The Elephant Whisperer is the true story of a Conservationist who started a wildlife preserve in South Africa. Early in the story he is asked to take a herd of dangerous elephants who will otherwise be killed. This is at the heart of the story, although by no means the entire story.
This wildlife preserve, Thula Thula, is a place the author refers to numerous times as “Paradise”. By the end of the book we really feel like it is his own little version of Heaven, replete with glorious sunsets, stretches of untamed earth, and the noble creatures that roam there upon. Nevertheless, it is a paradise without God.
Throughout this entire narrative, we see a man who has made his life’s work that of preserving and protecting the wilds of Africa. Here is a man who so reveres wildlife in all its forms, that he abstains from killing a very dangerous snake, even when it slithers into his bedroom. He would rather walk than move his car, because a spider had created a beautiful web on it that morning. Here also is a man who writes tender accounts of his connection with elephants; this connection is tangible in his rehabilitation of them to accept conditioned human contact.
Lawrence Anthony and Graham Spence are gifted storytellers with a Passionate love for Life. Yet, for all of the splendor, and for all of the reverence for creatures great and small, God was the only thing I felt was truly absent in this book. It felt like something was missing, and that was it. To witness all of the beauty and majesty of Africa as detailed in this sincere autobiography, and still not see God, was heartbreaking (if not the turning of a blind eye).
Another stellar performance by Simon Vance.
I really dislike group narrations (adaptations?). Reminds me of a hokey "radio-hour" rather than the reading of a novel.
In "Truth", the story is a little slow and lacks suspense. On top of that, the 'mystery' of the initial crime is distracted by the Detectives sloppy lifestyle and inner turmoil. This might be fine, except that the reader is apt to miss the point.
The main character's monologue, or the story's narrative, tends to switch topics without warning, making the storyline difficult to track (this, likely due to subtlety in the writing, stylistic differences of Australian crime-writing, and reader inattentiveness).
Bottom Line: "Truth" is not a bad novel, just slow, and rather boring, but there worse ones out there. 50/50.
Eschatology* is the study of "end times", specifically as it relates to the Bible and world events.
*This book is for those who have a serious interest in this subject only.
The title lets us know that his major point of study for this book, is the nature and origin of the "anti-Christ". This "person's" identity has been the subject of the three Abrahamic religions, and is frequently mentioned in the eschatological texts of all three's sacred scriptures.
Chris White is well-read in the field of eschatology. He has a bible study podcast which examines various issues surrounding the bible, with an emphasis on biblical "end-times". (I believe his career occupation however, is that of an Attorney at Law. This is evidenced by the compelling arguments he is able to make, and his clear presentation of facts, and separating speculations for examination.)
He understands most of the major arguments about biblical prophecy, and states them in a clear and concise manner. He presents his views in comparison and contrast to the other most commonly held views, and then explains why he feels his position is better. He creates compelling arguments, underscored by biblical supports.
There are so many unnencessary plot-lines that are introduced that the story becomes hard to follow and (somewhat ironically) loses interest.
I enjoy the author's writing style, with one major exception, his "back-stories" or "flashbacks" seem included simply to flesh-out the character or to add dimension. Instead, they become so long as to distract from the original story.
Just when you think you have finished with one "flashback" and the original story will resume, another, different, flashback is introduced. This happens so frequently I cannot tell which is the main story, if there is one, or if they are a series of independent stories linked together to make a LONGER novel.
I think the author missed an opportunity here. I would have enjoyed this much better as a series of books, rather than a montage of very long vignettes spliced together.
I finished the book.
Found it mostly interesting and enjoyed the setting.
Did not share Darwinist viewpoints or appreciate slams against traditional theism, but was able to overlook it.
In audio format the occasional non-linear interludes caused me to lose my place in the novel, but was otherwise and okay story.
In an hour and a half Jimmy Houston engages the reader and passes on a lifetime of expertise. Advanced and Beginner alike will get something from tho book.
Slow Horses is an interesting new take on the Spy Game genre.
Instead of the best of the best in modern spy craft, we are introduced to the cast-off's of an offbeat MI-5 division. "Mission Unattainable". Because they are screw-ups, they have been relegated to a backwater department that monitors emails for suspicious activity (at current they have checked 80,000 emails and have found no imminent threats).
I enjoyed the writing style, which was descriptive, but not bogged-down in details. And enjoyed the characters immensely, especially the corpulent and flatulent director of the Slough House Division.
However, one criticism I feel inclined to make is: halfway through the book several peripheral characters became main characters; It became very confusing for me personally to know what just happened. It took a re-listen to those parts before I could make sense of who was who and when, and where, and why... The story steadied itself before a satisfactory ending.
I definitely recommend to fans of the genre.
What may be intended as wry-old-humor and absurdity, just became somewhat tiresome after a while. I lost interest in the story and the characters about halfway through. Although lighthearted, it seemed unfunny to me, and just became long-winded in its delivery.
Listening to "Defending Jacob" is like watching a train wreck.
You watch with a weird fascination, knowing that what you see is terrible, but unable to pull your gaze away. One bad thing piles onto another bad thing, and you begin to question the truth (as the lawyers, and the author intended). "Jacob" redefines the courtroom thriller. If Grisham were to write a novel that was not formulaic, and was smoldering with emotion and filled with flawed characters (that may or may not be sadistic killers) then this might be it. You will never guess the ending.
Without giving anything away... the DA's son is accused of murder, and as the title of the book suggest, a number of meanings begin to play out. His family is pulled headlong into the muddy fray, and their lives are quickly unraveled with hateful gossip, community backlash, and etc...
Excellent reading by Grover Gardener.
A veterean Homocide Detective is forced into an early retirement as cancer ravages his insides (and makes a mess of his plans at fishing and lazy days ahead). Amidst the upheaval this illness causes, he is given a rare chance at redeeming a bungled case from his past. This distraction saves him from thinking about his current misery, and may even save a girl's life.
It is a solid detective story, if a little predictable. The 'cancer' aspect of the novel was very informative and written neatly into the story; The author seemed very knowledgeable about the subject, and empathetic to the hero's predicament.
The narrator's timbre was appropriate for a gruff, worn-out cop.
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