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itinerant

here and there | Member Since 2007

ratings
147
REVIEWS
38
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
1
HELPFUL VOTES
75

  • Trophy Hunt: A Joe Pickett Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By C. J. Box
    • Narrated By David Chandler
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (289)
    Performance
    (239)
    Story
    (241)

    It's an idyllic late-summer day in Saddlestring, Wyoming, and game warden Joe Pickett is fly-fishing with his two daughters when he stumbles upon the mutilated body of a moose. Whatever - or whoever - attacked the animal was ruthless: half the animal's face has been sliced away, the skin peeled back from the flesh. Shaken by the sight, Joe starts to investigate what he hopes in an isolated incident.

    Carole P. Bronico says: "Joe Pickett at his best!"
    "another good one"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I like Box's work, and Chandler's narration goes well with the prose. The situations are unusual enough and complex enough to be interesting, the characters deep enough to be engaging, the settings strong and the prose eloquent, even moving. The bad guys tend to be over-the-top bad, but at least Box has some surprise villains here. The family dramas wear on me after a while, but some might find them the best part.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Reflex

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Steven Gould
    • Narrated By Macleod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (623)
    Performance
    (554)
    Story
    (558)

    Davy has always been alone. He believes that he's the only person who can teleport. But what if he isn't? A mysterious group of people has taken Davy captive. They don't want to hire him, and they don't have any hope of appealing to him to help them. What they want is to own him. They want to use his abilities for their own purposes, whether Davy agrees to it or not. And so they set about brainwashing him and conditioning him. But there's one thing that they don't know....

    Katherine says: "Exciting sequel to Jumper"
    "slow maturation"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Following a several-year time gap, this follow-up begins asking some of the logical questions ignored in the first, High Concept episode. It's still good fun, though I found the Family Values motif a bit overdone and over-agendized. The ending shows the story is by no means complete, but I'm satisfied enough with the examination of the concept that I won't feel desperate for the next one, just as I won't regret reading this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gun Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Warren Ellis
    • Narrated By Reg E. Cathey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (195)
    Performance
    (171)
    Story
    (173)

    After a shootout claims the life of his partner in a condemned tenement building on Pearl Street, Detective John Tallow unwittingly stumbles across an apartment stacked high with guns. When examined, each weapon leads to a different, previously unsolved murder. Someone has been killing people for 20 years or more and storing the weapons together for some inexplicable purpose. Confronted with the sudden emergence of hundreds of unsolved homicides, Tallow soon discovers that he's walked into a veritable deal with the devil.

    JunkyardMessiah says: "Perfect marriage between writer and narrator"
    "something a little different"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book was fun. Some good forensics, interesting characters, lots of info on prehistoric Manhattan, corruption in the ranks, gruesome carnage. Not the run-of-the-mill good guys vs bad guys book: this author has some interesting things to say and has wrapped it up in a package whose central premise seems a bit weak but ultimately makes some kind of sense, and en route goes to some cool places.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Zodiac Station

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Tom Harper
    • Narrated By Piers Wehener
    Overall
    (55)
    Performance
    (50)
    Story
    (51)

    "An extraordinary thriller set at the frozen edge of the world, perfect for fans of Kate Mosse, Michael Crichton and Dan Brown.In the Arctic Ocean, the US Coast Guard icebreaker Terra Nova batters its way through the pack ice. There shouldn't be anyone near them for hundreds of miles. But then a lone skier, half-dead with cold, emerges out of the snow. His name is Tom Anderson, and he is the only survivor of a disaster at Zodiac Station, a scientific research base deep in the Arctic Circle.

    Richard Delman says: "Starts very well...and then bores."
    "obfuscatory"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed this book . . . in spots. The setting is interesting, the plot is interesting, the characters have a lot going on. The author, though, tells the story in a convoluted way that obscures many of the better qualities of the tale in favor of creating ambiguity and conflict . . . not conflict between characters so much as between versions of the truth. Much of this is realistic, created by the setting and the difficulty of communication, but much of it is a storyteller's conceit, creating confusion and delaying its resolution to pad the narrative and frustrate the reader, along the lines of a television series in its tenth year, when the writers have run out of ideas and the narrative turns mostly meta.

    So it's a good book, but it requires some active listening to keep the plot lines disentangled, and walks the thin line of asking too many times if the effort is worth it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Darker Place

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Laurie R. King
    • Narrated By Alyssa Bresnahan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (138)
    Performance
    (63)
    Story
    (64)

    Professor Anne Waverly teaches religious studies at a respected university. Middle-aged and slightly lame, she spends her days in lecture halls and offices. But occasionally, she works for the FBI. As Ana Wakefield, an eager seeker of higher truths, she infiltrates cults. Now, leaving the security of academia, she is on her way to Arizona in a battered VW bus.

    ELAINE says: "One of my Favorites"
    "details, details"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've read some of King's Sherlock Holmes titles and enjoyed them. She's a good writer . . . but in this case, not such a great story-teller. King anatomizes everything, and many of the details are compelling and make the story real and bring characters to life. Unfortunately, much of this reads like running in place: although there is a story arc, it's a very long flat arc, with the rising action and denouement occurring in the last few pages and for the most part off-stage. The lovingly-rendered world and the few characters and the pleasant prose kept me listening, but despite heavy foreshadowing and ominous flashbacks, the story never really got going: an endless series of quotidian events eventually erupted in a flurry of action (again, largely off-stage), making for a generally unsatisfying listen. The abrupt shift from Sedona to England about 2/3 of the way through seemed more a desperation move to salvage the narrative than a logical or necessary narrative maneuver, rendering the immensely long introduction a real waste of time (and I was never convinced King had ever been to Sedona or driven a Volkswagen van, either). The novel set out to be about religious zealotry and fatal conflicts with ham-fisted authorities, but was really about a woman who had lost her daughter . . . either one would have been fine, but it ended up being satisfactory at neither.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Death on a High Floor

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Charles Rosenberg
    • Narrated By Christopher Lane
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (650)
    Performance
    (571)
    Story
    (574)

    On the 85th floor of a glittering high-rise in Los Angeles, Robert Tarza steps into the lobby of the Marbury Marfan law firm to discover his partner Simon Rafer lying in a pool of blood - an ornate dagger plunged into his back. Robert had worked with Simon for decades, and their relationship was fraught with conflict. But he never imagined he would wind up as the prime suspect for his colleague’s murder. As the evidence stacks up against him with frightening speed, he quickly falls from his respected position to that of a criminal dragged through the tabloids.

    Charles Atkinson says: "Excellent Mystery, Brilliant Narration"
    "well read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The narrator seemed perfect to portray the protagonist. It's an uncommon stroy with some well-drawn characters. The reader's voice and approach to the material are excellent. The story veers a bit in the second half, but eventually the author seems to get a handle on the material (the Daniel Boone interlude had me wondering how such a well-crafted book could take such a wrong turn) and all goes well again. I'll be looking at more books by this author.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Leopard: A Harry Hole Novel, Book 8

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Jo Nesbø, Don Bartlett (translator)
    • Narrated By Robin Sachs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1138)
    Performance
    (946)
    Story
    (939)

    Two young women are found murdered in Oslo, both drowned in their own blood. Media coverage quickly reaches fever pitch: Could this be the work of a serial killer? The crime scenes offer no coherent clues, the police investigation is stalled, and the one man who might be able to help doesn't want to be found. Traumatized by his last case, Inspector Harry Hole has lost himself in the squalor of Hong Kong's opium dens. Yet when he is compelled, at last, to return to Norway - his father is dying - Harry's buried instincts begin to take over. Then a female MP is discovered brutally murdered.

    Charles Atkinson says: "Simply Fantastic! A great buy!"
    "more good stuff"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I hope I haven't listened to all of these, because I keep wanting more. It's good to space these Nesbo books out a bit, though: it's not a world to live in more than once a year, maybe. James Lee Burke is similar: good, but best not to stay immersed in too long.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Black-Eyed Blonde: A Philip Marlowe Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Benjamin Black
    • Narrated By Dennis Boutsikaris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (67)
    Performance
    (55)
    Story
    (56)

    Raymond Chandler's incomparable private eye is back, pulled by a seductive young heiress into the most difficult and dangerous case of his career. "It was one of those summer Tuesday afternoons when you begin to wonder if the earth has stopped revolving. The telephone on my desk had the look of something that knows it's being watched. Traffic trickled by in the street below, and there were a few pedestrians, too, men in hats going nowhere."

    Brustar says: "Close Your Eyes and Marlowe Is (almost) Back"
    "best Chandler reboot"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've read every Chandler story and novel several times, and looked into every Chandler reboot I could find. This one hits all the right notes. Someone complained about the narrator, but I thought it was just fine. Not a Humphrey Bogart imitation, but a good straightforward read of a well-wrought book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Spade & Archer: The Prequel to The Maltese Falcon

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Joseph Gores
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (93)
    Performance
    (33)
    Story
    (34)

    When Sam Spade gets drawn into the Maltese Falcon case, we know what to expect: straight talk, hard questions, no favors, and no way for anyone to get underneath the protective shell he wears like a second skin. We know that his late partner, Miles Archer, was a son of a bitch; that Spade is sleeping with Archer's wife, Iva; that his tomboyish secretary, Effie Perine, is the only innocent in his life. What we don't know is how Spade became who he is. Spade & Archer completes the picture.

    Mark says: ""A Real Joy""
    "nice work"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book exceeded my expectations on every level. Not only an adept prequel to an old favorite, but also the beginning of a new series in its own right. Do more of these . . .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Suspicion

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Joseph Finder
    • Narrated By Steven Kearney
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (149)
    Performance
    (136)
    Story
    (139)

    When single father Danny Goodman suddenly finds himself unable to afford the private school his teenage daughter adores, he has no one to turn to for financial support. In what seems like a stroke of brilliant luck, Danny meets Thomas Galvin, the father of his daughter’s new best friend, who also happens to be one of the wealthiest men in Boston. Galvin is aware of Danny's situation and out of the blue offers a $50,000 loan to help Danny cover his daughter's tuition. Uncomfortable but desperate, Danny takes the money, promising to pay Galvin back.

    Charles Atkinson says: "Great Premise"
    "phoning it in"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've liked Finder books in the past, but only finished this one to see if he could rescue it. It's a flimsy pretext with obvious reversals filtered through stock conflicts with the daughter and girlfriend. For the most part the scenes are barely sketched in, more like notes than a novel. In the second half Finder seems to be paying more attention to setting, but spends most of his time on a skiing scenario that reveals he evidently doesn't ski.

    This sounds like an early attempt at a potboiler or something written in haste to fulfill a contract. A better narrator wouldn't have been able to salvage much more from the bad writing, but this narrator didn't do it any favors.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Highway

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By C.J. Box
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (272)
    Performance
    (235)
    Story
    (240)

    When teenagers Danielle and Gracie Sullivan take a clandestine car trip to visit their friend in Montana, little do they know it's the last time anyone will ever hear from them again. The girls and their car simply vanish. Cody Hoyt, who's just lost his job and has fallen off the wagon after a long stretch of sobriety, is in no condition to investigate. But his son Justin, who the girls were going to visit, and his former partner, Cassie Dewell, convince him to drive south to their last known location. As Cody makes his way to the remote stretch of Montana highway where the girls went missing, Cassie discovers that there have been scores of similar disappearances in the state.

    Lorrie says: "No, No, No!!!!"
    "the final solution"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Not your typical series development. A pretty good story, but premised on some highly unlikely scenarios and alliances. The damsel-in-distress makes for a good page-turner, though, although the ditzy damsel is both hard to take and hard to believe: Mr. Box doesn't so much strain credulity as simply fail to acknowledge it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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