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Dave

Atlanta , GA, USA | Member Since 2006

26
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 12 reviews
  • 42 ratings
  • 155 titles in library
  • 12 purchased in 2014
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  • Peter Pan

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By J. M. Barrie
    • Narrated By Tim Curry
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (190)
    Performance
    (101)
    Story
    (101)

    J.M. Barrie's classic tale, completely unabridged, features a boy who refuses to grow up, Tinker Bell the fairy, and the Darling children: Wendy, John, and Michael. Their great adventure begins on the night that Peter flies into the Darling home looking for his shadow and teaches Wendy, John, and Michael how to fly with him back to Neverland, where adventures happen every day.

    Monica says: "Laugh and Cry"
    "Simply wonderful"
    Overall

    Tim Curry breathes life into this wonderful classic children's story. His voice gives such warm, comic expression to the snooty grown-ups, the treacherous-yet-stumbling pirates, the pouty fairy Tinkerbell, the nervous or excited children, and of course, the cheeky, indignant Peter Pan. Even if you're intimately familiar with the story, Curry's telling is memorable and well worth the listen.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Buddhist Meditation for Beginners

    • ABRIDGED (6 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Jack Kornfield
    • Narrated By Jack Kornfield
    Overall
    (219)
    Performance
    (84)
    Story
    (81)

    Known for bringing Insight Meditation to the West and for his many best-selling books, including A Path With Heart, Jack Kornfield now offers a collection of his most popular teachings with Buddhist Mediation for Beginners. This specifically designed gift set includes four complete audio learning courses.

    Amazon Customer says: "A good way to get started meditating"
    "Thoughtful wisdom, and sparkling charm"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Kornfield delivers the essential ideas of Buddhism with delightful freshness. He teaches the principles and recounts stories with a voice that is at once soothing and captivating.
    It's a good introduction to the ideology, delivered in a playful, honest tone that embodies it's spirit.

    It's also an ideal book for going to sleep. There's no particular narrative to keep your attention. You can start it and stop it anywhere. And Kornfield's voice is like a lullaby.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hyperion

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Marc Vietor, Allyson Johnson, Kevin Pariseau, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4234)
    Performance
    (2722)
    Story
    (2754)

    On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all.

    aaron says: "A LESSON in How to Write Smart, Dark, ADULT SciFi"
    "Mildly entertaining, disappointing and forgettable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Based on rave reviews I was expecting something on the level of Dune, or at least a better Heinlein novel. The collection of stories here are fairly entertaining and/or intriguing. But the overall frame story is weak. Basically, there's a lot of dabbling around in different ideas and themes, but nothing of substance in any of them. It felt like Simmons' own self-gratifying literary romp, which wasn't so much fun for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dad Is Fat

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Jim Gaffigan
    • Narrated By Jim Gaffigan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1916)
    Performance
    (1781)
    Story
    (1773)

    In Dad is Fat, stand-up comedian Jim Gaffigan, who’s best known for his legendary riffs on Hot Pockets, bacon, manatees, and McDonald's, expresses all the joys and horrors of life with five young children - everything from cousins ("celebrities for little kids") to toddlers’ communication skills ("they always sound like they have traveled by horseback for hours to deliver important news"), to the eating habits of four-year-olds ("there is no difference between a four-year-old eating a taco and throwing a taco on the floor").

    Sean says: "Good for Gaffigan fans - better for expecting dads"
    "Do you like Family Circus?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    In the intro, Gaffigan pokes at this parenting-comedy subgenre, complaining that most books are either cutesy "aww shucks" schlock or cynical "damn kids" complaining. And he promises that's not what he's written here.
    Sorry, Jim. That's what you've written here. These formulas are pretty well played out throughout, as well as a really predictable what-a-responsible-dad-would-do-oh-wait-I'm-a-big-kid gag.
    These jokes, which might play well in a stand up set, or even as words on a page, sound stilted and stale when recited by the author.
    I'd skip this one.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Peter Thiel, Blake Masters
    • Narrated By Blake Masters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (513)
    Performance
    (438)
    Story
    (438)

    The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won’t make a search engine. And the next Mark Zuckerberg won't create a social network. If you are copying these guys, you aren't learning from them. It's easier to copy a model than to make something new: doing what we already know how to do takes the world from 1 to n, adding more of something familiar. But every time we create something new, we go from 0 to 1.

    James says: "In my top 3 favorite Startup books"
    "Mostly worthless drivel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is your typical pop business book, slapping together the same tired examples to make some loosely related points, each either trivial yammering or overblown, unsubstantiated hype. The first hour is dedicated to zealous defense of monopolies, based on an extended false dichotomy with perfect competition.

    If you're reading it to gather talking points for golf course or water cooler schmoozing, you'll get your money's worth. If you're interested in an exploration of the mechanisms of innovation in business, as the book promises, you'll be sorely disappointed.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It: Tactics, Techniques and Technologies for Uncertain Things

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By James Wesley Rawles
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (593)
    Performance
    (386)
    Story
    (370)

    James Wesley Rawles, founder of survivalblog.com, shares with you everything you need to know to be ready for the worst. The book includes information on proper food storage and sanitation, gardening and livestock basics, investment strategies to protect your assets, medical advice, communication techniques, home security, and how to get "outta Dodge" when, in the parlance of the movement, "the shit hits the fan".

    skyrat says: "Unsurprising"
    "Good book. Terrible as audio"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book contains lots of lists and reference material. Though I love audiobooks and usually prefer listening, that's just not a good way to consume this material.Also, if you're into preparedness, this End Of The World stuff can be useful. But there are many critics of this relatively extreme Mad Max approach. These TEOTWAWKI situations are unlikely and impossible to assess in advance. It seems more sensible to focus on regional and personal emergencies, which are better understood and much more likely to occur. The end result would be similar, with less focus on tactics to handle outright societal breakdown and chaos. Just one man's opinion, based on my research and understanding.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Eyes of the Dragon

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1051)
    Performance
    (714)
    Story
    (715)

    A tale of archetypal heroes and sweeping adventures, of dragons and princes and evil wizards, here is epic fantasy as only Stephen King could envision it.

    Christine says: "Enjoyable"
    "Enthralling juvenile lit, performed masterfully"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Some gaping holes in the plot


    What did you like best about this story?

    Though the depiction is simplistic, it's sparkling vibrance is addictive. Bronson Pinchot's narration is enchanting!


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    Unlike most of King's work, this is adolescent fantasy. The plot is a little weak at times, but the style is rich and enjoyable. And Bronson Pinchot's performance is superb. I could listen to this man read the phone book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Subtle Knife: His Dark Materials, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Philip Pullman
    • Narrated By Philip Pullman, Full Cast
    Overall
    (3866)
    Performance
    (1264)
    Story
    (1282)

    In this stunning sequel to The Golden Compass, the intrepid Lyra finds herself in a shimmering, haunted otherworld, Cittagazze, where soul-eating Specters stalk the streets and wingbeats of distant angels sound against the sky. But she is not without allies: twelve-year-old Will Parry, fleeing for his life after taking another's, has also stumbled into this strange new realm.

    Geoffrey says: "The second book in a fantastic trilogy!"
    "Stop reading after 'Compass'"
    Overall

    This is a review of the entire Dark Materials story. The first book, The Golden Compass, is actually pretty good. But since the plot doesn't wrap up at the end, readers have to continue into books 2 and 3, which are really awful. The stories are dull - instead of the mighty armored bears, mercenary aeronauts and fiery gypsies of the first, we get disenchanted scientists and angry orphans. The characters are weak, and their long-winded development typically has nothing to do with the main plot. The philosophical allegory drifts into a disjointed set of uninformed ramblings. Characters behave in contradictory ways, abandoning their nature as needed to serve the plot. In one case, an armored bear (characterized earlier as a proud, insurmountable warrior) surrenders without a fight to a boy with a knife.

    Good writing feels like a glimpse into real, living world. "His Dark Materials" feels more like a puppet show, where characters are jiggled around to dish up a story.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Golden Compass: His Dark Materials, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Philip Pullman
    • Narrated By Philip Pullman, full cast
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5243)
    Performance
    (1728)
    Story
    (1754)

    When Lyra and her daemon Pantalaimon decide to spy on a presentation her uncle, the commanding Lord Asriel, is making to the elders of Jordan College they have no idea that they will become witnesses to an attempted murder, and even less that they are taking the first steps in a journey that will lead them into danger and adventure unlike anything Lyra's unfettered imagination has conjured up.

    Arnold says: "A Terrific Book"
    "Good start, then downhill fast"
    Overall

    This is a review of the entire Dark Materials story. The first book, The Golden Compass, is actually pretty good. But since the plot doesn't wrap up at the end, readers have to continue into books 2 and 3, which are really awful. The stories are dull - instead of the mighty armored bears, mercenary aeronauts and fiery gypsies of the first, we get disenchanted scientists and angry orphans. The characters are weak, and their long-winded development typically has nothing to do with the main plot. The philosophical allegory drifts into a disjointed set of uninformed ramblings. Characters behave in contradictory ways, abandoning their nature as needed to serve the plot. In one case, an armored bear (characterized earlier as a proud, insurmountable warrior) surrenders without a fight to a boy with a knife.

    Good writing feels like a glimpse into real, living world. "His Dark Materials" feels more like a puppet show, where characters are jiggled around to dish up a story.

    8 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • A Fine Balance

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Rohinton Mistry
    • Narrated By John Lee
    Overall
    (611)
    Performance
    (305)
    Story
    (303)

    In the India of the mid-1970s, Indira Gandhi's government has just come to power. It institutionalizes corruption and arbitrary force, most oppressive to the poorest and weakest people under its sway. Against this backdrop, in an unnamed city by the sea, four people struggle to survive. Dina, Maneck, and two tailors, the Untouchables Om and Ishvar, who are sewing in Dina's service, undergo a series of reversals.

    JOHN says: "Nearly a perfect book"
    "Wonderful!"
    Overall

    This story paints a colorful picture of India through its recent history. The characters are vibrant and interesting. The story runs like a river, gently twisting and turning through historical and fictional events. At times, it's grippingly tragic. At times, whole-heartedly joyful. All is told with an insightful, easygoing style, with lots of light comedy sprinkled throughout. And the narration is exceptional, and the telling surely adds a lot to the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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