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Linda B.

San Francisco, Ca
  • 31
  • reviews
  • 112
  • helpful votes
  • 324
  • ratings
  • A Little Life

  • A Novel
  • By: Hanya Yanagihara
  • Narrated by: Oliver Wyman
  • Length: 32 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,801
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,109
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 9,116

When four classmates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their center of gravity.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I had to call in SAD to work

  • By Angela on 10-17-15

All the king's horses...

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

Reviewed: 01-06-16

I am uncomfortable watching violence in movies or tv and avoid doing so. If I am a wimp, so be it. There may be spoilers to follow so you can stop reading if your choose.

From the beginning we know one of the characters has an horrific childhood filled with the most unspeakable abuse imaginable. I guess the author felt it necessary to regale us with specifics ad nauseom. I agree that the writing in this book is beautiful and I don't agree that it is a masterpiece. Three quarters of the book done, I had taken enough of a beating and decided to end Jude's pain and my own by not finishing the book. To leave a book unfinished is very unusual for me but I found the constant description of cruelty and debasement of a human being unnecessary and redundant.

The other three friends appear to be one dimensional, the doctor friend and the adoptive parents unbelievable. I found the book much too long although I can say that this book has stayed with me, like the film "A Clockwork Orange".

13 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • The Hanging Girl

  • A Department Q Novel
  • By: Jussi Adler-Olsen
  • Narrated by: Graeme Malcolm
  • Length: 15 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,167
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,987
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,976

In the middle of his usual hard-won morning nap in the basement of police headquarters, Carl Mørck, head of Department Q, receives a call from a colleague working on the Danish island of Bornholm. Carl is dismissive when he realizes that a new case is being foisted on him, but a few hours later he receives some shocking news that leaves his headstrong assistant, Rose, more furious than usual.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gasp! This is marvelous!

  • By Ted on 11-21-16

Different kind of crime detective fiction

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

Reviewed: 09-29-15

What an enjoyable ride! A twenty year old crime is brought to the attention of Department Q. I have to say this is my favorite in the series. The characters are very engaging and their relationship to each other is explored in greater depth than in earlier books. The story kept me guessing till the end with many unexpected twists. The narrator has a great style. Highly recommended if you like this genre.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Marriage of Opposites

  • By: Alice Hoffman
  • Narrated by: Gloria Reuben, Tina Benko, Santino Fontana, and others
  • Length: 13 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,247
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,961
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,963

Growing up on idyllic St. Thomas in the early 1800s, Rachel dreams of life in faraway Paris. Rachel's mother, a pillar of their small refugee community of Jews who escaped the Inquisition, has never forgiven her daughter for being a difficult girl who refuses to live by the rules. Growing up, Rachel's salvation is their maid Adelle's belief in her strengths and her deep, lifelong friendship with Jestine, Adelle's daughter. But Rachel's life is not her own.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Magical!

  • By TV on 09-27-15

Engrossing historical fiction

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

Reviewed: 09-04-15

Lovely literary fiction based on the lives of the artist Camille Pissaro and his mother, Rachel. The author has added fictional characters to round out the story but seems to have researched their family history very well. The story moves from St. Thomas, where the family had moved due to religious persecution, to Paris. The language is so descriptive that you get a sense of the heat, smells and colors of the island.

The narrators were all excellent. I highly recommend this book.

  • The Signature of All Things

  • A Novel
  • By: Elizabeth Gilbert
  • Narrated by: Juliet Stevenson
  • Length: 21 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,332
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,868
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4,877

In The Signature of All Things, Elizabeth Gilbert returns to fiction, inserting her inimitable voice into an enthralling story of love, adventure and discovery. Spanning much of the 18th and 19th centuries, the novel follows the fortunes of the extraordinary Whittaker family as led by the enterprising Henry Whittaker - a poor-born Englishman who makes a great fortune in the South American quinine trade, eventually becoming the richest man in Philadelphia.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Don't miss this one

  • By Molly-o on 12-27-13

OK but ...

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

Reviewed: 11-21-14

Most of the book was interesting and I enjoyed the historical references. It seems very well researched. I just found the book needed shortening. It was too long and at times repetitive. I'm glad I read it though.

  • To Kill a Mockingbird

  • By: Harper Lee
  • Narrated by: Sissy Spacek
  • Length: 12 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 26,607
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 24,041
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 23,974

Harper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south - and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred, available now for the first time as a digital audiobook. One of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than 40 languages, sold more than 30 million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the 20th century by librarians across the country.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Stunning

  • By Alan on 07-08-14

What a pairing

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

Reviewed: 10-02-14

A wonderful narration by Sissy Spacek adds to the enjoyment of this classical literary gem.

  • The Space Between Us

  • By: Thrity Umrigar
  • Narrated by: Purva Bedi
  • Length: 12 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 264
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 234
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 236

Best-selling author Thrity Umrigar won the Nieman Fellowship and earned a finalist spot for the PEN/Beyond Margins award with The Space Between Us. Set in modern-day India, this evocative novel follows upper-middle-class Parsi housewife Sera Dubash and 65-year-old illiterate household worker Bhima as they make their way through life. Though separated by their stations in life, the two women share bonds of womanhood that prove far stronger than the divisions of class or culture.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Story that stays with you

  • By gardener97 on 04-25-15

Predictable, Melodramatic

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

Reviewed: 09-27-14

I really expected to enjoy this book but was disappointed by the predictable storyline which became obvious very early on. I normally love hearing Indian accents but I found the narrator to be overly dramatic . The idea of juxtaposing the lives of a wealthy woman with a poor servant was interesting but all of the characters seemed to be flat and one dimensional. I found the ending to be unbelievable.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Elephant Whisperer

  • My Life with the Herd in the African Wild
  • By: Lawrence Anthony, Graham Spence
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 10 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,148
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4,724
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,735

>When South African conservationist Lawrence Anthony was asked to accept a herd of "rogue" wild elephants on his Thula Thula game reserve in Zululand, his common sense told him to refuse. But he was the herd's last chance of survival: they would be killed if he wouldn't take them. In order to save their lives, Anthony took them in. In the years that followed he became a part of their family. And as he battled to create a bond with the elephants, he came to realize that they had a great deal to teach him about life, loyalty, and freedom.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Beautiful story, beautifully written

  • By Tango on 01-12-13

Lovely story. Wonderful narration.

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

Reviewed: 09-03-14

This was a great find. The narration by Simon Vance is perfect. Lawrence Anthony describes his love of Africa, the people, the animals and especially his relationship with a wild herd of elephants. Highly recommended.

  • The Absent One

  • By: Jussi Adler-Olsen
  • Narrated by: Steven Pacey
  • Length: 14 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,641
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,370
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,363

In The Keeper of Lost Causes, Jussi Adler-Olsen introduced Detective Carl Mørck, a deeply flawed, brilliant detective newly assigned to run Department Q, the home of Copenhagen’s coldest cases. The result wasn’t what Mørck - or readers - expected, but by the opening of Adler-Olsen’s shocking, fast-paced follow-up, Mørck is satisfied with the notion of picking up long-cold leads. So he’s naturally intrigued when a closed case lands on his desk: A brother and sister were brutally murdered two decades earlier....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • New favorite author

  • By JAB on 09-25-12

Disappointing

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

Reviewed: 08-28-14

I enjoyed the Keeper of Lost Causes and found the leading characters interesting but this book dragged and was needlessly violent. The sadism was repulsive and mistreatment of animals disgusting Since there was no mystery I felt it hard to stay engaged. The narrator was good. No complaints there. I did finish the book but would not recommend it.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Return of the Native

  • By: Thomas Hardy
  • Narrated by: Alan Rickman
  • Length: 15 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 891
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 815
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 793

Set on Egdon Heath, a fictional barren moor in Wessex, Eustacia Vye longs for the excitement of city life but is cut off from the world in her grandfather's lonely cottage. Clym Yeobright who has returned to the area to become a schoolmaster seems to offer everything she dreams of: passion, excitement and the opportunity to escape. However, Clym's ambitions are quite different, and marriage only increases Eustacia's destructive restlessness, drawing others into a tangled web of deceit and unhappiness.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Always Hardy

  • By Wallen on 04-20-11

My new favorite

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

Reviewed: 08-13-14

What a delight hearing Alan Rickman read this marvelous audiobook. A wonderful Thomas Hardy classic being spoken in the glorious voice of Mr. Rickman. You couldn't ask for better.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • All the Light We Cannot See

  • A Novel
  • By: Anthony Doerr
  • Narrated by: Zach Appelman
  • Length: 16 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 45,312
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40,506
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40,510

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is 12, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good story, good narrator, not so great production

  • By j phillips on 08-08-17

Overly long and repetitious

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

Reviewed: 07-04-14

I must join the ranks of those that disliked this book. Although I finished it, I felt it was a labor rather than a labor of love. The narration moved through different periods of time making it confusing to follow. I felt the descriptions were too flowery and forced. Metaphors ran rampant. Too many dream sequences.

If you enjoyed watching "The English Patient", you'll probably like this book.

32 of 37 people found this review helpful