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Capn Mac

Pittsburgh, PA USA
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  • Master of Hounds

  • The Pickman Files, Book 1
  • By: C.Steven Manley
  • Narrated by: James Anderson Foster
  • Length: 8 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 30
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 29
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 29

Clint Mercer is about to get a crash course in magic. After he barely survives an attack on the hospital where he works, Clint is quickly recruited by the brilliant but often unstable wizard Arlo Dandridge. Working on behalf of the mysterious Pickman Institute, the two men soon find themselves in a race to recover an ancient relic of deadly power before a centuries-old warlock and his cult of militant followers can beat them to it.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Enjoyable Urban Fantasy Book.

  • By Natalie @ ABookLoversLife on 02-08-19

Good Start to a Series

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

Reviewed: 03-20-19

Clint Mercer is a former military medic who has settled down as a nurse in the ER. When the hospital is attacked by monsters, Clint finds himself drawn into a world he never imagined existed and soon, he and Arlo, a cantankerous user of magic, must put it all on the line to save the world from the Master of Hounds.

Foster's narration of this book was very good. I enjoyed his character voices and at no point did anything he say or do pull me out of the story.

I would recommend this to anyone who likes urban fantasy and I plan to check out other titles in this series.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this honest review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Grave Peril

  • The Dresden Files, Book 3
  • By: Jim Butcher
  • Narrated by: James Marsters
  • Length: 11 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 21,062
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 18,217
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,141

Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden has had a rough couple of weeks. As the only openly practicing professional wizard in the Chicago area, he has squared off against a multitude of supernatural bad guys. Harry has won the day against demons, poltergeists, sorcerers, trolls, vampires, werewolves, and even an evil faerie godmother. You might think nothing could spook him. You would be wrong.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Spike makes good

  • By Lakejewel on 03-22-10

%^$# Gets Real for Harry

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

Reviewed: 03-20-19

I'm liking the Dresden stories more and more as they go along and Marsters has definitely become Harry in my head. This one ups the anty and poor Harry, who always seems to come out of these worse for wear, hits rock bottom.

This time Harry is investigating Ghosts gone wild as the spirit world seems to have hit the hyperactive button. With his Knight friend Michael, he sets off to find the source of the spirit activity and ends up facing ghosts, wizards, vampires and His Fairy Godmother.

To tell you more would be to reduce your enjoyment of the story.

While I've grown used to it, I still think someone needs to do a better job at the mastering of these books. Marsters is great but I can hear ever swallow, mouth noise and turning of pages. I'm going to keep listening but I'm hoping someone reigns that in.

  • Space Force

  • By: Jeremy Robinson
  • Narrated by: Jeffrey Kafer, Emily Woo Zeller, Machelle Williams
  • Length: 9 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 228
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 221
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 219

 

Five years ago, the US Space Force became a reality. And while those writing the checks took things very seriously, the other military branches did not. As a result, Space Force was populated by undesirables: men and women who made too many mistakes, didn't follow the rules, or...slept with the wrong general's daughter. Three times. On camera. It was a mistake, okay? My name is Captain Ethan Stone, a decorated member of SEAL Team Six turned Space Force "recruit". 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • It's Like The Army or Navy But For Space

  • By Cyphers Fallen on 02-27-19

Space Farce! Am I Right?

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

Reviewed: 03-20-19

Ok, this was a fun, funny, sarcastic look at a preposterous idea, that being "What if Trump got his way and the military created a Space Force." Robinson takes that idea and all the ridiculousness of it and runs with it.

When we meet the eponymous force, they running their final training mission before their funding is pulled out from under them. The nation, and the world at large, sees them as nothing but the farcical idea of a man-child who had too much power. And now that is is out of power, the funds have dried up and Space Force is to be no more.

If only it were that simple. Before they can get off base, the unthinkable happens and actual aliens invade and they find themselves the only thing standing between the Earth and a race of hostile invaders who would like nothing more than to collectively teabag the human race. I kid you not.

Yes, I really enjoyed the absurdity of this book. My biggest complaint is that it starts to fall apart towards the end. It's almost as if Robinson wrote this on a Redbull and Mountain Dew bender and the ending was penned far too close to his caffeine crash. Still, as a whole it made me ROFLMAO, but only figuratively.

I enjoyed Kafer and Zeller's narration. It was fun to switch back and forth between points of view and they did a great job of bringing Stone and Halle to life. I didn't care much for Williams' narration though. All I could think about for her one chapter was "when will it end?" I'm glad she only did the one chapter. Robinson also pops in at the end playing himself. That was after the book had already jumped the shark.

Anyway, I would recommend this to anyone whose played too many video games and wondered what would happen if the overpowered players tea-bagging your in-game avatar were really cheating Aliens practicing their invasion. What? That's literally no one? Oh, well you may like this anyway.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this honest review.

  • Mass Effect

  • Revelation
  • By: Drew Karpyshyn
  • Narrated by: David Colacci
  • Length: 8 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,533
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,302
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,323

After discovering a cache of Prothean technology on Mars in 2148, humanity is spreading to the stars---the newest interstellar species, struggling to carve out its place in the greater galactic community. On the edge of colonized space, ship commander and Alliance war hero David Anderson investigates the remains of a top secret military research station---smoking ruins littered with bodies and unanswered questions. Who attacked this post, and for what purpose?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Enhances the enjoyment of the games substantially

  • By Some Dude on 09-01-11

Interesting Prequel

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

Reviewed: 03-20-19

This wasn't a great title but it also wasn't bad. Honestly, the only reason I bothered is that I am a huge Mass Effect fan and I'm a sucker for anything that builds on that universe (which explains why I wasted money on Andromeda).

I think what really made this odd for me is that I already have an idea of how some of these characters talk and act from playing the games. It's unfair of me to expect the narrator to sound like the voice actors that voiced the game characters but I suppose I did anyway.

If you have never played Mass Effect and have no interest in that universe, then this book isn't for you. There is much better sci-fi out there.

  • Norse Mythology

  • By: Neil Gaiman
  • Narrated by: Neil Gaiman
  • Length: 6 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42,772
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 39,139
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 38,963

Neil Gaiman has long been inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction. Now he turns his attention back to the source, presenting a bravura rendition of the great northern tales. In Norse Mythology, Gaiman fashions primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds; delves into the exploits of the deities, dwarves, and giants; and culminates in Ragnarok, the twilight of the gods and the rebirth of a new time and people.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • As good as it gets without the old texts

  • By William Taylor on 05-10-18

Textbook Example of How an Author Should Narrate

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

Reviewed: 03-20-19

I have loved Neil Gaiman's writing since I picked up my first Sandman graphic novel many moons ago. This was the first time I've listed to him narrate. If all authors were as adapt as Neil at narrating, they wouldn't need professional narrators.

This is a great retelling of the old Norse myths made even more interesting by the modern fascination with Thor and Loki that Marvel has drummed up. You can really tell that Neil enjoys telling these stories, almost as much as I enjoyed listening to them. While I was familiar with some of the mythology before I started, it was nice to have some of the gaps filled in and to really get a sense of what the Viking oral history must have been like.

I would definitely recommend this book.

  • Witch You Well

  • The Westwick Witches
  • By: Colleen Cross
  • Narrated by: Petrea Burchard
  • Length: 5 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 82
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 79
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 79

Even if the entire town is now accusing Aunt Pearl of murdering her guest. Even if her fiancee is acting weird and talking about seeing ghosts. Even if the town's sexy new sheriff, Tyler Gates, treats her like the most hexing of all the witches.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Fun story.

  • By Natalie @ ABookLoversLife on 09-19-17

Frustrating Characters

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

Reviewed: 02-25-19

I really wanted to like this book but the characters all seem to act in a way completely designed to push the plot forward or to keep the mystery mysterious without having a lick of true motivations. Secrets are kept for no good reason and no one seems to be capable of answering a straight question, even to those they love and trust. I found it completely frustrating.

Add to that poorly established ground-rules on what these witches can and cannot do and the mystery really just became when was the book going to end. Trust me, deus ex machina has nothing on these girls.

I found the narrator adequate. Her Aunt Perl is great and I'm sure my displeasure has more to do with the story she was handed and less to do with her abilities.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this honest review.

  • Fool Moon

  • The Dresden Files, Book 2
  • By: Jim Butcher
  • Narrated by: James Marsters
  • Length: 10 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,003
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20,950
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20,896

Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden is Chicago's only openly practicing wizard. He is also dead broke. His vast knowledge and magical skills are unfortunately matched by his talent for making powerful enemies and alienating friends. With little more than his integrity left, he accepts an offer of work from Lt. Karin Murphy of Chicago's Special Investigations Unit. He wants to redeem himself in Murphy's eyes and make enough money to quiet his rumbling stomach.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • One of the best books I've read in a long time!

  • By David Ziegler on 05-06-10

Things Get Hairy for Harry

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

Reviewed: 01-31-19

Harry Dresden, Chicago’s only Wizard for hire, is back, and this time there are wolves on the prowl.

And like always, Harry finds himself smack in the middle of a huge mess and on the wrong side over everyone, the Chicago PD, the FBI, gangster Gentleman Johnny Marconi, street thugs with a wolf motif, and a real, and very angry, Werewolf.

And things just keep getting worse for poor Harry.

This is the second book in Butcher’s Dresden Files series and it adds to Dresden’s mystique, reveals some more of his backstory and, at the end, leaves you wondering if something more than meets the eye is going on.

I really love Butcher’s writing. And yet, I still find fault with the audio quality of this book. Marsters is great as Dresden, but I can still hear every breath, tons of mouth noises, and the ruffling of pages as they turn. It was so bad at one point, I wanted to jump into the booth with Marsters and tell him to take the gum out of his mouth while he was speaking.

As I’ve said before, if you can put up with the audio quality, this is a great book. Give it a listen.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Stephen Fry’s Victorian Secrets

  • An Audible Original
  • By: John Woolf, Nick Baker
  • Narrated by: Stephen Fry
  • Length: 7 hrs and 33 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,905
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,877
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 11,831

On the surface, the Victorian age is one of propriety, industry, prudishness and piety. But scratch the surface and you’ll find scandal, sadism, sex, madness, malice and murder. Presented by Stephen Fry, this series delves deep into a period of time we think we know, to discover an altogether darker reality. The stories we’re told offer a different perspective on an era which underwent massive social change. As education, trade, technology and culture blossomed, why was there an undercurrent of the ‘forbidden’ festering beneath Victorian society? 

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Please, have mercy and cut out the sound effects

  • By Areader on 11-29-18

Who Knew Victorians Had Such Interesting Secrets?

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

Reviewed: 01-31-19

What can I say? Stephen Fry could read you the phone book and make it sound interesting. I think it’s the British accent. We Yanks are suckers for an authoritative sounding voice in a British accent.

And these are all very entertaining stories. I picked this up as one of my Audible freebies, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. It sounds like it was meant to be an episodic radio or TV program and may very well have been. And I was sad when Stephen ran out of stories to tell.

In each episode, Stephen explores something secret about Victorian Society, exposing the seedy underbelly while dispelling myths and misconceptions. The stories are full of forbidden sexual desires and shameful family secrets. And why are you still standing there? Go listen now.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Storm Front

  • The Dresden Files, Book 1
  • By: Jim Butcher
  • Narrated by: James Marsters
  • Length: 8 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 35,758
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 30,942
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 30,899

A call from a distraught wife, and another from Lt. Murphy of the Chicago PD Special Investigation Unit makes Harry believe things are looking up, but they are about to get worse, much worse. Someone is harnessing immense supernatural forces to commit a series of grisly murders. Someone has violated the first law of magic: Thou Shalt Not Kill. Tracking that someone takes Harry into the dangerous underbelly of Chicago, from mobsters to vampires....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Story, Distracting Sound Engineering

  • By Tom on 05-20-10

Wizard for Hire

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

Reviewed: 01-31-19

Harry Dresden is Chicago’s only Wizard for hire in a world where the supernatural prefers to remain anonymous and the average person thinks Harry’s a charlatan. But Harry’s the real deal and he can work real magic. But even a real wizard can find himself in over his head.
When people start dying in a fantastical and impossible way, Harry’s suspect number one and he has to scramble to find the real killer before he’s the next victim.

I loved this story. Harry is Sam Spade crossed with Merlin. He’s a tortured soul whose dark past threatens to overtake him even as he tries to do the right thing.

This is the second book I’ve listened to by Jim Butcher and I will, without a doubt, listen to the rest of the books about Harry Dresden and I suggest you do the same.

That said, I really have a problem with the audio quality of this book. James Marsters (Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer fame) perfectly embodies Dresden, but I really wish someone had taken him aside and given him some narration tips. The mouth noises and breaths are distracting, and I can hear him turn pages from time to time. You really can’t blame Marsters since I would assume actual engineers and a director were on hand while he recorded this. And still, it’s bad. That this passes as professional quality narration baffles me. It’s a testament to Butcher’s writing that I was willing to finish listening and want to hear more.

If you can get past the audio quality, give it a listen because this is in fact a great story.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Nighthawks

  • Children of Nostradamus, Book 1
  • By: Jeremy Flagg
  • Narrated by: Robin J Sitten
  • Length: 8 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 43
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 42
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 42

Twenty-six-year-old painter Conthan Cowan takes art to a shocking frontier. His debut exhibit features the transformation of his high school friend, Sarah, as she went from a shy, soft-spoken girl to a Child of Nostradamus - an individual gifted with extraordinary abilities. Living in a society where the Children of Nostradamus are captured by the government, Conthan's exhibit draws attention from officials and protesters alike.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • an entertaining story with an engaging plot

  • By AudioBook Reviewer on 09-05-17

Mutants, Mutants, and More Mutants

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

Reviewed: 01-31-19

This story reads like it started out to be a grittier fan-fic retelling of the X-men mythos with accomplished and nascent mutants going up against a shadow organization hell bent on their destruction. These aren’t the Children of the Atom, they are the Children of Nostradamus.

And it actually does a good job of bringing that sort of story to the page. But nothing seems original or groundbreaking. We’ve seen all of these mutants before in one form or another and I kept expecting Logan to pop up and lead the X-Men, excuse me, Nighthawks, to Canada where they could live free from persecution.

The most interesting character in the whole story is introduced at the beginning and is promptly killed. Plus, many of the characters do stupid things, putting them in harms way for no good reason.

Being a fan of the X-Men, I really wanted to like this story and I will admit it has potential and can possibly go somewhere in the, no doubt coming, sequels. I’m just not going to be listening because the narrator ruined what could have otherwise have been an enjoyable listen. No attempt is made at doing character voices and I often had a hard time figuring out who was speaking.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this honest review.