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Die Falknerin

Die Falknerin Member Since 2008

Painter, musician, bibliophile...

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  • "Der Ring des Nibelung"

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    In this brief introduction Johnson takes us from the opening e-flat of the Das Rheingold to the consuming flames of Götterdämmerung. Discussions of staging, orchestration, plot development, mythic elements and more are interspersed with musical excerpts.

    Wagner designed the tetralogy to begin with the Vorabend, (a "preliminary evening") in which Das Rheingold is perfomed, followed by the succession of the operas Die Walküre, Siegfried, and Götterdämmerung. Johnson makes an admirable presentation of each part of the cycle without excessive digression.

    Of course, countless volumes have been devoted to the discussion of meaning, leitmotif, scoring, and all things Wagnerian, should one want to look deeper. But for a brief discussion of Ring essentials, look no further.

    These operas share a somewhat daunting reputation. Even opera fans have been known to quaver before Valhalla! But don't be one of them. Listen to this book, then jump right in. Some of the most beautiful music ever written awaits you.

    More

    Ring of the Nibelung: Opera Explained

    • ORIGINAL (2 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Stephen Johnson
    • Narrated By Stephen Johnson
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    Wagner’s Ring cycle is the most ambitious work in the history of music: four operas that combine to tell a single epic story. Based in legend, it has become a legend in its own right: a supreme challenge for conductors, singers, opera producers, and indeed for audiences. But for all its grandeur and complexity, The Ring is far more accessible than many music lovers think.

    Die Falknerin says: "Der Ring des Nibelung"
  • "Revenge of the bat"

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    Why is this opera called "The Bat?" In a nutshell, two gentlemen, Eisenstein and Falke, in the costumes of a butterfly and a bat, respectively, attend a winter masquerade. On the way back, Eisenstein, taking advantage of Falke's inebriated state, abandons him far from his home. When he wakes up, he has to walk through the town in his bat costume, to his undying embarrassment and the amusement of his fellow citizens. Naturally, he wants to get his own back, and it is for this reason the opera is called, "The Bat."

    From this simple premise, the plot becomes "maddeningly complex," as the author rightly says. There are "multilayered and omnipresent infidelities," disguises, deceptions, drinking, dancing, and entirely too much carrying on. An opera featuring "Adele's Laughing Song" should be fun!

    As with so many things that seem effortless, back-breaking work goes before. While Johann Strauss II hadn't much experience writing for the theatre before he composed this, you'd never know it. He has more than a few operatic tricks up his sleeve, including the masterful use of crescendo and accelerando. The author brings attention to Strauss' use of rubato, which he refers to as "stealing time to avoid schmaltz." Some of the roles require nothing less than a virtuoso performer. But the result is accessible, light-hearted, and fun.

    A bottle of champagne to David Timson for his narration, and to you should you tackle "Die Fledermaus" during this, its rightful season!

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    Die Fledermaus: Opera Explained

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 19 mins)
    • By Thomson Smillie
    • Narrated By David Timson
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Die Fledermaus is one of the few operatic works to which the phrase "never a dull moment" can be truthfully applied. From the explosive opening of the famous overture - reminiscent of a volley of champagne corks - through the surging energy of the "Fledermaus Waltz" and the many comic numbers, of which the accelerando trio is the finest, up to such huge concerted numbers as the "Duidu" finale to Act II, this is an operetta which almost incarnates nostalgia. Thomson Smillie and David Timson infuse their exploration of Die Fledermaus with as much life as the operetta itself.

    Die Falknerin says: "Revenge of the bat"
  • "Passion, power, and truth"

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    If you had crossed Bizet's path in 1875, the year "Carmen" was first staged, you would have met with a plump, bespectacled Frenchman who was forever nibbling sweet delicacies. But while you might overlook this unassuming person, you could not have ignored his music.

    From early childhood, Bizet possessed prodigious talent. In the Conservatoire at nine, and winning every prize going, he worked his magic on a variety of instruments. At the age of 19, he won the Prix de Rome. With innate musical taste, judgment, and imagination, he stands above his contemporaries.

    As this program points out, Bizet was no "one trick pony." He'd written most of his work before anyone had heard of "Carmen," and some of this sadly neglected work deserves rediscovery and appreciation, such as his opera "The Pearl Fishers."

    Harold Schonberg wrote, "Carmen is an opera of passion, power, and truth, infinitely superior to the carefully arranged, prettily served canapés of Gounod and Massenet. They were skilled professionals. Bizet was a genius."

    Tchaikovsky and Brahms were fans of "Carmen," too. Wagner, having heard it, said of Bizet, "At last, for a change, someone with ideas in his head!"

    All this makes it the more stunning that this perennial favorite did not meet with immediate success. "Carmen" was called "immoral," and accused of being (even worse) "Wagnerian."

    In this excellent program, David Timson brings the spectacle of "Carmen" vividly to life, with reference to many important excerpts, the fast and furious scene changes demanded by the complex action, and so much more.

    If you're fortunate enough to be going to see the opera or just want to understand it better while you listen at home, you can't go wrong with this exploration of "Carmen essentials."

    This was the first opera I heard (at the age of nine) and it left me forever in love with opera itself. My French wasn't under firm control, and I couldn't really understand everything that was happening, but that music! I have never forgotten it. Such is the power of Bizet.

    More

    Carmen: Opera Explained

    • ORIGINAL (1 hr and 6 mins)
    • By Thomson Smillie
    • Narrated By David Timson
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    Carmen is among the most popular operas for all the obvious reasons: great characters, a gripping story, and fabulous music. But what sets it on a pinnacle is an amazing combination of three factors: a sizzling Gipsy heroine (one of the most psychologically complex and compelling characters in all theatre), great atmosphere (Spain, hot sun, the bull-ring), and the prodigality of melodic invention - one great tune after another, at least a dozen of which are the staples of Madison Avenue and the animated cartoon.

    Die Falknerin says: "Passion, power, and truth"
  1. Ring of the Nibelung: Ope...
  2. Die Fledermaus: Opera Exp...
  3. Carmen: Opera Explained
  4. .

A Peek at Elle in the Great NorthWest's Bookshelf

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Beaverton, OR, United States 210 REVIEWS / 216 ratings 219 Followers / Following 37
 
Elle in the Great NorthWest's greatest hits:
  • 528hz Solfeggio Meditation: Transform Your Life, Repair DNA and Create Miracles

    "Guided meditation/helpful for sleepless nites"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've been suffering from insomnia for the past few months, tried taking medication but hated the side effects.

    I've done group guided meditations before but never bought a recording of one so this is my first experience..I found it VERY helpful.

    Now I don't know if this will heal my 70 year old DNA or create any miracles but it DID help me fall asleep and when I awoke in the middle of the night-a frequent experience for me-I simply started it again on my iPad and fell back asleep.

    The speakers voice is very British but this West Coast American found it soothing. The background music was smooth and non invasive.

    I might buy the rest of the series just to have something different to help me sleep.

    I recommend it for those who have difficulty going to or staying asleep.

Amazon Customer

Amazon Customer Mooresville, NC, United States 09-18-12
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  • "Great with the album, decent YA nov..."

    9 of 9 helpful votes

    I need to start by saying that I've been a Rush fan since the late 70's. I love their music, and the Clockwork Angels album is one of their best ever. It's the reason I bought this book, but I'm reviewing it as a stand-alone work rather than as part of the larger production.

    Clockwork Angels is a traditional coming-of-age story set in a fantasy universe that incorporates elements of steampunk and alchemy. As the authors note in the afterword, many influences were drawn from classical stories and pulled together to create an adventure that will seem very familiar to anybody who has completed an English Lit class or two. In short: boy is raised in humble beginnings but craves adventure, runs away to the big city, has life-affirming adventures and finds that he can never return to the pedestrian life where he started.

    As a 40-something adult, I was ultimately left wanting more sophistication from this story. The characters generally lacked the depth I wanted and played to fairly well-established archetypes. Many of the plot turns went unresolved in favor of moving on to the next stage of the book, and I felt they could have been explored further to add a bit more weight to the world building. There were some pretty significant events portrayed in this story that would have had a huge influence on the way the world worked, but we never heard more about them. Too bad.

    As a Rush fan, I noticed lots of references to song titles and lyrics throughout the book. I agree that people unfamiliar with their music probably won't notice anything's up, and it's kind of fun to discover the easter eggs. But some of the references felt a bit forced or contrived. It was obvious in several cases that the phrase used was not really the best choice, but was tweaked to include a hidden bit of lyric.

    Neil Peart's narration was pretty good, and it was easy to be pulled in to the story - always a plus for an audiobook, and not a guaranteed experience. Definitely very solid.

    Ultimately, I would recommend this book to a younger audience. I think 10-15 is probably about the best age for a book like this, and would have enjoyed it a lot more as my 12-year-old self. As an adult, I liked it but was ultimately left feeling like I had listened to an abridged version with much of the detail omitted.

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    Clockwork Angels: The Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Kevin J. Anderson
    • Narrated By Neil Peart
    Overall
    (125)
    Performance
    (115)
    Story
    (115)

    For more than two centuries, the land of Albion has been ruled by the supposedly benevolent Watchmaker, who imposes precision on every aspect of life. Young Owen Hardy from the village of Barrel Arbor dreams of seeing the big city and the breathtaking Clockwork Angels that dispense wisdom to the people, maybe even catching a glimpse of the Watchmaker himself. He watches the steamliners drift by, powered by alchemical energy, as they head toward Crown City....

    Amazon Customer says: "Great with the album, decent YA novel alone"

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    • By The Great Courses
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    Rodgers and Hart. George and Ira Gershwin. Cole Porter. Lerner and Loewe. For most people who've grown up with and shared America's musical heritage, great songs open the floodgates to memories and feelings. Perhaps nowhere is this more profound than in the world of Broadway musicals, with their iconic melodies and memorable lyrics.Revisit the standards, originally written for the stage, that have both delighted and helped mend the broken hearts of Americans for decades.

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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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    Ludwig van Beethoven is justifiably acclaimed as one of the most revered composers in the history of Western music-a genius once characterized as a "Titan, wrestling with the gods." There is no better way for you to understand the full impact of that description than to not only listen to all nine of his magnificent symphonies, but to do so with a full understanding of what this great composer was saying and the circumstances that drove him up to and beyond what had once been considered the limits of musical expression.

    Nezar says: "A Great Course with a Great Caveat"
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    The Concerto  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg

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    • By The Great Courses
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    The concerto offers a kind of unique excitement no other instrumental music can match. Where a symphony enthralls us with its thematic variations and development, a concerto gives us human drama-the exhilaration of a soloist or group of soloists ringing forth against the mass of the orchestra.In 24 musically rich lectures, Professor Greenberg provides a guided tour of the concerto, from its conception as a child of Renaissance ideals, through its maturation in the Classical age, its metamorphosis in the Romantic era, and its radical transformation in the 20th century and beyond.

    Victoria says: "Better than "How to Listen to...Great Music!""
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    Great Masters: Haydn - His Life and Music  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg

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    Almost from the moment it was first set to paper, the music of Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) - technically superb, rich in quality, and widely imitated - has exemplified the Classical style, creating not only the Classical-era symphony but setting the standard, through his own 68 string quartets, against which that form has ever after been judged. And yet Haydn, despite the influence left by more than 1000 works, seems to no longer get his due, Now, in a series of eight vivid lectures, you can learn to understand and appreciate the music of one of the most original and influential composers of all time.

    Russell Bernard says: "Wonderful & Inspiring"
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    In this musically rich 24-lecture series, Professor Greenberg guides you in a deep encounter with these majestic works of art, offering you the rare opportunity to grasp the musical riches and spiritual greatness of the quartets in a clear and accessible way. Each of these lectures is a rare and life-enriching opportunity to know the scope of Beethoven's genius, his most unforgettable music, and the profound humanity and beauty that live through them.

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    The Chamber Music of Mozart  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg

    The Chamber Music of Mozart

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    • By The Great Courses
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    Nowhere is Mozart's maturity and mastery more apparent than in the chamber music he wrote during the last 10 years of his life. These 16 lectures take you deep inside the structure of Mozart's chamber masterworks to reveal his hand at work. This is an amazing opportunity to hear, study, and enjoy a selection of immortal musical compositions that Professor Greenberg calls "a blessing of inconceivable richness". You will learn the basic "language" that all 18th-century composers used to write Classical music. You'll also explore the subtleties of Mozart's technique as a composer: his ability to make art "artless".

    Dr. Frank A. Salamone Sr. says: "Greenberg and Mozart a match made in heaven"
  • How to Listen to and Understand Great Music, 3rd Edition  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg

    How to Listen to and Understand Great Music, 3rd Edition

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    Great music is a language unto its own, a means of communication of unmatched beauty and genius. And it has an undeniable power to move us in ways that enrich our lives-provided it is understood.If you have ever longed to appreciate great concert music, to learn its glorious language and share in its sublime pleasures, the way is now open to you, through this series of 48 wonderful lectures designed to make music accessible to everyone who yearns to know it, regardless of prior training or knowledge.

    Lee the reader says: "Wonderful, I've wanted this for so long...but..."
  • The 30 Greatest Orchestral Works  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg

    The 30 Greatest Orchestral Works

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    Over the centuries, orchestral music has given us a category of works that stand apart as transcendent expressions of the human spirit. What are these "greatest of the greats"? Find out in these 32 richly detailed lectures that take you on a sumptuous grand tour of the symphonic pieces that continue to live at the center of our musical culture.These 30 masterworks form an essential foundation for any music collection and a focal point for understanding the orchestral medium and deepening your insight into the communicative power of music.

    Jacob says: "Really happy with the format"
  • Wild Tales: A Rock & Roll Life (






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    From Graham Nash - the legendary musician and founding member of the iconic bands Crosby, Stills & Nash and The Hollies - comes a candid and riveting autobiography that belongs on the reading list of every classic rock fan.

    James says: "A Great Story for fans of the Hollies and CSN!"
  • 528hz Solfeggio Meditation: Transform Your Life, Repair DNA and Create Miracles  by Glenn Harrold, Ali Calderwood (music) Narrated by Glenn Harrold

    528hz Solfeggio Meditation: Transform Your Life, Repair DNA and Create Miracles

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    This is one of a series of six meditation recordings by Glenn Harrold and Ali Calderwood, which are based upon the ancient Solfeggio musical scale. Each note in this scale has specific healing properties, and this recording uses the third note, which resonates to a frequency of 528hz. This frequency works to heal broken DNA, healing on all levels - emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical - bringing relief from anxiety, fatigue, and control issues. It helps to release negative thinking.

    Elle in the Great NorthWest says: "Guided meditation/helpful for sleepless nites"
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    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Craig Marks, Rob Tannenbaum
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    It was a pretty radical idea - a channel for teenagers, showing nothing but music videos. It was such a radical idea that almost no one thought it would actually succeed, much less become a force in the worlds of music, television, film, fashion, sports, and even politics. But it did work. MTV became more than anyone had ever imagined. I Want My MTV tells the story of the first decade of MTV, the golden era when MTV's programming was all videos, all the time, and kids watched religiously to see their favorite bands, learn about new music, and have something to talk about at parties.

    David says: "The Most Entertaining Book of the Year"
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    Have you ever wondered how off-key you are while singing in the shower? Or if your Bob Dylan albums really sound better on vinyl? Or why certain songs make you cry? Now, scientist and musician John Powell invites you on an entertaining journey through the world of music. Discover what distinguishes music from plain old noise, how scales help you memorize songs, what the humble recorder teaches you about timbre (assuming your suffering listeners don’t break it first), and more.

    C. Beaton says: "Great book - wrong narrator"
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    • By Pete Townshend
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    Melinda says: "Glad To Meet You"
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    Rod: The Autobiography

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    Ninotchka says: "If you think he's sexy - or not - give it a go!"
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    david says: "The complete life of heavy metal's true father"
  • Great Masters: Mozart - His Life and Music  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg

    Great Masters: Mozart - His Life and Music

    • ORIGINAL (6 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Robert Greenberg
    Overall
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    Performance
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    Story
    (30)

    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.

    Amazon Customer says: "More Great Listening!"
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UNABRIDGED) by Sammy Hagar Narrated by Scott Shepherd

    Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock

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    • By Sammy Hagar
    • Narrated By Scott Shepherd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
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    Loud rock, fast cars, and Cabo. This is the life of Sammy Hagar. For almost 40 years, Sammy Hagar has been a fixture in rock music. From breaking into the industry with the band Montrose to his multiplatinum solo career to his ride as the front man of Van Halen, Sammy's powerful and unforgettable voice has set the tone for some of the greatest rock anthems ever written - songs like "I Can't Drive 55", "Right Now", and "Why Can't This Be Love".

    Hillary says: "LOVED it Twice"
  • How to Listen to and Understand Opera  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg

    How to Listen to and Understand Opera

    • ORIGINAL (24 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Robert Greenberg
    Overall
    (48)
    Performance
    (41)
    Story
    (40)

    To watch any opera lover listen to a favorite work, eyes clenched tight in concentration and passion, often betraying a tear, is to be almost envious. What must it be like, you might think, to love a piece of music so much?And now one of music's most gifted teachers is offering you the opportunity to answer that very question, in a spellbinding series of 32 lectures that will introduce you to the transcendentally beautiful performing art that has enthralled audiences for more than 400 years.

    Ona says: "The Fat Lady Will Never Sing for this one"
  • Rose-Marie [Russian Edition] (






UNABRIDGED) by Rudolf Friml Narrated by L. Yudina, D. Dyan, E. Kozyreva, M. Golovnya, V. Otdelenov, S. Anikeyev, A. Tikhonov

    Rose-Marie [Russian Edition]

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 42 mins)
    • By Rudolf Friml
    • Narrated By L. Yudina, D. Dyan, E. Kozyreva, and others
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
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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.

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UNABRIDGED) 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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UNABRIDGED) by Robert Malone Narrated by Judy Rounda

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UNABRIDGED) by Andrew Bushard Narrated by Mark Stahr

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UNABRIDGED) by Loren Weisman Narrated by Loren Weisman

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UNABRIDGED) by Sally Fletcher Narrated by Becky Parker

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UNABRIDGED) by Corey Taylor Narrated by Corey Taylor

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