LISTENER

Daniel Abrams

  • 33
  • reviews
  • 141
  • helpful votes
  • 268
  • ratings
  • The Hero's Peril

  • The Sorcerer's Saga, Book 5
  • By: Rain Oxford
  • Narrated by: J. Scott Bennett
  • Length: 10 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 46
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 43
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 43

The black star has been averted, but Ayden and his friends are not out of danger yet. When he and Merlin realize that Ayden's reputation as a curse breaker does more harm than good, they decide to travel, only to be captured by assassins the next morning. They have gained the attention of powerful people, and they will have to be clever and vigilant not to become pawns. What begins as a quest to clear up a misunderstanding and uncover the disappearance of a missing wizard, soon becomes an adventure of peril and magic, which will test Ayden's abilities, Merlin's wisdom, and an immortal prince's bravery. They will face monsters, deadly traps, powerful foes, and even more dangerous allies. 

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Book 5

  • By JEYCEE on 11-26-17

Love this series!

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

Reviewed: 09-13-18

At my request, this audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an -->unbiased<-- review

This is more of the relationships and banter that I've come to love. Aiden and Merlin, humorously at times, face off against new challenges and foes and craft their own unique solutions. Through it all, there is action, character development, and PLOT. I have found the whole series to be solid and well-written. What's more, there is now a new series starting in the same universe. This book, in some ways, leads into that new series, and it is great it on its own merits too! I am committed to the series at this point and I have been following it for a long while. When I hear of a new book, I will be itching to get my hands on it! The quality of Rain Oxford and J. Scott Bennett has been consistent through all of their books together and it has been a pleasure to listen to.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Song of Achilles

  • A Novel
  • By: Madeline Miller
  • Narrated by: Frazer Douglas
  • Length: 11 hrs and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,255
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,888
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,873

Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the kingdom of Phthia to be raised in the shadow of King Peleus and his golden son, Achilles. “The best of all the Greeks”—strong, beautiful, and the child of a goddess—Achilles is everything the shamed Patroclus is not. Yet despite their differences, the boys become steadfast companions. Their bond deepens as they grow into young men and become skilled in the arts of war and medicine—much to the displeasure and the fury of Achilles’ mother, Thetis, a cruel sea goddess with a hatred of mortals.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wasn't Expecting to Like It- BOY! was I wrong!!

  • By susan on 06-11-14

Fresh and enthralling perspective

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

Reviewed: 08-06-18

I was a touch unsure about this book at the very start, but it didn’t take long to realize that I was going to love the narration. From there it was all a beautiful trip down the rabbit hole. I got sucked into the story and never looked back. There were some nice lessons and great studies of humanity. I found this a touching story of love and the adventures were a pleasure to experience alongside the likes of Achilles! I loved this book and am now looking for more by Madeline Miller

  • The Sorcerer's Legacy

  • The Sorcerer's Path Series, Book 3
  • By: Brock E. Deskins
  • Narrated by: William Turbett
  • Length: 11 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 25
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 25
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 25

Azerick decides to put his quest for vengeance behind him. He takes on an apprentice and opens a school and home for North Haven’s homeless children even as Ulric’s schemes throws the kingdom into chaos. Hoping to create a life of peace and purpose, the young sorcerer finds himself in a struggle every bit as great as battling in the arena. Azerick quickly realizes he has taken on a task he cannot possibly do alone and calls upon his friends for help. He thinks he has managed to put all the death and destruction behind him until an assassin strikes from the shadows. 

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Azerick returns, and fights. A lot.

  • By Ray Johnson on 07-18-18

Be the Good you want to see

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

Reviewed: 07-16-18

At my request, this audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an -->unbiased<-- review

Azerick is really not shy about finding, and almost making trouble in this book. I loved it every single time. We all know the kinds of people that one might find sometimes in a dark alley, or persecuting another. Azerick clearly shows what he thinks of such people. I guess he had enough of the universe forcing crap on him and he decided he was going to start manufacturing the Good he thought the world should have. Azerick surprised me sometimes with his generosity, and I wish exactly how big his hoard of treasure from the dragon was.

Either way, I really enjoyed watching the story unfold as William Turbett kept on. I'm really coming to appreciate him in this role. I'll just note here that it's been a similarly pleasant, if not marginally better performance from him here.

Anyhow, we meet some new characters, and each of them has a nice place to carve into the story. The ripple-effects of Azericks actions and the ongoing changes and what-ifs really made this a 'page-turner' for me :) This book leaves off with so many different events and plot lines at a point where it feels like all the various burners are boiling and ready to overflow. Even though this book is much more about developing Azerick and new home, we do learn about and encounter some really critical story elements from other perspectives. The hints of political intrigue, assassins, magic, and might had me really devouring this book. Thanks again for the listen, Mr. Deskins! This is a great series!

2 of 2 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 16,105
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15,010
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14,986

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

Fantastic Story

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

Reviewed: 06-25-18

I love this book. Adrian Tchaikovsky is amazing! I found the differing perspectives to have been handled masterfully, and the insights offered were thought-provoking even outside the story. I hope that more comes after this! I am definitely going to be looking for more by him.

Mel Hudson does a wonderful job narrating such a well-written story. Her voice-acting provided differentiation and accentuation and I would be happy to hear more from her as well!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Girl Vs

  • Sinister Skies
  • By: Xela Culletto
  • Narrated by: Tonia Blake
  • Length: 7 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17

Before the Vela invasion, Rhyan's biggest concern was getting through a day of school. But when she is thrust into the madness of a kill-or-be-killed world, her true strength emerges and a deadly warrior is unleashed. Stumbling through the new morals of a post-apocalyptic world, she learns to depend only on herself. As she gets closer to discovering what the aliens actually want, her lethality becomes unmatched, and she soon learns the extent she'll go to in order to survive.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Girl Vs

  • By JEYCEE on 07-12-18

Strong and Worthwhile Beginning

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

Reviewed: 06-07-18

At my request, this audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an -->unbiased<-- review

I really enjoyed this. I was worried it would rely too much on well-worn tropes, which is common, but Xela Culletto does a great job of crafting her own story. It is dark, as you'd expect in a post-apocalyptic and war-ravaged world. Rhyan is an intriguing protagonist with a lot to her, and I found it worth exploring her persona and still want more. I found myself feeling things on her behalf... anger, maaaaaaybe murderous desires, vindication, and more. It was really a lot of great writing crammed into, for me, a shorter book. The secondary characters all added to the story without becoming a burden to it. Rhyan encounters some predictable elements, and some less so, and some elements that are predictable but still surprising! I never felt too much like I knew exactly what would happen. There are still a lot of questions (in a good way) left after this book ends, and I would definitely look into book 2 when it comes out.

Tonia Blake does a great job. Different voices, some emotion to add color, and clarity. It wasn't a 5 star only because it still felt like she was telling the story, but not *living* the story. Still, very solid and only added to my experience!

Everything was really well done, but I don't think we quite hit that 5 star level. I have high hopes for book 2!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Paradox Bound

  • A Novel
  • By: Peter Clines
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 12 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,401
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 10,812
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,791

Nothing ever changes in Sanders. The town's still got a video store, for God's sake. So why doesn't Eli Teague want to leave? Not that he'd ever admit it, but maybe he's been waiting - waiting for the traveler to come back. The one who's roared into his life twice before, pausing just long enough to drop tantalizing clues before disappearing in a cloud of gunfire and a squeal of tires. The one who's a walking anachronism, with her tricorne hat, flintlock rifle, and steampunked Model A Ford.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Standard Clines. Fun and forgettable

  • By Debra on 10-07-17

Awesome read!

