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Ray

Retired Political Science professor from a community college. Especially like Legal Thrillers.

West Deptford, NJ, United States | Member Since 2013

33
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 84 reviews
  • 111 ratings
  • 342 titles in library
  • 25 purchased in 2015
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  • Dead Irish: A Dismas Hardy Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By John Lescroart
    • Narrated By David Colacci
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (611)
    Performance
    (462)
    Story
    (460)

    In his new life as a bartender at the Little Shamrock, Dismas Hardy is just hoping for a little peace. He's left both the police force and his law career behind. Unfortunately it's not as easy to leave behind the memory of a shattering personal loss - but for the time being, he can always take the edge off with a stiff drink and a round of darts.

    Snoodely says: "Soap-opera thrillers?"
    "Misleading Title"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Dead Irish in three words, what would they be?

    Complicated plot that intersects in the end.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Dismis Hardy, the central character in the series. I had listened to five other books in the Dismis Hardy series and wanted to listen to this first book in the series.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No, it was too long for one setting.


    Any additional comments?

    I found it a bit difficult to keep the various threads of the story straight until they began to converge in the last third of the work.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Arrival of the Fittest: Solving Evolution's Greatest Puzzle

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Andreas Wagner
    • Narrated By Sean Pratt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (80)
    Performance
    (67)
    Story
    (69)

    In Arrival of the Fittest, renowned evolutionary biologist Andreas Wagner draws on over 15 years of research to present the missing piece in Darwin's theory. Using experimental and computational technologies that were heretofore unimagined, he has found that adaptations are not just driven by chance, but by a set of laws that allow nature to discover new molecules and mechanisms in a fraction of the time that random variation would take.

    Gary says: "Robustness makes for an interesting life and book"
    "TOO TECHNICAL FOR A LAYMAN LIKE ME"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I agree with Darwin's Theory of Evolution and the thesis of this book seems to be a good supplement to that theory. However, the data in support of the theory is too technical for a layman like me to fully understand. A biologist might find it worth a listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Dead Room

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Robert Ellis
    • Narrated By Jim McCance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (612)
    Performance
    (536)
    Story
    (537)

    A young woman is found, brutally murdered and left on gruesome display in the "safety" of her own home. The atrocity kicks off an investigation into a bizarre string of increasingly disturbing murders, all believed to be perpetrated by someone of unprecedented savagery and cunning.

    kelly says: "Intense, intricate story, superb narration"
    "MY KIND OF THRILLER"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A book with many twists and turns. It kept my interest until the end. In fact, I was surprised by the ending. I wasn't thrilled by the narrator, often it seemed that he was whispering. Still, quite worth the listen for those who like thrillers. Since I live just across the river from Philadelphia, I was pleased the city was the site of the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lightning

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Dean Koontz
    • Narrated By Christopher Lane
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4361)
    Performance
    (2720)
    Story
    (2738)

    A storm struck on the night Laura Shane was born, and there was a strangeness about the weather that people would remember for years. But even more mysterious was the blond-haired stranger who appeared out of nowhere - the man who saved Laura from a fatal delivery. Years later - after another bolt of lightning - the stranger returned.

    Barry says: "One of Koontz' best, entirely enjoyable."
    "INTERESTING STORY"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    For a long time I have enjoyed the books of Dean Koontz. This book was no exception, although it was very different from the Odd Thomas Series. I especially like works that deal with "Time Travel" as did this one. Still, I found the interaction with Adolf Hitler somewhat fanciful. Worth a listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Winner-Take-All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer--and Turned Its Back on the Middle Class

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Jacob S. Hacker, Paul Pierson
    • Narrated By John Allen Nelson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (71)
    Performance
    (52)
    Story
    (53)

    We all know that the very rich have gotten a lot richer these past few decades while most Americans haven't. In fact, the exorbitantly paid have continued to thrive during the current economic crisis, even as the rest of Americans have fallen behind. Why do the "have-it-alls" have so much more? Lots of so-called experts claim to have solved this great mystery, but no one has really gotten to the bottom of it---until now.

    Ray says: "VERY INSIGHTFUL"
    "VERY INSIGHTFUL"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found this assessment of the politics of the past 30 years to be very insightful. The authors provide a great way of connecting assessment to examples. A must read (listen) for those who want to understand the gridlock in Washington. I am wondering if the Middle Class can survive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • In Good Faith

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Scott Pratt
    • Narrated By Tim Campbell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (76)
    Performance
    (65)
    Story
    (69)

    A family of four is slaughtered in rural Tennessee. Two weeks later, a retired high school principal and his wife are brutally slain. Two Satan-worshipping teens stand accused. It's up to prosecutor Joe Dillard to convict them. A former defense attorney who spent way too much time defending people he knew were guilty, Joe is determined to win this case to atone for his past. But an evil young woman named Natasha is responsible for the slayings and Joe knows it.

    Ted says: "A Gooey Dollop Of Para Atop The Normal Hereā€¦"
    "GOOD, NOT GREAT"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My first listen to this legal thriller series. It was good enough that I will try Book 2 in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Whistling Past the Graveyard

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Susan Crandall
    • Narrated By Amy Rubinate
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (857)
    Performance
    (761)
    Story
    (763)

    In the summer of 1963, nine-year-old spitfire Starla Claudelle runs away from her strict grandmother's Mississippi home. Starla hasn't seen her momma since she was three - that's when Lulu left for Nashville to become a famous singer. If she can get to Nashville and find her momma, then all that she promised will come true: Lulu will be a star. Daddy will come to live in Nashville, too. And her family will be whole and perfect.

    Laurette says: "Feisty red-headed little girl takes on the south"
    "A RUNAWAY HIT"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    One reviewer said this book reminded them of Huck Finn. I agree, but it also reminded me of To Kill a Mockingbird. I especially like the style of the narrator, it was perfectly suited for this story. The book definitely had a point of view, without being preachy. I would especially recommend the book for a discussion group such as a book club.

    I don't usually give five stars in all categories, but I did this time and it was well deserved.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Best Revenge

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Sol Stein
    • Narrated By Christopher Lane
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    Ben Riller is the most successful producer on Broadway, but his newest production is in danger of closing before it opens. In his stressed-out condition, Ben is hearing the voice of his long-dead father, and they're having a running argument about life, love, and other people's money.

    Ray says: "DISAPPOINTING"
    "DISAPPOINTING"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was hoping to learn more about the job of a Broadway producer. Instead I learned of a producer who taked with his dead father and sought investors in organized crime. Don't believe that this will make it to Broadway no matter who produces it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Ray Kurzweil
    • Narrated By George K. Wilson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (709)
    Performance
    (569)
    Story
    (565)

    For over three decades, the great inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil has been one of the most respected and provocative advocates of the role of technology in our future. In his classic The Age of Spiritual Machines, he argued that computers would soon rival the full range of human intelligence at its best. Now he examines the next step in this inexorable evolutionary process: the union of human and machine.

    Sean Gately says: "Great Idea, terribly slow and painful listen"
    "BRILLIANT"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I have found the theories to be brilliant although I did not fully understand all of the support material. Well worth the effort for someone who wants to think "outside the box".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • How to Be a Movie Star: Elizabeth Taylor in Hollywood

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By William J. Mann
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (31)
    Performance
    (29)
    Story
    (29)

    Acclaimed biographer William Mann follows Elizabeth Taylor publicly as she makes her ascent at MGM, falls into (and out of) marriages, wins Oscars, fights studio feuds, and combats America's conservative values with her decidedly modern love affairs. But he also shines a light on Elizabeth's rich private life, revealing a love for her craft and a loyalty to the underdog that fueled her lifelong battle against the studio system.

    BlackNurvana says: "Sounds like an annoucement"
    "LIZ, LIZ, LIZ"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I didn't enjoy this book as much as I did Tinseltown by the same author. I felt that there was too much attention to the Taylor Burton relationship. Also I got tired hearing about her jewelry. A bit less star worshiping would have been appreciated.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tinseltown: Murder, Morphine, and Madness at the Dawn of Hollywood

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By William J. Mann
    • Narrated By Christopher Lane
    Overall
    (407)
    Performance
    (360)
    Story
    (363)

    By 1920, the movies had suddenly become America's new favorite pastime and one of the nation's largest industries. Never before had a medium possessed such power to influence; yet Hollywood's glittering ascendancy was threatened by a string of headline-grabbing tragedies - including the murder of William Desmond Taylor, the popular president of the Motion Picture Directors Association, a legendary crime that has remained unsolved until now.

    Steven says: "Everybody's a dreamer..."
    "WELL DONE"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book covers some history with which I was not very familiar. Although I could not see the footnotes, it seems to be very well researched. After listening to the book, I have been wondering how Hollywood has changed since its earlier days. I enjoyed the book enough that I plan to listen to the author's biography of Elizabeth Taylor.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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