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Marcus

East Coast, USA
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  • Lies Sleeping

  • Rivers of London, Book 7
  • By: Ben Aaronovitch
  • Narrated by: Kobna Holdbrook-Smith
  • Length: 10 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 746
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 703
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 701

The Faceless Man, wanted for multiple counts of murder, fraud, and crimes against humanity, has been unmasked and is on the run. Peter Grant, detective constable and apprentice wizard, now plays a key role in an unprecedented joint operation to bring him to justice. But even as the unwieldy might of the Metropolitan Police bears down on its foe, Peter uncovers clues that the Faceless Man, far from being finished, is executing the final stages of a long-term plan. A plan that has its roots in London's 2,000 bloody years of history and could literally bring the city to its knees. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A very satisfying read

  • By Tim on 11-21-18

Entertaining, but left confused and unfulfilled

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

Reviewed: 02-16-19

I've really enjoyed this series for the most part. Book 5 was a low point to me, and while Book 6 was a major improvement, it still left me wanting.

Book 7 continues that. There's a LOT of action in this book, and lots of "story" in general. If you're one of those "the journey is better than the destination" folks, this one will fit you nicely.

If, however, you want a coherent story with a plot that not only makes sense, but has a conclusion that is greater than the sum of its parts... This may not work for you.

I really enjoyed the journey, but this book felt like a scrapbook collage of plot points from earlier books smooshed together.

The faceless man is here, Mr Punch is here, other past villains are reborn or referenced. It's all very fun, but none of it really does any of the respective pieces any justice. Mr Punch seems thrown in because of the history with Leslie and Peter. The faceless man #1 and #2 are here too, but mostly in spirit for the former and underwhelmingly in the latter.

While this story has a "resolution", nothing felt satisfactory. A lot happened, but not much made sense when taken as a whole.

I saw another reviewer mention that #1 there seems to be a lot of references to the short stories, as if they're more important than the main ones, #2 that Peter was totally underwhelming here (who wants a protagonist that stumbles their way from dumb decision to dumber and continually is rescued by others or dumb luck?) and lastly that it seems everyone and their momma is doing magic nowadays. I agree with all 3 of these assessments and it added to the "meh" factor of this entry.

So, TL;DR: Very fun and enjoyable journey -- just don't expect much of a coherent (or fulfilling) story.

  • Super SF Double Feature 2: Shore Leave and Rasputin and Fulcanelli Ain't Dead

  • By: Kevin Candela
  • Narrated by: Gary Bennett
  • Length: 2 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 5
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5

From A Year in the Borderlands author Kevin Candela comes another thrilling double feature, drive-in style! In "Shore Leave", shipwreck survivors Heatherine Daniels and Sheila Grange penetrate deep into a mysterious cavern only to discover that there is much more to their desert island than coconut palms, seashells and sunburn.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Quick and Fun Sci-Fi

  • By Marcus on 02-05-19

Quick and Fun Sci-Fi

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

Reviewed: 02-05-19

Like the first Double Feature, this book contains 2 stories broken up by a brief intermission. Imagine an audible drive-in experience.

The first story, had an original take on a classic piece of sci-fi. Adding on layers of great characters and engaging scenes took it to the next level. It was the shorter of the two, but a perfect warmup.

The second story was the longer and followed two immortals on their quest. Action, intrigue and lots of humor made this the more entertaining of the two for me.

I was provided this audiobook free of charge in exchange for my honest review, and while I preferred the stories in the first double feature, these two are still absolutely worth a listen.

  • Slow Up

  • Hire a Muse, Book 2
  • By: George Saoulidis
  • Narrated by: Bridger Conklin
  • Length: 4 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 11
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11

Limitless meets Black Mirror in this novel that pushes the limits of a couple's minds. When Galene meets a man who's only goal in life is to make his mind go faster, she ends up falling for him. But will she manage to keep the relationship going at the top of the glass tower, when in reality she's too much of a slob and is bogged down with all her unfinished goals, when their age difference becomes too much of a problem, and when his work places them in the sights of an unforgiving huntress?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Awesome, but hard to describe

  • By Beth Case on 08-02-18

Entertaining, but gets a bit wonky

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

Reviewed: 02-05-19

I was hooked on this listen from nearly the word go. I found the characters engaging and the world-building fascinating. I remained in a state of delight for the first 1/2-2/3 of the book.

