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JPaladin

Member Since 2009

ratings
89
REVIEWS
49
FOLLOWING
11
FOLLOWERS
17
HELPFUL VOTES
83

  • Tigana

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Guy Gavriel Kay
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    Overall
    (888)
    Performance
    (553)
    Story
    (562)

    Tigana is the magical story of a beleaguered land struggling to be free. It is the tale of a people so cursed by the black sorcery of a cruel, despotic king that even the name of their once-beautiful homeland cannot be spoken or remembered.

    But after years of devastation, a handful of courageous men and women embark upon a dangerous crusade to overthrow their conquerors and bring back to the dark world the brilliance of a long-lost name: Tigana.

    Robert says: "Says a lot about who we are."
    "Good, but lost me a bit by the end."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've always been impressed by Kay's writing. This was a very interesting idea with some real potential. Yet, towards the end I wasn't able to stay under its spell- and I lost my ability to suspend my disbelief regarding the evolution of some of the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Crimson Campaign: The Powder Mage Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Brian McClellan
    • Narrated By Christian Rodska
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (206)
    Performance
    (191)
    Story
    (191)

    Tamas's invasion of Kez ends in disaster when a Kez counter-offensive leaves him cut off behind enemy lines with only a fraction of his army, no supplies, and no hope of reinforcements. Drastically outnumbered and pursued by the enemy's best, he must lead his men on a reckless march through northern Kez to safety, and back over the mountains so that he can defend his country from an angry god, Kresimir.

    Hassan says: "I Was Extremely Surprised!!"
    "Better than the first book."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Really enjoyed this one. Some of the characters really came into their own and the relationships and storyline became more compelling.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tower Lord: Raven's Shadow, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Anthony Ryan
    • Narrated By Steven Brand
    Overall
    (723)
    Performance
    (687)
    Story
    (692)

    Vaelin Al Sorna, warrior of the Sixth Order, called Darkblade, called Hope Killer. The greatest warrior of his day, and witness to the greatest defeat of his nation: King Janus' vision of a Greater Unified Realm drowned in the blood of brave men fighting for a cause Vaelin alone knows was forged from a lie. Sick at heart, he comes home, determined to kill no more. Named Tower Lord of the Northern Reaches by King Janus's grateful heir, he can perhaps find peace in a colder, more remote land far from the intrigues of a troubled Realm.

    Jack says: "The Great Swampy Middle!"
    "Good continuation of the story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While not as mind-blowingly good as the first book, with a bit more rambling, less focused story-telling this book was nonetheless an enjoyable read well worth the credit.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kushiel's Dart

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Jacqueline Carey
    • Narrated By Anne Flosnik
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1102)
    Performance
    (699)
    Story
    (706)

    The land of Terre d'Ange is a place of unsurpassing beauty and grace. It is said that angels found the land and saw it was good...and the ensuing race that rose from the seed of angels and men live by one simple rule: Love as thou wilt.

    Glen Gaines says: "The Kushiel series in order"
    "Never finished it."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The reviews seemed pretty positive, from readers with similar tastes, so I gave it a try.

    In fact I gave it three separate tries.

    I guess its just not my cup of tea.

    Neither the plot or the characters captured me.

    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
    (10777)
    Performance
    (9778)
    Story
    (9798)

    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!!"
    "Jumped the shark."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    At the risk of being obnoxious, I'd say this book "jumped the shark" about half way through.

    It started as a well-written and interesting urban psuedo-fantasy mystery. I was curious about what was hidden behind the strange occurrences and was drawn along with the characters.

    However, as the mystery was revealed, it got odder and odder. Eventually it stretched my ability to suspend my disbelief. Not necessarily because the circumstance became so surreal (and they did) but because the characters, for the most part, took it all so well--as if it were just another challenge to overcome.

    All in all it kept me entertained, but I'll think twice before buying another book from this author.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Night Watch: Watch, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Sergei Lukyanenko
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (544)
    Performance
    (405)
    Story
    (410)

    Night Watch is a world as elaborate and imaginative as Tolkien or the best Asimov. Living among us are the "Others", an ancient race of humans with supernatural powers who swear allegiance to either the Dark or the Light. A thousand-year treaty has maintained the balance of power, but an ancient prophecy decrees that one supreme "Other" will rise up and tip the balance. When a young boy with extraordinary powers emerges, will the forces of the Light be able to keep the Dark from corrupting the boy and destroying the world?

    Parusski says: "Lyrical, haunting and engrossing!"
    "Pretty good."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed, but wasn't blown away by this book. There were some interesting concepts bantered about by the main character, but nothing too profound or meaningful was every truly developed. Story line was run of the mill. But the writing was pretty good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Words of Radiance: The Stormlight Archive, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (48 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer, Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6654)
    Performance
    (6326)
    Story
    (6343)

    In that first volume, we were introduced to the remarkable world of Roshar, a world both alien and magical, where gigantic hurricane-like storms scour the surface every few days and life has adapted accordingly. Roshar is shared by humans and the enigmatic, humanoid Parshendi, with whom they are at war.

    D says: "Book !!; no let down- "Words of Radieance" shines"
    "Delivered!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    That's the Sanderson I've been waiting for!!!

    Picks up the storyline and expands on it.

    A couple parts felt a little bit cheezy (ala Stealheart and not Way of Kings), but not too bad.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Across the Nightingale Floor: Tales of the Otori, Book One

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Lian Hearn
    • Narrated By Kevin Gray, Aiko Nakasone
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6035)
    Performance
    (2188)
    Story
    (2196)

    A tour-de-force novel set in ancient Japan filled with passion, fantasy, and feuding warlords. The first volume in the highly anticipated Tales of the Otori trilogy.

    Jody R. Nathan says: "Wonderful epic story"
    "Enjoyable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Nothing to write home to mother about. But an enjoyable fantasy story set in a feudal Japanese society.

    I liked it and may look for sequels.

    0 of 0 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
    (6947)
    Performance
    (3315)
    Story
    (3318)

    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..."
    "3-books in one--AT LEAST"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book took me by surprise. Both in how much I enjoyed it and in how diverse it felt in plot and story-telling.

    It starts in the near future in a sort-of FBI pseudo mystery- setting, mildly calling to mind The X-Files (a character even directly references it). This section had some very brutal and sad events that made me consider putting the book down, but I'm glad I didn't

    The story later shifts into a few very different mid-apocalyptic narrative (some personal narratives) that is very imaginative and empathetic.

    Then it shifts again into a post-apocalyptic community survival story.

    Yet, it is all very purposeful and interconnected. The need for the great span of time and the diversity of POV becomes apparent as the story progresses.

    Given its length and shifting story-lines, Mr. Cronin could have easily broken this up into more than one book. I greatly respect that he didn't and I think it made for a better story.

    I'm already onto the next book in the series and enjoying it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The War with the Mein: Book One of the Acacia Trilogy

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By David Anthony Durham
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (849)
    Performance
    (403)
    Story
    (411)

    A deadly assassin sent from a race called the Mein, exiled long ago to an ice-locked stronghold in the frozen north, strikes at Leodan Akaran, ruler of the Known World, while the Mein also unleash surprise attacks across the empire. On his deathbed, Leodan puts into play a plan to allow his children to escape, each to his separate destiny. And so his children begin a quest to avenge their father's death and restore the Acacian empire, this time on the basis of universal freedom.

    Glen says: "Thumbs up!"
    "Great potential"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The book was a bit of a roller coaster for me.

    For the 1st half or so I was interested but not truly captured by the story. Then it hooked me hard. But then I thought the story/plot was becoming predictable and too "safe." Then it went a whole new direction--which surprised me (and I'm still not sure how I feel about it, but it was interesting).

    Another review compared it to Game of Thrones, while I see the comparison--mostly due to the multiple first person point of views and the divergent and re-convergent story lines--it has a very different feel. Enjoyable, but without the same sense of gritty "realism" for the characters, except for some distinct segments. There is a similar story arc regarding the diaspora of siblings from a family destroyed by political/military conflict set to a background of layered personal, political, and mythological conflict. There is also a similar "forgotten" history of a dark and mysterious foreign threat looming behind the story-line in the first book--waiting to be developed, I presume, in the following books.

    And there are some interesting and some what unique ideas here and some great potential for an intriguing epic story.

    In short: I liked it and I'm going on to the next book. It isn't yet one of my favorites, but I could see it becoming one of them if the series continues on its current trajectory.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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