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Sarra

SEATTLE, WA, United States | Member Since 2012

8
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 8 reviews
  • 22 ratings
  • 113 titles in library
  • 1 purchased in 2015
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  • Nexus: Nexus, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Ramez Naam
    • Narrated By Luke Daniels
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (262)
    Performance
    (234)
    Story
    (235)

    In the near future, the nano-drug Nexus can link mind to mind. There are some who want to improve it. There are some who want to eradicate it. And there are others who just want to exploit it. When a young scientist is caught improving Nexus, he’s thrust over his head into a world of danger and international espionage, with far more at stake than anyone realizes.

    Amy says: "The Post-human Future is Now"
    "Exciting, engaging and thought-provoking"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Nexus explores the best and worst in humanity, as the characters and organizations struggle to make sense of emerging technologies. Naam's characterizations feel very real- from the sensual joy and emotional fulfillment of connection to the murderous rage or chilling certainty of a soldier doing her job. There are no one-dimensional characters here, which made me connect with all of them, even while I disagreed with some. The story is fast-paced and thought provoking. I couldn't help but wonder what I would do with the technology presented within. The book left me with excitement and optimism for where humanity can go, tempered with a clear understanding of how things can go wrong. Not bad for a sci-fi thriller! I'm eagerly awaiting the next book.

    The narrator did an admirable job with an international set of characters. A few of his voices were a bit annoying but it makes for a very diverse world so I think those were actually great choices.

    Overall, it was an excellent story combined with a great narrator. Sci-fi fans will love it, and Naam makes the technical details easy for anyone to understand, so I believe that it can have an even wider audience. A great, thought-provoking read, highly recommended!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • A Beautiful Friendship: Star Kingdom, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By David Weber
    • Narrated By Khristine Hvam
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1213)
    Performance
    (1072)
    Story
    (1076)

    Stephanie Harrington had always expected to be a forest ranger on her homeworld of Meyerdahl until her parents relocated to the frontier planet of Sphinx in the far distant Star Kingdom of Manticore. It should have been the perfect new home - a virgin wilderness full of new species of every sort, just waiting to be discovered. But Sphinx is a far more dangerous place than ultra-civilized Meyerdahl, and Stephanie's explorations come to a sudden halt when her parents lay down the law: no trips into the bush without adult supervision!

    brendanstallard says: "Wow, Weber hits the target."
    "Poor writing ruins an interesting world"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The world in this book has some interesting elements- specifically the native critters on the planet, which are telepathic and have some interesting tribal dynamics. However, I couldn't get past the poor writing. Repetitive and poorly edited, it pulled me away from the story too much.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Name of the Wind: Kingkiller Chronicles, Day 1

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Patrick Rothfuss
    • Narrated By Nick Podehl
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13863)
    Performance
    (11416)
    Story
    (11538)

    This is a tale of sorrow, a tale of survival, a tale of one man's search for meaning in his universe, and how that search, and the indomitable will that drove it, gave birth to a legend.

    Joanna says: "Wow!"
    "Creative fantasy with a rich world"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is a great example of rich world building, without a lot of exposition. The magic system is fresh and interesting. The world has several different nations, each with unique cultures. However, the author doesn't spend ages telling you the history of all of them, instead allowing the characters' interactions to tell the reader the backstory and hint at deeper details.
    The main character is interesting and well-developed. He's a storyteller and bard, and the way he talks about the little flourishes and drama he adds to the story gives us a more intimate understanding of the story. It's a nice touch, and it holds up well throughout the book.

    This gives the reader a huge challenge- not only does he have to manage many different characters with distinct accents, but he also has to lend the narrative a storyteller's flair. The reader manages it all, which I found incredibly impressive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Privilege of the Sword

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Ellen Kushner
    • Narrated By Ellen Kushner, Barbara Rosenblat, Felicia Day, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (505)
    Performance
    (459)
    Story
    (462)

    Award-winning author, narrator, and screenwriter Neil Gaiman personally selected this book, and, using the tools of the Audiobook Creation Exchange (ACX), cast the narrators and produced this work for his audiobook label, Neil Gaiman Presents. In this exciting new "illuminated production", the author herself reads her own work, supported by a full cast.

    Ann says: "Austen-es​que tale (with swordfight​s!)"
    "Unusual fantasy, and an unusual audiobook"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed the story, without having read the previous book. The characters were complex, and I enjoyed how my understanding of them evolved over the course of the story. The main character was relatable, and I enjoyed her passion and strength. The Duke was mysterious, and well voiced.

    The audiobook did something unusual by adding some sound effects in, with very mixed results. Some of them were useful in setting the scene, like the party sounds, but I HATED the metal clashing sound that they used at the opening of the sword practice sessions. That sound is what pulled my performance rating down to three stars, since it almost made me stop listening.

    However, I did keep up with it and I enjoyed it in the end.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Bellwether

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Connie Willis
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (854)
    Performance
    (543)
    Story
    (545)

    Sandra Foster studies fads and their meanings for the HiTek corporation. Bennett O'Reilly works with monkey group behavior and chaos theory for the same company. When the two are thrust together due to a misdelivered package and a run of seemingly bad luck, they find a joint project in a flock of sheep. But a series of setbacks and disappointments arise before they are able to find answers to their questions - with the unintended help of the errant, forgetful, and careless office assistant Flip.

    Charles says: "The Lone Naysayer..."
    "Repetitive"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Bellwether? What did you like least?

    The characters and setting were interesting. I found the actual story to be incredibly repetitive. The main character repeats the same few phrases over and over and over again. It might be an accurate model of how a scientist puzzles over a problem, but it just sounded to me like she was trying to pad out the length of the story.


    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Sacre Bleu: A Comedy d'Art

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Christopher Moore
    • Narrated By Euan Morton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1251)
    Performance
    (1093)
    Story
    (1104)

    In July 1890, Vincent van Gogh went into a cornfield and shot himself. Or did he? Why would an artist at the height of his creative powers attempt to take his life... and then walk a mile to a doctor's house for help? Who was the crooked little "color man" Vincent had claimed was stalking him across France? And why had the painter recently become deathly afraid of a certain shade of blue? These are just a few of the questions confronting Vincent's friends who vow to discover the truth of van Gogh's untimely death.

    John says: "Not Moore at his funniest, but Moore completely"
    "Oddly Annoying"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Different story.


    What was most disappointing about Christopher Moore’s story?

    Normally I am a big fan of Christopher Moore but for some reason the gender dynamics in this story really bothered me. The old boys club of the artists, and the fact that the two main female characters are a muse/succubus and a nasty bitch just made the whole thing feel unpleasant.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Anger, annoyance. I know that the art world was (and still is) an old boys club, but the way these men talked about women was just frustrating.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Etiquette & Espionage: Finishing School, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Gail Carriger
    • Narrated By Moira Quirk
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1400)
    Performance
    (1278)
    Story
    (1283)

    Fourteen-year old Sophronia is the bane of her mother's existence. More interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper etiquette at tea - and god forbid anyone see her atrocious curtsy - Mrs. Temminnick is desperate her daughter become a proper lady. She enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

    But little do Sophronia or her mother know that this is a school where ingenious young girls learn to finish all right - but it's a different kind of finishing.

    Lynne Phelps says: "Fans of the Parasol Protectorate, Rejoice!"
    "Fun and Smart"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Etiquette & Espionage rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Near the top! Both the story and the performance are top notch.


    What did you like best about this story?

    This setting brilliantly gets around the main problem with young adult novels, which is that kids end up hearing and seeing things they never should be involved in while the adults are clueless. Because these children are studying to be spies, it actually makes sense that they snoop in the adult's business and get involved out of pure curiosity.


    Which character – as performed by Moira Quirk – was your favorite?

    They were all very well done, and I loved Dimmity as the flightly counterpart to Sophronia.


    Any additional comments?

    The story was engaging and entertaining and exceedingly well read.

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

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Kevin Hearne
    • Narrated By Luke Daniels
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10965)
    Performance
    (9793)
    Story
    (9765)

    Atticus O’Sullivan, last of the Druids, lives peacefully in Arizona, running an occult bookshop and shape-shifting in his spare time to hunt with his Irish wolfhound. His neighbors and customers think that this handsome, tattooed Irish dude is about twenty-one years old - when in actuality, he’s twenty-one centuries old. Not to mention: He draws his power from the earth, possesses a sharp wit, and wields an even sharper magical sword known as Fragarach, the Answerer. Unfortunately, a very angry Celtic god wants that sword, and he’s hounded Atticus for centuries....

    Chris says: "Finally, a modern day fantasy that really hits the"
    "Interesting world, lacks dramatic tension"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Kevin Hearne and/or Luke Daniels?

    Probably not.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The story setting, with every god ever worshiped still hanging around, has a lot of potential. However, the fact that humans don't know about them is pretty unlikely considering how much meddling they do.

    The main character has great potential but is too overpowered. He handles every crisis with flair and never seems to be in any real danger. And his one mentioned weakness is not exploited in this book. He's a fun character but the ease with which he fights gods makes it a bit boring. I did really enjoy his druid abilities and ideals.


    What aspect of Luke Daniels’s performance would you have changed?

    He mispronounces words, which drives me crazy! Other than that, his performance was good- nice use of accents. His female characters were all a bit breathy, which is not to my taste.


    Any additional comments?

    It's a fun setting but I'm not compelled to read more. I know the main character will conquer his obstacles with ease.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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