Then, unless something was wrong with my copy, things started jumping around for no reason. It began to feel like I was listening to the rough outline of a novel. I'd experience scenes that did not seem to have anything to connect them. We'd jump forward in time, then back, and not completely understand what the heck happened.

I did like the ending though. If we ignore the mess that came right before it (i.e. random scenes, convos etc) and pretend things went as described, it was the perfect Greek Mel (I say that as to not ruin anything).

I didn't care too much for the narrator, but the story was interesting enough to ignore him and focus on what was going on.

I thought these were mostly standalone, but I wonder if some of it would make more sense if I listened to book one. Either way, def not my favorite Mythography studios book, but was still enjoyable.

I was provided this audiobook free of charge in exchange for my honest review.

  • The Ruin

  • By: Dervla McTiernan
  • Narrated by: Aoife McMahon
  • Length: 10 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,790
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,542
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,542

When Aisling Conroy's boyfriend Jack is found in the freezing black waters of the river Corrib, the police tell her it was suicide. A surgical resident, she throws herself into study and work, trying to forget - until Jack's sister Maude shows up. Maude suspects foul play, and she is determined to prove it. Cormac Reilly is the detective assigned with the re-investigation of a seemingly accidental overdose 20 years ago - the overdose of Jack and Maude's drug-and-alcohol-addled mother. Reilly is under increasing pressure to charge Maude for murder when his colleague Danny uncovers new evidence....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Book of the Year

  • By Sharon on 07-11-18

Not quite Tana French, but enjoyable

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

Reviewed: 02-05-19

I'll admit to going into this wanting a Tana French fix since there's been such a lull in the Dublin Murder Squad series. While I was pleased overall, I felt McTiernan's twists and red herrings fell mostly short. There was also far too much circumstantial/coincidental to paint the picture of a clever/dogged detective cracking the case.

I did find the characters to be likeable, and the narration was excellent.

A worthy listen.

  • Dracula [Audible Edition]

  • By: Bram Stoker
  • Narrated by: Alan Cumming, Tim Curry, Simon Vance, and others
  • Length: 15 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,065
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,065
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,079

The modern audience hasn't had a chance to truly appreciate the unknowing dread that readers would have felt when reading Bram Stoker's original 1897 manuscript. Most modern productions employ campiness or sound effects to try to bring back that gothic tension, but we've tried something different. By returning to Stoker's original storytelling structure - a series of letters and journal entries voiced by Jonathan Harker, Dr. Van Helsing, and other characters - with an all-star cast of narrators, we've sought to recapture its originally intended horror and power.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Well Read, Throughly Enjoyable!

  • By WickedGoodYarn on 03-11-12

I finally listened to this classic

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

Reviewed: 02-05-19

Having consumed so much of the derivative work, it felt good to finally take in the original. First though, a warning: This book is LONG, and it is told through writings (primarily journals and letters) of the characters involved.

In the beginning, we start with Jonathan Harker's experience with Dracula in Transylvania. This drew me in immediately and when it ended, I almost felt as if the book would have been find ending there as well.

However, the book transitions into the telling of tales from other characters, and at this point, it's not only jarring and a bit confusing, but also rather uninteresting. Much time is spent on the mundane chit chat between girlfriends regarding suitors and what not. Sure, in the end it added a tad bit of background, but most of it could have been cut and not changed a thing in the long run.

Eventually though, the cast pieces together the information from their own encounters and form a coalition of sorts to take Dracula down. Once it gets going, it gets going!

