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Peter

Tinley Park, IL USA | Member Since 2003

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HELPFUL VOTES
  • 5 reviews
  • 14 ratings
  • 616 titles in library
  • 30 purchased in 2014
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  • The March Hare Network: The Wonderland Gambit, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Jack L. Chalker
    • Narrated By Andy Caploe
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    Time after time, life after life, Cory Maddox was being incarnated into worlds he found both familiar and strangely different. And only in this latest incarnation did Cory bring along knowledge, skills, and memories of his previous existence - memories of cold betrayal that promised nothing he saw or felt could be trusted. Nor could he trust his companions who, like himself, kept moving from life to life trying to escape the endless cycle. But it was only with the help of those companions that Cory could develop the technological means to peer beyond the veil of reality - to the shadowy figures whom he was sure were manipulating reality... if what he was experiencing actually was reality.

    Peter says: "Where's the end of the book?"
    "Where's the end of the book?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    The last three pages of the book are missing from the recording. Admittedly, not a lot of lost detail, but when you go "What the heck?" it's not you. I pulled out my paper copy to check.

    Not a reason to skip the book though. It's a great yarn, and the rollercoaster setup of the first book is in full swing - and hold your horses for the next one. This book does NOT stand alone - you need to hear the whole three-volume novel.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The March Hare Network?

    How do you react when it turns out that you aren't who you thought you were? And then it turns out you aren't who you found out you were? And everyone else knew it? And then they were wrong?

    But I'd give up my hair for god-like powers, too.


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

    Very well. He's still weak on voices, but since this series is told in the first person and he gets that voice right, it works pretty well. He seems more comfortable in this series than in some others I've heard. He simply can't voice women, though. Got any books set in a monastery he can read?


    Could you see The March Hare Network being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    It would be nearly impossible to do - though it would be a great story if they could. People keep getting their bodies changed, their genders swapped, their height and weight and hair color (or lack thereof) changed - and later, even their species. If they could do this with state of the art digital animation it could be staggering. Until then, yikes, unless you can find great actors all of whom have look-alike brothers and sisters….


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Cybernetic Walrus: The Wonderland Gambit, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Jack L. Chalker
    • Narrated By Andy Caploe
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (12)

    EVERYTHING YOU THINK YOU KNOW IS WRONG. That was the strange message left on Cory Maddox's e-mail.... That was the strange message left on Cory Maddox's e-mail - just at the moment when years of work on a revolutionary subspace computer system was about to pay off. Nothing would be the same for Cory again. Suddenly his life was thrown into chaos when the company that controlled his patent was sold out from under him, and instead of imminent wealth, Cory was facing immediate poverty. Then along came Alan Stark, who wanted to recruit Cory for a special research project on virtual reality.

    thomas says: "There is Something About Jack Chalker.."
    "Excellent performance, great story."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This has long been one of my favorite authors, and one of my favorite books from him. It's great to finally have his books on audio.

    People should be aware that it's not a trilogy - it's a three volume novel, and while each part is great, they really don't stand alone in any way.

    This first volume is a pretty good ride, but it's really just a setup for the rollercoaster of the following two volumes. You get a good taste of what's to come, a good solid plot, some great adventure, and the conceptual groundwork - but buckle your seat belts before you start the second and third volumes.

    One thing I love about Chalker is his recurring theme about what makes people who they are - what if your body changed? Your personal history? Your world? Your memories? How much of who you are would you still be? What makes someone even human?

    Are you sure the world around you works the way you think it does?


    What other book might you compare The Cybernetic Walrus to and why?

    People today will see thematic similarities to movies like Inception and The Thirteenth Floor.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Having a computer programmer and a graphic artist who thought they'd been kidnapped by the government meet the hookah-smoking Caterpillar from Alice In Wonderland was pretty impressive.

    Cynthia's transformation was pretty cool, too.


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

    Everything you think you know is wrong….


    Any additional comments?

    The narrator really isn't very good at voices. In this case, though, it really doesn't detract much from the book, because the story is told in first person, and he does that character's voice well.

    If you are the sort of science fiction reader who doesn't care for technical details and "hard science" - especially not when the book is old enough that we're talking "hard science" like telephone modems and FORTRAN programming - don't worry. There's a bit of it at the start, but pretty soon, it all drops off and even the characters admit they don't know how anything works. Not even reality….

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hero

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Perry Moore
    • Narrated By Michael Urie
    Overall
    (833)
    Performance
    (589)
    Story
    (595)

    In the story comic book legend Stan Lee calls "spellbinding" and "totally original," Thom Creed has secrets. For one, like his father, he has super powers. Also, he's been asked to join the League—the very organization of superheroes that spurned his dad. Then there’s the secret Thom can barely face himself: he's gay. But becoming a member of the League opens up a new world to Thom. There, he connects with a misfit group of aspiring heroes, including Scarlett, Typhoid Larry, and Ruth, a wise old broad who can see the future. Like Thom, these heroes have things to hide....

    Robert says: "Give it a listen!"
    "Fantastic!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Hero again? Why?

    Absolutely. The characters are both interesting and believable. It manages to be a teen coming of age story - of a young gay man, at that - without any of the "oh, dear Lord, who could be that stupid and angsty?" problems that most books like this have.

    The narrator is perfect. The delivery is dead on, and the range of both character and emotions he juggles, he does effortlessly.

    And even the characters were brilliant - which can be hard with superheroes, when we already know so many. Particularly fun that we kind of sort of know who many of the A-List heroes are, because they are fun-house mirror versions of more popular mainstream heroes we know, but taken apart and rearranged into new combinations, and then seen from the up close perspective of a young hero-in-training.

    Would the Justice League be giving autographs and doing book tours? Would the Avengers have PR problems, even after they save the world? Would you train heroes on how and when to save the bystanders - and when not to? What happens when heroes get old or have health issues? Just what does insurance cover? What do you wear to your audition as a super-hero?


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Hero?

    Spoilers. Unfair to give any details.
    When Thom finds the photos. Why Ruth wore the fancy dress. The poster that Thom knew he couldn't hang in his room. The need for dry cleaning. Dark Hero.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The first major training exercise was pretty awesome. That's one way to take out a villain!


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I don't think it's giving anything away to say that in a book about heroes trying to avert the end of the world, and new untrained heroes being forced into serious battles before they are fully trained, let's just say it doesn't always go well for everyone.

    The author and the narrator struck just the right notes when it was time to deal with such things.


    Any additional comments?

    The loss of the author to a premature death was a loss in so many ways. Not being able to have this be the first of a series of books is only one of them. I hope that someone else is willing and able to pick up the series and go on with it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Spirits of Flux & Anchor: Soul Rider, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Jack L. Chalker
    • Narrated By Andy Caploe
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (36)

    Cassie did not feel the soul rider enter her body...but suddenly she knew that Anchor was corrupt, and that, far from being a formless void from which could issue ony mutant changelings and evil wizards, Flux was the soure of Anchor's very existence.

    The price of her new knowledge is exile, yet Cassie and the Rider of her soul are the only hope for the redemption of both Flux and Anchor.

    Michael says: "Christmas in February! Chalker's Triumph Arrives!"
    "Biggest Disappointment from Audible yet"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Spirits of Flux & Anchor? What did you like least?

    This is the first book in the series of a set of books that has been one of my most favorite since it was first published. I've read them all more than a few times. The basic premise is brilliant, and over the course of the series, you get tantalizing glimpses of what's really going on, while still having a rousing story from the beginning.The characters always felt fully fleshed out - impressive in a setting when who and what they are can change in an instant and often does, yet the author manages to make it all flow along. When I saw that the books were available -finally!!! - in audio, I literally bounced in my chair and couldn't' wait to download and start listening, knowing that this would be hours and hours of listening joy.Then the narrator started talking.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Spirits of Flux & Anchor?

    If I give any moments, it will only spoil a surprise - all the best moments are plot twists. But I love the World that Chalker created here - small pockets of "Anchor" where normal natural laws apply, surrounded by a whole World of glittery foglike Flux that those gifted with the ability can literally shape to their will like magic.Many of the main characters actually think it is magic, but we get tantalizing glimpses from the beginning that there is More To The Story, which plays out over the whole series.Whether you're a fan of organized magic or hard science, or even science fiction looks at things like politics, gender roles, political corruption, or just a good yarn, the book is a great start to a fantastic series.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Fully two thirds of the major characters are women. The protagonist for the whole series is a woman, who starts out at around 16. Other "characters" are the mysterious, etherial, but essentially benevolent, if somewhat clueless, "spirits" of the series title.Who chose this narrator? He'd be good with a hard-hitting detective novel or a gritty action adventure, with fast cars, fast women, and lots of guns. But he simply can't do female voices - they just sound stupid when they don't sound like breathy teenage boys. And everyone else sounds like they're in the mob. Including the women.The whole tone of the society should be coming across as the Old West, with periodic visits to The Big City - you find out just why in later books. This is the worst book to narrator mismatch I've ever encountered, and that's saying something.There's a couple of decades of fervent wishing for these books on audio shot all to hell.


    Was Spirits of Flux & Anchor worth the listening time?

    I honestly don't know. Seriously, these are among my favorite books of all time, and just being able to listen to them is a joy, but the narration is like nails on a chalkboard and so violently wrong I alternate being thrilled to listen and outraged and incensed at the performance - or more accurately, the horrendous choice of narrator. If I didn't know and love the books, I don't know if the narrator would be so grating, but I also don't know if I'd want to hear any more, or if I would even finish the book.


    Any additional comments?

    Give it a try. It's a great story, and one of the most amazing science fiction series of all time. I'm hoping that I come to terms with the narrator and can stomach the rest of the audiobooks.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Cold Days: The Dresden Files, Book 14

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5613)
    Performance
    (5217)
    Story
    (5216)

    After being murdered by a mystery assailant, navigating his way through the realm between life and death, and being brought back to the mortal world, Harry realizes that maybe death wasn’t all that bad - because he is no longer Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only professional wizard. He is now Harry Dresden, Winter Knight to Mab, the Queen of Air and Darkness. After Harry had no choice but to swear his fealty, Mab wasn’t about to let something as petty as death steal away the prize she had sought for so long.

    Ethan M. says: "Thwarts Every Expectation - In a Good Way"
    "Welcome back, James Marsters!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    If I hadn't so thoroughly enjoyed the whole series, I might have been tempted to condemn Jim Butcher for the turn the series took with the last book. It was great, but where could the series possibly go from there, and how could it continue without losing almost everything that made it wonderful up until then?

    So I was very concerned about this book, and I should never have doubted. I can't say it's my favorite in the series - hard to beat making riding a dinosaur through Chicago believable as he did earlier in the series! - but it's darn good and stands on its own as well as making me eager for the next one.

    One of the things I loved about the book is that while it has a number of seriously surprising plot twists and new revelations about old situations and characters, none of them felt like cheats - as surprising as they were, I got the feeling that they were things I could have seen coming and were fully supported by what came before - AND make me want to go back and start the series from the beginning to watch the old events with new eyes.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Cold Days?

    It's hard to share the most memorable moment without unforgivably giving away spoilers, but there are a number of places where the plot suddenly shifts from the direction it was clearly going into a whole and suddenly new direction, one that takes not only the reader, but the characters, by surprise.


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

    James Marsters IS the voice of Harry Dresden. he combines just the right balance of been-there-done-that and golly-gee-wiz, and just the right balance of deep wisdom and klutzy seat-of-the-pants that it's hard to imagine anyone else doing it. Nothing against John Glover in the last book, but it's a joy to have Marsters back.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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