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christy

Books are an integral part of my mental health, intellectual stimulation and social networking!

Wisconsin | Member Since 2013

1
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 7 ratings
  • 79 titles in library
  • 2 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
3
FOLLOWERS
1

  • The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Andrew Sean Greer
    • Narrated By Orlagh Cassidy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (57)
    Performance
    (49)
    Story
    (52)

    Greta Wells embarks on a radical psychiatric treatment to alleviate her suffocating depression. But the treatment has unexpected effects, and Greta finds herself transported to the lives she might have had if she'd been born in different eras. During the course of her treatment, Greta cycles between her own time and alternate lives in 1918, where she is a bohemian adulteress, and 1941, which transforms her into a devoted mother and wife. As her final treatment looms, questions arise: What will happen once each Greta learns how to remain in one of the other worlds?

    Jean says: "Curious"
    "What a fun and well written book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this novel. I am a psychologist so I am sure the whole concept of traveling in time after ECT treatments was particularly entertaining...but what a great idea! This author did a great job with character development and used the time travel concept in a unique way. It is hard to find a good book about time travel that is creative and innovative since there are so many variations on that theme already out there.

    This novel portrayed the different time periods well and reflected how the culture of society impacted the lives of Greta Wells. It is like a historical fiction novel with a twist.

    When I was sharing the storyline with my husband, who is a true science fiction lover, he thought this was analogous to a chick flick at the movies. There might be some truth to that.....I think being a female, there was more to connect to with the various lives of Greta Wells. I was actually surprised the author was male. A good book for personal reflection of your own relationships and inspired the listener to examine the simple aspects of relationships. I thought this book was a feel good book and left me with a smile and a chuckle!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Big Little Lies

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs)
    • By Liane Moriarty
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4551)
    Performance
    (4069)
    Story
    (4068)

    Pirriwee Public's annual school Trivia Night has ended in a shocking riot. One parent is dead. The school principal is horrified. As police investigate what appears to have been a tragic accident, signs begin to indicate that this devastating death might have been cold-blooded murder. In this thought-provoking novel, number-one New York Times best-selling author Liane Moriarty deftly explores the reality of parenting and playground politics, ex-husbands and ex-wives, and fractured families.

    Sharon says: "New Liane Moriarty fans!"
    "lol humor against a backdrop of real life issues!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Not sure how I decided on listening to this book as no one personally recommended it to me, but I am sure glad I listened! I bet it was a reader review that spoke to me as I made a final decision to download. This was a fantastic listen! Think the narrator made the story come alive.

    To describe the book briefly...there is great character development to embrace so many phases of life for both men and women (a bit more for women though). Written with humor using stereotypes safely allowed me to laugh at the absurdities of daily events that we all have been sucked into or repelled from. Coupled with some hard realities like domestic violence, sexual abuse, and complicted relationships, the author manages to work through difficult life events without completely depressing the reader.

    I really enjoyed this and have recommended it to many of my friends who are avid readers. In one sentence, this book allows for a deeper reflection of what is really important at the end of each day.....but the author did this with a smile, some tears and a sense of humor to survive the harsh realities!

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

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Sue Monk Kidd
    • Narrated By Jenna Lamia, Adepero Oduye, Sue Monk Kidd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7382)
    Performance
    (6673)
    Story
    (6676)

    From the celebrated author of The Secret Life of Bees, a magnificent novel about two unforgettable American women. Writing at the height of her narrative and imaginative gifts, Sue Monk Kidd presents a masterpiece of hope, daring, the quest for freedom, and the desire to have a voice in the world - and it is now the newest Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 selection. Hetty “Handful” Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.

    Jan says: "Historical Fiction - beautifully quilted!"
    "Loved this Book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Loved everything about this book ~ the story, the narration, and the resulting feeling I was left with. This novel is engaging and the character development is superb. This is one of the novels that I woke up in the morning thinking about how I would create time in the day to book my headphones on!

    The reality of slavery was presented but also the richness of the lives of the main characters. The novel had a nice balance of the reality without overwhelming the reader. I thought a lot about the main characters after I listened to this novel and wanted to wait a bit before getting another book.

    Also, this was the first book I read by this author. I understand there are others that are highly recommended and will certainly listen to those someday!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Benediction

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Kent Haruf
    • Narrated By Mark Bramhall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (98)
    Performance
    (91)
    Story
    (92)

    From the beloved and best-selling author of Plainsong and Eventide comes a story of life and death, and the ties that bind, once again set out on the High Plains in Holt, Colorado. When Dad Lewis is diagnosed with terminal cancer, he and his wife, Mary, must work together to make his final days as comfortable as possible. Their daughter, Lorraine, hastens back from Denver to help look after him....

    Adele says: "Another Home Run for Haruf & Bramhall"
    "Sad but peaceful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was not sure about this book when I selected it. I was concerned that it would be depressing, but it surprisingly was reassuring and left me with positive, almost inspiring feelings. The book provides a glimmer of the true process of dealing with the final phases of life. It provides insight into why the little and simple human experiences are important.

    I do not think I would have enjoyed or even understood this book had I read / listened to it in my 20's. I also think I walked away with a deeper reflection since I have children and often think about ways to make their lives meaningful.

    This novel has a "centering" impact and I would encourage listeners to read it if they are looking for a good life story that through the simple aspects of human experience provides the depth of human experience. I think that there are pieces to this story that everyone could relate to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Luminaries

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Eleanor Catton
    • Narrated By Mark Meadows
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1119)
    Performance
    (973)
    Story
    (991)

    It is 1866 and Walter Moody has come to make his fortune upon the New Zealand goldfields. On arrival, he stumbles across a tense gathering of 12 local men, who have met in secret to discuss a series of unsolved crimes. A wealthy man has vanished, a whore has tried to end her life, and an enormous fortune has been discovered in the home of a luckless drunk. Moody is soon drawn into the mystery: a network of fates and fortunes that is as complex and exquisitely patterned as the night sky.

    Melinda says: "Not So Luminous"
    "I tried and tried....."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really wanted to enjoy this book as it sounded so interesting from the descriptions as well as other reviews. I first tried to read the actual hard copy of this book, that was not working. I found myself unmotivated to read the amount of text to get to the story! Then I tried the audio approach and found myself drifting often. I made it through about 30% of the book before I decided to take a break. Maybe I will finish it someday. The narration was fine; it was just the amount of words I had to process to understand the meaning!

    The plot was moderately intriguing and I do want to know about the remainder of the story, but the style of writing was a bit cyclical for me. I do appreciate novels that the writing is part of the process and thought that this was going be the same with this book. Maybe if there was a more intriguing onset to the story, it would have kept my interest.

    Also, this won the Man Booker award......not sure what that really means anymore. I might not be so interested in reading the next winner of that award next time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (14281)
    Performance
    (13391)
    Story
    (13409)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"

    Brian says: "Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped"
    "Absolutely entertaining and well written!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I had no idea I was going to be laughing out loud when I choose this book to listen to. The author successfully intertwined some good science fiction concepts with humor! I have not seen that done in a while! I am not a fan of the fantasy type novels, which this title had the potential of implying. So I was pleasantly surprised that Andy Weir was able to incorporate humor into a story about mars without the typical expectations of such a novel.

    I listen to audio books in the morning before my kids wake up while I work out and I was quite eager to get out of bed to see what Mark Watney was up to. Although the main characters, which there were only a few, were funny at times, there was also an underlying thread of intelligence, innovative survival, friendship, perseverance and human connection. There was a smattering of politics but that took a necessary back seat to the main storyline.

    I have recommended this book to a lot of my friends with varying book interests, so it is a versatile novel!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Book Thief

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Markus Zusak
    • Narrated By Allan Corduner
    Overall
    (9538)
    Performance
    (7574)
    Story
    (7611)

    It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist: books.

    Amazon Customer says: "Word Thief"
    "Although I wanted to love this, I did not!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book was saved for months in my audio library and I kept avoiding it because I was not sure if I wanted to engage in listening to the Nazi Germany zeitgeist. I finally downloaded it due to the number of people who asked me if I had read this yet. Although the idea of the story line was interesting with the unique perspectives it took on, I found the writing to be less engaging than I had hoped. I did stick with it, because that is just my personality and I usually do complete novels I start. It did get better as it progressed but it lacked inspiration, spirt and courage to me. I suppose my ultimate conclusion was that it had such great potential and it fell short of my expectations.

    On a positive note, I do think the novel was written with an interesting perspective of this young girl and how she experienced this era. So, maybe the true challenge comes in with writing about such a tragic time of mass devastation.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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