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Michael

Commodities broker, father, husband, and avid scifi/fantasy/self help fan.

Gretna, LA, USA | Member Since 2006

ratings
2
REVIEWS
1
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
14
HELPFUL VOTES
31

  • Gettysburg: A Novel of the Civil War

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Newt Gingrich, William R. Forstchen
    • Narrated By Tom Stechschulte
    Overall
    (230)
    Performance
    (82)
    Story
    (83)

    Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and veteran author William R. Forstchen combine their talents in this powerful and rousing alternate history of the most legendary Civil War clash.

    A User says: "Good book, but..."
    "A Wonderful Foray Into An Alternate US Civil War"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Political affiliations aside, Newt and William are on their A game with this tremendous "What If?" regarding the pivotal battle of Gettysburg. A simple small change of thought, and the war that rocked our nation to its core suddenly and dramatically leans in favor of the South. Any time a solid civil war era novel is written, it requires the author(s) to not only be steeped in the times and facts of that war, it also requires a completely different midst regarding the character development, motivation and reactions of the people of that time. It's all in the details, and these two authors provide that, along with their solid storytelling prose. Both authors bring together an engaging storyline, with experienced field warfare descriptions, both making for a wonderful listen.

    As a huge fan of alternate history, this is a rare and exciting listen for ANY fan of history, be it alternate or actual. And on a final note, the other two audiobooks in this series are equally fantastic.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Furies of Calderon: Codex Alera, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4076)
    Performance
    (2743)
    Story
    (2779)

    In the realm of Alera, where people bond with the furies - elementals of earth, air, fire, water, and metal - 15-year-old Tavi struggles with his lack of furycrafting. But when his homeland erupts in chaos - when rebels war with loyalists and furies clash with furies - Tavi's simple courage will turn the tides of war.

    Eric says: "great fantasy series"
    "Lost Roman Legions...And POKEMON?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you follow my reviews, you know that I like to roll the dice, to randomly buy a series on a whim, on the luck of the draw. Sometimes, it's a bust.

    This time, it's a definite win, but if you go by how the series was created, you'd probably run in the opposite direction.

    Here's one for the books: Jim Butcher is well-known for his "Dresden Files" series, created a fantastic fantasy series on a BET. Yep, a bet. Read on.

    To quote the Codex Alera Wiki site, "the inspiration for the series came from a bet Jim was challenged to by a member of the Delray Online Writer’s Workshop. The challenger bet that Jim could not write a good story based on a lame idea, and Jim countered that he could do it using two lame ideas of the challenger’s choosing. The “lame” ideas given were “Lost Roman Legion", and “Pokémon”.

    It DOES sound lame.

    Well, Butcher makes it work. To the nines.

    I've finished this first novel, and I'm enjoying this unique story line of humans with Roman similarities binding with elemental furies. Add unique races, backstabbing, politics, military battles, duels and an interwoven story line that pulls it all together, and you get a fantastic story that's simply put, a VERY VERY good listen.

    The whole concept of fighting alongside elemental familiars used here is wonderfully executed. It's deep, well-thought magic-based partnership of man and magical creature is a pleasure to experience.

    So, what about the writing?

    Again, if you follow my reviews, you know that I love ENGAGING fantasy or scifi writing. Anything less won't do. And this is definitely engaging. There's great characters that plot, backstab, challenge, fight for their beliefs, devour their enemies, and celebrate their victories. You're taken on a great romp of a story, and in the end, isn't that what we all want in a good listen?

    I know I do, and I so enjoyed this first audiobook in the series, that I bought the entire series. Yep. And I'm not disappointed with the decision.

    Who knew that Lost Roman Legions and Pokemon could knock it out of the park?

    Home run, Jim. Home run.

    31 of 35 people found this review helpful

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