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DENNIS

Adelphi, MD, United States | Member Since 2011

6
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 18 reviews
  • 18 ratings
  • 488 titles in library
  • 127 purchased in 2014
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  • Trustee from the Toolroom

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Nevil Shute
    • Narrated By Frank Muller
    Overall
    (805)
    Performance
    (724)
    Story
    (726)

    Keith Stewart, a retiring and ingenious engineer, could not have been happier in his little house in the shabby London suburb of Ealing. There he invented the mini-motor, the six-volt generator, and the tiny Congreve clock. Then a chain of events sweeps him into deep waters and leads him to his happiest discovery yet.

    Paula says: "Just Simply a Great Story!"
    "Delightful yarn for engineers"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story is a gem of plausible circumstances that carry a home-hobby mechanic of mini-mechanisms around the world to rescue the inheritance of his orphaned niece, aided by the kindness of strangers and a vivid set of circumstances and characters. The physically accurate descriptions of the fussy steps in manipulating a wide variety of devices ranging from sailboats to sawmills provide engineering authenticity as well as plot action. Read with the excellent expression and gravitas of Frank Muller, this gentle tale of humanity entangled with technology would make a great feel-good movie.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    Overall
    (9307)
    Performance
    (8529)
    Story
    (8539)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "Great Russian novel!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    After many weeks on the best-seller lists, I expected a merely artsy story, but I was delighted to find a novel worthy of Dostoyevsky, rich with full-blooded, flawed characters who semi-connect with each other and the semi-criminal world we live in. The narrator has an amazing range of voices with distinct personalities, not just accents but emotional persona. The author, a middle-age woman, does an extraordnary job of creating realistically reckless young men. Oddly, her female characters are thinner. The only flaw to my mind was the closing chapter, a redemption of the sort imposed by Victorian publishers.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fledgling: Liaden Universe: Theo Waitley, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Sharon Lee, Steve Miller
    • Narrated By Eileen Stevens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (168)
    Performance
    (152)
    Story
    (154)

    Theo Waitley has lived all her young life on Delgado, a Safe World that is home to one of the galaxy's premier institutions of higher learning. Both Theo's mother, Kamele, and Kamele's onagrata Jen Sar Kiladi, are professors at the university, and they all live comfortably together, just like they have for all of Theo's life, in Jen Sar's house at the outskirts of town.Suddenly, though, Theo's life changes. Kamele leaves Jen Sar and moves herself and Theo back into faculty housing, which is not what Theo is used to.

    Sires says: "A Coming of Age Story in the Liaden Universe"
    "A sweet fem-fi story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a sly futuristic tale without being dystopian. The style morphs from bare-bones homey, to comedy-of-manners, to thriller, somehow making the story of a teen daughter of professors and sabotage in the reference library interesting. Nice dry satire of academic and feminist lifestyle, as our girl finds her true self.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Oliver Sacks
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (464)
    Performance
    (174)
    Story
    (168)

    Music can move us to the heights or depths of emotion. It can persuade us to buy something, or remind us of our first date. It can lift us out of depression when nothing else can. It can get us dancing to its beat. But the power of music goes much, much further. Indeed, music occupies more areas of our brain than language does - humans are a musical species.

    Shimon says: "A must for music lovers"
    "Quite a variety of musical perception"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Sacks thoughtfully reveals how strange music appreciation is, by presenting many examples of unusual musical perception. In addition to dysfunctions related to accidents and illness, he describes the quirks of "earwigs", perfect pitch and color-sensed tones. Neurology still does not explain how acoustics are connected to emotions, or how simple rhythm is physically compelling. Nevertheless, it makes you think about what your brain is doing when you listen to music.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hornblower and the Hotspur

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By C. S. Forester
    • Narrated By Christian Rodska
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (247)
    Performance
    (224)
    Story
    (226)

    April 1803, and the Peace of Amiens is failing as Horatio Hornblower takes a three-master on a vital reconnaissance mission…. On the day of his marriage to Maria, Hornblower is ordered to take the Hotspur and head for Brest - war is coming and Napoleon will not catch His Majesty’s Navy with its britches round its ankles.

    John S says: "Good narration but series limited in availability"
    "The unheroic Hornblower at work"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Hornblower's command of a tiny ship engaged in the stressful and boring task of blockading Brest during the Napoleonic war is surprisingly engaging. Particularly when he is prone to seasickness and bouts of doubt about his personal and professional life. The story is a convincing tale of how a competent guy with a bit of cautious initiative and courage can do important work when the opportunity presents itself.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Book Thief

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Markus Zusak
    • Narrated By Allan Corduner
    Overall
    (8732)
    Performance
    (6843)
    Story
    (6874)

    It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can't resist: books.

    Amazon Customer says: "Word Thief"
    "Pretty depressing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book proves that it is difficult to write a good book about a halfwit orphan growing up in NAZI Germany. It has the flavor and starkness of depression-era and post-war German fiction. I gave up half-way through -- perhaps it got better.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Kokoda

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Peter FitzSimons
    • Narrated By Lewis FitzGerald
    Overall
    (168)
    Performance
    (142)
    Story
    (146)

    For Australians, Kokoda is the iconic battle of World War II, yet few people know just what happened and just what our troops achieved. Now, best-selling author Peter FitzSimons tells the Kokoda story in a gripping, moving story for all Australians.

    Mark T Ryan says: "A Tribute to Fighting Australians"
    "How the Aussies stopped the Japs"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The gritty fight by a vastly outnumbered Aussie militia to stop the Japs from crossing one of the worst jungles in the world to threaten Australia is one of the smaller battles of WWII. The day-by-day, person-by-person accounts from both sides keeps up interest in an obscure historical event. The Aussie fighters are occasionally portrayed a bit too heroically, bordering on wartime propaganda, but the scorn for distant and bungling military command rings true. Both sides lost more than half their men fighting for a tiny outpost on a footpath in the middle of New Guinea, a awesome example of men at war.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Suspect

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Robert Crais
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4202)
    Performance
    (3745)
    Story
    (3741)

    LAPD cop Scott James is not doing so well, not since a shocking nighttime assault by unidentified men killed his partner, Stephanie, nearly killed him, and left him enraged, ashamed, and ready to explode. He is unfit for duty - until he meets his new partner. Maggie is not doing so well, either. The German shepherd survived three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan sniffing explosives before she lost her handler to an IED and sniper attack, and her PTSD is as bad as Scott’s. They are each other’s last chance.

    Jacqueline says: "Gripping Page Turner!!"
    "For dog-lovers"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The notion of bonding a PTSD cop with a PTSD dog in a thriller was attractive to me as a sometime dog-resuer. But, the plot is a bit contrived and the characters, including the dog, rather one-dimensional.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Spellbound: Book II of the Grimnoir Chronicles

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Larry Correia
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3914)
    Performance
    (3649)
    Story
    (3645)

    Dark fantasy goes hardboiled in Book II of the hard-hitting Grimnoir Chronicles by the New York Times best-selling creator of Monster Hunter International. The Grimnoir Society’s mission is to protect people with magic, and they’ve done so—successfully and in secret—since the mysterious arrival of the Power in the 1850s, but when a magical assassin makes an attempt on the life of President Franklin Roosevelt, the crime is pinned on the Grimnoir.

    Paulette says: "Spellbound is Pure Magic"
    "An excellent reading of a magic shoot-em-up"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The plot is an extravagantly violent adolescent magical fantasy (not necessarily a bad thing), which is truly enriched by a reader who makes the characters sound bigger-than-life with a rich repertory of pitches, pronunciations and pacing. It's rare to hear one person voice as many distinct characters as a Disney animated movie.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Midnight Riot: Peter Grant, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Ben Aaronovitch
    • Narrated By Kobna Holdbrook-Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1353)
    Performance
    (1237)
    Story
    (1234)

    Probationary constable Peter Grant dreams of being a detective in London's Metropolitan Police. Too bad his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit, where the biggest threat he'll face is a paper cut. But Peter's prospects change in the aftermath of a puzzling murder, when he gains exclusive information from an eyewitness who happens to be a ghost. Peter's ability to speak with the lingering dead brings him to the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale....

    Nancy J says: "I LOVE this Book!"
    "good fun"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A nice adventure into magical police and the gods of the Thames in modern London, with well developed out-of-control complications.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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