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Katy J. Berner

Amherst, NY United States
  • 19
  • reviews
  • 29
  • helpful votes
  • 137
  • ratings
  • Where the Crawdads Sing

  • By: Delia Owens
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
  • Length: 12 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 36,462
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 33,315
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 33,187

For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life - until the unthinkable happens.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful

  • By Seattle blues on 08-17-18

A Book You Will Want To Hold In Your Heart

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

Reviewed: 09-03-18

My heart aches and my soul feels fuller after reading this book. It is a beautiful story about loneliness, love and survival. I want to know Kya, Tate and Jumper and I feel honored to have spent time with them in the magical costal marshes. What a wonderful and thoughtful novel!

  • Only Child

  • A Novel
  • By: Rhiannon Navin
  • Narrated by: Kivlighan de Montebello
  • Length: 9 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 524
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 483
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 481

Squeezed into a coat closet with his classmates and teacher, first grader Zach Taylor can hear gunshots ringing through the halls of his school. A gunman has entered the building, taking nineteen lives and irrevocably changing the very fabric of this close-knit community. While Zach's mother pursues a quest for justice against the shooter's parents, holding them responsible for their son's actions, Zach retreats into his super-secret hideout and loses himself in a world of books and art.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Oh. My. Goodness!

  • By Laury Hubrich on 02-23-18

A non-political book about school shootings. Should be required reading for all humans!

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

Reviewed: 07-20-18

This is the book you need to hear. It is about the trauma of a school shooting told from the perspective of a 7year old boy. It isn’t about gun control, it isn’t about politics, it’s about coping, trauma and recovery. It doesn’t even really mention gun control. The author did an incredible job telling a story that needed to be told without delving into the political shit storm and focusing instead on the important stuff- caring for those who suffer the trauma of a shooting in a very real and heartfelt way.
The narrator is amazing!
It should be required reading.

  • Origin

  • A Novel
  • By: Dan Brown
  • Narrated by: Paul Michael
  • Length: 18 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 39,930
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 36,502
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 36,389

In keeping with his trademark style, Dan Brown, author of The Da Vinci Code and Inferno, interweaves codes, science, religion, history, art, and architecture in this new novel. Origin thrusts Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon into the dangerous intersection of humankind's two most enduring questions - and the earthshaking discovery that will answer them.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Formula over fiction

  • By Evan M Carlson on 11-01-17

Similar Yet Different

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

Reviewed: 10-12-17

If you are familiar with Dan Brown’s Robert Langdon books, like DaVinci Code, you kind of know what to expect...except this time it is different. I felt like the author was attempting to break out of the formulaic type of suspense novel and delve into the realm of science fiction meets historical fiction. I read this on my device and listened together so I could pause and look up all of the references and art within the text. It helps the book to come alive and makes Spain’s beauty real.
I liked it, if you read Dan Brown books, you will like it- but I didn’t love it.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The List

  • By: Patricia Forde
  • Narrated by: Imogen Wilde
  • Length: 8 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 35
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 33
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 33

In the post-apocalyptic, neo-medieval city of Ark, speech is constrained to 500 sanctioned words. If somewhere were to speak outside that approved lexicon, they'd face banishment. The only exceptions to this rule are the Wordsmith and his apprentice, Letta. Together, they are the keepers and archivists of all language. But when Letta's master dies, she is suddenly promoted to Wordsmith and finds the situation more complicated than she knew.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good for YA Fantasy For Readers Who Liked The Giver

  • By Katy J. Berner on 08-24-17

Good for YA Fantasy For Readers Who Liked The Giver

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

Reviewed: 08-24-17

If you read the City of Ember it has similar themes. Somewhat similar to The Giver in places as well.
As a teacher, I'd love to talk with kids about the role of the contrasting settings (the forest verse the town) and why that seems to be a similar motif throughout science fiction/fantasy literature. (Think even Hunger Games, Maze Runner, and even Harry Potter).
Overall a pretty solid story, very safe text for emerging pre-teen readers but it does have some violence that might upset sensitive readers.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Orphan Number Eight

  • A Novel
  • By: Kim van Alkemade
  • Narrated by: Andi Arndt, Ginny Auer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 305
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 274
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 272

In 1919, Rachel Rabinowitz is a vivacious four-year-old living with her family in a crowded tenement on New York City's Lower East Side. When tragedy strikes, Rachel is separated from her brother, Sam, and sent to a Jewish orphanage where Dr. Mildred Solomon is conducting medical research. Subjected to X-ray treatments that leave her disfigured, Rachel suffers years of cruel harassment from the other orphans.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Characters not fleshed out enough

  • By MissSusie66 on 08-18-15

Good but not great

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

Reviewed: 01-08-17

This was a good book, but I didn't love it. There were some parts that seemed to be totally unnecessary to the plot and were confusing. The characters were flat, but over all it was an adequate book. I have others I liked more, but it held my attention:

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry

  • A Novel
  • By: Fredrik Backman
  • Narrated by: Joan Walker
  • Length: 11 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,626
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,739
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,719

Elsa is seven years old and different. Her grandmother is 77 years old and crazy, standing-on-the-balcony-firing-paintball-guns-at-men-who-want-to-talk-about-Jesus crazy. She is also Elsa's best and only friend. At night Elsa takes refuge in her grandmother's stories, in the Land of Almost-Awake and the Kingdom of Miamas, where everybody is different and nobody needs to be normal.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing author

  • By Book Addict on 07-24-15

This book is just delightful

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

Reviewed: 03-31-16

It was wonderful to be a child again as I read this book, living in the world of pseudo fairytales that Grannie uses to explain the world to Elsa. I laughed at the youthful nativity of Elsa and cried and dreamed with her as well. This book is touching and memorable and like a warm bright yellow scarf on a cold winter day.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Fatal Flame

  • By: Lyndsay Faye
  • Narrated by: Kirby Heyborne
  • Length: 15 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 183
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 170
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 170

No one in 1840s New York likes fires, but Copper Star Timothy Wilde least of all. So when an arsonist with an agenda begins threatening Alderman Robert Symmes, a corrupt and powerful leader high in the Tammany Hall ranks, Wilde isn't thrilled to be involved. His reservations escalate further when his brother, Valentine, announces that he'll be running against Symmes in the upcoming election, making both himself and Timothy a host of powerful enemies.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • horrible narrator ruins good story

  • By ChicagoCubsGrl on 06-19-15

This is what it would sound like if Siri read a book....

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

Reviewed: 03-16-16

I miss the narrator for the other Timothy Wild books in this series. This narrator is terrible. It sounds like a computer and not a human. Totally devoid of emotion and an odd lilting of voice that doesn't follow the natural flow of human voice.
Good story (as usual) - but I will have to read it because this is the worst narrator ever.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Go Set a Watchman

  • A Novel
  • By: Harper Lee
  • Narrated by: Reese Witherspoon
  • Length: 6 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 14,239
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,056
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 13,022

An historic literary event: the publication of a newly discovered novel, the earliest known work from Harper Lee, the beloved, best-selling author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning classic To Kill a Mockingbird. Originally written in the mid-1950s, Go Set a Watchman was the novel Harper Lee first submitted to her publishers before To Kill a Mockingbird. Assumed to have been lost, the manuscript was discovered in late 2014.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • To Kill A Mockingbird vs Go Set A Watchman

  • By Sara on 07-15-15

Like Having Coffee with an Old Friend

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

Reviewed: 07-25-15

This book is everything I wanted it to be and so much I didn't expect. Jean Louise experiences the struggle of becoming her own person in a world stuck in tradition and obligation of the Civil Rights South.
I know some people have said it wasn't as good as To Kill a Mockingbird but I found it to be as good- just different. I laughed, I cried, it broke my heart and put it back together. In a voice that only Lee's Scout could have, I felt back at home in Maycomb county.
Had it been published at the same time as TKAM she would have been tarred and feathered in the South for the actions and sweeping monologues about race and feminism presented in the book. In today's world I found her story spookily relevant in the time of Ferguson, Baltimore and the controversy surrounding the Confederate flag.

3 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • City of Dreams

  • A Novel of Nieuw Amsterdam and Early Manhattan
  • By: Beverly Swerling
  • Narrated by: Gabrielle de Cuir
  • Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 26
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 25

Rich with unforgettable characters and history, intricately plotted and utterly absorbing, City of Dreams is a stirring saga of early Manhattan and the beginnings of medical science told by a master storyteller.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • great book, but abridged ...

  • By Diane on 11-10-05

Not so dreamy

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

Reviewed: 02-15-15

I liked this, but didn't love it. The historical pieces cover significant violent parts of our inception from early colonial days to the post-revolutionary NY. The characters, although interesting, seemed incomplete and too many pieces of their stories were left unresolved at the end of each section. When it shifted time periods I felt like it took 20 minutes or so for me to make the connection from one section to the next. I needed to know why some characters disliked relatives and felt unsatisfied in understanding their motivation. It was a nice story, but not great.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Everything I Never Told You

  • A Novel
  • By: Celeste Ng
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
  • Length: 10 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 8,667
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 7,792
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 7,816

Lydia is dead. But they don't know this yet.… So begins the story in this exquisite debut novel about a Chinese American family living in a small town in 1970s Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee; their middle daughter, a girl who inherited her mother's bright blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together tumbles into chaos.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Character Novel

  • By colprubin on 07-16-14

A Story About The Power and Danger of Silence

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

Reviewed: 02-02-15

What an incredible first line of a text! I really loved this book because it is a reminder about the power of words (said, unsaid and written). I was pulled in immediately by the absence of truth and recognized how that absence surrounds each character. An aptly named title for a book about how what we don't say can hurt as much as what we do.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful