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R. Townsend

bunky1998

eastern NC | Member Since 2012

40
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 11 reviews
  • 17 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 12 purchased in 2014
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  • Citizen Soldiers: The U.S. Army from the Normandy Beaches to the Bulge to the Surrender of Germany

    • UNABRIDGED (21 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Stephen E. Ambrose
    • Narrated By George Wilson
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (119)
    Story
    (119)

    A masterful biography of the U.S. Army in the European Theater of Operations during World War II, Citizen Soldiers provides a compelling account of the extraordinary stories of ordinary men in their fight for democracy. From the high command on down to the enlisted men, Stephen E. Ambrose draws on hundreds of interviews and oral histories from men on both sides who were there.

    Jeremy says: "Required reading, excellent narration"
    "Unique Perspective of WWII"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Ambrose is an excellent writer, and this book is no exception. Thoroughly researched from both sides of the war in Europe, but unique in that the primary focus is from the perspective of the front-line troops. I found the interviews with the former German soldiers to be very insightful. It isn't often we hear reflections on WWII from those who were our enemies.

    Some funny stories, some heartbreaking ones (how could we ever understand the hell that was the frontline in the winter of 1944?) and overall a very good listen.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Yellow Star

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Jennifer Roy
    • Narrated By Tavia Gilbert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (118)
    Performance
    (106)
    Story
    (105)

    In 1939, the Germans invaded the town of Lodz, Poland, and moved the Jewish population into a small part of the city called a ghetto. As the war progressed, 270,000 people were forced to settle in the ghetto under impossible conditions. At the end of the war, there were about 800 survivors. Of those who survived, only twelve were children. This is the story of one of the twelve.

    Amazon Customer says: "Amazing! Truly touching"
    "Captivating View of Jewish Suffering During WWII"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I consider myself a student of all things related to WWII. This book was a very interesting read, given that it's from the perspective of a young Jewish girl confined to a Polish ghetto by the Nazis. I appreciated the unique worldview of the girl and the author does a masterful job of communicating her emotions during the ups and downs of survival in the ghetto.

    I was in tears at the end of this book, but I won't say why (no spoilers). A fast listen and wonderfully narrated.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs)
    • By Laura Hillenbrand
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10810)
    Performance
    (6837)
    Story
    (6868)

    Why we think it’s a great listen: Seabiscuit was a runaway success, and Hillenbrand’s done it again with another true-life account about beating unbelievable odds. On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean and disappeared, leaving only a spray of debris and a slick of oil, gasoline, and blood. Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared.....

    Anastasia Burke says: "Hillenbrand could make even laundry fascinating!"
    "If you need inspiration, listen to this book"
    Overall
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    If you're down, depressed and think your life is bad, listen to this book. What Louis Zamperini endured while lost at sea and in a Japanese POW camp during WWII is almost stranger than fiction. His struggles and demons following the war's end are not. Both show a man pushed to the breaking point, then finding freedom and a new mission for his life. You will laugh and cry listening to this, a triumph of the human spirit.

    Edward Herrmann (as usual) does an amazing job as narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Maverick Selling Method: Simplifying the Complex Sale

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Brian Burns
    • Narrated By Paul del Signore
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (417)
    Performance
    (164)
    Story
    (162)

    The Maverick Method is a powerful and unique selling method that provides the complete picture of how complex sales work. The Method has been researched, developed and practiced over a 20-year period. We have studied and modeled over one hundred of the most successful salespeople. Unlike other selling methods, the Maverick Method has been proven by salespeople on the frontlines of the most difficult selling environments imaginable.

    Jerry G. says: "New Approach to B2B Selling."
    "New to Complex Sales? Here's Your Treasure Map."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've been in the medical device industry for six years. I realized several years ago that I was lacking in knowledge and skills to successfully navigate complex sales.

    I stumbled upon Brian Burns and The Maverick Selling Method through some very funny (and highly relevant) videos on YouTube. Brian is an engineer by training (unlike most of us in the sales profession) and that background brings a useful and interesting perspective to his writing. Listening to this book and Brian's podcasts were an epiphany for me. It greatly improved my efficiency and helped me develop a logical sales strategy that can be tweaked and duplicated. It also provided peace of mind because Brian explain the roles various stakeholders play and how to effectively interact with them.

