- helpful votes
Dramatic story that falls a little short
This story, which relies heavily on historic facts, had the potential to be a very good book. I was quickly drawn in to the narrative both due to the subject matter and the excellent narration. We are introduced to a family of river gypsies and then later to a wealthy, politically active family, both from Tennessee. We quickly learn that there is some dark secret connecting both families and involving illegal adoptions and child theft. Great beginnings, however, the second half of the book does not retain and build on the promising start. I felt disappointed in the contrived conclusions and predictable scenarios that completed the picture.
The narrator did a wonderful job and the first half of the book was hood, so I was not totally dissatisfied with the experience, however, it was far from a great book.
An excellent and Revealing Memoir
I thoroughly enjoyed this memoir of a scientist who loves trees. The story of her life is full of a miriad of emotions, ambitions and successes that take the reader on a fascinating journey during which we also learn about the lives of trees in ways that make one want to know them more intimately.
One of the most impressive and important aspects of this memoir is the illuminating and revealing way in which Jahren opens her heart and described so perfectly the horrors of bipolar disease. I believe that anyone who has the good luck to get their hands on this book will enjoy it. My only reservation is regarding the author's own narration. I found it at times overly dramatic.
A little too stereotyped
The youngest of 3 children of Russian Jewish immigrants to the USA tells the story of her family's move to Tennessee where they opened a dry goods store in a small town. The premise is an interesting one as this was a somewhat common phenomenon - Jewish immigrants opening stores in small communities where they are the only, or one of a very few Jewish people. As is to be expected, there were issues of acceptance by the community, issues of isolation due to their situation of being the only Jewish family in the community and issues of foreignness in general. None of these issues is dealt with in any depth, however, leaving something to be desired.
Unfortunately, too, the author fails to flesh out her characters, but chooses instead to try and make them fit templates for the type of people who did this sort of thing. This too makes the story feel a bit empty.
Wonderful from start to finish
I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful story. The author has developed a number of interesting characters whose lives intersect over several centuries. What made the book so special is the way that love overcomes tragedy and sorrow. And of course the unanticipated ending tops it off perfectly.
Sugary, amusing story
The narrator in this audio book did an excellent job. The story itself is pleasant and amusing - suitable for a long drive or overseas flight. It's far from great literature, but is a feel good picturing of rural Irish life from the point of view of the village GP doctor.
Enjoyable Novel, Medocre Performance
While a dated, period piece, North and South is still relevant in its depiction of class struggle on 19th century England . The characters are well developed and their story engaging.
As far as the performance goes, the narrator was not particularly talented in distinguishing between the voices of the make and female characters, often leading to momentary confusion.
I cannot finish this boring, embarrassing excuse for Romance literature.There is nothing to redeem this garbage.
A dated moral drama
In this story of family struggle, fealty, love, passion and self denial, there is the redeeming quality of much tongue in cheek humor directed at human kind and society. The excellent narration also lead to my overall enjoyment, such that the very dated drama was a pleasant diversion from my usual Audible fare.
A novel diary
I will start by saying that the narration was superb. I have never chosen an Audible book by the narrator, however, I definitely intend to check and see what else is available narrated by Vance.
The premise of this novel, a reading of the diary entries of a sometime writer named Logan Mountstuart, is interesting and very effective. His life is varied but not important. He is an interesting individual, but not particularly admirable nor evil, in short, not outstanding. Yet his life takes place alongside, and often involving interesting, important, well known and historic events and people. And along the way the reader comes to love Mountstuart.
This was a totally engrossing and enjoyable experience.
A Waste of time
Only the Charles Dickens story was Ok. If giving a gift was the goal, you failed terribly. I am a loyal customer over many years. I have listened to many excellent books with many exceptional narrators. I feel that Audible should recognize this with a true value gift, or not at all.