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What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
A different narrator would have helped a great deal. It's hard to understand how this style of narration could have been permitted. She reads in an artificially stilted cadence presumably meant to evoke a serious tone, and perhaps to signify direct quotations in the text. It is awful and completely distracting from the story.
How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?
A different narrator. It was often hard to follow the content due to the problems noted above with the narrator.
12 of 12 people found this review helpful
What a freaking thrill ride. Karen Abbott found four of the most interesting and well-documented women in the Civil War and took off like a shot. One narcissist, two socialites, one cross-dresser, all spies.
I'm relatively knowledgeable about the American Civil War thanks to my father and the constant rehashing of the history from 4th grade through high school. Never before have I read something that gets so perfectly in depth about what the hell happened in Richmond. The microfocus on this particular city lends more depth and humanity to each person we meet--whether that's Pinkerton (mhmm, how did you think they started?) or Stonewall Jackson (yeah, he's there, too.)
It was a great look at how thoroughly incompetent some of the Union Generals were. This is less a history-written-by-the-winners... there's a lot of facepalming over McClellan.
Anyway, give it a listen.
The narrator, Karen White, was not great. 3 of 5 stars for her. She has the tendency to read in a stilted, serious "this is nonfiction" pattern, rather give way to the delightful narrative flow Abbott provided.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful