E.E. "Doc" Smith was the father of space opera, and the Lensman series was by far his finest work. Each book is 10 hours of breathless, over-the-top purple prose - titanic space battles, lantern-jawed hero, fiery-tempered nurse girlfriend, vile but stupid drug peddlers, and brilliant scientists inventing godlike new technologies with dazzling rapidity. Nearly every modern space opera trope, from Death Stars to deflector shields, got its start with the Lensman series. Everything that is now cliche was fresh when Doc Smith invented it.
In other words, if you like space opera, listen to the Lensman books.
Reed McColm, the narrator, does a very good "1950s American radio guy voice", but makes quite a few pronunciation errors.
Find a reader who can pronounce Japanese names!!
Yes...in paper form!
HE CANNOT PRONOUNCE JAPANESE NAMES. It's just painful to listen to. It's like someone reading Lolita and pronouncing her name "LAHL-it-uh".
Reamde is probably in my top 5.
The realism of the characters, the fast-paced complex plot, and the amazing detail of the world.
I have not. however, he is an AMAZING narrator - easily the best I've heard. He is especially great at doing accents, which most narrators are not. He is just so easy to listen to.
Yes, but it was almost 40 hours long!!!
No. I would try another book by Timothy Ferriss, but not if it was read by Ray Porter.
Ray Porter read this book with a staccato, aggressive tone that made it sound as if the author were constantly lecturing you or asserting his dominance over you. When I first started listening, I thought "Gosh, Tim Ferriss is a jerk!" But then I tried saying some of the sentences out loud in a normal-sounding voice, and the jerkiness vanished. It was just Ray Porter's aggressive tone.
A fittingly titanic end to the first and (possibly) greatest space opera series of all time!
This book is a bit unusual, since it mixes a droll, dry, humorous tone with depictions of graphic violence and cruelty. It is fun and engaging, and will keep you wanting more until the very end. The science fiction is pretty neat as well, and I liked the main character a lot.
I liked this book. It's fantasy with a strong historical feel. Good writing, strong characters, tight plot.
The problem is the narrator, who really hams it up and reads very slowly in a breathy voice. He sounds like he's reading to a very small child. It was very distracting and annoying.
This book suffers from sequel-itis. The characters don't develop or change very much, and little is done that wasn't done in the first book. Still fun and well-written, but it doesn't feel like as much really happens.
The narrator, as before, is truly excellent.
While there are a few gems here ("The Second Kind of Loneliness"), by and large these stories represent exploratory efforts and writing exercises. There are hints and glimmers of the amazing writer that George R.R. Martin will eventually become, but don't get your expectations too high.
The real thing to love about this audiobook are the autobiographical sections, narrated by Martin himself. It is absolutely fascinating to hear the blow-by-blow tale of Martin's life and career, especially as the segments coincide with the stories. You can really see Martin coming of age as a young writer. I'm looking forward eagerly to Part 2.
Paolo Bacigalupi write stories about bad people. Nearly everyone in the worlds he creates, including his protagonists, is a selfish, hardened, small-minded person frantically engaged in a Hobbesian struggle against nearly every other character. Trust, kindness, and friendliness are essentially nonexistent here. The ideas are wildly imaginative, the sci-fi cleverly crafted, and the worlds brilliantly realized. So if you like cool sci-fi and don't mind reading about brutal shmucks living hellish nightmares, this book is for you!
Sci-fi's most famous duo does not disappoint. While Footfall doesn't dive as deeply into the everyday lives and human struggles of its characters as did the better-known Lucifer's Hammer, it makes up for it with a climax that is far more gripping. With believable, sympathetic, and yet still scary aliens, and noble but flawed humans, Footfall just might be the greatest alien invasion novel ever written.
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