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Ray A. - independent & unsolicited reviewer

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Top-notch sci-fi. Absolutely loved it.

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

Reviewed: 08-11-17

What made the experience of listening to Earthcore the most enjoyable?

The experience of listening? Definitely Ray Porter. Excellent narration that drew me in easily.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Kirkland; closely followed by Sunny. Kirkland's character growth was well done and his cool-as-a-cucumber persona was the thread that held things together. Sunny's dialogue was almost always humorous and always entertaining. He didn't receive the same attention as Kirkland though and didn't change much throughout the story.

Which character – as performed by Ray Porter – was your favorite?

Sunny. Ray did a great job voicing the old-timer prospector.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

O'Doyle's response to a question near the end about why he wanted to put his life in jeopardy again, echoing the internal narration Kirkland had voiced in the caverns.

Any additional comments?

If you're at all interested in any fiction with science (not necessarily just space operas), i.e. Crichton then get this...immediately.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

Great listen

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

Reviewed: 07-31-17

Kevin Hearne definitely has a gift. I enjoyed every single one of the shorts in Besieged. Every character touched upon was given the same care as Atticus himself and it makes their stories feel as important as his.

Add in Daniels' narration and diving into their world is effortless.

My thanks to everyone involved in this series. Looking forward to the last ID book and whatever follows.

Another awesome adventure with Joe and Skippy

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

Reviewed: 05-30-17

I've been looking forward to this book since finishing the last book. This was well worth the wait. The dialogue between Joe and Skippy was witty and entertaining as always. I cracked up out loud in public at the part where Joe was dressing Skippy up while they staked out a wormhole.

Kudos to the author for managing to constrain a god like AI in such an effective manner. Instead of being overpowered, it makes what they are trying to do just barely possible.

The narration by Bray was freaking awesome as always.

Happily awaiting the next one. Thanks to everyone involved in creating this.

Holy #@$!, this is awesome.

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

Reviewed: 05-04-17

What did you love best about For We Are Many?

The breadth of scenarios and their perceived realism. This isn't just a book about space, or robotics, or people, or...etc.

What other book might you compare For We Are Many to and why?

I can't think of any book like this so I'll compare it's facets to others. The space portions are somewhat reminiscent of a combo between The Synchronicity War and The Lost Fleet (Campbell). The planet-side and social/political interactions are kind of like Revelation Space Ultras and Lost Fleet. The research/dev portions felt like someone describing Starcraft strategies; tactical resource allocation, collection and production capacities. The replicant aspect isn't like anything I've yet read. It's a great narrative device in that their simulated environments stay familiar to us. The Bobs aren't cold computers that exchange data packets, they sit and drink coffee and chat, or roast marshmallows around a fire.

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

Two main things. 1. Emotion. My internal narrative is not very emotionally charged. Not a big deal to me usually. This story benefits greatly from Ray's portrayal . His pauses and inflections made it even easier to get sucked into this engrossing story. 2. Differentiation between the Bobs. Seriously, awesome job taking the clones and adding slight variations in speech. Their word choices and structures seem to vary somewhat in the text but Ray adds more.

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

Absolutely. Easy to get sucked in and stay in.

Any additional comments?

One of the best and well-rounded sci-fi series I've ever read. I'll be eagerly awaiting the next one. I don't think I've heard Ray Porter before this series but I'm going to check out other titles he's done. If this series is any indication, he stands next to Luke Daniels and R.C. Bray.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Nice take on the 'life is a simulation' theme

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

Reviewed: 04-03-17

I found this to be an incredibly easy listen. There were a few plot points that kind of felt off but I'm assuming that future info will resolve.

With vastly different time scaling the author did a good job narrating both sides in a cohesive and linear manner.

Luke Daniels, awesome as always.

Off to the second book now.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Absolutely loved it

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

Reviewed: 03-22-17

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

Definitely. This series has a great mix of space, combat, ground, interpersonal and some philosophical components. Very easy to get drawn in to the story.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Hmm. Joe and Skippy tie. It's been gratifying to watch their character development and the relationship between them progress towards a friendship.

What about R.C. Bray’s performance did you like?

Here's what I didn't like about R.C. Bray's performance: Nothing. Bray did his magic and brought the characters to life.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

'Don't bring stray beer cans home'

Any additional comments?

Absolutely love the universe that Alanson has created. The hierarchy of races and the mystery of Skippy's creators gives the feeling of a mostly undiscovered universe which is compelling for me as a reader. The dialog between the two protagonists is both entertaining and still has depth when they aren't joking.

Kudos for the way Alanson wrote Skippy. It's very easy to write a god-like AI that marginalizes humans. Alanson went a different path and as a result the teamwork between the humans and Skippy produces better results than either would alone. Also, that makes for some entertaining moments when the AI laments being out-thought by a monkey.

Honestly, if you're browsing scifi books then IMHO you need to read this series.

Another great action-packed installment

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

Reviewed: 02-01-17

The latest foray into this world is every bit as satisfying as previous trips. If you have made it this far into the series it's a no-brainer purchase.

Luke Daniels' narration was great as always.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

@#%!ing Awesome!

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

Reviewed: 01-27-17

Would you consider the audio edition of Columbus Day to be better than the print version?

Haven't read the book.

What did you like best about this story?

Honestly, it's a tie between the characters and the varying theaters. The main protagonist, Joe is a down-to-earth everyman kind of guy and he had to grow and adapt. Skippy was also very well done. The dialog and motivations of the characters were both entertaining and believable. I also really like how the author paced the changes in locations. It was frequent enough that things stayed fresh.

What does R.C. Bray bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

It's Bray... 'nuff said. His character voices were great and more than once I choked out a laugh loudly enough to draw attention from strangers.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The budding friendship between Joe and Skippy.

Any additional comments?

I'd give this 6 stars if I could. A very entertaining listen that has a great mix of action, interpersonal interactions/growth, mifi and scifi.

The fun continues

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

Reviewed: 11-09-16

I was initially disappointed that there wasn't going to be as much
Wizardry as the last two volumes. It ended up being a great story regardless. Jimmy was kind of the main character and most of the suspense for me was in what actions he'd take.

The quest itself was an entertaining premise. The dialog between the characters while they critiqued it kept things light. This story doesn't take itself too seriously.

IMHO definitely worth it if you've read the others and enjoyed them.

Daniels was great as always.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Just gets better and better

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

Reviewed: 11-01-16

At this point I'd say that this is one of my all-time favorite sci-fi series. The feeling of breadth/complexity in the universe rivals that of Hamilton or Banks. Unlike most of Hamilton's work, Fox's writing doesn't take long to get up to speed. I've found myself immediately immersed in every book.

The continuing advancement of the humans and their preparation for the next wave could have been a less-exciting filler. Fox didn't do that. In fact, a lot of the build-up was kind of skipped over in a way that leaves the reader empathetic with the disbelief of characters who didn't witness it.

Excellent job maintaining numerous plot lines and keeping everything consistent and clear. Ancillary note:a lot of operas tend to try to narrate both at the top and at the level of individual Marines. The lower levels often feel like they're not fully fleshed out. Not the case here. I care about the Iron Hearts, the Marines, even the Proces. Not only that but the reader can see that what they do affects the larger plot. They matter.

I like the glimpses of the Xaros - even they (and Malaal) are given treatment so they're not one-dimensional evils.

Narration: I'm a big Daniels fan. His performance here is what I've come to expect... freaking awesome. He brings the characters to life in a way very few other narrators can.

I'm definitely in this series for the long-haul. Heck, after this series ends I'd be interested in a spin off series about Ibarra's machinations leading up to the first attack.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful