Top 20 at least, maybe top 15 all time. I do have a place in my heart for Mr. King's work. Will Patton and Craig Wasson (11/22/63, if you haven't heard it, go now...we'll wait) have perfected the narrative voice of Stephen King.
Tight and tidy plot! Raymond Chandler doesn't have anything on Stephen King. Elvis Cole, you've got some competition. Through in a little Dirty Harry...you get the idea. There were quite a few nods to the old cop/PI genre - I loved them all, with a tip of the fedora, shweethart.
But, I will say that Will did a fantastic job on the narration and the voices. He would narrate in character, so you'd know from whose perspective that chapter was about. He did a great job with Jerome, Holly, and Mr. Mercedes. Even the secondary characters were fleshed out very nicely -- as I listened I got so involved and absorbed that I felt as if I were listening to a radio play straight out of the 1940's. The only thing missing were cheesy sound effects. Perhaps we could get a special edition with those...Hell, yes, I'd buy it.
Holly's character development was superb. Even though she was introduced relatively late in the story her arc was the most compelling and gut wrenching in the book.
I was telling a coworker, who is a Jack Reacher/Lee Child fan about this book with high praise. I was about 3/4 the way through the book and I mentioned to him that I enjoyed it so much that I would enjoy this cast of characters in future books but that usually isn't SK's style; he's not much of a sequel-er. Imagine my surprise and joy when I read a 'rumor' on Twitter that this is (maybe) part one of a potential trilogy!
As Bill Hodges would say,
I got the first book on sale from Audible and immediately thought it was a teen title. Started listening and it is most definitely not. I immediately downloaded the last two books and listened to them in rapid fire succession. Most enjoyable: expectations exceeded by a really fun read!
Certain parts reminded me of "2010: A Space Odyssey", other parts reminded me of "The Light of Other Days". While not exactly a comparison, these are the two books that came to mind most often while I was listening. I like emerging AI stories and this one did not disappoint.
Early on, when Caitlin was chosen as a candidate to received an experimental surgery. I felt excited for her and her family. It was akin to gaining a superpower!
Laughed and cried. There are moments of lighthearted teen angst stuff and then moments of serious teen angst stuff.
These books can and should be read one after another - this review and rating will apply to all three - really enjoyed my time in this book, it ended all too soon!
I loved the way that Marcus' family was supported so completely by his community and his shipmates. The SEAL training portion of the book was fascinating but there are better books dealing specifically with his training (The Warrior Elite: The Forging of SEAL Class 228 by Dick Couch). And, of course, the missions themselves were hair raising listens!
Marcus - his story, his ethics, and his personal views on the media and politics came through loud and clear. I didn't agree with them all, but they were heartfelt and sincere.
Marcus voice was well represented. Some reviewers have criticized Kevin Collins' "fake Texas accent". I am from Oklahoma and I thought he did a great job! You probably wouldn't want an authentic Texas accent; Boomhauer is from Texas but I wouldn't want him narrating this story, I tell ya hwat!
"In Afghanistan Everyone Can Hear You Fall"
"We Need Taller Actors In Hollywood"
If you must see the movie, read or listen to the book first. The endings are completely different. The book has a much more satisfying climax.
More But Less.
The first two trilogies seemed more epic to me. After listening through to the 3rd part of this recording it dawned on me that only five days had passed in Land-time from the beginning of this book to around the middle. I'm not saying it's slow moving, but dang. So, what we have is more of a story that involves characters that I've loved and read about since I was 17, but the story doesn't seem as important as the first and second trilogies conveyed. Still a good fantasy story but not as consuming.
Absolutely! I've invested a lot of time in Thomas Covenant and Linden Avery. I don't intend to quit now. You should probably be warned though: Audible does not have the second book of the final set (Fatal Revenant) in their store. However, if you are as much of a Scott Brick fan as I am, you may want to consider getting it from his website, Brick By Brick - it looks like he may own some sort of licensing rights about who can distribute this recording. Kind of pricey, but the alternative is to read the book while imagining Scott's voice.
He understands the characters in this book. His performance of the Haruchai is what I consider to be spot on. Aneal's affliction is excellent as well.
Not like in the first trilogy. This is a good start to a familiar story - I'm not expecting too many surprises, though.
Fans will probably consider this a must read. Some of us who have waited decades for the conclusion of the series will also fall into this category; I'm still a fan! New fans: beware of dismissive reviews! As an old time Land Lover, I've needed the years between publication to digest and reread the first 6 books to understand and appreciate the Land. I've had the time to reflect on the motivations of the main characters. Some readers write this off as a series of books about a rapist, but that is way too simple. Donaldson's characters are complex and their reactions are usually unpredictable, much like most humans. You probably won't want to plow through all these in quick succession - let them mellow and age. You'll know when you are ready for the next one.Enjoy!
Classic. Science. Fiction. Modern science fiction relies greatly on aliens, futuristic technology, divine intervention for plot development. No aliens needed - the wits (and wit) of the main character and those of the NASA scientists kept the momentum raw and engaging. This book was almost a "How To" manual regarding surviving on a lifeless planet - I'm not a botanist but it at least SEEMED plausible Borderline voyeuristic in its journal entry style also made for an exciting and fresh approach to what could have been boilerplate SF.
I had to listen to the last third of the book in one sitting. The story moves along very nicely up until the last act but after that I could think of nothing else than "What's gonna happen to Watney?" I will not give anything away about the plot, but be ready for the last few hours in one satisfying stretch.
Mark Watney was the main protagonist. The way that RC Bray depicted Mark''s journal entries was superb - I got a great sense of who the character was by his conversational quirks and humor.
Yes, but work/family/bathroom commitments prevented this until the final third of the book.
Attention, 20th Century Fox! Start making this movie now! "Gravity" and "Moon" have shown us that single character space dramas are not only possible but, if the story is compelling, excellent as well. This is another such story. I don't want to wreck your personal mental image of the main character, but Steven Yeun kept coming to mind - I have no idea why, though...
This great novel is a long book, made longer by the foot-end-notes. Unfortunately, I had read and heard folks say that those little footnotes are both enjoyable and necessary to tie plot points and characters together. I agree. But so and because they are necessary I had to find some way to incorporate them into the audio-book experience. This way suited me the best: I listened to the book on my way into work and on the way home from work. Once the female narrator cued a footnote, I would simply pause the audio and switch to FM, usually classic rock, but sometimes sports or NPR and continue the drive into work or home depending on the time of day. Upon arriving, I would pull out my physical copy of IJ and read the footnote. Of course, I also listened to the audio form in the evenings and weekends, but I found the drive time listening the most satisfying. I looked forward to work for some 2 months, and likewise enjoyed my drive home. Some days I could get no more than a few minutes in before switching off, but that was fine. **Important** I also would back-reference the page from the text to the end note for future readings as I plan to start over pretty soon. (Like foot/end note 1. is on page 2, etc)
For some reason, I can't get this entertainment out of my head...
Wil Wheaton Delivers!I am a Scalzi fan and listening to Wheaton's performance of his work will solidify his position at the top of my favorite artists. His portrayal of a drunken crewman in deep conversation had me giggling. Scalzi's works are heavy in dialog, but the way that Wil animates each character you will have no problem keeping up. Good stuff!The main story arc ends after about 4 & 1/2 hours which was a very satisfying story. Then Scalzi tacks on the codas, which turn out to be 3 excellent tie-ins that give you not one, but four different (and equally satisfying) climaxes. They will in turn have you laughing and crying. This book will stay with me for a while (I am sending copies to my friends who are also big Original Series Trek fans). In fact I will probably listen to this again.
I didn't really have a favorite character, but the dynamic within Scalzi's Redshirt group was at times hilarious and at other times touching.
Yes, and this is one of his best.
Not gonna spoil this but I experienced both extremes - there was plenty wacky space humor with just enough father/son tenderness thrown in to make this a great, if not unusually structured, book.
From what I've listened to so far the narrator (Grover Gardner) does a great job! He pulled me into the story with no distracting affectation that you get from so many other recorded books of the horror/fantasy genre. However, the daunting 48 hour listen may have me augmenting the audio edition with my paperback.
Grant's Pass - by Amanda PIller. A post-apocalyptic anthology, well written and very fun to read. At times I felt that this collection was the 'lost chapters' of The Stand.
Swan's Song - A very good read in the same vein, Robert McGammon is another of my favorites (unrelated but other great books by him: Boy's Life and Going South)
The Road - by Cormac McCarthy. Grittier and darker than The Stand but evocative (the book is better than the movie and I liked the movie)
Gosh, so many! - the tunnel, the...hey, I'm not gonna spoil this for first timers! Read it and love it! Once everyone is up to speed, I may update this.
To all those folks who won't read this just because it's by Stephen King - please do yourself a favor and get this book. Although is has some 'horrific' scenes, the character development and story arc are some of the best I've ever read. Don't be put off by his reputation as Master of Horror - he's also a Master Storyteller; remember, this is the same author who gave us Stand By Me and The Shawshank Redemption.
Now, if we can just get Peter Jackson to take a peak at this little book....
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