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Virginia

South Lake Tahoe, CA, United States
  • 11
  • reviews
  • 2
  • helpful votes
  • 60
  • ratings
The Serpent and the Pearl audiobook cover art

A totally different view of the Borgia Family

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

Reviewed: 09-07-19

I've read several historical novels (and watched a video series) about the Borgia family. This book takes a totally different point of view and made the family seem totally different. Plus Kate Quinn gives a very different view of what life was like at that point in time for both the overwhelmingly rich as well those who come from more meager circumstances. Quinn's attention to history as well as her richness of descriptions made listening to this book a wonderful experience.

Defying Hitler audiobook cover art

It was like being there.

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

Reviewed: 11-13-17

This book is from the first hand writings of a thoughtful lawyer in Hitler's Germany. He paints a very detailed picture of how it was to live in Germany as Hitler took over the country. His vivid descriptions of all the people in his life, give you such a clear picture that I felt as if I were actually there - sitting on the sidelines experiencing all that he did so many years ago. Very vivid and terrifying at times.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society audiobook cover art

And You Are There

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

Reviewed: 07-29-16

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Definitely - because since I am living in America and I was born just after the end of WWII, I had no idea of the deprivations and difficulties that the British went thru during the war. I'd seen photos of bombed houses and people sheltering in the Underground tunnels, but never really thought about what it was like to live through it.

What did you like best about this story?

The relations between all the characters and the wonderfully vivid descriptions of each of them. And the comparisons between life in the city of London and life on the Isle of Guernsey.

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

A lovely British accent -

If you could rename The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, what would you call it?

That's the best title for the book!

The Vatican Diaries audiobook cover art
  • The Vatican Diaries
  • A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Power, Personalities, and Politics at the Heart of the Catholic Church
  • By: John Thavis
  • Narrated by: Malcolm Hillgartner

Look into the Vatican's Closets Full of Skeletons

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

Reviewed: 07-29-16

Would you consider the audio edition of The Vatican Diaries to be better than the print version?

I have more time to listen than to read.

What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

The fact that the writer had valid credentials and access to the inner halls of the Vatican. It validated for me the truth of what he was reporting.

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

Everything you didn't know about the life and power of the Vatican.

Any additional comments?

This is one of those books for which I wished I'd had a "cheat sheet" to keep track of who did what and why. I should have kept a note book handy to write down all the names and what they did.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Killing Reagan audiobook cover art

How did I miss that?

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

Reviewed: 07-29-16

What made the experience of listening to Killing Reagan the most enjoyable?

All of the insights and the interesting descriptions of the people in Reagan's life. I lived through the latter part of that time period, yet I was amazed at how much I'd missed. I never realized the power that Nancy Reagan had not only over Ronnie but other people in the political world of the time as well.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Nancy - she was easy to dislike and yet she fascinated me by her ability to get things to go her way. Totally determined to make sure her Ronnie succeeded.

Which character – as performed by Robert Petkoff and Bill O'Reilly – was your favorite?

I can't pick out one character but I'd like to say that I really enjoyed listening to this book precisely because Bill O'Reilly did NOT do the majority of the narration. We've listened to several of his books and while I enjoy the content, I do not enjoy his narrations. He mispronounces many, many words and makes it difficult to listen to.

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

Yes - I was thrilled not to have to listen to Bill's narration.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Pierced by the Sun audiobook cover art

A trip into the mind of a fascinating character

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

Reviewed: 07-29-16

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This book is told from the point of view of a fascinatingly spiritual yet very flawed character. It shows the underbelly of politics and religion in Mexico and it also gives a great look into the native culture. I really loved this book.

What did you like best about this story?

The information about the native spiritual practices and beliefs.

What about Roxanne Hernandez’s performance did you like?

Her ability to accurately pronounce not only English but also Spanish and Nahuatl words really enriched the story.

Any additional comments?

I just wished it had been longer.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Shadows of the Workhouse audiobook cover art

Historical Fiction at it's Best

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

Reviewed: 07-19-16

The author tells us the stories of some of the people who's lives were touched by the work houses of the1800's or those who struggled with extreme poverty trying to avoid them. And of the nurses and nursing Sisters who lovingly cared for them. The history of the workhouse system is told through the eyes of those who passed through them. The stratification of the British class system is made very clear, which was fascinating to me as an American who had never lived in that type of culture. Using period specific vocabulary and local dialect (Cockney) was also fascinating to me. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

The Valley of Amazement audiobook cover art

A close look at Shanghai in the late 1800's

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

Reviewed: 12-26-15

Where does The Valley of Amazement rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Amy Tan's books are always beautifully written and well researched. This book is one of her best.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Violet - the narrator - because you get to see her change and grow, deal with the bad cards life has dealt her and how she wrestles with her dual race heritage.

Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favorite?

Again Violet - because the narrator gives her a life and voice that also changes as she grows.

Any additional comments?

Getting to see a side of Shanghai society that is often not written or even talked about is very interesting. This is a cultural history.

The King's Curse audiobook cover art

Another great book from Philippa Gregory

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

Reviewed: 12-26-15

Would you consider the audio edition of The King's Curse to be better than the print version?

I don't always have time to sit down and read but when I have a recorded book I can easily listen when driving or working in the garden or exercising.

What other book might you compare The King's Curse to and why?

This book follows her others beautifully and it's great to see familiar characters like Margaret Pole in other books.

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

Her pronunciation is flawless and a joy to listen to.

Murder in the Sentier audiobook cover art

A tour a Paris with history and mystery thrown in.

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

Reviewed: 03-04-13

Would you listen to Murder in the Sentier again? Why?

I love Cara Black's mystery books because I feel as if I'm right there in Paris. She includes such descriptive details about the city which she obviously loves that she could have a second career as a tour guide. She always includes some history as well. Her mysteries always keep you on the edge of your seat until the very end. So you can travel, learn and be entertained all at once.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Aimee Le Duc is the best

Which character – as performed by Carine Montbertrand – was your favorite?

Again I think I'd pick Aimee. But the reader adds a different facet to the books. I had read several Cara Black books before I listened to any. So when I started with an Audible version I was thrilled. Because the reader is bilingual - or at least has a great accent in French - the books take on a totally different feel. She makes all the characters very real.

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

Where is my mother the terrorist?