Warning to all who are reading (listening to) Ayn Rand's works for the first time: This is a romance novel. It has the social/philosophical message that you're probably expecting, but the reasoning behind the message is in such strong contrast to the backdrop of absurd, pathological, personal relationships, that the messengers lose their credibility and the issue declines in the priority of problems that need fixing.
If you enjoy romance novels, you probably won't notice any of this, and my opinion should be irrelevant to you purchasing decision.
The author should have focused on character development and dialogue appropriate for the characters.
Frank Muller did a good job with the material he had. He was consistent and clear with each character, so I was never confused as to which character was speaking.
I was bored most of the time.
The author spent so much time describing whaling as an industry that I thought the book was commissioned by a whaling association or the Chamber of Commerce of Nantucket. The majority of the book is about whaling and whales, leaving a minority of the book about the actual story and the characters. The character development is shallow.
The author, like Shakespeare, has a tremendous optimism about the articulation and eloquence of people from all walks of life, no matter the lack of education. Not only did this detract from good character development, but it bordered on the absurd when a ship's officer is trying to motivate the oarsmen during a whale hunt with a long, steady stream of similes and metaphors. It reminded me of a role playing game where super heroes and arch villains are encouraged to deliver paragraphs worth of taunting lines between blows in a furious fight.
If, like me, you are listening to classics to fill holes in your education, either skip this book or listen to an abridged version. Most of "Moby Dick" should be extracted and printed as a new "Dummies" book on whaling.
I am now more desperate than ever for George R. R. Martin to finish the next book in the series "Song of Ice and Fire".
Former President Clinton backs his views with data and reasoning. He calls into question conservative rhetoric that is not consistent with historical data. This book challenged the efficacy of many of my political and economic beliefs. I recommend this book to all critical thinkers, regardless of their political affiliations.
A call for reason
The narration refers to charts that are in the viewable versions of the book. I found it useful to buy an ebook version so that I could review the charts.
The information provided by this book is understandable, supported by science and is actionable. Parents can listen to this book and apply what they've learned for the benefit of their children. The usefulness of this book is its greatest feature.
I enjoyed listening to the author/narrator. The information is presented in a conversational tone with plenty of anecdotes.
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