Edmonton, AB, Canada
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1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-07-15

The first boring Sandford Ever...**sigh**

The thing I like about Sandford's books is that they COOK. They never get weighed down with endless explanations and lengthy passages of "who cares" accounts of the science. They have been character and action driven...and they create a chain of steady information.

At least they did until this turkey.

If you're a science fiend who absolutely has to know the mechanics of interstellar travel, this is the book for you. If you, like me, are content with a narrative that says "the ship went really fast" -- this is audiobook hell. Why? In a printed novel I would just shrug and skim down to where the story gets started again.

With an audiobook you're trapped with the "Blah blah blah" of what makes the ship go "really fast" when you (ie "me") could not possibly care less.

The story comes up flat -- think of Virgil Flowers in space and many of the things SHOULD make it interesting like encounters with an alien presence, races through cold space, come up inspiring one long "ho hum" instead of that wonderful "I'll just sit here in the driveway for a few minutes to find out what happened.

I actually quit listening to this book several times and came back to it in the faint hope that it would get better. But...nope. This one shuffled through utterly predictable "no surprises here, fella" plot twists to a completely "saw that coming" ending.

I expect you, like me, are a Sandford fan. And that means that if you are like me, there's no way you're going to be talked out of purchasing this book. I completely understand. But you've been warned.

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0 of 1 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-01-15

I Would Have Wished...

First: The Princess Bride is one of my all time favorites.
Second: I was really looking forward to this book because...well...see "First"
Third: I was looking for insight...tidbits...trivia.
Fourth: The book had stellar reviews from people who appreciated the movie like I do. What could possibly go wrong?


What did I get? Hmmm. Have you ever seen actors interviewed about other actors? They say "He is a fine human being. Knowing him was one of the great moments of my life. Blah blah blah."

I appreciate that in public forums there's a certain etiquette that needs to be observed. But in books written by insiders, I'm really looking for meatier stuff. Not "dirt" -- but the kind of stories that take me inside the subject.

Hearing Elwes drone on and on about how wonderful (fill in the blank) was to work with and how unworthy he felt to be part of the project and how HAPPY he is that the movie finally took off really turns into blah blah blah after a while.

The clips from the cast are mildly interesting although they are very short and often reduced to "Actor Blah" as well.

Let's be fair: much of the ACTUAL information that manages to leak through the "Actor Speak" filter had to do with Andre the Giant and I was interested in it. I appreciated it. It would have been a much more interesting read if Elwes had realized that his audiences KNOW he was with a great cast and tried to turn them into people instead of icons.

The overall effect? Tedious with vague glimmers of interesting stuff meshed among all the stuff we already knew.

I'm so sorry to tell you, so VERY sorry to tell you that this book manages only one impossible thing: to turn a vibrant and delightful movie into something beige and completely uninteresting.

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3 of 6 people found this review helpful

2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-12-15

How can an apocalypse be this boring???

Take all the cliches you've ever read in any zombie books and dumb them down.

Add a "meh" writer and "blah" characters and, if you're like me, you'll wind up rooting for the zombies.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-12-15

It's No Dresden...

And it's not Felix Castor either.

But it's listenable. The plot plods only a couple of times and the narrator is lively enough. It's lacking depth and truly interesting characters...but if you want a book you can follow while you're doing something else and don't REALLY need to give it your full attention, this is as good an option as anything else.

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4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-12-15


I have pretty high standards for audio books. I want great narration...lively and interesting characters and a plot that moves along at a solid pace.

You get all of that and much more in this outstanding story.

19 plus hours and I wasn't bored once.

This one is a keeper.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-12-15


If you're looking for a book where the serial killer is brilliant and the newspaper reporter is dogged and the plot rockets along at a blistering pace...look somewhere else. This yawner reeks of "first novel BLAH" with an unevenly written completely uninteresting lead character that isn't even good enough to be considered a copy of a good character.

We forget about the killer for hours at a time as the intrepid -- or should that be 'insipid' character plods about a life just slightly more interesting than watching grass grow.

A horrid waste of time.

If, however, you are one of those people who listens to audio books because you have trouble sleeping........

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3 of 4 people found this review helpful

2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-19-14

The King is Dead...

This book is billed as King's triumphant return to the horror novel. This is an exciting statement and makes me think of his awesome work on The Shining, The Stand, Salem's Lot...

Revival is one big character rich/plot poor sigh with echos of what made King a household word to fans of the strange years ago.

Revival is certainly listenable. It gets off to a merry start that grips you. Great characters and truly outstanding narration.

It's when King has to deliver on the things that he's foreshadowed that it all starts to come apart. Sloppy plotting...and an ending not QUITE as dumb as "Cell" (his other blech effort) conspire to suck any real joy out of what this book could have been.

The plot's creaky and the logic -- which oddly enough is a critical ingredient in creating good horror -- is as flawed as any tomato surprise story before it.

It gets two stars for the way it starts. If I were to grade it on the utterly sloppy, tired flat last third of the book? It would get one.

David M.'s narration is outstanding. But ultimately it's a losing effort...because it's tied in to a book that cannot be saved.

I know if you're a hopeful King fan (like me) you're going to ignore this review and pony up the credit and hope for the best. I did. But you've been warned.

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4 of 8 people found this review helpful

2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-09-14

Starts Well...rapidly goes downhill

The opening scenes are riveting. A mysterious woman arrives at an emergency room. Has she killed someone? A sad hearted doctor...secrets. I was starting to look for a few more books by this author.

Then it turns into 50 Shades of Stupid. A flat and uninteresting foray into what the author, no doubt considers a masterwork of erotica -- but in reality is as interesting as listening to grass grow.

There's very little of the paranormal here -- unless you consider endless trite bodice ripping style paranormal.

Yuck. No,,,yuck squared.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-20-13

Starts stong and loses steam...

There's much that's good in this book. The characters are interesting and beautifully drawn. The plot chugs along at a steady pace.

Why didn't I like it more?

I'm not sure. I found that midway through this story that my interest was flagging. With police procedurals I often find this is where my interest is keenest.

The story seems to lose its way a little, buried under flashbacks and subplots that serve to create just enough confusion to make me a little bored. What I'm saying is that the focus doesn't sharpen as the story continues. On the contrary.

There are many better crime novels...but this one isn't BAD. It's just...meh.

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14 of 15 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-20-13

Exactly What You Think It Is...

...this book delivers exactly what you think it will: a street urchin slowly transforms into an assassin under the leadership of the Most Feared Killer Ever.

It's listenable enough. The writing is lively and in many cases beautifully done. The villains are drawn perfectly and the story chugs along with maybe just a touch too much personal agonizing.

This is the first of a series. I found that at the end of the first book, I'd had enough...and don't much care what happens to the hero.

It is, however, a fine book for a road trip where you don't need to concentrate entirely on the story. Not inspired...but remarkably average in every way.

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21 of 29 people found this review helpful