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Karen S. Kungie-torres

Los Angeles, CA
  • 11
  • reviews
  • 10
  • helpful votes
  • 33
  • ratings
  • Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine

  • A Novel
  • By: Gail Honeyman
  • Narrated by: Cathleen McCarron
  • Length: 11 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 35,564
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 32,862
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 32,731

Meet Eleanor Oliphant: She struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she's thinking. Nothing is missing in her carefully timetabled life of avoiding social interactions, where weekends are punctuated by frozen pizza, vodka, and phone chats with Mummy. But everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond, the bumbling and deeply unhygienic IT guy from her office.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Close To Perfection--A Definite Thumbs Up!

  • By Kindle Customer on 08-07-17

Such a poignantly beautiful story.

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

Reviewed: 03-26-19

Painful to read at times, but truthful in its eloquent telling of a heart-touching story.

  • Born a Crime

  • Stories from a South African Childhood
  • By: Trevor Noah
  • Narrated by: Trevor Noah
  • Length: 8 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 116,810
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 108,121
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 107,601

One of the comedy world's fastest-rising stars tells his wild coming of age story during the twilight of apartheid in South Africa and the tumultuous days of freedom that followed. Noah provides something deeper than traditional memoirists: powerfully funny observations about how farcical political and social systems play out in our lives.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Nothing special.

  • By Suzette Flynt on 12-10-18

Love, love, loved this book!

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

Reviewed: 03-19-19

I loved this book for so many reasons:
To be educated about South Africa. To see how Apartheid happened. To see inside the amazing life of Trevor Noah. To witness the bravery of the most amazing mother ever.
I loved this book, and I will have my sons listen to it when they are both in high school.

0 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • 12 Rules for Life

  • An Antidote to Chaos
  • By: Jordan B. Peterson, Norman Doidge MD - foreword
  • Narrated by: Jordan B. Peterson
  • Length: 15 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42,545
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 38,361
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 38,029

What does everyone in the modern world need to know? Renowned psychologist Jordan B. Peterson's answer to this most difficult of questions uniquely combines the hard-won truths of ancient tradition with the stunning revelations of cutting-edge scientific research. Humorous, surprising, and informative, Dr. Peterson tells us why skateboarding boys and girls must be left alone, what terrible fate awaits those who criticize too easily, and why you should always pet a cat when you meet one on the street.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Not Your Average 'Self Help' Book

  • By TheBookie on 06-04-18

Get a better editor

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

Reviewed: 11-26-18

I just could not get into this book. A book that promises a list should be concise, but this one is just way way way too long. I don’t need to know about lobsters to know why I should stand up straight, and I don’t need to know all the Christian history about why I should treat myself as well as I would treat my pet dog. I gave up in chapter 2.

  • The Girl Who Drank the Moon

  • By: Kelly Barnhill
  • Narrated by: Christina Moore
  • Length: 9 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,499
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,031
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,018

Every year the people of the Protectorate leave a baby as an offering to the witch who lives in the forest. They hope this sacrifice will keep her from terrorizing their town. But the witch in the forest, Xan, is kind and gentle. She shares her home with a wise Swamp Monster named Glerk and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon, Fyrian. Xan rescues the abandoned children and delivers them to welcoming families on the other side of the forest, nourishing the babies with starlight on the journey.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Extraordinary Listening Experience

  • By Gunnyvil on 12-18-16

Our new favorite book.

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

Reviewed: 09-24-17

My 13 year old son: I’m not the type to read a book twice, but I already know I’ll be reading this again.
My 11 year old son: I liked the small moments of humor used throughout the story.
Mom: I am a high school English teacher, and I hope with all my heart that this book becomes part of the traditional selection of novels to read. It is rich in meaning, motif, and magic. And, it has all the elements of great young adult literature — layered in a beautifully complex message of infinite love and forgiveness.

  • Britt-Marie Was Here

  • A Novel
  • By: Fredrik Backman
  • Narrated by: Joan Walker
  • Length: 9 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,768
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,181
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,167

Britt-Marie can't stand mess. She eats dinner at precisely the right time and starts her day at six in the morning because only lunatics wake up later than that. And she is not passive-aggressive. Not in the least. It's just that sometimes people interpret her helpful suggestions as criticisms, which is certainly not her intention. But at 63, Britt-Marie has had enough. She finally walks out on her loveless 40-year marriage and finds a job in the only place she can: Borg, a small, derelict town devastated by the financial crisis.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Gem

  • By Sara on 05-12-16

Love, love, loved this book!!

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

Reviewed: 06-22-17

BUT... you MUST read "My Grandmother Told Me..." first; otherwise, you won't appreciate the full effect of finding yourself wishing everything good and happy on the most "nag-bag" of characters from the previous book.
Fredrik Backman is my new favorite author. He'll take you over the full range of emotions from laughter to tears all while his sweetly genuine characters work themselves firmly into the warmest parts of your heart.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Goldfinch

  • By: Donna Tartt
  • Narrated by: David Pittu
  • Length: 32 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26,964
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,538
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 24,560

The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow

  • By j phillips on 05-28-17

Amazing. Big. Impressive.

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

Reviewed: 05-08-17

David Pittu is by far the most talented reader I have listened to yet. His ability to vary his voice for so many different characters and do it so consistently well is top notch.
The story is also engaging and entertaining. Donna Tartt creates complex characters and explores huge, philosophical ideas about art, truth, and good and bad in the universe. I highly recommend this audiobook.

  • The Glass Castle

  • A Memoir
  • By: Jeannette Walls
  • Narrated by: Jeannette Walls
  • Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,862
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,435
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,452

Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children's imagination. Rose Mary painted and wrote and couldn't stand the responsibility of providing for her family; she called herself an "excitement addict."

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A CAPTIVATING READ

  • By Jennifer on 09-25-12

Crazy story; mediocre writing and narration.

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

Reviewed: 04-10-17

This is one of those books I wasn't sure that I wanted to finish. The writing is formulaic without syntactic variety. The narration shows the same redundancy of voice pattern. Gets boring to listen to, but the content is crazy enough to pull you through to the end, which is satisfyingly appropriate.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Pilot's Wife

  • A Novel
  • By: Anita Shreve
  • Narrated by: Melanie Griffith
  • Length: 8 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 194
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 176
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 178

Until now, Kathryn Lyons's life has been peaceful if unextraordinary: a satisfying job teaching high school in the New England mill town of her childhood; a picture-perfect home by the ocean; a precocious, independent-minded fifteen-year-old daughter; and a happy marriage whose occasional dull passages she attributes to the unavoidable deadening of time.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Sorry but narrator is horrible

  • By To Much Shopping on 04-28-16

Good story, could have been "more"?

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

Reviewed: 07-31-16

I did enjoy this book, but it seems like there could have been more depth of detail, a longer suspense-building.
And why oh why Melanie Griffith? Great person, S_L_O_W reader. Sped up to 1.25 was perfect.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The London Eye Mystery

  • By: Siobhan Dowd
  • Narrated by: Alex Kalajzic
  • Length: 5 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 73
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 59
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 59

When Aunt Gloria's son, Salim, mysteriously disappears from a sealed pod on the London Eye, everyone is frantic.Has he spontaneously combusted? [Ted's theory.] Has he been kidnapped? [Aunt Gloria's theory.] Is he even still alive? [The family's unspoken fear.] Even the police are baffled. Ted, whose brain runs on its own unique operating system, and his older sister, Kat, overcome their prickly relationship to become sleuthing partners.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful family story

  • By Karen S. Kungie-torres on 07-10-16

Wonderful family story

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

Reviewed: 07-10-16

My two sons and I listened to this together while driving. Of course we could sometimes be found sitting in random parking lots-- listening and not driving, though!
Just the right amount of clues to keep them (aged 10 & 12) guessing.
My younger son, who is on the mild end of the spectrum, particularly found value in it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

  • Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
  • By: Stephen R. Covey
  • Narrated by: Stephen R. Covey
  • Length: 13 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23,957
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,424
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,339

Stephen R. Covey's book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, has been a top seller for the simple reason that it ignores trends and pop psychology for proven principles of fairness, integrity, honesty, and human dignity. Celebrating its 15th year of helping people solve personal and professional problems, this special anniversary edition includes a new foreword and afterword written by Covey that explore whether the 7 Habits are still relevant and answer some of the most common questions he has received over the past 15 years.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • I did not expect to like this book

  • By Michael on 04-23-17

Must Read

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

Reviewed: 06-25-16

I'm going to read this book once a year,
In the summer, after my teaching year is done.