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Chapel Hill, NC, USA | Member Since 2001

  • 12 reviews
  • 730 ratings
  • 704 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2015

  • Feet of Clay: Discworld #19

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Nigel Planer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Who's murdering harmless old men? Who's poisoning the Patrician? As autumn fogs hold Ankh-Morpork in their grip, the City Watch has to track down a murderer who can't be seen. Browse more novels of Discworld.

    Brooke P. Anderson says: "One of the best of the best"
    "Another fine novel about the Night Watch."

    My favorite stream of the Discworld series is definitely the tales of the Night Watch. This is yet another great tale with all of the Night Watch characters you have come to expect and more. I love how Pratchett deconstructs our culture and history through these characters and Pratchett has done it again!

    As always, Nigel Planer has done a great job bringing the Discworld to life.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Explaining Hitler: The Search for the Origins of His Evil

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Ron Rosenbaum
    • Narrated By Barrett Whitener

    When Hitler's war ended in 1945, the war over Hitler, who he really was, what gave birth to his unique evil, had just begun. Hitler did not escape the bunker in Berlin, but, half a century later, he has managed to escape explanation in ways both frightening and profound.

    Ashley says: "Perspective of 60 years"
    "Excellent Overvies of Hitler Theories"

    I listened to this book on cassettes many years ago, but I liked it so much I bought it on Audible to listen to it again.

    Ron Rosenbaum does an excellent job presenting and sorting through all the theories of what made Hitler and the Nazis what they became. For anyone interested in seeing what hypotheses historians have put forward about Hitler, this is a must read.

    I highly recommend this book.

    11 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • The Making of Modern Economics: The Lives and Ideas of the Great Thinkers

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Mark Skousen
    • Narrated By Patrick Cullen

    Here is a bold new history of economics, the dramatic story of how the great economic thinkers built a rigorous social science without peer.

    David says: "Fair Review of the Men Behind Modern Economics"
    "Worth the read despite strong bias"

    Although this book gives a very detailed potrait of the history of economics and the story of major economists, I find the author's idiosyncratic style a bit disorienting. Skousen maintains a very free-market perspective in his narrative, judging economists by their adherence to Smith's free market principles. The book also repeats facts and other information, leading me to believe that the book is at least partly a compliation of Skousen's previously written materials. I am not sure why we need to know that David Ricardo's teeth fell out while Skousen spends less time on the development of Ricardo's theories. The suggested musical selections are a bit strange, but they don't detract from the book.
    Overall, I would suggest that you read the boook if you are interesteed in the story of economics, but be aware of Skousen's biases. Hopefully, Audible will release Heilbroner's The Wordly Philosophers to offer the other side's perspective.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner
    • Narrated By Stephen J. Dubner

    Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? What kind of impact did Roe v. Wade have on violent crime?

    Shane R Massey says: "What it's really about"
    "Fascinating book, despite the title."

    This book is a great intrduction to modern microeconomic ananlytical thinking. Despite the title and the (self-?) aggrandizement of a smart economist, the book offers a collection of windows into the often murky working of modern-day academic economics. I would not take the conclusions about crime or parenting or cheating as the final chapter in the analysis of those topics. That is not what this book is about. The heart of this book is how the authors strip out pedantic writing and academic jargon to lay bare the thought processes of a mainstream (despite the claims of the book) economist.

    Take care before you read it. If you can not take an objective look at some difficult issues and question your own beliefs and unproven presumptions, this book is not for you. If you held your knee-jerk condemnation of Larry Summers' comments on women in science until you could form your own opinion from the actual text of his speech, then this book is for you.

    Besides these deeper points, the book is also informative, challenging, entertaining and well-written. Read it!

    197 of 209 people found this review helpful
  • Irrational Exuberance

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Robert J. Shiller
    • Narrated By Robert J. Shiller

    In this bold and potentially urgent volume, Robert J. Shiller, a respected expert on market volatility, offers an unconventional interpretation of recent U.S. stock market highs and warns that poorer performance may be in the offing. He tells us how we - as a society and individually - can respond. Hear an exclusive interview with Robert J. Shiller - FREE!

    Timothy says: "Very academic, but thorough and informative"
    "Very academic, but thorough and informative"

    This audiobook is not for the faint of heart!

    This is an academic overiew of behavioral finance. Not as thorough as a textbook, but it has the same flavor. With the acadmic perspective without the thoroughnes of an academic text, it reads like a litnay of hypothesis about the 'irrationality' of the stock market interspersed with anecdotal statistics and historical examples.

    The book has a very one-sided view of the central controversy in the economics of Finance, which is the rationlity of the financial markets. His strong endorsement of behavorial finance and emphatic rejection of Efficient Market Theory detract from the power of some of the hypothesis he puts forward.

    Because it is abridged, I cannot say if the book lost much in the abridgement. Being read by the author (a Yale economics professor), I would hope that this version keeps the essence of the unabridged text.

    If you can survive what seems, at times, an interminable academic lecture, this book does offer lots of facts and insights useful to understanding how the financial markets funtion.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Adventure Capitalist: The Ultimate Investor's Road Trip

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Jim Rogers
    • Narrated By Paul Boehmer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    It's the ultimate road trip. Legendary investor Jim Rogers and his fiancee travel to 116 countries in a custom-built, four-wheel-drive, bright yellow Mercedes. Over three years, they make their way through war zones, are guarded by military convoys, observe a 50-million-person pilgrimage, eat disgusting food, put the car on barges for transport between countries, and have their lives threatened at every turn.

    Dan says: "New Perspective"
    "Interesing travel book with superficial insights."

    This book weaves back and forth between two halves. The first is an interesting series of adventures the author has while driving the world. The second half is full of half-baked, superficial historical, economic and financial insights. If you can withstand the barrage of neo-libertarian 'insights' and are not offended by someone who sees the world through green-tinted lenses, I recommend this book.

    The narrator, however, is horrible with ridiculous foreign accents and an inability to pronounce foreign words and names, such as the name of London's Thames river.

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Starship Troopers

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Lloyd James
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Join the Army and See the Universe. That is the motto of The Third Space War, also known as The First Interstellar War, but most commonly as The Bug War. In one of Robert Heinlein's most controversial best sellers, a recruit of the future goes through the toughest boot camp in the universe - and into battle with the Terrain Mobile Infantry against mankind's most alarming enemy.

    Michael says: "Well Aged Heinlein"
    "More pop political philosophy than a novel."

    Although infinitely better than the horrid movie based on this novel, Starship Troopers is not much more than a thinly disguised outlet for Heinlein's conservative political philosophies. There are long and, at times, boring descirptions of military training and combat set in the future, but this plot douse not have much depth nor does it stray from the archetypal military coming-of-age story. The futuristic weapons and alien enemies are a minor side note to the other two themes (military coming-of-age and Heinlein's politics), so the only reason for it to be set in the future seems only as a way to illustrate how Heinlein would like to see society run.

    The narration is good and the writing itself isn't bad, though a bit dated, so I won't recommend against Starship Trooper. I just don't recommend it.

    1 of 16 people found this review helpful
  • The Truth: Discworld #25

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Stephen Briggs

    William de Worde, the accidental editor of Discworld's first newspaper, just wants to get to the truth. Unfortunately, everyone else wants to get at William. And it's only the third edition. Browse more novels of Discworld.

    Glen Phipps says: "Classic Pratchett"
    "Good choice!"

    Though Birggs is not Nigel Planer, he does a fine job of bringing Ankh-Morpork and its colorful inhabitants to life. I was very wary when I bought this book about the fact tha Planer wasn't the narraotr, but I am glad to say that I heartily enjoyed listening to The Truth.

    As you can read in the blurb about this book, this novel traces the start of Ankh-Morpork's first newspaper and yet another plot against the Patrician. I am amazed by Pratchett's ability to bring fresh ideas an humor to his novels, never mind his ability to allude to and parofy the world around us. This is a definite read!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Don't Know Much About History: Everything You Need to Know About American History

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Kenneth C. Davis
    • Narrated By Jeff Wooden

    When Don't Know Much About History first appeared, it created a sensation. With humor, great stories, and a trademark conversational style, the audiobook brought Americans a fresh new take on history. Davis proved that Americans don't hate history - they just hate the dull textbook version they were force-fed in school.

    Tom says: "Great listen. Great information."
    "A good refresher of High School American History"

    Although closed-minded conservatives will dislike this book, I found it be a mainstream history book that reviews and updates my high school American history course (from fifteen years ago). Not terribly in depth, but it does a decent job of reviewing the more important milestones in US history. For my taste, there was too much focus on the details of war and the major crisis of US history and not enough on the economic, social and political trends that don't grab headlines, but are essential to why the US is where it is today.

    The readers do a decent job and the Q&A format does get a bit tiresome after a while.

    So, unless you are real US history buff or a fanatically blind conservative, read it.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Foucault's Pendulum

    • ABRIDGED (6 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Umberto Eco
    • Narrated By Tim Curry

    One Colonel Ardenti, who has unnaturally black, brilliantined hair, a carefully groomed mustache, wears maroon socks, and who once served in the Foreign Legion, starts it all. He tells three Milan book editors that he has discovered a coded message about a Templar Plan, centuries old and involving Stonehenge, a plan to tap a mystic source of power far greater than atomic energy.

    Kenneth says: "too much missing"
    "Great book, great reader, but abridged . . ."

    I really enjoyed this book. Not only is Eco a master of language and story-telling, he is a master of suspense as well. I spent the entire time I listened to this book on the edge of my proverbial seat.
    Tim Curry, the actor from Clue, does an amazing job reading the book. Bot only does he handle the different languages, but he conveys the mood and tempo of the book while remaining intelligible.
    In the end, however, I spent much of the book wondering what I was missing. I dislike abridged works for that feeling. In this version's favor, the story line maintained its cohesiveness, as far as I could tell, unlike most of the other abridgemens I have read.

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful

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