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Benjamin

Cheyenne, WY, USA | Member Since 2006

ratings
153
REVIEWS
5
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
3

  • The Sign of the Four

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Arthur Conan Doyle
    • Narrated By Walter Covell
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    Miss Mary Morstan has been receiving pearls and she knows not why or from whom. Now she receives something else: a letter that promises to reveal the mystery and to "right the wrongs" against her. "If you distrust me," continued the correspondent, "bring two friends." She brings Sherlock Holmes and Watson.

    Benjamin says: "Bad Recording, Good Book"
    "Bad Recording, Good Book"
    Overall

    This recording suffers from quite a few "compression artifacts" and suddenly altering volumes that affect the enjoyment of the audio. The reader is quite good and does a great job of conveying the various characters in the story. At the current price this is a great deal however, although not a very high quality recording. It appears as though these shortcomings are a result of the inferior quality of the original recording, and not that of the digital conversion process. For a new fan of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's erstwhile sleuth, this is a worthy monetary investment.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Bloody Crown of Conan

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Robert E. Howard
    • Narrated By Todd McLaren
    Overall
    (344)
    Performance
    (170)
    Story
    (172)

    In his hugely influential and tempestuous career, Robert E. Howard created the genre that came to be known as sword and sorcery - and brought to life one of fantasy's boldest and most enduring figures: Conan the Cimmerian, reaver, slayer, barbarian, king. This volume gathers together three of Howard's longest and most famous Conan stories.

    Kirk says: "Awesome! Crom and Steel! Long live Conan!"
    "Wonderful presentation of the best Conan material"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book contains some of the most polished Conan stories ever written.. Such a collection of Howard's unadulterated Conan tales has been a long time in coming. For those new to the exploits of Conan this collection is wonderful place to start.

    Todd McLaren is equal to the task of conveying the atmosphere of the Hyborian Age with his range of masculine emotions. He has the requisite deep bass and emotive snarl for these characters. His voice for Conan is dead-on perfect.

    Long time fans of Conan will especially enjoy three essays by Patrice Louinet that are included at the end of the book. These essays provide an important literary analysis of Howard and his work. Howard is finally getting the credit that fans have long known he deserves.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Deconverted: A Journey from Religion to Reason

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Seth Andrews
    • Narrated By Seth Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (230)
    Performance
    (222)
    Story
    (220)

    Assertions like these seem comical until you realize that many Christian parents aren't kidding when they teach them to their children as facts. Every day, impressionable young minds are conditioned to blindly accept wild biblical tales of floating zoos, talking shrubbery, 900-year-old humans, the undead, curses, levitation, demon/human hybrids and men who obtain super-human strength from the length of their hair. Allegiance to these teachings is expected, often demanded.

    Michael says: "A man's spiritual journey out of religiousity"
    "Confessions of a Christian Apostate!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Having never heard of Seth Andrews before, I was pulled in by his broadcast quality voice and his open, supportive approach to his subject. Too often atheists are abrasive and derisive about believers. Mr. Andrews is respectful, cordial, and has a wonderful voice. His history in radio production comes through in the quality of this work.

    Like Mr. Andrews I am not a scientist. This work was extremely accessible to me; it was easy to wrap my head around the logic he presents. While there are certainly arguments to support his thesis, this work is more of a memoir about Andrews' own journey from Christianity to Atheism.

    Along the way he also introduces and plugs his own on-line presence. Even this is done respectfully; he does not make the mistake of turning into an advertisement. He lets the reader know that becoming an Atheist is not easy, but there is a community of unbelievers who have been there as well.

    What impressed me most about this work is the lack of profanity, and the respect that Andrews gives to Christians; he does not vilify and belittle them. I found that very refreshing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Windup Girl

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Paolo Bacigalupi
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3438)
    Performance
    (1835)
    Story
    (1847)

    Anderson Lake is a company man, AgriGen's Calorie Man in Thailand. Under cover as a factory manager, Anderson combs Bangkok's street markets in search of foodstuffs thought to be extinct, hoping to reap the bounty of history's lost calories. There, he encounters Emiko...Emiko is the Windup Girl, a strange and beautiful creature. One of the New People, Emiko is not human; instead, she is an engineered being, creche-grown and programmed to satisfy the decadent whims of a Kyoto businessman.

    Marius says: "Al Gore nightmare meets Blade Runner."
    "If you like sci-fi, then give this one a try"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This work has a vivid tactile feel to it; the humidity, smells, crowds, dampness, dirt, and squalor of the setting gets under your fingernails. My subconscious had an active couple of weeks while I was listening to this work. All of the scenes in the book look like a Thai version of Blade Runner. This work was written to be filmed. Bravo to Mr. Bacigalupi for creating such an imaginative addition to the bio-punk genre.

    Narrator Jonathan Davis has a soothing baritone that lends itself well to the intensity of the story. His pronunciation of the few difficult Thai words ("Somdet Chaopraya") sound excellent to my untrained Western ears. There is an incongruity between his Western baritone and the Asiatic characters he is representing, however. Despite this he does a wonderful job of differentiating between the various characters using only the subtle qualities of a trained voice actor. I never had trouble identifying the characters that were speaking.

    The plot introduces a consistent world-view based upon limited resources, nationalism, flawed economics, and stone age mysticism. Very heady stuff. His "kinksprings" fascinated me. Just hearing the words "algae bath" makes me sick to my stomach now. The ending was a real pleasure. If you like science fiction then I recommend you give this work a try.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Warlord of Mars

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Edgar Rice Burroughs
    • Narrated By John Bolen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (117)
    Performance
    (47)
    Story
    (48)

    John Carter risks everything to rescue his wife, Princess Dejah Thoris, from the clutches of his evil adversaries, but he is always just one step behind! His quest carries him ultimately to the mysterious northern pole. Will this civilization, submerged in ice, prove fatal to our hero?...This is the third in Burroughs' 11-volume Mars series, a blend of sci-fi and romantic adventure.

    Noe says: "A Trip to Mars."
    "A rousing John Carter adventure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Be sure to read the two previous novels in the John Carter series (A Princess of Mars, and Gods of Mars) before this one. A lack of context for this work will leave you wondering what all the fuss is about. This tale provides an exhilarating conclusion to the cliff hangar ending in Gods of Mars. Exhibiting his creative genius, Edgar Rice Burroughs uses this tale as an expansion of the entire Barsoomian fantasy setting. There is hidden treasure within the books' social commentary about religion and race relations. Impress people at your next literary cocktail party by comparing and contrasting the Therns with any organized religion you care to pick on.

    John Bolen narrates this work with both skill and, more importantly, with respect. Subject matter that seems campy and stilted by comparison with modern fiction is delivered professionally. Mr. Bolen performs a subtle Southern accent very well, imparting just the right amount of geography to John Carter. He speaks with a slow cadence that I find reverential, which is perfectly suited to this science fiction classic.

    Highly recommended for fans of classic science fiction.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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