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Wayne

Matthews, NC
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  • The Enigma of Reason

  • By: Hugo Mercier, Dan Sperber
  • Narrated by: Liam Gerrard
  • Length: 14 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 40
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 35
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 33

Reason, we are told, is what makes us human, the source of our knowledge and wisdom. If reason is so useful, why didn't it also evolve in other animals? If reason is that reliable, why do we produce so much thoroughly reasoned nonsense? In their groundbreaking account of the evolution and workings of reason, Hugo Mercier and Dan Sperber set out to solve this double enigma.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • reason is flawed but purposefully so

  • By Log Jammin on 12-11-17

Interesting, but boringly redundant

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

Reviewed: 05-22-18

Let's start with narration which is not very good. On the other hand I doubt that any other narrator could have done better with the circular redundancy of this book. There really is nothing new here. The final chapter which is 20 minutes in length summarizes the authors' positions on reason and reasoning well and is adequate. Worthwhile? Yes, but more so with far less verbiage.

  • The Case of the Antiquities Collector

  • A Joey Mancuso, Father O'Brian Crime Mystery
  • By: Owen Parr
  • Narrated by: Fred Filbrich
  • Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 4

Retired NYPD homicide detective Joey Mancuso and his half brother, Father Dominic O'Brian, are hired to find a Greenwich, Connecticut, young lady abducted from her dorm at the University of Miami. Working from their investigative offices located inside Captain O'Brian's Irish Pub & Cigar Bar, located in the Financial District of Manhattan, the brothers are about to find out there is more to this than a simple abduction.  

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Mancuso and O'Brian solve another one...

  • By shelley on 05-20-18

Another suspense mystery winner from Owen Parr!

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

Reviewed: 05-21-18

Owen Parr's Mancuso and O'Brian crime mystery series is about a private investigations business. The Case of the Antiques Collector is the 4th novel in this 5 star series. The protagonists are half brothers (same mother). Joey Mancuso is an unconventional former NYPD detective with the best case clearance record in department history. His brother and partner is Catholic priest Father Dominic O'Brian who inherited the family business, Captain O'Brian's Irish Pub and Cigar Bar in Manhattan, which is also the office of their PI business. This series is among the best, and may be THE best, modern detective mystery series currently available. The books are standalone, but I recommend listening to them in order. Narration is stellar.

This series has my HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION!!

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • The Organ Takers: A Novel of Surgical Suspense

  • The McBride Trilogy Series, Book 1
  • By: Richard Van Anderson
  • Narrated by: Joel Richards
  • Length: 10 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 2

Failed surgeon David McBride is in exile from the surgical community after making a costly error in judgment. Down but not out, he perseveres and is given a second chance to establish a career in surgery. But, as McBride stands on the threshold of a new life, the malignant underside of his fellow man intervenes. Under the threat of violence, David is forced to perform illegal organ harvests in a makeshift operating room hidden in a dilapidated meatpacking warehouse in lower Manhattan. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • WOW, that was intense!

  • By Wayne on 05-21-18

WOW, that was intense!

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

Reviewed: 05-21-18

The author is a ex heart surgeon who is is now an author of medical thrillers. The Organ Takes is Book 1 of the David McBride Trilogy. The suspense is incredible. The novel was first published in 2014 and was made available in audio format last week. Books 2 and 3 in the series are already available in various formats and should be released soon in audio format. The publisher's summary is excellent but tells a bit more than I prefer. Joel Richards narrates very well indeed.

The Organ Takers is a standalone, but it does end in a mild cliffhanger. This novel has my Highest Recommendation.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Retreat

  • By: Mark Edwards
  • Narrated by: Simon Mattacks
  • Length: 9 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28

Two years ago, Julia lost her family in a tragic accident. Her husband drowned trying to save their daughter, Lily, in the river near their rural home. But the little girl’s body was never found - and Julia believes Lily is somehow still alive. Alone and broke, Julia opens her house as a writers’ retreat. One of the first guests is Lucas, a horror novelist, who becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to Lily. But within days of his arrival, the peace of the retreat is shattered by a series of eerie events.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Better than I expected!

  • By Wayne on 05-20-18

Better than I expected!

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

Reviewed: 05-20-18

The protagonist, Lucas, is a writer who goes to a secluded new writer's retreat on the River Dee in the north of Wales. I'm not a fan of author Mark Edwards whose writing is horribly inconsistent except for the excellent suspense novels he has coauthored with Louise Voss. I usually skip his books of which he is the sole author, but my wife and I lived in Chester, England in a flat on the River Dee during the mid-1990's while my job took our plants England and the north of Wales . I have also visited the north of Wales for extended stays many times beginning in 1974 and ending when I retired 30 years later and have a strong fondness for the area and the people there. The border between England and Wales in the Chester area is defined by the River Dee before it cuts westward into Wales.

The quality of this psychological thriller, The Retreat, is unusually good compared to most of Mark Edwards novels. The narration is better than the novel.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Bandwidth

  • By: Eliot Peper
  • Narrated by: P. J. Ochlan
  • Length: 9 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 57
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 54
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 52

A rising star at a preeminent political lobbying firm, Dag Calhoun represents the world’s most powerful technology and energy executives. But when a close brush with death reveals that the influence he wields makes him a target, impossible cracks appear in his perfect life. Like everyone else, Dag relies on his digital feed for everything - a feed that is as personal as it is pervasive, and may not be as private as it seems. As he struggles to make sense of the dark forces closing in on him, he discovers that activists are hijacking the feed to manipulate markets and governments.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • What. A. Ride. Peper’s Best Yet!

  • By Brian on 05-01-18

This novel made me think!

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

Reviewed: 05-20-18

On the positive side it made me think about if Google or Facebook could become the global political powerhouse that CommonWealth is in this novel. CommonWealth controls publicly available information to the point it is more powerful than any government and threatens to become the world government. The strongest part of the novel is the author's short afterward.

Bandwidth also made me think about:
1. How Audible could classify near-term political science fiction as suspense mystery/thriller.
2. How any listener could rate Bandwidth 4 star or 5 star.
3. How smart the author was to make Bandwidth free with Kindle Unlimited.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Sacrifice

  • By: Peg Brantley
  • Narrated by: Nick J. Russo
  • Length: 7 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 9
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 8

Former lawman Mex Anderson is trying to cope with the horrific murders of his family as best he can. Moving from his small, Mexican town to the snowy mountains of Colorado has helped, however it seems nothing can ever take away the gut-wrenching pain of his loss. When the head of the drug cartel responsible for the killings approaches him with an offer that would reveal the individuals behind the murders, it might lead to the one thing that would allow Mex to heal: revenge.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The first Mex Anderson thriller

  • By Wayne on 05-19-18

The first Mex Anderson thriller

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

Reviewed: 05-19-18

The Sacrifice is a rock solid suspense mystery. I wish I had listened to it before Trafficked, the second Mex Anderson thriller. Trafficked is a better novel easily earning 5 stars, but it can be painful to read or listen to due to the topic. With The Sacrifice and Trafficked author Peg Brantley has written two excellent suspense mystery/thrillers demonstrating that she is a rising star of the genre. I look forward to her future novels.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • How It Happened

  • By: Michael Koryta
  • Narrated by: Robert Petkoff, Christine Lakin
  • Length: 10 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 37
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 35
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 36

 Kimberly Crepeaux is no good, a notorious jailhouse snitch, teen mother, and heroin addict whose petty crimes are well known to the rural Maine community where she lives. So when she confesses to her role in the brutal murders of Jackie Pelletier and Ian Kelly, the daughter of a well-known local family and her sweetheart, the locals have little reason to believe her story.  

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Don't Judge a book by it's cover!

  • By shelley on 05-16-18

Excellent suspense thriller!

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

Reviewed: 05-18-18

After reading the publisher's summary which contains multiple plot spoilers I almost skipped listening to this novel. But as a fan of Michael Koryta since his 2004 novel Tonight I Said Goodbye which he wrote while a college undergrad, I decided to listen. Koryta's first four novels were in his Lincoln Perry series and all were outstanding. Except for his two novel Mark Novak all of his other novels including this one and six others have been standalone. Koryta has frustrated me by his use of the paranormal (mostly ghosts) in four of his novels. In each case the paranormal had no impact whatever of the story.

How It Happened is a excellent homicide thriller about an FBI agent who believed a girls story about two murders despite her lack of credibility. The agent shows remarkable tenacity. Robert Petkofff narrates the novel brilliantly. The female narrator had a much smaller part and was not very good. My 5 star rating is for Petkoff.

