An incredible book that will change the way you think about the human ability to run. This book has got a little bit of everything. Secretive Mexican Indian tribes. $200 running shoes that aren't worth a dime. Light shed on one of the mysteries of evolution. Exciting races. And great sports writing. All tied together beautifully. One of the best books I've read in the past 10 years.
The book is entertaining but there's also a sense of extreme exaggeration from Mr. Bourdain that makes me take everything he says with a grain of salt. I don't know if this is truly a kitchen "confession" so much as a series of tall tales mixed with observation.
Roy Dotrice is simply the best narrator I've experienced on audiobooks, and he's perfect for these books. Clash of Kings is not quite as well-paced as the first book, but the second half of the book will carry you along like a tidal wave. This and the third book tie for second as the best books in the series (the first book is the best).
Under the Dome is a politically charged allegorical novel advocating for the environmental movement, and it takes potshots at Republicans throughout. The bad guys line up with recent Republican politicians (eg, there's a "Junior" who's a homicidal maniac). That said, the Dome concept of the novel is brilliant, and the best writing occurs in the first few chapters, but it quickly becomes plain Stephen King is writing without an ending for most of the book. All of King's imagination seems used up early, as I gagged at the silly resolution of it all. I found none of the characters in the book particularly likeable, not even the heros. King falls into some bad habits that marked his bland period.
The novel provides mind-blowing science, but the author is not skilled at characterization. I didn't feel connected to any of the characters in the novel, they were paper doll cutouts.
An amazingly detailed look at a horrific historical event. Narrator is perfect for this book. The book's apex is, of course, the flood itself, but the choices, actions, and attitudes of the people both before and after the event makes for an interesting look at society too. No higher recommendation.
Overall, it's a cool story that involves 3 generations of Star Trek lore, but it's a strangely paced story (perhaps due to being abridged?). It starts out plodding along then rushes along at the end. It's plot driven with little characterization. But still, it's a fun, satisfying read, just lacking any kind of depth. Dispensible fun.
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