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Scott

Champlin, MN, USA

12
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 5 reviews
  • 14 ratings
  • 63 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • Stranger in a Strange Land

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Christopher Hurt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2672)
    Performance
    (1240)
    Story
    (1258)

    Stranger in a Strange Land tells the story of Valentine Michael Smith, an earthling born and educated on Mars, who arrives on Earth with superhuman powers and a total ignorance of the mores of man. Smith is destined to become a freak, a media commodity, a scam artist, a searcher, and finally, a messiah.

    Harris says: "A Parable for the Ages"
    "Way too preachy"
    Overall

    The brilliant idea behind science fiction is that the author can create his own worlds, technology, and societies in order to subtly address his cultural or religious viewpoints. The key word in this sentence is 'subtly.' In 'Stranger in a Strange Land,' I felt like I was in a religious service, a very long religious service. The only difference was that the preaching was disguised as dialogue between some very boring characters, with very little plot or suspense to make an interesting story. I forced myself to listen to the end, thinking there must be some reason this work is regarded as a classic. All I can say is that, 'I don't groc.'

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt

    • ABRIDGED (8 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Edmund Morris
    • Narrated By Harry Chase
    Overall
    (352)
    Performance
    (73)
    Story
    (76)

    Available for the first time in audio, The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt is the story of seven men - a naturalist, a writer, a lover, a hunter, a ranchman, a soldier, and a politician - who merged at age 42 to become the youngest American President in history. This first volume of a planned trilogy won both the Pulitzer Prize and American Book Award. The second, Theodore Rex, is also available from audible.com.

    Michael says: "One of the best books I've come across."
    "Excellent piece of history"
    Overall

    Rush hour has never been more enjoyable. I am not a history buff, but I found myself very enthusiastic about this book. The book flowed well and was dynamically written. My interest was piqued throughout the book, which is something that does not happen that often with history books. I cannot wait for the second one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ringworld

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Larry Niven
    • Narrated By Tom Parker
    Overall
    (2890)
    Performance
    (1556)
    Story
    (1583)

    Welcome to Ringworld, an intermediate step between Dyson Spheres and planets. The gravitational force created by a rotation on its axis of 770 miles per second means no need for a roof. Walls 1,000 miles high at each rim will let in the sun and prevent much air from escaping. Larry Niven's novel, Ringworld, is the winner of the 1970 Hugo Award for Best Novel, the 1970 Nebula Award for Best Novel, and the 1972 Ditmars, an Australian award for Best International Science Fiction.

    Kennet says: "Genuinely Creative"
    "Good book, fascinating concept"
    Overall

    Niven tried to write a story around a fascinating technical concept. Normally, this approach fails miserably, for it is the story that keeps me involved in a book. In this case, however, Niven developed a plot that was as interesting as the technology.

    Although the characters were somewhat shallow, they were drawn from a diverse background and a bit of humor, which kept my interest throughout the book. The trials and episodes that the characters encountered were not earth-shattering, but they kept the story moving at an agreeable pace. In addition, the technology was interesting and was introduced in such a way as not to bog down the story in technological mumbo-jumbo.

    Bottom line: Ringworld was not the best book I have ever read, but I feel that it was wealth worth the time and money.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Paul

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs)
    • By Walter Wangerin Jr.
    • Narrated By Walter Wangerin Jr.
    Overall
    (102)
    Performance
    (26)
    Story
    (26)

    Master storyteller Walter Wangerin Jr. sweeps you into the life and times of the man who brought Christianity to the world. Here is Paul the person, viewed through the eyes of his contemporaries.

    Scott says: "Excellent book!"
    "Excellent book!"
    Overall

    This book really boosted my interest in the scriptures. Since I have finished it, I have read and reread the gospels of Paul to learn more. I am not a biblical expert, but the book seems to be accurate with no apparent flaws.

    The narration is difficult to get used to at first. But after an hour or two, I became accustomed to it, and I think it even enhanced the book.

    The only significant criticism that I can offer is that the book is a little slow at times.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Snow Crash

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Neal Stephenson
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis
    Overall
    (5454)
    Performance
    (2782)
    Story
    (2838)

    Neal Stephenson is a blazing new force on the sci-fi scene. With the groundbreaking cyberpunk novel Snow Crash, he has "vaulted onto the literary stage." It weaves virtual reality, Sumerian myth, and just about everything in between with a cool, hip cybersensibility - in short, it is the gigathriller of the information age.

    A. Tuck says: "Classic Stephenson"
    "Close, but just wasn't there"
    Overall

    Snow Crash had many interesting ideas - the metaverse, a glimpse of a creative but gloomy future, and a virus that bridged the biological and technological disciplines. From the first few chapters, the characters instantly drew my interest because of their unique situations (i.e. a pizza delivery man who carries swords and works for the mafia). I had high expectations in the first 2-3 hours of listening.

    But the plot never really came together. It felt like a group of isolated incidents with a weak, if not nonexistent, string to cohesively tie it all together. The characters did not grow as they overcame the challenges throughout the book, making them seem shallow and superfluous. Also, I had a difficult time becoming comfortable with the writing style, for it was written as an average seventh-grade teenager would tell a story to his buddies. I am assuming the author purposely wrote this way to match the gloomy tone of the book, but it was difficult to get used to, especially when you are used to reading well-written novels.

    Overall, if you are in a jam and cannot find anything else to read, you could certainly give Snow Crash a shot. But there are many better sci-fi novels out there.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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