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John

Denver, Colorado, United States | Member Since 2010

49
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 46 reviews
  • 81 ratings
  • 201 titles in library
  • 19 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • Touch of the Demon: Kara Gillian, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Diana Rowland
    • Narrated By Liv Anderson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (368)
    Performance
    (336)
    Story
    (337)

    Kara Gillian is in some seriously deep trouble. She’s used to summoning supernatural creatures from the demon realm to our world, but now the tables have been turned and she’s the one who’s been summoned. Kara is the prisoner of yet another demonic lord, but she quickly discovers that she’s far more than a mere hostage. Yet waiting for rescue has never been her style, and Kara has no intention of being a pawn in someone else’s game.

    Leesa says: "Best one yet!!"
    "Not as good as previous books in the series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I went into this story wanting a mystery book similar to those previously written by the author in this series. I came away with a pseudo-high fantasy novel. I also did not like how the main character seemed to immediately fall for a new person. It seemed... Odd given the characters (both Kara and the new character).

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Clariel: The Lost Abhorsen

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Garth Nix
    • Narrated By Graeme Malcolm
    Overall
    (69)
    Performance
    (67)
    Story
    (67)

    Award-winning author Garth Nix returns to the Old Kingdom with a thrilling prequel complete with dark magic, royalty, dangerous action, a strong heroine, and flawless world-building. This epic fantasy adventure is destined to be a classic, and is perfect for fans of Game of Thrones.

    Ethan M. says: "Return to the Old Kingdom in an inverted YA novel"
    "Few qualms, but a very good addition to the series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was very reluctant to buy this book because it was not narrated by Tim Curry, the narrator of the first three books in the series. However I believe that the new narrator did a good job (if not as good as Curry). If you are new to the series start at book 1 because there are minor spoilers in this book.

    This is a YA book in a YA series by a YA author, but I have to say that the author did a good job of making this book enjoyable for his older fans. I very much enjoyed that Clariel was not just Sabriel 3.0, being an excellent Charter mage and swordswoman. I was not expecting that she would be a berserker like Touchstone from book 1, and I feel that it did a good job towards diversifying the series. Clariel was a bit whiny for the first half of the book (okay more than a bit) so the author could have reduced the total number of times she wistfully longed for the forest to maybe just once or twice per chapter instead of what seemed like every single paragraph. The other sorta-problem I had with the book was the way that every single adult took Clariel for granted, but I forgive this fact because it's a YA book and that's a theme in the genre. That said I would have liked it if Clariel's mom was a little more approachable/didn't view Clariel as a tool.

    The second half of the book spoke more to me as an adult than the first half, being reminiscent in pace of Abhorsen (somewhat rapid fire when compared to the slower pace of Lirael). I liked that Free Magic was viewed as being somewhat not completely evil, just chaotic and freedom seeking, and that Mogget seemed true to form. I did not like that Clariel actually trusted Mogget first thing, but it made sense that she did what she did at the end of the book.

    Overall this is a great addition to the series. Not as good as Sabriel, but it was as good as the good bits of Lirael and Abhorsen.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Shadow Ops, Book 3: Breach Zone

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Myke Cole
    • Narrated By Korey Jackson
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (32)

    In the wake of a bloody battle at Forward Operating Base Frontier and a scandalous presidential impeachment, Lieutenant Colonel Jan Thorsson, call sign " Harlequin," becomes a national hero and a pariah to the military that is the only family he' s ever known. In the fight for Latent equality, Oscar Britton is positioned to lead a rebellion in exile, but a powerful rival beats him to the punch: Scylla, a walking weapon who will stop at nothing to end the human-sanctioned apartheid against her kind.

    John says: "Easily the best book in the series thus far"
    "Easily the best book in the series thus far"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm going to keep his short. Originally I was never going to read this book because the previous books in the series pissed me off for various reasons. But I heard a sufficient number of good things about this book for me to give this book a chance, and it paid off. It wasn't a spectacular book by any means, but it was quite enjoyable and I can see myself listening to it again (which is something I cannot say for the other books in the series).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Shadowed Sun: Dreamblood, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By N. K. Jemisin
    • Narrated By Sarah Zimmerman
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    Gujaareh, the city of dreams, suffers under the imperial rule of the Kisuati Protectorate. A city where the only law was peace now knows violence and oppression. And nightmares. A mysterious and deadly plague haunts the citizens of Gujaareh, dooming the infected to die screaming in their sleep. Trapped between dark dreams and cruel overlords, the people yearn to rise up - but Gujaareh has known peace for too long. Someone must show them the way. Hope lies with two outcasts.

    John says: "Great, not spectacular like the first"
    "Great, not spectacular like the first"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really liked the first book better than this one because it had a greater sense of presence than this book. That said I did enjoy this book quite a bit. Start with The Killing Moon then continue to this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Three Parts Dead

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Max Gladstone
    • Narrated By Claudia Alick
    Overall
    (56)
    Performance
    (51)
    Story
    (48)

    A god has died, and it’s up to Tara, a first-year associate in the international necromantic firm of Kelethras, Albrecht, and Ao, to bring him back to life before his city falls apart. Her client is Kos, recently deceased fire god of the city of Alt Coulumb. Without him, the metropolis’ steam generators will shut down, its trains will cease running, and its four million citizens will riot. Tara’s job: resurrect Kos before chaos sets in.

    Sexy Bookworm says: "A narrator can make or break a book for me."
    "Great story, but the narrator was off"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really liked this book. The story was significantly above average in quality, but not perfect. I will be reading the following books in this series in the months to come despite the imperfections. I could consistently see humor and good story telling in the story, which I thoroughly enjoyed. My one suggestion to the author would be to add more humor in the future, so we had something funny or a joke every two or three pages instead of every ten or twenty.
    My main issue was the narrator. She just didn't click with me. I liked 9/10ths of the voices she used, but disliked the voice she used for Tara. She made one of the main characters sound as if she had a lisp, or something. It was super minor, but it bugged me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Killing Moon: Dreamblood, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By N. K. Jemisin
    • Narrated By Sarah Zimmerman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (75)
    Performance
    (68)
    Story
    (69)

    In the ancient city-state of Gujaareh, peace is the only law. Upon its rooftops and amongst the shadows of its cobbled streets wait the Gatherers - the keepers of this peace. Priests of the dream-goddess, their duty is to harvest the magic of the sleeping mind and use it to heal, soothe . . . and kill those judged corrupt. But when a conspiracy blooms within Gujaareh's great temple, Ehiru - the most famous of the city's Gatherers - must question everything he knows.

    Paige says: "Fantastic narration!"
    "Super duper good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    NK Jemisin is swiftly becoming one of my favorite authors. Her characters are solid, her settings are strong, and everything has a unique taste. I will never look at the word Peace the same again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Skin Game: A Novel of the Dresden Files, Book 15

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5012)
    Performance
    (4743)
    Story
    (4729)

    Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, is about to have a very bad day.… Because as Winter Knight to the Queen of Air and Darkness, Harry never knows what the scheming Mab might want him to do. Usually, it’s something awful. He doesn’t know the half of it… Mab has just traded Harry’s skills to pay off one of her debts. And now he must help a group of supernatural villains - led by one of Harry’s most dreaded and despised enemies, Nicodemus Archleone - to break into the highest-security vault in town, so that they can then access the highest-security vault in the Nevernever.

    D says: "Hold onto your staff; Harry’s back."
    "A Highpoint in quality for the series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I just finished the book a few minutes ago, and I have to say that I am impressed. I have one or two nitpicks with the story. Overall this is a good book, a very good book. If you got a little tired after the last book, never fear. This story is easily in the top 5 best Dresden books, maybe top 3. Spoilers below.
    Nitpicks: 1. I wanted NickyD or Polonious Lartessa to die. They've been baddies in so many books now that their constantly failing makes them seem incompetent. They're no Team Rocket, but seriously they never get ahead. If one of them died it would have progressed the story in an interesting fashion, giving the slayer glory and forcing the remaining Denarians to double down in all future appearances.
    2. The twist. I don't mind that their was a twist at the end, but I would have liked better foreshadowing that it occurred instead of on the spot revealing of character motivations. I don't want to describe this too in depth, but one character had an awfully convenient change of heart. More foreshadowing would have helped.
    3. For the third book in a row Dresden is still whining about his deal with Mab. GET OVER IT ALREADY. I don't like whiners.
    4. Even though a year passed since the last book, everyone recalls it just like it was yesterday. To better explain this, all character relationships seem to have been put in stasis for an entire year, waiting for this story to take place to further develop those relationships. This isn't how people actually work.
    5. Why does anyone trust NickyD at all? I mean seriously everyone knows he's a fallen angel. Who would trust him? I certainly don't think the assembled baddies who were hired would have trusted NickyD enough to go on this venture.

    Looking past these nitpicks I am extremely pleased with this book. I would have liked the book to be shorter, taking away some pre-bank vault scenes, but besides that it really was great.

    3 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Fury of the Demon: Kara Gillian, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Diana Rowland
    • Narrated By Liv Anderson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (341)
    Performance
    (308)
    Story
    (307)

    Demon summoner Kara Gillian bears the scars of Rhyzkahl’s treachery, but she refuses to let them slow her down. She and the demonic lord Mzatal have not rested in their efforts to recover Idris - Mzatal’s summoner protg who was kidnapped by enemy lords - but now their search has brought them back to Earth.

    Sherese says: "Conspiracy, Conspiracy, EVERYWHERE!"
    "Fury of the Demon"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book was more of the same as the previous books in the series: nothing a lot better and nothing a lot worse. If you want to hop into the series, do so earlier on. It's a solid series and I do recommend it. Instead of gushing why I enjoyed this book (and I need to insist that I did enjoy it net total) I'm going to list the handful of issues which I had with it.

    Semi-spoilers below.
    1. I would have liked a few more plot twists. I kept expecting betrayal from within as well as unexpected defenses from Starfire. In the end the good guys just won without anything going wrong/getting worse. It made the badass evil humans seem less competent, which kinda marginalized their coolness. I wanted Sunny, or Paul, or Bryce, or someone to betray the team just cause it would have made for a better ending. With the whole 'Can we trust Elan? Zane?' plotlines suggested at the beginning of the book I assumed that there was going to be some sort of betrayal later on, but it never happened.
    2. I would have liked more of a mystery theme to the story. The reason why I was initially attracted to the series was because of the mystery, but it seems that in recent novels the author has turned away from the formula. I like to read mystery books where someone uses modern science with a spritz of magic to solve murders. I'm indifferent to the whole demon-realm sequences/demon-politic plotlines. In the recent "of the Demon" books these plotlines have been brought to the forefront at the expense of mystery. As I'm a mystery reader, this is a big turn off. Furthermore I'm a dude and not appreciative of the increasingly relevant romance components (I don't hate them, but frankly it's like we're tripping over Mizotl every two minutes). That's 2 strikes.
    3. The author's voice is improving the more books I've read, but this is slightly offset by the fact that the books are growing. This book took me 20+ hours to listen too, which was too long. I got as much enjoyment out of this book as I would have expected from a 16 hour book, so it was kinda dull in spots for me. Again part of the problem here is that I feel disenfranchised, no longer being this series' target audience. If you are interested in a kickass female protagonist who consorts (in both senses of the word) with demons then this book should be right up your alley. If so that 20 hours might be action packed from top to toe.
    4. Everything has a demon name, or weird sigil name, or whatever. It wasn't confusing so much as annoying: I didn't want to expend the effort to learn what everything means. Paiga was the worst offender, mainly because it's used what seems like once every five minutes. Also, wtf is Paiga-ing? Is it meditation, or calming magic? I think it's both, but I'm not quite sure. It happens all the time when the author could just say instead, "I forced myself to remain calm."
    Also why does everything have a demon-name, except the demon-realm? Why doesn't Mizotl or the demons call it by it's real name? Is this oversight, or just inattention on my part?
    5. Why didn't they just go to the demon realm and start summoning enemy summoners/ Ferush/Jerry/other enemy humans to "interview"? It seems like the most logical method for not only finding Idris but dismantling the enemy army. It was done previously in the series to great effect by Mizotl himself, so we know it can be done. As Kara herself is a summoner I'm surprised this solution didn't occur to her. Sure some of the baddies would be protected, but probably not Ferush. We know he wasn't wearing a magic-blocking anklet simply because he was able to read minds every time he was on screen. Just kidnap the guy and he would have crumbled.
    6. So... Tracy? Was he just a kook? If so, how did he get info on Farush? Now that both Tracy and Farush is dead I fear we won't get any answers. Or perhaps inattention caused me to not notice the answer to this question either.

    Ruling: I don't think this was worth my audible credit, but honesty it was close. I'm going to wait until future books are on sale before purchasing their e-paper copies. I only buy audiobooks when I am reasonably confident that I will want to listen to it again, and the way this series is going I don't think I can get more than one listen out of a single book.

    Also: Would it kill the author to put in another gag-worthy morgue scene?! I mean seriously, I haven't vomited in months.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Shadow Ops: Fortress Frontier

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Myke Cole
    • Narrated By Korey Jackson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (84)
    Performance
    (78)
    Story
    (80)

    The Great Reawakening did not come quietly. Across the country and in every nation, people began to develop terrifying powers - summoning storms, raising the dead, and setting everything they touch ablaze. Overnight the rules changed...but not for everyone. Colonel Alan Bookbinder is an army bureaucrat whose worst war wound is a paper-cut. But after he develops magical powers, he is torn from everything he knows and thrown onto the front-lines.

    Andrew says: "Exciting and fast paced."
    "Not great but solid"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read the first book and it left me hopeful enough to try the second book. Unfortunately for me I was never a huge fan of the first book and this book was more of the same. I didn't like the characters in these books, but I felt that the prose and the plot made up for them to some extent.
    I will not be following this series in the future because the characters didn't seize me/were too dense for my taste. Hopefully the author's characterization improves somewhat in the future because his prose is very good. I wanted to like the book simply because of the writing style, but that wasn't enough to carry it for me. I finished it, but was left wanting.
    If you want a book with good writing, good fights, and mostly good story and plot this might just be the book for you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Broken Kingdoms

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By N. K. Jemisin
    • Narrated By Casaundra Freeman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (120)
    Performance
    (90)
    Story
    (88)

    The gods have broken free after centuries of slavery, and the world holds its breath, fearing their vengeance. The saga of mortals and immortals continues in The Broken Kingdoms. In the city of Shadow, beneath the World Tree, alleyways shimmer with magic and godlings live hidden among mortalkind. Oree Shoth, a blind artist, takes in a homeless man who glows like a living sun to her strange sight. This act of kindness engulfs Oree in a nightmarish conspiracy.

    Laurene says: "Very enjoyable new epic fantasy"
    "Really, really good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have no regrets for reading this book. The author does a good job (as far as I, a non blind person can tell) of portraying a set of experiences from a blind person's perspective. You have to read it after the first book, but that's not such a bad thing. I'll probably listen to it again down the road. Another thing: the narrator adds a lot to the book. I highly suggest you pick this up.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms: Inheritance Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By N. K. Jemisin
    • Narrated By Casaundra Freeman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (289)
    Performance
    (220)
    Story
    (225)

    Yeine Darr is an outcast from the barbarian north. But when her mother dies under mysterious circumstances, she is summoned to the majestic city of Sky. There, to her shock, Yeine is named an heiress to the king. But the throne of the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is not easily won, and Yeine is thrust into a vicious power struggle.

    Theresa says: "I enjoyed this audiobook."
    "Excellent book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My only 2 qualms about this book are that the ending was identified too far in advance and that the main character had very little agency throughout the book. Besides those, this book was excellent.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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