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B. Rawlings

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Better than I expected, but not perfect.

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

Reviewed: 02-10-2020

Firstly, the narrator does an amazing job. I didn't realise until toward the end of the book just how much I had enjoyed her work, likely because of how seamless and easy she had made it. Her range of voices were broad enough that characters didn't become confusing, but never sounded exaggerated or forced. The story itself was quite enjoyable, but don't go into it expecting a wild post-apocalyptic action story. There's hardly any action and what action exists is somewhat brief and rushed. This, however, doesn't necessarily feel like a negative though. This story offers a much more realistic take on how a virus-based "post-apocalyptic" world would be structured and how real people would likely act, which I found quite refreshing. It could be a little slow at times, particularly in the first half, but never got boring for me. A few qualms I had. The "fight" scenes felt lame, way too fast, and relied on luck more than anything else, which felt like a bit of a cop out, the final one in particular. And the main character used the term 'shattered' numerous times to describe being physically exhausted and tired, which must be a British term. To the rest of the English speaking world, that word means to be heartbroken or disenchanted. And the term was used repetitively throughout an hour block. It felt like a variety of other adjectives would have easily suffice.

Not bad, but not amazing...

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

Reviewed: 26-09-2020

This story is told from the perspective of 5 different characters, although all in the third person. They are the mother, father and sister of a former victim of a serial killer who is currently considered "missing", the current kidnap victim of the killer, and a government agent trying to track the killer down and solve the case. The daughter is both likable and well narrated, and was easily my favourite perspective to listen to. The mother was also narrated well, but wasn't too likable. The father and detective were both pretty average all around, and the young female victim had an interesting perspective, but was annoying to listen to. The start of the book was a little droll and was hard to get into, but it did improve. Yet it never reached a level of shocking amazement that you always hope a book like this will. There was a twist, which you likely won't see coming until just before the big reveal, but it still didn't make me fall in love with the story. I'd give it a 7/10.

This better not be the last one!

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

Reviewed: 09-09-2020

I could sit hear and list all the pros of listening to this book, but that would take me hours. the cons list is much simpler: the book ends. I don't know how, after 7 titles in this series now, the stories never get tired or boring, the characters never grow irritating or mundane, and the books even manage to get longer. I'm hoping there's still more to come. I don't want this series to be over yet.

Not Ready Player One, but still enjoyable!

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

Reviewed: 14-07-2020

Wil Wheaton once again proves himself to be one of the best narrators out there with his flawless performance. The story, however, didn't quite live up to my hopes for what it could be. Obviously, as many others before me likely did, I discovered Armada with high expectations that it might be an almost equal "younger brother" to the practically perfect Ready Player One, which is not just one of the best of its genre, but one of my favourite books of all time. What I found was a story that tried its hardest to match its predecessor, but couldn't quite reach it. That's not to say it wasn't enjoyable though. It's still a decent book in its own right. It just had really big shoes to fill. It's still chock-full of 80s and 90s pop culture references, although this time around many of them felt forced, and still has the same formula of a slow build story with many characters and a lead with parental issues. However, many of the characters beside the main few aren't particularly explored well and the relationships felt rushed and their development brushed over. The story ends with a potential sequel opening, so hopefully there could be a follow up in the future.

It keeps getting better and better. Addictive!

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

Reviewed: 18-06-2020

This series has definitely "found its feet". With less stat dumps and more storyline and character development, it's become a highly addictive, humorous tale perfect for anyone who enjoys MMOs or just video games and fantasy in general really. The characters and dialogue are always on point and the narrator is hands down one of the best I have ever heard. He is cast perfectly for this series and makes every character come alive. Hanging out for book 4 now. Thankfully this author is just pumping out new titles like it's nobody's business!

Was hoping for a bit more...

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

Reviewed: 04-06-2020

Okay beginning, great middle, okay ending. Too many little things let this story down. The spoke word lyrics to songs were cringey, almost every character had two word names, the action peaks during the Hunger Games, then the tension eases off and the final four or so hours are slower paced. And the ending, although morbidly sad as intended, too many details were left unknown. Would have liked just a bit more of a climax and resolution. But still enjoyed it.

A hard to get through first half, but good second.

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

Reviewed: 23-05-2020

The first 6 hours of this book were a bit of a struggle. The main character isn't the brightest person and never stands up for herself, partly due to being a battered wife, and partly because she's supposedly prone to paranoia. The husband is a controlling, violent misogynist who plays the fitting bad guy. Many of the ensuing actions and conversations felt somewhat unrealistic at time, if not purely for the fact that there's often a way out that is never taken. The wife continues to fight for things she doesn't want, but there is a sense of realism there behind it all too. However, the "party scene" was where it all started to get exciting and everything slowly unfolds. It's pretty addictive from that point until the end. The only downside was that the ending wasn't a huge twist (I saw it coming) and there's a whole unresolved relationship between two characters involving a massive betrayal that's never addressed. Left me wanting a bit more to wrap it all up. Thankfully, the narrator was perfect and did an amazing job, which probably stopped me turning it off in the first half.

It's Jurassic Park. of course 5 stars!

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

Reviewed: 17-05-2020

Having seen the movie many times, I thought I'd check out where the story came from. Wow, this is quite different! And a lot of it in a good way too! Definitely worth the listen if you want a more in depth take on the story.

How can you not give an Allen Eskens book 5 stars?

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

Reviewed: 05-05-2020

After such a big build up, I did find the final climax a little anticlimactic, like it didn't go far enough or for long enough, and some of the big reveals were done in hindsight, like finding out information from the police after the fact, though I suppose the latter plays into it being a story of how Boady goes through his adolescence being naive of most of the things around him. Other than this, I can't fault this story or the audiobook in any way at all. It was all perfect and thoroughly enjoyable!

Loved it. Sci fi mixed with coming of age.

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

Reviewed: 28-04-2020

The narrator was the perfect choice for this story, and the story was long, like it had numerous stages that were all standalone short stories joined together, but were just the many stages of the main character's life. I loved all of it, especially the part about his upbringing and all the bad things that happened throughout his childhood. The ending, however, was not quite how I would have liked it and didn't match the rest of the story in my opinion. It felt unrewarding and a bit clinical and detached. But I still thoroughly enjoyed the book.