The Spinning Heart by Donal Ryan Narrated by Wayne Farrell

The Spinning Heart
by Donal Ryan
Narrator: Wayne Farrell

4 hours 48 minutes
Award winning Author Donal Ryan
Donal Ryan

Wayne Farrell Narrator of Donal Ryan's The Spinning Heart
Narrator Wayne Farrell

Narrator Review

Donal Ryan, The Spinning Heart

An exceptional, special book needs an exceptional narrator and Wayne Farrell is that person. It was refreshing to listen to an authentic Irish narration. Mr Farrell brings something special to The Spinning Heart, authenticity, sensitivity, and eloquence, enhancing our insight into each of the twenty one people represented in the story. Wayne Farrell has a rich and cadent voice that is very pleasurable to listen too. This is one of Farrell's most exemplary narrations showcasing his talents as a superb narrator. He will make you, for a moment in time reside in each persons shoes.

Click below to listen to a clip of  Wayne Farrell reading The Spinning Heart by Donal Ryan


Book Review: 

The Spinning HeartBy Donal Ryan

The Spinning Heart

The world has an intimate knowledge of the boom and bust cycles that have plagued everyone for a good many years. Set in a rural Irish village we meet twenty one people affected by this cycle and learn how they get a triple whammy when the bust comes and they are unemployed. Their boss Pokey Burke has bushwhacked them all, by stealing their retirement funds. The check stubs show deductions, but the official bureau has no record of any money turned in for any of the them. When they are asked if at the end of each year didn't they get a P60, none of them had. Pokey Burke has skipped town with every cent of their money and his father denies knowing where he is.

As we move through each of the twenty one, we are introduced to each ones interior self and their secret thoughts. From Bobby, who hates his father with a passion, Josie, Pokey's father, who feels himself responsible for what kind of man Pokey grew up to be, Lily, the faded and ageing hooker who gets no respect from anyone, least of all her own children, Vasya, an immigrant to Ireland, who seems lost and alone, Hillary, the most interesting, who is obsessively in love with the narcissistic Realtin. Hillary's thoughts are complaint after complaint of Realtin's self absorption, yet, at the end of each one she says how much she loves Realtin.

Underneath the town's veneer of sociability and nicety lurk old angers and resentments, mentally disturbed people, and a boiling pot of frustration and rage that finally reaches the breaking point. The village and its residents could be a village in any country that has experienced the boom and bust economy. Always leaving the working class and middle class people losing everything. Wayne Farrell does such a fabulous job of manifesting and personalizing each individual, from their angst's to their joys. Because of its universal appeal, and the relevance of the people to those we have known, do know or have crossed paths with in our own country. The Spinning Heart has achieved many awards and commendations from the, Man Booker Award,  The Guardian First Book Award, and the, The Irish Book of the Year Award. we hope to have many future books by Donal Ryan, who skillfully says much with few but well chosen words.

Other selections read by Wayne Farrell:

The Djinn by J. Kent Holloway narrator Wayne Farrell
The Djinn by Kent Holloway
 Narrated by Wayne Farrell
Spiggot by Craig Saunders read by Wayne Farrell
Spiggot by Craig Saunders,
 Narrator Wayne Farrell
And They Called Her Spider by Michael Coorlim reader Wayne Farrell
 And They Called Her Spider, Michael Coorlim
Narrator: Wayne Farrell
Maiden Voyage read by Wayne Farrell
Maiden Voyage of the Rio Grande By Michael Coorlim
 Narrated: By Wayne Farrell
White Angel Murder by Victor Methos read by Wayne Farrell
The White Angel Murder by Victor Methos
Narrator Wayne Farrell
A Quest of Heroes by Morgan Rice read by Wayne Farrell
A Quest of Heroes by Morgan Rice Narrator: Wayne Farrell
Two Tocks Before Midnight read by Wayne Farrell
Two Tocks Before Midnight by C. J. Martin
Narrated by Wayne Farrell

Hike up Devil's Mountain by Penny Estelle read by Wayne Farrell
Hike up Devil's Mountain Author: Penny Estelle
Narrator: Wayne Farrell



Ann M. Richardson narrating Greenwillow, written by B. J. Chute

GreenwillowB. J, Chute
Narrated by: Ann M. Richardson

6 hours 44 minutes
Post Hypnotic Press Inc.
Greenwillow, by B.J. Chute

Narrator, Ann Marie Richardson

Ann Marie Richardson has such a sweet and engaging voice,and reads with a very satisfying amount of emotion. When someone reads, and is enjoying the book you can really hear it as it comes through in the tone of their voice. Ms.Richardson evokes the emotional content to perfection. Her reading of of the text is just as excellent. Clear, well enunciated, and outstanding in every way. I especially enjoyed her characterizations of the old granny Briggs, and of Thomas Clegg, who is farming out his cow to the Briggs family.

Book Review: Greenwillow 

A charismatic story about a small village that's rather forgotten by the greater world. Two preachers, Rev. Birdsong and Rev. Lapp wrestle with concepts of good and evil and village life moves around their story. Rev. Birdsong fittingly named as he is cheerful, optimistic and full of kindheartedness appears in Greenwillow, and announces the Bishop sent him. The Rev. Lapp, is a cheerless, hell fire preacher and not pleased with situation at all and see's Rev. Birdsong as a threat to his own religious power over the village and wants to hasten Rev. Birdsong on his way. Fate has other ideas and very quickly Rev. Birdsong is ensconced and sharing the only church in the village with Rev. Lapp.

Gideon Briggs, maintains his father, Amos Briggs,' farm. Gideon loves Dorrie, but he frets about the time when the wandering curse will come on him and feels he can't marry. Fearful that like his father and his grandfather and all first born sons who were struck with the wandering curse, that he too would be destined to leave his family to roam the world. Men who returned periodically to foster new babies then off once again when the wandering possessed them. He felt sure that to marry and leave a family would just be wrong

Quite a stir is caused when Amos comes home, only to stay one day and two nights, time enough to meet the child that he fathered on his last home coming, and time enough to produce another baby. When he announces he's leaving to go to China, no begging or imploring from his family can stop him leaving. Down hearten Gideon, vows he will break the wandering curse, somehow. Gideon loves Dorrie, the farm, all the animals, his life in Greenwillow and has no desire to wander the world.

From the arrival of Rev. Birdsong there is a hint of something beyond the reach of mortals coming into play in this charming romance story. The wandering curse alone is enough to prick ones thoughts that something mystical is about to occur. Will Gideon break the curse and marry Dorrie, or will the unknown fates proceed on their path to continue with the wanderings? And what about the sour and devil obsessed Rev. Lapp, will the influence of just having Rev. Birdsong rub off on him and gentle his nature? The end alone is worth listening/reading this provocative tale. Ann Marie Richardson, does a distinguished reading that you will surely savor, and listen to again and again.


You Had Me at Woof By Julie Klam Narrator Karen White

You Had Me at Woof
How Dogs Taught Me the Secrets of Happiness
By Julie Klam
Narrator Karen White
5 hours 21 minutes

Julie Klam Author of You Had Me at Woof
Author Julie Klam 

Karen White Narrator of You Had Me at Woof
Narrator Karen White
A lovely narration by Karen White, who has magically captured the soul of this poignant and beautiful book. The reading is steady and heart felt with none of the reading done on exhalation. I'm glad to say Ms. White has improved her reading skills and I can recommend this book with the highest of accolades. She has really exceeded doing justice to the story from the humorous to the wrenching heartbreak of losing a loved dog. Her portrayal of Julie and all the dogs was compassionate and very tender. This is very much a five star narration.

Book cover photo of Otto, You Had Me at Woof
You Had Me at Woof
 by Julie Klam

Julie Klam, like so many thirty somethings is still hoping to meet her prince and marry, have children and live happily ever after. Her situation is not new and the search for a meaningful relationship has gone on for many generations. One could imagine that meeting the right person would be easier today than say fifty or a hundred years ago if accounting for the increase in population and technology available never dreamed of in the past. For Julie Klam, she saw her future in a dream and his name was Otto. Otto was not a man but an adorable Boston Terrier that lead Julie on her true path in life. Julie later marries and has a daughter, Violet, who in time becomes as obsessed with dogs as her parents are. 

I could relate to Julie's attitude of love me love my dog. I went through something very similar with my new husband and my Maltese. Years into the marriage I still would fun him when he heard me talking and ask 'what' and I'd respond with, nothing, was talking to the dog. That annoyed him so much that I never could resist doing it. He had to work hard at gaining the number one spot never knowing he had it from the beginning.

When Julie meets Paul it isn't long before he resents that Julie thinks Otto is number one and instead of going out to dinner with him, she has to rush home to take care of Otto. Paul does in time love Otto and many other dogs and becomes a willing partner in dog rescue. Paul sounds like a very nice guy that maybe found his own Secrets of Happiness through loving Julie and the many dogs that pass through their lives.

Just before Julie is to give birth to Violet, Otto dies, a terrible time for this to happen and the love Julie has for Otto losing him must have torn her heart out. Not good timing at all. Later Julie does love another Boston terrier something she could not have imagined happening after Otto, but Moses steals her heart and she does love him on a par with Otto. Sadly and I confess I was glad the tissues were close by, when Moses gets hit by a car while running to greet her. Just thinking of the horror of it will make a strong man weep. Moses had slipped out of his harness and ran out the main door before the doorman had a chance to shut it. People tried to help find him, and he was just gone. Julie tries to imagine where he might go if out on his own and follows her instinct which was accurate. When Moses sees her across the street he races towards her with joy in his eyes and is struck down by an vehicle. 

As a family they become deeply involved in animal rescue and fostering, Julie introduces us to each dog that passes through their life and the love they share. It is wonderful that Julie and Paul are willing to open their hearts and pocket books to save a dog. I'm not sure New York City is a good place to keep a dog of any size but people do love their pets and hope for the best. It is an extra sacrifice in many ways to keep dogs in the city, nonetheless, there seems to be an unending parade of abandoned dogs.

Julie gives a well rounded account of the good as well as the negative aspects of fostering. Anyone considering this path would do well to read/listen to this book before taking on such a daunting task. It was disheartening to hear some of the deceptions rescues use to try and find homes for these animals. Its good information to know if you are considering adopting a rescue pet. For instances the age of a dog is somewhat ambiguous, compare it to a real estate ad that says 'fixer upper' or cottage, which anyone who has done even a little house hunting recognizes as dump or small, barely room for one person.

I do recommend this book highly, its a good read/listen, very informative, funny and sad, wonderful example for others, to share their resources as this family does. 


Parrots Prove Deadly: A Pru Marlowe Pet Noire, Book 3 By Clea Simon Narrated By Tavia Gilbert

Parrots Prove Deadly: A Pru Marlowe Pet Noire, Book 3
By Clea Simon
Narrated By Tavia Gilbert
Series: Pru Marlowe, Pet Noir, Book 3
Length: 8 hrs and 46 mins
Blackstone Audio
Pru Marlowe, a Pet Noire Mystery by Clea Simon, Parrots Prove Deadly
Author Clea Simon

Tavia Gilbert Narrator of Parrots Prove Deadly by Clea Simon
Narrator Tavia Gilbert

A stellar narration by the fabulous Tavia Gilbert, in this not to be missed reading of Parrots Prove Deadly by Clea Simon. From the amazing laugh out loud rendition of the parrot Randolph Jones, to the spunky little dog listening in on Pru's thoughts, you will not only laugh, and love all the animals that Pru talks to, you will adore everyone's special voice that Ms. Gilbert brings through. Not only are her renditions of the animals wonderful so are the people, like the high strung, scatter brained and very annoying Jane Larkin, daughter of Polly Larkin. It is just phenomenal how Tavia Gilbert makes it all work.

When eighty four year old Polly Larkin dies at the Live Well assisted living, no one is surprised, after all at eighty four and in poor health, death is expected. Pru Marlowe gets a call from a hysterical and shrill Jane Larkin pleading with Pru, to help her with Randolph, a gray African parrot. Jane hopes Pru, can retrain Randolph to quit swearing. Pru, is an animal behaviorist, and Polly Larkin's pet bird is in danger of becoming homeless or worse, as Jane's Condominium doesn't allow pets, her brother Mark, won't take him as he has young children and doesn't want a foul mouthed bird around them. So Randolph is a couple weeks away from being booted out of Live Well assisted living center.

Her first meeting with the feisty bird is when Randolph shouts out "Who the hell is it", "mind your own damn business" and "bugger off," which are some of his less obnoxious litanies. As Pru is around the bird more, she hears him saying things that make Pru think that perhaps Polly did not die a natural death at all. Polly was found on the floor and her walker was upturned on its side, leading the staff to think she got up in the night, lost her balance and fell. Yet, Randolph is making noises that indicate something very different happened. Pru is the only one paying attention to what the bird says except one other person who wants to shut the bird up, forever.

Things start to escalate when Pru stops in to visit Randolph and the room is teaming with people, the doctor, Jane, Mark, and others who come and go as they please when suddenly Randolph squawks gets sick and falls over. Pru, takes charge and rushes him to the vet and feels sure the bird has been poisoned, but by what or who, her thoughts run through a number of things that could have harmed the bird. Maybe when she let him out of his cage to stretch. But who would want to kill him.

After Randolph is released from the vet she decides it would be in the birds best interest to take him home herself. In the beginning she jettisoned this idea, knowing that Wallis her Tabby cat would either try and eat the bird or bother him in some other ways. Yet, she didn't want to take him back to Live Well. Pru decides her house is big, she could keep him in a room away from Wallis. In the end she decides to just bring Randolph in and not try and hide him from Wallis, as if that were possible.

Wallis picks up Pru's thoughts about the bird and she's also thinking about having lunch. Wallis greets her at the door, asking 'lunch' with an insinuating tone that she's bringing in the bird for Wallis's lunch. Pru chides him for it but later Wallis gets her back when she's digging into a thick chunk of turkey, and whimsically says " that's a bird too," letting Pru know there is no difference between him relishing a tasty parrot for lunch or her eating a turkey. Ms. Gilbert does such a marvelous job bringing out the humor, fear or stupidity of each person, or animal.

I love all of the psychic books Clea Simon writes and the Pet Noire series is one of the most creative and enchanting. Tavia Gilbert is such a fine story teller and very confident in her talents making for a most excellent listen. Candy for the ears.


Parrots Prove Deadly by Clea Simon A Pru Marlowe Pet Noire
Parrots Prove Deadly by Clea Simon


Glimmers by Barbara Brooke Narrator Ann M. Richardson

Barbara Brooke
Narrator: Ann M. Richardson
7 hours 39 minutes
Heidi Bolton

Barbara Brooke author of Glimmers
Author Barbara Brooke

Ann M. Richardson Narrating Glimmers
Narrator Ann M. Richardson
Ann Marie Richardson has a lovely feminine tone to her reading style, very easy listening that I liked very much. Her voice is very suitable for many types of books but personally I think books like Glimmers or romance novels would showcase her talents. The reading pace is excellent and makes her romantic voice standout. Ms. Richardson was a little indistinct doing male voices making it a slight challenge to know just when a man is speaking. This may not bother someone else as listening to audio is very subjective. Although some of her other books are not so blurred and the males sound more appropriately male. I prefer a little more definition between male and female characters. This in no way distracts from the story or the listening pleasure. Ms. Richardson does an excellent narration with a huge emphasis on emotional content, giving a natural sounding flow to the story. I look forward to hearing many more books by this narrator as her voice is so pleasing and her reading ability is impressive.

You can listen to some nice excerpts here https://soundcloud.com/hersmoothvoice

Glimmers, a time travel tale by Barbara Brookes
Glimmers by Barbara Brookes

Review of Glimmers

I love time travel stories and Glimmers is a winner. What is more thought provoking than being transported to a past time in history just by slipping into a pair of suede ankle boots? This is exactly what happens when Paige buys a pair of boots from a consignment store. Paige seems a typical housewife, and mother, doing the carpooling, shopping, housekeeping. but has some weak spots like not being a very good cook.

The first time Paige glimmers into the past and looks in the mirror its a big wow moment, the face looking back at her is not hers at all but a teenage girl named Delilah Jones, who is an exceptional cook and hopes one day to go to culinary school and later open her own restaurant. Paige lives Delilah's life for short periods of time at least in regards to her own time frame but seems longer in Delilah's time. She becomes emotionally invested in Delilah and her ambitions and love life. Delilah is very focused and takes a summer job at an upscale restaurant to add money towards her school fees and meets a young man that is just as interested in her as she is in him. Love blossoms and a future with him is added to her ambitions.

At home Paige's sister is planning her wedding and relies heavily on Paige to run errands and be her general factotum. She really takes advantage of her and keeps her hopping. As Paige's ability to glimmer into the past develops she connects the dots and realizes that it's when she touches used articles like rings, watches, and other pieces of jewelry or wears used clothing that things around her begin to shimmer and shift and she's transported into the past.

It's one thing when she's seeing and living Delilah's life and quite another when her sister asks her to stop by the jewelers and see if her rings are ready and sized. Paige and her sister wear the same size clothing and have the same ring size, so when Paige slips the rings on her finger she is suddenly living her sisters life and shocked to find her sister is having an affair with a man not her fiance. No wonder she has so little time to take care of her own wedding plans, it's tricky time wise juggling a lover and a fiance.

This is a very fun story and a lot of romance, and self discovery. It is well written and there are no dull or boring parts. I liked that it didn't have any hard core graphic sex scenes in it, which seems so popular today. It's a good clean story that is tightly written and there are no loose ends when it reaches its apex. Anne Marie Richardson does such a charming narration that gives a gentle and sweet flavor to the overall story.
I recommend the audio version but if you choose to read the book, do one or the other or both as it is an excellent time travel romance that shouldn't be missed.



Fifth Grave Past the Light by Darynda Jones, Narrator Lorelei King

Fifth Grave Past the Light
by Darynda Jones
Narrator Lorelei King
9 hours
Macmillan audio

Fifth Grave Past the Light Darynda Jones

Narrator Lorelei King

Lovely Lorelei King, one of the shining stars of narrators, her voice is always   crystal clear and expressive. It is always such a pleasure listening to a book Ms. King narrates as she does not just read the book but puts her all into developing each character and their role beyond anything one could hope for. So wonderful at emotional parts as well as the, up the stream sex scenes, and the sex romps in all of this series once were called pornographic, but King manages to give a balance to them all, taking some of the singe out of them. I feel less scorched with her rendition of them. I easily recognize Lorelei's voice, she is skillful enough to not sound like characters from other books like Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series, where her characterizations are nothing short of stunning. Lorelei King renders every book as if it was the one and only ever, like a lover giving their total attention to the beloved.

Book Review: Fifth Grave Past the Light, Darynda Jones

Fifth Grave Past the Light was the best in the series, I liked the first one, but felt this one really stands out in many ways, from it being well written, lots of content and characters that are bursting with personality. Did I mention funny? What a wild imagination Ms. Jones has, with Charley Davidson. Charley can barely move through her own apartment for the amount of ghosts that are hanging around. Take that literally, there are at least nine, female ghosts of all ages, hanging from the ceiling and hiding under the bed and poor Charley has to shower with a ghost in the shower. One ghost in particular turns out to be neither missing or dead but very much alive and working.

I know us mere mortal humans would have a hard time with this. One ghost would send us scurrying in fright but Charley is a supernatural being and a beacon for lost souls, can just shrug it off and consider it all in a days work. While she's trying to investigate how to help all these traumatized souls in her apartment she is also working on a case of serial arsons. Worse, her lover, Reyes Farrow is her main suspect. Busy girl that Charley is, she manages to work concurrently on cheating spouse cases. Getting evidence of a cheater is much easier today with all the great tech toys available and with her naive assistant Cookie helping, it's a piece of cake, or so she thinks when they gussy themselves up to hit the bar and gather their evidence. Cookie just is not sophisticated enough to pull it off and everything goes awry when the cheater discovers the tiny microphone that Charley discreetly tucked into her scarf.

Darynda Jones
The workload and stress escalates when Captain Eckhart starts showing up and badgering Charley about her status at APD, the police department as a consultant. His interest in her was peaked when she solved four cases in one day. That really brought her to his attention and he becomes obsessed with finding out more about her. Especially once he discovers she's been assisting on solving crimes since she was five. Seems that would be enough to intrigue anyone. Angel her thirteen year old ghost detective is pressing her to give his mother more money every month. An arrangement he struck up with Charley when he died.

All in all this is a action packed, tilt a whirl ride from beginning to end. Best to start with the first book in the series, First Grave on the Right. I liked all in the series but the first and the fifth are the best. Lots of creative energy going on and unrestrained laughing. The only thing I'd prefer is less graphic sex, although Reyes Farrow, bad boy though handsome, sexy and a sweep them off their feet kind of guy the sex is just too intense and graphic for my taste. I suspect Reyes is not the son of the devil but being deceived somehow to think he is. Even if he is too hot to handle.