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S. Schmidt

Florida
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  • reviews
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  • Cast in Deception

  • The Chronicles of Elantra
  • By: Michelle Sagara
  • Narrated by: Khristine Hvam
  • Length: 16 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 395
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 363
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 365

Private Kaylin Neya thought her home couldn't possibly get more crowded. But when one of her housemates, Annarion, decides to undertake the Barrani Test of Name, his friends refuse to let him face his task alone - and Kaylin's sentient home, Helen, is the only structure capable of shielding the rest of Elantra from the magnitude of their power. Annarion and Mandoran almost caused the destruction of the High Halls once already. Add nine of their closest friends, and the danger is astronomically higher.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Maybe it's because I wait all year for these books

  • By S. Schmidt on 01-28-18

Maybe it's because I wait all year for these books

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

Reviewed: 01-28-18

Just my opinion, but I was disappointed. Overall, I don't like the storyline of the "lost" children of The Green. I love Teela, but the rest of their storyline is boring and full of politics and demonstrates how cold the Barrani are, but... we know that already. Most of the book was spent talking politics -nothing new was learned by us or by Kaylin. I found myself rewinding frequently to listen to parts I missed because it didn't hold my attention. There was some action, some of the characters we thought we could trust are thrown into suspicion, but overall, this book did not contribute much compared to other books. It's obviously background for what's to come, but I didn't need 16 hours of this background with Cast in Sorrow and Cast in Peril already behind us. And I missed the fun of Bellasdeo (sp?) and the emperor, I want more from Kaylin and Severn, even Mandoran's character especially when he is arguing and baiting Bellasdeo and getting stuck in walls. The usual characters didn't have a significant part in any of the book -very little of Marcus, the Hawk lord, Clint, Tara or any of the characters I look forward to seeing. I enjoy the books when we get to investigate and learn more of the other races -like Cast in Flight or Marcus' story, the Tha'alani or the even the towers - the growth Kaylin gains and the "other" side of the main characters, but in my opinion, this book could have been an in-between short story and we would have learned as much and moved on to the next story.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Witchful Thinking

  • The Happily Everlasting Series, Book 4
  • By: Kristen Painter
  • Narrated by: B. J. Harrison
  • Length: 5 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 135
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 123
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 123

Welcome to Everlasting, Maine, where there's no such thing as normal. Charlotte Fenchurch knows that, which is why she's not that surprised when a very special book of magic falls into her hands at the library where she works. As a fledgling witch, owning her own grimoire is a dream come true. But there’s something... mysterious about the book she just can’t figure out. Leopard shifter Walker Black knows what's odd about the book.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Mystery -kept me guessing until the end!

  • By S. Schmidt on 01-03-18

Great Mystery -kept me guessing until the end!

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

Reviewed: 01-03-18

Loved this new story by Kristen Painter! I didn't listen to it in order with the rest of the series and didn't feel I missed anything -great as a standalone novel. I wasn't certain 'whodunnit' until the end -great twists and turns! I had to go back and listen to the entire story again because the ending threw all of the characters into a new light - I wanted to see the pieces of their characters that I might have missed. Great character building in such a short novel! I love Nocturne Falls, but Charlotte and Walker won my heart. Will definitely listen to it again!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Save a Truck, Ride a Redneck

  • By: Molly Harper
  • Narrated by: Amanda Ronconi
  • Length: 3 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,494
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,406
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,395

Molly Harper brings her signature "clever humor, snark, silliness, and endearing protagonists" ( Booklist) to the charming small town of Lake Sackett, Georgia with the new Southern Eclectic series. Carl and Marianne were high school sweethearts, loving the way only teenagers can - with no thought to logic or pride, just a bone-headed, optimistic frenzy of unicorns and hormones. That was all they needed. Or so Carl thought. Scared of being stuck in Lake Sackett, Georgia, like so many of her friends, Marianne panicked and bolted....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Not as impressed with the story

  • By SuchetA on 11-07-17

Sweet Story -Looking forward to Sweet Tea series

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

Reviewed: 10-21-17

First, I love Molly Harper and Amanda Ronconi and they are an automatic download for me. This was a great story and a great setting (and as always, a little unusual to keep things interesting!) and always clever. I enjoyed the reference to Hap Borchard (sp?) from "And One Last Thing" and hope there may be references to Lacey and Monroe in future books.

Without giving too much away, Marianne's family is Lake Sackett's small town funeral home and coroner services with a bait and tackle shop for those family members not in the funeral home business. (That's the fun, Molly-quirky part of the story! Love the family, Marianne's brother and small town business!)

