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William

Rolling Hills Esate , CA, USA
  • 4
  • reviews
  • 9
  • helpful votes
  • 7
  • ratings
  • Housekeeping

  • By: Marilynne Robinson
  • Narrated by: Becket Royce
  • Length: 5 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 661
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 461
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 463

A modern classic, Housekeeping is the story of Ruth and her younger sister, Lucille, who grow up haphazardly, first under the care of their competent grandmother, then of two comically bumbling great-aunts, and finally of Sylvie, their eccentric and remote aunt. The family house is in the small Far West town of Fingerbone, set on a glacial lake, the same lake where their grandfather died in a spectacular train wreck and their mother drove off a cliff to her death.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • errancy, abandonment, and madness

  • By Emily on 07-19-11

Haunting, but a bit depressing

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-13-06

Housekeeping is a rich story, even though I found it somewhat depressing. Biblical themes abound, but at times it is hard to believe that the sophisticated narrator is a high-school aged girl. The narration, while generally good, is occasionally rather flat and too obviously read. There is a mystical touch here, but all in all I much preferred Robinson’s more recent Gilead. Still, this is a wondrous story, and I will likely return to it again someday for a better understanding of its many themes. The overall theme, however, is that the world is not my home: I’m just passing through.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Silas Marner

  • By: George Eliot
  • Narrated by: Margaret Hilton
  • Length: 7 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11

For 15 years Silas Marner, the lonely, friendless weaver, has lived in exile, shunned by society after being falsely accused of a robbery. The only thing Marner cares about is his pile of gold, which suddenly disappears one day. Bitter and despondent, the weaver finds an abandoned young girl named Eppie and decides to take care of her. This classic novel was one of the most popular and acclaimed novels of the 19th century. It is a timeless fable about love, friendship, redemption, and the danger of choosing greed over true happiness.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Rather sentimental story

  • By William on 03-13-06

Rather sentimental story

Overall
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-13-06

Silas Marner is a bit sentimental by modern standards, but is a good story still. I found the characters somewhat thinly drawn, and the audio quality of this reading rather poor. Even a bit of road noise tended to drown out large chunks of the narrative.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Gilead

  • By: Marilynne Robinson
  • Narrated by: Tim Jerome
  • Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,855
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,264
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,264

In 1956, toward the end of Reverend John Ames's life, he begins a letter to his young son, an account of himself and his forebears. Ames is the son of an Iowan preacher and the grandson of a minister who, as a young man in Maine, saw a vision of Christ bound in chains and came west to Kansas to fight for abolition: He "preached men into the Civil War", then, at age 50, became a chaplain in the Union Army, losing his right eye in battle.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A perfect reading

  • By Aging Boomer on 10-05-08

Midwestern Saint

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-31-06

The Rev. John Ames is the Midwestern image of a good man. He reminds me of my own father, born on the edge of the Midwest 80 years ago. I don’t regard myself as particularly sentimental, but I found tears near the surface very frequently while listening to this novel. This story is luminous in the sense that it illuminates, not the dark corners of the soul, but rather the little-observed or recognized areas of life. You’re a hard case if your wonder about the richness of the world and our humanity is not stretched by this tender book. I suspect I now know Pastor Ames much better than I do many of my flesh-and-blood friends.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
    
    
        By:
        












    





    





    
        
            
            
                
            
        
        Anne Bronte
    
    


    
    
        Narrated by:
        












    





    





    
        
            
            
                
            
        
        Frederick Davidson,
    
        
            
            
                
            
        
        Nadia May
    
    


    
    Length: 16 hrs and 30 mins
    39 ratings
    Overall 3.6
  • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

  • By: Anne Bronte
  • Narrated by: Frederick Davidson, Nadia May
  • Length: 16 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 39
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 6

Anne, like her sisters Emily and Charlotte, published under a male pseudonym -- Acton Bell -- yet still this novel was scorned by many for its exposure of the abusive male chauvinism concealed...

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow!

  • By Coffee Lover on 02-23-05

All things for good

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-20-06

Anne Bronte was the most pious of the three Bronte sisters. So it should come as no surprise that The Tenant of Wildfell Hall is the story of a Christian wife’s struggle for the conversion of her pagan husband. Helen Graham, the protagonist, is not without her own faults, particularly in her choice of a husband. The story is built around Helen’s penance, namely, her marriage, and her decision to rectify her mistake by means acceptable to God, if not pleasant for herself. It is the story of how Christian faithfulness brings hope out of evil and despair, and a testimony of how all things (eventually) work for the good for those who love God.

If you love 19th-century British novels, this is clearly a book for you. Its strong religious and moral emphasis may not sit well in the 21st century, but if so—so much the worse for us. The vocabulary, the sensitivity, the sheer humanity of the characters serve to remind us of how far civilization has, in many respects, declined from greater heights.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful