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claire s.


  • The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Volume I: Visions of Glory 1874-1932

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By William Manchester
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson

    Winston Churchill is perhaps the most important political figure of the 20th century. His great oratory and leadership during the Second World War were only part of his huge breadth of experience and achievement. Studying his life is a fascinating way to imbibe the history of his era and gain insight into key events that have shaped our time.

    Wolfpacker says: "Superb - Review of Both Volume I & Volume II"
    "Fascinating, and not just for history buffs"

    This is one of the most fascinating books I have ever listened to or read. I happily lean towards escapist fiction and mysteries for my own reading and listening. I ordered this lo-o-ong biography on a whim when I saw it on sale, not expecting to listen to the end.

    I was so wrong!

    Before even getting to the birth of the Churchill, a great deal of time was spent on providing the background of the world and culture that formed him. Instead of being rather dull, the vivid and well-crafted descriptions of a society and government so different from the modern worldwere very interesting and necessary to understand who did what and why. Once Winston Churchill was introduced he became a real person to me rather than a rather stout man in old black and white pictures with a distinctive voice heard on scratchy recordings.

    A great factor in the excellence of this book is the narrator. His diction is clear and easy-to-understand. His voice is pleasant and neutral on the factual portion and appropriately emotional for direct quotations of people. He even uses appropriate accents and voices for the varied characters. The Irish sound Irish. The French speaking in English sound French. He even manages to make the women sound clearly feminine. Beyond a great part of the fascination this book had for me was to hear the voice of Churchill recognizably interpreted from his childhood to middle age. All of this is an amazing performance by a fine actor.

    One small area of irritation for me was that some quotes were given in a language foreign to me with no translation to English. Since my French, German and Latin skills are only up to recognizing the language but not the content, I was a little frustrated. I was so engaged I really wanted to know what had been said.

    While a book of this length and on this topic is not for everyone, it is well worth the money, time and attention needed to hear it all the way through. I'm buying the second part of this biography next month

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Hexed: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Kevin Hearne
    • Narrated By Luke Daniels
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, doesn’t care much for witches. Still, he’s about to make nice with the local coven by signing a mutually beneficial nonaggression treaty when suddenly the witch population in modern-day Tempe, Arizona, quadruples overnight. And the new girls are not just bad, they’re badasses with a dark history on the German side of World War II. With a fallen angel feasting on local high school students, a horde of Bacchants blowing in from Vegas, and a dangerously sexy Celtic goddess of fire vying for his attention, Atticus is having trouble scheduling the witch hunt.

    A. Sentoni says: "Authenticity, Humor and Brilliant Writing"
    "Entertaining twist on contemporary fantasy"
    What made the experience of listening to Hexed the most enjoyable?

    In a genre swamped with books about vampires, werewolves, fey and wizards it was delightful to run across this entertaining series that follows the adventures and misadventures of the last Druid. Atticus was lived more than a thousand years blending into the regular mortal world, avoiding both attention and attack from various groups and individuals who feel that even a single surviving Druid is one too many. Peacefully running his occult book shop in the desert Southwest, he uses the power he can draw from the earth to heal both the land and some people who need help. He has successfully avoided notice. That is, it has been successful until the local coven of witches send hexes flying and deities from a variety of cultures start complicating Atticus' peaceful life he enjoys with friends and his faithful (and conversational) Irish Wolfhound.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of Hexed?

    While this book is engaging and often humorous as Atticus tries to solve problems without getting even more unwanted attention, perhaps the most entertaining part is having a variety of gods and goddesses from different pantheons show up complicating his life. The author has done his research so that these magically/spiritually powerful characters are recognizable from fragments of remembered mythology. Even with his Druidic Atticus has a tough time dealing with the Celtic goddess of death!

    What does Luke Daniels bring to the story that you wouldn???t experience if you just read the book?

    Luke Daniels brings a great sense of timing and a sure feel for comic effect to reading the book. Even with a large collection od characters to portray, it's easy to recognize which of them is talking.

    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It didn't bring me to hysterical laughter, but I often was so amused I chucked....and I was never bored!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Way of Kings: Book One of The Stormlight Archive

    • UNABRIDGED (45 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Kate Reading, Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Roshar is a world of stone and storms. Uncanny tempests of incredible power sweep across the rocky terrain so frequently that they have shaped ecology and civilization alike. Animals hide in shells, trees pull in branches, and grass retracts into the soilless ground. Cities are built only where the topography offers shelter. It has been centuries since the fall of the ten consecrated orders known as the Knights Radiant, but their Shardblades and Shardplate remain: mystical swords and suits of armor.

    Katy Crumpton says: "Very enjoyable (but a slight warning)"
    "Way long , but way worth it...."

    What an interesting world and society the author has created! Whether you admire the societies and their rules, they are clear, consistent and create a fascinating background for engaging characters.

    I bought this because I thought the author wrote extremely well, based on the Wheel of Time books he wrote.

    At first I was confused by the way this book jumped from one group of characters to a different story line with other characters that didn't seem to have any connection with one another. I finally realized that all the plots were gradually converging towards an intersection. It took time, but the author made me really care about the characters as thought they were real people.

    Now THAT'S good writing!

    Except for one thing, I'm looking forward to the other books in the series. If there are as many books as there are in the Wheel of Time series and it takes as long to write each one, I doubt I'll live long enough to get to read the last one and find out how the stories end. And I really want to!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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