Posted in Adult, Audiobook, Book Review, Horror

The Running Man – audiobook

Review:

The Running Man - Stephen King, Richard Bachman, Kevin Kenerly

Audience: Adult
Format: Audiobook/Owned

She was squinting at the thermometer in the white light coming through the window.
– first sentence

I am a huge Stephen King fan since I was a teenager but it has been a while since I read some of his books. Lately, I started listening to the audio versions of his older books and it is quite fun to revisit them in a different format.

First, I have to say that if you are listening to the audio, and haven’t read the book before, skip the author’s note. It’s not part of the story, and you can listen to it at the end. Otherwise, you will hear a spoiler that reveals the end of the story. 😦

I enjoyed listening to this and am going to watch the movie this weekend just for fun and to see the differences. I do know that Ben Richards (in the book) is not built like Schwarzenegger. Most times, it’s listening to his gut, his brains, or just plain luck that keeps him alive.

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1856102/the-running-man-audiobook

Posted in Adult, Audiobook, Book Review, Crime

Killer by Nature – Audible Original

Review:

Killer by Nature - Jan Smith

Audience: Adult
Format: Audiobook/Owned

This was just okay. I didn’t really like any of the characters and I didn’t even hate the villain enough. The main character is a psychologist who doesn’t seem to notice that her daughter has symptoms of psychopathy. I’m not giving anything away. If you’ve read any books or seen any movies about psychopaths, then you know how it goes: no emotions, no sympathy or empathy, hurting animals, etc. How does her mother not notice?? She’s supposed to be so busy, but even when the principal calls her in to talk about her daughter’s behavior, she still doesn’t see it. I found this part hard to believe.

Then there’s the killer (who is already in jail btw). When the doctor goes to see him, she gives him a test to see if he’s a psychopath. Remember, this is the woman who can’t even see it in her own daughter. The killer occasionally breaks into song – children’s songs to be exact. It’s a little creepy but more annoying than anything.

I listened to the Alien Audible Originals and they are also performances. I liked the format in that case. But for this one, it didn’t really seem to fit. Also, it was broken into episodes which was kind of jarring and involved a lot of music. The first time this happened, I thought the whole thing had started over because it also restates the title and author.

At least it was fairly short.

If I had to sum it up in one sentence:
A watered down version of a Hannibal Lecter story.

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1853605/killer-by-nature-audible-original

Posted in Adult, Audiobook, Book Review, Sci-Fi

The Boy on the Bridge

Review:

The Boy on the Bridge - M.R. Carey

Audience: Adult
Format: Audiobook/Owned

The bucks have all been passed and the arguments thrashed out until they don’t even bleed anymore.
– first sentence

This book is a prequel set in the same world as The Girl With all the Gifts. A group of soldiers and scientists are traveling in the Rosalind Franklin (an armored motor home set up as a mobile research station); their mission is to find data that might lead to a cure for the Hungry plague. In addition to the soldiers and scientists, there’s a teenage boy genius, Stephen who seems to be on the autistic spectrum. He developed the e-blocker that keeps the hungries from smelling humans in both this book and GWATG.

If you haven’t read Girl With all the Gifts, you should definitely read it first. This book isn’t quite as good but I still enjoyed it. The scope of this book is much smaller than GWATG, and we already know some of the information that this team is gradually discovering. But it was interesting to see what happened to leave the Rosalind FrankIin where the team in GWATG will eventually find it. I loved listening to the audio because of the narrator’s British (?) accent which fits in perfectly with the story.

The epilogue was a bit jarring. I don’t want to give anything away, I just didn’t get why Carey would go there with the ending.

Original post:
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Posted in Adult, Audiobook, Book Review, Horror, Sci-Fi

Alien: Cold Forge

Review:

Alien: The Cold Forge - Alex White, Michael Braun

Audience: Adult
Format: Audiobook/Owned

Dorian Sudler knows he shouldn’t smoke.
– first sentence

This is a dark story, but that isn’t different from the other alien stories. It focuses on corporate and human greed and the evil greed creates. Weyland-Yutani had a backup plan if Hadley’s Hope (Aliens) didn’t give them the specimen they craved. They created an isolated scientific research station called The Cold Forge and transported eggs there to be stored for future research. Blue is a scientist who suffers from a debilitating genetic disease but she is also a genetic researcher. Her condition has declined to the point where she is bedridden, but she is able to function by transferring her consciousness into an android body (Marcus). Blue and the other researchers are using chimps to gestate the aliens from the eggs and produce xenomorphs. Dorian is a Weyland-Yutani hatchet man whose job is to find ways to save the company money. He is at the Cold Forge to figure out why the scientists haven’t produced results yet.

Dorian is a despicable character that you will enjoy hating. I spent most of the book hoping he would die, and die painfully. Marcus is an interesting character who manages to generate sympathy despite being an android. I understand Blue’s need to find a cure, but she doesn’t care who or what she hurts to do it. She isn’t exactly likable, and I often questioned her decisions.

The book is well-written and the characters are fully developed though not all are likable. The threat of the aliens is constantly there, but the characters (as usual) don’t see it. The reader, on the other hand, is waiting for them to escape and kill everyone. The book brings up the question of animal suffering for the sake of research, and even questions whether it’s ok to cage the aliens and cause their suffering.

I enjoyed this book and recommend it to fans of the Alien universe.

Original post:
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Posted in Adult, Audiobook, Book Review, Horror, Sci-Fi

Alien series from Audible Originals

Alien: Out of the Shadows - Tim Lebbon Alien: River of Pain - Christopher Golden Alien - Sea of Sorrows - James A. Moore

River of Pain –
I really enjoyed this performance; the story, characters, sound effects, and music all came together perfectly. I felt like I was listening to a movie. The atmosphere is amazingly scary and claustrophobic. And as others have said, the woman who voiced Ripley was perfect. I liked how they created a brand new story that took place between Alien and Aliens (the movies) and I liked the explanation for it. Overall a very entertaining listen that will be fun for any fans of the Alien universe.

Out of the Shadows –
The overall production of this one was great with the same claustrophobic, scary atmosphere as the first. But I didn’t love the story or the characters as much.  Still entertaining, but just not as original or interesting.

Sea of Sorrows –
This was my least favorite of the three. I just didn’t buy the distant descendant of Ripley having a psychic connection to the xenomorphs. I also didn’t like any of the characters. I didn’t connect with any of them and found myself waiting for them to die.

All that being said, I flew through these books. I found myself always wanting to listen to them, even though they are all basically the same formula:
– Humans go where they shouldn’t or mess with things beyond their understanding
– The humans are somehow connected to Weyland-Yutani (which is greedy for money, power, or both, without regard for human life)
– An android works against the humans in service of Weyland-Yutani or in rare cases helps them
– The xenomorphs come and the humans underestimate them
– There is a lone survivor (or maybe a select few)

Anyway, if you are a fan of the Alien movies, these stories are a fun revisit to the universe – and might make you want to watch all the movies again (like I did last weekend).

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1845785/alien-series-from-audible-originals

Posted in Audiobook, DNF

DNF at around 45%

I listened to about 7 hours of this book and I still really can’t get into it. The total length is 15 hours, 27 minutes.

I’m not sure why this isn’t working for me. I have a hard time keeping the characters straight and I’m just well, not interested. I think I’ve given it enough time, at least for now. With so many great reviews, I feel like I must be missing something. Maybe it would be better if I read the physical book, but for now, I’m just done.

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1840300/dnf-at-around-45

Posted in Audiobook, Book Review, Grades 4-6, Realistic Fiction

Amal – audiobook

Review:

Audience: Middle Grade
Format: Audiobook
Library Copy

I watched from the window as the boys tumbled out of the brick schoolhouse across the field from us.
-first sentence

Amal loves school and her dream is to one day go to college and become a teacher. But one day, a chance encounter disrupts her life. She becomes an indentured servant to the family of her village’s corrupt landlord. Amal plans to work until she pays off her family’s debt, but when she finds out the truth, what will she do?

This story takes place in Pakistan and is meant for a middle-grade audience. Amal is a fantastic strong female character; she knows what she wants, she knows what is right, and she isn’t afraid to stand up for what she believes in.

I listened to the audio and the narrator, Priya Ayyar did a wonderful job. I’m counting this for “A” for the HA a-z challenge on Goodreads.

Recommended to grades 4-6.

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1832919/amal-audiobook

Posted in Adult, Audiobook, Book Review, Horror

Cujo – audiobook

Review:

Audience: Adult
Format: Audio
Library Copy

Once upon a time, not so long ago, a monster came to the town of Castle Rock, Maine.
– first sentence

This is a reread for me and I didn’t remember many details. I think I avoided it because of my love of dogs. I listened to the audio; Lorna Raver gives an excellent performance and helped me get lost in the story.

I was surprised by the beginning stuff about the monster (serial killer) Frank Dodd. I found myself wondering what that had to do with the rabid dog. But this story isn’t about a rabid dog. It’s about evil… evil and coincidences. It’s also a look back in time at what was once thought acceptable in a marriage.

As the story progresses, the parts with Cujo are separated by the stories of the Trenton family and the Camber family. Each family is dealing with their own issues, and these ultimately lead to the events which conclude with the showdown of mother and child trapped in a Pinto by Cujo.

It broke my heart to listen to Cujo’s thoughts as the disease progressed and he gradually went mad. But it was easier to read/listen to than it was to watch the movie. All I really remember from the movie is the part with Cujo and the car. I might have to watch it again just for comparison.

So, is an Evil force controlling the events that lead to the heartbreaking conclusion, or is it just coincidence? Does it even matter?

I’m using this for “C” in the Goodreads HA A-Z challenge.

Original post:
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Posted in Adult, Audiobook, Book Review, Horror

Pet Sematary – audiobook

Review:

Audience: Adult
Format: Audiobook
Library Copy

Louis Creed, who had lost his father at three and who had never known a grandfather, never expected to find a father as he entered his middle age, but that was exactly what happened…”
– beginning of first sentence

The first sentence sounds so innocuous, and yet this is the novel that Stephen King himself has called his scariest. Perhaps because it centers on death and how fear of death can compel people to do the unthinkable.

I am currently rereading Stephen King books that I haven’t read in decades. I listened to IT a couple of years ago because I wanted to refresh my memory before I saw the movie. I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to try the audios of more of his books. When I saw that the Pet Sematary movie is being remade, I decided this should be my next listen. I am glad I did. This book was scary and totally immersive – I was obsessed with listening to this. Michael C. Hall gave an amazing performance. I was constantly picturing him as Louis Creed, even while I kept seeing Fred Gwynne (from the original movie) as Jud Crandall.

I highly recommend this to anyone looking for a good scare. 🙂

I’m using this as “P” for the HA a-z challenge on Goodreads.

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1832381/pet-sematary-audiobook

Posted in Audiobook, Dystopian, Young Adult

Catching Fire – Audiobook

Review:

Audience: Young Adult

Format: Audiobook

Library Copy

I clasp the flask between my hands even though the warmth from the tea has long since leached into the frozen air.

– first sentence

I decided to continue my re-read with the audiobook for book two. While I enjoyed listening to the book, I was disappointed with the narrator (Carolyn McCormick). She totally missed the character, and after listening to Tatiana Maslany narrate the special edition of The Hunger Games, it was even worse. McCormick’s narration was irritating and didn’t fit Katniss’s character at all. Her voice is breathy, whiny, overdramatic, and grating. I think she would be good in a different book, like maybe a historical drama.

I knocked off one star for the narration, but I loved the story and would have given it 5 stars.


Original post:

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