I have rated the story 4 stars rather than 5 due to plot spoilers in the publisher's summary. I suspect the author likely wrote the summary.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Donald J. Trump

  • A President like No Other
  • By: Conrad Black, Victor Davis Hanson - foreword
  • Narrated by: Tom Parks
  • Length: 8 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 9

Conrad Black, bestselling author of Franklin Delano Roosevelt: Champion of Freedom and Richard M. Nixon: A Life in Full, turns his attention to his "friend" President Donald J. Trump and provides the most intriguing and significant analysis yet of Trump's political rise. Ambitious in intellectual scope, contrarian in many of its opinions, and admirably concise, this is surely set to be one of the most provocative political books you are likely to listen to this year.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Balanced perspective of our president!

  • By Wayne on 05-18-18

Balanced perspective of our president!

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

Reviewed: 05-18-18

Author Conrad Black writes with some authority in Donald J. Trump: A President like No Other because he is well acquainted with the man. He goes through Trump's adult life with brutal honesty about his personal weaknesses and mistakes as well as his strengths and successes. He discusses Trump's determination, hard work, and extraordinary energy, self confidence, crudeness, and audacity. He discusses his bankruptcies and near bankruptcies as well as his marriages and his cheating. Black readily admits the Donald Trump routinely overstates his accomplishments but calls them exaggerations rather than lies. Trump's commitment to and easy association with working class Americans is explained as is his very real patriotism. This book covers his Republican primary campaign and the general election campaign. He calls Trump unsuave. Black, who is not a US citizen, explains why he believes Donald Trump is the best possible president for this time in US history. Finally he covers President Trump's very real successes as president despite attempts by traditional Republicans, the entire Democrat Party, the administrative state, left wing judges, and the mainstream media to derail him. Finally Conrad Black makes the case that Trump is no more crude or disliked than Harry Truman, Lyndon Johnson, or Richard Nixon. Along the way Black makes the case that Trump's business experience provided him with excellent preparation for the US presidency.

I've read many of Conrad Black's highly polished columns as well as his historical biographies. He tends to use a lot of big words and to adopt a sophisticated style consistent with his wealthy upbringing and education and his unusual ease and competence with the formal English language. His approach with this book is very different; he writes using everyday English.

A note about the author: Conrad Black himself was a target of an overzealous US federal prosecutor ending up being convicted of various crimes related to business dealings and spending over three years in US federal prisons. He finished serving his prison time in 2011. He is a Canadian by birth and a British citizen by choice. He currently lives in Canada.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Her Last Word

  • By: Mary Burton
  • Narrated by: Brittany Pressley
  • Length: 10 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 115
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 98
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 98

Fourteen years ago, Kaitlin Roe was the lone witness to the abduction of her cousin Gina. She still remembers that lonely Virginia road. She can still see the masked stranger and hear Gina’s screams. And she still suffers the guilt of running away in fear and resents being interrogated as a suspect in the immediate aftermath. Now Kaitlin has only one way to assuage the pain and nightmares—by interviewing everyone associated with the unsolved crime for a podcast that could finally bring closure to a case gone cold.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good Procedural as I would expect from Mary Burton

  • By shelley on 05-11-18

Good suspense mystery!

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

Reviewed: 05-17-18

Listening was worth the time it took, but Her Last Word is not a special novel. Narration was just barely 3 star.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Good Twin

  • By: Marti Green
  • Narrated by: Dara Rosenberg
  • Length: 8 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13

Mallory Holcolm is an unfulfilled waitress and aspiring artist living in a Queens boardinghouse when she learns she has an identical twin sister named Charly she never knew existed. Charly is a Princeton graduate, a respected gallery owner, and an heiress married to her handsome college sweetheart, Ben. Charly got everything she ever wanted. Everything Mallory wanted, too. And now it might be easier than Mallory ever imagined. Because Ben has reasons of his own for wanting to help her. It begins with his startling proposal. All Mallory has to do is say yes. A chilling deception is about to become a dangerous double cross.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Fast paced, some surprises, a little predictable...

  • By shelley on 05-18-18

I enjoyed The Good Twin!

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

Reviewed: 05-16-18

I've read or listened to all of Marti Green's legal thrillers and enjoyed each without exception. The Good Twin is a clever suspense thriller about two identical twin girls separated at birth. One twin was raised by her single mother and the other was adopted by a very wealthy conventional family. The novel has some interesting plot twists. I considered a 5 star rating but cannot justify it; however The Good Twin is an excellent suspense thriller that I do recommend. Narration by Dara Rosenberg was irritating as the novel began, but quickly improved.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful