Being relatively familiar with this authors work, it seemed a safe bet that this book would be at least a moderately interesting companion on a long car ride and daily commutes. I found the book to be exasperatingly sluggish, repetitious and an unrewarding waste of 15 hours. Replace the useless similes and repeated phrasing, apparently intended for emphasis, with a restraint and brevity and it would be somewhat tolerable. Duma Key is much more interesting in subject matter with more engaging characters and events.
I would likely not buy another book by Tim O'Brien. Mr. Cranston is a very effective narrator and was the bright spot in an otherwise dreary listen.
Before I express my thoughts, I should point out that I enjoy war stories, Mr. O'Brien is surely a gifted writer his service to this country is very admirable. Unfortunately, I feel it is important to report this to be one of the most disappointing books I've listened to - and I have dozens and dozens in my library.
The story telling method employed by the author is disjointed and frustrating. A theme is introduced, drawn out and then paused only to be reintroduced and again drawn out much later in the book. It feels as though the chapters are a collection stories published separately previously and then causally strung together to create a novel.
The actual list of the "things they carried" occurs near the beginning and is very, very long (or as the author would say "very long list, countless, beyond measure, so many items, so much to carry, burdensome....) which I suppose is the point.
The authors final notes read by the author.
This book was simply disappointing.
This is tough content to convey / present audibly and the narrator author does a reasonable job. There are stretches where so much information is being presented that one should be seated at a desk and taking notes. The PDF attachments help.
In general, this is an area that audible books could stand to improve. Why not include as part of the audio file supporting images and text that could be linked in the 'now playing' window in the Audible player? Devices could easily manage a few more megs of information.
Anyone who considers themselves to be unorganized or frequently overwhelmed by tasks.
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