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D. Miller

Cleveland, OH
  • 6
  • reviews
  • 14
  • helpful votes
  • 13
  • ratings
  • The Life We Bury

  • By: Allen Eskens
  • Narrated by: Zach Villa
  • Length: 8 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 41,024
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 37,525
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 37,443

College student Joe Talbert has the modest goal of completing a writing assignment for an English class. His task is to interview a stranger and write a brief biography of the person. With deadlines looming, Joe heads to a nearby nursing home to find a willing subject. There he meets Carl Iverson, and soon nothing in Joe's life is ever the same. Carl is a dying Vietnam veteran-and a convicted murderer. With only a few months to live, he has been medically paroled to a nursing home after spending thirty years in prison for the crimes of rape and murder.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good listen!

  • By Lori on 12-14-15

Maybe a YA novel?

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

Reviewed: 08-07-18

The story line here is interesting but the book is written like a YA novel. The author obviously paid close attention to descriptions but perhaps too much because they are rather studied. The plot drags along with diversions from the mystery consisting of a budding romance and the narrator's issues with his mother and brother. The dialogue involved with the romance was so amateurish that it was almost embarrassing to listen to it. Mainly though, a great deal of the book is boring. I did stay with it to learn the "truth," but it was difficult to slog through the ingenuousness and sentimentality.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Desert Queen

  • The Extraordinary Life of Gertrude Bell: Adventurer, Adviser to Kings, Ally of Lawrence of Arabia
  • By: Janet Wallach
  • Narrated by: Jean Gilpin
  • Length: 20 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 174
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 149
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 155

Turning her back on her privileged life in Victorian England, Gertrude Bell (1868-1926), fired by her innate curiosity, journeyed the world and became fascinated with all things Arab. Traveling the length and breadth of the Arab region, armed with a love for its language and its people, she not only produced several enormously popular books based on her experiences but became instrumental to the British foreign office. When World War I erupted, and the British needed the loyalty of the Arab leaders, it was Gertrude Bell's work and connections that helped provided the brain for T. E. Lawrence's military brawn.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Great beginning, then gets boring

  • By Msz on 03-31-16

A woman ahead of time

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

Reviewed: 08-07-18

This story of Gertrude Bell is fascinating because of her forthright determination, superior intellect, and political acumen. These qualities, combined with her love of the Middle East and British patriotism, made her a key player before and after World War I, a time when the country of Iraq was established. Far from a feminist, she nonetheless never suffered a fool gladly and always treated men, even her superiors, as equals. My only problem with the book is its length. It seemed to go on forever. But the description of her ways of truly befriending Arab men and the machinations of the British make for a compelling story.

  • The Female Persuasion

  • A Novel
  • By: Meg Wolitzer
  • Narrated by: Rebecca Lowman
  • Length: 14 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 955
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 887
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 886

Greer Kadetsky is a shy college freshman when she meets the woman she hopes will change her life. Faith Frank, dazzlingly persuasive and elegant at sixty-three, has been a central pillar of the women's movement for decades, a figure who inspires others to influence the world. Upon hearing Faith speak for the first time, Greer--madly in love with her boyfriend, Cory, but still full of longing for an ambition that she can't quite place--feels her inner world light up. And then, astonishingly, Faith invites Greer to make something out of that sense of purpose, leading Greer down the most exciting path of her life as it winds toward and away from her meant-to-be love story with Cory and the future she'd always imagined.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent story and reading of it

  • By jill on 04-23-18

Preachy

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

Reviewed: 05-03-18

Another reviewer called this book "strident." I would call it "preachy." I've been a feminist as long as the character Faith Frank and so wasn't fearful of the strident label as many feminists are called that even when they make a small polite peep of truth. This book, while truthful, is tedious and boring in its attempt to describe a history of how some leaders of the women's movement have tried to help women, with lots of information about feminist perspectives on women's issues. I haven't read anything else by this author but know that writers are supposed to "show" and not just "tell." There is too much telling, often in the thoughts of characters. For example, while it is true that the economy pushes women to spend too much money and time on beauty, a polemic about this in the thoughts of a character is not the stuff of fiction but rather non-fiction. And so on. In addition there is a tinge of sentimentality about it all that is hard to define but seems to have something to do with the narrative performance. That said, the best parts are about how the characters react and change according to what happens to them, especially Cory and Zee, but not especially Greer and Faith, who are burdened with thinking and speaking, but mostly thinking, feminist rhetoric.

12 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Sunburn

  • A Novel
  • By: Laura Lippman
  • Narrated by: Susan Bennett
  • Length: 9 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 672
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 619
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 618

They meet at a local tavern in the small town of Belleville, Delaware. Polly is set on heading west. Adam says he's also passing through. Yet she stays, and he stays - drawn to this mysterious redhead whose quiet stillness both unnerves and excites him. Over the course of a punishing summer, Polly and Adam abandon themselves to a steamy, inexorable affair. Still, each holds something back from the other - dangerous, even lethal secrets. Then someone dies. Was it an accident or part of a plan? By now Adam and Polly are so ensnared in each other's lives and lies that neither one knows how to get away.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Outstanding Mystery

  • By Jim N on 02-25-18

Lippman's best

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

Reviewed: 04-05-18

Where does Sunburn rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Sunburn is among the top mysteries I have read.

What did you like best about this story?

The character development is wonderful and no character is ignored. We love and hate Pauly and Adam over and over again. There are many twists and turns with crucial information always just around the corner, providing just the amount of suspense. Plus, the narration is perfect, conveying moods very well and making everything and everyone believable.

Which scene was your favorite?

I especially liked the scenes in which Pauly and Adam think through what to say and what to hold back.

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

Like many mysteries as well as love stories, misunderstandings and miscommunications occur often. Sometimes I wanted to jump into the book and tell the characters to "tell all" to the other.

Any additional comments?

If you like mysteries that delve human nature and are compelling and suspenseful, this is the book for you.The descriptions of the town and the situations lend themselves to thinking about human motivations and what one would do in certain situations. Lippman draws her characters so well that even the "bad" ones have good qualities and vice versa, although she illustrates the fact that no one is without painful memories, often of wrong-doing.

  • The Lake House

  • By: Kate Morton
  • Narrated by: Caroline Lee
  • Length: 21 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14,475
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,321
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,299

Living on her family’s gorgeous lakeside estate in Cornwall, England, Alice Edevane is a bright, clever, inquisitive, innocent, and precociously talented fourteen-year-old who loves to write stories. But the mysteries she pens are no match for the one her family is about to endure ...One midsummer’s eve, after a beautiful party drawing hundreds of guests to the estate has ended, the Edevanes discover that their youngest son, Theo, has vanished without a trace.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • BRAVO!!!!!!!

  • By Maria on 10-30-15

Too Long

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

Reviewed: 12-30-17

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this book for its twists and turns of mystery and the character development. But with the caveat that it is very long. It went on and on and really could have been two books or a shorter one without so much verbiage added to every turn.

What did you like best about this story?

The many ways the plot could have gone and consequent suspense in not knowing.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I don't usually respond to romantic descriptions but the author's depiction of the love between Anthony and Eleanor was lovely.

  • A Little Life

  • A Novel
  • By: Hanya Yanagihara
  • Narrated by: Oliver Wyman
  • Length: 32 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,553
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,877
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 8,885

When four classmates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their center of gravity.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I had to call in SAD to work

  • By Angela on 10-17-15

A couple of caveats

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

Reviewed: 04-16-16

What did you love best about A Little Life?

I loved the writing, which is exquisite. The author uses words wonderfully and has profound psychological understanding as well as a vast knowledge of many things including relationships, the law, art, food and all things New York City.

Any additional comments?

This book is wonderful and certainly worth reading but one must accept its flaws. It is too long and it's wrenching. It's about someone who thinks he deserves nothing and thus cannot accept that anyone loves him or if they do it's because they don't know him. There are "reasons" for this, but yet the feeling is described so well that it likely touches all readers at least a little. It reminded me, quite poignantly, of all the times I've felt even a little that way. I empathized with him and also with the exasperated people who loved him. But the author goes on way too long recounting his thoughts and misery, which are excruciatingly sad and repeated over and over. I wanted to say "Ok, I get it. Stop."
The biggest flaw though is a plot device inserted toward the end that seemed to be put there to ensure a particular ending. It was as though she had to find some event, some thing, to make things end the way she wanted. I felt manipulated and cheated. That said, I will miss the four college roommates that she describes so well, their friendship, other friends, their camaraderie and also Harold, a father to them all in a way. I had mixed feelings when I finally finished the book, both relief and regret.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful