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Gail

Bristol, CT, United States
  • 11
  • reviews
  • 11
  • helpful votes
  • 237
  • ratings
  • The Kitchen House

  • A Novel
  • By: Kathleen Grissom
  • Narrated by: Orlagh Cassidy, Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 12 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,600
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,158
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,152

Orphaned while onboard ship from Ireland, seven-year-old Lavinia arrives on the steps of a tobacco plantation where she is to live and work with the slaves of the kitchen house. Under the care of Belle, the master's illegitimate daughter, Lavinia becomes deeply bonded to her adopted family, though she is set apart from them by her white skin. Eventually, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, where the master is absent and the mistress battles opium addiction.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This is a must!

  • By AB on 09-04-10

Engrossing but not good

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

Reviewed: 10-21-15

I bought this because it had so many great reviews yet have continued to struggle to finish it.

The story is compelling but after a while it is too much to believe or tolerate. EVERY bad thing that can possibly happen - does. We meet the main character when she is 5 or so and she grows up in the Kitchen House of a tobacco plantation as part of the slave family that runs the big house. She is portrayed as intelligent and able to learn yet grows to be by far the most naïve teenager of the times.

After a while it became just too ridiculous - when I read historical fiction I am looking for the actual story to be fictitious but BELIEVABLE, this is not.

Also - the writing does not come close to The Help - performance is as good but not the raw material.

  • Beautiful Ruins

  • By: Jess Walter
  • Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini
  • Length: 12 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 10,848
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,568
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 9,562

The story begins in 1962. On a rocky patch of the sun-drenched Italian coastline, a young innkeeper, chest-deep in daydreams, looks out over the incandescent waters of the Ligurian Sea and spies an apparition: a tall, thin woman, a vision in white, approaching him on a boat. She is an actress, he soon learns, an American starlet, and she is dying. And the story begins again today, half a world away, when an elderly Italian man shows up on a movie studio's back lot - searching for the mysterious woman he last saw at his hotel decades earlier.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • My mind wandered

  • By Ella on 11-25-12

Slow start, then a lovely read

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

Reviewed: 10-21-15

The back and forth between timeframes is sometimes hard to follow, if it were a print edition I would have been flipping back and forth to revisit earlier sections.

The story finally starts to unfold and once it does, it is captivating.

Perfect book for travel, such well developed and real characters quickly drawing me back into the story and staying with me well after the book was finished.

  • Between Heaven and Texas

  • A Cobble Court Quilts Book
  • By: Marie Bostwick
  • Narrated by: Natalie Ross
  • Length: 10 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 302
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 269
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 265

Welcome to Too Much - where the women are strong-willed and the men are handsome yet shiftless. Ever since Mary Dell Templeton and her twin sister, Lydia Dale, were children, their Aunt Velvet has warned them away from local boys. But it’s well known that the females in Mary Dell’s family have two traits in common - superior sewing skills and a fatal weakness for men. While Lydia Dale grows up petite and pretty, Mary Dell just keeps growing. Tall, smart, and sassy, she is determined to one day turn her love of sewing into a business.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great book in a great series!

  • By Jodie on 11-09-14

Thoroughly enjoyable story

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

Reviewed: 08-08-15

This was a perfect summer read- pleasant all around

Likable characters and entertaining story coupled with nicely read and performed copy made me wish it wouldn't end

  • A High-End Finish

  • By: Kate Carlisle
  • Narrated by: Angela Starling
  • Length: 8 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,411
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,296
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,291

In the seaside town of Lighthouse Cove, everyone knows the best man for the job is actually a woman - contractor Shannon Hammer. But while Shannon can do wonders with a power drill and a little elbow grease, her love life needs work. On a blind date with real estate agent Jerry Saxton, she has to whip out a pair of pliers to keep Jerry from getting too hands on.Shannon is happy to put her rotten date behind her, but when Jerry's found dead in a run-down Victorian home that she's been hired to restore, the town's attractive new police chief suspects that her threats may have laid the foundation for murder.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • It was ok

  • By Diana on 12-19-14

Predictable but pleasant

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

Reviewed: 04-28-15

This was an entertaining listen- perfect for the gym or times when my attention would drift. Easy to follow the story without fully focusing.

The book was okay, the narrator was okay- had either been excellent it would have made a big difference in my rating.

The characters are likable and I will listen to the next in the series.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • I Am David

  • By: Anne Holm
  • Narrated by: Struan Rodger
  • Length: 4 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 222
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 198
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 197

David escapes from the concentration camp where he has spent his entire life and flees across Europe. He is utterly alone – who can he trust? What will await him? And all the while, how can he be sure that they won’t catch up with him...David learns that his polite manner, his haunted eyes and his thin features are strange to other people. He must learn to fend for himself in this strange new world. This is The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas meets Jonathan Safran Foer for children.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Character of a Child

  • By Debbie on 01-09-14

Thought provoking, engaging and enjoyable

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

Reviewed: 09-09-14

What a treat to read something with such a good underlying message but with such a well crafted storyline. It was one of those books that left me wishing for the story to continue. The author very effectively delivered glimpses into a world seen through the eyes of a child, and then added on experiences so we could share in the evolution. Really it was captivating from the beginning, and the main character (David) was wonderful company.

  • Marjorie Morningstar

  • By: Herman Wouk
  • Narrated by: Gabra Zackman
  • Length: 28 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 304
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 259
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 255

Marjorie Morningstar is a love story. It presents one of the greatest characters in modern fiction: Marjorie, the pretty 17-year-old who left the respectability of New York's Central Park West to join the theater, live in the teeming streets of Greenwich Village, and seek love in the arms of a brilliant, enigmatic writer.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Missing final chapter

  • By bookbug on 07-05-13

Loved this again - 35 years later!

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

Reviewed: 07-03-12

I read this book many years ago and loved it - when I saw it on Audible I decided enough time had lapsed that it would seem fresh again. I am so glad I did. The performance is outstanding and the story itself is as well written and engaging as I remembered. It's a very long book and I have thoroughly enjoyed every bit. The characters and plot are well developed and multi layered and the nostalgic look back at 1940's era New York is a treat.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Calico Joe

  • By: John Grisham
  • Narrated by: Erik Singer
  • Length: 4 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,219
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,067
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,063

Whatever happened to Calico Joe? It began quietly enough with a pulled hamstring. The first baseman for the Cubs AAA affiliate in Wichita went down as he rounded third and headed for home. The next day, Jim Hickman, the first baseman for the Cubs, injured his back. The team suddenly needed someone to play first, so they reached down to their AA club in Midland, Texas, and called up a 21-year-old named Joe Castle. He was the hottest player in AA and creating a buzz....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Short but worth at least 2 credits

  • By Marjean on 04-21-12

Slow start - but worth a listen

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

Reviewed: 06-18-12

It seemed like I spent too much time wondering how the different pieces of the story fit together, but once I was 30 minutes into it - things came together and this was a decent book.

  • Only Time Will Tell

  • The Clifton Chronicles, Book 1
  • By: Jeffrey Archer
  • Narrated by: Roger Allam, Emilia Fox
  • Length: 12 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,871
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,318
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,292

From the internationally best-selling author of Kane and Abel and A Prisoner of Birth comes Only Time Will Tell, the first in an ambitious new series that tells the story of one family across generations, across oceans, from heartbreak to triumph. The epic tale of Harry Clifton’s life begins in 1920, with the words "I was told that my father was killed in the war"....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Typical Archer

  • By cristina on 10-21-11

FABULOUS - Classic Archer!

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

Reviewed: 05-28-12

So glad I just discovered this book earlier this year - finished just in time for part 2 to be released! A well executed, multi-layered story kept me fully engaged and anxious to know the fate of these wonderful characters. The narration is excellent as well.

  • An Available Man

  • A Novel
  • By: Hilma Wolitzer
  • Narrated by: Fred Sullivan
  • Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 103
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 86
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 86

When Edward Schuyler - a modest and bookish 62-year-old science teacher - is widowed, he finds himself ambushed by female attention. There are plenty of unattached women around, but a healthy, handsome, available man is a rare and desirable creature. Edward receives phone calls from widows seeking love, or at least lunch, while well-meaning friends try to set him up at dinner parties. The problem is that Edward doesn’t feel available. He’s still mourning his beloved wife, Bee, and prefers solitude and the familiar routine of work, gardening, and bird-watching.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Lovely book, easy read, wonderful characters

  • By Molly-o on 02-17-12

Pleasant Listen

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

Reviewed: 05-28-12

This is a nice, easy going enjoyable book. Enjoyable but not memorable
Perfect for the gym!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Happy Accidents

  • A Memoir
  • By: Jane Lynch, Carol Burnett (foreword)
  • Narrated by: Jane Lynch, Carol Burnett (foreword)
  • Length: 7 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 269
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 245
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 243

In the summer of 1974, a 14-year-old girl in Dolton, Illinois, had a dream - a dream to become an actress. But it was a long way from the South Side of Chicago to Hollywood, and it didn’t help that she’d recently dropped out of the school play, The Ugly Duckling, or that the Hollywood casting directors she wrote to replied that "professional training was a requirement". But the funny thing is, it all came true....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I liked Jane Lynch before this book.....

  • By Tzachariah Krosz on 09-22-11

A pleasure to listen

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

Reviewed: 11-22-11

This is a thoroughly enjoyable book, Jane is a pleasure to listen too and it is so nice to have the author reading her own words, so we know the nuances are exactly as designed.