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Zergling For Hire

San Jose, CA USA

ratings
142
REVIEWS
8
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
17

  • Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (22630)
    Performance
    (14008)
    Story
    (14154)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: It’s easy to say that when it comes to sci-fi you either love it or you hate it. But with Ender’s Game, it seems to be you either love it or you love it.... The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Enter Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, the result of decades of genetic experimentation.

    Kapila says: "6 titles in the series so far"
    "Excellent book, subpar narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Sadly, the narrator gives everyone who talks a brooklyn accent. His nearly monotonous tone of voice also makes it difficult to follow rapid verbal exchanges between different characters in the book.

    Awesome book, subpar narrator.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Dune

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Frank Herbert
    • Narrated By Scott Brick, Orlagh Cassidy, Euan Morton, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9795)
    Performance
    (5466)
    Story
    (5542)

    Here is the novel that will be forever considered a triumph of the imagination. Set on the desert planet Arrakis, Dune is the story of the boy Paul Atreides, who would become the mysterious man known as Maud'dib. He would avenge the traitorous plot against his noble family and would bring to fruition humankind's most ancient and unattainable dream.

    Joshua says: "Wonderful production!"
    "Excellent presentation of a legendary classic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    (from my Goodreads review)

    Paperback:

    The story and narrative style is crisp and wastes little space. The scope of the story is breathtakingly immense. Ten thousand years since the man-machine wars-- and those are only hinted at by reference to the Butlerian Jihad. Act I is the Atreides taking possession of Arakis. Act II is the fall of House Atreides and the rise of the lisan al gaib, Paul Mua'dib. Act III is the culmination of the legend wherein the lisan al gaib takes possession of the position of the imperial emperor, the landsraad, Dune and the future of humanity. (Although that is another story.)

    Audiobook:

    A huge cast of narrators retells this story lovingly. There's little more that I can say about this story than what I said about the paperback version (above)-- I do wish to note that the primary narrator is sometimes tasked with reading lines from characters who have been previously narrated by other narrators (e.g., sometimes there is a different narrator for the Baron Harkonnen-- and sometimes the primary narrator reads the Baron's lines.) I am pretty sure that Paul, Jessica, Chani, Stilgar and Gurney are all voiced by the same narrator throughout the audiobook.

    Despite the oddity of inconsistant narrator selection for a single character, the primary narrator is skilled enough at narration that it is easy to tell the difference between his general narrative voice and the various characters he narrates for.

    I highly recommend both the paperback and this most recent audiobook from McMillan audio, released in 2007.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Christmas Carol: A Signature Performance by Tim Curry

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Charles Dickens
    • Narrated By Tim Curry
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4055)
    Performance
    (1864)
    Story
    (1863)

    A Signature Performance: Tim Curry rescues Charles Dickens from the jaws of Disney with his one-of-a-kind performance of the treasured classic. Our listeners loved this version so much that it inspired our whole line of Signature Classics.

    Nanci says: "Superb story and reading!"
    "Fantastic addition the your Christmas celebration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Believe it or not, this is my first read of the "immortal classic, A Christmas Carol." I've seen 5-6 variations of the Charles Dickens classic starring various personages, including versions with the redoubtable Patrick Stewart and George C Scott-- not in the same version, of course. I've even seen a reimagining of this classic tale (Scrooged with Bill Murray, or some of the Walt Disney versions with Mickey and Scrooge MacDuck).

    Truthfully, I was blown away by the clever yet pithy narrative style invoked by Dickens. And Tim Curry, as narrator (I got this as an Audible audio-book) is truly fantastic. This will definitely become part of my annual Christmas celebration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Becoming: Anna Strong, Vampire, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Jeanne C. Stein
    • Narrated By Dina Pearlman
    Overall
    (745)
    Performance
    (450)
    Story
    (451)

    Anna Strong is trained for anything-until she's attacked one night, only to awaken in a dark world that exists between the living and the dead. Here, Anna struggles with her love for the two men who inhabit the realms of each: Max, a human DEA agent, and Avery, a Night Watcher who joins Anna in pursuit of the vampire who changed her life. Now, as her two worlds collide, fate plunges Anna into the ultimate battle between good and evil - where survival is not just for the living.

    Karen says: "Another new take on vampires and the paranormal."
    "Great narrator, poorly considered story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Was this rape porn, and plot just filler? Or was this a serious attempt by the author to consider real consequences and reactions to the traumatic transformation from human to Vampire?

    The protagonist is raped, beaten and nearly killed. And she's struggling to balance her human boyfriend with the new sexy, vampiric doctor who want to mentor her (and bed her). Wait, what? Wouldn't you think she'd hate to be touched, at all, after such a traumatic experience? Apparently, according to Stein, being raped, beaten and nearly killed doesn't create trauma (or at least, not just trauma)-- it creates arousal.

    Considering the protagonist's reaction to being brutually transformed into a Vampire, it should be easy to understand why I walk away thinking the story is a rape fetish wet dream. Had the story been authored by a man (and to be honest, I wonder if it was... and the author just used a woman's pen name) the feminists would be up in arms about the author making rape sexy.

    The narrator does an excellent job of narrating, has believably different voices for the various characters, and imparts drama to this otherwise flaccid story. Pearlman is definitely on my "would listen to again" list. Stein is not.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Ghost Story: The Dresden Files, Book 13

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By John Glover
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5652)
    Performance
    (4822)
    Story
    (4818)

    When we last left the mighty wizard detective Harry Dresden, he wasn't doing well. In fact, he had been murdered by an unknown assassin. But being dead doesn't stop him when his friends are in danger. Except now he has nobody, and no magic to help him. And there are also several dark spirits roaming the Chicago shadows who owe Harry some payback of their own. To save his friends - and his own soul - Harry will have to pull off the ultimate trick without any magic....

    Bill says: "Not the best audio book in the series"
    "Transition story, transition narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Butcher provides a transitional story for Harry Dresden, the series protagonist. Ghost Story continues the enjoyable but formulaic three-act structure. You have the over all story goal, Dresden must discover who killed him in Changes (the previous novel). Each act focuses on a theme: ghosts, physical, ghosts and physical.

    I'm frustrated by the need to retcon Changes to make the plot work in Ghost Story. In fairness, the omission of a scene in Changes was necessary for dramatic tension, but it's not a story telling technique that I like. (i.e., going back and changing the readers understanding of the chain of events) But, it works for Ghost Story. I don't like it, but it's necessary.

    John Glover is an excellent reader. Glover does have a rougher, older voice, and his enunciation is strange after so many books with Marsters. Still, like the reviewer who said that it took them several books to stop hearing Spike and start hearing Harry, I think this is largely an issue of narrator and listener comfort. Glover has more experience with narration than Marsters did when he first started the series, and it shows in the narration of Ghost Story. I have no doubt that John Glover would do an excellent job with the series, if he were to take over, but I miss James Marsters! Like most other reviewers, I would have preferred a delay to the audio book rather than a change in narrators.

    A note for the audiobook producers (and Audible)-- if you have a series, and you change the narrator, I'm likely going to stop buying the series in audiobook format.

    SPOILER ALERT---
    The story conclusion was immediately obvious. I knew how it would end before I'd finished Chapter 3. Of course, I also knew before reading the book that there's supposed to be like 20 books in the series. It'd be pretty difficult, I think, to do the remaining books with Harry as a ghost... ergo, conclusion = obvious.

    The most memorable part of the book for me really has to be the Act 2 interaction between Molly and Harry, during and after the Leanansidhe's training session with Molly. The diner scene, after Molly's training is especially effective for its mundane setting.

    This story provides the transition between Harry-as-he-was and the Harry-as-he-will-be. I couldn't put my finger on it until the second re-read. It felt transitional, but I didn't know why. After the second time through the story, I realized the inability to interact with the physical forces Harry to become more introspective, and to think before he acts (which isn't a strong suit for him). This is a transition for him, setting up a much needed change in his personality for the next story in the series: Cold Days.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Grave Peril: The Dresden Files, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6935)
    Performance
    (5147)
    Story
    (5142)

    Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden has had a rough couple of weeks. As the only openly practicing professional wizard in the Chicago area, he has squared off against a multitude of supernatural bad guys. Harry has won the day against demons, poltergeists, sorcerers, trolls, vampires, werewolves, and even an evil faerie godmother. You might think nothing could spook him. You would be wrong.

    Lakejewel says: "Spike makes good"
    "Good writing, subpar narrator & production"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    One of my top three favorite stories in the Dresden series, but sadly lacking in the production department. James Marsters' inability to read in much more than monotone and the production company's tendancy to ignore mispronunciations and grammer mistakes detracts from the audio series. I debate whether I will continue to purchase the rest of the series in audio, although I strongly encourage everyone to pick up the print version of these stories. Jim Butcher's writing is delightful.

    4 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Time Enough for Love

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Lloyd James
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (714)
    Performance
    (372)
    Story
    (386)

    Lazarus Long, the main protagonist and Heinlein's alter ego, is so in love with life he refuses to die. Born in 1916, he lives through multiple centuries. Time Enough for Love is the telling of his journey, lovingly detailed, through a vast and magnificent timescape of centuries and worlds.

    Frederick says: "Content Wonderful - Audio Product Dubious"
    "Great book, not a great reader"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Sadly, while I love this book, the reader leaves much to be desired. To me at least, there is little if any difference in voices between different characters, even those with male and female voices, making the narrative and conversation run together. The lesson learned: Don't just buy an audio book because you like the book, listen to the free previews first.

    4 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Eragon: The Inheritance Cycle, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Christopher Paolini
    • Narrated By Gerard Doyle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7968)
    Performance
    (3130)
    Story
    (3189)

    When Eragon finds a polished blue stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a poor farm boy; perhaps it will buy his family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling, Eragon realizes he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself.

    Sandra says: "Utterly Awesome!"
    "A kids book, but with depth"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the first audio book that I have purchased where I have no first purchased the printed copy first.

    While I find the narrator annoying (he seems to have a limited range of voices for the characters, and all the dwarfs, wier cats, dragons and shades sound alike) the story is strong and the author uses internal dialog for the protagonist which lends a greater sense of depth and realism than I normally expect from a kids book.

    All together an enjoyable listen despite it's flaws and I look forward to the continuation of the story.

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful

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