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Joshua Kim

Joshua Kim Etna, NH, United States Member Since 2005

mostly nonfiction listener

HELPFUL VOTES
555
ratings
REVIEWS
296
154
FOLLOWERS
FOLLOWING
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29
  • "Driving Towards Traffic"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "Traffic" freaked me out. I knew that 40,000 people died each year on our roads. And I knew that a car accident was the most likely way that trauma would encroach into my world. Vanderbilt gives me lots more things to worry about (like Dr's have the 2nd highest accident rate, pick-up trucks are dangerous to everyone else, new cars have higher accident rates then older cars, and intersections are bad news for bikers, runners, and drivers.

    This is a book I'd like my girls to read as a prerequisite to getting their license (and I'll install the driver cam that Vanderbilt writes about being effective in teaching young drivers defensive skills).

    Read the book. Slow down on the roads.

    More

    Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us)

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Tom Vanderbilt
    • Narrated By Marc Cashman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (345)
    Performance
    (139)
    Story
    (140)

    Driving is a fact of life. We are all spending more and more time on the road, and traffic is an issue we face everyday. This audiobook will make you think about it in a whole new light.

    Joshua Kim says: "Driving Towards Traffic"
  • "Pros and Cons of "Why Nations F..."

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    Story

    I read Why Nations Fail this month while traveling in South Korea. The book was much on my mind as I looked across the DMZ at North Korea on the 38th parallel. South Korea, a country of about 50 million people, enjoys a per capital PPP (purchasing power parity) GDP of around $32,000. (The U.S. is $48,000 by comparison - wealthier but also with a less equally distributed income). In North Korea, the GDP per capita (PPP) is $2,400 - an incredibly low numbers that still probably understates how desperately poor (and hungry) are the people of North Korea.

    Why should North Korea be so poor, and South Korea so rich?

    The two countries share common cultural roots, geography, and access to natural resources. This is the question Acemoglu and Robinson attempt to answer in Why Nations Fail. They look at examples such as North Korea, as well as other natural experiments of societies that share similar exogenous traits (resources, climate, etc.) - such as the twin Nogales's in Mexico and Arizona.

    Acemoglu and Robinson's explanation as to why some nations are poor and others rich has everything to do with the elites. Poor nations are poor because the people who run these countries have made their subjects destitute in service of enriching themselves.

    North Korea can best be understood as being run by a criminal family. Mexico is so much poorer than the U.S. because of its history of being run by elites whose main goal was to extract wealth, and who did not need to redistribute economic production as for most of its history the country lacked pluralistic institutions that could check the power of the rulers.

    This argument, that some countries are poor because the powerful keep them poor, stands in direct opposition to the arguments that Jared Diamond makes in Guns, Germs and Steel. Diamond believes that the wealth distribution was largely pre-determined by immunity to disease (or lack thereof), access to domesticable livestock, and the raw materials and technologies to make advanced weapons.

    I am a huge fan of Diamond's writing, but Why Nations Fail has me thoroughly convinced that more deterministic view of development (as put forward by Diamond and others) is problematic. Why Nations Fail should definitely be on the syllabus in any economic history or development course, and on the bookshelf (physical or virtual) of anyone interested in global inequality, poverty, and why some nations are so much richer than others.

    Should you invest the time to read Why Nations Fail? The book is 544 pages, or almost 18 hours by audiobook (my reading choice). Acemoglu and Robinson would have benefited from a strong-willed editor, one who was willing to push them to provide less historical detail (the book has a ton from around the world across numerous societies), and more analysis of the implications of their arguments for countries like China and India.

    I came away from Why Nations Fail thinking that if the argument is correct then China's long-term economic prospects might not be as good as we assume, and India's may be better. But having spent time time in South Korea, which developed so rapidly at least partly under a repressive military regime, it is hard to square this conclusion with the recent facts of some of our fastest developing countries.

    Perhaps Acemoglu and Robinson next book will take outliers and implications, building on top of the theoretical foundations for development and inequality laid out in Why Nations Fail.


    More

    Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Daron Acemoglu, James Robinson
    • Narrated By Dan Woren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (416)
    Performance
    (333)
    Story
    (334)

    Brilliant and engagingly written, Why Nations Fail answers the question that has stumped the experts for centuries: Why are some nations rich and others poor, divided by wealth and poverty, health and sickness, food and famine?

    Ryan says: "Important themes, with blind spots"
  • "5 Concise Reasons to Read"

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    I love short books. Can you recommend any good, but concise, nonfiction? Great reads under 200 pages?

    Here are my 5 concise reasons to read Robert Reich's latest book "Aftershock: The Next Economy and America's Future"

    Reason #1 - Conciseness: Most books are too long. Aftershock is a blessed 192 pages; 4 hours and 29 minutes short in audiobook format.

    Reason #2 - Originality: Reich's big argument is that out economy is fundamentally unbalanced. That the growth of inequality that has concentrated economic gains among the top 5 percent of the populations has resulted in an inability of most Americans to adequately consume. We cannot afford to buy what we produce (a problem near and dear to the heart of any parent who works in higher education).

    Reason #3 - The Higher Education Plan: Reich actually has a plan for higher education. He would make tuition free (to public institutions), and recoup the costs with a levy on future earnings for anyone who participated. His proposal is more complex than this description, and wildly unlikely to ever be enacted anywhere, but still fun to debate.

    Reason #4 - History: Reich was one of the first academic popularizers that I discovered. Back in 1992, he wrote The Work of Nations: Preparing Ourselves for 21st Century Capitalism, in which he argued that economic gains and options would accrue to the "symbolic analysts" - those who manipulate and create information. Reich was ahead of the game in 1992, and if we had listened more carefully to his warnings we might be in better shape today.

    Reason #5 - Narration: Reich narrates his own book - and does it beautifully. Usually reading what you have written does not work out so well. Narration is a skill best left to professional readers. But in this case, Reich is the right person to read his own words

    More

    Aftershock: The Next Economy and America’s Future

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Robert Reich
    • Narrated By Robert Reich
    Overall
    (419)
    Performance
    (240)
    Story
    (245)

    The author of 12 acclaimed books, Robert B. Reich is a Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, and has served in three national administrations. While many blamed Wall Street for the financial meltdown, Aftershock points a finger at a national economy in which wealth is increasingly concentrated at the top - and where a grasping middle class simply does not have the resources to remain viable.

    Chris says: "Very plausible assessment of our economy"
  1. Traffic: Why We Drive the...
  2. Why Nations Fail: The Ori...
  3. Aftershock: The Next Econ...
  4. .

A Major New Account

Stranger Than Fiction

What's Trending in Nonfiction:

  • Economics: Making sense of the Modern Economy: The Economist (






UNABRIDGED) by Saguao Datta (editor) Narrated by David Thorpe

    Economics: Making sense of the Modern Economy: The Economist

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Saguao Datta (editor)
    • Narrated By David Thorpe
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    A radically revised new edition of this highly readable, popular guide aimed at everyone from students to statesmen who want to make sense of the modern economy and grasp how economic theory works in practice. It starts with the basics, and from the underlying theory it moves to the specifics of the world economy, including an analysis of the recent recession. The closing part puts the usefulness and the failings of economics under the spotlight, and looks at the innovative approaches being developed to address these failings.

    Mark York says: "A smorgasbord of old Economist articles."
  • Think Like a Freak: The Authors of Freakonomics Offer to Retrain Your Brain (






UNABRIDGED) by Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner Narrated by Stephen J. Dubner

    Think Like a Freak: The Authors of Freakonomics Offer to Retrain Your Brain

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner
    • Narrated By Stephen J. Dubner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (606)
    Performance
    (549)
    Story
    (546)

    The New York Times best-selling Freakonomics changed the way we see the world, exposing the hidden side of just about everything. Now, with Think Like a Freak, Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner have written their most revolutionary book yet. With their trademark blend of captivating storytelling and unconventional analysis, they take us inside their thought process and offer a blueprint for an entirely new way to solve problems. The topics range from business to philanthropy to sports to politics, all with the goal of retraining your brain.

    flossdaily says: "Very little new material - deceptively short"
  • America: Imagine a World Without Her (






UNABRIDGED) by Dinesh D'Souza Narrated by Walter Dixon

    America: Imagine a World Without Her

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Dinesh D'Souza
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (84)
    Performance
    (78)
    Story
    (77)

    Is America a source of pride, as Americans have long held, or shame, as Progressives allege? Beneath an innocent exterior, are our lives complicit in a national project of theft, expropriation, oppression, and murder? Or is America still the hope of the world? New York Times best-selling author Dinesh D'Souza says these questions are no mere academic exercise.

    Kindle Customer says: "We can think for ourselves"
  • Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt (






UNABRIDGED) by Michael Lewis Narrated by Dylan Baker

    Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    Overall
    (1542)
    Performance
    (1375)
    Story
    (1391)

    Michael Lewis returns to the financial world to give listeners a ringside seat as the biggest news story in years prepares to hit Wall Street....

    Darwin8u says: "Making the system deliver on its promise."
  •  
  • Outliers: The Story of Success (






UNABRIDGED) by Malcolm Gladwell Narrated by Malcolm Gladwell

    Outliers: The Story of Success

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Narrated By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9524)
    Performance
    (4065)
    Story
    (4074)

    In this stunning new book, Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of "outliers"--the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful. He asks the question: what makes high-achievers different? His answer is that we pay too much attention to what successful people are like, and too little attention to where they are from: that is, their culture, their family, their generation, and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing.

    S Prabhu says: "Excellent book; well adapted for the audio format"
  • Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison (






UNABRIDGED) by Piper Kerman Narrated by Cassandra Campbell

    Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Piper Kerman
    • Narrated By Cassandra Campbell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2244)
    Performance
    (2041)
    Story
    (2056)

    With a career, a boyfriend, and a loving family, Piper Kerman barely resembles the reckless young woman who delivered a suitcase of drug money 10 years ago. But that past has caught up with her. Convicted and sentenced to 15 months at the infamous federal correctional facility in Danbury, Connecticut, the well-heeled Smith College alumna is now inmate #11187-424 - one of the millions of women who disappear "down the rabbit hole" of the American penal system.

    Mark says: "My favorite book of the year, so far"
  • Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking (






UNABRIDGED) by Susan Cain Narrated by Kathe Mazur

    Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Susan Cain
    • Narrated By Kathe Mazur
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3757)
    Performance
    (3234)
    Story
    (3208)

    At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled "quiet," it is to introverts that we owe many of the great contributions to society--from van Gogh’s sunflowers to the invention of the personal computer.

    Teddy says: "Thought provoking and Uplifting.... A++++++++!!!!!"
  • Clinton, Inc.: The Audacious Rebuilding of a Political Machine (






UNABRIDGED) by Daniel Halper Narrated by Harvey Betancourt

    Clinton, Inc.: The Audacious Rebuilding of a Political Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Daniel Halper
    • Narrated By Harvey Betancourt
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Weekly Standard editor Daniel Halper provides a meticulously researched account of the brilliant calculations, secret deals, and occasionally treacherous maneuverings that led to the Clintons' return to political prominence. In the 12 years since the Clintons left the White House, they have gone from being virtually penniless to multi-millionaires, and are arguably the most popular politicians in America - respected and feared by Republicans and Democrats alike.

    MPH says: "Hearsay is not Evidence"
  •  
  • The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference (






UNABRIDGED) by Malcolm Gladwell Narrated by Malcolm Gladwell

    The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Narrated By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4449)
    Performance
    (2103)
    Story
    (2102)

    In The Tipping Point, New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell looks at why major changes in society happen suddenly and unexpectedly. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a few fare-beaters and graffiti artists fuel a subway crime wave, or a satisfied customer fill the empty tables of a new restaurant. These are social epidemics, and the moment when they take off, when they reach their critical mass, is the Tipping Point.

    Marian Hanganu says: "Exceptional!"
  • Freakonomics: Revised Edition (






UNABRIDGED) by Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner Narrated by Stephen J. Dubner

    Freakonomics: Revised Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner
    • Narrated By Stephen J. Dubner
    Overall
    (2590)
    Performance
    (1081)
    Story
    (1078)

    Steven D. Levitt is not a typical economist. He is a much-heralded scholar who studies the riddles of everyday life, from cheating and crime to sports and child-rearing, and whose conclusions turn the conventional wisdom on its head. Thus the new field of study contained in this audiobook: Freakonomics. Levitt and co-author Stephen J. Dubner show that economics is, at root, the study of incentives: how people get what they want, or need, especially when other people want or need the same thing.

    David says: "Good, but be careful"
  • Disposable Income: A True Story of Sex, Greed, and Im-purr-fect Murder (






UNABRIDGED) by Tammy Mal Narrated by Michael Kramer

    Disposable Income: A True Story of Sex, Greed, and Im-purr-fect Murder

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Tammy Mal
    • Narrated By Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (0)
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    (0)
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    (0)

    Factoryville warmly welcomed their new neighbors, who seemed eager to fit in - at first. Soon, however, the Homeyers' pleasant disposition began to change. Anna, once highly visible and engaging, was rarely seen at all anymore, and Charles, who was always kind and neighborly, became distant and withdrawn. Local residents were baffled by their behavior. But their curiosity soon turned to suspicion when Anna Homeyer suddenly disappeared, leaving the town with a number of unanswered questions.

  • Hidden: Betrayed, Exploited and Forgotten - How One Boy Overcame the Odds (






UNABRIDGED) by Cathy Glass Narrated by Denica Fairman

    Hidden: Betrayed, Exploited and Forgotten - How One Boy Overcame the Odds

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Cathy Glass
    • Narrated By Denica Fairman
    Overall
    (0)
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    (0)
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    From the author of Number One bestseller Damaged comes the poignant and shocking memoir of Cathy's recent relationship with Tayo, a young boy she fosters whose good behaviour and polite manners hide a terrible past. Tayo arrives at Cathy's with only the clothes he stands up in. He has been brought to her by the police, but he is calm, polite, and very well spoken, and not at all like the children she normally fosters. The social worker gives Cathy the forms which should contain Tayo's history, but apart from his name and age, it is blank.

  • Learning to Speak Alzheimer's: A Groundbreaking Approach for Everyone Dealing with the Disease (






UNABRIDGED) by Joanne Koenig Coste Narrated by Pam Ward

    Learning to Speak Alzheimer's: A Groundbreaking Approach for Everyone Dealing with the Disease

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Joanne Koenig Coste
    • Narrated By Pam Ward
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
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    (0)

    Revolutionizing the way we perceive and live with Alzheimer's, Joanne Koenig Coste offers a practical approach to the emotional well-being of both patients and caregivers that emphasizes relating to patients in their own reality. Her accessible and comprehensive method, which she calls habilitation, works to enhance communication between care partners and patients.

  • Clinton, Inc.: The Audacious Rebuilding of a Political Machine (






UNABRIDGED) by Daniel Halper Narrated by Harvey Betancourt

    Clinton, Inc.: The Audacious Rebuilding of a Political Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Daniel Halper
    • Narrated By Harvey Betancourt
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Weekly Standard editor Daniel Halper provides a meticulously researched account of the brilliant calculations, secret deals, and occasionally treacherous maneuverings that led to the Clintons' return to political prominence. In the 12 years since the Clintons left the White House, they have gone from being virtually penniless to multi-millionaires, and are arguably the most popular politicians in America - respected and feared by Republicans and Democrats alike.

    MPH says: "Hearsay is not Evidence"
  •  
  • Lost and Found: The True Story of Jaycee Lee Dugard and the Abduction That Shocked the World (






UNABRIDGED) by John Glatt Narrated by Randye Kaye

    Lost and Found: The True Story of Jaycee Lee Dugard and the Abduction That Shocked the World

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By John Glatt
    • Narrated By Randye Kaye
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (0)
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    (0)
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    (0)

    In 1991, eleven-year-old Jaycee Lee Dugard was kidnapped on her morning walk to the school bus. But despite her family's tireless efforts, Jaycee's disappearance remained a mystery. Then, in August 2009, a registered sex offender named Phillip Garrido appeared on the University of California, Berkeley, campus alongside two young women whose unusual behavior sparked concern among campus officials and law enforcement. That visit would pave the way for a shocking discovery: That Garrido was Jaycee Lee Dugard's kidnapper.

  • The Tastemakers: Why We’re Crazy for Cupcakes but Fed Up with Fondue (Plus Baconomics, Superfoods, and Other Secrets from the World of Food Trends) (






UNABRIDGED) by David Sax Narrated by David Sax

    The Tastemakers: Why We’re Crazy for Cupcakes but Fed Up with Fondue (Plus Baconomics, Superfoods, and Other Secrets from the World of Food Trends)

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By David Sax
    • Narrated By David Sax
    Overall
    (0)
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    In this eye-opening, witty work of reportage, David Sax uncovers the world of food trends: Where they come from, how they grow, and where they end up. Traveling from the South Carolina rice plot of America’s premier grain guru to Chicago’s gluttonous Baconfest, Sax reveals a world of influence, money, and activism that helps decide what goes on your plate.

  • The Search for an Abortionist: The Classic Study of How American Women Coped with Unwanted Pregnancy Before Roe v. Wade (






UNABRIDGED) by Nancy Howell Lee Narrated by Claire Slemmer

    The Search for an Abortionist: The Classic Study of How American Women Coped with Unwanted Pregnancy Before Roe v. Wade

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Nancy Howell Lee
    • Narrated By Claire Slemmer
    Overall
    (0)
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    In the years before Roe v. Wade, women seeking to end their unwanted pregnancies had limited options - many of them dangerous, even potentially fatal, and nearly all of them illegal. This groundbreaking work by sociologist Nancy Howell Lee, first published in 1969, takes an intimate look at the entire abortion process - from the initial decision to terminate a pregnancy through the procedure itself and the aftermath - providing an incomparable view of what is still one of the most controversial and divisive issues in America.

  • Making the Case: Advocacy and Judgment in Public Argument: Rhetoric & Public Affairs (






UNABRIDGED) by Kathryn M. Olson, Michael William Pfau, Benjamin Ponder, Kirt H. Wilson Narrated by Stuart Appleton

    Making the Case: Advocacy and Judgment in Public Argument: Rhetoric & Public Affairs

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Kathryn M. Olson, Michael William Pfau, Benjamin Ponder, and others
    • Narrated By Stuart Appleton
    Overall
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    The authors examine the dynamic interplay of texts and their concomitant rhetorical situations by drawing on a number of case studies, including controversial constitutional arguments put forward by activists and presidents in the 19th century, inventive economic pivots by Franklin Roosevelt and Alan Greenspan, and the rhetorical trajectory and method of Barack Obama.