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Listener's Guide to Audio Books: Reviews, Recommendations, and Listings for More than 2,000 Titles

Wynne, John

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ISBN 10: 0684802392 / ISBN 13: 9780684802398
Verlag: Touchstone, 1995
Gebraucht Zustand: Very Good Softcover
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Bibliografische Details

Titel: Listener's Guide to Audio Books: Reviews, ...

Verlag: Touchstone

Erscheinungsdatum: 1995

Einband: Paperback

Zustand:Very Good

Über diesen Titel


If you're a fan of books on tape, then you'll want to own "The Listener's Guide to Audio Books", packed with all the information you need to make the best choice among the thousands of audio titles available.

John Wynne, a Grammy-nominated audio producer, has selected over 2,000 titles for you to choose from. Arranged by category and ranked with a one- to four-star rating, here are capsule reviews for hundreds of audios, including classic and contemporary fiction of every genre, children's titles, business, self-help, inspiration, radio drama, poetry, science fiction, and much more. Included with each review are reader, author, and publisher, as well as running time. At the end of each category, you'll find comprehensive listings for dozens of other audios available within that particular category.

Uncover some hidden audio gems: the four-star-ranked recordings of John le Carre reading his own books; Helena Bonham Carter's rendering of the children's favorite "The Secret Garden"; Norman Vincent Peale reading his uplifting work, "The Power of Positive Thinking"; and F. Murray Abraham's riveting performance in "The Phantom of the Opera". Select the very best version of "A Christmas Carol", As with several of the classics, there are numerous versions to choose from... but only one wins four stars. Whether you prefer works read by the author or presented by your favorite actor, you're sure to discover what you're looking for here. At the end of the book, you'll find information on ordering audios directly from the publishers as well as a complete author/title index.

From Booklist:

According to the introduction, this book is designed to be "a comprehensive, user-friendly compilation [which gives] listeners the information they need to make informed choices about what to buy." The compiler has been in the industry for 10 years and has produced more than 100 sound-recorded books.

Wynne limited his selections to materials available at the retail level, i.e., in book or record stores or by mail order. He chose to omit unabridged titles available from publishers like Recorded Books and Books on Tape, "due to considerations of the length of this book." The reviews are divided into broad subject categories, ranging from "Action and Adventure" through "Westerns." General fiction is further subdivided into "Classic" and "Contemporary." Categories begin with a "Highly Recommended" list of titles selected by Wynne. Each entry gives the title, author, reader or performer, a rating (a four-star rating means highly recommended; one star is "below par" ; and "bomb" indicates totally unsatisfactory tapes), number of cassettes, length of program, and publisher. Reviews are brief and unsigned; contributors for each section and their credentials are listed at the beginning of the book.

Also included are lists of recommended audiobooks that were not reviewed, with title, author, reader/performer and publisher, lists of Grammy award^-winning and nominated spoken-word recordings from 1958 to the present, and a list of publishers with addresses and phone numbers. There are author and title indexes.

The decision to omit the presentations of the two major producers of unabridged spoken-word recordings lessens the guide's value as a selection tool for AV librarians. It certainly does not supplant Words on Cassette, the standard buyer's tool for these works, nor does it replace reviews in current journals. But as an inexpensive purchasing guide for spoken-word books, the guide will be useful in public and school libraries as an aid to collection development and in assisting library clients who want to purchase audiobooks.

Students love the novelty and properties of computers, so they will welcome this beginner's dictionary on CD-ROM. Based on the print dictionary with the same title (2d. ed., 1989), it has 12,000 words and will engage primary-school-age users.

The CD-ROM has four functions: Find, Games, Notes, and Help. A tour is also offered to help orient the first-time user; it covers the four functions through example. The voice-over is that of a young child, and a moving character, Zack, provides action. The Find function allows the user to locate a word two ways: by typing in a word or by clicking on a letter of the alphabet. In the first case, the computer goes to the nearest word; it should be noted that the system will not compensate for plural or tense variations. For example, if the user types in plants, the computer will not automatically go to plant. Likewise the word later is not included, even in the entry late. The second method, which resembles a traditional dictionary search, has a hierarchial structure: from initial letter to sectioned guide words to specific word. Younger users may have a hard time with this kind of narrowing format.

The dictionary entries include simple definitions, sample sentences, pronunciation (both printed and audio), parts of speech, and often illustrations (diagrams or photographs). Some word variations are given, such as past tense or unusual plural. Only the most common meanings, from a child's perspective, are included; for example, the definition for mine does not refer to the military use, just to the possessive form and to an ore mine. The selection of entries is a bit arbitrary (more geography terms than expected, fewer basic terms than anticipated).

Three games are available: hangman, spelling bee, and words within words. The computer generates the hangman word, which is sometimes tricky, such as the word jiggle. In the spelling bee program, the program pronounces words, and the user types them out. The program suffers from near homonyms such as cypress, which was supposed to be Cyrus. (No example sentence is given to guide the user.) The third program gives a word, such as together, from which the user is supposed to generate other words, such as get and hero. Possible words are listed after the user tries. These games can be fun and are the interactive part of the dictionary. The Notes function enables the user to download or print the word.

This is a fun CD-ROM and serves as a motivator to get primary-grade children into dictionaries as reference tools.

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