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gary

Tecumseh, MI, United States | Member Since 2007

31
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 26 reviews
  • 316 ratings
  • 396 titles in library
  • 6 purchased in 2014
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  • The Measure of the Magic: Legends of Shannara

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Terry Brooks
    • Narrated By Phil Gigante
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (370)
    Performance
    (324)
    Story
    (325)

    For 500 years, the survivors of the Great Wars lived peacefully in a valley sanctuary shielded by powerful magic from the blighted and dangerous outside world. But the enchanted barriers have crumbled, the borders have been breached by predators, and the threat of annihilation looms large once more. Sider Ament, bearer of the last black staff and its profound power, devoted his life to protecting the valley and its inhabitants - and, in his final moments, gave stewardship of the black staff to the young Tracker Panterra Qu.

    Darren says: "Wished for More"
    "Sophomoric at Best"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Not a bad listen, but don't expect this sophomoric conclusion to the Bear of the Black staff to be as good as it was. This is not within the top 50% of Terry Brooks' best works.

    Phil Gigante does a great job.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Dead Sun: Star Force, Book 9

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By B. V. Larson
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (468)
    Performance
    (448)
    Story
    (446)

    Kyle Riggs sits uneasily upon Earth’s throne. He’s liberated his homeworld from a tyrant, only to replace him. In The Dead Sun, the ninth book of the Star Force Series, the Great War between life and the machines reaches its final chapter. Both sides have new technology and expanded industrial bases. Star Force and the machines attempt to exterminate one another in a final, glorious conflict. Along the way, Riggs finally learns who his real friends and enemies are. The Dead Sun is a military science fiction novel by best-selling author B. V. Larson.

    Michael G. Kurilla says: "Riggs finally finds some peace"
    "So Concludes the Star Force Saga..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Have you listened to any of Mark Boyett’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Mark Boyett was a great narrator. A professional in his art.


    Any additional comments?

    I must admit I've never much cared for first-person narration, however I make a huge exception to the Star Force series -- in the end, Mark Boyett (i.e., his voice) was Colonel Kyle Riggs.

    Mr. Larson did a great job keeping the story fresh and the progression interesting throughout the series.

    As a space opera, I thoroughly enjoyed the ride that saved humanity. I was never bored or agitated at this series, as I have been with others, and I finished each read enthusiastically and quickly.

    I will be continuing on with any other series Mr. Larson and Mr. Boyett present, and I look forward to another ride.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Gripping Hand

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Jerry Pournelle, Larry Niven
    • Narrated By L. J. Ganser
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (536)
    Performance
    (470)
    Story
    (479)

    Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle, award-winning authors of such best sellers as Footfall and The Legacy of Heorot, return us to the Mote, and to the universe of Kevin Renner and Horace Bury, of Rod Blaine and Sally Fowler. There, 25 years have passed since humanity quarantined the mysterious aliens known as Moties within the confines of their own solar system. They have spent a quarter century analyzing and agonizing over the deadly threat posed by the only aliens mankind has ever encountered - a race divided into distinct biological forms, each serving a different function: Master, Mediator, Engineer, Warrior.

    James says: "The sequel matches the first book"
    "Ah...yeah."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Jerry Pournelle and Larry Niven and/or L. J. Ganser?

    Yes. It would be nice to have a story to finish this one.


    Any additional comments?

    Story was unsatisfying. I enjoy the Mote universe, but this was nothing near as good as the first book. This was mostly a story of narration, the characters monologging about what was happening instead of actual events occurring. Ending was unsatisfying, little plot, and almost no intrigue.

    I did enjoy Ganser's reading, however; this was my first book with this narrator and I look forward to hearing him again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Battle Station: Star Force, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By B. V. Larson
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1227)
    Performance
    (1135)
    Story
    (1137)

    In Battle Station, Kyle Riggs faces new challenges, new alien fleets, and learns the secrets behind the war he has been fighting for years. In the fifth book of the Star Force Series, the Eden system is in humanity's grasp, but can they keep it? Star Force is weak after a long war, and many yearn to go home. Knowing the machines will return with a new armada eventually, Riggs seeks a more permanent solution. Along the way, worlds are won and lost, millions perish, and great truths are revealed.

    William says: "Non-stop Sci-Fi Action"
    "Classic BV Larson"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Battle Station?

    I enjoyed the continuation of what has become an interesting story with an interesting protagonist. If you liked the first four Star Force books, you won't be disappointed.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The plot twist that comes in Book 5.


    Which character – as performed by Mark Boyett – was your favorite?

    Riggs, of course, but Marvin runs a close second.


    Any additional comments?

    I will be continuing onto the next books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ready Player One

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Ernest Cline
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8857)
    Performance
    (8240)
    Story
    (8237)

    At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.

    Travis says: "ADD TO CART, POWER UP +10000"
    "Gets better in the second half...But yawn..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Ernest Cline and/or Wil Wheaton?

    Probably not. Although I "eventually" enjoyed the story, I found the gimmick of this story annoying after a time. Wil did an 'okay' job, but just.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Use a professional audio performance artist. Wil was monotone the whole way through and all characters sounded the same. It was if he was reading aloud, not creating a performance.


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

    Nope.


    Any additional comments?

    I "almost" gave up on this story, but was somewhat of a captured audience, as I was listening to it during travel. It gets better about half-way through and by the end I had enjoyed it, or at least needed to know how it ended, but not enough to ever want to read or do it again, like I will a truly "good" book. Quite frankly, I don't get why so many geek-out on this book; the gimmick was fun at first, but quickly became annoying -- too much gimmick and not enough plot. I also don't like dystopias that are completely unrealistic, nor first-person narration.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Shadow of Freedom

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Allyson Johnson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (322)
    Performance
    (304)
    Story
    (305)

    There are two sides to any quarrel... unless there are more. Queen Elizabeth of Manticore's first cousin and Honor Harrington's best friend Michelle Henke has just handed the "invincible" Solarian League Navy the most humiliating, one-sided defeat in its entire almost thousand-year history in defense of the people of the Star Empire's Talbott Quadrant. But the League is the most powerful star nation in the history of humanity. Its navy is going to be back – and this time with thousands of superdreadnoughts.

    David Hurwitz says: "Missing: Honor and Nimitz"
    "Horrible."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from David Weber and/or Allyson Johnson?

    Probably, but not this series.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Allyson Johnson?

    She did okay. My "performance" issues are with the directors of the audiobook, but this may be misplaced, it may be that Weber, or his publisher is to blame. Someone made some very bad decisions in how this book/listen was assembled, with regard to the timeline. I quit about chapter 8, I couldn't take any more. I do not want to listen to the same EXACT parts of the story from the last book and the book before it. Stupid.


    Any additional comments?

    There are some SERIOUS time dependencies issues. It's as if chapters from 2 to 3 books ago, that were cut, were added back into a new book. This book actually starts out in a timeline BEFORE the book before the book before this one. Confused? You will be. It is as if previously deleted (and bad) chapters were cut, and reassembled. I'm done.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Rising Thunder: Honor Harrington, Book 13

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Allyson Johnson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (796)
    Performance
    (718)
    Story
    (717)

    Peril and strife strike on a double front for Honor Harrington and company. After a brutal attack on the Manticoran home system, Honor Harrington and the Star Kingdom she serves battle back against a new, technologically powerful, and utterly nefarious enemy. And as if that weren’t task enough, Honor must also face down a centuries-old nemesis in the crumbling, but still mighty, Solarian League.

    ShySusan says: "I HATE the year-long wait for the next installment"
    "A collection of minor characters"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about A Rising Thunder?

    After 12 books, they started pronouncing Manticoran "correctly." Honor makes a cameo, and the story is only minor characters and stories loosely held together.


    What could David Weber have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Include Honor. More on the treecats.


    What didn’t you like about Allyson Johnson’s performance?

    After 12 books, she finally started pronouncing Manticoran "correctly." After hearing it pronounced incorrectly for 12 books, hearing it correctly was distracting and annoying.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    I like the Manticoran universe. I think it interesting and full of opportunities, that Weber then fails to explore.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • At All Costs: Honor Harrington, Book 11

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Allyson Johnson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (708)
    Performance
    (498)
    Story
    (501)

    What price victory? The war with the Republic of Haven has resumed . . . disastrously for the Star Kingdom of Manticore. Admiral Lady Dame Honor Harrington, Steadholder and Duchess Harrington, the single victorious Allied commander of the opening phase of the new war, has been recalled from the Sidemore System to command Eighth Fleet. Everyone knows Eighth Fleet is the Alliance's primary offensive command, which makes it the natural assignment for the woman the media calls "the Salamander."

    Sijia Huang says: "To Avid Harrington Readers..."
    "Yawn..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Very little action in this book. Mostly explanations to things you've already figured out, or don't need an explanation for. Very little of the story moves forward and little new comes into play. Very disappointed.


    Would you ever listen to anything by David Weber again?

    Yes. Overall I very much like his characters.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Yes. She does a great job.


    What character would you cut from At All Costs?

    Almost all of them. Cardboard as they are.


    Any additional comments?

    I wish I had quit on the last book...

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Echoes of Honor: Honor Harrington, Book 8

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Allyson Johnson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (787)
    Performance
    (570)
    Story
    (572)

    For eight years, Commodore Honor Harrington was in the forefront of the battle between the Star Kingdom of Manticore and the powerful People's Republic of Haven. Then she was captured and publicly executed. But Honor is far from dead, what's more, she's going home and taking her people with her.

    Professor says: "Honor Harrington Universe Book 11"
    "Best So Far..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Echoes of Honor the most enjoyable?

    The story was very engaging. Never got boring or dull as was the first half of Book 7.


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

    I was very excited upon (redacted) at the end when (redacted) (redacted) (redacted)... You'll just have to listen to the story...


    Any additional comments?

    Great ending that leaves you wanting Book 9.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • In Enemy Hands: Honor Harrington, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Allyson Johnson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (817)
    Performance
    (575)
    Story
    (584)

    Honor Harrington has survived ship-to-ship combat, assassins, political vendettas, and duels. But this time, Honor and her crew, ambushed and captured, are aboard an enemy ship, bound for a prison planet aptly named "Hell" - and her scheduled execution. Yet the one lesson Honor has never learned is how to give up. She and her people are going home--even if it means conquering hell to get there!

    Daniel says: "Excelent, audible should finish the series"
    "Yawn"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Get rid of the first half of the book.


    Would you ever listen to anything by David Weber again?

    Sure.


    Did Allyson Johnson do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    The first HALF of this story was complete fluff. Only one important point was made, besides that, it can be summarized in two sentences, but I won't spoil it for you, please, feel my pain.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Memory of Light: Wheel of Time, Book 14

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer, Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4266)
    Performance
    (3880)
    Story
    (3923)

    Since 1990, when Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time® burst on the world with its first book, The Eye of the World, listeners have been anticipating the final scenes of this extraordinary saga, which has sold over 40 million copies in over 32 languages. When Robert Jordan died in 2007, all feared that these concluding scenes would never be written. But working from notes and partials left by Jordan, established fantasy writer Brandon Sanderson stepped in to complete the masterwork.

    Mike Koch says: "End of one of my favorite fantasy series ever."
    "A Fitting Beginning to the Forth Age"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to A Memory of Light again? Why?

    Yes, but I will have to wait many years. This epic spanned a great many years of my life, it was a story worthy of waiting, of thought. Listening to the entire series from front to back will have to come when I have the time to devote to it, and perhaps I've forgotten a thing or two about it.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Memory of Light?

    The ending. A fitting end and great tribute by Sanderson to Jordan, for all of us. As it ended, I couldn't stop grinning, but I did not want it to be finally complete. Tear.


    What does Michael Kramer and Kate Reading bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Absolute giants in the performance of audiobooks. It was great listening to them back and forth between chapters, depending on if the main theme of the chapter involved a female voice (Kate) or was male voice (Kramer). Whoever decided to break up the story this way was a genius.


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

    I'm am perpetually irritated by this question by Audible. No, it is TOO long to listen to in one sitting, quit asking this stupid question.


    Any additional comments?

    Sanderson did an excellent job of bringing Jordan's magnificence to fruition. We will all be forever in his debt for finishing the vision Jordan created and captured our imaginations with. Thank you Sanderson. Godspeed Jordan.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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