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Kim

Addicted to audiobooks & podcasts. 5 Stars=I Loved It, 4 Stars=Enjoyed it Thoroughly, 3=Kinda Good, 2=Bad/Boring, 1=Complete Waste of Credit

Spokane, WA, United States | Member Since 2009

521
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 109 reviews
  • 265 ratings
  • 417 titles in library
  • 21 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
16
FOLLOWERS
101

  • Company

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Max Barry
    • Narrated By William Dufris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (444)
    Performance
    (104)
    Story
    (107)

    Nestled among Seattle's skyscrapers, The Zephyr Holdings Building is a bleak rectangle topped by an orange-and-black logo that gives no hint of Zephyr's business. Lack of clarity, it turns out, is Zephyr's defining characteristic. The floors are numbered in reverse. No one has ever seen the CEO or glimpsed his office on the first (i.e., top) floor. Yet every day people clip on their ID tags, file into the building, sit at their desks, and hope that they're not about to be outsourced.

    Michael says: "Characters brought to life"
    "Dark humor for the office crowd"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Combine "The Office" with "The Borg" from Star Trek and you'll get an idea of what this book has in store for you. The characters are people easily recognizable by anyone who's ever worked in a cube farm or a large company - some are sad, some are scary and some are downright like-able - all have that sense of realism to them that makes them familiar. I enjoyed the dark humor and twisted take on how easily employees can be manipulated by gossip, clueless management techniques, and the whims of "upper management". This was a fun read overall and I think it would make a fantastic movie or TV series.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Android's Dream

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By John Scalzi
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2800)
    Performance
    (2457)
    Story
    (2457)

    A human diplomat creates an interstellar incident when he kills an alien diplomat in a most unusual way. To avoid war, Earth's government must find an equally unusual object: A type of sheep ("The Android's Dream"), used in the alien race's coronation ceremony. To find the sheep, the government turns to Harry Creek, ex-cop, war hero and hacker extraordinaire.

    James says: "Philip K Dick meets Douglas Adams"
    "Freaky Fun in Outerspace"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Wil Wheaton is fantastic as a narrator - his performance alone brings the overall score of this book up to 4 stars. He is the perfect match to John Scalzi's cleverly written comedic action-adventure. This is the kind of book that plays in your brain like a movie - I could easily see this being turned into a script and put on the big screen. The story moves fast and the characters are easy to like - snarky, intelligent, and just plain fun. I really like this lighter version of sci-fi that doesn't require one to have a degree from MIT to follow - I'm sure it breaks a million scientific laws but to me it sounds all perfectly plausible and gets me excited for a future where I could have a monster sidekick to pal around with and to eat annoying people for me. This one is Spaceballs on crack - enjoy!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Son

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Philipp Meyer
    • Narrated By Will Patton, Kate Mulgrew, Scott Shepherd, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1286)
    Performance
    (1146)
    Story
    (1168)

    Part epic of Texas, part classic coming-of-age story, part unflinching portrait of the bloody price of power, The Son is an utterly transporting novel that maps the legacy of violence in the American West through the lives of the McCulloughs, an ambitious family as resilient and dangerous as the land they claim. Spring, 1849: Eli McCullough is 13 years old when a marauding band of Comanches takes him captive. Brave and clever, Eli quickly adapts to life among the Comanches, learning their ways and waging war against their enemies, including white men - which complicates his sense of loyalty and understanding of who he is.

    Melinda says: "Five Stars for the Lone Star, The Son, & Meyer"
    "Engaging... but brutal"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I went into this one craving a historical epic - a tale of the American west with cowboys and native Americans; the struggles and hard-won victories that took place on the fringes of civilized life. I was not disappointed - this book gave me all of that and added in a level of brutality and harsh humanity I wasn't expecting. The first chapters were difficult to listen to, in that the suffering of children always seems to get to me more than anything else. The disjointed way the chapters are laid out - each being entries in the diaries of various characters scattered around during completely different decades - made it hard to follow. I think hearing 3 or 4 chapters in a row from the same person might have been better for me. It took over half the book to figure out how some of them were related to each other and there seemed to be so many holes that never really get filled in at the end. That being said, I did find myself looking forward to listening and ended up enjoying it overall. I would recommend this to anyone looking for an old-westy kind of story but keep in mind that you will hear some pretty vicious stuff about the way people treated each other back when America was still becoming a country. And if you are prone to being upset about the portrayal of white people, native Americans, or Mexican people back in the 1800's to early 1900's then be forewarned that you could find this book controversial.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • SuperFreakonomics

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner
    • Narrated By Stephen J. Dubner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2852)
    Performance
    (1213)
    Story
    (1224)

    SuperFreakonomics challenges the way we think all over again, exploring the hidden side of everything with such questions as: How is a street prostitute like a department-store Santa? What do hurricanes, heart attacks, and highway deaths have in common? Can eating kangaroo save the planet? Levitt and Dubner mix smart thinking and great storytelling like no one else.

    Rich says: "Worth Your Time"
    "It's good to freak out sometimes"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As a fan of the weekly Freakanomics podcast, I came into this with a good idea of what to expect - which means the joy of surprise and enchantment a first-time listener may experience was bound to be elude me. I was right about that - nothing super earth-shaking for me, however my expectations were more than met and I really enjoyed this sequel to Freakanomics. These guys are just plain awesome and their mass appeal is obvious; I would recommend this for group car rides where you want everyone to think a little bit, discuss a little bit, laugh, and enjoy an escape from superficial assumptions about the world we live in. This would also be great for someone looking to increase their stash of interesting conversation starters for parties or awkward first dates (you may want to avoid the patriotic prostitutes though).

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Serpent of Venice: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Christopher Moore
    • Narrated By Euan Morton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (633)
    Performance
    (585)
    Story
    (587)

    Venice, a really long time ago: Three prominent Venetians await their most loathsome and foul dinner guest, the erstwhile envoy from Britain who also happens to be a favorite of the Doge: The rascal-Fool Pocket. This trio of cunning plotters have lured Pocket to a dark dungeon, promising a spirited evening. Their invitation is, of course, bogus. These scoundrels have something far less amusing planned for the man who has consistently foiled their quest for power and wealth. But this Fool is no fool.…

    Amazon Customer says: "Moore sophomoric humor riffing off the Bard's time"
    "The Fool Returns....to Applause!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Oh joyous delight!! The return of our beloved "Fool" aka "Pocket" ready to wreak havoc and run amok once again! For fans of "Fool" - you will love the deliciously salty language and abundant sexual innuendo woven throughout this tale of love and betrayal. I have not read The Merchant of Venice (yes, I know - for shame..) but it's so much better from the literary genius that is Christopher Moore - perhaps our generation's Shakespeare - after all, wasn't he thought to be quite edgy-bordering-on-vulgar back in his day? Anyway, for new readers - dive right in - you don't have to know much about the other book to enjoy it - all you need is a love for inappropriate humor, saucy characters, and tragedy perfected. I didn't give it 5 stars across the board because I did like Fool a little bit better and I reserve all 5's for only a select few. That said, I forgot to mention the narrator who needs to be nominated for an award - he IS Pocket - the performance is seamless and the production is fantastic. Great audio book - 4.5 stars.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Mindy Kaling
    • Narrated By Mindy Kaling, Michael Schur
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2793)
    Performance
    (2587)
    Story
    (2602)

    Mindy Kaling has lived many lives: the obedient child of immigrant professionals, a timid chubster afraid of her own bike, a Ben Affleck–impersonating Off-Broadway performer and playwright, and, finally, a comedy writer and actress prone to starting fights with her friends and coworkers with the sentence “Can I just say one last thing about this, and then I swear I’ll shut up about it?”

    Lisa says: "If you like Mindy, you'll enjoy this listen."
    "Cute & Entertaining"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was hoping for something light and funny to give myself a break from the heavy stuff I've been lost in recently - this clever half-bio / half-monologue did the job nicely. I will say that it was a bit more bubblegum than I normally prefer, but I realize that I'm probably 15 years older than the high-end of her intended demographic, so I tried to keep that in mind when I found myself rolling my eyes too much. The narration was fine but I suggest listening to the sample first - her voice is child-like. For comedy writing, it's not bad - it has profanity, sarcasm, & amusing anecdotes - I would recommend it to young women in their late teens/early twenties without hesitation.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Rabid: A Cultural History of the World’s Most Diabolical Virus

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Bill Wasik, Monica Murphy
    • Narrated By Johnny Heller
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (455)
    Performance
    (406)
    Story
    (407)

    The most fatal virus known to science, rabies kills nearly 100 percent of its victims once the infection takes root in the brain. From Greek myths to zombie flicks, from the laboratory heroics of Louis Pasteur to the contemporary search for a lifesaving treatment, Rabid is a fresh, fascinating, and often wildly entertaining look at one of mankind’s oldest and most fearsome foes.

    Sparkly says: "My favorite science read this year."
    "This one's a dog..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was looking forward to learning all about the fascinating history of rabies and it's effect on man and beast throughout history. The book contains tons of factual and anecdotal information (some of it gruesome which is right up my alley) - it should've been a hit for me but I didn't enjoy it so I can't bring myself to give it more than 2 stars. It's not the authors' fault; the narrator's vocal tone made it hard for me to concentrate on the story and I found myself trying to get through it in small bites to avoid the irritation. It may just be a personal thing with me - so listen to the free sample and if the narration doesn't bother you after a few minutes then go for it - the content is fine.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Lizard King: The True Crimes and Passions of the World's Greatest Reptile Smugglers

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Bryan Christy
    • Narrated By Tony Ward
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (31)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (18)

    When Bryan Christy began to investigate the world of reptile smuggling, he had no idea what he would be in for. In the course of his research, he was bitten between the eyes by a blood python, chased by a mother alligator, and sprayed by a bird-eating tarantula. But perhaps more dangerous was coming face to face with Michael J. Van Nostrand, owner of Strictly Reptiles, a thriving family business in Hollywood, Florida.

    Kim says: "Snakes on a plane!!!"
    "Snakes on a plane!!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Ever wonder what might be in all the suitcases that glide past you on the luggage carousel at the airport? After listening to this captivating expose' of pet suppliers and their quasi-cartel smuggling operations, I will make sure to keep my distance from that weird lady with the oddly squirming carry-on the next time I have to fly. The story flips between the perspective of the good guys and the bad guys - although at times you wonder which is which - so you end up learning a little about about how to be a great smuggler/criminal and a little about how to catch them. Entertaining and informative - an easy 4 star rating for this great listen.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Running with Scissors: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Augusten Burroughs
    • Narrated By Augusten Burroughs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1030)
    Performance
    (261)
    Story
    (261)

    Running with Scissors is the true story of a boy whose mother (a poet with delusions of being Anne Sexton) gave him away to be raised by her psychiatrist, a dead ringer for Santa and a lunatic in the bargain.

    Arthur Held says: "NOT what I was expecting"
    "Way better than the movie"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I saw this movie a few years back and wasn't too impressed - I'm glad I decided to give the book a chance. This is one of those pieces that grabs you early and doesn't let go - although gruesome at times, it gets into your head and makes you want to find out what insane thing can possibly happen next. The dialogue comes across as authentic which is just as important to a book as the events that take place - bad dialogue can ruin an otherwise perfect story. Augusten Burroughs is amazingly talented at both writing and narration - I will definitely be listening to his other titles.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Wicked Bugs: The Louse That Conquered Napoleon’s Army and Other Diabolical Insects

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Amy Stewart
    • Narrated By Coleen Marlo
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (282)
    Performance
    (202)
    Story
    (200)

    In this darkly comical look at the sinister side of our relationship with the natural world, Stewart has tracked down over one hundred of our worst entomological foes - creatures that infest, infect, and generally wreak havoc on human affairs. From the world's most painful hornet, to the flies that transmit deadly diseases, to millipedes that stop traffic, to the Japanese beetles munching on your roses, Wicked Bugs delves into the extraordinary powers of many-legged creatures

    Paul says: "fascinating and creepy"
    "Not enough...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I find the subject matter of this book fascinating and was looking forward to a good creepy bug book to haunt me for a bit. Unfortunately, it missed the mark two ways - 1) Not enough scientific detail - the descriptions of the insects and their behaviors were too brief. Fewer insects with more detail on each would've been better. 2) Not enough anecdotal or cultural references to make listening fun for more than a couple of hours. If there had been more "fun" stuff, I wouldn't have noticed the lack of educational content.

    Although I was disappointed, I'm giving this selection 3 stars overall because I did enjoy sections of it, and it kept me interested enough to listen all the way through.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mother Night

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Kurt Vonnegut
    • Narrated By Victor Bevine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (454)
    Performance
    (314)
    Story
    (316)

    American Howard W. Campbell, Jr., a spy during World War II, is now on trial in Israel as a Nazi war criminal. But is he really guilty? In this brilliant book rife with true gallows humor, Kurt Vonnegut turns black and white into a chilling shade of grey with a verdict that will haunt us all. Mother Night is a daring challenge to our moral sense.

    Robert says: "“We are what we pretend to be”"
    "Interesting but forgettable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I picked up this title because the author was revered in my parents' generation and I wanted to know why. I'm not sure if I missed the point or if I ruined it by expecting something controversial or at least special - either way I find myself lukewarm on Vonnegut at this point. It was enough to keep me interested though so I won't slam it too much - 3 stars.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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