Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Review and a Book

There has been some discussion in the blogsphere lately concerning whether listening to an audio book should be counted as a book you’ve read.

Kerrie at MYSTERIES in PARADISE held a poll and the results were “count” the audio as “reading” as long as it is unabridged. Interesting post, be sure to check it out.

I haven’t been counting the books I’ve read, but I consider an audio book as read when I’ve finished listening to it. I understand the plot the same as if I had read it. Audio books are great for road trips and the daily commute to work, as well as when doing yard work. In fact, my first introduction to Stuart Woods was listening to SANTA FE RULES while re-doing my rose garden one year.

I mention this because today I’m doing my first review of an audio book - DELIVER US FROM EVIL by David Baldacci, unabridged and read by Ron McLarty. Following the review I have one more book giveaway to announce.

DELIVER US FROM EVIL by David Baldacci

The story follows three different sets of characters. Author David Baldacci weaves the tale to bring all three together for an explosive and heart-pounding ride.

The listener is introduced to a clandestine group who track down

war criminals and take justice into their own hands. The group is headed by the Professor, but Regina “Reggie” Campion is the lead heroine. She’s a British femme fatale. The group’s next target is Fedir Kuchin, a Ukrainian who served the Soviets as a mass murderer.

At the same time, Shaw is an enigmatic agent who works for an American agency that is also very clandestine. The only difference is Shaw’s group doesn’t enforce their own justice but bring the criminals to face the law.

Shaw’s next assignment is to apprehend a Canadian businessman, Evan Waller, who is known to traffic in young girls. However, Waller has expanded his crimes to include trading in nuclear weapons with Islamic fundamentalist.

Meanwhile, Waller plans a vacation to Provence while dealing with internal problems in his organization. Waller is also hiding a deep, dark secret about his past.

When Shaw and Reggie met, they are both working undercover and are both in Provence. They are attracted to each other and don’t know they are both after the same man for different reasons.

A series of events causes Shaw’s assignment to be cancelled, but he can’t leave Reggie. To go into more details would give away a lot of spoilers about this action-packed thriller. There are twists and turns in every direction.

The details of Fedir Kuchin’s past are graphic but realistic of the torture so many suffered at the hands of the Soviets. The author brings history to life when Kuchin is faced with his past deeds.

Just when you think you can take a breath, a new surprise is in store. By the end of the audio I thought the justice I wanted had arrived and the ending would be a given. However, Baldacci had other plans.

Even though the unabridged version contains 12 discs, the story isn’t long or drawn out, but moves quickly and smooth as the three groups collide in a dramatic conclusion.

Deliver Us From Evil by David Baldacci, Hachette Audio, @2010, ISBN: 9781600249648, Audio, 12 Disc

FTC Full Disclosure - This book was sent to me by the Hachette Audio Group in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.
Thanks to Anna and the folks at the Hachette Book Group, I have five copies of THE IMPOSTOR’S DAUGHTER (ISBN: 9780316033060) by Laurie Sandell to giveaway.

This 272-page paperback is a graphic memoir and not a comic book

for children. Though presented with very insightful art, the themes are adult in nature. Here’s a brief synopsis of the book: “Laurie Sandell grew up in awe (and sometimes in terror) of her larger-than-life father, who told jaw-dropping tales of a privileged childhood in Buenos Aires, academic triumphs, heroism during Vietnam, friendships with Kissinger and the Pope. As a young woman, Laurie unconsciously mirrors her dad, trying on several outsized personalities (Tokyo stripper, lesbian seductress, Ambien addict). Later, she lucks into the perfect job--interviewing celebrities for a top women's magazine. Growing up with her extraordinary father has given Laurie a knack for relating to the stars. But while researching an article on her dad's life, she makes an astonishing discovery: he's not the man he says he is--not even close. Now, Laurie begins to puzzle together three decades of lies and the splintered person that resulted from them--herself.”

The giveaway is open to residents of the U.S. and Canada only and no post office boxes can be accepted. Just e-mail me (mcbookshelf@gmail.com) with “Win Impostor‘s Daughter” in the subject line. Be sure to include your name and mailing address in the body of the e-mail. Just so you know, I don’t share this information with anyone or use it in any other way. The deadline for the giveaway is Tuesday, July 27.

Tomorrow I hope to have another review, a thanks for a blog award and updates on coming authors. Make the next person you meet wonder what you’re up to date, smile.


  1. Interesting argument with audio books vs. real books. I've only listened to Pride & Prejudice, but it was abridged (I discovered too late) and cut out some of my favorite bits!

    I was just at the library tonight and stood in front of the racks and racks of audio books they have available. One of these days I'll give it another whirl.

  2. Audio books are awesome! I haven't go a kindle yet so these rock and they don't make me car sick :)

  3. I count audiobooks even if they are abridged - I guess it's up to the individual.

    This book sounds so good, but I think I'm glad I have it in print version - I can't listen to graphic, but I have no problem reading it!

  4. Mason - I enjoyed that poll at Mysteries in Paradise, too, and I have to agree with the majority of people who voted. Audio books certainly count as "books." In fact, there are lots of cultures with an oral history tradition where stories are passed down without being written...

  5. I cast my vote with yes, audio books count as books. There are so many different ways of delivering a story, which is ultimately what is being reviewed. The story. Thanks for the review, this one looks like it grips you to the very ending.

  6. I've never listened to an audio book, but I can't imagine why people wouldn't consider it "reading." I agree with Joanne, the story is the story, whether it's read in words or heard in words.

  7. The Baldacci book sounds fast-paced and interesting. I would get it in audio form if I spent more time in my car. I consider audio books as reading, although it's someone else doing the reading to me.

  8. Vicki, I have listened to several abridged audios. Each time it made me want to read the book and see what I had missed. Do give it another try.

    Nicole, I don't have a Kindle either (not sure I ever will). Audio books do help when on long road trips.

    Kathy, I'm with you. If I read or listen to a story (abridged or not) I've read it.

    Margot, I think oral history is a wonderful thing. I would have loved to have audio tapes of a my grandmother telling stories but I was young and didn't understand the importance of it then. This is a book that has a lot of history behind.

    Joanne, this story does keep you on pins and needles right to the end.

    Karen, do try an audio book. I think you'll enjoy it. I especially like listening to a book while I'm working in the yard. Makes the time and the chore go quickly.

    Helen, I've thought of audio books lately as someone telling a bedtime story. Baldacci's book is quite intriguing.

  9. I don't understand, why would listening to a book being read be different from having read it? That doesn't make any sense. Especially if it's unabridged.

    Oh well, to each their own...


  10. I think audio books count! For those who travel a lot, it's their best option.

  11. I think it should count! It's all about brain processing, as far as I'm concerned. Whether it's visual or aural makes no difference.

  12. I agree that audiobooks should count when you are a blogger and participate in a reading challenge.

    On the other hand it sounds odd to me, but that is because as a teacher, I would never count a page if my students had not read it ´properly´ :D

  13. I have several students who would be devastated if they weren't allowed to count their audio books. With their learning disabilities it's the best way for them to read.

  14. Clarissa, I agree but I think some feel you get more from the book if you actually read the words rather than hear them.

    Diane, audios are great for travel. On the daily commute I think they even held with road rage.

    Talli, I'm with you. It's all about what the brain processes.

    Dorte, when it comes to students and papers, then I understand that that needs to be read in certain cases.

    Jemi, I've wondered if listening to audio books would help younger children want to read more. As you say, it does help those who have learning disabilities.

  15. Hi Mason .. I should listen to audio books and am sure I will do more in the future ..

    I've listened to some Harry Potter with the family .. when it was read by Stephen Fry .. I think I'd have to enjoy the Reader .. and the story would have to roll along ..

    Thank you .. sounds interesting .. Hilary

  16. I can see why they say "privileged childhood in Buenos Aires" and it must have to do with the fact that the city is a dream come true. So anybody who grows there, will have a privilege childhood, around the most amazing cultures combined together. I remember whe I travelled there, I was staying in a buenos aires apartment where I had the best of times. Anyways, I think it´s great what you are doing with the giveaway, great idea!


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.