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Douglas E. Noll

  • 56
  • reviews
  • 243
  • helpful votes
  • 125
  • ratings
  • In Evil Times

  • The Imperials Saga, Book 2
  • By: Melinda Snodgrass
  • Narrated by: Nicole Poole
  • Length: 9 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 3

Scholarship student Thracius "Tracy" Belmanor and Princess Mercedes de Arango have graduated from the High Ground and become officers in the Orden de la Estrella. Stung by Mercedes' choice of Beauregard “Boho” Cullen as her consort, Tracy is glad they are posted on battleships light years apart but soon finds that without her protection, he is nothing but a target. Meanwhile, Mercedes' posting has its own challenges, not least her unfaithful husband.  

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Second Book of Series

  • By Douglas E. Noll on 01-23-19

Excellent Second Book of Series

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

Reviewed: 01-23-19

This book starts at graduation from the High Ground Academy. The story examines the moral ambiguity of allowing a mass murder of children to be "ignored" in the interest of preventing an inter-species war. Mercedes is slowly losing her soul as she grows into the role of Le Infanta and Tracy, stubborn and priggish, suffers dearly for his principles. The book ends on a bit of a cliffhanger promising much more to come. Can hardly wait.

  • The High Ground

  • Imperials Saga Series, Book 1
  • By: Melinda Snodgrass
  • Narrated by: Nicole Poole
  • Length: 10 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9

The Emperor's daughter Mercedes is the first woman ever admitted to The High Ground, the elite training academy of the Solar League's Star Command, and she must graduate if she is to have any hope of taking the throne. Her classmate Thracius has more modest goals - to defy his humble beginnings and rise to the rank of captain. But in a system rocked by political division, where women are governed by their husbands and fathers, the poor are kept in their place by a rigid class system, and the alien races have been conquered and subjugated, there are many who want them to fail.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Much Better Than Expected

  • By Douglas E. Noll on 01-23-19

Much Better Than Expected

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

Reviewed: 01-23-19

The jpublisher's summary makes this book sound almost like a coming of age story. In a way, it is, but it is really an exploration into the competing needs of social stability through hereditary aristocracy, meritocracy, xenophobia, and the protection of power, position, and privilege. The narration is excellent and the characters very flawed and very real. I will not say more as to not give away the story. I really enjoyed this one.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Warden's Will

  • The Will and the Way, Book 1
  • By: Heath Pfaff
  • Narrated by: Amy Landon
  • Length: 11 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 17
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17

The are few forces more powerful than the Will of a fully trained Warden, but those who endeavor to become Wardens must first escape the crucible fires of Black Mark Academy. Very few who enter will leave as Wardens, and many will never leave at all. Lillin ends up at Black Mark Academy not as a willing volunteer, but as forced penance for a past wrong. She soon discovers that the training involved in becoming a Warden is more nightmarish than she could have imagined. With her face marked permanently for her past crimes, she has to either survive the Warden's cruel training program or die in the process. She must discover the determination within herself to move forward and kindle the flames of the eternal fire, the Warden's Will.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • great story. a <br />

  • By Trevor on 10-07-18

Intense

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

Reviewed: 09-11-18

This is one of the most intense books I have listened to in years. The story line is predictable enough, but the way Pfaff builds the characters and the world they live in is what makes this book. It is also disturbing as the trials Lilan must go through to save her life and become a warden are nothing short of horrendous torture. I am not sure any human could survive the ordeals the warden training puts her through. I know I couldn't, and I am pretty tough. Well, she manages to survive even the horrible water test. I will want listen to the next installment to see what Pfaff creates for our heroine. The narration is well done. Recommend this one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The White Fleet

  • Blood on the Stars, Book 7
  • By: Jay Allan
  • Narrated by: Jeffrey Kafer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 306
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 289
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 288

The war is over, but the struggle continues. Tyler Barron and his spacers have set out into the unknown, deep into the Badlands, seeking to discover the empire’s old tech and the secrets of its tortured history before Gaston Villieneuve and the resurgent Union can beat them to it. The White Fleet is a vast force, powerful, and crewed by the toughest veterans from the war. Barron and his people know the future of the Confederation, even its survival, depends on recovering the scientific secrets of the empire before the enemy can do the same.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • more like a Novella<br />

  • By theodore vawter on 01-05-19

Tiresome...

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

Reviewed: 06-11-18

Seems like Jay Allan is entering the path of David Weber--polemics, anti-politics, bad narratives around failing societies and corrupt governments. Weber lost his mojo years ago because of this and Allan is trending in that direction. In this installment, we listen to shallow characters proclaim their superiority over everyone else with ridiculous declarations. It's tiresome. There is a new, good plot line developing if Allan can get back to his craft. Right now, his writing shows exhaustion and fatigue, not energy and creativity. I've never been a big fan of Kafer as a narrator. In this book, he makes things worse by over-emphasizing the stupid statements.If you are a fan of the series, buy it, tolerate it, and hope for better in the next installment.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Galaxy's Edge

  • By: Jason Anspach, Nick Cole
  • Narrated by: R.C. Bray
  • Length: 17 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,188
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 7,735
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,718

On the edge of the galaxy, a diplomatic mission to an alien planet takes a turn when the Legionnaires, an elite special fighting force, find themselves ambushed and stranded behind enemy lines. They struggle to survive under siege, waiting on a rescue that might never come. In the seedy starport of Ackabar, a young girl searches the crime-ridden gutters to avenge her father's murder; not far away, a double-dealing legionniare-turned-smuggler hunts an epic payday; and somewhere along the outer galaxy, a mysterious bounty hunter lies in wait.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • bit of a disconnect between parts

  • By Amazon Customer on 03-10-18

Fun Space Opera

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

Reviewed: 03-25-18

First, R.C. Bray is a joy to listen to. In this reading, he has expanded his characterizations considerably beyond what I have heard from him before. Just excellent. The story is interesting and the characters are well-developed. I'm looking forward to the next installment on Audible.

  • Rogue World

  • Undying Mercenaries, Book 7
  • By: B. V. Larson
  • Narrated by: Mark Boyett
  • Length: 12 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,777
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4,492
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,472

The Galactics arrived with their Battle Fleet in 2052. Rather than being exterminated under a barrage of hell-burners, Earth joined a vast Empire that spanned the Milky Way. Today, Battle Fleet 921 is returning to Earth. It hasn't been seen by human eyes since our blissful day of Annexation. But what should be a joyful occasion, a chance to grovel at the feet of superior lifeforms, is rapidly becoming a nightmare.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I kept thinking about his Toes

  • By Don Gilbert on 07-08-17

Nice Way to Pass the Time

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

Reviewed: 07-07-17

Other reviewers are complaining that this is a rehash of the former story lines. They are correct. But I didn't buy any of Larson's books for insightful plot development. I just like being entertained. Larson and Boyett have always delivered and they do again this time. Yes, it's all very predictable and it's still fun to listen to.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Paradise

  • Expeditionary Force, Book 3
  • By: Craig Alanson
  • Narrated by: R.C. Bray
  • Length: 15 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 26,902
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 25,231
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 25,129

While the crew of the starship Flying Dutchman have been trying to assure people that hostile aliens do not have access to Earth, the UN Expeditionary Force has been stranded on the planet they nicknamed "Paradise". The Flying Dutchman is headed back out on another mission, and the UN wants the ship to find out the status of the humans on Paradise.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • running out of ideas...

  • By Amazon Customer on 06-08-17

Can't Wait for the Next Installment

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

Reviewed: 06-05-17

Well-written, funny, ingenious. I love this series. Alanson has a great series going and Bray is a brilliant narrator.

  • Last Life

  • Lifers, Book 1
  • By: Michael G. Thomas, Eric Meyer
  • Narrated by: Wesley Bryant
  • Length: 15 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    2.5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    1.5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars 7

Noah Cage is a cybernetic supersoldier, a war hero and a man on his fifth and final life. He's a Lifer, an enhanced warrior. Repaired, rebuilt and improved after four lifetimes of soldiering. With each death comes further modification and enhancement, although at the loss of yet another piece of his dwindling humanity. Cage is thrust into the debacle of the Third Martian War. One that sees every man in his unit killed, including his best friend Rob Romero.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • worst read book I have bought

  • By Robin on 08-07-17

Mediocre, at best

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

Reviewed: 04-15-17

The narration is terrible. When I started listening, I almost quit and thought about asking for a refund. This narrator has no clue about how to tell a story. He pauses at wrong times and speaks so slowly that I had to speed up the playback to make it bearable. Despite this terrible narration, I decided to tough it out and listen to the entire book because I had some long drives. The story could have been interesting, but was repetitive and predictable. Our hero gets in a bind, is about to be killed, then is saved by some miraculous event. This repeats over and over again. Can't recommend this one, sorry.

  • Columbus Day

  • Expeditionary Force, Book 1
  • By: Craig Alanson
  • Narrated by: R.C. Bray
  • Length: 16 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 28,236
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 26,858
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26,796

The Ruhar hit us on Columbus Day. There we were, innocently drifting along the cosmos on our little blue marble, like the Native Americans in 1492. Over the horizon came ships of a technologically advanced, aggressive culture, and BAM! There went the good old days, when humans got killed only by each other. So, Columbus Day. It fits. When the morning sky twinkled again, this time with Kristang starships jumping in to hammer the Ruhar, we thought we were saved.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Sci Fi I didn't know I wanted

  • By Gary Glenn on 06-27-17

Very Entertaining

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

Reviewed: 12-26-16

This is a good one. The story moves right along with some interesting twists. It might seem contrived, but Alanson does a good job making the improbable probable. R.C. Bray does a phenomenal job of reading. His characterizations and voices are amazing, funny, and believable. Was sorely disappointed to learn that the next two books in the series are not yet on Audible. I hope that changes soon as I really want to continue with Joe and Skippy and find out what happens next.

  • Koban: Conflict and Empire

  • Koban, Volume 6
  • By: Stephen W Bennett
  • Narrated by: Eric Michael Summerer
  • Length: 15 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 877
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 816
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 809

The Galactic Federation is confronted by the vast and implacable Thandol Empire, which has coveted the former Krall region of space for eons, a region of space now occupied and claimed by the upstart Kobani. Outnumbered, they face an opponent who possesses new and deadly weapons. An enemy that had thousands of years to develop the means to take on the Krall Empire, and now present the supermen with a weapon that turns their greatest genetic asset into their greatest weakness.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Same Great Kobani -- Different Aliens!

  • By bluestategirl on 12-17-16

Another great addition to the series

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

Reviewed: 11-30-16

I listened to this nearly straight through. It is just as good as the previous installments.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful