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Michael

Commodities broker, father, husband, and avid scifi/fantasy/self help fan.

Gretna, LA, USA | Member Since 2006

38
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 1 reviews
  • 2 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 21 purchased in 2014
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23

  • Ex-Communication

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Jay Snyder, Khristine Hvam, Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1328)
    Performance
    (1230)
    Story
    (1230)

    In the years since the wave of living death swept the globe, St George and his fellow heroes haven't just kept Los Angeles' last humans alive - they’ve created a real community, a bustling town that's spreading beyond its original walls and swelling with new refugees. But now one of the heroes, perhaps the most powerful among them, seems to be losing his mind. The implacable enemy known as Legion has found terrifying new ways of using zombies as pawns in his attacks.

    Lore says: "Corpse Girl for the win!"
    "How Do You Top 'Ex-Patriots?' You Write This Book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you're a fan of this series, you may already own this audiobook. If not, or if you're still deciding wether or not to slap those Audible credits on the counter, and get into this series, this third review is for you.

    If you've read my previous reviews, you already KNOW my thoughts on this writer and his efforts. This review is going to basically say the same thing, with a few changes.

    First, the characters, both existing and new have greater depth. The story now deals with faith and magic in a more intricate method, and are both stronger players in the tone and direction of the story. The storyline is richer, and takes even better advantage of the world Clines has already established. It's fantastic, and the author steps up his game in this third effort. The zombies are badder, the heroes are better, the villain steps up the game, and the conflicts make for great reads, or in this case, listens.

    I'm not going to give away any plot points here, as you know. I HATE when a reviewer gives spoilers about the work they review. It's as if the reviewer dips into all that hard work, and steals a small (or sometimes large) part of the spotlight so richly deserved by the author. So, no spoilers.

    But I WILL finish by telling you the following:

    It's one thing for author to write one good work - It's an ENTIRELY different thing to write THREE subsequent works in a series surrounding a constant theme, and doing so beautifully time after time.

    Clines has done this, over and over in this series. If you love the zombie, superhero or modern magic genres, you're going to be satisfied, from the first in the series, to this third in the series.

    Personally, I'm thinking this is the best of the three. How often does THAT happen?

    Go ahead. Say it. You know the answer. Not very often, if ever.

    So, Clines topped the other two books by writing THIS book.

    Thanks, Peter. I can't wait to see where you take the series from here.

    20 of 24 people found this review helpful
  • Furies of Calderon: Codex Alera, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4254)
    Performance
    (2913)
    Story
    (2948)

    In the realm of Alera, where people bond with the furies - elementals of earth, air, fire, water, and metal - 15-year-old Tavi struggles with his lack of furycrafting. But when his homeland erupts in chaos - when rebels war with loyalists and furies clash with furies - Tavi's simple courage will turn the tides of war.

    Jim says: "Remastered into chapters from CD."
    "Lost Roman Legions...And POKEMON?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you follow my reviews, you know that I like to roll the dice, to randomly buy a series on a whim, on the luck of the draw. Sometimes, it's a bust.

    This time, it's a definite win, but if you go by how the series was created, you'd probably run in the opposite direction.

    Here's one for the books: Jim Butcher is well-known for his "Dresden Files" series, created a fantastic fantasy series on a BET. Yep, a bet. Read on.

    To quote the Codex Alera Wiki site, "the inspiration for the series came from a bet Jim was challenged to by a member of the Delray Online Writer’s Workshop. The challenger bet that Jim could not write a good story based on a lame idea, and Jim countered that he could do it using two lame ideas of the challenger’s choosing. The “lame” ideas given were “Lost Roman Legion", and “Pokémon”.

    It DOES sound lame.

    Well, Butcher makes it work. To the nines.

    I've finished this first novel, and I'm enjoying this unique story line of humans with Roman similarities binding with elemental furies. Add unique races, backstabbing, politics, military battles, duels and an interwoven story line that pulls it all together, and you get a fantastic story that's simply put, a VERY VERY good listen.

    The whole concept of fighting alongside elemental familiars used here is wonderfully executed. It's deep, well-thought magic-based partnership of man and magical creature is a pleasure to experience.

    So, what about the writing?

    Again, if you follow my reviews, you know that I love ENGAGING fantasy or scifi writing. Anything less won't do. And this is definitely engaging. There's great characters that plot, backstab, challenge, fight for their beliefs, devour their enemies, and celebrate their victories. You're taken on a great romp of a story, and in the end, isn't that what we all want in a good listen?

    I know I do, and I so enjoyed this first audiobook in the series, that I bought the entire series. Yep. And I'm not disappointed with the decision.

    Who knew that Lost Roman Legions and Pokemon could knock it out of the park?

    Home run, Jim. Home run.

    38 of 42 people found this review helpful

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