    This is a great listen for those new to complex selling and veterans alike. I've purchased a lot of selling books (from Gitomer to Og to Zig) over the years and gleaned useful things from them. "Maverick" ranks up at the top with these authors. A quick read/listen and one you'll return to for guidance again and again. Thanks, Brian!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ball Four: The Final Pitch

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Jim Bouton
    • Narrated By Jim Bouton
    Overall
    (266)
    Performance
    (237)
    Story
    (236)

    When Ball Four was published in 1970, it created a firestorm. Bouton was called a Judas, a Benedict Arnold and a “social leper” for having violated the “sanctity of the clubhouse.” Baseball commissioner Bowie Kuhn tried to force Bouton to sign a statement saying the book wasn’t true. Ballplayers, most of whom hadn’t read it, denounced the book. It was even banned by a few libraries. Almost everyone else, however, loved Ball Four.

    Dennis Anderson says: "Author's reading provides new insight into classic"
    "Much more than just a baseball book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm not a huge baseball fan, but I picked this up as an alternative to the business books I listen to in my car each day. I quickly found myself laughing out loud as Bouton describes the antics and behavior of himself, his teammates and the coaches/managers of their expansion MLB team.

    This is not a story about baseball as much as it's a story about young men being young men in the late 1960's, an aging pitcher looking for a second chance in the big leagues and why professional sports have changed so dramatically since Bouton was a player.

    Even more so, you get a chance to hear how Bouton's life changed after he wrote "Ball Four" and the life he pursued post-baseball. Bouton's stories and perspectives on a variety of subjects here are just as enjoyable.

    I typically prefer for someone other than the author to read the book aloud, but I must admit that "Ball Four" was the exception. You can't help but laugh along with Bouton as he cracks up, remembering these stories while he reads them. At the same time, you will experience his pain and sense of loss in a way that only Bouton can share as he reads to you. At one particularly emotional and poignant moment, Bouton says, "If you've read this far, you're like family anyway." It is as if he is reading to YOU personally, and I've never experienced that in any other Audible book. It is very moving, to say the least.

    One of the best books I've ever gotten on Audible.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Eat Move Sleep: How Small Choices Lead to Big Changes

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Tom Rath
    • Narrated By Tom Rath
    Overall
    (180)
    Performance
    (162)
    Story
    (151)

    In Eat Move Sleep, Tom Rath delivers an audiobook that will improve your health for years to come. Quietly managing a serious illness for more than 20 years, Tom has assembled a wide range of information on the impact of eating, moving, and sleeping. Written in his classic conversational style, Eat Move Sleepfeatures the most proven and practical ideas from his research. This remarkably quick listen offers advice that is comprehensive yet simple and often counterintuitive but always credible.

    R. Townsend says: "Great Tips, Well Researched, but..."
    "Great Tips, Well Researched, but..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am a big fan of Tom Rath; Strengthsfinder was a book that literally changed my life.

    I gave this book three stars soles on how Rath points out small changes you should make, and quotes research on why these changes can make a big difference to your health, well-being and life-expectancy. It's nice to have all of these ideas in one book.

    Having said that, "Eat Move Sleep" falls short is in two key areas:

    1. I am one of those Audible listeners who believers authors should not record their own works. At first, I didn't mind Rath's voice because you can tell this is a subject that is near and dear to him. Over time, however, I became irritated because Rath's voice (which is somewhat plaintive, in my opinion) began to really irritate me. After the first hour, I had to listen in 10 minute segments because it starts to sound whiny and "preachy," if you will.

    2. This book is designed around a 30-day plan, and that is it's biggest weakness. Were you to attempt incorporating all of these changes into your life in 30 days, you will become incredibly frustrated and immediately start wolfing down donuts, bacon and hot dogs while chain-smoking at the same time.

    For example, "Day One" of the plan recommends you should, "Identify the three healthiest elements of diets you have tried in the past. Integrate these elements into your lifestyle for good."

    I like this concept; however, "for good" means "FOREVER." I can't think about forever, Mr. Rath; I'm just trying to make it through today! Habits are formed over long periods of time and require more thought and planning than is outlined here.

    There are 75 different behaviors Rath recommends changing during the 30 days you follow the plan. Does that sound realistic? of course not; it's a recipe for failure. Rath's 30-day plan would be better as a 30 MONTH plan. Pursuing physical fitness is a marathon, not a sprint.

    Again, you have to find a wellness plan you can live with over the long term. Use the 30-day plan to identify your options, then incorporate 1-2 little changes in your life over the course of a month or two. Solidify the habits, then choose two more for the next month. That is how I plan to use this book.

    34 of 36 people found this review helpful
  • A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam

    • UNABRIDGED (35 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Neil Sheehan
    • Narrated By Robertson Dean
    Overall
    (69)
    Performance
    (44)
    Story
    (46)

    Sheehan's tragic biography of John Paul Vann is also a sweeping history of America's seduction, entrapment and disillusionment in Vietnam.

    Kyle says: "Good inside view of the making of the Vietnam War"
    "Worthy of the Pulitzer Prize, Great Listen"
    Overall
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    Story

    If you desire to know more about what really happened in Vietnam before and during the war, I give this book the highest recommendation. I doubt you'll find more than a handful of other Vietnam War-related works that are as brutally honest and well-written while showing the human side of the conflict so clearly.

    It is clear why Sheehan won the Pulitzer Prize for this book in 1989. He illuminates the complex, flawed and heroic character of John Vann in a manner that will make you sad about his childhood and angry his emotional/physical vacancy as a husband and father. At the same time, Sheehan is masterful in creating an overview of important events, policy positions, battles, etc. without getting mired down in too many details or verbose explanations.

    Many people nowadays aren't familiar with John Vann, but he spent many years in Vietnam as a military advisor, officer and high-level civilian official. He understood how the US could possibly "win the war," and sacrificed his meteoric military career trying to persuade the military and executive leadership to listen to reason and prosecute the war differently.

    While listening to this book, I found myself laughing out loud from incredulity at all of the foolhardy actions America took before and during the Vietnam War. For example, the US supplied nearly 100% of the arms and ammunition used by the Vietcong and North Vietnamese Army up to the time the Chinese/Soviets got involved. No conspiracy here, people; just tragic stupidity.

    "A Bright, Shining Lie" delivers a masterful summary of how the United States ended up in Vietnam, allowed American hubris to guide a vicious cycle of poor decision-making and cost America so dearly during and after the war despite one man's attempts to do the right thing for the people of Vietnam and the US.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 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
    (1992)
    Performance
    (1771)
    Story
    (1773)

    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"
    "No Conspiracy Theories Here"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a well-written story. It provided a balanced view of Kennedy's personal and political life up to the day of his death. I enjoyed hearing the details around the PT 109 incident as well as the concise, in-depth and engaging profiles of the people around him including Jackie Kennedy, LBJ, Lee Harvey Oswald and many others who played an important role in JFK's presidency (and his eventual assassination).

    O'Reilly's narration flows along at a nice pace and in no time you'll find that the book is finished. I recommend this book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: A Short Guide to Making Over Your Mornings—and Life

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 4 mins)
    • By Laura Vanderkam
    • Narrated By Laura Vanderkam
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (844)
    Performance
    (717)
    Story
    (703)

    According to time management expert Laura Vanderkam, mornings hold the key to taking control of our schedules. If we use them wisely, we can build habits that will allow us to lead happier, more productive lives. Drawing on real-life anecdotes and scientific research that shows why the early hours of the day are so important, Vanderkam reveals how successful people use mornings to help them accomplish things that are often impossible to take care of later in the day.

    Teresa says: "A statement or two could summarize this book"
    "Good Info, Needs a Different Narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love short books like this and Vanderkam's book was no exception. Great refresher on why to be productive early in the morning and how to do it.

    I would have liked the book better with a different narrator for two reasons. First, her reading pace was a little too slow for my tastes. Second (and maybe I'm crazy), but I found her voice to be very sexy and it ended up being a bit of a distraction. But maybe that's just me...

    Anyway, still a great Audible book and worth your time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Simon Sinek
    • Narrated By Simon Sinek
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1952)
    Performance
    (1520)
    Story
    (1515)

    Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty from customers and employees alike? Even among the successful, why are so few able to repeat their successes over and over? People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers might have little in common, but they all started with why.

    Allan says: "Important Theme - Repetitive Presentation"
    "Great Read, Would Benefit from One Addition"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Even though I only rated "Start with Why" four stars, I still think it is an outstanding book. It has truly changed the way I approach my career and I have begun to spend more time on clearly defining my personal "Why."

    This may sound silly but I wish Mr. Sinek had included some "Power Questions" or activities to direct readers/listeners in clarifying their personal "Why." With all of the conflicting priorities and activities we as individuals deal with on a daily basis, it can be difficult to uncover and crystallize your purpose. Some guidance would be helpful and welcome, at least in my case.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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