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janateach

janateach

Georgia | Member Since 2012

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HELPFUL VOTES
  • 10 reviews
  • 14 ratings
  • 157 titles in library
  • 16 purchased in 2014
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  • Eggs, Cookies, and Leeches: Memorable Writing from The New Yorker

    • ABRIDGED (4 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Malcolm Gladwell, Hendrik Hertzberg, John Colapinto, and others
    Overall
    (39)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (14)

    Certainly, all the writing in The New Yorker is memorable, and this collection is no exception. The authors include such best sellers as Malcolm Gladwell, Seymour Hersh, and Jonathan Franzen - and the subjects range from the lives of short-order cooks to the secrets of college admissions.

    Michael says: "A random collection?"
    "Fun and different!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'd recommend this if you are looking for something eclectic. It is a neat mix of some of the best the New Yorker has to offer.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • My Life in France

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Julia Child, Alex Prud'Homme
    • Narrated By Kimberly Farr
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (699)
    Performance
    (256)
    Story
    (264)

    This memoir is laced with wonderful stories about the French character, particularly in the world of food, and the way of life that Julia Child embraced so wholeheartedly. Above all, she reveals the kind of spirit and determination, the sheer love of cooking, and the drive to share that with her fellow Americans that made her the extraordinary success she became.

    Sara says: "What a pleasure!"
    "Wonderful!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about this story?

    I loved Julia's pluck! She is not afraid to do or try anything.


    What does Kimberly Farr bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The pronunciations of the French words were lovely and helped me to expand my vocabulary.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Drop Dead Healthy: One Man's Humble Quest for Bodily Perfection

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By A. J. Jacobs
    • Narrated By A. J. Jacobs
    Overall
    (424)
    Performance
    (361)
    Story
    (357)

    A. J. Jacobs tackles his most challenging experiment yet: a yearlong mission to radically improve every element of his body and mind - from his brain to his fingertips to his abs. First, he had to tackle a complicated web of diet and exercise advice, most which is nonsensical, unproven, and contradictory. Second, he had to consult a team of medical advisers. And finally, he had to subject himself, over the course of two years, to a grueling regimen of exercises and a range of diets and nutritional plans.

    Niall says: "A comic tries a little of everything"
    "Funny and relatable."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Drop Dead Healthy?

    Jacobs is a relatable, anxious, narrator. He is honest about his life and his health status.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    He is not consistent in his monthly reporting. I want to know how many pounds he weighed each month so I can hear how he is improving, etc. He does not try diets that are truly sensible - I'd love to hear how he did on a recommended and healthy diet rather than just a juice fast.


    What about A. J. Jacobs’s performance did you like?

    He's funny and willing to try things like accupuncture.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • History of Greed: Financial Fraud from Tulip Mania to Bernie Madoff

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By David E. Y. Sarna
    • Narrated By Paul Boehmer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (51)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (43)

    From the earliest financial scams of the 17th century, through the headline-grabbing Wall Street scandals of our times, History of Greed provides a history of financial fraud. In it, David E. Y. Sarna exposes the true and often riveting stories of how both naive and sophisticated investors alike were fooled by unscrupulous entrepreneurs, lawyers, hedge fund managers, CPAs, Texas billionaires, political fundraisers, music managers, financial advisers, and even former Mossad agents.

    PHIL says: "Occasionally uneven or plodding, but spellbinding"
    "Not my favorite narrator."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    If the narrator was less boring.


    Would you ever listen to anything by David E. Y. Sarna again?

    I felt this book was not sold to me correctly. It focuses on the recent crisis, which is not surprise, but it does not really tell me the historical gems that I would like to know from a story that purports to tell stories of greed across human history.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Paul Boehmer’s performances?

    Yes. I would have a better feel for who is at fault, the author or the reader.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Girl Walks into a Bar...: Comedy Calamities, Dating Disasters, and a Midlife Miracle

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Rachel Dratch
    • Narrated By Rachel Dratch
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1131)
    Performance
    (1044)
    Story
    (1044)

    Anyone who saw an episode of Saturday Night Live between 1999 and 2006 knows Rachel Dratch. She was hilarious! So what happened to her? After a misbegotten part as Jenna on the pilot of 30 Rock, Dratch was only getting offered roles as "Lesbians. Secretaries. Sometimes secretaries who are lesbians." Her career at a low point, Dratch suddenly had time for yoga, dog- sitting, learning Spanish - and dating. After all, what did a forty-something single woman living in New York have to lose?

