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Jamie

Dallas, TX, United States | Member Since 2011

5
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 6 reviews
  • 111 ratings
  • 313 titles in library
  • 40 purchased in 2014
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  • The Gargoyle

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Andrew Davidson
    • Narrated By Lincoln Hoppe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (236)
    Performance
    (132)
    Story
    (137)

    An extraordinary debut novel of love that survives the fires of hell and transcends the boundaries of time. The narrator of The Gargoyle is a very contemporary cynic, physically beautiful and sexually adept, who dwells in the moral vacuum that is modern life. As the book opens, he is driving along a dark road when he is distracted by what seems to be a flight of arrows.

    Jim "The Impatient" says: "Hell is a choice"
    "Alright story. Slow narrator."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I liked this story okay since it had a very interesting permise.

    However, I had two pretty major complaints. The main character (the man who gets burned at the very beginning of the story), is basically full of self loathing, incredibly pessimistic, and kind of brings you down. Everyone else in the story helped balance his intense (albeit understandably considering the drastic change to his life) negativity. I almost stopped the story from that alone, however, I hoped that the story ended on a happy note so I kept listening.

    My second major complaint is the narrator. He read so incredibly slow that I'm sure the story could've been a little as 12 hours long. I use the Audible app to listen to my audiobooks so I was able to speed up his narration speed. Most of the time, I listened to his story at 1.5 speed, but all other times, I listened to it at twice the narration speed. It was disappointing.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Lock In (Narrated by Wil Wheaton)

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1666)
    Performance
    (1552)
    Story
    (1558)

    Not too long from today, a new, highly contagious virus makes its way across the globe. Most who get sick experience nothing worse than flu, fever, and headaches. But for the unlucky one percent - and nearly five million souls in the United States alone - the disease causes "Lock In": Victims fully awake and aware, but unable to move or respond to stimulus. The disease affects young, old, rich, poor, people of every color and creed. The world changes to meet the challenge.

    Alexis says: "Fun! Things you might want to know:"
    "Great story. Preferred Will Wheaton's narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story was great, like most all of John Scalzi's books. It was a very interesting concept and, after listening to the audiobook, I understand why Audible offered two different narrations! What a great execution!

    I listened to Will Wheaton's version first and then Amber Benson's. In her defense, I really love Will Wheaton's narrations, in general, and if I had listened to her narration and then Will Wheaton's, I probably would've liked her narration more. I still would've preferred Will Wheaton's but I wouldn't have had as high expectations after listening to his version nor been comparing the two as much. Amber Benson is just a lot more dramatic in the way she narrates and I'm not sure I like it all that much. If you're going to listen to both narrations, I recommend listening to Amber Benson's and then Will Wheaton's, just as a heads up.

    And, as for the story, it was very interesting and I can't wait for the next John Scalzi book! I love almost all of his work! I'm not going to try to summarize the book as I'm always worried about spoiling.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Lock In (Narrated by Amber Benson)

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Amber Benson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (478)
    Performance
    (426)
    Story
    (439)

    Not too long from today, a new, highly contagious virus makes its way across the globe. Most who get sick experience nothing worse than flu, fever, and headaches. But for the unlucky one percent - and nearly five million souls in the United States alone - the disease causes "Lock In": Victims fully awake and aware, but unable to move or respond to stimulus. The disease affects young, old, rich, poor, people of every color and creed. The world changes to meet the challenge.

    Anthony says: "Love Amber's Narration"
    "Great story. Preferred Will Wheaton's narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story was great, like most all of John Scalzi's books. It was a very interesting concept and, after listening to the audiobook, I understand why Audible offered two different narrations! What a great execution!

    I listened to Will Wheaton's version first and then Amber Benson's. In her defense, I really love Will Wheaton's narrations, in general, and if I had listened to her narration and then Will Wheaton's, I probably would've liked her narration more. I still would've preferred Will Wheaton's but I wouldn't have had as high expectations after listening to his version nor been comparing the two as much. Amber Benson is just a lot more dramatic in the way she narrates and I'm not sure I like it all that much. If you're going to listen to both narrations, I recommend listening to Amber Benson's and then Will Wheaton's, just as a heads up.

    And, as for the story, it was very interesting and I can't wait for the next John Scalzi book! I love almost all of his work! I'm not going to try to summarize the book as I'm always worried about spoiling.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Into Thin Air

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Jon Krakauer
    • Narrated By Philip Franklin
    Overall
    (2136)
    Performance
    (944)
    Story
    (958)

    The definitive, personal account of the deadliest season in the history of Everest by the acclaimed journalist and author of Into the Wild. Read by the author. Also, hear a Fresh Air interview with Krakauer conducted shortly after his ordeal.

    David says: "Being There"
    "Interesting story. Not the best narration."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story was something I found interesting and the author did a good job of portraying the hardships and turmoil the group faced that day. It's interesting to read an account of someone who has survived such a challenge.

    However, though I usually love the idea of a book being narrated by the author, this is not one that was well done. He just reads much too slowly and in an almost complete monotone. I had to force myself to keep listening, though I'm sure if I was visually reading the book, I wouldn't have been able to put it down.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Marcus Luttrell, Patrick Robinson
    • Narrated By Kevin Collins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2375)
    Performance
    (2216)
    Story
    (2227)

    Four US Navy SEALS departed one clear night in early July, 2005 for the mountainous Afghanistan-Pakistan border for a reconnaissance mission. Their task was to document the activity of an al Qaeda leader rumored to have a small army in a Taliban stronghold. Five days later, only one of those Navy SEALS made it out alive. This is the story of the only survivor of Operation Redwing, SEAL team leader Marcus Luttrell, and the extraordinary firefight that led to the largest loss of life in American Navy SEAL history.

    Mike says: "Enthralling and authentic story of valor in combat"
    "Good story but overly biased and long winded"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I wanted to read this book because so many people had told me how great it was. However, I must have been naive to expect the story to be written as a narrative versus as a sort of long conversation with the writer. The book is full of very far right Conservative, anti-Liberal rhetoric, which, these days, I'm getting a bit tired of all the political hate, from both sides. I understand that should maybe be expected from some military guys but I felt it severely distracted from the story. I appreciate and agree the sacrifice anyone in the military makes needs to be remembered, which is part of why I wanted to read the book. But the author so clearly expected the "liberal media" to criticize him that his criticism of the very far left Liberals (though he seemed to expect this of all liberals) and defense of his and the military's actions pervaded the entire book. I ended up being taken out of the story every time he would do this, even though I agree there are sometimes necessary evils and tough choices made in the time of war.

    It was interesting to hear about some of what the SEALs have to go through for training. However, this also felt more like Navy advertising versus being a part of the book. Yes, it was good to give the back story and idea of the mindset and personalities of the SEALs, but it was a little more than the first 1/3 of the book which just seemed unnecessary. It is amazing what Marcus Luttrell and his team went through and great to know there are people out there who will fight so hard to save a complete stranger, especially at high risk to themselves.

    The narrator really wasn't that great. He over enunciated every word and spoke just far too slowly. I listened to the entire audiobook at an accelerated speed. The first third at 2X speed and the part that was actually about the operation at about 1.5X and had absolutely no problem listening to the story. It helped the narration sound more normal, especially since, like I said, the book was written more as a conversation Marcus Luttrell was having with someone versus a retelling.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Les Miserables

    • UNABRIDGED (57 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Victor Hugo
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    Overall
    (1173)
    Performance
    (581)
    Story
    (591)

    Set in the Parisian underworld and plotted like a detective story, Les Miserables follows Jean Valjean, originally an honest peasant, who has been imprisoned for 19 years for stealing a loaf of bread to feed his sister's starving family. A hardened criminal upon his release, he eventually reforms, becoming a successful industrialist and town mayor. Despite this, he is haunted by an impulsive former crime and is pursued relentlessly by the police inspector Javert.

    Amazon Customer says: "I love this book - one of the best of all time"
    "Great story. Awful narrator."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've read the full, unabridged version of this novel before and loved it. However, I didn't want to devote so much time to reading such a lengthy book again.

    I chose this version of the audiobook unwisely. The narrator's voice is so affected and pretentious that it completely detaches from the story. Listen to the sample and then imagine listening to that for more than 55 hours. I couldn't do it for more than 15 minutes. I'm going to purchase the other version since the narrator's accent is more how I would imagine and like the narrator of such a great book to be.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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