In contrast to O Jerusalem, the view of India in this book is rather trite and boring, and the opposition characters rather less interesting. In OJ, post-war Palestine shone with the fierce intensity of its desert sun and the people were richly portrayed. Alas, King's India was far less engaging and the plot of the story fell short of her brilliant best.
Yes. While well below the best of this series, it is still a fun read. Jenny Sterling's narration is as usual impeccable, and even being relatively unexceptional in the series, the series is itself a fascinating exploration of one of western literature's most interesting legends.
As I said, her usual wonderful self.
Strong and interesting female lead character, moral complexity of the ending
It was top notch. His characterizations were spot on.
Be careful who you mess with
This is a brilliant work of fiction that weaves so many elements together, European history, internet life, family dysfunction and thoughts about modern media, in a way that is utterly fascinating. Simon Vance's performance adds an element of gravitas to this already wonderful piece of work.
Yes, the reporting appeared thorough.
I think he was good at hitting the points the book was trying to emphasize.
You know, it's not that this story wasn't well done, it was. I feel almost guilty about rating it as only 3 stars, because it feels like it should be more important than that. The story was interesting in itself, and certainly points to trends that should leave any reader worried about the completely artificial nature of the structures for investment in the economy that are portrayed here.
And yet, I felt curiously disappointed when I got to the end of the book. There were three stories braided together, the improper prosecution of a programmer, the building of a high speed network and the creation of a new stock exchange. I think I'm supposed to have felt triumphal at the end of the last one, worried by the second, and I don't even know what the first one had to do with the rest of the stories, except that it involved some of the same people.
I think what I'm saying is that the book lacked focus. No bad cess to the author, he tried to take on a huge subject, using individuals as lenses to view the process of the destruction of the stock market as anything rational. And yet, I am left unsatisfied. Worth a read, but not going to be on my top 100 books ever list.
This book is in many ways a typical example of its genre, i.e. self-help books on changing your diet and/or relationship with food. As such it is comparable with Dr. Sears books on the Zone, or Dean Ornish's books. There is one important difference that makes this book more interesting to me, Lustig isn't selling anything (other than the book of course), no meals, no diet plan, just his conception of the science behind fat accumulation, storage and how the government and food industry are complicit in the "obesity epidemic".
It didn't get in the way at all. For a book like this, that's high praise.
From the point of view of an educated lay reader, I find much of the science persuasive. The fact that the book isn't part of a large merchandising effort makes it more so.
I have loved the Amber series for nigh on thirty years, since I first discovered it as a teen ager. This series is magical in its language, portrays fascinating personal and moral struggles set against a tremendously imagined world. All this I love. The narration is decidedly the weak point in this rendition.
It might be easier to sum up what I liked. His Corwin is well done, with a good grasp of the character. Just about everyone else is a miss. In this performance, the character of Ganalon is turned into an upper-class twit, and somehow Benedict and Dara become refugees from the Ante-Bellum South. Random remains a cross between someone from the Revenge of the Nerds and a really bad Peter Lorre on meth.
Yes, write a scathing review of a performance, something I am not usually called upon to do on this otherwise wonderful site.
I gave the book three stars overall, despite my distaste for the narrator's choices in characterization. The Guns of Avalon is the weakest of the first five Amber books, having to do a lot of backing and filling and introduce large chunks of exposition that were necessarily delayed by the story conventions required in the first book by amnesia and a deft pacing that left no time to breathe, let alone fill in back story. Still, it's a four-star story for me, the only one that isn't five. I just wish Juliani didn't make a number of the characters sound like muppets, it makes me sad. I'm afraid I can't really recommend the reading of this series here presented, and will only go on in a dimming hope it gets better, and since I already bought the bloody thing.
For someone unfamiliar with the air war against Japan, this book provides a good summary of the history and some worth while glimpses into what it meant to fly in that struggle. For this sort of reader, it is well worth the read.
This is a good basic book. For readers with a more sophisticated grasp of World War II history, this book doesn't add anything new or startling. As I said, a workmanlike effort.
Almost everything! What in the name of namable things was he thinking with some of his voice characterizations, making Random seem like a refugee from the Revenge of the Nerds?
How I lost 100 million dollars trying to make an unfilmable movie!
Ok, you have to understand, I love this entire series and have done for more than thirty years. Amber is, perhaps oddly, one of those comfort settings I return to from time to time, and each time I am still blown away by the tour de force that Roger Zelazny created in the making of this world and the people who dwell therein. So it was with great pleasure that I found Amber on Audible. I downloaded the first book in the series and sat back to enjoy another visit to a place I always come away the happier for having visited.
Within an hour of beginning, I was gritting my teeth as Juliani's Random, turned into a caricature of a braces-wearing teen ager who happens to hold the keys to the universe came slushing through my headphones. Mr. Juliani is a talented narrator with a wide vocal range to work with. I was dismayed at his handiwork, but I will be giving the Guns of Avalon a go to see if things get better.
I have only experienced this in audio
I have read the John Ciardi translation of this monumental work. James' translation is by far the more beautiful and startling, bringing forth the pathos and horror of Hell and purgatory with a vividness that left my brain singing for days after I had finished it. This will be one I come back to time and again to enjoy the elegance and lyrical ferocity of the language. The narration is a fitting complement to such a magnificent text.
Readers of this review should not mistake my displeasure for any lack of regard for the book itself. This is entirely on the narrator.
The Lord of the Rings has been a touchstone for me ever since I was ten. Tolkien's love of language and the world of immense detail he created frame a story that stans on its own for excellence.
Absolutely not! I'm sure Mr. Inglis' talents would work for some British lit, in fact he might well do a smash-up job on Alice or something like that, but his delivery is altogether inappropriate for this story. And oh God, someone should have prevented him from trying to sing Tolkien's songs.
Hmmm, almost anger. I love the entirety of Tolkien's Middle Earth and all the stories therein. There is a music in his poetry and a poetry in his music that requires care to bring across in a spoken performance. Rob Inglis left this poetic music writhing in shame on the ground, its petticoats torn, stockings awry and generally in a state of violated disrepair that I could not abide.
J. R. R. Tolkien was a linguist and a lover of the sound of language. If one listens to the music that is in Elvish when properly spoken, one cannot doubt that to be read aloud was one purpose for the writings of his tales of Middle Earth. I applaud Audible for bringing an attempt to do this into its collection, but I cannot describe in strong enough terms how disappointing this effort is in ruining the rhythm of the language and rendering the whole thing into a children's farce, note I say farce, not tale. One must love this material deeply in order to do it justice, as shown by the Peter Jackson film adaptations. I do not feel the love here.
As the last veterans of World War II pass away, their stories are disappearing. This is a sad thing, because it is in the personal stories of important events that we can truly learn history that affects us. Robert Mrazek's book conveys this history in a compelling fashion that makes it possible for 21st century Americans to relive the experiences of the young men of the Eighth Air Force during their time of trial in Europe.
The personal touch Mrazek brings to each story manages to convey it at all scales from grand strategy to the happenings in individual planes. It's difficult to span this wide a scale, but Mrazek does it skillfully.
In the interests of full disclosure, Ray Theodore Wilken, one of the men Mrazek follows through the raid was my biological grandfather, so I had a reason to read this book. Doing so has taught me more about my own family history and the histories of the men linked to Ted by their joint service, and the German fighter ace who killed him.
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