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Jay A. Cohen

Padre Cohen

Santa Clara, CA USA | Member Since 2004

82
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 18 reviews
  • 253 ratings
  • 335 titles in library
  • 17 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
2

  • The Intercept: A Jeremy Fisk Novel, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Dick Wolf
    • Narrated By Peter Ganim
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (262)
    Performance
    (217)
    Story
    (216)

    Days before the July Fourth holiday and the dedication of One World Trade Center at Ground Zero, an incident aboard a commercial jet flying over the Atlantic Ocean reminds everyone that vigilance is not a task to be taken lightly. But for iconoclastic NYPD detective Jeremy Fisk, it may also be a signal that there is much more to this case than the easy answer of this being just the work of another lone terrorist. Fisk suspects that the event might also be a warning sign that another scheme has been set in motion.

    Katherine says: "Page turner"
    "Better Luck Next Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love "Law & Order." "The Intercept" reads like a Dick Wolf script, and that's not a good thing. The story is repetitious, derivative, and bland up to the final few minutes. What makes Mr. Wolf's scripts great are the actors in the "Law & Order" TV series. They the characters to life, make them compelling. But, there's nothing captivating about any of the characters in this novel. Nothing. The book reads like a script.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly, and the Making of the Modern Middle East

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Scott Anderson
    • Narrated By Malcolm Hillgartner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (375)
    Performance
    (319)
    Story
    (319)

    Based on four years of intensive primary document research, Lawrence in Arabiadefinitively overturns received wisdom on how the modern Middle East was formed. Sweeping in its action, keen in its portraiture, acid in its condemnation of the destruction wrought by European colonial plots, this is a book that brilliantly captures the way in which the folly of the past creates the anguish of the present.

    Charles Fred Smith says: "The "Real" Story"
    "Really Wanted to Like This"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Heard about "Lawrence in Arabia" in an interview of Scott Anderson. Sounded interesting and what with my being a T.E. Lawrence fan…

    T.E. Lawrence is fascinating, and the information Mr. Anderson presents is engrossing. The historical context is presented particularly well. But the story is destroyed by its uninspired and annoyingly amateurish writing. So much so it gets in the way of the story.

    The narrator does a journeyman's job, but it gets outright silly when doing voice characterizations.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Civilization: The West and the Rest

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Niall Ferguson
    • Narrated By Niall Ferguson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (847)
    Performance
    (712)
    Story
    (706)

    The rise to global predominance of Western civilization is the single most important historical phenomenon of the past five hundred years. All over the world, an astonishing proportion of people now work for Western-style companies, study at Western-style universities, vote for Western-style governments, take Western medicines, wear Western clothes, and even work Western hours. Yet six hundred years ago the petty kingdoms of Western Europe seemed unlikely to achieve much more than perpetual internecine warfare. It was Ming China or Ottoman Turkey that had the look of world civilizations.

    F. Ribeiro says: "Niall Ferguson's Most Enjoyable Book"
    "Interesting POV, Unsubstantiated Speculation"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Whether or not one agrees with Niall Ferguson, he's always interesting. "Civilization: The West and the Rest" is an entertaining look at why Western Civilization developed its preeminent world position, a look at history through different eyes. He weaves historical facts into well thought out theory. But, a few premises are too narrow to be the full truth, particularly his praise of Martin Luther who was a despicable, neurotic bigot. Still, I recommend the book because it's thought stimulating. Mr. Ferguson reads somewhat speedily, but he's one articulate man.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama Bin Laden

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Mark Owen, Kevin Maurer
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3642)
    Performance
    (3257)
    Story
    (3287)

    From the streets of Iraq to the mountaintops of Afghanistan and to the third floor of Osama Bin Laden's compound, operator Mark Owen of the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group - commonly known as SEAL Team Six - has been a part of some of the most memorable special operations in history, as well as countless missions that never made headlines. No Easy Day puts listeners alongside Owen and the other handpicked members of the 24-man team as they train for the biggest mission of their lives.

    Darwin8u says: "Gripping, first-hand narrative of Op Neptune Spear"
    "Truth is Stranger than Fiction… Not This Time"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Who wouldn't want to know more about the Navy SEALS and bin Laden? Right? The story has so much promise.

    Unfortunately, "No Easy Day" is the most boring, trivial, simplistic account of nothing. Go ahead. Waste your money and time to read/hear the same things you already heard from news accounts and Mark Owens' "60 Minutes" interview. There's nothing new here. And, the platitudes… Don't get me started.

    Holter Graham did the best he could reading this novel.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The House of Silk: A Sherlock Holmes Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Anthony Horowitz
    • Narrated By Derek Jacobi
    Overall
    (1119)
    Performance
    (979)
    Story
    (982)

    Sherlock Holmes is the greatest detective in literary history. For the first time since the death of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, a new Holmes story has been sanctioned by his estate, whetting the appetites of fans everywhere. Information about the book will be revealed as deliberately as Holmes himself would unravel a knotty case, but bestselling novelist and Holmes expert Anthony Horowitz is sure to bring a compelling, atmospheric story to life.

    GP says: "A disapointment"
    "Banal"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Mr. Horowitz is not the writer Doyle was. The writer does mimic Doyle's style, but, unfortunately, the story is predictable and bland. The one bright spot is the narrator; Derek Jacobi is terrific.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Tom Clancy Presents: Act of Valor

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Dick Couch, George Galdorisi
    • Narrated By Steven Weber
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1480)
    Performance
    (1300)
    Story
    (1302)

    Act of Valor takes audiences deep into the secretive world of the most elite, highly trained group of warriors in the modern world. When the rescue of a kidnapped CIA operative leads to the discovery of a deadly terrorist plot against the U.S., a team of SEALs is dispatched on a worldwide manhunt. As the valiant men of Bandito Platoon race to stop a coordinated attack that could kill and wound thousands of American civilians, they must balance their commitment to country, team and their families back home.

    Ann says: "Best of America, honor and character astounding"
    "Predictable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Like most Clancy novels, "Act of Valor" is a middlingly written great story—only without the great story. The story is predictable, melodramatic, and needlessly technical. A reader knows who's going to be killed halfway into the story. The dialog is laughable, particularly between husband and wife.

    Maybe the movie is better. The screenwriters have better editors.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • St. Peter’s Fair: The Fourth Chronicle of Brother Cadfael

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Ellis Peters
    • Narrated By Johanna Ward
    Overall
    (32)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (18)

    In the summer of 1139, there is a pause in the civil war racking the country, and St. Peter’s Fair promises to bring some much-needed gaiety to Shrewsbury—that is, until the dead body of a wealthy merchant is found in the river Severn. Was Thomas of Bristol the victim of murderous thieves? If so, why were his valuables abandoned nearby?

    Carol says: "Classic Cadfael"
    "An Escape"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Elis Peters writes literate novels that assume the reader is intelligent. The Brother Cadfael stories are well thought out very well written. The characters are believable and the stories plausible. "St. Peter’s Fair" isn't Peter's best novel, but in a world of gratuitously gruesome and vulgar entertainment, her historical fiction is always an escape.

    I thought that a woman reader portraying male characters might not work, but Johanna Ward does a wonderful job. Enjoy!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Steve Jobs

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    Overall
    (11959)
    Performance
    (10358)
    Story
    (10335)

    Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

    Jeanne says: "Interesting man"
    "Wearisome Prose"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There are no surprises in "Steve Jobs." His history, management style, and persona were legend in Silicon Valley before this biography was written. Okay, the relationship with Joan Baez surprised me, but that was it. And, who would turn down an opportunity like Ms. Baez?

    Don't expect any deep business or personality analyses in this biography. The stories are interesting, but the writing tedious. The author's lack of technological knowledge prevented him from painting a fuller picture of Steve Jobs in context.

    I hope Mr. Isaacson's other biographies are better written than "Steve Jobs." The writing is repetitive, unpolished, and rushed to press without sufficient editing. Did I say repetitive? If I had a dollar every time the phrase "Jobs was furious" was used, I could retire.

    The reader was patronizing, sluggish, and sounded as though he were reading a children's bedtime story.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Liberty: A Jake Grafton Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Stephen Coonts
    • Narrated By Guerin Barry
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (238)
    Performance
    (86)
    Story
    (84)

    On a quiet park bench in Manhattan - just miles from the ruins of the World Trade Center - a spymaster delivers a chilling secret message to Jake Grafton: A rogue Russian general has sold four nuclear warheads to a radical Islamic terrorist group, the Sword of Islam.

    Jim says: "Getting someplace but slowly"
    "No More Mr. Coonts"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "Liberty" is one of the most mediocre books I've ever read. The story is simplistic, the plot implausible, the characters uninteresting, and the writing ungifted. Mr. Coonts patronizes his readers by filling in obvious narrative with excruciating, unnecessary detail and gratuitous violence. The dialog is particularly laughable. Mr. Coonts' style? Don't use one word or a sentence when you can use five.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Full Black

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Brad Thor
    • Narrated By Armand Schultz
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1724)
    Performance
    (1391)
    Story
    (1402)

    Born in shadow and kept from heads of state, there are some missions so deadly, so sensitive, that they simply don't exist. so deadly, so sensitive, that they simply don't exist. When one such mission goes horribly wrong, a wave of dramatic terrorist attacks is set in motion. Their goal: the complete and total collapse of the United States. With the CIA's intelligence abilities hobbled, former Navy SEAL Team 6 member turned covert counterterrorism operative Scot Harvath launches an audacious plan to infiltrate the terrorists' network and prevent one of the biggest threats the U.S. has ever faced.

    Sean says: "More More"
    "Banal"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The description of "Full Black" sounded so promising. I enjoy a good action thriller. Unfortunately, the book is beneath mediocre. Not even close to good. The story is predictable, the plot unconvincing, the characters thin, and the writing simplistic and bloated. The writer assumes that his readers are too stupid to "connect the dots," resulting in pages of poorly written, unnecessary paragraphs. Where was the editor‽ The narrative of the violence is overly testosterone-driven and repulsive.

    The protagonists have no redeeming virtues, unless one believes in the author's political agenda: the end justifies the means. Where is John le Carré when you need him?

    1 of 7 people found this review helpful

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