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Sci-Fi: Contemporary

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Ryan

Ryan Somerville, MA, United States Member Since 2005

Gen-Xer, software engineer, and lifelong avid reader. Soft spots for sci-fi, fantasy, and history, but I'll read anything good.

HELPFUL VOTES
1312
ratings
REVIEWS
324
259
FOLLOWERS
FOLLOWING
379
14
  • "A complex exploration of hope chall..."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    On the face of it, the Sparrow is a novel about humanity's first contact with an alien race, a disastrous expedition to Alpha Centauri that leaves only one survivor, a Jesuit priest named Father Emilio Sandoz. Underneath, though, Mary Doria Russell creates a nuanced, multi-layered novel that poses some serious questions about the nature of faith and morality.

    The story builds suspense by cutting back and forth between the Church’s interviews of the spiritually and physically broken priest, who initially refuses to talk, and the events of the past, proceeding from the time when the aliens are first discovered (and the Church recognizes an opportunity for itself). We know that things are destined to go wrong, but not exactly how, except for a few pieces of foreshadowing. Does the tragedy of the mission hinge on one mistake -- or many?

    Russell takes her time setting up the story, which might try the patience of some readers, but illuminates the minds of a small, tight-knit group of well-constructed characters. We see the initial sense of scientific and spiritual mission, the optimism of the interstellar travelers as they near their destination, the months of exploration of the edenic planet Rakhat and the first encounters with the childlike Runa. However, as the story unfolds, we begin to see the outlines of a significant difference between the humans and the aliens that neither side manages to perceive fully, each with its own innate view of how life is meant to function. I found the conception of an alien species’ alternate biology and culture reminiscent of Ursula Le Guin’s works.

    Religious themes often feature in First Contact novels, because, of course, the very presence of other intelligent beings would raise important questions about the “design” of the universe. Could we get a new glimpse of the Ultimate Creative Force by meeting fellow travelers? Or is there a hubris in hoping? What commonalities should be embraced? What differences accepted? In The Sparrow, these issues are central, though you don’t need to be Catholic or even religious at all to relate to them. The priests here may belong to an old tradition, but theirs is one that embraces science and rationality, seeking God somewhere in the DNA of the universe rather than in supernatural encounters. Indeed, conversations between Father Sandoz and a strong-willed agnostic character named Ann show that the boundaries between belief and lack of it aren’t easy to define.

    At the heart of the book, though, is the question of shattered faith. What happens when what we hope for fails us, and the universe cruelly turns on us, as it does for Father Sandoz? Do we let go of the piece of wreckage we’re clinging to and allow ourselves to silently sink below the cold waves? Or do we reach for the helping hand that others offer us, even though it forces us to face the pain and weakness we carry? Russell, admirably, doesn’t offer an easy out for either Father Sandoz or her readers.

    A few things hold me back from a five star review, however. First of all, there are a lot of plausibility issues, the main one being that a visit to another inhabited planet would never unfold with so little planning or caution (I mean, think about the bacteria). Secondly, though I liked the characters, their quirks and banter get a little too precious at times.

    Overall, though, I think The Sparrow is well worth a read for anyone who appreciates science fiction that isn’t about blazing guns or astrobabble, but tells a contemplative story focused on age-old human questions.

    More

    The Sparrow

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Mary Doria Russell
    • Narrated By David Colacci
    Overall
    (559)
    Performance
    (380)
    Story
    (383)

    Emilio Sandoz is a remarkable man, a living saint and Jesuit priest who undergoes an experience so harrowing and profound that it makes him question the existence of God. This experience - the first contact between human beings and intelligent extraterrestrial life - begins with a small mistake and ends in a horrible catastrophe.

    yvette hatfield says: "Far fetched book but good summer listen."
  • "Grown-up Hiyao Miyazaki"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this book, though, as you can tell from other reviews online, it's not a novel for every taste. Let me put it this way: if you like the films of Hiyao Miyazaki (Spirited Away, Howl's Moving Castle, Princess Mononoke), and relish a few dashes of metaphysics, literary/movie/music references, and existentialism, then Murakami's mix of fantasy, surreality, and realism might speak to you. If not, you'll probably be frustrated with the listening/reading experience. (If you don't know Hiyao Miyazaki, then get ye to Netflix first, then come back here.)

    On the surface, the book has two intertwining stories. One is about a 30-something loner guy with slacker tendencies and cyberpunkish skills who lives in Tokyo and takes a job with an eccentric scientist, a choice which soon sets off a cascade of strange consequences. This is interleaved with a second story, in which a man with no memory finds himself trapped in a fantastical, dreamlike town, trying to make sense of its fable-like inhabitants and his reasons for being there. As the novel progresses, the two stories begin to intersect. While "magic realism" is a genre that can really fly off the rails sometimes (see Mark Helprin's A Winter's Tale), Murakami keeps his story readable and grounded in a coherent flow of events.

    This is one of those books where (in my opinion), you'll enjoy it more if you don't expect the author’s stew of ideas and imagery to make perfect sense or try to analyze his science and philosophy too much. Yes, there are a few logic holes and not everything in the surface-level plot gets resolved in an obvious way. Rather, this is a novel to read for its oddball characters, the vision of the writing, the strange-but-fitting twists and turns of the story, the humorous juxtaposition of the surreal and the everyday, and the existential questions under its fanciful trappings. If you had only 36 hours to live, what would you do with the time? I found the way Murakami chose to answer this question unexpectedly moving. Even with the end of the world coming, you might still have to do laundry...

    I enjoyed the narration and voice-acting in the audiobook. The main character's voice reminded me of Spike from Cowboy Bebop, which (in my world) was a bonus.

    More

    Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs)
    • By Haruki Murakami
    • Narrated By Adam Sims, Ian Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (500)
    Performance
    (388)
    Story
    (393)

    Information is everything in Hard-boiled Wonderland. A specialist encrypter is attacked by thugs with orders from an unknown source, is chased by invisible predators, and dates an insatiably hungry librarian who never puts on weight. In the End of the World a new arrival is learning his role as dream-reader. But there is something eerily disquieting about the changeless nature of the town and its fable-like inhabitants.

    Ryan says: "Grown-up Hiyao Miyazaki"
  • "21st century castaway adventure... ..."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is a lot of fun. Weir seems to have done a ridiculous amount of research into how a manned NASA Mars mission would probably work, and turns this knowledge into a suspenseful adventure with a likable protagonist and a healthy dose of humor. The story begins, in classic castaway fashion, from the journal entries of an astronaut named Mark Watney, who’s stranded on Mars after an emergency forces the rest of his fellow astronauts, who think him dead, to abort the mission and depart.

    Now alone with his expedition’s equipment, including rovers, space suits, a habitat, and some botany experiments (but no radio), Watney must improvise ways to stay alive and contact Earth. A lot of science and engineering geekery soon follows, but Weir does such a good job of explaining it, using Watney’s informal voice and snarky, quip-ready “engineer” humor (the opening f-bomb sets the tone), that I don’t think it will be too hard for the average reader to understand. Being an engineer myself, I could easily relate to how this guy’s mind worked, as he took apart different systems and put them to use in ways they weren’t quite meant to be used, yet did so in a careful, controlled manner. I had one of many smiles at the part where he contemplates international law and decides that one of his actions makes him a pirate. A SPACE PIRATE! Yep, engineer.

    I don’t think it’s much a reveal to say that the narrative eventually expands to include people back on Earth. If you recall the movie Apollo 13, a lot of similar action follows, as NASA and other organizations put their best minds to work on the problem of how to save Watney. I won't spoil the series of mishaps, setbacks, and narrow escapes that follow as he hangs on for a rescue attempt, but suffice to say that Weir makes good use of his setting and contrives some creative but plausible solutions. The supporting characters could have been developed a little more, but their banter is entertaining. Weir is clearly a fan of NASA, but isn't above poking fun at bureaucracy, PR machines, and the various personalities that inhabit the organization.

    I hope someone sees fit to make a movie, because all the right ingredients are here. There’s a crowd-pleasing survival story and a likable hero. There’s a long-shot plan and a big-screen-ready nail-biter of a climax. And it's a heckuva a lot more believable than other Mars-themed stuff that Hollywood has given us (I'm looking at you, Red Planet). But, if there’s never a film, audiobook narrator RC Bray is the next best thing, with a boyish voice that's a perfect fit for Watney, and different affectations for his various quips.

    More

    The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5898)
    Performance
    (5604)
    Story
    (5615)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"

    Brian says: "Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped"
  1. The Sparrow
  2. Hard-boiled Wonderland an...
  3. The Martian
  4. .

A Peek at Hassan's Bookshelf

Helpful
Votes
1091
 
181 REVIEWS / 348 ratings Member Since 2009 270 Followers / Following 10
 
Hassan's greatest hits:
  • The Passage: The Passage Trilogy, Book 1

    "A Good Book, But Long"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Let me say that i took my sweet time listening to this book, i think it took me more than a 2 months to finish it... why? well because its beginning was really good then it was a bit slow, then slower, then slower.. by that time i took a pause when i was halfway through.
    But then when 5 days ago i picked up the book again, it started getting better and better and better, which made me finish it and buying the next book.

    what i didn't like about this book is how long it was.. i think if it was a little bit shorter it would have been better. some books tend to drag you along and thats really boring.

    What i liked is the new ideas that aren't in any other books, and how real the life in that book felt like, and thats is amazing.

    So to get it or not to get it?
    If you like these end of the world books and how life is afterwards, you will like this book when you pass halfway through it. And this book will go through years even a hundred years between characters and thats new for me.
    but again, if you hate long books this will feel really really long.

    i really like it, but maybe in more than 5 years i might come back and read it again as how long it was.

  • Ex-Purgatory

    "Didn't Expect This!!"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you here you know how these books usually start, there is a Then and Now through the book and you get to know one of the heroes' past. But here its different.

    When you start this book you will be a bit confused, I certainly was, and I couldn't understand what was happening (which is great, its boring when you figure it out early in the book) and when i got to the point where all looked clear... well.. you still get shocked afterwards.

    Ex-Purgatory was written in a different approach and actually that was one of its pros, its ending was good and twists are always there...

    Cons: Narrator.. Jay Snyder is a good narrator, and he did a good job as always.... But where are the others?? I liked the combo of narrators as in the past books... it doesn't always work when you have different narrators for a single book, but in this series it works well... so ya guys, bring them back in the next book.

    So go ahead, change is good, and you will like this addition!

  • Ex-Communication

    "Finally Its HERE!!!!!!!"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    its finally here, i have been waiting for this book for over a year, and was afraid to never get it... but nope, finally its here, this master piece of a zombie series. Super heroes and zombies leads to a great book and a greater series.

    Ex-communication had a fast start and a challenging one too, legion is there, and he is out for blood, new relations are made here and new characters come to life here as well.

    Let me point this out, this the the 2nd release of this book, the first one was full of recording errors (a character would be narrated by different narrators) . but audible fixed this in less than a week, and i am amazed with you guys for that.. and then this is my 2nd review for the book.

    Ex-communication was a bridge between Ex-Patriots and the next Ex book. as its action content was a bit less than the 2nd book but still, it was amazingly written, crafted, and produced. such a fantastic book.

    To Peter Clines: please don't be late for the next book, waiting for it from now.

  • The Observers: The Human Division, Episode 9

    "This series is getting Better and Better!!!!"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Thats it, this series is in my A list .... the sabotage, the plot, the mysteries are really great... I was at work while listening to this one, and i couldn't focus mch at work the whole time.. had to go for a break to focus on the book..

    In this book you see more and more into the human division, and who are trying to create more conflict between Earth and the Colonial Union... It got tense in a point in the book but then you have your B team to save the day, well mainly Wilson as usual.

    i can't wait to see what will happen in the end of this series, but i think its going to be great.

Ethan M.

Ethan M. Cambridge, MA 08-06-08 Member Since 2000

On Audible since the late 1990s, mostly science fiction, fantasy, history & science. I rarely review 1-2 star books that I can't get through

HELPFUL VOTES
1642
ratings
REVIEWS
136
86
FOLLOWERS
FOLLOWING
631
13
  • "Solid Hamiltonian Space Opera"

    80 of 80 helpful votes

    For my money, Peter Hamilton is the best writer of space operas working today. Like all of his books, this one has a cast of many characters, frequent shifts in perspective between at least 8(!) storylines that initially seem unrelated, some great action sequences, lots of interesting speculation about far future technologies, and an occasional need for an editor.

    This book takes place 1500 years after his last two-book series (Pandora's Star and Judas Unchained). Some of the characters from that series are still around, due to the virtual immortality provided by future medicine, but knowing the previous books is not required, though it will make some of the story more interesting.

    As the first book of three, this one starts a bit slower than Pandora's Star, but builds over the first third or so of the audiobook to become a really compelling story that weaves together the stories of a far-future hitman, the leader of a religious movement, a semi-omniscient AI, a young woman launching a business career, and a young man who initially seems to be living in a fantasy novel. And yet, as the story comes together, these desperate elements weave together into a story about interstellar intrigue and an upcoming event that could threaten the galaxy.

    I thought this was an excellent start to a new space opera, much better than Hamilton's Nights Dawn series, but not as immediately action-packed as the previous Pandora's Star novels. Some segments run a bit long, and the occasional sex scenes can seem a trifle gratuitous, but if you like sprawling novels with dozens of characters (think George RR Martin, but in space) and innovative space opera spanning dozens of worlds, this is a great, very well-read choice.

    More

    The Dreaming Void: Void Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter F. Hamilton
    • Narrated By John Lee
    Overall
    (2151)
    Performance
    (1314)
    Story
    (1334)

    AD 3580. The Intersolar Commonwealth has spread through the galaxy to over a thousand star systems. It is a culture of rich diversity with a place for everyone. A powerful navy protects it from any hostile species that may lurk among the stars. For Commonwealth citizens, even death has been overcome.

    Ethan M. says: "Solid Hamiltonian Space Opera"
  • 4.9 (16 ratings)
    Bloodlines: The Valkyrie Chronicles, Book 2 (






UNABRIDGED) by Erik Schubach Narrated by Hollie Jackson

    Bloodlines: The Valkyrie Chronicles, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Erik Schubach
    • Narrated By Hollie Jackson
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    When a weakness of Valkyrie sight is uncovered, Kara, Kate and an unlikely ally, must race against time to stop a saboteur before Valhalla falls. Arina copes with being a new type of Valkyrie and defies Odin while reminding the ruling caste what the ideals of the Asgard are and what they should all aspire to be. She must help a young Ragnarok, who was sent to die at the gates of Valhalla, to learn the truth about the Asgard and her own people. Old enemies and lost friends weave a web that could spell the end for one of Odin's own.

    Alex says: "Can't wait to listen to more"
  • 4.8 (13 ratings)
    As the World Dies: Untold Tales, Volume 3 (






UNABRIDGED) by Rhiannon Frater Narrated by Kathy Bell Denton

    As the World Dies: Untold Tales, Volume 3

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Rhiannon Frater
    • Narrated By Kathy Bell Denton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    In the third volume of the As the World Dies Untold Tales experience three terrifying tales of those who are forced to face the unrelenting and hungry walking dead. Returning to Texas after celebrating his divorce in Vegas, Rune, a biker cursed with the ability to see ghosts, discovers that the world is being taken over by the hungry undead. Soon he realizes he will have to depend on all his abilities to survive not only the ravenous zombies, but the dangerous men lurking on the back roads of Texas.

    Shea says: "Awesome"
  • 4.5 (17223 ratings)
    11-22-63: A Novel (






UNABRIDGED) by Stephen King Narrated by Craig Wasson

    11-22-63: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson
    Overall
    (17223)
    Performance
    (15299)
    Story
    (15252)

    On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

    Kelly says: "I Owe Stephen King An Apology"
  • 4.6 (21489 ratings)
    Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition (






UNABRIDGED) by Orson Scott Card Narrated by Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir

    Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir
    Overall
    (21489)
    Performance
    (12961)
    Story
    (13091)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: It’s easy to say that when it comes to sci-fi you either love it or you hate it. But with Ender’s Game, it seems to be you either love it or you love it.... The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Enter Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, the result of decades of genetic experimentation.

    Kapila says: "6 titles in the series so far"
  •  
  • 4.7 (9961 ratings)
    Ready Player One (






UNABRIDGED) by Ernest Cline Narrated by Wil Wheaton

    Ready Player One

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Ernest Cline
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9961)
    Performance
    (9267)
    Story
    (9268)

    At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.

    Travis says: "ADD TO CART, POWER UP +10000"
  • 4.3 (7803 ratings)
    Speaker for the Dead (






UNABRIDGED) by Orson Scott Card Narrated by David Birney, Stefan Rudnicki

    Speaker for the Dead

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By David Birney, Stefan Rudnicki
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7803)
    Performance
    (4301)
    Story
    (4355)

    In the aftermath of his terrible war, Ender Wiggin disappeared, and a powerful voice arose: the Speaker for the Dead, who told the true story of the Bugger War. Now, long years later, a second alien race has been discovered by Portuguese colonists on the planet Lusitania. But again the aliens' ways are strange and frightening...again, humans die. And it is only the Speaker for the Dead, who is also Ender Wiggin the Xenocide, who has the courage to confront the mystery...and the truth.

    Joe says: "The Enderverse"
  • 4.4 (6106 ratings)
    The Stand (






UNABRIDGED) by Stephen King Narrated by Grover Gardner

    The Stand

    • UNABRIDGED (47 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6106)
    Performance
    (5380)
    Story
    (5425)

    This is the way the world ends: with a nanosecond of computer error in a Defense Department laboratory and a million casual contacts that form the links in a chain letter of death. And here is the bleak new world of the day after: a world stripped of its institutions and emptied of 99 percent of its people. A world in which a handful of panicky survivors choose sides - or are chosen.

    Meaghan says: "My First Completed Stephen King Novel"
  • Outcast: Star Force, Book 10 (






UNABRIDGED) by B. V. Larson, David VanDyke Narrated by Mark Boyett

    Outcast: Star Force, Book 10

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By B. V. Larson, David VanDyke
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (8)

    Star Force is called to arms again! Outcast is a new beginning, the first book in a new spin-off series. Many peaceful years have passed since the Macro Wars ended. Most of those who fought against the heartless machines have aged - but not the ingenious artificial construct known as Marvin. His insatiable curiosity is as strong as ever, and he’s brought home fresh perils to humanity’s doorstep.

    rich says: "Captain Marvin Takes Command"
  • The Martian (






UNABRIDGED) by Andy Weir Narrated by R. C. Bray

    The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5898)
    Performance
    (5604)
    Story
    (5615)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"

    Brian says: "Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped"
  • Ark Royal (






UNABRIDGED) by Christopher G. Nuttall Narrated by Ralph Lister

    Ark Royal

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Christopher G. Nuttall
    • Narrated By Ralph Lister
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (60)
    Performance
    (59)
    Story
    (59)

    Seventy years ago, the interstellar supercarrier Ark Royal was the pride of the Royal Navy. But now, her weapons are outdated and her solid-state armour nothing more than a burden on her colossal hull. She floats in permanent orbit near Earth, a dumping ground for the officers and crew the Royal Navy wishes to keep out of the public eye. But when a deadly alien threat appears, the modern starships built by humanity are no match for the powerful alien weapons.

    C. Hartmann says: "TWO (!!) audiobooks this year get SIX stars"
  • 11-22-63: A Novel (






UNABRIDGED) by Stephen King Narrated by Craig Wasson

    11-22-63: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson
    Overall
    (17223)
    Performance
    (15299)
    Story
    (15252)

    On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

    Kelly says: "I Owe Stephen King An Apology"
  •  
  • Ready Player One (






UNABRIDGED) by Ernest Cline Narrated by Wil Wheaton

    Ready Player One

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Ernest Cline
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9961)
    Performance
    (9267)
    Story
    (9268)

    At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.

    Travis says: "ADD TO CART, POWER UP +10000"
  • The Stand (






UNABRIDGED) by Stephen King Narrated by Grover Gardner

    The Stand

    • UNABRIDGED (47 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6106)
    Performance
    (5380)
    Story
    (5425)

    This is the way the world ends: with a nanosecond of computer error in a Defense Department laboratory and a million casual contacts that form the links in a chain letter of death. And here is the bleak new world of the day after: a world stripped of its institutions and emptied of 99 percent of its people. A world in which a handful of panicky survivors choose sides - or are chosen.

    Meaghan says: "My First Completed Stephen King Novel"
  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (






UNABRIDGED) by Douglas Adams Narrated by Stephen Fry

    The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Douglas Adams
    • Narrated By Stephen Fry
    Overall
    (5341)
    Performance
    (2958)
    Story
    (2980)

    Seconds before the Earth is demolished to make way for a galactic freeway, Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last 15 years, has been posing as an out-of-work actor.

    John says: "HHTGH - Lightly Fried"
  • Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition (






UNABRIDGED) by Orson Scott Card Narrated by Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir

    Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir
    Overall
    (21489)
    Performance
    (12961)
    Story
    (13091)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: It’s easy to say that when it comes to sci-fi you either love it or you hate it. But with Ender’s Game, it seems to be you either love it or you love it.... The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Enter Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, the result of decades of genetic experimentation.

    Kapila says: "6 titles in the series so far"
  •  
  • A Beautiful Friendship: Star Kingdom, Book 1 (






UNABRIDGED) by David Weber Narrated by Khristine Hvam

    A Beautiful Friendship: Star Kingdom, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Khristine Hvam
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1067)
    Performance
    (944)
    Story
    (945)

    Stephanie Harrington had always expected to be a forest ranger on her homeworld of Meyerdahl until her parents relocated to the frontier planet of Sphinx in the far distant Star Kingdom of Manticore. It should have been the perfect new home - a virgin wilderness full of new species of every sort, just waiting to be discovered. But Sphinx is a far more dangerous place than ultra-civilized Meyerdahl, and Stephanie's explorations come to a sudden halt when her parents lay down the law: no trips into the bush without adult supervision!

    brendanstallard says: "Wow, Weber hits the target."
  • Lock In

    • UNABRIDGED
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Not too long from today, a new, highly contagious virus makes its way across the globe. Most who get sick experience nothing worse than flu, fever, and headaches. But for the unlucky one percent - and nearly five million souls in the United States alone - the disease causes "Lock In": Victims fully awake and aware, but unable to move or respond to stimulus. The disease affects young, old, rich, poor, people of every color and creed. The world changes to meet the challenge.

  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: The Official Movie Novelization (






UNABRIDGED) by Alex Irvine Narrated by Christian Rummel

    Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: The Official Movie Novelization

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Alex Irvine
    • Narrated By Christian Rummel
    Overall
    (35)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (32)

    A growing nation of genetically evolved apes led by Caesar is threatened by a band of human survivors of the devastating virus unleashed a decade earlier. They reach a fragile peace, but it proves short-lived, as both sides are brought to the brink of a war that will determine who will emerge as Earth's dominant species.

    AudioBookReviewer says: "retelling of a classic tale"
  • Out of the Black: Odyssey One, Book 4 (






UNABRIDGED) by Evan Currie Narrated by David deVries

    Out of the Black: Odyssey One, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Evan Currie
    • Narrated By David deVries
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (138)
    Performance
    (134)
    Story
    (132)

    The wreckage of the starship Odyssey, once Earth's greatest guardian, lies strewn across New York City. Abandoned by all but its captain, Odyssey's sacrifice covered the withdrawal of countless troops as the Drasin assault ravaged the planet. When Captain Eric Weston finally emerges from the rubble, impossibly alive thanks to the mysterious "Gaia", he knows with the Drasin it's kill or be killed.

    Paul says: "What Happened?"
  • Origins of a D-List Supervillain (






UNABRIDGED) by Jim Bernheimer Narrated by Jeffrey Kafer

    Origins of a D-List Supervillain

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Jim Bernheimer
    • Narrated By Jeffrey Kafer
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Even D-list supervillains have to start somewhere. Follow Cal Stringel's misadventures as he climbs to the lowest levels of supervillany in the prequel to the smash hit, Confessions of a D-List Supervillain. Angry that he wouldn't be known as the engineer who made Ultraweapon's force blasters, Cal resigns to chase after a bigger, better paycheck. However, the Promethia Corporation isn't going to let him go that easily and sets out to make his life a living hell.

  • The Agenda: Reconciliation (






UNABRIDGED) by Anthony W. Antolic Narrated by Richard Frances

    The Agenda: Reconciliation

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 45 mins)
    • By Anthony W. Antolic
    • Narrated By Richard Frances
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    A group of friends found that Hitler is using time travel as a weapon against the Allies. Now it is up them, John, Carlos, Cheeno, and Mike, to recruit others to help stop this nightmare from coming true.

  • Outcast: Star Force, Book 10 (






UNABRIDGED) by B. V. Larson, David VanDyke Narrated by Mark Boyett

    Outcast: Star Force, Book 10

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By B. V. Larson, David VanDyke
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (8)

    Star Force is called to arms again! Outcast is a new beginning, the first book in a new spin-off series. Many peaceful years have passed since the Macro Wars ended. Most of those who fought against the heartless machines have aged - but not the ingenious artificial construct known as Marvin. His insatiable curiosity is as strong as ever, and he’s brought home fresh perils to humanity’s doorstep.

    rich says: "Captain Marvin Takes Command"
  • Deadlocked 8: Sons of Reagan (






UNABRIDGED) by A. R. Wise Narrated by Scott Aiello, Corey Allen, Christian Rummel, Lameece Issaq, Christopher Kipiniak, Jay Snyder, Elizabeth Jasicki, Bailey Carr

    Deadlocked 8: Sons of Reagan

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By A. R. Wise
    • Narrated By Scott Aiello, Corey Allen, Christian Rummel, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    The finale of the second series of Deadlocked. The High Rollers are ready to take revenge against the forces aligned against them. A hard and long winter has forced them into hiding, but has also given them a respite from something else…something far worse than anything they’ve battled so far. The Noah Initiative has begun, and the land will soon be devastated by a new virus. The people lined up against the High Rollers are fighting among themselves as well, and everyone is at risk. This isn’t just a fight for survival anymore, it’s a fight to save the entire human race.

  •  
  • Sunstone (






UNABRIDGED) by Freya Robertson Narrated by Barnaby Edwards

    Sunstone

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Freya Robertson
    • Narrated By Barnaby Edwards
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    The Incendi elementals that dwell beneath the mountains have found a way to tap into the Arbor’s roots, which stretch not only across the land but also through time, and King Pyra is determined to crush the ancient tree. Twenty-two years after the defeat of the Darkwater Lords, Chonrad’s widow Procella and their three children are drawn back to Heartwood to investigate the rumour of strange fires springing up across the land.

  • Silver Bullet: The Order of the Air, Book 3 (






UNABRIDGED) by Melissa Scott, Jo Graham Narrated by Matt Patterson

    Silver Bullet: The Order of the Air, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Melissa Scott, Jo Graham
    • Narrated By Matt Patterson
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    A series of mysterious plane crashes in the Rocky Mountains in the midst of a Depression winter call Air Corps reservists Mitch Sorley and Lewis Segura out to fly search and rescue, but it's more than just a simple navigational hazard. Fortunately, Mitch and Lewis are more than just pilots. With Lewis' wife Alma and their old friend Dr. Jerry Ballard, they're members of an esoteric Lodge dedicated to the protection of the world.

  • The Silo Archipelago (






UNABRIDGED) by Michael Bunker Narrated by Ann Simmons

    The Silo Archipelago

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Michael Bunker
    • Narrated By Ann Simmons
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Leah is a picker. Her job is to sift through the refuse and waste of the silo and sort it for recycling. She enjoys making homemade paper and writing stories, but she just happens to live in an underground silo full of mysteries, and in a dystopian world that has been destroyed by mankind. The two things that she loves to do most in the world are both illegal.

  • The Concrete Island (






UNABRIDGED) by J. G. Ballard Narrated by William Gaminara

    The Concrete Island

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By J. G. Ballard
    • Narrated By William Gaminara
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    A chilling novel about our modern world, from the author of Empire of the Sun and Crash. An architect is driving home from his London offices when a blow-out sends his speeding Jaguar hurtling out of control. Smashing through a temporary barrier he finds himself, dazed and disorientated, on a traffic island below three converging motorways. But when he tries to climb the embankment or flag-down a passing car for help it proves impossible - and he finds himself marooned on the concrete island.