Marianne and Carl dated until the summer before she left for college. She broke up with him abruptly when she left for college and left him wondering what happened. (In this part of the story I kept getting flashbacks to Reese Witherspoon's character in "Sweet Home Alabama.") Marianne doesn't come home often during her college years due to studying and internships and Carl, but her mother guilts her into coming home for the summer before she starts law school to spend time with the family. She gets involved in the family business, helps mediate a funeral crisis and finds she can't stay away from Carl.

It's a well-written story with great characters -heartfelt moments and great laughs. I can't wait for "Sweet Tea and Sympathy"!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Ravenheart

  • Crossbreed Series, Book 2
  • By: Dannika Dark
  • Narrated by: Nicole Poole
  • Length: 10 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,769
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,626
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,617

Two weeks after joining Keystone, Raven Black is ready to take on the world as a criminal hunter for hire. If only her partner wasn't a bloodsucking Vampire with a penchant for getting under her skin. Despite her lavish surroundings, Raven misses the freedom of life without rules. And Keystone's next assignment is about to test her self-control in more ways than one. Dead bodies are popping up in the human district, and all signs point to a Breed serial killer.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Worthy of a credit for a Dannika Dark fan

  • By Enthralled on 06-19-17

Great action and good laughs!

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

Reviewed: 10-04-17

I LOVE the dynamic between Raven and Christian and this book was so much fun! A great, dramatic chase for a serial killer while the bonding between all of the characters is witty and comical! My favorite -No spoilers -just listen for bars and hats! I like all of the characters, their skills so different, their backgrounds varied and I enjoy learning a little more about each character in small doses. It makes me want to know more. Dannika does a great job building the characters slowly through a wide variety of interactions between themselves and between the Keystone group and outsiders. This is a great series! I enjoyed the "Seven" series, but something about the characters never quite rang true -they didn't feel like real people. I can relate to every character in this series thus far and it's only the second book! Keep them coming!

  • Slouch Witch

  • The Lazy Girl's Guide to Magic, Book 1
  • By: Helen Harper
  • Narrated by: Tanya Eby
  • Length: 8 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 903
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 830
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 834

Let's get one thing straight - Ivy Wilde is not a heroine. In fact she's probably the last witch in the world you'd call if you needed a magical helping hand, regardless of her actual abilities. If it were down to Ivy, she'd spend all day every day on her sofa, where she could watch TV, munch junk food, and talk to her feline familiar to her heart's content. However, when a bureaucratic disaster ends up with Ivy as the victim of a case of mistaken identity, she's yanked very unwillingly into Arcane Branch.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Awesome book!!!

  • By christa on 08-06-17

Yay! I found a new series!

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

Reviewed: 09-23-17

I've been wandering aimlessly from one author to another looking for an interesting, but not too intense series and I've found it! I completely relate to Ivy and love the dynamic between her and her new unintentional and initially unwanted partner, the slightly stuffy, but entirely redeemable Adeptus Exemptus Raphael Winter. The mystery was well-written and left you wondering until the end who-dun-it. I had someone else entirely in the cross hairs so enjoyed being surprised. And Ivy is no slouch so it's fun to watch her get unintentionally intrigued and manage situations that no one thinks her capable of!

I've read the complaints about the narrator speaking with a distinct American accent when the story is clearly British, but I didn't find it distracting and thought she did a great job with distinguishing voices. I always knew who was talking, male, female, cat... It might have been fun to hear it all in British accents, but I wouldn't change the narrator -she was Ivy.

It's a great story and I look forward to the next one!

  • Four Weddings and a Sixpence

  • An Anthology
  • By: Julia Quinn, Elizabeth Boyle, Laura Lee Guhrke, and others
  • Narrated by: Mary Jane Wells
  • Length: 11 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 131
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 123
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 122

Beloved authors Julia Quinn, Elizabeth Boyle, Laura Lee Guhrke, and Stefanie Sloane deliver the stories of four friends from Madame Rochambeaux's Gentle School for Girls who find an old sixpence in their bedchamber and decide that it will be the lucky coin for each of their weddings…

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Delightful

  • By Linda on 12-29-16

The Perfect Valentine's Romance Book

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

Reviewed: 01-13-17

This was a fun, light book of romantic tales. As I was reading, I thought this would be the perfect romance to curl up with around Valentine's Day. All short, sweet HEAs.

My favorite is always Julia Quinn and she's easy to pick out even if the authors hadn't been given. -She begins the book with "Something Old" describing the schoolgirls and sets up the story, describing their backgrounds and relationships -it's well done. The 5th book wraps up with Julia Quinn's "And a Sixpence in her shoe." This was my favorite story -Bea and Frederick are interesting, well developed, unique characters and their story flowed well. She makes them a believable couple in a short period of time. (and I love Bea -practical, forthright with a unique perspective on Frederick who can't help but fall in love with her.)

