As Earth's ability to support human life begins to diminish at an alarming rate, the Global Space Agency is formed with a single mandate: protect humanity from extinction by colonizing the solar system as quickly as possible. Venus, being almost the same mass as Earth, is chosen over Mars as humanity's first permanent steppingstone into the universe. Arik Ockley is part of the first generation to be born and raised off-Earth.
I enjoyed the first 90% of the book very much, but I felt the ending was premature. I wanted the book to go so much farther than it did. The premise is good and the setup was well-thought-out. The peak in the drama happens and then... the book ends. There are questions un-answered and everything is in a state of turmoil at the end. It's been out for long enough that it's unlikely the author planned a sequel. So it lost a star, even though I was anticipating a 5 star review for most of the book.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
The faerie Magpie Windwitch, granddaughter of the West Wind, flies over the ocean with her small flock of crows. Ill-advised sailors all too often open bottles floating near their ships, and Magpie has vowed to recapture the devils released upon the world from their sea-borne containers. But there is one bottle in which a great menace was trapped by the ancient Djinn King, and when this bottle is opened, the evil of the Blackbringer threatens to engulf the world.
I am writing this review having read the second book in the series already so I can look back with that perspective in mind. I enjoyed this book, although I've already read Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone series and this was not as good. It did set up an interesting world of fairies, though, and the second book builds on that. So if you enjoyed this book, go ahead and get the next one, it's even better. I'm looking forward to the rest of the series.
Windwitch, the Djinn King's Champion, is on their trail, intent on finding Whisper before the devils do. It's a desperate quest, because if the Azazel should die, the Tapestry of Creation will fail, and all life with it.
I enjoyed this book very much. At the beginning I was afraid that this book would do what some sequels do and focus primarily on a different character than the one we'd come to love in the first book, but it came back around to the characters we already knew and simply added a few more. My only complaint is with the narration - this book switched narrators from the first book, which is always a jolt since the voices change, but this narrator did a pretty good job with the voices. My problem was with some of the more drama-laden sections, she over-read them as you'd imagine a preschool teacher might, infusing her voice with a bit too much surprise/fear/etc. It irked me a bit. But overall it wasn't that big a deal and it was an enjoyable listen.
Florentyna Kane has finally become the first woman president in America. But on the very day that she is sworn into office, powerful forces are already in motion to take her life. The FBI investigates 1000s of false threats every year. This time, a reliable source has tipped them off about an assassination attempt. One hour later, the informant and all but one of the investigating agents are dead. The lone survivor: FBI Special Agent Mark Andrews. Now, only he knows when the killers will strike. But how can he alone unravel a ruthless conspiracy - in less than one week?
I've long been a fan of Jeffery Archer books, but I found this one to be a major miss by this usually reliable author. First of all, if you're considering buying it because it's the third book in the Kane and Abel series, stop now. It's really not related to Kane and Abel and the Prodigal Daughter at all. I read after the fact that it was originally supposed to be a stand-alone book, but was changed to be about Florentyna Kane because of the success of the first two books in that series. And about the plot itself, it was formulaic with no big surprises. It also managed to be confusing at times, hard to follow who did what. There were long sections of prose that should have been cut by a judicious editor (we literally listened to the main character picking out clothes one day... Should I wear a black suit? no, how about double breasted, yes, that's in style. Now for a tie, red or blue?). And the love story in the book is totally unbelievable with no foundation and very little chemistry between the characters. The best I can say is that the book was not so bad that I stopped listening before the end. The narration was okay, but sometimes it felt like even the narrator couldn't build up enough enthusiasm to inject energy into the story. Her voice was soporific and made me feel like I was laying on a couch listening to a psychologist talk. In sum, go find a different Jeffery Archer book to read and give this one a pass.
Emma Gatewood told her family she was going on a walk and left her small Ohio hometown with a change of clothes and less than $200. The next anybody heard from her, this genteel, farm-reared, 67-year-old great-grandmother had walked 800 miles along the 2,050-mile Appalachian Trail. And in September 1955, atop Maine's Mount Katahdin, she sang the first verse of "America, the Beautiful" and proclaimed, "I said I'll do it, and I've done it."
Despite being interested in the AT for years, I'd only peripherally heard about Grandma Gatewood so it was great to hear more of her backstory. The details of her hike were necessarily scant - she's dead, so couldn't be interviewed directly, and her notebook didn't contain the kind of day-to-day minutia that some people were looking for. I thought the author did a good job of piecing together the details of her hike as well as he could. He obviously did a lot of research and interviewed a lot of people in preparation to write. The story does jump around in time a bit and while I think there could have been better roadmarks from time to time, I didn't really have trouble following. My only real complaint is that he seems to have put in everything he came across. It's not a terribly long book - maybe he was trying to flesh it out. I enjoyed hearing a poem she wrote, for instance, but by the time we were hearing the 3rd or 4th of her poems (unrelated to the AT), I was over them. Unlike many of the reviewers, I enjoyed hearing some of the history of the trail. I don't think that part was over-done. But I could have done without hearing the story of the author's re-tracing her last climb and how his wife twisted her ankle and had to change footwear - that seemed totally superfluous to the story. In sum, it was an enjoyable listen, but I listened at increased playback speed and won't be reading it again.
Living on her family’s gorgeous lakeside estate in Cornwall, England, Alice Edevane is a bright, clever, inquisitive, innocent, and precociously talented fourteen-year-old who loves to write stories. But the mysteries she pens are no match for the one her family is about to endure ...One midsummer’s eve, after a beautiful party drawing hundreds of guests to the estate has ended, the Edevanes discover that their youngest son, Theo, has vanished without a trace.
I am not a fan of the mystery genre as a general rule. Either I can predict the twists in the story before they happen and spot the culprit the first time I meet him/her or the ending comes so far from left field that it feels unsatisfying. This book was a pleasant surprise. There were several plot twists that I did not see coming, but they also did not come out of nowhere. The characters were likable and I was invested in their story. As far as the performance, it was easy to listen to and the inflection and emotion were good. My only complaint is that the different characters didn't have very distinct "voices"... There are narrators who use such distinct tones and accents that I can tell who is talking immediately and this book was not like that, but it did not detract from the story, which was a very enjoyable read.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful
London, 1759. After a high-society electric-eel party leads to a duel that ends badly, Lord John Grey feels the need to lie low for a while. Conveniently, before starting his new commission in His Majesty’s army, Lord John receives an urgent summons. An old friend from the military, Charlie Carruthers, is facing court-martial in Canada, and has called upon Lord John to serve as his character witness.
Grey voyages to the New World,a land rife with savages (many of them on his own side) and cleft by war.
I am a huge fan of the Outlander series. This story was not bad, Diana Gabaldon is a good storyteller, but it is not an Outlander book, it belongs to the Lord John series of books. It even has the same narrator as the Lord John series, not the narrator of the Outlander books. Since I have not read the Lord John books, the story was a novella about characters I didn't know (aside from Lord John). I kept waiting for it to come around to the Outlander storyline, but it never did. I assume they called it an "Outlander" novella since that series is more popular than the Lord John series, but I feel that doing that is a misleading way to try to encourage sales.
2 of 3 people found this review helpful
With The Barbarian Nurseries, Héctor Tobar gives our most misunderstood metropolis its great contemporary novel, taking us beyond the glimmer of Hollywood and deeper than camera-ready crime stories to reveal Southern California life as it really is, across its vast, sunshiny sprawl of classes, languages, dreams, and ambitions.
This is an interesting and engaging story which contains profound insight into the lives of illegal immigrants working in the USA. It doesn't feel so political that it's preachy and because the story is entertaining and multi-dimensional, it would be a good read for anyone, regardless of their point of view. The main character is relatable and flawed, but still sympathetic. I did have a couple of problems with the plot - I won't go into detail so as to not give spoilers, but there were some flimsy choices by everyone involved, but especially the main character, that I find it hard to believe any halfway intelligent person would make. My other main problem is that I don't speak Spanish and not all the Spanish language was translated, leaving me feeling that I was missing things on occasion, but they were not crucial to the story and were perhaps intentional to cause the reader to relate to a situation that many non-native-English speakers surely encounter daily. With those caveats, it's a thought-provoking book that captivated my attention from start to finish.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Is there a science to love? In this groundbreaking audiobook, psychiatrist and neuroscientist Amir Levine and psychologist Rachel S. F. Heller reveal how an understanding of attachment theory - the most advanced relationship science in existence today - can help us find and sustain love. Attachment theory forms the basis for many best-selling books on the parent/child relationship, but there has yet to be an accessible guide to what this fascinating science has to tell us about adult romantic relationships - until now.
I don't generally like "self-help" type books, but since this was a gift from Audible (i.e. free) and I'm in a serious relationship, I gave it a go. To my surprise, I enjoyed the book quite a bit and found many things I can use. It focuses on avoiding pitfalls in relationships, including falling into (or staying in) the wrong relationship for you and escalating problems instead of resolving them, all from the point of view of the type of attachment profile of the people in the relationship. At first I found the premise to be somewhat commonsensical, but as the explanations progressed, I found myself often thinking "a ha, I never thought of it that way." Although I felt the book over-simplified some interactions, it is a good jumping off point for any readers who have had relationship problems or find themselves occasionally thinking something like, "How the heck did this argument start, I didn't do anything wrong?" To be honest, a lot of the information was not really relevant to my romantic relationship, but it did have tips I can use with my partner and much of what they discuss can also be applied to the other important relationships in your life (friends, family, coworkers). Prepare to find yourself not only evaluating your own attachment profile, but looking around at the interactions of others with a new perspective.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
To live in a pristine land unchanged by man... to roam a wilderness through which few other humans have passed... to choose an idyllic site, cut trees and build a log cabin... to be a self-sufficient craftsman, making what is needed from materials available... to be not at odds with the world but content with one's own thoughts and company. Thousands have had such dreams, but Richard Proenneke lived them.
I enjoyed this story very much. I love to listen to stories about people carving their own place in nature and their adventures, successes, and problems. The story made me want to move to Alaska and try my own hand at building a cabin... until I remembered I'm more a car-camping type of person. I have two criticisms: 1. I didn't love the narrator, but he was okay, it's not something that detracted from my enjoyment, I just think there could be someone better. 2. I'd like to see ALL Audible books that have photo sections come with a pdf of the photos the way Bossypants and some others do. It's frustrating to know there are photos out there, but have to search on the web and hope you're finding the right ones.
3 of 4 people found this review helpful