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Brian

I love to read books; and now just recently I've discovered that audio books are very cool!! I'm also an author. You can find the SciFi book "The Curse of Europa" here on Audible or on Amazon.

Lansing, MI, United States | Member Since 2014

458
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 32 reviews
  • 33 ratings
  • 81 titles in library
  • 4 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
3
FOLLOWERS
61

  • Earth Afire

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card, Aaron Johnston
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye, Arthur Morey, Stefan Rudnicki, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1683)
    Performance
    (1526)
    Story
    (1535)

    One hundred years before Ender's Game, the aliens arrived on Earth with fire and death. Earth Afire by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston is the story of the First Formic War. Victor Delgado beat the alien ship to Earth, but just barely. Not soon enough to convince skeptical governments that there was a threat. They didn’t believe that until space stations and ships and colonies went up in sudden flame. And when that happened, only Mazer Rackham and the Mobile Operations Police could move fast enough to meet the threat.

    DocJim says: "This is a GREAT adventure Sci-Fi Book. Masterful!"
    "A bit too hard to believe"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    The narration was good and the story kept my interest, but it seemed to be too much of a stretch. Bug like aliens that have to walk around with spray cans? Seems they would have developed a better delivery method. Then all the subordination of the troops - driven to fight the creatures against orders, because, of course, no-one-else on Earth can. I also thought it was a bit too early for Mazer Rackham. I thought he was the hero of the 2nd Formic war, not the 1st also.

    Don't get me wrong, the story is well told, the characters (as always with OSC) are well developed; it just became too far-fetched I thought. If you can suspend disbelief then it actually is a very good story.

    8 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. Mercedes: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Will Patton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7529)
    Performance
    (6942)
    Story
    (6946)

    In the frigid pre-dawn hours, in a distressed Midwestern city, hundreds of desperate unemployed folks are lined up for a spot at a job fair. Without warning, a lone driver plows through the crowd in a stolen Mercedes, running over the innocent, backing up, and charging again. Eight people are killed; fifteen are wounded. The killer escapes. Mr. Mercedes is a war between good and evil, from the master of suspense whose insight into the mind of this obsessed, insane killer is chilling and unforgettable.

    Joyce says: "Love this style of King!!!"
    "I was ran over by this book!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I loved the characters, the plot, and the suspense. Mr. King proved again that he can write more than just horror. This has some horror elements but all believable - as in - no supernatural. It is just a good story about a psychopath, an ex-cop that loved getting drawn back into "the game", and some other interesting characters that round out a well told story.

    This was my first book narrated by Will Patton. I didn't even know he narrated books but he has done a boatload. The first few minutes I wasn't so sure about his raspy voice but now I couldn't imagine it read by anyone else and his character voices were all great. He did a wonderful job IMO.

    Bravo!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • American Gods: The Tenth Anniversary Edition (A Full Cast Production)

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman
    • Narrated By Dennis Boutsikaris, Daniel Oreskes, Ron McLarty, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5825)
    Performance
    (5229)
    Story
    (5260)

    First published in 2001, American Gods became an instant classic, an intellectual and artistic benchmark from the multiple-award-winning master of innovative fiction, Neil Gaiman. Now discover the mystery and magic of American Gods in this 10th anniversary edition. Newly updated and expanded with the author's preferred text, this commemorative volume is a true celebration of a modern masterpiece by the one, the only, Neil Gaiman.

    Michael says: "New to Neil"
    "Gaiman weaves a good tale!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The previous book I listened to took me about six months to get through as it just didn't beckon me to listen at any chance I could get. I would listen here and there but many times music on the radio won out.

    Not with this book!!

    Gaiman hooked me right away and I wanted to listen every chance I could get. American Gods was only a tad shorter than my previous book, but I whipped through this one in about 10 days (and I mainly listen in my car and during workouts.) But I did add a few hours here and there with longer lunches or listening while doing dishes, etc.

    I'm usually more a SciFi guy vs. Fantasy, but I've likes all of Neil Gaiman's book that I've read so far.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Neverwhere [Adaptation]

    • ORIGINAL (3 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman
    • Narrated By Christopher Lee, James McAvoy, Natalie Dormer, and others
    Overall
    (2138)
    Performance
    (2009)
    Story
    (2002)

    A BBC Radio six-part adaptation of Neil Gaiman's best-selling novel, starring James McAvoy as Richard and Natalie Dormer as Door. Beneath the streets of London there is another London. A subterranean labyrinth of sewers and abandoned tube stations. A somewhere that is Neverwhere....

    Gayle says: "Superb"
    "Radio production missing what's best about a book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The voice acting and sound production was great and it was a good story but it took a lot of work to visualize it sometimes. It reminded me of driving my SUV with the kids in the back watching a DVD. I could hear the movie but not see it. So I got a sense of the story but sometimes didn't really know what was going on as I couldn't see what was happening.

    I was assuming it was just different voices speaking the parts but that all the narration would be there - it was not. I guess I didn't notice "Adaption" in the title. If you were already familiar with the story that would help, but I was not, so there were times where I just didn't know what was happening.

    After this I moved on to American Gods and gasped when I noticed that it was "a full cast production." I feared the same issue with a 20 hour book. Much to my delight that one had the full narration with the different voices. That was awesome and is what I was expecting here.

    So - I liked the story but I would probably steer clear of a similar production in the future.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Against the Tide of Years

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By S. M. Stirling
    • Narrated By Todd McLaren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (449)
    Performance
    (273)
    Story
    (273)

    In the years since the Event, the Republic of Nantucket has done its best to re-create the better ideas of the modern age. But the evils of its time resurface in the person of William Walker, renegade Coast Guard officer, who is busy building an empire for himself based on conquest by technology.

    When Walker reaches Greece and recruits several of their greater kinglets to his cause, the people of Nantucket have no choice.

    B. Bozeman says: "I've Finished the entire series"
    "Okay story but it dragged for me"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is hard to put into words... The story was pretty good but I guess it just dragged on too long. It wasn't interesting enough to make me want to listen to it every chance I could get. It is long to begin with, about 21 hours; but it look me over 6 months to finally listen to the entire book as I would find myself not really caring if I listened to it vs. music in my car.

    This became more evident to me after finishing this book as the next book I listed to (from OSC) I zipped through in a week. Then another, and another, as I was more compelled to listen - and found I wanted to listen to these next books; while driving, doing dishes, late at night, etc. This wasn't the case for Against the Tide of Years unfortunately. So I guess I'm bailing on the 3rd book. The thought and detail that went into the story is amazing and I liked the premise. I'm not saying it's bad, but for me it just didn't keep me on the edge of my seat.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Shades of Earth: An Across the Universe Novel, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Beth Revis
    • Narrated By Tara Carrozza
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (165)
    Performance
    (144)
    Story
    (144)

    Amy and Elder have finally left the oppressive walls of the spaceship Godspeed behind. They're ready to start life afresh - to build a home - on Centauri-Earth, the planet that Amy has traveled 25 trillion miles across the universe to experience. But this new Earth isn't the paradise that Amy had been hoping for. Amy and Elder must race to uncover who - or what - else is out there if they are to have any hope of saving their struggling colony and building a future together. But as each new discovery brings more danger, Amy and Elder will have to look inward to the very fabric of what makes them human on this, their most harrowing journey yet.

    Brian says: "Male reader in mid 40's"
    "Male reader in mid 40's"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really liked the first book! The second book was a bit of a disappointed. Book three here was better however (but not anywhere near as good as book one.)

    I know this is teen/YA so I've kept that in mind when listening to it. It's a bit hard for me to review because of that. For me... all-in-all I liked the series; but there were just some things that were too silly.

    As I said in my review of "A Million Suns" the tone of the series seemed to change starting with book 2. I wished these final two books followed the tone of the first book which wasn't as silly - but again... I know the series isn't geared towards middle aged men :)

    So for the teen/YA readers I think you will really like this series. For you older readers, the story is good, you just have to remember that it is teen/YA.

    These are the same narrators as book two and I liked the performances a lot more in this book, especially the male narrator. His delivery of Elder was very flat in book 2. It was a little better in book 3 and his other voices were great. I really liked his Lt.Colonel Martin.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • A Million Suns: Across the Universe, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Beth Revis
    • Narrated By Tara Carrozza
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (223)
    Performance
    (195)
    Story
    (199)

    It's been three months since Amy was unplugged. The life she always knew is over. And everywhere she looks, she sees the walls of the spaceship Godspeed. But there may just be hope: Elder has assumed leadership of the ship. He's finally free to enact his vision - no more Phydus, no more lies. But when Elder discovers shocking news about the ship, he and Amy race to discover the truth behind life on Godspeed.

    Brian says: "Male reader in mid 40's"
    "Male reader in mid 40's"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Yes, I knew this was teen / young adult going in. I really enjoyed the first book and thought it was extremely well done and crossed beyond the Teen/YA boundary to hold it's own in the more mature market as well.

    I however was not as pleased with this second book. The whole tone changed a little bit making me wonder if an editor worked hard with Revis to make the first book appeal to a larger audience, but didn't work as hard on this second book. Its feel became a lot more teen based and the whole scavenger hunt thing didn't appeal to me that much.

    Again, I know I'm reviewing a teen/YA book, so please bear this in mind with my review. If you are a teen/YA reader, it may very well appeal to you. But for the slightly older crowd (for me anyhow) I did not like this book as much as the first and it seemed to drag on.

    The narrators changed also, which never helps with the flow of a book series.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Across the Universe

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Beth Revis
    • Narrated By Lauren Ambrose
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (308)
    Performance
    (241)
    Story
    (242)

    Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, 300 years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end 50 years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.

    Kelli says: "Well worth the listen!"
    "Male reader in mid 40's... I like it!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    So, yes, I knew this was teen / young adult going in. I had read the first chapter in the book store when the book first came out and really like it; but I hesitated purchasing it as it wasn't really geared towards middle aged men. But I have to say, I really liked it and it wasn't too bogged down in teen/YA issues. But yes, there were some of those moments, but it was bearable.

    The base premise wasn't new but it had a twist that was new (to me anyhow.) I ended up really liking the book and I think it was well done; done good enough to cross beyond the Teen/YA boundary and hold it's own in the more mature market as well.

    It's not hard core sci-fi but it was well done. The narration was very well done also.

    ***

    I have since read the other two books and I was not as impressed. I think the story was ultimately good, but books 2 and 3 became a lot more teen/YA based. Granted, that is what the books are, but for me I had to roll my eyes at some of the dialog and scenarios in those books. But I understood that it wasn't written for middle aged men so I just suffered through those parts and enjoyed the rest of the story. I have recommended to my 16yo daughter that she may like the series.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Android's Dream

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3479)
    Performance
    (3081)
    Story
    (3078)

    A human diplomat creates an interstellar incident when he kills an alien diplomat in a most unusual way. To avoid war, Earth's government must find an equally unusual object: A type of sheep ("The Android's Dream"), used in the alien race's coronation ceremony. To find the sheep, the government turns to Harry Creek, ex-cop, war hero and hacker extraordinaire.

    James says: "Philip K Dick meets Douglas Adams"
    "Good story telling"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This wasn't exactly up my alley, I'll admit. A crazy beginning with farting to communicate - come on now! Needing a certain kind of sheep for a ceremony?? A lot of it was a bit over the top, but I guess that's what a lot of people liked about it too. Once I willed myself to just go-with-it, it did keep my interest and was well told. Although to be 100% honest, I thought it was going to be about androids, given the name and the android on the cover. It is not - silly me!

    Sometimes the author would mention something about a character (and then take 5 - 10 minutes filling in a silly back story that wasn't always necessary - imho.) To me that was just a bunch of unnecessary detail.

    But overall, wow, it ended up being an elaborate and clever story as long as you aren't looking for realistic. The ending is mind blowing (in all the detailed events that fall into place) and Kudos to Scalzi for keeping it all straight. While it wasn't exactly "up my alley" I have to admit it was some good story telling and thus give it 4 stars.

    Will Wheaten did a great job narrating - 5 stars!!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Accidental Time Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Joe Haldeman
    • Narrated By Kevin Free
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (290)
    Performance
    (153)
    Story
    (155)

    Joe Haldeman is the esteemed Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author of The Forever War. Things are going nowhere for lowly MIT research assistant Matt Fuller - especially not after his girlfriend drops him for another man. But then while working late one night, he inadvertently stumbles upon what may be the greatest scientific breakthrough ever. His luck, however, runs out when he finds himself wanted for murder - in the future.

    Brian says: "A fun, light story"
    "A fun, light story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I both love and hate time travel stories. I usually hate the ones that allow the protagonist to bop around at will. Especially ones that try to make a suspenseful (race against the clock) story to save the day - when all they have to do is use their stupid time machine and go back... say 12 hours more, etc.... i.e. Heros (TV show).

    The time travel stories I love are ones where there are restrictions. This is one of those stories. This grad student, Matt, discovers that a simple device seems to be able to jump forward in time. The restrictions are that the amount of time it moves forward is exponential each time; so a few seconds turn into a few minutes, to days, months, years, etc. There is no going backwards.

    So the story turns out to be him moving forward in time, further and further each time. It's a bit light heated but clever. A warning - if you can't handle a story that discusses and rebukes religion then steer clear.

    When I first started listening to the narrator I was a little turned off - he seemed young and amateurish. But he actually ended up doing a pretty good job actually and since the story was completely centered around Matt (who is young and a bit immature) , the narrator's voice became totally appropriate and fit perfectly.

    In all, this is a quick, witty, funny, and overall fun story. It was not at all what I expected and I was presently surprised.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Heaven's Fall: Heaven's Shadow, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By David S. Goyer, Michael Cassutt
    • Narrated By Joe J. Thomas
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    Twenty years have passed since the mysterious Near-Earth Object nicknamed Keanu appeared in the night sky and transported an assortment of humans from all over Earth into its interior. There they discovered that Keanu was an immense long-range spaceship - and they were not its only inhabitants. They joined forces with the aliens called the Architects, who had come from a distant galaxy to seek help in fighting the vicious Reivers. And they defeated them - or so they thought.

    Brian says: "Better than book 2"
    "Better than book 2"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Heaven's Fall rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Probably 60 percentile.


    Any additional comments?

    Book 2 fell a little flat for me; I rated this one a little higher but it too had some plot elements that you had to say "whatever" and just continue. There are just some elements that are totally unbelievable and unrealistic.

    I don't want to throw out any spoilers so I will just say that if you are looking for hard core scifi, realistic scifi, etc., you should keep looking. It has some very cool elements and it will probably make a good movie (which I believe may be on the table - I would watch it) It was enjoyable story telling, I just wished the plot was a bit tighter. I guess there was just some of those "common sense" issues. So when you are reading (or listening) you are thinking to yourself, "okay... but couldn't they have just done this?" Or, "that would never happen that way... etc."

    So again, a good story in all actuality, but if you are very nitpickey on plot issues you may want to pass. If you just want an enjoyable story with pretty good character interaction then give it a whirl, you'll probably like it!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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