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hermanous

Frederick, MD, United States
  • 54
  • reviews
  • 98
  • helpful votes
  • 143
  • ratings
  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Book 1

  • By: J.K. Rowling
  • Narrated by: Jim Dale
  • Length: 8 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 57,431
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 52,061
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 52,072

Harry Potter has never even heard of Hogwarts when the letters start dropping on the doormat at number four, Privet Drive. Addressed in green ink on yellowish parchment with a purple seal, they are swiftly confiscated by his grisly aunt and uncle. Then, on Harry's eleventh birthday, a great beetle-eyed giant of a man called Rubeus Hagrid bursts in with some astonishing news: Harry Potter is a wizard, and he has a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. An incredible adventure is about to begin!

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • My Sad, Sad Confession…

  • By Mike L Lane on 08-08-17

Great listen. Narrator meh

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

Reviewed: 01-13-17

The book is without question amazing, and I adore Rowling's sense of story.

Narrator is

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Fold

  • By: Peter Clines
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28,670
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26,742
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 26,699

The folks in Mike Erikson's small New England town would say he's just your average, everyday guy. And that's exactly how Mike likes it. Sure, the life he's chosen isn't much of a challenge to someone with his unique gifts, but he's content with his quiet and peaceful existence. That is, until an old friend presents him with an irresistible mystery, one that Mike is uniquely qualified to solve.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Star Trek: Q-Squared

  • By Jim "The Impatient" on 01-09-16

Interesting Premise. Failed Execution.

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

Reviewed: 02-01-16

Let's start off with what's good/interesting (without spoilers):

1. The idea of looking at an early "teleportation device" and how it handles folds in the universe is interesting, and how it is explored here -- its ramifications -- is interesting.

2. The main character has potential, in that he is, essentially a human computer, able to recollect and pieces information together to form a better picture of what is happening.

The two good points, above, however, are saddled by defects in execution. These include:

1. The author needs a better editor, especially with dialogue, which often tries to be too clever for its own good, pushing a laugh that isn't there, or simply sounding melodramatic.

2. Narrator has limited vocal range. His tempo can be annoying. His feminine voices are, well, bad.

3. While the main character has potential, he is a sanctimonious judgmental prick wrapped in a "gee I'm just a nice guy" persona. when you hope a character dies at the end of the story, it's generally not someone with whom you care about.

4. I don't think the author has gotten into the heads of his main characters. Things selected as what one might drink, for instance, is more an afterthought. But that's just one thing. Perhaps its better to say these are 2D characters needing to become 3D, and the author simply hasn't invested the time in developing these individuals.

5. Way too many pop culture references. A small handful? Fine. But over-reliance is a form of laziness. Why describe something grotesque in all its grotesqueness when instead the author can say, "it looks like the XXXXXX in the movie XXXXXX." Lazy. Damned lazy. The author should be ashamed.

6. More of an overused trope that I'm really getting tired of: the "trust me" trope. There are points in this book where one character needs to explain something of importance to the other character. First, it screws character development. Second, it's not realistic. Sharing information breeds trust. Not sharing information breeds suspicion. The author's use of this cries out in amateurish agony.

So, that's my take, at least.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Big Magic

  • Creative Living Beyond Fear
  • By: Elizabeth Gilbert
  • Narrated by: Elizabeth Gilbert
  • Length: 5 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15,095
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 13,450
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,373

Readers and listeners of all ages and walks of life have drawn inspiration and empowerment from Elizabeth Gilbert's books for years. Now this beloved author digs deep into her own generative process to share her wisdom and unique perspective about creativity. With profound empathy and radiant generosity, she offers potent insights into the mysterious nature of inspiration. She asks us to embrace our curiosity and let go of needless suffering.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Biggest Inspiration In a Long Time

  • By Gillian on 09-23-15

A fantastic meditation of the creative process

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

Reviewed: 11-03-15

What an amazing little book. I sucked this up in one entire sitting while doing my own art, then carrying it with me while I prepared dinner and then as I prepared to go to bed. I think it will be, for me, one of those books that I'll come to again, and again and again.

I've never encountered a book that is at once so level-headed while also being the warm embracing hug to that inner creative spirit. The author herself is the narrator and I think needed to be that way. She reads gloriously, heartfelt, and because she's written it, you can sense that it's coming not only from her heart but from her years of dedication to her craft.

  • Ready Player One

  • By: Ernest Cline
  • Narrated by: Wil Wheaton
  • Length: 15 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 181,423
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 169,512
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 169,159

At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I’m sorry I waited so long to read this book.

  • By Julie W. Capell on 05-27-14

Fun, Nostalgia, Geek-Friendly

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

Reviewed: 08-17-15

A wonderful book, very inventive and fun. Really loved not only the 80s references but how they are crucial to the book, almost forming its skeletal structure. Loved it.

  • Seveneves

  • A Novel
  • By: Neal Stephenson
  • Narrated by: Mary Robinette Kowal, Will Damron
  • Length: 31 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 15,450
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14,350
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 14,343

A catastrophic event renders the earth a ticking time bomb. In a feverish race against the inevitable, nations around the globe band together to devise an ambitious plan to ensure the survival of humanity far beyond our atmosphere, in outer space.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • So Much Potential

  • By Kurt Schwoppe on 06-08-17

Loved this book.

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

Reviewed: 07-03-15

Very gripping, and as someone who's not a scientist, all the science, which drove much of the book, was not only believable but conceivable.

