Newly elected, Jack Ryan has found that being President is not easy: domestic pitfalls await him at every turn; there's a revolution in Liberia; the Asian economy is going down the tubes; and now, in Moscow, someone may have tried to assassinate the chairman of the SVR - the former KGB - with a rocket-propelled grenade. Were the potential assassins political enemies, the Russian Mafia, or disaffected former KGB? Or is something far more dangerous at work here? While Ryan dispatches his most trusted eyes and ears, including black ops specialist John Clark, to find out the truth of the matter, forces in China are moving ahead with a plan of truly audacious proportions. If they succeed, the world will never look the same again.
©2009 Tom Clancy (P)2010 Random House
This is a very good Clancy story. Lots of intriguing inside baseball detail about the inner workings of the CIA. However, the narration made it almost unlistenable. It sounds like every sentence in the book - no, every phrase - was recorded seperately and spliced together. It is so disjointed and emotionless that it took me the entire first part to get used to it. It is comically bad, especially when compared to the Clancy stuff done by Lou Diamond Phillps. I don't regret buying it because it is a good story, but it is painful to listen to...Buyer beware...
No, just more convenient.
Yes, though I feel
Since he reads slower than others (an advantage to me !): better focus on the story.
There are humorous moments and even a sense of irony !
I find Tom Clancy espionage and political stories enjoyable, though I feel more inclined towards Robert Littell, Frederick Forsyth, and John le Carre.
Contrary to several opinions expressed here, I find Michael Pritchard read good. Others, like Scott Brick may read faster and, perhaps, involve themselves more into the story, but I personally am satisfied with Michael's narration. There is enough voice modulation and intonation to provide for an enjoyable listening experience. Pronouncing foreign (non-English) names (different accent !) is not often easy for English readers, but Michael's effort is commendable.
Michael Pritchard has the wrong voice for audiobooks, looking forward to Lou Diamond Philips in Dead or Alive.
As is evidenced by my other reviews, I'm hardly a book critic or a literary connoisseur, but I sure do love me some Jack Ryan. The plot arc that starts in Sum of Fears finds ends well in The Bear and the Dragon.
It appears that several of these Jack Ryan books are available in duplicate versions, ones read by Scott Brick and one by Michael Pritchard. I enjoy both authors, but suggest that as much as you can, stick to one narrator or the other; it does greatly help with the flow.
I have been listening to audio books, in one medium or another, since 1990, and I can say that this narrator should retire.
I seen other reviews for other books where people have said the narrator was horrible. But I still got the book because I liked the author. But although the narrator was bad, I was able to muddle through.
But Michael Prichard is 10 times worse. I'm not trying to be mean, but it's like he doesn't even care. He just reads the words so he can get his paycheck.
If you don't believe me or think I'm just being cruel, just look at the reviews for some of the other Clancy books that Prichard does. I'm not the only one that finds Prichard unbearable.
And to the publisher, if you are wondering why repeat sales of the Clancy books are so low, this is why. Please find a new narrator to redo the Clancy books. I love Clancy, but I'm not sitting through another book read by Prichard.
I've been reading Clancy's books for many years, and I always look forward to the next John Ryan book in the series. This one was a big disappointment, for a few major reasons:
1.) Weak Plot: most Clancy novels are chess games, with a good portion of the book devoted to maneuvering pieces into place, then pitting them against each other in a big battle at the end (but with lots of technical details and some character work thrown in for good measure). This one felt like a LOT of maneuvering with a relatively boring payoff in the end.
2.) Too Preachy: the author's conservative biases (which have always been a part of his books) came through quite a bit louder in this novel than I've noticed in others. I heard notes of homophobia, pro-life ranting, and racism. In the past, I've chalked these up to the prejudices of each character (which are unavoidable, of course) but this time it felt like the author's own biases coming through... it was honestly uncomfortable enough that I'm not sure if I'll read another of his books.
3.) Mediocre Narration: I wouldn't call him a "bad" narrator, but his voice often enhanced the boring-ness of the plot.
Overall, this one was a slog for me. I'm ready for my next listen to be something both exciting and engaging.
I absolutely love my audible account, makes its from enjoying a book to loving the stories found in the books. Do forgive my errors in the reviews i do have dyslexia but i will share my love with everyone
The former nation of the USSR is now weak, struggling, and trying to survive the collapse of Communism, but they have luck, the struck gold, literally. with a huge gold mine and a oil well big enough to rival the middle east the new Russian nation has high hopes. but so does the PRC.
In the final novel of the Ryan universe Tom Clancy makes it worth it. old KGB enemies are working together with CIA men. the elite NATO team of Rainbow six goes to Russia to help train the Russian military in counter terrorism.
many of our old friends in his whole series come back to help out and we end with a few laughs, cries and we know the world is safe.
tom clancy tried to write a few years later with another novel but gave up before finishing the story.
I enjoy counter-terrorism, westerns, historical fiction, detective mysteries, and old school comedy like "A Christmas Story".
Intriguing read of "what if" post cold war Russia, China, and the U.S.accidentally moved into a sudden war. I loved all the detailed plot development into leadership decisions behind the public awareness. The narrator is monotone and takes away from the story enjoyment; however, the story was so strong I managed to love this novel. Sadly, I will never purchase another audio book narrated by Michael Prichard. It is just too difficult a listen. Nonetheless, I loved Tom Clancy's story. It was fantastic.
Largely good mindless entertainment, though it takes an attentive brain to track the multiple plot lines that you KNOW will "coincidentally" come together. Plot gets a bit convoluted and is rather predictable but if international spy/military action is your mood, then the predictability works. Narrator does a better job with this one than the previous novel in the series -- more modulation of the voice. This one is less about Ryan in role and character development. Includes pretty strong pro-life politics along with trashing Chinese communist leadership. For the digital world in which we now live, the computer and communications is a bit quaint, but adds to the plot and action really well. I got tired of the continual stereotyped racial name calling and labels, and it seemed more liberally dotted with 4 letter words and sexually oriented expletives etc. Ok Ok boys will be boys, but it got pretty juvenile. All this said, it was a fun listen and kept me well engaged.
This story is about Russia, China, and the USA , human rights and the treatment of citizens...a whole lot of history, and predictions for the future.
The story highlights ... Greed, a country on the fringe of becoming economically stable, and unusuall alliances ... Something here for all readers...lots of emotional flares... And vulnerablity by strong people.
Worth a credit any day
Michael Prichard turns in a great job reading
"Repetitive and turgid story"
This book was a real disappointment with a mediocre reader. He made no attempt to give accents to the different characters so it was hard to know if it was supposed to be a Chinese or Russian speaking.
It's very repetitive and the dialogue is clunky. Don't bother with this one.
"If its available in abridged form go for that."
Tom Clancy books make good films. This was hard going. This one couldn't be classed as fast paced!!
"The Bear and the Dragon - Fabulous listening!"
The Bear and the Dragon, like many Tom Clancy novels is one that you don’t want to put down or, in this case, turn off. While I normally listen to audiobooks in the car, this was one that got unhooked and taken with me. It’s hard to believe that this is nearly forty three hours of audio, the plot is so gripping it certainly doesn’t feel that long. Most of the storyline is perhaps all too believable in today’s world, with just a few elements stretching the imagination. Then again, if it didn’t stretch the imagination it might not be such an entertaining listen. Michael Prichard’s narration is excellent, well paced and clear. This is a great story and very good value. Thoroughly recommended.
A cracking listen, complicated storyline and well crafted characters (new ones as well as old ones), thoroughly enjoyed the lisen, Id recommend it to anyone. I listen to my audible books whilst working night shift and, for once, didnt want work to end as it meant waiting for the next "installment". Even though you knew the good guys would save the world, it was still a good story.
"The Bear and the Dragon"
I read this a long time ago, and loved it then. I loved listening to it just as much.
what a lovely way to pass the ironing.
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