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Jess

West Orange, NJ, United States
  • 14
  • reviews
  • 37
  • helpful votes
  • 137
  • ratings
  • All the Ugly and Wonderful Things

  • A Novel
  • By: Bryn Greenwood
  • Narrated by: Jorjeana Marie
  • Length: 11 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,200
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,796
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,783

As the daughter of a drug dealer, Wavy knows not to trust people, not even her own parents. It's safer to keep her mouth shut and stay out of sight. Struggling to raise her little brother, Donal, eight-year-old Wavy is the only responsible adult around. Obsessed with the constellations, she finds peace in the starry night sky above the fields behind her house until one night her stargazing causes an accident. After witnessing his motorcycle wreck, she forms an unusual friendship with one of her father's thugs, Kellen, a tattooed ex-con with a heart of gold.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • So many 'hard to listen to' moments

  • By jksullycats on 12-27-16

GUTTED!!

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

Reviewed: 02-06-17

This novel ran me over emotionally and I loved every moment of it. The ending left me questioning whether a young reader might think that the kind of relationship between Wavy and Kellan (adult:minor) is always safe because this was a unique situation. Here, he was her only safe sanctuary. He saved her. He loved her and knew how to care for her. I doubt most 24 year olds would be so wise and so aware of the damage he could cause. Exhale. Highly recommend.

  • Summary Matthew Desmond's Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

  • By: Ant Hive Media
  • Narrated by: MJ McGalliard
  • Length: 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars 6
  • Performance
    1.5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Story
    2.5 out of 5 stars 5

In this brilliant, heartbreaking book, Matthew Desmond takes us into the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee to tell the story of eight families on the edge. Arleen is a single mother trying to raise her two sons on the $20 a month she has left after paying for their rundown apartment. Scott is a gentle nurse consumed by a heroin addiction. Lamar, a man with no legs and a neighborhood full of boys to look after, tries to work his way out of debt. Vanetta participates in a botched stickup after her hours are cut.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • A mechanized voice?

  • By Jess on 08-22-16

A mechanized voice?

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

Reviewed: 08-22-16

The description says a human read the summary but it truly sounds like a machine! So distracting. The content was not as interesting as I anticipated but it may have been due to the "narrator". Skip this. Read the book. That's what I plan to do.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The After Party

  • A Novel
  • By: Anton DiSclafani
  • Narrated by: Dorothy Dillingham Blue
  • Length: 10 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 213
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 189
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 188

Joan Fortier is the epitome of Texas glamour and the center of the 1950s Houston social scene. Tall, blond, beautiful, and strong, she dominates the room and the gossip columns. Every man who sees her seems to want her; every woman just wants to be her. But this is a highly ordered world of garden clubs and debutante balls. The money may flow as freely as the oil, but the freedom and power belong to the men. What happens when a woman of indecorous appetites and desires like Joan wants more?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • still waiting.....

  • By ss200 on 05-18-16

Not up to par

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

Reviewed: 06-28-16

While I loved this author's first novel, this one didn't sing to me in the same way. The writing was more precious and the protagonist less sympathetic. Disappointing.

  • A Window Opens

  • A Novel
  • By: Elisabeth Egan
  • Narrated by: Julia Whelan
  • Length: 11 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 465
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 435
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 430

Alice Pearse is a mostly happily married mother of three, an attentive daughter, an ambivalent dog owner, a part-time editor, a loyal neighbor, and a Zen commuter. She is not: a cook, a craftswoman, a decorator, an active PTA member, a natural caretaker, or the breadwinner. But when her husband makes a radical career change, Alice is ready to lean in - and she knows exactly how lucky she is to land a job at Scroll, a hip, young startup that promises to be the future of reading.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not riveting, sometimes tedious

  • By Ranch Girl on 05-29-16

Fun read

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

Reviewed: 09-10-15

I thoroughly enjoyed this book but would probably have it enjoyed it a bit less if all of the surroundings weren't so familiar to me as the fictional suburb of Filament is a real town in north jersey. He novel is well written and the plot moved well. It's touching and funny and all very familiar to life's realities for this of this generation. The end sagged a bit but overall a good read.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • This Is Where I Leave You

  • By: Jonathan Tropper
  • Narrated by: Ramon De Ocampo
  • Length: 10 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,035
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,478
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,492

The death of Judd Foxman's father marks the first time that the entire Foxman family - including Judd's mother, brothers, and sister - have been together in years. Conspicuously absent: Judd's wife, Jen, whose 14-month affair with Judd's radio-shock-jock boss has recently become painfully public. Judd joins the rest of the Foxmans as they reluctantly submit to their patriarch's dying request: to spend the seven days following the funeral together.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Humorous, but Flat

  • By FanB14 on 07-08-13

Grabbed me and held on...

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

Reviewed: 06-13-15

This novel about a familiar and complicated family grabbed me quickly and held my attention throughout. I should probably let this sit a bit before writing this as I just finished the book but the end was a bit too open ended for me. Yes life is filled with options but which feels right for you? Oh Judd. Definitely a fan of Tropper's now.

  • Unforgettable

  • By: Scott Simon
  • Narrated by: Scott Simon
  • Length: 6 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 133
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 117
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 116

"I'm getting a life's lesson about grace from my mother in the ICU. We never stop learning from our mothers, do we?" When NPR Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon began tweeting from his mother's hospital room in July 2013, he didn't know that his missives would soon spread well beyond his 1.2 million followers. Squeezing the magnitude of his final days with her into 140-character updates, Simon's evocative and moving meditations spread virally.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Unforgettable Indeed!

  • By Eileen on 05-10-15

Wonderful

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

Reviewed: 06-09-15

A wonderful tribute to a woman adored by her son, loved by her husbands and cherished by her friends. Sagacious and kind with an open heart and gentle soul.

  • The Life and Loves of a He Devil

  • By: Graham Norton
  • Narrated by: Graham Norton
  • Length: 6 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 264
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 245
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 242

Graham Norton has been entertaining audiences and having fun with some of the world's biggest stars for nearly 20 years. He is loved across the nation for his delight in the peculiar and for his ability to find humour and a common ground in all that life brings. The Life and Loves of a He Devil is Graham's funny and honest memoir on the theme of love.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Light frothy fun

  • By Jess on 01-01-15

Light frothy fun

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

Reviewed: 01-01-15

This was a fun listen, bawdy at times, honest and personal. I enjoyed it but I was already a fan.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Mermaid of Brooklyn

  • By: Amy Shearn
  • Narrated by: Hillary Huber
  • Length: 12 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 10
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 10

In this beautifully written novel that blends the whimsy of The Time Traveler’s Wife with an indelible portrait of motherhood, a young woman strives to pick up the pieces after her husband mysteriously leaves - and she finds strength from the unlikeliest of allies. Jenny Lipkin is an average, stretched-too-thin Brooklyn mom tackling the challenges of raising two children in a cramped Park Slope walk-up and bonding with the other moms about breast-feeding while spending endless hours in Prospect Park.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • skip it

  • By Jess on 03-09-14

skip it

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

Reviewed: 03-09-14

Would you try another book from Amy Shearn and/or Hillary Huber?

nope

What could Amy Shearn have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

nothing I can think of

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Really bad kid voices. Russian voice was good.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

I was disappointed. Felt like a blog that was published. Not enough there there for me.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Someone

  • A Novel
  • By: Alice McDermott
  • Narrated by: Kate Reading
  • Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 252
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 208
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 209

An ordinary life - its sharp pains and unexpected joys, its bursts of clarity and moments of confusion - lived by an ordinary woman: this is the subject of Someone, Alice McDermott’s extraordinary return, seven years after the publication of After This. Scattered recollections - of childhood, adolescence, motherhood, old age - come together in this transformative narrative, stitched into a vibrant whole by McDermott’s deft, lyrical voice.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Each word chosen like a jewel

  • By Annie M. on 10-27-13

fluid, rich tale of the ordinary

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

Reviewed: 10-06-13

Would you consider the audio edition of Someone to be better than the print version?

Wonderfully written and my first foray into the work of Ms. McDermott. However, i have to say, I would have enjoyed the novel even more if the narrator didn't have the irritating habit of upspeaking: she ended far too many sentence on the upswing as though each statement were a question. Very distracting. The writing, however, won me over. Great first read and won't be my last of hers.

What three words best describe Kate Reading’s performance?

Stop the upspeak please. Definition: Affliction affecting my in today's society not just teenagers where a person makes a question out of a sentence that isn't a question (or more simply speaks "up" at the end of a sentence)

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls

  • A Novel
  • By: Anton DiSclafani
  • Narrated by: Adina Verson
  • Length: 11 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 271
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 243
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 244

It is 1930, the midst of the Great Depression. After her mysterious role in a family tragedy, passionate, strong-willed Thea Atwell, age 15, has been cast out of her Florida home, exiled to an equestrienne boarding school for Southern debutantes. High in the Blue Ridge Mountains, with its complex social strata ordered by money, beauty, and girls' friendships, the Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls is a far remove from the free-roaming, dreamlike childhood Thea shared with her twin brother on their family's citrus farm - a world now partially shattered.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Read this book!

  • By Jess on 07-13-13

Read this book!

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

Reviewed: 07-13-13

What did you love best about The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls?

The writing is lush and gorgeous and yet the author excels at keeping the story moving. Best kind of literary fiction.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Thea, the protagonist, who is a bold and brave girl with flaws and foibles. Smart and caring while being an adolescent who doesn't understand that there are serious consequences to her seemingly private actions.

Which character – as performed by Adina Verson – was your favorite?

Thea

Who was the most memorable character of The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls and why?

Thea ...see above

Any additional comments?

Just read this book. It will pull you in quickly and keep you swimming in this world for days to come. I look forward to the author's next book. Bravo first novel!!

6 of 7 people found this review helpful