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The Second Korean War

Narrated by: Cody Banning
Length: 15 hrs and 4 mins
4 out of 5 stars (45 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Two Russian agents discover a missing nuclear weapon was hidden in an American city by North Korea. Another nuclear weapon nears Seoul in a tunnel built by North Koreans. And North Korea's new military dictator launches an all-out invasion. Will Seoul or Pyongyang be the new capital of a united Korea?

©2018 Ted Halstead (P)2018 Ted Halstead

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

Narration Failure

The narration put me off from the start. The stiff delivery was just impossible to ignore. The editor also placed the chapter breaks right on top of the last sentence of the preceding chapter. The content of the story was fat on technical.details and skinny on character development even of the protagonists.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A Surprising Gem

This book turned out to be fairly entertaining. It was a fun twist to have so much of the story from a Russian perspective. The story flows well with enough detail to keep the listener informed without being bored. The events push the boundaries of belief in some cases, but overall it isn’t too far fetched.

The narration is a bit rough especially at first, but it improves as the book progresses.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Brian
  • Niagara Falls, NY
  • 10-03-18

A “What If” Imagining a 2nd Korean War

The synopsis doesn’t give you too much (which in a way doesn’t spoil anything like some can) – but going into this I imagined that I was going to get introduced to a story where… a second Korean War was started.

I can tell that Halstead put a ton of heart and research into this book. He is able to write something that makes you think and feel.

Overall, I thought that Halstead did a good job imagining a what if situation and telling it to us from a ton of points of view – probably too many, but that’s just my opinion. I kept going from breezing through scenes to ones where I just felt like I needed a break. If you’re a fan of military fiction, lots of characters, and an original idea and plot – I do think you’ll enjoy The Second Korean War.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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  • DWD
  • Indianapolis, IN
  • 10-03-18

Multi-Country Thriller

Published in 2018 by Ted Halstead.
Read by Cody Banning.
Duration: 15 hours, 4 minutes.
Unabridged

Ted Halstead's The Second Korean War is a multi-country thriller in which North Korea tries a desperate gamble to force South Korea to submit to North Korean rule.

The book starts out on an military base on the far eastern part of Russia. North Korea has found out that Russia has a small nuclear "backpack" weapon (a battlefield nuke) dating from the early days of nuclear weapons that has been lost from the inventory over the years. North Korea acquires the weapon so that they can start a two-pronged effort to force South Korea to surrender and force the United States to withdraw from South Korea without fighting.

But, things don't go as smoothly as they hoped, people die and a Russian police detective starts putting things together. The question is, will he put things together fast enough?

The last thing I want to do is write out a bunch of spoilers, so I won't tell how everything breaks down. Some of the twists and turns were nicely done. I especially liked how the Russians were the good guys and honest brokers throughout. There's a lot of technology (radar-eluding planes, submarines) and geo-political intrigue in the vein of Tom Clancy. It's not as good as the best Tom Clancy, but that is a high bar. I found the North Korean plan for South Korea to be exceedingly implausible simply because of their hardheaded insistence on using a specific vehicle. I get it, the stereotype of military dictatorships is that they are ultra-orthodox and inflexible.

I listened to The Second Korean War as an audiobook. It was not a particularly good production. The reader, Cody Banning, has a clear voice. But, his rhythm is just not there. At times, it sounds like he is trying to imitate William Shatner, with odd long pauses at commas. According to my research, this is just his second audiobook, so that explains a few things. There's a lot of potential there.

The audiobook was poorly edited, though. Multiple times you can hear the reader clear his throat, shake papers and sometimes start over as he botched a line. Botched lines happen - but this is Also, the editor/producer should have caught the fact that Banning mis-read the word "emphatically" as "empathically" throughout the book. This is my 467th audiobook review and this one stood out for its rather poor editing. Too bad.

I rate this audiobook 3 stars out of 5, despite the production/editing work. It was a unique take on a potential Korean conflict.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Great story

This was a great story, however it felt like a big wind up to nothing.

While happy endings are nice it felt like all the protagonists were bumbling idiots instead of professionals.

There were many editing errors, at times the narrator could be heard repeating, being edited out by the author, or what sounded like snapping fingers.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Worst performance in 20 years

I’ve been an Audible member for almost 20 years and this was the worst production I’ve ever heard. It seemed like there were many cuts and redoes and they were very distracting. The readers pace was such that paragraphs seemed to blend together and an incomprehensible fashion.
The story was barely acceptable.

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Predictable and uninspired with terrible production quality

I do not expect much from this type of action book— just some mild entertainment on my commute . As a consequence I am rarely disappointed . This book disappointed me.

The story: the story was an uninspired linear thriller with no twists or character development to engage the reader. It is hard to point to anything that the author did wrong; the book has the usual elements of the genre, story arc, and wooden characters. It’s just that the author did not do much that was particularly right. It feels like he meant to write a much longer book and was told halfway through to start wrapping it up. The end builds on storylines that were never properly developed and the story crashes more than it ends. I have read many books in this genre and I never write reviews. This one was that bad

Narration: the narrators voice was acceptable, although he spoke a little too quickly. Slowing the speed down to 75% was too much but just barely. Where’s the narration really failed was in the production quality. There are countless times during the story where the narrator picks up halfway through a sentence in a different tone of voice, skips words, or misreads something. I don’t know how to rate this because I don’t see these kinds of issues much in other audiobooks. Basic editing and production should be a given. This was slovenly.