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Shane

ratings
19
REVIEWS
6
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
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HELPFUL VOTES
1

  • Horse Heaven

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Jane Smiley
    • Narrated By Shelley Thompson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (101)
    Performance
    (41)
    Story
    (41)

    Many astonishing and affecting things happen at the racetrack, and the mysterious universe of horse racing, passionate, cold-hearted, pure, corrupt, is woven into a marvelous tapestry of joy and love, chicanery, folly, greed, and reckless courage. Spanning two years on the circuit, from Kentucky and California to New York and Paris, Horse Heaven, puts us among trainers, nervey jockeys, billionaire breeders, and restless track wives.

    Julie Delio says: "I wish I could review book and narrator separately"
    "Tangents and filler"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I believe about 30% of the book could have been cut and kept the story moving in a much better and more realistic way. The haphazard insertion of the dog's point of view as well as the side step of an Irish shopping trip did nothing to maintain or evolve the story. It was as if the author merely had some extra material, and chose to stuff it in to fill pages.


    What could Jane Smiley have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Stick to 3-4 main characters and actually write about them rather than use them as a fulcrum to launch into shallow 'thoughts' about a few people with whom then come in contact.

    When she wrote about the trainers, she did a good job. When she wrote about the fringe, she seemed to do it for her own amusement, rather than for the story.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    The repeated mispronunciation of common words is completely unacceptable in a professional reading.

    La Jolla... come on... she isn't in kindergarten.

    The recording editor should be fired.


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

    Absolutely not.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Furies of Calderon: Codex Alera, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3998)
    Performance
    (2668)
    Story
    (2704)

    In the realm of Alera, where people bond with the furies - elementals of earth, air, fire, water, and metal - 15-year-old Tavi struggles with his lack of furycrafting. But when his homeland erupts in chaos - when rebels war with loyalists and furies clash with furies - Tavi's simple courage will turn the tides of war.

    Eric says: "great fantasy series"
    "Excellent... but what's with the horns?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    There is absolutely no rhyme or reason to the intermittent 'horns' which play, quite loud I might add, randomly throughout the book. It serves no purpose other than to wake my children, as I listen to the book, on long car trips.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Reluctant Swordsman

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Dave Duncan
    • Narrated By Donald Corren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (209)
    Performance
    (193)
    Story
    (198)

    Wallie Smith can feel the pain. He goes to the hospital, remembers the doctors and the commotion, but when he wakes up it all seems like a dream. However, if that was a dream how do you explain waking up in another body and in another world? Little Wallie finds himself in the physique of a barbarian swordsman, accompanied by both an eccentric priest babbling about the Goddess and a voluptuous slave girl. Is this a rude awakening or a dream come true?

    Joe says: "An enjoyable listen"
    "Surprisingly good. I had no predilictions"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Reluctant Swordsman rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is a very good book. I was surprised simply because I purchased it on sale as a 'first in the series' book only. I thought both the writing and the narration was very well done. So much so, that I purchased the next three books.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Shadowplay: Shadowmarch: Volume II

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Tad Williams
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (248)
    Performance
    (157)
    Story
    (159)

    A year ago, the March Kingdoms were at peace, and the Eddon family held the throne. Now the family has been shattered. King Olin Eddon is a prisoner in a faraway land, and Olin’s heir Kendrick is dead – slain by treachery and dark, bloody magic. With their father and brother taken from them, the royal twins Barrick and Briony have done their best to hold the kingdom together, but now Barrick has been captured in a failed war against the immortal Twilight People and Briony has been forced to flee.

    Coral says: "Stuff is happening but it's rather dull"
    "Weak willed characters are extremely aggravating"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I think the book and story are pretty well done. However, the incredibly weak willed, whiny characters are almost too much to tolerate. I enjoy the story line and there are enough twists and interesting thoughts to keep it moving, albeit slowly at times. I think Williams could have cut 15-20% to make a much better book. My biggest issue is with the incredibly whiny, self-centered, feeble characters. This is the people Williams made, not poorly developed characters. I believe they are developed well, as slack, spineless, 'why me' characters. But the issue is that almost EVERY character is written this way. There is little spine in any character, with the 'inner talk' trending almost always towards the 'why does this have to happen to me... people should treat me better' kind of way. Rarely does a character dig in and show character... it is typically 'deus ex machina' forcing them to muddle through, rather than choice of the character. I think this is really brought to the surface by the very well done narration. Hill does a great job with varying voice, however, he seems to have an affinity for the whiny voice. Which, for this book is not a problem, given the sad-sack characters he has to work with. However, my only thought is that it is the combination of Hill's great narration and the overly wrought spinelessness of the characters synergistically grating against my being. I have never spoken to the radio in my car as much, telling the characters to get a grip and put in some effort.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Sun Also Rises

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Ernest Hemingway
    • Narrated By William Hurt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (923)
    Performance
    (568)
    Story
    (581)

    The Sun Also Rises is one of Ernest Hemingway's masterpieces and a classic example of his spare but powerful style. A poignant look at the disillusionment and angst of the post-World War I generation, the story introduces two of Hemingway's most unforgettable characters: Jake Barnes and Lady Brett Ashley. Follow the flamboyant Brett and the hapless Jake as they journey from the wild nightlife of the 1920s Paris to the brutal bullfighting rings of Spain with a motley group of expatriates.

    Gerald says: "Bravo Papa!"
    "Classic, but the narration was dreary"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Sun Also Rises?

    The direct prose of Hemingway always leaves a clean feeling throughout the narrative. The brilliance of the scenes comes from the simple phrasing rather than through the self congratulatory word choices of so many authors. Hemingway does not write through a Thesaurus filter, as so many contemporary authors choose to do.


    Did William Hurt do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    I have read the book several times throughout my life, and never felt the dreariness which pervaded Hurt's narration. I always felt more life in the book. Perhaps Hurt's characterization of the drunken despondancy of the characters is more accurate to the mindset of Hemingway, I don't know. However, I could not get past the over-riding feeling that I needed a drink myself, just to get through the chapter. I like Hurt's film career very much, with my favorite film being Children of a Lesser God, however, I did not like this narration.


    Any additional comments?

    The book is a clean, precise example of Hemingway's work. Having taken the summer, and essentially relived the book's experience, it is gratifying to relive those places through this book once again, albeit in a more sober form. From Paris to San Sebastian to Pamplona and even ending in Madrid, the book pulls me through the memories quite well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • How to Win Friends & Influence People

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Dale Carnegie
    • Narrated By Andrew MacMillan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9375)
    Performance
    (4094)
    Story
    (4082)

    You can go after the job you want...and get it! You can take the job you have...and improve it! You can take any situation you're in...and make it work for you!

    Ralph says: "This is well worth listening too! Main points are."
    "Common courtesy was never so enlightening"
    Overall

    It is amazing, having grown up thinking that I was a relatively courteous man, just how important and how obvious the thoughts in this book really have turned out to be. This is a book I wish I had read as a kid, then again as a teen, and then several times as a young adult.

    The narration tone and cadence is great.

    I highly recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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