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Raquel S.

Avid Amazon Fan and Kindle User

Member Since 2011

ratings
10
REVIEWS
7
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
9
HELPFUL VOTES
30

  • Halo: Primordium: The Forerunner Saga, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Greg Bear
    • Narrated By Timothy Dadabo
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (350)
    Performance
    (334)
    Story
    (334)

    In the wake of apparent self-destruction of the Forerunner empire, two humans - Chakas and Riser - are like flotsam washed up on very strange shores indeed. Captured by the Master Builder, misplaced during a furious battle in space, they now find themselves on an inverted world where horizons rise into the sky, and where humans of all kinds are trapped in a perilous cycle of horror and neglect. For they have become both research animals and strategic pawns in a cosmic game whose madness knows no end....

    Raquel S. says: "Once upon a time on a Halo far far away..."
    "Once upon a time on a Halo far far away..."
    Overall
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    Story

    I listened to the first book Halo Cryptum which told of a story of Chakas (a human), Riser (a hobbit like humanoid), and Bornstellar Makes Everlasting. However, midway through the first book, Chakas and Riser are separated from Bornstellar and their fate unknown. In Halo Primordium, we discover what did happen to Chakas and Riser. They had crash landed onto Halo Installation 07. This book is their story.

    Halo Primodium...oh my goodness. While the story meanders in the first half with Chakas trying to make sense of this Halo world he crash landed on and the odd humans he's come in contact, the story rapidly ramps up to some eye-opening experiences that lead to big OMG moments all Halo game fans would recognize.

    Tim Dadabo freaking excelled in his narration and storytelling style. I had no problems engaging, especially when he slipped into his character voice of 343 Guilty Spark. The final chapters of Halo Primordium are worth the price of the book alone as it became more of a Halo production than just a reading of a story. Great stuff! Kudos to Tim and the studio staff for doing what they did. It was pure awesome to my ears.

    Greg Bear Halo stories have turned up to be quite amazing. While his stories take place a long time ago in galaxies far far away, he weaves the legends that become the foundation of Halo lore of today. Honestly, Forerunners are just as baffling back then as they are as mysterious in current Halo timeline.

    In Primordium, we learn more of the Flood and the Gravemind. Very creepy, very mysterious. We also learn more of the humans of the past that had fought against Forerunners and against the Flood.

    By the end of the book, you can't help but think - wow, we humans are in so much trouble in the Halo Universe.

    I eagerly await the third book in the series Halo Silentium and truly hope that Tim Dadabo performs that book as well.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • World of Warcraft: War Crimes

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Christie Golden
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (207)
    Performance
    (204)
    Story
    (205)

    Alliance and Horde forces have stripped Garrosh Hellscream, one of the most reviled figures on Azeroth, of his title as warchief. His thirst for conquest devastated cities, nearly tore the Horde apart, and destroyed countless lives throughout the World of Warcraft. Now, on the legendary continent of Pandaria, he will stand trial for his transgressions.

    Jonathan D Gaynor says: "Great for Fans of the Game; Major Holes; Fun Read"
    "Enrapt! Audible version is an immersive experience"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I started War Crimes on my Kindle, but decided to purchased the Audible version so I can keep working while listening to the book. The audible version proved to be such an immersing experience, I had a hard time going back to the e-book!

    War Crimes is a World of Warcraft novel that follows up on the downfall of Garrosh Hellscream, the dethroned Warchief of the Horde. Garrosh is put on trial for his War Crimes for the atrocities committed during the War. This includes the bombing of Theramore, the destruction of the Vale of Blossoms, the martial law and internment of the Darkspears trolls, and many more.

    Throughout the trial, crucial and devastating moments are brought and "re-enacted" thanks to the Vision of Time. Moments from the past from both books and in-game scenarios are brought up. This makes for emotional court room drama and stuff happening to rock everyone's world. At moments you wonder if anything good can come from any of this at all!

    What I love so much about War Crimes is that you can't help but get sucked into the drama of it all. Several notable characters are brought up front to shine as the great characters they are. Secrets are exposed and dealt with. People meet that we've always wondered what would happen if they did.

    I think Scott Brick did a great job reading War Crimes. My favorite scene is when he re-enacts the in-game dialog between Garrosh Hellscream and Varok Saurfang. I've seen this dialog before, but until Scott read it, I never realized the depth of what Saurfang was saying til I heard it out loud. Then I was like "Oh, crap!"

    War Crimes on audiobook form is totally worth listening to. It's a great experience. Five rocking stars! Fantastic book by Christine Golden. Great read by Scott Brick. You can't help but get lost in the story.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Darksiders: The Abomination Vault

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Ari Marmell
    • Narrated By Bob Walter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (41)
    Performance
    (38)
    Story
    (38)

    Ride with the Horsemen of the Apocalypse as they seek to unearth a plot that could plunge all of Creation into chaos! Ages before the events of Darksiders and Darksiders II, two of the feared Horsemen - Death and War - are tasked with stopping a group of renegades from locating the Abomination Vault: a hoard containing weapons of ultimate power and malice, capable of bringing an end to the uneasy truce between Heaven and Hell...but only by unleashing total destruction.

    Raquel S. says: "Meet snarky Death and his deadly secrets."
    "Meet snarky Death and his deadly secrets."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Darksiders: The Abomination Vault is a gem of a story for all Darksiders fans to read and enjoy. You get a in-depth view of the horseman Death, who is a very snarky, lethal sonavabitch. A dark character with an ever darker past.

    While the story happens long long LONG before the Darksiders game timeline, it lays down some precedences that may explain some of the who/what/why's for the game. The book has an interesting lot of characters from the high heavens to the depths of hell...many of which we are already familiar with such as Azrael, Abaddon, Uriel, and the Crowfather. And we meet new characters such as Panoptos (of which the watchers are based from) and The Keeper of Oblivion, whom I hope we meet again in the future.

    Ari Marmell did a marvelous job fleshing out the characters in the book, especially with Death. I only hope he will write more Darksiders books in the future. His stories are rich enough for me to continue to enjoy the Darksiders universe, regardless if we get another game or not.

    Bob Walter did an excellent job narrating and performing the story. His rendition of Death is just right with its feralness and inflections, similar to the game. Since Death is the lead character of the story, one can forgive the softer voice of War. Once you're lost in the story, it won't matter at all.

    Oh, Death, Death, Death. You snarky feral sonofabitch. You freaking steal this story long and wide. Death is what makes the reading/listening The Abomination Vault so outstanding, regardless if you played the game or not.

    War takes second place, but is still a major character. He gets some marvelous moments of his own in the book that War fans will enjoy. Strife and Fury also make appearance, but their parts are small.

    But Death...dammit...he steals all the scenes. Greedy bastard, LOL.

    If you're a fan of Darksiders, you will enjoy this audio book. Get it.

    If you're a fan of dark fantasy, but have never played the game, you will also enjoy The Abomination Vault. Ari does a great job with his writing that you do not need to have played the game to still enjoy a great story. You will not be disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Prince of Midnight

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Laura Kinsale
    • Narrated By Nicholas Boulton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (370)
    Performance
    (340)
    Story
    (340)

    He was once a legendary highwayman. Now he's a recluse in a ruined French castle, with only a half-wild wolf for a companion. When Lady Leigh Strachan comes looking for a man to aid in her revenge, she's disillusioned to find that the famed Prince of Midnight couldn't help even if he cared to - which he doesn't. S. T. Maitland wants nothing to do with his legend, or with this fierce, beautiful, broken woman... until the old thrill of living on the cutting edge of danger begins to rise in his blood again.

    Robbie says: "Imagine My Joy!"
    "Boulton's Performance is Exhilirating! I'm in awe."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Laura Kinsale is my all-time favorite romance author. Her books are magical, unique, funny, and can leave you breathless. I've been a fan of Kinsale's for a very long time. Her books are staple in my libary (and now my Kindle) and I read them multiple times.

    Recently, Ms Kinsale decided to bring her stories to audio version and have Nick Boulton do the narration, the first being The Prince of Midnight. TPOM ranks in the top three of my favorite Laura Kinsale books.

    Within the first few minutes of listening, I was in awe. It was then I knew I was in for an amazing time with The Prince of Midnight. Nick brought such depth to the voices and to the story. He doesn't merely read the story - he performs it marvelously - and does so with quality for each character no matter how minor the role, male or female.

    His characterization of the main protaganist - S.T. Maitland, the Prince of Midnight himself - nearly melted my smartphone on several occasions.

    Yes, it's that good.

    If you've never experienced the magic a Laura Kinsale book, you're in for a real treat. The Prince of Midnight has adventure, danger, romance, humor, magnificent horses, bashful wolves, and a handsome (if arrogant) injured hero. Love scenes smolder bright without being coarse or explicit. Add in Nick Boulton's performance and a great book got even better. The story becomes alive.

    One of my favorite performances in the book by Nick Boulton was the whole drunk S.T. scenario. He was hilarious! I could listen to that repeatedly and not get bored of it.

    Toward the end of the book, the story kind of dragged and sounded repetive as the lovebirds try to figure out their strained relationship. But, the epilogue makes up for it in heaps. Oh, boy oh boy, does it make up for it.

    Laura Kinsale story + Nick Boulton's performance = Exhilirating story time.

    17 of 22 people found this review helpful
  • What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: A Short Guide to Making Over Your Mornings—and Life

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 4 mins)
    • By Laura Vanderkam
    • Narrated By Laura Vanderkam
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (859)
    Performance
    (727)
    Story
    (713)

    According to time management expert Laura Vanderkam, mornings hold the key to taking control of our schedules. If we use them wisely, we can build habits that will allow us to lead happier, more productive lives. Drawing on real-life anecdotes and scientific research that shows why the early hours of the day are so important, Vanderkam reveals how successful people use mornings to help them accomplish things that are often impossible to take care of later in the day.

    Teresa says: "A statement or two could summarize this book"
    "Makeover your Morning, Makeover your Life"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "Early to bed, early to rise, makes a person healthy, wealthy, and wise." This old proverbs continues to ring true with Laura Vanderkam's audiobook "What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: A Short Guide to Making Over Your Mornings—and Life".

    We may all know that we need our "quiet/me" time in the morning, but do we really make the effort to do so? Maybe you need a bit of guidance to get started without being overwhelmed. The information Ms. Vanderkam offers is good stuff. Nothing heady or overwhelming. Just enough to encourage you to examine how you spend your mornings and be more accountable for it - because this YOUR time for YOU. The advice is practical whether you apply it to physical or spiritual practices.

    The audiobook is inexpensive and it's only a little over an hour long. A small investment that can reap benefits if you're looking for ways to improve your life for the better. Ms. Vanderkam's performance is a bit on the boring side; aside from that it's good stuff. I'd gladly recommend it to anyone looking for ways to change their habits that can change their life for the better.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Confessions of a D-List Supervillain

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Jim Bernheimer
    • Narrated By Jeffrey Kafer, Talmadge Ragan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (615)
    Performance
    (580)
    Story
    (584)

    Exploding from the pages of Horror, Humor, and Heroes, Volume One - it’s the full length adventures of the one and only Mechani-Cal! So grab your battlesuit and prepare to get a little nasty.

    Ryan says: "Everyman villain tries to make good. Fun stuff!"
    "Memoirs of a Supervillain turn Superhero"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Confessions of a D-List Supervillain to be better than the print version?

    I haven't read the print version. The audio edition is excellent though.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Mechani-Cal, of course. He's the main character. His voice and style is so humorous and dark, you can cannot help but like him. A brilliant mind, a good soul, but has suffered a lot bad luck to sour him. His attempts to be the boy-scout Superhero fail him, however, when push comes to shove, that's when Mechani-Cal does his best.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Not a scene, but my favorite part of the book was the first part when Mechani-Cal tries to figure out how to save the world from the mind-controlling bugs enslaving the human race. But it's all great stuff from beginning to the end.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The scene where so-called superhero and jealous ex-boyfriend mind-wipes Aphrodite, Mechani-Cal's new girlfriend, thereby forgetting her special sweet relationship she had with Cal.


    Any additional comments?

    I truly enjoyed Confessions of a D-List Super-villain from beginning to end. The narrator did an incredible performance as Mechani-Cal. The story has a great mix of action, humor, sarcasm, and romance. For those who enjoy comics and superheroes, this is a great audiobook to listen too.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • World of Warcraft: Wolfheart

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Richard A. Knaak
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (215)
    Performance
    (206)
    Story
    (204)

    New York Times best-selling author Richard A. Knaak continues the thrilling story begun in the record-breaking MMO game expansion World of Warcraft: Cataclysm in this new audiobook!

    Raquel S. says: "Worgens and Orcs and Elves, Oh My!"
    "Worgens and Orcs and Elves, Oh My!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to World of Warcraft: Wolfheart the most enjoyable?

    Wolfheart is a well-created audible book. It was professionally put together with the chapters ending with well-recognized music from World of Warcraft. It added a great touch to the reading performance and lets you know you were coming to the end of a chapter.Scott Brick did a great job voicing the different characters of the book, especially King Genn Greymane as a Worgen, but was a bit too soft and annoying as Tyrande Whisperwind. (She's a soft-spoken character as it is, so it just annoying all around.) Mr. Brick was great keeping the pace of the story moving along, though he recited the book in a bit of Shakespearean opulent way that made me giggle sometimes. I kept thinking to myself,


    What did you like best about this story?

    King Varian Wrynn by far steals the show in the book. Nearly every scene he's involved in is my favorite. The battle at the end is great!


    Which character – as performed by Scott Brick – was your favorite?

    As I mentioned earlier, I truly enjoyed Scott's performance as King Genn Greymane. The added snarls when Greymane was in worgen form were such a good touch to an already great performance. It was thrilling. His masterful performance as the outspoken King Varian was perfect. Another favorite.Scott also did excellent performing as the orcs, in particularly Garrosh Hellscream and the One-eyed Briln.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The scene where all the Alliance members were gathered and were considering the addition of the worgen into the Alliance. King Varian Wrynn totally steals the scenes here. The political drama that explosively unfolded was jaw-dropping. One of the best parts of the whole story.


    Any additional comments?

    Wolfheart is a great story, but not without its flaws. It's a war story, a tragedy, a murder mystery, and political drama. Overall, a great story to enjoy. However, the whole Maiev Shadowsong murder mystery story line rides nearly parallel to the rest of the story. While it's a worthwhile story to be told for sure, it aggravates how it doesn't quite cross lines with the overall arc of the story. I also wasn't too pleased that the one focus on this book I really wanted to delve into - King Varian Wrynn, the man whose eyes are on the cover of this book - the Wolfheart himself - doesn't make an appearance until like Chapter 11. Arg! However, when he does show up...WHOA! The wait is nearly worth it. This is not my first audible book, but it is the first I've actually completed from start to finish as fast as I could within a couple of days.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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