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stuartjash

  • 44
  • reviews
  • 269
  • helpful votes
  • 360
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  • The Night Agent

  • A Novel
  • By: Matthew Quirk
  • Narrated by: Chris Andrew Ciulla
  • Length: 10 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 50
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 46
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 45

To save America from a catastrophic betrayal, an idealistic young FBI agent must stop a Russian mole in the White House in this exhilarating political thriller reminiscent of the early novels of John Grisham and David Baldacci. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Entertaining all around

  • By J. Green on 01-25-19

Great standalone thriller

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

Reviewed: 01-26-19

FBI Agent Peter Sutherland basically does one thing - he sits in the White House and answers a phone when it rings. He then runs whatever he hears up the chain of command, but one night, he hears a phrase that thrusts him into the middle of a conspiracy.

This book was action-packed, fast-paced, exciting, and entertaining. I thought it was a fun and fantastic listen, and Chris Andrew Ciulla did an amazing job narrating. I highly recommend this book to any thriller lover.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Code Name: Lise

  • The True Story of the Spy Who Became WWII's Most Highly Decorated Woman
  • By: Larry Loftis
  • Narrated by: Kate Reading
  • Length: 9 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 144
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 136
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 133

The year is 1942. World War II is in full swing. Odette Sansom decides to follow in her war hero father’s footsteps by becoming an SOE agent to aid Britain and her beloved homeland, France. Five failed attempts and a plane crash later, she finally lands in occupied France to begin her mission. It is here that she meets her commanding officer, Captain Peter Churchill. As they successfully complete mission after mission, Peter and Odette fall in love. All the while, they are being hunted by the cunning German secret police Sergeant Hugo Bleicher, who finally succeeds in capturing them.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I can't believe this was real

  • By stuartjash on 01-24-19

I can't believe this was real

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

Reviewed: 01-24-19

This story is a non-fiction book, but with so much thrill, intrigue, and mystery. It has everything that makes for a good book. It took me only two days to finish this book. It bridges suspense into romance, as it chronicles Odette Sansom, who in her father's footsteps, fights for her country during WWII. She then falls in love with Captain Peter Churchill, and they go on mission after mission with one another.

This was one of the books that makes you want to drive around the block an extra time to keep listening. Kate Reading did a fantastic job narrating this exciting story.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Hunt Them Down

  • (Pierce Hunt, Book 1)
  • By: Simon Gervais
  • Narrated by: Bon Shaw
  • Length: 8 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 216
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 186
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 187

Former Army Ranger Pierce Hunt is no stranger to violence. Fresh off a six-month suspension, he’s itching to hit a notorious Mexican drug cartel where it hurts, even if that means protecting crime boss Vicente Garcia, a witness in the case against sadistic cartel leader Valentina Mieles. But things spiral out of control when the cartel murders Garcia and kidnaps his granddaughter and an innocent bystander, Hunt’s own teenage daughter. Mieles wants the new head of the Garcia family on a plate - literally. Hunt has seventy-two hours to deliver, or Mieles will execute the girls.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great start to a new series...

  • By shelley on 01-02-19

Great new thriller

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

Reviewed: 01-15-19

What a fantastic new novel involving the DEA, cartels, betrayal, and everything in between. I will definitely be reading all future books by this guy.

  • Tier One

  • By: Brian Andrews, Jeffrey Wilson
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 11 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,218
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,696
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,676

John Dempsey's life - as an elite Tier One Navy SEAL named Jack Kemper - is over. A devastating terrorist action catapults him from a world of moral certainty and decisive orders into the shadowy realm of espionage, where ambiguity is the only rule. His new mission: hunt down those responsible for the greatest tragedy in the history of the US Special Ops and bring them to justice.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This One's a Keeper!!!

  • By shelley on 09-11-16

More bad than good

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

Reviewed: 11-24-18

I love thrillers, but this one falls short.

Let's get this out of the way immediately, Ray Porter is fantastic. He is one of the best thriller narrators, but I didn't feel like he could hold this book upright.

The plot of this story is based on a premise that seems way too far-fetched to me. It doesn't seem believable. Something else that I don't care for, that I've noticed a lot of authors do, they have foreign characters use American metaphors, and they preface it as well. For example, one Arab character might say, "He is, as the American's like to say, burnt to a crisp." Doing that seems so devoid of creativity. There were also many cheesy lines, like, "You are the only man for the job."

I did like the qualities added to the characters to make them dynamic, but the dialogue was lackluster.

I didn't care for this book much at all. That being said, I have heard many good things about their follow up books to the series, and I will check them out and give it another chance.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Forever and a Day

  • A James Bond Novel
  • By: Anthony Horowitz
  • Narrated by: Matthew Goode
  • Length: 7 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 225
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 215
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 213

A spy is dead. A legend is born. This is how it all began. The explosive prequel to Casino Royale, from best-selling author Anthony Horowitz. Forever and a Day is the story of the birth of a legend, in the brutal underworld of the French Riviera, taking listeners into the very beginning of James Bond’s illustrious career and the formation of his identity.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Another fantastic Bond novel

  • By stuartjash on 11-08-18

Another fantastic Bond novel

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

Reviewed: 11-08-18

This is a great Bond novel. Horowitz adds classic intrigue, excitement, and plot into this story that we've seen in Ian Fleming's novels. There is an obvious amount of research that Horowitz has put into this book, and this book seems to easily fall into line with the classic Bond novels.

Matthew Goode is a great narrator. I typically listen to books at 1.5x speed, but slowed this one down to 1.25x due to Goode's accent. That is not a criticism, just a random aside.

I think this is a great book, and Horowitz's other books I have loved too, especially The Word Is Murder and The Magpie Murders. I highly recommend this book, as well as those.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • 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

Great story, narrating was different than expected

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

Reviewed: 10-30-18

First, the plot was excellent. Having Bosch and Ballard pair up, I think, was a fantastic idea. I do miss not having two books with one of each, but they are a power duo.

My ONLY complaint was with the narration. First, I think both narrators were great, however, they way the narration was produced was bizarre. Coming into this story, I expected to have Bosch completely narrated by Welliver and Ballard entirely narrated by Lakin. What they did, though, was broken different chapters into the characters, so a new chapter may be 'Bosch", in which Welliver narrates the entire chapter, even if Ballard is speaking. Same goes for Lakin. She will narrate entire conversations between Ballard and Bosch. It seemed like if they were going to have two narrators, they would have actually had the two narrators be the voices for the entire story, not just specific chapters.

I loved the plot, but the idea behind that style of narration was slightly disappointing. The story is still good enough that I would recommend a purchase!

39 of 45 people found this review helpful

  • The Fox

  • By: Frederick Forsyth
  • Narrated by: David Rintoul
  • Length: 8 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 306
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 282
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 280

The number one New York Times best-selling master of international intrigue takes readers into the bleeding-edge world of technological espionage in a propulsive thriller that feels chillingly real. Former chief of the British Secret Intelligence Service Adrian Weston is awoken in the middle of the night by a phone call from the prime minister. Her news is shocking: The Pentagon, the NSA, and the CIA have been hacked simultaneously, their seemingly impenetrable firewalls breached by an unknown enemy known only as "The Fox".

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Modern Story with Classic Prose

  • By stuartjash on 10-24-18

Modern Story with Classic Prose

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

Reviewed: 10-24-18

Forsyth is 80-years-old, and he writes a book that is one of the most relevant and current pieces of mystery and thrill that there is available. I will skip over the synopsis of the book, but long story short, there is a young hacker, Luke Jennings, who assists in finding "The Fox".

Not only is writing a thriller in which the antagonist is a computer hacker difficult, it is hard to make it into a "thriller." Typically thrillers have a bad guy with fantastical skills that rival the protagonist, which is why I was a little apprehensive when starting this book. Part of it, and this may make me a little ageist, was the fact that an 80-year-old was writing it.

BUT...Forsyth delivered magnificently! This was a great book, with a plot that continued to move along, and it truly kept me captivated until the end. Also, as someone who works in the computer/software industry, Forsyth nailed every term and piece that revolves around the tech industry.

You also have to admit that Forsyth is one of the best writers out there, meaning his prose is stellar, his characters are dynamic, his plots are realistic and believable, and his books keep you engaged and hooked.

I loved this book, and David Rintoul was the perfect narrator for this audiobook. I highly recommend it!

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Operator Down

  • A Pike Logan Thriller
  • By: Brad Taylor
  • Narrated by: Rich Orlow, Henry Strozier
  • Length: 14 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 694
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 650
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 647

Former Delta Force Officer and New York Times best-selling author Brad Taylor delivers a heart-pounding thriller where Pike Logan's search for a Mossad agent and ally puts him on a collision course with a ruthless military coup in Africa - and tests his loyalties to the Taskforce.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wait, I have to catch my breath...

  • By shelley on 01-18-18

Great book, takes time to get used to narration

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

Reviewed: 10-23-18

I won't do a book recap, as many already have. It is fantastic. I will talk about the narration.

I saw one review saying who is who in this story. Let me address that: First, yes, there are two narrators, which is obvious from above. Let me preview this by saying Brad Taylor has an interesting writing style. He bounces between first and third-person throughout the book. At first I found this distracting, but once I got used to it, I thoroughly enjoyed it. One of the narrators does Pike Logan, all in the first-person. The other narrator does everything else, all in the third-person. This helps make you see Pike Logan's point-of-view, but also allows you to see what's going on outside of his field-of-view.

Again, at first, it's a little distracting. But it only took a chapter or two for me to be engrossed in this book. It is one of my favorite Brad Taylor novels to date. I can't recommend it enough. Just prepare yourself for two narrators.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • November Road

  • A Novel
  • By: Lou Berney
  • Narrated by: Johnathan McClain
  • Length: 9 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 272
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 256
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 255

Frank Guidry’s luck has finally run out. A loyal street lieutenant to New Orleans’ mob boss Carlos Marcello, Guidry has learned that everybody is expendable. But now it’s his turn - he knows too much about the crime of the century: the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Within hours of JFK’s murder, everyone with ties to Marcello is turning up dead, and Guidry suspects he’s next. With few good options, Guidry hits the road to Las Vegas, to see an old associate - a dangerous man who hates Marcello enough to help Guidry vanish.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A new look at life after the JFK Assassination

  • By stuartjash on 10-10-18

A new look at life after the JFK Assassination

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

Reviewed: 10-10-18

There seems to be many books out, especially in recent years, about conspiracy surrounding the JFK assassination. You have Stephen Kings '11/22/63' and Stephen Hunters 'The Third Bullet', but all of those pale in comparison to what Lou Berney did with this story.

November Road takes the reader/listener on a magnificent journey that has mystery, intrigue, and characters that are put into extraordinary situations. This really takes the reader on this ride, using the JFK assassination as somewhat of a backdrop to what happens to Frank Guidry, who has been serving a New Orleans mob boss, and now he must run from him. He uses another fantastically designed character, Charlotte, to assist him in this process.

This book really was a nice, refreshing listen/read to your typical books that surround November 1963.

I thought this book was beautifully written, and it is glaringly obvious that Berney put so much time and effort into the design of each chapter, character, and page.

This book sucked me in, and I listened to the entire thing yesterday (the day it was released). It is easily going down as one of my favorites of the year.

Johnathan McClain was also the perfect narrator for this story. My only small critique was that at points when characters are whispering in the story, McClain would whisper as well, which caused me to have to ride the volume for parts of it. That's quite minor and nit-picking, because otherwise, the narration was superb.

I can't recommend this book enough!

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Red War

  • A Mitch Rapp Novel, Book 17
  • By: Vince Flynn, Kyle Mills
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 9 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,813
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,441
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,411

When Max Krupin - Russia's leader - discovers that his kidney cancer has spread to his brain, he's determined to hide his diagnosis. He begins by getting rid of anyone threatening to him - as well as creating chaos in the region to keep the world's attention diverted. Soon, Krupin's illness becomes serious enough that he needs a more dramatic diversion, prompting him to invade the Baltics. Desperate to understand what's causing Krupin's unusually erratic behavior and Russia's aggressive moves in the region, America begins working with Russia's disgraced prime minister to stage a coup.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • EXCELLENT addition to the series...

  • By shelley on 09-25-18

One of the best in the entire Rapp series

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

Reviewed: 09-27-18

As a Mitch Rapp Ambassador, I took my time reading Red War, as I never wanted the experience to end. Well, it finally came to a conclusion tonight, and Kyle Mills did not disappoint.

Story: When Mills first introduced us to Grisha Azarov in Mills' first complete novel since taking over the Flynn franchise, he formed the most formidable opponent Rapp had ever met. The way Mills weaves Grisha into this plot is fantastic and dramatic. As you can see from the other reviews, Rapp is in a race against time, Maxim Krupin's time in order to stop from a Russian takeover. It is fast-paced. The story never lets up, and Rapp is as sharp as ever.

One thing I really like and enjoy about Mills' writing is what he's done with the relationship between Rapp and his friend/comrade Scott Coleman. Coleman and Rapp were always close when Flynn wrote the series, but Mills has developed their relationship even more so. I think a large part of this is due to the fact that Mills has added so much more humor into the novel. The banter between not just Rapp and Coleman but also Rapp and Grisha is hilarious. Mills has allowed this humor to permeate through very intense, dramatic, and thrilling scenes, and it gives the reader a chuckle and reminds you that these battle-hardened men still have a sense of humor. Rapp and Coleman's conversations never cease to make me laugh.

This was, I think, the best novel Mills has ever written. As far as the Rapp series goes, I truly believes this even rivals some of the top Flynn novels like Transfer of Power and Consent to Kill, which is a nearly impossible task. I love the way Mills has moved the series forward. This was a fun, thrilling, and entertaining read. I could've finished it in a few days, but I never wanted the book to end.

Narration: Come on, it's George Guidall! He's, arguably, the best narrator in the world. He is hands-down my favorite, and last year when Scott Brick narrated the Enemy of the State, I was a little disappointed. Not disappointed in Scott Brick, he's amazing as well, but disappointed that Guidall wasn't doing it. He has been the voice of Rapp and friends for so long, that we all grew accustomed to it. Great having Guidall back.

Great book + Great Narration = Amazing Listening Experience!

Great job, Kyle Mills!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful