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D. David DGuerra

I born a long time ago and grew up to be who I am today.

Houston, TX, United States | Member Since 2010

6
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 55 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 12 purchased in 2014
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  • A Plague Upon Your Family: Zombie Fallout, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Mark Tufo
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    Overall
    (1857)
    Performance
    (1721)
    Story
    (1730)

    The Talbots are evacuating their home amidst a zombie apocalypse. Mankind is on the edge of extinction as a new dominant, mindless opponent scours the landscape in search of food, which just so happens to be noninfected humans. The Talbots have escaped Little Turtle, but to what end? On the run, they find themselves encountering a far vaster evil than the one that has already beset them. As they travel across the countryside they soon learn that there are more than just zombies to be fearful of....

    Teddy says: "An excellent sequel"
    "Tufo is a fun writer so my fear is for the plot"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Let me start by saying I like Tufo's writing. I like the character and the world he'd created in the first novel. Mike is a great protagonist for a Zombie infested world because all of his bravado is tempered by being a family man who knows his wife's in charge. I love Tufo's pacing, and once you get into this book, like the first, it's hard to put down. That said, I have to take off some stars for a few things but I'm getting really picky here; First is the glaring pov changes. In the first book Tufo made them work, but if this is supposed to be the second journal of Mike Talbot there should have been more explanation as to why we are suddenly following two characters Mike never seems to hear the story of. Little things like that just come across as "lazy writing". This bring me to my second problem, in that references were made to Mike's "first journal" but indicates he lost it before the final chapters could have been finished - I usually expect a writer to start breaking their own continuity, but not in the second book. These two things just made me feel like this story was rushed to publication. Unlike the first book where things were shoehorned into place, this one just tried to cover it up with a lamp shade. I'm not a fan of Deus Ex Machina and while there were a few slipped into the main plot I almost feel a big one is put in place to end this novel. As for the story, this one tires to introduce something new and at the the risk of being a spoiler, it's in the prologue. Vampires are in Tufo's world, but they aren't vampires like you know them. It makes sense as this is a book about the UNdead but there is no big lead in or foreshadow. You open the book and here's a vampire. It just feels like Tufo dropping in a new plot element for the sake of dropping in a plot element.
    All that said, this was still a good book and I'm going to read/listen to the next one. Again, i like the characters and Tufo's writing but I'm starting to feel more afraid for the fate of the plot than the characters.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Storm Born: Dark Swan, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Richelle Mead
    • Narrated By Jennifer Van Dyck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1002)
    Performance
    (658)
    Story
    (664)

    Eugenie Markham is a powerful shaman who does a brisk trade banishing spirits and fey who cross into the mortal world. Mercenary, yes, but a girl's got to eat. Her most recent case, however, is enough to ruin her appetite. Hired to find a teenager who has been taken to the Otherworld, Eugenie comes face to face with a startling prophecy - one that uncovers dark secrets about her past and claims that Eugenie's first-born will threaten the future of the world as she knows it.

    Leesa says: "Good Listen."
    "If you are a Kim Harrison fan..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What would have made Storm Born better?

    I'm a fan of other Richelle Mead books but this one would make a for a "good" Kim Harrison novel and I'm not exactly a fan of Harrison's storytelling. So "bad" Richelle Mead is "good" Kim Harrison? This reads like an extended prologue and by the end of it Eugenie has so much raw power and personal influence that it makes you wonder why we even bothered being introduced to her shared home life and her "day job".


    Would you be willing to try another book from Richelle Mead? Why or why not?

    As I said, I'm already a fan. I just feel this series is already off on the wrong start. Normally Mead's characters (Kinkaid and Rose) are far more balanced. Eugenie is about the biggest Mary Sue I've seen. If not for Mead then for someone. Her power is unrivaled for the most part and this is the START of the story? It's like introducing Luke Skywalker with the power of Darth Vader and the Emperor combined then hinting that he has the potential to grow stronger.


    Have you listened to any of Jennifer Van Dyck’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Her performance is decent for the material. I wouldn't mind listening to her read better written works.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    There actually WAS a plot twist, and it has the best personification of Persephone (the Iron Queen) I've seen in modern literature thus far. Too many people have painted her in a light that betrays the awesomeness that is the Queen of the Dead.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm still not sure what the point of this story was. It's almost like an entire series of books (akin to the Hallows series as a whole) was condensed and shoved into one book that leaves almost no room for real growth OR this was simply the published back story for the character Mead wanted to put in the books that follows this. Either way, the execution is off.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • My Life as a White Trash Zombie

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Diana Rowland
    • Narrated By Allison McLemore
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1664)
    Performance
    (1548)
    Story
    (1547)

    Teenage delinquent Angel Crawford lives with her redneck father in the swamps of southern Louisiana. She's a high school dropout, addicted to drugs and alcohol, and has a police record a mile long. But when she's made into a zombie after a car crash, her addictions disappear, except for her all-consuming need to stay "alive".

    Marvin says: "New diet trend, become a zombie!"
    "Angel is the Redneck-Lestat of Zombies. No really!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What Anne Rice did for Vampires, Diana Rowland does for Zombies. This book is fun and Rowland's attention and commitment to the character make this not only a great read but a good example of how to write first person fiction. Angel, being "white trash" (in her words) doesn't just walk into a room and describe things in elegant verbiage to keep the action moving, but instead fumbled for how to explain what formaldehyde smells like to someone who doesn't know what formaldehyde is. She even take the opportunity to expand on her character's detailed background. The character evolution, the story progression and this new form of Zombie mythos make for an excellent read.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Last Bastion of the Living: A Futuristic Zombie Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Rhiannon Frater
    • Narrated By Kristin Allison
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (227)
    Performance
    (205)
    Story
    (203)

    A walled city surrounded by lush land, protected by high mountain summits, and fortified by a massive gate to secure the only pass into the valley, The Bastion remained humanity's last hope against the fearsome undead creatures known as the Inferi Scourge. On one fateful day, the valley gate failed and the Inferi Scourge overran and destroyed the human settlements outside the walls, trapping the remaining survivors inside the city. Now, decades later, the last remaining humans are struggling to survive....

    Mike Naka says: "better than expected!"
    "Brilliant telling of Zombies in the Future"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As a whole, this book is outstanding. Character's are clearly defined and both their motives and actions seem to evolve organically though I don't seem to care for all of them as much as I think I should. The action is well paced and doesn't devolve into a boring "play by play". Frater has a strong grasp on her world and there is a very rich back story put in place. This feels it could be the setting for a whole new series of books taking place in the same world. Military. Action. Hard Sci-Fi. Zombies. Political Intrigue. It's all in there so there's something for every genre fan. Ironically this selling point is also it's biggest weakness because problems start to arise when a few of the "big reveal" moments seem cheap or forced. More foreshadow or just a hint earlier on would have probably set up those moments a little better, instead of feeling like seasoning added after the duck was already cooked. It's still a good book and a unique take on the Zombie mythos that has something for everyone, regardless of the type of story you usually get into and stands strong as a sum of it's various parts.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Zombie Fallout: Zombie Fallout, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Mark Tufo
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    Overall
    (2861)
    Performance
    (2674)
    Story
    (2684)

    This is the story of Michael Talbot, his family, and his friends: a band of ordinary people trying to get by in extraordinary times. When disaster strikes, Mike, a self-proclaimed survivalist, does his best to ensure the safety and security of those he cares for. Book one of the Zombie Fallout Trilogy follows our lead character at his self-deprecating, sarcastic best. What he encounters along the way leads him down a long dark road, always skirting the edge of insanity.

    Teddy says: "Hooked!"
    "If the Walking Dead[TV] was a Sitcom..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There are a lot of Zombie novels out there, so why this one? Because it's fun! Tufo manages to give us a protagonist who's facing a horde of Zombies while keeping his priorities straight like the fact that he arms his kids with guns for back up but has to promise his wife he won't get her "baby boys" killed. And then knowing hordes of Zombies are outside but his dog needs to go for a walk. This isn't a story about killing Zombies either - something else that seems to be the focus of most Zombie myth. If the Walking Dead has a Situationial Comedy on CBS it would be Zombie Fallout. The gore and tension is often mixed with humor and laugh out loud moments as Mike swears "I'm not ashamed to admit it, because that's what happened"... you get the idea.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Succubus on Top: Georgina Kincaid, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Richelle Mead
    • Narrated By Elisabeth Rodgers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1112)
    Performance
    (686)
    Story
    (695)

    Love hurts, and no one knows it better than Georgina Kincaid. If she so much as kisses Seth Mortensen, the shy, sexy, incredibly gifted Seattle writer she's been dating, she'll drain his life force. Georgina is a succubus - a demon who draws her power from other men's pleasure. Admittedly, the shapeshifting and immortality perks are terrific, and yes, Georgina did choose to join the ranks of hell centuries ago.

    Shelley says: "Loved this book!"
    "As a Follow up Book, this just feels rushed."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed the first book so much I was looking forward to this one, but Richelle sticks to cheap tricks to try and keep the story going like ending a chapter with someone coming home early. This book also seems to over use the Flashback technique from the previous book, and it started to feel a bit tired near the end or it seems to show up right in the middle of a scene to info dump back story just to justify Georgina's reaction or motivations.

    The story almost doesn't seem like it's even using the same character. Georgina was smart and focused, able to handle a personal life, day job, demonic job, and single handedly solve a mystery all at the same time. This time, however, I found myself predicting everything that had been going on with both storylines long before the mid point of the book. It was as if the Smart and Multi-taking Georgina was replaced with a dumb blond who couldn't buy a clue without Government Assistance. In fact, she ends up asking everyone else in the story for help as if she didn't know how to look up anything on her own.

    Another thing that kind of bothered me was how the flashbacks read as if they were still in modern times. I've honestly forgotten how old this immortal is supposed to be because the dialog across two different flashbacks reads just like the contemporary narrative. Especially when using slang like "trolling" in what should have probably been Medieval Greece but I'm not sure if it's not even earlier. Little things like that probably got glossed over in an effort to get this book out quickly. While the book may be "Succubus on Top" it's clear that Georgina is anything up on top... in fact, it's hard to imagine her falling much lower by the end of this story. Not sure why the choice was made to have her fail so epicly and often. Maybe if Richelle Mead had more time to write this one. I'm hoping the next book is better.

    Elisabeth Rodgers is the perfect narrator for this book, able to quickly transition with the character changes. Consider the main character is a shapeshifter this can be more challenging than you might think. Also some of the most ridiculousness scenes are still read with such conviction that I truly took fault with the words over the speaker. I still want to believe in Richelle as an author based on two other books, so I'm going to give the 3rd a chance next.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • I Don't Want to Kill You: John Cleaver Series #3

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Dan Wells
    • Narrated By Kirby Heyborne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (131)
    Performance
    (106)
    Story
    (108)

    John Cleaver has called a demon - literally called it on the phone - and challenged it to a fight. He has faced two of the monsters already, barely escaping with his life, and now he's done running; he's taking the fight to them. But as he wades through his town's darkest secrets, searching for any sign of who the demon might be, one thing becomes all too clear: in a game of cat and mouse with a supernatural killer, the human is always the mouse.

    Lisa says: "LOVED IT... but is this the last?"
    "The Best of the Trilogy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about I Don't Want to Kill You?

    I think, because we've gotten used to John at this point there isn't a need to explore the character and his motives anymore. We get to, however, explore more emotional context for this character's life. It's strange to imagine, after the first two books, but it was still impressive to see the "softer" side of John Cleaver. Probably good as a stand alone, but I'm sure it's much more effective if you'd read "I am not a Serial Killer" and "Mr. Monster" first.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of I Don't Want to Kill You?

    No Spoilers but the end. I mean, it's a Horror novel, so obviously the final confrontation is going to stand out the most.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    John's confrontation with the Handyman was brilliant. Not only is it a climatic moment as John closes in on his target, but themes that are so poetically addressed in that scene were so well set up prior that you know this is a huge arch for this character.


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

    The title alone says it all "I don't WANT to Kill you..."


    Any additional comments?

    I think this really is the best book in the series. By the time I got to Part 2 I couldn't stop. Dan Wells really has become one of my favorite authors with this story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Moon Called: Mercy Thompson, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Patricia Briggs
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3961)
    Performance
    (2525)
    Story
    (2530)

    Mercy Thompson's life is not exactly normal. Her next-door neighbor is a werewolf. Her former boss is a gremlin. And she's fixing a VW bus for a vampire. But then, Mercy isn't exactly normal herself.

    Susan says: "I love this series.."
    "Makes Werewolves Cool again!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Moon Called the most enjoyable?

    There were so many things that were done right with this book. For starters the lead is strong but still feminine. Most female leads are physically powerful, but they lack an matching level of independence. If anything Mercy survives more on her wits and conviction than her powers and abilities.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The story had me thinking the entire time and never fell into the cliche trappings I thought it was going to take. Just when I think Briggs is about to pull out an old cliche she turns it just enough to make it original. The plot is involved and the way Briggs describes wolves is so primal that she makes the cool again. These aren't lost puppies or smoldering drifters who are trying to protect people from the best within - these are Wolves so you best step aside.


