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Roberta Westwood

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What a lovely book!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-09-22

I thoroughly enjoyed life through the eyes, hearts and words of these two young people. I learned a whole lot about what it is like to face racism and judgement as a Muslim, especially as a young woman. Along the way, I learned about Muslim courting (to the degree that it almost made sense to me), multiple sclerosis and art. Despite the struggles, this story overflows with optimism. Great narration. Highly recommended.

Terrible narrator

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-09-20

I gave up, I could not concentrate on the story, the narration was so poor

Story transports you

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-09-20

I wasn't sure how I felt about this book at first (a bit heavy on male exploits of the women they laid for my liking), but I am glad I stuck with it. The characters were actually very well developed and the intrigue built as the story went on. Oh, the things that happen that we can't imagine. Lots of surprises and a few deaths. A satisfying listen.

Take a walk on the dark side

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-05-27

I read Lord of the Flies long ago, so I was ready for a new take on the classic. Fortunately, it was long enough ago that I didn't remember the plot details. Oh my, what dark sides we humans have.... and so interesting to see how they come out. Good vs evil. Dark vs light. Excellent narration, which really added to my experience ~ I felt I 'got' the characters.

1 person found this helpful

Spock and Nimoy relect

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-05-27

What a fabulous little book! My only complaint is that it was too short. Well, actually, it didn't leave me wanting, I just didn't want it to end. Great narration from Nimoy. My favourite parts were the conversations he had with Spock in his head. It really was a partnership. A must listen for all Trekkies. LLAP

Fantastic

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-01-26

I loved this book. I chose to read this book in light of recent news and politics, hoping it would give me more insight into Iran and the Iranian people. It did not disappoint. The hopes and dreams of Iran's youth, set against the context of the country's norms and traditions, provided a rich picture. The characters were very real to me. The tiny details of the neighbourhood, the cooling hose in the heat, the imaginings under the stars, took me right there. Richly written. Great narration. 5 stars.

Rambling

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-01-26

I'd had enough of this book about half way through, but stuck it out. Not so sure it was worth it. Overall, the book could have been 1/3 shorter and told the same story. The order was odd, the last half was misplaced. It was factual at first, but seemed to fall into conjecture. The last 2 minutes of the Acknowledgements told me why, and I wasn't thrilled to have spent my time on it. I like true crime stories but would not read this author again.

2 people found this helpful

Very dark but compelling

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-01-12

I've had Eric Larson's "The Devil in the White City" sitting unlistened to in my library for sometime, but decided to read it before reading "Bloodstains". I recommend you do the same, as it provided context. I like memoirs and have read a few by people who have learned about a parent or relative's criminal history ~ drawn by the curiosity of wondering what that must be like ~ so Bloodlines caught my eye. But this is no run of the mill serial killer (if there is such a thing), this was the first and worst. A truly evil psychopath. And I knew this story would involve unfathomable darkness. The journey Mudgett took to uncover his family history was inseparable from his own mental illness, which reared its head while he was uncovering revelations. It made for a very dark story indeed. But I am glad I read it. There is an oddity about this book in that it has a music and sound effects in the background throughout most of it, and it was distracting. Like B-grade movie, the amateurish audio effects drew attention to them, instead of enhancing the story.

Dark history in the white city

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2020-01-12

After a false start a year ago, when I couldn't get into this book, I picked it up again. I had just come across "Bloodstains" by Jeff Mudgett, the great grandson of the "devil" in this book, and thought I should read this first (I recommend reading them in this order; it gave good context for Mudgett's revelations). Overall, this was a pretty good book, but tying together two largely unrelated storylines isn't easy to do. While both were joined by the time and place of the Chicago World's Fair, flipping from a mass murderer's arrival in the city to the architects planning the site couldn't help but feel disjointed. In the end, the stories were joined in the grizzly nightmares and calamities during the fair. It was disturbing to learn that the disappearing women barely registered with authorities and the "devil" carried on under their noses. It is a dark history, but interesting nonetheless.

Convoluted

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 2019-12-18

Interesting premise, but the storyline was just too convoluted for me. Yes, it worked in terms of making it impossible to guess what might happen next, and who the characters really were. The story and main characters never really grabbed me though. I wasn't left to mull over the lessons or revelations or human relationships afterwards.