Friday, May 29, 2015

Tallgrass by, Sandra Dallas narrated by, Lorelei King

Tallgrass by, Sandra Dallas narrated by, Lorelei King

This would make a really good book club book. It’s a fascinating look at the Internment camps, actually more of a look on the people in the towns and how they felt about it; it was nice to find out that some didn't want the camps and that these people should be released because they were American citizens. It’s a sad chapter in the US History but something that we need to look at so it doesn’t happen again especially in this day and age.

I enjoyed the characters in this book especially Rennie and her family, she was lucky to have great parents who objected to the camps, even when their own son was off at war. This book is also a bit of a coming of age story for Rennie. There is also a mystery added in and I’m sure you can guess who is blamed for the crime.

This was my first book by this author but it won’t be my last I really enjoyed her writing style and thought she was a very good storyteller. I also enjoyed the interview at the end of the book with the authors reasons for having the story told from the townies prospective and not the Japanese in the camps, which I felt made this a unique read because we are on the outside looking in just like the real people in the towns that were near any of these camps. The confusion of should you hate these people, then the realization that these are American citizens, and the backlash from other community members if you try to stick up for the people in the camps or say anything about releasing them. That’s what I find the most fascinating about this period in our history, is the how would you feel question, I’d like to think I would feel as Rennie’s father did but you just never know.

Lorelei King’s narration was as always spot on, everyone had their own voice and it was easy to differentiate between all the characters.

4 ½ Stars

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Armchair Audies..Thriller/Suspense Category …And the Winner Is….

Armchair Audies….THRILLER/SUSPENSE Category …And the Winner Is….

 Again in this category we have many different kinds of Thrillers and one I felt didn’t belong in this category. Here are the nominees:

The Avengers, Lost Episodes Vol 1: Hot Snow; Adapted by John Dorney; Narrated by Various; Big Finish Productions
I didn’t feel like this book belonged in this category I felt it should be in Audio Drama and it also seemed old radio show, which I enjoy but I didn’t feel like it was a good fit for the category. The narrations were okay but the music was extremely annoying.

Dead Six; by Larry Correia and Mike Kupari; Narrated by Bronson Pinchot; Audible, Inc.
We all know Bronson is amazing but even he couldn’t get me all the way through this 20 hour book. As always all his voices were great but I didn’t feel his range as much in this one as I did in his other nominated title in CHILDREN’S TITLES FOR AGES 8-12 (The Hero’s Guide to Being an Outlaw)

In the Morning I'llBe Gone; by Adrian McKinty; Narrated by Gerard Doyle; Blackstone Audio Inc.
Gerard Doyle’s narration is fabulous this man has a chameleon voice he can do any accent and every single person has a very distinct voice he is amazing!

The Lost Key; by Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison; Narrated by Renee Raudman and MacLeod Andrews; Brilliance Publishing
I must admit to liking MacLeod Andrews narration faster than Renée Raudman’s I thought his narrations were fabulous and all his accents seemed real and well done. Raudman though it took me a little while to enjoy her voice by the end I was enjoying her narration. I would listen to more by both of these narrators.

Those Who Wish MeDead; by Michael Koryta; Narrated by Robert Petkoff; Hachette Audio
I thought Robert Petkoff’s narration was amazing  and very impressive especially the narration of the 2 psycho hit men The Blackwell Brothers that are after Jace/Conner then when one of the characters describes how these men talk, it was even more right on, because he narrated them exactly how the author describes them. Every character has a distinct voice and his female voices were well done.  I will be seeking out other books Petkoff has narrated. I see he narrates quite a few of Koryta’s books so; I will be listening to more of this author & narrator combo.

Wayfaring Stranger; by James Lee Burke; Narrated by Will Patton; Simon & Schuster
I liked this book and at first I enjoyed Will Patton’s narration but after a while everyone sound like an old southern man with cotton in their cheeks.

And The Winner Is…..
Robert Petkoff for Those Who Wish Me Dead, his narration blew me away. The narration of the bad guys had my stomach churning from fear, his female voices sounded authentic and it was a great story.

Good Luck To All The Nominees!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Armchair Audies…Solo Female Narration—And the Winner is……

Armchair Audies…Solo Female Narration—And the Winner is……

This was a tough category this year, we all know how fabulous all these ladies are and honestly I will be happy whoever wins because every one of these narrations is an award worthy performance

The nominees are:

Boston Jacky; by L.A. Meyer; Narrated by Katherine Kellgren; Listen & Live Audio, Inc.
Katherine Kellgren IS Jacky Faber she has made this series come to life for me and this offering is no exception every accent every voice is amazing. Every single voice is different and this book has a huge cast of characters.

Life Drawing; by Robin Black; Narrated by Cassandra Campbell; Penguin Random House Audio
Even though this book was not my cup of tea, Cassandra Campbell’s narration was really well done with different accents and every character had a different voice. Although I disliked the story itself Campbell’s narration was the only thing that kept me listening.

Murphy's Law; by Rhys Bowen; Narrated by Nicola Barber; Audible, Inc.
Nicola Barber’s narration is well done, she has many different accents in this book from Irish to American to a little Italian, and her male voices are also very good. I enjoyed her narration and I think it added to my enjoyment of this book.

Until the End of theWorld; by Sarah Lyons Fleming; Narrated by Julia Whelan; Podium Publishing
Julie Whelan’s narration is well done, I enjoyed her many female voices, however at times her male voices muddled together, especially when Nelly and John are talking and Nelly’s accent isn’t as pronounced I wasn’t sure which man was talking. I did enjoy her narration very much as I always do and love her regular talking voice, and the whininess of Anna was good and not overdone to be annoying, well any more annoying the character of Anna is!

Written in My Own Heart's Blood; by Diana Gabaldon; Narrated by Davina Porter; Recorded Books
Ahh Davina she is the voice of the Outlander Series and I have listened to every one of this series many times so this is a favorite and Davina Porter’s narration is as always amazing. So many accents and characters all with their own voice you never wonder who is speaking, and there is a lot of characters in this series!

Yellow Crocus; by Laila Ibrahim; Narrated by Bahni Turpin; Brilliance Publishing
I read this book in print back in 2012 and if I remember right I read it in Bahni’s voice so was very happy to listen to the real thing. Bahni Turpin’s narration was amazing; she is such a great narrator. Every character has their own voice and her male voices are great too.  She makes this story come to life and embodies every character and makes them real.

Now to pick a winner……That is really tough!

And the Winner is….

Katherine Kellgren for Boston Jacky, for not only this book but this entire series her narration is amazing so many different voices and accents from all over the world she is an amazing talent.

Good Luck to all Nominees!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Armchair Audies …Mystery Category…. And The Winner Is……

Armchair Audies …Mystery Category…. And The Winner Is……

This year we really had a lot of different kinds of Mysteries in this category, some I enjoyed others not so much. I will be going back and listening to others in the Castillo series I really enjoyed that one and will look for other books by Katherine McInerney. I wasn’t a big fan of Malice or Providence Rag I thought both of these books dragged on and didn’t keep me on the edge of my seat. I really enjoyed Missing You and had listened to this before the nominees were announced and even predicted it was going to be nominated (I said Solo Female Narration) but it was still nominated! The Silkworm was a pretty good book but I think I should have read the first one because I did feel I was missing out on some character development.

Kathleen McInerney’s narration was really good she used a nice slight accent when she was voicing the Amish people, her German accents were good and her male voices were fine and her narration of Kate was very well done.

 Hounded; by David Rosenfelt; Narrated by Grover Gardner; Listen & Live Audio, Inc.
I listened to the last book in this series last year and didn’t enjoy it much so I only listened to some of this book. Grover Gardner’s narration is good I like his voice but couldn’t get past not liking the book.

Malice; by Keigo Higashino; Narrated by Jeff Woodman; Macmillan Audio
I usually enjoy Jeff Woodman’s narrations but this one was different he has an odd accent that I can’t place, this book is set in Japan but that isn’t the accent it has an almost upper crust British feel to it but not all out British but it isn’t a straight American accent either, but either way I can’t place it and it threw me off. Also every one pretty much sounds the same, I never knew when it was Detective Kaga or Nonguchi talking their voices sounded so similar. I think he attempted to make one voice higher but that just confused me more because I thought that was his lady voice.

January LaVoy’s narration was very well done I liked that you always knew who was talking and that everyone had a voice, I must mention though there are times some of her male characters sound like cartoons but that was only a couple people so it was easy to overlook. This is my second narration by January and I really enjoyed both so I will seek out books where she is the narrator.

Providence Rag; by Bruce DeSilva; Narrated by Jeff Woodman; Audible, Inc.
Jeff Woodman’s narration was good although sometimes his women’s voices weren’t believable. I thought his other accents and voices of men were well done. I have liked his narration of other books so I will listen to him again.

The Silkworm; by Robert Galbraith; Narrated by Robert Glenister; Hachette Audio
Robert Glenister’s narration is very well done he does both male and female voices very well; he also had a lot of different kinds English accents which were well done.


January LaVoy for Missing You, I thought she was the perfect choice for this book. I know Sleepless Reader and I disagree on this one and it was a tough call between Glenister & LaVoy but none of the other books brought out the emotion of the book the way January LaVoy did and for that reason she is my winner.

Good Luck to all Nominees!

Friday, April 24, 2015

The Dead Will Tell by Linda Castillo; Narrated by Kathleen McInerney ~~Armchair Audies

The Dead Will Tell by Linda Castillo (Kate Burkholder #6) Narrated by Kathleen McInerney

 Macmillan Audio

Nominated for an Audie in the Mystery Category

Kathleen McInerney’s narration was really good she used a nice slight accent when she was voicing the Amish people and her male voices were fine and her narration of Kate was very well done.

I have had my eye on this series for a while and now thanks to the Armchair Audies I finally listened to one, and I will now go back and listen to the beginning of this series.

I enjoyed this story it was interesting trying to figure out if the victims were seeing a ghost or was it just their guilt over what happened years ago. In this Amish community Kate Burkholder former Amish now Chief of Police has to go into the community she left behind and dredge up memories of a heinous crime where a father and 4 children are killed and the mother is taken and never seen again, one child survived and has stayed in the community although he deals with so much guilt over leaving his siblings to try to catch the people taking his mother he can’t catch them and when he gets back to the house it is completely engulfed in flames. But that was 35 years ago and today there are what at first look like suicides but Kate sees there is more going on here than meets the eye and it seems to have something to do with this long ago unsolved crime.

This book kept me guessing and the reveal surprised me it was definitely not who I thought it was. I liked the character of Kate but was a bit confused when it came to her relationship with Tomesetti but I think if I go back and listen to the previous books it will make more sense to me. That was the only part of the book where I felt like I was missing something although I still enjoyed the main story.

As I said I will go back and listen to previous books in this series so that tells you I liked it.

3 ½ Stars

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Lacy Eye by Jessica Treadway narrated by, Ellen Archer

Lacy Eye by Jessica Treadway narrated by, Ellen Archer

This was quite a story it kept me on the edge of my seat, especially when you listen to it as a mother and wonder what would you think and feel? Would you also stand up for your daughter even when everyone else thinks she’s guilty? There’s no way you could have raised a daughter who had a hand in killing her father and left you severely beaten and left for dead. Yes, your daughter has always been a bit odd and was bullied and teased as a child because of a lazy eye but she isn’t a monster right??!!??

I had a hard time putting this one down, I needed to know if Hanna was right or if she had just let one of her attackers back into her home. Yes there were times when I thought Hanna open your eyes and listen to what everyone is telling you but then when you look at it from a mother’s perspective of always defending and protecting your child I could understand where she was coming from.

I also liked the way this is written almost from inside Hanna’s head who doesn’t remember anything about the night of the attack but that night when a police officer asked her who did this she implicated her daughter Dawn and her boyfriend Rud. Rud ends up in prison but Dawn is never indicted because her roommate gives her an alibi. A lot of the book is Hanna going through memories of Dawn’s life, I think in her own way trying to justify why she said Dawn did it because she can’t come to terms with the possibility that her daughter had anything to do with it. There are times in these memories when you feel so bad for Dawn and how her classmates and even her own sister, Iris, treated her but there are other times especially in the present day that made the hair on the back of my neck stand up and wonder if Hanna is wrong about everything.

Okay I will stop now before I give anything away; this is a taut psychological thriller that I think would be fabulous for a book club because right now I wish I had a friend who had also read this book so I could talk to them about it. This is a powerful story and especially as a mother will pull at your heartstrings and leave you with a lot of “What if this happened to me?” questions.

Ellen Archer’s narration was very well done I thought the tones and sarcasm she gave Iris were perfect and also her narration of Dawn showed us that she really never grew up and seemed stunted as a child/teen. And with Hanna so much of the book is inside her head and I liked that I could tell when she was speaking to someone or just remembering things. I would definitely listen to this narrator again.

This was my first read by this author and I am now curious about her other books and will search them out.

4 ½ Stars

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The Lost Key (A Brit in the FBI #2) by Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison narrated by, MacLeod Andrews and Renée Raudman~~Armchair Audies

The Lost Key (A Brit in the FBI #2) by Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison narrated by, MacLeod Andrews and Renée Raudman

Brilliance Audio

Nominated for an Audie Award in the Thriller/Suspense

I must admit to liking MacLeod Andrews narration faster than Renée Raudman’s I thought his narrations were fabulous and all his accents seemed real and well done. Raudman though it took me a little while to enjoy her voice although by the end I was enjoying her narration. I would listen to more by both of these narrators.

This book started out a bit slow for me and it took me a little while to warm up to the narrators but I ended up really liking this story and the narration once I got used to it.

This book had a conspiracy theory, a historical artifact that may be the key to the worst weapon ever, a large amount of gold bars and a secret society trying to make the world a better place. However when you have powerful people after something very important there is always a chance for someone to be subverted and when members of this secret society start to die you have to wonder if the threat is coming from the inside of the group or the outside.

This was my first book by this author and I think I will go back and listen to the first book in this series and follow this series as it progresses.

3 ½ Stars