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Charles Atkinson

Greensboro, NC, United States
  • 566
  • reviews
  • 8,844
  • helpful votes
  • 833
  • ratings
  • Money to Burn

  • A Novel of Suspense
  • By: James Grippando
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 11 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 188
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 79
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 77

At 31, Michael Cantella is a rising star at Wall Street’s premier investment bank, Saxton Silvers. Everything is going according to plan until Ivy Layton, the love of his life, vanishes on their honeymoon in the Bahamas. Fast-forward four years. It’s the eve of his 35th birthday, and Michael is still on track: successful career, beautiful new wife, piles of money.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fast paced 5 star entertainment

  • By Charles Atkinson on 07-29-18

Fast paced 5 star entertainment

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

Reviewed: 07-29-18

Well written and read, this novel is perfect for Audible fans. It seems like nonfiction, given what has transpired this century.

And it’s one of those rare novels where I felt like I was in the story as well. It’s plot is nothing like The Firm, as I had read in some description, But it is a great read

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Killer Angels

  • The Classic Novel of the Civil War
  • By: Michael Shaara
  • Narrated by: Stephen Hoye
  • Length: 13 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,906
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,087
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,099

After 30 years and with three million copies in print, Michael Shaara's Pulitzer Prize-winning Civil War classic, The Killer Angels, remains as vivid and powerful as the day it was originally published.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great book!!

  • By Joel D Offenberg on 12-27-09

I enjoyed reading it myself better...

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

Reviewed: 06-30-18

This is one of the few books that will hook any reader whether they care about the subject matter or not. Shaara’s masterpiece brings to life the key figures in the battle of Gettysburg.

Regardless of your lack of knowledge or interest of this battle, Killer Angels will keep you up late into the night. By the end you will be highly entertained while gaining a thorough history lesson.

Stephen Hoye does a good job narrating. However, I still remember the voices I gave to the characters when I read it some 30 years ago.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Outsider

  • By: Stephen King
  • Narrated by: Will Patton
  • Length: 18 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 33,399
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 30,598
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 30,461

An 11-year-old boy's violated corpse is found in a town park. Eyewitnesses and fingerprints point unmistakably to one of Flint City's most popular citizens. He is Terry Maitland, Little League coach, English teacher, husband, and father of two girls. Detective Ralph Anderson, whose son Maitland once coached, orders a quick and very public arrest. Maitland has an alibi, but Anderson and the district attorney soon add DNA evidence to go with the fingerprints and witnesses. Their case seems ironclad.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Disappointing From Stephen King

  • By Myles on 11-02-18

I love his characters...

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

Reviewed: 05-24-18

I can’t think of any author who creates characters better than King. I love them all and it’s the characters who always keep me interested to the end.

I just don’t care for the supernatural focus anymore. So I give it 3 stars for great characters and a ridiculous story.

7 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • California Fire and Life

  • By: Don Winslow
  • Narrated by: Jon Lindstrom
  • Length: 12 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,225
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,127
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,122

Jack Wade, a claims adjuster for California Fire and Life Mutual Insurance Company, is one of the best arson investigators around. He's a man who knows fire, who can read the traces it leaves behind like a roadmap. When he's called in to examine an unusual claim, the tracks of the fire tell him that something's wrong. So wrong that he violates his own cardinal rule - "You don't get personal, you don't get emotional. Whatever you do, you don't get involved" - and plunges into the case.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A book about an insurance adjuster, oh yea.

  • By John S on 04-18-15

It’s a barn burner!

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

Reviewed: 05-22-18

This is a novel with a lot of characters and information, which means it’s complicated. But it’s also ingenious, particularly how Winslow brings it all together in the end.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Dollmaker

  • Forgotten Files, Book 2
  • By: Mary Burton
  • Narrated by: Christina Traister
  • Length: 11 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,361
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,218
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,209

Dr. Tessa McGowan had never seen anything quite like it. But the mutilated bodies on her exam table tell a stunningly macabre tale: someone with a twisted mind is kidnapping women and altering their faces to resemble real, life-size dolls. As a forensic pathologist, it's her job to aid the agent leading the case - even if that agent is her estranged husband.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Creepy!

  • By shelley on 11-17-16

Burton does procedurals like a pro.

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

Reviewed: 03-28-18

It is pretty easy to guess what the doll maker does with women. It’s pretty sick stuff, borderline horror material. Nevertheless the police procedural part was terrific.

Christina Traister does another great job with narration. However, with the male leads in both The Shark and The Dollmaker her voice is low and unemotional. She does an excellent job with accents and both sexes otherwise.

This is the second novel of 3 in The Forgotten Files trilogy. This time the focus shifts to Detective Dakota Parks of the Virginia State Police. His estranged wife has returned to his life and he isn’t sure how he feels about their relationship. She is the new Medical Examiner, which means they must work together. The Dollmaker case suddenly takes a personal turn for the couple, which furthermore complicates their lives.

Mary Burton is a great mystery writer!

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • The Keepsake

  • By: Mary Burton
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Riker
  • Length: 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 13
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 13

Murder is not a one-size-fits-all crime. People kill for many reasons. Revenge. Jealously. Hate. Even love. Officer Georgia Morgan with the Nashville Police Department Forensics Unit didn’t generally care about motivation behind a killing. That was big picture. She cared about the micro picture: hair fibers, fingerprints, DNA, and all the other minute details that proved guilt or innocence. Homicide Detective Jake Bishop was her opposite.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Great Police Interrogation

  • By Charles Atkinson on 03-27-18

A Great Police Interrogation

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

Reviewed: 03-27-18

A short story that covers 19 years? Brilliant! Smart police work in one heck of a interrogation. I’d love to hear more from the detective !

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • The Shark

  • Forgotten Files, Book 1
  • By: Mary Burton
  • Narrated by: Christina Traister
  • Length: 10 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,300
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2,066
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,057

At the grisly murder scene of a teen prostitute, Virginia state trooper Riley Tatum's past roars back to haunt her. When she was a teenage runaway, she was kidnapped, drugged, and left unconscious on the streets. She has no memories of what happened, only strange recurring dreams of two men playing cards. Former FBI agent Clay Bowman, Riley's old flame, is Shield Security's newest member. He's plagued by the unsolved case of a serial killer nicknamed the Shark who murdered girls as part of a sadistic poker game.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Extremely disappointing

  • By Shane on 05-23-17

Play for blood? That's just my game!

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

Reviewed: 03-26-18

Mary Burton does suspense as well as anyone. The Shark features great characters, a unique and believable premise and great storytelling.

Christina Traister narrated this novel brilliantly. Her southern accents are dead on, particularly the upper crust, old south drawl of the main character.

No spoiler here, but the quote above is from the film Tombstone, when Doc Holiday confronts Johnny Ringo. It fits in nicely with this particular story.

This is fast, fun ride with plenty of tense moments.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Murder in an Irish Village

  • By: Carlene O'Connor
  • Narrated by: Caroline Lennon
  • Length: 10 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4,197
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,832
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,814

In the small village of Kilbane, County Cork, Ireland, Natalie's Bistro has always been warm and welcoming. Nowadays 22-year-old Siobhan O'Sullivan runs the family bistro named for her mother, along with her five siblings, after the death of their parents in a car crash almost a year ago. It's been a rough year for the O'Sullivans, but it's about to get rougher. One morning, as they're opening the bistro, they discover a man seated at a table with a pair of hot pink barber scissors protruding from his chest.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great start to a new suspense mystery series!

  • By Wayne on 12-05-17

Quaint village with all the charm of the Irish

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

Reviewed: 03-20-18

As with similar series, such as Her Royal Spyness, the mystery and story are secondary to the characters and the settings. So if the main characters are lacking in any way, the novel is sure to disappoint. Fortunately O’Connor created charismatic characters in a charming Irish village with just the right amount of humor and conflict.

For a fast read or light listening, you cannot go wrong with this novel.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • An Engineered Injustice

  • By: William L. Myers Jr.
  • Narrated by: Adam Verner
  • Length: 10 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 310
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 270
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 273

What if the deadliest train wreck in the nation's history was no accident? When a passenger train derails in North Philadelphia with fatal results, idealistic criminal defense attorney Vaughn Coburn takes on the most personal case of his young career. The surviving engineer is his cousin Eddy, and when Eddy asks Vaughn to defend him, he can't help but accept. Vaughn has a debt to repay, for he and his cousin share an old secret - one that changed both their lives forever.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting legal thriller!

  • By Wayne on 02-11-18

Intriguing Legal Story

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

Reviewed: 03-10-18

This is a first rate legal story, good enough to make a great movie. As you aware from the publisher summary, a passenger train is derailed and everything seems to point to an engineer 's error. Within hours after the crash, powerful litigation firms, all the local and national media zero in on the engineer. To complicate matters, one of the victims is the son of a Philadelphia mafia don.

My issue is in the lack character development. I found all of the characters intriguing, but I felt disappointed and wantedvto know more about the families and especially the law firms.

The narrator was far to bland for my taste. I felt he could have been far more creative with key characters.

This is indeed a great story. Despite my criticisms, I plan on trying more novels from this author.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Born to Run

  • By: James Grippando
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 10 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 138
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 68
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 66

Best-selling author James Grippando is back with another innovative and action-packed thriller featuring the ever-popular Jack Swyteck. Miami criminal defense lawyer Jack Swyteck guards his own family secrets as closely as anyone, and while his father's two terms as Florida's governor made some family rifts public, things are finally better between the two men. Whenever Harry Swyteck asks for Jack's help, he gets it, and suddenly he needs it more than ever before.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Blackmail, murder and Jack Swyteck!

  • By shelley on 02-27-18

Jonathan Davis/Grippando = Synergy

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

Reviewed: 03-10-18

Great characters come from great writing. However, if the novel is in audio form the narration of a book is almost as important as its author. Nowhere is this more true than the Swyteck series narrated by Jonathan Davis.

I give the story only 3 stars for a 5 star experience. It’s because while I struggle with the believability of it’s premise, I find the main characters are so authentic I love every moment with them. Jack Swytech, his father Harry, best friend Theo and his girlfriend Andy’s interactions and responses in very mysterious and complicated situations are as believable as they are heroic.

You can read the publisher’s primer for the story. What it cannot tell you is how magnetic the characters really are.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful