LISTENER

Patrick

  • 16
  • reviews
  • 29
  • helpful votes
  • 28
  • ratings
  • On Tyranny

  • Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century
  • By: Timothy Snyder
  • Narrated by: Timothy Snyder
  • Length: 1 hr and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,700
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,449
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,426

The Founding Fathers tried to protect us from the threat they knew, the tyranny that overcame ancient democracy. Today, our political order faces new threats, not unlike the totalitarianism of the 20th century. We are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or communism. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Required reading

  • By A. R. S. on 04-17-17

A Handbook for 2018-2022. Must read.

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

Reviewed: 03-30-18

the problem with this book is that it is a guide for both sides of the argument. it's a how-to on implementing a successful tyranny as much as the ways to defeat it.

  • The Adventures of Tom Stranger, Interdimensional Insurance Agent

  • By: Larry Correia
  • Narrated by: Adam Baldwin
  • Length: 2 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,016
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,411
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 7,398

Have you ever seen a planet invaded by rampaging space mutants from another dimension or Nazi dinosaurs from the future? Don't let this happen to you! Rifts happen, so you should be ready when universes collide. A policy with Stranger & Stranger can cover all of your interdimensional insurance needs. Rated "Number One in Customer Satisfaction" for three years running, no claim is too big or too weird for Tom Stranger to handle.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Someone owes me a new keyboard

  • By Aimee M on 05-24-16

miserably unfunny

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

Reviewed: 06-20-17

first of all, if you are reading this after 2017, most of the forced pop culture references will be outdated. it reads like a highschool writing assignment. maybe the intended audience is 10th graders? however, many props to the narrator who does his best to sell it (only reason i gave it 2 stars over 1). But no amoint of voice acting can save this tripe.

3 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Children of Time

  • By: Adrian Tchaikovsky
  • Narrated by: Mel Hudson
  • Length: 16 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17,026
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15,875
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15,850

Adrian Tchaikovksy's critically acclaimed stand-alone novel Children of Time is the epic story of humanity's battle for survival on a terraformed planet. Who will inherit this new Earth? The last remnants of the human race left a dying Earth, desperate to find a new home among the stars. Following in the footsteps of their ancestors, they discover the greatest treasure of the past age - a world terraformed and prepared for human life. But all is not right in this new Eden.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fascinating Premise Within an Excellent Story

  • By Kurt Schwoppe on 07-30-17

this is what great SciFi looks like

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

Reviewed: 06-16-17

This was a completely engaging story with a novel (not a pun) perspective. i typically listen to a book during commiting an hour at a time, but ended up finishing it in 4 days. great narration/characterization. the world building is fantastic and while leaving only the slightest thread for a sequal, is a great stand alone. this is what great SciFi looks like.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • 1984

  • New Classic Edition
  • By: George Orwell
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 11 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20,913
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,057
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,085

George Orwell depicts a gray, totalitarian world dominated by Big Brother and its vast network of agents, including the Thought Police - a world in which news is manufactured according to the authorities' will and people live tepid lives by rote. Winston Smith, a hero with no heroic qualities, longs only for truth and decency. But living in a social system in which privacy does not exist and where those with unorthodox ideas are brainwashed or put to death, he knows there is no hope for him.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Come one, Come all into 1984!

  • By Kit McIlvaine (GirlPluggedN) on 02-18-08

Perfect Narration!

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

Reviewed: 02-14-17

obviously, the material is a classic so there is no point in critiquing that. Simon Pebble's performance was amazing! I was totally engrossed and felt as if he was truly the protagonist recounting the story. his multilple character voices were seamless and authentic. His obviously did research. his haunting tune for Oranges and Lemons say the bells of St. Clements will stay with me and be my defacto standard version.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Mechanical Failure

  • Epic Failure, Book 1
  • By: Joe Zieja
  • Narrated by: Joe Zieja
  • Length: 10 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 195
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 182
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 181

The 200 years' (and counting) peace was a time of tranquility that hasn't been seen since...well, ever. Mankind in the Galactic Age had finally conquered war, so what was left for the military to do but drink and barbecue? That's the kind of military that Sergeant R. Wilson Rogers lived in before he left the fleet to become a smuggler. But it turns out that smuggling is hard. Like getting-arrested-for-dealing-with-pirates-and-forced-back-into-service kind of hard.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • took a bit to find it's voice

  • By Patrick on 09-08-16

took a bit to find it's voice

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

Reviewed: 09-08-16

What did you like best about Mechanical Failure? What did you like least?

The first third of the book was a bit clumsy and I didn't get a good feel for where it was going (not in a good way). However, as it progressed, it started hitting it's beats and ended up worth the ride. I was expecting something along the lines of Red Shirts (John Scalzi) but it headed in more of a Futurama vibe, not in a bad way. I enjoyed the secondary characters, there were some LOL moments. I won't spoil them, but you'll know.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Chasm City

  • By: Alastair Reynolds
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Length: 23 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,440
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,052
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,054

The once-utopian Chasm City - a domed human settlement on an otherwise inhospitable planet---has been overrun by a virus known as the Melding Plague, capable of infecting any body, organic or computerized. Now, with the entire city corrupted - from the people to the very buildings they inhabit---only the most wretched sort of existence remains. The stakes are raised when Tanner Mirabel's search brings him face to face with a centuries-old atrocity that history would rather forget.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Enter Revelation Space HERE

  • By Tango on 10-11-13

Heed the reviewers: Read this one first!

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

Reviewed: 09-08-16

What about John Lee’s performance did you like?

I think John Lee does a great job. Good cadence, consistent voicing, Not too much variation in character, but acted well enough that it was never confusing.

Any additional comments?

I actually read the first book of the series before i knew it was a 5-ology after reading Pushing Ice. Most reviewers said read this one first. I totally agree; this is a MUCH better introduction into the universe and is (only at the last chapter) a prequel to the first book. It is an engaging noiresque-cat-and-mouse story with some unexpected events. There are three parallel stories being told, each one could have been it's own stand-alone book if fleshed out more. There are a few, not too off-putting deus ex-machina events and fortunate characters. Worst critique would be that at the end, I did get a Scooby Doo vibe as the cast of characters started running around. That being said, the ideas, like many of Reynolds' books explore the plausible aspects of space faring civilizations, bio-tech cultures, immortality, and world-building. Final verdict: I just downloaded Redemption Ark.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • But What If We're Wrong?

  • Thinking About the Present as If It Were the Past
  • By: Chuck Klosterman
  • Narrated by: Chuck Klosterman, Fiona Hardingham
  • Length: 10 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,049
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 947
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 943

We live in a culture of casual certitude. This has always been the case, no matter how often that certainty has failed. Though no generation believes there's nothing left to learn, every generation unconsciously assumes that what has already been defined and accepted is (probably) pretty close to how reality will be viewed in perpetuity. And then, of course, time passes. Ideas shift. Opinions invert. What once seemed reasonable eventually becomes absurd, replaced by modern perspectives that feel even more irrefutable and secure - until, of course, they don't.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Another bad review for the narrator

  • By Norris Family on 06-13-16

CAUTION! Abandon all hope to all who enter

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

Reviewed: 07-15-16

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

For the love of ghod, this book SHOULD NOT BE READ by anybody with the following conditions: mild or history of depression, recent decision to quit any medication, over 50 years old, newly married, recently divorced, optimistic, paranoid, has children, is a child, collector of high-powered weapons, or has ever so much has teared-up in any movie ever. The book was all fun and games at first, but after the intro it started ripping my soul into tiny, tiny pieces of confetti. I was expecting a thoughtful exploration of potentially innovative scientific ideas that would show hope and excitement for the future. NOPE. This is a soul-crushing explanation, well reasoned, that show not that we are wrong about everything, but that anything we do or anything we know is utterly pointless. 100, 200, 500, 1000 years from now (assuming there is a human population), everything - and i mean absolutely everything - we value will at best be a one-line footnote if it is in fact remembered at all. Other than that is was read by a lovely narrator. British women uttering swear words is quite a delight. I just hope she didn't off herself after this contract.

Any additional comments?

Seriously. Be a good emotional place before reading. It is not a bad book, just the opposite.

  • Pacific

  • Silicon Chips and Surfboards, Coral Reefs and Atom Bombs, Brutal Dictators, Fading Empires, and the Coming Collision of the World's Superpowers
  • By: Simon Winchester
  • Narrated by: Simon Winchester
  • Length: 14 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 516
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 482
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 477

Best-selling author Simon Winchester offers an enthralling biography of the Pacific Ocean and its role in the modern world, exploring our relationship with this imposing force of nature. Winchester's personal experience is vast and his storytelling second to none. And his historical understanding of the region is formidable, making Pacific a paean to this magnificent sea of beauty, myth, and imagination that is transforming our lives.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Ponderous hard to keep attention

  • By Mark on 01-01-16
  • Pacific
  • Silicon Chips and Surfboards, Coral Reefs and Atom Bombs, Brutal Dictators, Fading Empires, and the Coming Collision of the World's Superpowers
  • By: Simon Winchester
  • Narrated by: Simon Winchester

Compelling & brilliant -

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

Reviewed: 05-13-16

What did you like best about this story?

I absolutely love how Winchester manages to pluck out disparate stories, some seemingly without significance, and ties them into a holistic and interdependent narrative. He does not just do the library search and tell stories vicariously, he goes to these places. He interacts with the people. He builds visual landscapes from actual experience.

Which scene was your favorite?

The story of Sony. It may be common knowledge by MBAs, but I never knew about it and how exceptional it was.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I literally (and I don't mean figuratively) was brought to tears at the description of the atrocities the US pulled (and is STILL pulling) on indigenous islanders. I had no idea.

Any additional comments?

Simon Winchester is truly the full package of researcher, explorer, and documentarian. Had he lived in the 1800's, his name would be synonymous with Darwin, Audubon, Shakleton, or Livingston.

  • The Man in the High Castle

  • By: Philip K. Dick
  • Narrated by: Jeff Cummings
  • Length: 9 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 5,370
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 4,922
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 4,941

It's America in 1962. Slavery is legal once again. The few Jews who still survive hide under assumed names. In San Francisco the I Ching is as common as the Yellow Pages. All because some 20 years earlier the United States lost a war - and is now occupied jointly by Nazi Germany and Japan.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Alternative history

  • By Michael G Kurilla on 07-28-15

Rare example of TV being better than Book

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

Reviewed: 05-13-16

What disappointed you about The Man in the High Castle?

Got this before watching the Netflix adaptation. The book went absolutely nowhere. I know it won a buttload of critical acclaim back in the 60's. The premise is brilliant and at the time of writing it was probably cutting edge. There are some really interesting ideas explored with the alternate history. I thought maybe I was too thick headed to get it, so researched some background on it. A major theme of the book is the I Ching predictions and I think that Dick wrote it using that randomness (think magic 8-ball) for direction. By the end, the characters seemed to just fizzle out.

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

First Jeff Cummings novel. Would definitely consider him again.

Any additional comments?

I think the narrator, Jeff Cummings, did a very good job and kept true to the text and intent of the book. The only thing is that the racial characterizations were to the point of being almost or intentionally racist. It made me squirm at times. I don't know if this was an affect of the author's pre-civil rights mindset or if the book was written in the fictionalized "voice" of an Americanized Nazi or Nazi-ized American. Dick was experimenting with reality and perception (and perhaps some recreational drugs), so i'm going to go with the Nazi theory. I wouldn't listen to this where other people can overhear, you may get a raised eyebrow or even the evil-eye by eavesdroppers.

  • vN

  • The First Machine Dynasty
  • By: Madeline Ashby
  • Narrated by: Christina Traister
  • Length: 10 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 137
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 123
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 123

For the past five years, she has been grown slowly as part of a mixed organic/synthetic family. She knows very little about her android mother’s past, so when her grandmother arrives and attacks them, young Amy wastes no time: she eats her alive. Now she’s on the run, carrying her malfunctioning granny as a partition on her memory drive. She’s growing quickly, and learning too. Like the fact that in her, and her alone, the failsafe that stops all robots from harming humans has stopped working….

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • An Imaginative Novel of Robots, Control & Chaos

  • By JTF on 05-22-14

Frustrating. Confusing. not in a good way.

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

Reviewed: 05-13-16

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

Christina has an excellent and enjoyable reading voice. However, her characterizations were too dissimilar and at times inconsistent.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Confusion. I can handle a complex story line with disjointed timelines. I was scratching my head trying to differentiate between identical robots that that replicate while maintaining familial relationships and grandmother/granddaughter on-the-fly personality swapping within the same body. I couldn't distinguish who's mother's grandma's grand nice was which. The continuity was confusing (even though it was linear), there were times when i actually had to re-wind thinking that the recording had skipped a section or two.

Any additional comments?

This may be a better physical read than an audio book.