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Dean

a Tech Exec who loves the stories about what could be and what should have been. Mixed with histories told from an outside perspective.

Member Since 2009

102
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 102 reviews
  • 359 ratings
  • 718 titles in library
  • 12 purchased in 2015
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • Pebble in the Sky

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Isaac Asimov
    • Narrated By Robert Fass
    Overall
    (432)
    Performance
    (212)
    Story
    (222)

    One moment Joseph Schwartz is a happily retired tailor in Chicago, 1949. The next he's a helpless stranger on Earth during the heyday of the first Galactic Empire. Earth, as he soon learns, is a backwater, just a pebble in the sky, despised by all the other 200 million planets of the Empire because its people dare to claim it's the original home of man. And Earth is poor, with great areas of radioactivity ruining much of its soil - so poor that everyone is sentenced to death at the age of 60. Joseph Schwartz is 62.

    bonnie says: "Jewel of a book"
    "Rip Van Winklestar."
    Overall

    A quaint Sci-Fi Rip Van Winkle story set in the "distant" future. The Story is OK, at times I thought it a bit trite but was worth the read. I have not read any book length Asimov before, and although I would not place this in my top 10% for literary quality, I think I will look for some additional IA pieces.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Get Up!: Why Your Chair Is Killing You and What You Can Do About It

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By James A. Levine
    • Narrated By Gildart Jackson, Paul Boehmer, Gabrielle De Cuir, and others
    Overall
    (96)
    Performance
    (85)
    Story
    (85)

    That the average adult spends 50 to 70 percent of their day sitting is no surprise to anyone who works in an office environment. But few realize the health consequences they are suffering as a result of modernity's increasingly sedentary lifestyle, or the effects it has had on society at large. In Get Up!, health expert James A. Levine's original scientific research shows that today's chair-based world, where we no longer use our bodies as they evolved to be used, is having negativeconsequences on our health.

    George says: "A Good Wake-Up Call"
    "Great motivation to get moving."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Overall the text is great medication to get up and get moving. The only portion of the book I did not understand is why like so many authors I have experienced lately they have to stray from such good content into political or off topic distractions. I really do not understand the relationship of a transgender advocate on a fantastic text about our societal change towards the sedentary? AUTHORS STOP THINKING you have to solve everything at once and stick to your fantastic core topic.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Steelheart Part 2: Reckoners, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (13)

    Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills. Nobody fights the Epics...nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them. And David wants in. He wants Steelheart - the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David's father.

    Sally says: "Fast paced and pleasantly unpredictable"
    "For dreams"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Listening to stories like this is not just about learning who did what in a tale. It is about learning how to find good in what happens no matter how dark. It is about looking beyond where you are and seeing hope. I look forward to the next epic from Sanderson. Great writing, plot development, action, and ending to s story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Judas Unchained

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Peter F. Hamilton
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3375)
    Performance
    (2175)
    Story
    (2195)

    Robust, peaceful, and confident, the Commonwealth dispatched a ship to investigate the mystery of a disappearing star, only to inadvertently unleash a predatory alien species that turned on its liberators, striking hard, fast, and utterly without mercy.The Prime are the Commonwealth's worst nightmare. Coexistence is impossible with the technologically advanced aliens, who are genetically hardwired to exterminate all other forms of life.

    Susan says: "Exceptionally great book"
    "tying up loose ends"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    an interesting take on what alien species and intelligences could be like. Not all "we are always better" or "we will always win" so, it is a bit sobering in it's approach to telling a tale.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Blood Feud: The Clintons vs. The Obamas

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Edward Klein
    • Narrated By Lars Mikaelson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (247)
    Performance
    (217)
    Story
    (217)

    In this highly anticipated follow-up to his blockbuster New York Times bestseller The Amateur, former New York Times Magazine editor-in-chief Edward Klein delves into the rocky relationship between the Obamas and the Clintons. An old-school reporter with incredible insider contacts, Klein reveals just how deep the rivalry between the Obamas and the Clintons runs, with details on closed-door meetings buttressed by hundreds of interviews.

    DS Ells says: "Fascinating!"
    "infighting at the top of politics."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Obama's vs Clinton's, I am not sure which would like/hate this book more. Hillary is portrayed as a pawn of Bill, and Barack is shown as one who is managed by no names. eh...interesting read non-the-less.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Savage Continent: Europe in the Aftermath of World War II

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Keith Lowe
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (123)
    Performance
    (103)
    Story
    (105)

    The end of the Second World War in Europe is one of the 20th century's most iconic moments. It is fondly remembered as a time when cheering crowds filled the streets, danced, drank and made love until the small hours. These images of victory and celebration are so strong in our minds that the period of anarchy and civil war that followed has been forgotten. Across Europe, landscapes had been ravaged, entire cities razed and more than thirty million people had been killed in the war.

    Rodney says: "Better in print?"
    "war within a war after a war"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I have read many books about WWII and this book was very direct in reminding us how personal every "global conflict" is. no war is only between countries or ideologies, it is between people, and affects people. This book was very moving for me as my God-Mother is from Dresden and has many times made comments that this helps bring perspective to. Thank you K Lowe.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Pandora's Star

    • UNABRIDGED (37 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Peter F. Hamilton
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4576)
    Performance
    (2851)
    Story
    (2889)

    The year is 2380. The Intersolar Commonwealth, a sphere of stars some 400 light-years in diameter, contains more than 600 worlds, interconnected by a web of transport "tunnels" known as wormholes. At the farthest edge of the Commonwealth, astronomer Dudley Bose observes the impossible: Over 1,000 light-years away, a star...vanishes. It does not go supernova. It does not collapse into a black hole. It simply disappears.

    Devin says: "Great Epic Scifi"
    "parallels"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    A little longer than the book really needed to be. Plus, it seemed to be channeling RR Martin in the number of storylines in the book, that lacked conclusion in book one. While I appreciate authors want to make money by publishing books, please as good as the writing in this book is, it should have concluded more of the story lines, vs, making the reader wait for book two.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Legend: Event Group Adventure, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By David L. Golemon
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (77)
    Performance
    (68)
    Story
    (68)

    The Event Group is comprised of the nation’s most brilliant men and women in the fields of science, philosophy, and the military. Led by Major Jack Collins, their job is to find the truth behind the world's greatest unsolved myths. And this time, Collins and his crew will dare to uncover a terrifying secret - about the long-vanished tribe of the Incas - that's buried deep within the Amazon Basin.

    Matthew says: "The Event Group continue to roll"
    "fun serial writing."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    The whole Event group series is like an Indian Jones or W13. The plot and pace are enough to keep you moving, subtle humor, and enough freedom to let your mind wander from reality. Which I think is part of the allure of Sci-Fi, enough reality to connect, enough lack of reality to make you wonder.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fuzzy Nation

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton, John Scalzi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4448)
    Performance
    (3932)
    Story
    (3933)

    In John Scalzi's re-imagining of H. Beam Piper's 1962 sci-fi classic Little Fuzzy, written with the full cooperation of the Piper Estate, Jack Holloway works alone for reasons he doesnt care to talk about. Hundreds of miles from ZaraCorps headquarters on planet, 178 light-years from the corporations headquarters on Earth, Jack is content as an independent contractor, prospecting and surveying at his own pace. As for his past, thats not up for discussion.

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn says: "Short, sweet, and satisfying storytelling."
    "what is sentient ?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    A great look at what do we value, and what do we use to determine senescence. Hoses and power grids are not necessary for civilization of intelligence.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6474)
    Performance
    (6025)
    Story
    (6027)

    Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. Life couldn’t be better…until Andrew begins to pick up on the facts that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces; (2) the ship’s captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations; and (3) at least one low-ranked crew member is, sadly, always killed.

    Paige says: "Not his Wheal-house"
    "enjoyable sci-fi poking fun at itself."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When the characters realized they were...well...characters in a story.


    Any additional comments?

    A really fun look at how "campy" '60s science fiction really was. The whole red-shirt joke from Star Trek put in context of the characters that well...wore the redshirts.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Lost Island: Gideon Crew, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child
    • Narrated By David W. Collins
    Overall
    (552)
    Performance
    (492)
    Story
    (495)

    Gideon Crew, brilliant scientist, master thief, is living on borrowed time. When his mysterious employer, Eli Glinn, gives him an eyebrow-raising mission, he has no reason to refuse. Gideon's task: steal a page from the priceless Book of Kells, now on display in New York City and protected by unbreakable security. Accomplishing the impossible, Gideon steals the parchment - only to learn that hidden beneath the gorgeously illuminated image is a treasure map dating back to the time of the ancient Greeks.

    Mary says: "Their worst book!"
    "fun fun sci-fi"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Many others who have reviewed this book I think miss the point. This was not meant to be a rewrite of Homer's Odyssey, the book of Kells or anything else...it was meant to be an adventure in fantasy and science fiction with a current setting. I enjoyed the books and the general escape from reality it offered.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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