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The Ugly Duckling

Written by: Iris Johansen
Narrated by: Robin Mattson
Length: 3 hrs and 10 mins

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Publisher's Summary

If fate suddenly made you more beautiful that you ever dreamed possible, would it be the beginning of a fairy tale, or your worst nightmare?

The brutal attack should have killed anybody, but Nell Calder did more than survive. She emerged a woman transformed, with an exquisite beauty found only in fairy tales. Nell Calder deserved a happy ending. Instead, her descent into terror has just begun. 

Her attacker is still on the hunt, determined to finish what he's started. And Nell, protected by a new face, is just as determined to fight back and take her revenge. But to catch her prey, she will have to expose herself - even if it makes her a killer's prime target. 

©1996 Iris Johansen (P)1996 Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, A Division of Random House, Inc.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Vickie L. Triplett
  • 02-12-15

disappointed

I liked the book but the audio version cuts out half of the book and does not give the reader the complete story. Very disappointing

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Heather
  • 20-03-06

hopefull

I really enjoyed this book, it was some what predictable in parts but a entertaining read and it made my day go much quicker, I would suggest this book for anyone who thinks on the power of women that don't think they can change there lives until they are in situations beyond there control and then they see the power that is inside and take charge of life again or for the first time. this was also a fun romance a little different but a good change

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • HeatherY
  • 21-04-17

Abridged Audiobook!

The Ugly Duckling is the story of Nell Calder, a plain, plump, shy woman whose life revolves around her 4 year old daughter. Nell's life is altered one night when her husband and daughter are killed, and her face is badly injured in a fall during the attack. Reconstructive surgery makes her more beautiful than she'd ever dreamed, and rehabilitation gives her the strong lithe body she'd never had.

Nell would rather give up on life without her daughter until Nicholas Tanek gives her a purpose, revenge. Nell begins to train her body and mind for the task, and enlists Tanek's help. Tanek is bent on revenge of his own, and together they lay a trap for the killer.

I have a beat up paperback version of this book, so I purchased the audiobook to listen to at work. The audiobook is missing A LOT. None of the essential plot points are missing, but any conversation that doesn't drive the plot forward has been cut out completely. All banter, scene setting, and internal dialogue are gone. As a result, you miss out on what made the book great, most notably the change that Nell undergoes inside. The romance element also suffers, because you don't see the attraction between Nell and Tanek form.

An example of this is a side plot where Nell runs away to a boot camp for training. The men there are rough and intent on harming her the moment they get a chance. While there she meets Paul Drake, a mentally handicapped boy, and they form a friendship. He protects her from the men there until Tanek arrives to rescue them. That scene encompasses about 50 pages in the novel, from Nell arriving and convincing them to train her, to the friendship she forms with Paul, to the descriptions of the officers and men at the camp, to the horrors she endures and internal strength she demonstrates, to the eventual rescue by Tanek. The scene is only a few minutes in the audiobook, and cuts it down to the bare bones. She arrives, she climbs a wall, she says hi to Paul, Tanek shows up, it's over.

I would 100% recommend the full version of this book, it's wonderful. The audiobook in the abridged form is a pass for me.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Myrna
  • 17-03-12

Very Good!

The main character in the book felt as many of us do a lot of the time because of what someone says to us. I liked the tenacity of the character in pursuing her goal. Book recommended by my sister-in-law as the best she had read. It lived up to her recommendation. I enjoyed the book very much.

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 29-01-20

What's up with all the music?

I read this years ago and was excited to find it on audibles. I was extremely disappointed in the narration, though. I couldn't even finish it. I love the story, but the performance was aweful! There some parts when music would just start at random and you can't even hear the narrator. I think this one needs a RE-DO!

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Annette
  • 12-12-17

Horrible narrator

I realize it was a novela but the narrator sounded like she was chewing gum and the music sounded like a theme for General Hospital. Don't waste your money or credit.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • A User
  • 14-06-17

LOVED IT BUT!

I loved this book but would have absolutely loved to have heard the book in it's entirety!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Cindy H.
  • 14-03-17

An Old Favorite

That stands the test of time. Tanick(sp?) reminds me of Rourke of J.D. Robb's In Death series. Born in the gutter, rescued & taught thievery by an older man then when his success outstrips his teacher, he brings the older man along with him on the rise to the top. Thimbs up!