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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
    (390)
    Performance
    (342)
    Story
    (341)

    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"
  • "Five Days in Hell/Years in Purgatory"

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    Sheri Fink, MD, PhD, published "The Deadly Choices at Memorial" in the New York Times on August 30, 2009. I read it on line, and, when I found an abandoned copy at a Starbucks, I read it again. It was a great article, and I wished for more details - why did the hospitals generators fail? - why didn't the hospital's emergency plan have procedures in place for a catastrophic failure? - why didn't the doctors who administered fatal injections wait for rescue that, in hindsight, was just hours away? That article won a Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting; and this lengthy book (576 pages on paper) answers those questions, and more.

    Fink has the rare gift of understanding how complex systems work and fail, and the ability to explain them in a lively, intriguing narrative that weaves history, culture, engineering, medicine, medical ethics and people and companies together into a compelling story. She doesn't draw conclusions: she gives the conclusions reached by the government; the American Medical Association; the people that survived Memorial and the family members of those who didn't; law enforcement; expert witnesses; criminal attorneys and civil attorneys; and ethicists.

    As a reader/listener, I reached my own conclusions about why Memorial failed as a physical building, and how and why Dr. Anna Pou, did what she did - she apparently euthanized patients, and was arrested for second degree murder. A grand jury declined to indict Dr. Pou or the two nurses that helped her, years after Katrina.

    Would I have made the same kind of decision in an analogous situation? It's easy to pass moral judgment sitting in my comfortable backyard, well rested, enjoying a Sunday croissant and strong, black coffee. I don't think I would have, especially as to patient Emmett Everett, Sr., but I really don't know.

    Fink's epilogue makes a strong recommendation: guidelines need to be in place for medical priorities when medical resources are short, and those decisions need to be made well before natural or man made mass casualty events happen, not in the middle of a catastrophe.

    The book was so well narrated, I realized I was up at 1 a.m., after repeatedly setting the Audible sleep timer, listening. I had to switch to a book I'd already heard so I could sleep.

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

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    Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Sheri Fink
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (410)
    Performance
    (356)
    Story
    (360)

    In the tradition of the best writing on medicine, physician and reporter Sheri Fink reconstructs five days at Memorial Medical Center and draws the listener into the lives of those who struggled mightily to survive and to maintain life amidst chaos. After Katrina struck and the floodwaters rose, the power failed, and the heat climbed, exhausted caregivers chose to designate certain patients last for rescue. Months later, several health professionals faced criminal allegations that they deliberately injected numerous patients with drugs to hasten their deaths. Five Days at Memorial, the culmination of six years of reporting, unspools the mystery of what happened in those days.

    Sharon says: "A Must Read"
  • "Well Served by this Book"

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    On November 4, 2008, Barack Obama was elected to his first term as President. Three days later, I read a nice piece in the Washington Post by Wil Haygood. "A Butler Well Served by this Election" was the too brief story of Eugene Allen, a Black butler who served eight presidents, retiring during the Reagan administration. Later, watching the inaugural on television, the camera panned to Allen, and a commentator mentioned he was there as a special guest of the President's. Allen must have had interesting stories, but he was discrete and I thought they had died with him in 2010.

    I was thrilled to find "The Butler: A Witness to History" (2013) at the top of the Audible crawl. "Wow," I thought. "A story I always wanted to hear more of, and one of the narrators is Forest Whitaker!" I like his voice so much I'd listen to him reading a refrigerator repair manual. It was the fastest Audible purchase I've made, and I don't regret it.

    I thought I would be listening to a lengthier biography of Allen, or perhaps a novelization of the movie, but "The Butler" book is really a companion to the movie. According to this book, the movie "The Butler" is partially fictionalized, and a dramatic conflict was created between Allen and a radicalized son. This book first discusses how Haygood came up with the original story idea, and his lovely interviews with Allen and his wife, Helene. The book discusses Allen's relationships with the presidents he served, but briefly -it's a short book. It also discusses the tragedy Allen honored to vote for Obama, and then his physical struggle to attend the inauguration.

    There's also a section on the difficulty bringing "The Butler" to the screen. Oprah Winfrey discusses the history of Blacks in film, as actors, directors and producers. I am familiar with all of the actors she mentioned, but the directors in the 1920's and 30's were new to me.

    I'm giving the book a story rating of "3" because, as an Audible, it wandered. I wasn't always sure what point was being raised.

    [If you found this review helpful, please let me know by clicking 'helpful'.]

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    The Butler: A Witness to History

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Wil Haygood
    • Narrated By Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, David Oyelowo, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (160)
    Performance
    (140)
    Story
    (140)

    When acclaimed Washington Post writer Wil Haygood had an early hunch that Obama would win the 2008 election, he thought he'd highlight the singular moment by exploring the life of someone who had come of age when segregation was so embedded in the culture as to make the very thought of a black president inconceivable. He struck gold when he tracked down Eugene Allen, a butler who had served eight presidents, from Harry Truman to Ronald Reagan. Forest Whitaker narrates the story of this remarkable man who, while serving tea and supervising buffets, was also a witness to history.

    Simone says: "Not what I expected!... in a bad way."
  1. The Bully Pulpit: Theodor...
  2. Five Days at Memorial: Li...
  3. The Butler: A Witness to ...
  4. .

A Peek at Joshua Kim's Bookshelf

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Votes
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Etna, NH, United States 154 REVIEWS / 296 ratings Member Since 2005 284 Followers / Following 49
 
Joshua Kim's greatest hits:
  • Engines of Change: A History of the American Dream in Fifteen Cars

    "Cars, Computers, and "Engines of Change""

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    When I was in 9th grade (in 1984) I subscribed to 4 car magazines: Motor Trend, Car & Driver, Road & Track, and & Automobile. Today, my fondest dream is to own zero cars and to rent an occasional Zip Car (preferably a Prius, Volt, or Leaf) whenever the need for driving should arise.

    Reading "Engines of Change" was a good reminder for me about how important automobiles once loomed in my worldview. At some point my passion for cars was replaced by a passion for computers and technology. At 14 I thought I wanted to be an automotive journalist, and 42 I'm very happy to work at the intersection of education and technology (and to be driving a minivan - slowly).

    I'm betting that my story, one of a shift from a love of automobiles to a love of computers, is not unique. How many teenagers who once spent time changing spark plugs and reading car magazines morphed into building PCs and hanging out on computing message boards? I have this theory that today's computer geeks were yesterday's car enthusiasts - and that is why today's Apple new product announcements are so much more exciting than the new model car launches.

    Ingrassia takes us back to a time when new cars really mattered. He profiles 15 cars that have had a large impact on American culture. These stories are all engaging and well-told, and in learning about the Model T or the Corvette or the Mustang or the Honda Accord we also learn a great deal about the times in which they were introduced. This is not a book about the "15 best cars of all time", rather Ingrassia is interesting in describing the cars that had the biggest cultural impact.

    Ford's Model T literally changed how American society was organized, as an affordable mass produced automobile was a prerequisite to a rural to urban migration and a mobile society. The Honda Accord was the first Japanese car to be built in a U.S. factory (in Ohio), and ushered in a long-term transition away from UAW dominance and the decline of The Big 3. The Chrysler minivan (a Lee Iacocca encore after bringing to life the Mustang) killed the traditional station wagon, empowered a new generation of soccer parents, and eventually led to Mercedes Benz's disastrous and short-lived purchase of Chrysler.

    Ingrassia is a terrific writer, and is also the author of the excellent Crash Course: The American Automobile Industry's Road to Bankruptcy and Bailout-and Beyond. I hope that Ingrassia's next project is about the only cars that really excite me now, cars that run on electricity (although his chapter on the Prius in Engines of Change is excellent).

    I think that there is a huge market of computer geeks (and educational technologists!) just waiting to buy our first batter powered car, as soon as the technology improves and the costs come down to a point where electric cars are nearly competitive with gas powered vehicles.

  • The American Future: A History

    "Compelling"

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    You know those questions that go "if you could have dinner with anyone, who would it be?". Well...I think I'd choose Simon Schama. Or maybe a roadtrip. Schama is one of those historians who both have something to say about how we live now and the depth of knowledge to ground his thinking by weaving stories from our past. One part sociology, one part history, all very smart and engaging. The American Future should be read in conjunction with watching the BBC documentary of the same title, narrated by Schama.

    Reading the book while watching the documentary does wonderful things for the brain in terms of reinforcing the concepts and stories with images. It helps the stories stick.
    Schama's basic premise is that the election of Obama represents the culmination of an American journey towards our nation struggling to live up to our founding myths. Only American could produce the horror of the civil war, segregation and institutional racism while holding the promise of electing an African American to the highest office. This American Future beautifully chronicles our redemption, placing the biggest story of our times firmly within our American narrative.

  • The Wordy Shipmates

    "Wish I Was Friends with Sarah Vowell"

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    Sarah Vowell is a national treasure. Who is the last person that made understanding the Puritans both cool and fascinating. Reading the Wordy Shipmates helped me connect the dots between our current military adventures and our earliest colonial history. Growing up in Boston you'd think the I'd know more about the Boston Puritans, but somehow teaching this sort of history went out of style during my school years. This funny, smart, and wise book is a great demonstration as to why understanding the Boston Puritans is important for us all. I'm trying to figure out a way to assign this book in the classes I teach (out of a business school!).

  • The Most Powerful Idea in the World: A Story of Steam, Industry, and Invention

    "Excellent"

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    In William Rosen's masterful new book, The Most Powerful Idea in the World: A Story of Steam, Industry, and Invention, the most powerful idea is not the invention of the steam engine. Rather, the title refers to the development of the concept that ideas can be property, and that through the availability of patent law and capital, individuals tinkerers can become industrial scale innovators.

    Rosen notes that: "From 1700 to 2000, the world's population has increased twelvefold - but its production of goods and services a hundredfold". (page 316) Will the innovations around digital technology, from cheap and powerful mobile computing devices to robust cloud based applications, bring about a commensurate rise in productivity as the industrial revolution? The steam engine allowed the cost of energy to come down rapidly, through its original use as the power source to pump out coal mines to its subsequent use in locomotives to bring down the costs of transporting coal. Today, it is less clear if digital technologies can bring about similar improvements in the productivity of education (increased access and quality at reduced costs), that the steam engine did for energy productivity in the 18th and 19th centuries.

    It is ironic that the very intellectual property protections that catalyzed the willingness of inventors and entrepreneurs to invest their energy and money into the steam engine that are perhaps retarding innovations in education. Much of our current economic prosperity is built on the concept that ideas are property, yet many of the barriers to extending learning at low cost run up against this principle. Efforts to extend the infrastructure and content of learning outside of the marketplace, through open source and open educational content, have failed to significantly bring costs down or increase access.
    Are we in the midst of an educational revolution powered by technology? Or are we grafting new technologies on old structures, changing education only at the margins?

Jeremiah Duncan

Jeremiah Duncan San Francisco, CA 09-10-12 Member Since 2011

I'm a pop culture writer and editor living in San Francisco who commutes about half an hour with audio books five days a week. I go through a lot of audio books.

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  • "Beautiful, Heartbreaking, and Infor..."

    70 of 70 helpful votes

    "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.

    More

    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
    (1192)
    Performance
    (997)
    Story
    (1022)

    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"

What's Trending in American:

  • 4.8 (227 ratings)
    Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Volume 3 (






UNABRIDGED) by Robert A. Caro Narrated by Grover Gardner

    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
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    Performance
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    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 (217 ratings)
    Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson, Volume 2 (






UNABRIDGED) by Robert A. Caro Narrated by Grover Gardner

    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
    (217)
    Performance
    (125)
    Story
    (126)

    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 (21 ratings)
    The Nixon-Kennedy Debates: The Complete and Authentic Recordings of the Historic Debates (






UNABRIDGED) by Peter Marcus, John F. Kennedy (contributor), Richard Nixon (contributor) Narrated by Sander Vanocur

    The Nixon-Kennedy Debates: The Complete and Authentic Recordings of the Historic Debates

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Peter Marcus, John F. Kennedy (contributor), Richard Nixon (contributor)
    • Narrated By Sander Vanocur
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (12)

    This compilation contains the complete audio recordings of all four of the landmark debates complemented by narration by Sander Vanocur (one of the original panel of journalists during the first debate), enabling listeners to hear, word for word, history in the making and to draw his or her own conclusions about who won this face-off between two of America's most noted Presidents.

    Andy says: "Great Piece of American History"
  • 4.9 (17 ratings)
    Turning Points in American History  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Edward T. O'Donnell

    Turning Points in American History

    • ORIGINAL (24 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Edward T. O'Donnell
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (15)
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    (16)

    These 48 lectures are your chance to relive the most groundbreaking moments in the fascinating story of the United States. They offer you a different perspective on the sweeping narrative of U.S. history. Spanning the arrival of the first English colonists to the chaos of the Civil War to the birth of the computer age and beyond, this lecture series is a captivating and comprehensive tour of those particular moments in the story of America, after which the nation would never be the same again.

  •  
  • 4.8 (16 ratings)
    Robert E. Lee and His High Command  by The Great Courses Narrated by Professor Gary W. Gallagher

    Robert E. Lee and His High Command

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Gary W. Gallagher
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (15)
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    Few events have captivated students of American history like the Civil War. Its most striking personalities seem somehow outsized, magnified beyond the ability of books or even legend to contain them. And few among those personalities have ever held our attention like General Robert Edward Lee.With his Army of Northern Virginia, Lee came to embody the cause of the Confederacy itself

    Brad says: "Excellent Review of Lee's High Command"
  • 4.8 (14 ratings)
    The Americans: 11 True Stories of Challenge and Wonder (






UNABRIDGED) by Michael Fuller, David Vachon, Paul Chrastina, Rick Bromer Narrated by Michael Holmes

    The Americans: 11 True Stories of Challenge and Wonder

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Michael Fuller, David Vachon, Paul Chrastina, and others
    • Narrated By Michael Holmes
    Overall
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    (13)
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    Here are tales of adventurers, gifted and determined, who enriched our lives as they lived theirs with spirit and grit: Francis Scott Key, who turned glorious patriot as he saw Fort McHenry's defenders bombed but not bowed; Amelia Earhart, who became a famous pilot before she could fly, slaves William and Ellen Craft, who ran a thousand miles for freedom using audacity and ingenious disguise, and many more. Discover the true stories about the people you only thought you knew.

    A. Good says: "Who knew?"
  • 4.8 (12 ratings)
    Letter from Birmingham Jail (






UNABRIDGED) by Martin Luther King, Jr. Narrated by Dion Graham

    Letter from Birmingham Jail

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

  • 4.3 (4246 ratings)
    1776 (






UNABRIDGED) by David McCullough Narrated by David McCullough

    1776

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By David McCullough
    • Narrated By David McCullough
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4246)
    Performance
    (1474)
    Story
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    Why we think it’s a great listen: If you ever thought history was boring, David McCullough’s performance of his fascinating book will change your mind. In this stirring audiobook, McCullough tells the intensely human story of those who marched with General George Washington in the year of the Declaration of Independence, when the whole American cause was riding on their success.

    Shawn says: "Great Book"
  • Twelve Years a Slave (






UNABRIDGED) by Solomon Northup Narrated by Louis Gossett, Jr.

    Twelve Years a Slave

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Solomon Northup
    • Narrated By Louis Gossett, Jr.
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (592)
    Performance
    (530)
    Story
    (532)

    In this riveting landmark autobiography, which reads like a novel, Academy Award and Emmy winner Louis Gossett, Jr., masterfully transports us to 1840s New York; Washington, D.C.; and Louisiana to experience the kidnapping and 12 years of bondage of Solomon Northup, a free man of color. Twelve Years a Slave, published in 1853, was an immediate bombshell in the national debate over slavery leading up to the Civil War.

    Fran H. Willingham says: "I've waited for this a long time"
  • Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10 (






UNABRIDGED) by Marcus Luttrell, Patrick Robinson Narrated by Kevin Collins

    Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Marcus Luttrell, Patrick Robinson
    • Narrated By Kevin Collins
    Overall
    (1387)
    Performance
    (1288)
    Story
    (1286)

    Four US Navy SEALS departed one clear night in early July, 2005 for the mountainous Afghanistan-Pakistan border for a reconnaissance mission. Their task was to document the activity of an al Qaeda leader rumored to have a small army in a Taliban stronghold. Five days later, only one of those Navy SEALS made it out alive. This is the story of the only survivor of Operation Redwing, SEAL team leader Marcus Luttrell, and the extraordinary firefight that led to the largest loss of life in American Navy SEAL history.

    Jay says: "True Tale of Courage and Honor"
  • The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism (






UNABRIDGED) by Doris Kearns Goodwin Narrated by Edward Herrmann

    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
    (390)
    Performance
    (342)
    Story
    (341)

    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"
  • Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War (






UNABRIDGED) by Robert M. Gates Narrated by George Newbern, Robert M. Gates

    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
    (440)
    Performance
    (383)
    Story
    (386)

    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"
  •  
  • Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln (






UNABRIDGED) by Doris Kearns Goodwin Narrated by Suzanne Toren

    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
    (1192)
    Performance
    (997)
    Story
    (1022)

    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"
  • 1776 (






UNABRIDGED) by David McCullough Narrated by David McCullough

    1776

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By David McCullough
    • Narrated By David McCullough
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4246)
    Performance
    (1474)
    Story
    (1480)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: If you ever thought history was boring, David McCullough’s performance of his fascinating book will change your mind. In this stirring audiobook, McCullough tells the intensely human story of those who marched with General George Washington in the year of the Declaration of Independence, when the whole American cause was riding on their success.

    Shawn says: "Great Book"
  • The Devil in the White City (






UNABRIDGED) by Erik Larson Narrated by Scott Brick

    The Devil in the White City

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Erik Larson
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4018)
    Performance
    (1761)
    Story
    (1771)

    In a thrilling narrative showcasing his gifts as storyteller and researcher, Erik Larson recounts the spellbinding tale of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition. Also available abridged.

    D says: "A Rich Read!"
  • One Summer: America, 1927 (






UNABRIDGED) by Bill Bryson Narrated by Bill Bryson

    One Summer: America, 1927

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Bill Bryson
    • Narrated By Bill Bryson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (790)
    Performance
    (707)
    Story
    (699)

    One of the most admired nonfiction writers of our time retells the story of one truly fabulous year in the life of his native country - a fascinating and gripping narrative featuring such outsized American heroes as Charles Lindbergh, Babe Ruth, and yes Herbert Hoover, and a gallery of criminals (Al Capone), eccentrics (Shipwreck Kelly), and close-mouthed politicians (Calvin Coolidge). It was the year Americans attempted and accomplished outsized things and came of age in a big, brawling manner. What a country. What a summer. And what a writer to bring it all so vividly alive.

    Mark says: "Why 1927?"
  •  
  • Miracles and Massacres: True and Untold Stories of the Making of America (






UNABRIDGED) by Glenn Beck Narrated by Ron McLarty, Glenn Beck

    Miracles and Massacres: True and Untold Stories of the Making of America

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Glenn Beck
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty, Glenn Beck
    Overall
    (289)
    Performance
    (263)
    Story
    (268)

    History is about so much more than memorizing facts. It is, as more than half of the word suggests, about the story. And, told in the right way, it is the greatest one ever written: Good and evil, triumph and tragedy, despicable acts of barbarism and courageous acts of heroism.The things you've never learned about our past will shock you. For example, the reason why gun control is so important to government elites can be found in a story about Athens. Not the city in ancient Greece, but the one in 1946 Tennessee.

    David says: "One of Glenn's best works"
  • Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot (






UNABRIDGED) by Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dugard Narrated by Bill O'Reilly

    Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dugard
    • Narrated By Bill O'Reilly
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1834)
    Performance
    (1634)
    Story
    (1635)

    More than a million listeners have thrilled to Bill O'Reilly's Killing Lincoln, the can't-stop-listening work of nonfiction about the shocking assassination that changed the course of American history. Now the anchor of The O'Reilly Factor recounts in gripping detail the brutal murder of John Fitzgerald Kennedy—and how a sequence of gunshots on a Dallas afternoon not only killed a beloved president but also sent the nation into the cataclysmic division of the Vietnam War and its culture-changing aftermath.

    Kristina says: "MUST READ/LISTEN"
  • Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination That Changed America Forever (






UNABRIDGED) by Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dugard Narrated by Bill O'Reilly

    Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination That Changed America Forever

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dugard
    • Narrated By Bill O'Reilly
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3547)
    Performance
    (3161)
    Story
    (3172)

    The anchor of The O'Reilly Factor recounts one of the most dramatic stories in American history—how one gunshot changed the country forever. In the spring of 1865, the bloody saga of America's Civil War finally comes to an end after a series of increasingly harrowing battles. President Abraham Lincoln's generous terms for Robert E. Lee's surrender are devised to fulfill Lincoln's dream of healing a divided nation. But one man and his band of murderous accomplices are not appeased....

    Daniel says: "History Made Interesting"
  • A People's History of the United States: 1492 to Present (






UNABRIDGED) by Howard Zinn Narrated by Jeff Zinn

    A People's History of the United States: 1492 to Present

    • UNABRIDGED (34 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Howard Zinn
    • Narrated By Jeff Zinn
    Overall
    (643)
    Performance
    (374)
    Story
    (382)

    A classic since its original landmark publication in 1980, Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States is the first scholarly work to tell America's story from the bottom up - from the point of view of, and in the words of, America's women, factory workers, African-Americans, Native Americans, the working poor, and immigrant laborers.

    JB says: "Very poorly read"
  • Skygods: The Fall of Pan Am (






UNABRIDGED) by Robert Gandt Narrated by Thomas Block

    Skygods: The Fall of Pan Am

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Robert Gandt
    • Narrated By Thomas Block
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Originally published by Wm. Morrow, in 1995, Skygods is the saga of America's most glamorous airline - from its meteoric ascent to its plunge to extinction. Pan Am blazed the way across the world's oceans with its magnificent Clipper ships, launched the first international jet service, was the first to fly the behemoth 747, was the lead customer for America's SST and the Concorde, and was even taking reservations for the first commercial flights to the moon.

  • Daniel Boone and the Founding of Kentucky (






UNABRIDGED) by Henry Cabot Lodge, Theodore Roosevelt Narrated by Glenn Hascall

    Daniel Boone and the Founding of Kentucky

    • UNABRIDGED (7 mins)
    • By Henry Cabot Lodge, Theodore Roosevelt
    • Narrated By Glenn Hascall
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    A former President is co-author of this concise look at one of America's most noted frontiersmen. Teddy Roosevelt was well known for his own love of the outdoors so it seems very natural for him to interact with this story of America's growth into new territories. Narrated by Glenn Hascall.

  • Miss Anne in Harlem: The White Women of the Black Renaissance (






UNABRIDGED) by Carla Kaplan Narrated by Liisa Ivary

    Miss Anne in Harlem: The White Women of the Black Renaissance

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Carla Kaplan
    • Narrated By Liisa Ivary
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    New York City in the Jazz Age was host to a pulsating artistic and social revolution. Uptown, an unprecedented explosion in black music, literature, dance, and art sparked the Harlem Renaissance. While the history of this African-American awakening has been widely explored, one chapter remains untold: The story of a group of women collectively dubbed “Miss Anne.” Kaplan’s formidable work remaps the landscape of the 1920s, and alters our perception of this historical moment.

  • Hold Tight Gently: Michael Callen, Essex Hemphill, and the Battlefield of AIDS (






UNABRIDGED) by Martin Duberman Narrated by Anthony Bowden

    Hold Tight Gently: Michael Callen, Essex Hemphill, and the Battlefield of AIDS

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Martin Duberman
    • Narrated By Anthony Bowden
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    In December 1995, the FDA approved the release of protease inhibitors, the first effective treatment for AIDS. For countless people, the drug offered a reprieve from what had been a death sentence; for others, it was too late. In the United States alone, over 318,000 people had already died from AIDS-related complications - among them the singer Michael Callen and the poet Essex Hemphill. Meticulously researched and evocatively told, Hold Tight Gently is the celebrated historian Martin Duberman’s poignant memorial to those lost to AIDS and to two of the great unsung heroes of the early years of the epidemic.

  •  
  • The Wawa Way: How a Funny Name and Six Core Values Revolutionized Convenience (






UNABRIDGED) by Bob Andelman, Howard Stoeckel Narrated by Dana Hickox

    The Wawa Way: How a Funny Name and Six Core Values Revolutionized Convenience

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Bob Andelman, Howard Stoeckel
    • Narrated By Dana Hickox
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Grahame Wood opened the first Wawa Food Market in 1964 as an outlet for Wawa dairy products. Since then, the convenience store has grown into a well-known company that competes against the biggest industry players in the world in three areas: fuel, convenience, and food, all while maintaining their personal approach and small business mentality. Now, almost 50 years later, Wawa has opened its first store in Florida and begun to play on the national field. How did it happen?

  • Washington's Farewell Address (






UNABRIDGED) by George Washington Narrated by Glenn Hascall

    Washington's Farewell Address

    • UNABRIDGED (34 mins)
    • By George Washington
    • Narrated By Glenn Hascall
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    George Washington played a role in so much of the early years of American culture. After 45 years of service in a variety of roles Washington left the office of president with cautions, wisdom, and gratitude. The original address was published in American newspapers as a means of ensuring the message would reach as many American people as possible. A very telling address from our first President. Narrated by Glenn Hascall.

  • Historical Thinking and Other Unnatural Acts: Charting the Future of Teaching the Past: Critical Perspectives On The Past (






UNABRIDGED) by Sam Wineburg Narrated by Kevin Pierce

    Historical Thinking and Other Unnatural Acts: Charting the Future of Teaching the Past: Critical Perspectives On The Past

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Sam Wineburg
    • Narrated By Kevin Pierce
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    Since ancient times, the pundits have lamented young people's lack of historical knowledge and warned that ignorance of the past surely condemns humanity to repeating its mistakes. In the contemporary United States, this dire outlook drives a contentious debate about what key events, nations, and people are essential for history students. Sam Wineburg says that we are asking the wrong questions.

  • A Trust Betrayed: The Untold Story of Camp Lejeune and the Poisoning of Generations of Marines and Their Families (






UNABRIDGED) by Mike Magner Narrated by Steve Carlson

    A Trust Betrayed: The Untold Story of Camp Lejeune and the Poisoning of Generations of Marines and Their Families

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Mike Magner
    • Narrated By Steve Carlson
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    While the big bad corporation has often been the offender in many of the world’s greatest environmental disasters, in the case of the mass poisoning at Camp Lejeune the culprit is a revered institution: the US Marine Corps. For two decades now, revelations have steadily emerged about pervasive contamination, associated clusters of illness and death among the Marine families stationed there, and military stonewalling and failure to act.

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