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Justicepirate

northern NJ
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  • Carve the Mark

  • By: Veronica Roth
  • Narrated by: Austin Butler, Emily Rankin
  • Length: 15 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,235
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,043
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,044

On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a current gift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their current gifts, Akos and Cyra do not - their gifts make them vulnerable to others' control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives and reset the balance of power in this world?

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Good Attempt - Poor execution

  • By Joseph Reeves on 09-21-17

Unique and great, but also unoriginal in parts

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

Reviewed: 01-16-19

This was told really well. I think I'd rate it higher if more portions in it did NOT resemble the Dune series so much. It is sad to me how many newer science fiction novels take bits and pieces from such a well known old cult classic series. However, much of what was written was also quite original (so I like this much better than the Red Rising book that ripped off far too much Dune and Ender's Game for my liking). If Veronica Roth has never heard of Dune, I'd be very surprised.

This is pretty cool because the bit of romance in this story was not blatant throughout it. There was a huge story that was highlighted far more. It was a bit of a star-crossed lover story though and definitely leaves you on the edge at the end of it to lead into the next story.

Cyra has a brutal family known for leaving death and destruction along its path. Akos is from a place filled with frozen life and much talk about fate and being able to see prophesies into the future, but with different options stretched out. Akos also can't really feel pain due while Cyra feels a lot. She also has a pretty controlling brother who uses her like a pawn (she reminds me so much of Alia from the Dune series. . I mean she even does a dance thing in similar form).

Portions of this story drags on a bit and it is certainly nothing like the Divergent series was, which I did enjoy for the most part. I will say that I envisioned this story in my mind as if it were really happening though.

I am going to just give this an even three star rating.

  • The Hate U Give

  • By: Angie Thomas
  • Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 11 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 31,546
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 29,185
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 29,073

Sixteen-year-old Starr Carter moves between two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she lives and the fancy suburban prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is shattered when Starr witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend Khalil at the hands of a police officer. Khalil was unarmed. Soon afterward, his death is a national headline. Some are calling him a thug, maybe even a drug dealer and a gangbanger. Protesters are taking to the streets in Khalil’s name. Some cops and the local drug lord try to intimidate Starr and her family. What everyone wants to know is: what really went down that night? And the only person alive who can answer that is Starr.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This Book Changed My Entire Perspective

  • By Wendi on 01-14-18

Definitely a really well done book

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

Reviewed: 01-16-19

This book is raw, real, and true to today. It needs to be something that people learn from, respect, and grow into an understanding about the world around us that people seem to ignore. White people especially.

Young people of color are being killed for no reason other than racial injustices that take a hold of the hearts of people who hate. This story opens us all up to that world and we can see the side that needs to be heard.

The only reason why I didn't rate this five stars is because I really don't like the constant swearing throughout it. Otherwise it is amazing and well written. The characters drew me in. I really got mad when the main characters got mad. I felt pain when they felt pain. It is as it should be in reality.

I wish I read/listened to this nearly a year ago when it came out and I wanted to, but at least I got around to it now!

Cops, please stop pulling your guns out and shooting people, especially over the most petty things like what you "think" you saw or assumed. Stop harassing people because of the color of their skin and your ideas of who you think they might be.

Stop the hate. Stop the killing.

Pretty much the only negative I have about the audible version of this story is that the Fresh Prince of Bel Air opening song parts should have been sung maybe instead of sounding like a spoken word?

  • The Queen

  • Aretha Franklin
  • By: Mikal Gilmore
  • Narrated by: Adenrele Ojo
  • Length: 3 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,786
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 3,410
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,401

You know her voice. Now hear her story.

Audible has teamed up with Rolling Stone to produce an uncompromisingly honest Audible Original that honors the life and legacy of the incomparable Aretha Franklin. Aretha’s universal appeal was evident from the release of her first album at age 14 through her nearly 50 Top 40 hits. Yet this intimate biography reminds us that Aretha knew pain as much as she knew glory. It was the blues, residing deep within her soul, that gave way to a voice able to lift millions with a profound sense of freedom, self-worth, and undeniable talent to rise above sorrow.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I learned so much

  • By Amazon Customer on 10-15-18

Could have been better

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

Reviewed: 01-16-19

I listened to this while working on some things at home and was disappointed (it was really short by the way). It doesn't really talk much enough about who Aretha Franklin really was and keeps much of her life very hidden, which I understand she did on her own anyway. I feel like I didn't learn enough about her life. Also there was far too much use of the F word in this audio book. Ugh.

  • As You Wish

  • Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride
  • By: Cary Elwes, Joe Layden, Rob Reiner (foreword)
  • Narrated by: Cary Elwes, Christopher Guest, Carol Kane, and others
  • Length: 7 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,340
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 8,677
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,628

From actor Cary Elwes, who played the iconic role of Westley in The Princess Bride, comes a first-person account and behind-the-scenes look at the making of the cult classic film filled with never-before-told stories, exclusive photographs, and interviews with costars Robin Wright, Wallace Shawn, Billy Crystal, Christopher Guest, and Mandy Patinkin, as well as author and screenwriter William Goldman, producer Norman Lear, and director Rob Reiner.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Warm-hearted retelling

  • By Thomas Allen on 10-19-14

You have to listen to this one instead of read it!

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

Reviewed: 01-16-19

Audible has most of the actors/director talk on parts where Cary Elwes talks about them (and yes, he narrates the majority).

I learned so much about the making of this movie and it was captivating through and through. As one of the most quotable and best movies of all time, I just was really excited to give this one a go.

Cary Elwes talks about his life before, during, and after the filming of this film. I enjoyed all the fun and silly stories that surround how this movie came into existence.

My only negative thoughts on this book is that sometimes actors say something more than once, which irritates me, because, as an example, "YES, I get it. . .You filmed the scene in three days. You stated it."

  • Homegoing

  • A Novel
  • By: Yaa Gyasi
  • Narrated by: Dominic Hoffman
  • Length: 13 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,925
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,470
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,480

Two half sisters, Effia and Esi, unknown to each other, are born into different villages in 18th-century Ghana. Effia is married off to an Englishman and will live in comfort in the palatial rooms of Cape Coast Castle, raising children who will be sent abroad to be educated before returning to the Gold Coast to serve as administrators of the empire. Esi, imprisoned beneath Effia in the castle's women's dungeon and then shipped off on a boat bound for America, will be sold into slavery.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • An important story but terribly disjointed

  • By Joy on 12-07-17

Slavery timeline story!

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

Reviewed: 11-03-18

I loved how this story worked out. It focuses on a royal family who are in a tribe in Ghana. It also focuses a lot on slavery in Ghana and in the US and racial prejudices over the past couple of centuries. Literally we start in maybe the late 1700s in this story (I can't recall the date) of when a young woman is sold to a British man in Ghana to be his "wife" and it focuses also on how people were separated because of the slavery back in that time. Then it jumps to the 1800s in the US. It goes on and on for a few generations, telling the stories of their lineage, which I really adore. It shows a lot of strengths and weaknesses in each character and how they are to overcome, while another part of the family remains in Ghana. It was incredibly well written and at times I felt like I was in the story watching it in person, because of how real the pictures were painted for me. This is such a good book! I'm giving it 4.5 stars.

  • The House Girl

  • A Novel
  • By: Tara Conklin
  • Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 14 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 738
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 649
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 654

The year is 2004: Lina Sparrow is an ambitious young lawyer working on a historic class-action lawsuit seeking reparations for the descendants of American slaves. The year is 1852: Josephine is a 17-year-old house slave who tends to the mistress of a Virginia tobacco farm - an aspiring artist named Lu Anne Bell. It is through her father, renowned artist Oscar Sparrow, that Lina discovers a controversy rocking the art world: Art historians now suspect that the revered paintings of Lu Anne Bell, an antebellum artist known for her humanizing portraits of the slaves who worked her Virginia tobacco farm, were actually the work of her house slave, Josephine.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Disappointing

  • By Jeanette Finan on 02-21-13

I like Josephine!

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

Reviewed: 11-03-18

3.5 stars.
The beginning 25% of this book was a little slow for me, I almost gave up on it, actually, but afterwards I really enjoyed learning more and more of what was going on.

Lina works for a law firm and she has questions about her mom who died when she was quite young. Her dad is a famous artist and her mother was a talented artist herself.

Lina gets very much into a case of trying to find a formerly known slave named Josephine who was thought of as an artist that her slave owner took credit for works of after she had taught her the skills she had. Lina wants to bring down the slave owner's family who wants credit for the works. The story goes back and forth between things regarding Josephine's life and Lina herself.

I think there are a few ways this story could have been better. I do think that it wrapped things up fairly well, though not completely. Definitely this was a pretty unique story that is believable in many of its forms.

  • Age is Just a Number

  • Achieve Your Dreams At Any Stage In Your Life
  • By: Elizabeth Weil, Dara Torres
  • Narrated by: Rebecca Lowman
  • Length: 7 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 55
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 34
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 34

In Age Is Just a Number, Dara Torres reveals how the dream of an Olympic comeback first came to her when she was months into her first, hard-won pregnancy. With humor and candor, Dara recounts how she returned to serious training while nursing her infant daughter and contending with her beloved father's long battle with cancer. A truly self-made legend, her story will resonate with women of all ages and with anyone daring to entertain a seemingly impossible dream.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic

  • By Angela T. Szpojda on 08-15-09

Dara is cool!

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

Reviewed: 10-08-18

Dara's a cool woman and inspires me, since she is extremely fit for a woman reaching 50 and is a medalist from the Olympics with a great swimming career. Her story is kinda boring though, no? I am not saying that her story is too boring to enjoy and should be more riveting, but the way she tells it (and I don't mean how the woman who read the book read it either) is pretty boring. I struggled even wanting to listen to this book, So I listened to it every so often only. I will still watch clips of her swimming, but I don't recommend this as a book worth reading/listening to.

  • The Underground Railroad (Oprah's Book Club)

  • A Novel
  • By: Colson Whitehead
  • Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 10 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,213
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,218
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,184

The Newest Oprah Book Club 2016 Selection. Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood - where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned - Cora kills a young white boy who tries to capture her. Though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Stupendous book, hard to follow in audio

  • By JQR on 12-01-16

3.75 stars

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

Reviewed: 09-26-18

The book was very detailed with well written narratives and horrifying situations of what a person trying to survive slavery in the 1800s and make a way of escape towards freedom might have endured.

Cora is the main character in this story. She makes her way along the underground railroad and shares her various experiences of life in slavery causing her to want to get out, shares interactions with the conductors she stays with while on the road, shares times with those she befriends or is wary of, and even shares times with a slave hunter out to get her.

It was unique and has some content that is definitely not suitable for minors.

edit:
By the way, I was really confused at times during the reading of this book that there seemed to be an ACTUAL railroad, rather than the whole metaphor of one that existed in reality. It took me a while to catch on to the way she viewed her journey towards freedom.

  • Little Fires Everywhere

  • By: Celeste Ng
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Lim
  • Length: 11 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26,903
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,313
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,271

In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is planned - from the layout of the winding roads to the colors of the houses to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules. Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother - who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter, Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Boring and Drawn Out!!!

  • By M. Ryder on 10-05-17

Start fresh.

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

Reviewed: 09-20-18

I am going to give this book 3.75 stars, as it was truly excellently written and captivated me to the story of the people it highlighted. This story focuses in on a few families all living in Shaker Heights, named after the religious sect.

One family throughout the story is Mia and Pearl, a mother and daughter duo who travel the country and hope to finally settle down for good. Mia is a photographer who seems to include mixed media in her art. Pearl is in high school and started to make a couple friends with the landlord's family.

The Richardsons are a family of 6. This story does take on the perspective of three of the kids, though the fourth one does certainly get brought up a lot in the story through each perspective. It also takes on the mother's perspective. Man, she bugs me most of the time throughout the story. I won't really get into her though....

Mia is the coolest character in this whole story and I really enjoyed the story that unfolded about her life as we go on and how she handles situations. She definitely gets "cool mom" status too. You'll see when you read it. She is very mysterious in the beginning though.

There was another family that gets talked about plus an extra character. A family is trying to adopt a little baby who has Chinese descent. They absolutely adore her. The mother is local and misses her child, so a court situation comes up.

This story ends a little strangely but I still enjoyed how it ended. I don't know if things that happened would work out the way they did necessarily, if it were real, but I guess that is why it is fiction, as anything can happen.

A lot of this book is about motherhood and relationships they have with their children. I think that whole idea really shines in this and was enjoyable. There was lots of drama throughout it too!

  • The Diplomat's Daughter

  • A Novel
  • By: Karin Tanabe
  • Narrated by: Joy Osmanski, Corey Brill, Jacques Roy
  • Length: 13 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 331
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 306
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 304

During the turbulent months following the 1941 bombing of Pearl Harbor, 21-year-old Emi Kato, the daughter of a Japanese diplomat, is locked behind barbed wire in a Texas internment camp. She feels hopeless until she meets handsome young Christian Lange, whose German-born parents were wrongfully arrested for un-American activities. Together they live as prisoners with thousands of other German and Japanese families but discover that love can bloom in even the bleakest circumstances.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wartime Love Story

  • By Mona-Alisa on 01-12-18

Giving it 3.5 stars

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

Reviewed: 09-06-18

This story takes us through the perspectives of three characters during WWII. The first one is a Japanese born woman who has lived and traveled around the world due to her father being a diplomat. Her name is Emi Kato. She is in love with Leo and is so sad to be leaving him, as he is from Austria, a place she had lived in for a time. In the early part of the book we don't really know much about him other than her obsession. As the story goes on we learn much more about his life (more in the second half). The second character we learn a lot about is Christian, who is an American born to German parents. He struggles with life in an internment camp.

This story is filled with passion and love as well as the hatred of people who are of different races. It is also about how a heart can change and how other hearts can have persistence and patience. It is a sad story many times and is not meant for those who are minors. It was well written. The narration on the audio book is well done. I am glad they changed voices based on the narration.