I would not try another book from Jeffrey Pfeffer. For an academic with credentials like his he has to know he skates on thin ice with his examples and that half of the US public will react negatively to contemporary examples. Since he chose to use those examples anyway, instead of others from less emotional milieus that could have illustrated his points just as well, I have to conclude that he had at least one ulterior motive to this book. I don't care to support that kind of writing. I don't watch movies done by actors who overshadow the story with political statements, or listen to journalists who sell their political views by deceit and don't read authors who try to slip politics into books, either. The way that he chose to highlight his favorite political party with sycophantic valentines to them and damn his enemies with faint praise was very annoying and detracted from his major points. It was the equivalent of saying things like "the wife-beater got away with it in court because of his projection of confidence" on his enemies, then turning around and lauding one person who was disbarred from his home state's legal association, another who had recklessly killed someone and lied about it, and so more. Very irritating.
The way Mr. Pfeffer illustrated the health aspects of understanding power hit home. I listened to those points and forced myself to continue the book when it bogged down in tributes to his friends.
The performance was fine, which I know means it was probably extremely skillful because business books do not lend themselves to interesting narration.
I think many people could benefit from the Clif's Notes and not have to put up with the irrelevancies.
Cialdini's book on Influence is the standard for this genre. The author should note Cialdini's neutral political examples and adjust accordingly. Obviously power is a political issue so one would have to use political examples, but why not 11th century Japan, ancient Rome or anything else that is not so emotionally charged as current politics?
I would recommend this to any frequent reader of Sci Fi. I would also recommend that people read this if they are thinking about reading Reynold's Revelation Space series. I think it creates the setting better so that Revelation Space and the others would be easier to follow. I loved those books, too.
Reynolds creates a different solar system in the distant future and then uncovers a riveting murder mystery in it. His uses of the environments he created was amazing.
There were many interesting scenes so I have a hard time picking one. The Prefect's interactions with the Spider (augmented human) were all interesting. His interrogations of beta and alpha artificial intelligences were cool. His characters called Ultras are cool. The whiphound was a great invention. Each habitat in the Glitter Band was creative. I liked those so much I toyed with the idea of trying to write my own sci fi so that I could create other Glitter Band habitats. That isn't my gig, though, so I hope some other, real authors pick up that thread.
I listened to this book in 2 hour chunks. John Lee's voice becomes so comfortable in my head that I start needing a fix every now and then.
Great science fiction overall. Alastair Reynolds should team up with some Japanese artists and write a series of Manga with hyperpigs as the protagonists.
This might be the second most important book one will ever hear. It isn't the best story - it is a great story, but not "the best ever"; it's value is in making important points about the scarcity of life. I was immediately captivated by it and went out and bought the hardcopy to give to my kids.
This would be like updating, then blending, Douglas Adam's Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy with C.S. Lewis's Out of the Silent Planet. Sawyer uses very lighthearted tones to illustrate deep ideas.
Jonathan Davis nailed the attitude of Hollus.
I did more yardwork because I kept listening to this. I also intend to listen to it again in a few months.
There were some laugh-out-loud scenes early in this book. That is all I can say about them. My physicist and computer-engineering friends will probably love it, too.
Angela Dawe did a great job. Most of the books I have heard were narrated by men and she was a really good change of pace. She changed voices very well and captured the spirit of the characters and story.
A comparison might be The Mote In God's Eye by Niven. That isn't a great comparison because of obvious differences but I can't think of another. I chose it because the challenge of First Contact could go any number of ways and those stories are two plausible scenarios.
I have not heard Angela Dawe before.
The very first interaction between Loul, the Didet, and Meg, the Earther, was very engaging. The story was already interesting and that was the point where I became emotionally engaged with the characters. Also the author built the perfect amount of suspense in the confrontation.
I thought Redling did a great job of being thought provoking without trying to do too much with the story. It was a fun listen and one that many people should pick for a long drive or flight.
Anyone who likes sci-fi / fantasy should try this one. That is the genre I listen to the most and this was a great purchase. If you listen to books while exercising or doing yardwork, this will make the time go by. The author tells a good story without being predictable, and the reader brings the characters to life.
Kingkiller Chronicles: The Name of the Wind is analogous; Pathfinder by Orson Scott Card has some similarities; Eye of the World readers would like it; and Game of Thrones fans would most likely enjoy it. This is a more light-hearted book than most of those and in that vein, levity is hard to find. It is not a comedy, just a tale that does not take itself too seriously.
The entrance to the hidden prison. It was not for the drama, it was because of the images created. That scene was so well described it stood out as innovative and memorable. I do not want to say more because part of the fun is the discovery for future readers.
Theft of Swords is a great name but I am not coming up with a tag line at the moment.
No additional comments.
I loved the alternate universe where the story takes place almost as much as the story itself. I appreciate how hard it is to create a world with different physical laws than ours and keep those principles alive throughout the book. The story was very exciting. It is the kind of audio book to have for long hours in the gym or a big cleaning project at home. I think a family could listen to it together on a long drive if the kids are old enough to watch Lord of the Rings types of movies.
Game of Thrones, Lord of the Rings - Robert Jordan references imagining how TLOTR would be different as one of his creative inspirations.
I didn't have a specific scene as a favorite. I found the encounters with Darkfriends very well done as the main characters moved through the landscape.
I would listen to this book beyond the time I had budgeted on any given day.
I have recommended it to family and friends. I played parts of it for my family at dinner. For one thing it is so different from the rest of the books I have read recently. Then there is no heavy message or metaphorical hand-wringing, just a pure focus on the story. It is counter to my religious beliefs but done so light-heartedly and skillfully that I could not take any offense. I would recommend this to any religious person who does not take themselves too seriously, which is the vast majority of the ones I know.
The opening action sequence was very memorable. I won't say why, just that there were some surprising "elements" in it and some clever conversational changes between different kinds of characters.
He was the most awesome dog I have ever heard. I always looked forward to the interchanges between Atticus and Oberon because Luke nailed the dog part. I am a dog owner and could easily imagine my pet friends talking that way. Without a doubt, his canine voice is one of the reasons to listen to this book instead of simply reading it.
It made me laugh because Oberon was very funny. Otherwise it was very fast paced.
Please send my thanks to both Kevin Hearne and Luke Daniels. Very well done!
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