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Barb

Pullman, WA, United States
  • 32
  • reviews
  • 52
  • helpful votes
  • 229
  • ratings
  • A Week in Winter

  • By: Maeve Binchy
  • Narrated by: Rosalyn Landor
  • Length: 10 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 997
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 850
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 852

Stoneybridge is a small town on the west coast of Ireland where all the families know one another. When Chicky Starr decides to take an old, decaying mansion set high on the cliffs overlooking the windswept Atlantic Ocean and turn it into a restful place for a holiday by the sea, everyone thinks she is crazy. Helped by Rigger (a bad boy turned good who is handy around the house) and Orla, her niece (a whiz at business), Chicky is finally ready to welcome the first guests to Stone House’s big warm kitchen, log fires, and understated elegant bedrooms.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Didn't want it to end.....

  • By Vicki Unger on 02-26-13

Pleasant, light read

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-27-18

Maeve Binchy has always been good for characters you like. You find yourself hoping they'll have good lives after the book is over, but she leaves you certain that they will. The book is predictable but pleasant.

  • A Tale for the Time Being

  • By: Ruth Ozeki
  • Narrated by: Ruth Ozeki
  • Length: 14 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,742
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,590
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,582

In Tokyo, 16-year-old Nao has decided there's only one escape from her aching loneliness and her classmates' bullying. But before she ends it all, Nao first plans to document the life of her great grandmother, a Buddhist nun who's lived more than a century. A diary is Nao's only solace - and will touch lives in ways she can scarcely imagine. Across the Pacific, we meet Ruth, a novelist living on a remote island who discovers a collection of artifacts washed ashore in a Hello Kitty lunchbox - possibly debris from the devastating 2011 tsunami.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Engaging story beautifully read

  • By Karen on 01-30-14

Layer upon layer upon layer

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-15-18

I've looked at this book many times, always deciding that it was probably too abstract for me. There are abstract parts, but most of the book is a multi-layered story featuring two characters separated by space and time. There's a touch of magical realism and characters that you can really get attached to. I loved the book. I'm going to buy a print copy and read it again.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Paris Secret

  • By: Karen Swan
  • Narrated by: Lucy Price-Lewis
  • Length: 12 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 305
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 288
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 289

When high-powered fine-art agent Flora Sykes is called in to assess objets d'art in a Paris apartment that has been abandoned since WWII, she is skeptical at first - until she discovers that under decades of dust the treasure trove of paintings is myriad...and priceless. The powerful Vermeil family to whom they belong is eager to learn more and asks Flora to trace the history of each and every painting.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Paris, Art History, Nazi occupation’s...

  • By Mona-Alisa on 02-06-18

Good fluff

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-15-18

A mystery/romance that was well-written fluff. Wealthy people with wealthy-people problems in places wealthy people go. A good romance read with a little mystery thrown in.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Little Fires Everywhere

  • By: Celeste Ng
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Lim
  • Length: 11 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14,368
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,021
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,990

In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is planned - from the layout of the winding roads to the colors of the houses to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules. Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother - who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter, Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Boring and Drawn Out!!!

  • By M. Ryder on 10-05-17

Immediately Drawn In

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-30-17

Celeste Ng has written a compelling, satisfying novel. The story of an artist and her daughter who move to a quiet suburb and change and challenge everyone's comfortable truths. I couldn't wait to see how it came out, even though you catch some of the ending at the very beginning of the book. (Which was an interesting surprise.) I also want to compliment the narration. You can see what a good actor does in interpreting a book, and Jennifer Lim did a superb job. One of my favorite "readings" of a novel, ever.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore

  • A Novel
  • By: Matthew Sullivan
  • Narrated by: Madeleine Maby
  • Length: 8 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 417
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 379
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 377

Lydia Smith lives her life hiding in plain sight. A clerk at the Bright Ideas bookstore, she keeps a meticulously crafted existence among her beloved books, her eccentric colleagues, and the BookFrogs - the lost and lonely regulars who spend every day marauding the store's overwhelmed shelves. But when Joey McGinty, a young, beguiling BookFrog, kills himself in the bookstore's back room, Lydia's life comes unglued.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Boy Does A Good Reader Make A Big Difference

  • By D. Jay Ritt on 11-20-17

Surprise!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-28-17

A wonderfully written mystery about a young man who commits suicide in a Denver bookstore, and the woman who works out the mystery surrounding his life and death. I could not have predicted the ending at all. It had me listening eagerly up until the last minute. Wonderful book.

The narrator did a great job of general narration, but when she voiced the male characters, she managed to make them all sound slow and rather stupid.

