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barbara

Brookside, Australia | Member Since 2014

12
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 28 reviews
  • 54 ratings
  • 299 titles in library
  • 17 purchased in 2015
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  • Holly Would Dream

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Karen Quinn
    • Narrated By Khristine Hvam
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (38)
    Performance
    (20)
    Story
    (19)

    Holly Ross often wishes she lived in a simpler time, when the clothes were glamorous, the men debonair, and the endings happy. That said, her career as a fashion historian isn't so bad. With both a wedding and a big promotion coming up, her own happily ever after seems assured. So how, in the space of one day, does it all go wrong? How does she end up homeless, jobless, penniless, and fianc-less? Why is she cruising the Mediterranean in hot pursuit of real estate tycoon Denis King?

    Truth says: "Sweet, enjoyable"
    "Great story let down by mispronounciation"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a funny and entertaining story and the narrator gave it great character but her pronounciation left a lot to be desired and was rather distracting. Once I heard one word pronounced incorrectly, I seemed to be drawn to listening for the other mistakes. Fracas, gnocchi, Hubert Givenchy, Trevi Fountain and Lacroix are all quite well known but were mangled by the narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Good Girl

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Mary Kubica
    • Narrated By Lindy Nettleton, Johnny Heller, Tom Taylorson, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3610)
    Performance
    (3044)
    Story
    (3054)

    Born to a prominent Chicago judge and his stifled socialite wife, Mia Dennett moves against the grain as a young inner-city art teacher. One night, Mia enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn't show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. With his smooth moves and modest wit, Colin Thatcher seems at first like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia's life.

    Roger says: "Brilliant performances, moving story"
    "Loved this book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this book. The characters were all realistic and well developed. Storyline and plot were excellent. I found it believable and well thought out. Narration was clear, pronunciation (which I am anal about) top class. Didn't expect the ending at all, it certainly wasn't predictable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Olive Branch

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Jo Thomas
    • Narrated By Rachel Atkins
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    It's amazing what you can buy online these days: memorabilia, fashion accessories, a crumbling Italian farmhouse.... After a Prosecco-fuelled girls' night in gets out of hand, Ruthie Collins awakes to discover that she has bid for her dream Italian home online - and won. Recently out of a relationship, a new start is just what Ruthie needs. Anything is better than sleeping on her mum's settee.

    barbara says: "A lovely story, slightly predictable ending"
    "A lovely story, slightly predictable ending"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Olive Branch?

    The whole story was engaging and well written. Lots of detail about the lifestyle and food in Italy. Realistic characters, beautiful setting, hilarious power struggles between the newcomer and the locals.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The accuracy and descriptiveness of the lifestyle in Italy.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The roof - I will say no more so as not to spoil the story - however, the whole saga of the roof is just so accurate for that part of the world!


    If you could rename The Olive Branch, what would you call it?

    Finding La Dolce Vita :)


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

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Liane Moriarty
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (112)
    Performance
    (100)
    Story
    (99)

    The Husband's Secret is a funny, heartbreaking novel of marriage, grief, love, and secrets. When her husband announces he's in love with her best friend, painfully shy Tess picks up her young son and returns to her mother's house. There she begins an unexpected affair with an old flame. Rachel is a woman in her 60s consumed by grief and anger at the loss of her daughter 20 years earlier. When her son announces he is taking her beloved grandson overseas, Rachel begins a descent into deeper bitterness and pain.

    Margaret says: "Wonderful story telling"
    "Loved this book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Husband's Secret in three words, what would they be?

    Believable, surprising, emotive.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The twist near the end.


    What about Caroline Lee’s performance did you like?

    I have listened to a few books that Caroline has read and always enjoyed her performance. Her characters are realistic and she never sounds stilted or as if she is just reading a book.


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

    Absolutely.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • No One Would Listen: A True Financial Thriller

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs)
    • By Harry Markopolos
    • Narrated By Scott Brick, Harry Markopolos, Frank Casey, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1522)
    Performance
    (816)
    Story
    (812)

    No One Would Listen is the exclusive story of the Harry Markopolos-lead investigation into Bernie Madoff and his $65 billion Ponzi scheme. While a lot has been written about Madoff's scam, few actually know how Markopolos and his team - affectionately called "the Fox Hounds" by Markopolos himself - uncovered what Madoff was doing years before this financial disaster reached its pinnacle. Unfortunately, no one listened, until the damage of the world's largest financial fraud ever was irreversible.

    Brendan says: "Shocking, terrific"
    "Interesting and easy to understand"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A comprehensive and understandable explanation of the downfall of Bernie Maddox. I had heard of Bernie Maddox and had a vague idea of what had occurred and that he was sentenced to many years in jail. Having only this basic knowledge, I found the book easy to follow and understand. Financial terms and operations are explained in layman's terms. It was an interesting read, quite fascinating, and I was not at all surprised at the ineptitude of the SEC and its staff. Other listeners have found the author egotistical - yes, he does blow his own horn, but considering the efforts he put into his pursuit of justice, I don't really blame him. And this diminishes as the book progresses, he just builds himself up at first so if you find this annoying, don't give up, it does get better! The only part I would criticise was near the end where financial victims read their statements. Whoever read them needs some acting lessons. They were all in a very irritating monotone with no emotion or inflection, and the first one was very stilted. Apart from that I found this an interesting listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Survivors Club

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By J. Carson Black
    • Narrated By Joyce Bean
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (218)
    Performance
    (192)
    Story
    (188)

    Detective Tess McCrae investigates a grisly crime scene in the ghost town of Credo, Arizona. The evidence suggests a cartel drug hit. But Tess, with a nearly faultless photographic memory, sees what others might miss: This is no drug killing. Someone went to gruesome lengths to cover their tracks. The killer’s trail leads from Tucson to California - from anti-government squatters to the heights of wealthy society. As Tess follows the trail of gore and betrayal, perfect and indelible in her memory, she uncovers far more than one man’s murder and solves much more than one isolated crime.

    Gang of Four says: "Liked it; but..."
    "OK but a weird ending"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book was just OK. The language was a little stilted and the end didn't really come together for me - the ending needed more development. The main character, Tess, was quite believable and the concept was good. However, it was as if the first and second halves of the book were written by different people or the second half was just written in a hurry. The first half developed well and held my interest but it went downhill from there. It lost my interest about 2/3 through and I only continued listening out of curiosity.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Silent Wife

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By A. S. A. Harrison
    • Narrated By Emily Pennant-Rea
    Overall
    (14)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (13)

    A chilling psychological thriller portraying the disintegration of a relationship down to the deadliest point when murdering your husband suddenly makes perfect sense. A novel perfect for readers of Sophe Hannah, Nicci French, and Barbara Vine. Todd Gilbert and Jodie Brett are in a bad place in their relationship. They've been together for 28 years, and with no children to worry about there has been little to disrupt their affluent Chicago lifestyle. But there has also been little to hold it together, and beneath the surface lie ever-widening cracks.

    Jane F. Clifton says: "Gone Girl it ain't"
    "Best narration ever ... and a fascinating story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this book. The narration was perfect - inflections, accents, pronunciation, etc. The concept is that the main characters do not relate to each other in the usual way of a long term couple. It was intriguing and puzzling, and switched between the couple and the husband and mistress smoothly. It flowed well and the language created atmospheres very well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Famous Last Words

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Annie Sanders
    • Narrated By Suzy Aitchison
    Overall
    (74)
    Performance
    (66)
    Story
    (64)

    Lucy spends her days making flamboyant clothes, which express all the passion and flair that she cannot, and at night sits alone, fretting over her struggling business. Then a beguiling fortune-teller informs her that her future is far from rosy - in fact, she doesn't have one! Naturally she doesn't believe him, but when his other prophecies come scarily true, she starts to wonder if he could be right. His prediction pushes Lucy to finally throw caution to the wind.

    barbara says: "Great light hearted entertaining story"
    "Great light hearted entertaining story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a lovely, humorous story. It was full of interesting characters, well read and not far fetched as are some funny stories. It wasn't over the top, and had some well-written feel good moments between both Lucy and her son and Lucy and her father. A little formulaic (teenage pregnancy, friend's hottie brother, etc.) but very enjoyable all the same.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Forgotten Garden

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Kate Morton
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5832)
    Performance
    (3536)
    Story
    (3578)

    Thirty-eight year old Cassandra is lost, alone, and grieving. Her much loved grandmother, Nell, has just died and Cassandra, her life already shaken by a tragic accident 10 years ago, feels like she has lost everything known and dear to her.

    Robert says: "Six stars if I could"
    "Fantastic book. Well read, excellent story."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I loved this. Nice long book, I listened to it twice. Story is great, full of little twists and turns, read very well and nicely paced.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Orphan Train: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Christina Baker Kline
    • Narrated By Jessica Almasy, Suzanne Toren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6891)
    Performance
    (6037)
    Story
    (6058)

    Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer is close to "aging out" out of the foster care system. A community-service position helping an elderly woman clean out her home is the only thing keeping Molly out of juvie and worse.... As she helps Vivian sort through her possessions and memories, Molly learns that she and Vivian aren’t as different as they seem to be. A young Irish immigrant orphaned in New York City, Vivian was put on a train to the Midwest with hundreds of other children whose destinies would be determined by luck and chance.

    Kathi says: "Moving story of sharing and transformation."
    "Good story but a bit predictable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Well written and read, with believable characters. Was rather slow in parts and the some of it was predictable - the boy who was adopted by a farmer who just wanted him to work on the farm and beat him, etc. Nice ending.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Time Traveller's Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Ian Mortimer
    • Narrated By Jonathan Keeble
    Overall
    (559)
    Performance
    (423)
    Story
    (423)

    Imagine you could travel back to the 14th century. What would you see? What would you smell? More to the point, where are you going to stay? And what are you going to eat? Ian Mortimer shows us that the past is not just something to be studied; it is also something to be lived. He sets out to explain what life was like in the most immediate way, through taking you to the Middle Ages. The result is the most astonishing social history book you are ever likely to read: evolutionary in its concept, informative and entertaining in its detail.

    Marc-Andr? says: "Detailed, Interesting and Entertaining"
    "Detailed and interesting - history come to life"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a detailed and interesting book. The scenes were very well described and came alive in my mind as I listened. Very well written and read, with a touch of humour.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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