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text 2019-01-09 18:45
Reading progress update: I've read 70% and
The Power of the Dog - Don Winslow


this book is simply: OUTSTANDING!


To be honest, I purchased the audiobook THE CARTEL by this author in error, not realizing that it was book 2 of a series. 


When I discovered my error, I decided to buy this one-mostly because of Ray Porter, the narrator. 


Now I'm pretty much consumed by this story of:




Drug Cartels

The Mafia

The Catholic Church

Armies trying to take over South American countries

(and how they are backed or not backed and the reasons why.)


If I didn't already know what happened back then I might not believe what's going on in this book. But I do know the truth of some of what happened and I have no choice but to believe it. Don Winslow has done his research.


It's compelling, it's believable, the characters are engaging, (not even the bad guys are ALL bad - making them quite believable in the process), the story in turns shocking, sad, stunning and un-put-downable.


Lastly? Ray Porter is a narrating GOD. 

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review 2018-12-31 22:30
WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING by Delia Owens, narrated by Cassandra Campbell
Where the Crawdads Sing - Delia Owens

I'm not a good enough reviewer to properly review this book. Instead, here's:


Shelby's review


Kelly's review


Bark's review


and lastly,


Yodamom's Review



My friends have it all over me regarding reviews of this book, so I'll let them speak for themselves. What a great way to finish off 2018!


Now I'm going to go ugly cry.

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review 2018-12-19 16:00
MOURNING JEWELRY by Stephanie Wytovich, narrated by Lesley Ann Fogle
Mourning Jewelry - Stephanie M. Wytovich



This poetry collection, read to me by Lesley Ann Fogle, was like a dark and stormy night, but inside my brain.


Relentlessly dark and beautifully wrought, this volume speaks to the pain of being a woman, the pain of being done wrong by men, the joy in paying those wrongs back, (in spades), and a lot more.



"Yes, suffocation would be a blessing from a world where each breath I take reminds me that I'm alone. That the life I lived was a lie, and that the person that I loved was nothing more than a foul gust of air that moved through a hollow woman."




I'm discovering that it's difficult to review a poetry collection such as this. While trying to impart the depth of feeling and emotion evoked by these dark words and ideas, I find myself consistently coming up short. This is the third time I've tried to write this review and this time I'm just going to let my words stand.


If you like poetry, (hell, even if you don't), this collection is worth your time. Take it slow as I did, or race through it all at once-either way you're going to be affected by the experience. What exactly will that effect will be? I suspect it will be a highly individual-type thing, but for me? The experience was wonderful and I know I'll be revisiting MOURNING JEWELRY in the future.


Highly recommended!


*I received the audio of this book free from the author, in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.*

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review 2018-12-18 18:45
The Queen: Aretha Franklin - Mikal Gilmore,Adenrele Ojo


Why not try a free Audible original about Aretha Franklin? That was my thought and I'm glad I did try it, though it wasn't exactly what I expected.


I was a Rolling Stone subscriber for decades, (until they put the Boston marathon bomber on the cover, but that's another story.) One of the things I miss about the magazine is the in-depth articles on musicians and singers, which is what I thought this would be.


It turned out to be like an article, yes, and a very well researched one at that. It's my fault for thinking that, since this is an audiobook, samples of her music or even full songs would be included. They're not. Also, this isn't as much of an in-depth look of her life so much as it is a look at her musical life. Which isn't a bad thing, I just expected more.


Side note: *I just discovered that Mikal Gilmore is actually the brother of Gary Gilmore, the subject of the book THE EXECUTIONER'S SONG. How did I not know that?*


Anyway, this was free and as such I can't complain. Thanks, Audible!



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review 2018-12-14 18:30
WINTER'S BONE by Daniel Woodrell, narrated by Emma Galvin
Winter's Bone: A Novel (Audio) - Daniel Woodrell,Emma Galvin

I'm not feeling like a full review today so I'll limit this to only a few comments.


*The Ozarks in which this book takes place seem to have nothing in common with the OZARK Netflix show.


*I have no doubt in my mind that life in some areas of the Ozarks is as brutal as it's depicted in this book. Poverty, drug use, tight family units, and long-held multi-generational grudges are just part of the miserable lives examined here.


*I couldn't help but feel for 16 year old Ree who just wanted to join the army and get the hell out of there. Due to her mother's mental illness and her two young siblings, her hands were tied. It's hard to escape family.


*I thought this book was savage with sharp, vivid prose-sometimes so sharp it stabbed me right in the heart.


*I enjoyed WINTER'S BONE, as much as one can enjoy a story this violent and merciless. I look forward to sampling more of Daniel Woodrell's work in the future.


*Recommended for those with the wherewithal to stomach the brutalities of this rural, mountain life. You have been warned!

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