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tarafarah7: Tara Brown

Grand Rapids, MI
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  • Murder of a Movie Producer

  • Hope Hadley Cozy Mystery Series, Book 8
  • By: Meredith Potts
  • Narrated by: Stephanie Quinn
  • Length: 1 hr and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 5
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 5

Hollywood has always been a cutthroat industry, but for Sophie Paulson, the backstabbing turns personal when her movie producer boyfriend, Paul Franklin, dumps her for another woman, then fires her out of the blue. Former actress turned amateur sleuth Hope Hadley arrives in town just as Paul is found murdered and the police suspect Sophie of the crime. Hope desperately races to discover the truth before her friend Sophie is put in jail for the rest of her life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Read

  • By Ashley Hedden on 02-17-19

New favorite in the Hope Hadley series!

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

Reviewed: 02-16-19

Murder of a Movie Producer: Hope Hadley Cozy Mystery Series, Book 8 by Meredith Potts, narrated by Stephanie Quinn is my new favorite in series. I'm not going to say anything to give away the ending, but I will say I was surprised! This one will keep you guessing! I love that this audiobook is just under 2 hours because 1. I don't like to be kept waiting for the big reveal and 2. I'm able to squeeze in some well-deserved "me time" more easily...we all deserve time to relax and unwind. :-)

I'm not usually into narrator changes in the middle of a series, but I was pleasantly surprised when I heard the softer, more feminine voice of Stephanie Quinn in this episode. More personal preference than anything else, I like that Book 8 portrays Hope in a different light. She doesn't sound so "rough around the edges" anymore. Quinn does an excellent job, and I hope she sticks around!

As my new favorite in the Hope Hadley Cozy Mystery Series, I rate Book 8, Murder of a Movie Producer by Meredith Potts, narrated by Stephanie Quinn 5/5 stars! Hope ran this case pretty much on her own, and I like how it not only kept me guessing through to the end, but also surprised me (I really didn't expect it to end that way - loved it!). I recommend this audiobook to cozy mystery fans and/or those looking for a short, complete mystery to enjoy as relief from your busy schedule! Happy listening!

Thank you for reading my review. I hope it was helpful.

  • Murder of a Restaurant Critic

  • Hope Hadley Cozy Mystery Series, Book 7
  • By: Meredith Potts
  • Narrated by: S. L. Crawley
  • Length: 1 hr and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 8

Everyone's a critic. But sometimes words cut deep and the wounds turned deadly. That's what happened to Claude Giraud, the top restaurant critic in town. He had run afoul of the wrong restaurateur, and it is now up to amateur sleuth Hope Hadley to figure out which one.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Fun Cozy!

  • By Susan C-K on 02-22-19

Hope, I've missed you! :-)

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

Reviewed: 02-15-19

It's been awhile since I've listened to a Hope Hadley mystery! Murder of a Restaurant Critic: Hope Hadley Cozy Mystery Series, Book 7 by Meredith Potts, narrated by S. L. Crawley is a fun listen, and at just over an hour and a half, it can easily be completed in one sitting. I'll let you read the plot description on your own, but just know that the storyline is fast-moving, and it's a complete mystery from start to finish...no cliffhangers. Yay! Cozy mysteries are my favorite books to listen to, but sometimes I feel like I get stuck in a rut listening to the same story over and over again, just different characters. This Hope Hadley mystery was a nice change of pace, and I really enjoyed it.

The narration by S. L. Crawley was good throughout, but in some places, it was outstanding. The voices and inflection in the second half of the book were awesome - bring on some more! Can't wait to listen to the next in series!

Murder of a Restaurant Critic: Hope Hadley Cozy Mystery Series, Book 7 by Meredith Potts, narrated by S. L. Crawley is engaging, fun, and perfect for when the kids go down for their afternoon naps. Give it a try - you deserve some "me time!" Happy listening!

Thank you for reading my review. I hope it was helpful. :-)

  • Murder and Cherry Cake

  • Mysteries of Treasure Cove, Book 5
  • By: Meredith Potts
  • Narrated by: Carrie Burgess
  • Length: 3 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16

Sabrina Daley's life changed forever when her sister went missing 30 years ago. It ended up taking more than a decade to discover Jessica Daley's body and arrest the man responsible for her murder. Ever since that tragedy, missing-persons cases have triggered a deep emotional response in Sabrina. So when Sabrina's friend Angela Hummel disappears one day, Sabrina can't help but be torn up inside. As Sabrina begins searching for Angela, she can't help but wonder if this new case will have a familiar tragic ending.  

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Appropriate, clean and exciting

  • By Yuri on 02-14-19

Light and Fun

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

Reviewed: 02-10-19

Murder and Cherry Cake: Mysteries of Treasure Cove, Book 5 by Meredith Potts, narrated by Carrie Burgess is a great addition to the series and perfect for cozy mystery fans. I enjoyed the storyline of this one, and I liked the ending; it kept me engaged and I listened from start to finish in one sitting. I've been following main character Sabrina for some time now, and she's quite the character, let me tell you! Since I've never been a suspect in a case of disappearance, murder, or any other crime for that matter, I'm not sure if the characters words and actions are true-to-life. But, I do know if I was being questioned about my whereabouts, I'd be freaking out and probably crying. These people are nuts! Now, "Team Sabrina" is tough and almost too demanding of everyone they come across, but the potential suspects act angry, rather than sad or nervous. While I'm sure people act all different ways when in similar situations, I can't imagine all of them being crazy. Needless to say, I'm glad I live where I do. Haha!

The narration by Carrie Burgess was great, as usual. Her inviting tone pulls me in and keeps me listening. I really enjoy listening to her, and I think she makes my overall experience with the book that much better.

Murder and Cherry Cake: Mysteries of Treasure Cove, Book 5 by Meredith Potts, narrated by Carrie Burgess is a light and fun mystery that teens and cozy lovers will enjoy. At three hours, it is the perfect listen to sharpen up your own detective skills! I'm looking forward to the next in series.

Thank you for reading my review. I hope it was helpful. Happy listening! :-)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • On the Come Up

  • By: Angie Thomas
  • Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 11 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 303
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 288
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 288

Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least get some streams on her mixtape. As the daughter of an underground rap legend who died right before he hit big, Bri's got massive shoes to fill. But when her mom unexpectedly loses her job, food banks and shut-off notices become as much a part of Bri's life as beats and rhymes. With bills piling up and homelessness staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it - she has to make it.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Thomas and Turpin are my perfect pairing

  • By Katie - Audible on 02-05-19

"You can't stop me on the come up!!"

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

Reviewed: 02-07-19

Angie Thomas’ highly anticipated 2nd novel, On the Come Up, is every bit as brilliant as her best-selling, award-winning 1st novel, The Hate U Give. Influenced by events in her own life, Thomas focuses on themes such as poverty, racism, family, friends, chasing your dreams, standing up for what's right, and never giving up. Following in the footsteps of her late father, an underground rap legend, 16-year-old Bri has a big name to live up to. Battling issues at home, school, and around the neighborhood, does this aspiring rapper have what it takes to make it to the top, without losing herself in the process?


In addition to the intense and emotional storyline, Angie Thomas’ character development, use of dialogue, and real-life conflicts - both external and internal - make On the Come Up an engaging, page-turner for readers of all ages, genders, races, and backgrounds. People...the struggle is real, and Angie Thomas does an amazing job bringing this to life!! Set in Garden Heights, readers of T.H.U.G. will be immediately drawn in to the familiar surroundings. As a 20th year high school teacher of urban teens, I cannot even begin to explain how thankful I am for books like this one. Exposing my students to books with strong-minded, inspiring characters and settings that mirror their own lives, has not been an easy task over the years. If we want kids to become readers and lifelong learners, seeing a reflection of themselves, their families, and the places in which they live is a must! Without this, no connection can be made, no learning can take place, and no growth will occur. Thank you, Ms. Thomas, for recognizing this. Your writing, your characters, and the true-to-life events inspire kids everywhere and let them know they matter.


The audiobook narration by Bahni Turpin is excellent. Goosebumps!! Her performance in On the Come Up is equally outstanding to that of T.H.U.G. She masterfully gives a voice to each character and brings the text to life as the plot unfolds. And, yes, she raps!! If you have never listened to her perform as a narrator, you are missing out. She's the real deal, a sure thing, a must-listen! Bravo!


Without hesitation, I rate On the Come Up by Angie Thomas, narrated by Bahni Turpin 5 out of 5 stars across the board. The plot is engaging, the events and characters are real, and the message is inspiring. With the utmost confidence, I recommend this novel to everyone. Yes, everyone. From those who live a life of poverty to those with a dream, On the Come Up is a book that will stick with you for the long haul as you journey through life.


Thank you for reading my review. I hope it was helpful. :-)

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Deadly Dinner Theater Affair

  • By: K. M. Morgan
  • Narrated by: Lili Dubuque
  • Length: 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 19
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 19

When Daisy McDare attends a murder-mystery dinner theater performance, she worries that a real-life death will occur during the show. Is she just being paranoid, or does she have every reason to be concerned?

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Dinner Theater

  • By PattyH on 02-05-19

Murder Mystery Dinner!

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

Reviewed: 02-03-19

The Deadly Dinner Theater Affair by K.M. Morgan, narrated by Lili Dubuque takes place at a murder mystery dinner. I want to attend one of these mystery dinners!! Going into the story, I was super excited, and probably set my hopes a bit high for an hour long story. Either way, I still enjoyed it. I listened to the whole audiobook in one sitting, and it kept my interest the entire time.

The narration was just okay, in my opinion. This is just personal preference. The recording of the audiobook is of professional quality, and everything sounded smooth in terms of volume, pace, and clarity. I just didn't feel a connection to the characters as much as I could have; I imagined the main character to have a lighter voice, rather than sounding like a mature woman. Once again, this is just my personal preference. The performance wasn't bad, it just wasn't my favorite.

I give The Deadly Dinner Theater Affair by K.M. Morgan, narrated by Lili Dubuque a rating of 3.5 to 3.7 stars. Since I don't usually listen to audiobooks of this length, I welcomed the one hour story. I loved being able to relax and listen from start to finish all in one sitting; I'd like to look for more of similar length. I also loved listening to the events unfold at a murder mystery dinner....so much, in fact, that I'm going to go look up if any perform in my town. Happy listening!

Thank you for reading my review. I hope it wss helpful.

  • A Street Cat Named Bob

  • And How He Saved My Life
  • By: James Bowen
  • Narrated by: Kristopher Milnes
  • Length: 6 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 595
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 556
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 554

When street musician James Bowen found an injured cat curled up in the hallway of his apartment building, he had no idea how much his life was about to change. James was living hand to mouth on the streets of London, barely making enough money to feed himself - the last thing he needed was a pet. Yet, James couldn't resist helping the strikingly intelligent, but very sick animal, whom he named Bob. He slowly nursed Bob back to health and then sent the cat on his way, never imagining that he would see him again. But Bob had other ideas.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Three Cheers for Bob and James!

  • By Gillian on 01-27-14

So glad I got bought this one!!

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

Reviewed: 02-01-19

A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life by James Bowen, narrated by Kristopher Milnes is about a man and his cat, and how they saved each other's lives physically, emotionally, and mentally. If you have a pet that you adore or are an animal lover, this audiobook is for you, as you will have no problem relating to the feelings and emotions of the author. Like James, my rescue kitty, BooBoo, is also my baby, and I love her like she is my child. Regardless if you recused your pet or not, I'm sure all of us (pet owners) agree with this saying: "I wouldn't be the person I am today if (your pet's name) wasn't in my life." Yes? We each have our own unique story of how we became bffs with our furry friends. James' story, though, was a little different in the sense that Bob, his cat, rescued him, too, and helped nurse him back to health; James is a recovering drug addict. Through this heartfelt, and sometimes funny, story you will experience the journey from the beginning and learn how James and Bob's immediate bond, love, and trust for one another made them both who they are today.

