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M. Gastel

Miss Cocoa

McKeesport, PA | Member Since 2010

4
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 12 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 20 purchased in 2014
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  • The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By (edited by Clayborne Carson)
    • Narrated By Levar Burton
    Overall
    (192)
    Performance
    (66)
    Story
    (65)

    He was a husband, a father, a preacher - and the preeminent leader of a movement that continues to transform America and the world. Now, in a special program commissioned and authorized by his family, here is the life and times of Martin Luther King, Jr. Featuring King's I Have a Dream Speech.

    John-Mark Stensvaag says: "A Fascinating Slice of History"
    "Get reacquainted with a legend"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book which is primarily writings of King interspersed with some autio of his speeches is illuminating and heart breaking at the same time. The passages tell the story of King's struggle to achieve justice for the poorest Americans -- black and white -- through non-violent confrontation with corrupt systems in the North and in the South. His words are so apt for today's turbulent times, it is astounding. I feel honored to have spent some time with this man-- and know I will return for a listen to uplift my spirit and for insight, again and again. Beautifully read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Boy from Reactor 4

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Orest Stelmach
    • Narrated By Tanya Eby
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (42)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (37)

    When Nadia Tesla inquires into her enigmatic father’s past, a stranger propels her on a treasure hunt from New York to her father’s homeland in Eastern Europe. The knowledge she acquires could change the fate of the free world and earn her riches beyond her dreams. To cash in, she forms an alliance with an unlikely accomplice - a mysterious boy from the cooling ponds of Chernobyl. Together, these lost souls must survive the trip home through the world’s most treacherous terrain, pursued by resourceful men who will stop at nothing to steal the treasure.

    Bob says: "Excellent-Interesting"
    "An intriguing tale set in the Ukraine"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Boy from Reactor 4 the most enjoyable?

    The plot, characters, and setting were all well developed. This story clips along at a good pace and while you are reading it you are also learning a bit here and there about the Ukraine -- including a visit to devastated Chernobyl.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The lead character -- unlike so many leads-- she's not perfect -- but she's worth getting to know -- and she learns and grows.


    What does Tanya Eby bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I really enjoyed the "3-D" effect of reading and listening. It made the book alive for me -- and it clips along faster. I set the narration at 2x and it worked well for me. The narrator knew the pronunciations for the Ukrainian words -- which were delightful to hear, and also prevented me from getting "stuck" on them.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Characters living near Chernobyl. Well drawn and very sympathetic.


    Any additional comments?

    A good read.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Hannibal: One Man Against Rome

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Harold Lamb
    • Narrated By Charlton Griffin
    Overall
    (928)
    Performance
    (352)
    Story
    (357)

    This is the breathtaking adventure of the great Carthaginian general who shook the foundations of Rome. In the world's first "global" conflict, Hannibal Barca marched up and down the Italian peninsula for 18 years, appearing well nigh invincible to a Rome which began to doubt itself for the first time in its history.

    Karen says: "Fascinating - not to be missed!"
    "Hannibal -- Who Knew?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Wow! Since am a fan of ancient literature, I looked forward to this book -- but I didn't expect a page turner. But there you are! I am simply amazed at how much detail is found here -- the author must have scoured every nook and cranny to get so much information on a man who lived 200 years before Christ, never wrote a word himself, and was remembered primarily by his enemies (Romans) who really wanted to erase him from memory. The author argues that Hannibal is a greater general in some ways than Napolean, and that, but for Hannibal, there would really be no Julius Ceaser (he got a lot of good ideas from Hannibal.) But besides the numerous fascinating war scenarios, and the intriguing tatics devised by Hannibal -- he's also a remarkable man-- loyal, cunning, taciturn, humble, and, yes -- caring. He really sacrificed his life for Carthage. Even in 6th grade, for some reason, I always rooted for the Carthigians -- now even more so! So get settled in your easy chair, and prepare for a darn good yarn. Trust me, there's a lot more to know about Hannibal than you probably know. Nicely read too. Sound effects add a nice touch setting scenes, but never get out of hand, and the narrator successfully projects various character voices. I love his take on Hannibal.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Unfinished Business: What the Dead Can Teach Us About Life

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By James Van Praagh
    • Narrated By Marc Cashman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (143)
    Performance
    (87)
    Story
    (85)

    Based on over 25 years of spirit communication and thousands of professional readings, world-famous medium James Van Praagh shares the personal regrets, misgivings, remorse, and, most important, the advice of the dead who have chosen him as a medium. These spirits have a great deal to say about what they have learned and discovered on the other side and how we, the living, can benefit from their experiences.

    Sue says: "Excellent book, awesome narrator!"
    "Love is All You Need"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I must say, I was skeptical, but I really enjoyed this book. Van Praagh writes a combination of stories from his encounters with spirits and they people to whom they are communicating, and the insights he has gleaned from these encounters over the years. His words are positive, uplifting, and very, very hopeful. He doesn't just provide assurances of eternity, he illustrates the power of love and forgiveness in a powerful and memorable way.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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