time is running out.

    Tabitha says: "Action! Romance! Science!"
    "Status Quo Dystopia"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    It wasn't super imaginative. You could predict what was going to happen by the blatant forshadowing. I also find it hard to believe that ten years of doctors and researchers unable to find a cure for a disease would be so easily put to shame by a 16 year old nursing trainee. The main character is elevated too easily to positions of importance and defies the odds in way too many circumstances for it to seem legitimate.


    Was Partials worth the listening time?

    Hmm maybe? I won't be buying the sequals but it wasn't wholly unpleasent. (how's that for selling it??)


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Far from the Tree: Parents, Children and the Search for Identity

    • UNABRIDGED (40 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Andrew Solomon
    • Narrated By Andrew Solomon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (406)
    Performance
    (345)
    Story
    (341)

    A brilliant and utterly original thinker, Andrew Solomon's journey began from his experience of being the gay child of straight parents. He wondered how other families accommodate children who have a variety of differences: families of people who are deaf, who are dwarfs, who have Down syndrome, who have autism, who have schizophrenia, who have multiple severe disabilities, who are prodigies, who commit crimes, who are transgender.

    C. Beaton says: "A Gripping Masterpiece"
    "So. Long."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Andrew Solomon and/or Andrew Solomon?

    No... I think he's said all he can say.


    What was most disappointing about Andrew Solomon’s story?

    I listened to the ted talk by Andrew Solomon and was moved so much by the power in his words I had to get the book. It was a really lengthy reiteration of the ted talk. There is a lot of repetition and very long anectdotes that don't really add anything new to the concepts he is trying to present.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Narration was fine.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Still Missing

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Chevy Stevens
    • Narrated By Angela Dawe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1328)
    Performance
    (705)
    Story
    (714)

    On the day she was abducted, Annie O’Sullivan, a 32-year-old Realtor, had three goals: sell a house, forget about a recent argument with her mother, and be on time for dinner with her ever-patient boyfriend. The open house is slow, but when her last visitor pulls up in a van as she’s about to leave, Annie thinks it just might be her lucky day after all.

    Richard Delman says: "A singular voice; a horrendous story."
    "Great read, disappointing ending"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Still Missing the most enjoyable?

    The look inside the experience and mind of someone who has been abducted.


    What other book might you compare Still Missing to and why?

    Room by Emily Donahue.
    Also this novel takes place on Vancouver Island involving a realtor who is abducted. There is a real life story of a realtor on Vancouver Island who was murdered at a home she was showing. That was a bit eerie.


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

    n/a


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

    Not in one sitting, it's pretty long. I listened to it every day though until complete!


    Any additional comments?

    I didn't love the ending where you find out who was responsible for the abduction. It would have been better if it was just random or if the abductor had chosen the woman at random. Makes it less sensational and more authentic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Paleofantasy

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Marlene Zuk
    • Narrated By Laura Darrell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (86)
    Performance
    (76)
    Story
    (73)

    We evolved to eat berries rather than bagels, to live in mud huts rather than condos, to sprint barefoot rather than play football - or did we? Are our bodies and brains truly at odds with modern life? Although it may seem as though we have barely had time to shed our hunter-gatherer legacy, biologist Marlene Zuk reveals that the story is not so simple. Popular theories about how our ancestors lived - and why we should emulate them - are often based on speculation, not scientific evidence. Armed with a razor-sharp wit and brilliant, eye-opening research, Zuk takes us to the cutting edge of biology to show that evolution can work much faster than was previously realized.

    Kali says: "Dropping some evolution knowledge!"
    "Awful narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Paleofantasy? What did you like least?

    It was interesting but was a bit long winded and sciency. It was definitely food for thought but could have been condensed which would have kept me listening more consistently.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Paleofantasy?

    n/a


    Would you be willing to try another one of Laura Darrell’s performances?

    Maybe for fiction. Her voice was really annoying when listening to a scientific book. If I hear "neandra-tal" instead of "neandra-thal" one more time I'll kick a puppy.


    Do you think Paleofantasy needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Valley of Amazement

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Amy Tan
    • Narrated By Nancy Wu, Joyce Bean, Amy Tan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1100)
    Performance
    (971)
    Story
    (988)

    Shanghai, 1912. Violet Minturn is the privileged daughter of the American madam of the city's most exclusive courtesan house. But when the Ching dynasty is overturned, Violet is separated from her mother in a cruel act of chicanery and forced to become a "virgin courtesan." Half-Chinese and half-American, Violet grapples with her place in the worlds of East and West - until she is able to merge her two halves, empowering her to become a shrewd courtesan who excels in the business of seduction and illusion, though she still struggles to understand who she is.

    Pamela says: "Just could NOT get past the ugliness"
    "Not Amy Tan's best work"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    It was a little haphazard and a number of events were unnecessary to the development of the story so it seemed a little longwinded. I would streamline the story a bit more.


    If you’ve listened to books by Amy Tan before, how does this one compare?

    It's not her best work. It was a lot more sexual than previous books too.


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

    n/a


    Do you think The Valley of Amazement needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No. Unlike Shanghai Girls which I loved was part of a series this was a decent standalone book and I wouldn't consider another in the series, though I would probably read almost anything Amy Tan wrote :)


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Zero Day: A Jeff Aiken Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Mark Russinovich
    • Narrated By Johnny Heller
    Overall
    (836)
    Performance
    (763)
    Story
    (768)

    An airliner’s controls abruptly fail mid-flight over the Atlantic. An oil tanker runs aground in Japan when its navigational system suddenly stops dead. Hospitals everywhere have to abandon their computer databases when patients die after being administered incorrect dosages of their medicine. In the Midwest, a nuclear power plant nearly becomes the next Chernobyl when its cooling systems malfunction. At first, these random computer failures seem like unrelated events.

    Brian says: "Techno-thriller that gets the tech right"
    "Went the wrong way"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I feel like the really interesting part of this idea, all the problems that follow on a failure of the digital world and computerized systems, was glazed over in favor of how viruses work and a poorly written ethno-political motivation of digital attack.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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