FORT COLLINS, CO, United States | Member Since 2012
A blunt, no-holds barred, accounting of a SEAL sniper going through training and actual combat missions. Just listen to this book! You will not be disappointed!
The story is a fairly straightforward quest for revenge story. Hugh Glass (protagonist) is attacked and severely wounded. He's abandoned by a couple of men who remained behind to care for him. Thus begins the revenge story.
This fictionalized account of the real Hugh Glass is quite entertaining and well-researched. You feel as though you're back in the 1820s with the Rocky Mountain Fur Company and its men. The writing is vivid and well-paced.
A few knocks against the story is how often Hugh Glass falls into peril only to be miraculously rescued from that peril by some happenstance or another. It happens so often that these perils/salvations border on contrivances. At eight hours into the story, the author writes "first lucky turn" in describing Hugh Glass's fortunate escape from yet another peril and all I could do was laugh. First? Try tenth!
There are contradictions as well when Hugh Glass is afraid to build a campfire as it may be seen by enemies, but then is more than willing to build a huge pyre. What?? Of course, such action works in his favor, naturally.
The narrator is decent and brings different inflections and accents to the different characters. The narrator is especially good at invoking the shaky, tremulous voice of a young man and the broken, harsh voice of Hugh Glass. However, the narrator also can get a bit overdramatic at times suddenly invoking a rough growl at odd points in the narrative. I liked this narrator on No Easy Day. He's not as consistent in this telling.
Still, an entertaining story and I can see why it'll become a movie. Certainly recommended!
As the title of my review suggests, perhaps this book was visionary back when it was written in the 70s. Sadly, it is horribly dated in it perceptions and conceptions of that time period. The thing about great sci-fi is that it should TRANSCEND the time period of which it was written. Dune does that. Star Wars does that. Hyperion does that. These are examples of great sci-fi that has transcended the time period (60s/70s/80s) in which they were conceived and still leave us in wonder.
The Mote in God's Eye is about a spaceship that has journeyed to a far point in the universe and it comes into contact with an alien species called Moties. The moties breed like rabbits, change gender like frogs and are able to mimic/reshape themselves into human copies.
The "outdatedness" of this book comes from the endless dialogue regarding sexual conventions (of the 70s/80s) and social mores (70s/80s) that the humans attempt to explain to the moties. It's really quite absurd how long this discussion goes on and on.
The other "outdatedness" is how the men of the ship perceive and act toward the only female (seemingly) that is on the ship: Lady Sally. Really. The men's attitude towards her is a cross between male chauvinism and extreme medieval chivalry.
The book suffers from an extreme durth of action or anything that might make the story in the least bit interesting. It is very heavy on exposition and nonsense-discussion between the characters in the book.
I wonder exactly how this book could be rated so highly. I wonder if it's mainly nostalgics who read the book when it first came out and rate it based on how they felt at that time.
If I never hear the word "fyunch" again, it will be too soon.
The narrator makes this book even worse with his conceited, imperious-sounding tone of voice.
Very disappointed in what many have declared as a classic.
King truly did his research to capture the feel and historical accuracy of the Kennedy assassination in 1963. The story is about Jake Epping who discovers a way to go back in time to a certain point before the assassination of JFK. Jake has made a promise to a friend that he'll do whatever he can to try to stop the assassination.
Jake goes through multiple iterations of trying to stop the killing of JFK and King expertly, and with great suspense, describes each attempt. At the same time Jake also falls in love with a woman "back-in-time" and his efforts to protect this woman get entangled and mired with his efforts to stop the assassination.
Action packed and suspenseful. Highly recommended!
This was a decent enough tale of a woman who's perspective is so distorted that she is uncertain of her own recollection of events. As many reviews have stated - it is Rear Window meets Gone Girl. The story is told from the pov's of three women: Rachel, Ana, and Megan; each of whom have some connection to the other women through a man or the same house in which they have lived at some point. The main plot is a missing person's mystery and who-done-it type.
The story is well written in describing the distorted recollections of Rachel. While some have said this is a "unreliable narrator", I would more accurately describe her as a somewhat "psychotic" narrator.
The majority of the plot takes place on a train and the houses in which the characters are living or have lived. This is the weakest part of the novel. It's somewhat limited in its scope (literally limited in the "sets") and characters that comprise the story. I can't see giving it 5 stars as most others have done.
Nonetheless, a decent story that will keep you guessing till the end.
Myself being an introvert, I was drawn to this book. I often wonder why I'm reluctant to speak up or why I feel uncomfortable in large group settings. The author (herself an introvert) does an excellent job of analyzing and deconstructing the behaviors and mind sets of introverts. So many times, during the book, I felt like I was reading exactly about myself and my own experiences.
The author goes into detail on how better to understand introverts and ways in which to use their strengths for greater success.
The few marks against the book is that there a few areas (very few) where the author seems a tad biased towards introverts (as opposed to extroverts), but overall this was an excellent read.
Highly recommended for like-minded introverts and people that want to better understand introverts (Perhaps parents of introverted children. Spouses of introverts.).
My bar for excellent sci-fi is set at Hyperion, so I judge each sci-fi book in relation to that. However, this book very much reminded me of parts of Heinlein's Starship Troopers, just modernized and more expanded upon.
A recruit, James McGill, joins up with earth's intergalactic army to fight another alien species on a distant planet: Steel World. Things quickly go awry, and James discovers that the conflicts are not entirely as they seem.
The book is well written, well narrated and keeps the listener in suspense. The cons are that I have yet to find sci-fi where aliens are not depicted as something similar to an earth species: giant insects, giant lizards, strange barking seal-like creatures. I have yet to listen to sci-fi where the aliens seemed truly ALIEN (as in something we have never encountered before or something that is not like another species on our own planet.)
That is my one complaint in regards to any otherwise solid and excellent sci-fi novel.
Great, but not excellent.
I realize that this book is considered a classic and that it is the inspiration behind the great war film: Apocalypse Now. However, I must have zoned out in listening to this book as all I ever heard was "heart of darkness" many times over. Thus, the title of my review: simply saying "heart of darkness" several times does not provide an understanding of what it means to have a heart of darkness. The movie, Apocalypse Now, did a far better job of imbuing the character of Kurtz with a "heart of darkness" than this book did of imbuing its character Kurtz with the same. Perhaps my expectations of this tale were skewed as I had first viewed the movie before experiencing this tale.
The narrator, Kenneth Branagh, is excellent, a very distinct voice. I'm also glad that I got this book at steep discount as I cannot consider it worth the list price. It's also advantageous that it's a short tale as I'd rather spend my time on other books.
An apocalyptic story, but the zombies have a bit of a twist to them. They are not typical undead, even though they hunger for human flesh.
The story starts out from the perspective of a young girl, Melanie, and her strange, yet wide-eyed naiveté, existence in this post-apocalyptic world. An excellently written character whom you will feel a connection to throughout the entire story.
The story switches between the perspectives of Melanie, a teacher, a soldier, and a researcher. Each character has superbly described motivations for their respective roles and are very believable.
The writing is excellent and the narration is top-notch. Only a few dings in the story where plot convenience marred a few areas of story development, but minor quibbles. I absolutely enjoyed this book! The ending is perfect!
Quantity is not directly related to quality. This book is about several characters in a medieval type/fantasy setting who are fighting an invading force of parshendi. It is written from several perspectives: a prince, a slave, an assassin, and a "priestess". This book is extremely heavy on exposition and very light on any action or anything that might cause you to become interested in the story. I'm surprised that it is by the same author as the lean, mean, enthralling story: Steelheart. I'm convinced that either publishing companies have done away with editors to cut costs, or editors don't bother telling bestselling authors what to cut out of their books. This book could easily be reduced by 75% as only about 10-15 hours were at all interesting in my opinion.
26 hours into this 45 hour book and the only two characters I found interesting were Szeth and Syl. Szeth has a very cool stormlight lashing ability that I would compare to Spiderman's ability to pull himself onto walls, roofs, etc. and run along those surfaces. It is very well described and easily the best of the action scenes in this book. Sadly, it comes at the beginning and disappears for the great majority of the remainder of the book.
Syl, a "spren" which I think of as a kind of fairie or sprite, is ironically devoid of personality when first introduced (the irony being that most all of the other characters are devoid of personality) and she gains personality as the book continues. I found her to be the best written of any character.
Dalinor, the prince, spends most of his time wondering about his honor. The priestess, Shallan, spends most of her time eating bread and jam. Literally eating bread and jam to set up a plot point that....zzzz....oh, sorry fell asleep.
I'd skip this book and anything else in the series. You could get through 4 great books by the time you got through this one. The one bright spot, the narrators are decent and concise in their delivery.
Wow! I thought there was going to be a worldwide epidemic with the recent ebola breakout. Listening to this book, it seems all but certain. Not a matter of if, but when. It absolutely fascinating how a strain of ebola broke out right near Washington D.C. in a group of monkeys and yet never infected a single human being. Or did it? That's part of the story that leaves you wondering if this deadly virus is only lying in wait.
Listen to this book. Period!
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