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Derek

Loganville, GA, United States | Member Since 2006

50
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 48 reviews
  • 244 ratings
  • 385 titles in library
  • 5 purchased in 2015
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FOLLOWERS
2

  • The Associate: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Erik Singer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1838)
    Performance
    (413)
    Story
    (421)

    Kyle McAvoy grew up in his father's small-town law office in York, Pennsylvania. He excelled in college, was elected editor-in-chief of The Yale Law Journal, and his future has limitless potential. But Kyle has a secret, a dark one, an episode from college that he has tried to forget. The secret, though, falls into the hands of the wrong people, and Kyle is forced to take a job he doesn't want, even if it's a job most law students can only dream about....

    JoAnn says: "Good, but not nearly as good as The Firm""
    "Great story, ending leaves you wanting"
    Overall

    This is a great John Grisham story that is set in the high-paced world of a top Wall Street law firm. Much of the action takes place in Manhattan. I found the story more engrossing than last year's Grisham book, The Appeal (but to be fair, I have a huge personal fascination with Wall Street). Kyle McAvoy is caught up in a situation that seems implausible but is written in a fairly believable manner by Grisham. However, as with so many Grisham novels, the ending fall flat and leaves you wanting. It builds and builds and as you near the end you realize the ending is just going to dissipate like a mist (mainly because you can look and see how much time is left in the recording!). However's Grisham strength is always the story as a whole, and he is not known for his mind-blowing ending like an author such as Harlan Coben. Overall, I definitely recommend this. The change from the small town country lawyer is a nice mix-up of styles. With a better ending I think I could put it among his best, but that aspect places it mid-pack.

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • The Gods of Guilt

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Peter Giles
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3456)
    Performance
    (3052)
    Story
    (3047)

    Mickey Haller gets the text, "Call me ASAP - 187," and the California penal code for murder immediately gets his attention. Murder cases have the highest stakes and the biggest paydays, and they always mean Haller has to be at the top of his game. When Mickey learns that the victim was his own former client, a prostitute he thought he had rescued and put on the straight and narrow path, he knows he is on the hook for this one. He soon finds out that she was back in LA and back in the life.

    Ted says: "Luxury Vehicle… Does It All"
    "A good read in Connelly's "Lincoln Lawyer" series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The "Lincoln Lawyer" novels have turned out to be a really solid series. Connelly does a good job to use a different tone than he does with the Harry Bosch books. This story isn't the deepest mystery nor does it have a mind-bending twist, but it's engrossing and keeps you ready to find out what happens next. My biggest complaint is that the narrator for the Haller books can be a tad too dramatic at times, but this is a minor quibble. Overall, he does a very solid job.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Quest: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Nelson DeMille
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (557)
    Performance
    (486)
    Story
    (486)

    From the locked archives of the Vatican to the overgrown jungles of Ethiopia, an unlikely trio begins a deadly search for the Holy Grail. Two journalists and a beautiful photographer are traveling together in a broken down Jeep while covering the 1975 Ethiopian civil war. Both men fall in love with the woman and that complicates things. When the trio winds up lost in the jungle, in the no man's land between the fighting factions, they take cover and dig in for the night. In their hiding place, they encounter a dying man who tells them an amazing and quite unbelievable story. But for some reason - one that they grapple with for the rest of their journey - that night they believe.

    Andy says: "The Quest to make money"
    "Not one of DeMille's best"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    ** spoiler alert ** This book was a rewritten shorter work from the 70s. It should have probably been left shorter. This novel is way too long and plodding. The title would be more fitting if it were "Talking About the Quest" or "Planning a Quest." There is a TON of slow, tedious, only moderately interesting planning and discussing and preparing for the Grail quest. The relationship aspect was apparently grafted on for the novel and wow, is it frustrating. The lead female character just needs to make her mind up about the man she wants! After the long, sometimes interminable leadup to the quest, the team encounters a character that confirms of their speculations and the book speeds to a quick finish, including a pretty predictable encounter with the book's main bad guy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Ascendant: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Drew Chapman
    • Narrated By George Newbern
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (188)
    Performance
    (166)
    Story
    (164)

    Hidden deep within the figures tracking the ups and downs of the stock market lies a terrifying truth: America is under attack. Our government…our economy…our very way of life are in the crosshairs of a ruthless enemy…and no one knows. Except Garrett Reilly. He has a knack for numbers. He sees patterns no one else can. His gift has made him a rising star on Wall Street. But when he notices that two hundred billion dollars' worth of U.S. Treasury bonds are being sold off at a terrifying rate, his gift makes him the most wanted man alive.

    John S says: "Actually quite entertaining"
    "A pleasant surprise"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is an enjoyable read that has good pacing. It takes three-quarters of the book to set the stage for a very rapid conclusion. However, it is obvious this is the start of a series the way the build-up establishes the backstory and how the book ends. Some of the plot points are a little bit of a stretch but this is a geopolitical thriller, not literature, a "popcorn movie" if you will.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gray Mountain

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Catherine Taber
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1786)
    Performance
    (1597)
    Story
    (1611)

    The year is 2008 and Samantha Kofer's career at a huge Wall Street law firm is on the fast track - until the recession hits and she gets downsized, furloughed, escorted out of the building. Samantha, though, is one of the "lucky" associates. She's offered an opportunity to work at a legal aid clinic for one year without pay, after which there would be a slim chance that she'd get her old job back. In a matter of days Samantha moves from Manhattan to Brady, Virginia, population 2,200, in the heart of Appalachia, a part of the world she has only read about.

    Jan says: "Sorry John... wanted to like it... love you anyway"
    "More of a propaganda piece than a legal thriller"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    One of the most disappointing Grisham books. He did his standard glorification of lawyers while portraying all businesses as blood-thirsty and criminal entities. He's always been on the liberal side but if he keeps this trend up, he will cease to be "must read."

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Burning Room

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Titus Welliver
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1486)
    Performance
    (1334)
    Story
    (1318)

    In the LAPD's Open-Unsolved Unit, not many murder victims die almost a decade after the crime. So when a man succumbs to complications from being shot by a stray bullet nine years earlier, Bosch catches a case in which the body is still fresh, but all other evidence is virtually nonexistent. Now Bosch and rookie Detective Lucia Soto, are tasked with solving what turns out to be a highly charged, politically sensitive case.

    Amazon Customer says: "Not up to par"
    "Another very good Harry Bosch book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Michael Connelly does such a good job with the Harry Bosch series. He makes them feel real with, for a series book, depth. It's a much read series and this one had me looking forward to getting back to the book to see what was coming next.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ghost Story

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Peter Straub
    • Narrated By Buck Schirner
    Overall
    (335)
    Performance
    (306)
    Story
    (306)

    For four aging men in the terror-stricken town of Milburn, New York, an act inadvertently carried out in their youth has come back to haunt them. Now they are about to learn what happens to those who believe they can bury the past - and get away with murder. Peter Straub's classic best seller is a work of "superb horror" (Washington Post Book World) that, like any good ghost story, stands the test of time - and conjures our darkest fears and nightmares.

    Jaimie says: "Great Story! The Best of Peter Straub"
    "Not exactly scary and slow at first but not too ba"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I think stories like this translate better to film where special effects, sound and imagery really create the creepy mood better than mere words on a page. The book is not terrible, but the first two-thirds can be pretty slow in places. It picks up in the last third if you can make it there. Reading this book in 2014, the 70s setting is very nostalgic!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Long Mars: Long Earth, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett, Stephen Baxter
    • Narrated By Michael Fenton Stevens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (147)
    Performance
    (132)
    Story
    (133)

    2040-2045: In the years after the cataclysmic Yellowstone eruption there is massive economic dislocation as populations flee Datum Earth to myriad Long Earth worlds. Sally, Joshua, and Lobsang are all involved in this perilous rescue work when, out of the blue, Sally is contacted by her long-vanished father and inventor of the original Stepper device, Willis Linsay. He tells her he is planning a fantastic voyage across the Long Mars and wants her to accompany him. But Sally soon learns that Willis has an ulterior motive for his request....

    W. Seligman says: "A disappointment"
    "A pretty ho-hum plodding narrative"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This series has never been a page-turner. It is more of a plodding story documenting various storylines which converge to a degree of the Long Earth universe. There are definitely some interested exploration themes here, but nothing that is edge-of-your-seat. There appears to be no major driving plot but rather episodes in a far longer arc exploring this new world paradigm. It's not a bad series, but if you are looking for a thriller that drives hard to a conclusion, you will be disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Suspicion

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Joseph Finder
    • Narrated By Steven Kearney
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (211)
    Performance
    (186)
    Story
    (188)

    When single father Danny Goodman suddenly finds himself unable to afford the private school his teenage daughter adores, he has no one to turn to for financial support. In what seems like a stroke of brilliant luck, Danny meets Thomas Galvin, the father of his daughter’s new best friend, who also happens to be one of the wealthiest men in Boston. Galvin is aware of Danny's situation and out of the blue offers a $50,000 loan to help Danny cover his daughter's tuition. Uncomfortable but desperate, Danny takes the money, promising to pay Galvin back.

    Amanda says: "How did this get published?"
    "Best Finder in a while!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The best Joseph Finder book in a while. The plot moves right along and keeps your engaged. I did think that some of the scenarios of how our protagonist winds up close to the Galvin family was a bit of a stretch. Nevertheless, it did not significantly detract from the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Niall Ferguson
    • Narrated By Simon Prebble
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1816)
    Performance
    (874)
    Story
    (865)

    Niall Ferguson follows the money to tell the human story behind the evolution of finance, from its origins in ancient Mesopotamia to the latest upheavals on what he calls Planet Finance. Bread, cash, dosh, dough, loot, lucre, moolah, readies, the wherewithal: Call it what you like, it matters. To Christians, love of it is the root of all evil. To generals, it's the sinews of war. To revolutionaries, it's the chains of labor. Niall Ferguson shows that finance is in fact the foundation of human progress.

    Ethan M. says: "A mostly successful and interesting history"
    "Good but would be better to actually read it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a good overview of the history and evolution of money, banking and finance. I think it would be better as a book to read. Some of the material is a little dry even for someone like me who is fascinated by finance. The book is a little out of date and was written just as the recession of 2008 was beginning to emerge so some of the discussion seems be missing content had it been written post-2010 or so. If you are interested in this type of material, I definitely recommend it, but I would suggest you read it rather than listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Word Exchange: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Alena Graedon
    • Narrated By Tavia Gilbert, Paul Michael Garcia
    Overall
    (29)
    Performance
    (26)
    Story
    (27)

    In the not-so-distant future, the forecasted "death of print" has become a reality. Anana Johnson works with her father, Doug, at the North American Dictionary of the English Language, where he is hard at work on the last edition that will ever be printed. Doug is a staunchly anti-meme, anti-tech intellectual who fondly remembers the days when people used e-mail to communicate - or even actually spoke to one another. One evening, Doug disappears, leaving a single written clue: ALICE - a code word he and Anana devised to signal if one of them ever fell into harm's way.

    John says: "Never got into it."
    "Long-winded and tedious"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The summary looked great! I moved this book up to the top of my "Next Read" list. And boy was a disappointed. From the start, I had a very hard time focusing on this book. My mind wandered with easy because it was just not engaged. I was finding other things to listen to when commuting. I decided I would give it a little more time but when it shifted to the perspective of another character with a different narrator, it devolved into a long-winded recollection that might eventually have some relevance to the novel but at the time was utterly boring and uninteresting. I understand this is a book about people who love words but that is not a license to use them indiscriminately just to for the sake of using big words.

    0 of 4 people found this review helpful

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