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Alnita

Fallbrook, CA USA
  • 9
  • reviews
  • 11
  • helpful votes
  • 74
  • ratings
  • If on a Winter's Night a Traveler

  • By: Italo Calvino
  • Narrated by: Jefferson Mays
  • Length: 9 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 309
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 283
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 279

Italo Calvino imagines a novel capable of endless mutations in this intricately crafted story about writing and readers. If on a Winter's Night a Traveler turns out to be not one novel but 10, each with a different plot, style, ambience, and author, and each interrupted at a moment of suspense. Together they form a labyrinth of literatures, known and unknown, alive and extinct, through which two readers, a male and a female, pursue both the story lines that intrigue them and one another.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The position of the feet during reading...

  • By literate rose on 02-09-18

Rereadable

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

Reviewed: 02-11-18

I rarely give a book 5 stars. I reserve that 5th star for books that, upon reaching the end, I immediately start back at the beginning. Not because I want to repeat the experience, but because I'm certain there will be new experiences that I missed the first time around. Books like Cryptonomicon and Against the Day. This will be a short review. I can't wait to get started again.

2 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • California Girl

  • By: T. Jefferson Parker
  • Narrated by: Patrick G. Lawlor
  • Length: 12 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 46
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 18
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 18

Orange groves uprooted for tract houses, people flooding into Orange County, and strange new ideas in the air about war, music, sex, and drugs, and new influences including Richard Nixon and Timothy Leary. But for the Becker brothers, the past is always present and it comes crashing back when the body of the lovely and mysterious Janelle Vonn is discovered in an abandoned orange packinghouse. The Beckers and Vonns have a history, beginning with a rumble between the brothers of each clan. But boys grow up.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Preposterous

  • By FRITZ STOOP on 01-10-11

Predictable

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

Reviewed: 05-02-16

You'll probably guess the outcome fairly early on. If you do, you'll probably be right.

  • The Name of the Wind

  • Kingkiller Chronicles, Day 1
  • By: Patrick Rothfuss
  • Narrated by: Nick Podehl
  • Length: 27 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 60,283
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54,749
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 54,846

This is a tale of sorrow, a tale of survival, a tale of one man's search for meaning in his universe, and how that search, and the indomitable will that drove it, gave birth to a legend.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow!

  • By Joanna on 05-10-11

Two for One

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

Reviewed: 02-17-15

For a "story-within-a-story" to be successful, the reader must care about the teller and listeners of the tale being told, as well as the characters of the tale itself. Rothfuss accomplishes this brilliantly.

  • Kushiel's Dart

  • By: Jacqueline Carey
  • Narrated by: Anne Flosnik
  • Length: 31 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,483
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,963
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,981

The land of Terre d'Ange is a place of unsurpassing beauty and grace. It is said that angels found the land and saw it was good...and the ensuing race that rose from the seed of angels and men live by one simple rule: Love as thou wilt.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Kushiel series in order

  • By Glen Gaines on 10-27-09

Foreshadowing

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

Reviewed: 12-11-14

Any additional comments?

Had I but known that the author knows only one device for creating suspense -- foreshadowing -- I probably wouldn't have bought the book.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Trustee from the Toolroom

  • By: Nevil Shute
  • Narrated by: Frank Muller
  • Length: 8 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,604
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,443
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,442

Keith Stewart, a retiring and ingenious engineer, could not have been happier in his little house in the shabby London suburb of Ealing. There he invented the mini-motor, the six-volt generator, and the tiny Congreve clock. Then a chain of events sweeps him into deep waters and leads him to his happiest discovery yet.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Hologram of a Decent Man

  • By Jim In Texas! on 05-28-12

Most delightful novel I have read in a long time

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

Reviewed: 07-28-14

Before I was half finished with this book, I was so excited about it that I recommended it to my boss. He posted a review on his blog that says it much better than I could: "Trustee from the Toolroom by Nevil Shute is the most delightful novel I have read in a very long time. Spending time with the book, letting the paragraphs slide by, was pure joy, every minute of it. I just didn’t want it to end. . . . This book is a novel without any villain or even any intense conflict. It simply tells the story, in great detail, of how Keith lives and eventually embarks on an exotic trip across half the globe on a very unlikely mission. We think we know the eventual outcome but the suspense comes from wanting to know how he accomplishes it, step by step." I agree wholeheartedly. As soon as I finished, I went back to the beginning because I wanted to rehear the setting in view of what I already knew. I wound up listening to the whole book again.

  • Hyperion

  • By: Dan Simmons
  • Narrated by: Marc Vietor, Allyson Johnson, Kevin Pariseau, and others
  • Length: 20 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,816
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,655
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,704

On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • The Shrike Awaits. Enter The Time Tombs...

  • By Michael on 10-13-12

Dull book, engrossing audiobook

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

Reviewed: 12-04-13

I tried three times to read this book: In 1989 when it came out, in 1990 when it won the Hugo (surely I had missed something!) and again in 2003 when I vowed to read or reread all the Hugo winners. I never made it past the first dozen chapters. I found the plot tedious and the characters uninspiring. Then when Audible offered it as a Deal of the Day, I decided to try again. I guess it took an outstanding performance to show me that this is a GREAT book! I was up until 4 am this morning because I couldn't quit listening. The technology is amazing, even after 23 years. The characters and their stories are sometimes heartbreaking and sometimes horrifying, but always compelling. The different cultures are imaginative and fascinating.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Spherical Harmonic

  • A Novel of the Skolian Empire
  • By: Catherine Asaro
  • Narrated by: Liza Kaplan, Catherine Asaro
  • Length: 14 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 100
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 58
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 57

Separated for decades by circumstance and political machinations, the Ruby Dynasty, hereditary rulers of Skolia, struggle to bring together the tattered remnants of their family in the shadow of a disastrous interstellar war. Too many have died, others are presumed lost, yet Dyhianna, the Ruby Pharaoh, must move quickly if they are reassume their rightful place as rulers of the Skolian Empire.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Good book, horrible narrator

  • By S. Mounsey on 12-21-10

I give up

Overall
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-19-11

Well, I can't say I wasn't warned. But I was anxious to find out what happens next in the series. I thought, how bad can the narrator be? In the first few minutes, I agreed with the other reviewers that she sounds childish, but I thought I could put up with it for this one volume. Then I realized that the viewpoint character was Dehya Selei, the elegant, powerful mathematical genius and Ruby Pharoah of the Skolian Imperialate. When she chirps, "I created the psiberweb," in a tone and cadence you might expect to hear "I created a new Barbi costume," I gave up. I'm buying the paper book.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Against the Day

  • A Novel
  • By: Thomas Pynchon
  • Narrated by: Dick Hill
  • Length: 53 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 316
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 173
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 174

This novel spans the period between the Chicago World's Fair of 1893 and the years just after World War I. With a worldwide disaster looming just a few years ahead, it is a time of unrestrained corporate greed, false religiosity, moronic fecklessness, and evil intent in high places. No reference to the present day is intended or should be inferred.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • brilliant!

  • By Rebecca Lindroos on 01-28-07

Great fun, great names

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-30-08

This book is so much fun in so many ways, but I'll just focus on one -- the names. I suffer from biblianomia, a word I made up for inability to remember fictional character names. My paper books are full of highlighting and notes, so I wasn't sure about a 1,085-page book with over a hundred characters. I needn't have worried. The names Pynchon gives his characters, plus the narrator's masterful handling of each voice, made it easy. The itinerant mechanic/photographer is Merle Rideout. The anthropologist is named Provenance. And so on. Even minor characters get great names. My favorite is Mia Culpepper, who was mentioned briefly but so far hasn't been heard from again. I keep expecting her to show up feeling guilty about something.

1 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Star Strike

  • The Inheritance Trilogy, Book 1
  • By: Ian Douglas
  • Narrated by: Marc Vietor
  • Length: 15 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 420
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 258
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 264

Planet by planet, galaxy by galaxy, the inhabited universe has fallen to the alien Xul. Now only one obstacle stands between them and total domination: the warriors of a resilient race the world-devourers nearly annihilated centuries ago.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Good Sci Fi Detail and excellent story

  • By Lawrence on 08-04-08

Good space yarn; awful narration

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-30-08

It's a good space yarn, and I will get the others in the trilogy, but one chapter repeatedly mentions the golden ratio "phi," and I wanted to shriek every time the narrator pronounced it "pi." You don't have to be a mathematician or SF fan to know how to pronounce phi.

2 of 6 people found this review helpful