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Russell David Phillips

Trobnor Spillguts

4
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 2 reviews
  • 2 ratings
  • 463 titles in library
  • 54 purchased in 2014
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  • Existence

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By David Brin
    • Narrated By Kevin T. Collins, Robin Miles, L. J. Ganser
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (425)
    Performance
    (379)
    Story
    (378)

    Gerald Livingston is an orbital garbage collector. For a hundred years, people have been abandoning things in space, and someone has to clean it up. But there’s something spinning a little bit higher than he expects, something that isn’t on the decades’ old orbital maps. An hour after he grabs it and brings it in, rumors fill Earth’s infomesh about an "alien artifact".

    A. Massey says: "Big ideas, good science fiction, frustrating style"
    "Uplifting (heheh)"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Existence in three words, what would they be?

    optimistic hard scifi


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Existence?

    Reporter in the blimp.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The description of walking down the street and the vr overlay early in the book.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No extreme reactions.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a really interesting book. The story is based on lots of recent trends happening in the world in science and other wise and extrapolating some really interesting permutations of where it could all lead and how the world responds to events. Transparency, the prevalence of cheap and good recording, climate, over population, direct and instant access to information, real time VR overlays, etc...

    David Brin goes a different direction than many other books that take one trend or new technology and then postulates some future taking it to some ridiculous extreme. Creating some bizarre future that bears no resemblance to our own history or present. Where everyone is grown in a vat and controlled by the state or everyone lives in isolation never seeing each other, etc...

    Instead he (much more realistically) presents a world with literally massive amounts of people all with their own ideas, prejudices and goals all working against and with each other. Many things like improving VR technology, cheap and easy camera technology, social networking and instant access to vast amounts of information, climate change, genetic tinkering, etc... All advance, become part of the world and blend in different ways. Causing problems, solving problems, etc... A very rich world with lots of layers and very believable. You could easily recognize the world he presents evolving from our world.

    I also enjoy how he presents different peoples viewpoints. Never mocking the ideas of others but instead embracing them and respectfully presenting the validity of varied positions and the arguments they present. Very mature.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Rook: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Daniel O'Malley
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1962)
    Performance
    (1780)
    Story
    (1779)

    Myfanwy Thomas awakes in a London park surrounded by dead bodies. With her memory gone, her only hope of survival is to trust the instructions left in her pocket by her former self. She quickly learns that she is a Rook, a high-level operative in a secret agency that protects the world from supernatural threats. But there is a mole inside the organization - and this person wants her dead.

    Ethan M. says: "Harry Dresden meets English bureaucracy"
    "Pleasantly surprised."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    The description sounded interesting but I have to confess I was a little hesitant. The amnesia aspect worried me as I could easily see how badly that could be mishandled and either made meaningless, annoying, ridiculous,etc...

    BUT instead I thought it was done really well. In fact the mystery of self discovery (of who she "IS" vs who she "WAS") intertwining with the main plot events, etc.... all worked to make a really good listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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