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Mark E. White

Atlanta, GA USA
  • 14
  • reviews
  • 63
  • helpful votes
  • 129
  • ratings
  • Macbeth

  • By: Jo Nesbo
  • Narrated by: Euan Morton
  • Length: 17 hrs and 27 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 281
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 255
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 254

Set in the 1970s in a run-down, rainy, industrial town, Jo Nesbo's Macbeth centers around a police force struggling to shed an incessant drug problem. Duncan, chief of police, is idealistic and visionary, a dream to the townspeople but a nightmare for criminals. The drug trade is ruled by two drug lords, one of whom - a master of manipulation named Hecate - has connections with the highest in power and plans to use them to get his way.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great story, listen to the sample first

  • By stuartjash on 04-12-18

Noirist o the noir

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

Reviewed: 05-21-18

Gripping, dark-maybe darkest ever-novel. Impossible to put down. I listened to all in four hellish happy day.

Incredibly, there is a hay ending. Sort of.

  • Hide and Seek

  • Inspector Rebus, Book 2
  • By: Ian Rankin
  • Narrated by: Michael Page
  • Length: 7 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 210
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 188
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 192

In a shadowy, crumbling Edinburgh housing development, a junkie lies dead of an overdose, his body surrounded by signs of Satanic worship. Inspector John Rebus could call it an accident. But won’t. Now he’s got to search the city, from the tunnels of its dark underbelly to the private sanctum of the upper crust, to find the perfect hiding place for a killer.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • for Rebus diehards only

  • By connie on 04-04-15

Who wants to read about Rebus as a bully?

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

Reviewed: 05-26-17

In this book Rebus is a bully and a selfish cad who blows relationships with women through crude and obtuse behavior.

Great pace and tension though and terrific ending.

  • The Second Life of Nick Mason

  • By: Steve Hamilton
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 8 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 913
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 832
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 827

Nick Mason has already spent five years inside a maximum security prison when an offer comes that will grant his release 20 years early. He accepts - but the deal comes with a terrible price. Now, back on the streets, Nick Mason has a new house, a new car, money to burn, and a beautiful roommate. He's returned to society, but he's still a prisoner. Whenever his cell phone rings, day or night, Nick must answer it and follow whatever order he is given.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Rock and hard place plot

  • By Lesia on 06-01-16

Superb Chicago Noir

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

Reviewed: 05-20-16

The plot is superb. Surprising twists, nothing is ever easy, nothing goes as expected. Characters are well-drawn tough guys.

The reader is terrific. Sounds like John Belushi in Ghostbusters.

Negatives: cars were too much to believe. I can't believe the author saved the final wrenching twist. Take that back. The ending is pre shadowed and organic. Great ending. Great book.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • The Guise of Another

  • By: Allen Eskens
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Yen
  • Length: 9 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,620
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 2,411
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,399

A former Medal of Valor winner, Minnesota detective Alexander Rupert is now under subpoena by a grand jury on suspicion of corruption. So when he's asked to look into the false identity of a car-accident victim named James Putnam, a man who in fact died 15 years earlier, Rupert sees a potentially big case and an opportunity to regain his respectability. But the investigation puts him in the path of "the Beast", the nom de guerre of Drago Basta, a cunning veteran of the Balkan wars.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great listen, terrific narrator

  • By mary on 01-15-16

Cracking Good Noir

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

Reviewed: 11-16-15

A delicious tale with a complex plot twisting like cream stirred slowly into very ghost coffee. It's got it all: loyal but fallible heroes, femme fatales, deep betrayals reaching up after years to drag down empires and the good and evil both.

My only complaint is that after much foreshadowing one of the villains turned out-I think-to be a random minor character. Then again, I may have misheard.

24 of 26 people found this review helpful

  • Last Words

  • By: Michael Koryta
  • Narrated by: Robert Petkoff
  • Length: 14 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 258
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 240
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 239

Markus Novak just wants to come home. An investigator for a Florida-based death-row defense firm, Novak's life derailed when his wife, Lauren, was killed in the midst of a case the two were working together. Two years later her murderer is still at large, and Novak's attempts to learn the truth about her death through less-than-legal means and jailhouse bargaining have put his job on the line.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Competent Airplane Reading

  • By Mark E. White on 08-26-15

Competent Airplane Reading

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

Reviewed: 08-26-15

Would you try another book from Michael Koryta and/or Robert Petkoff?

Petkoff, yes. Korda, no.

What was most disappointing about Michael Koryta’s story?

Korda writes fast-pace page-turning prose well. He annoyingly makes simple mistakes in plotting though, introducing characters such as his mother and his wife without bringing resolution. He thoughtlessly leaves careful readers and those who like mysteries hanging on unresolved or undeveloped plot lines.

Anyone familiar with science, especially psychology or neurology will be greatly annoyed by his credulous and ham-handed misinterpretation of these disciplines. So will anyone who knows about caving.

Korda's cliffhanger ending is distorted by his blatant commercial for the next book in the series. While he seems not to have drawn up a careful plot, he clearly is following a well-thought-out financial plan. I read and enjoy commercial novels, but the author is so clumsy at the end that in his excitement to advertise, he spoils the ending.

What does Robert Petkoff bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

His voice, diction, and pace are pleasant. More importantly, his voices for different characters bring them to life and complexity.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

He writes excellent, tight, well-paced page-turning text. It kept me reading in spite of my annoyance with the book.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • How Proust Can Change Your Life

  • By: Alain de Botton
  • Narrated by: Nicholas Bell
  • Length: 5 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 314
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 269
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 270

For anyone who ever wondered what Marcel Proust had in mind when he wrote the one-and-a-quarter-million words of In Search of Lost Time (while bedridden no less), Alain de Botton has the answer. For, in this stylish, erudite and frequently hilarious book, de Botton dips deeply into Proust’s life and work - his fiction, letter, and conversations – and distils from them that rare self-help manual: one that is actually helpful.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Good book, well read, with just one remark

  • By Marie-Claude on 08-17-12

Whimsical, clever, enlightening.

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

Reviewed: 07-14-15

Wonderful book. I'm getting the paperback to retread and share. It's that good. It occasionally sounds condescending, but this is a quibble.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Solo Faces

  • A Novel
  • By: James Salter
  • Narrated by: Stephen Hoye
  • Length: 6 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 14
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 13

Vernon Rand is a charismatic figure whose great love - whose life, in fact - is climbing. He lives alone in California, where he combats the drudgery of a roofing job with the thrill of climbing in the nearby mountain ranges. Sure of only his talent and nerve, Rand decides to test himself in the French Alps, with their true mountaineering and famed, fearsome peaks. He soon learns that the most perilous moments are, for him, the moments when he feels truly alive.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Hemingway goes to the mountains and gets laid

  • By Mark E. White on 06-16-15

Hemingway goes to the mountains and gets laid

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

Reviewed: 06-16-15

Salter is usually so much better than this. The protagonist is flat, a wise man working at his craft. Credit is due in that he does change as the story winds on. There are some good climbing scenes among the trackless wastes of aimless wandering-both figuratively and literally.

You could take this as an existentialist descendent of The Stranger and Camus' flat and uninteresting protagonist, Marsault.

If this was Salter's aim, he could have done better with a more compelling plot and engaging characters.

Nothing says you must be tedious to be an existential hero.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Ticking Is the Bomb

  • A Memoir
  • By: Nick Flynn
  • Narrated by: Scott Brick
  • Length: 5 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Performance
    2.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 7

In 2007, during the months before Nick Flynn's daughter's birth, his growing outrage and obsession with torture, exacerbated by the Abu Ghraib photographs, led him to Istanbul to meet some of the Iraqi men depicted in the photos. Haunted by a history of addiction and a longing to connect with his mother who committed suicide, Flynn artfully interweaves in this memoir passages from his childhood, his relationships with women, and his growing obsession.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Memoir of a selfish man

  • By Mark E. White on 04-28-15

Memoir of a selfish man

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

Reviewed: 04-28-15

This is a book about gilt and blame. Most of the time the author blames his behavior on his parents, the torturers at Abu Greib, etc. from his higher moral position as a disciple of Buddism.

He takes no responsibility for his promiscuity, though he metes out a little blame for himself as he nurtures his parents.

The answer for his life is that it is his nature.

The lesson I took from the book is this is what happens when you don't take responsibility for your own actions. Just like the torturers he so berates, he ignores the gratuitous pain he causes others. Don't be like this.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Odds Against Tomorrow

  • By: Nathaniel Rich
  • Narrated by: Kirby Heyborne
  • Length: 10 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars 59
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 51
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars 53

New York City, the near future: Mitchell Zukor, a gifted young mathematician, is hired by a mysterious new financial consulting firm, FutureWorld. The business operates out of an empty office in the Empire State Building; Mitchell is employee number two. He is asked to calculate worst-case scenarios in the most intricate detail, and his schemes are sold to corporations to indemnify them against any future disasters. This is the cutting edge of corporate irresponsibility, and business is booming. As Mitchell immerses himself in the mathematics of catastrophe - ecological collapse, war games, natural disasters - he becomes obsessed by a culture's fears.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Stay away

  • By Holly on 06-03-13

Amusing, but slows down at the end

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

Reviewed: 05-16-13

Is there anything you would change about this book?

Speed up the last third of the book.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

Mitchell's character and obsessions are the most interesting. The details of settling the swamp are less so.

What does Kirby Heyborne bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He's a fine reader, but I don't think I would feel differently if I read the book.

Could you see Odds Against Tomorrow being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

No.

Any additional comments?

Interesting conceit. Mitchell's rise in the world of greed and finance is well done and fun to read. There's no great life-changing message, but the book was entertaining and diverting, perfect beach reading.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Filmmakers

  • By: Michael Corrigan
  • Narrated by: Amara Dotson
  • Length: 5 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 1

Through a chance encounter, a young film student kills a hitman in self defense and steals mob money to fund his film. He finds himself the object of a hunt by a police detective and the mob, including the hitman's brother. Will the film ever get made? Who will show up on the set? This thriller explores the violent world of mobsters and Hollywood filmmakers. It is also a love story.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Lots of Possibilites, Partly Realized

  • By Mark E. White on 04-25-13

Lots of Possibilites, Partly Realized

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

Reviewed: 04-25-13

Would you try another book from Michael Corrigan and/or Amara Dotson?

Yes.

What other book might you compare The Filmmakers to and why?

Get Shorty by Elmore Leonard. Like Filmmakers, he writes about gangsters and punks muscling into Hollywood.

Have you listened to any of Amara Dotson’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This is my first. I like her steady, understated monotone. She leaves the story to provide the excitement.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

Maybe.

Any additional comments?

This book has the strengths and weaknesses of the Elmore Leonard genre, though Leonard does it better. Good story and twists. Moves v. fast, so fast it is easy to lose track of characters.Many opportunities for bright, memorable images or characterization missed. Chekov said something like, "Don't tell us there was moonlight,. Show us the glistening reflection on the ice." Corrigan might follow this advice in future.The mistakes about death and morgues were annoying. As a physician I had only too much time with dead bodies. The don't, as Corrigan says, turn black. Rather, thee blood sinks to the bottom and the top turns and bluish-greenish gray.Many years ago I was in the SF morgue. When there are multiple bodies, they lay them out on multiple tables, not put them on shelves. Morgues keep bodies in refrigerated drawers, like filing cabinets.And would the Chief of Police really let a detective to shack up with a witness.But I quibble. the strengths far outweigh these details.In sum, this was an enjoyable, fast read with a great plot and rapid, exciting plot movement.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful