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ceelouise

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2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-06-17

Skip the book, read the book review for the general idea

Some good insights about being more alive through a general “eroticism”, but lots of straw man arguments, exaggerations and generalizations. We are afraid of affairs because it means chaos and orgies, for example.

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5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-06-17

Epic!

Where does David Copperfield [Audible] rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

One of the top five audiobooks I've listened to.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Agnes is annoyingly perfect but so inspirational for David, how romantic...she's really on a pedestal for him, but why not, novels are supposed to be like that!

Which scene was your favorite?

I cried when Dora died, when David was in Switzerland processing her death, when Agnes and David finally came together, many times...

Any additional comments?

Armitage reads this book superbly! What a performance. His narrative voice is so rich and appealing.

I do wish audible had left a longer pause between chapters. Some ended with such drama and then boom, you're on to the next

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1 of 3 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-09-17

Sounds like a scam

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

A friend and neighbor recommended this book. I don't believe she breastfed.

Any additional comments?

I listened to the first 15 minutes. The author "makes stuff up" to state it simply. Neoprimitivistic? Really? The author makes stuff up about the Sears attachment parenting theory, etc. I didn't breastfeed my newborn on demand because I was afraid of birth trauma. I did it because it was the easiest way.

The first 15 minute listen sounded very fishy to me, and I came to it positively because a neighbor and friend recommended it. After stopping listening and googling my suspicions were confirmed. Avoid these people and their parenting theory!

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-19-16

More Juliet Stevenson perfection

What will I do once I've listened to every Stevenson reading of Austen? Maybe I'll just start all over again. Stevenson and Austen would be invited to my "ultimate dinner party for which you invite anyone you want, alive or dead".

This is a little different from typical Austen. I love be her social commentary and the intelligent way she offers the simple pleasure of a happy ending.

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3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-05-16

The French pronunciations are terrible

Would you try another book from Jennifer L. Scott and/or Amy Rubinate?

Scott, yes

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Oh my goodness, I'm at the beginning and the narrator keeps pronouncing "bien dans sa peau" about as wrongly as it can be pronounced. I'm not asking for a perfect French accent, but she could have tried for one single minute to learn the correct pronunciation. Wow, terrible!

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4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-29-15

Good advice

What did you love best about Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic?

The intellectual snob in me does not want a silly self-help book that reminds us of basics like making eye contact. However, I listened to this in one go yesterday, I believe the day it was published. Jennifer Scott is a kindred spirit in that I also had a life-changing experience spending two semesters living with a lovely French family in Lyon when I was 21. (She is also a kindred spirit in that I too have taken up piano again and am working on learning classics by Bach, Beethoven, Schubert.)

What was one of the most memorable moments of Polish Your Poise with Madame Chic?

Most of the advice I didn't really need but enjoyed hearing again. By the way, for me the audio was probably more enjoyable than reading the book because I usually read real literature (not posing!) and the book was written in very simple conversational style that I'd rather listen to than read.
One piece that was indeed necessary to hear again was the reminder of why not to gossip: because would you like other people talking about you that way? Do unto others...

Any additional comments?

I am grateful that Jennifer has made it her life's work to encourage women to be feminine and civilized (men too for the latter). Her kind of influence is needed in our culture. It is certainly true that life is more formal in France and in Europe in general. They take more pleasure in small things and in many ways live more fulfilled because they know how to slow down and relax, they don't watch a ton of TV or glue themselves to their phones, they don't spend their days racing from one activity to the next with their overbooked children...

A lot of the cultural differences are simply due to the much higher density of population in Europe. Europeans are more considerate of others in many ways, speaking more quietly for example, because life is just more crowded, so you have to think of others. Other differences are due to the fact that Americans have more disposable income. Yes, it's true, even if you think you don't have enough! We are the ones with consumer culture who are always buying more stuff, the ones who can actually afford several different fancy activities for each child and the uniforms and paraphanalie to go with each. (Although just because we can afford it doesn't mean it's a good idea.)

As much as their slower approach to life is to be emulated, I must state that Europeans in general are not as achieving in special ways as Americans are. I am not saying this is a good or a bad thing, it's just a fact. For example, I doubt anyone in Jennifer's Famille Chic could play Mozart like she can, never mind publishing books. They spend their time with the beautiful mundane of lovely dinners every night instead. America is the idea and achievement engine of the world, and this is related to our casual fast-paced culture that is so lamentable in many ways, but sometimes you must take some of the bad with the good, or at least realize that one culture doesn't have all the answers. I for one though, have chosen to live in more of the French way, seeking the beautiful mundane rather than special achievement and a faster pace. It really does elevate life to dress nicely (skirts and dresses are wonderful, like Mimi Thorisson), eat meals at a table calmly without distraction and treat others courteously. Thank you Jennifer for making the effort and writing another book.

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9 of 9 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-15-15

Don't like Lawrence

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

I don't think I like DH Lawrence because I don't think he liked women. Couldn't stand the main character, Connie. The narrator reading of her made her even worse, I think. Some male writers can capture women correctly but not Lawrence.

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1 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-15-15

SIX stars!

What made the experience of listening to Middlemarch the most enjoyable?

I should have given no other of my reviews five stars, so this could stand out as it should. The story, the characters, the writing, the narrator performance! Perfection. One of my top five favorite books and one of the few for which I say listening is better than reading. Thank you Juliet Stevenson!

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1 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-15-15

Really got into this

What made the experience of listening to The Luminaries the most enjoyable?

So jealous of Catton's talent! It took me a while to get into this book. I sometimes have trouble with male narrators. I bought the book version and may read it again, there's so much to capture. I mean, she's no Henry James or Jane Austen, but this book is pretty brilliant. Enjoy! (The ending will really get you and you'll have to go back and relisten!)

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3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-15-15

Don't get audio, get book

Would you try another book from the authors and/or Carrington MacDuffie?

The book is fun to dip into. I don't recommend the audio. Pure silliness but I prefer this to women's mags and blogs.

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