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Michael Duke
Audible Editor
Michael loves mind-bending literature that is surreal or speculative and has a strong sense of voice (written and spoken). He's been known to shake up his listening routine with self dev books while sustaining a healthy habit of hoarding oatmeal raisin cookies in his desk.
Michael's Recent Reviews
  • The Handmaid's Tale: Special Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Margaret Atwood, Valerie Martin - essay
    • Narrated By Claire Danes, full cast, Margaret Atwood
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19337)
    Performance
    (17814)
    Story
    (17757)

    After a violent coup in the United States overthrows the Constitution and ushers in a new government regime, the Republic of Gilead imposes subservient roles on all women. Offred, now a Handmaid tasked with the singular role of procreation in the childless household of the enigmatic Commander and his bitter wife, can remember a time when she lived with her husband and daughter and had a job, before she lost everything, even her own name.

    ambER says: "WAIT WAIT WAIT WAIT WAIT"
Atwood has maintained a explicit, palpable tension in this book that tosses you between all sorts of emotions you'd rather not admit. Outrage? Acceptance? Bartering? Denial? It's all here, and more. The environment is never so physically dangerous that it is unlivable, but a very real mental anguish and psychological consequence weigh down every minute of this harrowing story. We are following someone through a gauntlet of psychic torture, brought about simply by perverted social attitudes.Read More I don't know much about Claire Danes--my knowledge of pop culture is nothing to write home about--but it is either her innate talent as an actor or the nature of this story that lends itself perfectly to verbal performance that allows her to add such visceral emotion and tenor to her voice. It is calm, deliberate, and absolutely raw.

Of all the books I've listened to, which is numerous but not much compared to a lot of people I'm sure, it is only Claire Danes performing The Handmaid's Tale that can make a wavering soft voice--a whisper--resonate as strongly as a woman screaming at the top of her lungs for her dear life.
Read Less
  • The Unseen World: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Liz Moore
    • Narrated By Lisa Flanagan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1378)
    Performance
    (1245)
    Story
    (1252)

    Ada Sibelius is raised by David, a single father and head of a computer science lab in Boston. Homeschooled, she accompanies her loving father - brilliant, eccentric, socially inept - to work every day. By 12 she is a painfully shy prodigy. At the same time that the lab begins to gain acclaim, David's mind begins to falter, and his mysterious past comes into question. When her father moves into a nursing home, Ada is taken in by one of David's colleagues. She embarks on a mission to uncover her father's secrets.

    Margot T. says: "Appreciated but Not Enjoyed"
Liz Moore’s The Unseen World is fascinating on so many levels. It has the depth of character of solid contemporary fiction, the fast pace and intrigue of a good mystery, and the sophisticated concept of refined speculative sci-fi. Read More It follows Ada Sibelius; a girl lab-schooled by her scientist father until his eventual decline into Alzheimer’s. As his memory fades, the mystery of his true identity pushes Ada through a surreal, lifelong quest in search of herself, her father, and the bond they maintain across platforms. More than just a clever story, Moore demonstrates a spectacular knowledge of different eras in American history, and she ties them together immaculately. The end result is an expertly-crafted novel about the nuances of a connected life. Read Less
  • Born to Run

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Bruce Springsteen
    • Narrated By Bruce Springsteen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6782)
    Performance
    (6325)
    Story
    (6300)

    In 2009, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band performed at the Super Bowl's halftime show. The experience was so exhilarating that Bruce decided to write about it. That's how this extraordinary autobiography began. Over the past seven years, Bruce Springsteen has privately devoted himself to writing the story of his life, bringing to this audio the same honesty, humor, and originality found in his songs.

    Tim says: "The Boss demonstrates his strong work ethic and dedication to excellence as he tells his story."
Growing up in New Jersey it’s not too much of a stretch to say that Bruce Springsteen was something of a spiritual force. His voice is synonymous with a powerful sense of place, and it bears a rugged, scrappy idealism that can make you feel patriotic and subversive at the same time. That’s what makes this autobiography, written and performed by The Boss himself, nothing less than magical. Read More It’s not simply a story of his path to success or a philosophy of greatness, but a marathon concert tell-all wherein he confronts demons of mental illness, poverty, and familial strife. It is nostalgic for a simpler time, but urgent in its display of discipline and individuality. Ultimately, Bruce delivers with this audiobook what he has done for nearly five decades with his music: a celebration of the commonplace and the struggles of American life with candor, imagination, and purpose. Read Less
Short Novels, Short Stories, and Short Story Cycles