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Oenophile

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  • The Emancipation of Veronica McCallister

  • By: Shawn Inmon
  • Narrated by: Tamara Marston
  • Length: 7 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 81
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 78
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 78

Veronica McAllister died in 2018. She immediately opened her eyes again in 1958, all memories of her previous life intact. She goes from old age, pants suits, and a cane, to poodle skirts, saddle shoes, and Buddy Holly. At the end of her first life, Veronica said she “wasn’t any good at life.” With the most precious of gifts - perspective and a second chance - can she succeed where she failed during her first life? What would you do, if you could do it all again?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic Series

  • By Sharey on 10-01-18

Great Entry

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

Reviewed: 10-09-18

I have read all the books in this series and enjoyed them very much. I was pleased to learn that a couple more books are in the works and I hope they make it to Audible soon. I plan to grab them as soon as they do.

These books, although a series, have their focus on different main characters and are read by different narrators, all of whom have been excellent. I particularly liked Ms Marston’s reading of Veronica. She did a great “frail little old lady” voice in addition to her voice for the younger versions. When she reads, the focus is on the characters and she does not distract the listener by being breathy or high-pitched or nasal. This was the first time I heard her and I can’t compliment her enough. I will look for her narration in the future.

Mr Inmon writes some good clean books. I realize some types of stories would not be realistic without sex, violence, or swearing, but it sure is nice to read some that don’t include them yet are still interesting. At the end of the book, Mr Inmon himself comes on and wonders if he captured what life was like for women of that time. I would say that what he wrote in the book for the character of Veronica was accurate, but for many women life was even more restrictive. I grew up in those times and would never want a repeat.

Veronica starts out in the book as an old woman dying of cancer after an unhappy life. She wakes up after death to find herself a teenager again. As in the other books, this character struggles to come to grips with what is happening to her. She realizes she has a chance to try to fix mistakes. All of us probably have wondered/wished to be able to go back and relive our lives while knowing what we know now. Sometimes one reiteration isn’t enough. Veronica repeats some mistakes or makes new ones, but eventually she is able to build a good and happy life. She builds a warm, loving family which is one of the most important things to her.




5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • The Cardinal

  • Nathan K, Book 3
  • By: Stuart Jaffe
  • Narrated by: Stuart Jaffe
  • Length: 4 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 4

In the world of the Immortals, none is more feared than The Cardinal - a vicious, insane man with a thirst for destruction. And now, he has turned his eye upon Nathan. For the Cardinal, hunting Nathan may be nothing more than a game, but, for Nathan, it is a life and death pursuit. He will have to rely on trusted friends and questionable enemies as he races to uncover the reason behind the Cardinal's deadly attacks. If he can't find the answers, Nathan won't have any hope of stopping the Cardinal.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic, shorter and more emotionally provoking

  • By Mikey on 12-16-18

Enjoyable light fiction

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

Reviewed: 03-07-18

I enjoy Mr Jaffe’s books; I have all the Max Porter and all the Nathan K novels so far. Mr Jaffe is one of the VERY few authors I like to hear narrate his own books. If he ever stops writing, he can switch, without missing a beat, to just narrating for a living. I grew up in Florida and currently live in North Carolina, so many of the place names and references are pleasantly familiar. They help me visualize the events in these two series.

The Nathan K series starts with a guy (Nathan) in the wrong place at the wrong time. He is brought into the world of Immortals and trained by a group who want him to perform various tasks and jobs for them. The Immortals are disdainful of normal humans, but Nate wants to help people. This causes conflict between Nate and the various factions of the Immortals. He escapes from the groups trying to control him after having received minimal training and with minimal understanding of the broader Immortal society. He ends up in direct conflict with the Cardinal, who is one of the original members of this society and who is as different from other Immortals as the Immortals are from normal humans.

Both the Max Porter set and the Nathan K set are pretty clean as far as sex scenes and language, something I appreciate. The second and third Nathan K books have some mild nudity/sex described but nothing too explicit and nothing I found offensive. These were in the context of setting up Nate’s involvement with a couple female characters. As a parent, I would not have minded teens sixteen and older reading them.

All in all, these are pleasant light listening for helping to pass the time while driving or doing chores. So far, my intention is to buy all books that may come out in these two series in the future. The main characters are likeable overall, though Nate must struggle to retain his humanity.












  • The Seventh Ward

  • The Haunted, Book 2
  • By: Patrick Logan
  • Narrated by: Michael Pauley
  • Length: 6 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 89
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 80
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 80

A grieving Robert Watts has little down time. Though he now has a house to live in, and friends new and old to join him, his financial woes have not been resolved. And he has yet to come to terms with the things that he has seen...and experienced. That is until Rob, Shelly, and Cal receive a visit from the mysterious Sean Sommers who offers them another job. Only this time, it's not a haunted estate that they are commissioned to purge, but an abandoned hospital ward.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Overall okay

  • By Oenophile on 07-10-17

Overall okay

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

Reviewed: 07-10-17

The story was fairly entertaining with fewer grammatical errors than in the first book, but way too many instances of the f-bomb and the word "quiddity." I liked the character of Cal, but Shelley is annoying, though she is a much more self-confident person than Cal.

