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Maria

Oscoda, MI, United States
  • 31
  • reviews
  • 1,156
  • helpful votes
  • 34
  • ratings
  • The Making of Us

  • A Novel
  • By: Lisa Jewell
  • Narrated by: Helen Duff
  • Length: 13 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 633
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 601
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 599

Lydia, Dean, and Robyn live very different lives, but each of them, independently, has always felt that something was missing. What they don't know is that a letter is about to arrive that will turn their lives upside down. It's a letter containing a secret - one that will bind them together and show them what love and family and friendship really mean. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Best book I've read in a long time!

  • By JNS on 07-19-18

Not sure what all the hype is about...

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

Reviewed: 12-02-18

I listened to the first 25-30 minutes, and had to delete the book and return it for a credit. For one, I just cannot understand the dialog. I found myself having to rewind more than once to try to catch what they said, because the accent was so thick. I've listened to a lot of British narrators, but this one was just too tough. I don't like having to concentrate that hard. Secondly, I would have stuck through it if it were the least bit interesting from the get go, but I found it dull and boring, with flat, shallow characters. I forced myself to make it to about the half hour mark, but I could not go on. Maybe others took to it better than I did, but it was just not for me.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Art of Inheriting Secrets

  • A Novel
  • By: Barbara O'Neal
  • Narrated by: Stina Nielsen
  • Length: 12 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 278
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 218
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 215

When Olivia Shaw’s mother dies, the sophisticated food editor is astonished to learn she’s inherited a centuries-old English estate - and a title to go with it. Raw with grief and reeling from the knowledge that her reserved mother hid something so momentous, Olivia leaves San Francisco and crosses the pond to unravel the mystery of a lifetime. One glance at the breathtaking Rosemere Priory and Olivia understands why the manor, magnificent even in disrepair, was the subject of her mother’s exquisite paintings. What she doesn’t understand is why her mother never mentioned it to her.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Great narration, horrible story.

  • By Debbie on 07-24-18

Terrific book... but rushed ending

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

Reviewed: 12-02-18

I loved this book! Right from the beginning it hooked me, and I loved Olivia from the get-go. The plot line of Olivia's mother leaving behind a mysterious legacy was really well done. The characters were lovable and engaging, and the descriptions and scenes of Rosemere were gorgeous. I especially loved the descriptions of food and ingredients woven throughout. I listened nearly straight through and relished every sentence. It was a bit slow in parts... a little more action would have nudged the pace up a bit, yet it still held my interest. The only negative to this book was the ending. It was if all of a sudden, the author got tired of writing, and wrapped up the ending in one sweet little neat package within a span of 5 minutes. I couldn't believe there was no narrative or dialog about what happened with Rebecca, other than a quick mention in a phone call. And there was still no real understanding of why her mother left all of those clues leading up to the last revelation. What was the point? I'm not sure I really understood. And was that the only reason her mother came back to England? I guess I expected a more thorough, satisfying ending and didn't get it. But still, I do recommend the book, as it enchanted me right up to the end. The narrator was terrific, too. Now I'm craving Indian food!

  • Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus

  • Third Edition with Bonus Content, New Reflections
  • By: Nabeel Qureshi, Lee Strobel - foreword
  • Narrated by: Nabeel Qureshi, Michelle Qureshi, Lee Strobel, and others
  • Length: 8 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 114
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 105
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 105

In Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus, now expanded with new bonus content, Nabeel Qureshi describes his dramatic journey from Islam to Christianity, complete with friendships, investigations, and supernatural dreams along the way. Providing an intimate window into a loving Muslim home, Qureshi shares how he developed a passion for Islam before discovering, almost against his will, evidence that Jesus rose from the dead and claimed to be God.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • INCREDIBLE!!! This book affected me greatly!!!

  • By Maria on 08-24-18

INCREDIBLE!!! This book affected me greatly!!!

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

Reviewed: 08-24-18

I honestly don't have the words to adequately review this book, or describe how greatly it affected me. I, too, grew up in a Muslim household and found Christ later in life. My family life was nowhere near as devout as Nabeel's. Rather than immersed in the Quran and daily Islamic prayer and study, my childhood was oppressed by the cultural implications and effects of a Muslim upbringing. As the oldest of six girls who lived in a vanilla Midwestern suburb (no boys) my father resented me big time. My childhood, especially the teenage years, were filled with abuse, neglect, strict rules to follow that made no sense, and the message that girls and women were unworthy of much. I struggled big time with our "cafeteria Islamic" faith, which basically consisted of not talking to boys, not eating pork, and not uttering the name of Jesus or celebrating Christian holidays like Christmas and Easter. It was a miserable existence, and after my disinterested father arranged a marriage for me at the age of 19 to a man twice my age that no one had ever met and who lived on the other side of the country, I left home to be on my own.

It wasn't until I was in my mid-30s that I found Christ. My experience was a more gentler, kinder discovery than Nabeel's. But so much of what he wrote about with regard to family dynamics, struggle against past beliefs, and the division Christian faith caused resonated deeply with me. Most profound for me were his revelations that despite all the hardship he went through, God made it known to him clearly that it "wasn't about you." Meaning, there is a bigger purpose in his salvation.

What an amazing testimony he gave! I listened nearly straight through, enraptured by every word. It affected me so deeply. It reminded me not to ever take a single blessing for granted. Today, I look back with awe at how much peace, blessing, success, love, and opportunity the Lord provided specifically to me, for me. For no other reason that my True Father in Heaven adores me.

I sobbed at the end of this book, so moved and humbled and grateful to have stumbled upon this book. It stayed with me a very, very long time, and I know it will continue to remain with me for many weeks and months to come. Most moving was the commentary at the end of the book by his wife, Michelle. I know she's aware of just how profoundly this book and Nabeel's story will impact the world. I so very much look forward to meeting Nabeel one day in the Kingdom of Heaven!!!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Simple Wild

  • By: K. A. Tucker
  • Narrated by: Rebekkah Ross
  • Length: 12 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 442
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 418
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 419

City girl Calla Fletcher attempts to reconnect with her estranged father, and unwittingly finds herself torn between her desire to return to the bustle of Toronto and a budding relationship with a rugged Alaskan pilot in this masterful new romance from acclaimed author K.A. Tucker.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 5 STARS 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

  • By Cyndi on 08-10-18

Ohhh... I absolutely LOVED this book!!!!

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

Reviewed: 08-22-18

Every once in a while, I come across a book that just surprises and delights me. This was one of those books! I swear, I listened all the way through (much to the chagrin of my husband). It's one of those truly perfect love stories where the guy (Jonah) is a big, tough, ruggedly handsome, wild alpha who's sensitive enough and witty/sarcastic enough to be smoking hot... without any of what I tend to call "the cheese factor." And Calla, a beautiful city girl through and through, is completely likable and funny and genuine. I suppose, in a nutshell, that was what I loved most about this book. I adored every single stinking' character, and rooted for all of them. Much more than a love story set in Alaska, this novel had a beautiful plot about parent-child relationships, loss, regret, hope, and the dichotomy between simple and complicated. Not to mention, the descriptions of Alaskan landscapes and people were captivating. The ending was satisfying, and left me wishing there was more -- or that I didn't listen so darn quickly. I think Rebekkah Ross is my new favorite narrator... she totally rocked this book! I'll definitely be looking for others from her as well as this author. Five stars, and my all-time favorite summer audiobook of 2018.

  • Dirty Genes

  • A Breakthrough Program to Treat the Root Cause of Illness and Optimize Your Health
  • By: Ben Lynch
  • Narrated by: Kaleo Griffith
  • Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 229
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 196
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 199

A leading expert in epigenetics - how genes switch on and off - provides a revolutionary, holistic, and personalized approach to better health by improving how your genes behave to prevent and reverse common ailments, chronic illnesses, and life-threatening diseases, including cardiovascular disease, autoimmune disorders, anxiety, depression, digestive issues, obesity, cancer, diabetes, and more.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Eye opening book on epigenetics - Worthwhile Read!

  • By Samurai Sailor on 02-01-18

Ugh, don't even bother!!

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

Reviewed: 02-06-18

This was one of the worst books I ever downloaded, and let me tell you why. First of all, I love audiobooks about epigenetics, health, disease, and biology -- so I'm familiar with this non-fiction genre. Secondly, I drive long distances regularly, with 5+ hour drives. I downloaded this book right before a very long road trip, and this is essentially how it went:

"Is it possible you could have dirty genes? Please take our questionnaire in the enhancement PDF..."

"For a list of diseases, syndromes, and issues that are likely the result of dirty genes, please refer to the enhancement..."

"What are some of the symptoms of dirty genes? Please read page 2 and 3 of the enhancement..."

"For a complete list of the kinds of things that can dirty up your genes, please refer to the enhancement PDF..."

"Foods and nutrients can help scrub dirty genes clean. For a list of those foods, please refer to the PDF enhancement..."

You get the idea. A complete joke. If I wanted to continually read and refer to something on paper or screen, then I would have bought the Kindle version. Nearly every other audiobook I've listened to in the biomedical sciences have included every list, every word, every questionnaire, every footnote in the audiobook, because most of the time people listening don't have the desire or the ability to go into a computer or device and download a document. That's the whole purpose of an audiobook. I don't understand why the author or publisher would allow it with this one, but the whole thing just comes off as lazy and incomplete. I'm returning for a credit.

(Side note, at the same time I also downloaded "The Longevity Code" by Kris Verburgh, MD which is on a similar topic. MUCH more thorough, so I recommend that instead.)

72 of 77 people found this review helpful

  • The Obesity Code

  • Unlocking the Secrets of Weight Loss
  • By: Dr. Jason Fung
  • Narrated by: Brian Nishii
  • Length: 10 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,107
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,270
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,182

In this highly listenable and provocative book, Dr. Jason Fung sets out an original, robust theory of obesity that provides startling insights into proper nutrition. In addition to his five basic steps - a set of lifelong habits that will improve your health and control your insulin levels - Dr. Fung explains how to use intermittent fasting to break the cycle of insulin resistance and reach a healthy weight - for good.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • There is a PDF, Folks

  • By Cynthia on 06-27-17

YES!! Finally. The book I've been searching for!!

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

Reviewed: 03-10-17

I am not a doctor, nutritionist or science major. I'm just a middle-age female who has struggled with weight for the past 15 years. I have a genuine interest in biology, epigenetics, nutrition and disease prevention. I have literally read or listened to every single book published out there on those subjects. Some are good, some are bad. And all of them center around this false notion that eating the right amount or specific kinds of various macros are the key to losing weight. Don't get me wrong - some of those diets and eating plans work - in the short term. Once I even lost 30 lbs and found a love of trail running. But every single stinkin' time the weight loss would be only temporary, and it would come back on within months. I was the quintessential yo-yo dieter who people assumed went on ice cream eating binges when I definitely did not. No one ever explained set-point, or the reason why weight comes back. Dr. Fung explains the body's homeostasis so well and with such great analogies that it was like a big, bright lightbulb going off. I'm excited to begin a new journey of sustained weight loss. This time around, instead of cutting out entire food groups or focusing on macros, I bought a blood sugar monitor and will aim to lower my blood sugar and insulin levels by experimenting with the right foods and diet for me. I discovered that Greek Yogurt -- the supposed health food that almost every diet book applauds as being great for weight loss -- spikes my blood sugar (and presumably, my insulin) considerably. But a snack of Ezekiel bread and peanut butter (gasp... actual BREAD?) didn't affect my blood sugar much at all. After years of wondering if tweaking and lowering my calories by another 100 on My Fitness Pal app would help me break my plateau, I finally have real answers. (And for the record, Dr. Fung insists that answer is NO.) The narrator was fabulous, and all around I'm declaring that I don't need to listen to another weight loss book ever again. This is a God-send!

424 of 433 people found this review helpful

  • Two by Two

  • By: Nicholas Sparks
  • Narrated by: Ari Fliakos
  • Length: 14 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,830
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,863
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,853

At 32 Russell Green has it all: a stunning wife, a lovable six-year-old daughter, a successful career as an advertising executive, and an expansive home in Charlotte. He is living the dream, and his marriage to the bewitching Vivian is the center of that. But underneath the shiny surface of this perfect existence, fault lines are beginning to appear, and no one is more surprised than Russ when he finds every aspect of the life he took for granted turned upside down.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • I Am Stunned At The Good Reviews!

  • By Wendi on 10-17-16

Gah! Boring. Dull. Cliche.

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

Reviewed: 10-18-16

I used to be an avid Nicholas Sparks fan, buying every book of his as soon as it was published. But they've been declining in quality, and I'm disappointed to say that I couldn't finish this one - and I likely won't be buying any more. It's a cliche, unimaginative story of modern American society: mousy testosterone-deprived doormat of a husband who gets cheated on by his wife when he quits his executive job, and mopes around the house feeling sorry for himself. The Mrs. is a powerful career driven mother who lands a high profile job and has an affair with her boss - dull and unlikeable from the start. Of course there's the token lesbian sister with ample digs on the Christian/Catholic church and their views on homosexuality, and a lot of mundane dialog that goes nowhere. Even the little girl is about as boring as a bowl of Kraft mac and cheese. There's an ex-girlfriend in the picture, but I honestly didn't really care to see where that storyline was going. Can you believe that with 7 hours left, I gave up and deleted it? I gave it two stars because the narrator was decent. Save your credit.

25 of 31 people found this review helpful

  • Always Too Much and Never Enough

  • By: Jasmin Singer
  • Narrated by: Jasmin Singer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 111
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 100
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 101

From the extra pounds and bullies that left her eating lunch alone at school to the low self-esteem that left her both physically and emotionally vulnerable to abuse, Jasmin Singer's weight defined her life. Even after she embraced a vegan lifestyle and a passion for animal rights advocacy, she defied any skinny vegan stereotypes by getting heavier. It was only after she committed to juice fasts and a diet of whole foods that she lost almost a hundred pounds and realized what it means to be truly full.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Touching and inspirational

  • By Daniel on 02-19-16

Meh... Not something I could relate to

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

Reviewed: 05-01-16

I had wanted to like this book, but even after a couple of hours invested in it, I gave up and moved on to something else. I guess I had hoped Jasmine's story would be more inspiring than it really was. Don't get me wrong, I commend her journey and her bravery to get to the point where she is now, but it just wasn't something I could relate to. She was an overweight, quirky, "underground" outcast kind of teenager with a fondness for New York, bright lights, show tunes, Broadway and theater. She wore funky clothes, had dark eyeliner and tattoos. She fought her weight and food battles in the solace of the LGBT community and vegetarianism... giving herself wholly into both of those causes. My life was very different, as I made peace with food and weight issues by becoming friends with farmers, embracing nature and learning to become one with the outdoors. I work in a very corporate environment and had none of the childhood or social issues she had. In fact, I can't even say that I personally know anyone remotely like her. Not to say that's bad, or sheltered or close-minded, but having grown up in the Midwest, she just isn't relatable. Her stories of bullying broke my heart, and I sympathized with some of her sad and awkward moments. I suppose, though, this book just didn't do it for me. I simply got bored with it. I have no doubt that it will impact others, though, so I hope that other listeners will find what I wasn't able to. For an author, she did a good job reading her own book.

3 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • The Memory Box

  • By: Eva Lesko Natiello
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
  • Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 458
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 419
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 419

In this gripping psychological thriller, a group of privileged suburban moms amuse themselves by googling everyone in town, digging up dirt to fuel thorny gossip. Caroline Thompson, devoted mother of two, sticks to the moral high ground and attempts to avoid these women. She's relieved to hear her name appears only three times, citing her philanthropy. Despite being grateful that she has nothing to hide, a delayed pang of insecurity prods Caroline to google her maiden name - which none of the others know.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Excruciating

  • By Nick on 09-25-17

Just couldn't finish it...

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

Reviewed: 04-10-16

I wanted to like this book SO much... I mean, what a cool plot idea: a woman who sees something strange online after Googling herself, which leads to family secrets. The problem was, it was boring. It was clear early on what this "family secret" was, and after listening to very (very) detailed and endless descriptions of this woman's many breakdowns, I just got bored with it. Clearly she wasn't mentally all there, and being inside this woman's head was just... well, annoying. There wasn't much action besides the protagonist gasping, freezing, choking, spinning with dizziness and collapsing over every single thing every single step of the way. I would never act that way. I just didn't like her, and couldn't relate to her. Also, the barely-there husband didn't help the shallowness of the story. Such a bummer, but I gave up after investing nearly 3 hours. I just didn't care to hear the rest it.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Primal Endurance

  • Escape Chronic Cardio and Carbohydrate Dependency, and Become a Fat-Burning Beast!
  • By: Mark Sisson, Brad Kearns
  • Narrated by: Brad Kearns
  • Length: 12 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 790
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 697
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 687

Primal Endurance shakes up the status quo and challenges the overly stressful, ineffective conventional approach to endurance training. While marathons and triathlons are wildly popular and bring much gratification and camaraderie to the participants, the majority of athletes are too slow, continually tired, and carry too much body fat respective to the time they devote to training. The prevailing "chronic cardio" approach promotes carbohydrate dependency, overly stressful lifestyle patterns, and ultimately burnout.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Needs PDF

  • By Amazon Customer on 04-13-16

My new favorite book!!!

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

Reviewed: 02-08-16

I'm a fairly new runner who found my love of running a year ago. I trained hard all last summer, lost a ton of weight... and then burned out, gaining it all back and injuring myself. What the heck happened? I thought I was doing it the right way by pushing myself a little harder and faster every week, but Mark and Brad showed me clearly that this was the wrong approach. I was already a fan of Paleo eating, and this book built a strong foundation to add to my basic framework of understanding the reasons why going full-on Primal makes sense. The science and examples and early-to-understand methods (including the Maffetone Method for training) brings together all of the puzzle pieces that adds to the food competent, giving me a solid plan to give it another try -- the right way this time!! I'm usually NOT a fan of authors reading their own work, but this was one exception. Brad did such a terrific job of narrating, that I felt like he and Mark were my own personal trainers. I love the personality he injected into the book. I'll be listening to this again and again, and saved lots of bookmarks. Well done! Highly recommend for any newbie like me, or a seasoned athlete.