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Brad

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada | Member Since 2008

34
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 58 ratings
  • 206 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • The Power of One

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Bryce Courtenay
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    Overall
    (2875)
    Performance
    (1679)
    Story
    (1684)

    Born in a South Africa divided by racism and hatred, this one small boy will come to lead all the tribes of Africa. Through enduring friendships with Hymie and Gideon, Peekay gains the strength he needs to win out. And in a final conflict with his childhood enemy, the Judge, Peekay will fight to the death for justice.

    Bob says: "Compelling story lifted higher by the narration"
    "I usually listen to sci-fi but..."
    Overall

    ...I thought I'd try something different for a change. I saw the movie more than a decade ago and it has stuck with me and the book is amazing. The audiobook version is superbly done, the narrator brings each character to life with perfection. This is one of the best recordings I've listened to in a long time. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • WWW: Wake

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Robert J. Sawyer
    • Narrated By Jessica Almasy, Jennifer Van Dyck, A. C. Fellner, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1617)
    Performance
    (882)
    Story
    (886)

    Caitlin Decter is young, pretty, feisty, a genius at math - and blind. Still, she can surf the net with the best of them, following its complex paths clearly in her mind. But Caitlin's brain long ago co-opted her primary visual cortex to help her navigate online. So when she receives an implant to restore her sight, instead of seeing reality, the landscape of the World Wide Web explodes into her consciousness, spreading out all around her in a riot of colors and shapes.

    'Nathan says: "Fantastic."
    "Not one of my favs, but..."
    Overall

    ...it might be worth your credit. I spent a lot of time thinking "this is an awesome idea" but the implementation is lacking. Specifically (and possibly spoiler-ish) I got the impression that if I were writing the same story, I wouldn't have represented the Internet in such a linear, geometric, symbolic way -- lines and boxes. Albeit I don't know what he's got planned for the next books, I think Sawyer could have added a whole other level of abstraction (engaging the creative imaginative parts of the mind, for example) to the way the protagonists interpreted things -- visually -- and it would have added something, otherwise ineffable, to the story.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Rendezvous with Rama

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Arthur C. Clarke
    • Narrated By Peter Ganim, Robert J. Sawyer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1806)
    Performance
    (1070)
    Story
    (1092)

    At first, only a few things are known about the celestial object that astronomers dub Rama. It is huge, weighing more than ten trillion tons. And it is hurtling through the solar system at inconceivable speed. Then a space probe confirms the unthinkable: Rama is no natural object. It is, incredibly, an interstellar spacecraft. Space explorers and planet-bound scientists alike prepare for mankind's first encounter with alien intelligence.

    Peter Tersteeg says: "Excellent story, terrible naration"
    "Lacking in emotion, but a good story."
    Overall

    I enjoyed it despite the flat, emotion-less characters. The ideas and the story itself are very enjoyable.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Endymion

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Victor Bevine
    Overall
    (1479)
    Performance
    (858)
    Story
    (873)

    Here, Simmons returns to this richly imagined world of technological achievement, excitement, wonder and fear. Endymion is a story about love and memory, triumph and terror - an instant candidate for the field's highest honors.

    David says: "A fine Part II of the Hyperion Cantos"
    "Narration brings it to life."
    Overall

    I read this book a couple years ago. Maybe it was because I hadn't read the first two in the series -- though the novel is supposed to stand on its own -- but I never really followed the story, despite pressing though the dead-tree version. Had I not so thoroughly enjoyed books one and two I may never have revisited this incredible story. I'm glad I did. And the narration gives it a depth that brings the story to life.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Fall of Hyperion

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Victor Bevine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2345)
    Performance
    (1411)
    Story
    (1441)

    In the stunning continuation of the epic adventure begun in Hyperion, Simmons returns us to a far future resplendent with drama and invention. Onthe world of Hyperion, the mysterious Time Tombs are opening. And the secrets they contain mean that nothing - nothing anywhere in the universe - will ever be the same.

    Darwin8u says: "Hyperion is FALLEN, am I too to fall?"
    "Leaves you wanting more..."
    Overall

    I was driving down the highway when I listened to the last couple hours of this book. I had fully intended to give the story a break and listen to something else in between. But I had the third book, Endymion, ready on my iPod and the conclusion to this one, the second of the series, was so gripping I couldn't help but keep going.

    I was a little disappointed about the change of storytelling format, particularly after book one, but quickly got over it. It doesn't really stand on its own though, so read Hyperion first.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Outliers: The Story of Success

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Narrated By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9962)
    Performance
    (4461)
    Story
    (4474)

    In this stunning new book, Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of "outliers"--the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful. He asks the question: what makes high-achievers different? His answer is that we pay too much attention to what successful people are like, and too little attention to where they are from: that is, their culture, their family, their generation, and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing.

    S Prabhu says: "Excellent book; well adapted for the audio format"
    "Interesting..."
    Overall

    A lot to think about, though I might need to buy a paper copy to check out some of the references. Although admittedly, listening to these ideas made me a little depressed...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Rise of Endymion

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Victor Bevine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1309)
    Performance
    (772)
    Story
    (779)

    In the stunning continuation of the epic adventure begun in Hyperion, Simmons returns us to a far future resplendent with drama and invention. On the world of Hyperion, the mysterious Time Tombs are opening. And the secrets they contain mean that nothing - nothing anywhere in the universe - will ever be the same.

    Chad says: "Simmons' Magnum Opus"
    "A long but satisfying conclusion..."
    Overall

    I figured out that if you listen to this whole four book series you are looking at about 96 hours of audio. If that sounds daunting, it is, but when every loose end is neatly tied up at the end of this last book it is worth it. This is an epic of science fiction storytelling and the narration is awesome.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • I Am Legend

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Richard Matheson
    • Narrated By Robertson Dean
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3513)
    Performance
    (1452)
    Story
    (1474)

    In I Am Legend, a plague has decimated the world, and those unfortunate enough to survive are transformed into blood-thirsty creatures of the night. Robert Neville is the last living man on earth. Everyone else has become a vampire, and they are all hungry for Neville's blood. By day, he stalks the sleeping undead, by night, he barricades himself in his home and prays for the dawn.

    Amazon Customer says: "Superb!"
    "Dark. Awesome."
    Overall

    A quick listen, I got through the whole thing on a short road-trip. The narration suits the mood very well, the readers gruff voice bringing Neville to life and building the suspense of the story. I've never seen the movie (as some others have mentioned) but I've heard this original story has a much more interesting philosophical twist at the end and makes for a much darker and more interesting conclusion.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Humans: The Neanderthal Parallax, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Robert J. Sawyer
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis, Robert J. Sawyer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (626)
    Performance
    (289)
    Story
    (296)

    In this Hugo-nominated novel, Neanderthal physicist Ponter Boddit brings Canadian geneticist Mary Vaughan back to his world to explore the near-utopian civilization of the Neanderthals. Boddit serves as a Candide figure, the naive visitor whose ignorance about our society makes him a perfect tool to analyze human tendencies toward violence, over-population, and environmental degradation.

    Guillermo says: "Missed the Mark"
    "Enjoyable and Engaging!"
    Overall

    A fast-paced story with an interesting premise, the Neanderthal Parallax (set largely in Canada... Huzzah!) is an easy and engaging read. The narrator of the audio version brings the characters to life well, and the hours pass quickly. My choice to give it four stars is only in comparison to the first book in the series, but all three are definitely recommended.

    9 of 12 people found this review helpful

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