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Benjamin

Brentwood, MO, United States | Member Since 2007

28
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 48 ratings
  • 183 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • Relic: Pendergast, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child
    • Narrated By David Colacci
    Overall
    (4007)
    Performance
    (2457)
    Story
    (2484)

    Just days before a massive exhibition opens at the popular New York Museum of Natural History, visitors are being savagely murdered in the museum's dark hallways and secret rooms. Autopsies indicate that the killer cannot be human. But the museum's directors plan to go ahead with a big bash to celebrate the new exhibition, in spite of the murders. Museum researcher Margo Green must find out who - or what - is doing the killing.

    Snoodely says: "Non-Perishable"
    "Pretty Good"
    Overall

    The book doesn't really pick up until the second half, but when it gets rolling it's hard to stop listening. I immediately started listening to the second book in the "Pendergast series", The Reliquary, on the strength of Agent Pendergasts portrayal in, The Relic.

    My main complaint is that the narrator's voicing of some characters, for example the scotsman, is annoyingly cliche. Also, some descriptions of technology circa 1996 are a tad overdone in the style of the movie "Hackers".

    Finally, let me just say that there is a great payoff in the last few chapters and epilogue. I highly recommend listening all the way through this book.



    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Hyperion

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Marc Vietor, Allyson Johnson, Kevin Pariseau, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3654)
    Performance
    (2209)
    Story
    (2231)

    On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all.

    aaron says: "A LESSON in How to Write Smart, Dark, ADULT SciFi"
    "Brilliant!"
    Overall

    Stunning, fantastic and gripping sci-fi in the format of a frame narrative ala The Canterbury Tales. Hyperion is a masterwork and I can't wait to read the rest of the series.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Reliquary: Pendergast, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    Overall
    (2353)
    Performance
    (1451)
    Story
    (1443)

    Hidden deep beneath Manhattan lies a warren of tunnels, sewers, and galleries, mostly forgotten by those who walk the streets above. There lies the ultimate secret of the Museum Beast. When two grotesquely deformed skeletons are found deep in the mud off the Manhattan shoreline, museum curator Margo Green is called in to aid the investigation.

    Jim says: "An unsurpassed thrill ride"
    "A Worthy Sequel to "The Relic""
    Overall

    "The Reliquary" is a satisfying continuation of the characters and events in "The Relic."

    Agent Pendergast is further developed as a flawless character, a sort of Gumbo-eating James Bond, couture martial arts master. The setting in New York's underground is compelling and its inhabitants are certainly interesting. I did feel that the last quarter of the book failed to reach the exciting crescendo hinted at by the first 3/4. This is because the big revelation dropped towards the novel's climax was a bit too far-fetched, even by standard of unbelief set in "The Relic."

    Despite its shortcomings, "The Reliquary" is an entertaining installment in the Agent Pendergast series.


    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • The Last Lecture

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Randy Pausch, Jeffrey Zaslow
    • Narrated By Erik Singer, Randy Pausch
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2181)
    Performance
    (634)
    Story
    (634)

    When Randy Pausch, a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon, was asked to give such a lecture, he didn't have to imagine it as his last, since he had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. But the lecture he gave - "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams" - wasn't about dying. It was about the importance of overcoming obstacles, of enabling the dreams of others, of seizing every moment (because "time is all you have... and you may find one day that you have less than you think").

    K. Giavelli says: "How to Live"
    "Inspiring in Tone, Not in Content"
    Overall

    Pausch's steady optimism in the face of terminal illness is the highlight of "The Last Lecture." Unfortunately, his life lessons generally consist of obvious and often trite axioms that are often used, seemingly, to occasion Pausch's self-promotion. While I didn't learn much of anything, I was bewildered by apparently overlooked paradoxes in his simplistic lessons. For example, after commanding the reader to ignore what others might think about oneself, he exhorts the importance of apology and of expressing one's appreciation of others through personal gestures of gratitude. To be honest, Pausch's not infrequent moments of righteousness are grating.


    9 of 33 people found this review helpful

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