While a little long, this book tells about the rise of one of our greatest entrepreneurs. I really did not know much about the Vanderbilts and Cornelius' influence on modern transportation. I am a bit of a history fan so may not be for everyone but I highly recommend it for a detailed discussion of the beginnings of the Vanderbilt fortune. Narrator is good so it is easy to listen.
A great example of American history. This book includes details at just the right pace.
Exhaustingly researched and exhausting to (try to) listen to. I challenge anyone to stay focused on this narative for more than 5 minutes. This book is simply very poorly written, which is a shame, because the missed, fascinating story, buried in this endless listing of facts and dates, is the invention of the concept of investor ownership and corporations; purchase and sale of "shares of a company" and the birth of the NY stock exchange. I long to read a well written book of this story. The author of such a well written book will find a lot of facts and dates to use from this very poorly written one - if he can get through it.
We rarely hear much of Vanderbilt today, but this well written work show the vast array of unique historical actions he touched… I found Cornelius Vanderbilt on the short list of historical actors who impressed me.
The biography is interesting. But my highest compliments go to the author and reader of the book. I enjoyed listening to the authors point of view and interpretation of the facts and the reading was excellent.
More anecdote interwoven with facts. Listening to this is like listening to an entire semester of lecture in one very long session.
Nothing brought the real man to light. Stiles should have read Brand's "Titan" before he wrote this.
100 percent average.
None. I do not believe in abridging, even in a boring book.
VERY disappointed. I like long, factual biographies but only when the person becomes a person not just a vehicle for facts.
Love to read, and Audible has made the two-hour daily commute enjoyable!
Fascinating look at Cornelius Vanderbilt and his long, successful life. To start from an industrious young man working for his father's boat to become a "Commodore" of the steam boat industry, and then a railroad tycoon was amazing. Much of the book talks of his time from the late 1700s to the 1870s. A man of amazing energy, stamina and discipline. The book covers the changes caused by changes by steamboats and rail by moving communication, people and products. It also shows the changes in New York during this time, and Vanderbilt's role during the Civil War.
While interesting, I felt it could have been shorter. It was not as riveting as book "Lindbergh", "Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr.", "The Bishop's Boys: A Life of Wilbur and Orville Wright", "The First American: The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin" or many similar books that portray a person and their times. I became impatient towards the end. Another reviewer I read commented that he appreciated the epilogue because it helped make sense of the rest of the book. Sad but true.
Yes. It is historically accurate and presents both personal and business views of the character which allows the listener to fully develop an understanding of the persona of the first Vanderbilt. Like his type or not, remember he did business in a different time and the results often created wealth and livelihood for many. Besides the account of his life, this book describes well the times in which he lived.
Story did not drift from the chronological events that made up the life of the character. It is just the facts. ma'am.
Vanderbilt's favoritism of one child over others
Long but worth the listen especially for business historians
Too detailed business information. Not enough of personal history.
Delivered in very monotone, but would be hard not to with the material provided.
Very high - probAbly number one for historical works
The commodore of course. Rags to riches with cunning and a concern for integrity
Strong, clear voice
I knew I couldn't listen to it in one setting as it it long but I was always eager to return to it.The story and characters so engrossing , I never felt lost when I began again.