Having listened to other Ronson books, I could not listen to this one since I love Ronson's delivery. Sorry. The website forced me to rate the story, which I really am not qualified to do since I did not read the book or see the movie. Going by Ronson's other books, however, I'm sure it's a good story.
Being a live-long western North Carolina resident, the only thing I ever knew about Highland Hospital was that Zelda had died there in a fire - and there is so much more to know. Lee Smith has done the research for me, along with her first hand knowledge of Highland, having had family members who were residents at various times. I don't know when I have enjoyed a book so much. The narrator was terrific in spite of occasional mispronunciations, which could be jarring to a native. But she more than made up for that with her just-right narration of this book.
Too relentless dismal and sad, as I know the Great War was. But torture for the reader by the end. Don't expect a break if you choose to read.
The story was engaging, and I wanted to know what would happen - but frankly was glad when it was over. I cared about Heather and Edmund, but found all of the other characters simply irritating. I've enjoyed Ruth Rendell's books for a long time, but this is not a favorite.
If I could have rated only the narrator, I would have liked to. I could not take his overly theatric narration, so I gave up after a few chapters. It's therefore unfair for me to rate the story and writing since I'm sure I would love the book with a more appropriate reader. Google informs me this narrator is primarily a voice artist for children's animated films, and that makes total sense. Too much emoting from my earbuds.
So I still need to read this book.
I've always enjoyed Dan Harris and his team on weekend GMA. So I was very surprised when I first heard him plug his book. I am thrifty with my Audible credits and do not make impulsive purchases with them - but I did in this case and was not disappointed. Such a terrific story and the perfect narrator along with it. Coincidentally I just finished Steve Stossl's "My Age of Anxiety". Harris's book is a great addition to the extensive research Stossl related on the history of anxiety theory and the various approaches to treating it - minus this one. I'm excited to learn more.
Being far from a Young Adult, I did not expect to love this book, but I certainly did. And as others have noted, the narrator is perfect.
I don't usually enjoy books about war, but this book kept me interested throughout. The author seems to be a very honest person, although I still find it incomprehensible he could not have at least heard rumors of the concentration camps. His book, however, is very enlightening, being the memories of a soldier deeply engulfed in the German military and a prisoner of war even longer held by the Soviets.
I am such a fan of the Ladies' and Dalhousie series, but stopped listening to this one after a few chapters. Don't like Mom or her paramour, despite their noble inclinations, and other reviewers don't paint a hopeful picture for Clover and James. So, following my motto of 'Life is too short to listen to irritating books' - I sadly throw in the towel, even though the author is A.M. Smith and I think I could easily be a fan of this narrator.
I have a hard time explaining to friends how much I love this seriesI I found myself weeping today as I listened to Flavia's description of her mother's funeral with her sister's eulogy and choice of funeral music. Hard to believe I am so drawn into the this world. I am in such awe of the author who is able to write such wonderfully funny and poignant books from the viewpoint of a 12 year old girl. And he has the perfect partner in the narrator. I hope this series continues a long, long time.
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