The second book, "Something New" by S. Sloane was a condensed version of "The Duke and I." While the story was cute, I was disappointed that it wasn't more original.

The third book, "Something Borrowed" by Elizabeth Boyle was a good, original story of Cordelia who has sworn off marriage due to her parents' volatile marriage, but told her aunts she is betrothed in order to get them to leave her alone. Unfortunately, she's given a deadline and she shows up at her childhood friend, Kipp's, house. Cordelia has lived the life Kipp wanted -traveling, seeing exotic places while he's been stuck at home as his father's heir. Cordelia brings joy back into his life opening possibilities while he shows her the joys of stability and the excitement to be had in every day life. It was well done.

"Something Blue" by Laura Guhrke and the fourth book in the series, was another good story though a little more frustrating to me. Elinor's ex-fiance, Lawrence, steals the coin from her to mess up her plans to marry a man that can help her father win against malicious lies to prove him guilty of murder. Lawrence is dead set on prosecuting her father, but without hard evidence, he's finding it difficult. Lawrence won't tell her what evidence he has or needs to convict her father because he knows she'll tell her father and give him a chance to ruin the case. She tells him over and over to show her proof, but he's upset because she believes her father rather than him? I thought that was a dumb premise. Her father has taken care of her and loved her -of course she believes him over her friend/ fiance if he won't /can't give her proof. The best part of the story are all of the mishaps that happen to her because she doesn't have the "lucky" coin.

All of the stories were good though my favorite was Julia's. I think the sex scenes could have been left out -I'm not against sex scenes, but they all seemed forced to me when the characters had such a short time to develop their characters and romances for us. I liked that many of the characters romances had childhood histories -long time friendships with their romantic interests or a previous courtship to make the short stories more plausible.

All-in-all, a fun listen!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Just Kiss Me

  • By: Rachel Gibson
  • Narrated by: Hillary Huber
  • Length: 8 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 115
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 102
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 106

"Hello, Ms. Vivian...it's been a long time." And with those words, Vivian Leigh Rochet nearly melted. It's been years since she last saw Harrison Whitley-Shuler. She was a teenager scrubbing houses for a living. He was the gorgeous son of rich parents, not fit for the likes of her. Vivian had vowed to get out of Charleston, become a big Hollywood star, and stick it to the snooty girls who made her cry. She got what she wanted - and more - but why does her glamorous life seem so trivial?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • enjoyed

  • By Rachael on 07-29-16

A complicated and great romance!

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

Reviewed: 08-16-16

The reviews for this book have been tough in my opinion. The characters are interesting, complex and imperfect -my favorite kind! (And better than the last couple of books in my opinion!) The story starts out a bit like the old movie "Sabrina" (or the brothers reminded me of the brothers in the movie), but the plot twists and turns and the story has several surprising twists! You see all of the characters good points and imperfections -there is no black and white "good" or "bad" characters -I like that about Rachel Gibson's books.

Vivian is a strong, smart woman who left the city of Charleston and became the actress she always dreamed of becoming, the woman her mother encourages her to be -herself -despite the criticism of those around her. Vivian was raised by a loving, but bi-polar mom, not knowing who her father is or was. I loved the portrayal of her mother -again, not good, not bad, but real and a woman others couldn't help but love, but also a woman who wasn't always there for Vivian. Vivian loves her mother and accepts her illness as just another part of the woman.

Vivian is raised living in the guest house, cleaning house for the Whitney-Shuler family with her mother. This includes cleaning for "the Mantis," Mrs. Whitney-Shuler (because she would eat the people around her), and her two sons. But even Mrs. Whitney-Shuler has layers as the adult Vivian finds out. The boys grow up in boarding schools, but Vivian is the nightmarish younger sister during their summer holidays. (I love the diary excerpts from the younger Vivian's perspective!) When she returns as an adult to arrange her mother's funeral and set her affairs in order, she finds Harrison living in Charleston building custom cabinetry and furniture and a much different person than the mean boy she grew up believing him to be. The attraction begins as a slow, but guarded burn and escalates to a very real and hot love.

Vivian discovers there is a lot she didn't know about the people she grew up with and to say much more would give away too much. But she finds Harrison, his brother and "the Mantis" have their own secrets and stories and they all came together to take care of each other, including taking care of Vivian and her mother in ways Vivian never understood. And Harrison will be the love she both needs and wants forever.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Five Minutes Late

  • A Romantic Comedy
  • By: Rich Amooi
  • Narrated by: Michael Ferraiuolo
  • Length: 8 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 85
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 78
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 78

The world needs garlic, and somebody's got to sell that garlic. Cedric Johnson is that man. But even though he's got just about everything he can wish for, Cedric is still missing one thing in his life: someone special. Fate may be on his side, but he encounters a few distractions along the way - like almost being killed by a UPS truck. Oh, and a little case of blackmail.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Sweet and Lovely

  • By Anna Vanti on 05-04-15

Sweet, clean, sometimes corny, but great Romance!

