You no longer follow Corwin

You will no longer see updates from this user when they write new reviews, or suggestions based on their library or recommendations.

You can re-follow a user if you change your mind.

OK

You now follow Corwin

You will receive updates from this user when they write new reviews, or suggestions based on their library or recommendations.

You can unfollow a user if you change your mind.

OK

Corwin

Idaho | Member Since 2013

2
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 10 reviews
  • 10 ratings
  • 115 titles in library
  • 40 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0

  • Trumps of Doom: The Chronicles of Amber, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Roger Zelazny
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    Overall
    (335)
    Performance
    (307)
    Story
    (306)

    Trumps of Doom is the sixth book of The Chronicles of Amber; an epic fantasy series written by six-time Hugo Award winning and three-time Nebula Award winning author Roger Zelazny.

    Matt A. says: "Another quality performance."
    "Amber's First Book of Merlin's Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Trumps of Doom?

    The Amber stories are perhaps Zelazny's best-known works They cover 10 novels, the first five told from the perspective of Corwin, a prince of the land of Amber. This book starts the tale of Merlin, Corwin's son, as he confronts unknown dangers and intrigues. The story is full of imagination in both settings and plot twists, told with the unique wise-cracking Zelazny flare. Merlin's tale starts with him "waiting around" for someone to kill him. It's something that happens once a year, on a clock-work schedule. And just like that, you're off, into a unique universe of parallel worlds, where anything is possible. If you're a fan of Zelazny, I've probably already written more than is necessary; if you've never read his work before, I encourage you to start with _Nine Princes in Amber_, the story of this famous series. If you *really* need to know more before deciding whether or not to buy, you can find numerous fan sites with a search of "amber Roger Zelazny" on the Internet. You'll be in for a great story!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Merlin is an interesting mixture of cynicism, naivete, insight, and self-blindness. He has a different background and skill set than his father. There is some interesting tongue-in-cheek, such as Merlin coming from a chaotic, magical, and feudal background, and yet becoming a -- designer of a computers.


    Which character – as performed by Wil Wheaton – was your favorite?

    The story is a 1st person narrative: Merlin is the storyteller.


    Any additional comments?

    There are a few problems with the narrator. He sometimes miss-pronounces words (e.g., "slavering" -- which he pronounces with a long a rather than the proper short), and names (e.g., "Gérard"). I, at least, expected more of a professional production. Fortunately, these unfortunate assaults on the ear are infrequent. It is interesting to hear the story as read by the narrator, as his inflection and emphasis differs from my reading, and my desire for a different take on the reading was part of my reason for buying an audio version of the books I know so well.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Sharpe's Escape: Book X of the Sharpe Series

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs)
    • By Bernard Cornwell
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    Overall
    (185)
    Performance
    (89)
    Story
    (87)

    It is 1810, and in Napoleon's determination to conquer Portugal, and push the British back to the sea, he sends his largest army yet across the Spanish frontier. But between the Portuguese border and Napoleon's seemingly certain victory are two obstacles; a wasted land, stripped of food by Wellington's orders, and Captain Richard Sharpe.

    Bradley says: "Three cheers for Patrick Tull!"
    "False Advertizing -- Another "ABRIDGED" Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    It is singularly annoying that with the newer books in the Sharpe series, Audible has ceased having the Performer read the Author's closing Historical Notes. The novel itself seems to have been read in its entirety, So why does Audible have so much trouble finishing the book by having the performer read just four-and-a-fraction more pages? Incomprehensible: History is a great part of what this genre is all about.

    In this case, the novel is based on the invasion of Portugal by Massena. Unlike most of the Sharpe novels, the critical battle (Bussaco) happens rather early on in the novel. But Sharpe's success in the battlefield just adds to his life's complications. Cornwell delivers his usual fast-paced adventure for Captain Sharpe.He interweaves some rich historical detail into his novel (such as Massena taking off his hat and bowing at a dramatic moment before the fortifications of Torres Vedras). The books are also fun adventure, and well worth the listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sharpe’s Havoc: Portugal, 1809

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Bernard Cornwell
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (130)
    Performance
    (112)
    Story
    (111)

    Best-selling novelist Bernard Cornwell crafts a thrilling tale from his immensely popular Richard Sharpe series. In 1809 Lieutenant Sharpe and his riflemen are in Portugal, preparing for Napoleon’s next strike. The smaller English force will probably pull out before it’s too late, but not Sharpe. His orders are to find the missing daughter of an English wine shipper. Just as Sharpe and his men begin their mission, the French launch their punishing assault.

    Corwin says: "Not Exactly Unabridged"
    "Not Exactly Unabridged"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Sharpe’s Havoc in three words, what would they be?

    Sharpe's adventures are always entertaining, rich in historical detail, and good action-adventure. This particular story is a little below the usual high grade yarn Cornwell tells, but only a little. The climax is a modestly improbable in what does *not* happen to Sharpe (I am avoiding a spoiler). For much of this book, this story also takes Sharpe further from the actual historical events than is the norm for the series. The Sharpe series was originally a series of 11 books. They were sufficiently successful that some sequel and prequel books were written, plus a few (like this novel) that were shoe-horned in between the original volumes. This particular story is taking place in the spring of 1809, as French Marshal Soult conquers northern Portugal, and then prepares to move on to Lisbon with his seemingly unstoppable army of 25,000 veterans. The small British army is in Lisbon, commanded by General Cradock, perhaps waiting to embark on British shops and sail home. All of Portugal is ready to fall, and Soult is being encouraged to dream big dreams for his personal future. But of course, Soult never planned on Lieutenant Richard Sharpe, Sergeant Patrick Harper, and their fearsome dogs of war, their fellow refugees from the British 95th Rifles.


    Any additional comments?

    Unlike the original 11 books in the Sharpe series (I believe all read by Frederick Davidson), the narrator of this book neglects to read the closing "Historical Notes" provided by the author. For me, at least, it is always interesting to know when the story's done what was real history and what was fiction. I'm fortunate enough to have a hard cover version of the book, and so able to look this information up, after listening to the book in my car. I would strongly encourage Audible to include the "Historical Notes" of Cornwall's books.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Ivanhoe

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Sir Walter Scott
    • Narrated By Michael Page
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (311)
    Performance
    (220)
    Story
    (228)

    Wilfred, knight of Ivanhoe, the son of Cedric the Saxon, is in love with his father's ward, Rowena. Cedric, however, wishes her to marry Athelstane, a descendant of the royal Saxon line, whom Cedric hopes will restore the Saxon succession. With a colorful cast of chivalric knights and fair ladies, this action-filled novel comes complete with feats of derring-do, the pageantry of a tournament, and a great flame-engulfed castle - all of which makes it the most enthralling of Scott's creations.

    Bill Dewey/Reclaiming Quarterly says: "Great Adventure, Good Rendition"
    "Solid Performance of Classic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Ivanhoe?

    Walter Scott's _Ivanhoe_ is a romantic adventure of the first order. If you want a tale of chivalrous knights and derring-do, this is one of the few books that spring to mind, outside of Arthurian tales and Howard Pyle's _Men of Iron_. The story is well told, and was responsible for a resurgence of knightly tales, and is also said to have helped shape the modern conception of a certain legendary outlaw. The language used is rich, perhaps slightly flowery, but a pleasure to hear. In places the story uses real history; in others, Scott takes some liberties to advance his tale. The result is both entertaining and enjoyable.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The characters are assigned their roles and carry them well. Sometimes characters border on stereotype, but Scott injects both enough humor and drama to keep you from really noticing. One of my favorite characters is the minor figure of Wamba, the quick-witted fool with the occasional merry turn of phrase.


    Have you listened to any of Michael Page’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Michael Page provides a solid performance. Characters have each their own voice, and you can clearly tell the difference between them. Page speaks clearly and with style appropriate to the piece. The performance is excellent.


    Any additional comments?

    Scott's work was first published in 1820, and so was written during the last part of George III's reign, during the Regency of George IV. If you were not introduced to the book in school, you should be aware the story is told in the style and language of the day (Scott was also a noted poet of his day). Yet Scott's tales continue to breathe life, and repeatedly turn up on both the small and silver screens. There is a reason the book was included in so many high school curriculum, and if you haven't read it for a while, it is definitely worth the listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • METAtropolis

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Jay Lake, Tobias Buckell, Elizabeth Bear, and others
    • Narrated By Michael Hogan, Scott Brick, Kandyse McClure, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1416)
    Performance
    (649)
    Story
    (661)

    Armed camps of eco-survivalists battle purveyors of technology in this exclusive, original production featuring five sci-fi masters and five all-star narrators.

    Karen says: "Fascinating stories"
    "Thanks, But No Thanks"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What would have made METAtropolis better?

    This is a collection of several novellas by different authors, set in the same future world. I managed to hear the first story out -- it took an effort of will -- but when the second story started, after about three minutes' worth, I realized I REALLY didn't want to listen to this stuff anymore. The second author sound just as unappetizing as the first.

    I've read Science Fiction for more than 40 years. While there may be some interesting ideas here for a setting here, the authors -- or at least the first one -- really didn't seem to have much sense of what to do with them. The tale he provided was rather "murky," featuring an almost-nauseatingly "perfect" hero -- big, powerful, handsome, exceptionally strong, a natural-born-leader, and all the rest you'd expect in a truly hackneyed tale. A few religious allusions and overtones are thrown in, apparently to try to suggest there is some "deeper meaning" to the tale. The author came across to me as more than a tad pretentious, overindulgent when it came to adjectives, and overly invested in cliched stereotypes. But hey, maybe that's just me.

    Anyway, I made myself listen to that first story, thinking their must be some redeeming quality to the tale. But when it was over, I was left asking the most deadly question an author ever wants to invoke in a reader: "so what?" The first story was a total waste of time, and the start of the second one seemed to be following in its footsteps. Maybe that's not fair, since I didn't hear it out, but if the lead-off story was so poor, is there really much hope for the encore material?


    Would you be willing to try another one of the narrators’s performances?


    What I, at least, consider to be bad writing was aggravated by a performer who seemed to be constantly "sitting on the edge of his chair" throughout his delivery. When the writing itself is already overdone, this style of delivery almost seemed a parody.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    None.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • METAtropolis

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Jay Lake, Tobias Buckell, Elizabeth Bear, and others
    • Narrated By Michael Hogan, Scott Brick, Kandyse McClure, and others
    Overall
    (2124)
    Performance
    (1870)
    Story
    (1913)

    Armed camps of eco-survivalists battle purveyors of technology in this exclusive, original production featuring five sci-fi masters and five all-star narrators.

    Anthony says: "Painful"
    "Thanks, But No Thanks."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    This is a collection of several novellas by different authors, set in the same future world. I managed to hear the first story out -- it took an effort of will -- but when the second story started, after about three minutes' worth, I realized I REALLY didn't want to listen to this stuff anymore. The second author sound just as unappetizing as the first.

    I've read Science Fiction for more than 40 years. While there may be some interesting ideas here for a setting here, the authors -- or at least the first one -- really didn't seem to have much sense of what to do with them. The tale he provided was rather "murky," featuring an almost-nauseatingly "perfect" hero -- big, powerful, handsome, exceptionally strong, a natural-born-leader, and all the rest you'd expect in a truly hackneyed tale. A few religious allusions and overtones are thrown in, apparently to try to suggest there is some "deeper meaning" to the tale. The author came across to me as more than a tad pretentious, overindulgent when it came to adjectives, and overly invested in cliched stereotypes. But hey, maybe that's just me.

    Anyway, I made myself listen to that first story, thinking their must be some redeeming quality to the tale. But when it was over, I was left asking the most deadly question an author ever wants to invoke in a reader: "so what?" The first story was a total waste of time, and the start of the second one seemed to be following in its footsteps. Maybe that's not fair, since I didn't hear it out, but if the lead-off story was so poor, is there really much hope for the encore material?


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    What I, at least, consider to be bad writing was aggravated by a performer who seemed to be constantly "sitting on the edge of his chair" throughout his delivery. When the writing itself is already overdone, this style of delivery almost seemed a parody.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • One Man's Initiation

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By John Dos Passos
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    Overall
    (487)
    Performance
    (418)
    Story
    (425)

    Springing from the author's first-hand experience as an ambulance driver and Red Cross worker during World War I, this autobiographical first novel is noteworthy for its vivid and colorful evocation of France at that time and for its passionate indictment of war. The author's disillusionment with war for a time turned him toward socialism and against capitalism.

    Sam Motes says: "A gem in the anti war genre."
    "A Meandering Tale that Ultimately Lacks Punch"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I got this book knowing I would be taking a long road trip in about a month. I listened to it "cold," having forgotten everything about it except that it was set in WWI and that it was an anti-war novel. The story was moderately well-told, enough to keep me paying attention during a long drive. But without the "jacket blurb" fresh in my mind, it took me a while to realize the story was about an ambulance crew member. Indeed, throughout the opening sequences, it would be easy to mistake the narrator for a soldier bound for the front. This led me to mistakenly believe the book was going to be something reminiscent of _All Quiet On the Western Front_ or similar great anti-war novels.

    Instead, we follow the (American) narrator through a loosely connected set of scenes and adventures, many of which take place behind the front, or even on leave in places such as Paris. There are a few scenes involving artillery attacks (including a gas attack), but most of the time, the war itself seems rather remote. Rather than having the narrator grow or change during the story, he seems much the same as when he started, despite his experiences. I suspect this is due to the author's inexperience in character development than the experiences, however.

    In any case, the author leaves most of the anti-war proselytizing to secondary characters who seem to have the front-line experience the narrator lacks. We don't really see any of their experience in the trench, and the characters just put in brief appearances and then vanish. This practice culminates in the the last 20 or 30 minutes of the recording, in which we are subject to anti-war lectures by two different French soldiers. One soldier spouts about how all war would end if everybody just followed the church -- a laughable notion for anybody familiar with European history. The second soldier then launches into a heavy-handed monologue against capitalism.

    That's pretty much the end of the novel. It does not satisfy: the author never really engaged me with the character of the narrator (or anyone else), and the didactic sermonizing was a bit "over the top," lacking any subtlety. The book wasn't "bad," but neither would I call it "good." If you're interested in this period of history, or the anti-war message, _All Quiet On the Western Front_ by Remarque would be a much better investment of time. So far as I'm concerned, I've listened to this book once, and that was enough (or more). I'm deleting it from my iPod....


    Has One Man's Initiation turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No, it hasn't "turned me off." The author doubtless had "interesting" experiences, but simply is not a very adept writer (in my humble opinion). I didn't find any of the scenes in the story to be especially gripping or vivid, but they were *adequate.* Nothing really grabbed me by the guts or painted a picture of the true horrors of war.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    I don't really fault the performance: it was adequate for the material. You could tell when different speakers spoke, etc.


    Did One Man's Initiation inspire you to do anything?

    While the story did include a few moments of interesting first-hand perspective, I did not find it inspiring.


    Any additional comments?

    I would not recommend this book to anyone, nor would I care to read anything else by this author. I found the book to be very "run of the mill." But -- it kept me awake while driving. ;)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Why Gettysburg Mattered: 150 Years Later (Bonus Material: The Gettysburg Address)

    • UNABRIDGED (14 mins)
    • By Allen C. Guelzo
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett, Kevin Pariseau
    Overall
    (433)
    Performance
    (381)
    Story
    (386)

    The Battle of Gettysburg – the turning point of the American Civil War – would, in the words of one staff officer, stand “like Waterloo, conspicuous in the history of all ages."

    Jami says: "Historical Snapshot"
    "Thankfully, it was Free."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    This is 12-minute-or-so discussion of the Battle of Gettysburg, followed by a reading of The Gettysburg Address. One can not expect much depth in such a brief document, and I guess its main value is to people with little knowledge of the battle, or to those who may have an interest in purchasing a book on the topic.

    The title is a misnomer: little time is spent discussing why Gettysburg mattered, and what discussion there is on that topic tends to cover well-known ground: how the Union needed a victory, etc. The beginning discusses things such as casualty figures, and challenges some commonly-held perceptions about the battle, but (doubtless due to the time limit of this free release) offers little in the way of arguments to support the author's assertions.Other topics discussed herein are also claimed to not be widely accepted, and yet to my experience, are "nothing new." I am, however, more widely read on the American Civil War than many laymen, so take that with as much salt as you wish.

    Since I view this as a marketing tool for another product, might have been more helpful? Perhaps an excerpt from the other book, giving a sense of the author's style, or something indicating the drama the author would try to focus on.Utterly lacking was any sense of why I should obtain the promoted book, as opposed to any of the many others available on the topic.

    If you are unfamiliar with the topic, this free publication may whet your appetite to know more about this critical event in American history, and if so, that is all to the good. Purchasing the book it promotes may then also be a very helpful action, and *perhaps* even be a very good choice.But this free promotion makes that less than clear, and fails even more so when dealing with an historically literate audience.


    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Return of the King: Book Three in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By J. R. R. Tolkien
    • Narrated By Rob Inglis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3247)
    Performance
    (2924)
    Story
    (2987)

    The Return of the King is the towering climax to J. R. R. Tolkien’s trilogy that tells the saga of the hobbits of Middle-earth and the great War of the Rings. In this concluding volume, Frodo and Sam make a terrible journey to the heart of the Land of the Shadow in a final reckoning with the power of Sauron. In addition to narrating the prose passages, Rob Inglis sings the trilogy’s songs and poems a capella, using melodies composed by Inglis and Claudia Howard, the Recorded Books studio director.

    Natalie says: "Finally!"
    "Inglis is to be Commended!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Return of the King in three words, what would they be?

    Great mythic story.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Tolkien has a great style quite appropriate for his mythic tale. He builds a consistent universe, borrowing elements from Norse and Celtic myth, mingled with the produce of his own rich imagination. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy is among my favorite works of fictions. When I first read it some 40 years ago, it came to its end much too soon for my liking, despite the length of the books.

    Rob Inglis is an excellent narrator, with the possible exception of his rendering of Tolkien’s verse into song. He has a rich, theatrical voice, and is (especially in comparison to some other narrators’ work) thoroughly professional in his performance. Also of interest to those who are wondering: the narrator DOES include Tolkien appendices.


    What about Rob Inglis’s performance did you like?

    It was helpful hearing the pronunciation of Elvish words, phrases, and names. I also typically listen to audiobooks only during lengthy car rides. This production is quite suitable for such journeys, keeping you alert and engaged.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    One would have to have a very long sitting to do this!


    Any additional comments?

    One of the appendices included in this volume is some introductory material from the first volume of the series, _The Fellowship of the Ring_. I can see where including it at the start of that volume might not suit the desire of some listeners to jump right into the tale. As is, this information – basic background of the nature of Hobbits – comes too late to be helpful to any listeners not familiar with them. Perhaps audible should consider restoring this to the _Fellowship_, with an option of skipping directly to the tale if desired?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Fellowship of the Ring: Book One in The Lord of the Rings Trilogy

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By J. R. R. Tolkien
    • Narrated By Rob Inglis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5258)
    Performance
    (4741)
    Story
    (4830)

    The Fellowship of the Ring, the first volume in the trilogy, tells of the fateful power of the One Ring. It begins a magnificent tale of adventure that will plunge the members of the Fellowship of the Ring into a perilous quest and set the stage for the ultimate clash between the powers of good and evil.

    Ellen says: "At last - The Definitive Recording!"
    "Genre Giant, but some minor recording concerns"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Fellowship of the Ring rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The Lord of the Rings Trilogy is among my favorite works of fictions. When I first read it some 40 years ago, it came to its end much too soon for my liking, despite the well over 1,000 page length of the books.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The narrator has a skilled theatrical voice and a slight accent that enriches his telling of the tale. For me, at least, this more than compensates for the minor production flaws alluded to below. The story itself probably needs little introduction, given its status in the genre. Suffice to say it is well-written, rich in imagination, and has strong mythic elements.


    Have you listened to any of Rob Inglis’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have listened to his version of The Hobbit; owning that version is made drove me to seek out Inglis' version of the Lord of the Rings.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    The length of the book likely precludes listening to it all at one sitting, unless one is undergoing an intercontinental flight or some such! But it is a story one wishes to come back to at the first opportunity!


    Any additional comments?

    I downloaded my copy to itunes, and listened to it over my ipod. I do not know how the quality of the recording compares to other download methods. While the production/recording values are generally quite high, there a few places in which I heard phantom background voices, or the recording had a minor, brief whistle. While this did not lessen my enjoyment, I would encourage audible.com to consider a remastering of the recording to remove these slight defects.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.