Those scared of gore and violence shouldn't feel worried here. There wasn't a whole lot of Dracula in this tale (especially since it was told by writings of 3rd parties), but enough detail was relayed through events to paint him as a worthy opponent.

I found the ending both a bit rushed and extremely satisfying. We spent so long thinking and planning that the actual "doing" felt like a breeze. Still if you can grit your teeth through the sections immediately following Jonathan Harker's experience in Transylvania, you won't be disappointed!

  • What Happens Next? Conversations from MARS

  • By: Adam Savage
  • Narrated by: Adam Savage
  • Length: 2 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 228
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 206
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 205

Every year, 200 experts across machine learning, automation, robotics, and space arrive in Palm Springs for MARS to share new ideas about how these four fields will shape our future. TV host and maker of things Adam Savage (MythBusters) takes listeners deep inside the MARS conference. In interviews with more than a dozen leading scientists and thinkers, Savage explores the mind-blowing and often misunderstood ways in which science and innovation are transforming the way we live, work, and play.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Machine learning, Automation, Robotics, and Space

  • By Kingsley on 12-27-18

Very interesting and engaging listen

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

Reviewed: 02-05-19

I did not know this event even existed, so it was cool enough to get a bit of a look at some of what went on, but more importantly, it was very interesting. It should be noted that I'm probably the target audience, being into sci-fi, tech and such, but I think most people would find this intriguing to some degree.

The production was great, and Adam turned what could have been a boring documentary-style interview thing (like the horrid "History of Magic") into something exciting and engaging.

Definitely worth the listen!

  • Harry Potter: A History of Magic

  • An Audio Documentary
  • By: Pottermore Publishing, Ben Davies
  • Narrated by: Natalie Dormer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,554
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,440
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,431

The history of magic is as long as time and as wide as the world. In every culture, in every age, in every place and, probably, in every heart, there is magic. Harry Potter: A History of Magic reveals some of the hidden stories behind real-world magic and explores some of J.K. Rowling's magical inventions alongside their folkloric, cultural and historical forebears.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • An enjoyable making-of documentary of sorts

  • By Tasha on 10-04-18

Preordered without realizing this differed

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

Reviewed: 01-25-19

I'll get this out the way first: This isn't Fantastic Beasts or Quidditch Through the Ages. It's not a Harry Potter schoolbook brought to life. What it is is basically an audio walkthrough of the History of Magic exhibits. I don't know if the original description didn't clarify this waaay back when I preordered, or I just overlooked it. Either way, that was quite a disappointment.

Getting past the fact that this wasn't what I was looking for, this was LONG and drawn out. There were some interesting bits, but it mostly went nowhere and only toward the end did it seem to keep some cohesiveness and momentum going.

The main narrator was great, and so were many of the guests. Unfortunately the head curator, Julian Harrison, was a frequent interview subject. Julian's voice is not only oddly deep and hollow, but he alternates between very high and low pitches in a single sentence which makes it VERY hard to listen to at a constant volume. I listened on a plane and many of his parts were drowned out by engine noise while I could hear everything else fine.

So, before going into this, first think if you really want to listen to a museum exhibition and some of the history of the items on display for this many hours. Then go find interviews with Julian Harrison on YouTube and be sure that you want to hear that voice a LOT.

If the answer to the above is "sure". Then godspeed.

  • Dark Sacred Night

  • A Ballard and Bosch Novel
  • By: Michael Connelly
  • Narrated by: Christine Lakin, Titus Welliver
  • Length: 10 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,202
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,791
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,759

Renée Ballard is working the night beat again and returns to Hollywood Station in the early hours only to find a stranger rifling through old file cabinets. The intruder is retired detective Harry Bosch, working a cold case that has gotten under his skin. Ballard kicks him out but then checks into the case herself, and it brings a deep tug of empathy and anger. Bosch is investigating the death of 15-year-old Daisy Clayton, a runaway on the streets of Hollywood who was brutally murdered and her body left in a dumpster like so much trash. Now, Ballard joins forces with Bosch. 

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • So So

  • By Paul Beer on 11-16-18

A new path forward for Bosch

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

Reviewed: 01-25-19

This book is told from 2 perspectives (with 2 different narrators). While sometimes that can be a bit confusing, each narrator was close enough to their portrayals of both characters that I think it worked.

The case was good, with a number of red herrings thrown in. I don't want to ruin anything, but I did find the actual "bust" a bit serendipitous. Still enjoyable though.

I was also glad to see some tie-ups of stuff left open from the last Bosch novel as well.

With Harry gone from the force and his relationship with the small PD he's currently with tenuous, it was interesting to see how Connelly would set Bosch up to continue what he was doing going forward. If teamups with Ballard is how it goes, I'm down for it!

  • The Meaning of Blood: and Other Tales of Perversity

  • By: Chuck Caruso
  • Narrated by: Eric J. McAnallen
  • Length: 6 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7

In The Meaning of Blood: and Other Tales of Perversity, award-winning author and Edgar Allan Poe scholar Chuck Caruso combines his deep roots in the American Gothic with his own contemporary sense of macabre humor. These 15 stories of dark fiction range from crime thrillers to western noir to grotesque horror. Each twisted tale displays Caruso's unique blend of wry prose, feverish storytelling, and tragically flawed characters discovering that even the most innocent encounter can lead to death. Or sex. Or both. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great stories and great performance

  • By Pamela M. Neumann on 01-30-19

An entertaining and cohesive collection of tales

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

Reviewed: 01-25-19

This was a pretty good collection of tales, many of which seemed to take place around the 19th century. This sort of gave the collection a binding beyond the obvious, but even the more futuristic ones (meaning our present, or near future) stood fine on their own.

There's a bit of something for everyone here: zombies, cthulu, wereslugs, religion, scifi tech, humorous misadventure and outright gore.

The tales are pretty creative and engrossing, but some lack that "aha!" or similar ending to bring it home. They can sometimes end on a note similar to "so that's what happened". OK then. I felt the titular tale could have ended at around the protagonist's discovery and delivered on that "whoa", but instead it continued on. I didn't feel anything beyond that really offered anything the listener couldn't have figured out for themselves in much shorter time.

I found the narrator had a pleasant voice, but a flat and bland reading style. Sentences were often delivered matter-of-fact and toneless with no seeming connection to those that preceded or followed. It wasn't enough to pull you out of the stories however, and he did a pretty good job at various accents when needed.

I was provided this audiobook free of charge in exchange for my honest review. Minor shortcomings aside, I could definitely recommend this listen. It's a pretty cohesive collection that succeeds more often than not in interesting and entertaining the listener.

  • Gorgonise Me

  • God Complex Universe
  • By: George Saoulidis
  • Narrated by: Bridger Conklin
  • Length: 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6

Evryali is a Gorgon. (Yes, Medusa’s sister.) She is noted for her petrifying gaze, of course, but also for her bellowing cries. Contrary to Medusa, who was a mortal that was cursed, Evryali was immortal. Here is a dark story inspired by her. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gorgonise Me

  • By Catrina P on 12-24-18

Very enjoyable short, sketchy narration

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

Reviewed: 01-14-19

When I see something coming from Mythography studios I'm almost guaranteed to enjoy it, and this one was no different.

The story is somewhat futuristic, but also rather mystical in nature. A household of servants are given implants that will, ostensibly, echo the emotions of their master. That's technically true, but not the whole truth.

The story is told from the position of one of the head servants who is both subject to and fully aware of the manipulation he's being subjected to. It's hard reviewing without giving anything away, but it's a real thinker for sure.

I didn't really like the overly dramatic narrator, but once you get into the tale it becomes easier to ignore.

I was given this audiobook free of charge in exchange for my honest review. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and if you're a fan of what Mythography studios typically puts out, then you likely will too. It's only 26 mins, so give it a try!