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Dean Thomas

the world's fastest fat man

Member Since 2013

33
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 56 reviews
  • 96 ratings
  • 187 titles in library
  • 65 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
2
FOLLOWERS
3

  • Torn

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Jacqueline Druga
    • Narrated By Andrew Wehrlen
    Overall
    (41)
    Performance
    (37)
    Story
    (37)

    Darius Cobb wasn't thinking of man's extinction. He honestly never gave it a thought. A college professor and part time country singer, Darius worried only about teaching and playing his guitar until the day he is attacked by cockroaches and is placed into a special government quarantine. There, he and the others start piecing together the inevitable. Using his knowledge, he begins predicting the events that unfold. Together he and his group plan and then implement a long term survival plan.

    Michael G. Kurilla says: "End of the world with typical craziness"
    "Could of been...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Other reviewers have done an excellent job of telling us about the story itself so I won't try to reinvent the wheel. You are better served by reading a plot review here:

    http://www.audible.com/listener/Michael-G-Kurilla/A3NQEKZ2TTCTP8/ref=a_pd_Sci-Fi_c9_1_1_rwTtl?asin=B00B1X7H9M

    So I will limit my review to other aspects of the story like narration. The narration does remind me a bit of a Seinfeld episode. It is pleasant but does make it a little difficult to experience any sort of tension. The complete opposite to a narrator like Kevin T Collins (who is great at adding tension to a scene by his voice). The narration speed on this title can easily be increased to 1.25x with no problems. I listened to it at 1.5x mostly and the only draw back was that at some places the voices seemed a little too high pitched (narrators pitch was already high to start with). The increase speed does of course shorten the total listening time of the story, if you are like me and consider the length of the story in your purchasing decision; please keep the speed factor in mind. Personally, I wasn't worried it was shortened by increasing the speed, because I didn't really enjoy this one.

    This audible story had the misfortune of following my listening of “The Undead Situation” my review can be found here:

    http://www.audible.com/listener/Dean-Thomas/AO082F0ADPGB5/ref=a_listener__c1_1_1_rvwTtl?asin=B0051WANJ0

    So it had a tall order to compete. Sadly it didn’t reach such heights but it still wasn’t all bad. It started slowly and I considered returning it during the first hour. But I am glad I didn’t, it got better. It isn’t a story I would recommend to someone who might be interested in ‘end of the world’ type thing, nor is it good enough to recommend to anyone sorely on a ‘listen to this and you will want to buy more audible books’. But it did kill many an hour of a boring commute of break time.

    I did find myself wishing that there was a bit more character development between the relationship of the main characters, as a result on a couple of occasions I thought 'what just happened here?', 'how did he/she?', 'why did he/she?'. The story itself could lead to further reincarnations maybe a mini-series. I do like the ideas and the possibilities this story has. The author does have other titles which seem as interesting. I just wished this one was better executed, and I am going to give her other work a go. I really do hope her other titles do a better job at bringing life those interesting plots!

    In summary this could have been a great listen and read. But sadly it just seemed to be poorly executed. It is another 'wait for it to be on specia'l so you don’t feel ripped off type of thing!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Surviving When the Dead Have Risen: A Tale of the Zombie Apocalypse: The Most Uncommon Cold, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Littorno
    • Narrated By Todd Menesses
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    Catch this new twist on the zombie apocalypse - Imagine a world in which nothing is as it should be. Our loved ones no longer recognize us. The basic laws of society no longer apply. And the dead do not remain still. That is the world in which reporter Kevin Turner finds himself. Now finding the facts surrounding the story do not matter as much as simply finding a way to stay alive.

    Dean Thomas says: "it's not your average zombie story"
    "it's not your average zombie story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I took a bit of gamble on this one and purchased it without it being reviewed by an audible listener. I wasn’t expecting anything much more than standard zombie story. I pressed play and immediately heard the narrator speak in very slow clear manner… very very slowly. Do yourself a favour turn the speed up to at least 1.25x or even 1.5x speed. The difference is brilliant. The narrators voice is great at that increased speed!

    I had just finished listening to ‘Die Trying’ before this title (an average zombie story saved by RC Bray’s narration) and I kept on thinking when is this one going to turn into a mindless zombie chasing fresh meat saga. To my surprise it never did!

    The way the undead are portrayed in this one is great. I don’t want to give away too much of the plot, so I will leave it up to you to listen to it. But needless to say there were enough fresh ideas in this one to keep me interested. And no, there are no vampires or evil spiritual being or anything like that.

    Another thing I noticed while listening to this one was lack of swearing. Yes there is swearing, but it is not at the same level as so many in the genre. Honestly, it’s lack of foul language is noticeable, and gives it… perhaps a ‘teenager’ vibe. I suppose the debate of either ‘for’ or ‘against’ the language is not meant to be had here.

    Probably the only other zombie type story it compares to is 'Torment' by Jeremy Bishop. But I would rate this one as slightly better.

    I really hope there is a followup book to this one because it deserves it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Die Trying

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Nicholas Ryan
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (29)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (27)

    Trapped amidst the horror of the zombie apocalypse, three men hear the sound of a helicopter overhead and know it represents their last desperate hope to survive the terror and reach safety. But survival comes at a cost - and the undead hordes that ravage the world are not the only lurking evil the men must face. But for Mitch Logan; his brother, Jed; and their friend, Clinton Harrigan; there is no choice.They must fight to survive - or Die Trying.

    AudioBookReviewer says: "I have never been so tense"
    "Bray does a great job on a ok story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am running out of zombie titles to review and I am getting desperate! The end result is this: R.C. Bray is the one of the best narrators for this genre. He narrates multiple books in my top 10. He has the ability to make a average title better. I am really starting to get very worried, what will be my next genre... romance novels here I come... See how the pressure is getting to me... bah romance novels!

    While there is nothing wrong with this title, it is not the best in the genre. It just doesn’t add enough and it lacks two things I really enjoy in a zombie story. Firstly, I like the comic book albeit adult comic style violence. You know the action that makes you feel young at heart!

    Secondly, and most importantly this one is devoid of humour. Looking at my top 10, all of them serve up large portions of sarcasm, often the character’s sense of humour highlights the humanity of the main characters (sane or not).

    This will certainly kill some time if you have a boring commute to work but if you listen to a lot of zombie stories, you will probably soon forget about this one after finishing. So my buying advice is simple, ‘pay your money, have some fun, and move on’.

    On more simple matters: The publishers summary is accurate of the story. If you choose titles on a cost per minute basis, then please take note that the narration can be easily sped up to 1.25x speed thus decreasing listening time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The End: Hitler's Germany, 1944-45

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Ian Kershaw
    • Narrated By David Timson
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    The last months of the Second World War were a nightmarish time to be alive. Unimaginable levels of violence destroyed entire cities. Millions died or were dispossessed. By all kinds of criteria it was the end: the end of the Third Reich and its terrible empire but also, increasingly, it seemed to be the end of European civilization itself. In his gripping, revelatory new book Ian Kershaw describes these final months, from the failed attempt to assassinate Hitler in July 1944 to the German surrender in May 1945.

    Dean Thomas says: "Should be Compulsive Reading"
    "Should be Compulsive Reading"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Ian Kershaw along with Stephen Ambrose are giants when it comes to these type of books. The author’s ability to bring clear historical facts to life along with insights into the character of the time and people is nothing short of brilliant!

    Surely, this type of book should be compulsive for all high schools so that hopefully we will never repeat the mistakes of the past.

    At the time of listening to this title I was also listening to Jack El-Hai’s “The Nazi and the Psychiatrist: Hermann Goring, Dr Douglas M Kelly, and a Fatal Meeting of Minds at the End of WWII” This was a perfect match for this book. For Jack’s book continued on to examine from a more clinical view of the questions raised in Ian Kershaw’s book. I would highly recommend listening to this one first then move on over to Jack’s book.

    A word of warning, it is not the type of title you listen to in one sitting. It took me a couple of weeks to make it through to the end.

    The narration is brilliant and like so many other titles now days can be best listened to at 1.25x speed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ship of the Dead: Omega Days, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By John L. Campbell
    • Narrated By Richard Ferrone
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    In the weeks following the Omega Virus outbreak, survivors form desperate clusters, uniting to defend against hordes of the walking dead. But they can only hide for so long …Father Xavier Church never wanted to be a leader. Nonetheless, he’s grown attached to his fellow survivors, and he won’t let anyone cause them harm - though he may be the one who inadvertently leads them to destruction …

    Dean Thomas says: "The tradition continues"
    "The tradition continues"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    John Campbell’s zombie story continues to impress. The same comments I made regarding the first in the series is applicable:

    The narration while not RC Bray quality is still very acceptable. Narration was still slow and was best listened to at 1.5x speed. The main difference between this one and the first is this story line moves a lot faster, it introduces new elements physical/spiritual dimensions. The addition of the ship and natural disasters also adds a greater impact to the listener.

    I found the ending of this title interesting. It is one of those endings which delivers enough closure for this to be the end of the series, or it could just as easily continue. Personally, I do hope it continues, but I would prefer less of the spiritual influence. However, some people love that sort of stuff, just not me.

    If you are looking to dabble your feet into the zombie genre, this series is highly recommended!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Omega Days: Omega Days, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By John L. Campbell
    • Narrated By Richard Ferrone
    Overall
    (54)
    Performance
    (53)
    Story
    (53)

    Eight million walking dead stalk the San Francisco Bay Area, with more on the way. Scattered refugees - a priest with a bloody past, a college girl turned sniper, escaped San Quentin inmates and others - will quickly learn the three most important rules of survival: Make your bullets count. Don't fall behind. Don't...get...bitten! Fast-paced and packed with zombie action, Book One of the Omega Days series lights off the apocalypse with a scream, and tears California to pieces!

    Dean Thomas says: "Another very good zombie story"
    "Another very good zombie story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the first John L Campbell story I have heard and I was pleasantly surprised. It really is yet another very good title to add to the zombie genre.

    The narration was pretty good, not RC Bray quality but still very good. The narration was slower than I liked and was easily sped up to 1.5x speed without any problems at all. This does shorten the length of the story somewhat but it is still excellent value per hour, if that makes a difference (I know it does for me on a limited budget)

    The story starts off with a lot of separate accounts of survivors but towards the very end, it speeds up as the separate subplots and groups come together. I get the sense this is going to be a long series because this first book has only very briefly tackled the idea of 'why the end started'. I am going to purchase the next in the series and can only hope it is just as good as this one!

    If you are interested in this type of title may I also suggest the following:
    Adrians Undead Diary (series)
    Z-Burbia (series) has a lot more violence and naughty language
    Mountain Man (series)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fortress Britain: Arisen, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Michael Stephen Fuchs, Glynn James
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (15)

    A world fallen under a plague of seven billion walking dead. A tiny island nation the last refuge of the living. One team of the world's most elite special operators. The dead, these heroes, humanity's last hope, all have.... Arisen.

    Thomas says: "One Bad Ass Zombie book!"
    "Must Have More"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Every book I have ever purchased narrated by RC Bray has been a winner!

    This one is a cracker! I gave the zombie genre a break for a couple of purchases and I was looking for a good old fashion action bash'em crash'em style story, and boy did I hit the jackpot with this one.

    The narration is excellent. The perfect speed to listen to for me was 1.25x speed. Which leads me to my biggest gripe with this one. It was too short, just over 5 hours in length, and even though I think Bray is one of the best narrators around, he is not exactly fast. So when you speed it up just a tad, the listening time is even shorter! This next book in the series should have been combined with this one! So in reality this one has been one of the most expensive in the genre per minute to listen too. I'm not so sure I am happy with that fact.

    Ok with my gripes aside. I can honestly say this is one of the best in this genre

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Nazi and the Psychiatrist: Hermann Göring, Dr. Douglas M. Kelley, and a Fatal Meeting of Minds at the End of WWII

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Jack El-Hai
    • Narrated By Arthur Morey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (60)
    Performance
    (56)
    Story
    (59)

    >In 1945, after his capture at the end of the Second World War, Hermann Göring arrived at an American-run detention center in war-torn Luxembourg, accompanied by 16 suitcases and a red hatbox. The suitcases contained all manner of paraphernalia: medals, gems, two cigar cutters, silk underwear, a hot water bottle, and the equivalent of $100,000,000 in cash. Hidden in a coffee can, a set of brass vials housed glass capsules containing a clear liquid and a white precipitate: potassium cyanide. Joining Göring in the detention center were the elite of the captured Nazi regime....

    Douglas says: "I Don't Understand The Complaints..."
    "Must Read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Amazing story, should be compulsive reading in all high schools. Do yourself a favor download this one and listen carefully. We must never allow this history to repeat.

    I had just finished listening to Ian Kershaw’s The End: Hitler's Germany, 1944-45 which documented how the Germans continued to do evil even when the end was near. This book takes that question one step further and attempts to answer the 'why'.

    I can highly recommend this book! I suggest you also listen to it at the same time as Ian Kershaw’s work (mentioned above)

    There has also been some comment regarding the narration on this title. Please don’t let that turn you off. I found the narration good. A couple of times it sounded like German names were edited in later. But it was nothing to drastic. It can easily be listened to at 1.25x speed without any problems.

    I couldn’t put this one down and listened to it one day!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Midnight: Adrian's Undead Diary, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Chris Philbrook
    • Narrated By James Foster
    Overall
    (54)
    Performance
    (51)
    Story
    (51)

    In Midnight, the third installment in the smash hit Adrian's Undead Diary series, the threats to Adrian and his new friends are greater than ever before. Local survivors holed up in an empty factory led by the chief of police are now crossing paths with Adrian and the Williams clan. Meanwhile Sean, the bloodthirsty tyrant from Westfield, seethes for vengeance after Adrian fends off attack after attack to take ALPA and everything he's worked so hard for.

    Tilo says: "Unexpected revelation"
    "Adrian delivers again!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This series did a great job at measuring out emotional responses from the listener. It seemed a perfect balance of tension and humour. Honestly I had snot coming out of me a uncontrolled fashion when I heard the shot in the bum story toward the end! The way in which the characters are intertwined with each other and the rest of the story is very enjoyable.

    I don’t really need to comment on the plot because this is the third in the series; you wouldn’t start at number three, would you? So I shall keep my comments to the actual delivery of the story: The narrator again does an excellent job bringing the characters to life. The speed of narration was great. I normally speed up the narration to 1.5x or more but this one was perfect at 1.25x

    Most of the way through this story I thought this is good, probably the best of the series. But then I got to the end and I was blown away! The ending took me completely by surprise. I won’t give away any plot, but I wonder what the author is going to do if there is another book in the series? I know I will certainly be buying it. In fact I would pre-purchase it!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Deadly Shores: Destroyermen, Book 9

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Taylor Anderson
    • Narrated By William Dufris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (510)
    Performance
    (476)
    Story
    (474)

    The long-planned raid on the heart of the Grik Empire has grown more ambitious - and dangerously ill-defined. Only Matthew Reddy, commander of the old destroyer USS Walker, seems focused on its original intent. Many Lemurians see an opportunity to reconquer their sacred homeland, which was stolen long ago, and have no intention of simply striking a blow and then pulling back. Others, Lemurian and human, have their own agendas - which may not be in the best interests of the Alliance.

    Carol says: "Drags on and on"
    "Fastest in the series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Deadly Shores?

    I liked how this one moved things along. The battle was taken to the enemy! I like how the newer characters developed. While some of the older characters were taken away (no spoilers here)


    What other book might you compare Deadly Shores to and why?

    None, haven't came across any which are similar


    Which character – as performed by William Dufris – was your favorite?

    I know it sounds stupid, but Petty the bird lizard thing has some great one liners!


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

    As much as I liked it, no. The book is just too long to do so, even if you speed the narration up a little.


    Any additional comments?

    Once again I feel angry because of the ending. Just once I want the ending not to be a wind up to buy the next in the series!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Undead Haze: Undead, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Eloise J. Knapp
    • Narrated By Kevin T. Collins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (103)
    Performance
    (94)
    Story
    (93)

    The apocalypse just got worse. When remorse drives Cyrus to abandon his hidden compound he doesn't realize what new dangers lurk in the undead world. He knows he must wade through the vilest remains of humanity and hordes of zombies to settle scores and find the one person who might understand him. But this time, it won't be so easy. Zombies and unpleasant survivors aren't the only thing Cyrus has to worry about. Not anymore.

    AudioBookReviewer says: "It has been worth the wait"
    "Cyrus V. Sinclair, the V stands for 'very good'"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What I liked about the first book still hold true in this second instalment: The mindless fun! The dark sense of humour of the main characters and the action...

    This time round, Cyrus V Sinclair battles of all things ‘being normal’. It would seem that the zombie plague has finally brought out the normal in Cyrus.

    This book feels more mature than the previous, by that I think it is takes itself a bit more serious than the first. Personally, I like the zombie genre because of the lack of seriousness… I like the comic book style violence and humour albeit a bit dark. I’m not in for lessons of self-awareness from this sort of story. It is just a personal thing and shouldn’t deter the listener from another instalment in the life of Cyrus V Sinclair. The ‘V’ stands for Virtuous. I wonder if the new ‘virtuous’ Cyrus thing just took me by surprise? If there is another one to add to the series, I do hope the V returns to ‘vile’ and ‘violent’ it suited him better.

    Nevertheless I enjoyed the story greatly and once again the narration was brilliant! 1.25x speed is the sweet spot for listening and once again it is the type of story I found myself wishing to listen to in one sitting.

    My buying advice is ‘yes, another one worthy to be in the library’.

    If you like this sort of story I would also recommend:

    Mountain Man series by Keith Blackmore
    ZBurbia series by Jake Bible
    Andrian’s Undead Diary series by Chris Philbrook
    Z-Risen by Timothy Long

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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