This story was set in an old psych hospital populated by the ghosts of insane patients, doctors , and nurses--the familiar setting of numerous B-movies. Robert, the main character, is injured and briefly crosses back to the Marrow (some place which must be crossed after death, as far as I can gather). More questions are raised about the identity of Sean and why he has chosen Robert to send the ghosts on to the afterlife.

I will likely get at least one more book in this series. The narrator was fairly good and I also knew which character was speaking. These first two books are okay for listening while doing chores because the story does not require intent concentration.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Fields of Fire

  • Frontlines, Book 5
  • By: Marko Kloos
  • Narrated by: Luke Daniels
  • Length: 10 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,783
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 3,533
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,534

Mars has been under Lanky control for more than a year. Since then, the depleted forces of Earth's alliances have rebuilt their fleets, staffing old warships with freshly trained troops. Torn between the need to beat the Lankies to the punch and taking enough time to put together an effective fighting force, command has decided to strike now.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great continuation of the series!

  • By Mgarneau on 03-02-17

Kloos Interaction

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

Reviewed: 03-01-17

This was a decent book in the series. Characters were further fleshed out by showing family interactions. Andrew and Halley have some time together but are separated by the Battle of Mars, but presumably there will be another book and we will learn her fate. No Fallon in this book--a bit disappointed. There is a lot of up-close-and-personal interaction with the Lankies and some strong female characters.

Earth's resources are becoming very depleted, so I expect the War to come to a conclusion soon one way or another.

Just a heads up, but there seem to be more f-bombs in this entry, so be careful playing aloud around kids if you are concerned about language.

Luke Daniels, not surprisingly, gives another fine performance. If you see his name, you know that's a given.

1 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Mind War

  • By: Douglas E. Richards
  • Narrated by: Adam Verner
  • Length: 12 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 243
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 214
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 214

Nick Hall has revolutionary electronics implanted in his brain that allow him to read minds - including thoughts, memories, and even intent. He can know the passwords, future strategies, and innermost secrets of anyone he chooses, making him the most formidable man alive. But his status as the only mind reader in the world is about to change...

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Hokey narrator style

  • By Eden2016 on 03-25-17

Interesting

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

Reviewed: 02-24-17

Interesting examination of the interface between humans and technology and some of the potential consequences with good guys and bad guys, terrorists and patriots.

The author's notes at the end of the book are even more compelling than the story. I especially appreciate his inclusion of Malala.

Looking forward to the next book in this series. I have them all so far.

  • Gunmetal Gray

  • By: Mark Greaney
  • Narrated by: Jay Snyder
  • Length: 16 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,111
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 8,485
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,444

After five years on the run, Court Gentry is back on the inside at the CIA. But his first mission makes him wish he had stayed on the outs when a pair of Chinese agents try to take him down in Hong Kong. Normally the Chinese prefer to stay eyes-only on foreign agents. So why are they on such high alert? Court's high stakes hunt for answers takes him across Southeast Asia and leads to his old friend, Donald Fitzroy, who is being held hostage by the Chinese.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Book, Overshadowed by its Perfect Predecessor

  • By Derek on 02-16-17

A terrific entry

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

Reviewed: 02-16-17

This was a very good book in the Gray Man series, although I have to agree with another reviewer that it suffers slightly from following the previous book "Back Blast", which was an absolutely marvelous nonstop thriller. I have read all the previous Gray Man books at least three times. This one will likely be no different.

This book starts out a bit slow but kicks in about a quarter of the way through. It has some great female characters. There is a a likeable one and then there is Brewer. I didn't like her much in Book Five and she is a real witch in this one. I think Court may have to take her down a notch or two in the next book! Hightower and a couple guys from the team Sierra make another appearance and there is some understandable tension there. FitzRoy was here, too.

The book takes us all around Asia from ritzy night clubs to rice paddies via planes, boats, and trains with an occasional helicopter ride. I couldn't quite finish it in one sitting, but I wanted to. Although it's a stand-alone, the author leaves us wanting more. I don't want to do a spoiler, but as I said, I don't think Court will stand for his having been treated badly, so I am looking forward to seeing in the next book what he will do about it. I hope it will be memorable.

Jay Snyder is one of my favorite narrators. The man has a voice like honey and switches character voices and accents effortlessly. I could listen to him read stock inventories, phone books or the dictionary.




8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • In the House of Mirrors

  • By: Tim Meyer
  • Narrated by: The Soliloquy Man
  • Length: 10 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 100
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 94
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars 94

When Ritchie Naughton, amateur photographer, stumbles upon a house in the woods, strange things start happening. His camera captures images that should not exist, things that cannot be explained. Soon, he'll realize that the people of Red River, New Jersey, are in terrible danger. A darkness grows within the house, threatening them all.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The House of Mirrors: Doorway to Horror!

  • By Susan M Stringer on 10-27-14

Potential

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

Reviewed: 01-24-17

This book has an interesting premise, but did not quite fulfill its promise. A camera holds the key to various dimensions in a multiverse, but how it works is not really explained fully. In contrast, as other reviewers have mentioned, characters are one-dimensional.

Nevertheless, I found the book interesting enough to finish. The story wraps up nicely, though I think there is enough setup for a sequel. The writer has potential, but I encourage him to get someone (or someone else) to edit the book prior to its publication. There were a few grammatical errors and improper verb conjugations. Some words were also used in a way that made me wonder if the author really intended to use another, similar word instead: for example, he wrote that one character's face had a frightful expression, but in the context of the story, I believe he may have meant to say frightened.

Nevertheless, I hope to find other books by Tim Meyer in the future. I would certainly be willing to listen to at least one more by this author and also by this narrator. Unlike other reviewers, I thought the narrator did a good job with only one or two mispronunciations. I had no problem with the volume of his narration or the pace of his reading. He had no odd quirks, or at least none that I noticed.

Overall, listening to this book was a pleasant way to pass the time.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Time Agency

  • By: Aaron Frale
  • Narrated by: Michael Burnette
  • Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars 3

Fugitive 07760 woke to a busy city street. His memory was blank. A well-dressed man approached him. He left a locked briefcase at his feet. An agent named Nanette tracked 07760. Her agency had been following the anonymous man through time. But the case was different than all the rest. Her well-dressed protégé had given the fugitive the briefcase. A fellow time agent getting involved was cause for panic.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • An Interesting Concept

  • By Oenophile on 12-10-16

An Interesting Concept

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

Reviewed: 12-10-16

This book has an interesting concept, but it is in need of a good editor. I like the time-travel aspect, but the writing needs to be polished up a bit.

  • Pushing Up Daisies

  • An Agatha Raisin Mystery, Book 27
  • By: M. C. Beaton
  • Narrated by: Alison Larkin
  • Length: 6 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 329
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 299
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 298

When Agatha Raisin left behind her public-relations business in London, she fulfilled her dream of settling in the cozy British Cotswolds, where she began a successful private detective agency. Unfortunately the village she lives in is about to get a little less cozy. Lord Bellington, a wealthy land developer, wants to turn the community garden into a housing estate. When Agatha and her friend, Sir Charles Fraith, attempt to convince Lord Bellington to abandon his plans, he scoffs.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • TERRIBLE NARRATION!

  • By Sabrina on 09-21-16

Okay entry in the series

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

Reviewed: 09-23-16

This is an okay entry in the series, but not one of the better Agatha books.

As other reviews have noted, there were some errors of continuity such as Mrs Bloxby's first name and the age difference between Agatha and Sir Charles. Slightly disconcerting.

Other than that, there was no one thing I can point to to indicate the lower rating of this book, just an overall "blah" feeling. I also prefer Ms Keith as narrator. Ms Larkin's performance was fine, but I had gotten used to Ms Keith and narrator changes within a series are somewhat disconcerting for me.

I have every book in the series, and there are many, so I suppose that some will strike me as more interesting than others. I think it is personal taste. Certainly I do not regret purchasing it and I intend to get any subsequent books in this and in Ms Beaton's Hamish MacBeth series--I also have every available book in that series as well. Very pleasant way to pass the time.

I think you will find the books well worth a credit.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • The Chopin Manuscript

  • A Serial Thriller
  • By: Lee Child, David Corbett, Joseph Finder, and others
  • Narrated by: Alfred Molina
  • Length: 7 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 3,379
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,650
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 1,667

15 thriller masters. 1 masterful thriller! Former war crimes investigator Harold Middleton possesses a previously unknown score by Frederic Chopin. But he is unaware that, within it's handwritten notes, lies a secret that now threatens the lives of thousands of Americans. As he races from Poland to the U.S. to uncover the mystery of the manuscript, Middleton will be accused of murder, pursued by federal agents, and targeted by assassins.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful story... Sometimes hard to follow.

  • By Laura E on 03-12-09

Good story, jarring production

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

Reviewed: 08-21-16

All the writers who collaborated here are favorites of mine, so I was looking forward to hearing this book. I have listened to collaborations before and this was not quite as good as I had expected given the caliber of the authors.

As others have noted, the different chapters were somewhat disjointed and did not give a seamless flow. The book required careful concentration to read, but overall was entertaining.

Alfred Molina's narration was topnotch. I am a big fan of his.

My primary complaint about this book--and this is strictly a personal preference--is that there are sound effects and music scattered throughout. In addition, the story is interrupted to announce the author of each chapter.

I find music and effects to be jarring and the author announcements distracting. I have Asperger's so perhaps it is just an idiosyncracy. I don't recall other reviewers mentioning this aspect of the book. I myself would not have purchased this book in audioform had I been aware of this in advance.