LISTENER

Minneapolis listener

Eden Prairie, MN
  • 11
  • reviews
  • 29
  • helpful votes
  • 124
  • ratings
  • Mrs. Everything

  • A Novel
  • By: Jennifer Weiner
  • Narrated by: Ari Graynor, Beth Malone
  • Length: 16 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,147
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,069
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,062

From Jennifer Weiner, the number-one New York Times best-selling author of Who Do You Love and In Her Shoes comes a smart, thoughtful, and timely exploration of two sisters’ lives from the 1950s to the present as they struggle to find their places - and be true to themselves - in a rapidly evolving world. Mrs. Everything is an ambitious, richly textured journey through history - and herstory - as these two sisters navigate a changing America over the course of their lives. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Absolutely beautiful

  • By JustAMommy on 06-13-19

Just too much...

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

Reviewed: 06-26-19

In a professional review I read that this is Weiner’s best book. It takes her from chick-lit (hateful term) to real lit.

Sadly, I can’t agree. It is overly long, in parts overly detailed and frequently quite preachy. And the sex is embarrassingly explicit.

My major complaint, however, is that one of the two sisters, the principal characters, (spoilers coming) spends two-thirds of the book being entirely self-centered, making idiotic decisions, taking and selling illegal drugs, sleeping around and stealing, yet she is rewarded big-time by the book’s end.

I find that unappealing. Yet, I listened to the entire book because the writing was fluid and interesting. As for the performances, they were fine, the only problem being the actresses sounded very much alike.

All considered, it was just too long, too much, too overwrought.

14 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Ask Again, Yes

  • A Novel
  • By: Mary Beth Keane
  • Narrated by: Molly Pope
  • Length: 12 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 479
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 442
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 439

Francis Gleeson and Brian Stanhope are two NYPD rookies assigned to the same Bronx precinct in 1973. They aren’t close friends on the job, but end up living next door to each other outside the city. What goes on behind closed doors in both houses - the loneliness of Francis’ wife, Lena, and the instability of Brian’s wife, Anne, sets the stage for the stunning events to come. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • An extraordinarily s

  • By Minneapolis listener on 06-21-19

An extraordinarily s

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

Reviewed: 06-21-19

A book to love and to long to end well.

Characters that move into your own life, echoing common struggles like estrangement, parental mental illness and alcoholism, heroism not where you’d expect it and love, love, love.

A beautiful and meaningful book. A gift.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • The Secretary

  • A Novel
  • By: Renée Knight
  • Narrated by: Victoria Hamilton
  • Length: 8 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 48
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 44
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 41

From her first day as personal assistant to the celebrated Mina Appleton, Christine Butcher understands what is expected of her. Absolute loyalty. Absolute discretion. For 20 years, Christine has been a most devoted servant, a silent witness to everything in Mina’s life. So quiet, you would hardly know she is there. Day after day, Christine has been there, invisible - watching, listening, absorbing all the secrets floating around her. Keeping them safe. Christine is trusted. But those years of loyalty and discretion come with a high price. And eventually, Christine will pay.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A bit of a slow start but very good

  • By cristina on 03-30-19

The poor cat!

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

Reviewed: 03-31-19

Among the many, many British thrillers read by ladies with lovely accents, this stands out as a fascinating study of two women bound together by professional need. One takes endlessly; the other gives in the same way. Can that table turn?

Recommended, although you will tire of the adjective “fra-GILE.”

Quite engaging. Lovely narration.

  • Every Note Played

  • By: Lisa Genova
  • Narrated by: Dennis Boutsikaris, Dagmara Dominczyk, Lisa Genova - afterword
  • Length: 8 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 510
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 473
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 474

From neuroscientist and New York Times bestselling author of Still Alice comes a powerful and heartbreaking exploration of regret, forgiveness, freedom, and what it means to be alive.

An accomplished concert pianist, Richard received standing ovations from audiences all over the world in awe of his rare combination of emotional resonance and flawless technique. Every finger of his hands was a finely calibrated instrument, dancing across the keys and striking each note with exacting precision. That was eight months ago.

Richard now has ALS, and his entire right arm is paralyzed. His fingers are impotent, still, devoid of possibility. The loss of his hand feels like a death, a loss of true love, a divorce—his divorce.

He knows his left arm will go next.

Three years ago, Karina removed their framed wedding picture from the living room wall and hung a mirror there instead. But she still hasn’t moved on. Karina is paralyzed by excuses and fear, stuck in an unfulfilling life as a piano teacher, afraid to pursue the path she abandoned as a young woman, blaming Richard and their failed marriage for all of it.

When Richard becomes increasingly paralyzed and is no longer able to live on his own, Karina becomes his reluctant caretaker. As Richard’s muscles, voice, and breath fade, both he and Karina try to reconcile their past before it’s too late.

Poignant and powerful, Every Note Played is a masterful exploration of redemption and what it means to find peace inside of forgiveness.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Not Nearly As Good As Her Others

  • By Wendi on 03-23-18

Lots of excellent information

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

Reviewed: 12-09-18

This book is a worthwhile education in ALS, but both main characters are so flawed and self-ansorbed that liking this book is difficult.

It is an easy listen and moves right along, but the arrogant Richard and the angry and self-defeating Karina are immature in spite of their years.

Voice actor Dennis Boutsikaris is excellent but you want to urge the actress who plays Karina to pick it up and move it along. Too neurasthenic by a lot. Her accent, however, is charming.

There is a fairly nice kid, which I always like to see.

Educational but far from uplifting. Perhaps that is too much to ask from such a terrible disease.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Between Husbands and Friends

  • A Novel
  • By: Nancy Thayer
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
  • Length: 10 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

When Lucy West and Kate Cunningham meet, the two spirited young women recognize kindred spirits in each other. Both Lucy and Kate married early and lack complete confidence in the brave new world of mothering. As their friendship deepens, their lives become fully intertwined. With husbands and children in tow, they spend glorious summers together in a large house on Nantucket island, sailing and feasting on lobster - and when their husbands are back on the mainland, the two women even get a chance to kick up their heels. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent family story

  • By Wendy on 12-02-18

I like the older Thayer

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

Reviewed: 11-28-18

I learned a lot about cystic fibrosis in this book and the narration was outstanding.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Family Trust

  • A Novel
  • By: Kathy Wang
  • Narrated by: Joy Osmanski
  • Length: 13 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 126
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 119
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 118

For years, Stanley Huang has claimed he’s worth a small fortune. But the time is coming when the details of his estate will finally be revealed, and Stanley’s family is nervous. As Stanley’s death approaches, the Huangs are faced with challenges that upend them and eventually lead them to discover what they most value. A compelling tale of cultural expectations, career ambitions, and our relationships with the people who know us best, Family Trust skewers the ambition and desires that drive Silicon Valley and draws a sharply loving portrait of modern American family life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A nice weekend listen

  • By SHANNON BOEHM on 11-04-18

Money, money, money, money...

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

Reviewed: 11-24-18

Life is NOT a cabaret in this book. There is no one to like and nothing useful to learn. The writing is skillful but cynical and angry. One sincerely hopes this is not a roman a clef.

  • Young Jane Young

  • A Novel
  • By: Gabrielle Zevin
  • Narrated by: Karen White
  • Length: 8 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 285
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 265
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 266

Young Jane Young's heroine is Aviva Grossman, an ambitious congressional intern in Florida who makes the life-changing mistake of having an affair with her boss - who is beloved, admired, successful, and very married - and blogging about it. When the affair comes to light, the congressman doesn't take the fall, but Aviva does, and her life is over before it hardly begins. She becomes a late-night talk show punchline; she is slut shamed and considered a blight on politics in general. How does one go on after this?

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • DNF not for me

  • By em g on 01-15-18

Funny, charming...

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

Reviewed: 11-21-17

...thoughtful and so true. Not for one second boring and narration is excellent. What a treat.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • A Wedding in December

  • A Novel
  • By: Anita Shreve
  • Narrated by: Linda Emond
  • Length: 9 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 130
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 37
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 42

At an inn in the Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts, seven former schoolmates gather for a wedding. Nora, the owner of the inn, has recently had to reinvent her life following the death of her husband. Avery, who still hears echoes from a horrific event at Kidd Academy 26 years ago, has made a life for himself in Toronto with his wife and two sons.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • A Story Without Substance

  • By Judith on 10-31-05

A beautiful narration...

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

Reviewed: 11-13-17

...for a book that was was not Shreve's usual evocative work.

It is by no means a bad book and deserves savtboo

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Behind Closed Doors

  • By: B. A. Paris
  • Narrated by: Georgia Maguire
  • Length: 8 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 45,406
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 41,145
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 41,100

Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace. He has looks and wealth; she has charm and elegance. He's a dedicated attorney who has never lost a case; she is a flawless homemaker, a masterful gardener and cook, and dotes on her disabled younger sister. Though they are still newlyweds, they seem to have it all. You might not want to like them, but you do. You're hopelessly charmed by the ease and comfort of their home, by the graciousness of the dinner parties they throw. You’d like to get to know Grace better.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Slow start but a gripping experience

  • By Vanessa Arizona on 09-04-16

Not one more word of gratuitous cruelty...

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

Reviewed: 08-16-17

Would you try another book from B. A. Paris and/or Georgia Maguire?

I'd be glad to listen to the narrator. Would not read the author again.

Has Behind Closed Doors turned you off from other books in this genre?

It's made me read reviews much more carefully.

What about Georgia Maguire’s performance did you like?

Tone and consistency, but a bit heavy on the pehhh-fict!

What character would you cut from Behind Closed Doors?

Millie, the young sister. I didn't finish the book, and I don't care if she saves the day in the end. It's bad taste to make any child, but especially a Down Syndrome child, prey.

Any additional comments?

I, too, feel like I was sold this book by Audible. It was heavily promoted not only online, but I see now her new book is getting FP ads in magazines, mentioning this book. Are these elementary psychological horrors worth that?

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Bright Hour

  • A Memoir of Living and Dying
  • By: Nina Riggs
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell, Kirby Heyborne
  • Length: 7 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 479
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 434
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 430

An exquisite memoir about how to live - and love - every day with "death in the room", from poet Nina Riggs, mother of two young sons and the direct descendant of Ralph Waldo Emerson, in the tradition of When Breath Becomes Air.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Awe inspiring legacy of A Brave Young Woman.

  • By Julia on 06-18-17

Heartbreaking and lyrical

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

Reviewed: 07-26-17

A poignant and gorgeously written memoir from a spirited and loving young wife, mother and writer. The portrait of the marriage is particularly sweet .

You are struck repeatedly by her bravery and their awful luck. Be at peace now, Nina.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful