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Political Figures

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Cynthia

Cynthia Monrovia, California, United States Member Since 2012

Ardent Audible listener with a long commute!

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  • "Makes You Forget You Live in the 21..."

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    Until I listened to Doris Kearns Goodwin's "The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism" (2013) it didn't occur to me that anyone - other than George Washington - had been 'drafted' into the presidency. I'd assumed that people who become president have a burning desire for the office, and plan and maneuver over many years to get there.

    Theodore Roosevelt, the brilliant, adventurous and beloved scion of a wealthy New York family, positioned himself his whole life to be president. Throughout his life, he was also a prolific and influential conservation and naturalist author. Roosevelt was such a maverick that the Republican Party tried to derail "that cowboy" by making him William McKinley's Vice Presidential running mate for the 1900 election. McKinley was assassinated in 1901, and secretly gleeful, Roosevelt became president.

    William Taft, Roosevelt's long time friend and politically progressive ally, had one life long ambition: the Supreme Court. Taft's judicial decisions in the lower courts and later, the Supreme Court, were well reasoned and supported and are still used today. On the way to becoming Chief Justice in 1921, he was inveigled into the presidency by Roosevelt, and elected in 1908.

    Four years later, Roosevelt wanted the presidency back. His long friendship with Taft had fractured, and Roosevelt's ego split the Republican Party in two. In the 1912 election, Taft, Roosevelt and Democrat Woodrow Wilson ran. With Republican votes split, Wilson won.

    Roosevelt's close relationship with journalists, including Ray Stannard Baker, who wrote "What the United States Steel Corporation Is" (1901) for McClure's Magazine (1893-1929). That lengthy piece, along with Ida Tarbell's groundbreaking "The Standard Oil Company" (1902), described trusts that ruthlessly snuffed out competition and endangered the country's resources. Roosevelt instituted such strong trust-busting reforms, he'd more aptly be a Democrat today. Upton Sinclair's "The Jungle" (1906) lead to the "Pure Food and Drug Act" (1906) and what eventually became the FDA. Taft, while much more reserved with the press than Roosevelt, relied on journalists to investigate and publicize one of his main goals as president: tariff reform. Taft didn't get everything he wanted, but he got a lot.

    Taft was a genuinely nice man who hard to make people comfortable, build consensus, and as appointed Governor General of the Philippines, showed an unparalleled empathy and understanding of that culture that enabled him to ensure that country's transition to peace. Roosevelt, however - well, he was dominating, extremely aggressive, pro-war, and hurt people that got in his way. The "Speak softly" part of his motto was aspirational. "The Bully Pulpit" disillusioned me about Roosevelt, whose lionization is even stronger than it was a century ago.

    I listened to Goodwin's "Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln" (2005) and had trouble with that as an Audible. There were so many people that it was hard to remember who was who, and there's no Audio index. I had a much easier time with the Audible of "The Bully Pulpit". Goodwin 'reintroduced' people that had been mentioned much earlier in her book, and that was enough to remember who they were. I got a little mired in the chapter on Taft and tariffs, and had to listen to it twice to understand the problem and what Taft wanted, but I didn't mind.

    "The Bully Pulpit" is fascinating and accidentally-drive-by-your-freeway exit absorbing. I got so into the book and the vivid descriptions of the people and places, I actually misdated a check "1914" instead of "2014". And Edward Herrmann as a narrator - let's just say that I heard a bushy mustache, waistcoat with a watch fob, and a Panama Straw Boater.

    [If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks!]

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    The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (403)
    Performance
    (355)
    Story
    (354)

    Goodwin describes the broken friendship between Teddy Roosevelt and his chosen successor, William Howard Taft. With the help of the "muckraking" press, Roosevelt had wielded the Bully Pulpit to challenge and triumph over abusive monopolies, political bosses, and corrupting money brokers. Roosevelt led a revolution that he bequeathed to Taft only to see it compromised as Taft surrendered to money men and big business. The rupture led Roosevelt to run against Taft for president, an ultimately futile race that gave power away to the Democrats.

    Cynthia says: "Makes You Forget You Live in the 21st Century Good"
  • "One Book Can Change the World"

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    Malala Yousafzai is on a crucial, well publicized and lauded mission to educate children. I expected "I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot By the Taliban" (2013) would be An Alarming Book with lots of Depressing Statistics that would make me feel Somewhat Superior in a Privileged Western Way, but Inspired to Help. What I didn't expect was that I would gain respect for a very different culture and enjoy a fascinating, but tragic story.

    The inhabitants of the Swat Valley of northwest Pakistan often use rope-pulley bridges to cross dangerous raging rivers and deep chasms quickly. "I Am Malala" is a fast ride across what has been, for me, an uncrossable gulf.

    Pashtuns have lived in the stunningly beautiful Swat Valley for more than 2300 years. Malala is a proud member of the Pashtun tribe, who are fierce fighters, culturally bound to welcome guests, and have traditions of marriage handed down for centuries. When Malala was born in Mingora, her father Ziauddin, was delighted - although tribal custom means only the birth of a boy is celebrated. Ziauddin was determined to give Malala and the other girls in Swat an education.

    Swat is almost entirely conservative, traditional Muslims. Men and women are kept separated after puberty, people pray five times a day, and work outside the home is not encouraged for women. That doesn't mean that the Koran says that women shouldn't be educated - in fact, it says the exact opposite. (And let's not forget that jobs weren't encouraged for women in the Western World until 60 or so years ago.)

    After 9/11, the Taliban arrived in Swat and took effective control of the area from an impotent and absentee Pakistani government. In their fundamentalist interpretation of the Koran, there is no dancing, no television, no song, and women are to be illiterate. When I read this book, I realized that the Taliban is to Islam what Westboro Baptist Church is to Christians - really out there, aching for jihad or crusade, and not actually representative of either religion.

    Malala learned to love learning, and to love school - especially when the Taliban took it from her. She became the voice of girls who wanted to learn by blogging, and then by appearing as an education advocate on television. She was prominently featured by the New York Times in a documentary "Class Dismissed" (2009). I remember that well - it was the first NY Times documentary I watched.

    Malala and her family never thought, as a child, that she was in danger. "Who would shoot a child?" everyone said. They underestimated the desperation of fundamentalists who find their beliefs - and therefore, their power - challenged. The Taliban shot her in the head on October 9, 2012. On October 9, 2013, she answered the question she'd been asked right before the assassination attempt: "Who is Malala Yousafzai?" with this book.

    I will leave the political analysis and sociological critique to other reviewers who have handled that so adeptly already. To me, this is a really good book. I'm sure Christina Lamb, the co-author, contributed greatly to that. Malala has been attending school and has had multiple surgeries in the last year, and she could not have had the time to do everything.

    I am sure this book will end up on school reading lists, alongside "The Diary of a Young Girl" (Anne Frank, 1947, posthumous). Teachers, please don't mar a wonderful story by making your students find only 'One True Meaning.' For Marie Arana, writing a reverent review of "I Am Malala" for the Washington Post on October 11, 2013, this book meant something more global and less personal. We both found profound meaning in this book - but the meanings, while complementary, were different.

    Finally, this book worked better for me as an Audible than in text. Mentally, reading excerpts, I tripped over Pashto and Urdu pronunciations - which would have distracted me from the book. Archie Panjabi sounds young, and her narrative as a 16 year old works.

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    I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Malala Yousafzai
    • Narrated By Archie Panjabi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (483)
    Performance
    (438)
    Story
    (439)

    When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala's miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York.

    Jan says: "So much more than expected..."
  • "Golden Horde/Platinum Listen"

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    Universal free education. Widespread literacy. Secular government. Freedom of religion. Ambassadors from other countries. Translators and interpreters. Diplomatic immunity. A consumer-driven economy. Free trade agreements. Huge technological advances in communications. Paper money based on precious metals and gem reserves. Pensions for military veterans, and lifelong benefits for survivors of those killed in action. Support for scholars. Doctors and lawyers. Laws that applied equally to the rulers as well as the ruled. A Supreme Court. Meticulous record keeping, using complex mathematics and calculators. Multiculturalism. An empire bigger than North and Central America, combined.

    The Mongol Empire under Genghis Khan and his grandson, Kubla Khan - and lesser known Great Khans - was astonishingly advanced, especially in contrast to Europe, which at the time, was mired in futile attempts - The Crusades - to 'free' the Holy Lands from Muslims.

    I knew that Genghis Khan was an innovative military leader who both invented and eschewed conventional warfare. Genghis Khan created the "decimal" system of soldiers of 10 soldiers to a 'squad', which is still used in modern military. A 'company' was 10 squads; a battalion was 10 'companies' . . . and so on. The term "decimal" is author Jack Weatherford's term; the other terms are mine, analogizing to modern military organizational structure. At the same time, Genghis Khan used innovative military weapons - including gun powder - and improved on existing weapons. His tactics - like waging war on multiple fronts, feinting defeat, and skilled infiltrators - are common today, but unique 900 years ago. Psychological warfare was a key part of Genghis Khan's military success - he encouraged stories of Mongol brutality and ruthlessness to encourage surrender.

    Until I listened to Weatherford's "Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World" (2004), I had no idea who Genghis Khan was, beyond his military skill. I spent a good part of the book wondering why, with advanced courses in European, Chinese and Russian history, I had essentially missed a crucial empire. In the Afterward, I found out: I am too old.

    During China's Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) a Chinese/Mongolian version of "The Secret History of the Mongols" (~1240, author unknown) was used to teach Chinese scholars the Mongolian language. It gradually stopped being used, and by the 19th century, there were very few copies. The first definitive English translation was Harvard-Yenching Institute's translation (Francis Woodman Cleaves, 1982). Urgunge Onon's 2001 translation is much more readable. Both are scholarly, often cited works. From 1924 to 1990, the Soviet Union controlled Mongolia and did its best to eradicate evidence of other civilizations, and kept the rest of the world from the country. Exactly who Genghis Khan was, how the Mongol Empire started, and how it thrived was hidden for almost 700 years.

    Weatherford's "Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World" opened a new civilization and a new perspective for me. Definitely worth the listen.

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    Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Jack Weatherford
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis, Jack Weatherford
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3318)
    Performance
    (1953)
    Story
    (1971)

    The Mongol army led by Genghis Khan subjugated more lands and people in 25 years than the Romans did in 400. In nearly every country the Mongols conquered, they brought an unprecedented rise in cultural communication, expanded trade, and a blossoming of civilization.

    Peter says: "Brilliant, insightful, intriguing."
  1. The Bully Pulpit: Theodor...
  2. I Am Malala: The Girl Who...
  3. Genghis Khan and the Maki...
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A Peek at Jeremiah Duncan's Bookshelf

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Votes
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San Francisco, CA 6 REVIEWS / 35 ratings Member Since 2011 16 Followers / Following 1
 
Jeremiah Duncan's greatest hits:
  • Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln

    "Beautiful, Heartbreaking, and Informative"

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    "Team of Rivals" surprised me in so many ways. I was surprised by how much I didn't know about Abraham Lincoln. I was surprised by how beautifully told this story is. And I was surprised by how moved I was by a story that I, essentially, already knew.

    Strange to say, but by the time Abraham Lincoln is shot by John Wilkes Booth in Ford's Theater, I had almost willed myself into thinking Lincoln was a character who could figure out the trap, and avoid it somehow. I really didn't want him to die.

    Narrator Suzanne Toren breathes life into the story, and even into the nearly all-male cast of characters. I could listen to her talk all day, and she made some of the dull spots easier to get through.

    Readers/Listeners will be surprised at how well they'll come to know Lincoln's cabinet and family, and how heartbreaking it is to consider the untimely deaths of three of his four children, not to mention the tragic histories that haunted both Salmon P. Chase and Edwin M. Stanton.

    I listened to this shortly after listening to "1861: The Civil War Awakening" (Adam Goodheart) which makes a fascinating companion piece to "Rivals" for its more colorful descriptions of the times, and its different perspective on figures such as Gustavus Fox.

    "Rivals" is destined to go down as one of the definitive accounts of Lincoln's life, and any reader with even the most fleeting interesting in the 16th president would do well to delve into it.

  • The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt

    "Fun as "Game of Thrones," much more informative"

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    Before reading this book I had no inkling Theodore Roosevelt's pre-presidential life would be so interesting or so entertaining!

    From tracking down criminals in the old west to rooting out corruption in the NYPD to leading the charge at the Battle of San Juan Hill, Roosevelt's life was literally full of adventure. Yes, this romantic view of the 26th president arguably threatens to gloss over his bullying and what some might even call warmongering, but Edmund Morris applies an even hand to the material that allows the reader to draw his/her own conclusions about Roosevelt the man. (This evenhandedness becomes more evident and more important in the second of his three Roosevelt biographies, "Theodore Rex.")

    I've listened to all the "Game of Thrones" books, and if you enjoyed the pace and intrigue of those thick tomes, then you'll probably also be able to lose yourself in this brilliantly crafted biography. This is top-shelf, A-list stuff, and Morris' place as one of our greatest historical writers has rightly been cemented since he published "Rise" in 1979.

    The vocal performance in this book is equally engaging. I would place Mark Deakins' work here on the same level as Roy Dotrice's narrative mastery in the "Game of Thrones" series. Deakins' ability to slip into Roosevelt's clipped cadence adds a whole other level to the book.

Adam

Adam IRVING, TX, United States 10-26-11 Listener Since 2005

Adam

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  • "Very good"

    11 of 11 helpful votes

    This is a very good book. It covers a critically important topic in history that is often neglected, and does it in good detail with great prose. One thing in particular I liked about it was that on several occasions it discusses some other events going on in Europe at the time, and is thus even more informative than it would be otherwise.

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    Peter the Great: His Life and World

    • UNABRIDGED (43 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Robert K. Massie
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    Overall
    (315)
    Performance
    (239)
    Story
    (236)

    This superbly told story brings to life one of the most remarkable rulers––and men––in all of history and conveys the drama of his life and world. The Russia of Peter's birth was very different from the Russia his energy, genius, and ruthlessness shaped. Crowned co-Tsar as a child of ten, after witnessing bloody uprisings in the streets of Moscow, he would grow up propelled by an unquenchable curiosity, everywhere looking, asking, tinkering, and learning, fired by Western ideas.

    Susan says: "detailed history"

What's Trending in Political Figures:

  • 4.8 (228 ratings)

    Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Volume 3

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Robert A. Caro
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    Overall
    (228)
    Performance
    (126)
    Story
    (125)

    Master of the Senate carries Lyndon Johnson's story through one of its most remarkable periods: his 12 years, from 1949 to 1960, in the United States Senate. Once the most august and revered body in politics, by the time Johnson arrived the Senate had become a parody of itself and an obstacle that for decades had blocked desperately needed liberal legislation. Caro shows how Johnson's brilliance, charm, and ruthlessness enabled him to become the youngest and most powerful Majority Leader in history.

    George says: "Superb!"
  • 4.8 (218 ratings)

    Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Volume 2

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Robert A. Caro
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    Overall
    (218)
    Performance
    (126)
    Story
    (127)

    Master of the Senate carries Lyndon Johnson's story through one of its most remarkable periods: his 12 years, from 1949 to 1960, in the United States Senate. Once the most august and revered body in politics, by the time Johnson arrived the Senate had become a parody of itself and an obstacle that for decades had blocked desperately needed liberal legislation. Caro shows how Johnson's brilliance, charm, and ruthlessness enabled him to become the youngest and most powerful Majority Leader in history.

    Chris says: "An excellent clear history"
  • 4.8 (46 ratings)

    Means of Ascent: The Years of Lyndon Johnson

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Robert A. Caro
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (38)
    Story
    (38)

    Robert A. Caro's life of Lyndon Johnson continues - one of the richest, most intensive, and most revealing examinations ever undertaken of an American President. The Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer/historian carries Johnson through his service in World War II and the foundation of his long-concealed fortune and the facts behind the myths he created about it. But the explosive heart of the book is Caro's revelation of the true story of the fiercely contested 1948 senatorial election.

    Abdur Abdul-Malik says: ""If You Do Everything, You'll Win""
  • 4.8 (13 ratings)

    Abraham Lincoln: A Life 1843-1849: A Win in Congress and a Battle Against Slavery

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Michael Burlingame
    • Narrated By Sean Pratt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    This chapter begins with Lincoln's fight for a seat in congress against two other Whig candidates. This part of his life is notably marked by domestic disturbances, many of which shaped people's idea of Lincoln, the man. Taking a pro-tariff stance in his campaign, he is elected to congress in 1846. We learn of his affinity to poetry, which he avidly read and wrote, and see the development of the 'old Abe' archetype.

  •  
  • 4.8 (12 ratings)

    Letter from Birmingham Jail

    • UNABRIDGED (51 mins)
    • By Martin Luther King, Jr.
    • Narrated By Dion Graham
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    April 16th, the year is 1963. Birmingham, Alabama, has had a spring of nonviolent protests known as the Birmingham Campaign, seeking to draw attention to the segregation against blacks by the city government and downtown retailers. The organizers longed to create a nonviolent tension so severe that the powers that be would be forced to address the rampant racism head on. Recently arrested was Martin Luther King, Jr.... It is there in that jail cell that he writes this letter; on the margins of a newspaper he pens this defense of nonviolence against segregation.

  • 4.9 (10 ratings)

    Che: La Vida Por Un Mundo Mejor [A Life for A Better World (Texto Completo)]

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Pacho O'Donnell
    • Narrated By Walter Krochmal
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Vivimos tiempos de confúsion e incertidumbre, que requieren una profunda reflexión y la puesta al día de algunas ideas que permitan concebir el futuro de otra forma, Ernesto Guevara (1928-1967), el Che, se propuso pensar la realidad desde otro ángulo y actuar de acuerdo con esas ideas hasta dar su vida por ellas. Su rostro es, pese al tiempo transcurrido desde su muerte, un símbolo universal de rebeldía e inconformismo.

    Juan says: "Documento histórico insuperable"
  • 4.4 (1833 ratings)

    Game Change: Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By John Heilemann, Mark Halperin
    • Narrated By Dennis Boutsikaris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1833)
    Performance
    (696)
    Story
    (698)

    Based on hundreds of interviews with the people who lived the story, Game Change is a reportorial tour de force that reads like a fast-paced novel. Character driven and dialogue rich, replete with extravagantly detailed scenes, this is the occasion-ally shocking, often hilarious, ultimately definitive account of the campaign of a lifetime.

    Joe says: "Best Audiobook of 2010!"
  • 4.3 (1820 ratings)

    Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln

    • ABRIDGED (9 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    • Narrated By Doris Kearns Goodwin, Richard Thomas
    Overall
    (1820)
    Performance
    (444)
    Story
    (448)

    We view the long, horrifying struggle from the vantage of the White House as Lincoln copes with incompetent generals, hostile congressmen, and his raucous cabinet. He overcomes these obstacles by winning the respect of his former competitors, and in the case of Seward, finds a loyal and crucial friend to see him through. This brilliant multiple biography is centered on Lincoln's mastery of men and how it shaped the most significant presidency in the nation's history.

    Anders says: "wait for the unabridged version"
  • The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (403)
    Performance
    (355)
    Story
    (354)

    Goodwin describes the broken friendship between Teddy Roosevelt and his chosen successor, William Howard Taft. With the help of the "muckraking" press, Roosevelt had wielded the Bully Pulpit to challenge and triumph over abusive monopolies, political bosses, and corrupting money brokers. Roosevelt led a revolution that he bequeathed to Taft only to see it compromised as Taft surrendered to money men and big business. The rupture led Roosevelt to run against Taft for president, an ultimately futile race that gave power away to the Democrats.

    Cynthia says: "Makes You Forget You Live in the 21st Century Good"
  • A Fighting Chance

    • UNABRIDGED (22 hrs)
    • By Elizabeth Warren
    • Narrated By Elizabeth Warren
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    As a child in small-town Oklahoma, Elizabeth Warren yearned to go to college and then become an elementary school teacher - an ambitious goal, given her family’s modest means. Early marriage and motherhood seemed to put even that dream out of reach, but 15 years later she was a distinguished law professor with a deep understanding of why people go bankrupt. Then came the phone call that changed her life: could she come to Washington, DC, to help advise Congress on rewriting the bankruptcy laws?

  • Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln

    • UNABRIDGED (41 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    • Narrated By Suzanne Toren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1201)
    Performance
    (1006)
    Story
    (1031)

    On May 18, 1860, William H. Seward, Salmon P. Chase, Edward Bates, and Abraham Lincoln waited in their hometowns for the results from the Republican National Convention in Chicago. When Lincoln emerged as the victor, his rivals were dismayed and angry. Throughout the turbulent 1850s, each had energetically sought the presidency as the conflict over slavery was leading inexorably to secession and civil war.

    Jeremiah Duncan says: "Beautiful, Heartbreaking, and Informative"
  • Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Robert M. Gates
    • Narrated By George Newbern, Robert M. Gates
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (451)
    Performance
    (393)
    Story
    (394)

    From the former secretary of defense, a strikingly candid, vivid account of serving Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. When Robert M. Gates received a call from the White House, he thought he'd long left Washington politics behind: After working for six presidents in both the CIA and the National Security Council, he was happily serving as president of Texas A&M University. But when he was asked to help a nation mired in two wars and to aid the troops doing the fighting, he answered what he felt was the call of duty.

    Jean says: "Yoda speaks"
  •  
  • I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Malala Yousafzai
    • Narrated By Archie Panjabi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (483)
    Performance
    (438)
    Story
    (439)

    When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala's miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York.

    Jan says: "So much more than expected..."
  • Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Jon Meacham
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann, Jon Meacham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (811)
    Performance
    (696)
    Story
    (681)

    In this magnificent biography, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of American Lion and Franklin and Winston brings vividly to life an extraordinary man and his remarkable times. Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power gives us Jefferson the politician and president, a great and complex human being forever engaged in the wars of his era. Philosophers think; politicians maneuver. Jefferson’s genius was that he was both and could do both, often simultaneously. Such is the art of power.

    Darwin8u says: "A Man and Biography Relevant to Our Day"
  • John Adams

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 1 min)
    • By David McCullough
    • Narrated By Nelson Runger
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1698)
    Performance
    (670)
    Story
    (676)

    McCullough's John Adams has the sweep and vitality of a great novel. This is history on a grand scale, an audiobook about politics, war, and social issues, but also about human nature, love, religious faith, virtue, ambition, friendship, and betrayal, and the far-reaching consequences of noble ideas. Above all, it is an enthralling, often surprising story of one of the most important and fascinating Americans who ever lived.

    Davis says: "An outstanding biography"
  • The Path to Power: The Years of Lyndon Johnson

    • UNABRIDGED (40 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Robert A. Caro
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (75)
    Performance
    (69)
    Story
    (71)

    This is the story of the rise to national power of a desperately poor young man from the Texas Hill Country. The Path to Power reveals in extraordinary detail the genesis of the almost superhuman drive, energy, and ambition that set LBJ apart. It follows him from the Hill Country to New Deal Washington, from his boyhood through the years of the Depression to his debut as Congressman, his heartbreaking defeat in his first race for the Senate, and his attainment, nonetheless, at age 31, of the national power for which he hungered.

    David C. Daggett says: "The Best of all Biographies"
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  • Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Jack Weatherford
    • Narrated By Jonathan Davis, Jack Weatherford
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3318)
    Performance
    (1953)
    Story
    (1971)

    The Mongol army led by Genghis Khan subjugated more lands and people in 25 years than the Romans did in 400. In nearly every country the Mongols conquered, they brought an unprecedented rise in cultural communication, expanded trade, and a blossoming of civilization.

    Peter says: "Brilliant, insightful, intriguing."
  • Benjamin Franklin: An American Life

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Walter Isaacson
    • Narrated By Nelson Runger
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (356)
    Performance
    (302)
    Story
    (298)

    Benjamin Franklin is the founding father who winks at us - an ambitious urban entrepreneur who rose up the social ladder, from leather-aproned shopkeeper to dining with kings. In best-selling author Walter Isaacson's vivid and witty full-scale biography, we discover why Franklin turns to us from history's stage with eyes that twinkle from behind his new-fangled spectacles. In Benjamin Franklin, Isaacson shows how Franklin defines both his own time and ours. The most interesting thing that Franklin invented, and continually reinvented, was himself.

    P. Adlfinger says: "Warring on the Performance"
  • Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin's Journey to Faith, Family, and Freedom

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Allen West, Michele Hickford
    • Narrated By Allen West
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    Over the course of the past few decades, Allen West has had many titles bestowed on him, among them Lt. Colonel, U.S. Representative, "Dad", and Scourge of the Far Left. He rose from humble beginnings in Atlanta where his father instilled in him a code of conduct that would inform his life ever after. Throughout his years leading troops, raising a loving family, serving as Congressman in Florida's 22nd district, and emerging as one of the most authentic voices in conservative politics, West has never compromised the core values on which he was raise.

    Doug D. Eigsti says: "We Also Dream"
  • Upstairs at the White House: My Life with the First Ladies

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By J. B. West
    • Narrated By Eric Martin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    J. B. West, chief usher of the White House, directed the operations and maintenance of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue - and coordinated its daily life - at the request of the president and his family. He directed state functions; planned parties, weddings, funerals, gardens, playgrounds, and extensive renovations; and with a large staff, supervised every activity in the presidential home.

  • Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin's Journey to Faith, Family, and Freedom

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Allen West, Michele Hickford
    • Narrated By Allen West
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    Over the course of the past few decades, Allen West has had many titles bestowed on him, among them Lt. Colonel, U.S. Representative, "Dad", and Scourge of the Far Left. He rose from humble beginnings in Atlanta where his father instilled in him a code of conduct that would inform his life ever after. Throughout his years leading troops, raising a loving family, serving as Congressman in Florida's 22nd district, and emerging as one of the most authentic voices in conservative politics, West has never compromised the core values on which he was raise.

    Doug D. Eigsti says: "We Also Dream"
  • Mandela - In Memoriam

    • UNABRIDGED (24 mins)
    • By Wale Owoeye
    • Narrated By Ronald Clarkson
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Mandela - In Memoriam is an audiobook of verse written to celebrate the global icon of freedom, late Nelson Mandela. Containing 27 Torches of Liberty, the poems are for those who loved the man Mandela was and his undying legacies.

  • Madam Speaker: Nancy Pelosi's Life, Times, and Rise to Power

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Marc Sandalow
    • Narrated By C. James Moore
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Unthinkable just a generation ago, Hillary Clinton's run for the presidency and Nancy Pelosi's ascension to Speaker of the House have cast the spotlight on American political women as never before. In the 230 years of this country's history, never has a woman—let alone a mother and a grandmother—risen to such a position of power as Nancy Pelosi did when she assumed her role as the first female Speaker of the House, third in line for the presidency.

  • Stone Free

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Andrew Loog Oldham
    • Narrated By Andrew Loog Oldham
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Stone Free is the third part of my triography. It is an affectionate look at impresarios I have admired, loved and loathed. There are profiles on Serge Diaghilev, Mike Todd, Otto Preminger, Larry Parnes and John Kennedy, Brian Epstein, Don Arden, Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp, Malcolm McLaren, Albert Grossman, Phil Spector, Allen Klein, and more. It is also a summing up of the bands and lads who started out in the '60's and are now leaving their own - as bands become brands and enter their 70s - what's left of The Beatles, The Stones, and The Who.

  •  
  • Spymistress: The True Story of the Greatest Female Secret Agent of World War II

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By William Stevenson
    • Narrated By Nicholas Camm
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    A rousing tale of espionage and unsung valor, this is the captivating true story of Vera Atkins, Great Britain's spymistress from the age of 25. With her fierce intelligence, blunt manner, personal courage, and exceptional informants, Vera ran countless missions throughout the 1930s. After rising to the leadership echelon in the Special Operations Executive (SOE), a covert intelligence agency formed by Winston Churchill, she became head of a clandestine army in World War II.

    Glenn says: "Great Story - Unfortunately Monotone Performance"
  • An Unlikely Prince: The Life and Times of Machiavelli

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Niccolo Capponi
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    In this compelling new biography, historian Niccol Capponi frees Machiavelli (1469-1527) from centuries of misinterpretation. Exploring the Renaissance city of Florence, where Machiavelli lived, Capponi reveals the man behind the legend. A complex portrait of Machiavelli emerges - at once a brilliantly skillful diplomat and a woefully inept liar; a sharp thinker and an impractical dreamer; a hard-nosed powerbroker and a risk-taking gambler; a calculating propagandist and an imprudent jokester.

  • Dispatches from the Eastern Front: A Political Education from the Nixon Years to the Age of Obama

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Gerald Felix Warburg
    • Narrated By Kirk Winkler
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    How does one arrive at a life in politics and policy? What happens to one's ideals when confronted with the reality that, in Washington, the only way to get things done is compromise? Who are the men and women who help shape our national agenda, and what drives their work? Dispatches from the Eastern Front provides fascinating, intensely personal, yet universal answers to these central questions.