Former Marine helicopter pilot Jack Morgan runs Private, a renowned investigation company with branches around the globe. It is where you go when you need maximum force and maximum discretion. The secrets of the most influential men and women on the planet come to Jack daily - and his staff of investigators uses the world's most advanced forensic tools to make and break their cases.
Another freebie from Audible. As with the majority of these giveaways, they are just plain mediocre. Fortunately, this book is fast - really fast! Chapters come in short, sharp waves. But I like my mysteries to be, well a mystery. Even though there are some interesting sub-plots such as “You are dead Jack”, the rest is quite whimsical. Infact, too many story lines spoil the broth. One reviewer wrote that the book was full of machismo which is entirely true.
I did however enjoy the narrator. His delivery was pleasant except for the awful Irish female impersonation. The musical interludes in the release is also off putting. Private is of course a series, which I will quickly bypass.
Georgie, aka Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, cousin of King George V of England, is penniless and trying to survive on her own as an ordinary person in London in 1932. So far she has managed to light a fire and boil an egg... She's gate-crashed a wedding... She's making money by secretly cleaning houses... And she's been asked to spy for Her Majesty the Queen.
This has been in my Audible library for many years and I finally got around to hearing it. I believe it was a freeby from long ago. This short, charming novel has a varied set of very quirky characters. I loved the ever so clumsy protagonist, Lady Georgy, who is forever on a quest to get a few shillings to feed herself. The mystery of the dead body in her bath tub adds to the mayhem of her life and forces her to become a detective as well as a spy.
The author's prose is very funny and the character of Georgy’s mother is delicious. The narration is top notch on this Audible release. The accents of the British upper crust society is so amusing. A very pleasant listen.
Living on her family’s gorgeous lakeside estate in Cornwall, England, Alice Edevane is a bright, clever, inquisitive, innocent, and precociously talented fourteen-year-old who loves to write stories. But the mysteries she pens are no match for the one her family is about to endure ...One midsummer’s eve, after a beautiful party drawing hundreds of guests to the estate has ended, the Edevanes discover that their youngest son, Theo, has vanished without a trace.
Ok no spoilers here. This is the worst from Morton yet. I have read all her books now and this one is a real dud. The premise is extremely promising as you hobnob with the upper class Edevanes family, rural Cornwall in the 1930s and a missing infant. As with all the author’s novels, there are mysteries stretched over time and clues litterred within the pages. But this offering has a terribly poor ending and leaves you wondering how she came up with it.
There are some similarities to her previous work as well such as three sisters growing up in a familiar country house setting. Worst, there is the “The Girl On The Train” sub-plot which is rather superfluous. She also treats the Metropolitan Police as a bunch of bumbling amateurs on both occasions where they are involved in the plot. Seriously, when a woman goes missing, who is the first suspect? There are occasions when you know the plot outcome before the pages reveal it to you.
I wish the author’s next outing can match the wonderful stories she wrote prior such as the “The Forgotten Garden”. I am hopeful.
The author could be described as a veteran in every sense of the word, even though he was only age 21 when the war ended. Armin Scheiderbauer served as an infantry officer with the 252nd Infantry Division, German army, and saw four years of bitter combat on the Eastern Front, being wounded six times. This is an outstanding personal memoir, written with great thoughtfulness and honesty.
After reading a few WWII books, I can sincerely say that this is not a book on blood and gore. This story is more about the author’s overall war time experience from training to melee, injury to recuperation, and correspondence to loved ones back home. In that regard, the story can get quite tedious and repetitive at times. Yet, you still get to experience life in the Wehrmacht and its trials and tribulations through the war years.
It is remarkable that a young 17year old could live through a harrowing experience such as the brutal Eastern Front and yet survive to tell the story years later. Many friends mentioned within the book, including his brother, sadly do not make it to the end of the war. As with all German WWII books I have read, the horrors of the Nazi regime remain absent throughout the pages. Apart from the author’s father who falls foul of the religious edicts of the regime, there is very little else on the Nazi philosophy.
Still, I enjoyed the book. It is different than other WWII books I have read and still yields enormous information. Recommended for the history buff.
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.
It’s a shame, that a new work will always be judged against your best work. Sadly, no, this is not as good as the author’s last outing. But the novel still has its moments of mystery, relevance and social commentary. Placed in an era of US political scandal, we still get to explore an East Asian character, entwined with a nomadic artistic duo, friending an established, orderly white family (cliché anyone?).
But the book gets stuck when the author brings on the heavy sympathy card for certain flawed characters. Even though there is ample commentary on individual views and situations, it almost feels as though the content is forced and at worse sarcastic. It is difficult to feel sympathy for a young delinquent arsonist because this character views the world different to her siblings. At the end of the book, there are a couple of major plot holes. Then you ask yourself, how is that possible?
Overall, it is not a bad book. Just not that great.
What is the nature of space and time? How do we fit within the universe? How does the universe fit within us? There's no better guide through these mind-expanding questions than acclaimed astrophysicist and best-selling author Neil deGrasse Tyson. But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in digestible chapters consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day.
Sure enough, this is a book for the folks who really wants to understand the universe in a hurry. It is a fast paced, no-nonsense journey that spans 15 billion years. I loved the quick pacing and read the book twice not to misunderstand the concepts and theories. Sadly, I remain perplexed. I am not a genius, so I took most of the content herein as gospel and hoped that one day other scientists will unravel the still mysterious beginning of our universe to its eventual death. Way after we are long gone.
I am not quite sure if the author should have read the book himself. That was the only thing negative in my review. Really every person with the smallest of questions around who we are, and how we fit in this vast space should pick this up.
At the end of the last century, Johnstown, Pennsylvania, was a booming coal-and-steel town filled with hardworking families striving for a piece of the nation's burgeoning industrial prosperity. In the mountains above Johnstown, an old earth dam had been hastily rebuilt to create a lake for an exclusive summer resort patronized by the tycoons of that same industrial prosperity, among them Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and Andrew Mellon.
As with many momentous events in history, they happen in an instant, linger a little in our conscience, and disappear just as quickly in newer events. So it was with this tragedy, a century+ ago in Johnstown, PA. As one reviewer stated, it was just as calamitous as 9-11-2001, if not more, but is lost to history today. Thank goodness for author’s such as David McCullough who presents us with a wonderfully written book detailing the preceding events as well as the outcome of the disaster.
The research within the book is outstanding as the author takes us to the town of Johnstown and its habitants, the Conemaugh valley and the surrounding heavy steel industry, vital railroad, and the man made South Fork dam. The neglected and aged dam was under the ownership and supervision of a secretive sporting club, South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club, with members coming from the Pittsburgh elite. The Club could have prevented the natural disaster through proper maintenance but failed to do so. As with many tragedies, where 1 in 10 occupants of Johnstown died, this man-made disaster could have been easily averted. Sadly, the Club and its membership escaped punishment through silence, powerful lawyers and wealth.
This is a great telling of a natural made tragedy in American history. Recommended.
As early as 1941, Allied victory in World War II seemed all but assured. How and why, then, did the Germans prolong the barbaric conflict for three and a half more years? In The German War, acclaimed historian Nicholas Stargardt draws on an extraordinary range of primary source materials - personal diaries, court records, and military correspondence - to answer this question. He offers an unprecedented portrait of wartime Germany, bringing the hopes and expectations of the German people to vivid life.
It has been awhile since I listened to this book and writing a review much later becomes a test of memory. But certain books leave a mark in your psyche that is never forgotten. I believe the strength in this book is the research done to collect the many writings from the war years and intelligently decipher them into an impressive body of work related to the German war experience.
Each letter, civilian, soldier, experience is informative and objective and goes a long way to rationalize the thinking of the common person living in Germany. Sadly, it really tells us of their feelings towards the war and their support and admiration of the National Socialist system. There were not many that disagreed with the ideology. The many that had questioned Hitler in the 1930s, either left the country or were brutalized in the concentration camps. The remainder roaming Germany were the sycophants of the system.
The German churches and organizations receive a special mention in the book for their outright passivity to the outrageous committed against the Jewish community. Even though some argued against the euthanasia programs, many in the church hierarchy simply ignored the known facts around the holocaust willingly.
This is a wonderful book on WWII, a little dry in places but still a great worthy listen. Recommended.
Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed. Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.
Not sure what to think about this young-adult novel. It was my first foray into the young-adult genre and it certainly held promise. Centered around a young African American female, who at first hand experiences a horrific and violent incident, we ultimately delve into the psyche of America’s race relations.
The author tries very hard to be objective through the eyes of Star, our protagonist. The relationships she maintains, the school she attends, the life she leads seems contrary to our beliefs of an impoverished, crime ridden, minority neighborhood. Then the story explodes into the realms of violence, disobedience, rioting, anarchy and the politics of the Black Lives Matter movement. Within this context, the story and sympathy for Star unravels.
Is it ok to throw objects at Police with intent to harm? Does the end justify the means? These are questions that seems to challenge the reader/listener. The author has given us her answer within the book. But I disagreed with her justification even though it was a harrowing tragedy.
The long-awaited first novel from the author of Tenth of December: a moving and original father-son story featuring none other than Abraham Lincoln, as well as an unforgettable cast of supporting characters, living and dead, historical and invented. February 1862. The Civil War is less than one year old. The fighting has begun in earnest, and the nation has begun to realize it is in for a long, bloody struggle. Meanwhile, President Lincoln's beloved eleven-year-old son, Willie, lies upstairs in the White House, gravely ill.
I wanted so much more from this book than I received. If I had known what “Bardo” meant prior to picking this up at Audible, I may have enjoyed the listen better. On many reviews of the book on-line, people state that it is not for all tastes. I can agree that it was not for me.
Centered around a cemetery, spirits, and Lincoln mourning the loss of his young son, the story is filled with what was and what could be. In between the spaces, multitude of period quotes are intertwined with the story to interject relevance, experience and fact. Characters, and there are many of them, narrate their own lives and how and why they seem to be trapped in this limbo state. Many fear the next state – moving on. All this can get quite confusing.
The production of this book is awful. There are long gaps of silence between some of the chapters that makes you think the audio has stopped working. It is almost impossible to know when a quote is delivered versus the actual narrative of a character. And there are so many readers. Its absurdly confusing.
How this one the Booker is a mystery to me.
16 of 18 people found this review helpful