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Renee

Australia
  • 7
  • reviews
  • 7
  • helpful votes
  • 8
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  • How to Write Non-Fiction: Turn Your Knowledge into Words

  • Books for Writers, Book 9
  • By: Joanna Penn
  • Narrated by: Caroline Holroyd
  • Length: 6 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 3

Save time, effort, and frustration on your author journey to writing non-fiction books with this informative guide that teaches you the business models of writing non-fiction books, mindset issues around writing, the details of how to research, how to write and edit your book, dictation and productivity tips, as well as publishing, product creation, and marketing. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • info-packed

  • By Renee on 20-01-2019

info-packed

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 20-01-2019

Lots of information about everything that goes into successfully publishing a non-fiction book. Doesn't get bogged down in the technical details of each segment but does give suggestions of where to find more. Aimed more at people who are considering writing or are yet to publish, though a good refresher for those with some experience.

  • Beautiful Messy Love

  • By: Tess Woods
  • Narrated by: Bart Welch, Nick Farnell, Tamela Shelton, and others
  • Length: 11 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 56
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52

When football star Nick Harding hobbles into the Black Salt Cafe the morning after the night before, he is served by Anna, a waitress with haunted-looking eyes and no interest in footballers, famous or otherwise. Nick is instantly drawn to this exotic, intelligent girl. But a relationship between them risks shame for her conservative refugee family and backlash for Nick that could ruin his career. Meanwhile, when Nick's sister, Lily meets Toby, it seems that for the first time she is following her heart, not the expectations of others.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Perfectly matched narrators - all-time favourite!

  • By Renee on 27-07-2017

Perfectly matched narrators - all-time favourite!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-07-2017

Tess Woods's debut novel, Love at First Flight, stayed with me long after I finished reading it, so I couldn't wait to get my hands on a copy of her second novel, especially when I discovered that Beautiful Messy Love was the story of the children from the first book. Beautiful Messy Love is a stand alone novel, though. You don't need to have read Love at First Flight to enjoy it, but once you read it I'm sure you'll fall in love with Tess's incredible writing and rush out to grab a copy. I was lucky enough to receive an advance ebook copy and devoured it within a couple of days. I also received a surprise paperback advance copy too. I loved the story so much that I bought the audiobook the day it released and finished that within a couple of days, too. So now, I have the whole set!

Wow! This was the best audiobook I've ever listened to - and I've listened to almost 200 audiobooks (you can see them all HERE). There are four different narrators that are perfectly matched to the four different point of view characters. The book was a five-star read anyway, but this extra attention to detail took it to the next level. If you're an audiobook fan - this is an auto buy. If you're not sure about audio then this book is a great place to start. The narrator for Toby - SWOON!

I found Lily very relatable - in my early 20s, I also struggled with studying a difficult university degree and debated whether to finish it. My heart went out to Anna and I loved Tante Rosa - the grumpy Egyptian matriarch made me smile. My favourite character would be Toby's brother, John - he cracked me up so many times with his inappropriate, self-absorbed comments. He was like the Aussie version of Joey from Friends - but more of a prick (and his girlfriend's name was Renee - I'd never put up with his crap, though).

I went from laughing at hilarious one-liners to sobbing, on multiple occasions - a roller coaster of emotions. Two intertwining love stories, overcoming issues of race, religion, fame and grief. This book is firmly at the top of my Best of 2017 list.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • A Kiss from Mr. Fitzgerald

  • By: Natasha Lester
  • Narrated by: Kelly Burke
  • Length: 11 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 187
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 172
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 174

It's 1922 in the Manhattan of gin, jazz and prosperity. Women wear makeup and hitched hemlines - and enjoy a new freedom to vote and work. Not so for Evelyn Lockhart, who is forbidden from pursuing her passion to become one of the first female doctors. Chasing her dream will mean turning her back on her family: her competitive sister, Viola; her conservative parents; and the childhood best friend she is expected to marry, Charlie.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Beautifully written. Absorbing. Great narration

  • By bec on 16-05-2016

#kissfitz is the bee's knees

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 31-05-2016

It's been weeks since I finished this and I still can't find all the words.

I'd been waiting for this book to come out since the middle of last year, since I discovered the inspirational Natasha Lester's blog and maybe, perhaps, began to slightly stalk her online ... Natasha has heaps of writing advice to share and I couldn't wait to see how she applied it all in her historical fiction novel.

Wow.

Natasha's writing is a bridge between literary and commercial fiction. There is romance, mystery, medical drama, historical fiction, costumes, dancing, parties, study, life and death. Natasha paints such a vivid picture of life in New York during the 1920's. I felt like I was there, walking alongside Evie, sipping champagne during the prohibition and occasionally breaking into the charleston. I loved Evie's spunk and determination. Even though Evie has blond hair, the girl on the cover captures her essence perfectly (and the cover is so pretty).

This book is the bee's knees, the cat's pyjamas and the bandicoot's bellybutton! It's a book I found myself live tweeting as I was reading (that's the polite way to say twitter stalking).

I listened to the audiobook edition. The narrator was fabulous. Kelly Burke spoke clearly and at a good pace, bringing each character to life.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Ugly

  • My Memoir
  • By: Robert Hoge
  • Narrated by: Robert Hoge
  • Length: 7 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 9

Robert Hoge was born with a giant tumour on his forehead, severely distorted facial features and legs that were twisted and useless. His mother refused to look at her son, let alone bring him home. But home he went, to a life that, against the odds, was filled with joy, optimism and boyhood naughtiness. Home for the Hoges was a bayside suburb of Brisbane. Robert's parents, Mary and Vince, knew that his life would be difficult, but they were determined to give him a typical Australian childhood.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Engaging memoir

  • By Renee on 21-03-2016

Engaging memoir

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 21-03-2016

I listened to the audiobook edition of this autobiography. When I realised that it was narrated by the author, I was a little nervous. Narrating an audiobook is more than just reading aloud and often authors don't quite cut it as voice actors. Well, I was impressed. Not only could Robert write an engaging memoir, he could articulate well via audio too. He spoke clearly and gave his story an authentic Aussie feel.

I read a lot of fiction, so I saw Robert as a character in his own story. I found him to be likable and relatable. I might not have been born with a tumor on my face, but I also faced schoolyard bullies, grew up in Australia, loved reading as a kid, felt nervous as a teenager talking to the opposite sex and fell in love. Robert was able to share his life story with a dose of self-depreciating humour and bring out my Aussie instinct to barrack for the underdog.

I found hearing about the ins and out of living with a physical disability very interesting. I spent the last few years working with people who have a disability, though most of them had intellectual disabilities and weren't able to share their feelings and experiences as eloquently as Robert.

I often find it difficult to review an autobiography, to be able to separate my opinion of the person from my opinion of their writing style. In this case, I was impressed with both. I received this audiobook from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • In Her Sights

  • A Montgomery Justice Novel
  • By: Robin Perini
  • Narrated by: Emily Durante
  • Length: 7 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 3

Jasmine 'Jazz' Parker, Jefferson County SWAT’s only female sniper, can thread the eye of a needle with a bullet. But she carries with her a secret from her past that she thought she buried for good at the age of 15. Two years ago she even drove away the one man she believed she could love - ex–Army Ranger turned reporter Luke Montgomery - to keep her past hidden. But now, in a fleeting second, the time it takes for one clean shot to save the life of the governor’s daughter, Jazz’s world begins to crumble around her.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Female sniper & ex military journalist

  • By Renee on 14-04-2015

Female sniper & ex military journalist

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 14-04-2015

A Romantic Suspense with a female sniper and an ex military journalist, throw in a S.W.A.T. team, some cops , a little girl and a psycho and you have an exciting story. I liked Jazz, she had a shady past but had done so much to better herself and she continued her personal growth throughout the story. I was a little surprised that her shady past hadn't come up during the background checks that would have been required to become a sniper, but I'm happy to look the other way because this is fiction and it makes for a great story. The romance was full of tension and steamy. The suspense kept me guessing.

I used Whispersync and swapped between the ebook and the audiobook. I enjoyed the audio more because the narrator was pleasant to listen to and was great at characterisation. She was able to give an authentic feel to each of the characters, ranging from a 3 year old girl to an alpha male.

Divide and Conquer cover art
  • Divide and Conquer

  • Cut & Run Series, Book 4
  • By: Madeleine Urban, Abigail Roux
  • Narrated by: Sean Crisden
  • Length: 8 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7

Baltimore is a city in alarming distress. Rising violence is fanning the flames of public outrage. Thus the FBI’s latest ideas to improve public relations: a municipal softball league and workshops for community leaders. But the new commitments just mean more time Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett have to spend apart when they’re happily exploring how to be more than by-the-book partners. Then the latest spate of crime explodes in their faces—literally.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Boy + Boy

  • By Renee on 25-03-2015

Boy + Boy

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-03-2015

Now this one is my favorite! Book 4 in the series was more than just action and sex. There was more behind the scenes bad guys POV that helped build the suspense. It also touched on deeper themes like coming out, visual impairment, expressing emotions and commitment. Of course, the Ty and Zane dynamics were awesome as usual.

  • The Girl in 6E

  • By: A. R. Torre
  • Narrated by: Jorjeana Marie
  • Length: 7 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17

Deanna Madden, aka Jessica Reilly, hasn't touched another person in three years. She hasn't left her apartment. She makes money from performing to webcams on a sex site, where her clients pay $6.99 a minute for her time. She's doing all right. The dollars are piling up in the bank. She's the number-three model on cams.com. And she hasn't killed anyone for years. But when Deanna sees on the news that a little girl called Annie has gone missing, the story rattles her carefully ordered world. It's uncomfortably similar to the dark fantasy of one of her most disturbing online clients....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting Story

  • By AlleMap on 27-09-2014

Intense

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-03-2015

This is the first book I have read by the author, and the first book in the series. An erotic thriller with lots of graphic descriptions of sex and violence. I found it compelling and hard to put down. A blend of intense, kinky, disturbed and tender. Though I didn't personally relate to any of the characters, I did find them likeable and I was emotionally involved in the plot.