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Charles

Olympia, WA
  • 10
  • reviews
  • 32
  • helpful votes
  • 188
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  • SpecOps

  • Expeditionary Force, Book 2
  • By: Craig Alanson
  • Narrated by: R.C. Bray
  • Length: 15 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 21,572
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 20,477
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20,413

Colonel Joe Bishop made a promise, and he's going to keep it: taking the captured alien starship Flying Dutchman back out. He doesn't agree when the UN decides to send almost 70 elite Special Operations troops, hotshot pilots, and scientists with him; the mission is a fool's errand he doesn't expect to ever return from. At least this time, the Earth is safe, right? Not so much.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Welcome to an outer space version of Groundhog Day, but boring.

  • By Aaron M. Benzing on 11-15-17

A major disappointment after the first one.

Overall
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-05-17

I had high hopes for this after the first installment was so good. Unfortunately, SpecOps fails to live up to its predecessor. Skippy is a joke, and a very annoying and tedious one at that. It's supposed to be super intelligent, hold the knowledge man can't even comprehend yet it fails time and time again. There is no character development at all and Bishop and Skippy are the only active entities throughout the book. This one is best for teenagers in the 14 to 17 age bracket.

  • Outcast

  • Star Force, Book 10
  • By: B. V. Larson, David VanDyke
  • Narrated by: Mark Boyett
  • Length: 13 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,277
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,116
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,110

Star Force is called to arms again! Outcast is a new beginning, the first book in a new spin-off series. Many peaceful years have passed since the Macro Wars ended. Most of those who fought against the heartless machines have aged - but not the ingenious artificial construct known as Marvin. His insatiable curiosity is as strong as ever, and he’s brought home fresh perils to humanity’s doorstep.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Captain Marvin Takes Command

  • By shalte on 07-22-14

Very disappointing

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

Reviewed: 09-23-14

Any additional comments?

This book was a major disappoint and obviously no more than a cash cow. The son is Kyle, the Liths are the Macros, and the story line is a carbon copy of the original series except this one got boring and was overlong for the content. Shame on you BVL. You got lazy and tainted a very good series. Marvin is great, as always, and should have a series with it as the main character. Any more son of Kyle? I won't be buying.

2 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Jerusalem Inn

  • A Richard Jury Mystery, Book 5
  • By: Martha Grimes
  • Narrated by: Steve West
  • Length: 8 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 320
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 291
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 286

From the rough but colorful pub that provides the novel's title, to the snowboard Gothic estate nearby, the chilly English landscape has never held more atmosphere - or thwarted romance. And Jury will never have a more mysterious Christmas.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Narrator

  • By Charles on 10-09-13

Great Narrator

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

Reviewed: 10-09-13

Where does Jerusalem Inn rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Very high up. I enjoyed listening to West's narration almost as much as I do Davina Porter... may Her Voice never fail..

The narrator is crucial to enjoying a book. One of my all time favorite books is Heinlein's THe Moon is a Harsh Mistress. However, the narrators voice was so mechanical I could not finish listening, even for the story.

So thank you Mr. West for being one of the good guys.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Anathem

  • By: Neal Stephenson
  • Narrated by: Oliver Wyman, Tavia Gilbert, William Dufris, and others
  • Length: 32 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,260
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,990
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,998

In celebration of the week-long, once-in-a-decade rite of Apert, the fras and suurs prepare to venture outside the concent's gates - opening them wide at the same time to welcome the curious "extras" in. During his first Apert as a fra, Erasmus eagerly anticipates reconnecting with the landmarks and family he hasn't seen since he was "collected". But before the week is out, both the existence he abandoned and the one he embraced will stand poised on the perilous brink of cataclysmic change.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Unparalleled

  • By Baron on 11-25-08

Love Stephensons works but not this.

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

Reviewed: 08-27-13

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

Someone on the planet Arbe might like it more. There were many parts of it that I enjoyed but it's slow and generally boring. It worked great as background noise to help me get to sleep.

If you’ve listened to books by Neal Stephenson before, how does this one compare?

I've listened to most of Stephensons work. I like this one the least of them all including the Baroque series which I don't think was well received. In fact I really enjoy his work, I think he's brilliant and most of his work is hard to put down. This was hard to pick up.

Did the narrators do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

Not really.

What character would you cut from Anathem?

None, I think they are all important. Conversely I wish there was more character development. Even the main character remains 2 dimensional.

  • The Stand

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Grover Gardner
  • Length: 47 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 34,142
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31,021
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 31,023

This is the way the world ends: with a nanosecond of computer error in a Defense Department laboratory and a million casual contacts that form the links in a chain letter of death. And here is the bleak new world of the day after: a world stripped of its institutions and emptied of 99 percent of its people. A world in which a handful of panicky survivors choose sides - or are chosen.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • My First Completed Stephen King Novel

  • By Meaghan Bynum on 02-20-12

Not the uncut version.

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

Reviewed: 03-23-13

Would you listen to The Stand again? Why?

not this one. I did not read closely enough to realize this is not the full uncut version that Mr King released.

