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Bruce Kent

chiefkent

Gulfport, MS USA | Member Since 2006

86
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 26 reviews
  • 1385 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 48 purchased in 2015
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5

  • Halsey's Typhoon

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Bob Drury, Tom Clavin
    • Narrated By Eric Conger
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (91)
    Performance
    (26)
    Story
    (25)

    December 1944, the Pacific Theater. General Douglas MacArthur has vowed to return to the Philippines. He will need the help of Admiral William "Bull" Halsey's Pacific Fleet. But at the height of the invasion, Halsey's ships are blindsided by a typhoon of unprecedented strength and scope. Battleships are tossed like toys, fighter planes are blown off carriers, destroyers are capsized, and hundreds of sailors are swept into the roiling, shark-infested sea.

    M. Taussig says: "Weather and Naval History Masterpiece"
    "Overcome by Circumstances"
    Overall

    Excellent book for those who aren't aware of this little footnote of WWII. Because most people aren't familiar with the US Navy's Third and Fifth Fleets, much space is dedicated to background on how "Bull" Halsey and the Third Fleet came to be in the Philippine Sea on 17 December 1944.
    The book is extremely well researched and tells the story in as impartial manner as possible. I listened to the book straight through in spite of the fact that I was very cognizant of the facts. The book reads like a historical novel. The authors weave essentially 5 story lines together to tell the 2 day saga. The result is a tale of hubris, tractability, heroism, insubordination, fatalism, life and death.
    My only negatives are minor. The narrator mispronounced some nautical equipments, but was consistent in his mispronouncements. The authors also had minor problems with terminology. For example, the only "ceilings" onboard US Navy ships are those made of panels that are suspended by wires, hanging from the "overhead". I only mention these small errors because they stood out in an otherwise outstandingly researched book where the authors went to great pains to use authentic Naval terminology.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • First Blood

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By David Morrell
    • Narrated By Eric G. Dove
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (143)
    Performance
    (118)
    Story
    (122)

    First came the man: a young wanderer in a fatigue coat and long hair. Then came the legend as the character, John Rambo, took his place in the American imagination. This remarkable and critically acclaimed novel pits a young Vietnam veteran against a small-town cop who doesn't know what he will unleash after their first ill-fated encounter - a life-and-death struggle through the woods, hills, and caves of rural Kentucky.

    Michael Rogers says: "Not everything I expected, but exciting"
    "First Blood and More Blood and More Blood..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Firstly, the book is much better the movie. It is also much more violent than the movie! The book, written in 1972, was an early statement on PTSD in Vietnam vets. The protagonist is the Vietnam vet and the antagonist is a Korean War vet. These are important factors throughout the book. There aren't any hero's nor winners in this book, simply conflict and misunderstanding.

    This is not your mother's Rambo. I lost the body count. While inside the heads of the 2 primary characters, the lines between right and wrong simply disappear. There are many complaints regarding the author's intro; I believe that he's embarrassed that his book turned into both a jingoistic movie series and a cash cow. Not what he had in mind when attempting to portray PTSD!

    While I wouldn't go so far as to compare this to 'All Quiet on the Western Front' or anything of that ilk, it is perhaps just one step below. The narration is flawless.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Four Feathers

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By A. E. W. Mason
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (91)
    Performance
    (55)
    Story
    (57)

    Just before his regiment sails off to war in the Sudan, British officer Harry Feversham quits the military. He is immediately given four white feathers as symbols of cowardice, one by each of his three best friends and one by his fiancée. To disprove this grave dishonor, Harry dons an Arabian disguise and leaves for the Sudan, where he anonymously comes to the aid of his three friends, saving each of their lives. Having proven his bravery, Harry returns to England, hoping to regain the love and respect of his fiancée.

    Kappavpi says: "Deep Realistic Story Masterfully Read"
    "Classic Stiff Upper Lip"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    To be perfectly honest I bought the book on sale because I liked the 1939 movie starring Ralph Richardson. It's a 1902 vintage serialized book written about the Mahdist Wars in the Sudan beginning in 1882 and covering the next 7 years, including the death of Gordon of Khartoum.

    The plot is long and convoluted involving 5 primary male characters, 2 primary female characters and 3 secondary male characters, all of who have some participation in returning the titular 3 small and 1 large white feathers. The white feathers signify that the senders accuse the recipient of cowardice. The majority of the novel is what follows once the feathers are received. If you have seen any of the movies you may have a general idea of what follows, (except the 2002 version which was complete revisionist crap having no relationship to either actual history nor the spirit of the book).

    The book's plots are much more involved and interesting than any of the movies. Still the characters are your standard British upper class stiff upper lip, but - with a touch of humanity. A classic example of popular literature 110 years ago, well done with excellent narration.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Motive: An Alex Delaware Novel, Book 30

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Jonathan Kellerman
    • Narrated By John Rubinstein
    Overall
    (186)
    Performance
    (154)
    Story
    (155)

    Even having hundreds of closed cases to his credit can't keep LAPD police lieutenant Milo Sturgis from agonizing over the crimes that don't get solved - and the victims who go without justice. Victims like Katherine Hennepin, a young woman strangled and stabbed in her home. A single suspect with a solid alibi leads to a dead end - one even Alex Delaware's expert insight can't explain. The only thing to do is move on to the next murder case - because there's always a next one.

    Bruce Kent says: "Figured it Out Too Early!"
    "Figured it Out Too Early!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    J. Kellerman with J. Rubenstein has to be one of my all time favorite combos in audio. I've listened to all 20, and can recognize all the major characters sans labels. has to be one of the best pairings in audio book history!

    As usual a great convoluted intricate and tight plot line, but I figured out 'who done it' by Chapter 2 and spent the rest of the time just waiting to see if I was right. Still a great ride! Kellerman and Rubenstein hitting another one out of here!

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Saint and Mr Teal: The Saint, Book 10

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Leslie Charteris
    • Narrated By John Telfer
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    The Saint is back - 50 audiobooks are now available starring the debonair classic crime hero. Simon Templar is the Saint - daring, dazzling, and just a little disreputable. On the side of the law, but standing outside it, he dispenses his own brand of justice one criminal at a time. In Paris, a dying man claims his brother can make gold... a secret that men are prepared to kill for. In London, a small-time American criminal sets up a violent gang, only to learn that there are certain things the Saint will not put up with.

    Bruce Kent says: "Not Politically Correct Snapshots in Time!"
    "Not Politically Correct Snapshots in Time!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As I've written previously, Leslie Charteris' Saint series is a picture in time of 1930's England much as Dashiell Hammett & Raymond Chandler provide snapshots in time for the same period in American San Fransisco and Los Angles - warts and all. The prejudices of the time with the bigotry and racial attitudes of the day are rampant throughout the books. The "N" word is used in ways that may surprise many American readers to reflect attitudes of the Britons of the day at all levels of society.

    Where Dashiell Hammett and his characters are terse and taciturn, Leslie Charteris is loquacious, but Simon Templar is one of the most loquacious and relaxed characters in the genre history! Reading these books one can see the development of the genre as we know it today.

    Mr. Tefler delivers all characterizations with flair and verve.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Saint Closes the Case: The Saint. Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Leslie Charteris
    • Narrated By John Telfer
    Overall
    (44)
    Performance
    (40)
    Story
    (41)

    Simon Templar is the Saint - daring, dazzling, and just a little disreputable. On the side of the law, but standing outside it, he dispenses his own brand of justice one criminal at a time.When the Saint and Patricia Holm stumble upon a government test of a weapon of mass destruction, they realise they've seen something that must be kept away from the wrong hands. But the Saint's nemesis Rayt Marius is already nearby.

    Nancy F. says: "Important to Listen Within Original Context"
    "Classic Series that Audible serves Poorly"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Book 3 is actually Book 1! Audible & Amazon staffs have a tendency to do minimal service to some series & unfortunately this is one of them.

    The book is fantastic! A picture in time right up with Dashiell Hammett & Raymond Chandler. This is NOT your mother's Simon Templar! This is more of an amoral Saint filled with violence and fuzzy philosophies. There are more than one Saint and Simon Templar is not a womanizing Lothario,but a one-woman man.

    Charteris helped write the early Saint movies, so agreed to the sanitizing of what Simon Templar became on the screen, but he kept The Saint true to his origins on the page.

    Mr. Tefler serves the written word with panache and verve! Listen to the series and see why Simon Templar, The Saint has been popular since 1929!

    16 of 18 people found this review helpful
  • Overlord

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By David L. Golemon
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    Overall
    (53)
    Performance
    (49)
    Story
    (49)

    The plans of a million years are finally ready for what has always been coming - Armageddon. Finally, the first move is set in motion and the assassinations begin, eliminating the leadership and consolidating military control of the seas and airspace of the world’s most powerful nations. Only one element in the arsenal of the world can possibly give the Earth a fighting chance at survival - a tiny being that has already saved the world once in the Arizona desert is now called upon to outthink his former masters.

    Matthew says: "I think I lost my watch down south..."
    "End of the Event?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Overlord reads like the summation of multiple underlying plot lines, some that began in "Event", the first book in the series. Reads like either the end of the road or the series taking off on new tangents.
    The characters are the normal archetypical jingoistic stereotypes from their respective countries, except the Speaker of the House who's your standard Tea Party'er taken from CSPAN. ;-) In other words - the usual suspects down to the 'men in black'.
    As I've said in past reviews of this series, Mr. Goleman is master yarn spinner. He manages to suspend belief just enough that his tall tales can be enjoyed to escape from the mundane travails of everyday life. What more can you ask?
    He IS a tad sloppy with getting all the details correct in his books, but he is so consistently sloppy that it's almost a trademark by now. Richard Poe has only gotten better over the life of the series to the point that I'm looking for other books narrated by him.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Primeval: An Event Group Thriller, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By David L. Golemon
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    Overall
    (45)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (39)

    Thousands of years after giant beasts crossed the land bridge into North America and mysteriously disappeared, a rare journal documenting the truth about the Romanovs' execution emerges, triggering an international competition and leading the Event Group to make a baffling discovery.

    Matthew says: "Somehow...it works!"
    "Event Group Series are Great Yarns"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Audible has all 9 of the Event Group series, you just need to hunt for the suckers because they like to hide them! Mr. Goleman spins pretty neat yarns in all of his books. His biggest problem is that he really needs a fact checker to edit his books desperately. His lack of knowledge regarding the military in general is appalling. The time in grade for promotion for officers has his characters frozen in rank; some change rank during the same book. He needs a decent armorer to fact-check his guns and ballistics.
    In one book India is described as the world's largest Muslim nation; the NKVD as the successor to the KGB, etc. Sometime it almost seems that Mr. Goleman is putting in false facts in on purpose! He does seem to get a favorite phrase for each book, plus many re-occurring ones like, "...screamed like a girl..."; "...a sight he would remember for the rest of his life"; etc.

    Richard Poe's narrations have come around from a virtual Joe Friday presentation to pretty good variation for all the characters and gets into the material!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Last Stand of the Legion: Rift: Blood War, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Rod Carstens
    • Narrated By Alexander Edward Trefethen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (22)
    Performance
    (20)
    Story
    (19)

    This is the story of the men and women on the Swift Boats, destroyers and battleships; the Legion pilots; the Anjin assassin from Rift; the Legionnaires of the newly formed Armored Infantry; the Von Fleet Corporation's executives; and so many more who must find a way to hold Rift against overwhelming odds.

    Amazon Customer says: "Cardboard Cutout Characters and Wooden Dialogue"
    "Great Potential!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This series has fantastic potential. Solid character development, good plot backgrounds. The only shortcoming was the 2 dimensional battle scenes. Everything occurs on one plane; ships go port and starboard, forwards and reverse, but little transvering in the 3rd plane of up and down or any combination thereof. If the author gets his ships moving in all 3 planes, (in some cases 4), then he has the makings of one rip-roaring space opera here!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • One Rough Man: A Pike Logan Thriller

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Brad Taylor
    • Narrated By J. D. Jackson, Neil Kaplan
    Overall
    (501)
    Performance
    (424)
    Story
    (421)

    A former Delta Force commander, Brad Taylor proves with this breathtaking debut thriller that Vince Flynn and Brad Thor have company. A collection of top operatives, the Taskforce was commissioned by the highest levels of government, kept secret from the media and even Congress. The best of the Taskforce bunch, Pike Logan knows the greatest threat to American security is one or two idealogues. Unfortunately for them, they’ve just crossed Pike’s path.

    Teresa says: "terrible narration"
    "4 Stars for Half a Man!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Firstly the tag team approach to the narrative distracts greatly form the story. If they feel the first person narrator is lacking, get another one. Secondly audible.com has not spent much time in this series. They have omitted the short story which would be 1.5; "The Dig", and the 4th novel, "The Widow's Strike" from the Series Listings in spite of the fact that both are sold by audible.com. Sloppy.
    Basic premise of Pike Logan series is a broken special forces operator being gradually made whole again by partnering with an extraordinary civilian broken female. Two halves make more than a whole. The action is well above average. The narrative tends to get verbose, but doesn't get too much of a bore. I have a tendency to read or listen to entire series if I find one of the books interesting - bought the first on sale and then listened to entire series. Author is obviously knowledgeable in special operations procedures, (I'm sure that they're disguised sufficiently to give away secrets), so the action sometimes suffers from detail - but detail IS the author's forte. Found all 10 'books' of the series worth my money and time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rebel Yell: The Violence, Passion, and Redemption of Stonewall Jackson

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By S. C. Gwynne
    • Narrated By Cotter Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (214)
    Performance
    (182)
    Story
    (181)

    General Stonewall Jackson was like no one anyone had ever seen. In April of 1862 he was merely another Confederate general with only a single battle credential in an army fighting in what seemed to be a losing cause. By middle June he had engineered perhaps the greatest military campaign in American history and was one of the most famous men in the Western World. He had given the Confederate cause what it had recently lacked: hope.

    Richard says: "A very good read"
    "Brings Stonewall Alive!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Fantastic bio! The best that I've ever read of Jackson! There were a few incidents missing, but the way the book was presented there was no way to include them. A most novel method of weaving his life through the various periods of both his career and childhood. It was most entertaining and kept my attention in spite of a rather dull narration.

    The good General was a man of many facets. He had a wicked sense of humor, displayed only in private, that belayed his public taciturn image. He could courts-martial men for disobeying orders and then caress their heads when they were wounded in battle. He was a pro-Union man, but when war came - lobbied for fighting under the black flag.

    The author repeatedly compares Jackson to Cromwell, Grant and Sherman. The Americans were all exposed to Jomini at West Point, but only Cromwell and Jackson constantly exhibited the Jominian tenets of speed and mass; besides their sharing a deep religious faith.(IMHO, Jackson,was the superior general). I think that most would consider Grant and Sherman more Claustewizian in their strategy, and therefore don't bear the author's comparison. The points in common being in rather humble circumstances at the war's beginnings. Other than that small point, it is an outstanding book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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