Sharon M. (sharon8339) - Reviews

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At the Villa of Reduced Circumstances (Professor Dr. von Igelfeld, Bk 3)  (Audio Cassette) (Unabridged)
Review Date: 9/18/2008


Professor Dr. Moritz-Maria von Iglefeld finds himself in more situations in this third installment of the Portugese Irregular Verbs series. With dry wit and subtle humor, Alexander McCall Smith guides von Iglefeld through some interesting scenarios abroad and in the continuing battle with his nemesis, Unterhalser. A thoroughly enjoyable listen!


Big Trouble
Big Trouble
Author: Dave Barry
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 41
Review Date: 11/22/2009


Vintage Dave Barry. He takes his skewed outlook on ordinary life and applies it to fiction in this farce containing teenagers, embezzlement, hit men, the FBI and more. At times the plot seemed confused, since it jumped from viewpoint to viewpoint, but all in all it was an enjoybale read.


Black Sunshine
Black Sunshine
Author: S V Date, S. V. Date
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 5
Review Date: 11/10/2009


This book takes a fictional look into the race for Florida's Governor, with a twist or two (and a murder or two) along the way. The early pacing of the story is a bit slow, but you will be rewarded if you stick with it, as the story line flows from simple bribery to outright ballot fixing to an office people are willing to kill for. Considering the political landscape in real life, this story doesn't seem too far out of the realm of possibility. Anyone who likes Dave Barry, Carl Hiaasen or Tim Dorsey will enjoy this book. I know I did.


Breath of Scandal
Breath of Scandal
Author: Sandra Brown
Book Type: MP3 CD
  • Currently 2.5/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 12/8/2009


On a night in her senior year in high school, college bound Jade Sperry endures gang rape at the hands of the rich man's son and his cronies. Years pass while Jade gets her education, has a baby and gets her life together, but she never forgets that night and her vow to exact revenge. Returning to her hometown to open a factory for her company, she lays the groundwork and succeeds in her goals, finding the possibility of love along the way.

Understanding this is one of Sandra Brown's earlier works, whoever edited this book should be strung up. The story line is fantastic, but the dialogue sometimes drags and the subplots seem to have been added as an afterthought. Dick Hill's narration was WAY overacted, still, it was a good story. It just didn't measure up to Sandra Brown standards. If you like audio books, this story would probably work well in the abridged version.


Cross My Heart (Ty and Hunter, No 1) (Unabridged Audio CD)
Review Date: 4/21/2010


If you're a Carly Phillips fan, here's another winner.

Unfortunately for me, it seems she only has one book in her with variances on character and theme. All of her books now sound exactly the same, and trying her hand at romantic mystery wasn't a good fit. I couldn't even finish this book, and I'll read almost anything. It was about 90,000 words that should have been 60,000 at most.

I gave it one star because I couldn't give it less. It's the last Carly Phillips I'll ever waste time on.


Dark Witch (Cousins O'Dwyer, Bk 1) (Audio CD-MP3) (Unabridged)
Review Date: 3/8/2014


The story was well written with a great pace. Having read all of Nora's backlist however, I got the feeling I had read this story before. Horses from her Harlequin/Silhouette Irish series; Ireland from the Gallagher series, and the supernatural evil from the Circle trilogy.

While she still writes one hell of a good story, it seems after more than 200 books she's running out of fresh ideas. Is this book a shouldn't miss? Absolutely. Is it one to keep on the shelf? In my opinion, no.


A Discovery of Witches (All Souls, Bk 1)
A Discovery of Witches (All Souls, Bk 1)
Author: Deborah Harkness
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 252
Review Date: 3/30/2012
Helpful Score: 1


Loved it!

I'm glad I opted for the audio version of this book. Jennifer Ikeda's narration was spot on and made the plot flow, even through the slower parts.

This book is similar, and in my opinion, better than The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane. The books are in the same vein, but this reminds me more of the Outlander series than a typical witchcraft book.

Definitely looking forward to the next two books in the series.


The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs (Professor Dr Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld) (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Review Date: 7/14/2008


This is the second in the von Iglefeld series and it was much better than the first. The characters were much more well defined in this book. A very entertaining listen!


The Guy Next Door: Ready, Set, Jett / Gail's Gone Wild / Just One Taste
Review Date: 3/28/2011
Helpful Score: 5


A trilogy of novellas by Lori Foster, Susan Donovan and Victoria Dahl.

From one who owns her entire backlist, all I can say is Lori Foster has lost her mojo. She's joined Nora Roberts and Stephanie Laurens in the club where the same book is written over and over again with the names changed.

Of the three stories, Susan Donovan's is by far the best, but I have to say I'm quite disappointed overall. Two stars max.


