I was interested in this story because my mother was born during the flu epidemic of 1918-19 and the doctor who delivered her died before he could sign her birth certificate. I was always curious about how a healthy person could die that quickly, with stories of bodies of flu victims being stacked "like cord wood" because there weren't enough healthy people to bury the dead. This book is so much more than a story about that pandemic.
It is a remarkably well-researched history of medicine starting with Hippocrates. Making medicine into an empiric science and transforming medical education were occurring just prior to this epidemic. We learn about how the flu affected the role of laboratory science, epidemiology, bacteriology, virology, public health and military medicine. Mr. Barry does an incredible job of explaining immunological and pathological concepts for the lay audience. He gives us much food for thought about the present influenza worries.
This audiobook is highly recommended for the general audience. I would really like to see it as required reading for medical students.
People reviewing this book either love it or hate it. Other reviewers have pointed out many of the flaws in this book. It is difficult to add another review without spoilers, but I will try.
Mr. Coben asks his readers to suspend belief time and time again.
We know little of the motivations of Jake's girlfriend as the story develops, as to why she acted the way she did and what she brought to the relationship that was special enough to create his obsession. The fact that they were both in a position to meet each other in the first place was a contrivance. Jake's best friend also mourns the loss of a "significant other" lost to him more or less the same way.
A very diverse cast of characters who have been touched by violence have all intersected with Jake's small liberal arts college. The faculty contains members that too conveniently include a former FBI agent and former diplomat, so that Jake can rapidly get information that most college profs would not have access to.
The story just doesn't hold water for me.
Mr. Giminez does a nice job of telling the story of a selfish self-promoting lawyer who sees the light, loses wealth, status and selfish wife by defending a rather remarkable junkie prostitute.
The main characters may be a little stereotypical, the plot resolution may also be a little stereotypical, but the story is worth telling and there are enough supporting characters and subplots to make for a satisfying listen.
Although the setting is Dallas instead of the deep south, this novel does have the feel of a good Grisham book.
I did not understand how dystopic the setting of this novel was from the summary or the reviews. One previous reviewer states that the story actually has two parts. I stopped listening several hours in, but before reaching a change in the story line. Didn't really get a feel for any other points in time or places other than a miserable hotel room in an abandoned city.
I was not feeling much of a time travel paradox nor could I figure out if time travel was available for anyone else to use other than the main character. The reader is rather unceremoniously inserted into the middle of this story and in the midst of people so different that it was hard to believe they were all different versions of the same time traveler.
This title has been in my library for several years and I have enjoyed it each time I listen. The story is gentle and engaging, and worth telling. The main characters are likeable people. The story line continues to grow with many unexpected turns. One should be at least a semi-Anglophile to appreciate the background of inherited properties, men's clubs, and the northern Scottish winter climate. This book offers a nice change of pace from the thrillers and vampires that comprise the best seller lists these days.
The narrative is always in the third person, but told from points of view of several characters in succession, which proves to be very effective. I found Lisa Burgett's narration easy to listen to and her performance adds to the quality of this audiobook.
I wish Audible would be able to offer more unabridged books by Ms Pilcher.
This book uses first person narrative to get inside the personality of a wealthy alcoholic. The best part of the book is the narrative voice. I believe the characterization of this aspect of her life is very good, but we hear about lots of carryings on of other very rich and superficial people.
I suspect I would drink too much if surrounded by these folks. There wasn't really much to chuckle about, the story line wandered quite a bit, and the attempt to tell about a "love story" between 60-somethings was fairly pathetic.
If you are interested in getting a perspective on the alcoholic's delusional way of thinking this book will be of value. Otherwise, leave it alone.
Apparently there is now a prequel to this series. I decided to start with Book 1 anyway. The story profiles our "cleaner" who has no allegiance except to his pay check. There is a plot, there is action, but all strains believability for characters who are not likeable.
The best fiction gives you a story that you can carry with yourself for a while after you've finished reading, really caring what more the characters will do or reflecting on how you've been influenced by the plot. This book did neither.
This novel is less about plot and more about endless explanations of how things work in the Star Carrier Universe. The action of the story is often interrupted by very long digressions into the science behind the technology to the point of being pedantic.
Since we know this is the first book in a series, perhaps it would have been better for the author to write an introductory chapter or two to explain the science, then get down to telling the story. Unfortunately, after stripping away the discourses the story is fairly weak, and in spite of its setting far in Earth's future, it really sounds like an old US military yarn.
The story did not interest me enough to consider listening to any additional books in the series.
I sampled this book because not only did it have a great rating, but thousands of Audible subscribers liked it. After listening to a couple of hours I gave up.
Atticus seems to have to fight off any number of attackers rather hilly nilly. He's warned by goddesses and witches that he'll be under attack but we don't really know why he's being attacked after surviving for 21 centuries, and particularly after establishing a "peaceable personna" in Arizona. His arch enemy doesn't show up in person, but enlists the help of a variety of long-lived gremlins, and can even overtake the will of police and other regular people to do the dirty work for him. There's one skirmish after another with clever evasive moves by Atticus. Just very little story line beyond the superficial.
I might go back and try to listen again sometime, but it really seems like there are better ways for me to spend my time right now.
The plot was verrry sloooow to get established. Only about half of the musical interludes made the story more interesting, the other interludes bogged the action down. The "mystery" wasn't revealed until the second half of the book. There were lots of loose ends that had to be accounted for and tied up during the second half, which made this audiobook somewhat tedious to listen to.
I'm sorry this very ambitious project didn't turn out better.
I have read several titles by Phillip Margolin and was disappointed in After Dark. The plot was too predictable and at times I felt like I was reading a romance novel instead of a legal mystery. I was not drawn into this story at all.
Report Inappropriate Content