The author should be credited for creating distinct personalities in key characters whose presence is felt through the entire book.

I don't want to divulge too much. It's a big book, but I was hooked the entire way.

  • Midnight Rising

  • John Brown and the Raid That Sparked the Civil War
  • By: Tony Horwitz
  • Narrated by: Dan Oreskes
  • Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 165
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 143
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 143

Plotted in secret, launched in the dark, John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry was a pivotal moment in U.S. history. But few Americans know the true story of the men and women who launched a desperate strike at the slaveholding South. Now, Midnight Rising portrays Brown's uprising in vivid color, revealing a country on the brink of explosive conflict. Brown, the descendant of New England Puritans, saw slavery as a sin against America's founding principles. Unlike most abolitionists, he was willing to take up arms, and in 1859 he prepared for battle at a hideout in Maryland....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Up from Obscurity

  • By Lynn on 06-18-12

Amazing Story

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

Reviewed: 09-06-14

Tony Horwitz' detailed account of the doomed raid that sparked the Civil War really is an amazing book. What I appreciated most were all the resources that the author availed of himself to paint a picture of John Brown that makes him less a "madman" and more detailed in three dimensions: resolute, not the best planner, earnest, honest, sincere in his beliefs. I think the rush to justice after his plot failed was just as interesting and speaks to many ways how politics and the media made his place in history more than he ever could. If you haven't listened to "Confederates in the Attic", another wonderful book from Tony Horwitz, I'd recommend it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Steelheart

  • The Reckoners, Book 1
  • By: Brandon Sanderson
  • Narrated by: MacLeod Andrews
  • Length: 12 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26,185
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,173
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,217

Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills. Nobody fights the Epics...nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them. And David wants in. He wants Steelheart - the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David's father.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • He got the idea from a near traffic accident

  • By Don Gilbert on 09-26-13

Dumbest Book of the Year

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

Reviewed: 09-03-14

I should have returned this book, but I didn't want to abuse Audible's very friendly return policy.

This book is what you'd expect if a thirteen year old boy, jacked up on breakfast cereal would write.

I don't want to sound mean but it is awful in so many ways:

1. Narrator's voice (written) has no humor despite many failed attempts. Because it's first person, all we ever see of the foes are archetypes of who they are.

2. the whole thing sounds ripped off from X-Men, only here, the "X-Men" or "Epics" are bad guys.

3. In the most suspenseful parts, it is so poorly written that you care not if the good guys win or fail.

This is, in many ways, a turd of a book. But there are some people liking it. Go figure. Good for them. I'm not one of them.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • American Nations

  • A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America
  • By: Colin Woodard
  • Narrated by: Walter Dixon
  • Length: 12 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,625
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,429
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,437

North America was settled by people with distinct religious, political, and ethnographic characteristics, creating regional cultures that have been at odds with one another ever since. Subsequent immigrants didn't confront or assimilate into an "American" or "Canadian" culture, but rather into one of the 11 distinct regional ones that spread over the continent each staking out mutually exclusive territory. In American Nations, Colin Woodard leads us on a journey through the history of our fractured continent....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • One of a Kind Masterpiece

  • By Theo Horesh on 02-28-13

Great Historical Take on How Screwed Up We Are

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

Reviewed: 08-21-14

I liked how the author carved up the America into 11 smaller "nations". It provided a fresh perspective on how how conflicts we still face today can be found in the distrust and apathy that certain nations held against each other since the beginning. Great listen.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • A Discovery of Witches

  • By: Deborah Harkness
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Ikeda
  • Length: 24 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 21,418
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,001
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,051

Deep in the stacks of Oxford's Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A most terrific & non-typical treatment of Witches

  • By Neal on 04-17-14

Sci-Fi Fantasy Bodice Ripper

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

Reviewed: 08-19-14

It's more of a romance than it is a story, and worse, it features yet another helpless woman who has to be supported by a "strong" male vampire. Maybe it's like Twilight for adults, but as I never read Twilight, I haven't a clue. But after reading this first one, I won't reach out for any more.

My preferred replacement, if you were to ask me: "Dreams and Shadows" or even "The Passage". Both distinctly different books, but at least you'll have characters you care about, in addition to strong female characters.

  • The Magicians

  • A Novel
  • By: Lev Grossman
  • Narrated by: Mark Bramhall
  • Length: 17 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 15,057
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,256
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 13,277

Quentin Coldwater is brilliant but miserable. A senior in high school, he's still secretly preoccupied with a series of fantasy novels he read as a child, set in a magical land called Fillory. Imagine his surprise when he finds himself unexpectedly admitted to a very secret, very exclusive college of magic in upstate New York, where he receives a thorough and rigorous education in the craft of modern sorcery.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Not an average book

  • By Kyle on 04-30-11

Good story with an unlikeable character

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

Reviewed: 07-21-14

I liked the Magicians, but at the same time, I couldn't stand the main character, Quentin, a character who is strewn into so much self loathing, that I too, loathed him. It would have been nice to see growth from him, but there wasn't much of that. That, and most of the main characters are equally unlikeable from a status perspective. It's like watching the popular kids in high school and hoping they trip up holding their lunch tray, to have it land in their faces.

That aside, I liked the tone, the fantastical element. I think the book would be better served with a long prologue that takes us through Fillory. This world is so important to the book, it needs to be better served to the reader.

If you want a 5-star experience all around, try "Dreams and Shadows", which is awesome in every way.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful