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Phoebe

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  • The Garden of Small Beginnings

  • By: Abbi Waxman
  • Narrated by: Emily Rankin
  • Length: 9 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 66
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 57
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 57

Lilian Girvan has been a single mother for three years - ever since her husband died in a car accident. One mental breakdown and some random suicidal thoughts later, she's just starting to get the hang of this widow thing. She can now get her two girls to school, show up to work, and watch TV like a pro. The only problem is she's becoming overwhelmed with being underwhelmed.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Absolutely Wonderful

  • By Lorna on 06-26-17

Excellent performance of a great story

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

Reviewed: 11-15-18

Emily Rankin's narrations are consistently superb and "The Garden of Small Beginnings" was no exception. The story was sweet and made a solo road trip for work feel much less lonely. I was rooting for the characters and found myself extremely emotional upon the book's end.

  • A Beautiful, Terrible Thing

  • A Memoir of Marriage and Betrayal
  • By: Jen Waite
  • Narrated by: Jen Waite
  • Length: 6 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,005
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 923
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 916

Before: Jen Waite has met the partner of her dreams. A handsome, loving man who becomes part of her family, evolving into her husband, her best friend, and the father of her infant daughter. After: A disturbing email sparks suspicion, leading to an investigation of who this man really is and what was really happening in their marriage. In alternating Before and After chapters, Waite obsessively analyzes her relationship, trying to find a single moment form the past five years that isn't part of the long con of lies and manipulation.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • There are people out there waiting for her...

  • By MaryPat on 08-29-17

Good, but...

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

Reviewed: 07-31-17

I enjoyed A Beautiful, Terrible Thing, but I was expecting more. Jen told an insightful story of marriage and betrayal, an important story for survivors of abuse & their loved ones. As a survivor of domestic violence, I appreciated that Jen handled her story without being overly salacious. The memoir was real, raw, and inspiring. That said, as a listener, I was almost expecting more... a plot twist of some sort that we never quite got. Not wishing that Jen had been forced to survive a more painful time, but I do wish the book was more accurately marketed - as a tale of survival. Instead the book is sold almost as a thriller. Jen's narration was good, you could hear the rawness of her emotions many times throughout her reading, though it is clear that she was a professional actress and at times her voice was a bit rehearsed sounding. Overall, the narration improved the book and gave you a sense of connection to the author and her story. I would recommend this book to any person who has seen a loved one unravel and is looking to feel a sense of connection.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful