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gzl5ry

Always open to something new, but my favorite genres are horror, sci-fi/fantasy with more of a leaning toward fantasy.

Oakland, MI, United States | Member Since 2014

18
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 15 reviews
  • 16 ratings
  • 122 titles in library
  • 5 purchased in 2015
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  • The Books of Blood, Volume 1

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Clive Barker
    • Narrated By Simon Vance, Dick Hill, Peter Berkrot, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (131)
    Performance
    (119)
    Story
    (123)

    Weaving tales of the everyday world transformed into an unrecognizable place, where reason no longer exists and logic ceases to explain the workings of the universe, Clive Barker provides the stuff of nightmares in packages too tantalizing to resist. This first volume contains the short stories : "The Book of Blood," "The Midnight Meat Train," "The Yattering and Jack," "Sex, Death, and Starshine," and "In the Hills, the Cities,"

    Travis says: "Not Quite what I Expected"
    "Flawless Execution!!!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    To those who like the horror/weird genres. Clive Barker was one of my early forays into the horror genre when I was but a wee lad of 12 or 13, The Books of Blood being the first stuff I had read of his. And now, some 25 years later, I find this treasure, that 'The Books' are being read into audiobook! I will buy every one, credit or no credit, Audible cannot produce them fast enough, please hurry Audible, four more volumes await!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Each story is unique so there is not a particular character, but one of my favorite stories is The Yattering and Jack, just a fun concept that the demon sent to drive Jack into insanity and submission could in turn be driven into endless frustration by a human.


    What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Every narrator turned out to be excellent for the given story. Pronunciation and character portrayal were excellent. I was only familiar with Simon Vance through his reading of Tigana (which I liked very much) and so was pleased to see him doing Sex, Death and Starshine. He pulled off the characters excellent, he has just the right British accent for the artsy, uppity theater types found in the story.


    If you could take any character from The Books of Blood, Volume 1 out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Oh Audible and your questions... I would say Jack Polo. I would ask him how he knew what was happening and how he could remain so calm and nonchalant in the face of being haunted by a devil.


    Any additional comments?

    I love that Audible has brought these in and thanks to Crossroads Press for producing them, please do the rest of the series.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • FREE The Playground

    • UNABRIDGED (44 mins)
    • By Ray Bradbury
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis
    Overall
    (447)
    Performance
    (412)
    Story
    (413)

    "The Playground" was part of the first hardcover edition of Ray Bradbury's legendary work Fahrenheit 451, published in 1953. In the story, Charles Underhill is a widower who will do anything to protect his young son Jim from the horrors of the playground - a playground which he and the boy pass by daily and the tumult of which, the activity, brings back to Charles the anguish of his own childhood.

    Nothing really matters says: "Something more than just a creepy short story."
    "Decent Ray Bradbury Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to FREE The Playground again? Why?

    I don't typically listen to audiobooks a second time, but the first time was worth it.


    What other book might you compare FREE The Playground to and why?

    None. Typical Ray Bradbury, sci-fi with somewhat of a social message if you want to look deep enough into it.


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

    It's a short story, so yes you can do it on the ride home, at the gym, at work, etc.


    Any additional comments?

    I just wanted to thank Audible for making this free when I purchased it. I enjoy the Audible freebies a lot and am thankful Audible puts them out there r different authors make them available.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Story of the Human Body: Evolution, Health, and Disease

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Daniel Lieberman
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (269)
    Performance
    (227)
    Story
    (231)

    In this landmark book of popular science, Daniel E. Lieberman - chair of the department of human evolutionary biology at Harvard University and a leader in the field - gives us a lucid and engaging account of how the human body evolved over millions of years, even as it shows how the increasing disparity between the jumble of adaptations in our Stone Age bodies and advancements in the modern world is occasioning this paradox: greater longevity but increased chronic disease.

    G-Man says: "A great discussion of human evolution/physiology"
    "Really Good Science Book for the Layman"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Story of the Human Body in three words, what would they be?

    What We NeedToHear. :) Ok, 5 words.


    What does Sean Runnette bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The narrator is good, but not spectacular. That is no knock on him, I'm not sure a narrator can add to much to reading a book on science straight through. But, his voice is clear and concise and at times I felt like I was listening to Mr. Lieberman and had to remind myself that it was a narrator. I suppose that is a sign the message was getting across.


    Any additional comments?

    I have a degree in science and I write (technical information) for a living. I am also fairly well versed in human evolution. A big problem with science and even health-centered books is that the message can get lost in the sometimes dry text. This has always been an issue in the sciences, how to get the important information we have to the masses in a way that the message can be received, processed and internalized. Mr. Lieberman has written a really well (and not boring at all) book on the evolution of some of the traits of the human body and how those developments are affecting us as a species in an ever changing environment in terms of out physical health and well being.This is a book I would recommend for a layperson looking to understand the emerging interest by the medical and research community in evolutionary approaches to medicine. I think if one can take away a single valuable message from this book that could affect every single one of our lives, it would be Mr. Lieberman's assertion that most of the mismatch diseases mankind is suffering from today in greater and greater numbers is, for the most part, not necessary to endure and that they can be corrected by understanding our evolutionary heritage better.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tender Hearts Taste Better in Butter

    • UNABRIDGED (21 mins)
    • By Weston Ochse
    • Narrated By Weston Ochse
    Overall
    (185)
    Performance
    (120)
    Story
    (121)

    A kidnapping turns to be unexpectedly deadly when the Mafia encounters ogres and demons. This is one of several tales in the Smoky Mountain Horrors collection.

    Kristi Richardson says: "Fun story. A little silly for me."
    "Well, that escalated quickly!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Well written, well read. Good story that had me wondering until the end when it escalated quickly with a fun, twist ending. I'd like to thank the author and Audible for making this free. I'm definitely interested in buying the author's book of stories now.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Funhouse: Sixteen Tales of Madness, Murder, Terror & Insanity

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Michael Bray
    • Narrated By David Mellon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    A man who makes an unscheduled stop gets more than he bargained for in "Candyland". A group of teens discover a terrible secret on Samsonite farm in "Scarecrows". A schoolyard bully and his former victim reunite with horrifying results in "Long Tall Coffin." A high school party becomes an arachnid nightmare for one unfortunate guest in "The Boy Who Saw Spiders". These are just some of the horrors hidden within the darkest recesses of the funhouse.

    Thomas says: "Great Stories, Horrible Narration"
    "My Second Foray into Mr. Bray's Short Stories"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Funhouse again? Why?

    I don't really listen to audiobooks a second time, so no. But, that has nothing to do with the stories or performance.


    What did you like best about this story?

    This was my second Michael Bray short story collection. I gave the first one I listened to 4 stars and really considered it 4.5 stars, only lacking that last half star due to a few minor inconsistencies in a few of the stories. But I still thought it was very good. I went 5 full stars with Funhouse. There's really nothing lacking in these stories. Mr. Bray tells a variety of angles from the straight forward, in-your-face horror to the angular type story that brings you in one way and then turns you another way right at the end. I'm highly impressed with Mr. Bray's stories and his control of the narrative. I highly recommend both books.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I don't know about scene, but I enjoyed his vampire story quite a bit. In Dark Corners he gave a unique spin on zombie stories, letting us see the perspective of a man turning into a zombie. I don't like zombies or zombie stories, but I liked that story quite a lot. In Funhouse, he gives us a future in which vampirism can be cured, and is in a man who is then immediately put on trial for all of the atrocities he committed while "infected". Hearing the former vampire's defense of his past in the court trial was interesting and somewhat interesting in a philosophical way. Again, I'm not a big fan of vampires or vampire stories, but Mr. Bray brought me a story that made me interested. Kudos, sir!


    Any additional comments?

    Read it, you won't regret it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Breakfast at Tiffany's

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Truman Capote
    • Narrated By Michael C. Hall
    Overall
    (1754)
    Performance
    (1596)
    Story
    (1609)

    Golden Globe-winning actor Michael C. Hall (Dexter, Six Feet Under) performs Truman Capote's masterstroke about a young writer's charmed fascination with his unorthodox neighbor, the "American geisha" Holly Golightly. Holly - a World War II-era society girl in her late teens - survives via socialization, attending parties and restaurants with men from the wealthy upper class who also provide her with money and expensive gifts. Over the course of the novella, the seemingly shallow Holly slowly opens up to the curious protagonist.

    Michael says: "Subtle yet Extravagant"
    "I'm Not Sure Why People Rave Over This Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Truman Capote and/or Michael C. Hall?

    Truman Capote? I don't think so. I'm not really sure why people rave over this story. It was a mediocre story at best. Maybe I don't get the age it was written in or something? Still, I have a good sense of context in writing but this story just wasn't very good to me.


    What about Michael C. Hall’s performance did you like?

    I might try Michael C. Hall again, he did ok with the characters including female voices. I'd like to see if he can handle a wider cast of characters as he may end up being a pretty good narrator.


    Was Breakfast at Tiffany's worth the listening time?

    Mheh. It wasn't long really, so I don't think a couple of hours is that big of a deal even though I didn't care for the story overall.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Cabal

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Clive Barker
    • Narrated By Chet Williamson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (44)
    Story
    (45)

    Cabal is the story of Boone, a tortured soul haunted by the conviction that he has committed atrocious crimes. In a necropolis in the wilds of Canada, he seeks refuge and finds the last great creatures of the world - the shape-shifters known as the Nightbreed. They are possessed of unearthly powers-and so is Boone. In the hunt for Boone, they too will be hunted. Now only the courage of this strange human can save them from extinction.

    gzl5ry says: "A Novella From the Master of Horror"
    "A Novella From the Master of Horror"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Cabal? What did you like least?

    Like him or not, nobody can deny that Clive Barker has fantastic ideas for stories. The story theme of monsters (of the night, aka The Nightbreed) hiding below ground from the monsters above (humans) offers a great juxtaposition of just who are the real monsters in the story.
    That said, the characters are somewhat weak, we don't really find out needed information about the backgrounds of different characters and why they have become what they are; at least not enough to form any sense of relatability. The timeline seems to be spotty, either moving too fast or missing pieces in between scenes.
    It almost seems like maybe Cabal should have been made into a novel. I think there was enough, withmore detail and more spacing to do so, but instead the whole thing feels, short and rushed.
    Still, Barker is Barker and he has his moments of prose in Cabal that make it good. It may not be his best work, but it certainly isn't bad either. The idea Barker presents about just whom the real monsters in this world are is enough to warrant three stars.


    Was Cabal worth the listening time?

    Yes. Even though I gave it three stars, it is still worth listening to, even if just to be familiar with Barkers early works.


    Any additional comments?

    It's an ok listen, just understand it isn't as good as some of his works released around the same time (Books of Blood, Damnation Game).

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Baby Teeth: Bite Sized Tales Of Terror

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Dan Rabarts, Lee Murray
    • Narrated By Chris Barnes, Dan Rabarts, Jenni Sands, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    Kids can say the creepiest things. Twenty-seven New Zealand and American authors delve into the strange, the unexpected, and the downright terrifying things that kids say in this collection of all-new flash fiction. From the mouths of babes come 37 stories, from the haunting to the hilarious to the horrific. Leave the lights on tonight. So you’ll see them coming.

    gzl5ry says: "A Whole Slew of Quick, Decent Stories"
    "A Whole Slew of Quick, Decent Stories"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    The collection was pretty decent. Some stories are better than others and there weren't any stories I didn't like. I think in hindsight I wouldn't mind paying the cash price, just under $10, but I think I would save my credit for something a little more expensive, but it wasn't a waste of my credit either. I would actually like to rate the book 3.5 stars rather than 3, but I don't think it is a true 4 star book.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Some people might wonder about the gore level. This isn't wickedly violent or gorey. It's horror, so you have to figure on some oddness, some uncomfortableness in some of the stories, but there isn't any extreme violence or gore (or sex).


    What aspect of the narrators’s performance would you have changed?

    I am assuming the authors are reading their own works. Again, some of the narrators are better than others, but nobody's narration was bad. Considering how often an author reading his or her own work turns out for the worse, I think each author did a good job reading their works.


    Was Baby Teeth worth the listening time?

    Sure.


    Any additional comments?

    The stories are quick, the originality of the ideas range from decent to quite clever. Nothing bad here, and there are a few shining stars. A decent collection if you would like some exposure to some lesser known horror writers. Give it a shot.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Free: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 15 mins)
    • By Washington Irving
    • Narrated By Tom Mison
    Overall
    (2216)
    Performance
    (2029)
    Story
    (2032)

    In the secluded Dutch territory of Sleepy Hollow, nebbish schoolmaster Ichabod Crane competes with the town hero for the hand of Katrina Van Tassel, the 18-year-old daughter and sole child of a wealthy farmer. As Crane leaves a party at the Van Tassel's farm one autumn evening, he is pursued by the Headless Horseman, an apparition said to be the ghost of a Hessian trooper snuffed out by a stray cannonball.

    Sara says: "Treasures Of Jolly Autumn"
    "Wonderful Production by Audible Studios"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Free: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow?

    It was free? Just kidding, the story is a classic of course, but the narration was superb.


    Which character – as performed by Tom Mison – was your favorite?

    The story is a third person narration, so there is no individual dialogue per se.


    Any additional comments?

    I am intrigued by the narrator and that Audible offered this for free. Thank you Audible. I will also be looking into the narrator, his pronunciation and style was perfection. I was very impressed with the entire production and package.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Darkness That Comes Before: The Prince of Nothing, Book One

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By R. Scott Bakker
    • Narrated By David DeVries
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (215)
    Performance
    (188)
    Story
    (190)

    In a world scarred by an apocalyptic past, evoking a time both 2,000 years past and 2,000 years into the future, untold thousands gather for a crusade. Among them, two men and two women are ensnared by a mysterious traveler, Anasûrimbor Kellhus - part warrior, part philosopher, part sorcerous, charismatic presence - from lands long thought dead. The Darkness That Comes Before is a history of this great holy war, and like all histories, the survivors write its conclusion.

    Andy says: "Finally in audiobook!"
    "A Slow Starter"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Not really. Friends have been after me for years to read this series and I just didn't get around to it. The book is a slow starter, but just good enough to keep the reader going toward the last third of the book or so where things start coming together nicely.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Well, I like philosophy. People should understand before going into this series, Bakker is a philosopher in real life as well as fantasy author. His world is large, complex and the people in it are complex. This is no dragons and magicians' apprentices type of fantasy world. The land Bakker writes in is at war and the magic is nasty, hard. The entire series is about a crusade launched against a "heathen" people who years before had taken over lands that once belonged to one of the empires involved. Many things involved in the series parallel our own earth's history (the Crusades mostly). The series is chock full of philosophy, religion, magic, war, politics and plotting/backstabbing and even tragic love. I liked the level Bakker writes at even though I enjoy more light fantasy too (something like the Wheel of Time).


    Which character – as performed by David DeVries – was your favorite?

    He does a good job with everybody I think. I came into the series blind, not having read any of it, and by the end I think he represented the character's traits pretty well. It was interesting seeing the names in print after hearing them pronounced. I also suggest for anybody coming into the series without a book to go Online and find maps of the world so you understand what nations and peoples Bakker is writing about and where they are from in the world.


    Could you see The Darkness That Comes Before being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    It's probably a little too philosophically deep to make a script and retain all of the plotting and conniving and philosophizing going on. The magic would be really expensive to do effects for also.


    Any additional comments?

    I stated before that the book started slow and dragged a bit. But, I will say that by the end of the first book I was ready to immediately buy the second book because I wanted to hear more of the story. I will also tell you that the rest of the series is definitely not a letdown, the second and third book are definitely better, so don't get discouraged if you decide to dive in and find it a little slow at first.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dark Corners: Twelve Tales of Terror

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Michael Bray
    • Narrated By Frank Wright
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (37)
    Performance
    (36)
    Story
    (36)

    What lurks within the darkness? What crawls outside of our perception? What happens when the world as we know it stops making sense? When reality isn't what it seems, and the rules no longer apply...

    gzl5ry says: "Pretty good, I'd like to read/listen to more."
    "Pretty good, I'd like to read/listen to more."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Dark Corners to be better than the print version?

    Didn't read the print version.


    What other book might you compare Dark Corners to and why?

    That's hard to say, but his style is not really gory or fantastical. He likes playing around in the mind, showing how people think inside their heads rather than outer experiences. So, I imagine the title describes his style best, he looks at the dark corners of the human mind and the human experience.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I liked all the stories. I was actually impressed with the first story, which in a roundabout way was about zombies. I don't like zombies, I think they are overdone along with vampires, but the story kept me interested even though I knew where it was heading. A few of the stories were fairly predictable, yet Mr. Bray's writing style is strong enough to keep them going on their own merit anyway. Also, I really liked how he ran different stories together, quite interesting and well done. He sometimes leaves something hanging in one story to answer what happened in a later story. Kind of neat and clever.


    Any additional comments?

    To me a 3 star book was ok, but I don't know if I'll check out anything by that author again. A 4 star book was pretty darn good, but not the best and I definitely want to get around to checking the author out again. A 5 star book is one that has blown my socks off and I immediately want to start another work by that author. I gave this book/recording 4 stars. I want to read/listen to more of Mr. Bray, the stories were good enough to want more. A few of the stories even get close to 5 star territory for me. I will definitely be making room on my list for more of his works.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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