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MRS DS Clark

Charlottesville Virginia, US
  • 7
  • reviews
  • 10
  • helpful votes
  • 7
  • ratings
  • Stalin's Daughter: The Extraordinary and Tumultuous Life of Svetlana Alliluyeva

  • By: Rosemary Sullivan
  • Narrated by: Karen Cass
  • Length: 19 hrs and 43 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23

A painstakingly researched, revelatory biography of Svetlana Stalin, a woman fated to live her life in the shadow of one of history's most monstrous dictators - her father, Josef Stalin. Born in the early years of the Soviet Union, Svetlana Stalin spent her youth inside the walls of the Kremlin. Communist Party privilege protected her from the mass starvation and purges that haunted Russia, but she did not escape tragedy - the loss of everyone she loved, including her mother, two brothers, aunts and uncles, and a lover twice her age, deliberately exiled to Siberia by her father.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Extraordinary tumultuous sums it up

  • By Purplelotus on 18-10-16

Flawless Rendering of a Remarkable Life

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-08-15

This account of the life of Stalin's only daughter is captivating throughout, thanks to both that author's exhaustive researched, well-crafted narrative and an authoritative yet sympathetic reading.

  • Far from the Madding Crowd

  • By: Thomas Hardy
  • Narrated by: Nathaniel Parker
  • Length: 13 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 218
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 183
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 182

Hardy's first major literary success, here brought to life by narrator Nathaniel Parker, is the story of the independent and spirited Bathsheba Everdene, who inherits her uncle's farm, the largest estate in the area. She surprises the villagers of Weatherbury by deciding to run it herself. Attracted to this bold young woman are three suitors all vying for her affections. They include the lonely gentleman-farmer Boldwood, the young and handsome but inconsiderate Sergeant Troy and the faithful shepherd Gabriel Oak.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Far From The Madding Crowd

  • By Steve on 17-04-11

Riveting Story, Superb Reading

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-05-15

This compelling classic could not be better served than it is in this reading by Nathaniel Parker. He makes vivid Hardy's majestically poetic narrative and uses subtle yet distinct inflexion to indicate which character is speaking. I did not listen to this book as much as dwell within it.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Dombey and Son

  • By: Charles Dickens
  • Narrated by: David Timson
  • Length: 39 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 162
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 126
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 126

Dombey and Son is vintage Dickens and explores the classic themes of betrayal, cruelty and deceit. Dombey's dysfunctional relationships are painted against a backdrop of social unrest in industrialized London, which is populated by a host of fascinating and memorable secondary characters. The complete and unabridged novel is brought spectacularly to life by veteran reader David Timson.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Range of Voices

  • By Peter on 17-08-11

Enthralling Illuminating and Entertaining

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-01-15

Audiobooks do not come better than this engrossing rendering of one of Dickens' darker novels. There are echoes of King Lear in this story about a father who cannot bring himself to love, or even acknowledge, his daughter. Child abuse and neglect are dominant themes, as well as domestic abuse, with the author's sympathies, as always, with the victims. The reading is flawless; I could hardly bring myself to turn it off, and lamented when I reached the end.

  • An Officer and a Spy

  • By: Robert Harris
  • Narrated by: David Rintoul
  • Length: 16 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,496
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,379
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,374

January 1895: On a freezing morning in the heart of Paris, an army officer, Georges Picquart, witnesses a convicted spy, Captain Alfred Dreyfus, being publicly humiliated in front of 20,000 spectators baying ‘Death to the Jew!’ The officer is rewarded with promotion: Picquart is made the French army’s youngest colonel and put in command of ‘the Statistical Section’ - the shadowy intelligence unit that tracked down Dreyfus.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent

  • By Julian Summer on 12-10-13

Riveting

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-08-14

Would you listen to An Officer and a Spy again? Why?

Yes. To relish the prose and enjoy David Rintoul's gripping performance.

What did you like best about this story?

Harris has made a relentlessly compelling thriller from historical fact.

What about David Rintoul’s performance did you like?

He served the narrative well, capturing and conveying the mood of every passage. His performance served the book throughout, keeping the listener immersed in the narrative.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It made me gasp at times.

Any additional comments?

This production achieves a standard that all listeners crave and lamentably few audiobooks deliver.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Death of the Black-Haired Girl

  • By: Robert Stone
  • Narrated by: David Colacci
  • Length: 7 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars 1

In an elite college in a once-decaying New England city, Steven Brookman has come to a decision. A brilliant but careless professor, he has determined that for the sake of his marriage, and his soul, he must extract himself from his relationship with Maud Stack, his electrifying student, whose papers are always late and too long yet always incandescent. But Maud is a young woman whose passions are not easily contained or curtailed, and their union will quickly yield tragic and far-reaching consequences.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Dreadful Disappointment

  • By MRS DS Clark on 25-08-14

Dreadful Disappointment

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-08-14

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

Someone so starved for stories he wouldn't mind the cliche-ridden narrative and utterly unsympathetic characters.

What could Robert Stone have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Stone has written some superb books. If only he had created characters as convincing as those in his other novels.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The tone he assumed when reading the lines of the female characters was annoying and further undermined the credibility of those characters, which was weak enough.

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

It ended.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Hanns and Rudolf: The German Jew and the Hunt for the Kommandant of Auschwitz

  • By: Thomas Harding
  • Narrated by: Mark Meadows
  • Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 112
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 106
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 104

Hanns Alexander was the son of a wealthy German family who fled Berlin for London in the 1930s. Rudolf Höss was a farmer and soldier who became Kommandant of Auschwitz and oversaw the deaths of over a million people. In the aftermath of World War II, the first British War Crimes Investigation Team is assembled to hunt down the senior Nazi officials responsible for the greatest atrocities the world has ever seen.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Moving, shocking and completely absorbing

  • By James on 06-09-13

Spellbinding Thriller...And All True

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 24-08-14

Would you listen to Hanns and Rudolf: The German Jew and the Hunt for the Kommandant of Auschwitz again? Why?

I would listen again to pick up facts I may have missed on first hearing.

What other book might you compare Hanns and Rudolf: The German Jew and the Hunt for the Kommandant of Auschwitz to, and why?

I would compare it to Ben McIntyre's books about espionage in the Second World War. Equally compelling and informative.

What about Mark Meadows’s performance did you like?

He read with conviction and empathy. And he kept the narrative going, never calling attention to himself, allowing the author's voice to come through.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

Any additional comments?

This is an exemplary audiobook.

  • Summer House with Swimming Pool

  • By: Herman Koch
  • Narrated by: Peter Berkot
  • Length: 11 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 35
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 29

When a medical procedure goes horribly wrong and famous actor Ralph Meier winds up dead, Dr. Marc Schlosser needs to come up with some answers. After all, reputation is everything in this business. Personally, he's not exactly upset that Ralph is gone, but as a high profile doctor to the stars, Marc can't hide from the truth forever.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Tiresome Reading of Low Rent "Lolita"

  • By MRS DS Clark on 24-08-14

Tiresome Reading of Low Rent "Lolita"

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 24-08-14

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

Anyone who wouldn't mind being trapped in an elevator with a snarling, sex obsessed narcissist.

Would you ever listen to anything by Herman Koch again?

No.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

His accent changed from sentence to sentence, and sometimes within the same sentence. At times it was American southern, and then New York-ish, and occasionally some kind of Western European. It was startling to hear the protagonist refer to himself as Dutch.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Summer House with Swimming Pool?

I would hand the manuscript back to Koch and tell him to return when he had something worthwhile to publish. Clearly Koch was keen to cash in on the success of his previous novel and dashed this off in one go.

Any additional comments?

A cynical story made worse by an insufferable, irritating narrator. A waste of time and Audble credit.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful