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South Yarra, Australia | Member Since 2007

  • 4 reviews
  • 10 ratings
  • 180 titles in library
  • 4 purchased in 2015

  • Caesar's Legion: The Epic Saga of Julius Caesar's Elite Tenth Legion and the Armies of Rome

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Stephen Dando-Collins
    • Narrated By Stuart Langton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Stephen Dando-Collins paints a vivid and definitive portrait of daily life in the Tenth Legion as he follows Caesar and his men along the blood-soaked fringes of the Empire. This unprecedented regimental history reveals countless previously unknown details about Roman military practices, Caesar's conduct as a commander and his relationships with officers and legionnaires, and the daily routine and discipline of the Legion.

    Ethan M. says: "You should really be interested in the topic first"

    Have been fascinated by Rome's legions since reading Asterix as a kid. This work was incredibly detailed and never got the feeling it was waffling or in need of editing. A real sense of immediacy. Narrator's voice is not particularly enthralling but a long way from soporific. One ommission (shared with many other works) is that it's not always clear what circumstances in a battle led one of two otherwise evenly matched armies to victory.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Consider Phlebas: Culture Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Iain M. Banks
    • Narrated By Peter Kenny

    The war raged across the galaxy. Billions had died, billions more were doomed. Moons, planets, the very stars themselves, faced destruction - cold-blooded, brutal, and worse, random. The Idirans fought for their Faith; the Culture for its moral right to exist. Principles were at stake. There could be no surrender. Within the cosmic conflict, an individual crusade....

    Jacobus says: "Peter Kenny makes the book worthwhile"
    "very, very good"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Consider Phlebas to be better than the print version?

    Yes - the narration is superb with a neutral english accent and with varied, unique and pitch-perfect accents to each character.

    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Kraiklyn - amoral and generally incompetent but not stupid and with irrepressible self-belief. "Easy in, easy out."

    Which scene was your favorite?

    Escaping the mega ship immediately following its collision with the iceberg

    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    For a mostly serious story, in places it can be very funny.

    Any additional comments?

    I somehow missed Iain Banks' works when growing up. Unlike most greater than decade-old sci-fi it has dated extremely well and am enjoying catching up on them all.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Worlds at War: The 2,500-Year Struggle Between East and West

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Anthony Pagden
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In the tradition of Jared Diamond and Jacques Barzun, prize-winning historian Anthony Pagden presents a sweeping history of the long struggle between East and West, from the Greeks to the present day.

    The relationship between East and West has always been one of turmoil. In this historical tour de force, a renowned historian leads us from the world of classical antiquity, through the Dark Ages, to the Crusades, Europe's resurgence, and the dominance of the Ottoman Empire, which almost shattered Europe entirely. Pagden travels from Napoleon in Egypt to Europe's carving up of the finally moribund Ottomans - creating the modern Middle East along the way - and on to the present struggles in Iraq.

    Tad Davis says: "Great story, with a lot of unfamiliar names"
    "Compelling analysis, but factually unreliable"

    Presents the compelling argument that Europe and the middle east have been culturally divided since pre-history, irrespective of which empires and religions have ruled them. Main concern is the author is careless to the point of amateurish with his fact(oid) checking. These are rarely central to his thesis but do detract from its impact. (ie "'Veni vidi vici' uttered by Julius Caesar after his conquest of Britain' - um, no, he reputedly said them of Pontus, and his brief incursion into Britain was anything but a conquest)

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • A Short History of Nearly Everything

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Bill Bryson
    • Narrated By Richard Matthews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Bill Bryson has been an enormously popular author both for his travel books and for his books on the English language. Now, this beloved comic genius turns his attention to science. Although he doesn't know anything about the subject (at first), he is eager to learn, and takes information that he gets from the world's leading experts and explains it to us in a way that makes it exciting and relevant.

    Corby says: "Very informative, fun to listen to"
    "quite brilliant"

    How Bill Bryson managed to write this after only a few years of study (apparently) beggars belief. A truly brilliant achievement that elucidates concepts even to technically proficient listeners without at any point alienating the lay person.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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