I think this was an interesting idea for a story, in that he is able to utilize the different personalities in his mind - each of which is a different expert in a field - to solve problems. That however is also part of the problem for me. He is a multimillionaire, mental giant and even though his 'mental illness' is complex because there are so many different genius individuals living in his mind, the main character really had no problems other than people trying to ask him for help. He was not someone I could warm up to or in the end even root for.
This is a good question because it ties in well with my major complaint about the narration. One of my most favorite characters is the UN Chief and grouchy old woman Avasarala. I LOVE the tone, humor, accent and life that Jefferson Mays (narrator of the first three books) gave her. I honestly thought "wow this is a woman I would love to work for and know!". So when I heard Erik Davies version of Avasarala I could not figure out who the character was at first. She is without accent, nondescript, slightly female and, well, angry. While she is only in the book for a couple of lines, it was still a major disappointment. I felt like it was laziness on the part of the narrator and producers for either not doing the necessary background research or deciding to just make her "cardboard, female character B" sounding. So this sounds like a major nit-picky quibble, however lack of background research is evident again with Miller who is made to sound almost ROBOTIC!!! Why?! Why?! Why?! That was hard to get over and very distracting. Alex has a generic, slightly Texan twang, so that was not too bad. Amos was another character who just sounded wrong and often I would get confused with who was speaking as his voice was very similar to a couple of other characters such as the main protagonist. Holden is a little bit closer to the original. Another issue I had was the editing. The narrator messed up on several occasions and read lines in the wrong voice - Giving the dialogue to Holden for instance with it was that of a completely different characters.
DON'T SWITCH NARRATORS IN THE MIDDLE OF A SERIES AND IF YOU ARE GOING TO DO THAT FIND SOMEONE WHO WILL DO THE RESEARCH SO THAT THEY CAN STAY TRUE TO WHO THE CHARACTERS ARE!!!
There is nothing that particularly moved me, but it was a lot of the same fun/gross/new/interesting ideas - which I love! A bit of repetition on some themes unfortunately (desperate father wants to save child), more fun and impossible situations and go from bad to horrible to 'how are they going to get out of this!". The characters are starting to get an invincible feel to them, which I do not care for but this is balanced by my not wanting any of them to be killed off :) The writing is again topnotch and this series still continues to raze the bar for new scifi.
Please let Jefferson Mays return and narrate the rest of the series in the future. Thank you.
No. This book takes place in a time when we are past being able to colonize Mars YET the much of the basic technology is what we use today - keyboards, ipad things, physical coin currency and of all things a bullet shooting Smith & Wesson. Maybe I have been massively spoilt by other Sci-Fi writers (Kristine Kathryn Rusch for example) who first of all would not have a Smith & Wesson this sort of weapon in a dome/biosphere because of the damage it could possibly do to the overall micro environment. Or how about cost of producing the bullets - is this done on Mars? Or are the shipped from Earth and If so, wouldn't that make them thousands of dollars a bullet? I don't know, it's never explained the author just moves on. At one point the protagonist is watching a dust storm, but where is it? Inside the dome? if so, why and how would such a storm be produced. If it is outside the dome, well how is he seeing it? does his office have a window that looks outside the dome? and if so why isn't that window as dirty and run down as the rest of the dome supposedly is. My point is there are so many loose and ridiculous loose ends when it comes to the world building and science end of this story that the author would have been far better off just to leave it on earth and make it a little bit in the future. As this story stands, it was frustrating and disappointing. I think there is loads of potential, but the lazy lack of imagination in the details has just left me cold.
He was ok with what he had to work with. I mean supposedly this is a very old Mars colony and yet the characters are described as having accents like a distinctive "Scottish brogue" or Latin for example. I mean after all that time wouldn’t they have their own accents, slang, patois, or subtle ways of non verbal communication??? (again spoilt by authors like James S. A. Corey)
Noooooooooo. For me it was not.
I love to be immersed in a world and I do not strictly read Sci-Fi. I am not a purist by any means. I can forgive allot if you can keep my attention, you are clever or can 'wow' me with interesting concepts and fresh ideas. But this book. Uhg. It was as if the author took a giant fluffy ice cream scoop of a bit of low fat, sugar free Raymond Chandler and flung it at Mars, stood back and said "Look I made a Noir/Sci-Fi!!!" NO. If you are looking for something that is Noir/Sci-Fi I would recommend reading "Noir" by K. W. Jeter - and I hope very much that book will be on Audible some day.
She did the best with what she was given, I hope they paid her well.