The narration by Kristopher Milnes was excellent! He brought an authentic feel to the story that we don't often hear. I feel bad, but it wasn't until I was about half way through the book that I realized he was not James! The feeling he put into the performance made me think this was the author, himself. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Milnes; he added to my overall experience and enjoyment of the book.

A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life by James Bowen, narrated by Kristopher Milnes gets a deserving 5 out of 5 stars. It is one that will stick with you long after you are finished because you will find yourself reflecting and reminiscing on your own life with your pet. I highly recommend this to animal lovers, caring pet owners, and those who are looking for stories of hope and inspiration.

Thank you for reading my review. I hope it was helpful. Happy listening! :-)

  • Ep. 16: Buzzy Adaptations: When Listens Come to Stage & Screen

  • By: The Audible Editors
  • Length: 35 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 25
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 24
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 24

Many of the most talked-about shows and film started out as written texts. Our editors weigh in on whether you should listen before seeing the movie, theater, or TV adaptation, as well what they’d like to see jump from their library to the stage and screen. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Another great episode!

  • By tarafarah7: Tara Brown on 02-01-19

Another great episode!

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

Reviewed: 02-01-19

Great episode! Thanks! I tend to do either-or when it comes to books and movies because I hate feeling let down, which usually occurs when I see the movie after I read the book. I'm sure this is because so much happens in books, and if the movie included everything, it would end up lasting 17 hours, instead of two. The only exception is that I do watch the movies of books we read in class, when available. I teach HS, and because students struggle to get a firm grasp on some of the texts we read, I like to see if there are particular scenes in the movie that will help to further their understanding. A good example of this is the Cyclops scene in The Odyssey.

My favorite audiobook of all time is The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas, narrated by Bahni Turpin. I didn't make it to the theater to see it, but it just came out on video, and I do plan to purchase it!! The book was amazing, and the message was so strong that I can't imagine the movie being a let-down in any way, shape, or form. I cannot wait to see it! In this case, many of my students have already seen the movie, but they haven't yet read the book. I want to make T.H.U.G. our semester 2 novel study. I've purchased enough copies of the book to run it as a small group study, but all of them want to read it (yay!). So, I've been saving up so I can get a class set (tell Amazon to put them on sale for 15min and then somehow alert me...I'll buy every copy! Hehee!).

Just want to say thanks, again. I enjoy your show! :-)

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Hope Never Dies

  • By: Andrew Shaffer
  • Narrated by: Joe Barrett
  • Length: 6 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 473
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 445
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 439

Joe Biden is fresh out of the Obama White House and feeling adrift when his favorite railroad conductor dies in a suspicious accident. To unravel the mystery, "Amtrak Joe" re-teams with the only man he's ever fully trusted - Obama. Together they'll plumb the darkest corners of Delaware, traveling from cheap motels to biker bars and beyond, as they uncover the sinister forces advancing America's opioid epidemic. Hope Never Dies is essentially the first published work of Obama/Biden fan fiction - and a cathartic listen for anyone distressed by the current state of affairs.  

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Yes, you will smile, laugh, cry, cheer, & applaud!

  • By Delores O. on 07-12-18

I hope this becomes a series!!

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

Reviewed: 01-29-19

Hope Never Dies by Andrew Shaffer, narrated by Joe Barrett is one I've had my eye on for some time. I'm glad I finally decided to get it - it's a funny and entertaining listen! I hope this becomes a series, so I can go on to solve more cases with this dynamic duo! In this audiobook, main character, Joe Biden, calls upon his loyal and trustworthy friend, Barack Obama, to help him learn more about a friend's death. Throughout their journey, the two find themselves in some humorous situations, while interacting with some interesting individuals and ending up in places we wouldn't imagine them ever being. While the plot of the story is good, it was really the interaction between this "presidential-turned-detective team" that kept me listening. There are jokes strategically placed throughout the text, mostly through dialogue, that many of you will find hilarious! I had many laugh-out-loud moments. In fact, I'm sure there were many more that I didn't even catch because I'm not well-versed in political lingo, people, and places. Wether or not you are a follower of these two, or politics in general, I think you will enjoy this fan fiction piece.

The narration by Joe Barrett was excellent! It definitely added to my overall enjoyment of this book. He held my attention 100%, and I didn't ever get bored listening. I don't think I would have enjoyed this book as much if I had only read it. I definitley recommend the audiobook!

Listening to Hope Never Dies by Andrew Shaffer, narrated by Joe Barrett, lifted my spirits and made me smile. It's between 6-7 hours long, which is perfect for your drive to and from work or an afternoon at home. I give it a rating of 4.3 stars. If you are looking for a light and funny mystery, enjoy the adventures of ametuer detectives, and are a follower of the Obama/Biden team, this is the audiobook for you!

Thank you for reading my review. I hope it was helpful. Happy listening! :-)

  • Ep. 7: The Hungerford Massacre (Real Crime)

  • By: Thomas Glasser
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Gibson
  • Length: 28 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 19

Michael Ryan's shooting rampage left a trail of bloody mayhem through a pretty English market town, wrecking countless lives. Hear the full negotiation between police and the killer as he holed up in a school classroom, carrying a machine gun and a grenade.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Authentic listen!

  • By tarafarah7: Tara Brown on 01-17-19

Authentic listen!

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

Reviewed: 01-17-19

Wow! What an unfortunate event. The Hungerford Massacre is my 1st listen in the Real Crime series. I definitley plan to listen to them all! The episode is very engaging and at ~30min, it's the perfect length for those who listen on-the-go or only have a little time to spare. This episode was authentic, and no important details were left out to leave the listener wondering what happened. Thank you!

  • The Jury

  • Revenge of the Sisterhood #4
  • By: Fern Michaels
  • Narrated by: Laural Merlington
  • Length: 7 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 270
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 213
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 214

For years, Paula Woodley has suffered the broken bones and shattered self-esteem caused by an abusive marriage. But what can she do? Her high-profile, Washington power-broker husband is not a man to be crossed. Or so he thinks. The Sisterhood may not be an organization found in any of his memos, but he's about to take a meeting with them - and they'll be setting the agenda.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Once again these are fun and great to listen too!

  • By Diana on 05-13-09

<br />Go get Book 1 right NOW!

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

Reviewed: 01-16-19

Truthfully, there isn't much I can say about Fern Michaels' Sisterhood series that I haven't already said in my past reviews, except that if you haven't started it yet, you are really missing out! In fact, I'm surprised this hasn't been made into a television series or movie. So much happens in each of these books - I cannot believe I am only finished with book 4. You definitely will want to start with book 1, rather than in the middle of the series so you can understand how and why these women joined forces to become a sisterhood of revenge. These are the only Fern Michaels' books I have read/listened to, but if her other books are this good, I'll be raving about those ones, too, soon enough!

I have only listened to the audiobooks, and while I'm sure reading this series is enjoyable, I cannot imagine it being as good as the audio. Narrator Laural Merlington is outstanding! Her voices, consistency, and the way she brings the text to life, make her 100% in my book. I love everything about her performance. I'm always in disbelief that there is really only one narrator. She makes me feel like I am right there with the women, as a member of their sisterhood!

The Jury: Revenge of the Sisterhood, Book 4 by Fern Michaels, narrated by Laural Merlington is well worth the credit. In fact, I have already purchased the next three in the series and plan to download book 5 right after I post this review. I give this one a rating of 4.7-5 stars. If you like women's fiction, lots of action, and enjoy seeing the bad guy finally get what he deserves, this is the series for you! Until next time...happy listening! :-)

Thank you for reading my review. I hope it was helpful.