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Jared

West Jordan, UT, United States | Member Since 2011

38
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 31 reviews
  • 56 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 13 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
3

  • Wool: Silo, #1; Wool, #1-5

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Hugh Howey
    • Narrated By Amanda Sayle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1382)
    Performance
    (1271)
    Story
    (1283)

    In a ruined and toxic landscape, a community exists in a giant silo underground, hundreds of stories deep. There, men and women live in a society full of regulations they believe are meant to protect them. Sheriff Holston, who has unwaveringly upheld the silo’s rules for years, unexpectedly breaks the greatest taboo of all: He asks to go outside.

    Michael G. Kurilla says: "Post-apocalyptic life in a silo"
    "Not horrible, but not great"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This contains a few minor spoilers, but nothing important to the story. Don’t get attached to Holston. He’s completely gone after the first chapter. And that leads into what I consider poor story structure. The book will start building momentum and become interesting. It appears to start very quickly with Holston. Then there’s an abrupt turn. The story stops dead and almost seems to restart. That's fairly common for some stories; hook the reader in the beginning, then get more in-depth before continuing on. The problem is that this same technique is used a few different times during the book rather than just at the beginning. It seems to just be getting interesting, then time resets and explains how it got to this situation in rather boring detail.
    Rather than going into the more traditional science fiction you’d expect, this story is more about internal politics and drama. There’s minimal focus as to why the planet is as it is. You get a few paragraphs that basically used the tired old story thread “The U.S. was secretly evil” to explain in passing and that’s it. No details at all and its completely superfluous to the story. Another silo is somewhat explored, but it answers few questions that aren’t answered elsewhere. There’s otherwise no exploring the outside world other than to say “maybe later we’ll do it”. So essentially, this is a story about the politics of people living in a massive structure.
    It’s not entirely bad, I guess I was just expecting something else, but I don’t think I would read anything by this author again.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Dead Living

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Glenn Bullion
    • Narrated By Mark Nelson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (78)
    Performance
    (75)
    Story
    (75)

    It didn’t take long for the world to die. The dead rose with no explanation and only one purpose...to eat living flesh. Born on the day everything died, the world of the living dead is the only world that Aaron knows. Kept in relative isolation from the walking corpses, his family teaches him how to read and write, how to survive on his own. After a tragedy hits close to home, he discovers he is different than any human left alive. The undead want nothing to do with him....

    Mike Naka says: "better than expected"
    "Poor dialog, narration and misleading synopsis"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Also poor character development. Other than being mildly naive about certain human interactions, the protagonist seems to be perfect in every way, which is a great thing to aspire to, but makes for very boring reading. The love interest is just as odd. She goes from a lifelong distrustful loner to opening up and falling in love with him in just over 48 hours of story time. All the surrounding characters are extra flawed, ready to throw their own families to the wolves (or zombies anyway), to make Aaron seem that much better.

    There’s inconsistency in the story as well. Chief among them being that the story explicitly states that the undead don’t decay – that’s why the story takes place 20+ years after it began and still has mobs of undead. However, just a few paragraphs later it describes the extreme and continuing decay of most of the creatures, some of them outright falling apart. This and several other inconsistencies continues on throughout the story in various ways wherever and whenever convenient.

    As for the narration I can’t blame Mark Nelson entirely. Judging by what others he’s narrated he is used to doing a combination of non-fiction and B-movieish stories. He just doesn’t have the right voice for something that is not trying (at least successfully) to be campy.

    I could see past all those flaws (the first two chapters were actually fairly good), but what I can’t forgive is that most of the book is devoted to Aaron and Sam’s love story. Zombies are happening somewhere in the background, but are just a peripheral focus after a few hours in and don't really matter. Despite this, the story tries to be extra graphic for the first couple of chapters I guess in an attempt to make up for the complete lack of action later.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Junkie Quatrain

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Christian Rummel, Therese Plummer
    Overall
    (768)
    Performance
    (708)
    Story
    (719)

    Six months ago, the world ended. The Baugh Contagion swept across the planet. Its victims were left twitching, adrenalized cannibals that quickly became know as Junkies. Civilization crumbled as people created isolated safe havens to hide from the infected... and the possibly infected. Now, as society nears a tipping point, lives will intersect and intertwine across two days in a desolate city.

    Tango says: "An awesome set of vignettes"
    "Not really worth it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Clines is overall a very good author - his story "14" is one of my favorites. This one however....

    Even a really great story wouldn't be worth spending much money or a credit on for such a short book (less than four hours). And though it is well written I wouldn't call it very good.

    I suppose the problem comes down to the format. This is a compilation of four short stories. Each story crosses over, but only mildly, except for the last two. There is no resolution for any of them. In the end it's just a series of events with no outcome. If you can get it on sale for just a couple of bucks it might be worth it, but otherwise don't bother.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Raising Stony Mayhall

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Daryl Gregory
    • Narrated By David Marantz
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (938)
    Performance
    (835)
    Story
    (837)

    In 1968, after the first zombie outbreak, Wanda Mayhall and her three young daughters discover the body of a teenage mother during a snowstorm. Wrapped in the woman's arms is a baby - stone-cold, not breathing, and without a pulse. But then his eyes open and look up at Wanda, and he begins to move.The family hides the child - whom they name Stony - rather than turn him over to authorities who would destroy him. Against all scientific reason, the undead boy begins to grow....

    Dave says: "The Undead Have Never Been So Fresh (or Funny)"
    "Slow but overall worthwhile"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story is overall very slow as it chronicles the "life" of Stony Mayhall, but I still found it entertaining for the most part.
    There's not much more I can say without spoilers. The cause of the dead rising is never discovered. The story begins in the 1970's. In this world, "Night of the Living Dead" was a documentary, not a horror flick, but afterword begins to follow real world history up to the present. If you're looking for a traditional zombie story, this isn't it.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Day By Day Armageddon

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By J L Bourne
    • Narrated By Jay Snyder
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3132)
    Performance
    (2228)
    Story
    (2224)

    In your hands is the handwritten journal depicting one man's struggle for survival. Trapped in the midst of global disaster, he must make decisions; choices that ultimately mean life, or the eternal curse to walk as one of them. Enter, if you will, into the world of the undead.

    rob haight says: "Great book! More more more!!"
    "Compelling but a little too much Sci Fy for me"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The third book got a little too Sy Fy for me. I realize some zombie tales could reasonably be called Sy Fy, but without giving too much away, it got a little too traditional Sy Fy for me. It does also seem that the author didn't outline his entire story prior to the publication of the first book due to some inconsistency in style and some very minor plot points established earlier on.

    Despite that, I found it to be very compelling, well written and well narrated. These are you're traditional slow but unrelenting, "bullet to the head" undead zombies, but some of them become faster/smarter (like an animal not a human) than the majority of the walkers.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Frozen Sky

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Jeff Carlson
    • Narrated By Amy H. Sturgis
    Overall
    (53)
    Performance
    (44)
    Story
    (46)

    Something is alive inside Jupiter's ice moon Europa. Robot probes find an ancient tunnel beneath the surface, its walls carved with strange hieroglyphics. Led by elite engineer Alexis Vonderach, a team of scientists descends into the dark...where they confront a savage race older than mankind....

    Trip Williams says: "GREAT story of first contact!"
    "Couldn't finish it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story starts out well, but after about two hours it goes off track and never really recovers. It becomes more of a soap opera with politics and pseudo science. Maybe it gets better in the end, but I just didn't have the motivation to make it there.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Revelation Space

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Alastair Reynolds
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1491)
    Performance
    (1022)
    Story
    (1026)

    Nine hundred thousand years ago, something annihilated the Amarantin civilization just as it was on the verge of discovering space flight. Now one scientist, Dan Sylveste, will stop at nothing to solve the Amarantin riddle before ancient history repeats itself. With no other resources at his disposal, Sylveste forges a dangerous alliance with the cyborg crew of the starship Nostalgia for Infinity. But as he closes in on the secret, a killer closes in on him because the Amarantin were destroyed for a reason.

    Eoin says: "Defeated"
    "No spoilers"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Seems rather dystopian to me, which I generally avoid, but overall still a good story. My only real complaint is with the narrator. The different portions of the story when switching from character to character, and chapter by chapter have little to no space between them, causing one scene to bleed into the next. This is likely how the publisher compiled the audio and nothing the narrator was doing. Also much of the storyline is, by necessity, non-linear, due to an inability to travel faster than light.
    In this future it seems as if all of humanity has switched to a feudal or tribal system. (It doesn't specifically say this, but that's how it appears to me.) You never hear about any major governments or even long term alliances. The best technology was developed centuries in the past(ship engines, cache weapons), and the knowledge of how it even works is lost. Most of the existing tech is capable of maintaining itself, so it's still working. There's a lot of nano tech (which is not lost tech), but much of it is compromised by the Melding Plague, a cyber-nano virus who's origin is explained in another story of the same universe. Most technological development has been arrested. A person can spend decades away from a planet and return with little technical change.
    Here's a couple of definitions that will make the story easier to follow, without giving anything away. There are Jugglers, or Pattern Jugglers. These are massive lifeforms that encompass whole planets, or at least the oceans. They are essentially ancient massive organic databases, with some debate on how conscious they may or may not be. They can store any kind of information, including whole minds, organic and electronic.
    Shrouds or Shrouders. There are multiple Shrouds, area's of highly localized energy and gravitational anomalies. Artificial in nature, their purpose is unknown.
    The eighty. In Chasm City there's a shrine to these people. They were the first to try to scan their brains into a computer(which is now common). The scanning process itself was imperfect at the time, and killed them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tooth and Nail

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Craig DiLouie
    • Narrated By Steve Cooper
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (243)
    Performance
    (129)
    Story
    (125)

    As a new plague related to the rabies virus infects millions, America recalls its military forces from around the world to safeguard hospitals and other vital buildings. Many of the victims become rabid and violent but are easily controlled—that is, until so many are infected that they begin to run amok, spreading slaughter and disease.

    Flavius says: "Rough, but Enjoyable"
    "Good, but comparatively not great"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't know if DiLouie wrote this book first or Infection, but I'm betting it was this one because it doesn't seem as well written. It's an excellent story, but not nearly as good as his Infection books. This story has a lot of similarities to Infection, but I don't believe is executed as well. If you've never read anything by DiLouie, I'd recommend you start with this one, then it should improve from there.

    1 of 1 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
    (5378)
    Performance
    (5015)
    Story
    (5010)

    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.

    Ken says: "It's all about the codas"
    "Accurate, but loving mockery of Star Trek"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is an excellent book almost the whole way through. There is a section at the end where it seems as though the editor told Scalzi that the book needed to be longer because it's totally unnecessary. Basically, when the story starts talking from the point of a blog, you can shut it off. Prior to that though it's very good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Return Man

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By V. M. Zito
    • Narrated By Bernard Clark
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (99)
    Performance
    (91)
    Story
    (94)

    The outbreak tore the US in two. The East remains a safe haven. The West has become a ravaged wilderness, known by survivors as the Evacuated States. It is here that Henry Marco makes his living. Hired by grieving relatives, he tracks down the dead and delivers peace. Now Homeland Security wants Marco for a mission unlike any other: He must return to California, where the apocalypse began. Where a secret is hidden. And where his own tragic past waits to punish him again.

    Mike Naka says: "wtf a zombie assassin? yes, but much more!"
    "If I want politics I'll turn on CNN"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't read fiction for politics and social commentary. I read them for entertainment. I could only get about an hour in until the author started droning on and on about politics. Not fictional politics that could actually play a roll in the story, but mostly real world stuff and how it could relate distantly to the situation. Maybe it gets better afterward, but my past experience with any fiction is that if it starts to get off on a tangent like this, especially early on, you can look forward to the whole book being that way. I'm glad I could return it. Judging by the reviews from other sites, I saved a lot of time and disappointment. The only zombie book worse than this was "Feed".

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful

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