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Joshua N. Mitchell

Denver, CO USA | Member Since 2004

31
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 65 ratings
  • 754 titles in library
  • 50 purchased in 2014
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  • Speaker for the Dead

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By David Birney, Stefan Rudnicki
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8411)
    Performance
    (4852)
    Story
    (4906)

    In the aftermath of his terrible war, Ender Wiggin disappeared, and a powerful voice arose: the Speaker for the Dead, who told the true story of the Bugger War. Now, long years later, a second alien race has been discovered by Portuguese colonists on the planet Lusitania. But again the aliens' ways are strange and frightening...again, humans die. And it is only the Speaker for the Dead, who is also Ender Wiggin the Xenocide, who has the courage to confront the mystery...and the truth.

    Joe says: "The Enderverse"
    "Good story, okay narration"
    Overall

    First, this isn't Ender's Game. It's an entirely different kind of story, so if you're looking for the pseudo-military sci-fi action of Ender's Game, you will be disappointed. That said, this is one of Card's better works, with rich, interesting characters and a fascinating (if slower-moving) plot.

    The multi-person reading is not very well done, however. At best, it's distracting; at worst, obnoxious--one of the female readers, in particular, has a habit of reading every sentence as though it's the saddest and most important thing ever written. The book's main narrator is (fortunately) quite good.

    Overall, recommended.

    14 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • 14

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Peter Clines
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11936)
    Performance
    (10847)
    Story
    (10871)

    There are some odd things about Nate’s new apartment. Of course, he has other things on his mind. He hates his job. He has no money in the bank. No girlfriend. No plans for the future. So while his new home isn’t perfect, it’s livable. The rent is low, the property managers are friendly, and the odd little mysteries don’t nag at him too much. At least, not until he meets Mandy, his neighbor across the hall, and notices something unusual about her apartment. And Xela’s apartment. And Tim’s. And Veek’s.

    Magpie says: "Super solid listen!!"
    "Superb narrator, great story."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to 14 the most enjoyable?

    I'm about halfway through. The story is great so far--believable characters, interesting mysteries. But the real surprise is Ray Porter's narration. So often, a poor narrator can ruin even a fantastic story. This is the opposite of that. Porter brings the characters to life with pitch-perfect, easily identifiable voices. Absolutely top notch.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Hunt for Red October

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Tom Clancy
    • Narrated By J. Charles
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1590)
    Performance
    (1207)
    Story
    (1215)

    A deadly serious game of hide-and-seek is on. The CIA's brilliant young analyst, Jack Ryan, thinks he knows the reason for the sudden Red Fleet operation: the Soviets' most valuable ship, the Red October, is attempting to defect to the United States.

    Christian says: "Audio quality quite poor"
    "Such a terrible reading."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of J. Charles?

    Literally anybody else. It is difficult to imagine a worse reader.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Totally. I think they should cast Sean Connery in the role of the Russian sub captain. He'd be perfect.


    Any additional comments?

    This is pre-bloat Clancy--there's some technobabble, but it's an exciting and detailed story. I cannot under any circumstances recommend this reading. Letting your Kindle do a computerized reading would be less distracting than this reader's almost unbelievably bad "voices," and his literally laughable accents. Do not waste your credit.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Fahrenheit 451

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Ray Bradbury
    • Narrated By Ray Bradbury
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (387)
    Performance
    (226)
    Story
    (233)

    Guy Montag was a fireman whose job it was to start fires....The system was simple. Everyone understood it. Books were for burning...along with the houses in which they were hidden. Montag enjoyed his job. He had been a fireman for 10 years, and he had never questioned the pleasure of the midnight runs, nor the joy of watching pages consumed by flames...never questioned anything until he met a 17-year-old girl who told him of a past when people were not afraid.

    Nancy says: "Listen before you buy..."
    "Hate to say it."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Fahrenheit 451? What did you like least?

    This is such a great story. But this can't be the best audio version of it--Bradbury is, by the point in his life at which this was recorded, not a strong reader to say the least. I think there's genuine value and a real connection that can come from listening to an author--especially a well-known and deceased one--reading his own work, and as a historical artifact, a recording of the master's voice near the end of his life, reading one of his best-loved works, this is a valuable edition. But if you are getting this as an audiobook rather than as a chance to listen to Ray Bradbury, you should go with another version.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Duma Key: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By John Slattery
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5152)
    Performance
    (1849)
    Story
    (1838)

    A terrible accident takes Edgar Freemantle's right arm and scrambles his memory and his mind, leaving him with little but rage as he begins the ordeal of rehabilitation. When his marriage suddenly ends, Edgar begins to wish he hadn't survived his injuries. He wants out. His psychologist suggests a new life distant from the Twin Cities, along with something else.

    Amazon Customer says: "Play the Book and Let the Book Play You"
    "Top-shelf King"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What about John Slattery’s performance did you like?

    Slattery's an excellent reader, and his voice sounds a lot like Stephen King's minus King's sometimes distracting vocal mannerisms.


    Any additional comments?

    This is among King's best--a fantastic ghost yarn in a modern setting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Full Dark, No Stars

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson, Jessica Hecht
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2377)
    Performance
    (1129)
    Story
    (1125)

    "I believe there is another man inside every man, a stranger...." writes Wilfred Leland James in the early pages of the riveting confession that makes up "1922", the first in this pitch-black quartet of mesmerizing tales from Stephen King. For James, that stranger is awakened when his wife, Arlette, proposes selling off the family homestead and moving to Omaha, setting in motion a gruesome train of murder and madness.

    Parusski says: "Eerie, honest, frightening!"
    "Decent stories, undone by narration"
    Overall

    These aren't my favorite Stephen King stories, but they're good—certainly better than his "Just After Sunset" collection. Jessica Hecht, though, sounds like she's reading Pollyanna or some other girls' adventure story instead of the two rather harrowing stories centering around women in this collection. She's probably a competent reader, but she's all wrong for Stephen King.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Ender's Game: Special 20th Anniversary Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki, Harlan Ellison, Gabrielle de Cuir
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (22995)
    Performance
    (14343)
    Story
    (14492)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: It’s easy to say that when it comes to sci-fi you either love it or you hate it. But with Ender’s Game, it seems to be you either love it or you love it.... The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Enter Andrew "Ender" Wiggin, the result of decades of genetic experimentation.

    Kapila says: "6 titles in the series so far"
    "A favorite, almost ruined by lousy narration"
    Overall

    This is an excellent book and this is the only Audible edition available. If you have to have it as an audiobook, this is your option.

    However, as others have pointed out, the female reader, Gabrielle de Cuir, all but sobs her way through any section that involves Ender's sister Valentine. Worse, she's all over most of Card's other books as well. Be forewarned.

    1 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Bleak House

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Charles Dickens
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (341)
    Performance
    (131)
    Story
    (128)

    First published in monthly parts from March 1852 to September 1853, this novel follows the fortunes of three pedestrian characters; Esther Summerson, Ada Clare, and Richard Carstone. The story they tell embondies Dickens' merciless indictment of the Court of Chancery and its bungling, morally corrupt handling of the endless case of Jarndyce v. Jarndyce, giving the novel its scope and meaning.

    UU Ma says: "30 hours was too short for me"
    "Probably great, but I can't hear it."
    Overall

    The single star is no reflection on either the author or the reader, both of whom are excellent. I cannot recommend this audiobook because the sound quality of the recording is so poor.

    I listen to Audible books during my commute. The muddy, distorted, indistinct recording is extremely difficult to understand over road noise, especially when the reader is reading in a lower register.

    Buyer beware.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The First Man in Rome

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Colleen McCullough
    • Narrated By Jill Tanner
    Overall
    (336)
    Performance
    (55)
    Story
    (58)

    Author of the beloved classic The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCullough creates sweeping sagas that are unparalleled in their drama and emotional grandeur. Now she carries listeners into the pageantry and passion, politics and intrigue of ancient Rome. Cunning and ambition were prized in this vast and powerful empire, but what would it take to win its highest honor, to be First Man in Rome?

    Jessica says: "Best Historical Fiction Ever"
    "Good story. Bad reader."
    Overall

    The book is a very good one--well researched, with vibrant and distinct characters.

    However, as someone else has commented, the reader has a tendency to pause in strange places and to elide over chapter breaks as though they weren't there. Her voice provides very few distinctions between characters.

    Perhaps the biggest problem, though, is that she mispronounces the Latin rather abominably and inconsistently. In a book with as many similarly-named characters as this one has, it's an understandable error, but it will make the listener's job that much more difficult.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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