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Andrew

ratings
29
REVIEWS
25
FOLLOWING
7
FOLLOWERS
6
HELPFUL VOTES
121

  • Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By J.K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    Overall
    (27432)
    Performance
    (25255)
    Story
    (25212)

    When Dumbledore arrives at Privet Drive one summer night to collect Harry Potter, his wand hand is blackened and shrivelled, but he does not reveal why. Secrets and suspicion are spreading through the wizarding world, and Hogwarts itself is not safe. Harry is convinced that Malfoy bears the Dark Mark: there is a Death Eater amongst them. Harry will need powerful magic and true friends as he explores Voldemort's darkest secrets, and Dumbledore prepares him to face his destiny....

    Gina says: "Masterful Narration Continues"
    "Let Us Pursue that Flighty Temptress, Adventure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    “Let us step into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure.”
    ― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

    Story: This was always my favorite of the movies and the book certainly doesn't dissapoint! The plot continues to thicken and this particular book finally gets into some of the darkest aspects of the entire series. The character development is great and the story, like the other books, is beautifully descriptive, detailed and captivating. I found myself deeply invested in the struggles of Harry, Malfoy and the other characters. This book really gets a lot of emotions from the reader/listener.

    Narration: I gave this 4 stars as I didn't think all the voices were fantastic. I'm sure I missed this in the previous books since I was so into the story, but it's become clear that some of the female voices just aren't nearly as strong as the male voices. Luna and Ginny stand out, but I believe there was another female character in there that fell short of what I would have expected. Aside from that, the other characters and the way Jim Dale captures the emotions is great!

    Overall: Half-Blood Prince is simply phenomenal. This book does a great job of explaining so, so much about the entire series. It also builds up to the final book which I've never read, but I'm sure will be amazing. I'm a fan of this book in particular as it gets darker; you can feel the struggle and emotions of the characters and it's thrilling! A great novel and a great addition to the series.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Ben Hogan's Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Ben Hogan, Herbert Warren Wind
    • Narrated By Steve Carlson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (244)
    Performance
    (201)
    Story
    (202)

    Over 50 years later, Ben Hogan's book Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf is still considered one of the premier instructional books on the fundamentals of the game of golf. Renowned for his swing, Ben Hogan methodically describes his technique through his lessons. Whether you are a beginner or a pro, this famous book is a must-have reference guide for any golfer.

    Balathayaparan Thayaparan says: "I love it, It is Really helpful to understand and play the game well."
    "There’s Nothing Difficult About Golf, Nothing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    “Up to a considerable point, as I see it, there’s nothing difficult about golf, nothing. I see no reason, truly, why the average golfer, if he goes about it intelligently, shouldn’t play in the 70s”
    ― Ben Hogan, Ben Hogan's Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf

    Story: The story or purpose of this book is pretty straightforward - to help you improve your golf game. Ben Hogan, one of the greatest of all time, breaks the book into sections for players to focus on step-by-step. Take one fundamental, put it to practice and then come back for more. The book is setup well and is easy to follow.

    Narration: Steve Carlson did a great job with the narration. He was definitely well-suited for the book. The pronunciation and pacing was excellent for the material and I just felt calm and relaxed throughout the listen - which is how I should feel while golfing!

    Overall: **How does this book not automatically come with any purchase of a set of clubs!?** Seriously, this should be everyone's initial go-to manual. Truly, these are great and timeless fundamentals which were applied years ago and can be applied for years to come. I've started to use this information for my own game and already see improvements. Scores in the 70s - here I come!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By J.K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    Overall
    (29732)
    Performance
    (27332)
    Story
    (27293)

    Dark times have come to Hogwarts. After the Dementors' attack on his cousin Dudley, Harry Potter knows that Voldemort will stop at nothing to find him. There are many who deny the Dark Lord's return, but Harry is not alone: a secret order gathers at Grimmauld Place to fight against the Dark forces. Harry must allow Professor Snape to teach him how to protect himself from Voldemort's savage assaults on his mind. But they are growing stronger by the day and Harry is running out of time....

    Gretchen SLP says: "Best Book You'll Read This Year"
    "You're just as sane as I am"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: Order of the Phoenix is truly amazing! The story; the way it builds, the tension and suspense, everything about it is beautifully detailed and yet again captivating. There is so much in this book that I never realized before (having only seen the movie previously). There is a lot of action, but I think my favorite parts are from the amount of information that is given that helps develop and further drive the story. I also found it hilarious thinking of the characters ages in this book and myself at that time in life... typical teenage troubles :P

    Performance: For me, something about Jim Dale's performance missed the mark compared to the other books. I can't remember all the characters, but a few of the female characters didn't sound right (or how I would have thought in my head). Luna stands out the most, though. Whenever she came up, I would think it was another guy in the group until the description came in saying it was Luna speaking. Aside from that, the other characters (and there are plenty of characters) were really great!

    Overall: It's funny, this book was one of my least favorite originally (again, having only seen the movie previously - for some reason I just didn't think much of it), but now it's one of my favorites! I really feel it's an action-packed book, starting with the attack in the beginning and the duel towards the end. That said, there is also a lot in between that gives Order of the Phoenix so much magic!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By J.K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    Overall
    (32205)
    Performance
    (29528)
    Story
    (29471)

    The Triwizard Tournament is to be held at Hogwarts. Only wizards who are over seventeen are allowed to enter - but that doesn't stop Harry dreaming that he will win the competition. Then at Hallowe'en, when the Goblet of Fire makes its selection, Harry is amazed to find his name is one of those that the magical cup picks out. He will face death-defying tasks, dragons and Dark wizards, but with the help of his best friends, Ron and Hermione, he might just make it through - alive!

    D.S.G. says: "“Harreeeeeeeeee”"
    "Only with Acceptance can There be Recovery"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: Goblet of Fire is definitely one of the better stories in the series. The previous three were really good and I admit that Prisoner of Azkaban is still one of my favorites, but Goblet of Fire really lets the magic start to shine! The Tri-Wizard tournament and all the tasks were so captivating and illustrated so brilliantely that it was hard to stop listening. It's also interesting getting a look at the character progression and how they develop and also how the story continues to grow. You'll find a full story here, with twists, turns, witt, suspense and more.

    Performance: Once again, this was another great performance. Jim Dale does a great job of capturing the characters and I believe gets them pretty spot on. More and more characters are introduced in the books and he finds a way to give them unique voices.

    Overall: I really don't know what to say about this story to do it justice. The Tri-Wizard tournament and all the detail within the three tasks was excellent. The maze at the end and how completely different it was from the movie (I've only seen the movie up until now)- that really surprised me because I thought the movie would be at least somewhat similar. The amount of detail that somehow continues to grow and continues to develop the story is amazing. This is definitely a great story with great narration that can be enjoyed over and over again.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By J.K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    Overall
    (33569)
    Performance
    (30803)
    Story
    (30774)

    When the Knight Bus crashes through the darkness and screeches to a halt in front of him, it's the start of another far from ordinary year at Hogwarts for Harry Potter. Sirius Black, escaped mass-murderer and follower of Lord Voldemort, is on the run - and they say he is coming after Harry. In his first ever Divination class, Professor Trelawney sees an omen of death in Harry's tea leaves.... But perhaps most terrifying of all are the Dementors patrolling the school grounds, with their soul-sucking kiss....

    Gretchen SLP says: "The Threat From Within"
    "I solemnly swear that I am up to no good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: The story continues... and gets even better! As I mentioned in my review of Chamber of Secrets, it becomes more and more clear how J.K. Rowling brilliantly created the world of Harry Potter. The characters continue to develop, new characters add to the story and the world continues to unfold in every book. The story seems to flow effortlessly from one book to the next. My favorite part of this particular book that was omitted from the movies and I didn't know about until now... The Marauders. I knew of the map, sure, but the amount of detail, backstory, everything about the Marauders added so much more to this book than I thought possible.

    Performance: Gosh, once again the performance is stellar! I feel as though Jim Dale is really engaging with the characters and therefore is able to capture them quite well. I gave this a four star again because of this audio issue - the audio pauses for a few seconds making me think there is an error with the audiobook (starting to think I'm the only one with this issue). That said, the narration itself is performed wonderfully!

    Overall: Seriously, how do these books get better and better?! One thing I failed to mention on the previous two books is just how much better the books are compared to the movies (but when is that not the case?). This is my first time reading / listening to this series, but still, I almost can't believe the amount of detail in the books that make them so much better and more enjoyable. Prisoner of Azkaban doesn't disappoint!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By J.K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    Overall
    (36979)
    Performance
    (33811)
    Story
    (33789)

    Harry Potter's summer has included the worst birthday ever, doomy warnings from a house-elf called Dobby, and rescue from the Dursleys by his friend Ron Weasley in a magical flying car! Back at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry for his second year, Harry hears strange whispers echo through empty corridors - and then the attacks start.

    Andrew says: "Of all the trees, we get one that hits back!"
    "Of all the trees, we get one that hits back!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: The characters continue to develop, the story continues to unfold and the world that J.K. Rowling created continues to captivate the reader/listener. You'll find everything that you enjoyed about the first book and more in this one.

    Performance: Jim Dale does it again! The voices he gives to the characters fit so well and I believe really capture the characters. The list of characters is quite lengthy in this book as well and so being able to give a voice to each and every individual is great! He does a great job of bringing the story to life.

    That said, I found audio issues in this book as well. The audio would stop for a few seconds in both Standard and High Quality - which made me think perhaps my phone lost battery or the book had an error and crashed completely. The audio would then pick up after a little gap. This didn't take away from the story or the performance by the narrator, but I felt was worth mentioning.

    Overall: This is yet another great book by J.K. Rowling and a fantastic follow up. It's no wonder the series is so popular.

    17 of 18 people found this review helpful
  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By J.K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    Overall
    (53645)
    Performance
    (48632)
    Story
    (48650)

    Harry Potter has never even heard of Hogwarts when the letters start dropping on the doormat at number four, Privet Drive. Addressed in green ink on yellowish parchment with a purple seal, they are swiftly confiscated by his grisly aunt and uncle. Then, on Harry's eleventh birthday, a great beetle-eyed giant of a man called Rubeus Hagrid bursts in with some astonishing news: Harry Potter is a wizard, and he has a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. An incredible adventure is about to begin!

    Mike L Lane says: "My Sad, Sad Confession…"
    "To the well-organized mind, death is an adventure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: It's hard to believe, but this is my first go through of the book... years and years after they were released. That said, I can completely understand how the story captured such a massive audience and created such a following. J.K. Rowling created such a descriptive and imaginative world which is fascinating and easy to follow. The language used, the characters, the imagery are clearly well thought out and developed.

    Performance: Jim Dale does a great job capturing the voices of each and every character. Some of the voices just so perfectly match the character description. Plus, being able to give a unique voice to a large number of characters is no easy task. The performance did get a 4-star rating, though, because of the audio issues. Both in Standard and High Quality, the audio would stop for a few seconds as if it were skipping. It doesn't happen all that often and doesn't derail the story, but it occurs often enough to mention.

    Overall: I am glad to have finally listened to and heard the book version of this story. It is very interesting and easily captures the attention of the listeners. While I know the book is in the ages 8-10 genre, it's also easy to enjoy in your 20s and beyond!

    28 of 36 people found this review helpful
  • The Only Pirate at the Party

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Lindsey Stirling, Brooke S. Passey
    • Narrated By Lindsey Stirling
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (799)
    Performance
    (744)
    Story
    (744)

    Dancing electronic violinist Lindsey Stirling shares her unconventional journey in an inspiring memoir filled with the energy, persistence, and humor that have helped her successfully pursue a passion outside the box.

    A. M. Waite says: "Inspiring, genuine, and lit up with joy"
    "Pull Out Your Eyepatch and Take To The High Seas!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: I've been on a celebrity bio/memoir binge lately and I must say that this particular story stands apart from the rest. It has the typical format you find in other books in the genre explaining the humble beginnings and rise to fame, but it is also so much more. Miss Stirling's stories come across as truly genuine. She is an artist that is sharing her experiences and inviting you into her life, not simply telling a story. You get a good look at her life; her struggles, her determination and work ethic, her pain and joy.

    Performance: This was definitely one of those performances made better by the fact that the author read her own work. She knows her stories and how to tell them. As a listener, you are sure to feel each and every emotion. I think most people forget that celebrities are real people too and that they go through very similar experiences as the average joe, and that becomes evident at the end of this book when it's true, raw emotion.

    Overall: Lindsey and Brooke did a fantastic job with this book. I, like most others, found this to be an inspirational listen. I was a fan of Lindsey Stirling's music before this book, and this book has only allowed me to greater appreciate the talent of this artist.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Scrappy Little Nobody

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs)
    • By Anna Kendrick
    • Narrated By Anna Kendrick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11865)
    Performance
    (10905)
    Story
    (10831)

    Anna Kendrick's autobiographical collection of essays amusingly recounts memorable moments throughout her life, from her middle-class upbringing in New England to the blockbuster movies that have made her one of Hollywood's most popular actresses today. Expanding upon the witty and ironic dispatches for which she is known, Anna Kendrick's essays offer her one-of-a-kind commentary on the absurdities she's experienced on her way to and from the heart of pop culture.

    Andrew says: "Anna Kendrick: Scrappy Little... Revelation"
    "Anna Kendrick: Scrappy Little... Revelation"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: Like so many others that have left reviews, I too have thoroughly enjoyed this book. I've only listened to a few other books in this genre (Rob Lowe, Judy Greer, Tina Fey) so I can't compare it to much, but I would consider this a somewhat typical Hollywood memoir. Trying to figure out direction in life, reaching the ah-ha moment, and then experiencing the highs and lows of the journey. I found myself able to relate to some stories and others not, but even if you can or can't, I'm confident that you'll be laughing along the entire way. One thing that makes it interesting is that Miss Kendrick is still a young actress. She has experienced a lot already and we don't even know where she will go from here (how many more books will we get!?).

    Performance: The narration was done wonderfully! The audiobook flowed and felt like a conversation with a friend... you know, when a friend tells a really, really long story :) For real, though, this was hilarious and genuine.

    Overall: I couldn't find myself giving the overall rating anything other than five stars. This book is light, easy to follow and humorous. I nearly finished it during one drive and didn't tire or need a break at all because it all flowed so well and I was pulled into the performance from the start. Highly recommend this audiobook! To wrap this up, the best way I can describe this audiobook is... absolutely effortless!

    24 of 26 people found this review helpful
  • A Clash of Kings: A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (37 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Roy Dotrice
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (53305)
    Performance
    (45599)
    Story
    (45556)

    A comet the color of blood and flame cuts across the sky. And from the ancient citadel of Dragonstone to the forbidding shores of Winterfell, chaos reigns. Six factions struggle for control of a divided land and the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms, preparing to stake their claims through tempest, turmoil, and war.

    Peter says: "I'm hooked, but narration..."
    "Valar Morghulis"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Story: The second book, while still really good and enjoyable, is not as interesting as I would have hoped. I'm familiar with the books as I've read them before, but I guess I've never really compared them. The second book compared to the first or third isn't as interesting and doesn't have events that are incredibly exciting. Don't get me wrong, there's still some cool things with shadow creatures, wildfire, and stuff beyond the wall, but aside from that I didn't find much else. Maybe if I didn't compare this to the others I'd give it a five, but what's coming up in the next book deserves a five.

    Performance: Once again, this is a five. There are just too many characters and they all pretty much have a unique voice. If I had to guess, I'd say there are at least 100 characters in the series. If you're able to give nearly everyone a voice, congrats, you get a five! Plus, you get to enjoy some singing.

    Overall: I still went with the five. Even though the story isn't as interesting by comparison, it's still a really good book.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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