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marcus

Berwyn, IL, United States | Member Since 2009

ratings
20
REVIEWS
19
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
9

  • Ringworld

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Larry Niven
    • Narrated By Tom Parker
    Overall
    (2869)
    Performance
    (1539)
    Story
    (1565)

    Welcome to Ringworld, an intermediate step between Dyson Spheres and planets. The gravitational force created by a rotation on its axis of 770 miles per second means no need for a roof. Walls 1,000 miles high at each rim will let in the sun and prevent much air from escaping. Larry Niven's novel, Ringworld, is the winner of the 1970 Hugo Award for Best Novel, the 1970 Nebula Award for Best Novel, and the 1972 Ditmars, an Australian award for Best International Science Fiction.

    Kennet says: "Genuinely Creative"
    "Prefer my SCI-FANTACY"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    With a bit less fantasy. No character in which I had any interest. PASS

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Rise of Humans: Great Scientific Debates

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor John Hawks
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (14)

    Trying to understand our human origins has always been a fundamental part of who we are. Today, with the help of dramatic archaeological discoveries and groundbreaking advancements in technology and scientific understanding, we are closer than we've ever been to learning the true story. In recent decades, it has been the science of paleoanthropology that has led the investigation, helping us make sense of this controversial subject and providing us with a richer understanding of our origins.

    marcus says: "Current to spring 2014. Good science up to date."
    "Current to spring 2014. Good science up to date."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Writer is an expert in paleo-anthropology and biology through genomics. This course is current through denosovia and Florencia. A detailed exploration of who we are and from whence we came. Highly recommended..

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Mote in God's Eye

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle
    • Narrated By L J Ganser
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3827)
    Performance
    (2274)
    Story
    (2304)

    The Mote In God's Eye is their acknowledged masterpiece, an epic novel of mankind's first encounter with alien life that transcends the genre. No lesser an authority than Robert A. Heinlein called it "possibly the finest science fiction novel I have ever read".

    J. Rhoderick says: "A great read!"
    "Facinating exploration and discovery. Aliens!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    After colonizing 200 planets the human civilization discovers the first planet populated by a non human species. This civilization has existed for more than 700,000 years and differentiated itself into various subspecies. They have colonized their entire solar system and even collected and mined all the asteroids. They appear to have solved the problems of war and disease. However although they possess superior intelligence, they have not yet developed any way to leave their one solar system.

    Here is a fascinating study of intragalactic power, politics and intrigue.

    0 of 0 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
    (628)
    Performance
    (547)
    Story
    (558)

    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"
    "Intrafalactic politics and space war."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A follow on to The Mote in God's Eye. The Mote was a great book. This book, I presume, was meant to draw readers of the Mote. Uf you are interested in monet power empire and space shoot 'em ups, this book is for you. Better yet, read The Fall of the Roman Empire. Fewer scientific errors. No compelling characters here, just interspecies politics and fantasy ship to ship space battles.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Atlas Shrugged

    • UNABRIDGED (63 hrs)
    • By Ayn Rand
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (5369)
    Performance
    (3329)
    Story
    (3348)

    In a scrap heap within an abandoned factory, the greatest invention in history lies dormant and unused. By what fatal error of judgment has its value gone unrecognized, its brilliant inventor punished rather than rewarded for his efforts? In defense of those greatest of human qualities that have made civilization possible, one man sets out to show what would happen to the world if all the heroes of innovation and industry went on strike.

    Mica says: "Hurt version decidedly superior"
    "Difficult for me. Greed, ego, poverty, power."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Maybe you had to be there. This book is set near the mid 1930's mid depression. The female protagonist is rich and on her way to poverty. She seeks out and attains a powerful husband. She espouses the Greatest Good for the most people, bit it is not clear that she believes it. She has a love/hate relationship with the men in her life who do more to enrich themselves than save the populace. An existential narrative.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • G is for Gumshoe: A Kinsey Millhone Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Sue Grafton
    • Narrated By Mary Pfeiffer
    Overall
    (234)
    Performance
    (115)
    Story
    (116)

    Good and bad things seem to be coming in threes for Kinsey Millhone: on her 33rd birthday she moves back into her renovated apartment, gets hired to find an elderly lady supposedly living in the Mojave Desert by herself, and makes the top of ex-con Tyrone Patty's hit list.

    James says: "Bad Sound Editing"
    "Detective novel. PG17"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you enjoy detective writers you will enjoy Sue Grafton's books. They are 'light reading'. The detective stories are tight and not much blood is spilled. This has a bit more sex than most, but it is not graphic and certainly in no way kinky. The travails of a young female high school redel turned private investigator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Lloyd James
    Overall
    (2903)
    Performance
    (1725)
    Story
    (1747)

    In what is considered one of Heinlein's most hair-raising, thought-provoking, and outrageous adventures, the master of modern science fiction tells the strange story of an even stranger world. It is 21st-century Luna, a harsh penal colony where a revolt is plotted between a bashful computer and a ragtag collection of maverick humans, a revolt that goes beautifully until the inevitable happens. But that's the problem with the inevitable: it always happens.

    Peter says: "Heinlein's Masterpiece"
    "The war between Earth and Moon."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story is not only plausible and entertaining, it has few scientific holes. The Moon fights for independence from a tyrannical Earth. Not going to get a "spoiler ending" out of me. Read this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stranger in a Strange Land

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Christopher Hurt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2657)
    Performance
    (1226)
    Story
    (1241)

    Stranger in a Strange Land tells the story of Valentine Michael Smith, an earthling born and educated on Mars, who arrives on Earth with superhuman powers and a total ignorance of the mores of man. Smith is destined to become a freak, a media commodity, a scam artist, a searcher, and finally, a messiah.

    Harris says: "A Parable for the Ages"
    "Another retelling of the Christ story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    An innocent from almost nowhere is in touch with supernatural "old ones" (who are both dead and alive). He does not understand greed or wrongdoing, although he senses them as wrong. He performs miracles. He has an unmarried wife. He is guided and protected by a John the Baptist revolutionary who disappears from the story. Eventually he attains humanity and then immortality. The old ones "angels" including arch angel Michael, see through the protagonists eyes that they have a lot of work do. An updated version of the 5 gospels. If you believe, you'll love it. If not, it is plagiarism.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ex-Communication

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Jay Snyder, Khristine Hvam, Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1212)
    Performance
    (1121)
    Story
    (1118)

    In the years since the wave of living death swept the globe, St George and his fellow heroes haven't just kept Los Angeles' last humans alive - they’ve created a real community, a bustling town that's spreading beyond its original walls and swelling with new refugees. But now one of the heroes, perhaps the most powerful among them, seems to be losing his mind. The implacable enemy known as Legion has found terrifying new ways of using zombies as pawns in his attacks.

    Lore says: "Corpse Girl for the win!"
    "George Romero meets Ridley Scott"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This would have been a great one and a half movie with CGI. As a book however it is rated "P" for "P"ass. Ghosts and goblins. "14" IMHO is a better effort from Mr. Clines.

    4 of 9 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
    (10437)
    Performance
    (9722)
    Story
    (9722)

    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"
    "Chronical of computer gamers"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Fantasy. If you did not get hooked up in the early computer games and arcade games, well, good for you. Skip this one. It is as pointless as those time wasters and not as much fun.

    There is a real world out there. If you live in Second Life, drink beer, eat your delivered pizza with one hand, I am sorry for you. You can buy this book just to say you can read.

    Antisocial gaming. Snore.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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