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Reena Kumar

  • 8
  • reviews
  • 9
  • helpful votes
  • 13
  • ratings
  • Alias Grace

  • By: Margaret Atwood
  • Narrated by: Shelley Thompson
  • Length: 15 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 574
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 523
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 524

Sixteen years have passed since Grace was locked up, at the age of 16, for the cold-blooded murders of her employer and his housekeeper/lover. Her alleged accomplice in the crimes, James McDermot, paid the extreme sentence of the law and was hanged on November 21, 1843. But some thought Grace was innocent, and her sentence has been commuted to life imprisonment. After a spell in the Lunatic Asylum she now claims to have no memory of the murders.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • beautifully written and narrated

  • By Brid on 30-09-16

Second time around - loved it

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

Reviewed: 22-11-17

I first read alias grace about 20 years ago as a young teen and certain scenes stuck in my mind, more for the feeling of excitement and suspense than the details of the story. I felt compelled to “read” it again, this time on audiobook, and I found it really engaging.

I also realised just after I started the audiobook that there is now a Netflix series so I am looking forward to that!

  • The Heart Goes Last

  • By: Margaret Atwood
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell, Mark Deakins
  • Length: 12 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 601
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 554
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 556

Margaret Atwood puts the human heart to the ultimate test in an utterly brilliant new novel that is as visionary as The Handmaid's Tale and as richly imagined as The Blind Assassin. Stan and Charmaine are a married couple trying to stay afloat in the midst of an economic and social collapse. Job loss has forced them to live in their car, leaving them vulnerable to roving gangs. They desperately need to turn their situation around - and fast.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good but Atwood has done better

  • By Reena Kumar on 22-04-16

Good but Atwood has done better

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

Reviewed: 22-04-16

I enjoyed this dystopian novel from Atwood. It was not as engaging as The Handmaid's Tale (in my opinion), but I enjoyed it and I cared about what happened to the characters.
I'd possibly go for 3.75 stars over four stars but I don't have that option!
Charmaine's piece is read as somewhat "airhead" or "dumb blonde". I think that was at least partly deliberate but it was only slightly annoying at times.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Leaving Time

  • By: Jodi Picoult
  • Narrated by: Rebecca Lowman, Abigail Revasch, Kathe Mazur, and others
  • Length: 15 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 589
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 543
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 548

Number One bestselling author Jodi Picoult returns with her compulsive new novel - about the lengths we go to for those who have left us behind; about the staying power of love; and about how three broken souls might have just the right pieces to mend each other. Jenna Metcalf was with her mother the night she disappeared in tragic and mysterious circumstances, but she remembers nothing.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This should be a movie

  • By JPH on 08-03-15

Not my favourite Picoult novel but great twist!

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

Reviewed: 16-04-16

What did you like most about Leaving Time?

The ending. It was one of those endings that makes one want to re-read the novel to see how one missed something massive!

What was one of the most memorable moments of Leaving Time?

Again, the ending is what stuck in my mind. I found some of the narrative about elephants tedious at times and sometimes the story seemed to drag.

What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

I'm not sure it did in this case. This was the first audiobook I "read" and I wonder whether I would have enjoyed it more if I'd read the book myself.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Not sure, something alluding to the mystery that is central to the story.

Any additional comments?

I'm a big fan of Picoult. I enjoyed this book less than I've enjoyed some others. I think it was slow in parts but I would still recommend it.

  • The Remains of the Day

  • By: Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Narrated by: Dominic West
  • Length: 7 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,595
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,473
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,468

A contemporary classic, The Remains of the Day is Kazuo Ishiguro's beautiful and haunting evocation of life between the wars in a Great English House. In the summer of 1956, Stevens, the ageing butler of Darlington Hall, embarks on a leisurely holiday that will take him deep into the countryside – and into his past.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Nostalgia for a time that has so much to teach us

  • By Amazon Customer on 20-07-15

An enjoyable read

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

Reviewed: 16-04-16

What made the experience of listening to The Remains of the Day the most enjoyable?

The narrative is engaging. There is no complicated plot and the narrative appears to be made up of flashbacks and observations about people and life but I found that interesting.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The housekeeper.

What does Dominic West bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

Fluidity.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Not that I recall.

Any additional comments?

A good read but, in my opinion, not as good as Never Let Me Go.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Martian

  • By: Andy Weir
  • Narrated by: R. C. Bray
  • Length: 10 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 17,263
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 16,252
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 16,221

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive - and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plainold "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Exhilarating adventure. Brilliantly executed.

  • By Kaggy on 30-08-14

Outstanding

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

Reviewed: 16-04-16

Would you consider the audio edition of The Martian to be better than the print version?

I haven't read the print version but the narrator is excellent and I imagine he adds to the story. I listened to the audiobook before I saw the movie and, as is often the case, I feel the movie (as much as I enjoyed it) did not quite live up to the book. Even if you have seen the movie, there is much to be gained from reading /listening to the book.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Martian?

There are several suspense-filled moments and the narration really adds to these.

Which character – as performed by R. C. Bray – was your favourite?

Mark, of course!

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The ending. I won't give anything away but this book really keep my guessing until the end and I wasn't disappointed.

Any additional comments?

A very engaging read, narrated beautifully and highly recommended.

  • The Time Traveler's Wife

  • By: Audrey Niffenegger
  • Narrated by: Fred Berman, Phoebe Strole
  • Length: 17 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 876
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 811
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 814

Clare and Henry have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was 36. They were married when Clare was 23 and Henry was 31. Impossible but true, because Henry is one of the first people diagnosed with Chrono-Displacement Disorder: periodically his genetic clock resets and he finds himself misplaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity from his life, past and future. His disappearances are spontaneous, his experiences unpredictable, alternately harrowing and amusing.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Immaculately crafted tale

  • By Vivienne F on 29-11-14

I loved this

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

Reviewed: 14-08-15

I really enjoyed this novel and this is one occasion when I really feel the narration added to my enjoyment. The book was well read and the narrators had pleasant voices. I was vaguely aware of the story, of course, before I read the book, but the novel is so well written and the jumping between times is rarely confusing. The ending was interesting. I won't spoil it for anyone who is yet to read The Time Traveller's Wife but I couldn't decide whether I was happy with the ending or not. It's definitely sad but the reader is given closure. There is a gap in time when the reader is not told what happened and I feel like I would like to know what happened there. Or maybe it adds to the story that this time is not addressed? I'm not sure. I finished reading this last night and I imagine I'll be thinking about it most of the day.
Highly recommended.

  • Love, Rosie (Where Rainbows End)

  • By: Cecelia Ahern
  • Narrated by: Amy Creighton
  • Length: 11 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 105
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 92
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 92

Sometimes fate just can't stop meddling. Best friends since forever, Rosie and Alex have shared their hopes, dreams, awkward moments - and firsts. But their bond is threatened when Alex's family move to America. They stay in touch, but misunderstandings, circumstances and sheer bad luck seem to be conspiring to keep them apart. Can they gamble everything - even their friendship - on true love?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Didn't think I'd like the format but it worked

  • By Reena Kumar on 02-07-15

Didn't think I'd like the format but it worked

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

Reviewed: 02-07-15

When I first started listening to this audiobook and realised it was in the format of a series of text messages, letters and emails, I didn't think I would enjoy it as much as I did. I thought I would get bored. I didn't.
I recommend it if you're looking for something to keep you occupied on the commute which is what I used it for. But I did find myself not wanting to stop listening which is not something that happens to me all of the time.
I thought the narrator was very good as well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Best of Me

  • By: Nicholas Sparks
  • Narrated by: Sean Pratt
  • Length: 9 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 70
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 58
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 57

They were teenage sweethearts from opposite sides of the tracks - with a passion that would change their lives forever. But life would force them apart. Years later, the lines between past and present are about to slip.... Called back to their hometown for the funeral of the mentor who gave them shelter when they needed it most, they are faced with each other once again. Can true love ever rewrite the past?

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • I think I would have enjoyed this more with a different narrator

  • By Reena Kumar on 26-06-15

I think I would have enjoyed this more with a different narrator

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 26-06-15

It took me a while to really get into this book and I can't help but wonder whether I would have enjoyed it more had I read it as a book or listened to it read by a different narrator.

I didn't enjoy the narrator's delivery. I'm not sure whether it was his voice, accent or just the way he read the female parts; possibly a combination of the three.

But I did enjoy the last quarter of the book and, by then, I had come to care about the characters. I must say that I predicted the ending from a certain point.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful