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Gretchen SLP

Sacramento, California
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  • A Polaroid Guy in a Snapchat World

  • By: David Spade
  • Narrated by: David Spade
  • Length: 6 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,136
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,699
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 5,673

Written and performed for the Audible experience, Spade’s new comic memoir takes listeners along for the sometimes embarrassing and always hilarious ride of getting older in our fleeting “Snapchat World”. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Cynical humor at its best!

  • By Amazon Customer on 07-26-18

😒🤨Trump Apologist and Male Genitalia Hyper-focus

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

Reviewed: 07-14-19

Aw, geez. Three hours in and I was already exhausted beyond description with the hyper focus on the author’s (and other men’s) genitalia. Then I felt and ignored further red-flag warnings when he made contemptuous jokes about the homeless and mocked listeners like me for enriching him by purchasing his book. Then about four hours in, when he revealed his feelings about trump—that poor trump gets picked on too much, and doesn’t get the “respect” he somehow deserves—I realized this guy, who I thought I loved as a comedian, is definitely not for me. I’ll be returning this one.

  • Work Song - Three Views of Frank Lloyd Wright

  • By: Jeffery Hatcher, Eric Simonson
  • Narrated by: Jim Beaver, Amy Brenneman, Chris Butler, and others
  • Length: 2 hrs and 9 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 12
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 11

In Work Song, tensions between master architect Frank Lloyd Wright and his tempestuous relationships are explored in this uniquely prismatic view of one of the great architects of the modern era. This engaging production includes a panel discussion with Wright biographer Harold Zellman. An L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performance featuring Jim Beaver, Amy Brenneman, Chris Butler, Matthew Patrick Davis, Sean Dougherty, Robert Foxworth, Charles Janasz, Kathryn Meisle, Kali Rocha, and Raphael Sbarge.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Frank Lloyd Wright is very fascinating

  • By Russell Bernard on 03-28-18

🎭 Could Have Been Great With More Mamah 🎭

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

Reviewed: 07-12-19

This was an okay listen, but not fantastic, for two basic reasons:

1.) Frank Lloyd Wright was sort of a jerk. The playwrights didn’t try to sugarcoat that, and instead worked with it and even possibly exaggerated it. So the only character to like or admire is Mamah, and

2.) There’s not nearly enough Mamah. The tragedy at Taliesin happens so early on in the play that there’s time for almost none of the love story of Frank and Mamah, even though the playwrights took up an entire chapter on an encounter with a fictional housewife, based on and evocative of Mamah (and portrayed by the same actress who portrays Mamah), who never existed. I would have loved a really in-depth exploration of the Frank-Mamah relationship instead. So I’m off to reread/re-listen to Loving Frank, by Nancy Horan.

Grade: B
Acting: A
Bechdel test: Fail, I think.

  • Proof of Love

  • By: Chisa Hutchinson
  • Narrated by: Brenda Pressley
  • Length: 1 hr and 6 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,086
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,922
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,908

An Audible Original from Audible Theater, Proof of Love is an Emerging Playwrights Commission, written for and available exclusively on Audible. Constance thought she had a happy life and a loving husband. Suddenly, a tragic accident splinters her upper-class black family - and forces Constance to face uncomfortable truths about her marriage and herself. Proof of Love is the explosive, funny, and moving new one-woman play by Chisa Hutchinson, member of the first class of talent supported by the Audible Playwrights Fund.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Surprisingly amazing

  • By Amazon Customer on 07-05-19

🎭 First-Rate One Woman Play🎭

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

Reviewed: 07-07-19

I love these Audible Original dramas, and the fact that many of them are now being offered for free. This one isn’t as startlingly original or stellar as Evil Eye, but many listeners will find it a lot more realistic than that play, and more enjoyable (not to mention more hopeful) than Girls and Boys. It’s original for sure, very contemporary, and also very bold in its explorations of themes of marital infidelity and racial issues. Even my husband, not always a fan of drama, got pulled in and couldn’t wait to hear what happened next. Grade: A

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • In Pieces

  • By: Sally Field
  • Narrated by: Sally Field
  • Length: 10 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,174
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4,740
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,714

In this intimate, haunting, literary memoir read by the author, an American icon tells her story for the first time, in her own gorgeous words - about a challenging and lonely childhood, the craft that helped her find her voice, and a powerful emotional legacy that shaped her journey as a daughter and a mother. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Riveting Life Story of Sally Field's

  • By D. A. Wright on 09-20-18

🤩Great Start, Weirdly Rushed Ending 🧐

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

Reviewed: 07-04-19

This was a terrific listen. Sally Field is a solidly good writer, and a great reader of her own work. I thoroughly enjoyed it and will likely listen again.

However, I do have one very big beef. The book is minutely detailed, full of color and nuance, with every chapter of Field’s life richly illustrated. We see every milestone of her development, every friend, every foe, every costar, every director, every trauma, every obstacle, every heartbreak, every fear, every hope, every triumph described in detail, right up to the moment she wins for Norma Rae at Cannes with Marty Ritt never letting go of her hand because she couldn’t stop shaking. And then....

It’s as if she were giving a speech with a strict time limit but had forgotten to watch the clock, and suddenly someone is frantically giving her the two minute warning signal. All of a sudden, it’s just bullet points from that moment until the moment, decades later, when Steven Spielberg offers her the role of Mary Todd Lincoln. It’s like, Oh, yeah, and I married a guy whose name was Alan, no time to tell you his last name much less how we met, and that marriage lasted ten years and I had another baby that decade, and I took him around with me even on the sets of movies like Mrs Doubtfire (no time to tell you even ONE WORD about what it was like to meet, much less work with, the great Robin Williams, or to even say the name Robin Williams) and Steel Magnolias (no time to even mention my costars, much less say what it was like to work with Olympia Dukakis, Julia Roberts, or SHIRLEY FRIGGING MACLAINE or DOLLY PARTON, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD. She doesn’t even mention how, when or if her relationship with apparently horribly chauvinistic jerk Burt Reynolds ended, which is super confusing to the reader, because the last we saw him, he was giving Field a huge diamond ring, which she accepted.

It was so bizarre that I actually said out loud, Oh no, I didn’t know this was an abridged version! But when I checked the print version on my Kindle, I saw that nope, the book really did read just that way: Incredibly detailed from birth to age 40, then bullet points only (if that) from ages 40-65, then a chapter on Mary Todd Lincoln and Field’s mom, the end.

I wish I could ask the author: What happened?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Last Mrs. Parrish

  • A Novel
  • By: Liv Constantine
  • Narrated by: Suzanne Elise Freeman, Meghan Wolf
  • Length: 12 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,396
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,412
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 10,387

Amber Patterson is fed up. She's tired of being a nobody: a plain, invisible woman who blends into the background. She deserves more - a life of money and power like the one blond-haired, blue-eyed goddess Daphne Parrish takes for granted. To everyone in the exclusive town of Bishops Harbor, Connecticut, Daphne - a socialite and philanthropist - and her real-estate mogul husband, Jackson, are a couple straight out of a fairy tale. Amber's envy could eat her alive...if she didn't have a plan.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The house of lies!

  • By CMiles1985 on 11-21-17

😐😧🙄Oh, For Crying Out Loud🙄

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

Reviewed: 06-30-19

Jeez Louise, this is bad. As cliched, obvious and predictable as they come. Reads like a junior college creative writing assignment, and though the authors’ new twist on the old Luckless Heroine Trapped in Nightmare Marriage to Controlling Abusive Husband trope is decidedly clever in and of itself, there is no nuance or artistry whatsoever, and the repetitive, explicit R-rated spousal abuse puts it so far over the top it definitely falls into the category of Abysmal. For a smart (and fun, and funny) suspenseful read, try some Matt Goldman, or for some solidly good suspense without the laughs, try some Katherine Howell. This stinker is not worth your time or your valuable credit.

Grade: D
Bechdel test: Pass (lots of sappy talk about deceased sisters)

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Silent Child

  • Audible's Thriller of 2017
  • By: Sarah A. Denzil
  • Narrated by: Joanne Froggatt
  • Length: 9 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,369
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,474
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,428

In the summer of 2006, Emma Price watched helplessly as her six-year-old son's red coat was fished out of the River Ouse. It was the tragic story of the year - a little boy, Aiden, wandered away from school during a terrible flood, fell into the river, and drowned. His body was never recovered. Ten years later Emma has finally rediscovered the joy in life...until Aiden returns.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Stupid

  • By Nancysue Rose on 10-08-18

😒Absolute Twaddle🙄

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

Reviewed: 06-27-19

I’m giving this three stars only because I bothered to finish it and because the narrator was good, but there’s an argument to be made that it deserves only two stars, or even one. It definitely ranks with the worst, most laughably cliched and predictable “thrillers” out there. I would rank it just above Girl Last Seen and just below Baggage, The Wife Between Us, and Behind Closed Doors. In fact, it’s pretty much a mashup of those four books, and the writing is just as simplistic, cliche-ridden, repetitive and juvenile. If it wasn’t for the child abuse theme, I would say this was a “thriller” written for teenagers, not adults. Story wise, it’s absolutely preposterous. One previous reviewer asked, what are the odds that so many evil monstrous villains just happen to live in one small village? Even more to the point, though, what are the odds that THREE of them, separately and individually, not only wittingly or unwittingly conspired to kidnap or kill the protagonist’s child, but also just happen to either be a member of her household or in her immediate inner circle of friends and acquaintances?

The very worst problem with the book, however, is that VERY early on, as early as chapter two or three, the author clearly and very explicitly begins signaling that Central Character X is a villain....like, literally, in almost his first interaction with the protagonist...and then, yep! Sure enough! She told you so! He’s a monstrous villain, all right! WHERE IS THE SUSPENSE IN THAT? It’s literally laughable that this was Audible’s Thriller of the Year. Were there NO other thrillers released that year?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Shallows

  • The Nils Shapiro Series, Book 3
  • By: Matt Goldman
  • Narrated by: Macleod Andrews
  • Length: 8 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 168
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 157
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 159

Business is booming for private investigator Nils Shapiro and his partners. Lawyer Todd Rabinowitz is found tied to the dock outside his Minnesota home with a fishing stinger through his jaw. His widow, Robin Rabinowitz, calls Nils to the crime scene and asks him to investigate her husband's savage murder. She's not the only one. Soon, Nils has more job offers than he can handle. Robin's boyfriend. Todd's partner at his law firm. One of Todd's clients, a polarizing Congressional candidate. The local police, in over their heads. The FBI. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Keeps you guessing...

  • By shelley on 06-17-19

💦🎣🐟 Thoroughly Entertaining 🍻🎭⚖️

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

Reviewed: 06-23-19

I love this series, which keeps on getting better and better. What’s not to love**? It’s well-written, fast-paced, lively, full of red herrings, twists and turns, and above all, FUNNY, which no other murder mystery series ever is. And the narrator is an A+ with perfect comic timing. I’d buy Volume Four right now if it were available.

**It’s true that this book includes references to our current politics, but if anything it reinforces traditional values, and does not in any way vilify traditional conservatives. The author (and his protagonist) definitely has respect for decent, honest people on both sides of the aisle.

Grade: A

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Good Nurse

  • A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and Murder
  • By: Charles Graeber
  • Narrated by: Will Collyer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,871
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,599
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,598

After his December 2003 arrest, registered nurse Charlie Cullen was quickly dubbed "The Angel of Death" by the media. But Cullen was no mercy killer, nor was he a simple monster. He was a favorite son, husband, beloved father, best friend, and celebrated caregiver. Implicated in the deaths of as many as 300 patients, he was also perhaps the most prolific serial killer in American history.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Good Nurse gets it right

  • By jc on 05-28-13

💀Must Listen, Mispronunciations and Errors Aside☠️

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

Reviewed: 06-16-19

Yes, if you work in Healthcare, mispronunciations like “dig” for digoxin (which, exactly as common sense would tell you, is ACTUALLY pronounced “didge” by nurses and doctors) will feel like nails on a chalkboard, since this one error, to take just one example, occurs about two thousand times in the author’s reading. And yes, if you’re from NJ or PA, you’re going to notice mispronunciations like “Mullenberg” for Muhlenberg. And if you’re even just a careful listener, you’re going to ask yourself, if this narrator can pronounce Mull as in his mispronounced version of Muhlenberg, why can’t he pronounce the syllable Cull as in Cullen, the topic of the book, a name which he habitually mispronounces as Colon?

Any healthcare provider is also going to blame the AUTHOR, not the narrator this time, for multiple references to “the Cerner” and especially to “the Cerner machine.” As any of the multiple healthcare providers and hospital employees interviewed for this book could and would have informed the author, Cerner refers to a series of medical software programs, an electronic medical records system or EMR, not a tangible object, not a device or machine. You wouldn’t refer to Google as The Google, nor is a computer a Facebook Machine.

Nonetheless, this is a riveting listen. I was so glad I pushed past the first half, which is mostly about Cullen, his depression, madness, and fractured relationships as well as his often fatal assaults on patients and resulting checkered employment history. The second half is part medical mystery, part police procedural, and I was enthralled. Our favorite part was when the police detectives are forced to acknowledge that the hospital administrators are NOT on the side of the law and are NOT committed to patient safety, but instead are motivated strictly by their singleminded commitment to OBSTRUCTION of justice and preservation of the hospital’s bottom line (to their patients’ peril). Unfortunately, this truth will be all too believable to readers who happen to work in the healthcare industry. A big bravo to the Poison Control employee who secretly recorded conversations with hospital administrators and finally forced them to take any action at all, to the two detectives who were finally able to crack this case and stop the perpetrator of these likely 400-plus murders, and to Agent Amy, the heroic nurse who risked all for the sake of justice and patient safety. You all deserve major awards.

So many readers will be left wanting to see more national conversation about hospital accountability and increased legislation to make hospital reporting of unusual occurrences, employee malfeasance and misconduct, missing medications, and adverse medical events COMPULSORY, with severe penalties for facilities that fail to comply.

Grade: A

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Girls & Boys

  • By: Dennis Kelly
  • Narrated by: Carey Mulligan
  • Length: 1 hr and 46 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,319
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,682
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 9,617

A pulse-pounding new play from Tony Award-winning® playwright Dennis Kelly takes you on a journey that is at once hilarious, gripping, and heartbreaking. This world-premiere production starring Carey Mulligan (The Great Gatsby, An Education) is available exclusively on Audible after a celebrated run at the Royal Court Theatre in London and off-Broadway at the Minetta Lane Theatre. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I have never heard a story performed so well.

  • By Erin Reeve on 07-05-18

💀Proceed with Caution ☠️☺️🙂😐😕☹️😳🤭😮😧😵

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

Reviewed: 05-19-19

Oh, man, I thought Evil Eye was dark, but that PALES in comparison with this. If child endangerment is a problem for you, proceed with extreme caution! Regardless of the horror factor, this is an important play sure to become a classic in the annals of feminist theory and seminal female monologues. I loved it as much as it horrified me, and I will be thinking about its implications for months to come. Many thanks to the author for bringing such fundamental truths about the differences between the sexes to light in a world that definitely discourages thinking about such things, much less talking about them. My only complaint—and it’s a small one—is that toward the end, when the main character lists four types of a certain perpetrator of a specific action, she does not go that one step further and say which type she felt applied to her own case. And I wanted to know, also, when the perpetrator “reached out to” her three times, what did those communications consist of? I’m sorry I will not know the answers to these questions.

Grade: A
Bechdel Test: Pass

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Evil Eye

  • By: Madhuri Shekar
  • Narrated by: Nick Choksi, Harsh Nayaar, Annapurna Sriram, and others
  • Length: 1 hr and 38 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17,548
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16,314
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16,226

Pallavi is an aspiring writer living in California. Her mother, Usha, is thousands of miles away in Delhi - and obsessed with finding her daughter a husband. In Madhuri Shekar’s ingenious Evil Eye, hilarious back-and-forth via phone and social media takes a shocking, supernatural twist when Pallavi meets the perfect man - leading to a climactic showdown that will leave listeners on the edges of their seats.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Does anyone remember party lines?

  • By Mary V. on 05-03-19

⚡️🔥🎭HOLY 🐄 COW😲

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

Reviewed: 05-15-19

Well, this is just plain fantastic. It’s comedy, it’s tragedy, it’s a suspense thriller, it’s a tearjerker...and all in a little over ninety minutes!! This incredibly well-written, well-acted and well-produced radio play is easily the best thing one could ever, ever hope to receive for free, so download it at once without hesitation. It would also be worth it for a credit.

I literally have only one complaint: there’s a very physical scene towards the end of the play, and although the listener can guess the general gist of what’s going on, I would have paid immediately to download the novel or script if it existed, just so I could know exactly what happened.

Grade: A+

26 of 31 people found this review helpful