Console Wars gives us all a trip down memory lane, returning us to the mid 80's through the mid 90's, which to me is the "Golden Age Of Video Games". The book focuses mainly on Tom Kalinski, the head of Sega of America, and follows him through the whirlwind ride that Sega took, coming to prominence in the 16-bit wars only to lose it all in 32-bit.
I really really enjoyed being taken back and re-living that era of video games. And along the way I learned tons about all the corporate strategies and deal-making and such that was going on. Fascinating stuff. Also the reading of this book is outstanding.
The only downside to me is that the book somehow doesn't take it's own advice, namely that "The name of the game is the game". In other words, the book gives us so much detail about what the heads of the companies are doing, what their strategies were, what the marketing department was doing, how they were coming up with their slogans and advertisements, and on and on. But what they talked surprisingly little about were the games! What would have been much MORE interesting to me was more of a focus on the development of the games, how the games were received by players, discussions about game genres and technologies and peripherals and all that stuff. THAT would be been a lot more engaging.
But anyway... it's still a really good and interesting book. Highly recommended for fans of video games who are interested in some of the history and behind the scenes stuff of that era.
Michael Crichton is an awesome storyteller, who towards the end of his life got way to political and forgot to try to tell entertaining stories. Next is one of those latter books unfortunately. This book is basically a rant about the idea that Genes should not be patent-able. So it's an oddball collection of events and characters that underscore this idea. The stor(ies), while kind of interesting, are not very coherent, and then at the end of the book we are treated to one of his rants in an epilogue. It's too bad that the author who brought us so many great books like Jurrasic Park and Timeline lost his way like this. I don't recommend this book.
I've read/listened to most of Patterson's works. Funny because I don't really LOVE his work or anything, but they are usually fun, fairly low-brow sorts of brainless fun, and I know what to expect from them. Private LA though, I consider to be one of his very best. Fun, now familiar characters that one can identify with, evil scary badguys, and lots of mystery and intrigue. Private LA is a very enjoyable read/listen
I've gone through close to 100 audio books now, and I consider Ready Player One to be one of my very favorite (probably top 5). Why? It's completely unique. I can't even compare it to anything else. It's part adventure, part nostalgia, part history (of the 1980's, the era when I was a teenager).
Great story, tons of 80's nostalgia, and as much as I hate to admit it (because he'll always be "Wesley Crusher" to me), Wil Wheaton really did do an excellent job of reading it. Highly highly highly recommended for people that lived in the 1980's, and enjoy video games.
Oh, and I loved the ending too :)
I've always been a big videogame fan, playing games back as far as the early 1980's, and so I'm pretty aware of the Rockstar Games library, but really didn't know much of the company's history. This book is very good as far as telling that story. The problem is though... it's not really THAT interesting a story, and by all accounts the principals in this story are basically jerks. Oh well, it was informative if not enjoyable.
I'm very touched by the story of Dewey, and very glad that I got this audiobook. The reader is really good, and the story is very touching, inspirational, and of course tragic as it chronicles the entire life of Dewey including his eventual death. Prepare to shed a few tears, but you will enjoy the ride.
I really enjoyed Divergent, and in many ways enjoyed this one just as much. Lots of action and combat and drama, and an ending that was somewhat of a surprise and was pretty good. The only thing I didn't like about it is that for me, the character Tris is getting increasingly more difficult to identify with. She keeps lying to and betraying her friends over and over again. That's tough for a main character to do that.
I've gotten somewhat tired of the cat stories that go like: family meets cat, family initially doesn't like cat, but gets used to it, then loves it, then cat gets killed by car, the end. There are only so many such stories (or similar) that you can read/listen to. Fortunately, these are pretty different. Mostly heartwarming, lighthearted, and fun. I enjoyed them all, which is a rarity.
I did enjoy Cats In The Belfry. It is basically a series of anecdotes by a owner of several siamese cats. The anecdotes are mostly somewhat whimsical, so it makes for a pretty pleasant read. Two downsides though: firstly, the reading was somewhat difficult to listen to. It is read by a British woman, talking extremely fast in long long long run-on sentences. It takes a long time to get used to that and to hear and process all the words. The other thing that for me is challenging to get past, is the fact that this is a story about a family who acquires a cross-eyed Siamese queen and attempts to breed her. In breeders circles, that is considered somewhat of a travesty, and the book seems to be clueless about the whole morality question of that.
Aside from those problems though, the stories are sweet and mostly light-hearted fare that are easy and enjoyable to listen to. I am glad that I got this audiobook.
Dulcy's Tale is a "story" told from the point of view of Dulcy, a cat. That is in interesting idea, but kind of flawed. The main problem with this is that it forces the cat to "talk" about his owner, and then that quickly turns into self-congratulatory drivel on the writer's part.
I listened for about an hour to this non-story until I couldn't take anymore. It's really awful. First off, it's in no way a story. It's just a bunch of mundane events (the owner going to work, a trip to the vet, etc etc) told in an equally mundane way. There is no antagonist/protagonist, no conflict, and no growth of the main characters. So in no-way a story. Secondly, the reader is REAL hard to listen to. Just this real "girly" sugar-sweet voice that makes me want to rech.
I'm a big cat lover, I love "A Streetcat Named Bob" and "Cat Daddy", but not this rubbish. I would recommend one of those books or even one of the "chicken soup" cat books long before this one.
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