LISTENER

Susie Bright

  • 42
  • reviews
  • 32
  • helpful votes
  • 586
  • ratings
  • Lagos Noir

  • By: Chris Abani - editor
  • Narrated by: Kevin Free, Cary Hite
  • Length: 6 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 2

Akashic Books continues its award-winning series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city. Now, West Africa enters the Noir Series arena, meticulously edited by one of Nigeria's best-known authors. The 13 stories that comprise this volume stretch the boundaries of "noir" fiction, but each one of them fully captures the essence of noir, the unsettled darkness that continues to lurk in the city's streets, alleys, and waterways. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seriously Delicious

  • By Susie Bright on 02-20-19

Seriously Delicious

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

Reviewed: 02-20-19

Lagos Noir begins a journey into Africa for the Akashic Noir series, and it’s seriously delicious.

Narrators Kevin Free and Cary Hite effortlessly switch between both regional and class accents and give so much character to the stories.

This collection grants entry into tony apartments—if only to rob them, and flooded back alleys; the company of striving college students, tech workers, farmers, and drug dealers.

"Just Ignore and Try to Endure" was one of my favorite stories, taking the familiar-in-any-city dilemma of an impossible real estate market and an indestructible army of rats, and spinning a tale with delightfully inventive language and plot surprises.

  • Vancouver Noir

  • By: Sam (editor) Wiebe
  • Narrated by: Allison Riley, Patrick Gaites, Geoff Sugiyama, and others
  • Length: 7 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1

Vancouver is the so-called City of Glass. A nice place, in any case, and much too nice for noir. Looked at from afar, Vancouver may seem idyllic. But living here is different - cold and baffling and occasionally hostile. While outsiders focus on high-test BC bud, locals see a heroin crisis: Vancouver is home to the first legalized safe-injection site in North America, now heavily taxed by overdoses resulting from street drugs cut with fentanyl. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • It Gets Dark Here

  • By Susie Bright on 12-12-18

It Gets Dark Here

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

Reviewed: 12-12-18

Becoming acquainted with a city beyond its touristed paths is the key allure of Akashic Noir and Vancouver Noir delivers. The city's topography comes to life; circumstances may be heightened or exaggerated, but the dilemmas of the characters are utterly believable. I feel like I know Vancouver intimately: its businessmen, and homeless, its prostitutes, and ghosts.

Those of us who live in beautiful tourist towns know that where there's money there's grifters and where there's grift, there's always a good story.

  • Nobody's Family Is Going to Change

  • By: Louise Fitzhugh
  • Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 5 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1

In the world of children's literature, Louise Fitzhugh's Harriet the Spy and The Long Secret are widely recognized as epoch-making. They have been received by young learners, year after year, with excitement and love. Nobody's Family Is Going to Change - the story of an African American family in New York in the 1970s - shares the vigorous sense of comedy and unflinching fidelity to the real world that has made Fitzhugh's other books into classics.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Who Can You Control?

  • By Susie Bright on 12-06-18

Who Can You Control?

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

Reviewed: 12-06-18

Louise Fitzhugh was adept at taking the viewpoint of protagonists of any age. Harriet in Harriet the Spy has made developmental leaps by the time of The Long Secret, but those leaps are shown in the narration, not written about. Here too, Emma is appropriately rude skeptical, and righteous while the grown ups are failing her.

Period-specific language and biases, can be jarring, especially as they come up in the first few minutes, BUT this story has evergreen dilemmas and lessons for both young people and anyone: Who can you change? What if your goals clash with your parents' -- or even societal -- wishes?

Beyond lessons, Emma as a character feels so real, it's sheer fun to follow her secret plans for world domination. She's a heroine for right now. As she tells her mother, 'I can and I will ... I can decide my whole life.'

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Gasa-Gasa Girl

  • By: Naomi Hirahara
  • Narrated by: Brian Nishii
  • Length: 7 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 13

From the time she was a child, Mas Arai's daughter, Mari, was completely gasa-gasa - never sitting still, always on the go, getting into everything. And Mas, busy tending lawns, gambling, and struggling to put his Hiroshima past behind him, never had much time for the family he was trying to support. For years now his resentful daughter has lived a continent away in New York City and had a life he knew little about.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Book 2 of the Mas Arai series

  • By Kindle Customer on 04-15-15

I Love Mas!

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

Reviewed: 12-05-18

I am smitten with Mas Arai. His cantankerous, but nuanced experience as a immigrant and a survivor; his grudging care for his son-in-law and estranged daughter; and the opportunity to see the world through a viewpoint different from my own.

Naomi Hirahara writes effortless mystery and has a distinctive perspective that I always look forward to hearing. Narrator Brian Nishii fully inhabits Mas's character, you are utterly convinced he IS Mas.

  • Maleficium [Wrongdoing]

  • By: Martine Desjardins
  • Narrated by: Danny Boudreault, Maxime Dugas, Martin Rouette, and others
  • Length: 4 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1

Pardonnez-leur, mon père, car ils ne savent pas ce qu’ils ont fait. Pardonnez à ces sept hommes victimes d’étranges maléfices, venus chercher dans le confessionnal une oreille attentive au récit de leur infortune et implorer le salut de leur âme souillée par la curiosité et la faiblesse de la chair. Pardonnez aussi à cette femme calomniée, emmurée dans un cruel silence, car elle sait bien ce qu’elle a fait.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Orgie exquise des sens

  • By Susie Bright on 10-25-18

Orgie exquise des sens

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

Reviewed: 10-25-18

Cette orgie exquise des sens, sans aucune excuse, évoque "Le décalogue". Sept hommes racontent l'histoire de la sorcière qui les maudit - répandant des commérages malins - jusqu'à ce qu'elle ait elle-même un tour. Cela satisfait ma soif de fantasmes érotiques sombres, de changements de perspective narrative et de douce et douce vengeance.

  • Porteur de masques [Wearer of Masks]

  • By: Bryan Perro
  • Narrated by: Bryan Perro
  • Length: 5 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1

Amos Daragon, un brillant garçon de douze ans, devient malgré lui le premier élu de la nouvelle génération des porteurs de masques. Instauré par la Dame Blanche, déesse suprême, ce culte modifiera sa destinée et celle de ses parents. Sa dangereuse mission consiste à rétablir l'équilibre du monde, menacé par la guerre sans merci que se livrent les dieux du bien et du mal. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Sans Limite!

  • By Susie Bright on 10-17-18

Sans Limite!

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

Reviewed: 10-17-18

Amos Daragon est rempli d'aventures issues de l'imagination apparemment sans limite de Bryan Perro. Comme C.S. Lewis, il n'y a pas de séparation entre les mythologies nationales, les contes folkloriques et les fantasmes entièrement inventés. Un monde génial et amusant à explorer.

  • Gotham

  • A History of New York City to 1898
  • By: Edwin G. Burrows, Mike Wallace
  • Narrated by: Victor Bevine
  • Length: 67 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 36
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 38

In Gotham, Edwin G. Burrows and Mike Wallace have produced a monumental work of history, one that ranges from the Indian tribes that settled in and around the island of Manna-hata, to the consolidation of the five boroughs into Greater New York in 1898. It is an epic narrative, a story as vast and as varied as the city it chronicles, and it underscores that the history of New York is the story of our nation. The events and people who crowd this audiobook guarantee that this is no mere local history. It is in fact a portrait of the heart and soul of America....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • THANK YOU!!!!!

  • By Amazon Customer on 09-29-18

Re-thinking Gotham

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

Reviewed: 09-26-18

At the top of my many time-travel fantasies is the pre-settlement island that became Manhattan. Jacob Steendam's description, "Oh this is Eden!" barely begins to describe the clear rivers and seemingly boundless forests brought to life in "Gotham."

This book, reexamines everything you thought you knew about New York City, from original inhabitants living a cyclical, symbiotic, and partially nomadic life on the islands, to the origin myth of a trade of land for a string of beads, to how and why it became the "greatest city in the world."

Family by family, ship by ship, the story of early Gotham is built in a thoroughly enjoyable narration that made me long to witness it all.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Praise Song for the Butterflies

  • A Novel
  • By: Bernice L. McFadden
  • Narrated by: Robin Miles
  • Length: 5 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 53
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 52
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52

Abeo Kata lives a comfortable, happy life in West Africa as the privileged nine-year-old daughter of a government employee and stay-at-home mother. But when the Katas' idyllic lifestyle takes a turn for the worse, Abeo's father, following his mother's advice, places the girl in a religious shrine, hoping that the sacrifice of his daughter will serve as atonement for the crimes of his ancestors. Unspeakable acts befall Abeo for the 15 years she is held in the shrine. When she is finally rescued, broken and battered, she must struggle to overcome her past.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Searing!

  • By Susie Bright on 09-05-18

Searing!

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

Reviewed: 09-05-18

I've been waiting all summer for this audiobook's release. Bernice McFadden is one of my favorite writers. She's a master of spare language; of the sharp detail that will unravel a tale as dark as any in the news. The image of a peanut rolling up to a yellow flip-flop and catalyses dreadful action is burned into my mind's eye.

"Praise Song" is in the expert hands of narrator Robin Miles and I can hardly think of anyone who could relate each character's flaws and troubles, as well as tenderness, with so much grace.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Season of the Witch

  • A Novel
  • By: James Leo Herlihy
  • Narrated by: Sarah Mollo-Christensen
  • Length: 10 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2

It’s the fall of 1969, and Gloria Random’s best friend John has been called up for the draft. To escape it, they decide to run away from their Midwest town and their mundane lives. Renaming themselves Witch and Roy, they head to New York City in search of Witch’s biological father. Landing in the East Village, they are pulled into a community of drug use, mystical rituals, and sexual experimentation as they try to hide deeper and deeper from the realities they left behind. James Leo Herlihy’s third novel captures the mood and grooves of late-60s New York at the height of the anti-war movement and the counterculture revolution. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Sarah Mollo-Christensen Makes It Sing

  • By Susie Bright on 08-20-18

Sarah Mollo-Christensen Makes It Sing

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

Reviewed: 08-20-18

For a book that is so distinctly "of its time," the spiraling end of the hippie era, the performance of Sarah Mollo-Christensen is absolutely fresh. Her characters are distinct and heartfelt. Her narrator, "Witch" never veers into parody-- even with vocabulary that describes angel-colored auras, peace marches, "can you dig it?" and "Far out!" It sounds like she means it and isn't making fun of The Brady Bunch.

Anyone who appreciates a strong searcher off to find herself in the big city will love this.

  • Death of a Dissident

  • By: Stuart M. Kaminsky
  • Narrated by: John McLain
  • Length: 7 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 25
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 23
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 23

The Victims: An unscrupulous cab driver. The killer's own frightened wife. Most troublesome of all, an outspoken dissident, watched closely by the KGB, whose trial had been set for the very next day. The Weapons: A heavy iron-headed hammer. A rusty, antiquated sickle. And a broken vodka bottle. The Cops:Tkach, who seduces suspects into confessing with his apparent innocence. Karpo, a bit of a Tartar, a bit of a vampire, a stolid saint of the Soviet faith.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Mystery set in Soviet Russia

  • By Kindle Customer on 04-04-15

Missing the original performance.

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

Reviewed: 07-30-18

I have read all the Kaminsky/Rostnikov novels and, tho this is a serviceable performance, I truly miss the much more Russian fluent original performances of these books, which were CD recordings and there lies the rub.
Onward! Thank you Audible, for these books!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful