Category Archives: 2014 Book List

“Light in August” by William Faulkner – narrated by Will Patton – Thoughts on Reading Classics in High School

I just spent some time reading through the Audible reviews of this book to help me remember it. That is the biggest downfall to getting so behind on book posts. When I came to this title on my list I was filled with a feeling of fond remembrance, so I knew I liked it but details of the book had escaped my memory. I had given it a so good rating back when I finished it and I’m having a memory that all through listening to it I had marriage material in mind but something about how it finished made me drop the rating down. I cannot for the life of me remember why. I want to say the ending was weak in comparison to the rest of the novel. Aside from whatever made me knock the rating down, this was n excellent book.

I haven’t read any other Faulkner. Several of the Audible reviews were from people who read this book or other Faulkner in high school and having revisited him as adults found they were much better able to appreciate him. I have revisited books I read in high school as well and every time it makes me question why we force teenagers to read what we force them to read.

I remember being hooked from the start, marveling on the quiet poetic nature of the descriptions of setting and characters. I do remember we begin with a pregnant woman traveling across the south to reunite with the father of her baby who had left to work and had promised to return. When he did not, the woman set out to find him. Her determination and belief that he loved her was heartbreaking. As a woman in the twenty-first century, I just shook my head and thought, oh honey.

What follows are the stories of several characters and how their individual lives weave together. They’re stories are all tragic and heartbreaking. This is a book set in the racist sexist south of the early twentieth century so one knows from that description this is not a heartwarming novel.

I have not had much luck with the classics this year as my friend Ricardo says but this one was wonderful. The fact Will Patton narrated is what sold me on it when it was a daily deal. If he is listed as narrator, it’s a no brainer. He’s just plain good.

Rating: So good!

‘Light in August’ at Audible

I want to revisit the thought about reading classics in high school. There are only a few books I remember liking in high school when forced to read them. ‘The Great Gatsby’ by F. Scott Fitzgerald was one. ‘A Separate Peace’ by John Knowles I liked so much I um accidentally forgot to return it to my english class. What was the one about the kids on the island? I remember a pig’s head on a stick? Google, help me out here. ‘Lord of the Flies’! (Search terms: kids crash landed on island) I know I liked them in high school but did I know why I liked them? I’ve since listened to the first two again and liked them even more though I could not stop myself from looking for bits of symbolism as if Mr. Heintz were asking me what I thought the eyeglasses on the building, (or was it a sign?) meant. I remember Mr. Heintz saying it meant everything was seen. Haha! Remember reading books in high school and discussing the symbolism of things? I admit, when I read books now, I don’t look for what things symbolize. usually if it’s important, it comes out in the telling of the story anyway. Though every time water plays a big role in a book, I can’t help but think, that means she’s being reborn. She’s being cleansed. So wow, Tally was reborn and cleansed a lot in the Uglies books, right Mr. heintz? I wonder if Scott Westerfeld meant to convey that symbolism haha.

Maybe, just maybe, I need to read some Hemingway as an adult. And ‘Heart of Darkness’. Hemingway and Conrad. *Shudder* ‘Old Man and the Sea’ and ‘Heart of Darkness’ are two books I remember clearly despising in high school. Perhaps they weren’t terrible books. Maybe if I read them today I’ll love them. On the other hand, why would I take the chance of possibly torturing myself when I could be reading some more Royal Spyness books?

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Filed under 2014 Book List, Audio books, NaBloPoMo 2014, silly girl

‘Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue: The Untold Story of English’ by John McWhorter – narrated by John McWhorter – ‘The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Structure of DNA’ by James D. Watson – narrated by Grover Gardner and Roger Clark

These next two books on my never ending audio book list are educational type books. I absolutely love learning as long as it’s about something I’m interested in like the english language or DNa, not say, accounting or ditch digging. Now, I love learning about accounting when my friend Georgie talks about it because her enthusiasm for it is contagious especially since she does things like forensic accounting and when you throw the word forensic before anything, it makes that thing that much more interesting. I couldn’t read a whole book about accounting unless maybe Georgie wrote it or it was about forensic accounting. Now, forensic ditch digging? That has some major promise! Where was I going with this? Ah yes, today’s books.

Today’s books were both daily deals and they appealed to my love of learning. ‘Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue’ is a fun history of the english language though I must admit that my mind wandered quite often. I think one who studies linguistics would hang on every word but for me, I just laughed at some of the pronunciations and enjoyed how excited McWhorter sounded as he narrated his work. You can most definitely tell he’s a language geek and that made listening to the book all the more fun despite the sometimes dry subject matter.

I think a book about language is perfect as an audio book because you can hear the correct pronunciation of words. As a screen reader user, I’ve given up on the fun Mental Floss articles about words because voiceover just garbles it. I enjoyed that aspect of Bastard Tongue. You know nothing, John Snow. What? never mind.

‘Double Helix’ took me back to my youthful excitement in freshman biology with Mrs. Stewart when she told us about Watson and Crick, the two men who discovered DNA. Those names have always been with me since that lecture my freshman year turned me to a life of science and medicine and DNA combined with forensics made me love true crime and find an odd sense of fascination with serial killers. So when this book was a daily deal, I snatched it up.

Much like it’s now exciting for me to read about an author’s journey as he or she writes a novel, learning what the struggle was like as these two young scientists raced to discover the secret of life before anyone else was fascinating. the book read more like a memoir with a scientific discovery attached than an educational book about DNA. That disappointed me a little since I was looking forward to the science. Late high school and in to college, my online name was DaNA. Screen readers, that’s a capital d, lower case a, capital n, capital a. Dana for Dana Scully of the X-Files and DNA jumped out visually with that lower case a in the middle. Science geek anyone?

I enjoyed these two books but I certainly could never be one who reads nothing but nonfiction. I just need to throw in a nice educational book every so often to supplement what I learn in my daily online reading haha. Oh and the DNA book being narrated by Grover Gardner? Score! Love him.

Both books got a rating of entertaining.

‘Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue’ at Audible

‘The Double Helix at Audible

So this worked well, working on this post at the time I did. I’m trying to figure out what will be my writing schedule for my books. Today I read Twitter, news and stuff while having morning coffee, had cereal and made the bed, then sat down to work on the post. I’ll try this again tomorrow and see how it works. I won’t be finishing and posting just yet since I have a phone call scheduled, but it became a good chunk of writing. Everything I’ve read from successful published authors has told me a schedule of some sort is a must. Treat writing like a job, even though you do it from home. What I’m discovering about blogging every day is there’s an end goal. Write a post, publish it to the blog. What is the daily end goal for writing a novel? That is what I must discover for myself.

Those doing NaNoWriMo have a goal of a certain word count per day so they end up with at least a fifty thousand word novel at the end of November. I thought about setting a daily word count goal but I don’t want to constantly be focusing on word count as I’m writing. Sometimes a day of writing comes super easy and thousands of words can be pushed out and the next day, your characters might be pushing against where you think you want to take them and only a few hundred words come out. So I don’t want to be constrained by a daily word count goal. So what shall be my writing goal?

How about keeping it simple. the goal is to write every day. NaBloPoMo is starting the habit. Just because blogging creates the goal of pushing publish every day, doesn’t mean I have to have that same goal with the books. I’ll just create a symbolic publish button. Maybe I’ll post on twitter how many words I wrote that day. Yeah…yeah. That will work. Yay writing!

Tomorrow’s book post will be about ‘A Light in August’ by William Faulkner and whatever thoughts about life that brings up. I kinda like doing book posts this way.

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Filed under 2014 Book List, Audio books, NaBloPoMo 2014, screen reader, Voiceover, writing

“Love Life” by rob Lowe – narrated by Rob Lowe, Synchronicity and a Deep Question

I read Rob Lowe’s first memoir back in early 2012 and it placed seventh on that year’s top ten book list. I couldn’t wait for ‘Love Life’ to come out since I loved Lowe’s first book. It definitely did not disappoint.

‘Love Life’ doesn’t just pick up where his first book left off, rather it just tells different stories from his life in acting, family and sobriety. His stories about his son going off to college were gut wrenching and totally tear making. I can’t imagine what those stories must be like for people with children if they touched me that deeply. One can hear the emotion in his voice as he reads those segments.

The book wasn’t all heart warming stories about his family. There’s a particularly erm, interesting story about Lowe’s visit to the Playboy Mansion in his early twenties when fame was just finding him that actually made me slightly uncomfortable. I’m not a prude my any sense of the word so the only thing I can think that might have caused my squirming was the fact that my favorite baseball player is engaged to a Playboy bunny who is the mother of his children. Is that why? Perhaps I need to look at that some more haha!

I actually got a retweet from Rob Lowe after I tweeted him that his Bigfoot sound effect made my dog jump haha! It was at night and Jayden and I were curled in our respective beds when the howling issued from my speaker and the jingle of Jayden’s tags told me he had jerked awake. It was hilarious! I can’t remember exactly what Lowe’s comment was in the retweet but I think he apologized to Jayden or something. Does it matter what he said? I got a tweet from Rob Lowe! *Squeeeee!*

I enjoyed reading his memoir as research for my own memoir that I have finally begun. Much like my fiction novel, it is mostly a series of notes in my computer and memories marinating in my head. Fall is the time I usually devote to writing since baseball is over, so hopefully a dent will be placed in both projects. I like to think that my own voice in telling my story is similar to Rob Lowe’s. It’s one of seriousness mixed with self-deprecating humor. I remember when I was very newly sober, a woman told me that it’s ok to share about what I perceived as weakness because it made me relatable and therefore more helpful to others. Rob Lowe might be a hugely successful celebrity but he is also incredibly relatable and down to earth. I hope he writes another memoir! If he does, I hope he doesn’t terrify me like he did with the orange juice in this one.

Rating: Marriage Material

“Love Life’ at Audible

I wrote in yesterday’s post that I would include more life details in all these book posts so it doesn’t feel like I’m cheating for this year’s NaBloPoMo haha. I couldn’t help but think this afternoon when I sat on my couch with Jayden after sleeping extremely late that at that moment, I was loving life and the book I’d be writing about in today’s post was titled ‘Love Life’. Is it a good thing to notice the moments when one is loving life? By that I mean, do I notice those moments because it’s rare they creep in amongst the angst, fear and worry I so often feel? It’s like when you enjoy a steak all the more because you so rarely have a steak, whereas if you always had steaks, would you enjoy them as much? Do you get my meaning?

Today as I felt how much I loved that moment, I was enjoying the first cup of coffee of the day. The door was open to the cool breeze of the fall afternoon, football was on, the sounds of whistles and crowd noise the soundtrack as B and I woke up more than just our minds.

We’ve lived here a month and today was the first weekend day that both of us slept well into early afternoon. We were both pleasantly surprised. I’ve slept pretty well in this house but hadn’t yet enjoyed the truly luxurious experience of taking hours to fully awaken from a cozy and constant doze. It was wonderful!

The house in which we moved a month ago is a three bedroom two bathroom house with a nice big backyard. The yard is walled in so no more surprise visits from javelina! I love taking Jayden out in the mornings and listening to the birds in the several trees in the yard as they greet the day. I can’t wait to have chairs on the porch on which to sit and drink a cup of coffee haha!

It’s been interesting learning the new space. There has been much frustration as walls and the refrigerator jump out into my path. I have my writing studio/workout room at last! I am currently sitting in it as I type this, music softly playing, door closed to the sound of the Bigfoot movie B is watching. It’s not lost on me that I wrote about Rob Lowe’s memoir in which he tells a Bigfoot story. I often find interesting instances of synchronicity in my life, like a book with the name of a character being the same as a name of a character in the book I just finished. Am I the only one who notices things like that?

I think it’s time I wrap this up and tackle the issue of posting. I discovered yesterday that Voiceover is not playing nice with the checkboxes on the WordPress dashboard since I updated to Yosemite. It seems I can check boxes in the WordPress app though, so I’ll save this as a draft and go figure that out. Tomorrow’s book post will be a two-for-one I think. Both were rather dry non-fiction books.

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Filed under 2014 Book List, Audio books, misty eyes, NaBloPoMo 2014, sobriety, twitter me this, Voiceover, writing

“Ragtime” by E. L. Doctorow – narrated by E. L. Doctorow (Welcome to NaBloPoMo) & words from Ricardo)

(Wow that subject ended up all rhyming eh?)It’s November, so that means it’s NaBloPoMo time here at the Roof. I’ve written a post of some sorts every single day all through the month of November since I began this blog back in 2009. Since I began writing my book posts, I’ve tried really hard not to just use those as an easy topic each day for NaBloPoMo since that feels like cheating but oh my am I behind on book posts! I’m so behind that even writing a post a day for thirty days will not catch me up.

So, here’s what I think I’m going to do. I’m going to throw life details even more into these book posts for this month. I’ve really needed to come up with some way of not getting so behind on book posts since I devour books like an addict. I’ve also left out fun life stuff I’d like to look back on in five or ten years since I’m not blogging regularly.

So, my goal for NaBloPoMo 2014 is not only to write every day and put a dent in my book posts, but also to force myself into the habit of writing every day period. I have two novels marinating in my head that need to get written and I’m hoping NaBloPoMo will finally give me the shove I need to create a writing routine.

Want to come with me on this adventure this month? I hope so!

Alright, so we begin with ‘Ragtime’, which my friend Ricardo and I have been referring to as THE book because neither of us can ever remember the title. to give you an idea of how behind I am on book posts, we read this book back in in April. April! I mean, that was when the 2014 baseball season was new and full of promise and I had just met my Rays and all my Twitter family friends in Florida and life was good, before David Price got traded to the Tigers…before Andrew friedman left to go be general manager of the Dodgers…before Joe Maddon left to manage the Cubs, before my heart was split apart and the pieces were tossed away and discarded like the piece of a fingernail that breaks off unexpectedly and I need to stop thinking about my Rays and get back to this horrible book my friend and I read.

My friend Ricardo and I are avid audio book listeners, often turning each other on to books and authors the other had never heard of. I’m currently reading a trilogy I absolutely adore thanks to him. When Audible had ‘Ragtime’ as a daily deal, I read the publisher’s summary and thought wow, that’s right up Ricardo’s alley. I told him about it and he picked it up to. We really thought it was going too be a fun bit of alternate history and the reviews at Audible raved about it and come on, it’s a classic.

I couldn’t even finish it. I think I got close to finishing it and if I remember right, I fell asleep at the end and missed the last nearly three hours. That happens sometimes when I’m reading at night in bed and usually I back up and find my place the next day. With this book I didn’t even bother. I just didn’t care. I didn’t give a lick about any of the characters. I couldn’t even follow the plot or even figure out what the plot was supposed to be and the author narrated the book which is rarely ever good. He sounded like that kid the teacher calls on in social studies to read the next few paragraphs of a really boring textbook.

That’s all I’ve got on this book. Ricardo wrote his opinion for me too so please give a warm round of applause to my friend Ricardo!

First, I can count on one hand the times I haven’t finished an audiobook. Usually, I can fight through confusing plots, bad narration, penny-novel imagery, and tough vocabulary. But all in one book? This is asking way, way, too much for a person not getting paid to endure the madness. Ragtime was written in the 1970’s and takes place in the earlyparts of the 20th century. I love me some historical fiction so was excited when Ro pointed this book out to me. And it got some really good reviews which help fan the flames of my curiosity about the book. After the first 3 chapters of Ragtime, I kept wondering if I bought the wrong book. The author jumped from scene to scene with what in my opinion, was for no rhyme or reason. I kept thinking, Maybe I need to go back and start again. I did, and was just as lost and confused. I have no idea what those reviewers saw in this book. Mid way through, I gave up. Instead of entertaining me, the book was frustrating me like a particularly troublesome math problem. Thank goodness Audible has a refund program.

Thanks so much for that, Ricardo. I need to get your thoughts on a book we both enjoyed, agreed?

Rating: Dismal

That rating is for the book, not Ricardo’s review. A dismal rating is my equivalent of a one out of five stars rating. Yikes.

“Ragtime” at Audible

That was the twenty-eighth book of the year. I might write more than one post a day, but only one will get the NaBloPoMo label and only those posts will have life stuff attached to the book post. Sound like a plan, Stan?

the next book on the list is ‘Love Life’ by Rob Lowe. It was definitely not written by creepy Rob Lowe, though the Mansion pool scene was slightly creepy.

So, I was able to add the NaBloPoMo 2014 tag to this post since it’s a new one, but something has happened with WordPress and I can’t add any of my other labels since the checkboxes aren’t labeled. I recently updated to Yosemite and it has horrible issues with Voiceover. Blarf.

WordPress app to the rescue! Seriously, iThings are becoming more and more preferable to my Mac.


Filed under 2014 Book List, Audio books, baseball, fellowship, guest blogger, NaBloPoMo 2014, writing

The Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth – narrated by Emma Galvin

I had checked out the first book in this trilogy, Divergent, several times before I finally decided to give it a chance. While the publisher’s summary peaked my interest as a fan of dystopia, something about it just kept pushing me away. I partly blame some of the reviews I read. I mostly check reviews to make sure the narrator isn’t awful but it was impossible to avoid those that said the main character needed a boy to dictate her every move blah blah blah. Finally, after the first movie came out and everyone was talking about the books, I asked about them on Twitter and several people said they really liked the books. Thank goodness I dove in! Can we say love? I can’t say I loved the books as much as the Uglies trilogy by Scott Westerfeld but this trilogy is certainly up there. I also learned some new words by looking up the names of the factions.

Factions you say?

In this dystopian Chicago, when kids turn sixteen, they must choose their faction. Either they stay with their family in the faction they were raised, or they choose a new faction, forever leaving behind they’re old one. (Quick question: Why is sixteen the all important age in young adult novels? I purposely made my heroine in my YA novel fifteen, just to be contrary. My YA novel? Shhh. this post is about Veronica Roth’s world.

Back to the factions. So these kids start in a mixed school but when they’re sixteen, school seems to have ended. There is never any mention of graduation or anything, school just suddenly stops.

The five factions are:

Abnegation: Primary trait – Selflessness)

Erudite: Primary trait – Intelligence

Dauntless: Primary trait – Bravery

Amity: Primary trait – Peace

Candor: Primary trait – Honesty

As the series goes along, we learn that the factions were created long ago as a way of keeping the peace. By segregating the personality types it was thought that people would get a long a little better. But who do you know that is only brave, or honest, or peaceful, or intelligent or selfless? Don’t we need all sorts of human personalities to keep a balance? That is what this series explores. I’m not sure I’ll watch the movies. I hear there are some things that were changed and left out that would be a bummer, but then again it would be nice to see Four again. What is it with me falling in love with teenaged characters? Ewww I feel dirty.

The narration was pretty good. In the third book we get the addition of a male narrator since we’re sometimes in a male’s head. Some of the scenes in the books are unsettling like The Hunger Games trilogy. Such violence. Luckily they are important parts of the story and not just stuck in for shock value. There are some really disturbing scenes when the characters are in their fear landscapes. Those are like computer generated hallucinations. Like the Star Trek TNG holodeck but terrifying. I bet they look pretty cool in the movies.

Series rating: So good!

The Divergent Trilogy at Audible

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Filed under 2014 Book List, Audio books

“Brilliance” (The Brilliance Saga Book One) by Marcus Sakey – narrated by Luke Daniels

This book was one of the Audible daily deals I hit a home run on. I enjoyed it so much, just preordered the second book in the saga which is due out this month. Getting ready to write this post reminded me to check on the next book. I can’t wait for it!

Since 1980, 1% of the population has been born with strange gifts. Called brilliants, these people are sought after and feared. After all, if someone has the talent to know exactly which stocks to sell and when, wouldn’t that be dangerous to our economy? On the other hand, doesn’t a talent to know what an opponent will do a split second before they do it come in especially handy for a law enforcement officer?

This book is highly entertaining as well as a social commentary on what it’s like to be different and in many ways, persecuted. Imagine what it must be like for parents to worry when they’re child exhibits special talents. What must it be like to fear for your child in that case instead of feeling only pride?

The narrator was excellent and I’m so glad he was brought back for book two! I hope he does the whole series.

Rating: So good!

“Brilliance” at Audible ~ I will no longer be providing Amazon links. If you are interested in this title in print, please visit your local small bookstore.

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“Dark Places” by Gillian Flynn – narrated by Rebecca Lowman, Cassandra Campbell, Mark Deakins, Robertson Dean

I’ve now read all three of Gillian Flynn’s books and I’m so bummed there’s nothing new out yet. Let me rephrase that. I’ve now read all three of Gillian Flynn’s books and I’m so grateful to have a break from the stuff in her head. I mean really. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, oh honey where did all that come from? Are you ok? I hope you have a really really good therapist. Can you imagine the conversation if Flynn and Stephen King got together for tea?

Flynn: “Can you pass the sugar?”

King: “Sure. Hey what did you think of the can opener scene in Lisey’s Story?

Flynn: Dude, brutal! What about my girl that carves words all over her body?

King: Definitely very disturbing. What was the longest word she carved?

Flynn: I don’t know, she never told me. How are those crumpets?

King: Tasty, but I don’t think The Murder Club in Dark Places would stop talking about death long enough to enjoy them.

Flynn: Do you know if your therapist is taking new patients?

In Dark Places, little Libby Day’s entire family is murdered when she’s a child and she lives on the proceeds, thinking she’s too emotionally disturbed to do anything else. Perhaps she is, and when she agrees to look into the murders herself to try and prove that she was right in accusing her brother of killing everyone, the road on which her investigation takes her is full of buried secrets. Will she survive once more, adding more physical and emotional scars?

I loved it and hated it at the same time and by the end I was shaking my head at the final twist. Wow.

The truly scary thing about Gillian Flynn’s books is that they could actually happen. There’s no monsters or supernatural stuff. There’s just plain evil people and messed up lives. I’ve always found psychological thrillers scarier than any horror. *shudder*

Rating: Marriage Material

“Dark Places” at Audible ~ I will no longer be providing links to Amazon, so if you are interested in the print version of this book please visit your local small book store.

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“Missing You” by Harlan Coben – narrated by January LaVoy

If I had the chance to interview Harlan Coben I would ask him who the lost love in his past is. The underlying theme of every one of his books I’ve read is a lost love. Though I suppose we all have a lost love, yes?

In “Missing You”, Detective Kat Donovan’s friend sets her up on an online dating site without asking her. Out of sheer curiosity one day she begins browsing the men on the site, laughing at their profiles and checking out the pictures until one catches her eye. Could it be? Her ex-fiance? She reads his profile and finds out he’s a widow. He had been married? He has a daughter. The man who was never far from her thoughts is suddenly right in front of her on the computer screen and before she knows it, her entire world is turned upside down.

Harlan Coben’s books are great thrillers. The pace is never slow and before you know it you’ve finished the book. I learned my lesson and never read his books back-to-back after binjing on three in a row because of the underlying similarities in them. January LaVoy was a good narrator. I’m picky about female narrators since they’re voices tend to be grating. but LaVoy has a deeper and quite pleasant voice.

Rating: So good!

Here is an interesting interview with Harlan Coben. It’s brief, but really interesting. He mentions the research he did for the book which included joining an online dating site. He also talks about how every writer is insecure which was something I needed to hear. It’s an autoplaying video link.

Oh, and if you read this book, you’ll want to hear this song. It will also be stuck in your head until you move on to your next read.

“Missing You” at Audible ~ I will no longer be including links to Amazon books. If you are interested in this book in a print version, please visit your local small bookstore.

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“Paper Towns” by John Green – narrated by Dan John Miller

This is the first young adult book I’ve read as an adult that I just didn’t quite “get”. This is the third of John Green’s I’ve listened to and while it was entertaining, witty and smart, the point of the story flew right over my head.

Margo Roth Spiegelman disappears one day shortly before high school graduation so “Paper Towns” centers around the people trying to figure out where she went based on the clues she left her neighbor, Quentin. There were many laugh out loud moments along the way, especialy when a boy has to pee in a few bottles while the group of friends embark on a road trip as they follow the clues. the characters were funny and interesting to read about but the point of the novel was lost on me. I suppose it’s about teenagers learning about themselves as they all share their different opinions about Margo. There just wasn’t that OMG moment in the book, I guess. Maybe I’m just finally growing up. 😉

Nah, it’s probably more since I listened to it on my trip and my mind was on baseball. I remember one night, listening to the book as I used my foam roller to massage my sore muscles. There was a perfect spot on the floor between the two double beds.

Rating: Entertaining

“Paper towns” at Audible ~ “Paper Towns” at Amazon

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Filed under #RoToTrop, 2014 Book List, Audio books

“Double Play” by Ben and Julianna Zobrist with Mike Yorkey – narrated by Apple’s Voiceover

For those of you who aren’t baseball fans, Ben Zobrist is a Tampa Bay Ray. In fact he’s not just any Tampa Bay Ray, he’s the Rays super utility guy. He mostly plays second base but he can really play anywhere the Rays need him. In my opinion he’s one of the most underrated baseball players in the game today. He also should have won a gold glove last year along with the rest of the infield who were nominated but passed over, James Loney at 1st, Yunel Escobar at short and Evan Longoria at 3rd, but I’m getting off topic.

We Rays fans are very familiar with Ben’s wife Julianna since Ben’s walk out music when he comes to the plate is always one of her songs. Julianna is a Christian pop singer with a lovely voice. They are both on Twitter but share one account, @TheZobrists.

When I found out they were working on a memoir together I knew right away I would buy it, no question. They gave little hints on Twitter here and there about the book so I knew it was going to be about their life together as a Christian couple and that they would both be sharing some deep secrets.

I got the book on Kindle when it was released and was flying through it so I took a break when I reached the pictures section which had captions and gave away some of the second half of the book, oops! I went back to the book on the flight home from St. Petersburg and it was awesome to go back to their story as I was leaving after my incredible trip.

There is some baseball in the book as we learn about Ben’s journey and how his swing was developed but for the most part it’s a story of love, deep christian faith, parenthood, life struggles and survival.

I got to meet Ben Zobrist when I visited the field and I was amazed by how tall he is. I told him I was reading his book and explained how my screen reader spoke the words and he said something like, “Oh man, they should have had Julianna and me read the audio book!” I said it would have been nice to hear him read the journal entries in the book and he laughed, saying how embarrassing those are and I told him they were sweet. He is such a nice guy! He let me hold his batting practice bat. It was awesome!

I highly recommend every Rays fan read this book and even if you aren’t a Rays fan, it’s a great story about how love survives life’s curve balls. I’m not religious but I appreciate their devotion to Jesus. They are a couple to admire, for sure.

Rating: So good!

My friend JB told me there is in fact an audio book now, not read by the Zobrists of course.

“Double Play” at Audible ~ “Double Play” at Amazon

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Filed under #RoToTrop, 2014 Book List, baseball, evan longoria, screen reader, Voiceover