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Gioacchino

Gainesville, VA, United States
  • 16
  • reviews
  • 10
  • helpful votes
  • 87
  • ratings
  • River God

  • A Novel of Ancient Egypt
  • By: Wilbur Smith
  • Narrated by: Dick Hill
  • Length: 24 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,431
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 926
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 930

Ancient Egypt. Land of the Pharaohs. A kingdom built on gold. A legend shattered by greed. Now the Valley of Kings lies ravaged by war, drained of its lifeblood, as weak men inherit the cherished crown. On the eve of the festival of Osiris, the loyal subjects of the Pharaoh gather in Thebes to pay tribute to their leader.

Exploding with all the passion and rage of a bygone time, River God is a masterpiece of historical writing.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Highly recommended

  • By Jillian on 02-19-09

Tiata is the Forest Gump of Ancient Egypt

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

Reviewed: 10-03-17

River God is an entertaining and fast paced book. I really actually liked it. However, a few things about the characters I didn't like. Tiata knows how to do EVERYTHING. Doctor, musician, architect, painter, inventor, horseman and on and on. He simply is not old enough to be expert in all these things so I found myself annoyed with it at times. The other thing I found a bit grating is Tounos and Lostra basically lived the life of a lie, committing adultery and passing off their son as the pharaoh's son which is pretty much treason. Yet Smith tries to portray them as these very honorable and patriotic people. That said, the characters are generally likable and the scenes well described.

  • Catalyst (Star Wars)

  • A Rogue One Novel
  • By: James Luceno
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 11 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,973
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,343
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 9,322

The must-have prequel novel to Rogue One: A Star Wars Story - the upcoming film, set before the events of Star Wars: A New Hope, that reveals the untold story of the rebel effort to steal the plans to the Death Star!

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good Setup for Upcoming Movie

  • By dunagrad on 12-15-16

Boring book writen capitalize on the Rogue 1 movie

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

Reviewed: 12-05-16

Any additional comments?

I have enjoyed James Luceno's SW books very much in the past. But this one just felt forced. We really learn nothing new or any real "back story". From the previews of the new movie and synopses written we already know that Jynn is daughter of the scientist who had a lot to do with the Death Star weapon. By the end of the book Jynn is maybe 4 or 5 years old. We learn nothing of how she becomes a girl power bad ass or any of that. Don't waste the credit.

  • Edge of Eternity

  • The Century Trilogy, Book 3
  • By: Ken Follett
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Length: 36 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,273
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,312
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,290

Throughout these books, Follett has followed the fortunes of five intertwined families - American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh - as they make their way through the twentieth century. Now they come to one of the most tumultuous eras of all: the enormous social, political, and economic turmoil of the 1960s through the 1980s, from civil rights, assassinations, mass political movements and Vietnam to the Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis, presidential impeachment, revolution - and rock and roll.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Some good, some bad

  • By Elisa on 09-22-14

A love letter to Liberal Democrats

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

Reviewed: 08-11-16

What could Ken Follett have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Don't be so incredibly biased. I think even a dyed in the wool life long democrat would be embarrassed by this.

Did John Lee do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

I normally would give John Lee 5 stars but not for this one. His American accents were very off. Early on in the book a 39 year old Jackie Jakes sounds like an 80 year old woman. George Jakes is supposed to have grown up in DC but sounds like that NY FDR kind of voice. He did a pretty good Nixon though.

Any additional comments?

I really enjoy Ken Follett's books they are usually very entertaining if not a bit romance novelish. As many other reviews have stated...the political bias was way over the top! Every liberal icon of the second half of 20th century was lionized and their mistakes glossed over. According to Follett, Barry Goldwater - Racist, White working class people - racist, Reagan murderer with crimes much "worse than Nixon". No mention of Reagan's famous Tear down this wall speech and role in bringing down the iron curtain. He also seems to glorify traders through out this series. If the trader is doing something Follet's own politics agree with they are a hero even if that ends up getting their fellow countrymen killed. It wasn't just the famous political figures that Follett portrays negatively. Any character with a more conservative view point behaves badly because they are either a closet homosexual that is repressed, a jilted lover getting revenge or some such thing like that.

I also agree with other reviewers that the characters weren't that interesting this time. I found myself not caring at all about the families at all any more they just seemed to be very diluted from what we started with. Overall if you have the credits it is entertaining enough, if you are very conservative you might want to avoid, if you are fair minded you might be a little annoyed and if you are a liberal you will love it.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Home World

  • Undying Mercenaries, Book 6
  • By: B. V. Larson
  • Narrated by: Mark Boyett
  • Length: 12 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,666
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5,285
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,261

When the Earth is invaded by a rival empire, James McGill's legion must defend the Home World. The top brass has complex plans, but none of that matters much to McGill, who chooses his own unique path. Traveling to star systems no human has ever visited, he searches for a technological edge to beat the enemy before it's too late. Along the way he unleashes new terrors, triggering the biggest battles in human history.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Obstinate to the Core

  • By Don Gilbert on 06-04-16

Predictable but as always a fun ride with McGill

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

Reviewed: 06-30-16

Any additional comments?

I think Larson gets lazier and lazier with each book in this series but it's still an enjoyable story and Mark Boyett is always flawless. Not sure why he inserted the new tech "Lisa" in this one. She was pretty much Natasha in all but name. I really like the dialog between Vet. Harris and McGill. Wouldn't mind the character of Harris being explored an little bit more in any future books.

  • Star Wars: Bloodline - New Republic

  • By: Claudia Gray
  • Narrated by: January LaVoy
  • Length: 12 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,796
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,107
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,083

From the New York Times best-selling author of Star Wars: Lost Stars comes a thrilling novel set in the years before the events of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • fantastic

  • By Amazon Customer on 05-08-16

Fills in some of the gaps of The Force Awakens

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

Reviewed: 06-07-16

Any additional comments?

I thought this was a pretty good story and filled in the plot holes of The Force Awakens. It was cool to get inside Leia's head on what she would be feeling to find out that her father was Vader and how that fact effects her.

January LaVoy...I think she's a good reader and easy to follow. My one criticism is she is poor at doing men's voices, especially men with an "American" accent. For some reason every male voice sounds like Jimbo Jones on The Simpsons.

  • Death World

  • Undying Mercenaries, Book 5
  • By: B. V. Larson
  • Narrated by: Mark Boyett
  • Length: 13 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,155
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4,781
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,771

Unknown aliens attack Earth. Their planet is uncharted, mysteriously having avoided detection for centuries. It's a world packed with the most vicious aliens humanity has yet to encounter. James McGill has discovered: Death World.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Plant World

  • By Don Gilbert on 09-06-15

Repetitive but fun and moves along

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

Reviewed: 05-20-16

Any additional comments?

The book is pretty much the same formula and with much of the same dialog as all the others. McGill beds every female character like usual, he disobey's orders and in the end gets promoted like usual. The alien enemies are huge and creepy like usual. That being said it's still a fun book that's fast paced.

  • Starfire

  • By: B.V. Larson
  • Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini
  • Length: 13 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,451
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,262
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,262

On June 30, 1908, an object fell from the sky, releasing more energy than a thousand Hiroshima bombs. A Siberian forest was flattened, but the strike left no significant crater. The anomaly came to be known as the Tunguska Event, and scientists have never agreed whether it was the largest meteor strike in recorded history - or something else. Alien artifacts have been uncovered since the 1908 event, and a new star drive is discovered.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Spy flick meets First contact. :)

  • By Antonio Stevens on 04-27-15

Big Let Down

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

Reviewed: 05-05-16

What could B.V. Larson have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Get to the point of the story sooner and actually finish the book. The ending was awful.

Which character – as performed by Edoardo Ballerini – was your favorite?

None, they were all cheesy.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Starfire?

All the ones where Brant is this super soldier that can dispatch every government agent that comes near him.

Any additional comments?

This book took forever to get to the point. The characters were just that, characters, very one dimensional. One of the characters, Brant, was so unrealistic and made no sense his dialog just became one big eye roll for me.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Machine World

  • Undying Mercenaries, Book 4
  • By: B. V. Larson
  • Narrated by: Mark Boyett
  • Length: 13 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,466
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5,055
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,038

In the fourth book of the series, James McGill is up for promotion. Not everyone is happy about that, and McGill must prove he's worth his stripes. Deployed to a strange alien planet outside the boundaries of the Galactic Empire, he's caught up in warfare and political intrigue. Earth expands, the Cephalopod Kingdom launches ships to stop us, and a grand conspiracy emerges among the upper ranks of the Hegemony military.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • McGill's Way

  • By Don Gilbert on 05-16-15

Fun but same old McGill Antics

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

Reviewed: 04-20-16

If you could sum up Machine World in three words, what would they be?

Same old story

If you’ve listened to books by B. V. Larson before, how does this one compare?

Larson is a good author but this time around it seemed like he cut and pasted a lot of lines.

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

Yes, he's one of my favorites. Does a good job with James McGill's southern charm.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, but that's rare for me.

Any additional comments?

I enjoyed the book but this whole McGill sleeping with the same old girls...I think it's a love hexagon by now. They are all jealous of each other but keep coming back for more. It makes the women in the story seem one dimensional. Also the way McGill gets out of getting permed in these every time is getting a bit repetitive. If you like this series it's worth a listen but expect more of the same.

  • Through Many Fires

  • Strengthen What Remains
  • By: Kyle Pratt
  • Narrated by: Kevin Pierce
  • Length: 8 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 533
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 493
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 487

Terrorists smuggle a nuclear bomb into Washington D.C. and detonate it during the State of the Union Address. Army veteran and congressional staffer Caden Westmore is in nearby Bethesda and watches as a mushroom cloud grows over the capital. The next day, as he drives away from the still burning city, he learns that another city has been destroyed and then another. America is under siege. Panic ensues and society starts to unravel.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Book can't wait for Part 2

  • By Alan on 05-09-14

Very unrealistic stories.

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

Reviewed: 02-04-16

What would have made Through Many Fires better?

A little realism. 5 cities nuked and the entire nation can't get food or fuel any more? None of the places that actually grow and raise food were touched! None of the cities that have refineries or oil production were touched!

1 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Into the Void

  • Star Wars Legends (Dawn of the Jedi)
  • By: Tim Lebbon
  • Narrated by: January LaVoy
  • Length: 10 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,515
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,334
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 2,330

On the planet Tython, the ancient Je’daii order was founded. And at the feet of its wise Masters, Lanoree Brock learned the mysteries and methods of the Force - and found her calling as one of its most powerful disciples. But as strongly as the Force flowed within Lanoree and her parents, it remained absent in her brother, who grew to despise and shun the Je’daii, and whose training in its ancient ways ended in tragedy. Now, from her solitary life as a Ranger keeping order across the galaxy, Lanoree has been summoned by the Je’daii Council on a matter of utmost urgency.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • A lot of not much

  • By K. J. Kendall on 08-12-16

Not really anything recognizable as Star Wars

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

Reviewed: 02-04-16

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

It wasn't an awful story or anything but it was so far removed from anything I identify as Star Wars. Maybe someone who just wants some ancient history of the Star Wars universe would enjoy it.

What was most disappointing about Tim Lebbon’s story?

Sure it talked about the force often and there were space ships but if you replaced a few words it could have just been any sci-fi story.

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

Very good at inflection from male to female characters no issue with her performance at all.

Any additional comments?

I found the main character specifically and the Je'daii in general very unlikable. As long as it served any of their purposes go ahead and destroy people's property, torture them for information and murder them. It's all good...because the Je'daii's purposes are so noble all the time. To paraphrase Emperor Palpatine from a later era "...all those who gain power fear to lose it". I just never read/listened to a Star Wars novel where I was rooting for the protagonist to lose more than this book.