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Tim Byers

Indianapolis, IN USA | Listener Since 1999

  • 9 reviews
  • 24 ratings
  • 124 titles in library
  • 1 purchased in 2014

  • Dwight Swain: Master Writing Teacher

    • ORIGINAL (2 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Dwight Swain
    • Narrated By Dwight Swain

    One of the best writing teachers in the English language on how to structure your novel & how to build strong story people who will enrich your fiction.

    Tim Byers says: "Pretty solid advice"
    "Pretty solid advice"

    Swain has the credentials to know what he's talking about here. These are recordings of a series of lectures at a writers conference, I presume. They suffer from age a bit, the fact that he seems to refer to slides we the listener can't see, and rather than discussing general concepts, sometimes forces definitions that don't always work. Nevertheless, he does know what he's talking about and will no doubt job your memory as a writer to strengthen your characters, tighten the action, and revise ruthlessly.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • One Bullet Away: The Making of Marine Officer

    • ABRIDGED (6 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Nathaniel Fick
    • Narrated By Nathaniel Fick

    A former captain in the Marines' First Recon Battalion, who fought in Afghanistan and Iraq, reveals how the Corps trains its elite and offers a point-blank account of twenty-first-century battle. Fick's training begins with a hellish summer at Quantico, after his junior year at Dartmouth, and advances to the pinnacle, Recon, four years later, on the eve of war with Iraq.

    Josh says: "Great book on the war experience of a Marine"
    "Captures both the heroism and frustration"

    If you're looking for support of your view on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, this is not the book to find it. Rather it is a compelling listen from a dedicated Marine who begins his career with idealistic patriotism, and sees it morphed into a love of his comrades. You'll witness the journey from gung-ho officer candidate to combat leader to sober veteran. I finished this book with a greater appreciation for the dedication and sacrifice we ask of our military men and women, not only in terms of the risk to their lives, but the cost to them after their part in the wars are over. This book toned my political rhetoric down a few notches and it just might yours.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Attack

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Yasmina Khadra
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Dr. Amin Jaafari, an Arab-Israeli citizen, is a respected, dedicated surgeon at a hospital in Tel Aviv. He has learned to live with the violence that plagues his city and works tirelessly to help the victims brought to the emergency room. But one night, a deadly bombing in a local restaurant takes a horrifyingly personal turn, when his wife's body is found among the dead, bearing injuries that match those typically found on the bodies of fundamentalist suicide bombers.

    Diana - Audible says: "Powerful"
    "Can you imagine..."

    I was intrigued by this title because I hoped that by listening I might begin to understand what would motivate someone to strap on a web of explosives, walk into a crowed restaurant, and press the button. That seems to be the basic question the main character, Dr. Jaafari, pursues, and hence the driving force of the novel. The author does a great job balancing the emotional torture inside Dr. Jaafari with the action of finding the truth. By the end, though, I'm not sure I've arrived at a place that's real or just where the author wanted to leave me. Worth the listen to make up your own mind.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • How I Write: Secrets of a Best-Selling Author

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Janet Evanovich, Ina Yalof
    • Narrated By Janet Evanovich, Ina Yalof, Alex Evanovich

    Written with nonfiction author and creative-writing teacher Ina Yalof, and with help from daughter Alex Evanovich, How I Write is the perfect guide for anyone looking to strengthen his or her writing - and for those who want to find out just what makes Janet Evanovich tick.

    Debra says: "GREAT MOTIVATION"
    "Great tips, Great examples"

    I've never read or listened to any of Janet's books, and this was nonetheless a great listen. She weaves her own reflections with those of her agent (I think) and her daughter, who manages her website, to discuss not only writing, but publishing, and issues around both. She includes samples of her writing to illustrate what she's talking about. So while I'm sure the Janet fans enjoyed this, any aspiring writer will too. ...And if you like this, you'll love Stephen King's book, On Writing, too.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Berlin Stories

    • ABRIDGED (2 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Christopher Isherwood
    • Narrated By Michael York

    Christopher Isherwood's dramatized memoirs are prophetic images of a country preparing itself to embrace Hitler and the Third Reich. The Berlin Stories includes two works published together: The Last of Mr. Norris and Goodbye to Berlin. These modern classics reveal in poignant detail the tragedy of mid-20th-century Germany.

    Kathryn Drinkard says: "Marvelous performance of Isherwood's stories"
    "Nothing happens..."

    The appeal of reading a diary is discovering something juicy or interesting. This diary has neither, because everything interesting seems to happen in the background. The Nazi's take over, but it hardly affects the narrator. He forges relationships that seem to go nowhere. I kept waiting for something significant to happen (you would think with a title like Berlin Diaries something would), but alas, nothing much did. Michael York does a superb job but ultimately this was disappointing.

    5 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • War and Peace (Dramatized)

    • ORIGINAL (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Leo Tolstoy
    • Narrated By Full Cast

    A BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation features a star cast including Leo McKern, Simon Russell Beale, Emily Mortimer, and Nicola Pagett, and over two hours of specially composed music.

    Tim Byers says: "Enjoyable version of a classic"
    "Enjoyable version of a classic"

    This dramatized version was very well done and captured both the epic sweep and memorable personalities of the characters in this classic story.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Lion's Game Part 1

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Nelson DeMille
    • Narrated By Scott Brick

    To survive in a game with no rules at all, John Corey must invent a strategy that includes no luck at all. He and the Anti-Terrorist Task Force must stop "The Lion," an alleged Libyan terrorist with the instincts of a wild animal, the bloodlust of a carnivore, and the boldness and speed of a cat of prey.

    Tim Byers says: "Narrators Voice Too Smug"
    "Narrators Voice Too Smug"

    No doubt DeMille fans will disagree, but I thought that the central character/narrator's tone, which jumps out at you from the first paragraph, was too smug. Since the real action of the novel doesn't really get going until the seventh or eighth chapter (when the mysterious airliner lands), I found the humor wore thin and the attitude became more of an annoyance than an asset. Still, now that I'm this far I may stick with it to see what happens...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Godless: The Church of Liberalism

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Ann Coulter
    • Narrated By Elizabeth White

    Godless is the most explosive book yet from #1 New York Times best-selling author Ann Coulter. In this completely original and thoroughly controversial work, Coulter writes, "Liberals love to boast that they are not 'religious', which is what one would expect to hear from the state-sanctioned religion. Of course liberalism is a religion.

    Kenneth says: "Somebodies ears are burning"
    "Ignore the shouting at Ann-- listen to her here"

    Ann is either loved or reviled, but only because her arrows hit the mark with more fun and force than any other commentator today. Godless raises the stakes to a new level. If you love her other books, Godless won't disappoint-- you'll laugh as you learn. If you hate her, especially without ever reading one of her books, you might just want to try this one out, to cut through all the shouting about Ann and listen to her thoughts. As hilarious as she can be, in the end its not her humor that sells, its the intellect behind her arguments. By themselves, the ending chapters on evolution are worth the listen.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Vessel of Sadness

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By William Woodruff
    • Narrated By Sam Kelly

    Italy 1944 is the setting of one of the most convincing and quietly magnificent stories about man and war that has ever been written. They were young when they left and sang as they sailed down the Clyde. They didn't know where they were going and they didn't really care. They didn't want to fight and they hardly knew what the war was about. Here, distilled from the experiences and observations of the author, who served in Italy in the British infantry, is the story of those who fought and died at Anzio.

    Tim Byers says: "You'll love the SOUND of this"
    "You'll love the SOUND of this"

    In a way I'm surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. I tend to prefer linear plots-- first A happens, then B, and so on, until Z follows logically at the end. This novel doesn't follow that plan. It's more of a mosaic-- smaller stories, generally following the timeline of the British Anzio campaign in WWII, splashed on the canvas in such a way that up close you don't see exactly how they relate to each other. But by the end, you come away with a deeper sense of what it must have been like for the men at war.

    I loved the rhythm of this book; the narrator was fantastic and perhaps it's a cliche, but there truly was a lyrical quality to the text. It just sounds wonderful, and the power of the spoken word is what kept me engaged when the logical side of the brain was looking for pegs to hang the stories on (it's not that there's not plenty of plot and action, it's just that the novel is not structured in that A thru Z fashion).

    I enjoyed this book so much I want to buy the hardcover version to see what that lyrical prose actually looks like in print!

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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