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W. Phelps

video guru

Palo Alto, CA United States | Member Since 2004

12
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 43 ratings
  • 308 titles in library
  • 18 purchased in 2014
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  • Stories: All-New Tales

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman (author and editor), Al Sarrantonio (editor), Joe Hill, and others
    • Narrated By Anne Bobby, Jonathan Davis, Katherine Kellgren, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (332)
    Performance
    (200)
    Story
    (200)

    The best stories pull readers in and keep them turning the pages, eager to discover more—to find the answer to the question: "And then what happened?" The true hallmark of great literature is great imagination, and as Neil Gaiman and Al Sarrantonio prove with this outstanding collection, when it comes to great fiction, all genres are equal.

    Diane says: "Tales of the Macabre"
    "Not quite what I was expecting"
    Overall

    If you are a Neil Gaiman fan like me, you might have some expectations for these stories, in which case you might be in for a bit of a shock. I have not finished all of this by any means yet - but the first 2 or 3 tales were a bit of a shock - stronger language and subject matter than I was prepared for. I'll come back and say more when I'm done...

    5 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • Old Man's War

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By William Dufris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3744)
    Performance
    (2707)
    Story
    (2729)

    John Perry did two things on his 75th birthday. First, he visited his wife's grave. Then he joined the army. The good news is that humanity finally made it into interstellar space. The bad news is that planets fit to live on are scarce - and alien races willing to fight us for them are common. So, we fight, to defend Earth and to stake our own claim to planetary real estate. Far from Earth, the war has been going on for decades: brutal, bloody, unyielding.

    Michael says: "As good as Heinlein"
    "I am hooked now!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Old Man's War again? Why?

    Yes - I liked the story and I liked the narration


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Old Man's War?

    John telling Jane about his memories of his wife


    Which character – as performed by William Dufris – was your favorite?

    all of them


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It definitely made me laugh at times - as in, did he (the author) really do that? Cool...


    Any additional comments?

    Mr. Scalzi, please keep writing these space novels, and I'll keep buying them and listening to them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Breath of Snow and Ashes

    • UNABRIDGED (57 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    Overall
    (3892)
    Performance
    (3393)
    Story
    (3369)

    A Breath of Snow and Ashes continues the saga of 18th-century Scotsman Jamie Fraser and his 20th-century, time-traveling wife, Claire. The year is 1772, and the rift between Britain and its American colonies has put a frightening word into the minds of all concerned: revolution. In the backwoods of North Carolina, violence has already reared its ugly head, as cabins have been burned to the ground. To preserve the colony for King George III, the governor pleads with Jamie to bring the people together and restore peace. But Jamie has the burden of knowing that war cannot be avoided.

    B.J. says: "Another terrific listen."
    "This is why I listen to audio books!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to A Breath of Snow and Ashes again? Why?

    Highly recommended - wonderful story, read by one of the best. Davin Porter seems to be in the room with you. She never falters or tires. Her performance makes this a great listen. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I can't pick just one character.


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

    I love all of the voices and accents she does. Her voice really conveys the emotion and mood of what is going on.


    Any additional comments?

    I listened to this first, now I'm going back to "Outlander" and expect to listen to the entire series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Company: A Novel of the CIA

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Robert Littell
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (5000)
    Performance
    (2108)
    Story
    (2101)

    "If Robert Littell didn't invent the American spy novel," says Tom Clancy, "he should have." In this spectacular Cold-War-as-Alice-in-Wonderland epic, Littell, "the American le Carre," takes us down the rabbit hole and into the labyrinthine world of espionage that has been the CIA for the last half-century. "Ostensibly a single novel, The Company can also be listened to as an anthology of cracking good spy stories," says (Publishers Weekly).

    Cynthia says: "Hang on to your Hat"
    "Excellent & boring..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Maybe - but be prepared to skip chunks of it


    Any additional comments?

    Wow, look at all the 5 star reviews! It was an interesting read (listen) but I completely agree with the reviewer that say it's too long. Many times during this one I kept shouting "get on with it!". When it does get going again it's great, and it's fun how the author wove actual events into the tale, but man it does drag one endlessly over details we don't really need to know...

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • In the Company of Heroes: The True Story of Black Hawk Pilot Michael Durant and the Men Who Fought and Fell at Mogadishu

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Michael Durant, Steven Hartov
    • Narrated By Michael Durant
    Overall
    (49)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (32)

    Durant's experience as a prisoner in Somalia grew increasingly bizarre, crystallizing a clash of cultures by turns frightening, melancholy, hilarious, and strangely familiar. Revealing never-before-told stories with the incisive thought and emotion of one who was there, In the Company of Heroes is one man's unforgettable, true story of going to hell and making it back alive.

    Dan says: "Unreal and really exciting"
    "Interesting story, terrible reading"
    Overall

    This is one of those times when I wish someone else had done the reading.

    With all due respect, Mr. Durant, you wrote an amazing story, but I think you should have let someone else read it and stick to flying helicopters. The author drones on, with almost no inflection, interminably. I got through it because of the story, but only just...

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Shakespeare's Champion: Lily Bard Mysteries, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Charlaine Harris
    • Narrated By Julia Gibson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (323)
    Performance
    (173)
    Story
    (169)

    When Lily stumbles upon the well-built corpse of a local body builder - his neck broken by a barbell - the town's underlying racial tension begins to boil over. The white victim was somehow connected to two unsolved murders of black residents of Shakespeare - and a dogged policeman is determined to stop the killing. But it is Lily herself who may have to decide whether to stay and fight for justice, or run away one more time.

    Kathi says: "Good/Bad--depending on your taste in crime reading"
    "Disappointing after Sookie Stackhouse"
    Overall

    I bought this because I have listened to, and very much enjoyed, all of the Sookie Stackhouse books by the same author. I got about 1/3 of the way into this and gave up on it. I guess if you like fitness centers and housecleaning maybe it's ok, but this is just not doing it for me. Too bad there isn't a way to get a refund on something you don't like...

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • World Without End

    • UNABRIDGED (45 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8780)
    Performance
    (3223)
    Story
    (3257)

    In 1989 Ken Follett astonished the literary world with The Pillars of the Earth, set in 12th-century England. Readers and listeners ever since have hoped for a sequel. At last, here it is. Although the two novels may be listened to in any order, World Without End also takes place in Kingsbridge, two centuries after the townspeople finished building their exquisite Gothic cathedral. The cathedral is again at the center of a web of love and hate, greed and pride, ambition and revenge.

    Laura says: "Repetitive, but still enjoyable"
    "It's a good read when you're sad it's over!"
    Overall

    I thought this was just as good as "Pillars", and enjoyed it immensely. I am amazed at how well John Lee narrates, he does a great job of creating voices for each character, with appropriate accents for lords and peasants and all the rest, and somehow keeps them all straight! My only regret is reaching the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rikki-Tikki-Tavi

    • UNABRIDGED (39 mins)
    • By Rudyard Kipling
    • Narrated By Sumeet Bharati
    Overall
    (863)
    Performance
    (191)
    Story
    (198)

    "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi", a short story from The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, is about the adventures of a valiant young mongoose.

    Yawn20 says: "Very well done"
    "My son loved it!"
    Overall

    We listened to this in the car on a recent trip - three times! Once on the way there, and on the way home after it was over, the voice in the back seat said "Play it again, Daddy".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • No Country for Old Men

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Cormac McCarthy
    • Narrated By Tom Stechschulte
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2041)
    Performance
    (725)
    Story
    (734)

    Cormac McCarthy, best-selling author of National Book Award winner All the Pretty Horses, delivers his first new novel in seven years. Written in muscular prose, No Country for Old Men is a powerful tale of the West that moves at a blistering pace.

    Alan says: "Great story!"
    "Dissapointing"
    Overall

    I've really enjoyed other books from this author, but I sure would like to know what happened while this book was bring written. Two thirds of it is so good, and I got really hooked on the main character, then... it feels like the author quit and just filled up the space. Sorry to be blunt but that's was my experience of this book.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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