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Ronald Albury

Cincinnati, OH USA | Member Since 2011

70
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 48 reviews
  • 178 ratings
  • 534 titles in library
  • 20 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • 1Q84

    • UNABRIDGED (46 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Haruki Murakami, Jay Rubin (translator), Philip Gabriel (translator)
    • Narrated By Allison Hiroto, Marc Vietor, Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4522)
    Performance
    (3945)
    Story
    (3920)

    The year is 1984 and the city is Tokyo.

    A young woman named Aomame follows a taxi driver's enigmatic suggestion and begins to notice puzzling discrepancies in the world around her. She has entered, she realizes, a parallel existence, which she calls 1Q84 - "Q" is for "question mark". A world that bears a question....

    Dr. says: "Slow, Strange, and (ultimately) Satisfying"
    "A slowly unfolding masterpiece"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you like the idea of a lengthy tea ceremony in a Zen garden, then you'll love this book. If you can't understand why they don't just drop a tea bag in some boiling water, then you'll hate this book.

    If you like a slow mysterious strip-tease with multiple layers of clothes, then you'll love this book. If you prefer to go into a topless bar and want the girl naked by the end of the first song, then you'll hate this book.

    I listen to books on my long drive to and from work. Unlike some books, I rarely found myself sitting in the driveway, on edge, waiting for the chapter to end. However, I frequently found myself eager to get up in the morning (even on a weekend) so I could pick up where I left off.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Croak

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Gina Damico
    • Narrated By Jessica Almasy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (768)
    Performance
    (709)
    Story
    (711)

    Fed up with her wild behavior, 16-year-old Lex’s parents ship her off to upstate New York to live with her Uncle Mort for the summer, hoping that a few months of dirty farm work will whip her back into shape. But Uncle Mort’s true occupation is much dirtier than shoveling manure. He’s a Grim Reaper. And he’s going to teach Lex the family business. She quickly assimilates into the peculiar world of Croak, a town populated by reapers who deliver souls from this life to the next.

    Jessica says: "Great story, distracting reader"
    "A little more teenage angst than I anticipated"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It isn't that I disliked the book - I liked it. But I had a couple of issues.
    a) There was a LOT more teenage angst than I anticipated - a little more than I could comfortably stomach - but I'm an old man so don't go by that.
    b) The whole Grim-Reaper thing is getting a little overdone - how many different ways are there to tell the same story?
    c) I can understand ending a book leaving hooks for sequels, but I really object to a book that stops cold and leaves you totally hanging, trying to force you to buy the sequel. This is the second book in a row that used that trick, and because it pisses me off I am not buying the sequels.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Fall of Hyperion

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Victor Bevine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2895)
    Performance
    (1909)
    Story
    (1941)

    In the stunning continuation of the epic adventure begun in Hyperion, Simmons returns us to a far future resplendent with drama and invention. Onthe world of Hyperion, the mysterious Time Tombs are opening. And the secrets they contain mean that nothing - nothing anywhere in the universe - will ever be the same.

    Darwin8u says: "Hyperion is FALLEN, am I too to fall?"
    "Okay book - but I'm stopping the series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Whereas the first book in the series had boring gaps due to development of some unlikable boring characters - I think this book got carried away with mysticism. Now, I enjoy some mysticism blended into a good story, but not when it is 'in your face' like a blinking neon sign.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hyperion

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Dan Simmons
    • Narrated By Marc Vietor, Allyson Johnson, Kevin Pariseau, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4902)
    Performance
    (3344)
    Story
    (3378)

    On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all.

    Michael says: "The Shrike Awaits. Enter The Time Tombs..."
    "Good book - with dead spots"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am NOT an advocate of all-action books. However, I am also not an advocate of marooning your readers on a smooth sea with no wind.

    It was narrated by a cast of people, as if a radio play. I generally like this approach, but this time, not so much. A) two of the narrators had voices that were almost indistinguishable; B) the woman's voice didn't match the tone or background ambiance of the mail narrators and sort of stuck-out like a sore thumb.

    If you can tough-out the dead spots, you'll probably enjoy the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ark Royal

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Christopher G. Nuttall
    • Narrated By Ralph Lister
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2102)
    Performance
    (1941)
    Story
    (1945)

    Seventy years ago, the interstellar supercarrier Ark Royal was the pride of the Royal Navy. But now, her weapons are outdated and her solid-state armour nothing more than a burden on her colossal hull. She floats in permanent orbit near Earth, a dumping ground for the officers and crew the Royal Navy wishes to keep out of the public eye. But when a deadly alien threat appears, the modern starships built by humanity are no match for the powerful alien weapons.

    Michael G. Kurilla says: "Riveting military sci-fi"
    "Fresh take on an old theme"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    An old obsolete star ship saves the earth. This is essentially the same premise as the 2004 version of Battlestar Galactica - only this time the earth doesn't get destroyed.

    But I'm not complaining. The story was well written and had the correct mix of development and action.

    The characters were interesting, mult-dimensional and exhibited growth over the course of the book. Everyone had their warts - sometimes their foibles helped and sometimes they hurt.

    I listen to books as I drive to and from work - and with this book I found myself sitting in the driveway after I got home.

    I enjoyed the book and expect that you will too.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Terms of Enlistment: Frontlines, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Marko Kloos
    • Narrated By Luke Daniels
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1359)
    Performance
    (1238)
    Story
    (1235)

    The year is 2108, and the North American Commonwealth is bursting at the seams. For welfare rats like Andrew Grayson, there are only two ways out of the crime-ridden and filthy welfare tenements, where you’re restricted to 2,000 calories of badly flavored soy every day. You can hope to win the lottery and draw a ticket on a colony ship settling off-world, or you can join the service. With the colony lottery a pipe dream, Andrew chooses to enlist in the armed forces for a shot at real food, a retirement bonus, and maybe a ticket off Earth.

    DAVE says: "Solid military sci-fi."
    "I wanted to like it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First, let me say that it is difficult to write a book, and I have the greatest respect for anyone who gets published. However, respect doesn't mean I enjoyed the book.

    Listening to this book felt like going to a travelogue at the local high school. I don't know for sure if it was writing or the narrator - but I believe it was the writing. I never got involved with the characters - they were all "what you see is what you get". There was no tension - no internal conflict - no building to any sort of a resolution. It was sort of a shaggy dog story that just ambled along ... and then abruptly ended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Icarus Agenda

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Robert Ludlum
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (79)
    Performance
    (67)
    Story
    (67)

    Colorado Congressman Evan Kendrick is trying to live out his term of office quietly—when a political mole reveals to the world Kendrick's deepest secret: that Kendrick was the anonymous man in Masqar, the man who courageously freed the hostage held in the American embassy by Arab terrorists; the unknown hero who performed an act of outrageous daring then silently disappeared. Now, suddenly, Kendrick is a living target pursued by the terrorists he outwitted.

    Lawrence says: "Politician or not. A real hero."
    "I wanted to like it"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    But I just could not suspend disbelief. This book is comprised of two different stories (one a political intrigue, the other a super hero spy story) that the author was unable to stitch together convincingly. It is presented as three books, but each book consists of the two stories badly stitched together.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Collision

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Jeff Abbott
    • Narrated By Phil Gigante
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (62)
    Performance
    (44)
    Story
    (43)

    Collision is the story of two men living very different lives - one, a successful corporate consultant who is mourning the murder of his new bride; the other, a former CIA agent known only as "Pilgrim", whose current assignment for a fringe espionage agency is so treacherous he doesn't trust even his own boss. When they are thrown together in a violent, unexpected event, the two men realize that they've been framed in an elaborate setup.

    Ted says: "Action Without Adventure"
    "Enjoyed (all but the fight scenes)"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I thought this was an interesting, well written book. I enjoyed the characters and watching them grow throughout the book.

    The one thing I didn't like was the way the narrator read the fight scenes. He may as well been reading a recipe out of a Betty Crocker cookbook. Maybe that's how they were written, but I think it is just how they were read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Solaris: The Definitive Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Stanislaw Lem, Bill Johnston (translator)
    • Narrated By Alessandro Juliani
    Overall
    (2474)
    Performance
    (2032)
    Story
    (2053)

    At last, one of the world’s greatest works of science fiction is available - just as author Stanislaw Lem intended it. To mark the 50th anniversary of the publication of Solaris, Audible, in cooperation with the Lem Estate, has commissioned a brand-new translation - complete for the first time, and the first ever directly from the original Polish to English. Beautifully narrated by Alessandro Juliani (Battlestar Galactica), Lem’s provocative novel comes alive for a new generation.

    Burns says: "A comment on negative reviews"
    "Not Impressed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I realize this is a 'special' book that is well thought of and has been made into multiple movies ... but I was really not impressed.

    While some of the philosophical underpinnings of the book are thought provoking, the book itself is boring. There is very little action, or even character interaction. We don't 'see' much of anything going on. Instead we are inside the head of the central character as he reads scientific studies ... lots and lots of scientific studies written by people with long names who introduce long winded theories.

    If you don't mind a book that is almost exclusively exposition, then maybe this book is for you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hailey's War

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Jodi Compton
    • Narrated By Angela Dawe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (15)

    Hailey Cain has a history of testing the limits of her fate: as a fearless bike messenger on the twisted, competitive streets of San Francisco; as a young female cadet in a sea of men at West Point. But Hailey also has secrets — the biggest of which led her to leave the academy just two months short of graduation, two months away from becoming a lieutenant in the U.S. Army.

    Ronald Albury says: "A believable strong female lead character"
    "A believable strong female lead character"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this book. The central character was complex enough (and damaged enough) to grab me. I don't know if the author has a real understanding of Hispanic gangs, or if she just faked it ... but I felt like I gained real insights.

    The book leaves the door open to a sequel. I hope she writes one soon.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Amy Falls Down: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Jincy Willett
    • Narrated By Amy McFadden
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (345)
    Performance
    (299)
    Story
    (302)

    Amy Gallup is an aging novelist and writing instructor living in Escondido, California, with her dog, Alphonse. Since recent unsettling events, she has made some progress. While she still has writer's block, she doesn't suffer from it. She's still a hermit, but she has allowed some of her class members into her life. She is no longer numb, angry, and sardonic: she is merely numb and bemused, which is as close to happy as she plans to get. Amy is calm. So, when on New Year's morning she shuffles out to her backyard garden to plant a Norfolk pine, she is wholly unprepared for what happens next. Amy falls down.

    Jessica and Will says: "Not contemporary fluff"
    "A funny concept that sort of wandered in circles"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I didn't dislike the book, but it didn't grab me either. It occupied my mind as I drove to and from work. Unlike some other books, it never grabbed me enough to sit in the driveway listening after I got home.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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