LISTENER

A. M. Hopkins

  • 4
  • reviews
  • 9
  • helpful votes
  • 17
  • ratings
  • Born a Crime

  • Stories from a South African Childhood
  • By: Trevor Noah
  • Narrated by: Trevor Noah
  • Length: 8 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 116,608
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 107,936
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 107,418

One of the comedy world's fastest-rising stars tells his wild coming of age story during the twilight of apartheid in South Africa and the tumultuous days of freedom that followed. Noah provides something deeper than traditional memoirists: powerfully funny observations about how farcical political and social systems play out in our lives.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Repeats parts of story

  • By Richard Palmer on 09-01-17

Captivating & Enlightening

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

Reviewed: 07-30-17

I'm not usually drawn to memoirs or other non-fiction genres. A trusted friend recommended this audiobook so I gave it a try. Trevor Noah's narration was amazing. He brought the people and places to vivid life. He rolled through a continuum of life stories with humor and intelligence, offering clear insight into otherness, desperation and, most of all, hope. I have a lot to ponder and I thank him for shaking up my privileged white liberal mindset.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Story of the Lost Child

  • The Neapolitan Novels, Book 4
  • By: Elena Ferrante
  • Narrated by: Hillary Huber
  • Length: 18 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,240
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,015
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,017

Here is the dazzling saga of two women: the brilliant, bookish Elena and the fiery, uncontainable Lila. Both are now adults; many of life's great discoveries have been made, its vagaries and losses have been suffered. Through it all, the women's friendship has remained the gravitational center of their lives. Both women once fought to escape the neighborhood in which they grew up - a prison of conformity, violence, and inviolable taboos.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Incredible Series

  • By Pamela on 10-15-15

Addictive yet unsatisfying

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

Reviewed: 05-12-16

While the writing was compelling enough to draw me in and listen to each book in the series, I never really liked the characters. It provides a gritty and honest portrait of a place and its people, but the main character seemed forever stuck in a defeatist and self-hating spiral. I hoped to see her and her friend grow up and blossom. I was disappointed.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay

  • The Neapolitan Novels, Book 3
  • By: Elena Ferrante
  • Narrated by: Hillary Huber
  • Length: 16 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,324
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,094
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,087

In this third Neapolitan novel, Elena and Lila, the two girls whom were first introduced in My Brilliant Friend, have become women. Lila married at sixteen and has a young son; she has left her husband and the comforts her marriage brought and now works as a common laborer. Elena has left the neighborhood, earned her college degree, and published a successful novel, all of which has opened the doors to a world of learned interlocutors and richly furnished salons.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • DOING AND THINKING

  • By CHET YARBROUGH on 07-30-15

Strangely addictive, BUT ...

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

Reviewed: 04-10-16

While a few of the main characters are explored in depth, the vast majority of the series is spent in their heads. Lots of angst, little momentum. Too much telling, not enough showing. The stories provide a very up-close and personal view of two damaged women growing up without seeming to learn much or grow from their constant pain. I am very confused about why they are critically acclaimed. Seems like lazy storytelling to me.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Some Luck

  • A Novel
  • By: Jane Smiley
  • Narrated by: Lorelei King
  • Length: 14 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 457
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 379
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 378

From the winner of the Pulitzer Prize: a powerful, engrossing new novel - the life and times of a remarkable family over three transformative decades in America. On their farm in Denby, Iowa, Rosanna and Walter Langdon abide by time-honored values that they pass on to their five wildly different children: from Frank, the handsome, willful first born, and Joe, whose love of animals and the land sustains him, to Claire, who earns a special place in her father’s heart.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Takes Times To Develop But Is Really Worth The Effort

  • By Sara on 10-12-14

Big Disappointment!

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

Reviewed: 10-31-15

Would you try another book from Jane Smiley and/or Lorelei King?

I loved "A Thousand Acres" and expected this to be as compelling. I was surprised at the lack of depth in the characters. They struck me as Paper Dolls, which I now see another reviewer mentioned. Very shallow, little development, boring people except for one who remains mysterious and out of reach throughout. The story had no tension or plot -- nothing to draw me in. It all felt like the kind of background exposition that should be kept to a minimum. I gave Smiley the benefit of the doubt and listened to the whole story, but it was not worth my time. I would be very reluctant to try another Smiley book, given the countless groans I emitted while listening. It felt like reading an amateurish attempt at a family history.

Has Some Luck turned you off from other books in this genre?

Not at all. I'll just be a lot more selective.

What didn’t you like about Lorelei King’s performance?

It came across like a kindergarten teacher carefully reading a children's book. Very annoying. I would cautiously preview her work on any other book before purchasing it.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The details of farm life in the 20s & 30s were illuminating.

Any additional comments?

I am left feeling very distrustful of the critics' reviews included in Audible. For anyone to have found this novel lush & grounded, or to report that after a few slow chapters they felt the velocity, intensity and wonder of this story, I am simply dumbfounded.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful