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Gilbert, AZ, United States | Member Since 2009

  • 4 reviews
  • 59 ratings
  • 257 titles in library
  • 26 purchased in 2014

  • Darwin's Radio

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Greg Bear
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In a cave high in the Alps, a renegade anthropologist discovers a frozen Neanderthal couple with a Homo sapiens baby. Meanwhile, in southern Russia, the U.N. investigation of a mysterious mass grave is cut short. One of the investigators, molecular biologist Kaye Lang, returns home to the U.S. to learn that her theory on human retroviruses has been verified with the discovery of SHEVA, a virus that has slept in our DNA for millions of years and is now waking up.

    Paul Krasner says: "Really good science fiction"
    "Medicore Story Ruined By Awful Narrator"

    The description intrigued me, so I bought the book. However, had I realized that it was read by George Guidall, I would not have. This is the same guy that reads all the Brad Thor and Vince Flynn books, and he's awful. Actually, awful only begins to describe his performance. An old guy with too much spit in his mouth, all of his characters sound the same, making it difficult to follow the story. He has four basic voices: male, female, Southern male and Southern female. His foreign accents helped in distinguishing those characters, but otherwise, they all sounded like an excessively-jowled old guy with too much saliva production. Additionally, his speech inflection is odd, and exactly the same for every character. I think the voice characterization for the male protagonist changed two or three times during the book.

    The story itself was average. It sounded like the author couldn't tell if he wanted to write a political thriller or a legal battle or a bio-med story or something that could be made into a movie for the LMN network. Some of this tediousness was caused by the narrator (did I mention he sucked?), but looking past that, it took far too long to tell this story. It dragged in places for no apparent reason, as if the telling of mundaneness was the purpose for writing the story in the first place.

    The description of this book makes it sound a lot more intriguing than it is and should have been half as long as it is. It's not an action or adventure story. It's basically a medical "thriller" with a lot of cruft thrown in.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Outlaw Demon Wails

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Kim Harrison
    • Narrated By Gigi Bermingham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    To save the lives of her friends, Rachel did the unthinkable: she willingly trafficked in forbidden demon magic. And now her sins are coming home to haunt her. As Rachel searches for the truth behind a terrifying murder, an even greater menace threatens, for the demon Algaliarept will stop at nothing to claim her, and the discovery of a shocking family secret throws Rachel's entire life into question.

    Carol says: "Horrible Narration Take 2"
    "Story nearly ruined by awful narrator"

    Wow, what were the producers thinking when they hired Gigi Bermingham to read this story? Her voice is pleasant, but she is unable to do characters other than her own voice. She botched just about every pronunciation and voice there was to botch. Absolutely no research into the backstory on this series and it showed.

    To be blunt, it was P_A_I_N_F_U_L to listen to this narrator. I only listened to the whole thing because it is part of the series and I wanted to know what happened, as subsequent books would make reference to what happened in this book. To get through some parts of the book, especially when Jenks was talking, I had to "re-narrate" the story internally in my head just to get through it.

    The voice of all the characters were terrible; completely unbelievable. Whereas Ms. Gavin's narration brought the characters to life, the character voices of Ms. Bermingham were totally off (not to mention stupid and silly). It's one thing to have a different voice from another narrator, but these weren't even close to resonating how the character should sound. Simply awful.

    Additionally, the inflection of how she speaks totally changes the meaning of the words. It's kind of hard to explain, but the timing and how the words were spoken were totally out of synch with how you expect the characters to be.

    These books are fantastic and the original narrator Marguerite Gavin brought them to life, which I believe is, at least, 50% of why these audio books are so popular. She nails every character and breathes life into them. The narrator for this book does nothing like this and it shows that carefully matching the narrator to the book is very important for the success of an audiobook.

    Luckily, the original narrator is back in subsequent books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Takedown

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Brad Thor
    • Narrated By George Guidall

    Best-selling author Brad Thor has crafted a must-read blockbuster featuring hard-nosed U.S. anti-terrorist agent Scot Harvath. Fiendish al-Qaeda terrorists are planning to rescue their imprisoned WMD expert during the chaos they create with their July 4th destruction of all bridges and tunnels to Manhattan. Now it's up to ex-SEAL Harvath to stop the evil-doers -- and neutralize the diabolical three-foot-tall villain known as "The Troll" who supplies their intelligence.

    rob says: "Great."
    "Terrible Narrator"

    I'm only into the 3rd hour of this book and it's getting more and more difficult to continue listening. The narrator sounds like an old guy with marbles in his mouth and all of the characters sound virtually identical; they all sound like geriatric men, even the females!

    It's difficult to follow the story because I'm constantly trying to figure out which character is talking.

    In a nutshell, this guy is awful. It's unbelievable that he's been selected to narrate so many books. All books that I won't be buying as I can't stand this narrator!

    As for the story, it's okay, but difficult to follow (mainly b/c of the narration). This is my 2nd Scot Harvath book and it will probably be the last. The character is a moron, in that if he didn't always have someone with him that was more observant, he'd be toast. The story starts with key tactical areas being attacked in a city and Harvath is too stupid to see that it's a coordinated attack. Seriously?

    It was the same in the "Lions of Lucerne," he was unable to make obvious conclusions from events happening around him. Not to mention all the stupid mistakes he makes. It's as if the author is trying to purposefully make the character into a "normal" guy, but it comes off totally unbelievable.

    If I could get my money back, I would.

    BTW, does someone sell a watch for a video camera in all of Thor's novels?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fuzzy Nation

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton, John Scalzi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In John Scalzi's re-imagining of H. Beam Piper's 1962 sci-fi classic Little Fuzzy, written with the full cooperation of the Piper Estate, Jack Holloway works alone for reasons he doesnt care to talk about. Hundreds of miles from ZaraCorps headquarters on planet, 178 light-years from the corporations headquarters on Earth, Jack is content as an independent contractor, prospecting and surveying at his own pace. As for his past, thats not up for discussion.

    Samuel Montgomery-Blinn says: "Short, sweet, and satisfying storytelling."
    "Story Excellent, Narration Okay"

    Like other books by Scalzi, especially "Old Man's War," the writing was excellent. I enjoy his writing style and wit used in his books. Two things about this audio book, though.

    First, Wil Wheaton has a good voice, but he pretty much can only do one character. Except for the voice he did when the fuzzies spoke, all the characters sounded the same. To be fair, Wheaton's narration was good and I enjoyed it, but it lacked the depth of characters that make audio books so much more enjoyable. For me, William Dufris is the perfect narrator for Scalzi's books.

    The second thing that you need to know is that this book is only 7 hours 20 minutes long. The other 6.5 hours is a narration of the original book, by a different narrator. I was unable to continue listening to the original book, though, as I didn't like the characterizations nor the storyline very much. This might be due to listening to it immediately after the Scalzi version. I'll probably go back and try again after a period of time.

    I was disappointed by the shortness of the "Fuzzy Nation" book, but I highly enjoyed it.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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