🎧Have You Heard?🎧Audiobooks For Your Listening Pleasure🎧The Best of April🎧

Posted April 30, 2024 by RobbieLea in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

#thebeachatsummerly #beatrizwilliams #saskiamaarleveld #oddthomas #deankoontz #davidaaronbaker #thekeeperofstars #buckturner #elizabethphillips #thenightidied #annefrasier #barriekreinik 

Yes … I am aware that November is actually the Thankfulness Month, but I find myself being equally thankful in the month of April. I’m thankful for warmer temperatures, green leaves, and spring flowers. I’m thankful that all my friends and family who viewed the phenomenal solar eclipse managed to salvage their eyesight, and that we had a beautiful full moon known as the Pink Moon. I’m thankful to live in a place where I can see the beauty of the Emerald Coast with its white sand beaches and clear water while eating the world’s best fried shrimp. Most of all I’m thankful for authors and writers who spend their days creating mysteries and thrillers, romances and adventures, and memorable characters, and for narrators whose voices live in our heads long after the stories have ended. This month I’m particularly thankful for an author who turned a beach and some spies into a history lesson, for an author who introduced me to a new character with an odd name who has stolen my heart, for an author who expertly penned a romance that tied up all the lose ends, and for an author who has successfully combined all the elements that appeal to me in one fascinating listen!

The Beach at Summerly

By Beatriz Williams

Narrated by Saskia Maarleveld

As Beatriz Williams implies in her author’s note at the end of her book, you will find The Beach at Summerly an intriguing mixture of beach read and spy novel. For those of us who grew up during the Cold War era, it will pique your imagination and make you wonder if the mysterious behavior of any of your eccentric friends or neighbors meant they were actually spies! Some of us remember that tireless interrogator Senator Joseph McCarthy, whose overzealous behavior ruined the lives of many celebrities back in the day. As you read or listen to The Beach at Summerly, you’ll definitely wonder if that sort of thing could happen again. Emilia Winthrop is just a simple island girl leading a simple island life until a fascinating newcomer begins encouraging her dreams about a different sort of life. Will Emilia succumb to the siren’s call or will her duty to her family keep her on the island? And who exactly is the mysterious Olive Rainsford? Saskia Maarleveld’s performance is excellent, and be sure to listen to the author’s note, an interesting take on a period of history which may be unfamiliar to many of you.

Odd Thomas

By Dean Koontz

Narrated by David Aaron Baker

From time to time when I’m reading or listening to a book, the thought occurs to me that I would love to spend time in the author’s head. That thought almost always occurs to me with any book by Dean Koontz. He is a master storyteller and creator of memorable characters. I promise you are going to love Odd Thomas! Oddie is kind and lovable despite the wasteland of his upbringing. He doesn’t have lofty ambitious – only to work at a job he loves and marry the girl of his dreams Stormy Llewellyn. He has friends who love him, and he also sees dead people. When his sixth sense warns him about future events, his life becomes complicated and he leads us on an adventure that can have no happy ending but which his destiny leads him to embark upon whether he likes it or not. Odd Thomas is masterfully narrated by David Aaron Baker who has a voice for each of the colorful characters in this fascinating tale. I’m delighted to say this is book one of a series, and I’m looking forward to more of Oddie’s adventures.

The Keeper of Stars

By Buck Turner

Narrated by Elizabeth Phillips

The Keeper of Stars is one of those books that might qualify as a second chance romance, and it is a definite palate cleanser if your taste usually runs to murder and mayhem as mine does. Ellie Spencer and Jack Bennett are the star-crossed lovers (literally) living this story. They are young when they first meet, and they both have set similar goals for themselves – to step outside the lives they are currently living and, in Ellie’s case, reach for the stars. As with so many who are driven by lofty goals, life interferes. A jealous friend, an interfering parent, and a war end the dreams Ellie and Jack have for themselves, but is it really the end? Buck Turner’s storyline evolves from young love thwarted by circumstances to a conclusion that will keep you guessing even after you think you know what’s going to happen. If you are a person who prefers a conclusion that ties up all the loose ends, then Elizabeth Phillips will voice it for you in a book that stops just short of sweetness overload and leaves you very satisfied.

The Night I Died

By Anne Frasier

Narrated by Barrie Kreinik

I rarely have a problem knowing what to say about a book. In fact, I usually have an idea where I’m going with my review before I hear the last words, but I hardly know where to begin with The Night I Died. First of all, I’ll say Barrie Kreinik  is the perfect narrator to hold this complex plot together. The book has a strange and compelling storyline and as author Anne Frasier tells her tale, there is a growing surreal quality to the characters and the setting. As a child in Kansas, Olivia Welles is thought to be dead in a car crash that took the lives of her mother and her best friend … but her heart starts beating again in the morgue giving her back her life but taking her memory of all the events surrounding the accident. Her best friend’s mom and sister survive the accident, but neither of them is quite right which becomes more apparent as the plot progresses. When the surviving sister is implicated in the deaths of three of her children, she calls Olivia, who is a private investigator, to help her. Of course, a story of possible triple matricide is going to attract the attention of the media vultures, and this is no exception. My favorite character in the book is an endearing and bumbling would-be reporter who enters the story wearing bad clothes, and after setting Olivia’s rental car on fire. Despite the grisly nature of the alleged crime or crimes, there is enough humor to cloud my attempts to put labels on this author’s work. There is even an adorable dog named Dorothy – they are in Kansas after all. I think that’s all I’m going to say about this roller coaster of a listen. If you love twists and turns and a “what the ????” ending, this one is for you!

Thank You For Following Us at Literati Literature Lovers and Happy Listening in May!

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