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Member Since 2004

  • 13 reviews
  • 199 ratings
  • 220 titles in library
  • 5 purchased in 2015

  • The Bloomsday Dead

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Adrian McKinty
    • Narrated By Gerard Doyle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Michael Forsythe is contacted by his former lover, Bridget, a New York Irish Mob boss, whose fiancé he killed. Bridget, calling from Dublin, says that her 11-year-old daughter has been kidnapped. Michael's choice is to fly to Dublin and help her find the girl, or be executed at the hands of Bridget's goons, who are holding him at gunpoint. He agrees to nothing, but is soon on the way to Dublin, leaving the first two of many dead bodies in his wake.

    Johnnie Walker says: "SIX STARS ******"
    "Classic Micheal Forsythe"

    The third installment of the tale is another good book along the same lines as the previous two. I liked it and am glad to have listened to it but I don't think I would be up for a 4th book as it is getting a "been there/ done that" feel to it. As usual, the narration was excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Jesse Boggs

    Who understood the risk inherent in the assumption of ever-rising real-estate prices, a risk compounded daily by the creation of those arcane, artificial securities loosely based on piles of doubtful mortgages? Michael Lewis turns the inquiry on its head to create a fresh, character-driven narrative brimming with indignation and dark humor, a fitting sequel to his number-one best-selling Liar’s Poker.

    Jill Pagano says: "Finally, I understand what happened!"
    "We knew they blew it - we didn't know how bad."

    I think pretty much every at this point realises that msitakes wer emade and that interests were not always aligned. I think very few people know just how screwed up the system is (now was) and inevitable the crash was. Banker knowingly made rediculous loans without care as the risk as repackaged and passed on. The fraufulent natur e of it is jarring but not completely unexpected. What is unexpected is just how incompetant "the market" (read: the people running it) turned out to be at valuing this trash. The most shocking part of all is how little has changed.

    The book gets somewhat repetitive as the author follows several people all comming to similar conclusions in similar ways and so taking similar actions to profit. It would have been better as a shorter read but it is still well worth it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Assassin: An Alex Hawke Thriller

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Ted Bell
    • Narrated By John Shea
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    A shadowy figure known as the Dog is believed to be the ruthless terrorist who is systematically and savagely assassinating American diplomats and their families around the globe. As the deadly toll mounts inexorably, Hawke, along with former NYPD cop and Navy SEAL Stokely Jones, is called upon by the U.S. government to launch a search for the assassin behind the murders.

    Matthew says: "made for the movies"
    "Predictable and boring."

    I'll give another vote to the narrator.

    The characters are cliche and one dimensional. If Bell were a student he would be accused of plaguarising Ian Fleming's bond. The story was unbelievable and predictable and at times just made no sense. He gave entirely too much back story to the villain. As an 8 hour book it would have been simply unoriginal. The extra several hours only serves to bring it down from there.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Room: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Emma Donoghue
    • Narrated By Michal Friedman, Ellen Archer, Robert Petkoff, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma. Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, but what she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

    Kathleen says: "A truly memorable read"
    "Not up to the hype"

    The voice of the narrator was a bit annoying but I am prepared to forgive that. The character is 5 years old and so it makes sense that he would speak in a high pitched voice that only his mother could love hearing. What I had a hard time forgiving is the meandering plot. The author starts by failing to give the audience credit for having any intelligence by continuing to slowly reveal the secret that the mother and child are being held hostage in a small room long after it is obvious. I'll go ahead and give a little bit of a spoiler, if it is possible to call revealing the middle of the book a spoiler, so stop reading here if you care. If the book stopped with the escape I would have described it as as second rate thriller that never developed much tension. From there it just devolves into a wandering "day in the life" description of their acclimation to free living. Throughout it all the author can't seem to make up her mind whether Jack is stunted or gifted as he constantly vacillates between the mentalities of a 3 year old and an 18 year old honors student. He never quite seems quite right for a 5 year old. The mother's character is similarly uneven in her temperment and no other character is every really developed. I am a glutton for punishment who always keeps reading clunker books hoping that they will be one of those rare ones that redeem themselves in the end. This one was just punishing to read without any redemption.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Darkly Dreaming Dexter

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Jeff Lindsay
    • Narrated By Nick Landrum
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Dexter Morgan appears to be the perfect gentleman. He is handsome and polite, and has been in a relationship for nearly a year and a half. Yet appearances can be deceiving, for Dexter is a serial killer who has slain many people. But in this tale, he's the good guy, for there is one little twist: Dexter only snuffs out other murderers. When another serial killer, with an eerily similar style, starts grabbing headlines, Dexter has a fairly morbid thought. Am I being challenged?

    V. Sharol says: "Compelling but unsettling"
    "Close to the series but different"

    I have been watching the Showtime series and this book hews fairly close to the plot from the first season. The ending is a good bit different, not so much in the conclusion bu tin how he gets there. What I like about the book is that it is just a bit darker, Dexter is a bit more insane and he is just a bit less human. He is not quite the nice guy who kills bad people of the TV series. Where I find the series to be an interesting but over-all pleasant diversion I found the book to be just a little bit disturbing - which I think is a good thing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest: The Millennium Trilogy, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Stieg Larsson
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Lisbeth Salander—the heart of Larsson’s two previous novels—lies in critical condition, a bullet wound to her head, in the intensive care unit of a Swedish city hospital. She’s fighting for her life in more ways than one: if and when she recovers, she’ll be taken back to Stockholm to stand trial for three murders. With the help of her friend, journalist Mikael Blomkvist, she will not only have to prove her innocence, but also identify and denounce those in authority.

    B.J. says: "Perfect."
    "He phoned it in."

    Too many tangential characters. Too much describing Swedish bureaucracy and politics. Not enough action. No plot twists worth not mentioning. Fire left things in the air and so people like me who can't put a book down half way through, just in case it gets good at the end, will not be able to not plow through this book. It is a predictable book that offers no further character development and would have benefited from a good editor (who would have surely ripped out most of the middle).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hit Man

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Lawrence Block
    • Narrated By Robert Forster
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Keller possesses all the qualities of a professional killer. He's cool, confident, reclusive, icy, and ruthlessly efficient. But this seasoned hit man is also prone to self-doubt as he finds himself caught in the clutches of a mid-life crisis.

    Barbara A. Russell says: "Surprisingly Terrific"
    "Hard to describe intertesting book."

    I kept waiting for a plot to develop. There was a bit of one - sort of. It mostly was a series of chapters where the hit man has to find a new and clever way to do his job. However,each time you do get a little deeper into his character. In the end a satisfying plot never really developed but somehow, in some way that is hard to explain, I did enjoy the book and looked forward to learning more about Keller. I think the writing was just so good that it made you want to listen despite the lack of action in the usual sense. The characters were well developed and the narration was perfect for the book. The moral dilemmas within the immoral actions were also interesting.

    I know this will come off as a mixed review, and I guess it is, bit I did rate it 4 stars, am glad I listened to it, and probably will buy at least one more sequel.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Lost Symbol

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Dan Brown
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to deliver an evening lecture in the U.S. Capitol. Within minutes of his arrival, the night takes a bizarre turn. A disturbing object is discovered in the Capitol Building. The object is an ancient invitation, meant to usher its recipient into a long-lost world of hidden esoteric wisdom. And when Langdon's mentor is kidnapped, Langdon's only hope of saving him is to accept this invitation and follow wherever it leads him.

    Paul says: "In love with books again"
    "More of the same - plus a horrible ending"

    Different religious group - different city - different girl - otherwise more of the same as Angels and Demons and Davinci Code. Personally, I liked the other two so found this a pleasing and interesting read. For me, however, I think this book brought it right up to the line of "been there done that" and I do not think I would go for a fourth Robert Langdon installment if it comes out.

    The last several chapters of the book are a rambling re-hash of concepts introduced during the rest of the book and clearly would have been "red lined" if the book publishers still had any editorial control. When the true location and identity of the the word are revealed (which I found completely predictable by the way) just stop and save yourself an hour or so. You'll miss nothing and have a higher regard for the book.

    9 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • Yes!: 50 Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Persuasive

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Noah J. Goldstein, Steve J. Martin, Robert B. Cialdini
    • Narrated By Blair Hardman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Whether you are in advertising, marketing, management, on sales, or just curious about how to be more influential in everyday life, Yes! shows how making small, scientifically proven changes to your approach can have a dramatic effect on your persuasive powers.

    Tyler says: "Not What I Expected"
    "Interesting and useful."

    The book is, as promised, a well referenced scientific discussion of ways that you can be more persuasive. The narrator is adequate but does not sound like a polished "pro", which in some ways gives it a more authentic feel. The authors try their best to introduce humor and keep it interesting but it is, after all, a review of scientific literature so it is understandable that some parts are a bit dry.

    However, the chapters and the book as a whole, are straight to the point and packed with useful information making it much less of an investment in time than most of us have probably wasted elsewhere. The format lends itself well to skipping around and picking out just the points you wish to try to apply. Anyone who is interested in self improvement either personally or in business, as I am sure anyone bothering to read this review is, would do well to not miss out on these tips.

    If you are wondering how easily they are applied I have used at least 7 of the techniques in this review. Seriously though, I am so glad that I listened to it that I plan to buy the hard copy in order to have it as a reference. Much of it qualifies as "pearls" that can easily be dolled out at staff meetings and similar venues.

    46 of 49 people found this review helpful
  • The Disappeared: Retrieval Artist, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Kristine Kathryn Rusch
    • Narrated By Jay Snyder

    Retrieval artists help the lost find their way back home, whether they like it or not. Specialized private detectives, they investigate the most unusual crimes in the galaxy. But Miles Flint isn't a retrieval artist. He's just a cop, trying to do his job.

    Joshua says: "An Intriguing New Universe"
    "Just not good."

    The prose was just not good. It was never good and then often peppered with melodramatic comments and obvious statements. The story line got started and then kind of wandered around with no place to go for a few hours then wrapped up in an unsatisfactory manner. This is the kind of work I would expect from a high school student.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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