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J. Carpenter

roulette

Fremont, CA USA

ratings
436
REVIEWS
18
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
1
HELPFUL VOTES
56

  • The Restaurant at the End of the Universe: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Douglas Adams
    • Narrated By Martin Freeman
    Overall
    (1592)
    Performance
    (934)
    Story
    (950)

    Facing annihilation at the hands of the warlike Vogons is a curious time to have a craving for tea. It could only happen to the cosmically displaced Arthur Dent and his curious comrades in arms as they hurtle across space powered by pure improbability, and desperately in search of a place to eat.

    J. Carpenter says: "awesome... except for the voice of Zaphod"
    "awesome... except for the voice of Zaphod"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is beautifully read with the screeching halt exception of Zaphod Beeblebrox. For unknown reasons the narrator chose to read this character as a stereotypical New York thug. Think Rocky Balboa and you'll have it. Other than that, the book is excellent.

    11 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Hero

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Perry Moore
    • Narrated By Michael Urie
    Overall
    (811)
    Performance
    (564)
    Story
    (570)

    In the story comic book legend Stan Lee calls "spellbinding" and "totally original," Thom Creed has secrets. For one, like his father, he has super powers. Also, he's been asked to join the League—the very organization of superheroes that spurned his dad. Then there’s the secret Thom can barely face himself: he's gay. But becoming a member of the League opens up a new world to Thom. There, he connects with a misfit group of aspiring heroes, including Scarlett, Typhoid Larry, and Ruth, a wise old broad who can see the future. Like Thom, these heroes have things to hide....

    Robert says: "Give it a listen!"
    "Rehashed superheros and bad romance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Audible reviewer Megan Volpert starts her review with "No one on earth has anything negative to say about this book", but I find that hard to believe. For one thing, the author should have invented more of his own superheros instead of re-hashing old favorites. He renamed them, but it's apparent that Superman, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, etc. are all there. The plot is pretty predictable and offers no real surprises.

    Thom encounters a LOT of SUPER-negative reaction to his gayness which I suppose if you lived in deepest, darkest Biblebelt or else in the heart of Red-neck-land (often the same thing) you would probably still encounter. It's a little hard for me to go with it in this day and age, but then I live in a socially advanced city so maybe I'm not the best judge on that.

    The premise is great, I love the idea of a gay superhero kid. I like his superhero talent, and that he has a great relationship with his Dad, and the story of his disappeared Mom. It's apparent that this is Moore's first novel, but for a first novel the writing is overall good enough. I hope that in future novels he develops his own line of superheros and makes them become classics rather than reusing other people's creations.

    Moore writes romance very badly, and the story would have been a lot more interesting without it, gay or straight. It doesn't matter who is involved in a romance, if it's badly written it really grates and romance is well known for being one of the hardest things to write well. Our hero Thom thinks like the heroine in a cheesy romance novel whenever he starts contemplating his own gayness or love life. He jumps to silly conclusions that are obviously wrong, and reacts with equal silliness. Could have been done a lot better, or better yet left out. I dinged this story down to 2 stars instead of 3 for this.

    Moore also leaves the open question, if Thom can heal everyone, why doesn't he heal everyone? There are sick people all around him, but he doesn't always fix them. I guess I agree with "David" who also reviewed this book saying: "Yay" for the message, "Meh" for the story".

    The narrator did a great job. There are a handful of narrators who are my very favorite and I wouldn't say he falls into that category, but if I wanted another book and it was narrated by him it I'd consider that to be just fine. I didn't mind his voices or inflections at all, and I'm pretty picky about narration.


    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Light

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By M. John Harrison
    • Narrated By Julian Elfer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (112)
    Performance
    (96)
    Story
    (99)

    In contemporary London, Michael Kearney is a serial killer on the run from the entity that drives him to kill. He is seeking escape in a future that doesn' t yet exist - a quantum world that he and his physicist partner hope to access through a breach of time and space itself.

    Max says: "Utterly Brilliant"
    "Not enough plot and strangely too much sex"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If this book is any indication, the author never gets any sex and as a result imagines a world where that's all people do all day long. All people, all the time, over and over. When they aren't getting any, they're begging someone for it. I'm no prude, I like sex in a novel, but if you took all instances of the word f**k out of this book I think it would reduce the total length by half. It makes the characters pretty shallow. There is one character, Seria Mau, who is not a sex-a-holic having given up her body to become One with her ship. But even she watches in fascination as her passengers have sex over and over.

    The plot is confusing and hard to follow which wouldn't bother me if it was more interesting. I wanted very much to like "Light", and because it was a "Neil Gaiman Presents" book I expected much more out of it. The narrator is really good, and his voice compliments the genera and "feeling" of the novel. The writing itself is great, but the story... not so much. I made it through 3.5 hours but then I threw in the towel because the plot was stagnant and I was bored.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Her Royal Spyness: A Royal Spyness Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Rhys Bowen
    • Narrated By Katherine Kellgren
    Overall
    (4127)
    Performance
    (3508)
    Story
    (3492)

    Georgie, aka Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, cousin of King George V of England, is penniless and trying to survive on her own as an ordinary person in London in 1932. So far she has managed to light a fire and boil an egg... She's gate-crashed a wedding... She's making money by secretly cleaning houses... And she's been asked to spy for Her Majesty the Queen.

    Coffee Lover says: "Joy, Joy, Joy!"
    "Fun but not very clever"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The characters are shallow and not very bright. The fairly predictable plot becomes increasingly contrived by the actions of those same "short-bus" characters.

    The narration is excellent and saves an otherwise bland book. The book also hovers too close to the romance genera. I found I didn't care at all about her romantic involvement and was just putting in time through those parts till the "real" story picked back up. I also find it a bad sign when I'm waiting for the author to remember a plot point she set up and which is screaming to be handled or for the character to do something besides dig her- or him-self in further by doing the obviously wrong thing. You should never find yourself rolling your eyes as a story progresses, but I did repeatedly. I was expecting a clever protagonist who did things herself instead of being handheld through life.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Hostile Hospital: A Series of Unfortunate Events #8

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Lemony Snicket
    • Narrated By Tim Curry
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (38)
    Story
    (38)

    This audio is the only one which describes every last detail of the Baudelaire children's miserable stay at Heimlich Hospital, which makes it one of the most dreadful audios in the world.

    Anne says: "How much more can we take??!!"
    "EXCELLENT reading, of another fun book by Snicket"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I think Tim Curry was born to read these books. His voice is perfect for conveying the sense of doom and gloom that hangs over the unfortunate Baudelaire children. This is one of those kids books that adults can enjoy listening to nearly as much as kids do! I love his method of teaching children new words in a way that ties in with the story.

    Highly recommended for kids, and also for adults who love kids stories.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Stainless Steel Rat

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Harry Harrison
    • Narrated By Phil Gigante
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (696)
    Performance
    (510)
    Story
    (511)

    DiGriz is caught during one of his crimes and recruited into the Special Corps. Boring, routine desk work during his probationary period results in his discovering that someone is building a battleship, thinly disguised as an industrial vessel. In the peaceful League no one has battleships anymore, so the builder of this one would be unstoppable. DiGriz' hunt for the guilty becomes a personal battle between himself and the beautiful but deadly Angelina, who his planning a coup on one of the feudal worlds.

    M. Stephenson says: "A Rat Race Worth Running!!"
    "Mediocre story with a terrible reading"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I know that Guidall can do great readings (his reading of "American Gods" for example), but this book was not one of them. It was, in fact, awful. He overemphasized too many words and worse, continuously mis-emphasized. The story might be better if read from a book, or with a different narrator, but I found this difficult to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Magic Kingdom for Sale - Sold!: Magic Kingdom of Landover, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Terry Brooks
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (855)
    Performance
    (427)
    Story
    (429)

    Landover was a genuine magic kingdom, with fairy folk and wizardry, just as the advertisement promised. But after he purchased it, Ben Holiday learned that there were a few details the ad had failed to mention.

    The kingdom was in ruin. The Barons refused to recognize the king, and the peasants were without hope.

    Al says: "If you're looking for Tolkein...."
    "Boring and slow"
    Overall

    I might have enjoyed this book as a very young teen, but wow, is it slow and plodding. Boring and predictable are words that also spring to mind.

    The reader, Dick Hill, is great for books about vampires and gritty detectives, but this is not the right genre for his voice. It's not a horrible reading by any means, but the material doesn't suit his style.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Atrocity Archives: A Laundry Files Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Charles Stross
    • Narrated By Gideon Emery
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (515)
    Performance
    (405)
    Story
    (404)

    Bob Howard is a computer-hacker desk jockey, who has more than enough trouble keeping up with the endless paperwork he has to do on a daily basis. He should never be called on to do anything remotely heroic. But for some reason, he is.

    Ethan M. says: "A great techno-spy-Lovecraftian-horror-comedy"
    "Awesome book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is well read by Gideon Emery, and a great book! I'd describe it as a Science Fiction/Horror/Comedy. The back story for the Concrete Jungle (the 2nd book included after the Atrocity Archive) gets a little slow, but it has a great payoff. Makes me want more office toys!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Dead Witch Walking

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Kim Harrison
    • Narrated By Marguerite Gavin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2880)
    Performance
    (1979)
    Story
    (1986)

    Rachel Morgan is a runner with the Inderland Runner Services, apprehending law-breakers throughout Cincinnati. She's also a witch, one of the many Inderlanders who revealed themselves after a genetically engineered virus wiped out 50 percent of humanity. Witches, warlocks, vampires, werewolves: the creatures of dreams and nightmares have lived beside humans for centuries, hiding their powers. But now they've stopped hiding, and nothing will be the same.

    Patti says: "wildly entertaining"
    "Could do with a better narration."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The book is ok (not great, but ok). The narration is a bit low end. Gavin has the ability to read fine, but her character voices are terrible verging on annoying.

    I also was annoyed that the author didn't bother to look up what order mink are in. Hint: It's not rodentia. Mink (and weasels) are in the order Carnivora.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Carpe Jugulum: Discworld, Book 23

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Nigel Planer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (512)
    Performance
    (308)
    Story
    (311)

    Mightily Oats has not picked a good time to be a priest. He thought he'd come to the mountain kingdom of Lancre for a simple little religious ceremony. Now he's caught up in a war between vampires and witches, and he's not sure there is a right side. There are the witches - young Agnes, who is really in two minds about everything, Magrat, who is trying to combine witchcraft and nappies, Nanny Ogg, who is far too knowing . . . and Granny Weatherwax, who is big trouble.

    David says: "laugh til you understand"
    "My favorite author, and my favorite narrator!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a great book, and is beautifully read.

    Pratchett has a unique style for picking interesting character names, and he has obviously had a lot of fun with that in this book. Lacrimosa de Magpyr, Cryptopher, Mightily Oats. Even his place names are great - "Don'tgonearthe Castle"

    Highly recommended!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Men at Arms: Discworld #15

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Nigel Planer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1138)
    Performance
    (502)
    Story
    (505)

    MICHAEL says: "Decent character development, poor audio quality"
    "Brilliant! (as usual)"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Pratchett is my favorite author, bar none. His turns of phrase and deep characterization give you a real sense of being there in all his Discworld novels.

    Nigel Planer brings his acting talent full on in all his readings, and gives each character the life that Pratchett intended when he wrote about them.

    Any Discworld book is worth listening to. I have them all, and have listened to many more than once. Best purchases I ever made.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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