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Samuel

  • 5
  • reviews
  • 11
  • helpful votes
  • 19
  • ratings
  • The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter

  • By: Theodora Goss
  • Narrated by: Kate Reading
  • Length: 13 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,376
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,201
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,188

Mary Jekyll, alone and penniless following her parents' deaths, is curious about the secrets of her father's mysterious past. One clue in particular hints that Edward Hyde, her father's former friend and a murderer, may be nearby, and there is a reward for information leading to his capture...a reward that would solve all of her immediate financial woes. But her hunt leads her to Hyde's daughter, Diana, a feral child left to be raised by nuns.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Cute, erratic, sloppy but not without charm

  • By Rachel on 07-07-17

A novel novel well read

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

Reviewed: 04-13-19

When the monsters are more genteel than the human society that made them there is already something worth reading there. The fact that they are heroines as opposed to heroes adds delight to that alteration of the typical story line. The author decorates the story through and through with a writing style akin to a novel and journal being read to me by the ladies involved. The narrator read well, clearly and defined the characters with distinction, adding more personality to each of the heroines by giving them distinct and identifiable voices. Doesn't hurt that historical, geographical and mythological references abound throughout that add a further connection to the real while accentuating the fantastical. A most worthwhile listen, one which I will likely enjoy repeatedly until volume two is released (please be speaking truth, Catherine).

  • Black (4 Novel Bundle)

  • By: Russell Blake
  • Narrated by: R.C. Bray
  • Length: 29 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 458
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 436
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 435

Artemus Black doesn't believe in fate...but even a hardened Hollywood PI can question destiny when cases turn ugly. With an assistant who mocks him relentlessly, an obese cat that loathes him, a romantic life that's deader than Elvis, money problems, booze, nicotine, and anger management issues, how much worse can it get? The answer is plenty, and Black finds himself in a web of deceit, betrayal, and murder - and bad hair days.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great series. Adventure, mystery, comical, noir.

  • By John Delaney on 07-08-18

Interesting and often humorous characters, but...

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

Reviewed: 02-05-19

This was a treat to listen to, despite not getting five stars. Black is a full fledged character with lots of history built into the stories that doesn't need to be read between the lines but isn't thrown in one's face with long explanations and his interactions with everyone are consistent and entertaining. His assistant, Roxy, and his police detective friend, Stan, along with Mugsy, the office cat, really help to flesh out his character and the driving forces behind his morality, ethics, and desire to achieve his goals. Sadly, there are a few negatives, but they don't take away from the pleasure of hearing these stories. First, he never really solves any of the mysteries he gets involved in, really. Comes very close, but they always seem to resolve themselves while he seems to be the reluctant observer and chronicler of tragedy. As a PI, he does do the legwork, but he always seems to fall short of the mark in solving the major cases he gets involved in. However, much like life, that is pretty close to the mark for reality, I'm guessing, where a detective can only put together the pieces after the fact and give a full narrative to the tale of woe. Case B, his therapist is disturbing, obviously a pervert, and a distraction to me relating to Black as a detective. I'm sure that's part of the overall entertainment, but Black's obvious ignorance of the therapist's questions and reactions to the women in Black's life and his interactions with them I found annoyingly distracting. He can't be that naïve and be a PI, I keep thinking. Lastly, there's a contrived feeling to the progression that, while not detracting from the pleasure of the story, does seem to force the story along. While it didn't hurt the entertainment of the story, it did give it a slightly less than flowing narrative. Overall, a pleasure to listen to and one I would recommend to a select group of people. If you enjoy the old Noir detectives and comedy, this is certainly well worth the listen. The down on his luck and perpetually scrounging detective stories will never grow old to me, and this modern rendition certainly fits that bill. With some minor improvements this could go from being a sitcom detective noir to something Sam Spade and David Spade could likely enjoy.

  • The City and the Dungeon

  • And Those Who Dwell and Delve Within
  • By: Matthew Schmidt
  • Narrated by: Doug Tisdale Jr.
  • Length: 9 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 221
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 210
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 209

The City is an immense metropolis of crystal spires and wondrous magic. Beneath is the Dungeon, a vast underground world, and a source of endless treasure guarded by grotesque and deadly monsters. No one knows where the Dungeon came from, or why. One young immigrant braves the Dungeon to remit money to his family, only to find much, much more. Friends, power, and secrets of the Dungeon. Perhaps even love.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • When the lights go down in the City

  • By Ray Johnson on 04-15-18

Had potential, but fell a bit short.

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

Reviewed: 08-03-18

The story premise is a good one, full of character, story and plot potential. Sad that it was so truncated as to nearly kill the plot and extinguish the character development. I felt no sympathy for the characters nor any sense of advancement of the plot in the head long rush of bland and empty action. So much potential with limited follow through. Flesh this idea out and it could be exceptional.

The narrator added to the rush with his reading style. Definitely needed pauses for effect and anticipation. He tried with voices, but I found many characters were indistinguishable from each other in the narration. Not unusual from many narrators, but with the lack of pauses to delineate characters many statements from characters bled into each other.

All in all, not a terrible listen, but certainly needs more to really bring out the depths possible in this story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Dungeon Deposed

  • By: William D. Arand
  • Narrated by: Andrea Parsneau
  • Length: 13 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,432
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,362
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,359

Ryker only has one goal in his life right now: Turn a certain adventuring guild into a flaming wreck while dancing merrily through the smoldering ruins. All for the chance to get back at a handful of people. It isn’t as if they didn’t deserve it either. They had driven him from his home. Chased him physically from the very guild house itself.  Simply because he wasn’t as strong as they expected him to be. As strong as he’d expected himself to be. He’d returned the next day and left with something he’d hidden away and told no one about when he found it in one of his few Dungeon Dives.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Dungeoneering 101, how to become a dungeon for fun

  • By Ray Johnson on 06-01-18

When a sexually frustrated teenager writes

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

Reviewed: 06-09-18

This had promise as a premise, but the author has a wet dream they want to communicate through this story. Sex, sexual violence, bully vengeance, and thoughtless use of vulgarity for the purest reason of personal release by the main character, mimicked almost perfectly but all characters made this an eye rolling delight. I finished the book only because I don't like to quit once I've started something.

The narrator gets my utmost respect for portraying these one dimensional characters in a way that actually gave them an upgrade to two dimensions. I look forward to hearing her work in future. Her efforts made this tragedy of a book bearable.

While this story was awful in just about every way, there was and is such potential that I hope someone else will do better in future.

10 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Crossover

  • Cassandra Kresnov, Book 1
  • By: Joel Shepherd
  • Narrated by: Dina Pearlman
  • Length: 16 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 419
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 381
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 380

Crossover is the first novel in a series which follows the adventures of Cassandra Kresnov, an artificial person, or android, created by the League, one side of an interstellar war against the more powerful, conservative Federation. Cassandra is an experimental design - more intelligent, more creative, and far more dangerous than any that have preceded her. But with her intellect come questions, and a moral awakening. She deserts the League and heads incognito into the space of her former enemy, the Federation, in search of a new life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The SERIES as a whole is EXCELLENT!

  • By Trip Williams on 05-22-16

Disinterest is a horrible thing

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

Reviewed: 04-23-16

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

This was a sad experience, seemingly licentious wish fulfillment on the author's part. This character had promise, unfortunately it was to some other story.

What could Joel Shepherd have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

That's a good question, and one I cannot answer without sounding brutal and harsh.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Dull reading voice and rather monotone in delivery.

What character would you cut from Crossover?

This question may be a bit off point, since it wasn't the characters that were at fault but the narration of their lives.

Any additional comments?

Sad to say, not my cuppa, but I'm sure there are those out there that would enjoy this type of writing style and delivery. Just not me. Best of luck in the future to the author and the narrator, though.