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  • 13
  • reviews
  • 12
  • helpful votes
  • 74
  • ratings
  • The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell

  • A Novel
  • By: Robert Dugoni
  • Narrated by: Robert Dugoni
  • Length: 11 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,402
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,872
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,861

Sam Hill always saw the world through different eyes. Born with red pupils, he was called “Devil Boy” or Sam “Hell” by his classmates; “God’s will” is what his mother called his ocular albinism. Her words were of little comfort, but Sam persevered. Sam believed it was God who sent Ernie Cantwell, the only African American kid in his class, to be the friend he so desperately needed. And that it was God’s idea for Mickie Kennedy to storm into Our Lady of Mercy like a tornado, uprooting every rule Sam had been taught about boys and girls. Forty years later, Sam, a small-town eye doctor, is no longer certain anything was by design.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Warning about the ending

  • By Roger M. Young on 05-27-18

Authors shouldn’t narrate

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

Reviewed: 07-04-18

This story is excellent. As an ex-Catholic, I especially enjoyed the religious story line that pulled the plot together. The writing is sometimes trite with certain words or phrases overused, but mostly its enjoyable. What I didn’t like was the narration. Dugoni is a writer, not an actor, and that’s how he reads. His different voices and accents are amateurish, and his Spanish accent is horrendous. I might read another book written by Dugoni in print, but not another audio book if he narrates it himself. The publisher should know better.

  • The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto

  • A Novel
  • By: Mitch Albom
  • Narrated by: Mitch Albom, Paul Stanley, George Guidall
  • Length: 9 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,001
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,860
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,850

Mitch Albom creates his most unforgettable fictional character - Frankie Presto, the greatest guitarist ever to walk the Earth - in this magical novel about the bands we join in life and the power of talent to change our lives. It's an epic story of the greatest guitar player ever to live and the six lives he changed with his magical blue strings.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fiction interwoven with REAL people, places,events

  • By Cynthia on 12-02-15

Wonderful, magical book!

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

Reviewed: 12-13-17

I absolutely loved this book. It has now become one of my favorites. Everything about it was great— the narration with different people doing different characters, the story that was believable (to the point that I actually googled Frankie Presto to see if he was real) yet with a lovely touch of magic, and the whole treatment of music. The narration by Music, the talent who was kind of like a god, was very novel and interesting. Maybe the only misstep was the narrator’s horrible Spanish pronunciation, but the positives more than made up for that. I highly recommend this book.

  • The Wrong Side of Goodbye

  • Harry Bosch, Book 19
  • By: Michael Connelly
  • Narrated by: Titus Welliver
  • Length: 10 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14,578
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,320
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,251

Harry Bosch is California's newest private investigator. He doesn't advertise, he doesn't have an office, and he's picky about who he works for, but it doesn't matter. His chops from 30 years with the LAPD speak for themselves. Soon one of Southern California's biggest moguls comes calling. The reclusive billionaire has less than six months to live and a lifetime of regrets. He hires Bosch to find out whether he has an heir.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Connelly Delivers Everytime

  • By Charles Atkinson on 07-19-17

Boring

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

Reviewed: 08-08-17

I've read and listened to a lot of Bosch books over the years and this is the worst one ever. The narrator's monotonous voice puts me to sleep, and the story is slow, overly detailed and devoid of action. Connelly goes into every tiny thing Bosch does in the course of his investigation and its painstaking to listen to in the narrator's monotone. I'm about halfway through and I haven't decided if I'm going to bother finishing the book or not. Don't waste your money or your credit on this dull dull book.

  • Running Blind

  • Jack Reacher, Book 4
  • By: Lee Child
  • Narrated by: Johnathan McClain
  • Length: 13 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,705
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,261
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,256

Across the country women are being murdered by a killer who leaves no evidence, no fatal wounds, no signs of struggle, and no clues to a motive. They are, truly, perfect crimes. In fact, the only thing that links the victims is the man they all knew: Jack Reacher.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Not My Favorite Reacher...

  • By Debbie on 02-20-13

Terrible narrator

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

Reviewed: 02-20-17

The story was fine-typical entertaining Reacher. But the narrator was really hard to listen to. He couldn't do women's voices at all and he made the male characters except for Reacher sound angry and shout everything. He really ruined the book. I hope they don't get him to do any more Reacher stories.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Britt-Marie Was Here

  • A Novel
  • By: Fredrik Backman
  • Narrated by: Joan Walker
  • Length: 9 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,765
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,178
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,164

Britt-Marie can't stand mess. She eats dinner at precisely the right time and starts her day at six in the morning because only lunatics wake up later than that. And she is not passive-aggressive. Not in the least. It's just that sometimes people interpret her helpful suggestions as criticisms, which is certainly not her intention. But at 63, Britt-Marie has had enough. She finally walks out on her loveless 40-year marriage and finds a job in the only place she can: Borg, a small, derelict town devastated by the financial crisis.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Gem

  • By Sara on 05-12-16

A lovely book

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

Reviewed: 11-01-16

Where does Britt-Marie Was Here rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Among the best.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Britt-Marie Was Here?

I really liked the ending.

What about Joan Walker’s performance did you like?

She made the character seem so real and so believable.

Any additional comments?

Britt-Marie's character isn't necessarily likeable at first, but the way the story unfolds she becomes more and more human and you start to see her flaws and her gifts. Her effect on the people around her is clear, but it isn't so clear how much they're affecting her until towards the end. This story held my attention and made me feel like I really knew the characters. I loved it and would recommend it to anyone who likes character-study type books with a few life lessons thrown in. (Not to mention soccer.)

  • The Zero Hour

  • By: Joseph Finder
  • Narrated by: Jeff Gurner
  • Length: 13 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 221
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 161
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 163

When an ominous, digitally encrypted telephone call is intercepted by the NSA's spy satellites high over Switzerland, FBI Special Agent Sarah Cahill -- irreverent, outspoken, a brilliant counterterrorism expert, a divorced mother of an eight-year-old boy -- is urgently summoned to New York to investigate an imminent terrorist attack on lower Manhattan.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Intense

  • By Jacki on 08-13-12

Exciting but too much detail

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

Reviewed: 07-26-16

This was a good story that held my attention. It got a little bogged down in technical details, most of which was unnecessary to the plot and just slowed it down. Also, of course, it's dated, almost obsolete, because technology and terrorism have progressed so much since this was written. Still, it is an exciting story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Heft

  • By: Liz Moore
  • Narrated by: Kirby Heyborne, Keith Szarabajka
  • Length: 11 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4,492
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,120
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4,117

Forrmer academic Arthur Opp weighs 550 pounds and hasn’t left his rambling Brooklyn home in a decade. Twenty miles away in Yonkers, seventeen-year-old Kel Keller navigates life as the poor kid in a rich school and pins his hopes on what seems like a promising baseball career - if he can untangle himself from his family drama.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Intriguing--Captivating--Altering

  • By Mel on 04-19-12

Really good listen

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

Reviewed: 03-16-14

What made the experience of listening to Heft the most enjoyable?

The way that the characters become real people that you really care about.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Heft?

I can't say without giving away the story. But I really cared about what happened to Kell, so every moment that pertained to him was memorable, maybe especially his mother's death and the way he reacted.

Have you listened to any of Kirby Heyborne and Keith Szarabajka ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No...

If you could take any character from Heft out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Kell. I want to see what's happened to him since the end of the story. OK. I want to take Arthur Opp out too, to see if Kell changed his life like I think it did.

Any additional comments?

The story builds and builds to the climax and sometimes I wanted to be able to skim through it (like you can when you read text) so I could get there. But listening forces you to hear every bit of this wonderfully written book and you realize how important that is so that you can truly understand these characters.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Book Thief

  • By: Markus Zusak
  • Narrated by: Allan Corduner
  • Length: 13 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 21,931
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,782
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,815

It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist: books.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Glad I took a chance.

  • By Robert on 08-20-11

I love this book!

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

Reviewed: 03-16-14

Would you consider the audio edition of The Book Thief to be better than the print version?

I don't know. I haven't read it. But I can't imagine that a movie that doesn't have the great narration and the wonderful metaphorical writing would be as good.

What did you like best about this story?

The beautiful writing, especially the voice of the narrator.

What about Allan Corduner’s performance did you like?

He read it perfectly.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I loved it. Mostly I'd say I cried.

Any additional comments?

The story is great but it's the language that makes this such a wonderful book.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Goldfinch

  • By: Donna Tartt
  • Narrated by: David Pittu
  • Length: 32 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26,962
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,537
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 24,559

The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow

  • By j phillips on 05-28-17

You really start to care about this guy!

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

Reviewed: 02-06-14

Which character – as performed by David Pittu – was your favorite?

Well, Theo, obviously. But Pittu performed all of the characters perfectly. His Boris was also outstanding. He does it all--accents, male/female, the right emotions.

Any additional comments?

This was a GREAT book. You really get pulled into the story and start feeling like this boy is real. Sometimes he does stupid things and you want to shake him. Other times, you just feel so sorry for the tricks life has played on him. All of the characters were developed to the point that you knew them and what made them tick. This is one of my all time favorite audio books.

  • Gone Girl

  • A Novel
  • By: Gillian Flynn
  • Narrated by: Julia Whelan, Kirby Heyborne
  • Length: 19 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 50,141
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 44,660
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 44,753

It is Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick's clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn't doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media - as well as Amy's fiercely doting parents - the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he's definitely bitter - but is he really a killer?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Demented, twisted, sick and I loved it!

  • By Theodore on 01-20-13

Don't waste your credit

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

Reviewed: 07-19-13

What would have made Gone Girl better?

A condensed version.

Would you ever listen to anything by Gillian Flynn again?

No

Would you be willing to try another one of Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne ’s performances?

Probably not, but it might just be the roles they were reading. Julia's voice was so whiny. Kirby's was too high.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Gone Girl?

many many chapters, all the endless whining/explaining by Amy. Most of the middle. The plot did not warrant such a long drawn-out book.

Any additional comments?

While the basic, "whodunnit" is kind of interesting at first, this book drags on and on. Neither character is particularly likable. About halfway through, I actually asked someone who'd read it to tell me what happened so I wouldn't have to listen to the whole long boring story to get to the end. She gave me a hint and I skipped about 20 chapters and listened to the last couple. I felt completely ripped off and disgusted by the ending.