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Richard Delman

San Francisco
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  • The Cabinet of Curiosities

  • A Novel
  • By: Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Marosz
  • Length: 17 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,958
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,688
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,686

In an ancient tunnel underneath New York City a charnel house is discovered. Inside are 36 bodies all murdered and mutilated more than a century ago. While FBI agent Pendergast investigates the old crimes, identical killings start to terrorize the city. The nightmare has begun. Again.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • DrBB

  • By Lois on 01-26-13

Not The Ice Limit.

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

Reviewed: 11-16-18

IMHO, The Ice Limit is the masterwork of Preston and Child. I think that Scott Brick narrates it, and he isn't my first choice of narrators, but Preston and Child have turned out such a prodigious volume of this stuff that you just can't help preferring one over the others. I did find this fun, although I found it utterly preposterous in many ways. Being imaginative is great, and my hat is off to them for the painstaking research and the glorious invention. However, life without end? A house full of the most unimaginable, one of a kind, priceless treasures of the earth, and it has been essentially idle for a hundred years? And, I agree with the reviewer who complains of the genius Pendergast and the stupid cops: enough already. Also, the editing quirk of several sentences being repeated where a simple edit would have cut them: it is irritating. Jonathan Marosz is fine, in my book, so to speak. He has done some Dennis Lehane and some Harlan Coben, and I like the sound of his voice. I forgive him the rising tone at the end of sentences.
I also have to say that I like Gideon Crew, he-man stereotype though he is. I've read or listened to all four of the books that involve him, and I hope he outlasts the dire medical prognosis.
All in all, worth the credit. A good yarn, even if the imagination runs away with itself regularly. Who really cares? It's fiction, right? They can't all be To Kill a Mockingbird.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • To Kill a Mockingbird

  • By: Harper Lee
  • Narrated by: Sissy Spacek
  • Length: 12 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 25,491
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 23,044
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 22,985

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
  • A gift to be treasured

  • By David Shear on 07-09-14

So much talent. So much warmth and wisdom. A gift.

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

Reviewed: 11-16-18

The positive reviewers rave about this masterpiece, and every single one of them is right. It is hard to find words to adequately describe how powerful this accomplishment is. I had seen the movie about fifty years ago, and I remember thinking that Gregory Peck was the only man who could play Atticus Finch. Well, now comes Sissy Spacek, who plays all of the characters in the book with grace, gentleness and love. We get to know Scout, Jem and Atticus so completely, so intimately: they feel like our family, only better. Atticus is without doubt the perfect father, never losing his temper even in the face of the astonishing evil that his own townspeople serve up. I spent two years in the South in the 1960s. Some of the people there still had the unimaginable prejudice against black people: one of my fraternity brothers at Vanderbilt, an otherwise fine guy, could not eat in the same room as a black person. The book evokes memories of lots of people like that. You just cannot understand them. Even the knowledge that they grew up in that environment, that they had no choices about what to think, but when they grow up and see the true evil on offer in the world? How can they not gain a little wisdom?
This book is a true American masterpiece, a work that could not have arisen out of any country other than ours. Racial prejudice is everywhere, of course, but the particular brand of it that lives in the American South is so insidious, so horrid, that the mind boggles. The kind of animal that Bob Ewell is, a man who repeatedly rapes and beats his own daughter and then blames all of his misery on the innocent Tom Robinson: this is a tragedy that chokes us up. It should not happen. Harper Lee absolutely deserved the Pulitzer and every other award she could receive. There is more wisdom in one chapter of this book than in literally dozens of novels that I have read. You must listen to it yourself, at least once. I will let a year go by, and then begin again with the joy that only this performance gives. I hope you love it too.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Watchers

  • By: Dean Koontz
  • Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini
  • Length: 16 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,496
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,375
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,369

On his thirty-sixth birthday, Travis Cornell hikes into the foothills of the Santa Ana Mountains. But his path is soon blocked by a bedraggled Golden Retriever who will let him go no further into the dark woods. That morning, Travis had been desperate to find some happiness in his lonely, seemingly cursed life. What he finds is a dog of alarming intelligence that soon leads him into a relentless storm of mankind’s darkest creation....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A stunning masterpiece that leaves you with hope.

  • By Anonymous User on 08-31-18

A terrific book read by the perfect narrator

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

Reviewed: 11-06-18

Dean Koontz calls this book his masterpiece, and this recording of it the absolute best. I had not read any of his books before, and I may not read another. As I look through the titles, he seems to be completely into the horror genre, like a minor league Stephen King. I am not at all into that, so much not so that I really have very little to compare it to. I have read a few of King's books, but I probably won't read any more of them, either. In any case, I sure am glad that Edoardo Ballerini did this. He is just about the greatest living narrator. Almost everything he does is great. I won't try to summarize the plot, as it is long and complicated, except to say that a dog has been scientifically invested with human intelligence, and a couple care for him deeply throughout the book. A monster has also been created, and you can see the denouement coming a thousand miles away. It's a fun ride, though. You will likely enjoy it.

  • November Road

  • A Novel
  • By: Lou Berney
  • Narrated by: Johnathan McClain
  • Length: 9 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 177
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 166
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 165

Frank Guidry’s luck has finally run out. A loyal street lieutenant to New Orleans’ mob boss Carlos Marcello, Guidry has learned that everybody is expendable. But now it’s his turn - he knows too much about the crime of the century: the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Within hours of JFK’s murder, everyone with ties to Marcello is turning up dead, and Guidry suspects he’s next. With few good options, Guidry hits the road to Las Vegas, to see an old associate - a dangerous man who hates Marcello enough to help Guidry vanish.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A new look at life after the JFK Assassination

  • By stuartjash on 10-10-18

Run out and get this book right now!

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

Reviewed: 10-16-18

It is a thrill to review a book that is this great. I have liked Lou Berney's prior books, but this one is better than the other three or four combined, and they were excellent. The publisher's summary lets you know about the setting and the characters, but there is nothing like listening to the fantastic narration and getting to know the people and following along in their extremely romantic, funny, thrilling romance and adventure. Frank Guidry is a con man who knows too much about the assassination of JFK, and as a result his superiors in the mob are determined to track him down. He hits the road. And there he comes upon Charlotte Roy and her divine little girls, Joan and her sister, whose name I have temporarily blocked. In any case, Frank falls hopelessly in love with the three of them. They are on the road running away from a needy, alcoholic father and husband, Dooley. The family has been living in a small town in Oklahoma, which, as it turns out, is where Lou Berney grew up and still lives. His imagination is just a marvelous thing. The reassembled family hits Route 66, all the way through the Texas Panhandle, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona and on to Las Vegas, where they meet up with Moe Dalitz, a mobster in his own right. Moe hates Carlos, the opposing mobster who is Frank's boss. Moe hates Carlos so much that he is willing to send Frank all the way to Viet Nam to run his own new interests (read: gambling, prostitution, drugs and who knows what else). If only to spite Carlos. Moe has a stable of lily-white teenage boys and girls who laze around his mansion playing ridiculous, dangerous, drugged-out games for him. Confused? Don't be. Lou Berney pulls all of this off with supreme aplomb. You root for Frank and Charlotte all the way, even though Frank must invent an identity to protect himself from the cold killer Paul Barone, who will off anybody just for kicks.
I love everything about this book. I hope you do too. I cannot imagine what Mr. Berney and the delightful Jonathan McClain can come up with next. I can't wait.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Freedom

  • A Novel
  • By: Jonathan Franzen
  • Narrated by: David LeDoux
  • Length: 24 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 4,715
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2,325
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,334

Patty and Walter Berglund were the new pioneers of old St. Paul - the gentrifiers, the hands-on parents, the Whole Foods generation. Patty was the ideal sort of neighbor, who could tell you where to recycle your batteries and how to get the local cops to do their job. She was an enviably perfect mother and the wife of Walter's dreams. Together with Walter - environmental lawyer, commuter cyclist, total family man - she was doing her small part to build a better world.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Enjoyable book. Really liked the narration.

  • By R. Spangler on 12-13-10

Masturbatory. Boring.

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

Reviewed: 10-16-18

Is this the same guy who wrote The Corrections? It is hard to believe. This entire book, all twenty-six hours of it, is about three people, and not a one of them is all that interesting. The family in The Corrections was really interesting, each one of them being worth reading about. The writing was stellar. The plot kept you guessing. Franzen is now gliding along. The fact that the first book was such a hit, and I did love it, has allowed him to sit back and cruise. I imagine he made a truly substantial amount of money for the first book, and he deserved it. This one, though, isn't worth a credit. I was curious to see what a second act would give us, but, honestly, save your money. Richard, Walter and Patty do not fill up such a humongous empty space. They're not even worth writing a whole book about. Their escapades are strictly vanilla. And not even a good vanilla. So Richard and Patty finally get it together, after an endless ten hours or so. Whoopee! What a ride. Save your time and your money. Life is too short to listen to boring stuff like this.

  • Button Man

  • By: Andrew Gross
  • Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini
  • Length: 9 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 124
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 119
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 117

Andrew Gross delivers a stirring story of a Jewish family brought together in the dawn of the women's garment business and torn apart by the birth of organized crime in New York City in the 1930s. Morris, Sol, and Harry Rabishevsky grew up poor and rough in a tiny flat on the Lower East Side, until the death of their father thrust them into having to fend for themselves. Morris, the youngest, dropped out of school at 12 and apprenticed himself to a garment cutter in a clothing factory; Sol headed to accounting school; but Harry, scarred by a family tragedy, fell in with a gang of thugs as a teenager.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent historical suspense HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

  • By shelley on 09-19-18

Truly excellent writing and narration.

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

Reviewed: 09-30-18

I agree with the five-star reviews. This is one of the most enjoyable works that I have listened to in a long time. Edoardo Ballerini has been my favorite living narrator, maybe other than George Guidall, for years. Andrew Gross has also claimed a niche in historical thrillers. The plot has been nicely summarized by the publisher and also by the other Audible readers. Morris is the center of the book, but there are a handful of other characters who are also very vivid. You half-expect to find Jimmy Hoffa in here somewhere. I had no idea that the men who developed the unions in the 20's and 30's were serious gangsters. At this point in time unions seem to me like a benign force, helping their members accumulate power in negotiations for health insurance, pensions, investments and other benefits that those of us who are self-employed pay through the nose for. Anyone who can negotiate with insurance companies has my congratulations. Having been a health care provider for almost fifty years, insurance companies have been the bane of my existence.
Sorry: I get derailed when thinking about that topic. There is violence in the book, and some of it is stretched out for reasons that I don't quite understand. Toward the end, Morris survives an encounter with thugs that makes him seem like he should have a capital S on his uniform. A gunshot wound at close range, several knife wounds also administered at close range, then he is tied up with chains and falls (was pushed) into the East River?! And then he wrestles with a vile gangster, throws off the chains and THEN is able to swim to the next pier? Mr. Gross, you must be kidding.
Thankfully there is little of that. The rest of the book is excellent. Mr. Ballerini is so gifted that Yiddish sounds utterly natural coming out of his mouth. Mr. Guidall is Jewish, and I'm not sure that his Yiddish is as good.
This book will give you many hours of enjoyment. It once again elegantly begs the question: how much of this is fiction and how much is real?

  • How Evan Broke His Head and Other Secrets

  • By: Garth Stein
  • Narrated by: Oliver Wyman
  • Length: 13 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 128
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 87
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 87

Evan had a hit single, but that was 10 years ago. Thirty-one now, hes drifting, playing in a local band and teaching middle-aged men to coax music from an electric guitar. Now, 14 years later, he experiences unplanned parenthood when he undertakes to raise the resentful teenage son hes never known. Off beat and disarming, How Evan Broke His Head and Other Secrets portrays a contemporary American family with unfailing honesty.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great narrator of a fine story.

  • By Richard Delman on 09-28-18

Great narrator of a fine story.

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

Reviewed: 09-28-18

Oliver Wyman is a wonderful reader. His narration of Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk has been one of the highlights of my twelve years of listening to audiobooks. I find myself telling people about how great that book is regularly. How Evan Broke his head is nothing like that. The book stars Evan and his son Dean, and then there is a cast of characters around them. The plot moves slowly. Mr. Wyman is again a perfect narrator of the material.There are excellent moments, in which we see the father and son growing into enjoyment of each other. I agree with the reviewer who said that the author's fascination with the Seattle music industry seemed to be far greater than his interest in his own characters, and that is no doubt why the book flags so badly in the second half. There is a fundamental rule about parenting: once you are yelling, you've lost. This book is largely about learning parenting from scratch when the "child" is a fourteen-year-old adolescent. When Evan begins screaming at Dean, and Dean spits in his face and screams "I hate you!": this is the point at which the book becomes hard to tolerate. If you can keep listening, though, you will be rewarded. Evan does a number of dumb, self-destructive things, but in the end the father and son reunite, and they both are wiser for the experiences. I love Oliver Wyman, and I hope I can find another book that is anywhere near as fantastic as Billy Lynn. This book is worth the listen, but I hope to hear Mr. Wyman narrate another book that is even better. I can recommend this book to you, with the caution that some of it is really tough to hear. It is not for the skittish or the squeamish.

  • Next of Kin

  • By: James Tucker
  • Narrated by: Christopher Lane
  • Length: 8 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 211
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 183
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 184

A New Year's Eve celebration begins with the pop of a champagne cork - and ends with the bone-chilling screams of a killer's victims . Ten-year-old Ben Brook is the lone survivor of the brutal murder of his wealthy family at their upstate New York compound. But from the moment he evades death, Ben's life is in constant danger. Can NYPD detective Buddy Lock keep the boy safe from a killer intent on wiping out the entire Brook clan?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Excellent Loved It - Just Get It

  • By shelley on 10-23-17

Absolutely brilliant.

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

Reviewed: 09-12-18

Don't miss this. Mr. Tucker has written a very moving, thrilling book about a boy named Ben, a NYPD officer who comes to love him, and the woman who loves them both. The plot is complicated but not that hard to follow, because I was glued to my seat for the entire eight and three quarters hours. And Christopher Lane is perfect. Perfect. His voice has become deeper and more nuanced with age. I just cannot say enough good things about this entire production. I feel that virtually any reader who loves a great thriller will be thrilled by this book.
The plot, as above, is so complicated that I can't possibly do it justice here. It goes all the way back to the Holocaust, which becomes the seed of the events here. A family gets extraordinarily wealthy by buying important paintings from Jews, at bargain-basement prices, because the Jews are about to be shipped off to Auschwitz, where millions died and few survived. The present day family of the buyer, the Brooks (I believe that that name was originally Bruch), have become unimaginably wealthy because of their inheritance of the Brook Corporation, which holds some crucially important chemical engineering patents. There are four brothers, with their families, who share in the ownership of the corporation. These people are systematically murdered by a person who will go unnamed. Ben is the ten-year-old son of the first parents to be killed. He spends most of the book being cared for by Buddy Lock and Mei Adams, and they spend most of their time trying to keep him from being murdered. Anyway, this amount of detail doesn't really need to be here. The suspense of the book is gripping as the end draws near. Mr. Lane ramps up the narrative pace, in an extremely convincing way. I was scared sh...less. Few books grab me like this one has. I just pre-ordered Mr. Tucker's next book, a thing that I hardly ever do. I hope you love this book as much as I do. It will hold you in its thrall for hours and hours.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Depth of Winter

  • By: Craig Johnson
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 7 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,651
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,555
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,544

In Craig Johnson's latest mystery, Depth of Winter, an international hit man and the head of one of the most vicious drug cartels in Mexico has kidnapped Walt's beloved daughter, Cady, to auction her off to his worst enemies, of which there are many. The American government is of limited help and the Mexican one even less. Walt heads into the 110-degree heat of the Northern Mexican desert alone, one man against an army.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • I miss Vic and Henry!

  • By Nancy R on 09-06-18

Walt is becoming a cartoon character.

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

Reviewed: 09-08-18

Funny title. What the heck does it mean?
Count me among the disappointed. Like most readers, I have eagerly awaited this book, and it has seriously let me down.
Craig Johnson has written the latest in the Walt versus the horrible guys series. And as usual it is George Guidall who is the real star of the proceedings. George is now eighty years old! And still working just as hard and just as brilliantly as he has for his whole career as far as I can tell. I am thinking about listening to him read Crime and Punishment, which is something like thirty-six hours long, translated from the Russian. George is the only narrator alive today who could seriously tempt me to such a Herculean effort. (Mine as well as his. All I have to do is listen. Can you imagine how hard this guy has been working in order to produce the kind and quality of catalog that he has?)
Nevermind. This book stretches credulity way beyond the snapping-off point. Walt’s daughter Cady is kidnapped by a vile, evil villain named Bidarte, who has an appropriately slimy, sleazy henchman named Culpepper. Not to spoil it for you, but these are the kind of monsters who strip the facial skin off of men and then plaster the faces onto soccer balls! Disgusting! Craig! Have you no shame? More importantly, do you have a graphic artist for these cartoons?
So Walt of course takes the bait and goes down into Mexico without any support. Sadly, Vic and Henry and the other support troops stay home, and they are sorely missed. An entire book without Vic and Henry: why? Just so once again Walt can run around proving that he is the world’s loneliest superhero? And with people like Vic and Henry available to him? I say again, why? And, the unkindest cut, where did Walt's sense of humor go?
Walt picks up a bit of support in Mexico, but of course he convinces these folks that he must, must perform his feats of derring-do unaided. He is turning into Dudley Doright. He sneaks into Bidarte’s camp and frees Cady. Along the way we learn that Walt is worth over four million dollars. Where did this come from? Bidarte sets up an auction in which people are bidding for Walt, presumably to torture him and kill him for his bad acts. We know, however, that Walt must live on, else where would the series be? At this point I am expecting Walt to slip into a phone booth (anyone remember those?) and come out with his cape, ready to fly off over the buildings. Maybe with a W on his chest.
I continued listening to this book primarily because George is so wonderful. It is suspenseful, but Craig’s tricks have gotten, not exactly stale, but have begun stretching, as above, the suspension of disbelief to the point at which we have a hard time going along with it. Faces stripped off and sewn onto soccer balls? Really?

18 of 19 people found this review helpful

  • Oh, the Places You'll Go!

  • By: Dr. Seuss
  • Narrated by: John Lithgow
  • Length: 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 525
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 413
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 408

Here is the incomparable Dr. Seuss' story of an unnamed "you" whose travels through the world involve a series of ups and downs. His ultimate success, however, is "98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed!"

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Lovely effects!

  • By Cesar on 11-26-12

What a great way to wake up!

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

Reviewed: 09-07-18

Did you know that Theodore Geisel had to receive forty rejection notices before he got one Yes!? Given that his stuff was so revolutionary, it's not that surprising that publishers were shy of pushing the envelope with this ingenious world of ideas and delightful illustrations. I doubt that any person has ever had the chutzpah to deliver these lines as a commencement speech, but someone should, with appropriate credit given. And while we're at it, I listened to the sample of Ted Danson reading the Lorax, and I gotta tell ya, Ted is no John Lithgow. His voice is wrong, contrived and phony from the git-go. Lithgow once again entertains us with his actorly skills and his knowledge of the world as it is, as opposed to the world as we wish it to be. I love Dr. Seuss. I love John Lithgow. How can one go wrong?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful