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Jason7

Jason7

Joined July 2018

audiobook addict
review
Jason7
The Great Believers | Rebecca Makkai
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Pickpick

This book is being mentioned as a possible Pulitzer winner. I wouldn‘t be at all surprised if it won, though it may not be my first choice. It‘s described as a “page turner” in the book‘s summary. I wouldn‘t necessarily classify it as such, but it is quite good. Half of the novel takes place in the 80s, the other half in 2015. The 80s storyline is where the book shines most. The audiobook narrator is really good. Overall rating: 4.39 stars

AmyG I loved this book. Not a page-turner...more if a slow burn for me. The end tied it all together. (edited) 2d
Jason7 Yes. Definitely more of a slow burn. Reminded me of A Little Life at moments. I think it will probably win The Pulitzer. 2d
13 likes1 stack add2 comments
review
Jason7
On the Come Up | Angie Thomas
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Mehso-so

This novel has more of a YA feel to it than The Hate U Give. While both novels are classified as YA, I feel that On the Come Up is geared more towards teens. This isn‘t typically my genre of choice, but I figured I‘d give it a go since I did like The Hate U Give. Bahni Turpin‘s voice performance is good, as always. Overall rating: 3.77 stars.

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Jason7
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I downloaded this one because I recently listened to and enjoyed Normal People, Sally Rooney‘s most recent novel. Rooney has a distinct writing style, which is descriptive and insightful. If you like one of her books you‘ll surely like her other. But, You have to like character driven stories. That doesn‘t mean the plot isn‘t interesting. It is. The narrator is also really good. I‘m impressed by this lady‘s writing.
Overall rating: 4.34 stars

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Jason7
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Mehso-so

This novel has its moments. Powers explores some complicated concepts as he speculates on the future of science, genetics, mental health, and reproduction. There‘s a narrator who breaks into the story at various intervals, and I never did figure out who this person was. Maybe I wasn‘t supposed to. Generosity: An Enhancement is good for stretches, but it has a pattern of losing momentum just when it gets going. Overall rating: 3.93 stars

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Jason7
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Many people love this novel based on all the five star reviews, and while it is a good audiobook, I‘m not sure it lives up to all the hype. Boyne is one of the best at writing dialogue, and much of the story is told through dialogue. The narrator was the perfect choice for this audiobook. While I enjoyed Boyne‘s latest work, A Ladder to the Sky, more than this one, The Heart‘s Invisible Furies was still good. Overall rating: 4.36 stars.

suvata I loved this book and rounded it up to 5-stars. LOL 2w
Jason7 I did like the book. Maybe I was expecting too much since a few people told me it was better than A Ladder to the Sky. 2w
10 likes2 comments
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Jason7
Reamde: A Novel | Neal Stephenson
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Reamde is especially long, which I don‘t mind if the length is warranted. It seems like I‘d have more to say about a book I spent over 2 weeks on, but it‘s not incredibly complex. Some of the coincidences are a bit improbable, verging on the outlandish. Events take a long time to unfold in this mystery/thriller. If I was to recommend a Stephenson novel, I‘d go with one of his others. Still,it wasn‘t bad. Overall rating: 4.07 stars

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Jason7
Middlesex: A Novel | Jeffrey Eugenides
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Eugenides spends a lot of time laying the groundwork in this Pulitzer Prize winner. The first half of the audiobook, which is over ten hours, isn‘t all that compelling, but it is necessary to fully understand this family saga that covers 3 generations of a closely knit Greek-American family. The second half is much more engaging. The narrator is above average. Overall rating: 4.30 stars.

StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Fantastic book! 1mo
Jason7 It is a good one, though I liked his other novel, The Marriage Plot, even more. 1mo
14 likes2 comments
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Jason7
The Fourth Monkey | J. D. Barker
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Mehso-so

Pretty disturbing mystery that starts off a bit slow. It does have some twists, some you may see coming and some you may not. The 2 audio narrators are a talented pair. It‘s a pretty good audiobook. Overall rating: 3.96 stars.

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Jason7
Normal People | Sally Rooney
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Normal People follows two teens who are forever connected, and novel explores this connection as the couple grows older. The story is especially character driven, and the writing is insightful. The audiobook narrator does an excellent job. Her accent adds an another element to the production, enhancing the overall effect. Audiobook rating: 4.22 stars.

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Jason7
Station Eleven: A novel | Emily St. John Mandel
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A plague wipes out most of human existence in this post-apocalyptic novel, but the story doesn‘t focus on that. It‘s more about the importance and the power of art. The audiobook narrator, Kirsten Potter, has a great voice, and she was the perfect choice for this, at times, slow-moving take on the post-apocalyptic genre. Overall rating: 4.14 stars.

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Jason7
Empire Falls | Richard Russo
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This Pulitzer winner is funny at times and tragic at others. It is a long audiobook, but the narrator is good and the story is good as well, so I never tired of the story. There‘s an HBO miniseries based on this book for those who prefer not to invest the time. I‘ll read more from this writer. Overall rating: 4.53 stars

16 likes1 stack add
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Jason7
Daisy Jones and The Six | Taylor Jenkins Reid
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I can‘t imagine the print version of this novel is as good as the audiobook. Daisy Jones & The Six is narrated by some of the best narrators in the business, a full cast. This format doesn‘t work in some cases, but it certainly does here. The audio version reminds me of a documentary-type memoir, though it‘s a fictional story of a 70s rock band. I predict great success for this audiobook. Overall rating: 4.68 stars

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Jason7
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I‘ve heard An American Marriage is a possible Pulitzer nominee. Im not sure if this is accurate, but it should be. This is a great novel that is enhanced by an equally great audio performance. I finished this one in two days. I don‘t have anything negative to say about it. Overall rating: 4.66 stars

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Jason7
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At times, this story reminded me of J. Irving‘s A Prayer for Owen Meany. However, where Owen Meany is vast and expansive, Sam Hell is limited and predictable. Still, it‘s an above average audiobook, a coming of age story dealing in themes of prejudice, racism, love, loss, and religion. Any turns or twists can be seen from a mile away, and the book goes on longer than necessary. Dugoni does a nice job of reading his own work. Overall rating: 3.99

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Jason7
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Donna Tartt is one of my favorite authors. The Secret History was a fantastic debut novel, and The Goldfinch is a modern masterpiece. The Little Friend is a long work. It takes a long time to develop, and it gets better as it goes. It‘s not as good as her other works, but I‘m a fan of anything she writes. The UK version of this audiobook has been recently recorded and is better quality than the U.S. version. Overall rating: 4.31 stars

10 likes1 stack add
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Jason7
Golden State | Ben Winters
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Mehso-so

In this novel it is a felony to tell a lie, so in the spirit of truth, I must say that Golden State was a bit of a disappointment. I really liked Ben Winters‘ previous novel, Underground Airlines, but this one isn‘t as good in my opinion. The idea is okay. The story is okay, and the narrator is okay, all of which leads to an average audiobook. Overall rating: 3.02 stars

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Jason7
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Mehso-so


I‘ve learned much of what I know about art and art history through historical fiction. This is my second B.A. Shapiro novel, and while I don‘t think this one is as good as The Art Forger, I did like the story. It‘s about the art world in the 1920s and, of course, the crime and corruption the art world attracts. XE Sands narration is above average. Overall audiobook rating: 3.98 stars

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Jason7
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This is the grand story of the esteemed Count Alexander Rostov, who will likely go down as one of the greatest literary figures of our time. The narrator, Nicolas Guy Smith, is the perfect voice for our refined protagonist. Amor Towels‘ A Gentleman in Moscow is not fast paced novel, nor should it be, and it will be relevant for decades to come. Overall rating: 4.68 stars

BarbaraBB How does your rating system work? 4mo
Jason7 It is a rating system I developed for audiobooks that includes rating the story, the narrator, and the overall effect of the audiobook. 4mo
20 likes2 comments
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Jason7
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Really good literary mystery about abandonment, isolation, and resilience. Cassandra Campbell narrates the mystery of the marsh-girl, and while Campbell is a pro and one of my favorite narrators, she‘s not the best at southern accents. Still, this is a high quality audiobook by Delia Owens. Overall rating: 4.44 stars.

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Jason7
Circe | Madeline Miller
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I‘m not all that familiar with Greek myths, so I‘m not sure how original this “retelling” is. What I do know is that Circe is a great audiobook. The story is engaging the whole way through, and the narrator, Perdita Weeks, has the perfect voice for the portrayal of a goddess. Going into this one, I was a bit skeptical, but that is no longer the case. Great job by author and narrator. Overall rating: 4.54 stars

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Jason7
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A Terrible Country is my first audiobook of 2019. It takes awhile to get going, but Ari Fliakos‘ fantastic narration kept me interested. After a few hours, I began to like the story more. I didn‘t realize how much I liked it until it was almost over. A Terrible Country is about everyday life in modern day Russia, and while that may not seem all that interesting, I was quite invested by the end of the book. Overall rating: 4.49 stars.

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Jason7
Invisible Monsters | Chuck Palahniuk
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Sometimes I choose an audiobook because of the author and other times because of the narrator. Anna Fields is a great narrator. Chuck is a great writer. Invisible Monsters is typical Palahniuk; it starts out a bit confusing, and by the time you figure out what‘s going on, the novel spirals out of control on its way to a wild finish. While it‘s not his best, it‘s still good. Overall rating: 4.01 stars

StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego This was my first Palaniuk. So many crazy plot twists, so entertaining. 5mo
Jason7 Yes. There‘s a lot going on in this one, especially by the end. 5mo
BookishMarginalia I‘m interested in the .01 stars... 5mo
Jason7 A few people have asked about that. Its a ranking system I use for book reviews. I‘ve been using it for awhile. 5mo
Jason7 I use it for audiobooks. It‘s a combination of various factors, including the story and the narrator‘s performance 5mo
9 likes5 comments
blurb
Jason7
Reading Challenge | Casey Malarcher, Andre Janzen
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I had to pick a few shorter works towards the end to get to 88, but my 2018 Reading Challenge is complete.

irre 👏👏🎉🎉 5mo
17 likes1 comment
review
Jason7
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Stories about art forgeries and stolen paintings make some of the best novels. These types of novels could be classified as a sub-genre of fiction. Any time I read or listen to a novel about stolen art I‘m reminded of Donna Tartt‘s The Goldfinch. While The Last Painting of Sara De Vos isn‘t that caliber of a novel (very few are), it‘s still quite good. The narrator of this audiobook is one of the best. Overall rating: 4.24 stars

TheFunkyBookworm Ohh I know exactly what you mean by this! The Goldfinch is one of those books that has stuck with me years after reading it and I‘ve been chasing that same “book feel” ever since- if that makes sense. Any recommendations other than the pictured that would fall into this category? 5mo
Jason7 I know exactly what you mean by that “book feel.” Infinite Jest has it, but it‘s a much more complicated read. The Nix by Nathan Hill comes close. A new book called The Feral Detective is a good one. The Marriage Plot by J Eugenides or any of J. Franzen‘s last 3 are high quality. I‘d love to find another like The Goldfinch. That‘s a masterpiece if there ever was one. 5mo
15 likes1 stack add2 comments
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Jason7
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Mehso-so

The Incendiaries is an above average audiobook. The story is somewhat difficult to follow in the beginning, but it becomes easier as the story progresses. There's a lot of colorful language in this one, and some of it fits, though there's a few cases where it misses the mark.The narrator of this recording does a respectable job. This author has potential.

Overall rating: 3.72 stars

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Jason7
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Mehso-so

The Parking Lot Attendant takes awhile to get going, and it never really takes off. This novel is on the Tournament of Books Long List for 2019, and that and the novel‘s description caused me to give it a shot. I can‘t see it beating out any of the other novels on The List, though I‘ve only read a few of the others. The narrator of this audiobook, Bahni Turpin, is fantastic as always. Overall rating: 3.15 stars

BarbaraBB I just bought this one, just because it‘s shortlisted for the ToB... 5mo
20 likes1 comment
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Jason7
Commune: Book One | Joshua Gayou
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Mehso-so


Commune (Book 1) is the first installment in Joshua Gayou‘s post-apocalyptic trilogy. The audiobook is popular on Audible and highly rated. For the most part, it kept my attention. There‘s nothing extraordinary here, though maybe the story is just getting started. R.C. Bray, the narrator, is serviceable. Overall rating: 3.59 stars

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Jason7
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It is rumored Moshfegh‘s new novel will be in the running for The Pulitzer. I must say I like it better than last year‘s winner. The character‘s are well developed, and there‘s just enough sarcasm and comedy in the novel to keep the story from becoming bleak and depressing. As usual, Julia Whelan‘s narration is top notch. Upon reflection, My Year of Rest and Relaxation is a high quality audiobook. Overall rating: 4.61 stars

TheBookStacker This is one of my top 5 for the year 5mo
Jason7 I‘d agree that it‘s in my top five from this year too. It was pretty entertaining 5mo
Gezemice I agree with the narration. She was fantastic. And I will be thinking about this book for a while. (edited) 5mo
Jason7 Same here. Dr. Tuttle is a great character 5mo
20 likes4 comments
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Jason7
The Friend | Sigrid Nunez
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Mehso-so

This year‘s NBA award winner is fiction that reads like memoir. I suspect some of this novel is based on the author‘s life, though I know nothing about this author and have no grounds for saying this. The Friend is about love and loss, but more specifically it‘s about suicide and writers and dogs. I like this author‘s style, and I like the narrator of this audiobook. It‘s a book of ideas, not a novel in the traditional sense. Overall rating: 3.89

15 likes2 stack adds
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Jason7
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Mehso-so

Winner of the Kirkus Prize for fiction, Severance is a somewhat original take on the post-apocalyptic genre. Audible advertises the audiobook as Fiction/humor, though it‘s not funny. I‘ve heard some refer to it as satirical, which is a little more accurate, I guess. The narrator of the audiobook sounds like Siri, but after awhile the robotic tone wasn‘t so bad. I‘ve got mixed feelings about this one, but I do like it. Overall rating: 3.99 stars.

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Jason7
Elevation | Stephen King
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Mehso-so

Elevation is not a long audiobook, and King narrates it himself. He‘s a really good narrator. Many people associate King with horror novels, but Elevation is far from it. It has a sci-fi or supernatural element to it, but I believe it‘s supposed to be uplifting. There‘s also a short story, “Laurie,” included with the audiobook. It‘s okay, I guess. Elevation is good if you‘re looking for a light, easy, and quick listen. Overall rating: 3.51 stars.

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Jason7
Washington Black | Esi Edugyan
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Washington Black is the story of a young boy born into slavery and his everlasting struggle to escape. The novel was shortlisted for the Booker Prize, and it‘s good, though I enjoyed a couple others on the list maybe a little more. Regardless, it‘s deserving of its recognition. This was my third audiobook narrated by Dion Graham, and another excellent performance. All in all, it‘s a solid audiobook.

Overall rating: 4.20 stars

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Jason7
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Mehso-so

James Franco narrates Vonnegut‘s classic that takes the listener inside the time traveling mind of Billy Pilgrim, a war vet suffering from PTSD. Franco isn‘t a terrible narrator, but he should stick to acting. Vonnegut is a beloved author, and this post-war classic is considered great by many. Unfortunately, I‘m in the minority....and so it goes. Overall rating: 3.35 stars

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Jason7
Bitter Orange | Claire Fuller
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There's a lot to like about this book, but many readers wont like the characters. The protagonist of the story reminded me of Eleanor Oliphant at times, though this novel is not humorous or quirky like Eleanor Oliphant. Bitter Orange starts off with the protagonist on her death bed, reflecting on memories innocent enough at first, but these memories get incrementally darker as time progresses. It‘s a literary mystery. Overall rating: 4.17 stars

14 likes1 stack add
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Jason7
Snuff | Chuck Palahniuk
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Let me start by saying that anyone who is easily offended should never read a book by Chuck Palahniuk. He definitely has a writing style of his own. He mixes random, obscure facts with some of the darkest humor on the planet. Snuff is a satirical, humorous, and bleak look into a record breaking day in the porn industry. It‘s great. Overall rating: 4.42 stars

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Jason7
The Late Show | Michael Connelly
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Mehso-so

Michael Connelly‘s The Late Show is a decent audiobook. The narrator, Katherine Moennig from the Ray Donovan tv series, narrates this one, and she‘s a good choice for the voice of Detective Renee Ballard. The novel isn‘t great, but it held my attention, and that‘s more than I can say for many audiobooks. I may get around to the sequel someday. Overall rating: 3.91 stars

10 likes1 stack add
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Jason7
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I‘ve had some good luck with my last few audiobook selections. The Feral Detective is a great story. It‘s original and smart yet dark and consuming. If you like stories of the bizarre, listen to this one. I‘ve listened to over 70 audiobooks this year, and The Feral Detective makes its case for the top spot. Don‘t give up on the narrator. It takes a moment to get used to her style, but she‘s fantastic. Overall rating: 4.76 stars

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Jason7
Katerina | James Frey
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James Frey is controversial figure in the literary world. He tells lies in memoirs and tells truth in fiction, blurring the lines between genres and catching hell for it. His writing style is different. He repeats phrases often and uses excessive profanity. All that being said, Katerina is a damn good audiobook, baring the good, the bad, and the ugly. Frey isn‘t the best narrator, but he‘s the best narrator for this audiobook. Overall rating: 4.69

MelAnn I have the kindle book but wondered if it would be any good on audio! I‘m loving it! 6mo
Jason7 It‘s really good on audio because James Frey narrates it himself. I think it adds something to a novel when an author reads their own work (if they are a good narrator) Katerina is one of my favorite audiobooks of 2018. 6mo
14 likes1 stack add2 comments
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Jason7
The Punch: A Novel | Noah Hawley
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This audiobook is a really good one. Noah Hawley‘s The Punch reminds me of this year‘s Pulitzer winner, Less by Andrew Sean Greer. The writing is crisp and clever, but the narrator is key here because he helps this above average story reach its full potential in audio format. He was phenomenal. Overall rating: 4.38 stars

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Jason7
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The Glorious Heresies is good audiobook with an excellent narrator. The story is a bit fragmented at times, though it revolves around the same group of shady characters in modern day Ireland. It‘s not mind blowing, but it‘s pretty damn good. Overall rating: 4.06 stars

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Jason7
Cherry: A novel | Nico Walker
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This audiobook was quite the surprise. I was not expecting a story so terrific. Walker‘s writing style is a throwback in the vein of Bukowski or Salinger, but the story is gritty and real. If you‘ve ever suffered from drug abuse, you‘ll really enjoy this one. If you haven‘t, you‘ll enjoy it all the same.The author is in jail. I hope he writes another. I listened to Cherry in less than 2 days. One of the best this year. Overall rating: 4.57 stars

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Jason7
Catcher in the Rye | J D Salinger
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Anyone looking to listen to this audiobook will have a hell of a time trying to find it. It‘s an older recording but still a good one. The novel is a classic for a reason, though some critics do not feel it should be. If you‘re easily offended, stay away.... Overall rating: 4:26 stars

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Jason7
Infinite Jest (Tenth Anniversary) | David Foster Wallace
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Absolutely nothing like it. People either love it or hate it. This audiobook is a true work of art with maybe the best narrator I‘ve heard. What a masterpiece. Overall rating: 4.98 stars

9999 Good for you! 7mo
BarbaraBB So why not 5? I find the 4.98 intriguing! 7mo
Jason7 I round it up to five and consider it a five star book. It‘s the highest ranked book I‘ve read or listened to. It lost .02 for a minor issue with footnotes. 7mo
Jason7 The Goldfinch audiobook comes in a close second for me. It is also great, with a rating of 4.96 7mo
16 likes4 comments
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Jason7
A Ladder to the Sky | John Boyne
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Maybe I‘ve simply overlooked this author, as this is the first John Boyne novel I‘ve read/listened to, or maybe I‘ve just been listening to too much sci-fi lately. Either way this audiobook is fantastic. It doesn‘t start off all that great, and it loses a little steam each time the narrator changes, but those are minor issues. Great audiobook: overall rating: 4.63 stars

TrishB There are a lot of books to catch up on from this author. All very different. 7mo
Jason7 I have two others by him but have always skipped over them for something else. I‘ll definitely get to another one from this author soon. 7mo
BarbaraBB He is really worth reading! 7mo
12 likes3 comments
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Jason7
Snapshot | Brandon Sanderson
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I wasn‘t expecting much from Snapshot since it‘s one of Brandon Sanderson‘s shorter, lesser-known works. However, I was pleasantly surprised. This audiobook was engaging from beginning to end, and the narrator is really good. The running time is less than 3 hours, so I suggest it for anyone looking for a quick, entertaining read/listen. Overall rating: 4.03 Stars.

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Jason7
All These Worlds | Dennis E Taylor
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All These Worlds concludes my time in The Bobiverse. The trilogy hits its high point in Book 2 and never really makes it back in the third installment. It was, however, a good ending to a good sci-fi trilogy.
Overall audiobook rating: 3.98

Series rating: 4.18

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Jason7
For We Are Many | Dennis E Taylor
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Book 2 of The Bobiverse Trilogy is a nice addition to the series. It picks up right where Book 1 leaves off. Overall, I think Book 2 is a little better than the first one. I like this series because it‘s easy to listen to, the narrator is good, and it doesn‘t get overly complicated, which some sci-fi novels tend to do. The story gets better as it goes, and I‘ll probably go ahead and begin Final book of the series. Overall rating: 4.22

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Jason7
Milkman | Anna Burns
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Milkman is my fourth audiobook from The Booker Long list. The narrator is phenomenal and adds a dimension readers certainly won‘t get from the print version. The writing style is unique, and I was glad to experience something a bit different. From what I understand, Milkman is difficult to get in the USA right now. It appeared on Audible one day and I purchased it, though it has since become unavailable. Overall rating: 4.37 stars

15 likes1 stack add
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Jason7
We Are Legion (We Are Bob) | Dennis E. Taylor
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Book 1 of the Bobiverse trilogy is an above average sci-fi audiobook. The narrator is good. The story is good. Anyone who liked The Martian will probably like this book. Nothing extraordinary here, but still pretty good. Overall rating: 4.01 stars.

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Jason7
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Mehso-so

The two narrators of this audiobook make this listen worthwhile, especially David Ledoux, the young adult version of the protagonist. The 93 year old version of the protagonist has a reflective and smaller role, those his audio performance is good as well. Water for Elephants is mostly a romance novel that revolves around a traveling circus during the prohibition era. It‘s pretty good, though nothing extraordinary. Overall rating: 3.93 stars.

DrexEdit I felt almost exactly the same way about this book. ☺️ 8mo
Jason7 If I‘d have attempted to read it, I‘d have never made it to the end. I made it there on audio though 8mo
14 likes2 comments