Friday, June 21, 2013

So, it's no secret that I love audiobooks.  And I listen to quite a few each week.  But I have the hardest time sitting down to write the reviews for them.  The actual writing of the review isn't what's difficult, though.  It's soon as I finish one, it's quiet and the voices in my head start up again, so I immediately start another audiobook to silence them.  I'm only half-kidding.  I am an over-thinker.  Way too analytical for my own good sometimes.  But that's beside the point.

The point is, I tend to rack up a ton of audio that needs reviewing and I thought I'd pick up on the current trend of mini-reviews for those times when I don't feel like -- or don't have the time for -- writing a full-blown review, dissecting every element of a novel or audiobook.  So, instead, I'm going to just break down a few audiobooks based on the narration and how the story culminated in general.  This will be my first attempt at that.  Let's see if I can avoid being as long-winded in my mini reviews as I was here in this introduction.  ;0)

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Title: Sweet Peril
Author: Wendy Higgins
Narrator: Erin Mallon
Series: The Sweet Trilogy, book #2
Publisher: HarperAudio
Publication Date: April 30, 2013
Source: purchased
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Audible

Anna Whitt, the daughter of a guardian angel and a demon, promised herself she’d never do the work of her father—polluting souls. She’d been naive to make such a vow. She’d been naive about a lot of things.

Haunted by demon whisperers, Anna does whatever she can to survive, even if it means embracing her dark side and earning an unwanted reputation as her school’s party girl. Her life has never looked more bleak. And all the while there’s Kaidan Rowe, son of the Duke of Lust, plaguing her heart and mind.

When an unexpected lost message from the angels surfaces, Anna finds herself traveling the globe with Kopano, son of Wrath, in an attempt to gain support of fellow Nephilim and give them hope for the first time. It soon becomes clear that whatever freedoms Anna and the rest of the Neph are hoping to win will not be gained without a fight. Until then, Anna and Kaidan must put aside the issues between them, overcome the steamiest of temptations yet, and face the ultimate question: is loving someone worth risking their life?

For some reason, Sweet Peril just didn't hold the same magic for me that it's predecessor did.  I could blame it on the fact that Kaidan is absent for the first half of the book or so, but even when he did enter the picture, I still wasn't wowed.  I was never intrigued by the idea of a love triangle featuring Kopano as one of its points either.  And Anna was even more of a Mary Sue this time around.  I get it...she's speshul and everyone should love her and help her defeats the evil.  More battling less coddling, please.  Too many gums flapping and not enough action.

The audio was on par with the first book's.  Anna's still got that Southern accent.  Kaiden's accent is, well, less than satisfactory for a Brit but it's passable, I suppose.  The audiobook was fun, though.  I didn't hate this sequel...I just think maybe I was in a different frame of mind when I listened to it than I was with Sweet Evil.  Or I needed more Anna/Kai hawtness.  It could definitely be that.

Rating:   photo 3-1.png 1/2

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Title: Reboot
Author: Amy Tintera
Narrator: Khristine Hvam
Series: Reboot, book #1
Publisher: HarperAudio
Publication Date: May 7, 2013
Source: purchased
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Audible

Five years ago, Wren Connolly was shot three times in the chest. After 178 minutes she came back as a Reboot: stronger, faster, able to heal, and less emotional. The longer Reboots are dead, the less human they are when they return. Wren 178 is the deadliest Reboot in the Republic of Texas. Now seventeen years old, she serves as a soldier for HARC (Human Advancement and Repopulation Corporation).

Wren’s favorite part of the job is training new Reboots, but her latest newbie is the worst she’s ever seen. As a 22, Callum Reyes is practically human. His reflexes are too slow, he’s always asking questions, and his ever-present smile is freaking her out. Yet there’s something about him she can’t ignore. When Callum refuses to follow an order, Wren is given one last chance to get him in line—or she’ll have to eliminate him. Wren has never disobeyed before and knows if she does, she’ll be eliminated, too. But she has also never felt as alive as she does around Callum.

The perfect soldier is done taking orders.

I was hesitant to read this, so I didn't request it for review.  And then bookish friends whose opinions I really trust said it was a different kind of zombie book.  Okay, I'm intrigued.  I love zombie stories.  But they meant it when they said different.  I mean, toward the end, there are hints that my good ole "Braaaaaiiiiinssss!!!" screaming zombies are coming, but this book just didn't do it for me, as a standard sci-fi or as a zombie novel.

I like books where a character has to find, recall, or be taught humanity.  But in Wren's case, it felt like she wasn't human and then all of sudden she felt the feels.  I didn't see the was 0-to-feels in 90 seconds or less.  And then there was Callum.  I kind of adore the tough girl/nice guy pairings, but in this case, the nice guy was just too nice for his own good.  I didn't find him endearing; I found him annoying.  And the story wasn't anything new or exciting to me.  Maybe my friends don't read enough sci-fi, but despite the rebooting and being used as weapons, this story was pretty generic.

Even one of my very favorite narrators didn't make the book any better.  I've loved everything I've heard Khristine Hvam narrate, but the audiobook for Reboot was only meh.  I didn't hate it, but I also didn't love it.  I guess I just prefer when Hvam gets to show off her ability to voice really different characters in the same setting, especially those with accents.  And she definitely didn't have the opportunity to do that here.

Rating:   photo 3-1.png

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Title: Tiger Lily
Author: Jodi Lynn Anderson
Narrator: Cassandra Morris
Series: n/a
Publisher: Listening Library
Publication Date: May 14, 2013
Source: purchased
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Audible

Before Peter Pan belonged to Wendy, he belonged to the girl with the crow feather in her hair. . . .

Fifteen-year-old Tiger Lily doesn't believe in love stories or happy endings. Then she meets the alluring teenage Peter Pan in the forbidden woods of Neverland and immediately falls under his spell.

Peter is unlike anyone she's ever known. Impetuous and brave, he both scares and enthralls her. As the leader of the Lost Boys, the most fearsome of Neverland's inhabitants, Peter is an unthinkable match for Tiger Lily. Soon, she is risking everything—her family, her future—to be with him. When she is faced with marriage to a terrible man in her own tribe, she must choose between the life she's always known and running away to an uncertain future with Peter.

With enemies threatening to tear them apart, the lovers seem doomed. But it's the arrival of Wendy Darling, an English girl who's everything Tiger Lily is not, that leads Tiger Lily to discover that the most dangerous enemies can live inside even the most loyal and loving heart.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Peaches comes a magical and bewitching story of the romance between a fearless heroine and the boy who wouldn't grow up.

Poor Tiger Lily.  This book was sad, y'all.  I was not expecting just how sad it was.  The original story is fun and fanciful, but this one is just a story about heartbreak.  And it vastly changed my opinion of both Wendy Darling and Tiger Lily...and maybe even Peter Pan and Tinkerbell.  Though, it did make me anxious for a re-read of the original tale.  I think I've watched the Disney version with my daughter too many times and it's warped my sensibilities.

The narrator for Tiger Lily had a childish lilt to her voice that was unappealing at first until I realized that Tink was the narrator and would therefore probably have a childish lilt of her own, being a tiny fairy and all.  But that same voice did not carry over to the other characters, which was a comfort.  Overall, the narration was pretty great.  It kept me grounded and reminded me that this was a retelling, an alternate point-of-view, for a beloved children's story and that I shouldn't be too broken up over it.

Rating:   photo 4-1.png

No new favorites in this group, unfortunately, but I enjoyed the experience nonetheless.


  1. Lovely reviews! I'm reading Reboot right now and I can tell you that is paper back form sounds about like its audiobook friend.

  2. oh sorry you didn't like Reboot more... :( I am excited that Tiger Lily is now on Audio. I need to get that one and glad to see you liked it. Sounds like the narrator was just right. I find it hard to do my audio book reviews too...I stop one and start the next. I can't stand the quiet. :) great reviews.

  3. I got Tiger Lily a few weeks ago on audio. I really enjoyed Cassandra as narrator in Two-Way Street, so I'm hoping she's just as good in Tiger Lily. :)

  4. That's really disappointing, I'm sorry Jen! The Sweet Trilogy always looked really good to me, but I hate it when sequels are a downer. No matter what format it's in, I get annoyed with no progression as well with characters. Like in Reboot, I want to SEE the progression, not just have it not there then suddenly there. I wasn't a big fan of Tiger Lily, but I love my Disney I loved your reviews! Now I know some more narrators to either avoid or go listen to!

  5. LMAO-she's speshul!!!! Great mini reviews!


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