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  • 204
  • helpful votes
  • 37
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  • Level Five

  • By: William Ledbetter
  • Narrated by: MacLeod Andrews
  • Length: 11 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 806
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 748
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 748

In Level Five, the debut near-future thriller by Nebula Award winner William Ledbetter, AIs battle for dominance, and nanotechnology is on the loose. And all that stands in the way of the coming apocalypse is a starry-eyed inventor who dreams of building a revolutionary new spacecraft and an intelligence agency desk jockey faced with the impossible choice of saving her daughter - or saving the world. 

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A firm 4 stars.

  • By Tony on 07-20-18

Excellent Story read by a very talented narrator

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

Reviewed: 10-26-18

Straight to the point, I agree with the majority of the other reviews on this one. New author for me as well as the narrator.

I think listeners who enjoy tech about computers and mostly plausible SciFi, would enjoy this book. It is what I would call a more thinking man's SciFi rather than a "Space Opera".

Well crafted writing combined with a very versatile collection of voices.

One little minor thought was I am not sure what the narrator's actual voice is here. If he were to default to that in an obvious way for when he was surely narrating and not performing one of the many characters in the story, it would have provided a bit more foundation for me as a listener. I did find myself asking if this was narration or a character at a few points along the way. I had to ask myself if there were more than one narrator often. It was like the "narrators" were multiple characters as part of the story - if that makes any sense. But overall, the voice acting is very broad and rich. I am going to look for other books read by MacLeod Andrews now.

I am not sure if Mr. Ledbetter is writing a sequel to this work or not, but I would be interested in more content that would logically take place after the ending of this work. I am carefully avoiding any spoilers here :)

Thank you for an excellent read!

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Brass Verdict

  • Booktrack Edition
  • By: Michael Connelly
  • Narrated by: Peter Giles
  • Length: 11 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 285
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 256
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 251

Things are finally looking up for defense attorney Mickey Haller. After two years of wrong turns, Haller is back in the courtroom. When Hollywood lawyer Jerry Vincent is murdered, Haller inherits his biggest case yet: the defense of Walter Elliott, a prominent studio executive accused of murdering his wife and her lover. But as Haller prepares for the case that could launch him into the big time, he learns that Vincent's killer may be coming for him next.   

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • If you want to hear music, try iTunes

  • By John on 09-11-18

If you want to hear music, try iTunes

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

Reviewed: 09-11-18

I am so very disappointed! I love Mr. Connelly's work. I am dumbfounded at the production decision to put music in the background, not just in the opening of the book, or maybe a short bit at the beginning of a chapter, but throughout the dialogue.

I lay responsibility mostly at the fault of the producer on this one, but I am stunned Mr. Connelly signed off on this decision. This is not television or a movie - it's an audio book.

I would suggest they re-release this project without the background music track and offer it free to those who in good faith pre-purchased this book.

We buy audio books for the reading. If we want music, we can provide that ourselves. I am a musician so music has a separate "story" for my ears.

This is so distracting I am having a very difficult time following the story. In the back of my mind I am thinking... Wondering... Did they finally stop playing the background music... Nope - there it is again. VERY hard to concentrate on the story. Ruins the work for me.

155 of 171 people found this review helpful

  • TFS Navajo

  • The Terran Fleet Command Saga, Book 3
  • By: Tori L. Harris
  • Narrated by: Jeffrey Kafer
  • Length: 8 hrs and 57 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 530
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 500
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 501

Only a few short months after humanity's first interstellar flights, the first shots have been fired in what will eventually become known as the Alliance Wars. Terran Fleet Command teeters on the edge of chaos in the aftermath of Chairwoman Crull's removal from power, while in space, Earth's defense falls squarely on the shoulders of Admiral Kevin Patterson. With only a small number of ships capable of bringing the fight to the enemy, he makes the bold decision to divide his forces, meeting the Resistance task force head-on at two separate locations.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Love It

  • By Rachel on 03-06-17

Flat, Thin, and lacks a dynamic heart

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

Reviewed: 09-07-18

Ok, I am almost to the end of the third book now and I likely will not continue with the next one.

Why you ask?

This series could easily be condensed into maybe two books? There is so much “Military” filler and very little story for the money.

The reader although not as bad as many, has a very narrow dynamic character range. He also, (this is also the producer’s fault), miss-pronounces many words and sometimes with catastrophic results.

Example: I live in Japan so I know – the name is pronounced “Oh he row” (roll the r into a slight “l” as you say it but NOT “Oh hear oh” – Please! Do a bit of research before you decide on how to say words - especially when they are foreign words.

Example: It’s pronounced “Par-leigh” not “Parlee”

And the name of the main ship in the series is “Thesis” – means approximately “from / of god” but when you slip and say it “Fecius” – well that just a “s**t*” mistake. Slow down and edit producers!

Unfortunately I must agree with other reviewers that the storyline is very shallow. The exploration of social space issues is thin and not well developed – or not deep enough that I want to care enough? And as others have said, this story moves SO SLOW!

The reader, again not totally bad, but along with the weak storyline filled with all this military conversation at the cost of other more compelling potiential, gives the work what I would say is minimal on “heart”. I’m not compelled to care about the characters very much and I am tired with all the over explained (over and over again) military tech.

Lastly, I don’t review “all” the books I read but this series, I feel I have an obligation to warn people about what they are getting into. Some like this kind of thing, but this type of writing and presentation is not a compelling listen for me.

  • The Force

  • A Novel
  • By: Don Winslow
  • Narrated by: Dion Graham
  • Length: 13 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,820
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,488
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,473

All Denny Malone wants is to be a good cop. He is the "King of Manhattan North", a highly decorated NYPD detective sergeant and the real leader of "Da Force". Malone and his crew are the smartest, the toughest, the quickest, the bravest, and the baddest - an elite special unit given carte blanche to fight gangs, drugs, and guns. Every day and every night for the 18 years he's spent on the job, Malone has served on the front lines, witnessing the hurt, the dead, the victims, the perps.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Winslow continus to amaze

  • By Steve L on 07-13-17

Surprisingly Better Than I Expected

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

Reviewed: 06-05-18

The aforementioned (by other reviewers) grittiness and deep dark world of a New York cop is so honestly believable that the sometimes course nature of the writing never seemed gratuitous to me.

Dion Gram's audio sample offered by Audible for this book did not do his ability to portray all the characters of a wide range of ethnic backgrounds justice. I truly enjoyed the wonderful talent of this reader!

Don Winslow's writing is on par with his other writing and in my opinion, is of the expected high quality of poignant realism.

I don't in my busy schedule, frankly have time to review every book I listen to. This work was so good I wanted to play forward with my recommendation to others. Between the reader and the story, this book was more than worth my time to review. What an awesome combination of professional skill sets.

My only caution is that if the use of profanity, adult themes of a graphic noir police story is not what you are looking for, this book may not be for you. If you have liked other Don Winslow works, this one should be a great listen for you.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Head On (Narrated by Wil Wheaton)

  • By: John Scalzi
  • Narrated by: Wil Wheaton
  • Length: 7 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,030
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,782
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,767

Hilketa is a frenetic and violent pastime where players attack each other with swords and hammers. The main goal of the game: obtain your opponent's head and carry it through the goalposts. With flesh and bone bodies, a sport like this would be impossible. But all the players are "threeps", robot-like bodies controlled by people with Haden's Syndrome, so anything goes. No one gets hurt, but the brutality is real, and the crowds love it. Until a star athlete drops dead on the playing field.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • THIS is why I read SciFi! Scalzi gets into your head (be it on or off)

  • By C. White on 04-17-18

I agree with many of the other reviewers

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

Reviewed: 05-26-18

The story was enjoyable enough, but was not on par with other works by the same author.

Will's voice characterizations (or lack there of), did indeed make the story confusing and hard to follow at times. Will is an actor and should be able to provide more differentiation of the characters than he does.

  • Dark Matters

  • Dark Matters Series, Book 1
  • By: Michael Dow
  • Narrated by: Graham Halstead
  • Length: 10 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 18

Rudolph "Rudy" Dersch is the newly minted CEO of the world's largest, multi-trillion-dollar corporate conglomerate. But the job comes with an unexpected twist - an invitation to join the Consortium, a small, secretive group of global elites who effectively decide what's best for the rest of humanity. How does Rudy's struggle to reconcile business and family impact the world's future? And who, if anyone, can break the Consortium's iron grip on the status quo?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great story line that builds into real captivating

  • By Janine Lex on 09-05-17

Just interesting enough

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

Reviewed: 02-16-18

Look at all this awards! I am wondering why though. Yes it's an interesting premise and in general the writing is good. It's the level of SciFi, character development and mystery I usually enjoy.

Where this one labors is the story moves a bit slow (for me) and didn't reach a real strong build to the end as I had hoped. There was a lot of redundancy of stating the same details over and over that if omitted, (some editing maybe), would have made the story shorter which in this case, would help with some of the lag issues I was feeling while listening to the book. I would say the writing could have been more concise.

Yeah, you have to read (listen to) the next one to get the "whole story". I will listen to it and give it a try I guess. It's like I said in my title, "Just interesting enough" but in my opinion with some editing out of some of the redundancy, it might be a better book. Move the points along quicker please. Use the space for more character and premise detail and development.

The narrator was new for me. Good characterizations and his French characterizations felt authentic to my untrained ear. That is challenging to pull off sometimes. It seemed, (maybe my lack of knowing the true pronunciations), that a couple French words spoken as English were possibly mispronounced. Just a little detail that caught my attention. Not any kind of show stopper. Maybe my ear is "too American"?

I'm am hoping the next book is better because I am invested in the story now.

  • A Gift of Time

  • By: Jerry Merritt
  • Narrated by: Christopher Lane
  • Length: 11 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,289
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5,946
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,930

When Micajah Fenton discovers a crater in his front yard with a broken time glider in the bottom and a naked, virtual woman on his lawn, he delays his plans to kill himself. While helping repair the marooned time traveler's glider, Cager realizes it can return him to his past to correct a mistake that had haunted him his entire life. As payment for his help, the virtual creature living in the circuitry of the marooned glider, sends Cager back in time as his 10-year-old self.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Smart and original

  • By J. OBrennan on 12-29-17

Not just‘SciFi’

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

Reviewed: 01-31-18

There is a certain quality of a story from the SciFi genre that sets it apart. This story finds itself in that sweet pocket of a wonderful story that will easily endure the test of time.

A sweet, cute and quaint story of human kind and love that spans the universe, yet, never strays too far from home. A simple tale of space, time and the depths of the human heart.

Not a “quick serve” of fast food storytelling. This is a well balenced work of the careful use of science fiction to explore realistic relationships.

The writing, the natration and the overall presentaion is brilliantly executed.

Be ready for some good ol’ down home characters from the deep South that will over time, capture your heart and imagination.

Yep, I liked this one. My one and only nigly comment was it moved as slow as the laid back Southern characters at times. But it no matter, it is what it is :)

If you like a bit of SciFi mixed with authentic characters, you will enjoy this book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Voodoo Ridge

  • A Cordell Logan Mystery, Book 3
  • By: David Freed
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 7 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,040
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 985
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 981

In 1956 a plane bearing mysterious cargo takes off from a small airport outside Los Angeles and disappears into a raging storm. Nearly 60 years later, while flying over the Sierra Nevada, retired military assassin turned civilian flight instructor and would-be Buddhist Cordell Logan catches a glint of sunlight on metal and spots what appears to be an aircraft wreckage. His life will never be the same.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Another A+ Cordell Logan story

  • By W. Brooks on 05-02-17

This series is great but Ray makes them awesome

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

Reviewed: 12-10-17

I have listened to two of these now (skipped the second one) - why?

I listen to a lot of different kinds of books, but when Ray Porter is reading something in my genre, I give it serious consideration. There are other great readers but Ray is hands down my all time favorite. He "makes a book" for me.

This third book in the series is heartbreakingly good. It has enough 'drive' to keep me wanting to keep listening and the general writing is very well done.

I think most listeners would enjoy it as well.

  • Blood Brothers

  • By: Rick Acker
  • Narrated by: Christopher Lane
  • Length: 11 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 23
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 19

Attorney Ben Corbin travels to Norway to settle a dispute between Karl and Gunnar Bjornsen, feuding brothers on the verge of developing a revolutionary neural stimulant that could turn first responders into superheroes. But more than just the fate of their pharmaceutical empire is at stake. What starts as a sibling rivalry takes a deadly turn as Gunnar flees with the secret formula and Karl finds himself in the crosshairs of a bribery investigation.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great Addition To The Series

  • By Lia on 12-22-17

Who was who now?

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

Reviewed: 12-05-17

The story was just "ok" for me. It was a very very slow ramp up to a very "yeah ok" ending for me. Only a few "high points" of interest for me in the story, but mostly it felt kind of "plodding along" until the end which was just a bit "too long of a trip".

The narration wasn't bad but I had difficultly differentiating all the characters at times. He's really good at the accents, but the voices were very close in character to me.

I know this got lots of great reviews and it was good enough to stick with until the end. It just didn't live up to my expectations.

  • Gray

  • The Complete Collection
  • By: Lou Cadle
  • Narrated by: Lauren Fortgang
  • Length: 24 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,336
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,149
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,139

Pre-med student Coral is on vacation in Idaho when something terrible happens. The black cloud is followed by a wildfire and searing heat that lasts for days. She survives deep in a cave but emerges days later to find the world transformed, with blackened trees, an ash-filled sky, and no living creatures stirring - except for her. So begins her desperate journey to find water and food and other survivors...and the answer to the mystery of what happened.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great Story - Superb Value

  • By Kurt Schwoppe on 11-05-17

Such high reviews?

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

Reviewed: 11-20-17

This title got such high reviews and I am frankly not sure why.

It was a LONG and a bit low dynamic ride to a predictable ending. The reader was better than the storyline that contained the same feelings and observations over and over. The repetitive nature of the work failed to provide much of a dynamic feeling eb and flow for me. Making my way to a predictable ending was a tedious journey.

The whole impact of the story I felt could have been accomplished in a little over half the time. There were plenty of story opportunities that were inadequately leveraged. I would characterize the book as a bit “soft” feeling. It mayo have been the writing, the presentation or a combination of these elements.

It wasn’t an “awful” book, just a bit “flat” feeling to really engage me much.

I’m sorry but I just can’t offer the same high praise as other reviewers. If you want a long book that moves pretty slow, with a tidy “feel good” ending, this book would be perfect for you.