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M. Boyd

Evil Genius

Anaheim, CA USA | Member Since 2011

4
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 5 reviews
  • 5 ratings
  • 117 titles in library
  • 4 purchased in 2015
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  • Brilliant Blunders: From Darwin to Einstein - Colossal Mistakes by Great Scientists That Changed Our Understanding of Life and the Universe

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Mario Livio
    • Narrated By Jeff Cummings
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (151)
    Performance
    (130)
    Story
    (130)

    We all make mistakes. Nobody’s perfect. Not even some of the greatest geniuses in history, as Mario Livio tells us in this marvelous story of scientific error and breakthrough. Charles Darwin, William Thomson (Lord Kelvin), Linus Pauling, Fred Hoyle, and Albert Einstein were all brilliant scientists. Each made groundbreaking contributions to his field - but each also stumbled badly. These five scientists expanded our knowledge of life on Earth, the evolution of the Earth itself, and the evolution of the universe, despite and because of their errors. As Mario Livio luminously explains, the scientific process advances through error.

    Gary says: "Easy to remember all the stories in the book"
    "Fascinatingly dry as an overcooked Turkey."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I'd start with Einstein and cosmology and finish with Darwin.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    The Mezzanine by Nicholson Baker


    What about Jeff Cummings’s performance did you like?

    I didn't find anything to dislike.


    Did Brilliant Blunders inspire you to do anything?

    It inspired me to make a salami and cheese sandwich while listening. Does that count?


    Any additional comments?

    It's a good book and fascinating subject, but brother does it need gravy.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (18361)
    Performance
    (17036)
    Story
    (17038)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?"

    Michael G. Kurilla says: "Macgyver on Mars"
    "Didn't expect to like this book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Couldn't stop listening. Good story. Good character. Good read. six words remaining. boobies. potatoes. Humour.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Never Let Me Go

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Kazuo Ishiguro
    • Narrated By Rosalyn Landor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1828)
    Performance
    (641)
    Story
    (647)

    From the Booker Prize-winning author of The Remains of the Day and When We Were Orphans, comes an unforgettable edge-of-your-seat mystery that is at once heartbreakingly tender and morally courageous about what it means to be human.

    Jane says: "Nothing short of brilliant"
    "This is a horrid read/listen. It's quite bad."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Better writing. Interesting characters. A plot. A plot would have been nice, I think. Yes, I'm pretty sure a plot would have improved things.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    I haven't made up my mind yet, but I assure you it will never be anything written by Kazuo Ishiguro, ever again. This book was truly mind numbing rubbish.


    Did Rosalyn Landor do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    The narrator was fine.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Dishonor! Dishonor on Kazuo Ishiguro's whole family! Dishonor on Kazuo Ishiguro! Dishonor on his cow! Dishonor on everyone associated with this door stop of a book.


    Any additional comments?

    I now have absolutely no empathy for clones. If I ran into a clone today, I'd vivisect it with a pair of cuticle scissors while whispering "complements of Kazuo Ishiguro". It could just be my dislike for this book talking but, this book was profoundly, exquisitely, gloriously, boringly, bad.

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

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Stephenie Meyer
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5409)
    Performance
    (2989)
    Story
    (3032)

    Earth has been invaded by a species that takes over the minds of human hosts while leaving their bodies intact. But Melanie Stryder refuses to fade away.

    Keith says: "Great story in a genre only touched upon before"
    "Does the Narrator suck or is it just the material?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Either a better story or a better narrator. I'm not sure which. Is the writing really as bad as I'm hearing or is it bad narration? The story telling is horrific. I'd forgotten how much I dislike female writers. There's just so much needless detraction from the story (what ever that might be) and I'm only an hour and a half into the audio and there's no indication that it's going to get any better. The writer isn't an author yet. It's painfully obvious that they rely too heavily on their thesaurus. The dialog is amateurishly cobbled together and every sentence paints the image of someone struggling to write a book, instead of someone telling a story.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Stephenie Meyer again?

    Nope. Never heard of this writer before. I was dared by my daughter (the bookworm) to make it past chapter 7 as nobody in her book club had been able to. I can hear why; the writing is absolute crap. I can't imagine reading this. I think it would make my eyes bleed. WooHoo! I'm up to chapter 6. I don't care about any of the characters so far. I do hate the heroin though (can't remember her name. I care that much about her). Too much useless back story has been heaped upon me about her that I'm not ready to hear and don't give a damn about, and the story isn't moving forward. This writer reminds me of George Martin. 50,000 words to say what would be better said in 100. The upside is they only used 2 uninteresting characters to do it, whereas Martin would have used 30.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Kate Reading?

    Jeremy Irons, Jim Dale, Alan Rickman, Morgan Freeman, or Harlan Ellison.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Host?

    All of it. The premiss supports a potentially great story, but this writer is NOT a story teller.


    Any additional comments?

    I can't believe I paid for this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Storm of Swords: A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (47 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By George R. R. Martin
    • Narrated By Roy Dotrice
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (18508)
    Performance
    (14719)
    Story
    (14794)

    As opposing forces maneuver for the final titanic showdown, an army of barbaric wildlings arrives from the outermost line of civilization. In their vanguard is a horde of mythical Others, a supernatural army of the living dead whose animated corpses are unstoppable. As the future of the land hangs in the balance, no one will rest until the Seven Kingdoms have exploded in a veritable storm of swords.

    Troy says: "Chapter and part breaks are incorrect"
    "Stop here and make up your own ending."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    People with a double digit IQ. These books are tedious. Watch the HBO version, they've altered the story (to make it moderately interesting) and cut through most of the considerable chaff.


    What was most disappointing about George R. R. Martin’s story?

    The two main characters Bran and Arya aren't central to the main plot.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Learn how to properly pronounce the characters names. People that listen to books four and five won't understand who he's talking about then he starts calling little finger "Peter", cause that's not how he pronounced it in the first three books.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from A Storm of Swords?

    I'd have merged books 1, 2 and 3 into one book and gutted almost all but the central characters. So many unnecessary and boring characters. Virtually nothing drives the story forward.


    Any additional comments?

    Dear Mr. Martin,
    Don't use 2,500 words and 30 different uninteresting characters to say something that can be said in 250 words.

    Dear Mr. Book Editor,
    You're fired.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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