I would only say that I somewhat preferred the earlier stories to the final autobiographical notes.
I found her a bit limited. ALL of her men sounded the same. Not just voice but inflections. I actually found this a bit distracting. On a few occasions, I thought that her emphasis was misplaced. But generally acceptable.
oh for goodness' sake! who thinks up these questions?
Yes. Why in the world not leave at least 5 seconds between stories. I generally listen while driving - and frequently in the dark. So it's not that easy or safe to dive for the 'pause' button. A good short story - and these are - sometimes ends beautifully and abruptly, leaving the listener lost in thought. But no time for that here! We've got to push on to the next story pronto!!! Not even two heartbeats to absorb the ending.PLEASE reconsider this policy.
Entertaining. Definite mind-candy.
I'd read some reviews. So, as I formed early opinions about the two protagonists, I knew that further twists would make me re-evaluate.
YoungHigh-pitchedDistractingBoth had younger and higher-pitched voices that I am accustomed to. I found it distracting for about the first third of the novel. Got used to it eventually. I would not go out of my way to listen to these two again.
This is not a book that moves you. It's a book that unsettles you or angers you.
One protagonist has a twin (we learn that very early - no spoiler here). Twin relationship was not as well developed as it appeared that it would be. In fact, most characters bordered on caricature and seemed drawn from dime novel stereotypes. It's more about the inner thoughts and the actions of the two protagonists. Beyond them, the remaining characters are primarily filler.
Wodehouse absurd plot.
Of course. I'm a fan of Wodehouse and pulled this one down for a trip I took.
I actually found this one because I was looking for Simon Vance. I thought he did a great job with a Dickens and, since I'm a Wodehouse fan, this was an easy choice. I'm guessing Vance is British because the Americans in this reading were a bit rough.
I think Audible needs to find some better questions to ask. Seriously.
This is not the best Wodehouse. But it is good Wodehouse. I'm not sure he had much feel for Americans. He did a better job with dialog involving the British aristocracy of the day. But it is still absurd Wodehouse with some thoroughly enjoyable characters.
I heard most of this on a couple of longish car trips, alternating with Wilkie Collins and Richard Russo. Probably should have substituted in something with more punch in fewer words. So...if a friend wanted LOTS of hours of listening for their audible credit, I'd mention this. And it generally beats scanning the radio dial for another station. But, no, I would not overall recommend this. I kept going, knowing it was well reviewed, because I thought it would get better. And THEN I kept going because I'd invested so many hours that I figured it HAD to get better. But it go worse.
Probably not. If I have time for this, I have time for Dickens. He has stood the test of time. I cannot imagine that this will.
Generally thought he was good, but he DID wring the pathos out of every line. Of course, one has to consider the material he was working with.
At half the length, this might have been fairly good. But oh-my-gosh this woman must love to see her words in print. There was nothing one could say in one paragraph that she did not expand to two chapters. No emotion that was not dragged around by an endless march of words. No scenario that was not reproduced ad nauseum.
Her protagonist was difficult to admire, to like, to pity, to take any interest in at all. Living inside his head for all these hours has been a painful and boring experience. The female interests were uniformly shallowly depicted. The "second lead", Boris, while overall the most likeable and interesting, was a bit hard to fathom.
I agree with a previous reviewer. There is a limit to the number of drunk/stoned/drugged out days the reader should be forced to endure...and one does wonder how such a protagonist manages to move in the circles in which he moves.
Sure - It's Dickens
Vance is absolutely fantastic. Dickens generally juggles a whole raft of characters and Vance did a wonderful job of bringing each to life.
I shall definitely be on the look out for other works read by this man.
Absolutely, I would recommend this book. It is entertaining as a story (well, several stories), but really is so much more. I will probably buy the hardcopy and re-read it. There is much to think about here. Love. Loyalty. Family ties. Decisions. Interconnectedness. I could go on, but you get the picture.
Several. I'd have to go back and listen again to find them all. But the story told by the father to the two children at the very beginning is magical. And sets the stage for so much of what is to come.
I don't find the question applicable, nor the answer important.
What a silly question.
Only that I was disappointed to have it end, but not disappointed in how it ended.
No. Each has its merits. I had actually read Straight Man in print when it was first published. And I enjoyed it again in audio. I suspect that I catch more bits when it is read to me, as I tend to skim a bit when reading myself. Russo is good with language and can set up some funny situations, so being forced to hear all of the words does not hurt.
I'm in academia. Much of this hit a nerve - or a funny bone.
To me, if the narrator is good, I don't notice I'm being read to. I just hear the story. So I'd say he did a good job.
hmm? other than Devereaux? How 'bout the duck?
I'm generally a Russo fan. This is probably my favorite.
I suppose those who spend alot of time in the 'self-help' aisle may enjoy this. I found it painfully boring and kept wishing he would move on and get to the point. (I've been skipping ahead and, thus far, no point in sight)
I'm finding him to be unnecessarily wordy and a bit pompous.
No thoughts here - other than the suggestion that you find someone who can properly pronounce "sadist".
Perhaps someone who could slip a bit of humor into his/her tone? The text is heavy going and the narrator just makes this worse.
This is the first time I've been really disappointed in a book from Audible. I had expected something a bit more scholarly. I gather from some other reviews that this would fall into the "self-help" category, apparently designed to make the reader feel better about him/herself. I imagine that such a spin is likely to be popular and will sell well, which actually makes the author seem a bit manipulative himself. Had I worked out in advance that this was primarily going to be "it's not you, it's him (her) and they are just not wired like most people", I would not have bought it. My bad.
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