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Gary

ratings
20
REVIEWS
5
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
23

  • Starship: Mutiny

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Mike Resnick
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis, Mike Resnick
    Overall
    (507)
    Performance
    (181)
    Story
    (185)

    The date is 1966 of the Galactic Era, almost three thousand years from now, and the Republic, created by the human race - but not yet dominated by it - finds itself in an all-out war. They stand against the Teroni Federation, an alliance of races that resent Man's growing military and economic power. The main battles are taking place in the Spiral Arm and toward the Core. But far out on the Rim, the Theodore Roosevelt is one of three ships charged with protecting the Phoenix Cluster.

    Eivind says: "Move along, nothing to see here"
    "Clich?s at Warp Speed"
    Overall

    My first time to give 1 star to any book. I listened to about a half-hour and started to suspect that I was hip-deep in space-mediocrity. So, sez I to myself, maybe just a little bit more, since I hate to press ERASE on a book I've already paid for. Twenty additional minutes were more than enough.
    The set-up? Wilson Cole, twice busted from captain of his own space ship because he can't live according to the regulations (i. e., he's convinced that he makes better decisions than his superiors, and so disobeys orders he thinks are dumb...all in time of war). All the cardboard scenarios are here, folks: the renegade who plays by his own rules; the brilliant intuitive decisions that only he can make; his million-to-one guesses about what will take place...and that of course do come to pass just as he predicts; his know-it-all expositions to his intellectual inferiors, who gaze with open-mouthed admiration at their hero. Puh-leeze! It's a stereotypical earth cop show transfered into hyperspace (and by the way, they travel at light speed and click off dozens of light years without a net...or any sort of escape hatch from relativistic physics). I just read Caesar's Commentaries from AudioBooks. A dictator, yes, but now there was a brilliant leader and strategist! And a wonderful writer, as it turns out. Pass on Mutiny, go for the Commentaries.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Earth Afire

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card, Aaron Johnston
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye, Arthur Morey, Stefan Rudnicki, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1251)
    Performance
    (1149)
    Story
    (1155)

    One hundred years before Ender's Game, the aliens arrived on Earth with fire and death. Earth Afire by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston is the story of the First Formic War. Victor Delgado beat the alien ship to Earth, but just barely. Not soon enough to convince skeptical governments that there was a threat. They didn’t believe that until space stations and ships and colonies went up in sudden flame. And when that happened, only Mazer Rackham and the Mobile Operations Police could move fast enough to meet the threat.

    DocJim says: "This is a GREAT adventure Sci-Fi Book. Masterful!"
    "Compared with others in the series - "Meh!""
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Earth Afire? What did you like least?

    The horror of an invasion that is truly alien was captivating. Beyond that, I don't see what all the positive comments are about. Slow moving, people make the same comments over and over again ("We need to warn earth NOW!" "We need to rescue as many people as possible!" "Grandfather, you need to keep moving!"). One of the few sf books where I wished it had been abridged for the recording. It struck me as paint-by-number - how do we get from "Earth at peace" to Ender? Not exciting.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    Make the dialogue more believable.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Christmas Sermons

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Dietrich Bonhoeffer
    • Narrated By Tom Parks
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    Executed by the Nazis for his complicity in a plot to assassinate Hitler, Dietrich Bonhoeffer remains with us today through his writings - far-reaching ripples of deep thought, passionate words, and unflinching character. Including biographical insights, Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Christmas Sermons spans Bonhoeffer's 17 years as a preacher. This collection of vintage sermons and writings searches out the power and mystery of the Christmas season: its joyous riches and its implications for our lives.

    Gary says: "Great texts, but a bloodless reading"
    "Great texts, but a bloodless reading"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    First, these are not Advent or Christmas sermons, although that is the major theme. But principally, the reading was a disappointment. These were sermons given by a man who was facing martyrdom: Parks reads them casually as off a Teleprompter. Why not give us the feel of a public address, as with the wonderful production of the

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Rendezvous with Rama

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Arthur C. Clarke
    • Narrated By Peter Ganim, Robert J. Sawyer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1756)
    Performance
    (1021)
    Story
    (1042)

    At first, only a few things are known about the celestial object that astronomers dub Rama. It is huge, weighing more than ten trillion tons. And it is hurtling through the solar system at inconceivable speed. Then a space probe confirms the unthinkable: Rama is no natural object. It is, incredibly, an interstellar spacecraft. Space explorers and planet-bound scientists alike prepare for mankind's first encounter with alien intelligence.

    Peter Tersteeg says: "Excellent story, terrible naration"
    "Superb Sf"
    Overall

    I cannot imagine why I've never run across this gem before now...it is one of the best novels I've read in a long time, and the top book that I've read from Arthur C. Clark. Two brief comments: the science element is a bit dated; I knew without looking at the description that it was decades old (turns out it's from 1973). The explorers have to overcome obstacles that would be easily solved by 21st century technology. Second, the other reviewers are down on the narration, that it is dry and "robotic". Folks...to put it simply, that is how one should narrate an Arthur C. Clark novel. It's about the science, never about the human characters. I thought Peter Ganim's measured reading was right on the money. If you want human stories with good sf, read Orson Scott Card.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • We Could Do Worse: A Millennial Collection of Alternate Histories

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs)
    • By Larry Niven, Howard Waldrop, Harry Turtledove, and others
    • Narrated By Richard Gilliland, Yancy Butler
    Overall
    (109)
    Performance
    (29)
    Story
    (29)

    Gary says: "Mediocre"
    "Mediocre"
    Overall

    Alternate History can be the matrix for some excellent speculation and a better understanding of what we are in this reality. This collection almost totally fails to live up to its potential. The Manhattan Project is shunted aside in favor of a rocket program that shoots down an incoming missile? Teddy Roosevelt recreates the Rough Riders to fight in WWI? These could be interesting, but are barely developed…and history doesn’t change much. Other premises are just silly: JFK goes back in time to see the real Camelot; Eisenhower rejects military training and becomes a jazz clarinetist. The only story with any texture is Rusch’s “The Arrival of Truth”, in which Sojourner Truth’s teaching leads to slave revolts.

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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