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jhwayne@bigfoot.com

ratings
10
REVIEWS
7
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
13

  • The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Volume II: Alone, 1932-1940

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By William Manchester
    • Narrated By Richard Brown
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (494)
    Performance
    (291)
    Story
    (291)

    This second volume in William Manchester's three-volume biography of Winston Churchill challenges the assumption that Churchill's finest hour was as a wartime leader. During the years 1932-1940, he was tested as few men are. Pursued by creditors (at one point he had to put up his home for sale), he remained solvent only by writing an extraordinary number of books and magazine articles.

    Andrew says: "Worth it"
    "Interesting biography, irritating narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Last Lion the most enjoyable?

    The information and its presentation.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Manchester's way of connecting Churchill's history to the culture of the times.


    What three words best describe Richard Brown’s voice?

    Irritating when quoting.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    You cannot make a film of this book.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Across the Nightingale Floor: Tales of the Otori, Book One

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Lian Hearn
    • Narrated By Kevin Gray, Aiko Nakasone
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6041)
    Performance
    (2192)
    Story
    (2200)

    A tour-de-force novel set in ancient Japan filled with passion, fantasy, and feuding warlords. The first volume in the highly anticipated Tales of the Otori trilogy.

    Jody R. Nathan says: "Wonderful epic story"
    "Excellent story, inadequate narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    It is an excellent story.


    Did Kevin Gray and Aiko Nakasone do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Kevin did a good job, Aiko was less satisfactory.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • July 1914: Countdown to War

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Sean McMeekin
    • Narrated By Steve Coulter
    Overall
    (33)
    Performance
    (29)
    Story
    (30)

    When a Serbian-backed assassin gunned down Archduke Franz Ferdinand in late June 1914, the world seemed unmoved. Even Ferdinand’s own uncle, Franz Josef I, was notably ambivalent about the death of the Hapsburg heir, saying simply, "It is God’s will." Certainly, there was nothing to suggest that the episode would lead to conflictmuch less a world war of such massive and horrific proportions that it would fundamentally reshape the course of human events.

    jhwayne@bigfoot.com says: "An exciting story, indifferently read"
    "An exciting story, indifferently read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to July 1914: Countdown to War again? Why?

    Yes, there are many details in the story that are worth rehearing.


    What other book might you compare July 1914: Countdown to War to and why?

    The Guns of August. They are both good narratives, but this is more current


    What aspect of Steve Coulter’s performance would you have changed?

    He needs to research the correct pronunciation of names. For example, "Choristers Bridge," the shorthand name for the Russian foreign office, is pronounced with a silent "h." Many other names are mispronounced, but that one grates.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No.


    Any additional comments?

    It is a very valuable corrective to the standard interpretation, which places the heaviest portion of the blame for the start of WWI on the Central Powers, especially Germany. It is clear that blame must be more widely apportioned, and that the Dual Monarchy must be given a heavier portion.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Screwtape Letters

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By C. S. Lewis
    • Narrated By Joss Ackland
    Overall
    (393)
    Performance
    (360)
    Story
    (367)

    A masterpiece of satire, this classic has entertained and enlightened readers the world over with its sly and ironic portrayal of human life from the vantage point of Screwtape, a highly placed assistant to "Our Father Below". At once wildly comic, deadly serious, and strikingly original, C. S. Lewis gives us the correspondence of the worldly-wise old devil to his nephew Wormwood, a novice demon in charge of securing the damnation of an ordinary young man. The Screwtape Letters is the most engaging and humorous account of temptation - and triumph over it - ever written.

    James says: "This is the Best Audio Screwtape, a Masterpiece"
    "Wonderfully imagined and well read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Screwtape Letters the most enjoyable?

    The subtle amusement of Lewis's exposition


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Screwtape Letters?

    The very beginning of the last letter.


    Have you listened to any of Joss Ackland’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I have seen him perform, but never heard him read before. He has a wonderful voice to express the chief character. He plays villains extremely well.


    If you could rename The Screwtape Letters, what would you call it?

    How to Tempt Into Evil.


    Any additional comments?

    This is an old book from the 1940's and some of it is clearly dated, but both enjoyable and instructive nonetheless.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • A Hunger for the Infinite: A Galactic Center Story

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 46 mins)
    • By Gregory Benford
    • Narrated By Robin Sachs
    Overall
    (474)
    Performance
    (412)
    Story
    (412)

    A Hunger for the Infinite, which first appeared in Robert Silverberg's Far Horizons anthology, is a novella that takes place in the universe of "The Galactic Center Saga", detailing a galactic war between mechanical and biological life. Here, the pilots had made it to True Center in order to destroy something, anything, important to the Mechs, but Paris had something else on his mind. A story of the Mantis, and the decline of humans beginning in 3600 AD.

    Michale says: "Haunting"
    "A narrative, but not a story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I cannot think of anyone.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Gregory Benford again?

    No


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Some were tolerable, none were favorites.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    I am sorry I wasted my time on this. To be fair, I listened to it all--I shouldn't have.


    Any additional comments?

    It misses the mark by not creating a character about which one cares.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Pawn of Prophecy: The Belgariad, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By David Eddings
    • Narrated By Cameron Beierle
    Overall
    (1704)
    Performance
    (936)
    Story
    (957)

    Long ago, so the Storyteller claimed, the evil god Torak sought dominion and drove men and Gods to war. But Belgrath the Sorcerer led men to reclaim the Orb that protected the West. So long as it lay at Riva, the prophecy went, men would be safe. That was only a story, and Garion did not believe in magic dooms, even though the man without a shadow had haunted him for years.

    Michael says: "My literary "comfort food""
    "Better than The Lord of the Rings"
    Overall

    Faster paced, less "English," and more complex.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Early Autumn

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Robert B. Parker
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (93)
    Performance
    (58)
    Story
    (58)

    A bitter divorce is only the beginning. First the father hires thugs to kidnap his son. Then the mother hires Spenser to get the boy back. But as soon as Spenser senses the lay of the land, he decides to do some kidnapping of his own.

    bebe says: "a very good Spencer novel"
    "Probably the best Spenser book"
    Overall

    Spenser is hired by Patty Giacomin to find and retrieve her son, Paul, who has been abducted by her ex-husband. Spenser soon realizes that 15-year-old Paul is being used as a weapon in a fierce and unrelenting battle between the Giacomins, neither of whom actually care much about him. Spenser decides to take care of the boy himself, and to attempt to teach him to become autonomous. This creates a certain amount of tension between Spenser and Susan, and a certain amount of danger for Spenser, who discovers that Mel Giacomin has mob connections.

    Most of book contains two story lines: Spenser's efforts to find a way to get Paul out of the battle between his parents, and his teaching of Paul to become an independent person at a very young age.

    In my opinion, the best part of the story is the work of Spenser to teach young Paul how to deal with the disasters of his family life and prevent them from consuming him.

    If you like Spenser, you should find this book very enjoyable; swiftly paced, well-written, and full of telling and enjoyable details.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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