You no longer follow Robin A. Gower

You will no longer see updates from this user when they write new reviews, or suggestions based on their library or recommendations.

You can re-follow a user if you change your mind.

OK

You now follow Robin A. Gower

You will receive updates from this user when they write new reviews, or suggestions based on their library or recommendations.

You can unfollow a user if you change your mind.

OK

Robin A. Gower

Robin

Point Pleasant, NJ USA | Member Since 2011

10
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 15 reviews
  • 83 ratings
  • 1593 titles in library
  • 36 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
1

  • Reading Between The Lines: From Page to Production

    • ORIGINAL (1 hr and 15 mins)
    • By BBC Audiobooks
    • Narrated By Lynne Truss, Rula Lenska, Lorelei King, and others
    Overall
    (61)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (7)

    Bath-based BBC Audiobooks hosted a sell-out event for the Bath Literature Festival. Reading Between the Lines: From Page to Production featured Rula Lenska, Lynne Truss, Sir Derek Jacobi, and Lorelei King in an entertaining and lively discussion about the art of the audiobook. They were joined by Sunday Times audio critic Karen Robinson, BBC Audiobooks' Publishing Director Jan Paterson, and Senior Producer Kate Thomas.

    Rio Delta Wild says: "fascinating!"
    "Behind the Scenes at BBC audiobooks"
    Overall

    This is a fascinating panel discussion by producers and performers of BBC audiobooks. The observations of the performers have opened my ears to nuances in the readings, but the real revelation is the role of the producer in coordinating and giving coherence to the recording sessions.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ajax Penumbra 1969

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 49 mins)
    • By Robin Sloan
    • Narrated By Ari Fliakos
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (337)
    Performance
    (307)
    Story
    (306)

    Young Ajax Penumbra has not arrived in San Francisco looking for free love or a glimpse of the technological future. He is seeking a book: the single surviving copy of the Techne Tycheon, a mysterious volume that has brought and lost great fortune for anyone who has owned it. The last record of the book locates it in the San Francisco of more than a century earlier, and on that scant bit of evidence, Penumbra's university has dispatched him west to acquire it for their library.

    Bonny says: "Perfect prequel"
    "The Back Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The 24 hour bookstore is a modern icon, and it's good to learn of its custodians' roots. There's still a lot to learn, though. Great fun.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Primate's Memoir: A Neuroscientist’s Unconventional Life Among the Baboons

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Robert M. Sapolsky
    • Narrated By Mike Chamberlain
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (39)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (32)

    "I had never planned to become a savanna baboon when I grew up; instead, I had always assumed I would become a mountain gorilla," writes Robert Sapolsky in this witty and riveting chronicle of a scientist's coming-of-age in remote Africa. An exhilarating account of Sapolsky's twenty-one-year study of a troop of rambunctious baboons in Kenya, A Primate's Memoir interweaves serious scientific observations with wry commentary about the challenges and pleasures of living in the wilds of the Serengeti-for man and beast alike.

    Robin A. Gower says: "Compelling, humane, intelligent"
    "Compelling, humane, intelligent"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book, part memoir, part science, part philosophy, touched me deeply and taught me much about the tragicomedy of primate lives.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • How to Listen to and Understand Great Music, 3rd Edition

    • ORIGINAL (36 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Robert Greenberg
    Overall
    (552)
    Performance
    (493)
    Story
    (484)

    Great music is a language unto its own, a means of communication of unmatched beauty and genius. And it has an undeniable power to move us in ways that enrich our lives-provided it is understood.If you have ever longed to appreciate great concert music, to learn its glorious language and share in its sublime pleasures, the way is now open to you, through this series of 48 wonderful lectures designed to make music accessible to everyone who yearns to know it, regardless of prior training or knowledge.

    Lee the reader says: "Wonderful, I've wanted this for so long...but..."
    "Understanding enhances pleasure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Perfect balance of explanation and demonstration. Learned, genial teacher makes difficult ideas accessible. The pieces studied will be "owned" forever by the student.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • All She Wrote: Holmes and Moriarity, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Josh Lanyon
    • Narrated By Kevin R. Free
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (206)
    Performance
    (197)
    Story
    (194)

    A murderous fall down icy stairs is nearly the death of Anna Hitchcock, the much-beloved "American Agatha Christie" and Christopher Holmes' former mentor. Anna's plea for him to host her annual winter writing retreat touches all Kit's sore spots - traveling, teaching writing classes, and separation from his new lover, J.X. Moriarity. For J.X., Kit's cancellation of yet another romantic weekend is the death knell of a relationship that has been limping along for months. But that's just as well, right?

    Anthony says: "Josh Lanyon does it again!!"
    "Classic tale; modern mores"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does All She Wrote rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is a traditional murder mystery inhabited by many of the usual suspects. It contains likable characters and provides gossipy insights into the publishing world. The protagonist's insecurities are endearing if overdone, and his boyfriend (an ex-cop) is too dishy and too tender to be true. I was slightly embarrassed to learn more about the mechanics of gay sex than I was ready to know -- but then, I am an older woman raised in an age more given to implication than to description. Nothing offensive here, though -- in fact, it's downright sentimental. The mystery is satisfying, and justice is done, though in secret. The narration is smooth and well paced, fitting the characters well.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dagger and the Cross: A Novel of Crusades

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Judith Tarr
    • Narrated By James Patrick Cronin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    In the time of the Crusades, in a world at war, a prince of immortal lineage and a spirit of fire who was once an assassin prepare to celebrate a royal wedding. But he is Christian and she is Muslim, and there are those who hate them not only for their disparate faiths but for their power and magic.

    Robin A. Gower says: ""Afterwards" to the fabulous Alamut"
    ""Afterwards" to the fabulous Alamut"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Tarr is a real master of historical detail and the creator of a magical past that is internally consistent and complements the scholarly past seemlessly. In the Dagger and the Cross, she returns to the Crusader Kingdom and displays her understanding of political pressures in both the Christian and the Islamic worlds. The dilemma that motivates the action -- the need for a papal dispensation for marriage between a nominally Christian mage prince and a half-wild Muslim afrit -- does not have much emotional force, but the supporting characters are strong, the sociological framework is credible, and the spiritual evil of intolerance in the Inquistors is satisfyingly threatening.

    This book is a sequel to Alamut, and essential listening for those who treasure that brilliant work of fantastic historical imagination.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Hounds of God

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Judith Tarr
    • Narrated By James Patrick Cronin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Alfred of St. Ruan's Abbey is a monk and a scholar, a religious man whose vocation is beyond question. But Alfred is also, without a doubt, one of the fair folk, for though he is more than seventy years old by the Abbey's records, he seems to be only a youth. But Alfred is drawn from the haven of his monastery into his dangerous currents of politics when an ambassador from the kingdom of Rhiyana to Richard Coeur de Leon is wounded and Alfred himself is sent to complete the mission.

    Robin A. Gower says: "Available at last"
    "Available at last"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Hounds of God?

    The Hound and the Falcon trilogy has long been one of my favorite fastasy/history series, and I am delighted that it is now available on Audible. Judith Tarr is deeply knowledgeable about Celtic legends, the Crusades and the medieval church, and she has created an internally consistent alternate reality compounded to the mix. Her characters are heroic but flawed, though most of the villains are thoroughly corrupted. Who would have thought that a question of the existence vel non of the human soul could be presented with such poignancy? The magic is not crude, cute or silly; it is integral to the story. Tarr is interested in how people know and touch each other; her magic is used mostly to create intimacies that most real people long for but never achieve.


    What other book might you compare The Hounds of God to and why?

    Other books by Tarr. Alamut, a prequel to the Hound and the Falcon, is masterful. Tarr's focus on the challenges and vulnerabilities of interpersonal communication is reminiscent of Ursula LeGuin's Left Hand of Darkness. Tarr's work is not as epic as Tolkien, and it is more serious than Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover books, but I'd place them all near to each other on the bookshelf.


    What three words best describe James Patrick Cronin’s performance?

    I must answer in more that three words. As a narrator and voice actor, Cronin is admirable. His voices fit the characters well, although he makes the deaf young man sound a bit doltish. However, I wish that Cronin had been better prepared to read the book. A few relatively unusual English words are mispronounced, which is irritating; worse still is that words relating specifically to the medieval world and the medieval church, names from the Bible and of Greek and Latin authors are almost always wrong and sometimes barely recognizable. Cronin obviously knows no French or Latin, and regularly mispronounces words in those languages, although he is master of a credible French accent. His recitation of Latin texts is hideous, betraying the fact that he has no idea what is saying or how it should be punctuated, and has no sensitivity to what is, after all, a metrical language.. I won't let these gripes ruin the book for me, but these frequent errors fall like screeching chalk on the blackboard. Shouldn't a professional reader check on pronunciations before he starts to perform?


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

    Yes, I cried at the end. Attachment always brings suffering; the question is, is it worth it?


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Schism: Triad, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Catherine Asaro
    • Narrated By Suzanne Weintraub, Catherine Asaro
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (99)
    Performance
    (53)
    Story
    (53)

    In 2002, Catherine Asaro won the Nebula Award for The Quantum Rose, the sixth novel in her Saga of the Skolian Empire. This very same novel was also named Best SF Novel by the Romantic Times. Schism: Part One of Triad is the 10th novel in this multiple award-winning series

    Rebecca says: "Poor Narrator Distracts from Good Book"
    "Well, I didn't stop listening..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Schism? What did you like least?

    Schism is intended as light reading, and it is mildly entertaining. I didn't love the characters or their world. The social differences that are supposed to motivate the society were not credible to me. I listened to the entire book (which I do not always do when I dislike the story), but I won't follow the series.


    Did Suzanne Weintraub and Catherine Asaro do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    The narration was smooth, but the reading is full of mispronunciations of middle-school level words. Isn't there a director or editor who polices these mistakes? About halfway through, I began to jot down the words irritatingly mispronounced by the narrator -- they include bohemoth, affluent, tumult, chasm, implacable, simulacrum, molecular and neutrino. Other listeners might not notice, but these errors distract me and detract from my enjoyment of the story.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Fellowship of the Ring: Book One in The Lord of the Rings Trilogy

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By J. R. R. Tolkien
    • Narrated By Rob Inglis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6906)
    Performance
    (6183)
    Story
    (6277)

    The Fellowship of the Ring, the first volume in the trilogy, tells of the fateful power of the One Ring. It begins a magnificent tale of adventure that will plunge the members of the Fellowship of the Ring into a perilous quest and set the stage for the ultimate clash between the powers of good and evil.

    Ellen says: "At last - The Definitive Recording!"
    "The story than which there is no greater"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This is by far the most exciting, most literate, most frightening, most elevating, most imaginative, most humane story ever written.If you have only seen the film, well, too bad. All that remains to be said is that Rob Inglis' narration is masterful.If you have only one credit, use it here.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Getting Stoned with the Savages: A Trip through the Islands of Fiji and Vanuatu

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By J. Maarten Troost
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (356)
    Performance
    (159)
    Story
    (162)

    After two grueling years on the island of Tarawa, Troost was in no hurry to return to the South Pacific until he began to feel remarkably out of place in modern America. He knew it was time to set off again for parts unknown. Here he tells the story of his time on Vanuatu, a cluster of islands where he struggles against typhoons, earthquakes, and giant centipedes but finds himself swept up in the laid-back, clothing-optional lifestyle of the islanders.

    L. Worthington says: "My new favorite author!"
    "Perfect of its sort."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Getting Stoned with the Savages the most enjoyable?

    A memoir of two years on a South Pacific coral atoll written a counter cultural Dutch/ Czech/American ne'er-do-well who has nevertheless done very well as an observer of his world and fearless taster of unaccustomed customs. He must equally amuse and frustrate his NGO administrator girlfriend/spouse. As a former recruiter of volunteers for service in the South Pacific, I appreciated the absurd authenticity of his tale.

    This is one of the few books that has delighted both my mildly rebellious daughter and her fuddy duddy mother.


    What about Simon Vance’s performance did you like?

    You mean that wasn't Martin himself? You could have fooled me. Simon Vance is also the best of his ilk.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Spirit Ring

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Lois McMaster Bujold
    • Narrated By Jessica Almasy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (173)
    Performance
    (146)
    Story
    (151)

    Fiametta Beneforte dreamed of making beautiful and enchanted objets d'art, but alas her magician-goldsmith father was more likely to have her scrub the kiln than study magic. After all, it was a waste to train a mere daughter beyond the needs of the moment.... Thur Ochs dreamed of escaping the icy mines of Bruinwald. But the letter from his brother Uri arranging his apprenticeship to Master Beneforte was not the only force that drew him over the mountains to the Duchy of Montefoglia.

    Becca says: "On the whole, a disappointment"
    "Okay"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Anything 'Bujold has written is worth a listen, but this certainly would not have made me the avid fan I am of her other works. It's a good, solid, historical/magic genre tale.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.