  • The Year We Turned Forty

  • By: Liz Fenton, Lisa Steinke
  • Narrated by: Lisa Larsen
  • Length: 11 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 237
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 214
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 215

If you could repeat one year of your life, what would you do differently? This heartwarming and hilarious novel features three best friends who get the chance to return to the year they turned 40, the year that altered all of their lives in ways big and small - and get the opportunity to change their future. But it doesn't take long for all three women to learn that reliving a life and making different decisions leads only to new problems and consequences and that the mistakes they made may in fact have been the best choices.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Straight Up Fluff

  • By jnd123 on 08-18-16

Shallow people, shallow story

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-28-17

I rarely give up on a book before I've finished it, but I couldn't make it through this one. Shallow female characters who only care about clothes, exercise and "putting a baby in there". (Who actually says they want a "baby in there"?) These are characters out of a bad reality tv show, not real women. (At least not real thinking women.) I'd rather wait until Ann Patchett or Anne Tyler write more books than read this.

  • Nine Women, One Dress

  • A Novel
  • By: Jane L. Rosen
  • Narrated by: full cast
  • Length: 6 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,423
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,317
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,312

Natalie is a Bloomingdale's salesgirl mooning over her lawyer ex-boyfriend, who's engaged to someone else after just two months. Felicia has been quietly in love with her boss for 17 years and has one night to finally make the feeling mutual. Andie is a private detective who specializes in gathering evidence on cheating husbands - a skill she unfortunately learned from her own life - and lands a case that may restore her faith in true love.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A perfect fit for fans of "Love, Actually." It's a delight!

  • By Katherine on 08-13-16

Good fluff

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-25-17

This would be a great beach-read. It was a clever story-telling device, some heart-warming stories, not demanding. Not great literature, but it was adequately written and fun.

  • Delicious!

  • A Novel
  • By: Ruth Reichl
  • Narrated by: Julia Whelan
  • Length: 12 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 758
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 690
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 695

In her best-selling memoirs, Ruth Reichl has long illuminated the theme of how food defines us, and never more so than in her dazzling fiction debut about sisters, family ties, and a young woman who must finally let go of guilt and grief to embrace her own true gifts.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Julia Whelan's reading makes this book come alive.

  • By Rachel Ellyn on 09-28-14

Interesting characters and lots of food

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-06-16

While I'm not a "foodie" per se, I do appreciate a good meal. I appreciate good characters even more, and a good mystery is an added bonus. This novel gave me more than I expected on all counts. It was fun--the writing is good and the plot moved along well. Good light read.

  • And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer

  • A Novella
  • By: Fredrik Backman
  • Narrated by: David Morse
  • Length: 1 hr and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,066
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 989
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 987

Grandpa and Noah are sitting on a bench in a square that keeps getting smaller every day. The square is strange but also familiar, full of the odds and ends that have made up their lives: Grandpa's work desk, the stuffed dragon that Grandpa once gave to Noah, the sweet-smelling hyacinths that Grandma loved to grow in her garden.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Heartbreakingly Perfect

  • By Jmo930 on 11-21-16

Wise, amazing story

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-21-16

I love Fredrik Backman's books in general, but this latest book, a novella, totally captured me. It's difficult to describe because it doesn't have a classic plot, but it's about aging and how we change as we age and how the people who love us continue to love us even when our memories fade and shift. It's a very short book, so I listened to it twice in one evening, and my husband read a Kindle copy in one sitting, and we were both totally drawn into it. I'll read it again later and recommend it to people I care for. It's truly a novel that helps the changes we'll all go through as we change. A wonderful book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Crosstalk

  • By: Connie Willis
  • Narrated by: Mia Barron
  • Length: 18 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 664
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 612
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 611

In a not-too-distant future, a simple outpatient procedure that has been promised to increase empathy between romantic partners has become all the rage. So when Briddey Flannigan's fiancé proposes that he and Briddey undergo the procedure, she is delighted! Only, the results aren't quite as expected. Instead of gaining an increased empathetic link with her fiancé, Briddey finds herself hearing the actual thoughts of one of the nerdiest techs in her office. And that's the least of her problems.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • It doesn't work like that.

  • By Joel on 10-31-16

A good story

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-23-16

Connie Willis is adept at the witty, fast-moving story and Crosstalk is no exception. Well-written with good characters (some of whom you want to come to harm), it held my attention and kept me coming back. This isn't of the same caliber as the WWII stories, but it's good. More similar to To Say Nothing of the Dog than Blackout or All Clear, but good.

My one problem is with the narrator. She doesn't know how to say "Notre Dame" (Not-ra-dom?) or Kathleen (Kath-a-leen?) and "a western cavalry fort" became a "western calvary fort"--not the same thing at all. If you can those things go, she did a good enough job, but those mispronunciations are sort of hard for me to hear.

Good book, though.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful