Narrator Stephanie Brush I Went to Vassar For This? by Naomi Neale

I Went to Vassar for This?
Naomi Neale
Narrator: Stephanie Brush
9 hours 32 minutes
Books In Motion

Stephanie Brush, (photo from Books In Motion)

Stephanie Brush,  reads clearly, enunciates well, does characterizations exceedingly well and reads text skillfully. She also has a good amount of pauses when appropriate. Her voice is clear and strong. I really like her ability to have a distinctive voice for each character.

BUT, throughout the book she does not keep an even pace. Some of the time she reads real fast then other parts she reads slow and some of the times she reads at a normal pace. With that said, what keeps her from being an outstanding reader is sentences end sounding like a question.

She has a bad habit of forcing out the last couple words of a sentences with a hard loud puff of air. She is very loud when she's breathing . As her pace picks up she begins to sound breathless. I start feeling like I am suffocating and need to gasp for air. I have a number of books read by Stephanie Brush and often wish she would quit breathing like a drowning man and forcing out words with so much emphasis.

It's kind of hard to explain but you can listen to an audio clip from your library or from www.audible.com and you'll immediately hear what I'm talking about. The worst is her rendition of a man laughing or chuckling. It is truly horrible. It's a shame really because otherwise her voice would be very nice, she does terrific with male characters. I'm sure if we were face to face I'd be needing either a respirator or a Kleenex.

The Book, I Went to Vassar for This?  Is about Kathy Voorhees, who works in advertising. She loses her job from botching an ad campaign for a retro food company. She takes home her boxed up personal items and a few months supply of t.v. dinners. She, in the typical Cathy Voorhees manner, just throws a retro t.v. dinner in the microwave without removing the aluminum foil causing the microwave to explode. The door flies off and hits her on the head.

When she comes around, she is not in her own apartment. She thinks she's been abducted by Hank Cabot and his friends for some kinky sex plot. Eventually she realizes that she is in 1959, living with two room-mates Tilly and Miranda. they think she is their roommate Cathy Voight. Their Cathy was thrown forward in time to Kathy Voorhees apartment and life. It's too bad Ms. Neale did not spend some time developing Cathy Voights experiences in 21st century. From the little that is mentioned of her she is not any nicer than Kathy Voorhees. Kathy Voorhees blurts out things without thinking, most often things that are rude, hurtful and condescending. She is vulgar and says things that would be at least to me, in the 21st century sound crude.

In chapter 4. she says to Hank " If you want your testicles to remain intact you'd better get the hell out of here" later Hank refers to her testicle comment. Something, a 50's man would not be likely to say without blushing. A 50's man would have been more repulsed by her, especially a nice well bred guy like Hank.
Without the political agendas it would have been a better book. More fun events and scenarios of adapting to another era instead of a difficult, and unpleasant person on a crusade to right social injustices.

An everyday conversation turns into a rant on sexual inequities. A party turns into a 60's style sit in protest and she loses Cherry a black woman her job and has the gall to say "don't demean yourself for me" when Cherry is doing her job, taking away Kathy's tray in a cafeteria and cleaning up. To say that in any era would be rude, condescending and patronizing.

In chapter 2. she says she didn't have a  brother but later in chapter 4 she tells Hank  "When were kids my  brother use to collect comics about Mighty Morphs and". She only mentions her sister one time in the beginning of the book. She had nothing nice to say about her sister. The concept of the story is excellent, and most of the book is enjoyable. I love time travel scenarios and this could have been a good one, if Ms.Neale had not used Kathy Vorhees, for her personal political, social, agendas. I wonder if anyone bothered to edit this book before it was published. Nonetheless the book is worth reading/listening too, the supporting characters were good and much of the story is fun and a light read.

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

I have to say I agree with the person above. It's a struggle to listen because she over enunciates, turning any word that ends in a "d" into a "t" sound. It just makes me crazy, distracts from the otherwise well differentiated voices she is so good at. And other thing is that she sometimes turns the harsh es sound into a soft es sound, for example the difference between lose and loose. Yes and that the barking laugh is very grating too!