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Debera

Severna Park, MD, United States | Member Since 2004

9
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 22 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 11 purchased in 2014
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  • Bowl of Heaven

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Larry Niven, Gregory Benford
    • Narrated By Zach Villa
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (125)
    Performance
    (112)
    Story
    (110)

    In this first collaboration by science fiction masters Larry Niven (Ringworld) and Gregory Benford (Timescape), the limits of wonder are redrawn once again as a human expedition to another star system is jeopardized by an encounter with an astonishingly immense artifact in interstellar space: a bowl-shaped structure half-englobing a star, with a habitable area equivalent to many millions of Earths…and it’s on a direct path heading for the same system as the human ship.

    LesPaul says: "Nothing Happens... Nothing Happens... Its Over"
    "Really? That's it?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What the heck? Just when the story looks like it just might be going somewhere - BOOM! - it ends. If these guys were planning on writing a trilogy or something, they should at least let the reader know ahead of time because the story ending in the middle of nowhere is a HUGE disappointment.

    Don't waste your money...

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Washington: A Life

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Ron Chernow
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (1717)
    Performance
    (1194)
    Story
    (1191)

    In Washington: A Life celebrated biographer Ron Chernow provides a richly nuanced portrait of the father of our nation. This crisply paced narrative carries the reader through his troubled boyhood, his precocious feats in the French and Indian War, his creation of Mount Vernon, his heroic exploits with the Continental Army, his presiding over the Constitutional Convention, and his magnificent performance as America's first president.

    ButterLegume says: "A sad day when my book was done!"
    "An Excellent Work"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've read numerous books on the life of G.W., but I find this to be the most comprehensive and honest work yet. I truly learned much about Washington the man I had not known.

    As usual, Scott Brick performed superbly as narrator.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln

    • ABRIDGED (9 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    • Narrated By Doris Kearns Goodwin, Richard Thomas
    Overall
    (1891)
    Performance
    (509)
    Story
    (516)

    We view the long, horrifying struggle from the vantage of the White House as Lincoln copes with incompetent generals, hostile congressmen, and his raucous cabinet. He overcomes these obstacles by winning the respect of his former competitors, and in the case of Seward, finds a loyal and crucial friend to see him through. This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.

    Anders says: "wait for the unabridged version"
    "Excellent Read"
    Overall

    Partisan politics is nothing new. Well worth the purchase, this book provides the political insight to Lincoln's winning the Republican ticket for the 1860 presidential election and how the power of personality brought together an administration that met the test of a lifetime. Couldn't have picked a better narrator. Richard Thomas was the perfect choice for depicting the times and politics of Abraham Lincoln.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sloop of War

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Alexander Kent
    • Narrated By Michael Jayston
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    April 1778, English Harbour, Antigua. As the French enter the American War of Independence in earnest, young Richard Bolitho is given his first command: Sparrow, a fast, well-armed fighting sloop. At last he has the chance to prove his abilities as a junior captain. But he faces other challenges too, threats as real and deadly as the enemy itself.

    Charles Stembridge says: "Excellent Series"
    "Jolly Good Read!"
    Overall

    A landlubber myself, I found this book enthralling. Action-packed from beginning to end, I simply couldn't turn it off. I'm definitely going to get the next book in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nothing Like the Night

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By David Lawrence
    • Narrated By Julia Watson
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Once she had been beautiful. Now she is eight days dead. Her body was slashed with more than fifty cuts. Janis Parker, young, successful, and glamorous, had shared her modern Notting Hill apartment with flatmate Stephanie James. But now Janis is dead, and Stephanie has disappeared.

    Debera says: "Marginal"
    "Marginal"
    Overall

    Not worth the $53 asking price and marginally worth a monthly book credit. The author excels in some aspects of his writing, specifically in portraying the serial killers and their evil deeds; however, he fails miserably in providing a main character who the reader could cheer or at least feel sympathetic for. Instead of being a great detective or exciting sleuth, Stella turns out to be such a pathetic, indecisive, emotional basketcase that she needs a pair of dice simply to decide which of her two lovers she's going to sleep with that night. How the author thought this character would be a convincing detective is beyond me. Rather than solving the mystery, the killers practically solve it for her as if they couldn't stand her bumbling around the streets of London anymore. Additionally, there are time and location disconnects the editor should have caught as well as the author's obsession with flies and maggots and stinking flesh even though bodies are barely a few hours dead (Hello! London's not in the tropics!). Finally, I would say the narrator is almost as much at fault in detracting from enjoying this story as the author. While her English accent is quite appropriate for the setting, the narrator's breathy voice, disinterested pitch and tone, and inability to help the reader distinguish between characters in a conversation contributed considerably to the failures of this recording. I would recommend this book only if your interest is in how to portray psychotic killers, which is the books only strong point.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Da Vinci Code

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Dan Brown
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6998)
    Performance
    (1745)
    Story
    (1789)

    While in Paris on business, Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call. The elderly curator of the Louvre has been murdered inside the museum, a baffling cipher found near the body. As Langdon and gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, sort through the bizarre riddle, they are stunned to discover a trail of clues hidden in the works of Da Vinci, clues visible for all to see and yet ingeniously disguised by the painter.

    Alexandra says: "Incredibly entertaining"
    "Well written with an excellent narration"
    Overall

    While the premise of the story takes considerable open mindedness to swallow, the plot is well spun with unexpected twists and is fast paced enough to keep the reader wanting to listen to the "next page." I was especially impressed with the narration as it was drew the reader into the story not unlike the radio-shows of old - only thing missing were the soundeffects!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Case of Jennie Brice

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Mary Roberts Rinehart
    • Narrated By Cindy Hardin Killavey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (27)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Mary Roberts Rinehart's name is synonomous with well-crafted mystery, and this novel, which combines both mystery and adventure, shows Rinehart's tremendously vivid powers as a storyteller.

    Debera says: "Good Concept, Poor Execution"
    "Good Concept, Poor Execution"
    Overall

    Story had a lot of potential and the author picked a very unique setting for the mystery. Additionally, the author's descriptive skills proved to be very good. Very easy to envision oneself standing in the scene. Unfortunately, the ending just petered out as if the author ran out of ideas. It was so unfulfilling that the author had to have the guilty party confess everything simply so she could tie-up loose ends. Most disappointing; however, was the narrator. No personality, no emotion. Just a stiff cardboard reading of the book with no animation or enjoyment whatsoever. Very disappointing.

    2 of 7 people found this review helpful

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