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Chris

Nashville, TN | Member Since 2007

20
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 28 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 14 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
2

  • Lexicon

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Max Barry
    • Narrated By Heather Corrigan, Zach Appelman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (559)
    Performance
    (505)
    Story
    (511)

    At an exclusive school somewhere outside of Arlington, Virginia, students aren't taught history, geography, or mathematics - at least not in the usual ways. Instead, they are taught to persuade. Here the art of coercion has been raised to a science. Students harness the hidden power of language to manipulate the mind and learn to break down individuals by psychographic markers in order to take control of their thoughts. The very best will graduate as "poets": adept wielders of language who belong to a nameless organization that is as influential as it is secretive.

    Tango says: "Fasten your seat belt..."
    "Very unique and imaginative"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Lexicon is a great listen. It has the most interesting theme that I have read in a long time. Half Jason Bourne spy novel, half super hero comic, it takes a unique idea and many well written characters and weaves a dramatic and very entertaining tale for them. My only complaint about the book is that I think it should have been longer. The ending feels a little rushed, and there are some back story and character development that could... no, should have been fleshed out. All in all, though, one of the best books on Audible.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Michael Pollan
    • Narrated By Michael Pollan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (596)
    Performance
    (529)
    Story
    (529)

    In Cooked, Michael Pollan explores the previously uncharted territory of his own kitchen. Here, he discovers the enduring power of the four classical elements - fire, water, air, and earth - to transform the stuff of nature into delicious things to eat and drink. Apprenticing himself to a succession of culinary masters, Pollan learns how to grill with fire, cook with liquid, bake bread, and ferment everything from cheese to beer. In the course of his journey, he discovers that the cook occupies a special place in the world....

    Matt says: "Michael Pollan Fans Will Love It."
    "An outstanding description of the art and science"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book answered many questions for me, and gave me the opportunity to discover previously unappreciated aspects of food and cooking, as well as the nuts and bolts mechanics of how food goes from raw ingredients to a great meal. I particularly enjoyed the way he divided the topics to correspond to preparation. I actually came away feeling like I could, and should, attempt some of the more advanced cooking techniques that he describes. Extremely well written and as entertaining as it is informative!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 14

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10551)
    Performance
    (9578)
    Story
    (9598)

    There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s.

    Magpie says: "Super solid listen!!"
    "What an incredible waste of a perfectly good story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book, as many others have pointed out, is just flawed to its core. Whats worse is that it didn't have to be. Clines did a great setup job for an interesting and exciting end. He chose not to go down that route, though, instead switching gears and throwing the characters into some absolutely ridiculous sci-fi sub plot that is as unoriginal as it is uninteresting. Its actually a shame really, because with just a little more effort this book could have been great. This is an excellent example of "letting a lot of hard work go to waste for the lack of just a little bit more". The performance was fine, its not the narrators fault that he was saddled with a dud. The story is just awful. Don't do it.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Truth: Discworld #25

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Stephen Briggs
    Overall
    (902)
    Performance
    (424)
    Story
    (431)

    William de Worde, the accidental editor of Discworld's first newspaper, just wants to get to the truth. Unfortunately, everyone else wants to get at William. And it's only the third edition. Browse more novels of Discworld.

    Glen Phipps says: "Classic Pratchett"
    "The Truth Shall Make Thee Fret"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is one of Pratchett's books that nearly make you forget that you aren't reading about Earth. The depth and humor of The Truth is on par with many of Pratchett's other blockbuster novels, and proves once again that his work can only loosely be called fantasy. If you have not read the book, stop reading this and get started listening right now.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dodger

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Stephen Briggs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (787)
    Performance
    (718)
    Story
    (712)

    A storm. Rain-lashed city streets. A flash of lightning. A scruffy lad sees a girl leap desperately from a horse-drawn carriage in a vain attempt to escape her captors. Can the lad stand by and let her be caught again? Of course not, because he's...Dodger. Seventeen-year-old Dodger may be a street urchin, but he gleans a living from London's sewers, and he knows a jewel when he sees one. He's not about to let anything happen to the unknown girl - not even if her fate impacts the most powerful people in England.

    Snoodely says: "Finally Revealed: Where Dickens Got His Ideas!"
    "As usual, Pratchett over achieves."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Dodger may be one of Sir Terry's best works to date. A historical fiction set in London, it takes the listener not only on a coming of age adventure with a somewhat "Nobbs" inspired character (albeit a much less pox riddled and more responsible version thereof), but also through a tour of life for the commoner in Victorian England. The story is gripping, the characters deep and relatable, and as with all things Pratchett: it's funny, fast paced, thoughtful and very entertaining. If you only have one credit to spend, get Dodger.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Final Empire: Mistborn Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7781)
    Performance
    (5261)
    Story
    (5295)

    For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years the Lord Ruler, the "Sliver of Infinity," reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Then, when hope was so long lost that not even its memory remained, a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa rediscovered it in the depths of the Lord Ruler's most hellish prison.

    Aaron Brown says: "Unique Magic system, good plot twists."
    "Overrated"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Brandon Sanderson and/or Michael Kramer?

    No


    Would you ever listen to anything by Brandon Sanderson again?

    Probably not


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Michael Kramer?

    I don't care for his narration style, he tries to go out of his way to make everything sound dramatic, like every line is being read from the declaration of independence or something.


    Did The Final Empire inspire you to do anything?

    It inspired me to write this review. The writing is very one dimensional, character development is weak and you end up not really caring about the main players. The author does not have a firm grasp of writing political intrigue, interpersonal relationships, or in my opinion, compelling story lines. Not that there aren't interesting aspects of Sanderson's world, the magic system is unique and the creatures he describes are interesting, but you never really feel like you have a firm grasp of the world that these people live in. It rains ash through the day, one must assume from volcanic activity, and it is misty at night. That's all the information that you are going to get. The characters get a similar treatment, you get enough backstory to explain their actions in the moment, and in the case of Vin I suppose its a little more fleshed out, but it lacks any kind of real human touches. Everything that happened before was bad, in fact horrible, yet now the characters can stop pulling "scams" (... really?... that's the best term available for a system of organized crime that has had 1000 years to perfect their trade?...) and know what is right and virtuous and how the world should work?

    Anyway, the book just isn't good. Kelsier isn't particularly likable, and his death toward the end of the book isn't particularly jarring as a result. Vin's love interest is not likeable, and his ascension to kingship in the midst of those circumstances is so unlikely as to completely undermine the motivations of the oppressed masses, which you learn very little about except that they are exactly like the nobility in every way except, apparently, the way they dress. I am sure that may people will disagree with me about this, apparently this series is quite popular. Just to clarify my own position, I like fantasy in general, and new and exciting twists on the tired, old, knights and wizards type of story. This is an attempt to break away from that, but not well executed.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • How to Win Friends & Influence People

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Dale Carnegie
    • Narrated By Andrew MacMillan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9325)
    Performance
    (4053)
    Story
    (4040)

    You can go after the job you want...and get it! You can take the job you have...and improve it! You can take any situation you're in...and make it work for you!

    Ralph says: "This is well worth listening too! Main points are."
    "Corporate America has ruined it's lessons."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    No.


    Any additional comments?

    The messages of the book, which in general revolve around being fair and kind and rationally addressing situations to affect a win-win outcome are, generally, good advice and still relevant in the modern world on a personal level.

    However, the times that the author lived in and the attitudes of the culture in this country at the time of his writing make it read more like a folksy, period piece. What one can see is that modern day companies have taken to heart the tenets of Winning Friends and Influencing People, but have stripped the ideas down to a facade of themselves, and hollowed out any actual human warmth or altruism that they contained.

    Carnegie's book could be a stand in for the 'Code of Conduct' in most corporate headquarters in America today. In effect, though, they are parodies of the ideas presented in the book, and leave most people feeling suspicious, that they are being pandered to, and generally deceived.

    Another unfortunate blind spot by the author, largely owing to his age and the time, is the incessant inclusion of religious analogy and inference. It would not be out of line to add the tag line to the title " ... if you are a right and good Christian".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • I Suck at Girls

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Justin Halpern
    • Narrated By Sean Schemmel
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (297)
    Performance
    (267)
    Story
    (271)

    Fans of the #1 bests eller Sh*t My Dad Says will recognize the always patient voice of Justin Halpern's dad as it crackles through this hysterical new audiobook. The story begins when Justin announces that he's decided to propose to his girlfriend. "You've been dating her for four years," his dad replies. "It ain't like you found a parallel fucking universe."

    Jay says: "Funny but nowhere like the the first book."
    "Guy Lit, if there is such a thing, and excellent."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What was one of the most memorable moments of I Suck at Girls?

    When the author enlists his 'friend' to help him conquer his fear of going into the canyon. That episode is an adolescent adventure worthy of Tom Sawyer. That unexpected sense of "victory or death" at its conclusion had me laughing out loud.


    Any additional comments?

    The theme that I, and I suspect many men, can relate to so easily is that of having great advice regularly pressed upon you, but without the ability to comprehend the advice until it's in hindsight. Halpern captures this perfectly, and you come away feeling like he told part of your story too.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Unseen Academicals: Discworld #32

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Stephen Briggs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (921)
    Performance
    (438)
    Story
    (445)

    Football has come to the ancient city of Ankh-Morpork - not the old-fashioned, grubby pushing and shoving, but the new, fast football with pointy hats for goalposts and balls that go gloing when you drop them. And now, the wizards of Unseen University must win a football match, without using magic, so they're in the mood for trying everything else.

    goddess_of_pipework says: "Punch-in-the-arm fun"
    "Typical Pratchett..."
    Overall

    ...in that, he never takes a book off. Every once in a while, I see a title from him and it gives me pause "Football... or, in American culture, soccer...?" But, its Pratchett telling the story, and I read on. I was not disappointed in the least. UA is funny, entertaining and has the hallmark real-world undercurrent, this time its social justice, which always give his stories weight and substance. Since Terry has no peers, and thus it is impossible to compare his work against anything other than his previous work, I would give this book an 8 out of 10 on the Pratchett scale. Read it. In fact, read them all.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Legends: Stories by the Masters of Fantasy, Volume 4

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Anne McCaffrey, Raymond E. Feist, George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Sam Tsoutsouvas, Kathryn Walker, Frank Muller
    Overall
    (112)
    Performance
    (61)
    Story
    (62)

    The monumental series of audio original fantasy concludes with this collection of three all-new stories by Anne McCaffrey, Raymond E. Feist, and George R.R. Martin. All of them are set in the uncanny realms of their phenomenally popular novels.

    Jim W says: "The Hedge Knight is great, skipped the others"
    "Mixed..."
    Overall

    This is a 3 story volume, and I must admin that I only bought it because of the story by George R.R. Martin. I did want to hear the McCaffrey and Feist stories too, in the hopes of finding more authors that I like. In The Hedge Knight, I was not disappointed. If you have read any of the Song of Ice and Fire series, you will enjoy this mini-prequal. GRRM truly is one of the masters of fantasy.

    However, the Runner of Pern is a predictable, contrived, and uninteresting girl-meets-boy love story. I had never read any of the Pern series, and this was not a positive first experience. She is a good enough writer, but the premise of the story leaves something to be desired.

    The Wood Boy by Raymond Feist is terrible... the characters are 1 dimensional cliches of fantasy fiction. The "plot", if you want to call it that, is completely absent until the last 10 minutes of the story. What makes it worse is that the author had, up until that point, described a moderately interesting world for the protagonist. Dont waste your time.

    My recommendation would be to buy this if you appreciate the fantastic work of George R.R. Martin. The other two get a free ride, but should be ignored unless you need something to fall asleep to.

    9 of 15 people found this review helpful

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