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Kevin

Checking out Brandon Sanderson's work

Herndon, VA, United States | Member Since 2011

15
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 41 reviews
  • 42 ratings
  • 204 titles in library
  • 19 purchased in 2014
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  • The Speed of Dark

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Moon
    • Narrated By Jay Snyder
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (346)
    Performance
    (184)
    Story
    (186)

    In the near future, disease will be a condition of the past. Most genetic defects will be removed at birth; the remaining during infancy. Unfortunately, there will be a generation left behind. For members of that missed generation, small advances will be made. Through various programs, they will be taught to get along in the world despite their differences. They will be made active and contributing members of society. But they will never be normal.

    Andrew says: "Totally Recommended!"
    "Great story - sort of weak ending"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a pretty interesting story, told from the point of view of a functioning autistic adult in a time when autism has been cured for those treated early enough. It is very well written and very well read. The performance does a great job with the various personalities in the book making it very enjoyable. The ending feels like the author was trying to get finished (but it still is interesting). While it is still a good ending, to many things are left undone. But overall, I really liked the story.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Well of Ascension: Mistborn, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6677)
    Performance
    (4630)
    Story
    (4666)

    The impossible has been accomplished. The Lord Ruler - the man who claimed to be god incarnate and brutally ruled the world for a thousand years - has been vanquished. But Kelsier, the hero who masterminded that triumph, is dead too, and now the awesome task of building a new world has been left to his young protégé, Vin, the former street urchin who is now the most powerful Mistborn in the land, and to the idealistic young nobleman she loves.

    Robert says: "It keeps getting even better"
    "Great second book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The book is very good. Sanderson has done another great job. The story carries well, the characters are well developed and the plot is very well developed. The reader is great - gets the voices and the attitudes very well. Its a great listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Embassytown

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By China Mieville
    • Narrated By Susan Duerden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (447)
    Performance
    (328)
    Story
    (332)

    China Miéville doesn’t follow trends, he sets them. Relentlessly pushing his own boundaries as a writer—and in the process expanding the boundaries of the entire field—with Embassytown, Miéville has crafted an extraordinary novel that is not only a moving personal drama but a gripping adventure of alien contact and war. In the far future, humans have colonized a distant planet, home to sentient beings famed for a language unique in the universe, one that only a few altered human ambassadors can speak....

    D says: "must hear to fully appreciate."
    "Not a fan - but not entirely disappointed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am glad I listened to this as an audiobook. I would never have survived the paperback. This story takes a long time to get going and requires you to learn a new set of coloquialisms including a double speech ability. The story does become more interesting, but it hard to get into it at the beginning.

    There are some interesting ideas - the houses, vehicles, weapons are all organic plants/animals that are taught to form certain objects. The idea that the native creatures can never lie is also intriguing. I was never sold on the "addiction" to a particular human pair of speakers - humans that communicate with the natives must talk at the same time which requires special brain communication.

    But overall, this was work. The performance is great and made the book bareable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Passage

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Connie Willis
    • Narrated By Dina Pearlman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (191)
    Performance
    (162)
    Story
    (166)

    Dr. Joanna Lander is a psychologist specializing in near-death experiences. She is about to get help from a new doctor with the power to give her the chance to get as close to death as anyone can.

    Aser says: "You Can't Get There From Here"
    "Great Performance - story not so much"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love most of what Connie Willis has written. Interesting, provocative, entertaining. She seems to have lost all that in this book. The audio performance was wonderful - otherwise I would never have made it through this book. The story seems to be confused in what message it is trying to send and confuses reality with dream like events.

    This is a book about near death experiences - a dangerous topic in any venue. She brings in the religious and scientific aspects - but never really does anything with them. You are left wondering why you just spent 29 hours of audio book time listening to the book.

    Now the performance is great. The reader handles all the characters very well and made it bearable. But I would avoid this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Accelerando

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Charles Stross
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    Overall
    (74)
    Performance
    (67)
    Story
    (68)

    The Singularity. It is the era of the posthuman. Artificial intelligences have surpassed the limits of human intellect. Biotechnological beings have rendered people all but extinct. Molecular nanotechnology runs rampant, replicating and reprogramming at will. Contact with extraterrestrial life grows more imminent with each new day.

    Kevin says: "Way to many acronyms in this book"
    "Way to many acronyms in this book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read this book on my quest to finish all the Locus award winners. I am beginning to realize that the Locus award is for those books that don't make the Hugo or Nebula. This book is like listening to a someone list off all the computer terms invented over the past thirty years, and then try to make that a book. As someone in that field, I was very disappointed. While there were moments where the book could have been great, the author never took advantage of them. In the end, the author looks like he is trying to show how smart he is and how current his knowledge without ever actually getting to the story.

    There are some pretty cool concepts (uploading one's brain, artificial beings, inter-galatic civilizations. But the author never really takes advantage. In a way, this is sort of a comedy for those who know the terms. I would avoid this book.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Ilium

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Kevin Pariseau
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (97)
    Performance
    (89)
    Story
    (91)

    From the towering heights of Olympos Mons on Mars, the mighty Zeus and his immortal family of gods, goddesses, and demigods look down upon a momentous battle, observing - and often influencing - the legendary exploits of Paris, Achilles, Hector, Odysseus, and the clashing armies of Greece and Troy. Thomas Hockenberry, former 21st-century professor and Iliad scholar, watches as well. It is Hockenberry's duty to observe and report on the Trojan War's progress to the so-called deities who saw fit to return him from the dead.

    Ryan says: "Achaeans and robots and post-humans, oh my"
    "Great Performance - very good story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is an interesting story that takes quite a bit of time to figure out. I hate the ending as it really just says there will be a sequal - but up to that point it is fairly interesting. It will make you read up on the Illiad as a large part of the book involves a re-enactment of the battle of troy on Mars. Kind of interesting.

    The performance is very good. The read does a great job of portraying the characters and there is very good character development. There are a few things left to the next book - I felt somewhat cheated there especially since the sequel did not get very good reviews. But worth the read/listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Boneshaker

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Cherie Priest
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton, Kate Reading
    Overall
    (1007)
    Performance
    (678)
    Story
    (676)

    In the early days of the Civil War, rumors of gold in the frozen Klondike brought hordes of newcomers to the Pacific Northwest. Anxious to compete, Russian prospectors commissioned inventor Leviticus Blue to create a great machine that could mine through Alaska’s ice. Thus was Dr. Blue’s Incredible Bone-Shaking Drill Engine born.

    Tracey says: "Doesn't live up to potential"
    "1860 Zombie Book - not quite what I expected"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The book is an okay read. The context of a gas resulting from a drilling machine punching a whole in an inactive volcano allowing a gas to come up that either kills those affected or turns them into zombie types is sort of hard to believe. If you suspend your believe, the story is interesting. The characters are pretty well developed. The story is a little weak in its development. The main protagonist could be the husband of the lead character or an impostor - but the problem here is that after ten years, what difference did it make.

    The reader is great. Does a good job acting out the various parts and makes an okay book a good listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Anathem

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Neal Stephenson
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman, Tavia Gilbert, William Dufris, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1863)
    Performance
    (867)
    Story
    (875)

    In celebration of the week-long, once-in-a-decade rite of Apert, the fras and suurs prepare to venture outside the concent's gates - opening them wide at the same time to welcome the curious "extras" in. During his first Apert as a fra, Erasmus eagerly anticipates reconnecting with the landmarks and family he hasn't seen since he was "collected". But before the week is out, both the existence he abandoned and the one he embraced will stand poised on the perilous brink of cataclysmic change.

    Richard says: "Tour de force"
    "Fascinating story - weak ending"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a complex story about how a society developed to split off the scientific community from the secular community in response to a number of world events that almost destroyed the population. In the midst of this, a vessel comes into orbit that is nothing ever seen before. That is the gist of the story. The telling is great - the actors do a great job on this reading. The story is good, but has a weak ending. But its pretty interesting anyway. Worth the read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Steelheart: Reckoners, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Macleod Andrews
    Overall
    (6404)
    Performance
    (5976)
    Story
    (6000)

    Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills. Nobody fights the Epics...nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them. And David wants in. He wants Steelheart - the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David's father.

    D says: "He got the idea from a near traffic accident"
    "Great story, great performance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a wonderful story. The lead character is hilarious when he is not serious. The reader does a wonderful job portraying the many personalities. It was a pleasure to listen to it. Great Story.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Moving Mars

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Greg Bear
    • Narrated By Sharon Williams
    Overall
    (63)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (27)

    Mars is a colonial world governed by corporate interests on Earth. The citizens of Mars are hardworking, brave, and intelligent, but held back by their lack of access to the best education, and the desire of Earthly powers to keep the best inventions for themselves. The young Martians - the second and third generation born on Mars - have little loyalty to Earth and a strong belief that their planet can be independent.

    A User says: "One of my favorites"
    "Great book and performance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a fascinating story if a bit unbelievable. It is a traditional Greg Bear SCI-FI story about a future of Mars that is different then any others I have read. This is the fourth Mars book that won an award in the 1990s I guess as a result of all the Mars Lander activity during that decade. The characters are well developed story very engaging.

    The audio performance is very good with alot of effort to emulate voices in suits, remote communications,etc. Overall, I really enjoyed this story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Terminal Experiment

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Robert J. Sawyer
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (258)
    Performance
    (95)
    Story
    (98)

    An experiment has gone terribly wrong. Dr. Peter Hobson has created three electronic simulations of his own personality. One will test life after death; another, immortality. The third one is the control unit. But now all three have escaped from Hobson's computer into the worldwide electronic matrix. And one of them is a killer.

    David says: "Incredible"
    "Interesting set of story angles"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book covers many disparate topics from religion (existence of a soul) to determination of when someone is actually dead - for organ donation purposes. The technology discussed moves between things long gone (technologically speaking) to things that have not been done. The concept that one could record one's self and store in on the internet, turn it on and have a discussion with your self is kind of interesting. The fact that there are limitations to that recording vs the physical experience is not surprising.

    The story carries well although a little weak on the ending. The reading is good and captured my attention. Overall a great performance.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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