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Robert

Avid reader through college now with no time to read. Audiobooks saved my life!

Orlando, FL, United States | Member Since 2006

12
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 22 reviews
  • 151 ratings
  • 360 titles in library
  • 23 purchased in 2014
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  • Inferno: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Dan Brown
    • Narrated By Paul Michael
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10649)
    Performance
    (9631)
    Story
    (9717)

    In the heart of Italy, Harvard professor of symbology, Robert Langdon, is drawn into a harrowing world centered on one of history’s most enduring and mysterious literary masterpieces: Dante’s Inferno. Against this backdrop, Langdon battles a chilling adversary and grapples with an ingenious riddle that pulls him into a landscape of classic art, secret passageways, and futuristic science. Drawing from Dante’s dark epic poem, Langdon races to find answers and decide whom to trust...before the world is irrevocably altered.

    Livia says: "Formulaic and Hard to Finish...."
    "It got better... really, it did."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Let me just say that I HATED this book for about 3/5 of the way through it. Way too many times I found myself thinking "this is just stupid" or not understanding why these characters were doing what they were doing. I can't say it's "all better" in the end but it did get better and there were reasons why certain things happened in the story.

    I generally like Dan Brown books. I think I've read them all and if you can get past the usual convention of "Nerdy but somewhat attractive man somehow teams up with stunningly beautiful and intelligent woman to solve a Scooby Doo mystery..." plot then you're on your way to liking this book.

    Like all the Langdon books, it's equal parts plot and art history/religion education. The education part is actually, most of the time, more entertaining but there is a lot of talking among characters to get those points across.

    Overall the pretty good latter 2/5 made up for the nonsensical first 3/5 and raised what was going to be a 2 star review to a 4.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Djinn

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By J. Kent Holloway
    • Narrated By Wayne Farrell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (85)
    Performance
    (76)
    Story
    (79)

    In the final years of the first Kingdom of Jerusalem, in a vault, hidden deep beneath the Temple Mount, Baron Gregory De L'Ombre has made an astonishing discovery. Imprisoned within the vault are twelve monstrous abominations, created by one of King Solomon's wives as a final act of revenge. The secrets of the vault will ensure Gregory's absolute power and forever enslave the Outremer-the Holy Land. No man dares stand against him.

    Squeak says: "An Awesome Fantasy!"
    "Ok for what it is"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Let's get this out of the way first... I don't generally like short-ish books. I like my audiobooks 20+ hours at least and I love series much more than one-off books. All that said, this book had such great reviews and was on sale for $5 so I took a chance.
    I didn't dislike it at all but nor did I find much to like. The narrator, especially how he did the main character's voice didn't really seem to fit to me. I get why he made the choice to do it the way he did but based on other reviews I kinda expected someone sounding like Han Solo rather than an old man.
    Also, the story was way too short. I'd just started liking some of the characters and it was over. I'll likely forget about this not too long from now. It just wasn't that memorable. Even the "plot twist(s)" were very predictable if you were paying attention.
    All-in-all, this came off like a Scooby Doo mystery more than anything else.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Earth Awakens: The First Formic War, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Orson Scott Card, Aaron Johnston
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki, Stephen Hoye, Arthur Morey, and others
    Overall
    (959)
    Performance
    (872)
    Story
    (873)

    Nearly 100 years before the events of Orson Scott Card’s best-selling novel Ender’s Game, humans were just beginning to step off Earth and out into the Solar System. A thin web of ships in both asteroid belts; a few stations; a corporate settlement on Luna. No one had seen any sign of other space-faring races; everyone expected that First Contact, if it came, would happen in the future, in the empty reaches between the stars. Then a young navigator on a distant mining ship saw something moving too fast, heading directly for our sun.

    Charles Rohrig says: "Sets the Stage for Ender's Game"
    "Good finish, overall solid trilogy."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Semi-spoiler alert here... but I think it will actually HELP you enjoy this book. There will most likely be another series of books that will get us from where this one ends to where I and probably a lot of other people expected this series to end. If you know Mazer's story from Ender's Game, then you know what I'm talking about. Contrary to what I thought going in, this series does NOT end with the events told in that story. That's actually a good thing though because Card has left a lot more room for additional content and more Ender's content is always a good thing.
    Despite being somewhat baffled all the way through this book at how they were going to get from Point A to where I KNEW Point B had to be, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the series as a whole. Card did an amazing job with the plot and the narrators did a great job too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • American Gods: The Tenth Anniversary Edition (A Full Cast Production)

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Neil Gaiman
    • Narrated By Dennis Boutsikaris, Daniel Oreskes, Ron McLarty, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5273)
    Performance
    (4737)
    Story
    (4765)

    First published in 2001, American Gods became an instant classic, an intellectual and artistic benchmark from the multiple-award-winning master of innovative fiction, Neil Gaiman. Now discover the mystery and magic of American Gods in this 10th anniversary edition. Newly updated and expanded with the author's preferred text, this commemorative volume is a true celebration of a modern masterpiece by the one, the only, Neil Gaiman.

    Michael says: "New to Neil"
    "Heady stuff!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First things first, I love Shadow! His character is what hooked me in and the voice seemed perfect!

    As for the book, it's one of those books that seems like they would talk a lot about in a college course somewhere. There is a lot going on and some if it makes perfect sense. Some doesn't. The thing I walked away with is that beyond all the surreal stuff is a pretty good story that can be enjoyed without really delving deeper into the other stuff that professors would love to dissect.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Elantris

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Jack Garrett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4638)
    Performance
    (3093)
    Story
    (3140)

    Legendary science fiction author Orson Scott Card calls Brandon Sanderson a writer to watch, and Publishers Weekly says his debut is "outstanding." Once the godlike rulers of the capital of Arelon, the inhabitans of Elantris have been imprisoned within themselves, unable to die after the city's magic failed years ago. But when a new prince falls victim to the curse, he refuses to accept his fate.

    Lore says: "What if your body could never heal?"
    "If you like his other books/series, get this!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Elantris immediately feels a lot like Way of Kings and from what I hear, the Mistborn series as well. It seems like Sanderson is building up to something and while Way of Kings and that series seems to be it, Elantris is the genesis of the kind of characters, plot lines and magic he goes on to use in later works.

    A great story in it's own right, Elantris is an origin story of sorts for Brandon Sanderson's style of world building and magic systems.

    Oh, and the fact that he managed to write a single volume fantasy story is pretty amazing in it's own right!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Storm Front: The Dresden Files, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Jim Butcher
    • Narrated By James Marsters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12388)
    Performance
    (9199)
    Story
    (9203)

    A call from a distraught wife, and another from Lt Murphy of the Chicago PD Special Investigation Unit makes Harry believe things are looking up, but they are about to get worse, much worse. Someone is harnessing immense supernatural forces to commit a series of grisly murders. Someone has violated the first law of magic: Thou Shalt Not Kill. Tracking that someone takes Harry into the dangerous underbelly of Chicago, from mobsters.

    Tom says: "Excellent Story, Distracting Sound Engineering"
    "Hello Mr. Dresden!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I liked this book. I actually picked it up because, of all things, I was photographing a wedding for a client that was themed after this series. I'd seen it before on Audible and had it in my wish list but bumped it up for research reasons.

    While I generally am not a "monster of the week" reader, preferring long, arching plot lines to one-off books, Harry is such a good character that I liked this. It's funny and pretty light reading. Overall an enjoyable read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tommo and Hawk: The Australian Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Bryce Courtenay
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2057)
    Performance
    (1411)
    Story
    (1413)

    Brutally kidnapped and separated in childhood, Tommo and Hawk are reunited at the age of 15 in Hobart Town. Together, they escape their troubled pasts and set off on a journey into manhood. From whale hunting in the Pacific to the Maori wars of New Zealand, from the Rocks in Sydney to the miners' riots at the goldfields, Tommo and Hawk must learn each other's strengths and weaknesses in order to survive.

    Angie says: "Brillant Narration"
    "Best of the series and that's saying a lot!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love this series. I really do. Despite some issues I have with the writing, in the end (and really beginning with this installment) they don't do anything to affect how much I enjoyed these books.

    Tommo and Hawk is a tad jarring at the start because unlike the first book, the Potato Factory, this book is first person, switching between the two main characters Tommo and Hawk. Initially I was struggling with this because I simply didn't like one of the characters but that changed as the book went on.

    Obviously as the 2nd book in a linear series, you are going to read this if you read the Potato Factory but know that after listening to all but the last 1/4 of the third book, Tommo and Hawk is the best of the 3 books but not by much since they're all fantastic.

    Enjoy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Potato Factory: The Australian Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Bryce Courtenay
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3514)
    Performance
    (2512)
    Story
    (2517)

    Always leave a little salt on the bread. Ikey Solomon's favorite saying is also his way of doing business, and in the business of thieving he's very successful indeed. Ikey's partner in crime is his mistress, the forthright Mary Abacus, until misfortune befalls them. They are parted and each must make the harsh journey from thriving nineteenth century London to the convict settlement of Van Diemen's Land.

    karen says: "Best audiobook of the year!"
    "5 Stars despite being slow to get started"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I gave this book 5 stars but really based on this volume alone, it may be more like 4 stars but taken as the foundation of a fantastic (so far... 3/4 through the 3rd book now) series, it's bumped up a bit.

    The story does start out slow. I'm not gonna lie that I had to ask my buddy who had read it already if it was going to pick up and he said yep, and he was right. The biggest problem is not really the pace but how little I liked or cared for a couple of the main characters. It wasn't until the end of this book and some way into the next that the reasons for what seemed like a very drawn out character development became clear.

    Just know that the author is using his characters not only to advance a great plot but also to tell some facts/history about the times and place they lived so we're seemingly not meant to love them all.

    Also, the one real criticism I have of the series as a whole and somewhat of this book is that at times the author chooses to "wrap up" certain parts of the plot without really letting the story play out. We hear about "the rest of the story" through a conversation between characters or a letter read aloud. Sometimes I found myself really wanting to have stuck with a certain character or part of the story because it was interesting only to be taken into the future (this is an EPIC story spanning generations so it does skip forward from time to time) and left hanging about what actually happened.

    That said, I HIGHLY recommend this book and this series. This genre is not in my usual wheelhouse either so it was surprising to have loved it as much as I did/do.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Kevin Mitnick, William L. Simon
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3682)
    Performance
    (3282)
    Story
    (3293)

    Kevin Mitnick was the most elusive computer break-in artist in history. He accessed computers and networks at the world’s biggest companies—and however fast the authorities were, Mitnick was faster, sprinting through phone switches, computer systems, and cellular networks. He spent years skipping through cyberspace, always three steps ahead and labeled unstoppable.

    Mikeyxote says: "Great listen for tech fans"
    "Not my cup of tea."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am a technology oriented person so this seemed perfect. Except that it wasn't. Bad narration and a slow story. I didn't finish it and don't plan to.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Panther

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Nelson DeMille
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2118)
    Performance
    (1791)
    Story
    (1783)

    Anti-Terrorist Task Force agent John Corey and his wife, FBI agent Kate Mayfield, have been posted overseas to Sana'a, Yemen - one of the most dangerous places in the Middle East. While there, they will be working with a small team to track down one of the masterminds behind the USS Cole bombing: a high-ranking Al Qaeda operative known as The Panther. Ruthless and elusive, he's wanted for multiple terrorist acts and murders - and the U.S. government is determined to bring him down, no matter the cost.

    John says: "Exciting Nelson DeMille novel with great narration"
    "Wow... this sucked!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First off, I have LOVED the other John Corey books. I loved the plots (mostly) and the humor. Most of all, I love John and Kate. That is until this book. I've never rooted for the bad guys in a book so much as I did this one.

    The book is 95% setup and 5% climax. In between is an incessant, horrible, forced string of Corey sarcasm.

    Again, I have loved this character in the past, especially his humor. I don't know if it's just me getting tired of the same old jokes and reactions to situations or if this is really bad writing.

    The last John Corey novel was outstanding and according to Nelson DeMille, was supposed to be the last. He even did an interview with Scott Brick about why he was not going to do any more Corey books. Seriously, he should have quit while he was ahead. This really seems to be a cash grab.

    The only high-point was Scott Brick as John Corey. Spot on as usual. Sorry he had such bad material to work with this time around.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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