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Susan J. Macaulay

River Forest, IL USA | Member Since 2013

7
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 2 reviews
  • 2 ratings
  • 174 titles in library
  • 2 purchased in 2015
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  • China Dolls: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Lisa See
    • Narrated By Jodi Long
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (238)
    Performance
    (217)
    Story
    (219)

    It's 1938 in San Francisco: A world's fair is preparing to open on Treasure Island, a war is brewing overseas, and the city is alive with possibilities. Grace, Helen, and Ruby, three young women from very different backgrounds, meet by chance at the exclusive and glamorous Forbidden City nightclub. Grace Lee, an American-born Chinese girl, has fled the Midwest with nothing but heartache, talent, and a pair of dancing shoes. Helen Fong lives with her extended family in Chinatown, where her traditional parents insist that she guard her reputation like a piece of jade.

    Mary says: "Need a different reader!! Where is Janet Song??"
    "Narrator Spoiled It For Me"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What other book might you compare China Dolls to and why?

    This is not unlike some of Lisa See's other books - long Chinese girls making their way in the world, this time beginning in 1938 and moving through their lives together. Well written and enjoyable, as always.


    How could the performance have been better?

    I normally enjoy Jodi Long as a narrator, but this was not the book for her. I don't know her background, but she sounds like she's from the New York City area (which I am as well). Her accent, although not pronounced, is nonetheless still there. This, combined with the fact that she sounds older than her late teens or early twenties, made it really hard for me to imagine that her words were the thoughts and words of three young Chinese-American girls from Ohio and California. I know it sounds picky, but it was very distracting to me.


    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Devil's Punchbowl

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Greg Iles
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (613)
    Performance
    (286)
    Story
    (289)

    As a prosecutor in Houston, Penn Cage sent killers to death row. But as mayor of his hometown - Natchez, Mississippi - Penn will face his most dangerous threat. Urged by old friends to try to restore this fading jewel of the Old South, Penn has ridden into office on a tide of support for change. But in its quest for new jobs and fresh money, Natchez has turned to casino gambling, and now five steamboats float on the river beside the old slave market, like props from Gone With the Wind.

    Corinne says: "Not his best but Iles can't be bad"
    "Couldn't Hear Half of the Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Greg Iles and/or Dick Hill?

    I would read another book by Greg Isles, but I doubt I would listen to another book read by Dick Hill. Perhaps it was the recording, and the not the narrator, but I couldn't hear half of what was being read when listening to this book in the car (which is where I do about 90% of my audiobook listening), even with the volume turned all the way up. The reader's attempt at a soft southern drawl often reduced the volume below the point of hearing, as did his voicing of the female characters. I've not had this problem with other audiobooks, so I don't think it was either my hearing or my system.


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

    I didn't enjoy this one as much as I have enjoyed others. The descriptions of human and animal abuse were far too graphic, and the plot moved a bit slowly compared to some of his other books.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Dick Hill?

    Someone with a more forceful voice.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Parts of it were good - suspenseful. I always enjoy Penn Cage books, although others more than this one.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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