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John

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Member Since 2013

ratings
64
REVIEWS
13
FOLLOWING
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HELPFUL VOTES
6

  • The Lost Civilization Enigma: A New Inquiry into the Existence of Ancient Cities, Cultures, and Peoples Who Pre-Date Recorded History

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Philip Coppens
    • Narrated By David Drummond
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (90)
    Performance
    (80)
    Story
    (82)

    Are history books giving us the whole story? Or is civilization far more complex and for older than we have been taught? Our school textbooks barely mention the 6,000-year-old Sumerian civilization, yet the latest archaeological findings at sites such as Jericho, and most recently, Gobekli Tepe in Turkey, have been dated to 10,000 BC. Civilization goes back at least another 10,000 years, if we are willing to believe what our ancestors themselves claimed.

    Joseph says: "Large parts of history are still unknown"
    "frustrating"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    A frustrating mix of genuinely fascinating, tangible material - Bosnian pyramids, copper mining in N. America, a prehistoric road network in France - and credulous silliness (conversations with crystal skulls, Atlantis, etc).


    Would you recommend The Lost Civilization Enigma to your friends? Why or why not?

    No, on balance.


    Was The Lost Civilization Enigma worth the listening time?

    Barely.


    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Jakarta Pandemic

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Steven Konkoly
    • Narrated By Joseph Morton
    Overall
    (732)
    Performance
    (655)
    Story
    (652)

    In the late fall of 2013, a lethal pandemic virus emerges from the Islamic Republic of Indonesia (IRI) and rages unchecked across every continent. When the Jakarta Flu threatens his picture-perfect Maine neighborhood, Alex Fletcher, Iraq War veteran, is ready to do whatever it takes to keep his family safe. As a seasoned sales representative for Biosphere Pharmaceuticals, makers of a leading flu virus treatment, Alex understands what a deadly pandemic means for all of them.

    deedeeg says: "Nice surprise"
    "Expected More"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The cardboard ex-milltary-hero saves his boring family using his survivalist foresight and fortuitous status as a flu-vaccine salesman. I liked the probably-realistic early days of the pandemic, massive denial all round. Once everyone hunkered down in their bunkers, the narrative lost interest, predictably.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Hot Rock: The First Dortmunder Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Donald E. Westlake
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (184)
    Performance
    (124)
    Story
    (128)

    John Dortmunder and company are hired by an U.N. African Ambassador to steal the famed Balabomo Emerald from the hands of a rival African country. But their daring and clever burglarly goes awry, and the emerald slips through their fingers. Undaunted, Dortmunder chases the gem by plane, train and automobile in hot pursuit of the hot rock.

    William says: "Dortmunder is on his game in this fun introduction"
    "Cartoony"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The writer takes us back to the early 60s for a caper novel with the usual cast of petty criminals. I've never met a more one-dimensional crew. The dialog-heavy style (the novel must be a first draft of a hoped-for-Hollywood screenplay) just highlights the weak writing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Strange Affair of Spring Heeled Jack: Burton & Swinburne, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Mark Hodder
    • Narrated By Gerard Doyle
    Overall
    (1136)
    Performance
    (1011)
    Story
    (1014)

    Sir Richard Francis Burton and Algernon Charles Swinburne are sucked into the perilous depths of a moral and ethical vacuum when Lord Palmerston commissions Burton to investigate assaults on young women committed by a weird apparition known as Spring Heeled Jack - and to find out why werewolves are terrorizing London's East End.

    Robert says: "Fun Steampunk but on the outlandish side"
    "Can't recommend"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The plot is preposterous, and the world-building - "add a steam engine to ever VIctorian artifact and throw in some rotors" - is unimaginative. If you want to see that done right, try The Windup Girl.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Aftershock: The Next Economy and America’s Future

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Robert Reich
    • Narrated By Robert Reich
    Overall
    (426)
    Performance
    (246)
    Story
    (251)

    The author of 12 acclaimed books, Robert B. Reich is a Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and has served in three national administrations. While many blamed Wall Street for the financial meltdown, Aftershock points a finger at a national economy in which wealth is increasingly concentrated at the top - and where a grasping middle class simply does not have the resources to remain viable.

    Chris says: "Very plausible assessment of our economy"
    "An eye-opener"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Concise, clearly-expressed analysis of current economic conditions. A very convincing argument by a credible commentator.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Hammered: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Kevin Hearne
    • Narrated By Luke Daniels
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6804)
    Performance
    (6165)
    Story
    (6170)

    Thor, the Norse god of thunder, is worse than a blowhard and a bully - he’s ruined countless lives and killed scores of innocents. After centuries, Viking vampire Leif Helgarson is ready to get his vengeance, and he’s asked his friend Atticus O’Sullivan, the last of the Druids, to help take down this Norse nightmare.One survival strategy has worked for Atticus for more than two thousand years: stay away from the guy with the lightning bolts. But things are heating up in Atticus’s home base of Tempe, Arizona....

    Hallie says: "Love this series!"
    "Guilty Pleasure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've listened to three books in this seies. While there are moments of real creativity, I think I'm done. It's a comic-book approach to subjects that could support much better stories. Jesus Christ shows up and stops a bar brawl. A vampire kills Thor (spoiler). Writing this, I regret listening to it..

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Higher Call: An Incredible True Story of Combat and Chivalry in the War-Torn Skies of World War II

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Adam Makos
    • Narrated By Robertson Dean
    Overall
    (949)
    Performance
    (867)
    Story
    (875)

    Four days before Christmas in 1943, a badly damaged American bomber struggled to fly over wartime Germany. At its controls was a 21-year-old pilot. Half his crew lay wounded or dead. It was their first mission. Suddenly a sleek, dark shape pulled up on the bomber’s tail - a German Messerschmitt fighter. Worse, the German pilot was an ace, a man able to destroy the American bomber with the squeeze of a trigger.

    JerryL says: "An Absolutely Incredcredible Audiobook!"
    "Rivetting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Great capture of time and place and character. I felt like I was there, for better or worse.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The New Space Opera 2

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Gardner Dozois (editor), Jonathan Strahan (editor)
    • Narrated By Tom Weiner, Bahni Turpin, Caroline Shaffer, and others
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    Following the success of their Locus Award – winning anthology The New Space Opera, editors Gardner Dozois and Jonathan Strahan up the ante with The New Space Opera 2, in which more of the most beloved names in science fiction spin stunning tales of interstellar adventure and wonder.

    John says: "Overall, Meh"
    "Overall, Meh"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm pretty sure I won't remember any of these stories next week. As opposed to other stories I read thirty years ago and still remember.

    I begin to think that anthologies of "original" stories are anthologies of stories that couldn't be sold elsewhere. In future, I'll concentrate on collections of Hugo/Nebula award winning stories.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Into the Black: Odyssey One

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Evan Currie
    • Narrated By Benjamin L. Darcie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1408)
    Performance
    (1303)
    Story
    (1308)

    Captain Eric Weston and his crew encounter horrors, wonders, monsters, and people; all of which will test their resolve, challenge their abilities, and put in sharp relief what is necessary to be a hero. A first-rate military-science-fiction epic that combines old-school space opera and modern storytelling, Into the Black: Odyssey One is a riveting, exhilarating adventure with vivid details, rich mythology, and relentless pacing.

    C. Hartmann says: "Great, Solid Military SciFi / Evolving Space Opera"
    "Totally Unimaginative"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I kept listening, waiting for a tiny spark of originality. I gave up after a few hours. This is generic Star Trek fan fiction, complete with aliens-who-look-like-lovely-earth-women, generic ethnic crew members, generic technology, lantern-jawed captain, etc. Ouch.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Hexed: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Kevin Hearne
    • Narrated By Luke Daniels
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7657)
    Performance
    (6870)
    Story
    (6888)

    Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, doesn’t care much for witches. Still, he’s about to make nice with the local coven by signing a mutually beneficial nonaggression treaty when suddenly the witch population in modern-day Tempe, Arizona, quadruples overnight. And the new girls are not just bad, they’re badasses with a dark history on the German side of World War II. With a fallen angel feasting on local high school students, a horde of Bacchants blowing in from Vegas, and a dangerously sexy Celtic goddess of fire vying for his attention, Atticus is having trouble scheduling the witch hunt.

    Adam says: "Authenticity, Humor and Brilliant Writing"
    "Disappointing book 2"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Kevin Hearne and/or Luke Daniels?

    I enjoyed the first book in this series, but this second book was a real let down. It feels like the author is settling in for a nice long lucrative series. Much like an episode of a TV series, in this book stuff happens, regular characters banter with each other, there's some preposterous sex, but nothing fundamental changes.
    I'm done with this series. Since when do druids fire RPGs and bonk goddesses?


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Luke Daniels?

    Sure.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    No.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Vermeer's Hat: The Seventeenth Century and the Dawn of the Global World

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Timothy Brook
    • Narrated By Malcolm Hillgartner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (12)

    A Vermeer painting shows a military officer in a Dutch sitting room, talking to a laughing girl. In another canvas, fruit spills from a blue-and-white porcelain bowl. Familiar images that captivate us with their beauty--but as Timothy Brook shows us, these intimate pictures actually give us a remarkable view of an expanding world.

    Acteon says: "A wonderful book"
    "Tedious"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What would have made Vermeer's Hat better?

    Selecting events in the 17th century that were actually *interesting*.


    What was most disappointing about Timothy Brook’s story?

    This is a fascinating time period but the focus was on endless tedious detail on the global trade tobacco, china and other consumerist concepts. I guess I should have researched the book b4 buying.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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