With all the fan buzz over witches and vampires from the Twilight movie (and every TV show leaching off the buzz), I was(Listened to Audible Version)
With all the fan buzz over witches and vampires from the Twilight movie (and every TV show leaching off the buzz), I was skeptical entering into this book. But in the end I felt it was not only well written, it is incredibly well researched and crafted for the books that follow.
I think the audiobook version is especially well done - the narration is excellent and it was easy to lose myself in the story as I went about my day....more
This book began for me as a cerebral sci-fi mystery novel and ended as an action flick - which is really my only complaint. Not t(For Audible Version)
This book began for me as a cerebral sci-fi mystery novel and ended as an action flick - which is really my only complaint. Not that doing that sort of switch is a bad thing, but it makes me wonder if the author had that planned from the beginning, because that sort of switch is easier if it's alluded to earlier in the book.
But - I loved the book. I want more. The ending (which also seemed as if it was tailored separately from the whole book) left the door open (no pun intended) for more stories with these characters and I was hoping to start reading the next book right away. Only there isn't one yet at the time of this review, so I'd warn readers to be prepared to wait for the next book too!
The Fold is fun, intelligent and nerdy at the same time. It's easily something I can see turned into a television series that I'd binge watch - definitely check it out!...more
I actually watched the movie prior to the book, so I had a fair expectation of how things were going to turn ou**spoiler alert** (For Audible version)
I actually watched the movie prior to the book, so I had a fair expectation of how things were going to turn out. That being said, this book was still excellent and I was happy to see (or hear) that a few key parts were skipped or changed in the movie. There's a part at the end that was actually funny because I knew how the movie turned out (Watney remarking how the movie would turn out if there was one).
The Martian is a fantastic examination of survival on Mars though - I think Mark Watney is not only an extremely likeable character, he's very believable. In fact, for all the detail and science that is described for how Watney tries to survive being stranded on Mars, I was struck afterward by the thought that Watney's personality was just as key for his survival. Really, no one else could have survived that situation - but rather than feeling like Watney was custom tailored for the situation by the author, I instead honestly believed the narrative and was rooting for Watney to survive.
I know that right now Mars is on the horizon for human exploration, and this book comes at a perfect time to dip into that excitement (and has been made into a movie); but I think this book is excellent regardless.
If you find science fiction to be to much fantasy and not enough science - this is the book for you!...more
I originally came across the Iron Druid Chronicles as an Audible recommendation, and I decided to try them out almost solely because the story took plI originally came across the Iron Druid Chronicles as an Audible recommendation, and I decided to try them out almost solely because the story took place in my home town of Tempe, AZ. Had I known how amazing the series would end up being, I wouldn't have been so nonchalant about diving into these books. They are entertaining, funny, filled with action and suspense and very addicting. Granted, some of the most memorable moments in the books are scenes that take place in parts of Arizona that I drive by, or frequent all the time, but I'd love these books regardless.
Kevin Hearne manages to mix up mythology and present day in a way that outshines any other modern day "mythical creatures are amongst us" story because above all else, he makes it fun. Atticus O’Sullivan is a bad ass with a sense of sarcasm and humor that rivals the best comic book heroes, and the other characters in the book are just as interesting, enjoyable, and fun to read about. By far the best part of the audio version is Oberon the dog, who makes the series worth listening to on his own, but is only part of the amazing performance by Luke Daniels.
The best way I can sell these books to you (and the audio versions specifically) is to compare them to a great television series that you just can't wait to see what happens next. If this was on Netflix I would binge watch it, but luckily it's available in audio format and I can drive or do some work while listening to it.
If your interest is piqued, then start with this book, Hounded, and then try out the rest in order. I strongly suggest the audible versions because you can listen to the prequel, Grimoire of the Lamb (also available on Kindle) when you finish the latest book and want more before Kevin Hearne releases his next book in the series. I hope you enjoy it! ...more
**spoiler alert** It is a solid book, but I think part of what was working against Armada was that Ready Player One was SOOOOOO amazing that I had hig**spoiler alert** It is a solid book, but I think part of what was working against Armada was that Ready Player One was SOOOOOO amazing that I had high hopes for Armada as well. This is definitely a book for Ernest Cline fans should enjoy, but in the end I felt it lacked the unique ride that Cline's first book presented; basically it's a mashup of other stories, and a comparison to Ender's Game will be hard to miss by the time you're done reading it....more
***Note*** - My review is for the Audible edition, which I didn't find so I chose this edition because it links to the narrator, Emily Janice Card. He***Note*** - My review is for the Audible edition, which I didn't find so I chose this edition because it links to the narrator, Emily Janice Card. Her performance is remarkable and perfect for this book. To say this book is smart is an understatement. It's closer to encyclopedic - and I mean that in a very fond way. What Marisha Pessl has written is a book that is so jam packed with literature, historical and science references that I consider it worth a merit badge to know that I "got" most of them. This is also its drawback however, because I don't think the full impact of how this book is written would be appreciated by those who aren't well read or studied. Should you read it regardless? Yes, but be prepared to wonder if you're catching everything.
The written book has illustrations from the main character, Blue van Meer, included in its pages, which is unfortunate to any audiobook listener but not a deal breaker. I found the audiobook to be excellent in its own right, and Emily Janice Card's performance was so in sync with the book that I doubt anyone could bring a better voice to Blue.
The story on it's own is fun, clever, and interesting; yet that is more an achievement than this sentence gives it credit for. I find myself baffled by how "real" Blue van Meer is as a legitimate teenager. Often when I read children that authors write as intelligent, I can't shake the feeling that I'm just reading about adult behavior and reactions that have a teenager mask - this isn't that way at all. Blue van Meer is so convincing as a teenager that I'm stunned by her intelligence and naivety fitting so neatly together.
Overall, this book was a delight to read. It was very enjoyable, and I give it my highest recommendation....more
I should preface this review by stating that while I intended to buy Gary Vaynerchuk's Thank You Economy on audio book, the opportunity came to reviewI should preface this review by stating that while I intended to buy Gary Vaynerchuk's Thank You Economy on audio book, the opportunity came to review this book in exchange for a free copy. Based on what I've learned about, and from, Mr. Vaynerchuk up to now I didn't have to think twice about the opportunity.
I am an example of the fruits of the Thank You Economy; I am the easily overlooked customer, a blogger with a scattering of Facebook friends and Twitter followers who now gets to direct the few attentions I influence to the Thank You Economy and of course Mixergy.com, who bought me this book. This is the Thank You Economy in action, and while I am sure Mr. Vaynerchuk isn't putting a down payment on New York Jets because of my book review, I am glad to contribute the small amount of influence I can muster... which is really the point of all of this. Social media brought you to this review, whether via Twitter, Blogger, Facebook, Goodreads or who knows what else - and the ideas carried along by those mediums have the potential to gain a lot of momentum. This is not a book about using the Internet for marketing however.
What Thank You Economy tries to do is to win a debate that is going on in the boardrooms and meeting places of any business today -- how should we run our business? Where do we focus, and what do we focus on? In much the same way that marketing involves advertising, development, and branding, Vaynerchuk highlights an idea of "culture," which encompasses your employees, your product and your customers as he champions the cause of developing strong relationships both inside and outside of your company.
It is an idea that makes sense, but one that does not immediately affect the bottom line, and that is why Vaynerchuk wrote this book. Certainly Gary Vaynerchuk loves social media (almost) as much as he loves wine -- but do not make the mistake that this book is some sort of guide to using Twitter effectively. Vaynerchuk sees social media as a vehicle for customer interaction; one that speaks more directly to your business than sales figures and market surveys can. He explains the benefit of not only embracing the social media phenomenon, but also understanding it fully. Were the Internet simply another advertising space the Thank You Economy would not be taking the shape it has.
Vaynerchuk knows that the information age has brought about a new breed of customer. Today people are well informed - they research your service and/or product with reviews and their friends often minutes before a purchase. They do not simply flock to lower prices; they find and more importantly stay with the companies and people they like and respect. They migrate to values, not radiated through call-center scripts, but instead demonstrated by truly enthusiastic and genuine employees pushing great product.
I also find the Thank You Economy to be so relevant to the current business culture that I unfortunately knew first hand about some of the points that Vaynerchuk makes. Companies are cutting staff and increasing productivity; and walking amongst the survivors of these actions I hear the talk about how the focus on service is taking a back seat to profit. Companies that looked to cut into employee compensation and resources are unaware that employees who once cared about their job are now more concerned about keeping it than anything else. Those same companies are also losing critical ground in the debates happening behind Facebook messages and Twitter mentions. Rather than fostering cultures of employees who seek to help their employers, they only drive away the employees to companies that do care.
Perhaps the potential of a Thank You Economy revolution in business is far off from today given the battles Vaynerchuk seems to continually fight to get his message across, but to this reader it is a far more exciting and encouraging approach to business than the status quo. The Thank You Economy helps bring a much more honest and authentic method of doing business to light in a clear and straightforward way, and is well worth a read.
Regarding the audio book version: I am fairly confident in saying that the most persuasive and engaging aspect of this book is Mr. Vaynerchuk himself. Where the audio book shines is that Gary Vaynerchuk takes time to break into his reading and updates the listener on things that he knows since he wrote the book last year. Some of those interruptions can be a little bit goofy, like when he mentions with odd reluctance that he almost ate split pea soup the other day, but often he interjects some additional thoughts and commentary that really fleshes out his thoughts in the book. Really the best way to sum up the audio book version is to say that it is the second edition of the Thank You Economy; but that should not dissuade you from enjoying either version. ...more