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M. L White

Tannersville, PA United States | Member Since 2001

  • 5 reviews
  • 21 ratings
  • 359 titles in library
  • 4 purchased in 2014

  • 1421: The Year China Discovered America

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Gavin Menzies
    • Narrated By Simon Vance

    On March 8, 1421, the largest fleet the world had ever seen set sail from China. When the fleet returned in 1423, the emperor had fallen, leaving China in political and economic chaos. The great ships were abandoned and the records of their journeys destroyed. Lost in China's long, self-imposed isolation that followed was the knowledge that the Chinese had reached America 70 years before Columbus.

    Joe says: "Very provocative"
    "Pure Unsupported Conjecture"
    Would you try another book from Gavin Menzies and/or Simon Vance?


    What could Gavin Menzies have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Provided some evidence to support his conjecture. The initial suppositions seemed to plausible, but each chapter becomes more extreme, and eventually he's throwing out crazy ideas with nothing to back them up. At that point, I dismissed his entire thesis as nonsense.

    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from 1421?

    just about everything.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Storm World: Hurricanes, Politics, and the Battle Over Global Warming

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Chris Mooney
    • Narrated By Lloyd James

    Chris Mooney, author of The Republican War on Science and one of the leading young environmental journalists and bloggers working today, immerses listeners in the world of those who study hurricanes. What was once an arcane branch of meteorology (itself an arcane science) has become embroiled in one of the most politicized and hotly contested debates in American science: whether or not the recent hurricane disasters, culminating in Katrina, are connected to global warming.

    M. L White says: "A compelling history of the science of hurricanes"
    "A compelling history of the science of hurricanes"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This is a fascinating history of hurricane science, running in parallel with our increasing understanding of global warming. Mooney presents a wel-researched history of hurricane science, along with personal interviews and insight into the people who developed it. It's fascinating to learn how recently we came to understand the physics of hurricanes and what affects them.

    What did you like best about this story?

    The parallel storytelling of global warming and hurricane physics - a great way to structure the book

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • How to be a Presentation God: Build, Design, and Deliver Presentations that Dominate

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Scott Schwertly
    • Narrated By John Allen Nelson

    Unlike most presentation books that say the same things regarding presentation design and delivery (less is more, get rid of bullets and use images, emulate Steve Jobs, and so on), How to Be a Presentation God actually divulges step-by-step secrets for how to build, design, and deliver blockbuster presentations. By providing entertaining and clever presentation insights, veteran presenter Scott Schwertly gives you the in's and out's for presenting yourself, your business, and your cause with an easy-to-implement approach.

    M. L White says: "Ironically Tedious"
    "Ironically Tedious"
    What would have made How to be a Presentation God better?

    Too much forced humor that's just not funny. Why not just get to the point? The speaking style is awful (meaning the writer, not the narrator). Constantly drifting off on tangents. i constantly found myself wondering whether he was begining another goofy story, or making a point relevant to the book. I finally lost interest and gave up. Pretty ironic, considering the subject matter.

    What could Scott Schwertly have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Got to the point, instead of jabbering incessantly.

    What character would you cut from How to be a Presentation God?

    The author.

    Any additional comments?

    One of a very few books that I've given up and not finished!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By William Cohan
    • Narrated By Alan Sklar
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In March 2008, Bear Stearns, a swashbuckling 84-year-old financial institution, was forced to sell itself to JPMorgan Chase for an outrageously low price in a deal brokered by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who was desperately trying to prevent the impending catastrophic market crash. But mere months before, an industry-wide boom had "the Bear" clocking a record high stock price. How did a giant investment bank with $18 billion in cash on hand disappear in a mere 10 days?

    roberta Kane says: "Riveting, interesting, learned alot"
    "Tedious, Repetitive. . . and essential reading"

    The book is filled with excruciatingly unnecessary detail and endless repetition. How many times do we need to hear the address of Bear Stearns? Conversations are recounted from multiple perspectives, even where they agree, We are told what someone is going to say, then told what they said.

    However, if you can get through all that, the story is compelling and will infuriate you. It is astounding to hear of the pettiness, narcissism, arrogance, and ruthlessness which engulfs the executives at Bear Stearns, and other investment banks. These people didn't care about anything except enormous bonuses, and would do anything to get them. When others lost their money, these people didn't give a hoot. But then to hear them whining and carrying on like two-year olds when their firm collapsed as a direct result of their incompetence is unbelievable.

    After the collapse, several of them gave interviews, in which they whined and complained about how they were treated, and tried to blame the failure on others.

    In spite of the author's bizarre belief that the failures were a result of government interference in the free markets, this book will convince any thinking person that our government needs to take a major role in regulating the financial industry - if for no other reason than to protect bankers from themselves. It is abundantly clear that they are too stupid to protect themselves.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Bell Labs: Life in the Crown Jewel

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Narain Gehani
    • Narrated By Stow Lovejoy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Narain Gehani tells the fascinating story of the transition Bell Labs is undergoing as it adapts to new business conditions. Bell Labs researchers, who once were free to focus on innovation, research excellence, and prizes, now have to worry about business relevance. The culture of lifetime employment is gone and the pendulum has swung from basic to applied research.

    Greg says: "Boring  couldnt finish listening"
    "Absolutely Boring"

    If you want an interesting book about technology try The Soul of a New Machine, or The Second Coming of Steve Jobs. This book could just as well have been about an accounting firm. We hear tales about downsizing, expense reports, and silly stories about employee's quirks that weren't worth repeating. I've tried and tried to get through this, and haven't succeeded. Save yourself the trouble.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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