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Robert R.

San Francisco, CA
  • 43
  • reviews
  • 206
  • helpful votes
  • 77
  • ratings
  • You're on an Airplane

  • A Self-Mythologizing Memoir
  • By: Parker Posey
  • Narrated by: Parker Posey
  • Length: 7 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 327
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 309
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 306

Have you ever wondered what it would be like talk to Parker Posey? On an airplane, with Parker as your seat companion, perhaps? Parker’s irreverent, hilarious, and enchanting memoir gives you the incredible opportunity. Full of personal stories, whimsical how-tos, recipes, and beautiful handmade collages created by the author herself, You’re On an Airplane is a delight in every way.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Very Odd Bird!

  • By Vampymissk on 08-31-18

Sadly So Boring I Couldn't Finish

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

Reviewed: 08-04-18

I lasted about three hours before realizing nothing about this resonated with me or amused or enlightened me in any way.

I was surprised because I've enjoyed Parker Posey for years, and everyone loves her, from coworkers in New York who ran into her shopping, to a nearby friend who had a yard sale she showed up at in San Francisco. That person and the actress so many of us admire simply doesn't translate to the page.

I expected this to be fun. It wasn't. Okay. I hung in there a little longer to see and try to judge the book she actually wrote instead of the one I imagined and looked forward to.

Nothing ever "took off on the page" here and after three hours I decided simply to return it.

Parker Posey is a pleasure to watch on the screen, but if her skills translate in any way to the realm of writing, it's lost on me here. I still wish her well in everything she pursues. Perhaps she'll hit he stride with a followup one day.

9 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • A Wrinkle in Time

  • By: Madeleine L'Engle
  • Narrated by: Hope Davis, Ava DuVernay, Madeleine L'Engle, and others
  • Length: 6 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15,623
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,941
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,944

Meg Murry, her little brother Charles Wallace, and their mother are having a midnight snack on a dark and stormy night when an unearthly stranger appears at their door. He claims to have been blown off course and goes on to tell them that there is such a thing as a "tesseract", which, if you didn't know, is a wrinkle in time. Meg's father had been experimenting with time travel when he suddenly disappeared. Will Meg, Charles Wallace, and their friend Calvin outwit the forces of evil as they search through space for their father?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Thank You for a New Narrator

  • By Patricia on 02-01-12

Unsatisfying

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

Reviewed: 03-20-18

I finally read this (in my 50s). It's a strange mix of sophisticated ideas (which I liked) and characters only a child could embrace with any willing suspension of disbelief (which I didn't). I have zero interest in seeing the film after reading this. If I were between kindergarten and third grade it would have been alright, but the same sophisticated ideas with believable characters (and character names) would have made this something special, which it's not.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Too Much Money

  • A Novel
  • By: Dominick Dunne
  • Narrated by: Ann Marie Lee, Nicholas Hormann
  • Length: 9 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 72
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 40
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 40

Dominick Dunne revives the world he first introduced in his mega-best-selling novel People Like Us, and he brings readers up to date on favorite characters such as Ruby and Elias Renthal, Lil Altemus, and, of course, the beloved Gus Bailey. Once again, he invites us to pull up a seat at the most important tables at Swifty's, get past the doormen at esteemed social clubs like The Butterfield, and venture into the innermost chambers of the Upper East Side's most sumptuous mansions.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Could Have Used a Final Polish

  • By Robert R. on 11-02-17

Could Have Used a Final Polish

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

Reviewed: 11-02-17

This was published posthumously and really could have used a good final polish.

Bits of information are repeated over and over, but the worst is that every character refers to a particular person as "the male nurse." Even a female nurse refers to him as a "male nurse," which just wouldn't happen in life.

The appeal of Dunne's writing is often recognizing the real life people and events he's fictionalizing, but this isn't the best of Dunne's work by a long shot. It might have been if he wasn't aged and in failing health and rushing to finish it before he died.

The story's more memorable simply for the feel of it and all the little details about the lives of the ultra rich Dunne sprinkles throughout, rather than the overall narrative.

The story's unmemorable and there's not a single really compelling character, so overall this is a mediocre effort in the end. You can easily skip it without having lost anything from your life.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Logical Family

  • A Memoir
  • By: Armistead Maupin
  • Narrated by: Armistead Maupin
  • Length: 8 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 121
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 111
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 112

In this long-awaited memoir, the beloved author of the best-selling Tales of the City series chronicles his odyssey from the old South to freewheeling San Francisco and his evolution from curious youth to groundbreaking writer and gay rights pioneer. Also included is an exclusive conversation between Maupin and best-selling author Neil Gaiman.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • LOGICAL Love!

  • By Tod T on 02-15-18

Ends Abruptly

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

Reviewed: 10-13-17

I've read all of Armistead Maupin's books over the years, enjoying some much more than others, finding some absolutely delightful, and some wildly uneven. This account of the author's life kept my attention, and introduced me to a side of his early life I could barely imagine given the difference in our ages, but it glosses over areas of his life I know about, relationships, and events, and then (worse) comes to an abrupt halt with an account of his last meeting with his father. It literally ended (with years and years uncovered) and then said "Epilogue," at which point Maupin read his famous coming out letter for Michael Toliver, and then an interview followed with Neil Gaiman.

What's the rush? I would have much preferred the author was thorough and didn't gloss over so much of his story, and all I can think is he and his publisher are leaving room for a followup.

I was satisfied with the content, but disappointed with the abrupt end to it, and overall I was left disappointed.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Garden Party

  • By: Katherine Mansfield
  • Narrated by: Dame Peggy Ashcroft
  • Length: 1 hr and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 4

This recording contains four of Katherine Mansfield's best stories. In The Daughters of the Late Colonel, two sisters are recently bereaved; while in Her First Ball a young girl attends her first dance. The Singing Lesson features Miss Meadows, a music teacher in turmoil; and in The Stranger, a middle-aged couple are reunited.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Missing Garden Party

  • By Robert R. on 05-30-17

Missing Garden Party

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

Reviewed: 05-30-17

I don't know why this is entitled The Garden Party, as it doesn't contain that particular story. It apparently contains The Daughters of the Late Colonel, Her First Ball, The Singing Lesson, and The Stranger. I was interested in this because of the narrator but I particularly wanted to listen to The Garden Party, and was confused for over an hour (there was no garden party), so a little Net research told me I was listening to The Daughters and the Late Colonel and that The Garden Party has completely different characters and subject matter. The title is (apparently) intentionally deceptive, and though I like the narrator and would have been interested if this included The Garden Party, I decided to return this book to Audible and not to reward the publishers' trickery.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Measure of Her Powers

  • An M. F. K. Fisher Reader
  • By: M. F. K. Fisher, Dominique Gioia - editor
  • Narrated by: Carolyn Cook
  • Length: 20 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5

Gathering journals, letters, translations, and selections from her many books, The Measure of Her Powers showcases Fisher's versatility, providing new listeners and loyal fans alike with a sampler from her wide-ranging body of work. M. F. K. Fisher is a perennial literary favorite. Her evolution from an uncertain young woman to a feisty elder with opinions about everything continues to fascinate listeners who understand the complexities of life's hungers.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Dreadful Narration

  • By Robert R. on 01-11-17

Dreadful Narration

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

Reviewed: 01-11-17

The narrator on this is overly gushy and unnatural in her reading, and because it's M.F.K. Fisher's words and Fisher was nothing like this in her style or speech, it was impossible for me to continue for long. You're far better off reading this yourself than listening to this woman who uses her voice like a gushy rollercoaster, over unnatural highs and lows in a way that speaks of an amateur, not Fisher or her life.

Other than that, no complaints. The story's okay (compiled from other Fisher writings). Any of those would serve you better.

What were they thinking?

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Princess Diarist

  • By: Carrie Fisher
  • Narrated by: Carrie Fisher, Billie Lourd
  • Length: 5 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,786
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,408
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,365

When Carrie Fisher recently discovered the journals she kept during the filming of the first Star Wars movie, she was astonished to see what they had preserved—plaintive love poems, unbridled musings with youthful naiveté, and a vulnerability that she barely recognized. Today, her fame as an author, actress, and pop-culture icon is indisputable, but in 1977, Carrie Fisher was just a teenager with an all-consuming crush on her costar, Harrison Ford.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Fireworks at Midnight

  • By Gretchen SLP on 11-25-16

Wish I'd Skipped This One

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

Reviewed: 11-24-16

I enjoy Carrie Fisher's work, but this was rather hard to listen to and just went on and on and on about a very minor affair that should have taken five minutes to gloss over.

I wish Carrie Fisher every success and happiness in life with her next project. This one is perhaps her only "off" work to date. Anything else she's done I highly recommend.

From what she was talking about to how it was delivered, this was a disappointment and chore to get through, alas.

6 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • The French Chef in America

  • Julia Child's Second Act
  • By: Alex Prud'homme
  • Narrated by: Alex Prud'homme
  • Length: 10 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 43
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42

Julia Child is synonymous with French cooking, but her legacy runs much deeper. Now, her great-nephew and My Life in France coauthor vividly recounts the myriad ways in which she profoundly shaped how we eat today. He shows us Child in the aftermath of the publication of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, suddenly finding herself America's first lady of French food and under considerable pressure to embrace her new mantle.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Even If You Think You've Heard it All...

  • By Robert R. on 11-19-16

Even If You Think You've Heard it All...

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

Reviewed: 11-19-16

Surprisingly, even if you've read several biographies of Julia Child, this one manages to give a very thorough overview of events in Julia Child's life up until her death, and to keep it fresh along the way, especially in contrasting Julia's personal thoughts (gleaned from letters and so on) compared to the Julia we saw that was her public persona. (The same can be said for her collaborators, Simone "Simca" Beck and Judith Jones.)

The narration was well done. It's well researched, insightful, and well written. If I have one criticism it's with pronunciation of some of the names of people. Pierre Franey's last name is pronounced to rhyme with Rainy rather than rhyming with Fan-Bay. Dione Lucas is pronounced as Dee-Own when it should be Dee-Oh-Knee. And so on.

Overall, highly recommended. It was a pleasure to listen to from beginning to end, and a fond remembrance of many of the events in Julia's life and memories of our own revisited along the way here.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • A Constant Alien

  • An Autobiography
  • By: Catherine Schell
  • Narrated by: Catherine Schell
  • Length: 11 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4

Catherine Schell has lived a life more dramatic and colourful than any of her many acting roles. Her story sweeps from her birth during an Allied bombing raid in Budapest to life under postwar Russian occupation, escape, and life as a refugee in Austria; a strict convent school life in America; and on to Germany, where she became an actress.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fascinating from Beginning to End

  • By Robert R. on 09-12-16

Fascinating from Beginning to End

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

Reviewed: 09-12-16

Having been a fan of actress Catherine Schell since the mid-1970s, the book I was expecting paled in comparison to the supreme accomplishment Ms. Schell delivered. While her professional exploits and stories of her cast members and so on were wonderful, classy, and dignified, the real draw here was a complete surprise. Ms. Schell's life is fascinating, from her childhood with the family escaping the Nazis to the present day. Highly, highly recommended, and a real pleasure to hear the actress narrating her own story. Regal class and elegance. Those qualities have always surrounded Ms. Schell, and they're here in abundance. Reading the book would be wonderful, but hearing the book in Ms. Schell's own words and voice added so much to the experience.

Sadly, many will never know the bounty we have here. They may not know the actress or her work, but her life story alone would be a fascinating read for anyone.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Making Masterpiece

  • My 25 Years behind the Scenes at Masterpiece and Mystery! on PBS
  • By: Rebecca Eaton
  • Narrated by: Meredith Mitchell
  • Length: 9 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13

For more than 25 years and counting, Rebecca Eatonhas presided over PBS's Masterpiece Theatre, the longest-running weekly prime-time drama series in American history. From the runaway hits Upstairs, Downstairs and The Buccaneers to the hugely popular Inspector Morse, Prime Suspect, and Poirot, Masterpiece Theatre and its sibling series Mystery! have been required viewing for fans of quality drama.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Engaging memoir

  • By Jean on 09-03-16

Glad I Listened

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

Reviewed: 09-12-16

I wasn't sure I was going to find this engaging, but I did, and it only took a few days to listen to. It was a pleasure to follow the back story of Masterpiece Theatre/Masterpiece over the years, and to learn a little of the behind-the-scenes information on how these shows came to be, the challenges along the way, the personalities involved, and so on.

I hesitated, wondering if an entire book of it would get boring. It didn't. Highly recommended.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful