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Valerie Bonham Moon

  • 8
  • reviews
  • 14
  • helpful votes
  • 29
  • ratings
  • What If?

  • Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions
  • By: Randall Munroe
  • Narrated by: Wil Wheaton
  • Length: 6 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,487
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,850
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,810

Millions of people visit xkcd.com each week to read Randall Munroe's iconic webcomic. His stick-figure drawings about science, technology, language, and love have a large and passionate following. Fans of xkcd ask Munroe a lot of strange questions. What if you tried to hit a baseball pitched at 90 percent of the speed of light? How fast can you hit a speed bump while driving and live? If there were a robot apocalypse, how long would humanity last?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Humorous but serious answers to crazy hypothetical

  • By Neuron on 05-08-16

<weighing> Wheaton:text = toss-up

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

Reviewed: 10-21-18

Wil Wheaton's performance of Randall Munroe's text is a fascinating hoot. This would make a great present for any sciency fan-boy/girl/woman/man/gender-of-choice.

I reached the end with a smile on my face. :)

  • When the Music's Over

  • An Inspector Banks Novel
  • By: Peter Robinson
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 14 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 364
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 327
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 325

Newly promoted Detective Superintendent Banks finds himself taking on the coldest of cases: a 50-year-old assault allegedly perpetrated by beloved celebrity Danny Caxton. Now Caxton stands accused at the center of a media storm, and it's Banks' job to discover the shocking truth. As more women step forward with accounts of Caxton's manipulation, Banks must piece together decades-old evidence - as the investigation leads him down the darkest of paths....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Contemporary Social Problems and Poetry

  • By mspoet on 08-24-16

Probbly accurate, but bleak, story

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

Reviewed: 10-16-16

Peter Robinson's writing is as good as ever. I still enjoy reading about the work of Alan Banks, but the realities of police work are tiring. This may have been an easier 'read' if the 2016 American political world wasn't what it is.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Murder Is Easy

  • By: Agatha Christie
  • Narrated by: Hugh Fraser
  • Length: 6 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 245
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 227
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 226

Luke Fitzwilliam does not believe Miss Pinkerton's wild allegation that a multiple murderer is at work in the quiet English village of Wychwood and that her local doctor is next in line. But within hours, Miss Pinkerton has been killed in a hit-and-run car accident. Mere coincidence? Luke is inclined to think so - until he reads in the Times of the unexpected demise of Wychwood's Dr. Humbleby.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Entertaining with Twists and Turns

  • By Marie on 05-06-15

A Christie country mystery

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

Reviewed: 06-06-16

As with all Agatha Christie mysteries, the solution to the mystery isn't revealed until the end. The clues lead round and round as the sleuth peels away the superficial covering laid down by the murderer.

The charm underlying this story is of young romance, honor, and destiny.

Readers who enjoy a diversion into last-century English country life should find this story a nice vacation from 21st century concerns.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • At Bertram's Hotel

  • A Miss Marple Mystery
  • By: Agatha Christie
  • Narrated by: Stephanie Cole
  • Length: 6 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 435
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 398
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 394

When Jane Marple comes up from the country for a holiday in London, she finds what she's looking for at Bertram's: a restored London hotel with traditional decor, impeccable service - and an unmistakable atmosphere of danger behind the highly polished veneer. Yet not even Miss Marple can foresee the violent chain of events set in motion when an eccentric guest makes his way to the airport on the wrong day....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • One of my favorite Agatha Christies

  • By Pamela on 11-10-12

Period charm, with a twist

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

Reviewed: 11-30-15

Mrs. Christie pulls the rug out from under the reader once again but with plenty of warning as to what's up in the story. The reader is lead to believe the story is about a specific set of characters, but finds out that there's more to it than that.

I've read At Bertram's Hotel many times but I still like listening to it to see not only whodunnit, but how She dunnit.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Paper Magician

  • By: Charlie N. Holmberg
  • Narrated by: Amy McFadden
  • Length: 7 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,738
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 3,397
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,385

Ceony Twill arrives at the cottage of Magician Emery Thane with a broken heart. Having graduated at the top of her class from the Tagis Praff School for the Magically Inclined, Ceony is assigned an apprenticeship in paper magic despite her dreams of bespelling metal. And once she's bonded to paper, that will be her only magic... forever. Yet the spells Ceony learns under the strange yet kind Thane turn out to be more marvelous than she could have ever imagined.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Valley girl reads book on faux British accent

  • By James and co. on 06-23-15

Charming potential

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

Reviewed: 11-30-15

I wanted to give this book four stars because I was charmed by paper-magic. I enjoy (simpler) origami so I had fun at the beginning of the book reading a story steeped in the idea of paper cranes coming to life, and reading about other paper creations having magical powers.

Unfortunately, the subplot is subtle and the story drives through pretty much on a single path. This leaves "the murky middle" a bit thin. The story may work well in print -- nice direct imagery, good atmosphere concerning the paper-folding, clear text -- but, in a spoken work, a bit more oomph would have improved the experience.

Despite that opinion, I'm looking forward to hearing the second book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Agatha Christie: An Autobiography

  • By: Agatha Christie
  • Narrated by: Agatha Christie
  • Length: 1 hr and 20 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 526
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 464
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 451

Back in print in an all-new edition is the engaging and illuminating chronicle of the life of the "Queen of Mystery". Fans of Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple and readers of John Curran’s fascinating biographies Agatha Christie’s Secret Notebooks and Murder in the Making will be spellbound by the compelling, authoritative account of one of the world’s most influential and fascinating novelists, told in her own words and inimitable style - and here in her own voice. These audio excerpts were dictated by Agatha Christie herself.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The author explains her process!

  • By Kristi R. on 07-09-14

A charming time-capsule

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

Reviewed: 07-09-15

I very much enjoyed hearing Agatha Christie's voice. I've read both Come, Tell Me How You Live, and her written Autobiography, so this audio autobiography is a satisfying addition to the others.

The sound quality of this piece isn't up to the level we expect today, but being a vintage recording, I found that the non-recording studio quality allowed me to imagine her sitting in a drawing room for the interview.

I would recommend this selection to anyone who has an interest in the life of Agatha Christie.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Collectors

  • By: Philip Pullman
  • Narrated by: Bill Nighy
  • Length: 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 694
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 635
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 632

"But the thing is," said Horley, "they didn’t know each other at all. Never heard of each other. It wasn’t about the makers. Only about the works." On a dark winter's night in 1970, Horley and Grinstead huddle for warmth in the Senior Common Room of a college in Oxford. Conversation turns to the two impressive works of art that Horley has recently added to his collection....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Henry James, meet Rudyard Kipling

  • By Michele Kellett on 02-18-15

Short story?

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

Reviewed: 01-25-15

I enjoyed Mr. Pullman's story and liked how hints about the Dark Materials books were worked in. Too short, though. This will be a lesson in double-checking the lengths of the programs.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Spider's Web

  • By: Agatha Christie
  • Narrated by: Hugh Fraser
  • Length: 4 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 231
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 205
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 200

A classic from the queen of mystery: Agatha Christie.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Agatha is always fun!

  • By Kathi on 08-07-16

Proper period adaptation

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

Reviewed: 01-25-15

I could listen to Hugh Frasier all day long. He's an excellent performer, but I'm sure no one needs me to point out that.

The story is, of course, vintage Christie. It's wonderful to be able to hear a new one after all this time. The only quibble I have is a seeming anachronism on the part of Pippa. "Sucks" seems out of place. Otherwise, a definite spider's web.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful