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nancy udell

Santa Fe, NM USA
  • 10
  • reviews
  • 91
  • helpful votes
  • 21
  • ratings
  • Of Human Bondage

  • By: W. Somerset Maugham
  • Narrated by: Steven Crossley
  • Length: 25 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 173
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 143
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 148

Philip Carey, a sensitive orphan born with a clubfoot, finds himself in desperate need of passion and inspiration. He abandons his studies to travel, first to Heidelberg and then to Paris, where he nurses ambitions of becoming a great artist. Philip's youthful idealism erodes, however, as he comes face-to-face with his own mediocrity and lack of impact on the world. After returning to London to study medicine, he becomes wildly infatuated with Mildred, a vulgar, tawdry waitress, and begins a doomed love affair.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • You won't want it to end!

  • By Rbjurnee on 04-18-11

Reader is terrible

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

Reviewed: 10-15-15

Would you try another book from W. Somerset Maugham and/or Steven Crossley?

I loved the Razor's Edge and the reader there was wonderful but I will NEVER read another book narrated by Crossley. He varies his volume extremely and drops very low and soft at the end of some words, so much so that I cannot follow his rendition. I had to ask for a credit and get the other reader.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • When Bad Things Happen to Good People

  • By: Harold S. Kushner
  • Narrated by: Harold S. Kushner
  • Length: 4 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 327
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 269
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 270

Offers a moving and humane approach to understanding life's windstorms. Raises many questions that will challenge your mind and test your faith regarding the ultimate questions of life and death.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Finally something that pricks my heart

  • By Quinn on 04-07-15

This book answered all my questions

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

Reviewed: 03-11-15

Howard kushner is wise kind and dead on. I am grateful for this book. If you are trying to accept the existence of a higher power in a world where bad things happen to good people, read this book. It is not dated. Still absolutely relevant. Thank you.

  • Barnaby Rudge, Volume II

  • By: Charles Dickens
  • Narrated by: Flo Gibson
  • Length: 10 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2

Barnaby, a kind, half-witted young man, joins the Gordon rioters to proudly carry their banner. He, his murderous father, the hangman Dennis, and the mapcap Hugh are arrested and condemned to death. There are vivid and gruesome scenes of pillage, battles, and executions, as well as myriad characters who are grim, romantic, or humorous.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • pretty good

  • By nancy udell on 03-05-15

pretty good

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

Reviewed: 03-05-15

not my favorite Dickens, but still good. The reader is decent, but the audio file is old and inconsistent.

  • Our Mutual Friend

  • By: Charles Dickens
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 31 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 357
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 214
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 210

A sinister masterpiece, Our Mutual Friend was Dickens' last completed novel. It is perhaps his ultimate vision of a dark, macabre London and the corrupting power of money.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Worth six stars

  • By Erez on 07-05-08

classic for a reason

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-22-15

Simon Vance brings this classic story to life. His narration is amazing and he is able to portray such a broad range of voices that every character is distinct and enjoyable.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Bossypants

  • By: Tina Fey
  • Narrated by: Tina Fey
  • Length: 5 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 48,723
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40,650
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40,473

Before Liz Lemon, before "Weekend Update," before "Sarah Palin," Tina Fey was just a young girl with a dream: a recurring stress dream that she was being chased through a local airport by her middle-school gym teacher. She also had a dream that one day she would be a comedian on TV. She has seen both these dreams come true. At last, Tina Fey's story can be told....

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Not funny, boring and could not wait for it to end

  • By Robert on 08-10-11

highly recommend

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-30-11

This is a great book made even more great by listening to Tina Fey read it to us. She is a unique spirit and creature and the book is full to the brim with funny, interesting, witty and wise insights. Her life (so far) is inspiring and great fun to listen to. I HIGHLY recommend.

0 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Dark Side

  • The Inside Story of How The War on Terror Turned into a War on American Ideals
  • By: Jane Mayer
  • Narrated by: Richard McGonagle
  • Length: 16 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 306
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 186
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 187

The Dark Side is a narrative account of the decisions the U.S. made after September 11, decisions that not only violated the Constitution, but also hampered the pursuit of Al Qaeda. In gripping detail, Jane Mayer relates specific cases, shown in real time against the larger tableau of Washington, looking at the intelligence gained and the price paid. In all cases, there were incalculable losses in terms of moral standing, our country's place in the world, and its sense of itself.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant and Maddening

  • By Madeleine on 03-19-09

Must read history

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-09-08

Thank you Jane Mayer for a chilling and detailed account of Cheney, David Addington and John Yoo's reign of terror. This is an important book that tells the story of how we became torturers and how a few courageous republican lawyers -- Jack Goldsmith and James Comey -- spoke truth to power and put in motion the eventual outing of this outrageous criminality. This is not a democrat v. republican book. THis is a book about principled v. unprincipled people -- courage v. cowardice and sanity v. insanity. It is a must read ("listen").

24 of 32 people found this review helpful

  • American Pastoral

  • By: Philip Roth
  • Narrated by: Ron Silver
  • Length: 15 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,332
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,658
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,647

Philip Roth presents a vivid portrait of an innocent man being swept away by a current of conflict and violence in his own backyard - a story that is as much about loving America as it is hating it. Seymour "Swede" Levov, a legendary high school athlete, a devoted family man, a hard worker, and the prosperous heir of his father's Newark glove factory comes of age in thriving, triumphant postwar America. But everything he loves is lost when the country begins to run amok in the turbulent 1960s. Not even a most private, well-intentioned citizen, it seems, gets to sidestep the sweep of history. American Pastoral is the story of a fortunate American's rise and fall ... a strong, confident man, a master of social equilibrium, overwhelmed by the forces of social disorder. For the Swede is not allowed to stay forever blissful living out life in rural Old Rimrock in his 170 year-old stone farmhouse with his pretty wife (his college sweetheart and Miss New Jersey of 1949) and his lively albeit precocious daughter, the apple of his eye ... that is until she grows up to become a revolutionary terrorist.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Powerful Masterpiece

  • By Sara on 03-10-14

One of the best -- do not miss

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-05-08

First, the reader is excellent. But he is reading a masterpiece. American Pastoral brilliant. Through the eyes of one family and the narrator, Roth captures the essence of the changes and turmoil that shook the country in the 60s and 70s. The narrative technique, the narrative itself, the dialogue, so many turns of phrase, really deliver a powerful emotional message. I don't know whether i would have enjoyed it as much without the wonderful narrator. Even though I had already listened to it, I chose it as a book for a long car trip and my husband loved it too. I liked it even more the second time. So much nuance.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • The Professor and the Madman

  • By: Simon Winchester
  • Narrated by: Simon Winchester
  • Length: 7 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4,050
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,042
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,058

Part history, part true-crime, and entirely entertaining, listen to the story of how the behemoth Oxford English Dictionary was made. You'll hang on every word as you discover that the dictionary's greatest contributor was also an insane murderer working from the confines of an asylum.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Perfect example of a quality audible book.

  • By Jerry on 07-07-03

A delightful work

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-25-04

Simon Winchester is delightful and engaging, intelligent and insightful. This is a wonderful read (listen). I loved his understated irony and his many flashes of brilliant insight into human nature and history, not to mention attention to detail without being pedantic at all. Winchester brings a surprisingly spiritual point of view to this surprising and touching story. The only disappointment is the interview with the current editor of the OED who shows himself a bore- far outclassed by Winchester's nuance.

43 of 44 people found this review helpful

  • The Diamond Age

  • By: Neal Stephenson
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Wiltsie
  • Length: 18 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 5,612
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,452
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,471

Neal Stephenson, "the hottest science fiction writer in America", takes science fiction to dazzling new levels. The Diamond Age is a stunning tale; set in 21st-century Shanghai, it is the story of what happens what a state-of-the-art interactive device falls into the hands of a street urchin named Nell. Her life, and the entire future of humanity, is about to be decoded and reprogrammed.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The rock could use a bit more polishing

  • By Tango on 05-19-13

Diamond Age -- Highly Recommend

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-20-04

After reading Snow Crash on a lark (I'm not a science fiction buff), I wanted to read everything Neal Stephenson has done. Althought he could have done more with the world he created in Snow Crash, here he creates and new and different world, equally fascinating and an equally brilliant and possible projection of the future based on current sociological realities and trends. And again, the story is fantiastic -- running atop this fascinating world. Also loved the narrator. She's very good. Highly recommend. Now I only wish his others were available in unabridged form!

  • Snow Crash

  • By: Neal Stephenson
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 17 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 13,762
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,435
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 10,520

Neal Stephenson is a blazing new force on the sci-fi scene. With the groundbreaking cyberpunk novel Snow Crash, he has "vaulted onto the literary stage." It weaves virtual reality, Sumerian myth, and just about everything in between with a cool, hip cybersensibility - in short, it is the gigathriller of the information age.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Classic Stephenson

  • By A. Tuck on 10-16-08

Snow Crash -- Highly Recommend

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-20-04

I'm not a huge science fiction buff, but tried this on the recommendation of one of the staff picks. I was blown away. It's not only well written with a great plot, it's inventive and savy -- both techologically and socially. Stephenson projects the very real state of the world today into the future with a steady eye. The result is both terribly funny and terribly horifying. On top of this extraordinary projection of the future, runs a great story. The reader is also excellent.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful