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Chani

Chicago
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  • 10
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  • 11
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  • But for the Grace

  • A DC Smith Investigation Series, Book 2
  • By: Peter Grainger
  • Narrated by: Gildart Jackson
  • Length: 9 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,111
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,045
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,044

When another resident of the Rosemary House care home is found dead in her chair one Saturday evening in December, no one is very surprised - not until the results of a routine post-mortem reveal something extraordinary. Sergeant DC Smith and his team have to tread carefully as they investigate what took place, and Smith himself has to confront some difficult memories. Others, meanwhile, seem intent on getting him to leave the force altogether.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not much of a story line

  • By Robert L. Sexton Jr. on 03-13-18

Obvious and dull

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

Reviewed: 05-20-18

I plodded through a lot of mundane writing, banal dialogue, repetition and extraneous descriptions while waiting for a twist in what seemed to be an obvious conclusion. The big reveal near the end (not near enough) was that there was no twist. Others have described the conversations as witty, I thought the main character's comments, some to himself, others that probably should have been kept to himself, just made him sound rather mean-spirited and bitter. There were way too many irrelevant scenes such as a truckers' diner with descriptions of patrons, staff, food and service, which did absolutely nothing to further the plot or the understanding of the main characters.

The narrator seems to get into a sing-song cadence which, combined with the boring nature of all too many passages, made it hard for me to keep some of the characters straight - I usually listen for an hour or two every other couple of days.

I don't remember what prompted me to buy the first book in this series, but because I did enjoy it, several months later I bought this one. In contrast to this author, I kept thinking fondly of Agatha Christie, who rarely wrote a sentence that did not either advance the plot or drag a clever red herring across the reader's path.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Lisey's Story

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Mare Winningham
  • Length: 18 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4,062
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,904
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,907

Lisey Debusher Landon lost her husband, Scott, two years ago, after a 25-year marriage of the most profound and sometimes frightening intimacy. Scott was an award-winning, best-selling novelist, and a very complicated man. Early in their relationship, before they married, Lisey had to learn from him about books and blood and "bools". Later, she understood that there was a place Scott went, a place that both terrified and healed him, could eat him alive, or give him the ideas he needed in order to live.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • It's a love story--it's a horror story--it's both

  • By Lesley on 01-30-07

The longest 19 hours of my life

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

Reviewed: 06-13-16

Disclaimer: I'm not a King fan. I don't dislike him, but I almost never read fantasy or supernatural genres, so I've never been drawn to his books. I bought Misery after seeing the movie more than a couple times and enjoyed it even more than the movie. I can't remember what prompted me to get The Green Mile (never saw the film), but that was another very good listen. After Lisey's Story, I'll probably never choose another King book.

I bought this one on sale, without reading the reviews. After all, it was only $5.95, how much could I go wrong? (hint - reread the title of my review) The first few hours are disjointed and it takes patience to understand what's going on. There's a lot of repetition throughout the book which adds great length but no substance. I found Lisey's incredible intuition and fantastic natural insight into other people (especially since she seems to have only superficial interaction with anyone except Scott) to be a lot harder to accept than Scott's imaginary world or his ability to share it with others.

I would probably have abandoned it after 2-3 hours, had it not been for the exceptionally fine narrator, the only good thing I can say about the book. But I hung in there, waiting for my prize at the end of the bool, but it was just "bool, the end." No prize.

And after the first hundred or so times, I cringed every "bad gunky" and there were still a lot more to come.

Before writing this, I read the 1-3 star reviews and I have to agree with just about everything they wrote.

  • The Mark of the Assassin

  • By: Daniel Silva
  • Narrated by: Christopher Lane
  • Length: 11 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,750
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,348
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,346

When a commercial airliner is blown out of the sky off the East Coast, the CIA scrambles to find the perpetrators. A body is discovered near the crash site with three bullets to the face: the calling card of a shadowy international assassin.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Worth your time

  • By Dennis on 02-14-10

cardboard characters

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

Reviewed: 05-10-16

After reading a lot of praise for the author and listening to a friend who likes his books very much, I took the plunge. I persevered through the first few chapters before I couldn't bear any more of the unbelievable opinions of a couple of the Israeli characters, the incredible premises on which the story seemed to be based (a super-agent for the Mossad who is also about the best art restorer in the world) and a super-assassin who is able to plan and coordinate highly complicated missions with split second timing that go off perfectly. It was just too ridiculous. If it's not fantasy or supernatural, it has to be reasonably credible and this book isnt. The only character I found at all likable or sympathetic was the young boy. The first hour was crammed with different stories that I found it hard to get into at all. I left it aside 2 or 3 times before I was able to get into it, by which time it was too late to return it.

I thought the narrator was pretty good, though his Israeli accent was completely wrong and he put the accent on the wrong syllable in a very common 2-syllable Israeli name (most listeners won't notice) and I didn't listen to more than about 3 hours of the book.

Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter audiobook cover art
  • Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter

  • A Novel
  • By: Tom Franklin
  • Narrated by: Kevin Kenerly
  • Length: 9 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,573
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,848
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,859

Larry Ott and Silas “32” Jones were unlikely boyhood friends. Larry was the child of lower middle-class white parents, Silas the son of a poor, single, black mother - their worlds as different as night and day. Yet a special bond developed between them in Chabot, Mississippi. But within a few years, tragedy struck. In high school, a girl who lived up the road from Larry had gone to the drive-in movie with him and nobody had seen her again.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic story in the south I know

  • By Jami E. Nettles on 01-10-11

Terrific

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

Reviewed: 12-23-14

I just finished listening to this book and I'm only sorry that it's over. I can fault nothing, the writing is poignant without being emotional, evocative descriptions that made me want to stop and think about them, though I was compelled to continue listening. The narration is brilliant, though not being from the South, I have no idea if the accents are true, but they sounded so to me.

I think I will buy a hard copy just to read Mr. Franklin's lovely prose, so rare these days.

  • The Bean Trees

  • By: Barbara Kingsolver
  • Narrated by: C. J. Critt
  • Length: 9 hrs and 20 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,243
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,060
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,066

Clear-eyed and spirited, Taylor Greer grew up poor in rural Kentucky with the goals of avoiding pregnancy and getting away. But when she heads west with high hopes and a barely functional car, she meets the human condition head-on. By the time Taylor arrives in Tucson, Arizona, she has acquired a completely unexpected child, a three-year-old American Indian girl named Turtle, and must somehow come to terms with both motherhood and the necessity of putting down roots.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • a dear favorite

  • By withherownwings on 02-22-14

Gave it up in the middle.

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

Reviewed: 04-12-13

I first listened to the Poisonwood Bible and was gripped from the beginning by the story and the wonderful narration. Then I listened to Prodigal Summer, and though it was completely different, I was engrossed from the start, though it took me a bit to get used to Ms Kingsolver's narration, once I did I found I liked her reading very much.

So I looked forward with great anticipation to listen to the Bean Trees. The first hour was pretty interesting, in spite of the narration, which I found grating and monotonous, and the accents were all wrong. After being bored for the next 3 or 4 hours, I took a look at the reviews here. I guess I didn't read them before I bought the book, and maybe a couple were posted after my purchase, but I have to agree with all the negative comments. Even with better narration, I think I would have stopped. It just stopped being interesting. As others have said, it just doesn't seem to go anywhere, and the characters are pretty boring.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Marine One

  • By: James W. Huston
  • Narrated by: Joe Barrett
  • Length: 12 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,496
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,198
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,193

After the presidents' helicopter, Marine One, goes down in a brutal thunderstorm, the government blames the European manufacturer of the helicopter, accusing them of killing the president. Senate investigations and Justice Department accusations multiply as Mike Nolan, a Marine Corps reserve helicopter pilot and trial attorney in civilian life, is hired to defend the company from the criminal investigations and a wrongful-death lawsuit brought by the most notorious lawyer in America.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Political Conspiracy or Accident? Courtroom Drama!

  • By R. Pontiflet on 01-03-16

Too melodramatic

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

Reviewed: 10-20-12

The story did hold my interest to the end, but I kept thinking the scenes and characters were "over-the-top." Instead of crafting a believable story, the author uses extremes to create tension and suspense. When I finally arrived at the denouement, I was left disappointed. As another reviewer (Liz) wrote, there were subplots tossed in that were never resolved . . . and in the end, never connected to the story.

3 stars because it held my interest, but I don't think I'll buy another of Mr. Houston's works.

  • Laughing Without an Accent

  • Adventures of an Iranian American, at Home and Abroad
  • By: Firoozeh Dumas
  • Narrated by: Firoozeh Dumas
  • Length: 5 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 259
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 138
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 140

In the best-selling memoir Funny in Farsi, Firoozeh Dumas recounted her adventures growing up Iranian American in Southern California. Now she again mines her rich Persian heritage in Laughing Without an Accent, sharing stories both tender and humorous on being a citizen of the world, on her well-meaning family, and on amusing cultural conundrums, all told with insights into the universality of the human condition. (Hint: It may have to do with brushing and flossing daily.)

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Sigh

  • By Sara on 01-29-14

bo-ring

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-09-09

I got through 5 chapters before finally giving up on this one. Nothing was very amusing or indeed very interesting. The style is mundane, the vocabulary elementary, the similes unimaginative, the anecdotes unremarkable. Only the irritating narration kept me from falling asleep.

1 of 5 people found this review helpful