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

Reviewed: 06-14-16

This was a great, fun story -nice and light, but with interesting characters and a cute storyline. Ellie is working hard to find Mr. Right with a clearly defined checklist -her dates, however, are nowhere near her checklist. They are the epitome of everyone's worst fears in dating. While Ellie is in the midst of these insane dates and working toward a promotion at work, she saves Cedric from being run over by a UPS truck. Through a series of goofy misunderstandings and tongue-tied meetings (and an insane ex), they begin a friendship that turns into a sweet romance. The story is full of enough real life events (past and present pains from loss of loved ones, working for a promotion, working to maintain a business) to let you see the true character of the people in the story, but there is also just enough sophomoric male humor and Ellie's crazy dating life to keep the story light, realistic and moving without a lot of angst. It was just what I needed after reading a couple of darker fantasy/ action novels -something I could relax with and enjoy!

  • Lord of Scoundrels

  • By: Loretta Chase
  • Narrated by: Kate Reading
  • Length: 11 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,523
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,308
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,306

Sebastian Ballister, the notorious Marquess of Dain, is big, bad, and dangerous to know. No respectable woman would have anything to do with the "Bane and Blight of the Ballisters", and he wants nothing to do with respectable women. He's determined to continue doing what he does best - sin and sin again - and all's going swimmingly…until the day a shop door opens and she walks in.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Witty dialogue highlights battle between the sexes

  • By Marcheta on 01-30-14

Least predictable, most fun Romance/ adventure!

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

Reviewed: 01-27-16

When I grow up, I want to be Jessica - Brilliantly smart, cunning and witty. I laughed out loud a number of times listening to her banter with her Diain and watching her twist him in circles as he was caught by her straight-forward assessments and solutions. She never deceived or tricked him -explained herself quite clearly, but he was certain she had to be up to no good as all women are -Sounds trite, but nothing you expect to happen does. Every time they headed into something I thought would be predictable, not only were their responses different, but so cleverly different, I HAD to back up and listen to them again! The story is excellent start to finish -I generally hate reviews that say "This is great!" and don't give a summary of the story, but I don't want to spoil this for anyone. Listen to the story and Expect the LEAST expected outcome!

  • From Russia with Claws

  • By: Jacey Conrad, Gia Corona
  • Narrated by: Natasha Volkov
  • Length: 9 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 418
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 394
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 391

When alpha female Galina Sudenko agreed to attend her distant cousin's birthday party, she wasn't counting on meeting the devastatingly handsome and powerful rom alpha Andrey Lupesco or having her sexy times with him interrupted by the murder of her idiot brother-in-law, Sergei. But such is life when your father is one of the most powerful werewolves within Seattle's supernatural Russian organized crime syndicate.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not your typical Molly Harper

  • By M. M. Robinson on 08-19-15

After meeting the cast, the story is predictable

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

Reviewed: 09-15-15

I didn't go into this expecting Molly -she did change her pen name -but I did expect it to be clever and the characters to be well-developed as her other books are. These are not.
Part of it was the narrator -she did a great job during conversations -I always knew who was talking and there were good male and female voices. But there is a lot of inner dialogue and the narrator sounded like she was bored, sleepy and almost like she was mocking the story or Galina. Very hard to listen to. She made me sleepy.
Summary: Galina is the youngest daughter, an alpha werewolf, in a misogynist werewolf mafia family. They allow the women to go to college, but haven't reached the 20th century much less the 21st in allowing them to be a part of the family business or make their own decisions. They are bred to marry, create pack family bindings and have children. The women themselves are much more liberal jumping into the sack with someone -not their husbands- every few pages. (It didn't flow well -it's like there was a sex scene quota they had to make and it disrupted the story. I kept wanting to skip ahead but hard to do on the ipod.) Galina is smart, loved by her father and hated by her eldest brother, the heir. She presents a smart plan to her father for her own part of the mafia family business, smuggling stolen and illegal art. Her father allows it and Galina does well which pushes her brother a little more over the edge -he wants her dead. He wants everyone dead that doesn't see things his way -he's the obvious "bad" guy from the beginning. Galina falls for Andrey, the Roma head of another family -unacceptable as a mate because of his family, but that doesn't stop her from mating frequently with the drug lord. She has a good relationship with her 2nd brother,Nick, and sister, Irina, and when everyone sees how nuts her eldest brother is, they come together to form a plan with their various lovers to take him out and make Galina head of the family. The story had promise -the premise was good, but it just didn't flow well and the characters didn't get the time they needed to grow.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful