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Thousand Oaks, CA, United States | Member Since 2003

  • 9 reviews
  • 23 ratings
  • 393 titles in library
  • 6 purchased in 2015

  • Life of Pi

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Yann Martel
    • Narrated By Jeff Woodman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Pi Patel has been raised in a zoo in India. When his father decides to move the family to Canada and sell the animals to American zoos, everyone boards a Japanese cargo ship. The ship sinks, and 16-year-old Pi finds himself alone on a lifeboat with a hyena, an orangutan, a zebra with a broken leg, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger. Soon it's just Pi, the tiger, and the vast Pacific Ocean - for 227 days. Pi's fear, knowledge, and cunning keep him alive until they reach the coast of Mexico, where the tiger disappears into the jungle.

    Theresa says: "Best audio of the year for me"
    "Worth the Journey"
    What made the experience of listening to Life of Pi the most enjoyable?

    I was never so thoroughly unprepared for a book. The premises; a young boy on a lifeboat with a tiger, a zebra, and so on.... I was expecting a charming, whimsical tale. I was even prepared for talking animals. What I got was firm slap in the face of what such a reality would be like. The writing was so vivid that at time I could taste the salt water on my lips.

    It is impossible to say much about the story without ruining it for the reader. I can only say that at times I was going to give up because the story could get so tedious and slow. Exactly would it would be like on a lifeboat for 227 days (btw: that is not a spoiler, he mentions that fact early in the story).

    But don’t give up. As unprepared as I was for the book at the beginning of the story, I was even more unprepared for the ending. I was left with a story I will never forget.

    What about Jeff Woodman’s performance did you like?

    Pitch Perfect.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Mote in God's Eye

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle
    • Narrated By L J Ganser
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The Mote In God's Eye is their acknowledged masterpiece, an epic novel of mankind's first encounter with alien life that transcends the genre. No lesser an authority than Robert A. Heinlein called it "possibly the finest science fiction novel I have ever read".

    J. Rhoderick says: "A great read!"
    "I must be missing something"

    When I read reviews like: Robert A. Heinlein called it "possibly the finest science fiction novel I have ever read,' my expectation are high to say the least. Well I must be missing something because this book was not much of anything.

    We spend the first half of the book getting everything set up. Then BOOM! Everything starts happening, action, excitement, mystery, and all. And then, 20 minutes later, it all stops. I mean really stops! The second half of the book absolutely nothing more happens. I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. But nothing.

    I live and breath sci-fi so it's not the genre that wasn't working. THe narrator was below average, but I don't blame him. He definitely did not add anything.

    Most of the positive reviews appear to be from people who read the book 20 years ago and this was a wonderful blast from the past. Good for them. As for me. I recommending passing on this book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Job: A Comedy of Justice

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Paul Michael Garcia

    After firewalking in Polynesia, fundamentalist minister Alexander Hergensheimer never saw the world the same. Now called Alec Graham, he was in the middle of an affair with his stewardess, Margrethe, and natural disasters kept following them. First, there was an impossible iceberg that wrecked the ship in the tropics; then, after being rescued by a Royal Mexican plane, they were hit by a double earthquake. To Alex, the signs were clear that Armageddon and the Day of Judgment were near.

    Will says: "Audio Quality Issues"
    "You can't go back!"

    I remember reading this book about 25 years ago. I loved it. I remember it as one of my all time favorite books. When it popped up on Audible I was so excited to relive it. Well, you can;'t go back. I was bored beyond belief. In the first 15 minutes we establish the basic story, Our two main characters are bouncing around in alternative versions of late 20th century america. After the first few bounces the novelty is over, but you have several 100 more to trudge through. I guess when I was 18 that was enough, now I am 46 and I need a little more. I write more for require spoilers which I hate coming across in reviews. Heinlein is a great writer and perhaps my previous reading spoiled the story for me. I'll finish with saying that the book is dated socially and politically and possibly could offend people. Which I guess means it could be worth listening to anyway.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Fabulous Riverboat: Riverworld Saga, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Philip José Farmer
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht

    The second entry in the Riverworld series, The Fabulous Riverboat tells of a world where all of humanity has been mysteriously resurrected on the banks of one mighty river. Samuel Clemens (a.k.a.Mark Twain) is tasked with finding a fallen meteorite and using its ore to build a massive riverboat. But in order to succeed, he'll have to outwit some of history's most nefarious villains.

    C. Leed says: "Good Follow-up"
    "Should have left the story alone"

    I loved the first book and was excited to read the followup. Everything that made book one a exciting, original, and thought provoking was replaced with boring character endless battles. After about four or five hours and repetition I had to give up. Maybe eventually something actually started to happen, but for me it wasn't worth the effort to listen to and was retroactively ruining the original story. It started reminding me of Dune. The first book was a masterpiece, after that it became a generic cash cow.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Amber Spyglass: His Dark Materials, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Philip Pullman
    • Narrated By Philip Pullman, full cast
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Lyra and Will, the two ordinary children whose extraordinary adventures begin in The Golden Compass and The Subtle Knife, are in unspeakable danger. With help from Iorek Byrnison the armored bear and two tiny Gallivespian spies, they must journey to a dank and gray-lit world where no living soul has ever gone.

    Merril says: "A wonderful, spell binding listen!"
    "A Satisfying Conclusion"

    If you read the first two books you have little choice but to read this one. As for enjoyment it lives somewhere between the Golden Compass and the Subtle Knife. The Golden Compass was perfection, the Subtle Knife was convoluted and forced.

    Too often the story drags and too often I feel things are happening only because they have to rather then as a natural progression.

    But the book cleanly, and often brilliantly, resolves all the complex story line. And, as with the first two book, the character are beautifully crafted and the audio book production is flawless.

    You'll be satisfied and more then a little heart broken when your done.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Wolves of the Calla: Dark Tower V

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Roland Deschain and his ka-tet are bearing southeast through the forests of Mid-World, the almost timeless landscape that seems to stretch from the wreckage of civility that defined Roland's youth to the crimson chaos that seems the future's only promise. Followers of Stephen King's epic series know Roland well, or as well as this enigmatic hero can be known. They also know the companions who have been drawn to his quest for the Dark Tower: Eddie Dean and his wife, Susannah; Jake Chambers; and Oy.

    Amazon Customer says: "The Dark Tower Review - Part Five"
    "Bored to Tears"

    I have been following this series from the beginning and have loved every page of every book (even that silly stroll through the Wizard of Oz). But this book killed my interest as true as Roland's aim. A series that began as a surreal western in the first book, became an exciting parallel universe tripping adventure in the second, then rolled into a full fledged SCI FI journey by the third. After that it lost what little grounding it had and by this book became tiresome in it's endless dialogs and pretentiousness. The story of Sue and Mia just isn't working for me and I am sorry to see it take center stage. Most of all I miss the action that was so prevalent in the other books. Nothing ever happens (gun fights) until the very end of the book. I really hope the next one is better because I have come to far to stop now.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Benedict Flynn
    • Narrated By Sean Bean
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    These stories are about how, many years ago, Arthur the once and future King of England, set out to save his country from the troubles that plagued it, aided by the brave knights of the Round Table, and the most famous sword in the world, Excalibur. How Merlin the Wizard fought against the wicked Morgana le Fay's enchantments, and how Arthur loved and lost the beautiful Guinevere, his Queen.

    Toni says: "A Voice to be Heard"
    "Not Quite Right? for me."

    I had already read Howard Pyle book many years ago. I was surprised how different Howard?s story was to what I had experienced in the movies. First of all there is no Holy Grail. This led to much research online where I learned that Howard version is considered the closest to the original and that the Church of England inserted the Holy Grail later.

    Having said all that I found this version to be well written and very well read but ultimately not quite right for my taste. Many characters have been seriously changed in what role they played in the story and, more importantly, what kind of person they were. This legend has always been about the honor and chivalry to the point where the characters are almost to good to be believed, this story has more believable character but at the cost of lessening the legend.

    The one exception is the scene with the Green Knight. I do not remember it at all in Howard?s story, but it was excellent and had all the elements I wished had been present throughout the book.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Iliad & The Odyssey

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Homer
    • Narrated By John Lescault

    Little is known about the Ancient Greek oral poet Homer, the supposed 8th century BC author of the world-read Iliad and his later masterpiece, The Odyssey. These classic epics provided the basis for Greek education and culture throughout the classical age and formed the backbone of humane education through the birth of the Roman Empire and the spread of Christianity.

    Sam says: "Worth the price, worth the time"
    "A Test of Endurance?. And well worth it."

    Let me start with the biggest issue that all who read (or listen) to this story must know: THE ILIAD ENDS BEFORE THE TROJAN HORSE!!! That?s right. After Hector death the narrator said ?the end.? I spent sometime online and learned that the famous story of the Trojan Horse is to be found in the works of Virgil.

    Having said that the Iliad is true test of endurance. There is a solid 45 minutes spent reciting each of the 1,000 ships (as in Helena, the face that launched ?). Endless lists of strange names of people you will never meet again in the story. And the name of people change too. Sometime it is the person name, sometime they are referred to as son of so-and-so, sometime even grandson of so-and-so. The whole book is the endless battle of Troy that not only does not conclude in the book, but every time something decisive is about to happen a god steps in and stops it. I am glad I listened to it, but it was not exactly the most exciting audible book.

    The Odyssey, on the other hand, is absolutely incredible. This story actually goes somewhere in fact it goes everywhere. I can?t say enough about this story. But you do have to hang on at the beginning. It starts almost at the end. The first 3 hours take place back at Ithaca while suitors are trying to marry Penelope. Finally we meet up with Odysseus who tells story of his travel. And what a story it is.

    So in conclusion, try to make it through the Iliad, but if you find yourself fading jump to download part 3 for the beginning of the Odyssey.

    36 of 39 people found this review helpful

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