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Paul Winker

Kentucky
  • 54
  • reviews
  • 23
  • helpful votes
  • 181
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  • Angela's Ashes

  • By: Frank McCourt, Jeannette Walls - introduction
  • Narrated by: Frank McCourt, Jeannette Walls - introduction
  • Length: 15 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,169
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,549
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,553

Why we think it’s a great listen: There’s no gentle way to put this – Frank McCourt’s performance of Angela’s Ashes is just better than the Pulitzer Prize-winning book. Frank McCourt shares his sometimes heartwarming, sometimes heartbreaking story of growing up poor, Irish, and Catholic in the Pulitzer Prize-winning memoir Angela's Ashes.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A classic book *and* a classic audiobook

  • By Karen on 01-30-03

I've avoided this book for far too long

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

Reviewed: 03-23-19

I thought this book was only for the pretentious and I was wrong. This is a delightful story even for those with simpler minds. Frank McCourt, RIP, did an excellent job bringing his memories to life. It really felt like I was being told the story by a 4 year old at the beginning and a young adult at the end.

  • You're Going to Mars!

  • By: Rob Dircks
  • Narrated by: Khristine Hvam
  • Length: 11 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,166
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,092
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,089

Living and slaving in Fill City One, you get used to the smell. We call it the Everpresent Stink. But every once in a while, on a spring day with a breeze, it clears away enough to remind us that there is something more out there. Most Fillers' wildest dreams would be just to get past the walls and live in the mainland. But my dream? It’s a little bigger. I’m going to Mars.   

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Author nails it again!

  • By @newhaven265 on 11-14-18

Khristine Hvam delivers an exceptional performance

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

Reviewed: 02-05-19

For what it is, light reading, it is an enjoyable book. As someone that enjoys science fiction books that really go into depth and tackle problems, I was a little disappointed that Dircks skirted around issues. This book is not without it flaws and there is one that drives me a little bit crazy. A character was introduced about halfway through the book that somehow plays a big role without much being disclosed about him.

Khristine Hvam made You're Going to Mars! a much more delightful experience. Her performance added so much to the book and make it easy to overlook some of the flaws. I realize its only February but this is the best performance I have listened to all year.

This book isn't life changing by any means but it is enjoyable. Khristine Hvam is one of those narrators that I haven't really gotten to spend much time with because a lot of the books that she has performed are not my cup of tea.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The First Conspiracy

  • The Secret Plot Against George Washington
  • By: Brad Meltzer, Josh Mensch
  • Narrated by: Scott Brick
  • Length: 11 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,406
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,315
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,309

Taking place during the most critical period of our nation’s birth, The First Conspiracy tells a remarkable and previously untold piece of American history that not only reveals George Washington’s character, but also illuminates the origins of America’s counterintelligence movement that led to the modern day CIA. In 1776, an elite group of soldiers were handpicked to serve as George Washington’s bodyguards. Washington trusted them; relied on them. But unbeknownst to Washington, some of them were part of a treasonous plan.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliantly written and narrated!

  • By Wayne on 01-09-19

I learned I'm not an alcoholic!!

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

Reviewed: 01-30-19

I thought Brad Meltzer and Josh Mensch did an excellent job. I think both were a little out of their comfort zones but all in all I think the flow is good. This book isn't by any means an account of what happened. There is still a lot that isn't known and will likely never be known about the plot to assassinate/abduct George Washington. The two did a good job of presenting a case for what may have happened with the little information available.

Further more the two did an excellent job of touching on details about 18th Century life. They did an excellent job of deciding what to include that wouldn't detract from the story. I could feel my liver cringe and kidneys tremble when Scott Brick elegantly mentioned how much alcohol was served throughout the colonies and in particular New York City.

  • Red Sparrow

  • A Novel
  • By: Jason Matthews
  • Narrated by: Jeremy Bobb
  • Length: 17 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,025
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,891
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,857

Drafted against her will to become a "Sparrow" - a trained seductress in the service, Russian intelligence officer Dominika Egorova is assigned to operate against Nathaniel Nash, a first-tour CIA officer who handles the CIA's most sensitive penetration of Russian intelligence. The two young intelligence officers, trained in their respective spy schools, collide in a charged atmosphere of tradecraft, deception, and inevitably, a forbidden spiral of carnal attraction that threatens their careers and the security of America's valuable mole in Moscow.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good Spy Novel (with a few quirks)

  • By Aaron on 01-12-14

A Colorful and Creative Rendition of Spy vs. Spy

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

Reviewed: 01-22-19

I don't think that it would be a stretch to say that this book could be categorized as fantasy. The most creative aspect and the thing that I like most about this book is Dominika's ability to see colors. What Dominika lacked in depth and character development was made up for in her ability to see colors. It was fun to imagine seeing things through Dominika's eyes and viewing people with blue, red, purple, black, etc halos.

I thought the narration was adequate but could have been a little more lively. Jeremy Bobb was a little on the dry side but it didn't take anything away from the book.

  • The Western Star

  • By: Craig Johnson
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 7 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,348
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 3,121
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,098

Sheriff Walt Longmire is enjoying a celebratory beer after a weapons certification at the Wyoming Law Enforcement Academy when a younger sheriff confronts him with a photograph of 25 armed men standing in front of a Challenger steam locomotive. It takes him back to when, fresh from the battlefields of Vietnam, then-deputy Walt accompanied his mentor Lucian to the annual Wyoming Sheriff's Association junket held on the excursion train known as the Western Star, which ran the length of Wyoming from Cheyenne to Evanston and back.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Warning! This ends in a cliffhanger.

  • By TyrannosaurusRix on 09-21-17

Walt receives relationships advice

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

Reviewed: 01-21-19

Fair or not, any installment of the Longmire series must stand up to Craig Johnson's first installment, The Cold Dish. I believe The Cold Dish to be an exceptionally well written and wonderful story. The Western Star is good but in comparison to my expectations, set by The Cold Dish, it fell short of excellence.

The book is mostly a flashback to Walt's encounter on the Western Star train. Not only does he have to solve a murder on the train, he is confronted by his life's biggest questions. Throughout this wild ride, Walt must decide if he wants to stay married to the beautiful Martha and what he wants to do for a career.

As always, it is worth nothing that George Guidall does an excellent job.

  • Skinwalker

  • Jane Yellowrock, Book 1
  • By: Faith Hunter
  • Narrated by: Khristine Hvam
  • Length: 14 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 6,294
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,607
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 5,611

Jane Yellowrock is the last of her kind-a skinwalker of Cherokee descent who can turn into any creature she desires and hunts vampires for a living. But now she's been hired by Katherine Fontaneau, one of the oldest vampires in New Orleans and the madam of Katie's Ladies, to hunt a powerful rogue vampire who's killing other vamps.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • How refreshing

  • By Mobilis on 06-01-10

Don't let the positive reviews fool you

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

Reviewed: 01-11-19

I gave this book a try for two reasons: First and foremost because it was on a 2 for 1 credit sale and secondly I'm into some weird stuff.

I get the impression that Faith Hunter tried to write a modern Tarzan/Jungle Book story. I wish I would have just revisited Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book or finally checked out Edgar Rice Burroughs's Tarzan series. My expectations, I fear were too high. I was hoping for a narrative about a skin-walker that turned good and what I got instead was a story about a cat person. As curiosity killed the cat my curiosity caused me to endure hours of torture because I was determined to finish this book.

Don't be led astray by the thousands of positive reviews. If you're hopeful to read more about skin-walkers keep looking. I should have known better when the summary mentioned Cherokee and skinwalker. All my searches for skin-walkers in Cherokee history/tradition/lore have turned up empty.

On the plus side, Khristine Hvam is a good narrator.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Ancient Civilizations of North America

  • By: Edwin Barnhart, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Edwin Barnhart
  • Length: 12 hrs and 19 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,122
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,028
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,022

For the past few hundred years, most of what we’ve been taught about the native cultures of North America came from reports authored by the conquerors and colonizers who destroyed them. Now - with the technological advances of modern archaeology and a new perspective on world history - we are finally able to piece together their compelling true stories. In Ancient Civilizations of North America, Professor Edwin Barnhart, Director of the Maya Exploration Center, will open your eyes to a fascinating world you never knew existed - even though you’ve been living right next to it, or even on top of it.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A different perspective - civilizations not tribes

  • By Steve Goppert on 07-26-18

I know Dr. Barnhart from the History Channel

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

Reviewed: 01-07-19

This was my third Great Course by Dr. Edwin Barnhart and is in the running for my favorite of his lectures. I didn't just learn about the civilizations that inhabited north America prior to the European conquest but also learned about archaeology and the methods used to draw conclusions about the people that came before us.

Dr. Barnhart also provides wonderful suggestions on where to take family vacations. Unintelligent people take their kids to Disney World! Learned men and women take their children to burial mounds.

Dr. Barnhart has appeared on History Channel's Ancient Aliens before. For those of you unfamiliar with the show, they take a clip of a reputable expert in the field and then draw a conclusion from the clip stating "many Ancient Astronaut Theorists believe.." In one of his other Great Courses lectures Dr. Barnhart debunks Ancient Astronaut Theorists.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Out of My Mind

  • By: Alan Arkin
  • Narrated by: Alan Arkin
  • Length: 2 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 6,934
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 6,320
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 6,291

In this Audible Original “mini-memoir”, the Academy Award-winning star of Little Miss Sunshine and Argo looks back on his life as a series of philosophical turning points, learning experiences, and a-ha moments. Drawn from a collection of seemingly inexplicable stories and encounters from Arkin's 84 years on this planet, Out of My Mind is a candid, relatable and delightfully irreverent take on how one man went searching for meaning and ended up discovering himself.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing journey into Alan's self!

  • By Amazon Customer on 12-09-18

Could use a little more garlic.

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

Reviewed: 12-17-18

I decided to give Out of My Mind a listen because I like Arkin's work. Arkin has a unique perspective and Out of My Mind is a worthwhile listen. Not all of it was my cup of tea. There were times that my attention drifted elsewhere but there are parts of it that I found captivating and made the entire experience worth it. I think this (AUDIBLE ORIGINAL) is worth the purchase for his telling of the experience that was making the TV movie Escape from Sobibor. I also enjoyed that a nice sized portion of his memoir was about his learning of Ze Arigo and his attempt to get a movie made about him.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Cold Dish

  • A Walt Longmire Mystery
  • By: Craig Johnson
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 13 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,282
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,677
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,656

Introducing Wyoming's Sheriff Walt Longmire in this riveting novel from the New York Times best-selling author of Dry Bones, the first in the Longmire series, the basis for the hit Netflix original series Longmire. Johnson draws on his deep attachment to the American West to produce a literary mystery of stunning authenticity, full of memorable characters.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Not Your Ordinary Western Novel (Series)

  • By Dataman on 09-12-12

I liked this book. It is so.

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

Reviewed: 12-10-18

I dislike that I liked this book so much because it's part of a series and there is an anxiety inducing large number of books in the series. Not only that, each audio book in the series is performed by George Guidall, who is one of the best in the business.

I've got a pretty big audible library, this is how most good reviews start, and this book is refreshingly different than a lot of crime dramas. The story itself is written from Walt's perspective. I thoroughly enjoyed his insights, mostly because he had a good sense of humor. The thing I enjoyed most about the story was the character development and it was a pleasant experience to get to know the people of Absaroka County.

  • The Green Mile

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Frank Muller
  • Length: 13 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 6,118
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4,873
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 4,876

At Cold Mountain Penitentiary, the convicted killers on E Block await their turn to walk the Green Mile and keep a date with the electric chair. Paul Edgecombe has seen his share of oddities in his years working as a guard on the Mile, but he's never met anyone like John Coffey.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Right Book, Right Reader.... Enjoy!

  • By Stuart on 08-08-05

Coffey like the drink only spelled different

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

Reviewed: 11-28-18

Stephen King novels tend to frustrate me and The Green Mile is no different. The manner in which King tells stories often obsessing over details, some of which aren't very relevant to the story, and the way in which he methodically manages to repeat himself annoy and frustrate me. I do have to give King credit because it works exceptionally well for The Green Mile. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know John Coffey and wish I had been a little more into reading when the novel was being released in six parts because that seems like it would have been a fun way to enjoy the story.