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Colby

Omaha, NE, United States
  • 45
  • reviews
  • 75
  • helpful votes
  • 262
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  • H Is for Hawk

  • By: Helen Macdonald
  • Narrated by: Helen Macdonald
  • Length: 11 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,992
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,719
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,709

When Helen MacDonald's father died suddenly on a London street, she was devastated. An experienced falconer captivated by hawks since childhood, she'd never before been tempted to train one of the most vicious predators: the goshawk. But in her grief, she saw that the goshawk's fierce and feral anger mirrored her own.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Mabel The Hawk--The Fire That Burned The Hurts Away

  • By Sara on 04-09-15

Unexpected Favorite

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

Reviewed: 11-11-18

I was assigned this book for a writing class, and somehow, reading a book you HAVE to read is never as much fun as the one you choose. Yet, I fell in love with this book. The detail was sometimes too good, the pain she endures is often heartbreaking, even if only because you see everything through the lens of the training of her hawk.
I knew nothing of falconry, and after learning how you feed them I will likely never delve into it again. However, I now feel somehow more educated on this subject as well as better educated on how to write in layers.
Each part of this story is a woman coming to grips with a great loss. Even as she trains her hawk, she knows she is going to have to part with her. The emotion is rarely an open wound we see, however. There is no ugly crying. This is a quiet, dignified and understated story of true grief and its effects on us.
This one is worth your time, perhaps more than once. This is one of those rare books you can pull out in a time of need and it will understand, comfort you and leave you with the knowledge that you are strong enough to make it.
#grief #nature #inspiring #british #beautiful #tagsgiving and #sweepstakes

  • Travels with Charley in Search of America

  • By: John Steinbeck
  • Narrated by: Gary Sinise
  • Length: 7 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,639
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,380
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,384

In September 1960, John Steinbeck and his poodle, Charley, embarked on a journey across America, from small towns to growing cities to glorious wilderness oases. Travels with Charley is animated by Steinbeck’s attention to the specific details of the natural world and his sense of how the lives of people are intimately connected to the rhythms of nature—to weather, geography, the cycles of the seasons. His keen ear for the transactions among people is evident, too, as he records the interests and obsessions that preoccupy the Americans he encounters along the way.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Enjoyed the Journey

  • By Rebb on 12-15-11

The Best, and Only Steinbeck I Ever Read, YET

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

Reviewed: 11-11-18

I do not typically read - THE CLASSICS - just as I also rarely watch the great movies of our time or any time. I discovered early in life that when you hate something everyone is supposed to love en masse, you are written off as tasteless and devoid of any discernment at all. When I told people I had nightmares with both The Wizard of Oz and Willy Wonka, I was accused of being afraid of Little People. Not true. I was terrified of the adults who seemed determined to kill the children in those movies.
As a result, I have never read Steinbeck's famous works, but I am about to. This introduction to his work made me fall in love with his storytelling. I had to read it for school, but since I had no preconceived notions, I went in open-minded. I fell in love with Charlie and the United States all over again.
The road trip reminded me of several I took with my father as a child, and I only wish we had been able to take Steinbeck's trailer. We slept in the car most of the time.
I loved the way he described the scenes, showed us the people he met and made us love his dog. When you think of this rough-and-tumble war correspondent and 50s era man's man, you see a certain kind of dog. I had to keep reminding myself it was not a Lab or even a Spaniel, but a Poodle. I know they are supposed to be hunting dogs, but the teacup versions have ruined their reputations completely.
He loved Montana enough I now feel the need to go through there on a trip I have planned for next fall. I was going to fly to my destination, but now I think I will drive from Nebraska to Utah, and take a few detours along the way, just for fun. The descriptions of the South were sad but true, even when I lived there 50 years after Steinbeck's trip. And like him, I was ready to go home by then.
#betterthanaclassic #midcentury #travelwriting #1960s #Americana #tagsgiving and #sweepstakes

  • Calypso

  • By: David Sedaris
  • Narrated by: David Sedaris
  • Length: 6 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,576
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 8,674
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,600

If you've ever laughed your way through David Sedaris's cheerfully misanthropic stories, you might think you know what you're getting with Calypso. You'd be wrong. When he buys a beach house on the Carolina coast, Sedaris envisions long, relaxing vacations spent playing board games and lounging in the sun with those he loves most. And it's as idyllic as he imagined, except for one tiny, vexing realization: it's impossible to take a vacation from yourself. With Calypso, Sedaris sets his formidable powers of observation - and dark humor - toward middle age and mortality.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent, as always

  • By Ruthie on 05-31-18

Sedaris Doesn't Need Me to Tell You to Buy This

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

Reviewed: 11-11-18

David Sedaris needs no introduction, unless like me about a year ago, you had never heard of him. Now I want to be him when I grow up.
As a middle-aged, straight, Nebraska mom, I am not sure how I can grow into a short, gay, internationally known humorist, but by God, I am gonna try.
You can get this book first, or get his books randomly, it doesn't matter. Each of his books travels up and down the timeline of his life, picking tiny pieces and giant events and dissecting them for their importance and ways to find their humor.
As a writing student, I learn from him with every sentence and have been known to laugh out loud so hard while listening in the car with the windows open that I have frightened other drivers.
Under the humor are stories with real pathos and sometimes tragedy. Ultimately, Sedaris is a great storyteller, and we are lucky he chose to share his stories with us. #childhood #funny #quirky #darkhumor #family #tagsgiving and #sweepstakes

  • Interior States

  • Essays
  • By: Meghan O'Gieblyn
  • Narrated by: Rebecca Lowman
  • Length: 7 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 2

The critic and essayist Meghan O'Gieblyn was born into an evangelical family, attended the famed Moody Bible Institute in Chicago for a time before she had a crisis of belief, and still lives in the Midwest, aka "Flyover Country". She writes of her "existential dizziness, a sense that the rest of the world is moving while you remain still", and that rich sense of ambivalence and internal division inform the 15 superbly thoughtful and ironic essays in this collection.  

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • If you FLYOVER this one, you will miss out!!

  • By Colby on 11-11-18

If you FLYOVER this one, you will miss out!!

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

Reviewed: 11-11-18


As a fellow flyover state resident, I loved the push and pull of how we are perceived. Yes, our lives are a bit quieter than the streets of Manhattan, and we do not have the same political gravitas of San Francisco, but we are populated with real people, real issues, and real writers talented enough to tell our stories with a gravitas of their own. Sometimes we even like the fact that we are underestimated. I live in Nebraska, which recently made national headlines with our new tourism slogan, - Honestly, It's Not for Everyone - This slogan is next to pictures of people having a lot of fun, and secondary taglines that mock the misperceptions of what Nebraska is like.
Meghan takes us on an adventure, not just of some truly beautiful places in the Midwest, but to some of the beautiful spot in her soul. She shares with us the real struggles everyone can relate to, whether on a farm or a beach. She even proves to us that there are beaches in Michigan.
Regardless where you live, who/what you believe in, there is something for you in this book.
This is O'Gieblyn's first full-length book, but I feel it brings together a collection of essays that are great stand-alone pieces you can read one at a time in any order, yet have a connectivity that makes it a great audiobook to listen to - perhaps on a long drive to Grandma's house for Thanksgiving in Iowa, where there really is nothing to see...(take that, Iowa!) #spiritual #funny #Midwest #loveofplace #home #tagsgiving and #sweepstakes

  • Crisis of Character

  • A White House Secret Service Officer Discloses His Firsthand Experience with Hillary, Bill, and How They Operate
  • By: Gary J. Byrne
  • Narrated by: Brian Troxell
  • Length: 9 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,695
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,434
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,424

Posted directly outside President Clinton's Oval Office, former Secret Service uniformed officer Gary Byrne reveals what he observed of Hillary Clinton's character and the culture inside the White House while protecting the first family in Crisis of Character, the most anticipated book of the 2016 election.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Crisis of Character

  • By Happy on 11-03-16

Nothing New

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

Reviewed: 07-15-16

I liked the anecdotal way he told his stories, but little was new or surprising. The best part came the day after I finished the book and the director of the FBI came out saying that the Clintons are irresponsible with classified material. Again - this proves to be nothing new. God help us if more of this is in charge - without the Bill Clinton charm even.
The writing style makes me believe his claim of dyslexia. It is told in a very simple manner, and without much style. If you want good story telling, this has a few of the Clintons, but more works to justify his credibility by letting you know he was really there.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Real Murders

  • An Aurora Teagarden Mystery, Book 1
  • By: Charlaine Harris
  • Narrated by: Therese Plummer
  • Length: 6 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,522
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,970
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,970

Though a small town at heart, Lawrenceton, Georgia, has its dark side - and its crime buffs. One of them is librarian Aurora "Roe" Teagarden, a member of the Real Murders Club, which meets once a month to analyze famous cases. It's a harmless pastime - until the night she finds a member killed in a manner that eerily resembles the crime the club was about to discuss.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Adjusting expectations

  • By Jeanie on 04-22-10

Too simplistic, and needs...something...

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

Reviewed: 11-04-15

The story was a bit weak, but entertaining. The narrator was not my favorite. Her main character was fine, but her male characters were uncomfortable, and her kid had head congestion and an IQ of 5 from the sound of him.
This was no Agatha Christie, the characters were one-dimensional, and for those of us who really ARE true-crime buffs, it was pretty tame.

  • Footsteps in Time: A Time Travel Fantasy

  • The After Cilmeri Series, Book 1
  • By: Sarah Woodbury
  • Narrated by: Laurel Schroeder
  • Length: 9 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 421
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 380
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 380

In December of 1282, English soldiers ambushed and murdered Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, the Prince of Wales. His death marked the end of Wales as an independent nation and the beginning of over seven hundred years under the English boot. < Footsteps in Time is the story of what might have happened had Llywelyn lived. And what happens to the two teenagers who save him.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Adventure gets Better!

  • By Edward Millner on 05-12-15

Outlander for Kids

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

Reviewed: 11-04-15

The story begins just like Outlander, but that's not really a bad thing. It takes some time to care about these characters, but eventually, you do. They aren't very deep, and I would love some more character development, but it was a nice way to spend some time, and I will try the next one.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Repeat

  • By: Neal Pollack
  • Narrated by: Jeff Cummings
  • Length: 7 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 255
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 233
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 232

Through strange metaphysical circumstances, failed screenwriter Brad Cohen finds himself caught in an infinite time loop, forced to relive the first forty years of his life again and again. Each "repeat," Brad wakes up in the womb on what was supposed to be his fortieth birthday, with full knowledge of what's come before. In various timelines, he becomes a successful political pundit, a game-show champion, a playboy, and a master manipulator of the stock market, but none of them seems to lead him out of his predicament.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Similar to Replay - But needs some work

  • By Chris on 04-30-15

NO REPEAT FOR ME.

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

Reviewed: 07-24-15

I tried so hard to like the main character. No matter what he did, no matter where he went, no matter how many times he hit repeat, he was an ass. I wanted him to be stuck forever, because he did not deserve what he had and did not appreciate. The narrator also did not do very well with women voices. They were all the same.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Just One Damned Thing After Another

  • The Chronicles of St Mary's, Book 1
  • By: Jodi Taylor
  • Narrated by: Zara Ramm
  • Length: 9 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,418
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,921
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,916

Behind the seemingly innocuous façade of St Mary's, a different kind of historical research is taking place. They don't do 'time-travel' - they 'investigate major historical events in contemporary time'. Maintaining the appearance of harmless eccentrics is not always within their power - especially given their propensity for causing loud explosions when things get too quiet. Meet the disaster-magnets of St Mary's Institute of Historical Research as they ricochet around History.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Action Adventure Time Travel Novel w/ Good Reader

  • By Sires on 04-13-14

Priceless Series!! History, humor, want MORE!!

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

Reviewed: 07-14-15

As with my other reviews on series, I am writing this one for all of them. I have gotten to 3.5 so far, and am already dreading being done with #6, because I never want this to end. I love history, British humor, and this one is amazing. The sarcastic Max is wonderful, and even if some of the humor needs to be rehashed from one story to the next for those poor souls who mix up the order, (I don't recommend that), the old jokes still make me smile.
There is love, but not sappy boring stuff, sex but not too graphic, (and part of the funny too), with plenty of history, adventures, and more laughs than I can explain away while at work. I love, Love, LOVE this group of people and hope Jodi Taylor keeps going, and that Zara Ramm reads them ALL.

  • Bulgakov: A Dog's Heart

  • By: Mikhail Bulgakov
  • Narrated by: Roy McMillan
  • Length: 3 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 505
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 461
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 466

When a respected surgeon decides to transplant human body parts into a stray dog, he creates a monster - drunken, profligate, aggressive and selfish. It seems the worst aspects of the donor have been transplanted as well. As his previously well-regulated home descends into riotous chaos, the doctor realises he will have to try to reverse the operation; but the dog isn't so keen....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A fine piece of art!

  • By Mike McGuire on 11-29-11

Not my favorite. But short.

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

Reviewed: 05-09-15

I like stories that are from a dog's perspective. So in that way, this was interesting. The science, of course, is completely fictional, but that's okay. Mostly, I wanted to like the people in the story, but I just could not find anything in the character development to grab a hold of. I did like the dog.