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Carolyn in Ben Lomond

Member Since 2017

50
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 34 reviews
  • 52 ratings
  • 253 titles in library
  • 7 purchased in 2018
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  • Within a Budding Grove: Remembrance of Things Past, Volume 2

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Marcel Proust, C. K. Scott Moncrieff (translator)
    • Narrated By Neville Jason
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (130)
    Story
    (131)

    Remembrance of Things Past is one of the monuments of 20th century literature. Within a Budding Grove is the second of seven volumes. The young narrator, experiencing his youthful sexuality, falls under the spell of a group of adolescent girls, succumbs to the charms of the enchanting Gilberte, and visits a brothel where he meets Rachel. His impressions of life are also stimulated by the painter, Elstir, and his encounter with another girl, Albertine.

    Darwin8u says: "One young nubile girl and then another ..."
    "Mesmerizing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found myself mesmerized by this book. Proust is a master of describing the intimate details of his thinking. Very little happens in the book outwardly. Essentially the narrator tells of his summer in a town on the Norman coast. And the characters, including the narrator, aren't particularly admirable. But it's absolutely fascinating to listen to his riffs on a wide variety of subjects, from sexuality to arts and artists to creativity to memory. Very hard to describe, but it's like listening to someone describing the incredibly interesting things they see inside a microscope looking at human character. The reader is good. Definitely kept my interest alive.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • O. Henry: Complete Short Stories Collection

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By O. Henry, William Sydney Porter
    • Narrated By Bob Thomley
    Overall
    (105)
    Performance
    (95)
    Story
    (95)

    O. Henry's short stories are well known for their wit, wordplay, warm characterization, and clever twist endings. This collection includes "The Last Leaf", "The Love Philter of Ikey Schoenstein", "The Caliph", "Cupid and the Clock", "The Brief Debut of Tildy", "The Higher Abdication", "The Ransom of Red Chief", "One Dollar’s Worth", "Cupid a la Carte", "Girl", "Springtime a la Carte", "The Ethics of Pig", "The Social Triangle", "Witches Loaves", "The Romace of the Buys Broker", and more.

    Loren says: "Mis-named: This is not a complete collection"
    "Good stories, competent reader"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Enjoyable reading, especially since many have surprise endings. I liked the reader's performance. He doesn't overdo it. Mitch in keeping with the deadpan humor of O. Henry.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Doomsday Machine

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Daniel Ellsberg
    • Narrated By Steven Cooper
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (326)
    Performance
    (290)
    Story
    (288)

    The Doomsday Machine is Ellsberg's hair-raising insider's account of the most dangerous arms buildup in the history of civilization, whose legacy - and renewal under the Obama administration - threatens the very survival of humanity. It is scarcely possible to estimate the true dangers of our present nuclear policies without penetrating the secret realities of the nuclear strategy of the late Eisenhower and early Kennedy years, when Ellsberg had high-level access to them.

    Terry Masters says: "Fascinating Insider Story"
    "Powerful appeal to our hearts and minds"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Ellsberg reveals his own role in the madness of preparing for nuclear war, describes how we got to this scary state where the entire human race could be extinguished, and concludes with an impassioned plea to end it now. Well worth reading to learn about the reality of the possibility of nuclear winter.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Christ in Flanders

    • UNABRIDGED (29 mins)
    • By Honore de Balzac
    • Narrated By Walter Zimmerman
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    Honore de Balzac is regarded as one of the founders of realism in European literature. He was a keen observer of detail and presented in his stories an unfiltered representation of society. He is known for his multi-faceted characters. Even his lesser characters are complex, morally ambiguous and fully human. Christ In Flanders is a story of faith..and a miracle.

    Carolyn in Ben Lomond says: "Beautiful story of faith"
    "Beautiful story of faith"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Short fable based on biblical story of Christ walking on water. Well-told by good narrator.Thanks

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Catonsville Nine: A Story of Faith and Resistance in the Vietnam Era

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Shawn Francis Peters
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    On May 17th, 1968, a group of Catholic antiwar activists burst into a draft board in suburban Baltimore, stole hundreds of Selective Service records (which they called "death certificates"), and burned the documents in a fire fueled by homemade napalm. The bold actions of the ''Catonsville Nine'' quickly became international news and captured headlines throughout the summer and fall of 1968 when the activists, defended by radical attorney William Kunstler, were tried in federal court.

    Carolyn in Ben Lomond says: "Well-written and insightful"
    "Well-written and insightful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Very thorough study of the action that was one of the most significant of the Vietnam war era. What's especially good is how he follows every one of the nine main participants how they came to participate through their time in jail and their lives afterward. All told journalistically, not academically. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Drop Your Weapons: When and Why Civil Resistance Works

    • UNABRIDGED (39 mins)
    • By Erica Chenoweth
    • Narrated By Kevin Stillwell
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    Revolts against authoritarian regimes don’t always succeed - but they're more likely to if they embrace civil resistance rather than violence. Over the last century, nonviolent campaigns have been twice as likely to succeed as violent ones and they increase the chances that toppling a dictatorship will lead to peace and democracy.

    Carolyn in Ben Lomond says: "Convincing"
    "Convincing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Lots of great examples and a convincing argument about the efficacy of nonviolent efforts to achieve social change. Contrast with violent insurgencies is effective. Good narrator. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The True Flag: Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and the Birth of American Empire

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Stephen Kinzer
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff
    Overall
    (279)
    Performance
    (254)
    Story
    (253)

    How should the United States act in the world? Americans cannot decide. Sometimes we burn with righteous anger, launching foreign wars and deposing governments. Then we retreat - until the cycle begins again. No matter how often we debate this question, none of what we say is original. Every argument is a pale shadow of the first and greatest debate, which erupted more than a century ago. Its themes resurface every time Americans argue whether to intervene in a foreign country.

    Joshua C. Packard says: "Timely and important"
    "Revealing history, entertainingly told"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Tells the fascinating story of how the U.S. became involved in its first major wars of overseas conquest. In less than a year, the U.S. conquered Cuba, Guam and the Philippines. Far from being wholeheartedly supported, there was a huge debate about the role of the U.S. In the world. Indeed it was a conflict over the very soul of the nation. Colorful figures were on each side, led by Theodore Roosevelt and Mark Twain. Kinzer tells the story engagingly, and the narrator does a terrific job of conveying the drama of the era. Highly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Confession

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Leo Tolstoy
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (99)
    Performance
    (86)
    Story
    (88)

    Tolstoy’s autobiographical essay is a dissection of his soul, a study of his life’s movement away from the religious certainties of youth, and a vital piece of reading which contextualizes the great works he is best known for. Marking the point at which his life moved from the worldly to the spiritual, Tolstoy’s philosophical reassessment of the Orthodox faith is a work that holds vital spiritual and intellectual importance to this very day.

    David Murphy says: "Wow"
    "Thoughtful exposition of faith"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Easy to read (listen to) as Tolstoy is such a clear writer. He explains how he came to his Christian faith only after examining the depths of despair where suicide is the only rational option.
    Lots to ponder here. I'll probably read it again someone as it is fairly short. I've always admired his pacifist credo and political attitudes. Now I understand better his religious beliefs. A great man.
    The narrator is terrific. He keeps your attention.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Stephen Kinzer
    • Narrated By David Cochran Heath
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (855)
    Performance
    (776)
    Story
    (772)

    John Foster Dulles was secretary of state while his brother, Allen Dulles, was director of the Central Intelligence Agency. In this book, Stephen Kinzer places their extraordinary lives against the backdrop ofAmerican culture and history. He uses the framework of biography to ask: Why does the United States behave as it does in the world?

    Angela says: "Cold war and intrigue - who could ask for more"
    "Revealing history, well-told"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Brothers again? Why?

    Probably not because I rarely ready books twice. But I have recommended it highly to a number of folks because it tells the inside story of the 1950s Cold War era.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Kinzer's portrait of each of the Dulles brothers was fascinating. Foster was an inflexible prude; Allen, a socially adept womanizer. Both were Wall Street lawyers who shared an anti-Communist ideology that arguably made the world much less safe. How they worked to overthrow the democratically elected governments of Iran and Guatemala was fascinating.


    Have you listened to any of David Cochran Heath’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, but I would be happy to listen to others.


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

    How the Dulles brothers helped to lay the groundwork for the Vietnam war was chilling. What a legacy of needless suffering and destruction.


    Any additional comments?

    As someone who was a child in the '50s, I had a very different impression of the Dulles brothers, particularly John Foster Dulles. He was not the high-minded patriot that I had previously thought. This book confirmed my worst suspicions about how the foreign policy establishment actually worked. That is, to say that American foreign policy has been aimed at protecting Wall Street's interests is not mere rhetoric. Kinzer explains how this actually worked for about two decades -- and presumably still does.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Susan Cain
    • Narrated By Kathe Mazur
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11901)
    Performance
    (10303)
    Story
    (10241)

    At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled "quiet," it is to introverts that we owe many of the great contributions to society--from van Gogh’s sunflowers to the invention of the personal computer.

    Theodore says: "Thought provoking and Uplifting.... A++++++++!!!!!"
    "Mostly obvious points. Not a compelling argument."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you ever listen to anything by Susan Cain again?

    Probably not. She kept changing the definition of introvert so that it became meaningless by the end of the book. Sometimes an introvert was someone who was socially shy. Other times it was someone who studied a subject thoroughly. She always seemed to say being introverted was good whereas folks who are more extroverted are bad.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Kathe Mazur?

    Sure. She was quite competent.


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

    Her self-serving description of her own career could have been dropped. Seemed like something she threw in to bolster her own corporate consulting business.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Underground Railroad (Oprah's Book Club)

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Colson Whitehead
    • Narrated By Bahni Turpin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9419)
    Performance
    (8576)
    Story
    (8546)

    The Newest Oprah Book Club 2016 Selection. Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood - where even greater pain awaits. When Caesar, a recent arrival from Virginia, tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned - Cora kills a young white boy who tries to capture her. Though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted.

    JQR says: "Stupendous book, hard to follow in audio"
    "Powerful story. Good narrator."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Although the story is powerful, it didn't have a kind of narrative drive that it could have had. I didn't feel compelled to read it straight through. More of something I could pick up and put down.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Not entirely satisfying, partly because it was somewhat ambiguous. My wife's book club read the book and half thought the ending meant one thing; the other half had a different interpretation.


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

    She's terrific. She animated all of the characters in slightly different ways. Very talented narrator.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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