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Burt

Berkeley, CA, United States | Member Since 2005

17
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 17 reviews
  • 35 ratings
  • 696 titles in library
  • 58 purchased in 2014
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  • The Cat Who Walks through Walls

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Robert Heinlein
    • Narrated By Tom Weiner
    Overall
    (749)
    Performance
    (435)
    Story
    (447)

    When a stranger attempting to deliver a cryptic message is shot dead at his dinner table, Richard Ames is thrown headfirst into danger, intrigue, and other dimensions where Lazarus Long still thrives, where Jubal Harshaw lives surrounded by beautiful women, and where a daring plot to rescue the sentient computer called Mike can change the direction of all human history.

    Christopher says: "Great book, presentation was disappointing"
    "Just not believable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What about Tom Weiner???s performance did you like?

    Tom did a very reasonable reading of the story. He just didn't have a lot to work with...


    Any additional comments?

    I loved Heinlein as a kid. He was one of the authors that introduced me to SciFi, and later got me interested in science as a profession (which I have now done for over 40 years). I was excited to hear another book of his that I had missed as a child of the 50's. Unfortunately, I was disappointed. I kept wanting to continue, because the banter between the hero and his new wife was interesting -- kind of. Unfortunately, it did not ring in the least bit true. Stories I prefer are those that are either SciFi or Mystery, where you are sucked into the environment, and believe you could really be part of it. This story never met that criteria, always feeling artificial and contrived. I stopped listening at about the 3 hr mark. No idea if it ever got better, but I learned decades ago that there are better ways to spend my time than to see if a bad book/movie might get better at the end... When all is said and done, I have to admit this was a bad buy, and I wish I had spent my credits and time on a different book. :(

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Born at Midnight: Shadow Falls, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By C. C. Hunter
    • Narrated By Katie Schorr
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (522)
    Performance
    (464)
    Story
    (463)

    One night Kylie Galen finds herself at the wrong party, with the wrong people, and it changes her life forever. Her mother ships her off to Shadow Falls - a camp for troubled teens, and within hours of arriving, it becomes painfully clear that her fellow campers aren’t just "troubled". Here at Shadow Falls, vampires, werewolves, shapshifters, witches and fairies train side by side - learning to harness their powers, control their magic, and live in the normal world. Kylie’s never felt normal, but surely she doesn’t belong here with a bunch of paranormal freaks either. Or does she?

    Angela says: "Outstanding!!"
    "BORING"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This story was so intensely boring that I stopped after a bit less than 2 hours. Couldn't take any more of it... :(

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Society's Child: My Autobiography

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Janis Ian
    • Narrated By Janis Ian
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (453)
    Performance
    (420)
    Story
    (420)

    Janis Ian was catapulted into the spotlight in 1966 at the age of 15, when her soul-wrenching song "Society's Child" became a hit. But this was only the beginning of a long and illustrious career. In Society's Child, Janis Ian provides a relentlessly honest account of the successes and failures - and the hopes and dreams - of an extraordinary life.

    Pamela says: "I know why this won the grammy"
    "Depressing and Narcissistic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about Society's Child?

    I have loved Janis Ian's music since the early 70's and was hopeful about this bio. Unfortunately, it was almost entirely composed of how the world was hard on her, and how wonderful and brilliant she was in the midst of it all.

    I have lived a somewhat tough life too, but learned a long time ago that very little happens to us that was not, in at least some level, a result of our own choices and actions. Janis may have had some hard knocks, but never takes any responsibility for her own choices or actions. That leaves me wondering how much else was exaggerated or more the result of her own than she would have us believe.

    I still love her music, but am now a lot more jaded about the life story behind it...


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Bones in Her Pocket

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 56 mins)
    • By Kathy Reichs
    • Narrated By Linda Emond
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (104)
    Performance
    (95)
    Story
    (96)

    When a fly-covered canvas bag floats to the surface of North Carolina’s Mountain Island Lake, forensic anthropologist Tempe Brennan is called to the scene. Animal remains? Or could this be related to bone fragments from a human male found nearby? To Tempe’s surprise, the decomposed body indicates the person was a female young adult. The profile fits the description of a missing graduate student named Edith Blankenship.

    Nicole Steinbeck says: "Good for a short story"
    "Short. Choppy. Sentences."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I generally like Kathy Reich and her Scarpetta novels. This one was an extreme exception though. It seemed like Kathy was experimenting with writing a novel that used no sentence longer than 6 words. Many. Sentences. Were. One. Word.

    About halfway through, the choppy writing became more noticeable than the story. In the end, it appeared to be a story with the only intent being to stop puppy mills. Laudable goal perhaps, but next time make the writing worth the end goal...

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Molly Moon's Hypnotic Time Travel Adventure

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Georgia Byng
    • Narrated By Clare Higgins
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (13)

    Molly Moon returns...and bumps into earlier versions of herself, four of them, to be exact, all kidnapped and transported back in time to nineteenth-century India by Molly's most fearsome nemesis yet, an insane maharaja. Molly foiled his plans once already, by stopping Primo Cell from becoming president of the United States. This time around, the maharaja is determined to alter the course of history. The only thing standing in his way is Molly and her brave pug, Petula.

    Lisa says: "great!!!"
    "Boring"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Though the reader was good, the story itself was boring beyond belief. I made the mistake of buying both this and the first book based on reader reviews. I worked myself to listen to the entire first one, but just couldn't get very far in this one before stopping.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dolphins of Pern: Dragonriders of Pern

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Anne McCaffrey
    • Narrated By Mel Foster
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (359)
    Performance
    (194)
    Story
    (201)

    When the first humans came to settle the planet Pern, they did not come alone: intelligence-enhanced dolphins also crossed the stars to colonize Pern's oceans while their human partners settled the vast continents. But then disaster struck. The deadly silver spores called Thread fell like rain from the sky, and as human colonists' dreams of a new, idyllic life shattered into a desperate struggle for survival, the dolphins were forgotten.

    Amazon Customer says: "RIP Anne McCaffrey"
    "Poor Sing-Song Reading Detracts From Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    The reader uses a sing-song voice throughout. Though better than a monotone, it has no relationship to the way real people speak, and sounds very artificial. I found it very distracting.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cast in Shadow: Chronicles of Elantra, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Michelle Sagara
    • Narrated By Khristine Hvam
    Overall
    (1345)
    Performance
    (1201)
    Story
    (1199)

    Seven years ago Kaylin fled the crime-riddled streets of Nightshade, knowing that something was after her. Children were being murdered— and all had the same odd markings that mysteriously appeared on her own skin….Since then, she's learned to read, she's learned to fight and she's become one of the vaunted Hawks who patrol and police the City of Elantra. Alongside the winged Aerians and the immortal Barrani, she's made a place for herself, far from the mean streets of her birth.

    Amanda says: "Addicted to the series, but leaves you hanging..."
    "Boring story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I was bored by the whole story. I kept waiting for something interesting to happen, but gave up about halfway through, and quit listening...


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern: Dragonriders of Pern

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Anne McCaffrey
    • Narrated By Sheila Hart
    Overall
    (260)
    Performance
    (167)
    Story
    (172)

    An air of pleasant anticipation hung so thickly over the Halls, Holds, and Weyrs of Pern that it had affected even the businesslike ways of Moreta, the Weyrwoman of Fort Weyr. Her dragon, Queen Orlith, would soon clutch; spring had made a glorious debut; the Gather at Ruatha Hold was extremely merry; and Moreta was enjoying the attentions of Alessan, the new Lord Holder of Ruatha Hold. Then, without warning, a runnerbeast fell ill.

    Burt says: "Weakest Storyline So Far"
    "Weakest Storyline So Far"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Moreta? What did you like least?

    This storyline went on and on about the daily problems of wierlife, and the severe depredations of the plague. I kept waiting for them to take the obvious step and simply go back in time to stop the plague from ever starting (they "time it" a lot in this story), but instead they take little steps that are almost meaningless in the scheme of things.

    Even at the very end (no details, to avoid a total spoiler), it is clear that a their ability to "time it" meant there was absolutely no need for the finale that was included.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • By Order of the President: A Presidential Agent Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By W. E. B. Griffin
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1090)
    Performance
    (692)
    Story
    (678)

    Two armed men board a 727 that has been all but forgotten at an airfield in Angola. Hijacking the jet, they then slit the throat of the lone crew and fly to parts unknown. The consternation is immediate, as the CIA, FBI, and other agencies race to find out what happened, in the process elbowing one another in the sides a little too vigorously. Fed up, the president of the United States turns to an outside investigator to determine the truth.

    Wayne says: "Dick Hill is the right reader; interesting story"
    "Probably better abridged"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you ever listen to anything by W. E. B. Griffin again?

    Griggin takes WAY too long to get to the point, and adds at least twice the fluff needed for the story to evolve. If I ever get another book from him, it will probably be an abridged version. I'm guessing that might be better.


    What about Dick Hill’s performance did you like?

    The reader did an excellent job, and it was easy to tell who was who, and to get the environment feeling of the story.


    Any additional comments?

    The story was intriguing. If the book were about half as long, it probably would have been an excellent story. As it was, I found myself bored most of the time, and started listening as background noise rather than really getting engrossed in the story.

    Bottom line -- if you want to hear the story, try the abridged version. I pretty much always go for the unabridged version, but I think I will break that rule if I decide to even try another Griffin book...

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Love in the Time of Dragons: A Novel of the Light Dragons

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Katie MacAlister
    • Narrated By Barbara Rosenblat
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (253)
    Performance
    (192)
    Story
    (190)

    In best-selling author Katie MacAlister’s Love in the Time of Dragons, suburban mom Tully Sullivan wakes up in a far-off place surrounded by strangers—many of them muscular, sexy ones—claiming to be dragons. They insist Tully is a dragon, too, and that she’s committed crimes deserving of death. Now Tully must disprove the allegations before time runs out.

    BlueMtn says: "Struggling to finish"
    "Enjoyable continuation of story line"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Love in the Time of Dragons?

    This is a nice continuation of the original Dragon series from MacAlister, which I listened to years ago. At times it seemed to drag a bit, as though Katie were trying to regain her pacing, but overall the story was enjoyable.


    What does Barbara Rosenblat bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Barbara is great at keeping the different characters distinct through voices, so we don't have to constantly hear who is talking through banal dialog additions. You start to relate to each voice as a separate person.


    Any additional comments?

    The story ended rather suddenly, A whole book leading up to a final world-changing battle that lasted just over 5 minutes left me wondering if I had missed something...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Keeper of Lost Causes: Department Q, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Jussi Adler-Olsen
    • Narrated By Erik Davies
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1490)
    Performance
    (1287)
    Story
    (1285)

    Jussi Adler-Olsen is Denmark's premier crime writer. His books routinely top the bestseller lists in northern Europe, and he's won just about every Nordic crime-writing award, including the prestigious Glass Key Award-also won by Henning Mankell, Stieg Larsson, and Jo Nesbo. Now, Dutton is thrilled to introduce him to America.

    Ted says: "Dark, Cold, and Danish"
    "tedius and slow"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I really wanted to like this book, but it was just too slow and tedious. I gave up after about 3 hours, when it just wasn't going anywhere. The reader did a good job, but there wasn't much to work with.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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