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Tom

Apex, NC, United States | Member Since 2004

43
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 24 reviews
  • 72 ratings
  • 536 titles in library
  • 26 purchased in 2014
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  • Earth Afire

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card, Aaron Johnston
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye, Arthur Morey, Stefan Rudnicki, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1523)
    Performance
    (1394)
    Story
    (1399)

    One hundred years before Ender's Game, the aliens arrived on Earth with fire and death. Earth Afire by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston is the story of the First Formic War. Victor Delgado beat the alien ship to Earth, but just barely. Not soon enough to convince skeptical governments that there was a threat. They didn’t believe that until space stations and ships and colonies went up in sudden flame. And when that happened, only Mazer Rackham and the Mobile Operations Police could move fast enough to meet the threat.

    DocJim says: "This is a GREAT adventure Sci-Fi Book. Masterful!"
    "Beware: Part 1 of ???"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I want to reiterate that this book is (or at least I hope so) part 1 of series. And I'm very disappointed that OSC did not make that clear. As others have said, it ended just as it was getting good. Translation, as a book standing on it's own, it was just ok.

    And for those not used to an ensemble case reading OSC's books, you better get used to it, or just by the real book. On numerous interviews he has stated he feels his books are best enjoyed being listened to instead of read. And I think he loves the idea of a full cast.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Mark Owen, Kevin Maurer
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3638)
    Performance
    (3254)
    Story
    (3284)

    From the streets of Iraq to the mountaintops of Afghanistan and to the third floor of Osama Bin Laden's compound, operator Mark Owen of the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group - commonly known as SEAL Team Six - has been a part of some of the most memorable special operations in history, as well as countless missions that never made headlines. No Easy Day puts listeners alongside Owen and the other handpicked members of the 24-man team as they train for the biggest mission of their lives.

    Darwin8u says: "Gripping, first-hand narrative of Op Neptune Spear"
    "ok, but here's how to save a credit..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I heard about this book after watching the 60 Minutes special a couple weeks ago. I wanted to learn more details, but you know, turns out the 60 minutes special was pretty complete. Sure the book had more details, but not a whole lot more.

    Also note that you only learn about what the author experienced. He doesn't explain what the others did. Clearly he did not interview all those involved to write a complete timeline. Maybe if I knew that going in, I would not have bought this book at all.

    Lastly, I wish he didn't ask us to donate money. This is a major pet peeve of mine. I think people forget that we (non-military) pay the entire military budget out of our taxes. And there are many, many worthy charities that exist.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Panther

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Nelson DeMille
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2118)
    Performance
    (1791)
    Story
    (1783)

    Anti-Terrorist Task Force agent John Corey and his wife, FBI agent Kate Mayfield, have been posted overseas to Sana'a, Yemen - one of the most dangerous places in the Middle East. While there, they will be working with a small team to track down one of the masterminds behind the USS Cole bombing: a high-ranking Al Qaeda operative known as The Panther. Ruthless and elusive, he's wanted for multiple terrorist acts and murders - and the U.S. government is determined to bring him down, no matter the cost.

    John says: "Exciting Nelson DeMille novel with great narration"
    "I'd recommend the abridged version"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First off, the book's length is ok, it's just that nothing happens! and there isn't enough suspense to carry you through the long plodding plot. I have read all of the Correy books, and they have been great. The Lion had me on the edge of my "seat" due to it's great action and suspense. But this one is a real dud.

    Trust me, you could listen to the first hour or 2, as the plot develops, catch a about 1 hour of action in the middle, and then skip to the last couple hours and not miss a thing. Well, as some others have said, you would miss about 5000 wise cracks. That's about 1000 for each of the characters. Does everyone have to be a wise a$$? Ridiculous! Even Kate gets in on the games. I'm no writer, but if I wanted my main character to stand out, I wouldn't surround him with 4 more copies of himself.

    So what is the other 16 hours about? You too can become a Yemen expert. Well, I suspect not in the true sense, but in the "Yemen is just a breading ground for corruption and deceit."

    I did give it 1 more star than I normally would because John is still John, and he's a fun character to read. A a thumb's up for Scott Brink, he was great as usual!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 14

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12080)
    Performance
    (10972)
    Story
    (10999)

    There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s.

    Magpie says: "Super solid listen!!"
    "Should be 2012 Hugo winner"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you, like me, love to read books where everyday people get thrown into extra-ordinary situations, and have to first come to an understanding that something paranormal (I don't mean ghosts) is going on, then this book is for you. For me, the discovery part is what I love. Most books of this genre wrap up the discovery 1/4 of the way through the book. But with 14, it takes over 1/2 of the book before things start to reveal themselves, and even more before becoming fully understandable.

    Clines has set such a high bar, I'm almost afraid to read any of his other books.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mockingjay: The Final Book of The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (28294)
    Performance
    (22033)
    Story
    (22251)

    Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she's made it out of the bloody arena live, she's still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge....

    GS says: "Conflicting Emotions"
    "OK ending, but overall, just ok"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    After reading many rough reviews, specifically about the ending, I didn't even get this book until months after reading #2. (and oh yeah, because #2 was just a repeat of #1)

    Well, surprisingly, I thought the ending was fine. So many reviews spoke poorly of it's ending that perhaps I was expecting the worst. Well, it wasn't that bad. However, the overall book was. It really wasn't about a revolution, or how governments are build. It was just about one person, and her life. How can someone help her enemies, and hate her best friends?...ridiculous. And too many characters spend too much time in a drug educed high.

    If you have read the first book (really good) and just need to read the series, go for it. It's not a total waste of time. Just don't expect the same quality. You'll be disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Small Favor: The Dresden Files, Book 10

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4966)
    Performance
    (3782)
    Story
    (3789)

    No one's tried to kill Harry Dresden for almost an entire year, and his life finally seems to be calming down. For once, the future looks fairly bright. But the past casts one hell of a long shadow.

    Carrie says: "I want more of Harry!"
    "Best so far....by far"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I just finished book 10, and this is by far the best of the series. Some of the earlier books, although they have a good story, the characters are not so great. Honestly, I was sick of hearing Harry say "I wanted to do the bad thing", when you know he would always end up doing the good thing. Predictable and just not good writing.

    But this book, wow. Great story, you cared about the people, especially Ivy.

    If you are getting tired of this series, please listen to this one, it will get you hooked again!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Hot Gate: Troy Rising, Book Three

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By John Ringo
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1528)
    Performance
    (1198)
    Story
    (1224)

    The fight to free the Earth from alien domination began in Live Free or Die, and continued in Citadel. Now Tyler Vernon and his troops aboard the gigantic battle station Troy face a desperate battle with the forces of galactic tyranny. And the very survival of the Earth and its people is not all that is at stake. The galaxy itself must choose to live free or die - and if the tyrants win this battle, darkness will fall across the galaxy for millennia to come.

    John M says: "Huh?"
    "3rd time is not the charm"
    Overall

    I think book one of this trilogy is one of my favorite books. Book 2 is a great followup, as it shifts focus onto different characters. Book 3, well, stinks. Not only does it lack excitement (too chatty as another has reviewed), but it was a complete sell out. Even when inside the thoughts of the enemy, we hear pardoning to us terians. "They are better than us...I'm sure we'll loose before long", blah, blah, blah. Come on, if our evil enemies respect us, do we really have a book?

    Also, much of the chattiness was about inter-cultural relations between earthling? Do I buy a sci-fi book to read about? No.

    If you gotta see how the trilogy ends, save your $$ and look it up on Wikipedia.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Hellhole

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Brian Herbert, Kevin J Anderson
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (366)
    Performance
    (257)
    Story
    (258)

    Only the most desperate colonists dare to make a new home on Hellhole. Reeling from a recent asteroid impact, tortured with horrific storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, and churning volcanic eruptions, the planet is a dumping ground for undesirables, misfits, and charlatans…but also a haven for dreamers and independent pioneers. Against all odds, an exiled general named Adolphus has turned Hellhole into a place of real opportunity for the desperate colonists who call the planet their home.

    Dan says: "Very Good Series Intro"
    "20 hours and no ending!!!"
    Overall

    I am at a loss with this book. Never before could my rating have ranged anywhere from 1 to 5.
    First off, after reading the write-up, I thought this was going to be sort of a post-apocalyptic book, telling us how they built a civilization on a ravaged planet. NOPE! chapter 2 begins with "Ten years later". Ok, I can't blame the writers for not doing what I thought.
    But then, out of the next 6 hrs, there is about 1 hour covering life on the planet Hellhole. Too much background!!!
    Then, the last 2/3rds of the book, it starts to get real good, as they focus on Hellhole. In fact, I couldn't stop listening. But, as other have said...this book as no ending. Book 1 of any trilogy has an ending! yes, there are loose ends, but that is not the case here. It builds and builds, and then just ends. Didn't we all learn in Writing 101 that all books need a climax and a resolution? As others have suggested, wait until part 2 is out if you don't want to be left hanging.

    6 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (35878)
    Performance
    (26882)
    Story
    (27266)

    Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone out to make sure you don't live to see the morning? In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by 12 outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

    Teddy says: "The Book Deserves The Hype"
    "A fun listen, but a simple book"
    Overall

    This book was super easy to listen to, and in fact, you'll really want to keep listening way past your bed time :) On this factor alone, I would recommend it for one of your credits.

    However, as far as a great novel, it's a bit too simplistic. While there was some good fiction here, it's single story line makes its great for kids, but adults may want more.

    What was here family thinking? What about her best friend? And does every incident have to be so perilous?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Impact

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Douglas Preston
    • Narrated By Scott Sowers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1205)
    Performance
    (391)
    Story
    (391)

    A brilliant meteor lights up the Maine coast and two young women borrow a boat and set out for a distant island to find the impact crater. A scientist at the National Propulsion Facility discovers an inexplicable source of gamma rays in the outer Solar System. He is found decapitated, the data missing.High resolution NASA images reveal an unnatural feature hidden in the depths of a crater on Mars and it appears to have been activated. Sixty hours and counting.

    Tom says: "Vulgar? yes, but overal, it's good"
    "Vulgar? yes, but overal, it's good"
    Overall

    A real interesting thriller set around a sci-fi scene. I really like these kind of books...everyday people discover something that would be unlikely, or impossible to us. Then we see how they deal with it.

    OK, these characters are a bit over the top, but it still works.

    OK, it's vulgar at times, but it still works.

    I really liked how this book evolved..slowly revealing different truths.

    If some raw cursing doesn't offend you, you won't be disappointed.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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