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March 1, 2019 - April 1, 2019

Barbara from Monroe Township, NJ
Kathy from Wilkes Barre, PA
 
 
 
 
 

Tessa
The Good Nurse by Charles Graeber
Narrator Name: Will Collyer

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Will Collyer did a fine job reading the audiobook. He has good pacing and clear diction.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
Charles Cullen was a registered nurse who worked in a number of New Jersey hospitals; when he worked at a hospital the death rates skyrocketed. This true-crime nonfiction is interesting, but not as gripping as some others. Still, it’s evident that Graeber did extensive research.

Judy
What to Think About Machines That Think by Edited by John Brockman
Narrator Name: Brett Barry and Lisa Larsen

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Most articles/essays were read by Barry; Larsen provides a nice change of pace. Both are skillful readers, imparting information with voices that seemed to find the material as fascinating as I did.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Brockman is behind the well-known online Edge Question Series. Because I'm fascinated by robots and the development of AI (Artificial Intelligence) this book was a feast of information. Thought-provoking and knowledgeable, the dozens of articles and essays not only indulged my curiosity but also suggested many new ways to think about the future. Each entry has information about the author, including any books each may have written. I've made a list of titles to look for.

pat
A Well-Behaved Woman by Therese Anne Fowler
Narrator Name: Barrie Kreinik

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Great narration which made the story so vivid.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Historical fictionalized account of the life of Alva Vanderbilt which is so compelling that you keep reminding yourself that the gilded age is not so different from 2019. Alva has a determination and desire to work the system she was subjected to.

Diane
Beautiful You by Chuck Palahniuk
Narrator Name: Carol Monda

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Good quality, interesting voice.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
As always, Chuck is interesting and provocative, but this book is also pretty gross...way too much sex description for my taste.

Shirley
The Clockmaker's Daughter by Kate Morton
Narrator Name: Joanne Froggatt

Rating the Audio Performance
5
This performance was superb. The characters came to life and the narrator's English accent was perfect to provide the mood of the book.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
I loved this book but I wish that I had read it in book form. There were many passages that I wanted to highlight, and several areas where I needed to go back an reread something and I couldn't do either with the audiobook. Kate Morton presents a complex storyline, well-developed characters and a tight plot.

Tessa
Origin by Dan Brown
Narrator Name: Paul Michael

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Paul Michael did a fine job narrating the book. I loved his voice for Winston, and he does a credible job of voicing Ambra as well.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
Brown certainly knows how to keep the reader in suspense and turning pages, guessing right up to the reveal. But…I’m tired of Robert Langdon and his lectures on symbology. I also felt that Brown wrote himself into a corner and took an easy out.

Sheryl
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
Narrator Name: Jack Hawkins and Louise Brealey

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Very engaging, excellent flow between characters.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Plot line kept you guessing to the very end.

Karen
Death by Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake by Sarah Graves
Narrator Name: Susan Boyce

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Susan Boyce reads this book beautifully. She voices the characters, both men and women, to reflect their personalities and roles in the novel. The tempo of her reading makes the story interesting and exciting so the listener is drawn into the story and keeps listening to find out how the mystery plays out.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
The Chocolate Moose is Jake and Ellie's new venture. It is a pastry shop that specializes in chocolate treats. Six weeks into the new venture when they are in the middle of baking cherry chocolate cheese cakes for the a Fourth of July raffle; a man is found dead in their shop. The man is Matt Muldoon who has been harassing them with claims that their shop is unsanitary, and he plans to report them to his "friends" at the health department. He wants the shop for his wife's venture. Ellie is the prime suspect so Jake and Ellie start investigating. They are led on a twisted journey to get to the bottom of the mystery. Meanwhile, Sam, Jake's son, is trying to get home but is delayed by bad weather. Another surprise awaits Jake.

Cris
Betty Ford by Lisa McCubbin
Narrator Name: Amanda Carlin

Rating the Audio Performance
5
I so enjoyed this book! I truly felt like reader was connected to the story. I felt she wanted us to KNOW Mrs Ford and her family’s story!
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
I knew about Mrs Ford’s breast cancer and problem with alcohol...Betty Ford Clinic. Yet I have to admit I was a young child, still in elementary school, so I didn’t know the whole story. I didn't know what a gutsy, true iconic figure she was for women! So glad I read this book!!

Natalie
The Mist by Stephen King
Narrator Name: Will Patton

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Love Will Patton's readings of King's books! He pefectly captures the characters' wit.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Stephen King is a master storyteller!

Jill
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
Narrator Name: Jack Hawkins and Louise Brealey

Rating the Audio Performance
4
I felt these narrators did a fine job with this book.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
I enjoyed the plot twists and red herrings in this book. Kept me guessing til the shocking ending!

Francisca
A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler
Narrator Name: Kimberly Farr

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Kimberly Farr is fast becoming a favorite narrator for me. She really brings these characters to life.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
3.5 stars. A family saga covering three generations of Whitshanks and the familial home that anchors their story. Tyler shines when writing about everyday life and the small dramas that make up American families. I find these characters so believable and relatable, even when their circumstances are very different from anything I’ve experienced personally.

Therese
Becoming by Michelle Obama
Narrator Name: Michelle Obama

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Even though I own the book, I wanted to listen to the audio version because I love listening to Michelle speak. It did not disappoint. She's a very clear and articulate speaker whose narration of her own story made it all the more special.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
A thoughtful introspective of the First Lady's life.

Mary
The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
Narrator Name: Imogen Church

Rating the Audio Performance
5
The narrator does an excellent job pulling you into an already captivating story.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
This isn't my favorite book by the author, but it still is a real "page turner". The opening events in the story make you doubt the main character's frame of mind as her life starts to take some strange and frightening turns. When you realize there are lots of characters in the novel that aren't completely up-front, you start to believe Lo Blacklock, the main character, and root for her to make the right decisions.

Deb
Endurance by Scott Kelly
Narrator Name: Scott Kelly

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Listening to Kelly read about both the science and the personal were delivered in nearly the same tone. But I imagined that to be typical of someone who's brain is constantly 'calculating' rather than 'relating'!
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Quite the informative yet very personal story of not only Kelly's myriad life experiences but of the behind-the-scenes efforts by NASA to continue space exploration. I particularly enjoyed Kelly sharing stories of his youth as a less-than-motivated/stellar student and how he was willing to change and apply himself once he found what he loved, a great motivational anecdote for struggling students (and adults as well). I liked that the scientific details were not overwhelming and the personal anecdotes, humorous as well as poignant, offered a nice balance. I plan to follow the ongoing studies of Scott and his brother Mark (also an astronaut).

pat
Warlight by Michael Ondaatje
Narrator Name: Steve West

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Very compelling voice of the narrator who is describing his life in London post World War II.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Beautifully written.

Beverly
A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult
Narrator Name: Bahni Turpin

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Enjoyed the change in character voices.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
I always like controversial subjects with all sides given. It makes you think and consider other viewpoints.

Harriett
The Defector by Daniel Silva
Narrator Name: Phil Gigante

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Excellent voice actor. His character accents are believable as well as his expression.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Silva's books are not only exciting and cohesive but also informative about the politics in his geographical locations.

Tessa B C
Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
Narrator Name: Jennifer Lim

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Jennifer Lim does a fine job narrating the audiobook. She has good pacing and enough skill as a voice artist to give the many female characters sufficiently unique voices. The way she performed Mrs. Richardson rationalizing her behavior, or Izzy’s confusion, frustration and anger really brought these characters to life for me.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
I cannot help but wonder what Ng has against determined mothers, first in her debut novel, and now with Elena Richardson. I was struck by how the Richardson kids had a mother who believed she was giving her kids everything, but in fact they knew little about how to deal with life. While Mia, unable to give her child much in the way of material goods, had given her the tools for living – self-reliance, observation, determination.

Margie
Born A Crime by Trevor Noah
Narrator Name: Trevor Noah

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Having Trevor Noah as the narrator is terrific. He has the most adorable accent and hearing him tell the personal stories adds a wonderful texture.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Outstanding! Not only a brilliant book about growing up in South Africa and the fall of apartheid but funny, funny personal stories. Loved it!

Vicki
Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover
Narrator Name: Julia Whelan

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Wonderful voice. Made me feel I was actually listening to the author as she grew up.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
I loved this book. I learned so much about life in a Mormon community. Had to keep telling myself this was a memoir and not fiction as it flowed so well.

Tessa
City of Bones by Michael Connelly
Narrator Name: Peter Jay Fernandez

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Peter Jay Fernandez does a fine job narrating the digital audiobook. He moves along at a good clip, and does a pretty good job of voicing the women characters as well as the men.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
3.5 stars. Book Eight in the popular Harry Bosch detective mystery series. I really like this series, partly because I really like Harry Bosch. He’s a great detective and does his best to circumvent the political minefield of a big-city police department. The action is fast-paced and Connelly gives the reader enough red herrings to keep anyone guessing.

Lana
The Blue Tattoo: The Life of Olive Oatman by Margot Mifflin
Narrator Name: Kaipo Schwab

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Narrator was excellent for this historical nonfiction book.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
Very good rendering of a young migrant's captivity, release, and the after effects of that captivity on her and her captors. I am fascinated with indigenous history and found this book to be informative, accurate, and well written.

Barbara
Trail of Lightening by Rebecca Roanhorse
Narrator Name: Tanis Parenteau

Rating the Audio Performance
4
This was a new narrator for me who I found easy to listen to and competent. Although I cannot comment on the correctness of his pronunciation of Navajo words, Tanis offered distinguishable, distinct voices for the characters, a must for me.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
Exciting, futuristic, post-apocalyptic urban fantasy novel set on Navajo lands which are now protected from the outside world by a magic wall. Maggie the hero, is a fierce and independent female character who together with a fledgling medicine man, tracks down monsters.

Jared
Hellen Back: The Attic by Vicki Zell
Narrator Name: Virginia Ferguson

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Ferguson was a delight to listen to. Her vocal tone was admirable and thought out with character. Very pleasant on the ears in tone range, a must in my book.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Marvelous. Surprisingly delicious fun. The back and forth storyline fit the tale to a T. Haunting and dark. King would be proud. Subtle and edgy. Ms Zell’s characters are darkness in the light. A strong story about possible storms we all have heard about in the newspaper and on television. A must-read for those who love a mystery suspense story strapped with twists and turns to tighten the soul.

Ricki
How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell
Narrator Name: David Tennant

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Tennant has a great voice, but the Vikings sounded too Scottish.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
I haven't seen all of the movie, but I can tell the book is different, but not in a bad way. Very fun read.

Kristen
At the Wolf's Table by Rosella Postorino
Narrator Name: Polly Stone

Rating the Audio Performance
4
The narrator does an admirable job of using a German accent as well as several characters' voices.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
A much different type of story about the German homefront of WWII. This story brought a new perspective to my understanding of the war and its toll.

Dottie
Bittersweet Brooklyn: A Novel by Thelma Adams
Narrator Name: Meredith Starkman

Rating the Audio Performance
3
Easy to listen to.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
Broken immigrant family in Brooklyn, teenage daughter having to take care of her widowed mother and three younger siblings, early 1900s. This is a painful yet riveting story narrated by the youngest daughter. It is a story about a broken family and also insightful into the family life, crime, poverty, corruption, and the endurance of immigrants.

Kathy
Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman
Narrator Name: Catherine Steadman

Rating the Audio Performance
5
At first I thought the monotone reading was going to be painful to listen to, but soon the story as well as inflection picked up and I was thoroughly immersed in the story. Very well done!
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Heart-thumping and exciting story! What I thought would be a story of a newlywed couple and honeymoon gone awry, turned into a story of dangerous twists. I loved this entire book.

Richard N B
Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
Narrator Name: Rebecca Lowman, Cassandra, Campbell, Mark Deakins and Robertson Dean

Rating the Audio Performance
4
The audiobook is narrated by a group of talented voice artists. Unfortunately, I don’t know which character each of these voice artists was narrating, but I found the multiple narration effective.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
Flynn knows how to write a suspenseful psychological thriller. Here she explores memories and psychological trauma. I was caught up from the beginning and held on tight through all the twists and turns the story took.

Brittany
West by Edith Pattou
Narrator Name: Renee Raudman, Kirby Heybourne and full cast

Rating the Audio Performance
5
I listened to the audiobook, which had a full cast of narrators. I would love to read another prequel or sequel story following one of the other character's story next.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
This is the sequel to EAST, Pattou's retelling of EAST OF THE SUN, WEST OF THE MOON. While the first book had a slow-burn, fairytale pace that suited the story, WEST had a lot more action, tension, suspense, and quests, which I enjoyed.

Lana
Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters
Narrator Name: Barbara Rosenblatt

Rating the Audio Performance
4
The narrator did an admirable job of portraying an English woman whose belief in her superior intelligence sometimes got the best of her. The narration definitely enhanced the story for me.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
Fluffy, but fun. Definitely not a book to sink into, but enjoyable as an old fashioned disdain turns to love mystery/romance set in British colonial Egypt.

Phyllis
The Last Anniversary by Liane Morarity
Narrator Name: Heather Wilds

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Very clear performance with Australian dialect.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
Chick lit with a little mystery, and a little family relationships. The long story gets all tied up at the end and everyone lives happily ever after on Scribbly Gum Island in Australia.

Rezina
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
Narrator Name: Jack Hawkins and Louise Brealey

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Great choice in having two narrators. Both gave excellent performances. It was very easy to identify the characters and keep them separate. It gave the story substance.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
The story was told in a way that kept you guessing what was going on. It was not hard to follow, which was great. I felt the ending was unsatisfactory and I wanted more after living with these characters.

Francisca
Espresso Tales by Alexander McCall Smith
Narrator Name: Robert Ian MacKenzie

Rating the Audio Performance
4
Robert Ian MacKenzie does a fine job narrating the audiobook. He has a gift for voices, making it easy to follow the many characters. I could listen to his Scottish brogue all day.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
Book Two in the 44 SCOTLAND STREET series about the residents of a particular apartment building in Edinburgh. The novel is a sort of ensemble piece, with chapters alternating among the characters. It’s not great literature but it is fun to read. Reminds me of Armistead Maupin’s TALES OF THE CITY series.

Tessa
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Narrator Name: Sissy Spacek

Rating the Audio Performance
4
The audiobook is performed by Academy-Award-winning actress Sissy Spacek. She does an admirable job, though her accent is wrong. She is a Texan, and the Southern Alabama accent is softer than her twang. Still, by the second disc I had stopped noticing this, and allowed myself to be carried into the story by her expert reading.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Is this the quintessential American Novel? Will it stand the test of time as Mark Twain’s THE ADVENTURES OF HUCKLEBERRY FINN has done? Time will tell. I do know this, however. This is a singularly powerful novel that has touched generations of readers in the nearly 60 years since it was first released and remains high on many “must be read” lists. It’s a well-paced novel, a fast read with elements of suspense, family drama, humor, and moral lessons.

Sandy
Finding Dorothy by Elizabeth Letts
Narrator Name: Ann Marie Lee

Rating the Audio Performance
5
I thoroughly enjoyed the audio performance of this book. Since the nature of the story is factual, yet whimsical, Anne Marie Lee is the perfect narrator.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
The back story of the author of THE WIZARD OF OZ was totally new to me. Although I lived in North Syracuse, New York, during my childhood, I never knew anything about L. Frank Baum. I am of the generation that watched the movie every year during the holidays. Knowing about the author and his wife is fascinating to me. The man was a dreamer and maker of magic. The woman came from a strong suffragette background. Out of their lives together came an enduring story enjoyed by generations.

pat
Becoming by Michelle Obama
Narrator Name: Michelle Obama

Rating the Audio Performance
5
What a remarkable writer and a witness/partner in the Obama presidency. She starts with her determined self as a child growing up striving to be a great student, daughter and friend. I read the book but listening to Michelle was amazing!
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
A great memoir - see above.

Aimee
Boundary Waters by William Kent Krueger
Narrator Name: Jerry Sciarrio

Rating the Audio Performance
5
The narrator does an excellent job with the pronunciation of Anishinaabe words. Additionally, his voice captures the perfect tension during the edge-of-your-seat moments in this book.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
This is my second Cork O'Connor book, and I am already on the wait list for the next one. The author does an excellent job with the setting, making it a large part of the storyline.

Angela
The Guilty by David Baldacci
Narrator Name: Kyf Brewer

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Great track includes music in some of the more suspenseful parts. The two narrator does a great job with differentiating the characters.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
Solid mystery with a unforeseen twist. Brought a different perspective on the main character, Will Robie. I enjoy Baldacci’s novels and this is no exception.

Nadine
The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah
Narrator Name: Julia Whelan

Rating the Audio Performance
5
The narrator performed the story very well. I highly recommend.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Ernt Allbright, a former POW, comes home from the Vietnam war a changed and volatile man. When he loses yet another job, he makes an impulsive decision: he will move his family north, to Alaska, where they will live off the grid in America’s last true frontier.

MARILYN
A Piece of the World by Christina Baker Kline
Narrator Name: Polly Stone

Rating the Audio Performance
5
This book is beautifully narrated right down to the voice quality that rings true to the fragility of the main character.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
I enjoyed reading this book so much that I purposely opted to listen to the recorded version. The story is about the broken dreams of an entire family but their strength to persevere. There is also a bit of insight into the painter of "Christina's World", Andrew Wyeth.

Tessa
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
Narrator Name: Carolyn McCormick

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Carolyn McCormick does a fantastic job of narrating the audiobook. I did get a little confused a few times about which character was speaking, but that was mostly because I was bored with the book and not paying close attention. It is NOT a reflection of McCormick’s skill in narrating.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
2.5 stars. Book Two in the HUNGER GAMES trilogy. Fast-paced formula continues with the characters facing numerous challenges and struggling with whom to trust and which alliances to forge in order to survive and win. I thought Collins was stretching things out to fill the pages.

ML
Circe by Madeline Miller
Narrator Name: Perdita Weeks

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Her voice was clear and mesmerizing. Ms. Weeks did a good job changing voices for different characters.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
4
Very detailed story of a female heroine of Greek mythology.

Sharon
Everybody’s Son by Thrity Umrigar
Narrator Name: Josh Bloomberg

Rating the Audio Performance
5
The narrator didn’t excellent job of helping the listener envision all of the different characters.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
A very contemporary American story.

Pamela
The Drifter by Nick Petrie
Narrator Name: Stephen Mendel

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Great narration with clear diction, good expression, and perfect pacing.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Very engaging story about PTSD and a good guy who comes to the rescue of a widow and her son.

Phyllis
A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson
Narrator Name: Rob McQuay

Rating the Audio Performance
5
The narrator did a very good job of reading and enacting emotions and details of the story.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
When I was in college back in the 1960s, I had a beloved professor who spent every summer working on the AT. I have been on sections, but never camped or walked any distance. I remember Grandma Gatewood who made the news at her advanced age, so really liked Bryson's account with his friend Steven Katz in 1996 who attempted to walk sections, but in reality only did 39% of the entire Appalachian Trail. They found it much harder than anticipated so I probably will only hear about their experience!

Sheldon
Becoming by Michelle Obama
Narrator Name: Michelle Obama

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Loud and clear.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Personal and interesting.

Francisca
Trans-Sister Radio by Chris Bohjalian
Narrator Name: Judith Ivey

Rating the Audio Performance
4
The audiobook is capably performed by Judith Ivey. I really liked the voices she used for Dana, Carly and Allison. But I couldn’t stand the gravelly voice she gave to Will. It certainly made it easy to tell who was who, but it just seemed so false. There is an unabridged audio version of this book, but my library didn’t carry it. Once I realized it was abridged, I resorted to the text copy to fill in the blanks. There was nothing crucial to the plot missing from the abridged audio, but I definitely got more character development from the text.
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
3
The novel is told by four central characters: Dana, Allison, Carley and Will. One of them is transgender. Bohjalian tackles blended families, small town politics, prejudice, marriage, relationships, and the idea of “love conquers all” in this novel. The story forces the reader to examine (and re-examine) the labels we assign to people and the knee-jerk reactions we have to those labels. I was intrigued and it held my interest, but I don’t think it’s Bohjalian’s best effort.

Helen
Becoming by Michelle Obama
Narrator Name: Michelle Obama

Rating the Audio Performance
5
Wonderful memoir!
Rating the Book's Content/Storyline
5
Fascinating story of her life.