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Joseph

JRJ

SAN JOSE, CA, United States | Member Since 2013

39
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 3 reviews
  • 17 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 10 purchased in 2015
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  • Influx

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Daniel Suarez
    • Narrated By Jeff Gurner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3429)
    Performance
    (3141)
    Story
    (3150)

    Particle physicist Jon Grady is ecstatic when his team achieves what they've been working toward for years: A device that can reflect gravity. Their research will revolutionize the field of physics - the crowning achievement of a career. Grady expects widespread acclaim for his entire team. The Nobel Prize. Instead, his lab is locked down by a shadowy organization whose mission is to prevent at all costs the social upheaval sudden technological advances bring.

    Sterling Okura says: "Entertaining Physics SciFi"
    "An excellent book well read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Influx is not quite as interesting as Suarez's first work, Daemon (and Freedom tm, which was really just the second half of Daemon rather than a second book) but I enjoyed it more than Kill Decision.

    The characters are nicely drawn, the story never lags. Definitely a page-turner... and Suarez is never afraid to dip into "hard sci-fi" levels of technical descriptions that are the result of copious research.

    The best part by far is the scene in which the main character is being interrogated. I don't want to spoil anything, but it is a brilliantly conceived bit of drama that there's no way to describe without spoiling. Suffice it to say that it alone justifies reading the entire book, and it is beautifully written.

    If there is a single problem with Influx it's that it requires a greater level of suspension of disbelief than the closer-to-current-reality books that precede it. Daemon and Freedom were almost as far-fetched, but they baby-stepped you towards accepting each new piece rather than demanding you to accept everything all at once. Influx throws you immediately into a universe that's far removed from our current levels of technological achievements without giving you time to adapt. However, the concepts are so well researched that they still feel real, and if you can suspend disbelief on some of the more exotic technologies presented (which, again, Suarez explains expertly) you're in for a great ride.

    Daemon (and its sequel Freedom) stands as my favorite fiction book in the last 20 years. Influx doesn't quite reach that bar, but is close... and is a fantastic book.

    Also, worth mentioning that the narration by Gurner was excellent as always. I wound up reading about a third of the book and listening to ⅔... I found that when I was reading I was hearing Gurner's voices. He's a great narrator.

    25 of 29 people found this review helpful
  • Privacy, Property, and Free Speech: Law and the Constitution in the 21st Century

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs)
    • By The Great Courses, Jeffrey Rosen
    • Narrated By Professor Jeffrey Rosen
    Overall
    (41)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (35)

    Although the courts have struggled to balance the interests of individuals, businesses, and law enforcement, the proliferation of intrusive new technologies puts many of our presumed freedoms in legal limbo. For instance, it's not hard to envision a day when websites such as Facebook or Google Maps introduce a feature that allows real-time tracking of anyone you want, based on face-recognition software and ubiquitous live video feeds.

    Joseph says: "Entertaining & thought-provoking. Highly recommend"
    "Entertaining & thought-provoking. Highly recommend"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A well-organized and structured lecture that takes a look at constitutional law and historical legal precedent, with particular emphasis on the 4th, 5th, and 1st amendments.

    Professor Rosen keeps the lecture interesting and thought provoking, forcing the listener to consider their own views on the concepts described. He supports his assertions with multiple references to case law without coming across as pedantic. I would rate this as relatively "light reading" with moderate information density.

    The narration was good but not excellent: obviously a polished speaker, but not rising the the quality of Audible's best professional narrators. The annoying and obviously added-in-post-production applause at break points between lectures was a poor creative choice.

    If this is indicative of the other "great courses" audiobooks I look forward to listening to more.

    14 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • The Thank You Economy

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Gary Vaynerchuk
    • Narrated By Gary Vaynerchuk
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (648)
    Performance
    (498)
    Story
    (491)

    The Thank You Economy is about something big, something greater than any single revolutionary platform. It isn't some abstract concept or wacky business strategy—it's real, and every one of us is doing business in it every day, whether we choose to recognize it or not. It's the way we communicate, the way we buy and sell, the way businesses and consumers interact online and offline.

    Scott says: "Gary is fun, but the book is a bit shallow"
    "Good but not great... "Crush It" was a better read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I enjoyed this book, but felt it didn't have as much to offer as Vaynerchuk's previous book, "Crush It." Throughout, I felt as though the author was pressured to do another book because of the success of Crush It, rather than because he had something more to say.

    Still, worth a read. Also, Vaynerchuk is always great as a narrator, as he brings his unique passion and voice to bear on the material.

    It's "credit worthy" but if you haven't read "Crush It" spend your credit on that one first.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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