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Simon Forsyth

Old timer IT guy, researcher.

Brisbane, Qld Australia | Member Since 2009

11
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 189 ratings
  • 381 titles in library
  • 32 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
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  • Elizabeth Kolbert on Field Notes from a Catastrophe

    • ORIGINAL (5 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Kolbert
    Overall
    (67)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (13)

    Author Elizabeth Kolbert talks about how global warming is not a theory, but a fact. She speaks of the deep concern the scientific community has, and how other countries have begun to take steps to address this growing problem while America lags far behind. Field Notes from a Catastrophe is a compelling audiobook you'll want to listen to and share with others.

    Simon Forsyth says: "Climate is an angry beast"
    "Climate is an angry beast"
    Overall

    I would raise some issues with Kolbert's over attribution of global warming to various climatic events and regional changes. The increase in global average temperatures due to human produced greenhouse gasses (and other actions like deforestation), is in the order of 0.2C per decade. This will produce changes in the climate outside our standard experience. While the overall trend of weather patterns and changes in regional variations should be detectable over a good chunk of time, the attribution of singular events such as Katrina to global warming is a large stretch. People spreading the call to action should walk the rigid scientific line otherwise you open yourself up to attacks of denial from the various sources of disinformation. So while Kolbert's message may be valid, many of her facts are quite fuzzy. I love the quote "Climate is an angry beast and we are poking it with a stick."

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kill Decision

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Daniel Suarez
    • Narrated By Jeff Gurner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2786)
    Performance
    (2492)
    Story
    (2501)

    Linda McKinney is a myrmecologist, a scientist who studies the social structure of ants. Her academic career has left her entirely unprepared for the day her sophisticated research is conscripted by unknown forces to help run an unmanned - and thanks to her research, automated - drone army. Odin is the secretive Special Ops soldier with a unique insight into the faceless enemy who has begun to attack the American homeland with drones programmed to seek, identify, and execute targets.

    Madeleine says: "What's that droning sound?"
    "Juvenile"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Daniel Suarez and/or Jeff Gurner?

    If you read this book, there is a chance that you will never buy another Suarez book. Please be aware that this is most definitely NOT the book to judge Suarez by, his others are far more worthy of your time.


    Any additional comments?

    This book stinks of ultra cool hero worship which might appeal to a certain type of younger audience. If you are a fan of Brent Weeks then you'll probably like this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Terminal World

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Alastair Reynolds
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (666)
    Performance
    (418)
    Story
    (423)

    Spearpoint, the last human city, is an atmosphere-piercing spire of vast size. Clinging to its skin are the zones, a series of semi-autonomous city-states, each of which enjoys a different---and rigidly enforced---level of technology. Following an infiltration mission that went tragically wrong, Quillon has been living incognito, working as a pathologist in the district morgue.

    DAVID says: "This ain't your fathers Alastair Reynolds"
    "Reynolds is usually excellent"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Alastair Reynolds and/or John Lee?

    I would carefully examine the reviews. This is the first "miss" for me out of 9 novels that I have read by Reynolds all of which were excellent.


    Any additional comments?

    I would hesitate to highlight the numerous annoyances of this novel because there are likely many people to whom these would not matter ... unless pointed out. To me "Terminal World" is such an inferior book compared to Reynold's other works, filled with grating contrivances and a completely unsatisfactory ending. I find it shocking that this was published in 2010 with numerous better books behind him, so the shortfalls cannot be put down to a lack of experience, but I suspect more to laziness.

    Do not make this your first Alastair Reynolds book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Live Free or Die: Troy Rising, Book One

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By John Ringo
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2119)
    Performance
    (1470)
    Story
    (1487)

    When aliens trundled a gate to other worlds into the solar system, the world reacted with awe, hope and fear. But the first aliens to come through, the Glatun, were peaceful traders and the world breathed a sigh of relief.

    Amazon Customer says: "Republican Physicists in Space!!!"
    "Excellent - STOP RIGHT NOW!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    The average review rating should say it all. Please do not look at other reviews as what they point out will begin to weigh heavily on your perception and may diminish the experience of the story, which is outstanding, as is the narration. I highly recommend listening to this audio book first, then coming back and reading the comments.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Dance with Dragons (Part One): Book 5 of A Song of Ice and Fire

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Roy Dotrice
    Overall
    (296)
    Performance
    (263)
    Story
    (265)

    This is Part One of A Dance With Dragons. The fifth volume in the greatest epic work of the modern age, George R R Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire, this recording is unabridged and split into two parts. The future of the Seven Kingdoms hangs in the balance. In the east, Daenerys, last scion of House Targaryen, her dragons grown to terrifying maturity, rules as queen of a city built on dust and death, beset by enemies.

    Ian says: "What happened here?"
    "Smells of Jordan"
    Overall

    I somewhat disagree with complaints about Dotrice; pacing and vocal range are more reasonable than most, although his rhythm is too pronounced sometimes. My sad tale would be that I think Martin is doing a "Jordan", as in Robert Jordan who would be too busy describing a scene rather than actually getting on with the plot. I started to get this feeling in the previous book and it seems to be spelled here pretty strongly. Things need to move along! However it feels like another two books minimum at this pace before a conclusion can be reached. The twists are starting to feel a little contrived. I hate writing this, I have been a huge fan of this series since it was first published.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Orion: Orion Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Ben Bova
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki
    Overall
    (540)
    Performance
    (306)
    Story
    (310)

    John O'Ryan is not a god...not exactly. He is an eternal warrior destined to combat the Dark Lord through all time for dominion of the Earth. Follow him, servant of a great race, as he battles his enemy down the halls of time, from the caves of our ancestors to the final confrontation under the hammer of nuclear annihilation.

    Jim "The Impatient" says: "Cornucopia of Genre's"
    "Not too bad"
    Overall

    While the story flowed reasonably, and was somewhat interesting, the overall plot was simplistic and a little too flawed for my tastes. I did listen to the end and appreciate what Bova was trying to say, and I do like the message and philosophical questions. Probably aimed at a younger audience.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Lustrum

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Robert Harris
    • Narrated By Bill Wallis
    Overall
    (62)
    Performance
    (29)
    Story
    (29)

    It’s Rome, 63bc. In a city on the brink of acquiring a vast empire, seven men are struggling for power. Cicero is consul, Caesar his ruthless young rival, Pompey the republic’s greatest general, Crassus its richest man, Cato a political fanatic, Catilina a psychopath, and Clodius is an ambitious playboy. The stories of these real historical figures - their alliances and betrayals, their cruelties and seductions, their brilliance and their crimes - are all interleaved to form this epic novel.

    Simon Forsyth says: "Brilliantly told story of ancient Rome"
    "Brilliantly told story of ancient Rome"
    Overall

    This book follows smoothly on from another of Robert Harris' books: Imperium, which is also an excellent work. A wonderful historical story from the point of view of the dedicated slave/secretary of Cicero. Bill Willis is an amazing narrator, bringing extra life to an already enthralling story.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Hunger Games

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Suzanne Collins
    • Narrated By Carolyn McCormick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (34917)
    Performance
    (25988)
    Story
    (26355)

    Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone out to make sure you don't live to see the morning? In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by 12 outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of 12 and 18 to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

    Teddy says: "The Book Deserves The Hype"
    "Blotchy ride but ends well"
    Overall

    The story feels somewhat simplistic, clichéd and quite contrived, particularly as key plot devices regularly arrive without warning. However, once the games start the story becomes much more compelling. I can understand how some people may have issues with the narrator, but if you can get over it, McCormick does quite a reasonable job. I think Collins shows her roots as this would definitely gain more stars for younger readers.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Evolutionary Void

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Peter F Hamilton
    • Narrated By John Lee
    Overall
    (160)
    Performance
    (110)
    Story
    (111)

    Peter F. Hamilton’s startling perspectives on tomorrow’s technological and cultural trends span vast tracts of space and time, his stories are as compelling as they are epic in scope, and yet they are always grounded in characters – human, alien and other – who, for all their strangeness, still touch our hearts and fire our imaginations.

    Simon Forsyth says: "Satisfying conclusion to a hard core Sci Fi series"
    "Satisfying conclusion to a hard core Sci Fi series"
    Overall

    This book concludes the Void trilogy: (1) Dreaming Void (2) Temporal Void (3) Evolutionary Void.
    If you are new to the series then you have to start with Dreaming Void, if you can get it : "The Dreaming Void" seems to have disappeared from the Australian store but there it sits in my audible library.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Time Traveler's Wife

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Audrey Niffenegger
    • Narrated By William Hope, Laurel Lefkow
    Overall
    (863)
    Performance
    (176)
    Story
    (176)

    This extraordinary, magical novel is the story of Clare, a beautiful art student, and Henry, a librarian, who have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was 36, and were married when Clare was 22 and Henry 30. Impossible but true, because Henry has Chrono-Displacement Disorder: periodically his genetic clock resets and he finds himself misplaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity in his past, present, and future.

    Lucy says: "Worth trying to sort it out"
    "Brilliant"
    Overall

    This audiobook has been an eye opener for me. I have read some of the negative reviews but went ahead with the purchase. I found the story to be absolutely brilliant and the characterisations are outstanding. The alternating readers was simply wonderful and the story wasn't difficult to follow at all, although the flow isn't the usual linear path. What I learned from this is that you will always get some listeners who are not satisfied due to some reason or other that may not affect you at all, so take reviews as a very rough guide only, each listener will get something different from every story, and the reviewers are only offering opinions.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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