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francesca

  • 27
  • reviews
  • 10
  • helpful votes
  • 66
  • ratings
  • The Lonely Life

  • An Autobiography
  • By: Bette Davis
  • Narrated by: Suzanne Toren
  • Length: 13 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16

The Lonely Life details the first 50-plus years of Davis' life - her Yankee childhood, her rise to stardom in Hollywood, the birth of her beloved children, and the uncompromising choices she made along the way to succeed. The book was updated with new material in the 1980s, bringing the story up to the end of Davis' life - all the heartbreak, all the drama, and all the love she experienced at every stage of her extraordinary life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A stellar of a listen!

  • By francesca on 23-10-18

A stellar of a listen!

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

Reviewed: 23-10-18

I’ve listened to lots of biographies but this is one of the best by far!!! Engaging, humorous, honest and interesting. You can’t go wrong with Miss Davis’s autobiography.

  • The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe

  • By: J. Randy Taraborrelli
  • Narrated by: Robert Petkoff
  • Length: 8 hrs and 18 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 31
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 19
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 18

When Marilyn Monroe became famous in the 1950s, the world was told that her mother was either dead or simply not a part of her life. However, that was not true. In fact, her mentally ill mother was very much present in Marilyn's world and the complex family dynamic that unfolded behind the scenes is a story that has never before been told...until now.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe

  • By Petra on 10-03-10

An interesting listen

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

Reviewed: 17-09-18

It’s a shame this audio book is abridged, but it’s still worth a listen for any Monroe fan. I normally really like this narrator but he should stay clear of English accents. His Lawford was okay but his English housekeeper was terrible!

  • Daughters of the Winter Queen

  • Four Remarkable Sisters, the Crown of Bohemia and the Enduring Legacy of Mary, Queen of Scots
  • By: Nancy Goldstone
  • Narrated by: Laura Kirman
  • Length: 13 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 14
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

In a sweeping narrative encompassing political intrigue, illicit love affairs and even a murder mystery, Nancy Goldstone tells the riveting story of a queen who lost her throne, and of her four defiant daughters. Elizabeth Stuart's (1596-1662) marriage to a German count far below her rank was arranged with the understanding that her father, James I of England, would help his new son-in-law achieve the crown of Bohemia. The terrible betrayal of this promise would ruin 'the Winter Queen', as Elizabeth would forever be known, imperil the lives of those she loved and launch a war that would last thirty years.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent research and writing, dreadful narration

  • By darkbluepoppy on 17-04-18

Interesting ..... if confusing.

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

Reviewed: 08-07-18

Chocked full of royal history but a little confusing at times, as the narrative jumps back and forth in history.

  • That's Another Story

  • The Autobiography
  • By: Julie Walters
  • Narrated by: Julie Walters
  • Length: 4 hrs and 18 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 294
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 199
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 198

Julie Walters has been described as the nation's most popular actress and comedienne. She has been delighting us on screen and on stage for over 25 years and - thanks to her undoubted talent, infectious spirit and self-deprecating humour - we have taken her to our hearts. Now she tells us her own story, in her own words. She was born in 50s Birmingham, daughter of an austere Irish Catholic mother.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • That's another story by Julie Walters

  • By Emma on 06-02-09

I just wish it was longer!!!

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

Reviewed: 13-06-18

A great listen filled with genuine warmth and humor. I just wish it was longer!

  • Broad Strokes

  • 15 Women Who Made Art and Made History (in That Order)
  • By: Bridget Quinn
  • Narrated by: Tavia Gilbert
  • Length: 5 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1

Historically, major women artists have been excluded from the mainstream art canon. Aligned with the resurgence of feminism in pop culture, Broad Strokes offers an entertaining corrective to that omission. Art historian Bridget Quinn delves into the lives and careers of 15 brilliant female artists in this smart, feisty, educational, and enjoyable book.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A great and engaging listen

  • By francesca on 08-06-18

A great and engaging listen

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

Reviewed: 08-06-18

This book puts a punch back into art and art history. It's interesting and well worth a listen , if just to learn about new artists you may not yet know. Artimesia you rock!!!

  • The Happy Hoofer

  • By: Celia Imrie
  • Narrated by: Celia Imrie
  • Length: 11 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 229
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 189
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 187

One of our best-loved actresses, Celia Imrie would rather have been a dancer. As a child she planned to join the Royal Ballet and marry Rudolf Nureyev. Now she has become one of our finest and funniest performers, on stage, TV and screen - adored for her roles in 'Acorn Antiques' and 'dinnerladies', as well as films including 'Calendar Girls' and 'Nanny McPhee'. In her hugely entertaining autobiography, Celia Imrie recounts a life hurtling (not always intentionally) into adventures both on stage and off.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A delightful book

  • By Kirstine on 01-07-15

An engaging and relatable read

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

Reviewed: 04-06-18

I loved the fact that Miss Imrie put into words some of the things I've always thought , but until now thought I was alone on. Thank you Miss Imrie from one happily unmarried woman to another!

  • Wedlock

  • How Georgian Britain's Worst Husband Met His Match
  • By: Wendy Moore
  • Narrated by: Rachel Atkins
  • Length: 13 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22

Wedlock is the remarkable story of the Countess of Strathmore and her marriage to Andrew Robinson Stoney. Mary Eleanor Bowes was one of Britain's richest young heiresses. She married the Count of Strathmore, who died young, and, pregnant with her lover's child, Mary became engaged to George Gray. Then in swooped Andrew Robinson Stoney. Mary was bowled over and married him within the week. But nothing was as it seemed. Stoney was broke and his pursuit of the wealthy Countess a calculated ploy.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gripping

  • By Benjy1702 on 02-02-16

You'd think it was fiction if you didn't know it to be true.

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

Reviewed: 15-03-18

Wow! The countess of Strathmoore certainly had an interesting life. She could be a poster child for the notion that money doesn't alway bring happiness. As great listen for any social / aristocratic / royal history buff!

  • In Search of Our Roots

  • How 19 Extraordinary African Americans Reclaimed Their Past
  • By: Henry Louis Gates Jr.
  • Narrated by: Dominic Hoffman
  • Length: 16 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1

More than a work of history, In Search of Our Roots is a book of revelatory importance that, for the first time, brings to light the lives of ordinary men and women who, by courageous example, blazed a path for their famous descendants.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting and in depth and very American

  • By francesca on 06-03-18

Interesting and in depth and very American

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

Reviewed: 06-03-18

I think the writer of this book assumes that only African Americans will listen to this. This is a shame, as it is an interesting listen no matter your ethnicity.

  • Midnight in Peking

  • The Murder That Haunted the Last Days of Old China
  • By: Paul French
  • Narrated by: Crawford Logan
  • Length: 8 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 141
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 115
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 116

Who killed Pamela Werner? On a frozen night in January 1937, in the dying days of colonial Peking, a body was found under the haunted watchtower. It was Pamela Werner, the teenage daughter of the city’s former British consul, Edward Werner. Her heart had been removed. A horrified world followed the hunt for Pamela’s killer, with a Chinese-British detective team pursuing suspects including a blood-soaked rickshaw puller, the Triads, and a lascivious grammar school headmaster. But the case was soon forgotten amid the carnage of the Japanese invasion...by all but Edward Werner.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Incredible story

  • By Caroline on 09-02-13

An enthralling listen

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

Reviewed: 20-02-18

Well worth a listen!!! The writer paints a vivid picture of life in 1930's Beijing and the "old boys " of the British establishment.

  • Adam Hills: Clown Heart - Live

  • By: Mr Adam Hills
  • Narrated by: Mr Adam Hills
  • Length: 1 hr and 18 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15

Take a trip with Adam Hills and his sold-out crowd at London's Hammersmith Apollo to the Clown Heart of comedy. In this live recording, Adam and his sign interpreter, Catherine, join forces with a willing audience to create some onstage stars and hit a few comedic high notes. Along the way he embraces love, life and death with his inimitable positivity, laughing in the face of tragedy and 'kicking cancer in the d**k'.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Hard to follow when a lot of the jokes are visual

  • By francesca on 17-01-18

Hard to follow when a lot of the jokes are visual

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

Reviewed: 17-01-18

There was definitely some funny bits and I totally love the " kick Cancer in the dick" part. But a lot of the jokes are visual, so you miss the full effect of the show.