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Tim

I use my left foot to type my reviews.

United States | Member Since 2010

649
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 352 reviews
  • 356 ratings
  • 822 titles in library
  • 89 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
11
FOLLOWERS
104

  • Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Haruki Murakami
    • Narrated By Feodor Chin, Ian Anthony Dale, Janet Song
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (18)
    Story
    (18)

    From Haruki Murakami, internationally acclaimed author of The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle and Norwegian Wood, a work of literary journalism that is as fascinating as it is necessary, as provocative as it is profound.

    Tim says: "Bland Interviewer"
    "Bland Interviewer"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really wanted to give high marks to Haruki Murakami for reporting the victims' stories about the Tokyo subway sarin attack in 1995, "Underground", but I almost couldn't listen to any of their stories anymore. I found that Haruki Murakami's reporting style to be very bland and boring. After a while there was too many of the victims' stories all bunch together, where I found it tiresome to listen to.

    As for the interviews of Aum Shinrikyo's members, it was interesting, but I preferred hearing from the victims instead. Maybe it's because the passive style of reporting from the Japanese culture or maybe Haruki Murakami is a really bad interviewer, but he should not write nonfiction anymore.

    He is awful as a reporter.

    This book just dragged on. I was really hoping to give at least three stars, but it's two stars at best.

    There is one compelling story that I liked the most. It was about the housewife when she found out that her husband was one of the casualties. Her in laws came by train to the hospital to see their dead son. The family got closer and life went on, but his daughter will never know her father.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mindstar Rising: The Greg Mandel Trilogy, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Peter F. Hamilton
    • Narrated By Toby Longworth
    Overall
    (814)
    Performance
    (731)
    Story
    (724)

    It's the 21st century, and global warming is here to stay, so forget the way your country used to look. And get used to the free market, too – the companies possess all the best hardware, and they're calling the shots now. In a world like this, a man open to any offers can make out just fine. A man like Greg Mandel for instance, who's psi-boosted, wired into the latest sensory equipment, carrying state-of-the-art weaponry – and late of the English Army's Mindstar Battalion.

    Michael G. Kurilla says: "Portrait of a SciFi master as a novice"
    "Hamilton in One Direction"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm a huge fan of Peter F. Hamilton. I still think that he is one of the best writers for science fiction. He writes in grand and epic structure with vast amount of detail in his characters. When reading the first installment of "The Greg Mandel Trilogy", you have to tweak your brain from what you read before from this author. "Mindstar Rising" is not space opera, but more action pack and focus on one character that is a sci fi detective on a post disaster in England.

    Please don't quote me, but I believe that the Mandel series was Hamilton's first. It will be interesting if he veer off more into space opera and somehow introduce us to Commonwealth as I keep listening to this trilogy.

    When reading the this book, Hamilton is in one direction. It's very different than what I've read from him in the past.

    I only gave "Mindstar Rising" 3 stars because it's like getting introduce to an new author. My mind still need to adjust that there is no space drama and sexy droids in this universe. I'm sure that more stars will be added in the following books as I see Hamilton in a different light.

    Just a lot of action in this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the New Billionaire Wildcatters

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Gregory Zuckerman
    • Narrated By Sean Pratt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (149)
    Performance
    (136)
    Story
    (137)

    Everyone knew it was crazy to try to extract oil and natural gas buried in shale rock deep below the ground. Everyone, that is, except a few reckless wildcatters - who risked their careers to prove the world wrong. Things looked grim for American energy in 2006. Oil production was in steep decline and natural gas was hard to find. The Iraq War threatened the nation’s already tenuous relations with the Middle East. China was rapidly industrializing and competing for resources.

    Chris says: "Balanced approach on controversial topic"
    "Chipping for Crude"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    To sum up the point of the book, when they couldn't drill anymore, they started fracking to get as much old that they can with no regards to anything else. "The Frackers" are a bunch of lottery winners from past black gold. I'm not an environmentalist, but the book is very neutral. The author is very melancholy at where he stands.

    "The Frackers" is strictly a biography on the oil tycoons It's too early to tell what fracking is doing to the environment and this book is very lack luster, but I hope that I don't see the day when "Frack You" becomes the new slang.

    There is no information on the process of fracking. It's all about the business of chipping for Crude.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Bryce G. Hoffman
    • Narrated By Pete Larkin
    Overall
    (124)
    Performance
    (112)
    Story
    (110)

    At the end of 2008, Ford Motor Company was just months away from running out of cash. With the auto industry careening toward ruin, Congress offered all three Detroit automakers a bailout. General Motors and Chrysler grabbed the taxpayer lifeline, but Ford decided to save itself. Under the leadership of charismatic CEO Alan Mulally, Ford had already put together a bold plan to unify its divided global operations, transform its lackluster product lineup, and overcome a dys­functional culture of infighting, backstabbing, and excuses.

    Michael says: "The best business book I ever read"
    "E-150"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My dad customized a 1979 Econoline-150 van with a wheelchair ramp for me. It was the family van, and as I got older, I got the keys to the "Brown Can.". The old goat ran for almost 20 years and got me through college, camping trips,concerts and lots of fun. We were sad to see the beast go. If Ford made an accessible mini van, I would probably have another Ford right now, instead of a Japanese import.

    "American Icon" is a true success story that I kept rooting for. There is something about seeing a Ford on the road and having pride in America. One of the best business stories that I've listened to in a long time. Ford had great leadership from the very beginning. A few major hiccups during the dot com era, but thanks to Alan Mulally, Ford is back again.

    At one time, my family had all Ford's in the driveway. While they ran over 100k, they all rattle and all of their air conditioners stopped working. Unlike the E-150, they all had the new blue oval logo, instead of F O R D individually stamped out in steel and bolted on the hood.

    Probably won't buy another Ford again, unless I need a heavy duty truck and if then I would get a Cummins Diesel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Voyager

    • UNABRIDGED (43 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7984)
    Performance
    (5163)
    Story
    (5138)

    Set in the intriguing Scotland of 200 years ago, the third installment in the romantic adventures of Jamie and Claire is as compelling as the first. Now that Claire knows Jamie survived the slaughter at Culloden, she is faced with the most difficult decision of her life. She aches to travel back through time again to find the love of her life, but, in order to do that, she must leave their daughter behind.

    Kathy says: "Hurry up! I want them all!"
    "Much More Enjoyable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "Voyager" was much more enjoyable than "Dragonfly in Amber" and I am finally getting into the Outlander series. Claire, Jamie, and Brianna are starting to make sense to me. I am understanding a lot more about the time travel and the different periods of time. Diana Gabaldon is a remarkable writer. I really like her storytelling about the history. Claire becoming a slave owner with Jamie is simply brilliant because Claire left Brianna behind with Frank during the Civil Rights movement in the 60's.

    I almost couldn't stop listening to "Voyager." The series finally fired on all cylinders and that is what I was hoping for all along. In "Voyager", it's not all about the family drama between the three, there are new characters in the melting pot, like Jamie's nephew, Young Ian and how he pretty much got raped by another woman and his uncle gave him a pep talk that the penis has no conscience.

    How can anybody forget Mr. Willoughby. He is my favorite. I'm really hoping Claire's letter to her daughter will somehow come into play.

    My friends are warning me that I'm getting too involve into the series, where I might start to think that I can time travel also. Hopefully, they will have an intervention for me. It's just the price to pay at reading a good book. I can't wait for more.

    I found Davina Porter's voice much more enjoyable when I cranked the speed up on my IPod. I really don't like to alter any narrators' voices, but Porter's reading pace is just too slow to pay attention. If you crank the speed up, you get a lot more story than on normal speed, but that is just my preference.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Extreme Medicine: How Exploration Transformed Medicine in the Twentieth Century

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Kevin Fong
    • Narrated By Jonathan Cowley
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (42)
    Performance
    (36)
    Story
    (38)

    Little more than 100 years ago, maps of the world still boasted white space: places where no human had ever trod. Within a few short decades the most hostile of the world's environments had all been conquered. Likewise, in the 20th century, medicine transformed human life. Doctors took what was routinely fatal and made it survivable. As modernity brought us ever more into different kinds of extremes, doctors pushed the bounds of medical advances and human endurance. Extreme exploration challenged the body in ways that only the vanguard of science could answer.

    CHESTER says: "EXTREME MEDICINE"
    "Coming from a Family of Healers"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My two younger siblings are both in the medical field. One is a physician and the other one is an anesthetists. We also have other family members are in the same line of work. When all of them get together, they like to talk shop until someone change the subject.

    "Extreme Medicine: How Exploration Transformed Medicine in the Twentieth Century" from Dr. Kevin Fong is interesting, but also a bit redundant because I pretty much heard it all from my family. The history of medicine and how the human body is so resilient is awesome to listen to, but "Exploration" of medicine is a bit hog wash. I don't quite understand what Dr. Fong is trying to prove.

    The cross reference of space exploration and medicine is a bit misleading. I don't see the link between the two when medicine is always evolving. We no longer use our bare hands to operate and microscopic surgery is becoming the norm. I guess what Dr. Fong is trying to say that without space exploration, the progress of medicine will be slower.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Pluto Files: The Rise and Fall of America's Favorite Planet

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Neil deGrasse Tyson
    • Narrated By Mirron Willis
    Overall
    (330)
    Performance
    (230)
    Story
    (230)

    In August 2006, the International Astronomical Union voted Pluto out of planethood. Far from the sun, tiny, and eccentric in orbit, it's a wonder Pluto has any fans. Yet during the mounting debate over Pluto's status, Americans rallied behind the extraterrestrial underdog.

    John says: "A Great Value"
    "Blog on Pluto"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I recently read Neil deGrasse Tyson's other book on Audible and found it fascinating. When I got the chance to buy "The Pluto Files" on sale, I was in joy. I find Dr. Tyson to be a genius. This book is more like a 4 hour lecture on why Pluto is not a planet. There is a lot of commentary from Tyson.and snippets of Pluto. If you are into astronomy, "The Pluto Files" is more like a personal blog from an astrophysicist.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs)
    • By Jonas Jonasson
    • Narrated By Steven Crossley
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1543)
    Performance
    (1373)
    Story
    (1392)

    After a long and eventful life, Allan Karlsson ends up in a nursing home, believing it to be his last stop. The only problem is that he's still in good health, and in one day, he turns 100. A big celebration is in the works, but Allan really isn't interested (and he'd like a bit more control over his vodka consumption). So he decides to escape. He climbs out the window in his slippers and embarks on a hilarious and entirely unexpected journey, involving, among other surprises, a suitcase stuffed with cash.

    Sylvia says: "Full of Surprises and Unexpected Events"
    "Nursery Rhymes for Grown Ups"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared" is a nursery rhymes for grown ups. Like Jack in the Beanstalk and an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe, that we heard in preschool, the 100 Year Old Man will be retold in a old folks home. I'm not sure if there is something missing from the Swedish version, but this book is a complete mess.

    Basically, it's about an old man jumping ship from a nursing home and start traveling the world and meeting people like Albert Einstein, Lyndon Johnson to Ronald Reagan and the North Korea dictator. None of this made sense. I almost stopped listening after the first half. Many reviewers compare this book to Forrest Gump, but I did not find 100 Year Old Man humerus. I have no interest at watching the movie either.

    Even after finishing the book, I'm not sure if the main character climbed out of the window and disappeared or just having a senior moment.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The War of the Worlds

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By H. G. Wells
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (409)
    Performance
    (340)
    Story
    (341)

    First published by H. G. Wells in 1898, The War of the Worlds is the granddaddy of all alien invasion stories. The novel begins ominously, as the lone voice of a narrator intones, "No one would have believed in the last years of the 19th century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's."

    Janice says: "Ants"
    "Sci Fi that Remakes Over and Over"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've always thought Steven Spielberg's version of War of the Worlds was a bad remake from the original in 1953. The remake was just awful and I had no interest at reading the book until now. I have always pass up H. G. Wells "The War of the Worlds", because why read the book when every few years, they remake some version of the martian, alien, doomsday story, over and over.

    I'm one of those naysayer that favors the novel over the movie. In "The War of the Worlds", the book is a million times better than the movies, tv shows, and even the infamous radio drama. I can't put my big toe on it, but H. G. Wells wrote this book over a century ago and the book has this ageless science fiction that could had been written just yesterday or in the future.

    We always had this fascination of extra terrestrial landing on Earth and probing us in our butts, or aliens, invading the world and somehow with the help from a genius from scientist and out military, they save the day. Whatever is in the script, the story always remain the same from some adaptation of H. G. Wells.

    I would like to take this review a step further. "The War of the Worlds" has always been the premise of all comic books, action hero movies and certainly all science fiction. Before you think that my review is lame, just think about this. In most superheroes, some kind of foreign enemy comes down from the sky, causing mayhem to all. Magically, a superhero appear from the dust and all becomes well and the aliens either dies or go back to their planet and "until next time..."

    The analogy is always the same from Wells' book. Martians comes from Mars and the Narrator somehow figures out that the Martians are starting to die from a disease that humans are immune to. This is no different from any movie portraying the hero defending the universe.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Death by Black Hole: And Other Cosmic Quandaries

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Neil deGrasse Tyson
    • Narrated By Dion Graham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1963)
    Performance
    (1146)
    Story
    (1148)

    Neil deGrasse Tyson has a talent for guiding readers through the mysteries of outer space with stunning clarity and almost childlike enthusiasm. This collection of his essays from Natural History magazine explores a myriad of cosmic topics. Tyson introduces us to the physics of black holes by explaining what would happen to our bodies if we fell into one; he also examines the needless friction between science and religion, and notes Earth's status as "an insignificantly small speck in the cosmos".

    Lind says: "Well written and well read"
    "TV Host, an Astrophysicist"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I ended up watching a revise version on Cosmos when it was on Fox. I've only seen a few episodes of the original with Carl Edward Sagan and was always amazed on how well he was able to explained space and life. I was a bit skeptical when I started to watch the new Cosmos with Neil deGrasse Tyson, but I was hooked from the very beginning. His style of explaining the universe is almost good as Sagan.

    After the series ended, I wanted to know more about Neil deGrasse Tyson. I found out that he is a famous astrophysicist and wrote many books on the subject. "Death by Black Hole" is a bunch of articles into a book that Tyson wrote and they are outstanding at explaining the unknown that are out of this world.

    Dr. Tyson has the same charisma as Dr. Sagan that you can listen to him for hours and always learn something new.

    This is a great introduction of astronomy and science. I will be reading more of Tyson's work.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Dragonfly in Amber

    • UNABRIDGED (39 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Diana Gabaldon
    • Narrated By Davina Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9540)
    Performance
    (6167)
    Story
    (6188)

    New York Times best-selling author Diana Gabaldon enchanted scores of fans with Outlander, her electrifying historical saga set in 18th-century Scotland. Now this sequel sweeps listeners back into the past as Claire relates more of her perilous sojourn there with her Scottish warrior husband, James Fraser. Twenty years after her strange journey back in time, Claire has returned to Scotland with her daughter, determined to share with her the secret she has harbored since her time travel.

    Shelley says: "I ADORE this series!"
    "Cumbersome Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found that "Dragonfly in Amber" to be cumbersome to read. So many characters and not enough main points. I got lost somewhere in the middle and it was hard to get back on track again. Who is Brianna? She is the daughter of Claire and Jamie, but I found her character to be very dull and wanting to know even more.

    Davina Porter performance in book #2 is good, but not excellent. Her pace of reading the sequel is a bit irritating. I just wish that she would had read faster at a steady pace. If I'm going to continue on with this series, I really need to accept Porter's voice. She was awesome in the first book, but in "Dragonfly in Amber", she became a senior citizen trying to act in her twenty's.

    I'm really hoping as Claire becomes older in the series, the narration will be more suitable.

    The plot just shifted too much for me in this book. I hope that "Voyager" is more straight forward.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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