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Teresa

Okemos, MI, United States
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  • Sing, Unburied, Sing

  • A Novel
  • By: Jesmyn Ward
  • Narrated by: Kelvin Harrison Jr., Chris Chalk, Rutina Wesley
  • Length: 8 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,540
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,266
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,252

In Jesmyn Ward's first novel since her National Book Award-winning Salvage the Bones, this singular American writer brings the archetypal road novel into rural 21st-century America. An intimate portrait of a family and an epic tale of hope and struggle, Sing, Unburied, Sing journeys through Mississippi's past and present, examining the ugly truths at the heart of the American story and the power - and limitations - of family bonds.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 4.06 Stars

  • By j phillips on 01-09-18

Rutina Wesley as a narrator did this book no favor

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

Reviewed: 02-09-18

This is a beautiful book. The male narrators did it justice. Retina Wesley’s performance distracted. Self-conscience, pretentious. The hyper-mysterious, sing-song interpretation seemed a caricature of certain women, and made it difficult to care about Leone’s story. A shame because hers is as important as any other character’s.

  • A Little Life

  • A Novel
  • By: Hanya Yanagihara
  • Narrated by: Oliver Wyman
  • Length: 32 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,251
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,521
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 9,527

When four classmates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their center of gravity.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I had to call in SAD to work

  • By Angela on 10-17-15

Tedious

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

Reviewed: 10-17-16

I didn't like this book or it's main character. I blame some of this on the narrator, who delivered the story in a voice that trembled with pain, and too often drifted into a whine. Which may have made the main character Jude seem more of a whiner than Yanagihara meant for him to be.
Rather than using too many words to try to describe my reaction to the book, I'll borrow from Daniel Mendelsohn's 12/3/15 article from The New York Review of Books. (I recommend the entire article.). "You suspect that Yanagihara wanted Jude to be one of those doomed golden children around whose disintegrations certain beloved novels revolve--Sebastian Flyte, say in Brideshead Revisited. But the problem with Jude is that, from the start, he's a pill: you never care enough about him to get emotionally involved in the first place, let alone affected by his demise. Sometimes I wondered if even Yanagihara liked him. There is something punitive in the contrived and unredeemed quality of Jude's endless sufferings; it sometimes feels as if the author is working off a private emotion of her own....".
All I can say is, Amen!

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • My Name Is Lucy Barton

  • A Novel
  • By: Elizabeth Strout
  • Narrated by: Kimberly Farr
  • Length: 4 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 2,189
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,943
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 1,942

Lucy Barton is recovering slowly from what should have been a simple operation. Her mother, to whom she hasn't spoken for many years, comes to see her. Gentle gossip about people from Lucy's childhood in Amgash, Illinois, seems to reconnect them, but just below the surface lie the tension and longing that have informed every aspect of Lucy's life: her escape from her troubled family, her desire to become a writer, her marriage, her love for her two daughters.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Because we all love imperfectly.

  • By Bonny on 01-15-16

Disappointed. Maybe the next one.

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

Reviewed: 01-20-16

I am a big fan of Olive Kitteridge, and thought it was a powerful work of fiction. I was profoundly disappointed by By Name is Lucy Barton. I have no idea why this book was written--weak plot, weak main character, dull semi-mystery. Really not a good book.
BUT--maybe like Donna Tartt, Strout was just changing her oil and her next book will be Strout's own Goldfinch. After all, genius though Tartt's first book was, few enjoyed her second. But 10 long years passed and there was The Goldfinch.

I think Strout has that kind of talent. We know she can write, we know she has the courage, we know she can write the sort of characters who are simultaneously lovable and maddening (Olive Kitteridge proves all of this). But little Lucy Barton?

I'm going to ask for a refund for Lucy Barton, but my faith in Strout remains strong.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Fates and Furies

  • A Novel
  • By: Lauren Groff
  • Narrated by: Will Damron, Julia Whelan
  • Length: 14 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4,238
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 3,822
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,836

Every story has two sides. Every relationship has two perspectives. And sometimes, it turns out, the key to a great marriage is not its truths but its secrets. At the core of this rich, expansive, layered novel, Lauren Groff presents the story of one such marriage over the course of 24 years.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A confounding, astonishing novel.

  • By jennifer on 02-27-16

Sad book; kind of ugly

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

Reviewed: 11-03-15

I don't idealize marriage--in fact I have real issues with marriage. But this book could put you off marriage, loyalty, innocence and honesty permanently. Probably the real problem is I don't share this author's view of the world. And I feel fortunate that that's true. I don't want to live in her world. I heard her interviewed on NPR and I was a little put off by her political views of marriage. But I thought--well, that's a little bit of youth and a little bit of over compensation. That's okay. Couldn't give the same pass to the book. Dreary, sad, and a dog named God. A dog named God--that probably best sums up the pretentious angst of this book. Don't waste your credit.

47 of 57 people found this review helpful

  • Circling the Sun

  • A Novel
  • By: Paula McLain
  • Narrated by: Katharine McEwan
  • Length: 12 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,683
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,326
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,325

Brought to Kenya from England as a child and then abandoned by her mother, Beryl is raised by both her father and the native Kipsigis tribe, who share his estate. Her unconventional upbringing transforms Beryl into a bold young woman with a fierce love of all things wild and an inherent understanding of nature's delicate balance. But even the wild child must grow up, and when everything Beryl knows and trusts dissolves, she is catapulted into a string of disastrous relationships.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Pro: It made me want to read "West With the Night"

  • By Ilana on 08-01-15

A PG-rated interpretation of Beryl Markham's life

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

Reviewed: 08-02-15

Beryl Markham is a fascinating real-life character who, based on highly researched biographies, was also very difficult and flawed. For an excellent, and I think more accurate reflection of Beryl Markham's life, read "The Lives of Beryl Markham" by Errol Trzebinski. In "Circling the Sun" the author presents a PG version of Markham's life, glossing over many facts and incidents that reflect Markham in a bad light, and spinning most other incidents to leave Markham innocent and in the right. In doing so, the author either ignores important incidents or tortures the facts to reconstruct them in Markham's favor. I heard the author interviewed on NPR and she said that she wrote the book from her home in Cleveland, and that since Colonial Kenya doesn't exist anymore, she was forced to write the book from her home and "just use her imagination". But she doesn't just use her imagination, she liberally cribs from "West with the Night" (a beautiful book about Markham's child and young adulthood in Kenya, whose authorship is controversial; the formal author is Beryl Markham, but there is strong proof that it was written by her 3rd husband), a book that is intentionally focused only on what was brave and remarkable about Beryl Markham. I love "West with the Night" too, and it's what led me to read anything else I could find about B. Markham. By contrast, when listening to "Circling the Sun", I had the impression the author swallowed "West with the Night" whole and launched her book from her admiration of the B. Markham portrayed in it. Any facts that collided with her vision of B. Markham were, as I say above, either ignored or spun to fit her image. Her Beryl Markham is sad, victimized and tender--but brave and true at heart. The author's need for that type of heroine does not do justice to the true Beryl Markham--a woman who was, unarguably remarkable and brave--but who was also sometimes heartless, cruel, selfish and highly flawed. If you want a version of Beryl Markham guaranteed to leave you mildly impressed and undisturbed you will like "Circling the Sun". I prefer the fascinating version that is the result of others' deep research: The complicated, amazing, infuriating Beryl Markham.

41 of 45 people found this review helpful

  • Howards End

  • By: E.M. Forster
  • Narrated by: John Franklyn-Robbins
  • Length: 12 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 108
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 78
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 78

E.M. Forster's Howards End is a vivid portrait of London's golden age, before World War I forever changed its values and culture. Forster brings the great city's upper classes to life, detailing their grandiose spending habits, popular fads, Monet and Debussy, the rise of feminism, and the beginnings of urbanization. More than a mere idealization of pre-war London, Howards End provides insightful commentary on the rapid societal changes that occurred at the onset of the 20th century. Masterfully blending the stories of three vastly different groups of people - the independently wealthy, educated Schlegels; the nouveau riche Wilcoxes; and the ambitious but struggling Leonard Bast - Forster weaves a wonderfully rich, unforgettably poignant novel.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • very poor recording

  • By carolyn benaroya on 01-14-06

Just Connect

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

Reviewed: 07-29-15

This is a wonderful book--EM Forster never disappoints. It's rich with character development, humor and meaning, and it's a welcome addition to my Audible library. The narration would be fine if it weren't for the inclusion of frequent sounds of the narrator swallowing, wetting his mouth--SOMETHING that is very distracting. It's strange that the makers of this audio didn't do a better job of editing.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Never Let Me Go

  • By: Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Narrated by: Rosalyn Landor
  • Length: 9 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 6,571
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,983
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 5,000

From the Booker Prize-winning author of The Remains of the Day and When We Were Orphans comes an unforgettable edge-of-your-seat mystery that is at once heartbreakingly tender and morally courageous about what it means to be human.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Moving, haunting, but slow developing

  • By Christopher on 04-29-05

Yawn

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

Reviewed: 07-15-15

My recommendation is, don't bother. Clone child grows into clone young adult whose place in the world is to provide organs for humans' transplants. That description is FAR more interesting than this book.

1 of 3 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 9,255
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 8,327
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 8,350

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

Pretty Awful

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

Reviewed: 07-15-15

This is a story that reminds me of something a very bright high school student would write: A caricature of parents who put too much pressure on a child. That's pretty much where this story begins and ends. I think it's supposed to be about feminism, the dangers of parents placing pressures on children, racism . . . But it's such an immature narrative that it's hard to care. My recommendation is to skip it.

20 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • The Girl on the Train

  • A Novel
  • By: Paula Hawkins
  • Narrated by: Clare Corbett, Louise Brealey, India Fisher
  • Length: 10 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 133,722
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 118,106
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 117,985

Audie Award, Audiobook of the Year, 2016. Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. "Jess and Jason," she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost. And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good? Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • The Girl on The Train

  • By BookReader on 12-30-15

Suspense and subtle clues!

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

Reviewed: 01-18-15

This one will keep you guessing. I swung back and forth between irritation and sympathy with each narrator. A very entertaining listen!

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Yes Please

  • By: Amy Poehler
  • Narrated by: Amy Poehler, Carol Burnett, Seth Meyers, and others
  • Length: 7 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 48,088
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 42,006
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 41,816

Amy Poehler is hosting a dinner party and you're invited! Welcome to the audiobook edition of Amy Poehler's Yes Please. The guest list is star-studded with vocal appearances from Carol Burnett, Seth Meyers, Michael Schur, Patrick Stewart, Kathleen Turner, and even Amy’s parents - Yes Please is the ultimate audiobook extravaganza.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not Necessarily for Knope Fans

  • By Katie - Audible on 06-04-15

She's a wonderful entertainer - not an author

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

Reviewed: 11-23-14

I love Amy Poehler as an entertainer, but who convinced her that she should write a biography of her relatively short life? And why didn't her editors protect her from herself? I'll be asking for a refund on this one.

4 of 8 people found this review helpful