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Norman

Pearl River, LA, United States | Member Since 2012

28
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 34 reviews
  • 40 ratings
  • 193 titles in library
  • 17 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • Tranquility's Grief: Tales of Tranquility, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Krista D. Ball
    • Narrated By Cori Samuel
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    As the bodies of her father and her sister burned, Bethany refused to say good-bye. She would say it only when she saw the release of their spirits and the burning of every person connected to their deaths. Only then would they rest in peace. Thousands are dead. Lady Champion Bethany’s tainted sister is slain. Her home lost forever. And Magic yet survives. Bethany thought she’d given everything in the fight against Magic. She was wrong.

    Norman says: "The Second book is fantastic"
    "The Second book is fantastic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    You should read the first book and then this. The first book established the history and environment of the world, magic, and the people. It gave a baseline to the characters who were interesting, real, and powerful. You should really read the first book, to understand the background and the characters (and it is really good read/listen on it own), but the second book rocks. I enjoyed the first book a lot, but by the second book multiple characters (human, elf, half-breeds and gods) are prevailing and maturing through continued tragedy, adversity and war, friendship, respect, and love. War is not just swords and arrows and magic (but those sections are very well done) but logistics and planning and friendship and politics. The book is complete but full of action and never boring.

    The narrator, Cori Samuel, is absolutely perfect with a range of characters, but most of all the Lady Champion. Cori is perfect as Bethany, who is refined, feminine, emotional/controlled, fallible/strong. needful of companionship and deadly to her enemies.

    I've been waiting for this book ever since the first. My greatest regret is that there are not a dozen more stories, written by Krista Ball and read by Cori Samuel, ready to download, for me to continue and enjoy. I look forward to many more books written by Krista and read by Coi, and i hope it will not be a long wait.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Agatha H. and the Clockwork Princess: A Girl Genius Novel, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Phil Foglio, Kaja Foglio
    • Narrated By Angela Dawe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (265)
    Performance
    (243)
    Story
    (245)

    With the help of Krosp, Emperor of All Cats, Agatha has escaped from the massive airship known as Castle Wulfenbach. After crashing their escape dirigible, Agatha and Krosp fall in with Master Payne’s Circus of Adventure, a traveling troupe of performers dedicated to staging Heterodyne shows - dramatizations of the exploits of Bill and Barry Heterodyne and their allies - who are unaware of Agatha’s connection to the Heterodyne line.

    Alan says: "Read before seeing the comic"
    "One of the best Audible books ever"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Agatha H. and the Clockwork Princess?

    The people (and creatures) all have realistic motivation and responses, no matter how fantastic the situation. And humor can be surprising and immensely enjoyable! The true complexity of the plot begins to reveal itself. What a great book, characters and the reader is absolutely fantastic.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    I dont know about tag lines, but i would love to see this done with real actors (and of course great CGI)


    Any additional comments?

    The start of the first book in the series was a little clumsy, but the rest of the book was great. The volume continues the improvment, to be one of the best audiobooks i have listened to on Audible, and i have listened to a broad variety. There is a wide variety of characters, Angela Dawe makes following the changes easy. A great story, great writing, and a great delivery. NOTE: you can start this book without reading the first, but i think you should probably start with the first. I havent quite finished this book but I already ordered the 3rd book. Great series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Agatha H and the Airship City: Girl Genius #1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Phil Foglio, Kaja Foglio
    • Narrated By Angela Dawe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (422)
    Performance
    (345)
    Story
    (353)

    The Industrial Revolution has escalated into all-out warfare. Sixteen years have passed since the Heterodyne Boys, benevolent adventurers and inventors, disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Today, Europe is ruled by the Sparks, dynasties of mad scientists ruling over - and terrorizing - the hapless population with their bizarre inventions and unchecked power, while the downtrodden dream of the Heterodynes’ return. At Transylvania Polygnostic University, a pretty, young student named Agatha Clay seems to have nothing but bad luck.

    Amazon Customer says: "Ever wanted visuals while audio book listening?"
    "The start is terrible but 2nd half is great"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    The writers had a tough time transitioning to a novel format (I didn't even know it was a graphic novel --facepalm--) but they really hit their stride in the second half of the book and it became very enjoyable. The performance was great throughout. The first quarter of the book seemed to be all third person narrative of a prologue. It should have been working notes for a prequel novel(s), and it should have been edited way down. The story should have picked up the same place as the graphic novel starts, with background added as needed. The Prologue, i listened to it at 1.5 speed - reserved for stuff i hate. This transitioned to 1.25 speed which is ok for many books. By mid book i slowed it down to normal speed to savor the book. So my excellent rating is for what the book grew into. I recommend you bear with the beginning, with my assurance it get better, both as the world takes shape, but even more so as the excellent writers learn to adapt to this new medium. Sure, some better editing and re-writes would have helped, but there is so much to come i can't fault the authors (too much) for not going back and fixing the beginning. Novelizations of movies and graphic novels can be very difficult, but having the authors master both novel and the graphic novel is quite impressive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dog Who Could Fly: The Incredible True Story of a WWII Airman and the Four-Legged Hero Who Flew at His Side

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Damien Lewis
    • Narrated By Derek Perkins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (329)
    Performance
    (283)
    Story
    (288)

    An instant hit in the UK, this is the true account of a German shepherd who was adopted by the Royal Air Force during World War II, joined in flight missions, and survived everything from crash-landings to parachute bailouts-ultimately saving the life of his owner and dearest friend. In the winter of 1939 in the cold snow of no-man's-land, two loners met and began an extraordinary journey that would turn them into lifelong friends.

    Jane says: "4 ½ stars. Audiobook needs a pdf file for pictures"
    "A dog knows what he thinks he should do"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This is a well told and well performed true story of a great dog in unusual circumstances. Dogs get into their minds what they should do. When it is following their chosen master's desires it can be amazing. Finding people buried by a bomb mission is phenomenal, but Antis got into a lot of interesting situations. And as any dog owner knows, they sometimes do things that you wish they wouldn't do, where do they get these ideas? This is not just for dog lovers, but rather is indeed an amazing story in a time of turmoil. Well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust: Flavia de Luce, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Alan Bradley
    • Narrated By Jayne Entwistle
    Overall
    (405)
    Performance
    (350)
    Story
    (349)

    Flavia de Luce - "part Harriet the Spy, part Violet Baudelaire from Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events" (The New York Times Book Review) - takes her remarkable sleuthing prowess to the unexpectedly unsavory world of Canadian boarding schools in the captivating new mystery from New York Times best-selling author Alan Bradley.

    Tomgotsue says: "A little disappointing"
    "Second only to Sweetness"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is Alan Bradley's second best book after "The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie." The last book was chock full of plot twists to take the series in a different direction but it gave up a lot in the telling of the story. This new direction was well worth setting the stage and it is quite an unusual ride. Hopefully Alan Bradley can continue to relish in Flavia's new found freedom and band of cohorts. The changes are so dramatic that the book could use a preface to better introduce a new reader to this new storyline. But new readers/listeners can still enjoy starting with this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cold City: A Repairman Jack Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By F. Paul Wilson
    • Narrated By Alexander Cendese
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (672)
    Performance
    (583)
    Story
    (579)

    If you’ve never read a Repairman Jack novel, this is the place to begin. It’s 1990. A twenty-one-year-old named Jack has dropped out of college, leaving his old life behind to build a new one in New York City. Manhattan’s rough edges are jagged enough to shred any unwary newcomer, but perhaps not one who is determined to stay off the grid, at any cost, in the busiest metropolis on earth. And to do so, he’ll have to take jobs of a less than legal nature.

    Andrew Pollack says: "Fun, as long you don't think too much"
    "Good fun, but lots of loose ends."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    Sorry if this is too much of a spoiler. The book was good fun, but i was sort of expecting more of a conclusion rather than just an intro to an on-going series. Lots of story lines are in play but not all close.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Insurgent: Divergent, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Veronica Roth
    • Narrated By Emma Galvin
    Overall
    (14803)
    Performance
    (13223)
    Story
    (13329)

    One choice can transform you - or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves - and herself - while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

    Lore says: "Decent but not as interesting as Divergent"
    "YA is no excuse for unbelievable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Insurgent? What did you like least?

    I saw the first movie, and the family asked for the audiobook. The plot has some interesting twists, too bad that those twists and turns don't happen in a believable world. It's not so much that the simulation drugs are beyond believable, I can "suspend belief" for more far-fetched concepts, but the whole world of the story lacks substance and the basics of civilization, while still pretending that some civilization exists. No one actually picks up trash, or cans food, or runs powerplants. That is all some distopian fantasy with a given invisible infrastructure, that wont actually work for the factions described. I can pass over the teenage raging hormones is the middle of battle, But the heroine's giving in to her inherent weakness compared to all the males around her, just seem to be the finishing blow. She spends too much time feeling the victim, for me to enjoy the story. I'll be interested in the conclusion enough to see the last movie, but the book/audiobook isnt really worth my time.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Full Force and Effect: A Jack Ryan Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Mark Greaney
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2339)
    Performance
    (2055)
    Story
    (2047)

    A North Korean ICBM crashes into the Sea of Japan. A veteran CIA officer is murdered in Ho Chi Minh City, and a package of forged documents goes missing. The pieces are there, but assembling the puzzle will cost Jack Ryan, Jr., and his fellow Campus agents precious time. Time they don't have.

    R. Conley says: "Thank You Mark Greaney!"
    "The Narration did not suit."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about Full Force and Effect?

    I hated the narration. You can listen to the sample but the dialogue may not be as troublesome as action scenes. The cadence never changes for action scenes or dialogue. I bought this pre-release, and i never imagined that such a popular series would have a poorly suited narrator (yes that is my opinion. Your opinion may differ.) I listen at 1.25 speed but i still hear those over dramatic pauses and downbeats at the end of each sentence.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Greaney isn't as good about developing characters, or getting you to believe in the science of the weapons as Clancy was, but he sure writes action well. Things move so fast that i dont question the contrived good luck and miraculous timing. While not the same as Clancy i can enjoy listening to the action.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    I will never get a book from Scott Brick again. I can do without different voices for each character, but the reading has much more to dislike. I think he would do well at soap operas or romantic novels, where the listener wants the narrator to add drama in an other wise boring book. But his cadence over emphasizes every period as being meaningfull and significant.


    Any additional comments?

    Isn't there some editor that makes narrators audition for parts? This book was ruined for me by the reader, and i hate to think a real editor would have actually selected Scott Brick as appropriate for this book. Maybe Greany should give his opinions on possible readers ( and listen to more than a sentence before approving a narrator.)

    16 of 19 people found this review helpful
  • Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Soldier: The Secret Files (The Junior Novelization)

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 50 mins)
    • By Marvel Press
    • Narrated By Tom Taylorson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (112)
    Performance
    (97)
    Story
    (98)

    Steve Rogers, known to the world as Captain America, continues his affiliation with S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury and the Avengers. But Steve struggles to fit in the modern world, and now his past will come back to haunt him… Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Soldier continues the big-screen adventures of Super-Soldier Captain America, as he battles with modern times and villains that threaten the safety of his country…and even the world!

    Adam says: "Short, too short."
    "A book is not a comic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What would have made Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Soldier better?

    I love reading comics but the author of this novelization didn't put much work into going beyond a few words about what goes on in a panel. I could have guessed what the graphics were doing, but this should have given description of the story/ flow of action, instead of being broken up into a description based on each panel in a comic. Instead of reading it panel by panel, a novelization should have better descriptions and better flow.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Soldier?

    for such a short novelization, the time wasted describing the Avengers movie was a waste of time. So with that gone and better writing, the whole "book" should still be many times longer. Dont wast money or credits on this, unless you plan on listening while reading tthe comic at the same time.


    Any additional comments?

    The narration was quite good, but there was just not enough story to work with.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Heart and the Fist: The Education of a Humanitarian, the Making of a Navy SEAL

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Eric Greitens
    • Narrated By Eric Greitens
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (867)
    Performance
    (669)
    Story
    (674)

    Like many young idealists, Eric Greitens wanted to make a difference. During college and afterward, he traveled to the world's trouble spots, working in refugee camps, serving the sick and the poor on four continents, from Gaza to Croatia to Mother Teresa's home in Calcutta, among others. Yet he could not prevent violence or save anyone from becoming a refugee; he could only step in afterward and try to ease the damage. So Eric joined the Navy SEALs and became an elite warrior....

    Theodore says: "Unforgettable"
    "Must Listen! A Great Storyteller with real insight"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Heart and the Fist to be better than the print version?

    Besides being a gifted writer, he is a wonderful story teller. His characterization of others is like a comfortable story around the dinner table as he falls into character describing/mimicking another person's reaction to shared experiences.


    What did you like best about this story?

    This is a really uplifting story in the midst of terrible tragedy, about the power of making good choices and pursuit of goals, not just for yourself but for others. Eric Greitens has done and witnessed many things as a college volunteer worker in many nations, a Rhodes Scholar and later as a Navy Seal. He tells the stories of both children and adults, and pauses briefly for insight into why they do what they do what they do. The stories are interesting and the insight and perspective is something i aspire to achieve.


    Any additional comments?

    This is one of the best books I have listened to on Audible (and i have listened to many). These real life adventures are more interesting than the fiction i usually listen to, and the comments on human character and motivation are natural outgrowths of the story telling, which comes first. For having seen so much human tragedy, even as a volunteer in many countries, he keeps his perspective and describes his observations, while seamlessly including quotes from the Greeks, to Lincoln, to Mother Theresa. He can challenge your thoughts on religion and charity, and what it means to help and protect those in need. This is not a book of lectures on what we should do, but rather stories about the good and bad people do, and trying to make good choices for yourself. This is great storytelling, all the better for having decisions and consequences about living a good and honorable life.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Reamde

    • UNABRIDGED (38 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Neal Stephenson
    • Narrated By Malcolm Hillgartner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4123)
    Performance
    (3611)
    Story
    (3648)

    Richard Forthrast created T’Rain, a multibillion-dollar, massively multiplayer online role-playing game. But T’Rain’s success has also made it a target. Hackers have struck gold by unleashing REAMDE, a virus that encrypts all of a player’s electronic files and holds them for ransom. They have also unwittingly triggered a deadly war beyond the boundaries of the game’s virtual universe - and Richard is at ground zero.

    ShySusan says: "Not perfect, but worth a listen."
    "38 hours of great story telling"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This is a trilogy's worth of adventure in one book, well managed by a master story teller. There are thrills and chills and multinational adventure throughout. At about 12 hours the story occasionally got a little slow and i could put it aside, I was afraid it would turn into a Perils of Pauline, but no, this is a great story with all the subplots coming together. With 12 hours left (as long as a longish Audible book) the conclusion is coming into focus, the excitement is building and I wonder "what more can possible happen before the end?" Well, a lot can and did happen. There is certainly death and destruction, but main characters are reasonably well treated, and the gore / violence was not overdone or overly upsetting. The narration/reading is great, with different characters and accents well done to help keep characters separate and be non-obtrusive to the story line. Well done. At one credit this is a bargain, a unique and plausible adventure of amazing scope. Listen to it!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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