The book was frustrating to get through. This is what it felt like listening to it: little bit of plot – protagonist explains sex life – little bit of plot – protagonist is questioned about sex life – little bit of plot – protagonist has fond remembrance of sex life – little bit of plot – protagonist has sex and explains about sex life to sex partner – little bit of plot – protagonist calls co-worker and jokes about sex life before telling vital information strangely connected to sex life. While I have never been a teenage boy, it felt like I was being pulled into the mind of one at times and it was difficult not to stop rolling my eyes over and over or at one point bash my head on my desk. It was soooo tiresome, so boring, and so repetitive.Another point of irritation about this book is that it takes place on a plant in the far future, however all the architecture on the planet is exactly like present day earth. There are districts that divide the place the protagonist lives in and they are labelled something like (not kidding here) “Old earth Chinatown”, “Old earth Spanish District”, “Old Earth India”, “Old Earth Whatever with that old earth architecture, music, food, language”. The rest of the place is made up of glass and cement. Seriously. I wanted to like this book. Some of the ideas have already been done, but they were still interesting. The plot had potential. If 90% of the sexual thoughts were cut out of the protagonists head and it was filled with a bit of depth she would be far more interesting and relatable. The only reason I have not asked for my money back was because I wanted to write a review to warn others who have similar tastes in SciFi, against buying this. However if you do ignore me (like I did with the other reviewers) it will really make you appreciate the genuine talents of other Scifi writers out there.
After writing this review I realized I probably wouldn't.
The last book I listened to was "John Dies at the End" and I REALLY enjoyed that book. There were so many elements of it that just clicked for me. It was/is so fun, fresh, funny, odd ball, horrible (in a good way), surprizing and really well narrated.
So I guess that the bar had been set pretty high when I started this book. The greatest disappointment was the change in narrators. Stephen R. Thorne (narrator of John Dies at the End) was just excellent in his depiction of the characters - especially the character of John, whom he plays as a down key sort of guy, I really liked that. All his other character's voices are well defined and you are able to tell them apart and visualize them.
The narrator of this book, Nick Podehl, does exactly the opposite and John is more hyper and yells allot. It is extreemly jarring going from one book to the next. As well, many of his character voices sound the same so I sometimes was lost in what was happening in conversations - who is saying what. His female voices are straight out of a bad Saturday Night Live skit, just horrible and all the same.
Ok I get that maybe they might have had difficulty getting back the narrator of the first book - maybe it was life, schedules, whatever - but WHY chose a new narrator whose style is so very different and is just not as skilled? So VERY disappointing.
Also gone was allot of the humour and fun. I get that more serious things happen in this book, but I think it is at the forsaking of the characters personalities. Possibly the author was trying to end the series and show some growth in his characters - but it just felt wrong and fell flat for me. Sometimes I caught myself silently growning and wanting to smack my forehead.
There is a death at the end that was just completely unnecessary and made me very angry. Really angry. That was just bs. Just horrible. You know what? I’m still angry. If I can ever figure out a way of deleting it from my audio book I will. It however may not be necessary as I doubt I will ever be listening to it again. By the way, since buying John Dies at the End a few months ago, I have listened to it three times.
Ok what did I like. Some of the humor was ok. Some of the ideas were fun, interesting, refreshing.
To be honest I was sort of relived when it was over.
Also I waited at least a month after listening to this book so that I could have some time to really reflect on what I liked and what bothered me.
I would have replaced Nick Podehl with the narrator of the first book "John Dies at the End" - Stephen R. Thorne
Please be more considerate when choosing narrators.
Not in audio form and if I got it in written I would not pay for it.
I remember him years ago from Loveline and found him to be entertaining in small doeces when you are in the mood for a rant or to hear an odd family story. I just don't find him that funny anymore and I think that is because I have gotten older and find his stories have more a ring of bitter unkindness to them.
I wonder how this audio book would have turned out if they had let another comedian read an unabridged verson. I really would have prefered that, so the answer to this question is "Adam Carolla".
What I thought I was getting and what I wanted was outlined in Adam Carolla's first chapter: interesting and funny stories about his growing up and life. What I got was Adam Carolla going off on tangents and sort of sad rants, and letting me know he was kipping stories and telling me over and over I needed to go buy the book if I wanted to know more (I know the audio book is abridged, but he endlessly states it and cannot seem to stick with the written material at all. It’s a bit like having a 6 hour radio show more than an audio book.) . He does have some funny moments and stories, but for me this was an absolute waist of my money and a regret.
A stronger female protagonist. I do not like romance novels at all, so I did not like those moments in the novel however they felt very cliché.
I should have investigated this more before I purchased it - Had I realized at the time it is published I Harlequin I would absolutely not have gotten it.
Redshirst was fun until the overall plot started becoming evident. The plot is so-so but I more enjoyed how the 'extras' in the story were self aware and knew their existence was bizarre but were going along with it so they did not end up dead. If you watched the original Star Trek, it added a funny perspective. Mid story a group of the characters have to leave the ship in order to survive and at this point I lost interest and I continued listening in the hopes that the story would regain more of its original quirkiness. It didn't. The reader was a good choice for the book.
Fresh, surprizing, different
There were things in the strory I did not expect and surprized me
When everyone gets together to open the last appartment door and they discover what is really behind that door - I never would have guessed that
They story had good pacing and kept my attention. This is not a story I would normally get and not entirely what I was expecting, but I am very pleased I heard it. The reader is very good at making distinct voices.
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