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Jeff

Frederick, MD, United States
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  • Anatomy of a Miracle

  • A Novel*
  • By: Jonathan Miles
  • Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini
  • Length: 13 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 101
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 90
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 90

Rendered paraplegic after a traumatic event four years ago, Cameron Harris has been living his new existence alongside his sister, Tanya, in their battered Biloxi, Mississippi, neighborhood where only half the houses made it through Katrina. One stiflingly hot August afternoon, as Cameron sits waiting for Tanya during their daily run to the Biz-E-Bee convenience store, he suddenly and inexplicably rises up and out of his wheelchair.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Astoundingly good

  • By Anonymous User on 08-08-18

Insightful

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

Reviewed: 08-03-18

The book was a great exploration of how various people would react to a miracle. It was a bit depressing to see how so many different people would try to fit the event into their pre-conceived notions—even when the facts and character of Cameron did not fit their “beliefs.” I am glad that the storytelling father of the doctor brought some clarity to this at the end.

The story would be a great example if Karl Barth’s theology. Barth was an influential Protestant theologian from the early 20th century who spoke against a tendency for evangelical Christians to “make God in their image.” To Barth, God was always omnipotent and surprising; if you thought you had God all figured out, you were no longer looking at God.

I thought that the transition from the miracle activities (after) to the lengthy discussion of Cameron’s sexuality was a bit jarring. I loved the war stories and the conversations with DeMarcus, and eventually the sexuality “tangent” became clear.

  • American Gods: The Tenth Anniversary Edition (A Full Cast Production)

  • By: Neil Gaiman
  • Narrated by: Ron McLarty, Daniel Oreskes, full cast
  • Length: 19 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 43,123
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 40,018
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 39,978

Locked behind bars for three years, Shadow did his time, quietly waiting for the day when he could return to Eagle Point, Indiana. A man no longer scared of what tomorrow might bring, all he wanted was to be with Laura, the wife he deeply loved, and start a new life. But just days before his release, Laura and Shadow's best friend are killed in an accident. With his life in pieces and nothing to keep him tethered, Shadow accepts a job from a beguiling stranger he meets on the way home, an enigmatic man who calls himself Mr. Wednesday.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 10 Years and Still a Fantastic Read

  • By Nightveil on 07-22-11

Overreaches

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

Reviewed: 07-07-18

Gaiman’s characters are well drawn and the individual stories on the road trip are all interesting. But the book tries to make some grand observation about the American ethos and Americans’ approach to the gods of the old world and the new world. I just didn’t get it.
I think the book could have been better focused and relatable if Shadow had traveled to Lakeside and ultimately solved the murder mystery. The divine influences and human sacrifice would have been a surprising ending for what was a good murder mystery.
I didn’t listen to or read the original, much shorter version. Maybe that was closer to my suggestion.

  • The High Mountains of Portugal

  • A Novel
  • By: Yann Martel
  • Narrated by: Mark Bramhall
  • Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 650
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 589
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 588

In Lisbon in 1904, a young man named Tomás discovers an old journal. It hints at the existence of an extraordinary artifact that - if he can find it - would redefine history. Traveling in one of Europe's earliest automobiles, he sets out in search of this strange treasure. Thirty-five years later, a Portuguese pathologist devoted to the murder mysteries of Agatha Christie finds himself at the center of a mystery of his own and drawn into the consequences of Tomás' quest.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Surreal Onion

  • By green ice cream garden on 03-07-16

2 out of 3 ain't bad

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

Reviewed: 02-03-17

I love how the three parts all fit together, and I loved the surprises of the second and third parts. The bumbling main character in the first part is just too long and drawn out.

  • The Lifeboat

  • A Novel
  • By: Charlotte Rogan
  • Narrated by: Rebecca Gibel
  • Length: 7 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 276
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 241
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars 240

Grace Winter, 22, is both a newlywed and a widow. She is also on trial for her life. In the summer of 1914, the elegant ocean liner carrying her and her husband, Henry, across the Atlantic suffers a mysterious explosion. Setting aside his own safety, Henry secures Grace a place in a lifeboat, which the survivors quickly realize is over capacity. For any to live, some must die. As the castaways battle the elements, and each other, Grace recollects the unorthodox way she and Henry met and the new life of privilege she thought she'd found.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • FELL FLAT

  • By Kathy on 04-14-12

Time setting didn't work

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

Reviewed: 07-09-12

What would have made The Lifeboat better?

The men and women from the early 20th century didn't seem realistic. They were too proper, too guarded with their feelings. I'm sure that people from that time WERE more guarded and proper, but they seemed to be more stereotypes than actual characters.

The power struggle between men and women was an interesting theme, and setting this in a time before women could vote was a good tie-in. But when the characters were interacting with each other in their socially acceptable ways, it just didn't seem believable. A little too Merchant & Ivory for me.