    What does Lorelei King bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    It's probably just me but Lorelei King is fantastic. I'm actually looking at other books based on just the fact that she's the narrator.


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

    Werewolves without bark.


    Any additional comments?

    If your tired of cliche Paranormal Romances and Werewolf love interests who pine over women like stray dogs then this is your book. This book revives my trust in Urban Fantasy as a genre. Mercy Tompson is a well written character who doesn't rely on her author giving her limitless resources and contrived scenarios just to set up an high-epic ending.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Spider's Bite: Elemental Assassin, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Jennifer Estep
    • Narrated By Lauren Fortgang
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2509)
    Performance
    (1901)
    Story
    (1912)

    They call me the Spider. I'm the most feared assassin in the South -- when I'm not busy at the Pork Pit cooking up the best barbecue in Ashland. As a Stone elemental, I can hear everything from the whispers of the gravel beneath my feet to the vibrations of the soaring Appalachian Mountains above me. My Ice magic also comes in handy for making the occasional knife. But I don't use my powers on the job unless I absolutely have to. Call it professional pride.

    Alex says: "Only because..."
    "Could have used a better editor."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I'm on the fence with this book. The characters are fun if not a little too Mary Sue/Gary Stu (really, a computer hacker/financier/car-jacker/marksman/thief who has a way with the ladies?) Most of the characters just seem to be an expert and whatever skill they need to force the scene to carry on but the contrived scenes are offset by good characters. The mythos is creative, but the prose is wordy. For every good thing about this book there is something that I feel and good editor should have asked to see cut.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    First thing I would have asked is for the word "silverstone" be limited to at least once per chapter. Even better, just stop using it since everything seems to be made of the stuff from Gin's knives, to normal kitchen knives, to gardening tools, hand cuffs and car keys (I'm making up that last one). Worse is every time she mentions the knives, which can be several times in one chapter, we're reminded they are made of silverstone. Also, I'd avoid the overly contrived subtext that everyone Gin opposes in the book is either tortures people to death or sexually depraved. It's like Estep is trying to make Gin a anti-hero by proving she only kills people who truly deserve it.


    What does Lauren Fortgang bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    This is actually the best part of book. Fortgang probably gives this book more life than I would have imagined if I reading this myself. Audible is probably the best way to go with this one in particular.


    Could you see Spider's Bite being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    I do. Probably on the CW where the focus is a limited cast of good looking people with very little in the way of moral ambiguity.


    Any additional comments?

    I kind of feel like this is probably the authors first book- and by that I mean first book EVER. It reminds me of Larry Correia in that this book would be better if it had been polished, or had the author made some of these glaring mistakes in unwritten novels so that the writing could just be cleaner. That said I assume the following books are better, but it's going to be a long while before I'm willing to return to this series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir
    Overall
    (21292)
    Performance
    (12785)
    Story
    (12912)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: It’s easy to say that when it comes to sci-fi you either love it or you hate it. But with Ender’s Game, it seems to be you either love it or you love it.... The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Enter Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, the result of decades of genetic experimentation.

    Kapila says: "6 titles in the series so far"
    "Still ahead of it's time!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Ender's Game the most enjoyable?

    The entire production of this was amazing from start to finish. The different voice actors in the "cut scenes" made this feel even more alive.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Orson Scott Card creates a rich but easy to visualize world. Nothing is so technical I fail to understand it, yet everything is so developed I can easily see the future that was created. It's truly hard to stop listening because everything happens so quickly and there is also a reason to come back to this story.


    Which character – as performed by Stefan Rudnicki and Harlan Ellison – was your favorite?

    Hmm... I actually like Valentine the most.


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

    I don't think it made me laugh for cry but I did have an emotional connection to this character by the end. I felt I'd gone on this journey with Ender so I can't help but feel a part of his world.


    Any additional comments?

    I know it was written 20 years ago, and what amazes me is how nothing seemed "over done" and I couldn't say "I've seen this before." There are always tropes you find in every story be it the modest pretty girl or overly nice guy who turns out bad - things like this don't really show up in the story. It just amazed me that a book written so long ago was still managed to surprise me from time to time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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