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John Powell III

attorneyjohn

Houston, Texas - United States | Member Since 2009

1
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 99 ratings
  • 330 titles in library
  • 12 purchased in 2014
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  • The Spy Who Came in from the Cold: A George Smiley Novel, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs)
    • By John le Carré
    • Narrated By Michael Jayston
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (241)
    Performance
    (219)
    Story
    (218)

    In the shadow of the newly erected Berlin Wall, Alec Leamas watches as his last agent is shot dead by East German sentries. For Leamas, the head of Berlin Station, the Cold War is over. As he faces the prospect of retirement or worse - a desk job - Control offers him a unique opportunity for revenge. Assuming the guise of an embittered and dissolute ex-agent, Leamas is set up to trap Mundt, the deputy director of the East German Intelligence Service - with himself as the bait.

    Walter says: "Great novel, but not Smiley..."
    "Gritty, real world cold war feel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Spy Who Came in from the Cold to be better than the print version?

    I generally do prefer audiobook versions to print versions nowadays, though it is a great experience to be able to have time to sit down and read a great novel.


    What other book might you compare The Spy Who Came in from the Cold to and why?

    Seems trite, but Casino Royale, the original Bond by Ian Fleming. This book is more grounded in realism and gritty, and loss of life, etc. However, the time period is very reminiscent in each.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The recollection of Limas about the recruitment of the German spy in Berlin's Presidium secretariat.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    At the realistic-seeming finish, where no one swoops in and saves the world, ala James Bond, I started out with an initial disappointed feeling, and then realized that how I felt was exactly what the author wanted us to feel.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Die Trying: Jack Reacher, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Lee Child
    • Narrated By Jonathan McClain
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2055)
    Performance
    (1830)
    Story
    (1826)

    When a woman is kidnapped off a Chicago street in broad daylight, Jack Reacher's in the wrong place at the wrong time. He's kidnapped with her. Chained together and racing across America toward an unknown destination, they're at the mercy of a group of men demanding an impossible ransom. Because Reacher's female companion is worth more than he imagines. Now he has to save them both - from the inside out - or die trying....

    Donna says: "STILL IN PROCESS OF LISTENING TO IT, BUT....."
    "Jack Reacher is my newest favorite guy!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Die Trying rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Pretty dang high, I have to tell you.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I liked the way Jack Reacher continued to surprise himself, and me, with the way he discovered the plot to be twisting and turning with him in it.


    What about Jonathan McClain’s performance did you like?

    Sort of subtly interesting, down to earth, but with a fierceness if you will, that leads right into the character's mindset.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dark of the Moon

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By John Sandford
    • Narrated By Eric Conger
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1944)
    Performance
    (958)
    Story
    (966)

    Virgil Flowers kicked around for a while before joining the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. First it was the army and the military police, then the police in St. Paul, and finally Lucas Davenport brought him into the BCA, promising him, "We'll only give you the hard stuff." He's been doing the hard stuff for three years now, but never anything like this.

    Crystal says: "Great winding road of a story"
    "Virgil Flowers becoming independent"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Dark of the Moon?

    The story is a return for John Sanford back to the roots of the types of books which I originally loved, his Lucas Davenport series. Still love them, but with Lucas older, and married to Weather, with kids at home - all realistic, mind - it leaves the storyteller struggling to keep romantic subplots effective and tasty, always a keen point in the Davenport series. Here, Virgil's story is a return to grit, investigation by walking around, and less polito-drama than the most recent Lucas boioks. Don't get me wrong, I still read and enjoy them, too... but...


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Protagonist Virgil, actually. For the usual reasons of a protagoginist. I didn't care for much of anyone else, and the villians are too crazy to be likeable. Probably Sanford's point.


    What about Eric Conger’s performance did you like?

    Eric is breaking new ground in this one. It felt as if he was working his way into Virgil's character as the story went. By the time he's finished it, he's going well, but at the beginning, "feeling his way" is a good description. Again, I liked it a lot.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Virgil giving his statement to the press after the ambush south of town.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dreadful Lemon Sky: A Travis McGee Novel, Book 16

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By John D. MacDonald
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (70)
    Performance
    (58)
    Story
    (60)

    Hero of The Dreadful Lemon Sky is Travis McGee, a man of universal interest and independent means who lives on an old houseboat he won in a poker game. One evening a young woman shows up with a suitcase full of cash. McGee agrees to be bagman.She tells him what to do if she doesn't return. When she doesn't, McGee is left alone to deal with an intrigue that involves drugs, fear, passion, and death.

    rick says: "Florida; Oh Florida"
    "McGee gets back on his swaybacked steed again"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Dreadful Lemon Sky in three words, what would they be?

    desperate poignant saddening


    What did you like best about this story?

    McGee is not a superhero, nor a secret agent. He is merely a man of slightly above average size and intellect, gifted with excellent reflexes and a changeable manner. Smooth operator comes to mind, but that doesn't fit, either. McGee struggles to understand what is going on himself, while the story unfolds, he is as lost as the reader and it shows.


    What about Robert Petkoff’s performance did you like?

    He was great


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    I've no idea how to draft a tag line...


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Long Lavender Look: A Travis McGee Novel, Book 12

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By John D. MacDonald
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (93)
    Performance
    (80)
    Story
    (80)

    A lovely young girl steps in front of Travis McGee's headlights. McGee misses the girl but lands in 10 feet of swamp water. As he's limping along the deserted road, someone in an old truck takes a few shots at him. And, when he goes to the local sheriff to complain, the intrepid Travis McGee finds himself arrested and charged with murder. And he can't help but ask himself, "is this what they call southern hospitality?"

    Amazon Customer says: "I thought Miss Agnes was a goner for sure!"
    "A swampy problem for McGee"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Long Lavender Look to be better than the print version?

    It is a hard task to be "better" than Macdonald's original print, but having a skilled reader (the original McGavin or now performed by Robert Petkoff) accomplishes the objective.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Long Lavender Look?

    As with many of the Travis McGee series, the opening sequence of events where McGee narrowly misses running over the girl, then is shot at. To say the writing is skillful would be insulting to how good it is.


    Have you listened to any of Robert Petkoff’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I recently listened to the entire Travis McGee series as read by Petkoff, and to my mind, he does the occasionally grouch McGee in fine fashion, and captures the caring Meyer perfectly. Great performance.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Nearly all of the McGee novels cause introspective thought on the societal commentary contained in them, even now, 30 or 40-odd years later.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cold Days: The Dresden Files, Book 14

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5920)
    Performance
    (5507)
    Story
    (5506)

    After being murdered by a mystery assailant, navigating his way through the realm between life and death, and being brought back to the mortal world, Harry realizes that maybe death wasn’t all that bad - because he is no longer Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only professional wizard. He is now Harry Dresden, Winter Knight to Mab, the Queen of Air and Darkness. After Harry had no choice but to swear his fealty, Mab wasn’t about to let something as petty as death steal away the prize she had sought for so long.

    Ethan M. says: "Thwarts Every Expectation - In a Good Way"
    "Harry goes Sexy Anti-Hero, sort of..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Cold Days in three words, what would they be?

    Winter is Hot


    What other book might you compare Cold Days to and why?

    Shoot, nothing really compares to the Dresden novels, that's why I enjoy them so much.


    What does James Marsters bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The witty turn of voice, alterations of voice treatments that bring Harry to life.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Harry gets a glimpse into Mab's past.


    Any additional comments?

    These books, ALL of them, well, except for the 2nd one, have been some of my favorite reading of the past decade.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Memory of Light: Wheel of Time, Book 14

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer, Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5465)
    Performance
    (4957)
    Story
    (5021)

    Since 1990, when Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time® burst on the world with its first book, The Eye of the World, listeners have been anticipating the final scenes of this extraordinary saga, which has sold over 40 million copies in over 32 languages. When Robert Jordan died in 2007, all feared that these concluding scenes would never be written. But working from notes and partials left by Jordan, established fantasy writer Brandon Sanderson stepped in to complete the masterwork.

    Amazon Customer says: "End of one of my favorite fantasy series ever."
    "Epic Closes down, pleasant feeling of closure"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up A Memory of Light in three words, what would they be?

    It is over


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rand al'Thor, protagonist, hero makes good in the best way - unexpectedly.


    Which character – as performed by Michael Kramer and Kate Reading – was your favorite?

    Matrim Cauthon


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The fight scene where Lan slew Demandred


    Any additional comments?

    This epic, which I began reading about a week after The Eye of the World was released to paperback, closes in a very satisfying way, with loose ends tied up, but with plenty of possible spin-off stories available for Brandon Sanderson - if he has the gumption to tackle them. Great Read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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