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Darren

College Station, TX, United States | Member Since 2005

ratings
17
REVIEWS
6
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
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HELPFUL VOTES
17

  • Making Money: Discworld #36

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Stephen Briggs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1168)
    Performance
    (456)
    Story
    (457)

    The Ankh-Morpork Post Office is running like...well, not at all like a government office. The mail is delivered promptly. Postmaster General Moist von Lipwig, former arch-swindler and confidence man, has exceeded all expectations - including his own. So it's somewhat disconcerting when Lord Vetinari summons Moist to the palace and asks, "Tell me, Mr. Lipwig, would you like to make some real money?"

    Jason says: "Another gem."
    "A must for Discworld fans"
    Overall

    This latest edition in the discworld series is a must read for all fans. While not the best of Pratchett's work, it is certainly an entertaining read. Continuing the Moist von Lipwig characters from Going Postal, the author turns the unique von Lipwig loose on the Royal Bank and the money system. While not as humorous or as original as the post office book - which should be read before this book - the story of the new Bank Master is still a delight. The plot is more predictable as the characters are already fleshed out from Going Postal and a veteran of the series can see where the book is headed quite quickly. Nevertheless, Pratchett's unique sense of humor and social commentary makes you want to get to the end while also dreading the termination of the tale. For those of you seeking to relish every minute of the recording be prepared for the fact that the last two minutes or so of "the book" are really a public service announcement for getting kids to listen to audiobooks. Alas, not one written by Terry Pratchett.

    Not the best of Pratchett's books, but it will not disappoint.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Race: An Isaac Bell Adventure, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Clive Cussler, Justin Scott
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (803)
    Performance
    (671)
    Story
    (674)

    It is 1910, the age of flying machines is still in its infancy, and newspaper publisher Preston Whiteway is offering $50,000 for the first daring aviator to cross America in less than 50 days. He is even sponsoring one of the prime candidates - an intrepid woman named Josephine Frost - and that's where Bell, chief investigator for the Van Dorn Detective Agency, comes in.

    Clint says: "Up, Up, Josephine..."
    "More of the same."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you like the various Cussler et al adventure series you will like this one as well. More of the same is good or bad depending on how you like the formula. Even Superman must shake his head at the doings of Cussler's heroes, in this case Isaac Bell, which push the boundaries of superhuman feats. It's still a fun, albeit very formulaic, romp across America where people of all stripes must "jump to it" whenever Bell and the Van Dorn Detective Agency make their demands known. There is some irony in the support for organized labor in a book that features a cast of the super rich who buy whatever or whomever they want on demand. But it is just fiction, right?

    Scott Brick continues to do a fantastic job as narrator. The editing could use a bit of tweaking as there is hardly a pause between the end of a sentence and the new chapter announcement. Not a big deal, but a bit jarring.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lost Empire

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Clive Cussler
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (681)
    Performance
    (387)
    Story
    (381)

    While scuba diving in Tanzania, Sam and Remi Fargo come upon a relic belonging to a long-lost Confederate ship. An anomaly about the relic sets them off chasing a mystery-but unknown to them, a much more powerful force is engaged in the same chase. Mexico's ruling party, the ultranationalist Mexica Tenochca, is intent on finding that artifact as well, because it contains a secret that could destroy the party utterly.

    Joanna says: "Lost Along the Way"
    "Not as good as the first"
    Overall

    This isn't a bad book, but it isn't as good as the first of the Fargo adventures. In the series opener, the Fargos were thrust into bad circumstances that made them semi-reluctant heroes. In this book, the fire just never develops. The Fargos find something they want, so they go get it. Evil doers don't want them to have the MacGuffin so they very nastily intervene. No one messes with the Fargos so they fight back, etc etc etc. Very formulaic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Purrfect Murder: A Mrs. Murphy Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Rita Mae Brown, Sneaky Pie Brown
    • Narrated By Kate Forbes
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (49)
    Performance
    (17)
    Story
    (18)

    When wealthy Carla Paulson begins plotting her extravagant new home, she ruffles more than a few feathers. Soon Carla is stabbed to death, and standing over her, with knife in hand, is one of Harry's good friends.

    Darren says: "Mystery gone missing"
    "Mystery gone missing"
    Overall

    In the latest installment of the Mrs. Murphy series, Rita Mae Brown brings you discussions on abortion, the evils of the Republican Party, the evils of politicians in general, relative merits of the BMW vs Mercedes transmissions, the importance of proper Virginia bloodlines for breeding, how to fit into Virginia society if you are not lucky enough to have the proper pedigree, the merits of heat pumps vs. oil burners, the glory of Ford F-150s (but the shilling is less than earlier books), evils of tv and the internet, the differences between the sexes, panty fetishes, the difficulties of veterinary coding for billing and filling, Jeffersonian architecture and the brilliance of animals. What you won't find, sadly, is a mystery of any real significance.

    The series has faded from its former glory and so has the heroine, Harry Haristeen. The mystery is tacked on in most places and only rarely is it the focus of the story. Harry continues her roller coaster ride from very intelligent heroine to a stereotypical dimwit who ties herself down on the tracks in front of the proverbial train. Will her animals save her? (Of course they will). Will the enlightened and liberated modern women still need saving by the stud hero? Tired cliches and increasingly one dimensional characters are sadly taking over what were once truly pleasurable reads. They mystery would have made a good short story in length, but it still would have been mundane.

    The writing is fundametally good and the debates are often fair if not balanced, but the mystery is what Rick and Coop (the law) should be listing as missing.

    Kate Forbes continues to be an excellent narrator.

    Bottom line: Don't feed what has become a cash cow unless the quality comes back.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Lord of Chaos: Book Six of The Wheel of Time

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Robert Jordan
    • Narrated By Kate Reading, Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4296)
    Performance
    (2416)
    Story
    (2423)

    As the Wheel turns, the winds of fate roil across the land. Rand al 'Thor struggles to unite the nations for the Last Battle when the Dark One will break free into the world to spring the snares laid by the immortal Forsaken for unwary humankind. The White Tower in Tar Valon, under the Amyrlin Elaida, has decided that Rand must be controlled immediately.

    Elias says: "Finally here!"
    "Back on track"
    Overall

    My review of Book 5 was critical, but I'm much happier with this next book in the series. The male/female disputes are toned down and the story proceeds apace. Not as action packed as some of the earlier installments, but I, personally, never missed it. A good course correction for the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Fires of Heaven: Book Five of The Wheel of Time

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Robert Jordan
    • Narrated By Kate Reading, Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4566)
    Performance
    (2596)
    Story
    (2630)

    In this sequel to the phenomenal New York Times best seller The Shadow Rising, Robert Jordan again plunges us into his extraordinarily rich, totally unforgettable world.

    Jeff says: "The fires of Heaven"
    "Plateaued"
    Overall

    While I have been enjoying the series so far, I have to agree with some of the other reviewers regarding the battle of the sexes. Get over it already, Mr. Jordan. We got the point eons ago. This book has been the most boring so far. Rand bounces between hard taskmasker and childish pawn of the women in his life. Strong women are great characters but both sexes come across as bipolar from time to time. Matt's parts have been pretty good. Moraine's character does grow well in her relatively brief appearance.
    A friend of mine got me into the series by praising the character development, but this iteration has failed in that regard. By the end of the book I began rooting for the Chosen. I would have easily given the book 4 stars if the author would have cut the by now incredibly repetitive sexual and gender confusion.

    5 of 10 people found this review helpful

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