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c, IL, United States | Member Since 2014

  • 3 reviews
  • 28 ratings
  • 558 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2015

  • Book of the Dead

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Patricia Cornwell
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Fresh from her bruising battle with a psychopath in Florida, Scarpetta decides it's time for a change of pace. Moving to Charleston, South Carolina, she opens a unique private forensic pathology practice, one in which she and her colleagues, including Pete Marino and her niece, Lucy, offer expert crime-scene investigation and autopsy services to communities lacking local access to competent death investigation and modern technology.

    Bernie says: "Time to end the series"
    "A Rare Occurrence"

    It's rare for me not to finish a book. Even more rare, not to get past the prologue. The opening sequence of this book was so distasteful, I stopped listening, and can't muster the interest or enthusiasm to continue past it. Although the Scarpetta novels aren't for the faint of heart or weak of stomach, and I've read most of them, this one struck me as offering up horrific brutality simply for the sake of sensationalism, or, perhaps, to see how far her readers are willing to follow her.

    I heard a spoiler for the book on Good Morning America, from Cornwell herself. I won't repeat it here, but I had misgivings about the book based on the revelation. The opening sequence clinched it; this is definitely not a book I'm going to return to in the near future.

    As a Cornwell/Scarpetta fan, I'm disappointed in the trends of the last few books, and most disappointed in this latest offering. I recognize the author's license to do as she pleases with her characters and stories, but I'm afraid I can't follow her on this one. I'll be more cautious about the next book as well, if there is one.

    One last point: the title has been used for another book, recently published, and for other titles in the more distant past. Is the inability to conceive of a more original title an indication that this line of books is played out?

    29 of 29 people found this review helpful
  • The Robots of Dawn

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Isaac Asimov
    • Narrated By William Dufris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Detective Elijah Baley is called to the Spacer world Aurora to solve a bizarre case of roboticide. The prime suspect is a gifted roboticist who had the means, the motive, and the opportunity to commit the crime. There's only one catch: Baley and his positronic partner, R. Daneel Olivaw, must prove the man innocent. For in a case of political intrigue and love between woman and robot gone tragically wrong, there's more at stake than simple justice.

    Yvonne says: "Refreshing"

    It's been many years since I first read this book. The second reading is even better than the first. The book, is in its essence, a murder mystery, set in a future time when humans have colonized parts of the universe.

    The characters are superb. Elijah Bailey is the quintessential human who relies on his own senses and intellect to solve the crime. R. Daneel Olivaw and Giscard are as sympathetic as characters can be, with some surprises thrown in at the end.

    The plot is tight, and moves along at a good clip that keeps the reader's attention. The ending is, as a good mystery should be, a surprise.

    Narration is also excellent.

    I highly recommend this book.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Life of Pi

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Yann Martel
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman

    Pi Patel has been raised in a zoo in India. When his father decides to move the family to Canada and sell the animals to American zoos, everyone boards a Japanese cargo ship. The ship sinks, and 16-year-old Pi finds himself alone on a lifeboat with a hyena, an orangutan, a zebra with a broken leg, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger. Soon it's just Pi, the tiger, and the vast Pacific Ocean - for 227 days. Pi's fear, knowledge, and cunning keep him alive until they reach the coast of Mexico, where the tiger disappears into the jungle.

    Theresa says: "Best audio of the year for me"
    "Too Many Obstacles"

    This book came highly recommended by friends who have read it, and has been critically well reviewed. I'm parting company with them.

    The parts dealing directly with Pi's life were interesting. They were interspersed with long, really long, philosophical, theological and religious lectures. The author blathers on and on as if in love with the sight of his own words and entranced by the sound of his own voice. It didn't advance the story at all.

    It was like running an obstacle course to get back to the interesting parts, and finally I just tired of it. I tried three times, and finally decided that I'd had enough.

    The narrator was excellent. But not even he could enliven this pseudo treatise.

    How/why this book received the excellent reviews and awards is a mystery to me.

    7 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • Golden Buddha: A Novel of the Oregon Files

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Clive Cussler, Craig Dirgo
    • Narrated By J. Charles

    Only Cabrillo could convert the interior of a nondescript lumber hauler into a state-of-the-art spy ship - and only he could take the helm on the dangerous covert missions it carries out for whichever US agency pays the price.

    Yvonne says: "Just OK"
    "Just OK"

    Although this book isn't up to the standard I expect from Cussler books, it was OK. It's a good concept and timely in light of today's political stage. It pretty much held my interest, but is not a "page turner."

    The characters were generally flat, two dimensional, not three. There was little about them to inspire empathy in the reader. Their motivations were supplied by the narrative, which is boring. The plot was generally ponderous and for an action-oriented book, that's not a good thing. It was just too "pat;" the characters were never really challenged, and you knew that there was absolutely no way they would fail.

    The narrator was acceptable overall. A piece of advice for all narrators: don't try to voice a living person unless you can do it just about perfectly. The attempts in this book to voice Vladimir Putin & HU Jintao were awful. Similarly, when the narrator attempted dialogue with what he must have felt was ethnic inflection, it was just plain bad.

    If you like Cussler, you'll probably like this book. Don't expect anything approaching his earlier works, though. This definitely isn't the Numa Files.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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