I purchased this book because of Orson Scott Card. I am a huge fan of his Ender/ Bean series and thought I might enjoy a collection of short stories to which he has given his support/ endorsement. I have to say that I disliked this collection overall. Several of the stories just bored me. Several felt incomplete or too short. The worst thing, however, was the abundance of what I can only describe as Sci-Fi Torture Porn.
While I'm a big fan of fantasy, sci-fi and even to a certain extent, horror, there was just no reason to include several of these stories in this book as they have been done before, have been done better, and made for a disgusting read. I like Stephen King short story collections a lot, and in his collections, there are always a few stories that are just gross, but usually only at the end of the short and usually in a surprising way. In other words, I am able to enjoy his short story, even if repulsive, because it has something in it that is clever or surprising. In this case these grotesque stories whole point seems to disgust and horrify the reader endlessly. When the end of these stories came, I just felt used and as if the writers were just trying to manipulate me, rather than entertain or enthrall me with their tales.
I would recommend a pass on this collection. There are much better collections out there with stories that are enthralling, entertaining and surprising, rather than just boring and/ or disgusting. Overall, the performances were fine or better, but couldn't make up for the material being.
I purchased this book because I was interested in the story behind the headlines. I wasn't interested in the sensational portions of her tale, as I assumed that she was brutalized by this nut. Instead, I was interested in her insights into her experience and how she mentally handled being snatched, kidnapped and finally rescued. I was hoping for a book written and read by an adult. Instead, this book feels like it was written and read by a 14-year old.
I have a very intelligent 15 year old daughter. The level of writing in this book is barely what I would expect if she were to write a book right now. The narrative is extremely immature and there are no real insights into her experiences. Her sentences are short and to the point and she repeats herself over and over again. After listening to nearly 2/3 of it, I simply was not able to finish listening to this book, even though I was very interested in her story. I have over 200 Audible books in my library and there are only two that I didn't finish. This is one of them.
Ms. Smart is a terrible reader. I understand why she would want to read the book herself, but she's just not good. I don't know if a better reader could have saved this book, though.
You're likely to get as much about this story from simply reading about it in the newspaper. Save your money and time for another Audible book.
I read several reviews which gave me the impression that this story was somehow unfinished, that there was an unexpected cliff-hanger and/ or that this story ended abruptly without fulfilling the listener's expectations. I would like to assure people reading these reviews in order to make a decision about buying this book, that this is not the case. The title of this book is "Earth Unaware" and that is the story about which this book is written.
Is this book a set-up for the next book to come? Yes. Of course. But it is also a story that can stand alone in many ways. There is a lot to know about what was going on when the Formics show up and this book is the starting point.
To keep this review short, I have to say that I really enjoyed this book. I have listened to all of the "Ender" and "Ender's Shadow" series and I liked this book more than some of those. The reading is fantastic, as usual. I am definitely looking forward to the next in the series.
I would not listen to this book again, although I might read it. I tend to listen to books I like over and over again, but Mr. Kings narration is not good. The story is wonderful, and I would like to get more out of it, but it's just not possible with his read.
I liked the "story within a story" format, which Mr, King has used before. Of course, I am a huge fan of The Dark Tower series, so I enjoyed my time with Roland and his Ka-Tet.
I'm so sorry that Mr. King chose to read this book himself. He's a wonderful writer, but a very poor audio performer. His voice, which is not a pleasant voice anyway, and the way that he performed the story was very distracting and actually put me to sleep several times, which never happens when I listen to a Stephen King novel!
If you like Stephen King, you will enjoy this story. However, beware that the author has done his own wonderful novel a disservice by reading it himself.
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