LISTENER

Bibliophile1963

Austin, TX
  • 16
  • reviews
  • 67
  • helpful votes
  • 31
  • ratings
  • The Widows of Malabar Hill

  • By: Sujata Massey
  • Narrated by: Soneela Nankani
  • Length: 14 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 672
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 618
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 617

Bombay, 1921: Perveen Mistry, the daughter of a respected Zoroastrian family, has just joined her father's law firm, becoming one of the first female lawyers in India. Armed with a law degree from Oxford, Perveen also has a tragic personal history that makes her especially devoted to championing and protecting women's legal rights. Mistry Law has been appointed to execute the will of Mr. Omar Farid, a wealthy Muslim mill owner who has left three widows behind. But as Perveen is going through the paperwork, she notices something strange.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Outstanding Historical Mystery

  • By Kindle Customer on 02-07-18

A Promising New Series!

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

Reviewed: 11-03-18

This was a lovely introduction to a new series. The historical setting of late Raj India is a very interesting time period. Add to that the suffragette movement and the changing roles of women, with a slow transition from men’s chattel to independence, and there is historical insight of great interest. The fact that the primary character is a Zoroastrian Parsi allows for insight, both through similarities and contrasts with other Indian cultural communities such as Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, Muslims, etc.,and also with English & Anglo-Indian cultures. As a scholar of Asian Studies, I I recognized and appreciated the accuracy, open-mindedness, & respect shown to all the cultures of the Bombay melting pot. I look forward to further novels as the series grows.

  • Bangkok Haunts

  • By: John Burdett
  • Narrated by: Glen McCready
  • Length: 12 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 348
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 109
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 109

Critically acclaimed, nationally best-selling author John Burdett has earned starred reviews for the fast-paced action, snappy dialogue, and gritty realism of his thrilling tales starring Royal Thai police detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep. In this vibrant and witty novel, devout Buddhist Sonchai relies on his karma to guide him through the seamy underbelly of Bangkok as he pieces together the scattered clues of a complex mystery.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Funny, weird, horrible, terrific

  • By Lehua of Pacifica on 11-29-08

Horribly inappropriate accent by narrator

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

Reviewed: 09-06-17

What did you like best about Bangkok Haunts? What did you like least?

Jeez, I'm only about an hour in and seriously don't know if I can bear to listen to another moment! I loved the first two books, but now they've changed narrator and it's simply dreadful. He would be fine reading Sherlock Holmes or some priggish British colonial character, but his clipped vowels and snobbish accent and staccato pace are all wrong for Thai Sonchai. Every time I try to listen again, I get so irritated within minutes that I'm ready to throw my phone across the room. I will set it aside for a few days and then try again but will most likely return this audiobook and read it myself. For that matter, I'd prefer my kindle's robotic voice to this accent! Again, not the actor's fault, just HORRIBLE CASTING!!!

What other book might you compare Bangkok Haunts to and why?

The books themselves thus far have been lovely, somewhat reminiscent of Colin Cotterill's Siri Paiboun books. It is the switch to Glen McReady's narration that I object to.

Would you be willing to try another one of Glen McCready’s performances?

NEVER

Was Bangkok Haunts worth the listening time?

No - could not listen anymore.

Any additional comments?

Loved the first two books with different narrator.

  • The Elephant’s Journey

  • By: Jose Saramago, Margaret Jull Costa (translator)
  • Narrated by: Christine Williams
  • Length: 5 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 34
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 30
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 30

In 1551, King Joo III of Portugal gave Archduke Maximilian an unusual wedding present: an elephant named Solomon. In Jose Saramago's remarkable and imaginative retelling, Solomon and his keeper, Subhro, begin in dismal conditions, forgotten in a corner of the palace grounds.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Very Portuguese

  • By Bibliophile1963 on 01-17-17

Very Portuguese

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

Reviewed: 01-17-17

There's something quintessentially Portuguese about this novel. It's something about the gentle humor, the deep wisdom, the kind acceptance of human nature. There's also a sense of absurd frivolity, rather like some of Lisbon's fanciful architecture. Somehow the author manages to write with bold childlike innocence and the wisdom of the ages. What's more amazing is that he did so while telling of a true historical event. It left me in tears but also in touch with my inner child.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Auntie Mame

  • An Irreverent Escapade
  • By: Patrick Dennis
  • Narrated by: Christopher Lane
  • Length: 10 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 163
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 154
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 153

Wildly successful when it was first published in 1955, Patrick Dennis' Auntie Mame sold over two million copies and stayed put on the New York Times bestseller list for 112 weeks. It was made into a play, a Broadway as well as a Hollywood musical, and a fabulous movie starring Rosalind Russell. Since then, Mame has taken her rightful place in the pantheon of Great and Important People as the world's most beloved, madcap, devastatingly sophisticated, and glamorous aunt.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Still one of my favorites!

  • By India W on 07-13-16

A Hopeful Escape in a Post-Trump World

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

Reviewed: 01-07-17

I've loved Auntie Mame since I first saw the Roslyn Russell version as a child in Alabama. She became my North Star for a less ordinary life. I can't believe I'm in my fifties before taking up the book form. I think I was afraid to, just in case it vanquished my Auntie Mame as much as the Lucille Ball film version did. I'm so glad that I took the risk. In a world in which Donald Trump has been elected President of the United States on a platform perfectly suited to the Upson's, Auntie Mame should be required reading - if to no one else, then at least to all those liberal-minded people who find themselves marooned amongst gleeful gloating Trump supporters. Ann tie Mame is a hopeful place to escape to when you feel surrounded by haters. Auntie Mame scorns both racists and intellectual snobs alike, celebrating the truly open-hearted as well as open-minded.

4 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • The Murder of Mary Russell

  • A Novel of Suspense Featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes
  • By: Laurie R. King
  • Narrated by: Jenny Sterlin, Susan Lyons
  • Length: 13 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,244
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,147
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,143

Mary Russell is used to dark secrets - her own and those of her famous partner and husband, Sherlock Holmes. Trust is a thing slowly given, but over the course of a decade together, the two have forged an indissoluble bond. And what of the other person to whom Mary Russell has opened her heart: the couple's longtime housekeeper, Mrs. Hudson?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A New Twist for Holmes & Co.

  • By Carole T. on 04-13-16

Historical Mysteries at Their Best

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

Reviewed: 11-01-16

I absolutely love this series. They are so much more than simply mysteries. The settings, the sense of time and place, are incredible. The way the author weaves in real people and events is not only interesting but also informative and endlessly encourage me to pop over to Wikipedia to follow up on an interesting tidbit, whether to see a Celtic triskelion or land giants and standing stones within the British landscape or the history and geography of North Africa and the Levant or the particulars of beekeeping and hive behavior or the devastation of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake or the machinations of politics and propaganda... An endless array of interesting information and insights have been added to my worldview while simultaneously enjoying a really good story. The author exhibits prodigious historical scholarship, insight and wisdom on the human experience, and a bard's gift for the tale. I rank Mary Russell alongside Amelia Peabody, Sebastian St. Cyr, Armand Gamache, Maisie Dobbs, Dr. Siri Paiboun, Flavia de Luce, Miss Marple, Hercule Poirot, Vish Puri, Kamil Pasha, Rev. Clare Ferguson... as great literary sleuths whom I've also learned from and would love to have as real friends around the dinner table! These books are treasures!

  • Dreaming Spies

  • By: Laurie R. King
  • Narrated by: Jenny Sterlin
  • Length: 12 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,497
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,337
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,333

For years now, readers of the Russell Memoirs have wondered about the tantalizing mentions of Japan. Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes had spent three weeks there, between India ( The Game) and San Francisco ( Locked Rooms). The time has finally come to tell that story. It is 1925, and Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes arrive home to find...a stone. A stone with a name, which they last saw in the Tokyo garden of the future emperor of Japan.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Haiku and Holmes - A Fine Brew

  • By Amazon Customer on 02-22-15

Historical Mysteries at Their Best

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

Reviewed: 10-28-16

I absolutely love this series. They are so much more than simply mysteries. The settings, the sense of time and place, are incredible. The way the author weaves in real people and events is not only interesting but also informative and endlessly encourage me to pop over to Wikipedia to follow up on an interesting tidbit, whether to see a Celtic triskelion or land giants and standing stones within the British landscape or the history and geography of North Africa and the Levant or the particulars of beekeeping and hive behavior or the devastation of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake or the machinations of politics and propaganda... An endless array of interesting information and insights have been added to my worldview while simultaneously enjoying a really good story. The author exhibits prodigious historical scholarship, insight and wisdom on the human experience, and a bard's gift for the tale. I rank Mary Russell alongside Amelia Peabody, Sebastian St. Cyr, Armand Gamache, Maisie Dobbs, Dr. Siri Paiboun, Flavia de Luce, Miss Marple, Hercule Poirot, Vish Puri, Kamil Pasha, Rev. Clare Ferguson... as great literary sleuths whom I've also learned from and would love to have as real friends around the dinner table! These books are treasures!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Locked Rooms

  • By: Laurie R. King
  • Narrated by: Jenny Sterlin
  • Length: 14 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,492
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,055
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,054

New York Times best-selling author Laurie R. King has won sweeping critical acclaim and an impressive collection of awards for her writing. Although other writers have tried, no one has matched King's ability to capture the allure of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary sleuth, Sherlock Holmes.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Don't miss this jewel!

  • By Melanie on 06-17-07

Historical Mysteries at Their Best

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

Reviewed: 10-27-16

I absolutely love this series. They are so much more than simply mysteries. The settings, the sense of time and place, are incredible. The way the author weaves in real people and events is not only interesting but also informative and endlessly encourage me to pop over to Wikipedia to follow up on an interesting tidbit, whether to see a Celtic triskelion or land giants and standing stones within the British landscape or the history and geography of North Africa and the Levant or the particulars of beekeeping and hive behavior or the devastation of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake or the machinations of politics and propaganda... An endless array of interesting information and insights have been added to my worldview while simultaneously enjoying a really good story. The author exhibits prodigious historical scholarship, insight and wisdom on the human experience, and a bard's gift for the tale. I rank Mary Russell alongside Amelia Peabody, Sebastian St. Cyr, Armand Gamache, Maisie Dobbs, Dr. Siri Paiboun, Flavia de Luce, Miss Marple, Hercule Poirot, Vish Puri, Kamil Pasha, Rev. Clare Ferguson... as great literary sleuths whom I've also learned from and would love to have as real friends around the dinner table! These books are treasures!

  • Garment of Shadows

  • A Novel of Suspense Featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes, Book 12
  • By: Laurie R. King
  • Narrated by: Jenny Sterlin, Robert Ian Mackenzie
  • Length: 10 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 938
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 824
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 831

In a strange room in Morocco, Mary Russell is trying to solve a pressing mystery: Who am I? She has awakened with shadows in her mind, blood on her hands, and soldiers pounding on the door. Out in the hivelike streets, she discovers herself strangely adept in the skills of the underworld, escaping through alleys and rooftops, picking pockets and locks. She is clothed like a man, and armed only with her wits and a scrap of paper containing a mysterious Arabic phrase. Overhead, warplanes pass ominously north.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Be Careful What You Wish For

  • By Jeanette Finan on 09-18-12

Historical Mysteries at Their Best

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

Reviewed: 10-27-16

I absolutely love this series. They are so much more than simply mysteries. The settings, the sense of time and place, are incredible. The way the author weaves in real people and events is not only interesting but also informative and endlessly encourage me to pop over to Wikipedia to follow up on an interesting tidbit, whether to see a Celtic triskelion or land giants and standing stones within the British landscape or the history and geography of North Africa and the Levant or the particulars of beekeeping and hive behavior or the devastation of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake or the machinations of politics and propaganda... An endless array of interesting information and insights have been added to my worldview while simultaneously enjoying a really good story. The author exhibits prodigious historical scholarship, insight and wisdom on the human experience, and a bard's gift for the tale. I rank Mary Russell alongside Amelia Peabody, Sebastian St. Cyr, Armand Gamache, Maisie Dobbs, Dr. Siri Paiboun, Flavia de Luce, Miss Marple, Hercule Poirot, Vish Puri, Kamil Pasha, Rev. Clare Ferguson... as great literary sleuths whom I've also learned from and would love to have as real friends around the dinner table! These books are treasures!

  • The God of the Hive

  • A Novel of Suspense Featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes
  • By: Laurie R. King
  • Narrated by: Jenny Sterlin
  • Length: 11 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,763
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,327
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,327

New York Times best-selling author Laurie R. King enjoys immense popularity and a resounding chorus of critical acclaim for her exquisite mysteries. The God of the Hive continues the thread King began in The Language of Bees, in which Mary Russell and her famous husband, Sherlock Holmes, face trouble with Scotland Yard and the deadliest of adversaries.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Imaginative and engrossing listen

  • By connie on 05-01-10

I love Robert Goodman.

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

Reviewed: 10-21-16

One of the best yet of the Mary Russell series. Robert Goodman is a character for the ages. Though only appearing in brief snatches, he steals the show from Mary Russell and the Holmes brothers.

  • Who Buries the Dead

  • Sebastian St. Cyr, Book 10
  • By: C. S. Harris
  • Narrated by: Davina Porter
  • Length: 10 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 633
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 588
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 583

The vicious decapitation of Stanley Preston, a wealthy, socially ambitious plantation owner, at Bloody Bridge draws Sebastian St. Cyr, Viscount Devlin, into a macabre and increasingly perilous investigation. The discovery near the body of an aged lead coffin strap bearing the inscription King Charles, 1648 suggests a link between this killing and the beheading of the deposed seventeenth-century Stuart monarch.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Outstanding

  • By Anne on 09-26-16

An Addictive Series

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

Reviewed: 10-17-16

This series is the type of mystery novel I love best. It is definitely not a "cozy" mystery, but neither is it bogged down by procedural minutiae or ever-increasing levels of violence intended to shock jaded readers. While dark and occasionally gothic, it avoids crossing over into blood and gore horror. It's greatest strength is the sense of time and place, wrought with the aid of prodigious historical scholarship. History would be a much more intriguing subject in school if taught through the personal, human, lens employed by Harris. The way real people and events are woven throughout the series is impressive, always based upon real timelines and interests. The politics of the time offer insights into repercussions still felt today. The series also retains the reader's attention with complex, evolving characters, their psychologies enfolding across the novels as both the characters and the reader grasp hidden motivations, needs, and outlooks, becoming more self-aware and wise with time and maturity. In that sense, the series also offers an enlightening view of human nature. This is first rate literature all around, not just as a mystery novel.