  • Drums of Autumn

  • By: Diana Gabaldon
  • Narrated by: Davina Porter
  • Length: 44 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 28,424
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 23,986
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 23,884

Twice Claire has used an ancient stone circle to travel back to the 18th century. The first time she found love with a Scottish warrior but had to return to the 1940s to save their unborn child. The second time, 20 years later, she reunited with her lost love but had to leave behind the daughter that he would never see. Now Brianna, from her 1960s vantage point, has found a disturbing obituary and will risk everything in an attempt to change history.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I Can't Get Enough!

  • By Eugenia on 02-15-10

I Am Soo Addicted To This Series

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

Reviewed: 05-05-12

What did you love best about Drums of Autumn?

This review is from Lonecia Coffman, I use Charles account.

The narrator, details, characterizations, romance, and the adventure. I feel as if I have gone through the stones and am completely immersed in the tale. Since, The Fiery Cross, A Breath of Fire And Ashes, and An Echo In the Bone, are not available in an unabridged version, I will not buy them here. I have already purchased the books from Amazon. How could anyone bear an abridged version after getting this far in the series? Inconceivable!

What does Davina Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Davina Porter. Sigh. That woman's voice and talent are preternaturally exceptional!! I look for books to listen to based on the fact that she is narrating. Davina could take the most crapulous book and turn it into a bestseller because who would not want to listen to Davina's magical narration.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

This story has everything. I have, laughed, cried, bitten my nails, and spent forty two dollars I shouldn't have (didn't have any credits left) to make sure I had the next book before the one I was listening to ended.

Any additional comments?

If you are going to have the first part of the series Unabriged, don't let the sellers cheap out and sell you abridged versions for the rest. I HATE abridged books. They are a total rip-off! If I want an abridged story I will decide for myself which part of the story to skip.

  • Artists in Crime

  • By: Ngaio Marsh
  • Narrated by: Benedict Cumberbatch
  • Length: 3 hrs and 19 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 232
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 207
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 205

It started as a student exercise, the knife under the drape, the model's pose chalked in place. But before Agatha Troy, artist and instructor, returns to the class, the pose has been re-enacted in earnest: the model is dead, fixed for ever in one of the most dramatic poses Troy has ever seen. It's a difficult case for Chief Detective Inspector Alleyn. How can he believe that the woman he loves is a murderess? And yet no one can be above suspicion.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Aii! Abridged

  • By Charles on 06-05-11

Aii! Abridged

Overall
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-05-11

I love the narrator but I forgot to check that this was an unabridged version. Sigh. Why would anyone even make an abridged recording?

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress

  • By: Robert A. Heinlein
  • Narrated by: Lloyd James
  • Length: 14 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,376
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,854
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,878

In what is considered one of Heinlein's most hair-raising, thought-provoking, and outrageous adventures, the master of modern science fiction tells the strange story of an even stranger world. It is 21st-century Luna, a harsh penal colony where a revolt is plotted between a bashful computer and a ragtag collection of maverick humans, a revolt that goes beautifully until the inevitable happens. But that's the problem with the inevitable: it always happens.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Heinlein's Masterpiece

  • By Peter on 12-04-06

An excellent book, a great narrator, BORING

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-21-10

This is a most excellent book and Lloyd James is a great narrator. I'm sure he portrayed the book just as the producers wished. Unfortunately listening to a stolid Russian give a deadpan, monotone delivery for hour after hour was just too much. The book lost most of it's allure and was just plain boring. I did listen to the whole thing and I have to admit that I was so beat down by the end that I was almost ready to join the Communist party. Read the book and don't waste your money here.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Money Shot

  • By: Christa Faust
  • Narrated by: Susie Bright
  • Length: 6 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 55
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 42
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 42

They thought she'd be ease. They thought wrong. It all began with the phone call asking former porn star Angel Dare to do one more movie. Before she knew it, she’d been shot and left for dead in the trunk of a car. But Angel is a survivor. And that means she’ll get to the bottom of what’s been done to her, even if she has to leave a trail of bodies along the way….

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A teaser, not a spoiler

  • By Charles on 09-25-10

A teaser, not a spoiler

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-25-10

I did not expect to become so involved in this story. Though the context of this tale is the business of almost gratified sexual desire, this story is not sexual, nor is it a moral hammer up side the head. I keep finding myself thinking about Angel and the choices she made an I find myself comparing her to the "Man With No Name".

Sometimes, a woman has to do what a woman has to do.

I will listen to this one again and again.

Thank you Christa Faust for a deliciously captivating tale.

**
Review by Lonecia C.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Wisdom of Forgiveness

  • Intimate Conversations and Journeys
  • By: His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Victor Chan
  • Narrated by: Shishir Kurup
  • Length: 5 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 127
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 44
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 43

When Victor Chan first met the Dalai Lama in 1972, it was after a series of adventures, some harrowing, that had taken the young traveler from his native Hong Kong, across Asia, until he arrived at His Holiness's residence in Dharamsala. Chan worried that the Tibetan leader might receive him warily because of his Chinese heritage. Instead, the Dalai Lama was amused by Chan's black ankle-length Moroccan cap and long ponytail, and this first encounter quickly blossomed into a warm, enduring friendship.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Simple, easy listening, profound

  • By Douglas on 12-04-04

Truly unenlightening

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-09-09

This book is horrible. The book comes across as more about Victor Chan than of His Holiness The Dalai Lama. The title is very misleading. I felt that the time spent listening to this was wasted. There are much better books on this subject available.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful