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McFitz

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  • 260
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  • You're Going to Mars!

  • By: Rob Dircks
  • Narrated by: Khristine Hvam
  • Length: 11 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 293
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 286
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 285

Living and slaving in Fill City One, you get used to the smell. We call it the Everpresent Stink. But every once in a while, on a spring day with a breeze, it clears away enough to remind us that there is something more out there. Most Fillers' wildest dreams would be just to get past the walls and live in the mainland. But my dream? It’s a little bigger. I’m going to Mars.   

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Reviewers Choice Award, its that good

  • By AudioBook Reviewer on 11-13-18

Super fun fantasy/sci-fi and outstanding narration

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

Reviewed: 11-24-18

It's a fun underdog story set in a future U.S. where a huge corporation has complete control over waste management. Our heroine, Paper (with sisters named Rock and Scissors), is a drudge in one of the very stinky trash cities. She has always dreamed of space travel and is smart as a whip, but her lowly position keeps her firmly on the terrestrial garbage heap. That is until a contest from the richest man on Earth gives her a chance to fulfill her destiny. Now she's on her own and has to prove her mettle in a competition—called "You're Going to Mars!"—for a seat to the red planet.

The book is a fantasy overall with some fun science fiction included for the geeks among us. The characters are unique and authentic and the dialog is realistic and funny, with lots of snarky remarks and sarcasm from Paper's fellow candidates. Some of the humor was sophomoric but I laughed out loud several times. There's also plenty of action throughout and an exciting finale.

The themes are a sort of combination of "Ready Player One" (integrity trumps environment) and "Red Rising" (if you can't beat 'em, join 'em) with themes from "The Wizard of Oz" (there's no place like home) and "The Hunger Games" (don't trust your competitors) but the book is definitely for adults.

The audiobook production was excellent. As I've said many times, a narrator can make or break a story, and Khristine Hvam is absolutely brilliant in this one. Her pacing and attitude were perfect. The one little complaint I have is that her voice gets a little whiny at times, but it's a small irritation compared to the whole.

Includes foul language in a modern context, no real sex, very little violence. Highly recommended in the audiobook format and for fans of Hugh Howey, Ernest Cline, Marko Kloos, Dennis E. Taylor, and John Scalzi.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Mountain Man: Prequel

  • By: Keith C. Blackmore
  • Narrated by: R. C. Bray
  • Length: 8 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,021
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2,871
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,855

After a long day of prepping a house for painting, all Gus Berry wanted was the night off to spend some time with his girlfriend and relax before having to return to work the next morning. But that isn’t going to happen. Because Gus’s co-worker Benny has found a one-night job at the local Mollymart East, a job that has to be done by morning. If Gus and his paint crew can complete the work by then, it could mean huge business with a respected, established grocery store chain.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gus... Redefining the ‘Everyman!'

  • By Tracy P. on 10-24-18

Zombie Apocalypse in Maryland

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

Reviewed: 11-13-18

I saw the great ratings for this series and wanted to start at the VERY beginning; this is a prequel for the Mountain Man series. Wow, what a ride!

Main character Gus has a mostly-normal day as a professional painter, but that begins to go south quickly when a crazy man tries to attack some shoppers at the discount store where Gus and his crew are working. The small group of shoppers, checkers, and painters don’t know what to make of the situation, but it’s quickly apparent that something is desperately wrong.

Yep, it’s the zombie apocalypse.

The story includes lots of the undead and their victims, car chases and hit-and-runs (or make that splat-and-runs), and stealth and hiding. It’s gory, it’s nasty, and it’s fun if you like that kind of thing. Blackmore adds in some humor to take the tension down a bit, and I laughed out loud a few times. There’s also plenty of raw language, which is realistic, but if you’re put off by cursing, this isn’t for you. Of course, if you’re put off by violence and gore, the language is going to be the least of your worries.

Blackmore categorizes this series as horror, and I understand why. In addition to the frightening descriptions, you can’t help but imagine what you would do in the same situation, as well as feel the desperation and terror.

As for the narration, all I need say is that R. C. Bray did his usual stellar job of reading this book. He’s a favorite of many audiobook listeners, and there’s a good reason for that. #Zombie #Suspenseful #Violent #Tagsgiving #Sweepstakes

  • The Cuckoo's Calling

  • By: Robert Galbraith
  • Narrated by: Robert Glenister
  • Length: 15 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 25,926
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23,675
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23,659

After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: his sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Unbelievable debut mystery set in London

  • By Tracey on 05-26-13

Excellent contemporary UK-based mystery

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

Reviewed: 10-13-18

An excellent mystery involving the death of a famous model in London. The main character, a private investigator on the downside of luck, is interesting and flawed, and the reader is definitely invested in him after the first few chapters. His backstory is slowly revealed but there is plenty left to learn in future volumes.

There are quite a few characters (mostly suspects), but they are separated by believable stories and the skill of the narrator. Robert Glenister does an outstanding job with the narration. There are many different UK accents and he nails them (as far as this American can tell). His pacing was terrific, too.

This is not a usual genre for me but I enjoyed the story. There is plenty of bad language in this one, so beware if that offends you. #UnlikelyHero #Gritty #PrivateEye #Tagsgiving #Sweepstakes

  • Nevermoor: The Trials of Morrigan Crow

  • By: Jessica Townsend
  • Narrated by: Gemma Whelan
  • Length: 11 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 557
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 530
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 527

Morrigan Crow is cursed. Having been born on Eventide, the unluckiest day for any child to be born, she's blamed for all local misfortunes, from hailstorms to heart attacks - and, worst of all, the curse means that Morrigan is doomed to die at midnight on her 11th birthday. But as Morrigan awaits her fate, a strange and remarkable man named Jupiter North appears. Chased by black-smoke hounds and shadowy hunters on horseback, he whisks her away into the safety of a secret, magical city called Nevermoor.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A bit over-hyped but still a good read

  • By Constance Jenkins on 03-18-18

Delightful Story and Outstanding Narration

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

Reviewed: 10-01-18

Gemma Whelan really nailed the many accents in this little fantasy, the first of a series (2 so far). Her pacing was excellent, too, and each voice was unique (even for non-humans). It's a fun story of a misfit 11-year-old in an alternate England who has to prove herself. Great for all ages tween and over. I will absolutely be continuing this series.

  • The Gods of Gotham

  • By: Lyndsay Faye
  • Narrated by: Steven Boyer
  • Length: 12 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 988
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 878
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 881

It is 1845. New York City forms its first police force. The great potato famine hits Ireland. These two seemingly disparate events will change New York City. Forever.... Timothy Wilde tends bar near the Exchange, fantasizing about the day he has enough money to win the girl of his dreams. But when his dreams literally incinerate in a fire devastating downtown Manhattan, he finds himself disfigured, unemployed, and homeless. His older brother obtains Timothy a job in the newly minted NYPD, but he is highly skeptical of this new "police force".

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Don't miss this one!

  • By Kelly on 11-06-12

Lush writing, excellent mystery

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

Reviewed: 09-25-18

Set in 1840s New York City, this book is full of lush descriptions, a fascinating collection of characters, and it’s beautifully written. Difficult topics (child prostitution, serial killing, racial and ethnic prejudice) abound, but it’s all in the context of the newly-created police department. On top of all that, the mystery is excellent.

The audiobook was narrated by Steven Boyer, and I had my doubts about his delivery after the first few chapters. However, he redeemed himself with entertaining accents and his pace was quick but clear. Plus, the use of the local cant (slang) constantly reminded me of Nathan Fillion’s Captain Mal in “Serenity,” which was a nice visual.

I highly recommend this to all historical novel and historical mystery readers.

  • Edinburgh Dusk

  • Ian Hamilton Mysteries, Book 2
  • By: Carole Lawrence
  • Narrated by: Simon Mattacks
  • Length: 9 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 181
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 155
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 155

A wicked Scottish winter has just begun when pioneering female physician Sophia Jex-Blake calls on Detective Inspector Ian Hamilton to investigate the suspicious death of one of her patients - a railroad lineman who she believes succumbed to the horrific effects of arsenic poisoning. The most provocative aspect of the case doesn’t escape Hamilton: the married victim’s numerous sexual transgressions. Now, for the first time since the unexplained fire that killed his parents, Hamilton enters the Royal Infirmary to gain the insights of brilliant medical student Arthur Conan Doyle.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent recording.

  • By Kindle Customer on 09-21-18

Excellent mystery and narration, dark topic

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

Reviewed: 09-21-18

This is the second in series of detective novels set in Victorian Edinburgh, Scotland. Ian Hamilton is a likable main character, and the entertaining supporting cast includes people from vastly different levels of society, including some real-life personalities in this case.

The descriptions of the city in 1880 are very good and the atmosphere is fun. I did question a few things that didn't seem authentic to the time period, but I tried not to let those throw me off. There are also times when the author goes a little overboard with philosophy, but otherwise the story moves along at a decent pace. The mystery itself was presented very well, and the denouement was satisfactory but not exciting.

I have to add that the coming out of one of the characters as homosexual was—as far as I can tell—just jumping on the gay bandwagon. It seems all authors these days feel they must include the topic, although it didn't add anything to the plot. That was a disappointment, merely because it was unnecessary.

The narrator of the audiobook, Simon Mattacks, was very good. His timing was particularly good, and his Scottish accents really added to the story; I wasn't fond of one of the voices, but a narrator only has so many choices.

Quite a bit of sexual references, some violence but nothing graphic, no foul language. The tone is quite dark, but so is the plot; this is definitely NOT a cozy mystery.

  • Jane Austen at Home

  • A Biography
  • By: Lucy Worsley
  • Narrated by: Ruth Redman
  • Length: 14 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 208
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 195
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 194

Take a trip back to Jane Austen's world and the many places she lived as historian Lucy Worsley visits Austen's childhood home, her schools, her holiday accommodations, the houses - both grand and small - of the relations upon whom she was dependent, and the home she shared with her mother and sister towards the end of her life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • OMG - Who doesn't enjoy Jane Austen!

  • By Doris Anna Wright on 09-16-17

Delightful and fascinating

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

Reviewed: 09-14-18

This wonderful book follows the Georgian author and her family through the many houses and homes they occupied. Worsley does an astonishing amount of clarification of the little data available about Jane Austen; without adding opinions, she pieces together the facts and smushes quite a few rumors along the way.

Home and family were of utmost importance to Jane Austen and most women of her time, and by choosing to relate the writer’s life via those values, this extraordinary personality is remembered with the respect she always deserved.

Ruth Rodman does a fabulous job with the narration. She was the perfect choice for this work. And Ms. Worsley introduces and closes the book herself in her usual enthusiastic manner.

Highly entertaining and strongly recommended to all who are interested in this time period.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Circe

  • By: Madeline Miller
  • Narrated by: Perdita Weeks
  • Length: 12 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,129
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 8,557
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,507

In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child - not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring, like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power - the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Refined writing with an intimate performance

  • By Michael - Audible Editor on 04-11-18

Luscious and Lovely

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

Reviewed: 08-04-18

What a beautiful story of Circe, based on the early Greek mythology, suffused with life by the author and performed with skill by the narrator. It might change your opinion of a few of the characters you thought you knew, as well.

Ms. Weeks’ pacing was perfect and her ability to differentiate the characters was excellent. The only qualm I have is that her voice was sometimes so quiet that it was difficult to hear, and I had to adjust the volume several times.

The story is quite brutal at times—it IS about the gods, after all—and there’s some applicable violence. Mortality is a huge factor in the story, of course. Implied sex but nothing descriptive, no foul language.

Highly recommended and deserves all the praise it’s getting.

  • Dodger

  • By: Terry Pratchett
  • Narrated by: Stephen Briggs
  • Length: 10 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,699
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,544
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,535

A storm. Rain-lashed city streets. A flash of lightning. A scruffy lad sees a girl leap desperately from a horse-drawn carriage in a vain attempt to escape her captors. Can the lad stand by and let her be caught again? Of course not, because he's...Dodger. Seventeen-year-old Dodger may be a street urchin, but he gleans a living from London's sewers, and he knows a jewel when he sees one. He's not about to let anything happen to the unknown girl - not even if her fate impacts the most powerful people in England.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing Narrator, Great story

  • By Easy Reader on 01-18-13

Great diversion with outstanding narration

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

Reviewed: 07-23-18

This is the story of a young man named Dodger, a "tosher," or finder of treasure in the London sewers, and how he becomes a hero. The characters are fun, Stephen Briggs does an outstanding job with the voices, and there's plenty of humor. Yes, there's quite a bit of silliness around, but consider the source... Terry Pratchett has quite an imagination (understatement of the century). A very enjoyable diversion.

  • Still Life

  • Chief Inspector Gamache, Book 1
  • By: Louise Penny
  • Narrated by: Ralph Cosham
  • Length: 9 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,730
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,150
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,132

Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surêté du Québec and his team of investigators are called in to the scene of a suspicious death in a rural village south of Montreal. Jane Neal, a local fixture in the tiny hamlet of Three Pines, just north of the U.S. border, has been found dead in the woods. The locals are certain it’s a tragic hunting accident and nothing more, but Gamache smells something foul in these remote woods, and is soon certain that Jane Neal died at the hands of someone much more sinister than a careless bowhunter.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A rare find

  • By Alex on 01-16-15

A Mystery of Character

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

Reviewed: 07-11-18

This is very much a character-driven contemporary murder mystery, set in a small village in southern Quebec. This is the first book in a long series starring Chief Inspector Gamache.

The co-stars—villagers and other policemen—have varied personalities and quirks. Most are interesting and some are annoying (just like our real acquaintances!), which is a sign that Louise Penny knows how to write. Descriptions were wonderful, and I could almost smell the paint, the dead leaves, and the coffee.

I thought the mystery itself was well presented and the pacing was very good, moving along between interviews and insights. The identity of the murderer was uncertain until the last part of the book, and it’s always pleasant to be surprised. I felt a little let down by the climax in this one, but maybe I read too many mysteries.

Ralph Cosham did an great job with the narration. The accents were mostly distinct and I wasn’t bothered by weak female voices this time. I will be continuing this series in audio format and hope he’s the narrator.

Very little violence (except for the murder, of course), no gore, some foul language, and no sex.