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Susan

oakland, ca, United States | Member Since 2009

2
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 13 reviews
  • 53 ratings
  • 263 titles in library
  • 3 purchased in 2015
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  • The Handmaid's Tale

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Margaret Atwood
    • Narrated By Claire Danes
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4247)
    Performance
    (3827)
    Story
    (3860)

    Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead, serving in the household of the enigmatic Commander and his bitter wife. She may go out once a day to markets whose signs are now pictures because women are not allowed to read. She must pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, for in a time of declining birthrates her value lies in her fertility, and failure means exile to the dangerously polluted Colonies. Offred can remember a time when she lived with her husband and daughter and had a job, before she lost even her own name....

    Emily - Audible says: "My Top Pick for 2012"
    "Really loved this"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Loved this so much that I want to listen to it again sometime and I really want to learn more about its writing and its author. Can't believe this book was written in 1985 but identifies so many issues that are in the forefront of our lives now. Really wonderful - recommending this to everyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Girl You Left Behind

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Jojo Moyes
    • Narrated By Clare Corbett, Penny Rawlins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (598)
    Performance
    (521)
    Story
    (518)

    France, 1916: Artist Edouard Lefevre leaves his young wife, Sophie, to fight at the front. When their small town falls to the Germans in the midst of World War II, Edouard’s portrait of Sophie draws the eye of the new Kommandant. As the officer’s dangerous obsession deepens, Sophie will risk everything - her family, her reputation, and her life - to see her husband again.

    FanB14 says: "Exquisite Portrait of Sophie and Liz"
    "She hit another home run"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Love her books. This is my third and can't wait to get more. Was so surprised at this one from the start. Didn't disappoint. Tell your friends.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • One Plus One: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Jojo Moyes
    • Narrated By Elizabeth Bower, Ben Elliot, Nicola Stanton, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1308)
    Performance
    (1169)
    Story
    (1173)

    Suppose your life sucks. A lot. Your husband has done a vanishing act, your teenage stepson is being bullied, and your math-whiz daughter has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you can't afford to pay for. That's Jess' life in a nutshell - until an unexpected knight-in-shining-armor offers to rescue them. Only Jess' knight turns out to be Geeky Ed, the obnoxious tech millionaire whose vacation home she happens to clean. But Ed has big problems of his own, and driving the dysfunctional family to the Math Olympiad feels like his first unselfish act in ages...maybe ever.

    Kathy says: "Sometimes I need a book that is just fun to read."
    "I couldn't have enjoyed it more."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A wonderful and engaging story that seems to be about real people. Ice read two of her three books and can't wait for the third.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dispossessed: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Ursula K. Le Guin
    • Narrated By Don Leslie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (227)
    Performance
    (175)
    Story
    (178)

    Shevek, a brilliant physicist, decides to take action. He will seek answers, question the unquestionable, and attempt to tear down the walls of hatred that have isolated his planet of anarchists from the rest of the civilized universe. To do this dangerous task will mean giving up his family and possibly his life. Shevek must make the unprecedented journey to the utopian mother planet, Anarres, to challenge the complex structures of life and living, and ignite the fires of change.

    Justin says: "The Anti Atlas Shrugged"
    "Not sure why I bothered to finish this"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm thinking this was not a good book for an audio version. I found the philosophy arguments interesting but I felt like they were repeated over and over. I cannot recommend this and wish I had just returned it. The ideas in the book are good - but not the format.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wild Lavender

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Belinda Alexandra
    • Narrated By Kate Hood
    Overall
    (127)
    Performance
    (85)
    Story
    (84)

    Simone Fleurier is wrenched from her home on a Provencal lavender farm at the age of 14 after the accidental death of her father. Forced to become a maid at the boarding house of her Aunt Augustine in Marseilles, Simone's life is hard and impoverished. But one of her aunt's boarders, the beautiful Camille Casal, a star at the local music hall, gives Simone a dream: that one day she too will be a famous singer and dancer.

    Wade says: "An Extrodinary Story"
    "So so disappointed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am a huge Belinda Alexandra fan. I can hardly believe she wrote this. It was predictable and transparent from the start. I didn't care for the reader at all. I don't want to be overly critical - after all, it is simply my opinion. But I will never get another book narrated by her again. So very disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10869)
    Performance
    (9912)
    Story
    (9934)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "Not sure if it was worth it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The bottom line is that I was worn out by this book. There were some compelling parts, but the level of detail about some parts of the story was interminable. My son said the ending was worth it all. The ending - the last 30-40 minutes - was very compelling, and there were other sections that I was really involved in, but most of it was just drudgery for me. I also didn't care for the reader. Some readers are able to bring characters to life with different voices. With Boris he did a great job. Most of the women sounded the same. I was often confused with the men, as well. Not sure I can recommend this book. I'm pretty conflicted.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Husband's Secret

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Liane Moriarty
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4310)
    Performance
    (3841)
    Story
    (3857)

    Imagine that your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret - something with the potential to destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others as well. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive....

    Margaret says: "Escape to the land down under..."
    "Amazing thoughtful story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a fabulous listen and I am even considering getting the book to re-read. I would have been highlighting lines left and right.

    The only thing I didn't like was some of the production. Caroline Lee was her usual wonderful self, but there were these long pauses between chapters and sections that were very annoying. Even still I might even listen to this again - marvelous!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Best Kept Secret: The Clifton Chronicles, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Archer
    • Narrated By Alex Jennings
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (677)
    Performance
    (588)
    Story
    (587)

    Best Kept Secret opens a moment after the end of The Sins of the Father, with the resolution of the trial and the triumphant marriage of Harry Clifton and Elizabeth Barrington, finally uniting their family. Harry, now a best-selling novelist; Emma; their son, Sebastian; and orphaned Jessica make a new life for themselves, but all is not as happy and secure as it could be. Emma's brother, Giles, is engaged to a woman who may be more interested in Barrington's fortune and title than in a long and happy marriage.

    cristina says: "Plot without characters"
    "So so annoyed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was supposed to be historical fiction. There is so little history in it that I don't think it qualifies. And, silly me, I didn't know this wasn't the last book in the chronicles - and what a stupid place to end the book - cheap - unreasonable - I have no idea if I will continue with this series. I like HISTORICAL fiction - the only little tidbits I got didn't come close to satisfying that genre. Boo Jeffrey Archer. The only reason I gave it three stars is that for much of the book it would have been a fine vacation read.

    Oh, and one other annoying thing. Usually when a part of a book has a label on it, like a character name, the story is told from that character's point of view. In this book, sometimes, even in the midst of one character's story, the narrative jumps to something about another person that the main character in that part couldn't possibly know about - totally disjointed.

    I repeat - boo Jeffrey Archer!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Art of Racing in the Rain

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Garth Stein
    • Narrated By Christopher Evan Welch
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6060)
    Performance
    (3955)
    Story
    (3971)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: If you’ve ever loved a dog - or even patted a dog - this book, told from the perspective of man’s best friend, will tug at your heartstrings...and won’t let go until long after Welch performs the last word. Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: a philosopher with a nearly human soul (and an obsession with opposable thumbs), he has educated himself by watching television extensively and by listening very closely to the words of his master.

    FanB14 says: "Artful Surprise"
    "A little gimmicky, but very enjoyable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    But I REALLY hated the music between parts - it even drowned out the reader sometimes - horrid - but at least it was infrequent.

    The story was very sweet - the metaphors were very good - the book was thought provoking, the characters were likable. Makes me look at my dog a little differently.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ready Player One

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Ernest Cline
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12735)
    Performance
    (11849)
    Story
    (11857)

    At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.

    Julie W. Capell says: "I’m sorry I waited so long to read this book."
    "Unexpectedly fabulous"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I can't remember why I bought this - there is nothing about the description that would entice me. But I am so thrilled that I followed the reviews - what a wonderful, carry-me-away story. I'm not sure if I would have enjoyed it as much if I had read it - Will Wheaton's reading was so wonderful - his expression, voices, timing - all amazing.

    I can't recommend this enough. I knew nothing about 80's video games, so I probably missed a bunch of inside jokes. I don't care. I loved the pacing, the silliness, the romance, the geeky references - all terrific.

    Get this book. You will thoroughly enjoy it!

    Susan

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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