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Troy

Troy DALLAS, TX, United States Member Since 2012

I grew up on Golden Age Radio, and while I love to read, I typically consume more books via audio thanks to a job that lets me listen while I work. As an aspiring writer, I try to read a great deal of non-fiction in addition to a variety of fictional genres. I especially love history, historical fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and old-style gothic horror.

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  • "A Public Service for Beginners"

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    I write that title with a caveat, which I'll explain. This book is geared to the idea that perhaps you know just a little about the world of opera and feel like maybe you're ready to be dangerous and don't know where to start. Mr. Plotkin offers his credentials as to why he's the right man to be your guide to this strange world, which are impressive, and then he leads you through the basics just as he says he will. He's one part tour guide, one part college professor, and he clearly loves opera. And he hopes you will too.

    The history of opera is offered at Wikipedia speed, broken down for you in sections so you can see how it evolved into what it's become today. He'll even give you pointers on how to attend a performance and get the most out of it, which that alone is invaluable information. Where it gets dicey is that sometimes he forgets he's talking to a beginner when it comes to the actual operas, but he does bring it back down to beginner level sooner or later. A lot of the times, though, you will be expected to rise to the next level up without warning, and where this subject is concerned, that's not a bad thing if you're truly interested. He covers a handful of operas within this tome and explains why he picked them. His insights are well worth it for anyone who wants to dig deep. The thing is, and he'll tell you this up front, he's working from very specific recordings of these works that you will have to hunt down on your own, either in a library or online. Some of his explanation is specific to those recordings. Don't let that disuade you. If you can't find that recording, try another and compare it to what you learn in this book. The point of this entire thing is to help you make the leap from novice to enthusiast with confidence enough to discover more, and where you go from there is up to you. I've heard it said that for some beginners, it's many years - if ever - before they go from hearing an aria or two to listening to an entire opera with anything close to understanding. This book connects the dots if you're willing to meet the author halfway.

    More

    Opera 101: A Complete Guide to Learning and Loving Opera

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs)
    • By Fred Plotkin
    • Narrated By Fred Plotkin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (41)
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    (11)
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    Opera is the fastest growing of all the performing arts, attracting audiences of all ages who are enthralled by the gorgeous music, vivid drama, and magnificent production values. If you've decided that the time has finally come to learn about opera and discover for yourself what it is about opera that sends your normally reserved friends into states of ecstatic abandon, this is the book for you.

    Vilas Boas says: "unmissable introduction to the world of operas!"
  • "The Title Says It All"

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    Maybe I'm biased. Like so many others like me, Christopher Reeve has been a role model for me since Superman first hit the big screen. As I grew up, I got to learn about the man behind the Man of Steel, and his "can do" attitude continued to inspire. Between the accident that left him paralyzed and his death years later, Reeve's inner strength proved the title of this book to be true. Nothing is impossible.

    So many years later, it's still heart-wrenching to hear him speak about his experiences in his own words, so it's no surprise this book packs quite the punch. At the same time, this is one of those stories that only he could tell with all of the humanity and personal conviction he could bring to bear. There's nothing sugar-coated here; the tragedy and the optimism are both as genuine as the man himself. This audiobook is written and presented in such a way that he's speaking directly to you.

    Before the end of his life, Reeve was able to walk again, with assistance, and only a few steps at a time. But it did happen. The force of will to do that is unquestioningly great, and it's something few of us can fathom. This book helps to fill in the picture a bit, and to show that this level of commitment to an idea is not only human, it's within us all. Whatever the situation, whatever the misfortune, we are gifted with untold reserves that help us to adapt and to (as Reeve himself has said) "go forward." This is the legacy of Christopher Reeve. It's a message all of us deserve to hear.

    More

    Nothing Is Impossible: Reflections on a New Life

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Christopher Reeve
    • Narrated By Christopher Reeve
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
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    Performance
    (7)
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    Christopher Reeve has mastered the art of turning the impossible into the inevitable. In Nothing Is Impossible, Reeve shows that we are all capable of overcoming seemingly insurmountable hardships. Published on the eve of both his fiftieth birthday and the seventh anniversary of his spinal cord injury, Nothing Is Impossible reminds us that life is not to be taken for granted but to be lived fully with zeal, curiosity, and gratitude.

    Amazon Customer says: "Book not about"
  • "A Specialized Biography"

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    The author states up front that rather than be the kind of detailed biography you can find anywhere else, this is specifically a look at Elizabeth Taylor's rise to stardom. I think that's a bit disingenuous, as much like any other famous Elizabeth in history, it's impossible to separate the lofty career from the personal life of the woman herself. One defines the other.

    Everything that made Taylor who she was is put under the spotlight for this. Her parents and upbringing within the studio system are detailed, which helps to put her career as an independent actress into proper perspective. Her husbands, friends, colleagues, and even her detractors are all set into her orbit, their worlds revolving around her star. There are a great many quotes, anecdotes, and news clippings within that help round out the basic facts, but at the end of the day, Taylor's star power outshines everything, including the author's attempts to be unbiased. There are some private conversations that are seemingly quoted verbatim, which don't seem to have any supporting documentation, but they are believable and add to the already heightened personality of this story. How much is true? Where a Hollywood legend is concerned, who's to say? There's a great line in the Jimmy Stewart film "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence" that pretty much sums up the nature of this book:

    "When the legend becomes fact, print the legend."

    That's not to say there aren't facts here. If anything, Taylor's life sometimes proves that fact is stranger than fiction, such is the nature of living at her level of prestige. Regardless, if you're interested in the glamour of Hollywood, bigger than life personalities, or just really fascinating stories from a world beyond the everyday 9 to 5, this one's a fun read.

    More

    How to Be a Movie Star: Elizabeth Taylor in Hollywood

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By William J. Mann
    • Narrated By Mark Boyett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
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    (20)
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    Acclaimed biographer William Mann follows Elizabeth Taylor publicly as she makes her ascent at MGM, falls into (and out of) marriages, wins Oscars, fights studio feuds, and combats America's conservative values with her decidedly modern love affairs. But he also shines a light on Elizabeth's rich private life, revealing a love for her craft and a loyalty to the underdog that fueled her lifelong battle against the studio system.

    Troy says: "A Specialized Biography"
  1. Opera 101: A Complete Gui...
  2. Nothing Is Impossible: Re...
  3. How to Be a Movie Star: E...
  4. .

A Peek at karyn's Bookshelf

Helpful
Votes
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richmond, VA, United States 38 REVIEWS / 67 ratings 27 Followers / Following 5
 
karyn's greatest hits:
  • Kicking and Dreaming: A Story of Heart, Soul, and Rock and Roll

    "Really Pleasant and Interesting Listen"

    Overall
    Performance
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    Although not a big fan of Heart, I really enjoyed listening to the sisters tell in their own voices about their experiences in starting the band and playing through the years. I found this to be a really solid listen.

  • I'm with the Band: Confessions of a Groupie

    "Un-listenable...."

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really, really loved this book when it came out. A wild sordid story of one girl living an unconventional life in the 60's when California rock was being born. I read and re- read it and was SO excited to revisit it on audible. Miss Pamela ruins her own story by not out sourcing the reading to someone else. Her over dramatic and breathless reading, not to mention the need she feels to sing off key bits and pieces of songs allowed me to stomach about 40 min of this recording. I kept hoping and praying she would return to a normal voice once she got past her adolescence to no avail. It's really disappointing that the person that produced this didn't reign her in so that her amazing story could be told in a less distracting way. If you really want to experience this book, buy it and read it.

  • I Don't Know What You Know Me From: Confessions of a Co-Star

    "Yay!!! Another Audible Favorite!"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book was on par with my absolute, hands down favorite "BossyPants". Judy Greer's stories are touching, funny, interesting and well narrated. As another small town Michigan girl, her early essays on growing up outside Detroit during the "John Hughes" era made me feel like we were besties exchanging memories. Love this book!!!

  • My Extraordinary Ordinary Life

    "A Great Listen! Sissy Spacek is Just Cool!"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    From her laid back delivery of the narrative to the story. This book is chockful of charming stories told in her distinctive voice that keeps you listening. There isn't one negative thing I could say about this one. I highly recommend it!

Amazon Customer

Amazon Customer Utah 10-11-13 Member Since 2009

tired teacher

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  • "Who Knew Danza Could Teach?"

    17 of 17 helpful votes

    Being a public school teacher myself, I probably enjoyed this book more than many people may. I only wish I had the resources that Mr. Danza could call on. It would be heavenly to be able to conceive an idea and actually be able to pull it off financially. But even though he had those resources, he was still a first year teacher, facing the challenges that we all face, dealing with the discipline problems we all deal with, wondering how on earth he could impact a kid's life for the better, as we all do, grading papers nights and weekends, taking them with us to family gatherings, parties, or even the movies. But with it all, it is still the most rewarding of professions. Having a student come back and tell you, "You were my favorite teacher" makes it all worth it. I think this is something that Tony Danza learned.

    More

    I'd Like to Apologize to Every Teacher I Ever Had: My Year as a Rookie Teacher at Northeast High

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Tony Danza
    • Narrated By Tony Danza
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
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    (505)
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    (455)
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    Long before he starred on some of television’s most beloved and long-running series such as Taxi and Who’s the Boss? and went on to distinguish himself in a variety of film and stage roles, Tony Danza was a walking contradiction: an indifferent student who dreamed of being a teacher. Inspiring a classroom of students was an aspiration he put aside for decades until one day it seemed that the most meaningful thing he could do was give his dream a shot. What followed was a year spent teaching 10th-grade English at Northeast High - Philadelphia’s largest high school with 3,600 students....

    Cheryl R Rowe says: "I may be a little biased, but ...."

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    Even from the perspective of time, it is nearly impossible to grasp the full contribution made to music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in his brief and glorious life. He composed his first symphony at the age of 8 and reached full artistic maturity by the time he was only 20. And when he died at the age of 35, he left a legacy of more than 600 works of brilliance - symphonies, chamber music, operas, and more - most composed during an incredibly productive 20-year period.

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    Na ljubov' glavnoj geroini pretendujut dvoe: bogatyj i porochnyj gospodin Avlej, u kotorogo rabotaet ee brat, i molodoj kovboj i zolotoiskatel' Dzhim. Roz-Mari otvechaet vzaimnost'ju Dzhimu, no ego obvinjajut v ubijstve. Chtoby spasti ljubimogo, devushka soglashaetsja na brak s Avleem. Kovboi, indejcy, zlodei, intrigi, ubijstvo, ljubov', vernost', chest' i spravedlivost', a takzhe more krasivoj muzyki.

  • The Gypsy Virtuoso [Russian Edition] (






UNABRIDGED) by Imre Kalman Narrated by G. Ots, E. Kritskaya, A. Oleynikov

    The Gypsy Virtuoso [Russian Edition]

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 59 mins)
    • By Imre Kalman
    • Narrated By G. Ots, E. Kritskaya, A. Oleynikov
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    Dom Pali Racha, izvestnogo skripacha i rukovoditelja cyganskogo orkestra. Kogda podnimaetsja zanaves, Pali sozhaleet ob ushedshej molodosti, v to vremja kak ego starshaja doch' Sari nakryvaet stol dlja bol'shoj sem'i (u Pali 16 detej). Pali zabotit sud'ba syna Lachi, tozhe skripacha, predpochitajushhego odnako cyganskim melodijam «ser'eznuju» muzyku. Pali opasaetsja, chto synu dlja uspeha nedostaet talanta.

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  • Thomas Steinbeck, Son of Famed Writer John Steinbeck: An Interview About His Life, His Novels, His Father  by Patricia L. Lawrence Narrated by J. D. Streeter

    Thomas Steinbeck, Son of Famed Writer John Steinbeck: An Interview About His Life, His Novels, His Father

    • ORIGINAL (28 mins)
    • By Patricia L. Lawrence
    • Narrated By J. D. Streeter
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    Thomas Steinbeck, son of famed writer and Pulitzer Prize recipient John Steinbeck, sits down with Patricia Lawrence for a casual conversation about his life; his published short stories, Down to a Soundless Sea; fictional accounts of life around Monterey Bay California...and his father!

  • The Hustons (






UNABRIDGED) by Lawrence Grobel Narrated by David Drummond

    The Hustons

    • UNABRIDGED (37 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Lawrence Grobel
    • Narrated By David Drummond
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
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    When John Huston died at 81 on August 28, 1987, America lost a towering figure in movie history. The director of such classic films as The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, The African Queen, The Maltese Falcon, Prizzi's Honor, and The Dead, John Huston evoked passionate responses from everyone he encountered. He was at the center of a dynasty, with three generations of Oscar winners (Walter, John and Anjelica).

  • Ghost Light: An Introductory Handbook for Dramaturgy, Theater in the Americas (






UNABRIDGED) by Michael Mark Chemers Narrated by Brian E. Smith

    Ghost Light: An Introductory Handbook for Dramaturgy, Theater in the Americas

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Michael Mark Chemers
    • Narrated By Brian E. Smith
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    Ghost Light: An Introductory Handbook for Dramaturgy offers useful and entertaining answers to the confounding question: "What, exactly, is dramaturgy, and what does a dramaturg do?" According to Michael Mark Chemers, dramaturgs are the scientists of the theater world - their primary responsibility is to query the creative possibilities in every step of the production process, from play selection to costume design, and then research the various options and find ways to transform that knowledge into useful ideas.

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