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Keith F. Woeltje

St. Louis, MO USA | Member Since 2004

21
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 95 ratings
  • 438 titles in library
  • 18 purchased in 2014
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  • Spook Country

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By William Gibson
    • Narrated By Robertson Dean
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (575)
    Performance
    (122)
    Story
    (128)

    Bobby Chombo is a "producer" and an enigma. In his day job, Bobby is a troubleshooter for manufacturers of military navigation equipment. He refuses to sleep in the same place twice. He meets no one. Hollis Henry, an investigative journalist, has been told to find him.

    wendy says: "Loved it"
    "Great book; so-so reader"
    Overall

    This is the Gibson of Pattern Recognition, not Neuromancer. A contemporary novel about intrigue, but with passing reference to cutting-edge technology. The book itself I'd give 4 stars to- I liked the multiple story threads, and felt Gibson tied them together well at the end. The ideas behind the story itself are brilliant. But I never felt as engaged with Hollis Henry, the protagonist (of sorts) as I did with Cayce Pollard in Pattern Recognition. The other leading characters, too, were not entirely fleshed out. As for the reader, he does an OK job. Characters each have their own voice. Unfortunately he does not do accents well, so many of the characters who I'm sure would have unique accents only have a variation on an American voice.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5493)
    Performance
    (5222)
    Story
    (5230)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plainold ""human error"" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"

    Brian says: "Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped"
    "Brilliant story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Reminds me a bit of Clarke's /A Fall of Moondust/ - realistic engineering challenges in the space environment. Competence porn at its finest. I'll definitely be listening to it again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Singularity Sky

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Charles Stross
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (202)
    Performance
    (98)
    Story
    (101)

    In the 21st century, the perfection of faster-than-light travel and the rise of a prodigious artificial intelligence known as the Eschaton altered the course of humankind. New civilizations were founded across the vastness of space. Now, the technology-eschewing world known as the New Republic is besieged by an alien information plague. Earth quickly sends a battle fleet - but is it coming to the rescue, or is a sinister plot in motion?

    Paula Ross says: "A unique blend"
    "Great book - very original"
    Overall

    Stross is always full of original ideas. I've read the book in paper before- this is a good reading. The Festival is weird, and I'm not sure I get it completely, but the Eschaton concept is very interesting. Rachel and Martin are likeable characters. They also appear in Stross's Iron Sunrise (although they aren't really the main characters there).

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Slaughterhouse-Five or The Children's Crusade: A Duty Dance with Death

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Kurt Vonnegut
    • Narrated By Ethan Hawke
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2395)
    Performance
    (1107)
    Story
    (1122)

    Kurt Vonnegut's absurdist classic introduces us to Billy Pilgrim, a man who becomes 'unstuck in time' after he is abducted by aliens from the planet Tralfamadore. In a plot-scrambling display of virtuosity, we follow Pilgrim simultaneously through all phases of his life, concentrating on his (and Vonnegut's) shattering experience as an American prisoner of war who witnesses the firebombing of Dresden.

    William says: "What more can be said?"
    "Great to listen to; an American classic"
    Overall

    I won't review the story - you can find that anywhere. I was concerned that it might be hard to follow on audio, but it wasn't at all. It's a great book. On top of that, Ethan Hawke gives a superb performance as a reader. His near-whisper tones (don't worry - it's plenty easy to understand what he's saying) are just the thing for the book. I was sad when it ended. So it goes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Your Mac Life, 12-Month Subscription

    • NONE (2 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Shawn King
    Overall
    (68)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Your Mac Life, hosted by Shawn King, is one of the most popular Mac broadcasts in the world. Download and listen to this weekly, Web-based "radio show" about and for Apple and Mac users. Stay on top of the what's new in the world of Macs, listen to interviews with Mac-related newsmakers, and pick up technical tips to help you make the most of your Mac.

    Jeffrey says: "Great Show"
    "Entertaining and educational"
    Overall

    Fun to listen to on my work commute. Although not new to computers, I am new to the Mac, and I enjoy listening to what is new in the Mac world. Shawn and Jay are very entertaining--I like the give and take of their exchanges. Unlike another Mac internet radio show I've listened to, they don't interrupt their guests to cut to a commercial. The annual subscription price is a bargain for the entertainment and Mac tips I get.
    /K

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Galactic Convoy

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Bill Baldwin
    • Narrated By Full Cast
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (163)
    Performance
    (72)
    Story
    (74)

    Ursis nodded soberly out the Hyperscreens toward the merchant ships, then turned to Brim. "Out there, Wilf Ansor," he brooded, "are real heroes of war. To fight from behind disruptors of warship is something anyone can do. One can always count on lucky shooting to save him from disaster, or heavy armor plate at least. But to face enemy with only black void and thin sheet of hullmetal separating you from disruptors, and then stay in formation, that is kind of bravery we Sodeskayans record in Great Books."

    Alexander says: "A Ripping Good Yarn"
    "Not as good as the first one"
    Overall

    I reviewed the Helmsman and said it was so bad that it was good-very entertaining. But in this second volume the horrible dialogue wears thin, and it isn't as much fun as the first book. The love triangle with Margo gets even more ridiculous. I'm sorry I wasted the time on it.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Bill Baldwin's The Helmsman

    • ORIGINAL (10 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Bill Baldwin
    • Narrated By Steve Cumming, full cast
    Overall
    (192)
    Performance
    (68)
    Story
    (69)

    One of the few survivors of a League sneak attack on his poor and miserable homeworld of Carescria, Wilf Brim sets out to settle the score. Were it not for the attrition from the war that followed, Wilf would never have escaped his lower-class status and been accepted into the Academy. Now, freshly graduated, young Sublieutenant Wilf Ansor Brim, Imperial Fleet, begins his first assignment, Helmsman of the I.F.S. Truculent.

    David says: "The Helmsman"
    "So bad it's good"
    Overall

    I really enjoyed the book as light, escapist listening. This is by no means great literature. The descriptions are overdone, the dialog stilted and cliche-riddled. The sex scenes are puerile. Nevertheless it really is a lot of fun--like a B-movie space opera.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • War of Honor

    • ABRIDGED (8 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Barbara Rosenblat
    Overall
    (135)
    Performance
    (38)
    Story
    (40)

    No one wanted another war. Thomas Theisman didn't. After risking his life and a fresh round of civil war to overthrow the Committee of Public Safety's reign of terror and restore the Republic of Haven's ancient Constitution, an interstellar war was the last thing he wanted. Baron High Ridge didn't. The Prime Minister of Manticore was perfectly happy with the war he had. No one was shooting anyone else at the moment, and as long as he could spin out negotiations on the formal treaty of peace, his government could continue to milk all those "hostilities only" tax measures for their own partisan projects.

    Maurice says: "Extensively Abridged"
    "Disappointment"
    Overall

    I didn't pay close enough attention, so I didn't realize it was abridged. I read the book when it came out. The abridgement leaves out too much (although it does also leave out a lot of Honor's angst, which can get tedious).
    /K

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Da Vinci Code

    • ABRIDGED (7 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Dan Brown
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    Overall
    (2950)
    Performance
    (183)
    Story
    (187)

    While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call. The elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum, a baffling cipher found near the body. As Langdon and gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, sort through the bizarre riddle, they are stunned to discover a trail of clues hidden in the works of Da Vinci, clues visible for all to see and yet ingeniously disguised by the painter.

    Jonas says: "Overall Good"
    "Only so-so"
    Overall

    Irritating writing style--Brown makes it clear that all of the characters know something you don't know. Shallow, fairly predictable plot despite all the "surprises." We're supposed to believe Brown regarding all sorts of esoteric knowledge, but he can't even get the form of address of an English knight correct (Sir Lee Teabing is referred to as "Sir Teabing" rather than "Sir Lee"). I really don't see what all the fuss is about.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir
    Overall
    (21291)
    Performance
    (12784)
    Story
    (12911)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: It’s easy to say that when it comes to sci-fi you either love it or you hate it. But with Ender’s Game, it seems to be you either love it or you love it.... The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Enter Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, the result of decades of genetic experimentation.

    Kapila says: "6 titles in the series so far"
    "Outstanding"
    Overall

    One of the best SF novels in recent history. A compelling and original story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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