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Margaret

ratings
12
REVIEWS
9
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
12

  • The Design of Everyday Things

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Donald A. Norman
    • Narrated By Peter Berkrot
    Overall
    (128)
    Performance
    (101)
    Story
    (97)

    First, businesses discovered quality as a key competitive edge; next came science. Now, Donald A. Norman, former Director of the Institute for Cognitive Science at the University of California, reveals how smart design is the new frontier. The Design of Everyday Things is a powerful primer on how - and why - some products satisfy customers while others only frustrate them.

    Sean says: "Badly needs updating"
    "Quaint"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Despite having a nominal publishing date of 2002, the examples in the book were never updated from the late 1980's. This makes the book incredibly old fashioned and quaint to listen to. Although the ideas contained are timeless, the examples (such as PBX phones and floppy disks) are so out of date they obscure the arguments of the book.


    What was most disappointing about Donald A. Norman’s story?

    The examples. They are out of date and truly irrelevant in this age.


    What three words best describe Peter Berkrot’s performance?

    strident, monotonous, and nasal


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Design of Everyday Things?

    I would update the examples to ones that are relevant today. There are adults out there now who have never seen the kind of phone systems he describes, the typewriters, or the floppy disk. Every single example from this book is from the late 1980's, and was not updated during the 2002 publication. MAJOR editing mistake.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • METAtropolis

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Jay Lake, Tobias Buckell, Elizabeth Bear, and others
    • Narrated By Michael Hogan, Scott Brick, Kandyse McClure, and others
    Overall
    (1704)
    Performance
    (1501)
    Story
    (1532)

    Armed camps of eco-survivalists battle purveyors of technology in this exclusive, original production featuring five sci-fi masters and five all-star narrators.

    Anthony says: "Painful"
    "Couldn't Make it Past Second Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about METAtropolis?

    The stories are downright turgid. They dwell on unimportant information and don't advance plot or characterization. I trudged through the first two stories, hoping they would get better. The Elizabeth Bear second story was marginally better than the first. The premise was somewhat interesting, but was waaay too political and leftist for my taste. If they're going to write anti-capitalist polemics, at least they could make them interesting. I bought this book because of the editor, John Scalzi, and hoped it was at least somewhat like his books. No where near them.


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

    I won't be looking at these authors to read first, for sure.


    What aspect of the narrators’s performance would you have changed?

    The narrators were competent with the bad material they were given.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    My reaction was of being dropped in a vat of cold molasses and trying to get out.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wool Omnibus Edition (Wool 1 - 5)

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Hugh Howey
    • Narrated By Minnie Goode
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (910)
    Performance
    (835)
    Story
    (833)

    This is the story of mankind clawing for survival, of mankind on the edge. The world outside has grown unkind, the view of it limited, talk of it forbidden. But there are always those who hope, who dream. These are the dangerous people, the residents who infect others with their optimism. Their punishment is simple. They are given the very thing they profess to want: They are allowed outside.

    Think about this says: "I was consumed by this story!"
    "It Got Better"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    The whole set of five short stories is a setup for a longer piece. And that's -all- they do - set up. It's very slow at first, and wandering. The piece could have used better editing.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Jules, I guess. She's the main character from book three on, and seems to be the main character for the rest of the series.


    What three words best describe Minnie Goode’s voice?

    squeaky, high pitched, rarely changes between characters


    Was Wool Omnibus Edition (Wool 1 - 5) worth the listening time?

    Yes and no. It did get better with time, but all this set up could have -definitely- been done in half the words without losing any story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Blood River Down - Book I of the Quest of the White Duck

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Charles L. Grant, Lionel Fenn
    • Narrated By Jack Chekijian
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Gideon Sunday, an ex-semi-professional American Football player, goes to his pantry to retrieve an awful bottle of his (dead) sister's fruit preserves. When he gets there, he discovers a meadow in his pantry. He closes the door, takes a few breaths, and begins to investigate. Upon discovering that A) no one is playing a trick on him, B) there really IS a meadow in his cupboard, and C) there is something three-quarters of ugly coming out of it, he decides to beat a monster to death with a baseball bat.

    Ann says: "A quest with humor ... and a white duck!"
    "Dry As Dust"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    An interesting plot and characters? It's told from one character's point of view, and that character is BORING.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Charles L. Grant and Lionel Fenn again?

    Nope.


    What three words best describe Jack Chekijian’s performance?

    Somewhat amusing.


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

    Not really.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated By Lisette Lecat
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2349)
    Performance
    (892)
    Story
    (893)

    Mma "Precious" Ramotswe sets up a detective agency in Botswana on the edge of the Kalahari Desert, making her the only female detective in the country. At first, cases are hard to come by. But eventually, troubled people come to Precious with a variety of concerns. Potentially philandering husbands, seemingly schizophrenic doctors, and a missing boy who may have been killed by witch doctors all compel Precious to roam about in her tiny van, searching for clues.

    Gene says: "Transcends its Genre"
    "If You Like Brer Rabbit...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Alexander McCall Smith and/or Lisette Lecat?

    No. I found the book condescending to Africans in the same way that Disney's "Songs of the South" was condescending to African Americans.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Alexander McCall Smith again?

    No. His very, very white male authorial voice counterpointed by a black female protagonist makes the book jarring and painful.


    What three words best describe Lisette Lecat’s performance?

    Urbane, Flat, Slooooow.


    What character would you cut from The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency?

    All of them. They're very, very flat and stereotypical.


    Any additional comments?

    Truthfully, the protagonist reminds me of no one other than Brer Rabbit, with all the trickster stuff and class problems and the rest. The book is obviously written by a white male who thinks he has a clue about women and being black, but what comes out is how little he does know below the surface. Very disappointing book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Furious: Kris Longknife, Book 10

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Mike Shepherd
    • Narrated By Dina Pearlman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (247)
    Performance
    (227)
    Story
    (228)

    Having used unorthodox methods to save a world - and every sentient being on it - Lieutenant Commander Kris Longknife is wanted across the galaxy for crimes against humanity. For her own safety, she’s been assigned to a backwater planet where her Fast Patrol Squadron 127 enforces immigration control and smuggler interdiction. But Kris is a Longknife, and nothing can stop her from getting back to the center of things - not when all hell is breaking loose.

    Carol Scott says: "fast, don't put it down you might miss something"
    "Bridge Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    More action, less law?


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Currently listening to Inheritance.


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

    A lot! She brings each character to life, especially Nellie the computer. Reading the book would be less enjoyable.


    Was Furious worth the listening time?

    Yes, and no. This book is merely a bridge between, I assume, two more active books. It resolves some things and sets up others, but doesn't have as much action as usual.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Renegade History of the United States

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Thaddeus Russell
    • Narrated By Paul Boehmer
    Overall
    (100)
    Performance
    (59)
    Story
    (61)

    American history was driven by clashes between those interested in preserving social order and those more interested in pursuing their own desires---the "respectable" versus the "degenerate", the moral versus the immoral. The more that "bad" people existed, resisted, and won, the greater was our common good. In A Renegade History of the United States, Russell introduces us to the origins of our nation's identity as we have never known them before.

    Rory K Gallagher says: "One of those books...that cause brain freeze!"
    "Couldn't Get Through Prologue"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about A Renegade History of the United States?

    The whole stridency of the extra long prologue that made it impossible to get to the book. I probably agree with most of his points, but couldn't stand that he was so very, very one sided and polemic. There was no meat for the half hour long introduction .... so I tuned out.


    What was most disappointing about Thaddeus Russell’s story?

    Way too polemic, far too little meat.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Paul Boehmer?

    Maybe.


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

    Not that I could see, in that I couldn't make it through the intro.


    Any additional comments?

    If you're going to write a book, don't turn off the reader with a highly polemic and unnecessary introduction. Just get on with it.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Apocalypse Dawn: Left Behind Military #1

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Mel Odom
    • Narrated By Steve Sever
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (126)
    Performance
    (37)
    Story
    (37)

    In a single cataclysmic moment, First Sergeant Samuel Adams "Goose" Gander finds himself center stage in the opening act of the Apocalypse. Goose and the men of the 75th Army Rangers fight to survive a massive attack on the Turkish-Syrian border. Battling his own failing faith, Goose prays for the lives of his men and the innocents who are caught in the rain of bullets and missiles.

    Jim says: "Adding Guts to the Glory"
    "Awful Prosyletization"
    Overall

    I got this book thinking it was science fiction. It's one that was recommended by Audible, and was in their science fiction sale. So, I bought it. BIG mistake. This book is Christian schlock from beginning to end. The characters are one dimensional and the plot is so straightforward it makes a straight line look crooked. No surprises, once you catch on it's all about converting or confirming Christian beliefs. Never will I trust an Audible recommendation again. Even if you are a committed Christian, you have to check your mind at the door to enjoy this.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • By Heresies Distressed: Safehold Series, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Jason Culp
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (562)
    Performance
    (346)
    Story
    (349)

    Now the battle for the soul of the planet Safehold has begun.The Kingdom of Charis and the Kingdom of Chisholm have joined together, pledged to stand against the tyranny of a corrupt Church. The youthful Queen Sharleyan of Chisholm has wed King Cayleb of Charis, forging a single dynasty, a single empire, dedicated to the defense of human freedom.

    James says: "I want Oliver Wyman back"
    "Narrator Down Spiral"
    Overall

    Unfortunately, for whatever reason, the narrator for this book is not the same one as the narrator for the first two in the series. The change is very jarring, and this narrator is not up to the task. The first narrator changed his voice and accent for various characters. This new narrator didn't really, nor did he even attempt any kind of voice continuation from earlier in the series. Good book ruined by bad narration. Read it, don't listen to it.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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