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Darla A. Middlebrook

Moose Jaw, SK - Canada | Member Since 2008

29
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 22 reviews
  • 47 ratings
  • 610 titles in library
  • 41 purchased in 2014
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  • Warbreaker

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By James Yaegashi
    Overall
    (2926)
    Performance
    (2099)
    Story
    (2112)

    An author whose previous, wildly successful novels have earned him a reputation as fantasy's master of magic, Brandon Sanderson continues to dazzle audiences with this tale of princesses and gods. In this extraordinary world, those who attain glory return as gods. And those who can master the essence known as breath can perform the most wondrous miracles - or unleash the most devastating havoc.

    Robert says: "What's Your god like?"
    "Hooray for the "surfer dude" God."
    Overall

    I really enjoyed this read. Lightsong as a surfer dude was different and a bit confusing at first, but it worked for me. Denth was suitably amusing and yet creepy at the same time. I think I will listen to this one again and again.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs)
    • By Jonas Jonasson
    • Narrated By Steven Crossley
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1604)
    Performance
    (1429)
    Story
    (1448)

    After a long and eventful life, Allan Karlsson ends up in a nursing home, believing it to be his last stop. The only problem is that he's still in good health, and in one day, he turns 100. A big celebration is in the works, but Allan really isn't interested (and he'd like a bit more control over his vodka consumption). So he decides to escape. He climbs out the window in his slippers and embarks on a hilarious and entirely unexpected journey, involving, among other surprises, a suitcase stuffed with cash.

    Sylvia says: "Full of Surprises and Unexpected Events"
    "Laughed out loud"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I realized, after a few minutes of listening, that I should not eat or drink while enjoying this book. Too much spewing and/or choking from laughter. Very humorous from start to finish. A lot can happen to a person when that person lives to be 100! Steven Crossley does a very good job with the narration. I could "see" the story unfolding through his narrative.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Raising Steam

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Stephen Briggs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (257)
    Performance
    (239)
    Story
    (238)

    To the consternation of the patrician, Lord Vetinari, a new invention has arrived in Ankh-Morpork - a great clanging monster of a machine that harnesses the power of all of the elements: earth, air, fire and water. This being Ankh-Morpork, it’s soon drawing astonished crowds, some of whom caught the zeitgeist early and arrive armed with notepads and very sensible rainwear.

    Jacobus says: "It is like being bitten by a black ribbon vampire"
    "Always a treat..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Visiting the Discworld and its denizens is always a treat. Stephen Briggs paint wonderful pictures with his voice by giving every character a unique dialect or accent. I enjoyed this rendition so much that I have listened to it at least 10 times.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Necropolis

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Michael Dempsey
    • Narrated By Kevin T. Collins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (144)
    Performance
    (129)
    Story
    (130)

    NYPD detective Paul Donner and his wife Elise were killed in a hold-up gone wrong. Fifty years later, Donner is back: revived courtesy of the Shift. Supposedly the unintended side-effect of a botched biological terrorist attack and carried by a ubiquitous retrovirus, the Shift jump-starts dead DNA and throws the life cycle into reverse, so reborns like Donner must cope with the fact that they are not only slowly youthing toward a new childhood, but have become New York's most hated minority.

    David says: "Big dumb ideas about undying"
    "Well done"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. Well done


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Necropolis?

    The sequences wherein Donner's memory starts to return.


    Have you listened to any of Kevin T. Collins’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    First time


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Donner realizes his love for Maggie


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Agent to the Stars

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3437)
    Performance
    (2968)
    Story
    (2972)

    The space-faring Yherajk have come to Earth to meet us and to begin humanity's first interstellar friendship. There's just one problem: They're hideously ugly and they smell like rotting fish. So getting humanity's trust is a challenge. The Yherajk need someone who can help them close the deal. Enter Thomas Stein, who knows something about closing deals. He's one of Hollywood's hottest young agents.

    C. Paget says: "excellent"
    "Laugh out loud funny!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Really...I laughed out loud. Which can be embarassing when one is listening through the earbuds of an iPod while standing in line at Safeway. But, I digress. John Scalzi is rapidly becoming one of my favorite sci-fi authors and I have always liked Wil Wheaton. The Scalzi-Wheaton team have presented us with an [actually] plausible "1st contact" scenerio. I refuse to give away any plot parts. Suffice to say that "Agent to the Stars" is one that you should have in your library! Very funny, intelligent and well acted.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sideshow: Tales of the Galactic Midway, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Mike Resnick
    • Narrated By Kerry Woodrow
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Traveling carnival owner Thaddeus Flint swindles the owner of a freak show into an unlikely business partnership. When Flint discovers that the freaks are a group of undercover alien tourists, he keeps the secret from the outside world and looks for an opportunity to expand his carny tour out to the stars.

    Darla A. Middlebrook says: "A strange kind of circus!"
    "A strange kind of circus!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Sideshow rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The story picks up after a slow start and then...wow! If any of you have experienced a real sideshow, Resnick's presentation of that "life" is very gripping. The narrator of the audio book uses various voices in most effective manner. Can't wait to listen to the next book in this series.


    Which character – as performed by Kerry Woodrow – was your favorite?

    Tojo and the "Blue Man"


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

    I just wanted to slap Thaddeus, so I guess Kerry Woodrow presented that character effectively!


    Any additional comments?

    Hope to hear more from Kerry Woodrow

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Outpost

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Mike Resnick
    • Narrated By Bob Dunsworth
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    On the planet Henry II, orbiting the twin suns of Plantagenet and Tudor, at the very edge of the great black hole at the center of the Milky Way, there is a tavern called The Outpost. Through the doors of The Outpost have come the greatest heroes, villains, and adventurers of the galaxy - to drink, to brag, and to swap tales.The Outpost is neutral territory where fighting is forbidden and blood enemies can have a drink together and tell stories of battles past. After all bounty hunters, con men, itinerant preachers, thieves, and assassins have more in common with each other than they do with the rest of the mundane galaxy.

    Jason says: "A common thread to a series of short stories."
    "A wealth of storylines"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Mike Resnick and/or Bob Dunsworth?

    I really enjoy Mike Resnick's books.


    If you’ve listened to books by Mike Resnick before, how does this one compare?

    This one seems to be a compilation of storylines/ideas that were used in other books of this particular Resnick universe.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Discovery of Witches

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Deborah Harkness
    • Narrated By Jennifer Ikeda
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9811)
    Performance
    (7296)
    Story
    (7335)

    Deep in the stacks of Oxford's Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library.

    haesel says: "Where was this woman's editor?"
    "What will happen next?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about A Discovery of Witches?

    The love story and the "discovery" (not going to say more...it would be a spoiler)


    What did you like best about this story?

    The sisterhood of the witches.


    Which character – as performed by Jennifer Ikeda – was your favorite?

    I liked all of them...don't make me choose!


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

    Yes, but I could not. So, I listened more than once.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Rebecca Skloot
    • Narrated By Cassandra Campbell, Bahni Turpin
    Overall
    (4099)
    Performance
    (2643)
    Story
    (2670)

    Her name was Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor Southern tobacco farmer who worked the same land as her slave ancestors, yet her cells, taken without her knowledge, became one of the most important tools in medicine. The first immortal human cells grown in culture, they are still alive today, though she has been dead for more than 60 years.

    Prisca says: "Amazing Story"
    "One Woman's history"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks to be better than the print version?

    The two forms do not really compare. I listened, then read, then listen and read at the same time. The illustrations and pictures from the printed version were needed in order to understand some parts of the book. Especially when talking about the family.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The fact that it was/is factual.


    Which character – as performed by Cassandra Campbell and Bahni Turpin – was your favorite?

    The author.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Deborah & Zakariyya were given the picture of the cell culture from Henrietta's cells.


    Any additional comments?

    Everyone should read this book and think hard about what happens in the name of "medical research".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Sisters Brothers

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Patrick deWitt
    • Narrated By John Pruden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (35)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (33)

    Hermann Kermit Warm is going to die. The enigmatic and powerful man known only as the Commodore has ordered it, and his henchmen, Eli and Charlie Sisters, will make sure of it. Though Eli doesn't share his brother's appetite for whiskey and killing, he's never known anything else. But their prey isn't an easy mark, and on the road from Oregon City to Warm's gold-mining claim outside Sacramento, Eli begins to question what he does for a living–and whom he does it for.

    Kirsten says: "A trip in to the Wild West"
    "Not my cup of tea"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The Sisters Brothers?

    The story seemed to ramble. It seemed as though the author was trying to be "profound", but instead was in turns violent and boring.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Patrick deWitt again?

    If it is similar to this, no.


    What about John Pruden’s performance did you like?

    Narration was clear and precise. Too bad the script was not up to the narrator's skills.


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

    I dreaded having to continue reading. Had to read it for a book club meeting, otherwise I would not have bothered finishing it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fuzzy Nation

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton, John Scalzi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4021)
    Performance
    (3532)
    Story
    (3531)

    In John Scalzi's re-imagining of H. Beam Piper's 1962 sci-fi classic Little Fuzzy, written with the full cooperation of the Piper Estate, Jack Holloway works alone for reasons he doesnt care to talk about. Hundreds of miles from ZaraCorps headquarters on planet, 178 light-years from the corporations headquarters on Earth, Jack is content as an independent contractor, prospecting and surveying at his own pace. As for his past, thats not up for discussion.

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn says: "Short, sweet, and satisfying storytelling."
    "A Good Job"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I am a bit ambivalent about the almost total re-working of the Fuzzy’s and Jack Holloway’s story…personal jury is still out on that. Having said that, however, I must say that I thoroughly enjoyed the narration.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    I liked it. Hope John Scalzi is planning a sequel.


    What does Wil Wheaton and John Scalzi (Introduction) bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I read along as I listened. Hearing the


    Could you see Fuzzy Nation being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Someone like Harrison Ford for Holloway. If made into a series, I would like to see some of the characters from the original Fuzzy novels. Using CGI, it would be possible to have the Fuzzies played by some of the actors from current movies and TV shows.


    Any additional comments?

    The author gave Papa Fuzzy words to express its curiosity, intelligence, thoughtfulness, anger and grief that were strong and poignant. Papa’s speeches in the court room and during its final confrontations caused tears to come to my eyes and a chill to run down my spine. Very well narrated! Kudos and stars!!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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