You no longer follow crazybatcow

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 crazybatcow

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

crazybatcow

I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)

East Coast, Canada | Member Since 2012

1962
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 287 reviews
  • 393 ratings
  • 870 titles in library
  • 16 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
9
FOLLOWERS
579

  • Ultramarathon Man: Confession of an All-Night Runner

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Dean Karnazes
    • Narrated By James Yaegashi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (474)
    Performance
    (251)
    Story
    (254)

    Karnazes reveals the mind-boggling adventures of his nonstop treks through the hell of Death Valley, the incomprehensible frigidity of the South Pole, and the breathtaking beauty of the mountains and canyons of the Sierra Nevada.

    Andrea says: "Not as self-congratulating as others have said"
    "If only I had his determination..."
    Overall

    It is rather motivational. Even if you never plan (or want) to run extreme distances, it does pick you up for those short runs too - i.e. if he can drag his butt through 199 miles, why can't I just finish this 5 miles?

    He is very extreme and I imagine it's a good thing there are few like him - I believe that running is good for body and soul, but don't think we should push ourselves to the extent that these extreme runners do.

    I find it amazing that he can fit a family life and a job into his reality, but he claims to do so. Makes me feel lazy with my one hour a day to hear how he runs, literally, from Friday night to Sunday evening, then goes back to work on Monday morning.

    Sigh... I really gotta keep his determination in mind when I give up on my marathon training mid-season because I find it too time-consuming. The narration is good, and there's no sense of the author being "full of himself". He has done amazing things with his body... good for him!

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Exoskeleton: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Shane Stadler
    • Narrated By Patrick Conn
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (192)
    Performance
    (175)
    Story
    (172)

    A convicted felon is given a choice following his sentencing: serve a 25-year conventional prison sentence...or spend 365 days in a new, experimental corrections program. He opts for the experimental program, only to realize he has made a horrible mistake. A dark tale of science spun dangerously out of control, Exoskeleton will leave even the most jaded of listeners quaking in their boots.

    Molly says: "Exoskeleton - now I get it"
    "Step below B grade novel - more horror than sci-fi"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I think I must be the only reviewer here on Audible who was not paid or given a free book to review this novel. There is no way this story is even a 3 star, let alone anything higher than that. Period. Oh, and it doesn't fit in the science fiction genre - it is a horror story.

    The book seems okay as it starts, but just got worse as it went on. It spent way too much time discussing/detailing torture, and the longer it went on, the more times the same (or similar) torture scenes were explored. It isn't really that graphic, just... repetitive and detailed and every torture scene was described in detail - being *just that little bit worse* than the scene before. There are only so many times we need to hear about the pain being so bad that he blacked out, or nearly blacked out, or greyed out or defecated, etc. And, seriously, all these people torturing him doesn't make any sense - there can't be an entire organization of sadists who have the sole goal of creating as much pain as is possible... as a job...

    For 3/4 of the book, the torture seems pointless but it does turn out that there is some (albeit foolish) rationale behind it. Why they went through the hassle of obtaining and using Will (as opposed to any other existing convict) was not explained, however. (There was some attempt to explain this by there being a shortage of convicts available, but... realistically, in the U.S. penal system there would have been hundreds of thousands of eligible convicts who didn't need to be framed in order to be used as a guinea pig.)

    Some specific annoyances: people scratch an itch... they don't itch it. The "spiritual/philosophical"component (as a result of torture) was lame. It seems it is there to give the author a chance to talk about post-death or souls, or the nature of existence. But coming from an author that doesn't know when to use "itch" and when to use "scratch", it was very hard to take seriously.

    All in all... it was an annoying book to finish: there was a lot of jumping back and forth between (mostly) irrelevant characters who all sound the same, a plot that is ultimately fantastical/supernatural but is presented as if it is realistic, and a setting that is conveniently contrived just so the setting will be correct for the author's "spiritual" exploration.

    The narration is not very good. He emphasizes the wrong part of the sentence sometimes -making statements sound like questions - and pronounces some words incorrectly (femur as fe-mure and epitome as epi-TOME). He also laughs or coughs when the characters in the book do (but thank goodness he didn't scream when the characters screamed). I won't be looking for more books by this author, and would think twice before buying books read by this narrator.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Aurora: CV-01: Frontiers Saga, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Ryk Brown
    • Narrated By Jeffrey Kafer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (593)
    Performance
    (539)
    Story
    (544)

    world recovering from a devastating plague. A brutal enemy threatening invasion. A young man seeking to escape the shadow of his father. A ship manned by a crew of fresh academy graduates. A top-secret experimental propulsion system. A questionable alliance with a mysterious green-eyed woman. What destiny has in store for the crew of the UES Aurora is far greater than any of them could ever imagine. And this is only the beginning....

    John C. says: "90% SciFi, 10% Cheese"
    "Summary headline: boy-man saves the day"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Ender's game anyone?

    Of course, not nearly as well written.

    Bad boy (who is chronologically mature, but written like a teenager) who turns out to be just enough of a rebel that he makes an outstanding leader (i.e. can save the world by thinking outside the box while everyone else (mostly females) are still arguing over what they should do).

    If women weren't needed for the males in this story to oogle and have sex (or think about having sex) with, there'd be no women at all in this story.

    Or... maybe a more accurate analogy would be a Star Trek episode where Wesley Crusher becomes captain at age 14 but has Kirk's libido. Yes, that sums up the "child-prodigy with chip on his shoulder + let's drool over how hot all the women are in their tight uniforms" tone.

    And, other than that... it's a standard, unoriginal sci-fi story that feels like it stole its storyline from a hodgepodge of nearly all the classic sci-fi books written by good authors... minus the part that includes good writing. (i.e. space battles won by dint of boy (err, I mean man) being super talented and lucky, space ships with new tech being sent off on maiden voyage, transluminal spaceship flight to uncharted areas of space, first contact with another planet's inhabitants, etc).

    And the farther I get into it, the worse it becomes. I think I read somewhere that this is a first novel... and I hope that is true, because it certainly sounds like a newbie wrote this, fresh after watching a 4 day Star Trek marathon on the Space channel.

    The narration is actually quite good. It's the unoriginal storyline and tell-not-show approach that makes this story un-enjoyable. (Oh, and the author jumps from inside one character's thoughts to inside another characters thoughts without any pauses- so we get to see this unoriginal story from everyone's point of view.). Unfortunately, I have the next book in the series already, but I won't be reading it.

    There is some adolescent sexual innuendo/sex, but no graphic sex, violence or language.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • I Hear the Sirens in the Street: A Detective Sean Duffy Novel - The Troubles Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Adrian McKinty
    • Narrated By Gerard Doyle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (857)
    Performance
    (769)
    Story
    (765)

    A torso in a suitcase looks like an impossible case, but Sean Duffy isn’t easily deterred, especially when his floundering love life leaves him in need of a distraction. So with detective constables McCrabban and McBride, he goes to work identifying the victim. The torso turns out to be all that’s left of an American tourist who once served in the U.S. military. What was he doing in Northern Ireland in the midst of the 1982 Troubles?

    Dave says: "Utterly brilliant"
    "Make sure you're okay with Irish politics"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read the first book in this series first - and I think this is required. The story itself is separate from the first one, but this book will make much more sense if you do read book one first since it sets the stage, give the background for Duffy's world, and starts Duffy down the path he is taking in this book.

    If you did not like the Irish politics of book one, it is as thick here as it was there. In fact, if this story were to be pulled out of that setting, it would be a much weaker story. A lot of the obstacles that Duffy has to deal with are direct results of the political turmoil during the "Troubles".

    I'm not familiar with that era, but accepted it as the backdrop of Duffy's detecting (it is a detective novel, underneath all the politics), and think it made the novel dark (noir) and heavy (in a good way). It is a violent (but non-gory) novel and there are no sex scenes.

    The narration is very good, but it is a heavy Irish accent that you might have to get used to. I got the next one in the series on Audible as soon as I finished this one. Ghosts of Belfast is a read-alike book here on Audible, read by the same narrator (and it has the same setting and same noir tone).

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Quarantined

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Joe McKinney
    • Narrated By Therese Plummer
    Overall
    (91)
    Performance
    (83)
    Story
    (84)

    The citizens of San Antonio, Texas, are threatened with extermination by a terrifying outbreak of the flu. Quarantined by the military to contain the virus, the city is in a desperate struggle to survive. Inside the quarantine walls, Detective Lily Harris is working burial statistics duty at the Scar, San Antonio's mass graveyard, when she finds a murder victim hidden amongst the plague dead.

    crazybatcow says: "It's a viral outbreak quarantine. Zero zombies."
    "It's a viral outbreak quarantine. Zero zombies."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Okay. First things first. This book has nothing to do with zombies. Absolutely nothing...

    What it is: a murder/detective story set in a city that was quarantined because of a viral outbreak that kills nearly 20% of the people it infects.

    It was pretty realistic... well, the setting and goings-on (riots, looters, fear) that occur within the quarantined city was realistic. The belief that a government would be able to successfully seal off a city with flown in barricades before someone "escaped" to spread the virus to the rest of the country was a bit on the naive side. When the virus that ends up jumping species to wipe out 20-30% of us finally does arrive, it will be spread much much too fast for any government to lock it down as quickly as they do in this story.

    It wasn't very original, or stunningly written, but it was a decent story, with engaging enough characters that they don't really drive you crazy. The main character was female, and the author does need a bit more experience living as/with a woman because the woman here is written as a stereotype... (i.e. an entire scene is written around her having a bath and shaving her legs... like that would be a priority in a virally infected world where she has a murder to solve). I won't mention the lame sex scene (it should have been left out it was that pathetic). And there are periodic (and fortunately short) tirades about women's self-esteem as affected by magazines, Republican suppression, and evil organizations who would rather let millions of people die than lose out on potential profits. You won't be left wondering how the author feels about any of these topics.

    Anyway... it's a quick read, with some insights on what "real life" might be like in a quarantined city... and what challenges a detective might face while trying to solve a murder under these circumstances. I'd read more by this author, as long as I was prepared for uninspiring characterizations and a heavy reliance on stereotypical physical descriptions and behaviours.

    I didn't mind the narration - it wasn't intrusive, and I didn't notice any mispronunciations (other than a couple HWO instead of WHO), but, then again, I'm not from Texas. It is not gory or graphic and I don't think there was any swearing.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Vicious Circle

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Mike Carey
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer
    Overall
    (668)
    Performance
    (401)
    Story
    (404)

    Felix Castor has reluctantly returned to exorcism after the case of the Bonnington Archive ghost convinced him that he really can do some good with his abilities ("good," of course, being a relative term when dealing with the undead). But his friend, Rafi, is still possessed; the succubus Ajulutsikael (Juliet to her friends) still technically has a contract on him; and he's still dirt poor.

    Cather says: "A worthy sequel"
    "Hard-boiled detective story, with ghosts"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It is a hard-boiled detective story, in an urban fantasy setting. Oh yeah, and includes ghosts/demons/undead as "citizens". The lines of good and evil don't follow the traditional paths: here some humans are bad, some undead are good, and some of each are the opposite.

    The story is a bit slow to pick up... I actually got a bit frustrated with the delay in the story gearing up because I had selected this book for a trip and didn't have any alternatives handy, and I wanted an immediate escape from flight delays. I think the delay was to set the backdrop and introduce the main characters of Felix's world.

    Fortunately, the story does pick up not too far in, and once it did, it became a very engaging mystery/detective novel. The mystery Felix is trying to solve might be non-traditional (ghosts), but the detective-procedural was actual pretty "normal". It was traditional hard work and a few hard knocks that allowed Felix to solve the mystery, not a deus-ex-machina.

    I think if you read the first book in the series and liked it, you'd like this one at least as much, maybe more since there isn't as much time fleshing out the world. If you hadn't read the first book, though, I still think you can start with this one and not be lost for long - the slow part at the beginning sets up the world sufficiently for newcomers, and the detective story is completely stand-alone.

    The narration is very good. It is not gory or graphic and I don't think there was much (if any) swearing. If you liked the first couple Joe Pitt (vampire) books by Charlie Huston - (only the first couple, they got lecture-y by the series end) - this has a very similar tone/humor.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Cold, Cold Ground

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Adrian McKinty
    • Narrated By Gerard Doyle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1530)
    Performance
    (1332)
    Story
    (1326)

    Adrian McKinty was born in Carrickfergus, Northern Ireland. He studied politics and philosophy at Oxford before moving to America in the early 1990s. Living first in Harlem, he found employment as a construction worker, barman, and bookstore clerk. In 2000 he moved to Denver to become a high school English teacher and it was there that he began writing fiction.

    Alan says: "What a stunning book"
    "How much is story, how much narrator?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Okay... I'll be honest by saying that I delayed writing my review and, at first, I got this series mixed up with Stuart Neville's... I thought it might have been only because they are both set in Ireland but... I think the main characters are similar as well, and the books have a noir tone to them, and, of course, Doyle narrates both of them. Excellently, btw.

    That being said, this is an interesting and engaging series, even though it is a bit thick with Irish politics and the "Troubles" which are foreign to someone of my age and nationality. I am vaguely aware of the circumstances of Ireland in the 80s, but never lived them, so the stage set for this story was not at all familiar to me.

    So, if you were to look at the reviews of the paper version of the book, you might find that some reviewers had a little rant about the veracity of some of the author's settings, I didn't read this book for historical accuracy and am okay not knowing any better. And I have no idea why some readers found the author's writing style or language choices to be pretentious... maybe they were reading it as a literary exploration of Ireland during the 80s and saw things in it that weren't really there? Or maybe it's as simple as Doyle making the story come alive in his narration and those who read the book in paper form missed all this.

    Fortunately, I read this book hoping it was a noir detective story... and that's exactly what it is. It is dark and violent and a bit confusing as to what motivated people to behave the way they did, but that's what makes it worth reading - to figure it out. I bought the rest of the series on Audible for full price as soon as I finished this one.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Germline: The Subterrene War, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By T. C. McCarthy
    • Narrated By Donald Corren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (96)
    Performance
    (79)
    Story
    (80)

    One hundred years from now, Russia and the United States are at odds again. This time the war has gone hot. Heavily armored soldiers battle genetically engineered troops hundreds of meters below the icy, mineral-rich mountains of Kazakhstan. War is Oscar Wendell’s ticket to greatness. A reporter for the Stars and Stripes, he has the only one-way ticket to the front lines. The front smells of blood and fire and death—it smells like a Pulitzer.

    crazybatcow says: "A military sci-fi that isn't sci-fi at all"
    "A military sci-fi that isn't sci-fi at all"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It is a military sci-fi that doesn't include weapon-porn (so we are not subjected to what size rounds fit in which type of gun, nor how many revolutions ammunition might make in a gun barrel, or the armour penetration per inch by weapon type, etc). I like military-ish fiction that doesn't include gun/military enthusiasts' fantasies, so this book fit the bill for me.

    Sure, some of the military stuff was glossed over, and some of the sci-fi was glossed over... and really, it wasn't all that sci-fi-y. It's almost like a straight up "look, I survived an atrocious war even though I came out scarred" novel. There was nothing in it that is outside the current realm of possibility: although some of the tech might not actually exist yet, the theories behind the tech does.

    But the book isn't really even about war, it's about the people impacted by war...

    The main character isn't a soldier. And that means we get to see a very long war from an alternative point of view. I also think it allowed Oscar to be better written, and more humanized than he would have been if he was a proper soldier. i.e. there was no real harm in him being high as a kite in the midst of battle since he wasn't really supposed to be there anyway.

    The story is actually one of growth and maturity: it's the maturation of one man - because of, or in spite of, a horrendous war background. There is some (not overly moralistic) message about how war scars people psychologically, and how our veterans may not receive the respect and help they require after returning... particularly in circumstances where the "war" has slipped from the front page.

    The narration is fine. Surprisingly, there is not much gore or swearing, and there is no detailed sex. The story is wrapped up completely at the end.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Teckla: Vlad Taltos, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Steven Brust
    • Narrated By Bernard Setaro Clark
    Overall
    (212)
    Performance
    (183)
    Story
    (186)

    Soon after the events of Jhereg, Vlad becomes embroiled in a struggle between the House of the Jhereg and a group of revolutionaries that his wife has joined.

    Ron says: "Rebel Uprising"
    "Oh my! Not even close to what it should be..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Hmmm... after reading the first book in this series, I immediately bought the remainder of the books because I figured they would all be similar in quality and tone. Now I am worried that I was mistaken.

    The first book was a noir vigilante book set in a foreign (fantasy) world. The second was more along the lines of an almost-noir detective novel, and although there was not much vigilantism, the dark theme remained. This one was... well... a soap opera-y philosophical fiction. It had no detective work going on; it had no noir; it had no vigilantism. It was more than a bit on the lecture-y side (oh, look how bad "THE MAN" is and how the "system" controls us) and involved the main character essentially pacing back and forth (literally, from one side of town to another, and figuratively in trying to figure out his wife) and bemoaning the apparent breakdown of his marriage (in the face of her struggle against governmental control of "the people").

    See my disappointment? It is missing all the features I enjoy (vigilantes, noir, detectives) and includes some of my main pet peeves (morals and lectures). And what was left - man pulling his hair out over relationship breakdown - really didn't tickle my emotional armpits. I simply didn't care. Maybe I'm callous, or maybe Brust simply is better at writing noir than emotional pieces.

    I really hope the next one is back to the good stuff because this one was just not worth reading. If this had been the first book I'd read by Brust, it would have been the last. In fact, I'm half tempted to ask for my money back because I feel like I was ripped off - I thought I was buying a noir fantasy with vigilante overtones and I got a philosophical political treatise instead.

    The narration is fine. There is nothing gory or graphic and I don't think there is any swearing.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Rise Again Below Zero: Rise Again, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Ben Tripp
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (195)
    Performance
    (174)
    Story
    (173)

    Billions died and rose again, hungry for human flesh. When the nightmare reached Sheriff Danielle Adelman's small mountain community of Forest Peak, California, it was too late for warnings . . . forcing her to lead a small group of survivors out of hell, all the while seeking her estranged runaway sister at any cost.

    Mike Naka says: "wow! much, much better than expected!"
    "Strong characters, but story meanders a bit..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Well... I gave 5 stars to book one, and started to give only 4 stars to this one. Then I re-thought my assessment and have to say that this book is nearly as good as book one (caveats follow, and key word is "nearly").

    Of course, if you have read book one, you pretty much have to read this one too because, otherwise, you will never know what happened to Danny. (If you did not read book one, don't read this one first, it won't make nearly as much sense.) If you liked book one for its realistic characters and zombie action, you should probably find this one stands on equal ground; it is as good in that sense as the first book was.

    So, why is this book not quite as good? Only because there was a bit too much mid-story filler about Danny on a bender which didn't add anything to the story line, and the zombies just brushed on the edge of being too extreme. Yes, I know, they are zombies... but... we expect zombies to fit within certain parameters, and the survivors' responses to them to also fit within these parameters; in this book, however, it just "got a little weird". (hah... got a little weird... in a zombie book... hmmm...)

    But, the more I think about it, the more I realize that the shift in the zombie - we'll call them "attributes" - was sort of a logical progression, given how they started. Though I don't think I can accept the late-story acceptance/attitude of "zombies are people too". (I sort of wonder if this theme was meant to have some moral behind it... but since I ignore morals in stories, I'm not sure if that was the intent, or just my interpretation of certain events.)

    Anyway, the story is wrapped up in the end - though maybe not the way we would have preferred it to be. The narration is very good. There is a bit of swearing, a bit of zombie "messiness" (aka gore), and no detailed sex. If there was another book in the series, I'd buy it.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Swords of Exodus: Dead Six, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Larry Correia, Mike Kupari
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (992)
    Performance
    (926)
    Story
    (926)

    On the far side of the world, deep in former Soviet Central Asia, lies a stronghold called the Crossroads. It is run with an iron fist by a brutal warlord calling himself Sala Jihan. He is far more than a petty dictator, for Jihan holds the fate of nations in his grasp. To save a world slipping into chaos, Jihan must either fall or be controlled.

    Doug D. Eigsti says: "....Valentine and Lorenzo Battle at the Crossroads"
    "If you liked book one, might as well get this too"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I got this book immediately after finishing the first book in the series, and, as soon as I finished it, I looked to see if there was a third book I could buy.

    It is a very good, action-packed and mostly realistic pseudo-military novel. If you've read the first book, this is nearly as good, though it does have some scenes that just brush on the supernatural (well, there is nothing supernatural in it, but some of the events are just a bit beyond believable, and, while we aren't given any concrete examples of supernatural actions, we are led to believe such actions did occur "off-screen").

    It still focuses on the same two main characters and there are a few more side-kicks than in book one. The point of view also switched between them a bit more frequently than in book one. There were a couple occasions where it was difficult to tell which of the characters (Lorenzo or Valentine) we were following. There is also a bit more political - anti-terrorist - rhetoric in this book. It didn't quite go over the top, but... there were probably a few too many comments regarding the evilness of terrorists (yes, of course, terrorism is bad, but in an action novel I don't really want to feel like I'm being lectured on the subject).

    All in all, I quite enjoyed it. Even the ending seemed fitting, and I hope they do a third book in the series - I'd buy it if they did. The narration was as good as in book one. There is some violence, mostly non graphic, and some swearing; no sex.

    1 of 1 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.