Sunday, February 17, 2013

7. The Island - Elin Hilderbrand

audio read by Denice Hicks
13 unabridged cds/ (15 hours)
2010, Hachette Audio
416 pages
for adults
finished 2/15/13
genre:  contemporary realistic fiction
Goodreads Rating: 3.86
My rating:  2/It was okay
Acquired through PBS
Setting:  a remote island off Nantucket

1st Line/s:  "It had sat abandoned for thirteen years.  This had happened without warning."

My comment:  Well....I must admit, this type of book isn't my cup of tea. It seemed to go on and on and on and on....and I wasn't totally endeared with many of the characters. Tate drove me crazy - what a spoiled, self-centered little brat she was. Relating to rich summer people has never been my thing. And this story is mostly about exactly that sort of person. I almost quite listening (and the reader did a wonderful job) many times. 15 hours of more or less the same thing....a few surprises, but not many.....I think I'll stick to my murder mysteries from now on. Sorry, Ms. Hilderbrand, but I tried.

Goodreads synopsis:  Birdie Cousins has thrown herself into the details of her daughter Chess's lavish wedding, from the floating dance floor in her Connecticut back yard to the color of the cocktail napkins. Like any mother of a bride-to-be, she is weathering the storms of excitement and chaos, tears and joy. But Birdie, a woman who prides herself on preparing for every possibility, could never have predicted the late-night phone call from Chess, abruptly announcing that she's cancelled her engagement. 

It's only the first hint of what will be a summer of upheavals and revelations. Before the dust has even begun to settle, far worse news arrives, sending Chess into a tailspin of despair. Reluctantly taking a break from the first new romance she's embarked on since the recent end of her 30-year marriage, Birdie circles the wagons and enlists the help of her younger daughter Tate and her own sister India. Soon all four are headed for beautiful, rustic Tuckernuck Island, off the coast of Nantucket, where their family has summered for generations. No phones, no television, no grocery store - a place without distractions where they can escape their troubles.

But throw sisters, daughters, ex-lovers, and long-kept secrets onto a remote island, and what might sound like a peaceful getaway becomes much more. Before summer has ended, dramatic truths are uncovered, old loves are rekindled, and new loves make themselves known. It's a summertime story only Elin Hilderbrand can tell, filled with the heartache, laughter, and surprises that have made her page-turning, bestselling novels as much a part of summer as a long afternoon on a sunny beach

MOVIE - The Guilt Trip

PG-13 (1:35)
Released 12-19-12
on DVD 4/30/13
saw it at the cheap theater on Kolb on 2-15-13
RT Critic:  37% Audience:  49%
cag:  3.5/Lots of good chuckles, very enjoyable
Directed by Anne Fletcher
Paramount Pictures

Barbra Streisand, Seth Rogen (quite a combo!)

From Fandango:  Before embarking on a once-in-a-lifetime road trip, Andy Brewster (Seth Rogen) pays a visit to his overbearing mother, Joyce (Barbra Streisand). That proves to be a big mistake; Andy caves in under pressure to take his mom along for the ride. Early on -- as the miles roll by -- Andy feels nothing but aggravation at her antics. Eventually however, he comes to realize that they have more in common than he first thought and that Joyce's wisdom might be just what he needs.

Barbra Streisand was fun to watch...she tried to be a little shlumpy, but those perfectly manicured French nails belied that.  However, they worked really well together and I was able to chuckle along quite nicely.  Good entertainment.  During the credits, some scenes that had been cut of them traveling in the car were shown, great fun.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

6. The Intercept - Dick Wolf

Jeremy Fisk #1
audio read by Peter Ganim
9 discs/ 11.5 hours
Harper Audio, 2013
387 pgs.
Written for adults
Finished 2/3/2013
Genre: Mystery/ Terrorists in NYC after 9/11
Goodreads Rating" 3.96
My Rating:  Liked it/4 (the first two cds seemed, well, boring.  However, right from the beginning of the third disc things got much more interesting and then started moving very quickly.
Acquired at Tucson/Pima Library
Setting:NYC in 2010

My comments:  As I said above, the first two discs were a bit boring and confusing...the time switched back and forth to set up the story.  Not having the book to flip back the pages and double check things might have been the problem.  Then, at the beginning of the third disc, an attempted hijacking on a flight from Sweden to New York is averted to Bangor International Airport.  From there on, the story was very interesting.  Point -of-view switched from one person to another, including the "bad" guys.  Jeremy Fisk had a large part of the story, but the book did not seem to particularly center on him.

Goodreads ReviewDays before the July Fourth holiday and the dedication of One World Trade Center at Ground Zero, an incident aboard a commercial jet over the Atlantic Ocean reminds everyone that vigilance is not a task to be taken lightly. But for iconoclastic New York Police detective Jeremy Fisk, it may also be a signal that there is much more to this case than the easy answer: that this is just the work of another lone terrorist. 

Fisk—from the department’s Intelligence Division, a well-funded anti-terror unit modeled upon the CIA—suspects that the event might also be a warning sign that another, potentially more extraordinary scheme has been set in motion. Fluent in Arabic and the ways of his opponents, Fisk is a rule breaker who follows his gut—even if it means defying those above him in the department’s food chain. So when a passenger from the same plane, a Saudi Arabian national, disappears into the crowds of Manhattan, it’s up to Fisk and his partner Krina Gersten to find him before the celebrations begin. 

Watching each new lead fizzle, chasing shadows to dead ends, Fisk and Gersten quickly realize that their opponents are smarter and more agile than any they have ever faced. Extremely clever and seemingly invisible, they are able to exploit any security weakness and anticipate Fisk’s every move. And time is running out.