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Derek

Loganville, GA, United States | Member Since 2015

54
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 51 reviews
  • 247 ratings
  • 388 titles in library
  • 7 purchased in 2015
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FOLLOWERS
2

  • The Firm

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (751)
    Performance
    (542)
    Story
    (550)

    At the top of his class at Harvard Law, he had his choice of the best in America. But he made a deadly mistake. When Mitch McDeere signed on with Bendini, Lambert & Locke of Memphis, he thought he and his beautiful wife, Abby, were on their way. Mitch should have remembered what his brother Ray -- doing 15 years in a Tennessee jail -- already knew. "You never get nothing for nothing."

    Mark says: "One of the best thrillers ever!"
    "Very different from the movie"
    Overall

    I have long wanted to listen to the audiobook of The Firm but Audible only had an abridged version. When I saw that they had added an unabridged version, read by my favorite narrator Scott Brick, nonetheless, I jumped on it. The book is very good but winds up deviated significantly from the book. The story is definitely entertaining, but I have to admit, this is one of those rare cases where I think I preferred the film. That being said, it is an excellent audiobook that was engrossing and kept me engaged. As such, I am happy to give it four stars.

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Descent

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Tim Johnston
    • Narrated By Xe Sands, R.C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (326)
    Performance
    (284)
    Story
    (281)

    From the day Caitlin vanishes the lives of her family members are irrevocably altered, each assuming blame for that day's tragic events. As the initial days of hope are replaced by weeks of anxiety and despair, they find themselves increasingly isolated, each wondering: Is she still alive? Will we ever know what happened?

    C. Strutz says: "Intense"
    "The cover says thriller...huh?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    From the description, I had such high hopes for this book. I thought it might be something in the vein on Gone Girl. No...not even close. Other than the first chapter or two, the subsequent parts of the story meander, go into great depth on a bunch of tangentially - at best, irrelevant at worst - related plot points. In the first quarter of the novel, the points of the main plot could have been compressed into less than a chapter. The timeline seems to jump and the context clues for the temporal relationship of the various parts are very opaque. I finally gave up about a quarter of the way through. The story showed little momentum and promise and I realized I was simply continuing only because I don't like to give up. Perhaps, I will come back to this book at some point, but I am onto a new book that is far more interesting in the first few pages than "Descent" was in first few chapters.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • My Sister's Grave

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Robert Dugoni
    • Narrated By Emily Sutton-Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (329)
    Performance
    (284)
    Story
    (283)

    Tracy Crosswhite has spent 20 years questioning the facts surrounding her sister Sarah’s disappearance and the murder trial that followed. She doesn’t believe that Edmund House - a convicted rapist and the man condemned for Sarah’s murder - is the guilty party. Motivated by the opportunity to obtain real justice, Tracy became a homicide detective with the Seattle PD and dedicated her life to tracking down killers.

    Mary says: "If you're considering this book, just don't."
    "Really engrossing! Loved my first Dugoni novel!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this book. Not being familiar with this author, I had nothing to go on other than the description and I was not disappointed! The plot is well paced and goes deeper than mere action and superficial plot points. But it does not get lost in deep, brooding introspection that weighs down to many books. My understanding is that the Tracy Crosswhite character will be a new series for Dugoni. I hope so! I will be on the lookout for a new entry in this universe!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Before I Go to Sleep: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By S. J. Watson
    • Narrated By Orlagh Cassidy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (841)
    Performance
    (699)
    Story
    (697)

    "As I sleep, my mind will erase everything I did today. I will wake up tomorrow as I did this morning. Thinking I'm still a child. Thinking I have a whole lifetime of choice ahead of me...." Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love - all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may be telling you only half the story. Welcome to Christine's life.

    Sara says: "A terrifying story"
    "The beginning & ending are good, but the middle..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The first tenth and the last tenth are pretty good. The middle 80%....oh....my...goodness. The tedium. It was not so bad that I quit and gave up, but I came close and it is rare that I don't finish a book. I understand that Christine's days are repetitive due to the memory loss, but the way the author presents this winds up coming across as interminable hand-wringing that gets really old in a hurry. I am hopeful the movie far surpasses the book.

    0 of 0 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
    (3803)
    Performance
    (3354)
    Story
    (3349)

    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.

    Jane says: "Definitely entertaining. I had some smiles."
    "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.

    1 of 1 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
    (583)
    Performance
    (510)
    Story
    (510)

    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
    (197)
    Performance
    (175)
    Story
    (173)

    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
    (2712)
    Performance
    (2401)
    Story
    (2407)

    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."

    2 of 2 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
    (2257)
    Performance
    (2018)
    Story
    (2006)

    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
    (359)
    Performance
    (327)
    Story
    (327)

    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
    (181)
    Performance
    (162)
    Story
    (163)

    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

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