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Dan

ratings
7
REVIEWS
5
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
1
HELPFUL VOTES
8

  • One Second After

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By William R. Forstchen
    • Narrated By Joe Barrett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5060)
    Performance
    (3066)
    Story
    (3091)

    Already cited on the floor of Congress and discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a book all Americans should read, One Second After is the story of a war scenario that could become all too terrifyingly real. Based upon a real weapon - the Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP) - which may already be in the hands of our enemies, it is a truly realistic look at the awesome power of a weapon that can destroy the entire United States.

    Andy Spooner says: "A page-turner, no doubt, but..."
    "One word: WOW!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up One Second After in three words, what would they be?

    Timely. Accurate. Eye-opening. This was my first book about an EMP attack or societal breakdown scenario. After reading, I researched the concepts and talked with several friends in energy industry. Everything I found verifies the technical aspects of this novel with one minor exception. Granted I am from North Carolina and spend many summers in the Black Mountain/Old Fort/Asheville areas and can relate to locations personally and emotionally, Forstchen crafts a well written novel with realistic, fairly well developed characters. The one minor technical question I had involves the concept of planes dropping out of the sky immediately after and EMP. I'm not familiar with plane steering but thought a plane could still glide after a full electronic failure. Many EMP books indicate they drop out of control immediately by spiraling out of control. I mention this as minor because it has no overall impact on the story and serves only as an example of everyday technology that would be impacted by an EMP.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    This is a very timely concept and is considered one the best of its genre. Newt Gingrich's foreward shares some congressional views on how this scenario is viewed in Washington. Recent congressional discussions indicate it is still a viable threat yet no real action has been taken. Experts agree that a tanker in the Gulf of Mexico could launch a missile over the US and reach an altitude sufficient for a nationwide EMP within 20 minutes and we would not have time to respond. It is a very realistic scenario and sadly the average American is unaware of the potential.


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

    Absolutely!


    Any additional comments?

    This is an audio book I can listen to repeatedly and learn something new from each time. I wish it were required reading in high schools as an Iranian warship is about to arrive on the US east coast, a Russian warship is currently docked in Cuba, and we approach a two front cold war with China and Russia. One of the major movie studios purchased the rights to this novel but the contract expired. Hopefully someone else will develop this into a major motion picture.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Executive Orders

    • UNABRIDGED (51 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Tom Clancy
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
    Overall
    (1170)
    Performance
    (885)
    Story
    (917)

    Debt of Honor ends as Jack Ryan is confirmed vice president minutes before a mammoth act of terrorism kills the President, most of his cabinet, all but a few members of Congress, the entire Supreme Court and all of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Suddenly Ryan is President, which is where Executive Orders begins.

    Thomas says: "Don't some of us wish Jack ryan was real?"
    "My favorite Tom Clancy novel!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    While a printed Tom Clancy novel can often get bogged down in technical details, audio versions keep my attention. The narrator holds my attention during the technical parts without putting me to sleep.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Executive Orders?

    My favorite part is when President Ryan must rebuild the government from scratch for the first time since our Founding Fathers. He asks the people to send ordinary citizens-- farmers, doctors, business leaders, entrepreneurs---- instead of professional politicians.


    What about Michael Prichard’s performance did you like?

    I enjoy his inflections and style in which he represents for each character.


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

    As much as I would like to, Clancy novels are too long for one sitting. However, I often listened longer than I should have.


    Any additional comments?

    I immediately thought of "Executive Orders" last week when the Malaysian 777 disappeared. A somewhat similar scenario evolves in "Executive Orders" although a much smaller aircraft. Still, the concept has merit as Isreal announces they now fear an attack by the missing aircraft.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hazardous Duty: Presidential Agent Series, Book 8

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By W.E.B. Griffin, William E. Butterworth
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (293)
    Performance
    (271)
    Story
    (266)

    Mexican drug cartels are shooting up the streets of Laredo and El Paso. Somali pirates are holding three U.S. tankers for ransom. The President of the United States is fed up and, as Commander in Chief, has what he thinks is a pretty bright idea — to get hold of Colonel Charley Castillo and his merry band and get them on the case. Unfortunately, that will be difficult. Everybody knows that the President hates Castillo’s guts, and has just had him forcibly retired from the military, and now Castillo’s men are scattered far and wide, many of them in hiding.

    Michael says: "TRIPE!!! Utter Tripe with horrible editing."
    "Worst W.E.B. Griffin novel ever!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I've read every other Griffin novel and always look forward to new ones. This one, however, is 70% reflections on previous adventures with little new story and no plot. In an afterward, Griffin describes it as a tribute to M*A*S*H but I found no humor or purpose at all. "Hazardous Duty" diverts from previously successful formulas. I'm puzzled as to why Griffin strayed from proven approaches. I almost gave up on it by the third chapter but hoped it would pick up by the end. However, it plodded along until ending abruptly. Perhaps the concept of a mentally compromised President as Clandenine is meant to reflect a potential Joe Biden administration but the overall scenario in this book is preposterous.


    Any additional comments?

    The best part about this book is Audible's return/exchange policy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sycamore Row

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7981)
    Performance
    (7195)
    Story
    (7191)

    Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of lung cancer. He trusts no one. Before he hangs himself from a sycamore tree, Hubbard leaves a new, handwritten, will. It is an act that drags his adult children, his black maid, and Jake into a conflict as riveting and dramatic as the murder trial that made Brigance one of Ford County's most notorious citizens, just three years earlier. The second will raises far more questions than it answers. Why would Hubbard leave nearly all of his fortune to his maid? Had chemotherapy and painkillers affected his ability to think clearly?

    Brock says: "Grisham at his best (again)"
    "Grisham's most disappointing legal novel yet."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from John Grisham and/or Michael Beck?

    I will listen to a future Grisham book but with greater skepticism. He seems to be stuck in a formulaic format of a lawyer tired of the law, continuing to stay in the field, hating big firms, and winning after someone else makes a grand discovery that wins his case. I found "Sycamore Row" to be Grisham's most predictable novel yet. When I read the summary, I eagerly awaited the chance to revisit the "A Time to Kill" characters. I figured if anyone could make dull probate law exciting or at least suspenseful it would be Grisham. I kept hoping for some twist or revelation that would shake it up and help it rise to the caliber of earlier novels. Alas, it barely maintains the mediocre level of his last few books.


    Did Michael Beck do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Most of the characters were read well although the accents were tough to handle. He mentions how one character reverted back to his native accent for certain letters late in the book but had never used them until then. The voices were distinguishably different but they seemed to have different accents. I have not listened to other books read by Beck but to me his Southern accent did not sound authentic.


    Do you think Sycamore Row needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No. Lightning struck for Grisham and the characters of Ford county once. It was unlikely for it to successfully strike twice, especially for the same star attorney. I doubt there's a sleepy county in America in which it could strike three times with the desired effect on readers and maintain realism. I enjoy reading novels with settings making me wish I could walk the streets and feel like I know the townspeople.


    Any additional comments?

    I highly recommend Grisham's juvenile series about Theodore Boone, especially the first two novels.

    7 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Threat Vector

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Tom Clancy, Mark Greaney
    • Narrated By Lou Diamond Phillips
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3467)
    Performance
    (3030)
    Story
    (3044)

    Jack Ryan has only just moved back into the Oval Office when he is faced with a new international threat. An aborted coup in the People's Republic of China has left President Wei Zhen Lin with no choice but to agree with the expansionist policies of General Su Ke Quiang. They have declared the South China Sea a protectorate and are planning an invasion of Taiwan. The Ryan administration is determined to thwart China’s ambitions, but the stakes are dangerously high as a new breed of powerful Chinese anti-ship missiles endanger the US Navy's plans to protect the island.

    Jean says: "Spies and a counter espionage"
    "Classic Clancy!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Absolutely! Lou Diamond Phillips was a great choice as narrator.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The timely subject matter of cyber warfare and the detail in which Clancy explains how real it is. I love the Jack Ryan characters and this book is a great addition to the series. I like the technical information related to cyber warfare and the manner in which is explained. It is not as dry and technical as the data in "The Hunt for Red October".


    Which character – as performed by Lou Diamond Phillips – was your favorite?

    John Clark... Always pictured him with a tough, raspy voice and Phillips captures it well.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I hated to hit pause long enough to run into a store or other errand.


    Any additional comments?

    The length may sound long but flies by as quickly as reading hardback copies.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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