Into the Night (Reliance Group, Bk 1)
Into the Night (Reliance Group, Bk 1)
Author: Janelle Denison
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 31
Review Date: 1/3/2012


Owning Ms. Denison's entire backlist, this book is almost an exact take on her earlier novel, "Wilde Thing". After waiting almost 2-1/2 years for this story, to say I'm disappointed is an understatement.

While each author has his/her individual style, Ms. Denison uses the same 3 or 4 catchphrases to death and I'm afraid her writing career is suffering for it. Maybe she should desert her Plotmonkeys and find people who will actually advance her career.

IMO, this book isn't worth the paper it's printed on, and since I've already read the story in another of her books, I didn't feel the need to waste time finishing it.


Kingdom Come
Kingdom Come
Author: Jim Hougan, Dick Hill
Book Type: Audio Cassette
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 2/15/2010


This book is kind of like the DaVinci Code only grittier. Jack Dunphy gets caught up in a conspiracy involving the highest levels of the CIA and traverses the planet searching for answers while trying to elude his pursuers. This is a new author for me and I'll be looking for more of his backlist. Enjoyable listen.


Lavender Morning (Edilean, Bk 1)
Lavender Morning (Edilean, Bk 1)
Author: Jude Deveraux
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 235
Review Date: 12/28/2009
Helpful Score: 2


Jude Deveraux's books have always been either hit or miss with me, and this one is a miss. The story line is a good one, but there's no flow to it at all. The ending seemed like it was pulled out of thin air when it was decided there were enough pages. While I plan to read the following books in the series, it is to see what happens to the other ladies and to see if the storylines improve. If someone asked me if I would recommend this book, I'd have to say no - don't waste your time.


Matters of the Heart
Matters of the Heart
Author: Danielle Steel
Book Type: Audio CD
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
 10
Review Date: 7/17/2010
Helpful Score: 2


Having had a sociopath in my life for a time, I was excited about the prospect of a novel taking an honest look at one as a main character. Boy was I sorry. Danielle Steel has always been a hit-or-miss author for me and this was a miss by a mile. Repetitive narration, one dimensional characters and a female protagonist I'd have had to smack if I'd met her face to face. The sociopathic male protagonist came off more as a whiner than a menace until things got physical. Then he just became mean. It got so bad I couldn't even finish the story, which is very unlike me as I'll read almost anything to the end just to see if it improves.

Don't bother unless you're a hard core Danielle Steel fan. It's not worth the wasted time.


Rainwater
Rainwater
Author: Sandra Brown
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 175
Review Date: 12/24/2011
Helpful Score: 1


This book is more in line with Sandra Brown's early romance novels, instead of the romantic suspense books she currently pens.

All in all, this is one of the most well-written, best plotted books I've read in a long time. Great story, good flow and her signature twist at the end.

I loved this story and hope she writes more like it.


Sepulchre (Languedoc, Bk 2)  (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Review Date: 9/13/2009
Helpful Score: 2


The storyline of this book is original, with the plot bouncing back and forth between time periods. Unfortunately, Kate Mosse spends so much time on the back story and excruciating details, that the characters are never fully developed.

This unabridged audio is 16 cd's long, and the story would have been much better had it been about 1/3 shorter.

If you like stories similar to The DaVinci Code, you will ike this. However, like Dan Brown, this story takes way too long to develop.


Sisters (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Sisters (Audio CD) (Unabridged)
Author: Danielle Steel, Sam Freed (Narrator)
Book Type: Audio CD
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 14
Review Date: 9/9/2010


This is my last Danielle Steel. The plotline for this book had such potential and she screwed it up so badly I couldn't wait for it to end. What could have been a look into the lives of four successful sisters who learn what the true priorities are in life, Steel glosses over everything and races to a neat and tidy conclusion.

Ms. Steel used to be a terrific writer. Now she's not even mediocre.


Valley of Silence (Circle, Bk 3) (Audio CD, Unabridged)
Review Date: 12/11/2011


After listening to all three unabridged recordings in this series, I have to say this story arc would have been MUCH better as a single book in three parts. It seemed that each separate love story plot line dragged for a good portion of each book. The concept of the story was a good one, there was just entirely too much filler.

All in all, en anjoyable listen, but not enough for me to keep.


When You Dare (Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor, Bk 1)
When You Dare (Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor, Bk 1)
Author: Lori Foster
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 226
Review Date: 7/4/2011


This is the last book by Lori Foster I read. As one who owns her entire back list, this book was a disaster. At almost 450 pages, it's about 150 pages too long - and it shows. The plotline is quite good, but the filler needed to flesh it out just didn't cut it. I couldn't invest emotionally in her characters, so even after the big finale, I really didn't care who or why they were after her.

I am beginning to believe Lori Foster has lost her mojo and she may never get it back.


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