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Mary

aptos, CA, USA | Member Since 2008

15
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 6 reviews
  • 26 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 5 purchased in 2014
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  • 1434: The Year a Magnificent Chinese Fleet Sailed to Italy and Ignited the Renaissance

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Gavin Menzies
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    Overall
    (92)
    Performance
    (36)
    Story
    (35)

    Gavin Menzies presents astonishing new evidence that it was Chinese advances in science, art, and technology that set the European Renaissance ablaze.

    In 1434, a large Chinese fleet arrived in Tuscany. Official ambassadors of the Chinese Emperor met with Pope Eugenius IV and shared a wealth of Chinese knowledge, including world maps (which were later given to Columbus), astronomy, mathematics, art, printing, architecture, civil engineering, military machines, surveying cartography, and genetics. This gift of knowledge sparked the inventiveness of the Renaissance - Da Vinci's inventions, the Copernican revolution, Galileo's discoveries, and much more.

    George says: "Interesting but its very bad history"
    "1434"
    Overall

    Very convincing and accademic read. This book has a lot of reference information that would be good to have in front of your face rather than just audio. If this is your interest be prepared for an immense amount of information. Well read.

    1 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Mein Kampf: The Ford Translation

    • UNABRIDGED (27 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Adolf Hitler, Michael Ford (translator)
    • Narrated By James Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (106)
    Performance
    (92)
    Story
    (90)

    For the first time in 65 years, a modern, easy to understand, truly complete and uncensored edition of Mein Kampf has been released which reveals more than any past translation. This is also the first translation available in an English language audio format. Older translations altered passages, omitted passages, mistranslated Hitler's words, and made some parts more sensational while concealing the true meaning in other parts of the book.

    Raymond says: "Interesting insight into a modernist mind"
    "This is a very good translation and easy read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I have recommended this to several friends who read a lot of European History and were not aware there was a new translation available.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The author gives a very good prologue telling us that had this book been read earlier by the countries and people it came to affect they would have been all the wiser for it. He says it will not change nor give you prejudices you don't already have. I agree. Hitler did not have any compelling reasoning behind his prejudices that were very convincing. The book was not 'written' by Hitler. It was done in a speech format as someone transcribed his words. Also, This translation is comprehensive and well researched. Where there are references to old cities, historical persons from Prussia, Greek or Roman history or treaties or etc. Mr. Ford's researchers immediately fill you in with the details. Mr. Ford tells us that several dictators have read this book since Hitler's time. I found Hitler's thoughts and ideas on the youth and thier health especially interesting considering the year this was first written, 1927. The German law stated that men must be 21 and women 18 years of age to wed. He wanted the age lowered partially to decrease the need for prostitution. He felt teens should get two hours of exercise daily along with fresh air. He had some good ideas on health and fitness. In other areas his thoughts were rather bizarre, however, until I read this I'd only heard bad things about it. That made me want to read it all the more. Thanks Mr. Ford for making it comprehendable. Now everyone else, pick it up, so you can put it down.


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

    Mr. Smith has an interesting voice. He keeps you alert and wanting to hear more.


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

    Years ago I was in Vienna and went to the Museum where Hitler first applied to art school. There was a Bosch triptych on display. Bosch's art is so bizarre compared to Hitler's quiet building and landscape designs. Hitler tells his own life story in Mein Kampf and speaks of his interest in the arts.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Streetlife: The Untold History of Europe's Twentieth Century

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Leif Jerram
    • Narrated By Carl Prekopp
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (7)

    The 20th century in Europe was an urban century: it was shaped by life in, and the view from, the street. Women were not liberated in legislatures, but liberated themselves in factories, homes, nightclubs, and shops. In Streetlife, Leif Jerram presents a totally new history of the 20th century, with the city at its heart, showing how everything distinctive about the century, from revolution and dictatorship to sexual liberation, was fundamentally shaped by the great urban centres which defined it.

    Mary says: "I want to read this book over and over."
    "I want to read this book over and over."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Streetlife rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This book ranks in the top ten of books I have read.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Streetlife?

    This is not a book of moments and scenes. It is a book of life; real life as it is lived. It is history in the making day-to-day. We read about kings, generals, world leaders and great people in our history books. We memorize dates and and great moments but this is a book of how life changes at the street level which is where we truly live. It is full of information and bits and pieces of facts that bring you through from the late 19th century to the mid 20th century introducing us to the simplest things such as the 'teenager' which did not exist before WWII and disposable income. Prior to then young people simply worked with thier families then married and life went on. Where did the soda shop come from? What did teens do before the War? How was seating arranged before lighting was available in large theaters? This book answers questions you never had and astonishes you in its simplicity. I enjoyed this book immensley.


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

    I had a strong desire to re-read this book once I finished it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Anna Karenina

    • UNABRIDGED (33 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Leo Tolstoy
    • Narrated By Nadia May
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (855)
    Performance
    (318)
    Story
    (322)

    Considered by some to be the world's greatest novel, Anna Karenina contains two plots: the tragedy of Madame Karenina, in love with a man who is not her husband; and the story of Konstantine Levin, a sensitive man whose personal philosophy is Tolstoy's reason for writing about him.

    D. Littman says: "A classic, classically read"
    "Anna Karenina"
    Overall

    I always wanted to read this book but feel, now, that I would have put it down way too early. Sometimes daunting in its philosophical rhetoric but otherwise a compelling story of a society of its time. Well narrated. I appreciated someone else pronouncing the names as I am sure I would have slaughtered them. I am glad I "read" it.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • World Without End

    • UNABRIDGED (45 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    Overall
    (8647)
    Performance
    (3100)
    Story
    (3128)

    In 1989 Ken Follett astonished the literary world with The Pillars of the Earth, set in 12th-century England. Readers and listeners ever since have hoped for a sequel. At last, here it is. Although the two novels may be listened to in any order, World Without End also takes place in Kingsbridge, two centuries after the townspeople finished building their exquisite Gothic cathedral. The cathedral is again at the center of a web of love and hate, greed and pride, ambition and revenge.

    Laura says: "Repetitive, but still enjoyable"
    "World Without End"
    Overall

    Exciting and well researched. Compelling story of the building of Englands cathedrals. The characters were very human and vulnerable. Kept me on the edge of my seat. Well read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Nobody's Fool

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Richard Russo
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (555)
    Performance
    (180)
    Story
    (183)

    Divorced from his own wife and carrying on halfheartedly with another man's, saddled with a bum knee and friends who make enemies redundant, Sully now has one new problem to cope with: a long-estranged son who is in imminent danger of following in his father's footsteps. With its sly and uproarious humor and a heart that embraces humanity's follies as well as its triumphs, Nobody's Fool is storytelling at its most generous.

    Steve says: "Russo is a genious."
    "Nobody's Fool"
    Overall

    Excellent story and excellent reader. I truly was captivated by this story and the telling. Ron McClarty has so many voices and nuances just right for the telling of this type of story. I will "read" anything he "reads".

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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