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John

SIERRA MADRE, CA, United States | Member Since 2012

2
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 6 reviews
  • 11 ratings
  • 213 titles in library
  • 27 purchased in 2014
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  • DisneyWar

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By James B. Stewart
    • Narrated By Patrick Lawlor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (615)
    Performance
    (248)
    Story
    (249)

    Once upon a time, one man ruled America's greatest entertainment company. This is the untold story of his triumphs and failures, and of the revolt that cost him his kingdom.

    Christine says: "Utterly fascinating"
    "Provocative title, but the story is less so"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is less about a war at Disney than it is a detailed (and exhaustively documented) history of Michael Eisner's time as the head of Disney, and the changes to the company and its culture that he oversaw. As an employee of the entertainment industry, I found this book very interesting, and the insider information, especially as much of it occurs in recent memory, is entertaining without being titillating. This is strictly an insider's view of the inner workings of Disney, however; what is missing is the context to put the events depicted in comparison to the workings of other entertainment companies. Fans of Disney may find this book interesting, since it explores what makes the Disney experience so distinct, and questions whether Eisner has improved that experience or not. The narration was good but not great; Lawlor's voice was more informal than I would have liked, and he seemed a bit rushed to get through the pages.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Red Mars

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Kim Stanley Robinson
    • Narrated By Richard Ferrone
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1057)
    Performance
    (484)
    Story
    (498)

    Winner of the Nebula Award for Best Novel, Red Mars is the first book in Kim Stanley Robinson's best-selling trilogy. Red Mars is praised by scientists for its detailed visions of future technology. It is also hailed by authors and critics for its vivid characters and dramatic conflicts.

    For centuries, the red planet has enticed the people of Earth. Now an international group of scientists has colonized Mars. Leaving Earth forever, these 100 people have traveled nine months to reach their new home. This is the remarkable story of the world they create - and the hidden power struggles of those who want to control it.

    Paul says: "If you like books with DETAIL not much Action"
    "Great balance of fiction and science"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Kim "Stan" Stanley Robinson has the distinct ability to write use scientific concepts within the narrative in a way that lets you understand what is happening even if you don't understand how. The science serves the drama without overpowering it, letting the characters be front and center to the story. Mars itself is the main character, with long passages of the book given over to describing the landscape and its harsh beauty. The other human characters are more familiar and (for me) more interesting. Red Mars is not an adventure tale; rather it is more of a "what if" exploration of the future of humanity. There is plenty of drama, conflict, and even spectacle. The narration was clear, with distinction between voices and was never distracting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Theft of Swords: Riyria Revelations, Volume 1

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Michael J. Sullivan
    • Narrated By Tim Gerard Reynolds
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4907)
    Performance
    (4517)
    Story
    (4514)

    Acclaimed author Michael J. Sullivan created instant best sellers with his spellbinding Riyria Revelations series. This first volume introduces Royce Melborn and Hadrian Blackwater, two enterprising thieves who end up running for their lives when they’re framed for the death of the king. Trapped in a conspiracy bigger than they can imagine, their only hope is unraveling an ancient mystery - before it’s too late.

    Magpie says: "Two books in one - keep listening!!"
    "Theft of my time"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The setting, story, and characters have great potential for an original fantasy epic. That potential got me through the first book (there are two in this recording). Unfortunately, it never quite lives up to that potential. The two main characters are not well fleshed out, and the glimpses of greatness that you see in them is never fully realized. What is lacking is depth; characters have motivations and histories that are barely glimpsed but never seen, and what results is a lot of action without consequence, and danger without drama. When the dialogue is witty it is funny, but gets lost when it's trying to be meaningful. Narration is okay, but not well served by the material. I had to stop about one hour into the second book once I realized that I didn't care for these characters anymore.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Redshirts: A Novel with Three Codas

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5510)
    Performance
    (5141)
    Story
    (5136)

    Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. Life couldn’t be better…until Andrew begins to pick up on the facts that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces; (2) the ship’s captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations; and (3) at least one low-ranked crew member is, sadly, always killed.

    Ken says: "It's all about the codas"
    "Meta-enjoyable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Great genre-subversion story, and very funny. If you don't like meta-meta-fiction then this is not the book for you. The narration was very entertaining; what Wheaton lacks in distinction between voices, he more than makes up for with enthusiasm and tone that matches the material perfectly. Another reviewer said his penchant for dropping the "he said" and "she said" to the point of distractedness and at first it bothered me too but I got over it. The codas are a little too long but mostly funny.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Storm Front: The Dresden Files, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11020)
    Performance
    (7912)
    Story
    (7914)

    A call from a distraught wife, and another from Lt Murphy of the Chicago PD Special Investigation Unit makes Harry believe things are looking up, but they are about to get worse, much worse. Someone is harnessing immense supernatural forces to commit a series of grisly murders. Someone has violated the first law of magic: Thou Shalt Not Kill. Tracking that someone takes Harry into the dangerous underbelly of Chicago, from mobsters.

    Tom says: "Excellent Story, Distracting Sound Engineering"
    "Fun listen"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a fun experience. There was enough dramatic tension, plot twists, and interesting magic to make the story come together in an exciting and entertaining way. Narration was good and fit the tone of the book well, though Marsters style may not be for everyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Well of Ascension: Mistborn, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6427)
    Performance
    (4398)
    Story
    (4431)

    The impossible has been accomplished. The Lord Ruler - the man who claimed to be god incarnate and brutally ruled the world for a thousand years - has been vanquished. But Kelsier, the hero who masterminded that triumph, is dead too, and now the awesome task of building a new world has been left to his young protégé, Vin, the former street urchin who is now the most powerful Mistborn in the land, and to the idealistic young nobleman she loves.

    Robert says: "It keeps getting even better"
    "Good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Well of Ascension in three words, what would they be?

    Good middle book


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Elland, since he grows into a king


    Have you listened to any of Michael Kramer’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Nope


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The mist is watching


    Any additional comments?

    Hope the third book closes everything out well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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