It is early 1978, North Carolina. An 11 year old boy, his father, grandfather, and a family friend are arriving at the families remote hunting property for a weekend of male pondering around the deer hunting season. For the boy, this is his first year that he is allowed to hunt with the men. He is ecstatic to be counted as one of them. This is his year.
A poacher is seen on the property in the distance. And the boy, even unknown to himself as to why, yet filled with the adrenaline of a hunt to begin aims his rifle and shoots.
The poacher falls.
And the world for this group of hunters explodes into a whole new unknown world of accusations, fear, family loyalty, untrust, and for the boy….
A friend of mine had read Goat Mountain. Her thoughts on this book brought it to my attention because it was different than anything I had read before. So I found this one on audio and here are my thoughts.
Goat Mountain is a beautiful listen. Yet it is also terrifying and disturbing. As the events unravel over a weekends hunting trip, a fathers anguish, a grandfathers harsh words, the friends panic, but most disturbing – the young boys lack of…
Where this book may have been a win, I found it confusing that this story is being told by the boy many years later, although we are never given a glimpse of what happened between the accident weekend and the current time of the book. Goat Mountain is about a hunting weekend, and I felt that if it was going to be about an event that happened years prior, it should have had something to bond the incident to the current time. Perhaps to others this makes perfect sense, but when it ended it felt to me to be unfinished.
I wish it would have left me with a better feeling but instead I felt as disjointed as the book came to be.
When once asked what advice Corey Feldman would give to parents who are raising kids in the industry he replied, get them out of Hollywood and let them lead normal lives.
Corey’s career began at three when he was in a McDonald’s commercial. His older sister Mindy was is the Mickey Mouse Club and one day someone heard Corey’s gravely voice while he was on his sisters set and he was hired as the voice of the fox in the Fox and The Hound. From there Corey as he grew launched into larger roles and starred as a teen in The Goonies, Gremlins, Friday The 13th and Stand By Me. He built a strong lifelong friendship with Corey Haim when they started appearing in the same movies such as The Lost Boys, License To Drive, and Dream A Little Dream.
While some may think having the opportunities of being a teen star is glamorous, Corey, in his memoir paints quite a different picture. A verbally and mentally abusive mom took all of his earnings and cost him more than one job. His father was not much better, acting as his manager in Corey’s teen years and costing him larger roles by making Corey accept the smaller easy money roles. When Corey put his foot down and told his dad that he could no longer manage him, his father kicked him out.
Corey falls into the traps of Hollywood with drugs and alcohol and even abusive sex. Told in a matter of fact way, Corey Feldman owns up to all of his past failures, painting quite a different picture than the one that we see on the screen. When Corey Haim his friend of many years dies at the age of 38, Corey Feldman speaks strongly about the causes and rumors surrounding Haim’s death.
An amazing memoir of strength and courage.
I grew up with the movies that both Corey Feldman and Corey Haim starred in. Watching them on-screen they looked like your typical fun-loving teenagers and as a teen myself, I wished I could hang out with them. Now, after listening to Corey Feldman’s memoir…. no way I should have wanted to hang out with them! The things that they both went through is enough to make anyone sick and angry…. both boys really were lost boys.
At first I thought it was a little odd that Feldman talks so much about Haim and what his life was like in this memoir. After I thought about it I feel that they were both so close, and Feldman probably knew Haim better than almost anyone. Haim never got to share his story. He wanted to… he just ran out of time. To hear Feldman stick up for his friend when he was sexually abused, rumored to have been gay, and a drug addict is heart breaking.
I flew through this audio. Read by Corey Feldman himself, I found the behind the scenes movie antics to be fun as that was what I like to know about in this memoirs of actors and actresses. Really though, the childhood, the growing up and all the things we do not see, is what breathes life into the story. So often you hear about these child stars lives at home and you are shocked. Corey’s is no exception. This memoir is brutally honest and I for one am glad to know Corey’s story.
