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  • The Ferryman Institute

  • A Novel
  • By: Colin Gigl
  • Narrated by: Stephen Hoye
  • Length: 14 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 44
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 42
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 41

Ferryman Charlie Dawson saves dead people - somebody has to convince them to move on to the afterlife, after all. Having never failed a single assignment, he's acquired a reputation for success that's as legendary as it is unwanted. It turns out that serving as a Ferryman is causing Charlie to slowly lose his mind. Deemed too valuable by the Ferryman Institute to be let go and too stubborn to just give up in his own right, Charlie's pretty much abandoned all hope of escaping his grim existence. Or he had, anyway, until he saved Alice Spiegel.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Narrator does not capture tone of the story

  • By Jessica Bell on 03-15-17

Compassion and Humor dealing with death

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

Reviewed: 02-24-19

Excellent Read. This book is about death and the role of one Ferryman who's job it is to convince the dead to move on to their next life. It is sad and dark but contains compassion and humor as the Ferryman tries to deal with his job and the bureaucracy of his organization. I listened to the audible version and found this to be a 4 star read.

  • The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August

  • By: Claire North
  • Narrated by: Peter Kenny
  • Length: 12 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,721
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,173
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,168

No matter what he does or the decisions he makes, when death comes, Harry always returns to where he began, a child with all the knowledge of a life he has already lived a dozen times before. Nothing ever changes. Until now.As Harry nears the end of his 11th life, a little girl appears at his bedside. "I nearly missed you, Doctor August," she says. "I need to send a message." This is the story of what Harry does next, and what he did before, and how he tries to save a past he cannot change and a future he cannot allow.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Not what I'd feared

  • By Isobel on 04-29-16

Ok but dragged

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

Reviewed: 02-22-19

I really like time travel books, and based on the reviews I was expecting more. The book was ok. Total lack of humor distracted from the read. The Narration was good. However, I found much of the story tedious and I thought it dragged. The author did do a good job maintaining the story as it jumped across the timeline and from life to life but much of that seemed to add no value. I liked the main character but found his early dealings with Vincent to be naive, and continually struggled to understand why he liked Vincent, a character who embodies the worst characteristics of science without conscience. The ending was good and Harry's perseverance to stop Vincent was satisfying. Overall, I thought this book was 2.75 stars and overrated by other reviewers.

  • White Lies

  • By: Lucy Dawson
  • Narrated by: Rachel Atkins
  • Length: 9 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,345
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,065
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,057

A darkly gripping domestic drama about secrets and lies. When you have everything, you have everything to lose.... Alexandra Inglis is a respected family doctor, trusted by her patients to keep their most intimate secrets. And if sometimes the boundaries between duty and desire blur...well, she's only human. But when Alex oversteps a line with Jonathan, one of her patients, she knows she's gone too far.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Kept me guessing!!

  • By ROBIN on 05-26-18

Ok mystery with a twist

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

Reviewed: 02-13-19

Upside - an interesting mystery that kept me guessing. Downside - the book dragged, not to mention my universal dislike of almost every character in the story made sticking with the story difficult.

  • Second Hand Curses

  • By: Drew Hayes
  • Narrated by: Scott Aiello, Marc Vietor, Tavia Gilbert
  • Length: 9 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,465
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 4,257
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,257

When your fairy godmother threatens to enslave you with a curse - when a malevolent piper solves your rat problem but steals your children - when you seek revenge on the prince who turned you into a frog - who can you turn to in your hour of need? The band of scoundrels known far and wide as the Bastard Champions - the swashbuckling trio who travel a world of legend, seeking adventure and righting wrongs - as long as there's enough gold to be earned.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic

  • By Carla on 11-22-17

Fun and entertaining

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

Reviewed: 02-09-19

This is a quick read which puts a cynical spin on some common fairytales. It was enjoyable and fun, with humor and some likable characters.

  • The Land: Predators: A LitRPG Saga

  • Chaos Seeds, Book 7
  • By: Aleron Kong
  • Narrated by: Nick Podehl
  • Length: 46 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 12,522
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 11,875
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 11,819

In The Land: Predators, the Mist Village has harnessed its power. With core buildings, professional fighters, and now their own dungeon, the settlement is primed to grow into a kingdom of true power and magic. The path to power has not been without risk, however. The MistVillage has been noticed. Evil nobles from the Kingdom of Law, bloodthirsty goblins from the Serrated Mountains, an undead lord with a penchant for human sacrifice, and fanatical kobolds from the Depths all plot the village's destruction.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The best book ever!!!

  • By Amazon Customer on 12-06-18

Fun

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

Reviewed: 02-01-19

For the reader who has gotten to this point in the series, you obviously enjoy the story. I too enjoyed this book and like its predecessors, the story remains fun. I enjoyed the continued growth of the main characters and the comradery that they share. The author has created a world that holds magic and monsters, and I like the fact that it is not a completely dystopic universe.

On the downside, I cannot consider a higher rating. The writing continues at times to venture beyond crude male adolescent humor, which might be great for a teenage boy, but I found it was a turn-off and distracting from the story. Also, I am not a gamer so I often tuned out during the lengthy reviews of LITRPG game stats, concentrating on the story progression. I do not know if I would have the patience to read through the detail of game stats provided so I am glad I listened to the audible version.

On the upside, there is lots of action and the author has created an interesting world with both villains and heroes. Ultimately, I equate reading these books to eating potato chips. They are fun, light reads, that easily support multitasking if listened too. In my mind, they fall short from taking the next step, but I will likely buy and read the next book. However, I do not expect any major changes or growth.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Land: Founding: A LitRPG Saga

  • Chaos Seeds, Book 1
  • By: Aleron Kong
  • Narrated by: Nick Podehl
  • Length: 9 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18,915
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 17,823
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 17,792

Tricked into a world of banished gods, demons, goblins, sprites and magic, Richter must learn to meet the perils of The Land and begin to forge his own kingdom. Actions have consequences across The Land, with powerful creatures and factions now hell-bent on Richter's destruction. Can Richter forge allegiances to survive this harsh and unforgiving world or will he fall to the dark denizens of this ancient and unforgiving realm? A tale to shake "The Land" itself, measuring 10/10 on the Richter scale, how will Richter's choices shape the future of The Land and all who reside in it?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • So hooked!!!

  • By Jaime J. Padilla on 03-10-19

Fun Romp

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

Reviewed: 02-01-19

I listened to the first book in Audible and overall, the story is pretty good. I enjoyed the growth of the main characters and the comradery that they share. The author has created a world that holds magic and monsters, and I like the fact that it is not a completely dystopic universe.

On the downside, the writing at times ventures beyond sexist male adolescent humor, which might be great for a teenage boy, but I found it was a turn-off and distracting from the story. I am not a gamer so I often tuned out during the lengthy reviews of LITRPG game stats, concentrating on the story progression. I do not know if I would have the patience to read through the detail of game stats provided so I am glad I listened to the audible version.

On the upside, there is lots of action and the author has created an interesting world with both villains and heroes. Ultimately, I equate reading these books to eating potato chips. They are fun, light reads, that easily support multitasking if listened too. In my mind, they fall short from taking the next step, but I will likely buy and read the next book. However, I do not expect any major changes.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Great North Road

  • By: Peter F. Hamilton
  • Narrated by: Toby Longworth
  • Length: 36 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,076
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,899
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,904

A century from now, thanks to a technology allowing instantaneous travel across light-years, humanity has solved its energy shortages, cleaned up the environment, and created far-flung colony worlds. The keys to this empire belong to the powerful North family - composed of successive generations of clones. Yet these clones are not identical. For one thing, genetic errors have crept in with each generation. For another, the original three clone "brothers" have gone their separate ways, and the branches of the family are now friendly rivals more than allies. Or maybe not so friendly....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Get the Timeline and Cast of Characters

  • By Don M on 02-03-13

Complex Story

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

Reviewed: 01-18-19

I have had to wait a few days before writing this review because it was not an easy read, and I have mixed feelings about the rating. First, I am a big fan of Hamilton's writing. My opinion is that the best part of the Science Fiction he writes is the believability of the science. I also like the fact that he finds hope in humanities future. This book, set in the not too distant future of mankind is a mix between a police procedural, with a science fiction base.

Like other Hamilton books, this novel is long, and the plot is very complex, containing many characters jumping across a complex story-line. Admittedly that made it hard to follow. Another review pointed out that the print copy of this book has a map, a timeline and a very helpful cast of characters. I listened to the audio version and I will admit that I wish I had had that map while listening to the audible version. The cast of characters and the timeline confused me on multiple occasions. More than one time I was frustrated trying to figure out which character the story had just re-introduced.

I do not think this was as good as the Commonwealth Saga, but it is certainly not predictable and it has a great ending. Worth the effort.

  • A Secret History of Witches

  • By: Louisa Morgan
  • Narrated by: Polly Lee
  • Length: 17 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,439
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,322
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,312

After Grand-mere Ursule gives her life to save her family, their magic seems to die with her. Even so, the Orchires fight to keep the old ways alive, practicing half-remembered spells and arcane rites in hopes of a revival. And when their youngest daughter comes of age, magic flows anew. The lineage continues, though new generations struggle not only to master their power, but also to keep it hidden. But when World War II looms on the horizon, magic is needed more urgently than ever.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Such Beautiful Writing, Such Terrible Characters

  • By Katie M on 11-26-17

Nice writing boring story

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

Reviewed: 01-18-19

The writing and narration in this audiobook are very well done, but they fail to offset the lack of an engaging story. Many of the generations of women in this story are not very likeable. The supporting characters, the society, with their ignorance and bigotry, are even less likeable. I found this book tough to get through and did not finish.

  • Spinning Silver

  • By: Naomi Novik
  • Narrated by: Lisa Flanagan
  • Length: 17 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,904
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,731
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,717

Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders, but her father's inability to collect his debts has left his family on the edge of poverty - until Miryem takes matters into her own hands. Hardening her heart, the young woman sets out to claim what is owed and soon gains a reputation for being able to turn silver into gold. When an ill-advised boast draws the attention of the king of the Staryk - grim fey creatures who seem more ice than flesh - Miryem's fate, and that of two kingdoms, will be forever altered. 

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • One of my favorite authors. Only 1 small complaint

  • By R. W. Olsen on 11-30-18

Well done

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

Reviewed: 01-05-19

I am not a huge fan of fair tales but I really enjoyed this book. It is well written with enjoyable narration.

  • Ball Lightning

  • By: Cixin Liu, Joel Martinsen - translator
  • Narrated by: Feodor Chin
  • Length: 12 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 630
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 576
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 573

When Chen’s parents are incinerated before his eyes by a blast of ball lightning, he devotes his life to cracking the secret of the mysterious natural phenomenon. His search takes him to stormy mountaintops, an experimental military weapons lab, and an old Soviet science station. The more he learns, the more he comes to realize that ball lightning is just the tip of a new frontier in particle physics. Although Chen’s quest provides a purpose for his life, his reasons for chasing his elusive quarry come into conflict with soldiers and scientists who have motives of their own.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Silly title, great book

  • By tosbanzai on 08-25-18

Tough Read

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

Reviewed: 01-02-19

I have not read “The Three Body Problem”. This was my first exposure to Cixin Liu and his writing. Ball Lightning is a near-term SCI FI Novel and definitely not typical of the genre. The plot, which revolves around China’s military scientific efforts to weaponize lightning, follows a Chinese scientist and his coworkers through the military testing associated with their experiments.

Overall, I found the novel to be a very slow tough read, but worth it in the end. As I struggled to stay engaged with narration, I was confused about the universally high reviews contained in Audible. The first 4/5ths of the book are dull and the characters wooden and stiff. Not until 8 hours into the narration does the story change from a clinical experimental test plan to an interesting story. The author then introduces a war with an unnamed but identifiable American foe, who is also exploring the future of atmospheric weapons.

Ultimately this book revolves around the pursuit of science for military application without conscience and without regard for the potential consequences. Humanity has certainly demonstrated such activity through history and as our science advances, the potential for increased self-destruction increases. There are some surprises at the end, and while the conclusion and ideas achieved in this book are interesting and redeeming, the journey to get to there was difficult. Ultimately, I can only give it 3 stars.