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Robert

Apopka, Florida, United States | Member Since 2013

10
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 14 reviews
  • 15 ratings
  • 453 titles in library
  • 108 purchased in 2014
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  • Wormhole: The Rho Agenda, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Richard Phillips
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (701)
    Performance
    (642)
    Story
    (641)

    When the Rho Project’s lead scientist, Dr. Donald Stephenson, is imprisoned for his crimes against humanity, the world dares to think the threat posed by the Rho Project’s alien technologies is finally over. The world is wrong. In Switzerland, scientists working on the Large Hadron Collider have discovered a new threat, a scientific anomaly capable of destroying the earth - and only Rho Project technology can stop it.

    Brian says: "SPECTACULAR SERIES!"
    "Surprise ending!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Wormhole to be better than the print version?

    The audio edition brings the story to life in a way that the printed version cannot.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Wormhole?

    The ending was quite a surprise and not what I would have expected.


    What about MacLeod Andrews’s performance did you like?

    Macleod Andrew's did an excellent job conveying the emotion of the characters during in their conversations.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Again, the ending was one of the most critical and moving parts of the story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Calculating God

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Robert J. Sawyer
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis, Robert J. Sawyer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1960)
    Performance
    (1353)
    Story
    (1366)

    In this Hugo-nominated novel, an alien walks into a museum and asks if he can see a paleontologist. But the arachnid ET hasn't come aboard a rowboat with the Pope and Stephen Hawking (although His Holiness does request an audience later). Landing at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, the spacefarer, Hollus, asks to compare notes on mass extinctions with resident dino-scientist Thomas Jericho.

    Ione says: "Interesting book, very enjoyable narration"
    "Calculating Intelligent Design"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Listening time was well-spent, although I it was like sitting in church or a lecture at a Christian philosophy class.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Robert J. Sawyer again?

    I have already been tempted to download another of Sawyer's books.


    Which character – as performed by Jonathan Davis and Robert J. Sawyer – was your favorite?

    My favorite character was the son, Ricky, as the most believable.


    Was Calculating God worth the listening time?

    Calculating God was definitely worth the listen, but it is in danger of insulting both atheists (or agnostics) and fundamental, young-earth Creationists.


    Any additional comments?

    Sawyer's characters have a small view of the divine, where God is simply as a transcended created being(s) from an earlier universe.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Shipstar

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Gregory Benford, Larry Niven
    • Narrated By Zach Villa
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (29)
    Story
    (29)

    Science fiction masters Larry Niven (Ringworld) and Gregory Benford (Timescape) continue the thrilling adventure of a human expedition to another star system that is jeopardized by an encounter with an astonishingly immense artifact in interstellar space: a bowl-shaped structure cupping a star, with a habitable area equivalent to many millions of Earths. And which, tantalizingly, is on a direct path heading toward the same system the human ship is to colonize.

    Donato says: "Hard to get through"
    "Should have been titled "Falling Star""
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Shipstar? What did you like least?

    Poor descriptions of action and inadequate character development made it difficult for me to maintain an interest in the storyline.


    Has Shipstar turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Shipstar did not turn me off to this genre, nor did it turn me off to Larry Niven or Gregory Benford. Not every story can be a homerun, but this story had a difficulty making it to first base.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The last chapter, where the human crew were deciding who would stay and who would go on the mission.


    Was Shipstar worth the listening time?

    I probably would not have listened to Shipstar had I known how poor the quality; I was ready to move on to another book after 2 hours.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Innocence: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Dean Koontz
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1009)
    Performance
    (901)
    Story
    (918)

    He lives in solitude beneath the city, an exile from society, which will destroy him if he is ever seen. She dwells in seclusion, a fugitive from enemies who will do her harm if she is ever found. But the bond between them runs deeper than the tragedies that have scarred their lives. Something more than chance - and nothing less than destiny - has brought them together in a world whose hour of reckoning is fast approaching.

    Michael says: "Among Koontz’s Best Slow Interesting Books"
    "Beauty and the Beast"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Innocence rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    If you like his "Odd Thomas" series, then Innocence will rank among the best of Dean Koontz for you.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The two main characters, and Koontz's portrayal of innocence, along with the twist at the end when the faces are uncovered, made this book one of my favorites.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I was able to listen to the whole novel is just a day and a half.


    Any additional comments?

    One slight week point was Koontz's use of dogs in the story. I appreciate Koontz's love for our canine friends but the insertion was slightly forced.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mockingjay: The Final Book of The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (27232)
    Performance
    (21060)
    Story
    (21266)

    Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena live, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge....

    GS says: "Conflicting Emotions"
    "Failed to Deliver"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes, but only if the friend had read the other two books. Someone who had not read the first two books does not need to waste their time jumping into the third book.


    What could Suzanne Collins have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    What a disappointment after the first two books. Suzanne Collins must have been racing the meet a deadline with this last book, because she could have improved the story line more by resolving the tension between Gale and Catniss; instead, she just sends Gale to a distant District.


    What does Carolyn McCormick bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Through inflection and pauses, McCormick breathes life into a story line that was constantly on the edge of going stale.


    Do you think Mockingjay needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    A follow-up book that ties up all the loose ends would help, but it needs to follow a better plot line accompanied by better developed sub-plots and character interaction.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Problem of Pain

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By C. S. Lewis
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (391)
    Performance
    (134)
    Story
    (139)

    For centuries Christians have been tormented by one question above all, "If God is good and all-powerful, why does he allow his creatures to suffer pain?"

    David says: "An Extraordinary Little Book"
    "The Problem with Pain a Delight"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Problem of Pain rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The Problem of Pain ranks in the Top ten percent of non-fiction


    What other book might you compare The Problem of Pain to and why?

    C.S. Lewis's book, Miracles, is similar in scope and dimension to the Problem of Pain.


    What does Simon Vance bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    While I was listening, Vance did so well I often thought I was listening to Lewis.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    The Problem with Pain no Problem


    Any additional comments?

    Christians will appreciate Lewis's apologetic approach the most.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Sociopath Next Door

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Martha Stout
    • Narrated By Shelly Frasier
    Overall
    (2684)
    Performance
    (1674)
    Story
    (1672)

    We are accustomed to think of sociopaths as violent criminals, but in The Sociopath Next Door, Harvard psychologist Martha Stout reveals that a shocking 4 percent of ordinary people, one in 25, has an often undetected mental disorder, the chief symptom of which is that that person possesses no conscience. He or she has no ability whatsoever to feel shame, guilt, or remorse. One in 25 everyday Americans, therefore, is secretly a sociopath.

    Taryn says: "Reinforces what you have already known"
    "That Explains A Lot"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Sociopath Next Door in three words, what would they be?

    Rude Awakening and Eye-Opening


    What other book might you compare The Sociopath Next Door to and why?

    The Sociopath Next Door reminds me of Dealing with Difficult People because it provided such a clear glimpse into the hearts of people who initially appear so enigmatic to me.


    Have you listened to any of Shelly Frasier’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Unfortunately, I had not listened to Shelly Frasier before, but she did an excellent job of breathing additional life into an enlightening text.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The most enlightening and encouraging portion of the book was found in the concluding chapter that discussed whether sociopaths, who are free from guilt and remorse, have an unfair advantage over those who possess a conscience.


    Any additional comments?

    The Sociopath Next Door and The Rocks Don't Lie are the two non-fiction books I have read this year that have changed my perception of life more than any other books than the Bible.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 14

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11022)
    Performance
    (9999)
    Story
    (10021)

    There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s.

    Magpie says: "Super solid listen!!"
    "Non-stop Suspense - Awesome Beginning to Crazy End"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Peter Clines's novel, 14, kept me on the edge of my seat. I can recommend it to anyone who would enjoy the combination of James Dashner (Maze Runner) and H. P. Lovecraft's cosmic horror.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of 14?

    A "most memorable moment" occurs at the decidedly weird turn when the building and occupants enter an alternate reality.


    What about Ray Porter’s performance did you like?

    A great narrator is one whom the listener forgets is there. I became engrossed in the story because of Ray Porter's excellent use of voice inflection, pauses, and the change of tone and accents between characters.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I experienced the special element of surprise at the end when a main character receives a job offer. (I don't want to spoil it for the perspective reader).


    Any additional comments?

    The last few chapters go a little too far and over-the-top, but Cline reels it back in for a satisfying conclusion.

    1 of 1 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
    (3920)
    Performance
    (2441)
    Story
    (2468)

    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"
    "Too Much Vulgarity"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Hyperion is a combination of a futuristic Canterbury Tales and a sci-fi Murder on the Orient Express. Time listening was well-spent except during the passages that consisted primarily of long strings of vulgarity.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Hyperion?

    Hyperion has a number of memorable moments but the most memorable is toward the end of the book when events dovetail together to provide a complete picture.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The pilgrims' arrival and subsequent drama at the Time Tombs.


    Do you think Hyperion needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    The information and character development within Hyperion lend plenty of material for multiple sequels.


    Any additional comments?

    Vulgarity, like most spices, can enrich a recipe when artfully employed, but can ruin a tasteful creation when overused.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Chindi: Academy Series

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Jack McDevitt
    • Narrated By Khristine Hvam, Oliver Wyman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (212)
    Performance
    (94)
    Story
    (94)

    The universe has been explored - and humanity has all but given up on finding other intelligent life. Then an alien satellite orbiting a distant star sends out an unreadable signal. Is it the final programmed gasp of an ancient, long-dead race? Or the first greeting of an undiscovered life form?

    Robert says: "Everything You Want in a Sci-Fi Novel"
    "Everything You Want in a Sci-Fi Novel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Chindi to be better than the print version?

    Comparing the audio version to the printed word is comparing apple to oranges, but the advantage to the audio version is the ability to continue to story while on the go. The written version is better curled up in bed with book in hand and a cup of tea on the night-stand.


    What other book might you compare Chindi to and why?

    Chindi follows in the tradition of Deepsix and Engines of the Gods, but only better. Jack McDevitt really hits his stride with this one.


    What does Khristine Hvam and Oliver Wyman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Having two readers enhances the reading experience by breaking up the monotony and bringing the novel to life. Wyman's role is primarily delivering quotes during the chapter divisions and Hvan narrates the story..


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The excitement is sprinkled throughout the novel but reaches a major crescento as the expedition explores the Chindi vessel.


    Any additional comments?

    Chindi length is slightly greater than many of the Sci-fi novels and so the listener will invest extra time reaching the end, but the end is worth it.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Honor of the Queen: Honor Harrington, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Allyson Johnson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1545)
    Performance
    (1122)
    Story
    (1122)

    It's hard to give peace a chance when the other side regards conquest as the only option and a sneak attack as the best means to that end. That's why the Kingdom of Manticore needs allies against the Republic of Haven, and the planet Grayson is strategically situated to make a very good ally indeed. But Her Majesty’s Foreign Office overlooked a “minor cultural difference” when they chose Honor Harrington to carry the flag: women on the planet of Grayson are without rank or rights and Honor’s mere presence is an intolerable affront to every male on the planet.

    Richard says: "Following on in the series - Book 2"
    "Obvious Bias"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from David Weber and/or Allyson Johnson?

    I will probably take a break from the Honor Harrington series for a while, but I may go to book three in the series in the future, to give Harrington one more try.


    If you’ve listened to books by David Weber before, how does this one compare?

    The Honor of the Queen was a disappointment compared to the first book. The book revealed a painful bias on the part of the authors against religious devotees that distracted from an otherwise intriguing plot line. Portraits of the antagonists were two-dimensional and forced. Weber seem to have more difficulty describing battle scenes clearly.


    What aspect of Allyson Johnson’s performance would you have changed?

    Johnson started off well, became more monotonous,and then improved markedly after Harrington's injury demanded a speech impediment.


    Did The Honor of the Queen inspire you to do anything?

    I appreciate the emphasis on personnel convictions and leadership integrity,which can have real-time implications.


    Any additional comments?

    I am an older adult, but this book may appeal more to young adults or younger military personnel.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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