Cecilia Fitzpatrick has a reputation to protect. The other women in her town after all look up to her. She organizes many of the school functions, is always around to help where needed, and you did not even know you needed Tupperware until you attend one of Cecelia’s parties… and then you don’t know how you lived without it. She has three wonderful daughters and a handsome husband. What more could she want? Then while looking around the attic she finds a letter from her husband sealed and saying to only open in the event of his death. And suddenly everything Cecelia thought was right in her life is turned upside down.
Tess O’Leary loves her job and the fact that she is able to work beside her husband Will, and her cousin and best friend Felicity. Then Felicity, who was always a bit heavy loves a significant amount of weight and along with Will, approaches Tess about their love for one another. Stunned, Tess packs up her son Liam and goes to live with her mother in Sydney.
Rachel Crowley is a school secretary. She loves being around children even though she lost her own daughter over 25 years ago to a murder that was never solved. When new evidence turns up, Rachel has to decide if she can wait for the police to take action or will the anger and pain of all these years cause her to do the unthinkable.
These three women’s lives will intertwine in ways they do not see coming. Through friendships and connections, the Husband’s Secret is not to be missed.
I listened to this book on audio and once it started, I had a hard time shutting it off! Caroline Lee was an amazing narrator, she made the book come alive with each of the voices of the full cast of characters. In an almost fun and snarky tone, I fell in live with this book through the narration. It was just a lot of fun to listen to!
The Husband’s Secret was delightful, fast paced, and while dealing with serious subjects, it never came off as heavy. I have heard the book is great, but audio listeners know that the audio is pretty fantastic too.
Note: Because I enjoyed this book so much, I am currently downloading What Alice Forgot, by this same author.
Philippa Gregory weaves a fiction tale so fine through factual history that is at times hard to see where one begins and the other ends. Fantastic reading! ~Sheila
When Henry’s battle ends with a crown to a kingdom that he is not handed, but instead takes from the battle ground as his own , he know that his only hope is to marry the Princess Elizabeth of York to bind the Tudors and the Yorks after nearly two decades.
Elizabeth is both beautiful and strong-minded and in love with a man who was slain during this war. Henry in turn shows Elizabeth no love or affection but instead parades her around as his prize possession and handles her roughly and against er will behind closed doors.
Ahhhh…. the lives of the Tudors and the Yorks.
In the hearts of those in England they hope and pray for someone to come along and return the power of the kingdom to the York’s. When a young man come sup against the kingdom the battle begins as Henry fights to protect his stolen kingdom and Elizabeth watches with interest and fear as this man who claims to be her long-lost brother comes to return the power to York and Elizabeth now has to choose between a man she is coming to love and the boy who could save them all.
Why did I want to read this book? Ever since The Boleyn Girl I have adores Phillipa Gregory’s writing. Her writing flows with passion and facts and fills the holes that time has created giving us “what if” to think about.
The White Princess was just as fulfilling as I had hoped when I chose to listen tot his one on audio. Narrator Bianca Amato is a fantastic choice for Gregory’s books as her accent is perfect for the narration and I found myself trying to roll words off my own tongue as she did.
I tried a few at work but my rendition is nowhere near perfect as Bianca’s. Audio book lovers, you will thank me when I tell you try this one in audio.
Phillipa Gregory is not known as the “Queen Of Royal Fiction” without cause. Her books are interesting and bring you right to the time of flowing gowns, castles filled with servants and royalty, and a longing to be a part of the court. Every time I read her books I find myself fully engaged in whatever part of the story she is sharing at that moment.
The White Queen is breath-taking. We meet Elizabeth in earlier Cousin War books, but this is the storyline where she takes her place as Queen on a throne that is both welcoming and torturous. With her mother by her side, when she is not forced to go elsewhere, Elizabeth tries to be the Queen in every sense of the word, holding her head high and not let others see the pain behind her eyes, behind closed doors, and nowhere to ever escape.
In a reading slump or looking for your next “WOW!”, open up any one of Phillipa Gregory’s books. You do not have to read The Cousin’s War books in order, each one pops you right there and you will have no problem finding your place in the crowd of Gregory fans.
When you see the differences in one another and learn to embrace them rather than exploit them… you become whole.
A cafe in Manhattan. Bobby, a gay man from Georgia, young and trying to find his way as his family pulls from him. Amelia, money has never been a problem for her but finds she can not buy her way out of a family secret that has the power to change everything. Alice, African-American and knows that life can be cruel but finds her way through the day-to-day by looking ahead and using her great gifts in cooking to reach others…
All three have been uprooted from their pasts and they all migrate towards cooking, hungry for companionship, understanding, and acceptance. As the book starts in 1920′s where slaves are being freed, to the AIDS epidemic of the 80′s, all three know the true meaning of sacrifice in order to find authenticity.
Why did I want to read/listen to this book? The synopsis sounded powerful. The three protagonists of the book were all so different, I wanted to know what would bring them together.
Even as I write this review I find myself settling into a state of melancholy, and maybe that is not the right word, but I feel a longing for these characters a sense of wanting more yet saddened that as I write this, they are already a part of my past. Does that make sense?
A Place At The Table was fulfilling, much like the table at which they all sat. While food fills them, it is the relationships that fill them up and that imagery that Susan Rebecca White paints is one I want to hold on to. I listened to this book on audio and loved the narration of Robin Miles (she also narrated The Last Original Wife which I LOVED!), George Newbern, and Katherine Powell. The book flowed smoothly from one scene to the next which I can imagine was no easy task, yet it mixed so well together to create a book I will recommend to others. This would be a great discussion book for book clubs and I will be recommending it to my book club for sure!
Thank you to Simon and Schuster Audio
for the opportunity to listen to and review this audio
Why I wanted to listen to this audio: Heard a little hype about this on Facebook from friends I trust… thought I would give it a try. I am always up for a good laugh.
Dad Is Fat is Jim Gaffigan’s hilarious stories on what it is like to be a father of 5 (yes 5!) children. Jim shares the moments in his and his wife’s life of what it is like to try to maneuver through life in New York with 5 children and no car and taxi’s will not take more than 4 passengers in a vehicle. An awesome listen or read for any parent who feels they may be outnumbered in their home or even for people like me who have no
It’s hard to write a synopsis for this audio when all I want to do is pull up a chair and start sharing with you the funny moments that had me laughing out loud…
“There is no difference between a four-year old eating a taco and throwing a taco on the floor.”
“We are all a little weird. And we like to think that there is always someone weirder. I mean, I am sure some of you are looking at me and thinking, “Well, at least I am not as weird as you,” and I am thinking, “Well, at least I am not as weird as the people in the loony bin,” and the people in the loony bin are thinking, “Well, at least I am an orange”.”
But don’t take my word for it… here is Jim, live from his audiobook – Dad is Fat:
I thoroughly enjoyed this audio, loved listening to Jim – and highly recommend this one for your next road trip. This audio is family friendly.
Why did I want to read (listen to) this book? I have a friend who just recently read it with her book club. It was her first Dan Brown and when she was done she was thrilled with it. “A real thinker” she told me. I downloaded it on audio and as the story pulled me in… I remembered, I really enjoy Dan Browns writing. How could I have forgotten?”
Synopsis: Robert Langdon (our hero of such literacy wonders as The Davinchi Code, Angels and Demons, and The Lost Symbol) finds himself once again pulled into a horrific plan on deceit and “God playing” centered this time around “Dante’s Inferno” .
When he awakens in a hospital bed not knowing where he is or how he got there, the pieces start to fall into place quickly that Robert has stumbled into something big and there are people – powerful people who do not want him anywhere near the plans they are making. When Robert takes a look out the window of his hospital room and sees an architecture piece that just can not be… he realizes….
“Toto.. we are not in Kansas anymore.”
As the pieces start to fit together Robert Langdon is not sure who he can trust. What he thinks is true can possibly be just a play on his lack of memory over the past few days, but as Langdon starts to see more clearly the truth is both fascinatingly outrageous as it is frightening. He has a very short window to move forward on and try to stop a genius of a mad man from altering the worlds population in a effort to save us all….
Whoa. Double whoa.
Within minutes of getting into this audio, I was hooked. Paul Michael does an incredible job with the narration, but if you are more of a book person, I think you will be just as quickly hooked.
Dan Brown does not mess around with a long drawn out intro to Inferno. Instead, it opens with a rush of energy and we as readers/listeners are instantly engaged in the “What happened? Who…. wait….” and all in a good heart pumping way.
There is something fascinating about the under belly of the earth and those who dwell there. I have always enjoyed how Dan Brown can take an existing piece or art or history and wrap a story around it so engaging you start to believe that this was always part of the history of the piece and it would be easy to associate one with the other from this day forward. Remember readers – while Dan Brown writes with a fascinating pen… he is writing fiction…. great fiction. But fiction all the same.
Inferno moves with a rapid pulse and I found it so engaging and so interesting. I have heard of Dante’s Inferno, but knew little about it.
Inferno (Italian for “Hell”) is the first part of Dante Alighieri’s 14th-century epic poem Divine Comedy. It is followed by Purgatorio and Paradiso. It is an allegory telling of the journey of Dante through Hell, guided by the Roman poet Virgil. In the poem, Hell is depicted as nine circles of suffering located within the Earth. Allegorically, the Divine Comedy represents the journey of the soul towards God, with the Inferno describing the recognition and rejection of sin.
I thoroughly enjoyed Inferno. Never predictable when I did find out what was going on and how it took my breath away. There are pieces of Inferno that make you think “what if”. There is so much more I would like to share about Inferno, but it is a pleasure to read or listen to it fresh with no pre-thoughts so I am going to leave it at this. Do you need to have read the other Langdon books to understand this one? Nope. All of the books mentioned above are incredible stand alones.
If you would like to dig deeper into this one, I am rolling out the Spoiler Button which when pressed, will take you to a new page for those of us who have read Inferno and want to talk about it more.
Why did I want to read (listen) to this book? Is this tomorrow sounded like a great “what happened?” style read when three close childhood friends one day come home not knowing what happened to the third… Police are involved and people are suspiciously but nothing comes of the disappearance. But the question is – did Lewis and Rose possibly know what did happen to Jimmy? And if so – why have they waited so long to tell?
Synopsis: It’s 1956 and Ava Lark is both beautiful and single. She rents a home for herself and her twelve-year-old son Lewis in the Boston area. Lewis finds friends within the neighborhood brother and sister Jimmy and Rose and the three become inseparable.
When one day Jimmy goes missing the neighborhood falls apart. Ava is watched with suspicion as she had a boyfriend Jake at the time who had a record, unknown to Ava…. and Lewis and Rise go their separate ways as they grow older and find it hard to be around one another without Jimmy, but both still carrying the broken pieces of the unknown.
When years later Rose and Lewis find their way to each other again a decision much be made to tell the truth or to leave well enough alone knowing enough hearts have been broken over this whole ordeal.
The story line behind what makes Is This Tomorrow is captivating. Of course, I as the reader want to know what happened to this young boy who disappears without a trace. As the story opens and the setting is put into place you can get the vibe of the book – an almost Jodi Piccoult feel as is unrolls page after page.
While the story played out and I enjoyed it I never had a strong feel for any of the characters – they all felt a bit vague to me… not three-dimensional. Due to that lack of feeling for the characters it affected my over all feel of the story. Basically while I felt bad about Jimmy’s disappearance, I was not emotionally charged by this event. I hung in there as I really did want to know what happened to Jimmy.
I listened to Is This Tomorrow on audio as Xe Sands is the narrator and that is almost always a win. Almost always. One thing that I picked up on was the tone of voice that was given to each of the characters… Ava always sounded weary. I thought about that a lot during the listening of this book. It bothered me that she never sounded strong or confident, or even happy… weary was actually a word I thought about while listening to the audio which in hind sight, probably took away from some of my enjoyment of the book. Lewis as well always sounded weary… and the boyfriend….. while weary is a perfectly acceptable emotion for the book – I had trouble getting beyond the weary of the entire book…
in the end – when all was said and I done… I too felt weary.
Note – that I am in the minority on this one. I looked at Amazon and there are gushing reviews. This may be one that came across better in book format than audio but certainly please check out other opinions on this one.
Leslie Carter and her husband Wesley have enjoyed many years of the upper class Atlanta society. But times are changing when two of Wesley’s long time buddies trade in the mothers of their children for younger models. Leslie, in her later 50′s finds she can not relate to these young women with their modern taste in clothing, music, and childish (in her opinion) ways. When Wesley seems to be more engaged in golfing and his buddies, Leslie takes a good long look at her life and realizes that Wes has always put his own needs and wants above hers. As she tally’s up the sacrifices she has made through the years she comes to realize she has given up way too much of herself.
With two adult children that can not seem to get it together, and Wes acting as though Leslie is lucky to have him, Les decides enough is enough. When a discovery is made that Wes has been keeping something very big a secret, it is the final straw. Les packs her bags and returns to her home town of Sullivan Island in Charleston where she stays with her brother, Harlan (who Wes couldn’t stand because as he put it “Harlan was a little pink”).
When Les finds a connection with Johnathan a long ago boyfriend, Les rekindles the friendship between them and finds that life did not have to be as hard as she had made it to be and decisions on how to move forward from here were now what needed to be thought through. There are obligations to her husband of many years and to her children – but exactly what those obligations are clearly needed to be changed.
Oh how can I even describe how much I enjoyed this book? Told in alternating chapters between Leslie and Wesley (yes the matchy matchy names bothered me at first) you as the reader get a first hand look at what is happening through each of their eyes and opinions. It was actually enjoyable to go from reading Leslie;s matter of fact smooth dialogue to Wesley’s more demanding, almost pout like tone of what he felt should be the ideal wifely duties and what he felt was due him.
Definitely a hard to put down read that I enjoyed very much. I liked that it had a different twist to it than other “returning home” reads. And let me say – Harlan, who in my mind felt like Rupert Everett (George in My Best Friends Wedding).
Additional format note: Due to time restraints I read part of this book and then downloaded the audio book and listened to it -which is a rave! Fantastic narration – I loved the voices of the smooth southern flow talk of Leslie and then the harsher whiny tone of Wesley – definitely a treat for the ears!
Thank you to TLC Book Tours for letting me try Dorothy Bentown Franks books
and making me a HUGE FAN as a result!
A local woman is killed in a tragic car accident that looks to be a clear-cut case of drunk driving with her blood alcohol level dangerously high, yet friends and family assure Detective Patrick Hedstrom that this woman never drank.
A Reality Show is being filmed in town as well, and jealousy brews as some seem to get more camera time than others. When a party on the set ends with the murder of a contestant, no one knows who they can trust. Of course much to the producers delight – ratings spike as people tune in (literally) to the reality show with a real murder!
Two incredibly different crimes – but are they connected? Patrick and his new partner Hannah will just have to figure that out…
I liked the idea of The Stranger. When the book opens with the details leading up to the car accident and all the pieces that led up to the accident – possible people involved, motives, I was deeply engagedm looking forward to an enticing story. Then the addition of the reality show story line and the murder took me out of the zone to try to get what one would have to do with the other….
I don’t feel I became as attached to the reality show part of the book as I did with the car crash and the personal story line that follows through the book like a mysterious smoke – the relationship of Patrick and Erica was interesting as well. I listened to this one on audio which may be a part of my disconnect but in the end, while interesting – I have no big take away from this one.
The writing is beautiful and flowed well – I did enjoy the narration. Just because this was not a love for me, be sure to check out other opinions on this one.
Thank you to Highbridge audio for the chance to listen to and review this audio book.