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Robert

Champaign, IL, United States
  • 34
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  • 56
  • helpful votes
  • 230
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  • A Deadly Wandering

  • A Tale of Tragedy and Redemption in the Age of Attention
  • By: Matt Richtel
  • Narrated by: Fred Berman
  • Length: 12 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 164
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 144
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 144

An ordinary Utah college student named Reggie Shaw fatally strikes two rocket scientists while texting and driving. Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter Matt Richtel follows Reggie from the moment of the tragedy, through the police investigation, the state's groundbreaking prosecution, and ultimately, Reggie's wrenching admission of responsibility. Richtel parallels Reggie's journey with leading-edge scientific findings regarding human attention and the impact of technology on our brains.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Required Reading

  • By Ann on 05-15-15

Important story

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-11-18

The story of the consequences of inattention while driving, from a single tragic case to the science behind inattention, is an important one This book was well researched, if at times a bit overwhelming in details.

  • The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O.

  • A Novel
  • By: Neal Stephenson, Nicole Galland
  • Narrated by: Laurence Bouvard, Shelley Atkinson, Laural Merlington, and others
  • Length: 24 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 5,015
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,651
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4,638

From best-selling author Neal Stephenson and critically acclaimed historical and contemporary commercial novelist Nicole Galland comes a captivating and complex near-future thriller combining history, science, magic, mystery, intrigue, and adventure that questions the very foundations of the modern world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Really, really fun

  • By Lovisa on 08-05-17

Read, maybe but listen, no!

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-03-18

The basic plot, that magic was an integral part of the world until 1851 when it suddenly ceased, and that a secret government organization is trying to bring it back in present day is solid and provides an inexhaustible supply of subplots. I have two criticisms. One is that given the structure of the story, that it is derived from personal journals and official documents, there are times when it is extremely tedious to listen to as the narrator must read the dates and numerous times of certain documents whereas someone reading the book could just skim over this. There are times I wanted to scream listening to this. The second is that the ending leaves most plot lines unresolved thus forcing us to wait for a presumed sequel. This was not clear at the beginning and I thought this was stand alone book.

  • Educated

  • A Memoir
  • By: Tara Westover
  • Narrated by: Julia Whelan
  • Length: 12 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 4,961
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4,578
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 4,550

Tara Westover was 17 the first time she set foot in a classroom. Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, she prepared for the end of the world by stockpiling home-canned peaches and sleeping with her "head-for-the-hills bag". In the summer she stewed herbs for her mother, a midwife and healer, and in the winter she salvaged in her father's junkyard. Her father forbade hospitals, so Tara never saw a doctor or nurse. Gashes and concussions, even burns from explosions, were all treated at home with herbalism.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Gripping Read

  • By Mel on 04-06-18

Educated means many things.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-02-18

This memoir of a woman who grew up isolated on a mountain in Idaho in a household dominated by a bipolar Mormon fundamentalist is excellent. As her father had a paranoid fear of the government, she didn’t attend school and had minimal homeschooling. As her father didn’t believe in doctors, all treatment was homeopathic, even some horrendous injuries. Watching her develop from a child to adulthood was fascinating. I do want to give away too much detail, just read it!

  • The Alice Network

  • A Novel
  • By: Kate Quinn
  • Narrated by: Saskia Maarleveld
  • Length: 15 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,068
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,100
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,046

In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She's also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • We are standing on the shoulders of giants...

  • By Marie on 02-25-18

Pluses and minuses

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-04-17

The core of this book is the real WWI spy network run by Louise de Bettignies, aka Alice Dubois, chronicled in "The Queen of Spies" by Major Thomas Coulson published in 1935 and other sources. The addition of a post WWII timeline that eventually ties to the basic story had more potential than realized because at times overly maudlin.

  • All These Worlds

  • Bobiverse, Book 3
  • By: Dennis E. Taylor
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 7 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 30,641
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 28,683
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28,605

Being a sentient spaceship really should be more fun. But after spreading out through space for almost a century, Bob and his clones just can't stay out of trouble. They've created enough colonies so humanity shouldn't go extinct. But political squabbles have a bad habit of dying hard, and the Brazilian probes are still trying to take out the competition. And the Bobs have picked a fight with an older, more powerful species with a large appetite and a short temper.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Clean ending to a fantastic series

  • By Virgil on 08-08-17

Don't start

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-06-17

At some point in each of the books of this trilogy I decided it wasn't worth continuing. I'm not sure why I finished it but would recommend not even starting. The best plot was well conceived and the subplots were often good but the writing is generally trite and the reader makes it worse.

  • Extracted

  • Extracted, Book 1
  • By: R. R. Haywood
  • Narrated by: Carl Prekopp
  • Length: 12 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,681
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,499
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,490

In 2061 a young scientist invents a time machine to fix a tragedy in his past. But his good intentions turn catastrophic when an early test reveals something unexpected: the end of the world. A desperate plan is formed: recruit three heroes, ordinary humans capable of extraordinary things, and change the future.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Fast-Food Science Fiction

  • By Kurt Schwoppe on 04-07-17

Better as a single volume

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-17-17

Would you try another book from R. R. Haywood and/or Carl Prekopp?

No

What was most disappointing about R. R. Haywood’s story?

With a solid plot (team formed of people from different time periods extracted at the point of their death using a time machine whose goal is to prevent a future apocalypse), and initially good character development, this story sadly severely bogged down as the writer tried to create enough material to fill Book 1 without really advancing the plot much. I would not recommend starting this series.

What character would you cut from Extracted?

The author!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Immortal Irishman

  • The Irish Revolutionary Who Became an American Hero
  • By: Timothy Egan
  • Narrated by: Gerard Doyle
  • Length: 14 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,888
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,733
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,727

The Irish-American story, with all its twists and triumphs, is told through the improbable life of one man. A dashing young orator during the Great Famine of the 1840s, in which a million of his Irish countrymen died, Thomas Francis Meagher led a failed uprising against British rule, for which he was banished to a Tasmanian prison colony. He escaped and six months later was heralded in the streets of New York - the revolutionary hero, back from the dead, at the dawn of the great Irish immigration to America.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • What A Life!

  • By Carrie Arnold on 03-29-16

Disappointing

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-02-17

Would you try another book from Timothy Egan and/or Gerard Doyle?

I might as this was well written and well read BUT I gave this only two stars as I think the title character Thomas Meagher was a tragic person not worthy of being called immortal. While clearly a brilliant orator, he used his skills for doomed causes- the Young Ireland Rebellion of 1848 the most glaring example.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Code Name Verity

  • By: Elizabeth Wein
  • Narrated by: Morven Christie, Lucy Gaskell
  • Length: 10 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,974
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,396
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,378

Code Name Verity is a compelling, emotionally rich story with universal themes of friendship and loyalty, heroism and bravery. Two young women from totally different backgrounds are thrown together during World War II: one a working-class girl from Manchester, the other a Scottish aristocrat, one a pilot, the other a wireless operator. Yet whenever their paths cross, they complement each other perfectly and before long become devoted friends. But then a vital mission goes wrong....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Haunting, Beautiful, Exquisite, Special Book

  • By Suzn F on 07-21-13

Excellent for young adult to senior!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-15-16

If you could sum up Code Name Verity in three words, what would they be?

Intriguing and heart warming

Who was your favorite character and why?

Julie- clever and courageous

What does Morven Christie and Lucy Gaskell bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Superbly read

If you could take any character from Code Name Verity out to dinner, who would it be and why?

Julie- great conversationalist

Any additional comments?

While listed as a young adult novel, I'm 68 yo and thoroughly enjoyed it. Well written and well read.

  • The Girl Who Wrote in Silk

  • By: Kelli Estes
  • Narrated by: Emily Woo Zeller
  • Length: 12 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,078
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,800
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,803

Inara Erickson is exploring her deceased aunt's island estate when she finds an elaborately stitched piece of fabric hidden in the house. As she peels back layer upon layer of the secrets it holds, Inara's life becomes interwoven with that of Mei Lein, a young Chinese girl mysteriously driven from her home a century before. Through the stories Mei Lein tells in silk, Inara uncovers a tragic truth that will shake her family to its core - and force her to make an impossible choice.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Is it me?

  • By Amazon Customer on 06-14-16

Overly sentimental

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-26-16

Interesting story interweaving a late 19th century timeline with the present day highlighting the severe anti-Chinese racism of the late 1800s. However in my mind overly sentimental to the point of that at times distracting from the story.

  • History's Greatest Voyages of Exploration

  • By: Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius
  • Length: 11 hrs and 59 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,004
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 913
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 904

Mutiny. Disease. Starvation. Cannibals. From the ancient wayfarers to modern astronauts, world explorers have blazed trails fraught with danger. Yet, as History's Greatest Voyages of Exploration vividly demonstrates, exploration continues to be one of humanity's deepest impulses. Across 24 lectures that unveil the process by which we came to know the far reaches of our planet, you'll witness the awe-inspiring and surprisingly interconnected tale of global exploration.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Captivating from start to finish!

  • By Quaker on 04-19-15

Great review

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-20-16

Any additional comments?

Excellent review of important voyages of exploration from antiquity to modern times. My only (minor) complaint is the professor's determination to pronounce every name in the language of that person rather than English. At times sounds forced and is annoying.