This is one of the most engaging nonfiction books I've read. Janis tells the story of her life, her music and the music industry. Nicely written, beautifully read. One aspect that really set this one apart for me was the natural way that Janis sings and plays the guitar at the beginning of every chapter and throughout the book. It has the feel of sitting in your living room and having Janis tell you her life story. Amazing!
I've been a fan of Janis Ian's music since 1967. However, I knew precious little about her personal life. Janis lays out key events in her life, good and bad, without whining about the bad or over indulging in her success. Hers is a life lived out loud without regrets. In the end, it is a story about her music (which clearly is in her DNA) the power of the human spirit and the power of music.
Book opens with Janis telling the story of performing Society's Child in front of an audience with the small number of racial bigots heckling the 15-year-old star.
I thought the storyline of this book, which followed the "life" of a single gun, added a great deal to the discussion around guns and gun control. Most public discussions of this topic seem to end in both sides screaming at each other. The characters are very approachable and familiar, descriptions of Portland, Maine are spot on and beautifully drawn. I could almost smell the salt mist from the sea! No matter what your opinion is regarding Second Amendment rights, this is a good story that gives you plenty to think about and some interesting facts about gun laws.
I decided to read this book because it was part of the modern vanguard group on audible. I knew before I started reading that it would be about a psychotic killer. As the story progresses, the violence accelerates. By the time I was three quarters of the way through the book, I thought about quitting. I think if I were reading a hard copy or an e-book I would turn the page and skipped some of the really violent descriptions.
I actually liked the story and the writing style. I don't think the ending really did justice to the story. Personally, it was just too violent for my taste.
This was a decent read and nothing more IMHO. It tells the story of several generations of a family in Texas and Mexico. I thought the historical context was pretty interesting. I think I understand more about the culture in Texas and the role of the oil industry.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book until it ended abruptly and without a conclusion. Maybe I should say it ended without wrapping up many loose ends. Without dropping a spoiler, I can only say that some key characters had conflicts that were never wrapped up. I think if there had been a more satisfying conclusion, I would've given this book at least four stars. I still would recommend reading it. It is an interesting story with good character development and writing.
Maggie Schein has written and enjoyable and engaging series of fables. These are not the type of short stories that you will want to simply read and move on. They are creative, intricate fables that address life's big questions and offer some wonderfully different perspectives. One of my favorites examines the connections between all living things in the universe. Is the predator prey relationship really what it seems? Could it be that the prey willingly allow their fate in order to sustain the predator?
While reading the stories, I often felt like the writing was almost poetry or music. At times there is a cadence to Maggie Schein's writing. There are some sections of stories that repeat themselves almost like a chorus. And this brings me to the narration.
The narration is expertly done by writer, singer and songwriter Janis Ian. Her narration adds another dimension to the writing, especially in those sections which are poetic/musical. I'm not sure another narrator would have managed to find this interpretation of the words.
This collection of stories will remain in my library and I will visit them over and over in the future.
Donna Tartt is to writing what Mozart is to a symphony. Her descriptions of places and people become so real to me that I feel as if I'm part of the story. After a few hours of listening to this book I knew I would miss it when it was over. And I definitely miss the characters and the story.
Two of the characters,Theo and Boris, are crafted in such depth that I loved them and cheered them on with great hope, even while they were choosing the wrong path over and over again. I won't reveal any more details about the story for those who have not yet read the book.
What is The Goldfinch about? Life's big questions. What does it mean to love? Is there a clear difference between good and bad, right and wrong? Is it even an "either or question"? Are there good things that can come out of bad things and vice a versa?
This is the kind of book that will keep you thinking long after you finish reading it. I very highly recommend it.
One last thing-the narrator is fabulous! Great voice, excellent accents and wonderful storytelling ability. He is a real addition to a masterful book. Don't sleep
Donna Tartt could write the phone book and make it sound intriguing. It would, however, be a mistake to narrate that piece of work, IMHO. Once I got past the narration, I absolutely loved this book! The characters evolved throughout the book-gradually, delicately. The story involves the murder of a college student, which we learn immediately in the prologue. The real story is not about the murder, but about the flawed characters who surrounded him in life.The characters in this novel are united around the study of ancient Greece-language, literature and culture. And just like a Greek tragedy, each character carries his or her own fatal flaw. Once a terrible event takes place, it sets in motion a series of events which reveal the history and personality of each character.
Neil Gaiman has written an engaging, magical story. As the narrator reflects on a strange experience of long ago when he was seven years old and met Letty, an 11-year-old girl who lived at the end of the lane and had mysterious powers. Fans of fantasy literature will certainly enjoy this book. Even though I don't count myself as a big fan of fantasy literature, I thought the story was very creative and took me on a wonderful journey through the eyes and mind of a seven-year-old boy. When I saw that the author was also the narrator I was hesitant, since authors often have more writing skills than storytelling skills. Not the case here. Neil Gaiman is a wonderful narrator.
I think it's difficult to write a comic novel. Although there were serious aspects to the story, it was loaded with quirky humor. This is the kind of comedy that is clever and intelligent. The characters are eccentric as well as endearing. Wedged in between weighty fiction, this book was just pure fun and enjoyment. I think it's the type of book you would love to start on a rainy day, wearing your favorite PJs and read all day and into the night. I gave this book 4 stars not because I think it's a work of literary genius, it's just fun to read.
First, there were many things about this book that were outstanding. The writing is elegant. The narration is quite good. I will definitely read other books by Kate Atkinson very soon.
My feelings were mixed because I felt that the hopping around to alternate versions of the story did not quite work for me. The stories themselves were great. By the end of the book, I had no sense of where the story landed. Maybe that was the point. If so, it just didn't work for me.
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