    Jeanine says: "Could not stop listening"
    "She's no Tina Fey."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes. It doesn't stand up to Bossypants, but Dratch knows that, too. The book is good and honest and a nice look at a pretty regular life.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Peter and the Wolf

    • UNABRIDGED (25 mins)
    • By Sergei Prokofiev
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    Overall
    (76)
    Performance
    (65)
    Story
    (64)

    Generations of children have been charmed by this enchanting work, and Brilliance Audio is proud to introduce its own version with multi-Grammy Award-winner Jim Dale as narrator. To delight the millions of Jim’s fans, his reading of Peter and the Wolf will include unforgettable vocal characterizations of the various animals, young Peter, and Peter’s grumpy old grandfather. The music of Peter and the Wolf, including some of the best-known classical melodies, is superbly performed by the award-winning Seattle Symphony, led by music director Gerard Schwarz.

    Jan says: "Wonderful!"
    "My Child's favorite!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Peter and the Wolf the most enjoyable?

    Having my child say, "Mom, the WOLF!"


    What does Jim Dale bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Dale's narration is whole-hearted. He paints the pictures with his words and inflections.


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

    It gets me through long car trips. Listening to it for the hundreth time on repeat can make me want to cry, though!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • At Home: A Short History of Private Life

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Bill Bryson
    • Narrated By Bill Bryson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2605)
    Performance
    (1330)
    Story
    (1336)

    Bill Bryson and his family live in a Victorian parsonage in a part of England where nothing of any great significance has happened since the Romans decamped. Yet one day, he began to consider how very little he knew about the ordinary things of life as he found it in that comfortable home. To remedy this, he formed the idea of journeying about his house from room to room to “write a history of the world without leaving home.”

    Tina says: "Another wonderful Bryson"
    "Random."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes. I love to hear Bryson read! His tales are funny and relatable. However, I'd warn them that it meanders and meanders along every little path.


    If you’ve listened to books by Bill Bryson before, how does this one compare?

    It's among his best.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The stories of Samuel Pepys. Byrson is hilarious in his descriptions.


    Was At Home worth the listening time?

    Yes! It's a book that can be easily picked up and put down because it does not have a strong narrative arc, so it's length is not so intimidating.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Thousand Lives: The Untold Story of Hope, Deception, and Survival at Jonestown

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Julia Scheeres
    • Narrated By Robin Miles
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (587)
    Performance
    (500)
    Story
    (503)

    In A Thousand Lives, the New York Times best-selling memoirist Julia Scheeres traces the fates of five individuals who followed Jim Jones to South America as they struggled to first build their paradise, and then survive it. Each went for different reasons - some were drawn to Jones for his progressive attitudes towards racial equality, others were dazzled by his claims to be a faith healer. But once in Guyana, Jones' drug addiction, mental decay, and sexual depredations quickly eroded the idealistic community.

    Rachel says: "Unforgettable"
    "Heavy stuff."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes, if they are interested in Jim Jones this feels to be the definitive book.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The background on how progressive the Joneses were really surprised me. The author's continued repeating of the many camp meetings got old but were important to understand what was happening in Jonestown.


    What does Robin Miles bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Her empathy for the characters shone as she read about their desperate situations. It actually made it harder to digest because her voice made the atrocities sound so much worse than if this were just words on a page.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gone Girl: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Gillian Flynn
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan, Kirby Heyborne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (17261)
    Performance
    (15371)
    Story
    (15414)

    It is Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick's clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn't doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media - as well as Amy's fiercely doting parents - the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he's definitely bitter - but is he really a killer?

    FanB14 says: "Amazing Amy"
    "Perfect as an audiobook."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about this story?

    I loved the alternating narrators in this performance. His and her stories paired together made for perfect tension. I listened to this story as I began training for my first 5k and I am certain that wanting to know more is one of the things that kept me going.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    No spoilers, here! But let's just say that the narrators are a bit unreliable and peeling away the layers of their characters were amazing.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Revenge is a dish best served cold.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Snow Child

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Eowyn Ivey
    • Narrated By Debra Monk
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1346)
    Performance
    (1175)
    Story
    (1162)

    Debut novelist Eowyn ivey’s experience living in the Alaskan wilderness brings a palpable authenticity to The Snow Child. Alaska in the 1920s is a difficult place for Jack and Mabel. Drifting apart, the childless couple discover Faina, a young girl living alone in the wilderness. Soon, Jack and Mabel come to love Faina as their own. But when they learn a surprising truth about the girl, their lives change in profound ways.

    Bonny says: "Magical, realistic and well worth listening to"
    "Just lovely."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Snow Child to be better than the print version?

    I haven't looked at the print version, but I really enjoyed the Ms. Monk's voices. She differentiated the characters and made each come alive.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Snow Child?

    The few times in the middle of the story when Mabel and Jack truly connect made the story magical. These characters were in a difficult marriage but you truly rooted for them.


    What about Debra Monk’s performance did you like?

    She used a narrators voice so well to describe the place and allow me to choose what I enjoyed but she voiced the characters, especially the bossy neighbor, with unique inflections that truly reflected their characters.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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