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

Reviewed: 05-31-18

I loved this book. Peter Clines has proven himself to me in every one of his books. Ex-Heroes is such a good series, and Ray Porter brings this stuff to life for me! I loved the whole experience in Paradox Bound. The original suspense and questions and then the avalanche of revelations through time and perspective were so much fun to experience. I had a great time reading and listening and I'll be looking for more from Mr. Clines as often as I finish a book, probably.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Sorcerer's Torment

  • The Sorcerer's Path, Book 2
  • By: Brock Deskins
  • Narrated by: William Turbett
  • Length: 9 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 36
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 34
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 34

Forced to flee The Academy after killing another student, Azerick sets sail to start a new life and a new home from where he can continue to grow in power so that he may avenge his father's murder. However, the fates have not finished with the young sorcerer. A massive storm blows his ship into the clutches of a terrifying creature with the power to control the minds of others and enslave them to its will. Azerick becomes the pawn of this creature, but what happens when an irresistible force meets an indomitable will?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Better than the first.

  • By Natalie @ ABookLoversLife on 04-16-18

The Right Step Down the Path

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

Reviewed: 04-20-18

At my request, this audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an -->unbiased<-- review

I LOVED this book! I feel like so many things happened that I just really never saw coming. Yes, of course, some things were predictable at times, but I found the story very well done and strong on its own merits vs fantasy trope.

The book starts out with Azerick not too far out from the events of book 1; a pretty good spot to start for minimal confusion. We do come to learn some of the highlights of book 1 through context of natural discussions, so there is some built-in refresher. It is kept to a minimum and was well done, and useful. That said, this book was all its own. It goes to different places and carries many different themes. We start getting a taste of the true sorcerer that Azerick is and is becoming. We learn that there is more to magic, too, and I found the presentation of those magics and of the characters involved to be delightful. I had fun listening through the entire book after I got going.
There was just so much content!

William Turbett improves VERY nicely from book 1. I think he's found the character's voice, and he relays all of the characters very well. I couldn't decide on 4 or 5 stars from Turbett's narration easily; it was close! I opted for 4, though, because it took just a bit more of the story than I wanted before his narration had me invested. Also, I would still love a bit more vocal differentiation at times. My true rating for him is more like 4.4 /5... so close :) He really carries the bulk of the story so well.

I would love to listen to more of Turbett's work as he continues to improve his narration. I believe he's going to be reliable for a good listen.

I've already begun looking to collect more book by Brock Deskins, which is among the highest praise I can offer. Deskins is telling a wonderful story, and not just in this series alone! I really enjoyed his other series, starting with Shroud of Darkness, too. I am eager for more audiobooks from these novels!

I am grateful to have had this opportunity.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Edge of the Stars: A Techno-Thriller Science Fiction Novel

  • The Edge, Book 2
  • By: Andria Stone
  • Narrated by: Nicholas Barta
  • Length: 8 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 6
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 6

Mars invites scientists to participate in terraforming experiments which brings the MAVREK team all the way from Terra. But minutes after landing on the space station, Dr. Mark Warren is accused of murder. The warm welcome continues with an attack on his spaceship, then three Terrans are found dead, and killer cyborgs are spotted. Authorities immediately conduct a massive hunt throughout Martian space and terrible new enemies surface with a direct link to Warren's old nemesis. On the planet, the same fugitives hunting Warren also threaten the downfall of Mars itself.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Action, Action, and Development

  • By Daniel Abrams on 04-06-18

Action, Action, and Development

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

Reviewed: 04-06-18

At my request, this audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an -->unbiased<-- review

I got started with this book just about the first moment I could. I had enjoyed the first book probably in January this year and I knew the sequel was coming. I love Sci-Fi and the tech and style of action are what really sets them apart sometimes.

Nicholas Barta is certainly dependable for a good read. He does a variety of recognizable voices and I felt he added to the overall experience nicely. I'm used to his voice and nuances already, having read the first book recently, but there really were no issues to be concerned with. I would not quite call him a 5-star performer yet, but I think he could get there. If he could inject a bit more emotion to fit some of the scenes, and move liveliness at the right moments, he'd be there.

This book starts with a prologue that does a good job getting us caught up on the goings on since the end of book 1. The ball gets rolling and we dive into action pretty quickly. But that's really what this book was; action (thriller). I know there is some self-styled techno-thriller aspect here, but what I got more from book two was the thriller side. Book 2, Edge of the Stars, really plays off of the tech established in Book 1, Edge of the Future. I enjoyed all of the cyborgs and nanites, the presence of spaceships even if they aren't focal, and the colonies outside Earth... Terra. The issue I ran into is that this book stood so significantly on the shoulders of book 1 that a lot of the outstanding tech and details began to feel mundane to me. The major technological aspect of this book was seen in the interrogation scenes. I was intrigued and interested anyhow, but again, this was more futuristic thriller and less techno.

Still a good and engaging story, still good banter and plot, still relatable characters. I expected that, though, after book 1. Our characters are becoming more of a 'family' than a band of colleagues, and I welcome the change. I'll be here for book 3 when it's out too! A solid read overall. I'm glad to have had the opportunity.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • How to Enslave a Human

  • By: Dylan Callens
  • Narrated by: Ulka S. Mohanty
  • Length: 6 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 8
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 8

Our souls were crushed in a quiet revolution. We can no longer think for ourselves in an era controlled by artificial intelligence. While on the brink of starvation, we are led to believe that life is perfect. There is no need for hope; no one realizes that any is required. Only a handful of Untruthers live outside of this grand illusion. I am now one of them. My name is Carl Winston, and I have lost everything to find the truth.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Good premise...

  • By Daniel Abrams on 03-01-18

Good premise...

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

Reviewed: 03-01-18

At my request, this audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an -->unbiased<-- review

I enjoyed the idea of this story more than the actual story. I love Sci-Fi and Post-Apocalyptic stories too. This kind of touches both. Really, it's like Matrix meets I, Robot, with some Terminator for flavor. I just felt like this story lacked depth. There wasn't much for me to latch on to and really CARE about with the characters. We barely even know who our protagonist is, the lady feels like a forced love interest, and the kid... I was disappointed there too.

I feel like Dylan Callens has a great idea here in how he spun these elements together, but I also feel like this book could have used a few more rounds of challenges by editors and maybe Alpha/ Beta readers? It could have been better, IMO, if some of these looser plot elements had been fine-tuned and fleshed out. I guess I'm saying I wish that this same timeline was expanded into a longer book with more detail and more character interaction? Maybe some action too, for balance it.

All in all, this is a 3 star for me. The narration was good, but not awesome, but the story wasn't enough to leave me beating down the author's door for more. Still a read I enjoyed, though.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Dragon's Price

  • The Sorcerer's Saga, Book 4
  • By: Rain Oxford
  • Narrated by: J. Scott Bennett
  • Length: 10 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 72
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 68
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 67

Ayden Dracre, the youngest son in a family of notorious sorcerers, has always respected dragons. That might change when he learns the history of the Sjau. Unfortunately, he is about to face an adversary not even the dragons can destroy, and this time, there is more than Ayden's life at risk. When the future of Caldaca is on the line, the Sjau will have to set aside their differences to save magic. Merlin's powers of divination continue to grow, but will it be enough to defeat his greatest enemy yet?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Book 4

  • By jey cee on 07-09-17

Fantasy for Any Age

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

Reviewed: 02-07-18

At my request, this audiobook was given by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an -->unbiased<-- review

I found this series has been sort of ageless in its target audience. It's written for anyone. The language is squeaky-clean and I didn't find it lacking in story or action in any way. We have character development and depth, relationships and dialogue, some drama, some crises, and some great lessons to enjoy here. Friendship, sacrifice, trust, teamwork, and I'm sure I can justify hard work as a lesson here too.

No matter how you feel about that, there is always humor to be found here. "Why are you Snoggin the Captain?" was, I thought, a fine example of this. There is a lot to enjoy in this whole series, as in this individual story. I would certainly suggest listening in order for clarity, but this story did well enough on its own, too.

Ayden is a pretty wonderful protagonist and character to follow. I recommend this series! I think that, due to how the plot mostly shies away from some more "adult" topics, I would note that YA is probably the best audience here. I, however, am not "YA" and loved this book plenty :)

5 of 5 people found this review helpful