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Richard

Biomedical entrepreneur. Lifelong Libertarian. Yoga enthusiast.

ratings
268
REVIEWS
49
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
2
HELPFUL VOTES
83

  • Girl in Translation

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Jean Kwok
    • Narrated By Grayce Wey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (463)
    Performance
    (185)
    Story
    (184)

    When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn squalor, she quickly begins a secret double life: exceptional schoolgirl during the day, Chinatown sweatshop worker in the evenings. Disguising the more difficult truths of her life-like the staggering degree of her poverty, the weight of her family's future resting on her shoulders, or her secret love for a factory boy who shares none of her talent or ambition-Kimberly learns to constantly translate not just her language but herself back and forth between the worlds she straddles.

    Susan B. Johnson says: "This is a keeper"
    "Good here and there, not so good there and here"
    Overall

    The book is all-in-all good, but when the author bombs the romantic scenes using corny language. I can almost see her editor suggesting how to "spice up" those scenes with phrases straight out of cheap paperbacks.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Woods

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Harlan Coben
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1525)
    Performance
    (746)
    Story
    (748)

    Twenty years ago, four teenagers at summer camp walked into the woods at night. Two were found murdered, and the others were never seen again. Four families had their lives changed forever. Now, two decades later, they are about to change again.

    Ted says: "WHOA! This was totally good!"
    "Awful reader"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The reader is supremely annoying. He makes every word, phrase and sentence a major dramatic emotion.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Minotaur Takes a Cigarette Break: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Steven Sherrill
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    Overall
    (758)
    Performance
    (712)
    Story
    (712)

    Five thousand years out of the Labyrinth, the Minotaur finds himself in the American South, living in a trailer park and working as a line cook at a steakhouse. No longer a devourer of human flesh, the Minotaur is a socially inept, lonely creature with very human needs. But over a two-week period, as his life dissolves into chaos, this broken and alienated immortal awakens to the possibility for happiness and to the capacity for love.

    Cathy says: "Full of surprises, delightfully unexpected"
    "Utterly worthless"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is worthless. I can't think of anything good to say about it, perhaps other than the reader is decent.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • 11-22-63: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson
    Overall
    (17685)
    Performance
    (15725)
    Story
    (15678)

    On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

    Kelly says: "I Owe Stephen King An Apology"
    "Engaging and endearing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A book full of fun, a sprinkle of sci-fi, a love story to pull the emotions, and the end result is a very enjoyable book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Conflict of Interest: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Adam Mitzner
    • Narrated By David LeDoux
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2077)
    Performance
    (1686)
    Story
    (1701)

    Alex Miller is a criminal defense lawyer leading the life he always imagined. At thirty-five, he is the youngest partner at New York City's most prestigious law firm, with a beautiful wife and a perfect daughter. When Alex's father suddenly passes away, Alex is introduced to Michael Ohlig, a rich and powerful man who holds an almost mythical place in his family lore. But Alex is surprised when Ohlig admits that he's in serious legal trouble, accused of crimes involving hundreds of millions of dollars.

    Melinda says: "My 2 Cents"
    "Why this book is mediocre"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I anticipated a Grisham-level legal thriller as suggested by other reviewers.

    Instead, this book tries to be legal drama wrapped inside of personal drama, or perhaps personal drama wrapped inside of legal drama. The result is that both the legal drama and the personal drama are boring, shallow and just barely interesting. The author tries to salvage this mediocrity with a couple of twists at the end, but they are barely interesting, so they fail to save this very bad book.

    And then there's the reader. This man has a decent voice but his reading skills are deficient, He emphasizes with fake emotion almost every noun, verb, preposition, adjective, adverb and conjunction in the book, regardless of the need to give any of them a dramatic emphasis. Particularly irritating is his impersonation of the protagonist's 5-year-old daughter, Very very annoying.

    A complete waste of 11 hours and a credit.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Wild Blue: The Men and Boys Who Flew the B-24s Over Germany

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Stephen E. Ambrose
    • Narrated By Jeffrey DeMunn
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (186)
    Performance
    (146)
    Story
    (147)

    The very young men who flew the B24s over Germany in World War II against terrible odds were an exemplary band of brothers. In The Wild Blue, Stephen Ambrose recounts their extraordinary brand of heroism, skill, daring, and comradeship. Stephen Ambrose describes how the Army Air Forces recruited, trained, and chose those few who would undertake the most demanding and dangerous jobs in the war.

    jud says: "Terrific book."
    "OK book, not great"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Interesting tidbits, but not a gripping story. Would've liked more page-turning adventures, anecdotes, events. Essentially a recap of George McGovern's stint as a USAF bomber pilot.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Meaning of Everything: The Story of the Oxford English Dictionary

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Simon Winchester
    • Narrated By Simon Winchester
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (181)
    Performance
    (55)
    Story
    (54)

    Writing with marvelous brio, Simon Winchester first serves up a lightning history of the English language and pays homage to the great dictionary makers from Samuel Johnson to Noah Webster before turning his unmatched talent for storytelling to the making of the most venerable of dictionaries: The Oxford English Dictionary.

    Donald says: "A New Appreciation"
    "Not very interesting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Lacks engagement. More or less a drone narration of facts with some interesting anecdotes and stories here and there.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Treachery In Death: In Death, Book 32

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By J. D. Robb
    • Narrated By Susan Ericksen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1943)
    Performance
    (1227)
    Story
    (1221)

    In a New York City fifty years in the future, Detective Eve Dallas tracks down those who break the law - including the ones sworn to uphold it. Eve Dallas and her partner, Peabody, are following up on a brutal, senseless crime - an elderly grocery owner killed by three stoned punks for nothing more than kicks and snacks. And for the first time, Peabody is primary detective on the case, which means she has to get used to a new level of authority and responsibility. Good thing she learned the ropes from a master like Eve. But after rounding up the perps, Peabody stumbles upon a much trickier situation.

    Jean says: "Treachery in Death"
    "Very mediocre"
    Overall

    This is the first Robb book I've read, and clearly the last. It has nothing going for it: an uninteresting story line, blah prose, barely any development of the characters.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Passage: The Passage Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Justin Cronin
    • Narrated By Scott Brick, Adenrele Ojo, Abby Craden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6962)
    Performance
    (3326)
    Story
    (3330)

    First, the unthinkable: a security breach at a secret U.S. government facility unleashes the monstrous product of a chilling military experiment. Then, the unspeakable: a night of chaos and carnage gives way to sunrise on a nation, and ultimately a world, forever altered. All that remains for the stunned survivors is the long fight ahead and a future ruled by fear—of darkness, of death, of a fate far worse.

    Nicole says: "You love it or you hate it..."
    "What a waste of 40 hours"
    Overall

    This book is bad. A melodrama -- read by a melodramatic reader -- that is a blatant screenplay desperately seeking to be picked up for a movie production. It's full of action phrases ("coiled", "sprang into action", square jaw", "exploded", "burst into" this that or the other, ad infinitum), whilst character development is moronic when its decent, awful most of the time. The only good parts are the recollections from the diaries, which unfortunately happen in very very very few places. And the ending is worthless, perhaps looking for the sequel book (and movie).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Water for Elephants

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Sara Gruen
    • Narrated By David LeDoux, John Randolph Jones
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13311)
    Performance
    (5734)
    Story
    (5808)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Some books are meant to be read; others are meant to be heard – Water for Elephants falls into the second group, and is one of the best examples we have of how a powerful performance enhances a great story. Nonagenarian Jacob Jankowski reflects back on his wild and wondrous days with a circus. It's the Depression Era and Jacob, finding himself parentless and penniless, joins the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth.

    Kindle Customer says: "Great Narration!!"
    "By and large, a mediocre book"
    Overall

    One third of the book -- where the protagonist is 90- or 93- years-old -- is good: the character development, story, prose and reader.

    The other two thirds -- where the protagonist is in his early twenties -- are mediocre at their best. These parts consist of poorly written, unbearable melodrama worsened by a reader who thinks that he needs to amplify the melodrama. Shallow story, barely any character development, trite prose.

    The good parts aren't worth the pain of listening to the mediocrity.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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