Two for My Ears!

I’ve been very remiss in posting about audiobooks lately, so I wanted to highlight two recent ones that I’ve listened to during my commute: The Huntress by Kate Quinn and The Testaments by Margaret Atwood.

I loved Kate Quinn’s The Alice Network so I was excited to get The Huntress on audiobook via Audible. Here’s the overview of the story:

From the author of the New York Times and USA Today best-selling novel The Alice Network comes another fascinating historical novel about a battle-haunted English journalist and a Russian female bomber pilot who join forces to track the Huntress, a Nazi war criminal gone to ground in America.

In the aftermath of war, the hunter becomes the hunted….

Bold and fearless, Nina Markova always dreamed of flying. When the Nazis attack the Soviet Union, she risks everything to join the legendary Night Witches, an all-female night bomber regiment wreaking havoc on the invading Germans. When she is stranded behind enemy lines, Nina becomes the prey of a lethal Nazi murderess known as the Huntress, and only Nina’s bravery and cunning will keep her alive.

Transformed by the horrors he witnessed from Omaha Beach to the Nuremberg Trials, British war correspondent Ian Graham has become a Nazi hunter. Yet one target eludes him: a vicious predator known as the Huntress. To find her, the fierce, disciplined investigator joins forces with the only witness to escape the Huntress alive: the brazen, cocksure Nina. But a shared secret could derail their mission unless Ian and Nina force themselves to confront it.

Growing up in post-war Boston, 17-year-old Jordan McBride is determined to become a photographer. When her long-widowed father unexpectedly comes home with a new fiancée, Jordan is thrilled. But there is something disconcerting about the soft-spoken German widow. Certain that danger is lurking, Jordan begins to delve into her new stepmother’s past – only to discover that there are mysteries buried deep in her family…secrets that may threaten all Jordan holds dear.

In this immersive, heart-wrenching story, Kate Quinn illuminates the consequences of war on individual lives, and the price we pay to seek justice and truth. 

So – I loved this story and found it really intriguing and I really enjoyed the narrator (Saskia Maarleveld) who is awesome with accents; however, this is looooong. Over 19 hours long. Apparently the book is over 550 pages. It was great, but I listened to it over weeks in the car and I got confused due to the changes in time that were happening in the narrative, as well as the number of characters. The story was well-written and engaging, but next time, I would choose to read it and not try to listen to it over weeks while I’m driving.

Another lengthy listen that I enjoyed, though it was disturbing, was Margaret Atwood’s The Testaments, a sequel to A Handmaid’s Tale, which I read when it first published many years ago. This dystopian novel follows the first one, but can be read as a stand alone.

Here’s the overview:

Number one New York Timesbest seller

Winner of the Booker Prize

The Testaments is a modern masterpiece, a powerful novel that can be enjoyed on its own or as a companion to Margaret Atwood’s classic, The Handmaid’s Tale.

More than 15 years after the events of The Handmaid’s Tale, the theocratic regime of the Republic of Gilead maintains its grip on power, but there are signs it is beginning to rot from within. At this crucial moment, the lives of three radically different women converge, with potentially explosive results.

Two have grown up as part of the first generation to come of age in the new order. The testimonies of these two young women are joined by a third: Aunt Lydia. Her complex past and uncertain future unfold in surprising and pivotal ways.

With The Testaments, Margaret Atwood opens up the innermost workings of Gilead, as each woman is forced to come to terms with who she is, and how far she will go for what she believes.

This was over 13 hours long, and at times depressing and disturbing, but it was true Margaret Atwood: well-written and makes you think. It had multiple narrators, with Ms. Atwood being one of them. Even if you haven’t read Handmaid’s Tale or watched it on Hulu, I would recommend this story.

My audiobooks today were purchased using my Audible monthly credits from my subscription.

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