LISTENER

W M Thompson

  • 3
  • reviews
  • 36
  • helpful votes
  • 14
  • ratings
  • Gray Mountain

  • A Novel
  • By: John Grisham
  • Narrated by: Catherine Taber
  • Length: 14 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 6,880
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 6,123
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 6,129

The year is 2008 and Samantha Kofer's career at a huge Wall Street law firm is on the fast track - until the recession hits and she gets downsized, furloughed, escorted out of the building. Samantha, though, is one of the "lucky" associates. She's offered an opportunity to work at a legal aid clinic for one year without pay, after which there would be a slim chance that she'd get her old job back. In a matter of days Samantha moves from Manhattan to Brady, Virginia, population 2,200, in the heart of Appalachia, a part of the world she has only read about.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Painful to listen to

  • By Toni on 10-24-14

Tried my loyalty to the author

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

Reviewed: 11-20-14

What disappointed you about Gray Mountain?

Nothing happened

Has Gray Mountain turned you off from other books in this genre?

No

Which character – as performed by Catherine Taber – was your favorite?

All the characters were OK. Just none that were remarkable.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Nothing comes to mind

Any additional comments?

The story rambled in so many different directions--all of them mildly interesting but nothing to stay with. There were too many possible places to go but in the end none of them produced. It felt like the memoirs of a former New York legal associate. Nothing more going on than that, really. Actually, what it felt like was the set up for TV series that would get painful watch after about three episodes.

  • The Director

  • By: David Ignatius
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 13 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 864
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 752
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 753

In David Ignatius' gripping new novel, spies don' t bother to steal information...they change it, permanently and invisibly. Graham Weber has been director of the CIA for less than a week when a Swiss kid in a dirty T-shirt walks into the American consulate in Hamburg and says the agency has been hacked, and he has a list of agents' names to prove it. This is the moment a CIA director most dreads. Weber isn' t sure where to turn until he meets a charismatic (and unstable) young man named James Morris who runs the Internet Operations Center.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Just Flat Out Scary!

  • By NOKWISA on 06-22-14

Lucky Ending

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

Reviewed: 07-31-14

What disappointed you about The Director?

I could never be confident I knew who the story was about. There were several--several--interesting, well developed and intriguing characters. But whose story was it? In the end, this was cleared up but I'm talking the VERY end. And when it was, all the other interesting characters that I had invested in just sort of melted. The ending? Well, let's just the guy who turned out to be the main character got really, really lucky.

Who was your favorite character and why?

My favorite character was the guy who had to make the hard moral choices. Readers often expect such characters to be the main character. This guy kind of was until he wasn't anymore.

Which character – as performed by George Guidall – was your favorite?

The national information czar, the director of national intelligence. That was the other confusing thing. The Director. There were three of them. I'm sure this was intentional, but it also contributed to the gnawing uncertainty that there might not have been a main character.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

I thought the subject matter was fascinating, current, credibly portrayed. The main technical flaw in the cyber-security plot was that ALL systems these days are archived and can be re-created. But that turned out to be OK because the real issue was the timing. It takes time to put such things all back together and the operators struck in the interim.

Any additional comments?

The book felt like an exploration into multiple characters without really a coherent plot. The villains were unmarked. The implicit threat was vague. The motivation was, in some cases, irrational. I found myself often looking for a place to put my foot, a perspective from which I could evaluate the stage. That kept shifting which might have been intentional abut it didn't work.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Racketeer

  • By: John Grisham
  • Narrated by: J.D. Jackson
  • Length: 12 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 7,408
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,395
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 6,382

Given the importance of what they do, and the controversies that often surround them, and the violent people they sometimes confront, it is remarkable that in the history of this country only four active federal judges have been murdered. Judge Raymond Fawcett has just become number five.... Nothing is as it seems and everything’s fair game in this wickedly clever new novel from John Grisham, the undisputed master of the legal thriller.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Very Enjoyable Grisham

  • By Ron on 10-25-12

Listen to this one at 2 x speed

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

Reviewed: 10-24-12

What does J.D. Jackson bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Grisham is always top notch and like so many listeners, once I start, I can never put down his stories. But while J.D. Jackson is the pitch-perfect narrator for this audiobook, playing it at 2 x speed really helped me stay with his otherwise over-comtemplative pace.

35 of 44 people found this review helpful