Tag Archive: audible-wishlist



Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African ChildhoodDon’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood by Alexandra Fuller
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Look, I didn’t hate it. It obviously kept my interest until that mild end. Yet, I just didn’t get into it like others I see in the reviews.

As I have said on reviews of other biographies/autobiographies, I don’t feel I can stand in judgment of another’s life and the viewpoints of their life. And this book was another example of a person’s life and perspective.

One of the things I like was the language the author used as she grew up. It was a bit confusing at first, especially on text-to-speech to hear the immature language of the author as a toddler mixed with the language of her area. And as she grew the language grew along with the history and cultural colloquialisms.

I was struck by how normal the author perceived it was to live in war zones or areas of gang wars. I know that must be how it is for anyone in these kinds of situations. That is their ‘normal’. So this was an educational piece for me.

Still, I find I am glad to move on to other books now. Thank you for recommending this to me. I hope everyone likes it better than I did.

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Planetfall (Planetfall, #1)Planetfall by Emma Newman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Darn cliffhangers! I cannot wait until the library can get book two onto my Kindle Fire! That is the only reason I rated it four stars.

If you are a sci-fi fan like me, especially the kind that include space travel or new planets, you’ll love it, too. One of my friends recommended this to me and she is not wrong, this is my kind of book!

Ren is the main character. She has some personal issues but tries to stay professional. We aren’t sure what causes her to be the way she is. But we like her and follow her life on this planet. Other characters aren’t nearly as developed but don’t need to be. There are a couple of them that are not as nice or are too pushy but, hey, in any group of people there are going to be individuals who are not as accessible.

The science used in this book was fascinating. It all seems not only plausible but necessary if we are ever to explore other worlds.

What isn’t often explored in sci-fi are mental issues and how that could affect all on a new planet. And mental issues may not be there at the beginning when being processed towards being an astronaut but that doesn’t mean that issues won’t come about later to trigger individuals.

I love how issues like anxiety and depression and even hoarding are brought up. As we all know, the patient is the one that has to ask for help for help to be most effective. I seem to be making this sound clinical, it isn’t. It is exciting and kept me up reading far longer than I should. The excitement of a new planet and flora and fauna never seen before kept my interest until nearly sunrise a couple of nights.

I highly recommend this book. And as I said, I can’t wait for the next book to become available.

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The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector's StoryThe Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector’s Story by Hyeonseo Lee
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh, what a fantastic book! Hyeonseo Lee tells her story in an immaculate way. Her story was so messy yet the writing was well-done and kept my interest all the way through. It is an autobiography. As such we get the inside view of people who live in North Korea and how hard it is to escape and integrate into other countries.

I want to write more but I’m afraid of ruining your reading experience with this book. I wish Ms. Lee continued success and I hope as time goes on more people will break loose and that country will be independent. It does make you want to make sure the things you think of as truth are truth and not something others want you to believe.

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Acorna: The Unicorn GirlAcorna: The Unicorn Girl by Anne McCaffrey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It is no secret that Anne McCaffrey has been one of my favorite authors of all time. I think it is within this decade that I was in a bookstore in Reno that had some pretty good deals. They told me that they had just received a huge collection of First Edition Anne McCaffrey’s books. I nearly passed it up. I’ve never been rich monetarily. I figured I wouldn’t be able to afford it. But being a store that wanted to keep their merchandise moving, they actually quoted me a price for the whole collection that I could afford.

But I was working and found that reading “real” or “tree” books hard for my eyes. And I was always tired with fibromyalgia. So the books sat on my shelves.

When we moved here the McCaffreys sat in a box until I got a new bookshelf. Now they are out on display so I can’t resist. Except reading the old way is slow. So I try to keep my paper bookmark where I am in the Kindle version and read a bit when I can.

Luckily, I’ve been collecting the Kindle versions of Anne’s treasures. At least this one has text-to-speech. I kind of hoped for Audible but they don’t have this book. It’s okay as I can speed up the listen-rate to 2x and get through a book in no time.

As much as I looked forward to Acorna, who wouldn’t want to read a story about a unicorn girl? I have to admit that as much as I love her writing style, I found this book wasn’t so much about the girl as it was about child slavery and the men who found the girl. You never get to see her point of view, even when she grows up. Still, Ms. McCaffrey and Ms. Ball cover the issues well and made a good story. I am already into the next book and I see the plot continues with other people. Acorna is still not showing up personally. Maybe that will change soon.

I still liked the book and can’t wait to see what happens in the series.

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Imagine Me GoneImagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

A few days ago I came to the conclusion that I couldn’t finish this book. I just couldn’t like the characters or the story. What parts I related to were triggers of my own upbringing and depressions. I figured this wasn’t a good book for me.

After looking at the reviews and realizing a friend had recommended to me, I decided to stick it out. I must admit that the book got a little better but still was not one I will remember in the future. I would normally give this book a single star, but I do think the subject matter needs to be shared with others that may not have had the opportunity to learn about it first hand. And explore why the treatment of depression and other mental health issues don’t get looked at is because many think the patients are needy, attention-getters or otherwise diminish the pain the person is going through. The author gives us a couple glimpses into the minds of severe depression. So I raised the star rating by one.

Since I review and rate for my own future reference I have to leave it at 2 stars. Others love this book and say it is their favorite of the year. So don’t take my word for it. Pick it up and see what you think. Oh, I should mention this was a library Kindle version.

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The Wee Free Men (Discworld, #30)The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Serendipity. Do you want to know how lucky/blessed I am? Well, I’m going to tell you right here in this review as I can’t separate my life from my reading diet.

A week ago I had been invited to go on a potential road trip to see my foster daughter. There were so many things that could happen to prevent said trip. So I was calling it the ‘iffy trip’. But things didn’t go wrong. Somehow everything went right and I got to go. I hadn’t been in Oregon since I was in junior high. And I hadn’t seen my foster daughter for at least a decade. And who knows, that iffy trip may have me moving up to Oregon very soon! How cool is that?

My friend brought this book, The Wee Free Men, narrated by Stephen Briggs. What a great road trip read! My friend and I were enthralled! We were laughing so hard at the late Terry Pratchett’s writing for most of the trip north and then most of the trip south. And, yes, the writing is the basis of this experience. But Mr. Briggs’s acting skills were truly fantastic. He had all the accents and voices for everyone and kept the story going.

Often while listening to this I pictured getting into Mr. Prachett’s head while he was writing this story. He must have laughed to himself often with the puns that seem to rolls from his fingers into the pages. Then I wished I could watch Stephen Briggs do his part in front of the mic doing his performance. There had to be quite a few faces for each of the characters that seem to jump out of his mouth.

Needless to say, I have this book on my Kindle and Audible wishlists. I want to read it over and over. It is easily as great as Alice in Wonderland or Wizard of Oz. It would be a great family read. SO fun!

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Review: Prodigy by Marie Lu


Prodigy (Legend, #2)Prodigy by Marie Lu

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have never read a series of books so out of order as I have had to with this series. It was too expensive to buy each of the three books so I consulted the library. They had the large print hardback book and the CDs to listen to available right away. They didn’t have the first book and the second was already borrowed. So I read/heard book three first. I was very impressed with the author that the story line and characters held together without the background of the first two books. Soon the second book became available in only the OverDrive (audio) version. So I took my chances.

Once again, I am impressed with how well the story holds together even reading it so out of order. As with book three the narrators: Mariel Stern (June), Steven Kaplan (Day) keep the story moving from within the characters’ points of view. Though the ending of book two felt like the narrators were hitting their stride, the beginning felt a little unrehearsed. Still, I think this is a great way to tell a story from the male and female viewpoints. I think it makes the book more accessible to both genders. That’s my guess. I wonder how males react to this way of telling a story. Both June and Day are fearless and human and show they deeply care for each other and their people. Both are trying to make a dystopian world a little more livable for all. I imagine that the audio versions of this story add so many more layers of believability to the story.

This was the first book I have had to rely strictly on the audio version. There was no Kindle or tree-book available to read along on. With my ADD that made it hard to stay within the story. But I limited my visual stimuli to crocheting a mundane pattern or closing my eyes. I think if I had a car, this would be a great ride along story. It isn’t so exciting as to make the drive dangerous, but it keeps your attention.

Now that I know how the story ends, and how the middle is told, I will have to read the first part. I found I had one credit on Audible so as to ‘buy’ book one. Once my finances are better I will grab the Kindle version to go with it. I may eventually reread the story in the right order to see how much different it comes across. I highly recommend these books for young adults and older. The romance isn’t horrible sticky. Rather it adds another layer of depth to the story. Enjoy!

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Review: Champion by Marie Lu


ChampionChampion by Marie Lu

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Five stars! And that’s with me starting to read it on book three! I never do that. I like to start at the beginning and read a long series to the end. Starting in the middle or later can be chancy at best. But there was no choice. I saw such high ratings and I think a GoodReads friend recommended it. So I jumped over to Amazon. WAY too expensive for me right now. So I went over to my library website to see if they had it. The had the regular version of book two and this third book. BUT with this large print book I was able to land the audio-CDs. How lucky was that?

Let me take a moment out for a font complaint. Why is it that large print versions don’t give spaces between lines? Even with the larger font I still couldn’t read it straight through. I needed to use my trusty dusty bookmark to keep track, like a first grader! Old eyes, what can I say?

What kept me going, though, was the audio version. The voices of June and Day were read by Mariel Stern and Steven Kaplan respectively. They were wonderful narrators! I must make sure when I finally get this series for myself that I get the Audible Whispersync with the Kindle version.

I must marvel at the writing of Marie Lu. That I can come into the story this late in the game and not feel lost is to her credit. Sure, I felt like I was missing a little background on how it all started and how relationships grew, or didn’t, but I felt I already knew, somehow. There wasn’t a lot of background descriptors dragging the story out, so I assume Ms. Lu snuck it all in there somehow. Magic!

And I am surprised that coming out of the book I have a hunger to read the entire series, real soon! I put all the books on all my wishlists. Just reading a book three should have had me feel I was finished, ya know?

Oh, and if you read this one, have some Kleenex on hand near the end. It’s not horrid, but I haven’t cried like that near the end of a book for a long time. But that shows the amount of truth that this story held for me. No, I am far from being a teen–65, but I could still relate to all that was going on with these characters.

Oh, and this is the first book in a long time that felt that either guys or girls could read it with equal fervor. Each chapter is either June or Day (Daniel) and both are tough but caring human beings.

As I have said before, where were authors like Marie Lu when I was a teen? This book kept my interest from beginning to end. And I think that if you are unlucky enough to not get the first two books you can start here and still have an active adventure!

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Light, Coming BackLight, Coming Back by Ann Wadsworth

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

For once, I was glad that the font was too small for me. It meant that I had to savor my moments with the story. This was like the fine wine, dark chocolate, aged cheese kind of book. I cherished every moment with it. It wasn’t the kind of book that left you tense or anxious in any way. In fact, I felt very little tension in the book. That goes against what I have been taught about writing.

The main character, Mrs. Mercedes Medina, is in her sixties. Her husband is 20 years her senior. I love the depth of relationship they have. The author, Ann Wadsworth, did a wonderful job creating the couple and each individual. They were wonderfully human characters with faults and follies of their own and a comfortable chemistry between them. But as life is changing and Patrick, the husband, starts failing in health, Mercedes, is trying to figure out her own life.

Since I am in my sixties, I found her life to be interesting. It is far from my own life. I felt like I moved in with this couple and lived a different life for a while. Isn’t that the best part about books? You can step into someone else’s life, their cities, their adventures, their music. Mrs. Medina’s life is rich while she is searching.

I have been thinking about what I would write about this book since I started it. There are no words I can come up with to do it justice. I wish everyone could read it. I don’t want to let it go. That’s how much I loved it. I registered the book on BookCrossing. BCID: 71813027955  Please read it if you get the chance.

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Sing You HomeSing You Home by Jodi Picoult

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was special!

I was lucky enough to get both the audio CDs and the large print hardback from the library. I highly recommend reading it like that. As a music major, who thought seriously about moving into music therapy, I found myself relating to the main character, Zoe.

Not only was this well written, there were songs sung in the narration! The narrators’ voices were well done. And the a capella singing voice is angelic!

It was depressing to me to give the book back to the library. I loved it so much I know I will be buying the Kindle/Audible combo to enjoy again in the future.

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