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Talking to Strangers audiobook cover art

Interesting Research

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

Reviewed: 09-15-19

As far-fetched as Gladwell’s conclusions are, his studies always make me think. This book could do with a lot less indignation. The music was not only unnecessary, but creepy and obnoxious.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Love Lies audiobook cover art

Cheating Spouses- Always Guilty

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

Reviewed: 09-08-19

Of course the grieving husband did it. This book gave a good overview of the murder but tended to be repetitive of facts. I feel there was a real “posse” of family and friends who seemed to be full of very biased opinions. The victim was excused of a lot of behavior that her family and friends judged so badly when her husband did it.

Time to Go audiobook cover art

Brilliant Writing, Strong Story

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

Reviewed: 08-13-19

I was not familiar with the author and now I am looking forward to reading his other work.
This memoir is searingly honest and funny despite the grim prognosis of its central characters. I fell in love with Susie and Stanley and even the author-despite his seemingly glib take on his parents’ aging issues. I really felt emotionally invested in how this was going to turn out. Kennaway’s take on end of life issues was startlingly refreshing. We need more truthful mirrors of families facing these struggles.
I appreciated the deft hand of the author- not shying away from hard truths but instilling laugh out loud humor in the camaraderie of his household.
Kennaway is a beautiful writer and can be compared to Ian McEwan. I really enjoyed this book and will recommend it to my friends, family, and book clubs.

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone audiobook cover art

Mixed Bag

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

Reviewed: 07-23-19

The author had interesting insights into how therapy works and how therapy sessions play out. But the cloying feel good stories of each of her patients were not credible and seemed almost superficial. I lost patience when each of her patients had sudden shifts in perspectives and “happy” endings. Relating the joyful funeral or the busy executive’s new appreciation for his family or the older woman’s ridiculously enriched life- just seemed contrived and rather ridiculous. Why does the author feel the need to tie up convenient closure for each of these patients? I prefer a more realistic (and just as uplifting) exposure of therapy’s benefits.

22 of 24 people found this review helpful

The Dog Stars audiobook cover art

Nothing new

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

Reviewed: 07-04-19

Too long story of a guy who survives after a pandemic in the future. Everything about the story seemed predictable and somewhat corny. The author can write a lyrical moment but he lost me on an overwrought plot and two- dimensional characters. Will not recommend this book.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Dignity audiobook cover art

Preachy Look at Race and Poverty

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

Reviewed: 06-15-19

The author is so personally involved that he loses diving deeper into the looming subject of inequality. He wants to “speak” for the poor but he just gives repetitive glimpses into the sad and dark world of those with few choices. His outrage seemed to be his own justification for leaving his poor past behind. The story did drive home the importance of a McDonalds or a Walmart to give poor neighbourhoods a sense of community.
I did not like this book and will not recommend it to my reader friends. Nickled and Dimed much better.

1 of 11 people found this review helpful

The Snapshot Killer audiobook cover art
  • The Snapshot Killer
  • The shocking true story of predator and serial killer Christopher Wilder - from Sydney's beaches to America's Most Wanted
  • By: Duncan McNab
  • Narrated by: Michael Carman

Great True Crime

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

Reviewed: 06-08-19

Good research. Fascinating tale of a sadistic killer. Can not believe I had never heard of this serial killer.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Where the Crawdads Sing audiobook cover art

Weak Attempt at Literature

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

Reviewed: 02-27-19

This sappy story is what gives book club selections a bad name. The writing at times was lyrical -but often so overboard I lost patience. The characters were all stereotypical archetypes. The wild, misunderstood talented protagonist, her true love, the 2 dimensional bad choice boyfriend, and the abusive dad. The most insulting affront was the depiction of the good ol’ kind-hearted black folks. The plot was weak and who cares anyway? This is a hard book to finish and I will not recommend it to anyone.

51 of 60 people found this review helpful

Little Fires Everywhere audiobook cover art

Trite and Cliche Driven

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

Reviewed: 02-20-19

Nothing NOTHING new in this overwrought narrative about the intersection of two very different families. The tropes are all there: repressed privileged mom, hippie free- spirited artistic mom, headstrong teens, family secrets, and a blazing fire to end the whole thing. I especially found the hunt for private information from an abortion provider ridiculous, and unbelievable. The author seems very uninformed regarding abortion experiences- from the using of fake names to the head of clinic carelessly leaving confidential information where it could be accessed. This was offensive. This book was a very shallow tale of family dysfunction.

Death of Mrs. Westaway audiobook cover art

Weak Knockoff Mystery

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

Reviewed: 02-14-19

Disappointment and impatience- two responses I experienced while listening to this very pedestrian retread of the classic Rebecca. The characters were not believable and the protagonist was irritating. There was absolutely not one original plot twist. This is one of the very few books I would want my money back.