I bought this series on cassette when my library was getting rid of all their cassettes. The material was excellent but the quality of the used cassettes was awful, I had to stop less than halfway through because it was so frustrating, I thought of purchasing the set on CD but the price was pretty high. Now I can hear it all in perfect condition at a great price!
Robert Greenberg is smart and funny and presents the material in a way that is accessible to anyone. I'm delighted that we now get access to The Great Courses at our regular credit price!
Adults as well as kids can enjoy this amusing book, especially if you remember 1968. The classic struggles of 7th grade are set against a changing world background. But some things, like the power of Shakespeare and of friendship are constant.
This is a very detailed start to an epic series. The coming of age part is the strongest. I felt that after while the hero became practically superhuman, which made me less interested in him. There certainly were some great scenes and action sequences that kept me listening, but the whole didn't always come together. The narration was also good but not outstanding. It wasn't that easy to tell the various characters apart.
Maybe it's that I'm not as much of fan of military/macho fantasy, preferring some whimsy or humor, and more central female characters. I see there are some sequels coming but I don't feel compelled to listen to them.
Jacky explores America with a motley group of crew members. She experiences just about every possible mood of pride, shame, joy, misery, fear, triumph, anger, love, revenge, compassion, and just plain fun. And Katherine Kellgren portrays them all perfectly.
Some of the earlier books were a bit predictable, but this one has plenty of surprises. Happily we know that Jacky will get out of each scrape because there are more books to go, but sometimes it was hard to see how she would manage this time.
If you are at this point in the series, you might like to download the free conversation between Kellgren and the author, L. A. Meyer. It doesn't give any spoilers after this point except a hint of some more places Jacky will go. He explains why music is so important in these books, and she talks about how she develops the character voices and keeps them straight.
This series is one of several I would never have found or appreciated in print. The right narrator contributes so much more than I could get by reading it myself.
Remember the beginning of Raiders of the Lost Ark where a whole adventure happens before the opening credits? This is sort of like that, plenty happens in a brief time. It's probably not as much fun for those who don't already know our heroes, but I hope people try it out and go on to listen to the whole series. The ending made me laugh out loud. I hope there is a law that Tim Reynolds is the only person allowed to read Riyria books, as I wouldn't be able to stand any different voice.
The concept behind this book is fascinating, but the upshot seems to be bleakness and futility. Making different choices just leads to different miseries. So many ways to be unhappy and to die and so many times reliving the horrors of WWII. The only good thing for those who lived through it was that it finally ended! Here it keeps coming back.
For the last third of the book I was wanting to fast forward but never knew exactly where things might change (they don't, much!). And although I spent so much time with the main character, she still seemed a bit of a blank.
The narration was excellent and the evocation of the different eras was quite good, but overall I was quite disappointed. I wonder if this would get published if it was Atkinson's first book.
In my opinion, Connie Willis' 2-part work, Blackout & All Clear, is a much superior book about both the Blitz and the effects of individuals on history.
It's a challenge to present a story people know well from the movie. It was interesting to see the similarities and differences. It seems Anne Hathaway made some of the voices similar to the movie and others different. As a professional actor, she was great at conveying emotion and excitement, though a couple of the voices were kind of odd. This would be a good book for a family to listen to together, And of course there is a message about how you really already have what you think you need, whether it is brains, heart, courage or the ability to find your way home.
Kay is one of my favorite authors and his poetic style is good for audio. However, there were some odd things about this book. The hero is seen in a certain role and suddenly he appears in a different one with very little or no explanation and this happens several times. There's an incident in his youth that makes him what he is and that is never shown and only alluded to very generally. On the other hand some scenes and conversations are repeated several times, so that Character A & B converse, later Character A remembers it, then Character B remembers it in the same words, and so on. Simon Vance does a good job but it is hard to keep straight all the Chinese names and families without any list or family tree to refer to. I think this wouldn't be the best introduction to this author unless you really are interested in Chinese history. The amount of fantasy is very small and could be explained away, it's really more of an alternative history
The protagonist makes clear early on that he doesn't express emotions. That makes this book a challenge for a narrator as relatively few lines are spoken by others in this first-person story. This narrator did a terrific job of showing Don's attitudes and personality without ever sounding boring or stilted. We are able to laugh at Don's actions while at the same time coming to understand and appreciate him.
Some have questioned whether this book trivializes the challenges of people with disorders such as Asperger's. It is not designed as a serious investigation, rather it is a romantic comedy. But it also makes us see how all of us are differently abled in some ways and how ridiculous some of our social traditions are.
I read that this was written first as a screenplay and that there is a movie in the works - I'm looking forward to it!
This book picks up as the 3rd in Locke's story, but at the same time, it features interspersed stories of Locke as a boy and teen, back with Chains and the gang. It's great to see Calo and Galdo again, and finally Sabetha! Lynch does a good job of juxtaposing the two narratives so that the arcs of the stories match.
However, I didn't give it the 5 stars that I gave the last two.Some parts seemed a bit long. Lynch includes a big part of the play that Locke and his gang perform. He probably had fun writing that, but it slows down the action. Also there are new mysteries introduced and left hanging, so I hope we don't have to wait a long time for the next one.
Michael Page continues to be outstanding as the narrator.
I put off getting this because the 80's isn't my era and I've never played video games. However so many people recommended it and I have loved Wil Wheaton in everything else I've heard. It turned out it didn't matter that I'm not the target demographic. I found myself glued to the headphones, rooting for the hero and his friends. Underneath the technology is a sweet coming of age story and a classic hero's quest. One experience I do have is working in call centers and his satire of that was darkly hilarious.
Wil Wheaton is perfect for the part. I 'm sure I wouldn't have been as emotionally involved if I read this in print.
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