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Mark

Father,Husband,Photographer,Book Fiend. 1st Audiobook was 1776 byDavid McCullough;listened while putting up Xmas lights in snowstorm-Hooked!

Bettendorf, IA, United States | Member Since 2011

37
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 21 reviews
  • 313 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 23 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
6
FOLLOWERS
6

  • The Shawshank Redemption

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Frank Muller
    Overall
    (909)
    Performance
    (608)
    Story
    (613)

    Based on a a novella from Different Seasons, this unabridged tale focuses on a man convicted of murder, who finds himself in a prison ruled by a sadistic warden and secretly operated by a clever convict.

    Eric says: "This makes the movie better"
    "Seeing the Movie Didn't Ruin The Reading/Listening"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Shawshank Redemption the most enjoyable?

    The character development is always great with King, but this is such a concise, short story that precision is paramount to a great story. He hits the mark brilliantly, and it's a beautiful, rich story of the brotherhood of man, and the good and ill that individuals are capable of. Frank Muller was fantastic as always.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Way Down on the High Lonely: The Neal Carey Mysteries, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Don Winslow
    • Narrated By Joe Barrett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (49)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (34)

    Neal Carey’s three-year confinement in a Chinese monastery is finally over—but his troubles are just beginning. The elusive financial benefactors who have bought his freedom expect a return on their investment. They want him to find Cody McCall, a two-year-old boy recently abducted by his father in a bitter Hollywood custody battle—a task that will propel Neal from the glittering Hollywood hills to the remote wilds of Nevada.

    Mark says: "Superb- love the series!"
    "Superb- love the series!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Love this series, as well as the Don Winslow stand alone novels. He's become a top tier, "go-to" novelist for me & I can't recommend his work enough. My only criticism is that soon I'll have plowed through his entire bibliography...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Power of the Dog

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Don Winslow
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    Overall
    (662)
    Performance
    (441)
    Story
    (445)

    This explosive novel of the drug trade takes you deep inside a world riddled with corruption, betrayal, and bloody revenge. From the streets of New York City to Mexico City and Tijuana to the jungles of Central America, this is the war on drugs like you've never seen it.

    Leslie says: "Amazing Novel, Excellent Narration"
    "Don Winslow is a fantastic author"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    3rd book of Mr Winslow's I've read & all have been excellent. Great character development and in depth, realistic storylines. Loved it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Winter of Frankie Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Don Winslow
    • Narrated By Dennis Boutsikaris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (535)
    Performance
    (383)
    Story
    (384)

    Frank Machianno is a late-middle-aged ex-surf bum who runs a bait shack on the San Diego waterfront. An affable Italian with a love of people and life, he's a stand-up businessman, devoted father, and a beloved fixture in the community. He's also a hit man - specifically, a retired hit man. Back in the day when he was one of the most feared members of the West Coast Mafia, he was known as Frankie Machine.

    Surf City Swami says: "The Winter of Frankie Machine is a ray of sunshine"
    "Mario Who?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I read/listened to The Godfather a year ago, long after loving all the films. And was disappointed. This is the second Don Winslow book I've read (Savages was the first) & I'm hooked. His writing is gritty & tight, but bottom-line for me is the authenticity. It's what will translate into my reading his entire catalog, rather than an odd one here or there. Solid book from start to finish- and a great finish, by the way.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Extinction Point: Extinction Point, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Paul Antony Jones
    • Narrated By Emily Beresford
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (305)
    Performance
    (279)
    Story
    (279)

    Emily Baxter’s dream life turns into a waking nightmare the day the red rain falls. Like a biblical plague, the scarlet downpour spreads a hideous virus that demolishes life in New York City, the nation, and the world. Suddenly the last soul in an annihilated metropolis - and possibly on Earth - the onetime newspaper reporter must learn to scavenge, survive...and plan for a future of utter solitude. Then, from far-flung Alaska, another living voice reaches out, and Emily grasps at her only glimmer of hope. But she may be even less alone than she thinks.

    Charyn says: "Several hours that I'll never get back"
    "Lost time"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I try to think of the feelings of writers & so don't often write negative reviews, and since it appears many others have done so I'll just say that, even at a discount, I wondered how this book got made- much less an audio version. Editing and additional drafts with more depth and better character & story development might have made an interesting concept something more...sorry to say, this lacked all the important elements.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Code Name Verity

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Wein
    • Narrated By Morven Christie, Lucy Gaskell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2029)
    Performance
    (1827)
    Story
    (1825)

    Code Name Verity is a compelling, emotionally rich story with universal themes of friendship and loyalty, heroism and bravery. Two young women from totally different backgrounds are thrown together during World War II: one a working-class girl from Manchester, the other a Scottish aristocrat, one a pilot, the other a wireless operator. Yet whenever their paths cross, they complement each other perfectly and before long become devoted friends. But then a vital mission goes wrong....

    Suzn F says: "Haunting, Beautiful, Exquisite, Special Book"
    "Fantastic story & narration!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This sat on my wish list until it wound up on the Daily Deal special....but it was well worth a credit. Loved this book. And I actually had tears in my eyes when the story came to a close, which has only happened one other time. Heroism, danger, strong female leads telling a crucially important story about a critical time in WW II- just a fantastic novel!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • For the Dead: A Poke Rafferty Thriller

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Timothy Hallinan
    • Narrated By Victor Bevine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (22)
    Story
    (22)

    In Bangkok, Thailand, an American travel journalist and his Thai family find themselves inadvertently entangled in a web of dirty cops and far-reaching corruption when their daughter’s ill-gotten cell phone displays photographs of some very crooked cops, all of them thoroughly dead.

    Mark says: "Timothy Hallinan has my appreciation!"
    "Timothy Hallinan has my appreciation!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've not enough time to go back and review each book in the Poke Rafferty series, and rarely write reviews, but Mr. Hallinan has created an exotic, captivating core of characters large and small, and opened a window to a world many of us know little about. This series has become my favorite in recent years and each book has cost me hours at night- listening when I should have been sleeping! Hoping the series continues for many years to come!!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Carniepunk

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Rachel Caine, Rob Thurman, Kevin Hearne, and others
    • Narrated By Candace Thaxton, Kirby Heyborne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (129)
    Performance
    (118)
    Story
    (120)

    Come one, come all! The Carniepunk Midway promises you every thrill and chill a traveling carnival can provide. But fear not! Urban fantasy's biggest stars are here to guide you through this strange and dangerous world....

    Hassan says: "Its A Separate 14 Short Stories"
    "great stories & narrators"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I came across Carniepunk via the Iron Druid series by Kevin Hearne. Enjoyed most of the offerings here immensely, but the reason I was moved to write a review is due to the fantastic narration by Kirby Heyborne, whose work I was already happily familiar with, and the excellent work by Candace Thaxton, who is new to me. Ms Thaxton was brilliant, imbuing all of her characters with their own distinct voice; I'll be listening for her in future titles. So as not to short shrift Mr Heyborne, I grew to respect and appreciate his work through those Iron Druid books...while not normal fare for me, both the books and narration captured my attention through an entire series, including novellas and short story collections, and I was thrilled that Audible didn't switch narrators in the middle of the series...hate it when that happens! Finally, to all the authors who provided the stories within, a heartfelt thanks for creating unique, devilishly entertaining worlds for us to romp in for a bit. Well done!

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Dying Breed

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Declan Hughes
    • Narrated By Stanley Townsend
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (20)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (9)

    Even the best private eye needs more than a name to find a missing person, but that's all that Father Vincent Tyrrell, the brother of prominent racehorse trainer F. X. Tyrrell, will offer Loy when he comes to him for help. A dwindling bank account convinces Loy to delve into the deadly underworld of horse racing, but fortune soon smiles on him: while working another case, he discovers a phone number linked to F. X. on a badly beaten body left at an illegal dump.

    Sixty Some says: "Irish Angst"
    "Grand writer, excellent narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Coming across Declan Hughes was a happy accident. I've thoroughly enjoyed all Declan Hughes novels that Audible has on offer- but have now exhausted Audibles offerings! More, please! Thanks to a great writer, and a serious nod to a truly wonderful narrator. Having just stopped two books (by other authors) midway due to really poor narration, I especially appreciate Stanley Townsend's reading (of all the Declan Hughes audiobooks, I believe). He actually inhabits each character distinctly, without over-dramatization.

    Mr. Hughes and Mr. Townsend- huge fan. Thank you, sincerely.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • My Life as a White Trash Zombie

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Diana Rowland
    • Narrated By Allison McLemore
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2243)
    Performance
    (2066)
    Story
    (2062)

    Teenage delinquent Angel Crawford lives with her redneck father in the swamps of southern Louisiana. She's a high school dropout, addicted to drugs and alcohol, and has a police record a mile long. But when she's made into a zombie after a car crash, her addictions disappear, except for her all-consuming need to stay "alive".

    Marvin says: "New diet trend, become a zombie!"
    "Nice surprise"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't review often, and hadn't expected to be rating this, much less reviewing it. Thought it looked like a fun "beach read" type of thing, but I didn't pull the trigger until it went on sale recently. I was very pleasantly surprised! Not only by the book itself, (and yes, I will be following the series after getting through this first very funny & entertaining book), but by the absolutely pitch perfect narration done by Allison McLemore. Just hearing McLemore say "nekkid" in pure "white trash" form was worth the price of admission. If you're on the fence, take a chance and you won't regret it. And keep that blender nearby:)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Confession

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Olen Steinhauer
    • Narrated By Robertson Dean
    Overall
    (89)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (28)

    It is 1956. Radio reports of the Hungarian revolution break through the government's radio jamming, setting the entire Eastern Bloc on edge.

    Inspector Ferenc Kolyeszar must track down a murderer while dealing with his crumbling marriage. As he is drawn deep into an underworld of betrayal and violence, he finds that he is not so different from those he pursues.

    Vivian says: "very good very different"
    "Heart-breaking, chilling and utterly engrossing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the fifth Steinhauer novel I've read (so far) and his best to date. Though if you're seeking light fare or a pleasant tale with a storybook ending, you might wait until you're ready for this novel. I'm continuously drawn to novels of this era if they're well written, and particularly with this book, Steinhauer is a masterful storyteller, drawing rich characters. I caught myself scowling many times as I went through the main character's trials- getting totally caught up in the story. It's a rare novelist- and a rare novel- that can get me so engrossed.

    I only wish that stories of this era, and the madness they stemmed from and the madness they inflicted, with the worst failings of humankind on display, were a thing of the past. But as long as power can intoxicate its wielders, it always has the potential to perverse and subjugate. Or maybe I'm just writing this too soon after the reading and it's all too fresh in my mind.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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