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John

REDWOOD CITY, CA, United States | Member Since 2010

13
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 5 reviews
  • 6 ratings
  • 495 titles in library
  • 24 purchased in 2014
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  • The Idea of America

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Gordon S Wood
    • Narrated By Robert Fass
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (18)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (11)

    The preeminent historian of the American Revolution explains why it remains the most significant event in our history

    John says: "MetaHistory"
    "MetaHistory"
    Overall

    This is a history of historian's views of the American Revolution and following years, not a history of those years per se. Very, very abstract and vague. Almost no names of individuals (except to say they weren't exactly mad)... A lot more mention of historians from the 1940s to 1970s than of the founding fathers or anyone else from circa 1800 AD.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The History of the Ancient World: From the Earliest Accounts to the Fall of Rome

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Susan Wise Bauer
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (107)
    Performance
    (99)
    Story
    (96)

    This is the first volume in a bold new series that tells the stories of all peoples, connecting historical events from Europe to the Middle East to the far coast of China, while still giving weight to the characteristics of each country. Susan Wise Bauer provides both sweeping scope and vivid attention to the individual lives that give flesh to abstract assertions about human history. This narrative history employs the methods of "history from beneath" - literature, epic traditions, private letters, and accounts - to connect kings and leaders with the lives of those they ruled.

    Amazon Customer says: "A Fantastic Overview!"
    "Horrible strident narration"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The narrator seems to be trying to get through the text as quickly as possible, with no thought to the content of what he is reading, while trying to make it all sound "dramatic".

    The content is pretty much standard ancient history, with the exception of the chapter on "Abraham" who is introduced as "the first monotheist" and followed by an uncritical rehash of the Biblical story in Genesis.

    Well, that's all for now

    5 of 16 people found this review helpful
  • No Simple Victory: World War II in Europe, 1939-1945

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Norman Davies
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (379)
    Performance
    (173)
    Story
    (170)

    If history really belongs to the victor, what happens when there's more than one side declaring victory? That's the conundrum Norman Davies unravels in his groundbreaking book No Simple Victory. Far from being a revisionist history, No Simple Victory instead offers a clear-eyed reappraisal, untangling and setting right the disparate claims made by America, Great Britain, France, and the Soviet Union in order to get at the startling truth.

    Nikoli Gogol says: "The Best Account of WWII in Europe"
    "Fantastic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    this is a very refreshing take on war in general and of course world war two specifically.

    however when during the battle of Stalingrad, "the temperature had dropped to twenty degrees Celsius" I think it's missing some minuses.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gettysburg

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Stephen Sears
    • Narrated By Ed Sala
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (94)
    Performance
    (82)
    Story
    (83)

    Best-selling author and acclaimed Civil War expert Stephen W. Sears, hailed by The New York Times Book Review as “arguably the preeminent living historian of the war’s eastern theater,” crafts what will stand the test of time as the definitive history of the greatest battle ever fought on American soil. Drawing on years of research, Sears focuses on the big picture, capturing the entire essence of the momentous three day struggle while offering fresh insights that will surprise even the best versed Civil War buffs.

    John says: "a couple of grating mispronunciations"
    "a couple of grating mispronunciations"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Great treatment of the battle with lots of detail, the book itself is fantastic. However, the narrator constantly mispronounces the last names of Harry Heth and Carl Shurz, (as "heth" and "shurz", rather than the correct "heath" and "shirts"). This doesn't detract from the work of the original author, but it is grating when heard over and over again...

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Modern Scholar: The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Thomas F. Madden
    Overall
    (252)
    Performance
    (118)
    Story
    (111)

    In this informative and lively series of lectures, renowned history professor Thomas F. Madden serves as the ultimate guide through the fall of ancient Rome. Professor Madden correlates the principles of Roman conduct that would forever change the world. Rome was an empire unlike the world had ever seen, and one that will likely never be duplicated. Peopled with personages of great distinction and even greater ambition, the Roman Empire contributed many of history's proudest advancements.

    Greg says: "Good general survey, a lot of names."
    "superficial with glaring mistakes"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Very superficial coverage of the development of the Roman Empire from the late Republic to 476 CE. Lots of glossing over of major developments (e.g., the end of the first triumvirate is described as 'Crassus got killed in a battle'). Lots of minor mistakes, like Pompey pronounced "Pompeii", Aetius called "German" with apparently a minor role in the late empire, etc. Should be $10 rather than $35.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful

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