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Madeira Park, British Columbia, Canada | Member Since 2004

  • 7 reviews
  • 33 ratings
  • 368 titles in library
  • 6 purchased in 2014

  • The Victors: Eisenhower and His Boys: The Men of World War II

    • ABRIDGED (4 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Stephen E. Ambrose
    • Narrated By Cotter Smith

    From America's preeminent military historian, Stephen E. Ambrose, comes a brilliant telling of the war in Europe, from D-Day, June 6, 1944, to the end; 11 months later, on May 7, 1945. To create this astonishing narrative, Ambrose draws from his 5 acclaimed works about that conflict, particularly from the definitive and comprehensive D-Day and Citizen Soldiers.

    K. Mckenna says: "The Stephen Ambrose highlight reel"
    "Abridged too far"

    It is, alas, too much like a highlight reel (as another reviewer noted) and if I'd noticed it was abridged, I'd never have bought it. My mistake.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Bob Spitz
    • Narrated By Kimberly Farr
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    From Pasadena to Cambridge to New York, Washington, D.C., India, Ceylon, Paris, Marseilles, Santa Barbara, and Maine, Bob Spitz re-creates an extraordinary life. He takes us beyond the image of Julia as the tall, eccentric woman with a funny voice who taught America how to cook, to establish her as a genuine rebel and beloved icon, a woman who redefined herself in middle age, helped to change the role of women in America, set the standard for how to create a public personality in the modern media world.

    S. Vann says: "Deeply mixed feelings"
    "Great story, terrible writer"

    The story of Julia Child is definitely interesting and this book provides a lot of information previously unknown to me -- particularly Paul's life before he met Julia.

    Unfortunately, the writing is slapdash in the extreme. While I was listening to this book the great line from The Princess Bride kept coming to mind: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
    Many, many words are misused and not for effect. The author sometimes attempts to be matey with the reader, describing an ordinary freshman-in-college-level discussion as "high-falutin." He seems to think that "intellectual" is a sort of job title. He finds word combinations that appeal to him, whether or not they're appropriate. Julia and Simca are the "countesses of cuisine" at a time when they were anything but. Julia feels the first "pangs of interest" in television. Pangs? Really? There are dozens more, which I found both distracting and annoying. Apparently, book editing has essentially disappeared because all this book really needed was a scrupulous editor.

    The subject matter remains interesting and the reader is quite good. If the writing doesn't irritate you, the book can be enjoyable.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Lion in the Valley

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Peters
    • Narrated By Susan O'Malley
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The 1895-96 season promises to be an exceptional one for Amelia Peabody, her Egyptologist husband, Emerson, and their precocious eight-year-old son, Ramses. The much-coveted burial chamber of the Black Pyramid is theirs for the digging. But there is a great evil in the wind sweeping through Cairo. The brazen moonlight abduction of Ramses and an expedition subsequently cursed by misfortune and death have alerted Amelia to the presence of a notorious looter of the living and the dead.

    AJ says: "Terrible narration"
    "Good book but wrong narrator"

    These books are told in the first person by Amerlia Peabody who is English. Having the book read by Susan O'Malley in her flat American voice is a mistake of the first order.
    I downloaded this version by mistake and I have to abandon it early on. Now I will bite the bullet and pay more to get the Barbara Rosenblatt version.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mountains Beyond Mountains

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Tracy Kidder
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Pulitzer Prize-winner Tracy Kidder tells the true story of a socially conscious genius who uses his intellectual and personal gifts to solve global health problems.

    MikeInOhio says: "A Great Book"
    "What it means to"

    I agree with the earlier reviewer that if you are conservative-minded, you will not like this book. In fact, you will hate this book. It offers no comfort to the smug and complacent. It fails to blame the victims and doesn't heap scorn on those trying to help what are surely the most wretched of the earth.
    Paul Farmer is exactly the kind of guy to set neo-con teeth on edge. He's a famous infectious disease expert, for heaven's sake. He could be making piles and piles of money and spending it all on big houses and cars for himself!
    It might be ok if he were driven by religious fervor but instead he's a secular guy who actually believes that in "love thy neighbor" stuff and doesn't have the sense to know that neighbors are the folks who live next door in suburbia -- not in some dreadful slum in Haiti or Peru.
    But for those who don't think compassion is a dirty word, this book will enlighten and move you. Farmer is no saint but he's the most moral person one could imagine. His reserves of energy and will simply boggle the mind. He's almost impossible to describe but Tracy Kidder does remarkably well. Most of us can never be like Paul Farmer -- and in some ways that's a good thing -- but the world is a better place because he's in it. And every day he lives, he continues to make a difference.
    Would that we could all have that said about us.
    "And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity." Corinthians xiii. 13.

    9 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Uncle Dynamite

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By P.G. Wodehouse
    • Narrated By Jonathan Cecil

    A chance meeting on a train brought together Lord Ickenham and Bill Oakshott, although being told that the love of his life, Hermione, was engaged to none other than Pongo, Lord Ickenham's nephew, did not make Bill feel like he'd been struck behind the ear. And what with the usual amount of stirring goings-on at Ashendon Manor that include biffings and black eyes and duckings in duck ponds, is there any chance that it will ever work out for poor Bill?

    Sarah says: "Almost better than Jeeves"
    "Prime Wodehouse"

    Lord Ickenham is one of Wodehouse's most adorable creations. Ingenious as Jeeves and equally unflappable, he waltzes through the story with complete aplomb. He's charming, witty, rich, generous, kind, and shrewd. Any world would be greatly improved if there were only ONE more Lord I. More than one would be stupendous.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Strange Affair

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter Robinson
    • Narrated By Simon Prebble

    On a summer night, an attractive woman hurtles north in a blue Peugeot with an address in her pocket, while, back in London, a desperate man leaves a late-night phone message on his brother's answering machine. By sunrise, the woman is found in her car, shot, execution-style, through the head.

    Shaliali says: "Very, Very Abridged"
    "Warning, Abridged."

    Another waste of time and Peter Robinson's talent. Robinson doesn't write "too many words" and what literary genius decides which parts are dispensible? One could weep with frustration.
    Go buy the book. It's excellent. But don't waste your ears on an abridged version.

    13 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • This American Life, 1-Month Subscription

    • NONE (1 hr)
    • By This American Life

    "Its mission is to document everyday life in this country. We sometimes think of it as a documentary show for people who normally hate documentaries. A public radio show for people who don't necessarily care for public radio. What we look for in putting the show together are stories that we love, truly love." Get the latest issue or subscribe!

    Martha says: "My favorite part of!!"
    "Best of American Radio"

    After moving to Canada early in 2004, the only radio shows I missed were "Car Talk" and "This American Life." I am so grateful to for giving me access to both. "This American Life" is quirky, unpredictable, and mesmerizing. When I read descriptions of a show, I often think I won't like it because of the subject matter...but I always end up fascinated. A recent show on automobiles was terrific from beginning to end and few people care less about cars than I do. I continue to be amazed that they produce such a high-quality program every week.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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