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Paul Krasner

I like books that have interesting characters and easy to follow plots. For example, Cormoran Strike, is a great character for me.

Member Since 2014

394
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 66 reviews
  • 107 ratings
  • 1395 titles in library
  • 21 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
17

  • Solar

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Ian McEwan
    • Narrated By Roger Allam, Ian McEwan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (338)
    Performance
    (147)
    Story
    (149)

    Nobel Prize-winning physicist Michael Beard is fast approaching 60, a mere shell of the academic titan he once was. While his fifth marriage falls apart, Michael suddenly finds himself with an unexpected opportunity to reinvigorate his career and possibly save humankind from the growing threat of global warming.

    Cariola says: "McEwan Does It Again!"
    "Droll English humor"
    Overall

    I was waiting for an action packed Michael Connelly type novel but it was very slow paced. The main protagonist was one of the most despicable humans ever portrayed in literature and it was hard to get used to him as being representative of the dark side of academia. It took me the entire book to finally get the humor of the book and it was one of those books that I really liked in retrospect. Its a worthwhile read but a reader has to go into it with the right attitude: its a comedy with a message on climate change.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Alas, Babylon

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Pat Frank
    • Narrated By Will Patton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4920)
    Performance
    (3816)
    Story
    (3821)

    This true modern masterpiece is built around the two fateful words that make up the title and herald the end - “Alas, Babylon.” When a nuclear holocaust ravages the United States, a thousand years of civilization are stripped away overnight, and tens of millions of people are killed instantly. But for one small town in Florida, miraculously spared, the struggle is just beginning, as men and women of all backgrounds join together to confront the darkness....

    Evelyn says: "Excellent listen"
    "Excellent post apocalyptic novel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Although a little dated, it is an excellent story about what happens when normal life support is cut off. I had a little taste of this last year when I lost power for six days during a snow storm. The first day it's fin and after that, each day becomes more difficult. My one complaint about the book was how easily each crisis was handled. It perhaps could have been renamed "father knows best-post atom bomb"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Euphoria: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Lily King
    • Narrated By Simon Vance, Xe Sands
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (622)
    Performance
    (539)
    Story
    (528)

    English anthropologist Andrew Bankson has been alone in the field for several years, studying the Kiona river tribe in the territory of New Guinea. Haunted by the memory of his brothers' deaths and increasingly frustrated and isolated by his research, Bankson is on the verge of suicide when a chance encounter with colleagues, the controversial Nell Stone and her wry and mercurial Australian husband, Fen, pulls him back from the brink. Nell and Fen have just fled the bloodthirsty Mumbanyo and, in spite of Nell's poor health, are hungry for a new discovery.

    David says: "Anthropologists in Love"
    "A big disappointment"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    No, there are so many good book to read and this was not one of them.


    Would you recommend Euphoria to your friends? Why or why not?

    No, too boring


    Which character – as performed by Simon Vance and Xe Sands – was your favorite?

    None


    Could you see Euphoria being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Yes, Kate Winslet would be the Margaret Meade character


    Any additional comments?

    This book was a big disappointment. Since it was on the New York Times best of the year list, I expected a really good book. It was really boring even when there was the threat of imminent death of the protagonists. I think the problem is that Ms. King tried to make the story conform to the real story of Margaret Meade's trials and tribulations in real life. The story was, after stripping away the "native" culture aspect, was just an ordinary love triangle. The people who made these amazing terrifying trips were strong people but Ms. King characterized them as weak milk toasts.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Uncertain Justice: The Roberts Court and the Constitution

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Laurence Tribe, Joshua Matz
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (49)
    Performance
    (41)
    Story
    (42)

    From Citizens United to its momentous rulings regarding Obamacare and gay marriage, the Supreme Court under Chief Justice John Roberts has profoundly affected American life. Yet the court remains a mysterious institution, and the motivations of the nine men and women who serve for life are often obscure. Now, in Uncertain Justice, Laurence Tribe and Joshua Matz show the surprising extent to which the Roberts Court is revising the meaning of our Constitution.

    PHIL says: "Thoughtful, yet very listenable"
    "Excellent look at how the Supreme Court works"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Uncertain Justice rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Top 100


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Uncertain Justice?

    Seeing how Judge Scalia acted when he didn't get his way


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Too many to list


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

    Supreme Court Wrestling


    Any additional comments?

    This book changed my understanding of the many issues with which the Supreme Court has to deal. The authors took no sides and clearly explicated the real issues of many landmark modern cases. What we get from the news regarding these cases is the equivalent of using one camera snapshot of a football game to evaluate who should have won. The book convinced me that the appointment of Clarence Thomas was one of the single most tragic mistakes in our Country's history. If a person is interested in understanding the reasoning behind some of the most impactful cases in our history, listen to this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Second Ship: The Rho Agenda, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Richard Phillips
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1974)
    Performance
    (1777)
    Story
    (1801)

    In 1948, an alien starship crash-landed in the New Mexico desert and brought with it the key to mankind’s future. Code-named the Rho Project, the landing was shrouded in secrecy, and only the highest-ranking US government and military personnel knew it existed. Until now....

    Mike From Mesa says: "Terrific story"
    "Ridiculous plot and terrible writing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Teenagers


    What could Richard Phillips have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    The plot was ridiculous. There is nothing short of rewriting the entire book that would make it more enjoyable. He had too many story lines going on at the same time. Having the main characters fall in love was absurd. I couldn't finish the book because it was so juvenile. I got the feeling that Phillips was trying to write a "Hunger games" type of series.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of MacLeod Andrews?

    The narrator was fine. He can only deal with the material he's presented


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Yes, the discussion of time travel was interesting


    Any additional comments?

    Don't waste a credit and I'm asking for mine back.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Restless

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By William Boyd
    • Narrated By Rosamund Pike
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1129)
    Performance
    (306)
    Story
    (298)

    It is the summer of 1976 in Oxfordshire, England, and someone is trying to kill Sally Gilmartin. The only person she can trust is her daughter, Ruth, a young single mother struggling with her own demons. Now Sally must tell her daughter the truth: She is actually Eva Delectorskaya, a Russian émigré recruited for the British Secret Service in 1939.

    Susianna says: "Favorite Book of 2007"
    "Excellent espionage in the John LeCarre mode"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Restless?

    The story kept my interest without having to resort to tricks or violence


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Restless?

    The moment when Eva discovered that she had been betrayed by someone on her team.


    Have you listened to any of Rosamund Pike’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Equal to her other performances.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    My reaction to the book was the realization of what a spy's life really was.


    Any additional comments?

    I really enjoyed this book. The main character was very believable. Although I really liked a character like Lizbeth Salander, it was always difficult for me to believe that someone like her could really exist in out society. She was a sociopath, albeit a likable sociopath, but her life was shaped by her circumstances and was almost to escape from. Eva chose her life as a spy and although this choice was for a seemingly noble reason, she never realized that she was trapped in it forever. That realization, that once a spy, always a spy, was an apocalyptic moment for me. The fact that Lucus probably laughed at his English society all the while that he was betraying it was a very powerful contrast to Eva who was miserable all the rest of her life. I liked the manner in which Boyd contrasted the two and the way in which he did not portray Lucus as an evil man until the very end. I will say that I thought the only mistake that Boyd made was the telegraphing of his two-facedness when he said, "The only rule is to trust no one". Boyd really captured the character of Eva as a real woman who was incredibly strong but vulnerable and gained her success in spydom by her brains, cleverness and singlemindess.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Darwin's Radio

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Greg Bear
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (726)
    Performance
    (354)
    Story
    (356)

    In a cave high in the Alps, a renegade anthropologist discovers a frozen Neanderthal couple with a Homo sapiens baby. Meanwhile, in southern Russia, the U.N. investigation of a mysterious mass grave is cut short. One of the investigators, molecular biologist Kaye Lang, returns home to the U.S. to learn that her theory on human retroviruses has been verified with the discovery of SHEVA, a virus that has slept in our DNA for millions of years and is now waking up.

    Paul Krasner says: "Really good science fiction"
    "Really good science fiction"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this book. In my opinion, there are different kinds of science fiction: the futuristic, usually filled with tons of new gadgets, the war genre, and the biologic type. This is the biologic type and my favorite. The most famous and, probably best representative, is Michael Crichton books. This book comes very close to one of his books but not nearly as well written. However, the premise is compelling: That the Human genome contains the ability to change due to environmental forces in order to allow it survival. This, of course, borders on Lamarkianism but recent discoveries in genetics gives its more credibility. Many people don’t accept the premise that the living body is really only a vehicle for the genes and a book like this will turn them off. The book was excellent because it wove together several different controversial themes: the politics of disease, the status of humanity at the present time, xenophobia, the inability of governments to deal effectively with change, human rights and the place in science in government. All these are topics are worthy of a book and, the fact that Bear did so successfully, is to be praised. I disagree with most of the negative reviews and fear that their opinions were shaped by the daunting science explicated during the story in order to provide credibility. I have a high understanding of biology and, myself had to re-listen several times to these sections, in order to fully comprehend the meaning. When I look at the status of our world today, there are times that I would hope for a genetic change to remove the unbelievable hated, conflict negativity that seems to pervade almost every aspect of our lives. In my opinion, if a change doesn’t come soon, the homo sapiens branch of the tree of life will end up being a withered jin and another branch will continue to grow.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Dig

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Michael Siemsen
    • Narrated By Chris Patton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (232)
    Performance
    (203)
    Story
    (203)

    A mysterious woven metal artifact is found at a paleontological dig in Africa. Mystified experts, confounded by the impossible timeline they get from traditional dating methods, call upon a stubborn young man with a unique talent. Matthew Turner's gift is also his curse: When he touches any object, his awareness is flooded with the thoughts and feelings of those who touched it before him. It is a talent that many covet, some fear, and almost no one understands.

    Jan says: "So I liked it, in a random sorta way..."
    "Bait and switch"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I hate books like this. I feel so duped when a book has a great premise and then falls so poorly in delivering the goods that I just want to throw it in a nice hot fire. I felt like I was listening to a third year college student's final story of the year in his creative writing course. He really wanted to write a story about a life form that existed 130 million years ago on earth (maybe extraterrestrial?). 130 million years ago. That's twice as long as the dinosaurs went extinct yet these people could have easily been a wandering tribe in the movie "Apocolypto". I won't even go into the ridiculous premise that a piece of clothing, even with incredible strength, could be found a few feet under the topsoil after 130 million years. In the text, the author takes pains to explain to us stupid non-geologists that even Mt. Killmanjaro wouldn't be there after only 25 million years. The language was sophomoric and the story completely uninteresting. But how to write this story. OH, he falls upon the technique of inventing a main story in which an ACHD neo-geek (being a geek lately is not enough to be considered beyond socially acceptable) has a psychokinetic gift that allows him to sense the life of whatever had touched it when he touches it. Voila', he now has two story lines from which he can bounce back and forth and double the word count. Just to beef up the work count a little more, he adds a bizarre sub,sub plot that is a possible explanation for his agorophophic and anal compulsive behavior; he reveals that his cop father made him use his talents when he was young to help him solve murders. Somehow this really screws him up for life. It's really a pathetic attempt to foster a reconciliation with the father at the end. But don't fear, fearless reader, he is cured by a gorgeous nubian babe. The story starts by his, for the good of science and lots of cash, by touching a part the outfit of one of these 130 million year old creatures and goes into a trance and, thus, can tell the story about them. We are supposed to fall in love with them (even though in the beginning he describes them as totally repulsive life forms who, by the way, really stink) and their hardships (They are constantly being harassed and eaten by flying predators and they lose their poor "newest" and "new") as he falls in love with them. Yeachhhhh! Maybe the story was written in his Senior year of Prep school. And then there's the sub plot of the evil scientist who is using the hero's gift to make money. Oh horrors. I'm telling you, this was, perhaps, the worst book I have read in several years and I strongly recommend this only for teenagers with social problems. I see the future and it is an awful movie. There's no justice in literature. Did I tell you that this book is horrible?

    6 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • The Execution of Noa P. Singleton: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs)
    • By Elizabeth L. Silver
    • Narrated By Rebecca Lowman, Amanda Carlin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (91)
    Performance
    (75)
    Story
    (77)

    Noa P. Singleton speaks not a word in her own defense throughout a brief trial that ends with a jury finding her guilty of first-degree murder. Ten years later, a woman who will never know middle age, she sits on death row in a maximum security penitentiary, just six months away from her execution date. Seemingly out of the blue, she is visited by Marlene Dixon, a high-powered Philadelphia attorney who is also the heartbroken mother of the woman Noa was imprisoned for killing....

    Paul Krasner says: "Sorry, but not the next "Gone Girl""
    "Sorry, but not the next "Gone Girl""
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There’s no question the book is compelling but to be truthful the readers (they are to be praised for a magnificent read. They made us hate all the characters so much that we just had to know what motivated them) saved it from failure. The moral ambiguities that the story brings out are worthwhile to discuss, ie. Is the death penalty moral?” but the story doesn’t do it justice. The author definitely succeeded in forcing me to finish to find out what really happened but I felt (don’t want a spoiler here) the ending was somewhat non-believable. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed the book but it was no, “Gone Girl”. When I finished the book, I realized that I didn’t “believe” any of the characters even though I knew them well. Was this Ms. Silver’s intent? I don’t think so. I think it is just a case of a first novel lack of depth. I know it’s not fair to compare but when I read a book like this (here I mean the author’s linguistic gymnastics), I’m forced to think of a book like “American Pastoral”. After all, we have to set the bar somewhere. When I think of the characters in Noa P, they are so anemic and thinly drawn that they disappear almost as quickly as the earplugs are out. During a talk to librarians on Youtube, Ms. Silver admitted getting the idea for the plot while taking a capital punishment course in law school but only began writing the book in earnest while she was working on a real life capital punishment case. That sounds about right to me; she was working out her own ambiguities of the issues in the case in fiction. The problem is that she had too much law and not enough character in the writing. Although she tries to describe the legal system objectivity, if she stays in the legal profession, I would be shocked. Her dislike of her chosen profession is so obvious. I think that is ultimately one of the flaws of the book. During due diligence of the revisiting of the case, the inadequacies of the trial are so numerous, that it’s hard to believe a death sentence makes any sense. I think Ms. Silver lucked out on getting such a boost of publicity. We were all “Jonesing” for the next “Gone Girl” and voila’ “Noa P appears. Great premise and potential and great marketing but ultimately the book doesn’t deliver. I have to place this book in the “a good quick summer read while waiting for the next really great book” category.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Contact

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Carl Sagan
    • Narrated By Laurel Lefkow
    Overall
    (657)
    Performance
    (591)
    Story
    (596)

    The future is here...in an adventure of cosmic dimension. In December, 1999, a multinational team journeys out to the stars, to the most awesome encounter in human history. Who - or what - is out there? In Cosmos, Carl Sagan explained the universe. In Contact, he predicts its future - and our own.

    A. Ferguson says: "Great book, significant differences from the movie"
    "Great story and great science"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really liked the movie and liked the book even more. The story was very fast paced, maybe even a little too fast with the jumps in time being somewhat agitating. However, the main characters were well drawn but the minor characters somewhat cartoonish. Ellie was the main character and the driving force behind the book. The character of Haddon was also really fascinating. I really learned a lot about astronomy although in parts it was a little above my head. Still, the book made a plausible case for extra terrestrial beings and Sagen's spin on how we were on the brink of destruction rang true. The only part of the book and the movie that I didn't buy was the conspiracy ending. It made no logical sense and the world's governments all rejecting the stories of these five brilliant people was ridiculous. I am still not sure why Sagen ended it this way. I guess he ran into the same problem all science fiction writers run into: how to plot a satisfying believable ending. The reader was really great and I will look for other books she's read.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Sins of the Father: Clifton Chronicles, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Jeffrey Archer
    • Narrated By Alex Jennings, Emilia Fox
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1079)
    Performance
    (897)
    Story
    (895)

    Only days before Britain declares war on Germany, Harry Clifton, hoping to escape the consequences of long-buried family secrets, and forced to accept that his desire to marry Emma Barrington will never be fulfilled, has joined the Merchant Navy. But his ship is sunk in the Atlantic by a German Uboat, drowning almost the entire crew. An American cruise liner, the SS Kansas Star, rescues a handful of sailors, among them Harry and the third officer, an American named Tom Bradshaw.

    Margaret Campbell says: "Can';t Wait for the Next One!!!"
    "The series is wearing thin"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Jeffrey Archer's style is wearing very thin. In past books, his plots were much more believable and less reliant on melodrama. These characters are completely non-believable. For example, Emma has to be the most accomplished woman in history. Rising from nothing, gaining her way in all sorts of situations through her incredibly strong personality, picking up waitressing in two weeks, making her way to the United States by obtaining a three week only job on a ship and then finding her non-husband who is the father of her child, blah, blah blah. Even writing this plot makes me nauseous. The fact that this is going to be an ongoing five part series borders on theft. This series is one step above comic book level.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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