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Tyler

St. Louis Park, MN, United States | Member Since 2008

24
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 8 reviews
  • 77 ratings
  • 373 titles in library
  • 28 purchased in 2014
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  • Idiot America: How Stupidity Became a Virtue in the Land of the Free

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Charles P. Pierce
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (175)
    Performance
    (153)
    Story
    (157)

    The culture wars are over and the idiots have won. This is a veteran journalist’s caustically funny, righteously angry lament about the glorification of ignorance in the United States. The three Great Premises of Idiot America: · Any theory is valid if it sells books, soaks up ratings, or otherwise moves units; anything can be true if someone says it loudly enough; "fact" is that which enough people believe. And "truth" is determined by how fervently they believe it.

    Vargas says: "You Get What You Paid For"
    "Sooo, WHY are we talking about this now?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is what was going through my head the entire audiobook. Although I agree with his premise and most of the points he makes, the flow of the book is a complete and utter mess. One minute he's talking about Glenn Beck, then about James Madison, and I really have no idea why. Once he gets on a topic (Terri Schiavo for example) the flow of the details and the descriptions are really great. It's just that he jumps from topic to topic without really any rhyme or reason.

    6 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • Just the Arguments: 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Michael Bruce, Steven Barbone
    • Narrated By Mark Ashby
    Overall
    (18)
    Performance
    (18)
    Story
    (18)

    Philosophers don't just make claims, they give arguments. Does the existence of evil call into doubt the existence of God? Show me the argument. Will living a just life lead to happiness? Show me the argument. Philosophy starts with questions, but attempts at answers are just as important, and these answers require reasoned argument. Cutting through notoriously dense and verbose philosophical prose, the authors set 100 famous and influential arguments in context, including key quotations

    GBL says: "Great book, but not for listening!"
    "Like reading a grocery list"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This really is just a reference book for introductory philosophy courses, and it did not translate well at all to the audio format. I'm sure the actual content is of good quality, but it is NOT for the armchair philosopher. As the narrator listed off each component of each argument, it was very difficult to keep track of what was being said. I'm sure reading it would have been better, but again, this isn't a book for readers who just want to know more about the 100 best arguments. It's for people who need to know how the arguments are technically structured.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Ironfire: A Novel of the Knights of Malta and the Last Battle of the Crusades

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By David Ball
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (154)
    Performance
    (126)
    Story
    (130)

    Best-selling author David Ball has won widespread critical and popular acclaim for his sweeping novels, including Empires of Sand. With Ironfire Ball delivers a stirring historical epic of the Crusades. In the 16th century, only the Knights of Malta stand against the Ottoman Empire of Suleiman the Magnificent and his 40,000 brutal warriors.

    Corey says: "Masterpiece !!!!"
    "Great book for psychopaths"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The history is great. There's good character development, the reading is adequate, the book is generally well written... Yet, the majority of the book is spent focusing on making life as miserable as possible for the protagonists you care about. Imagine your sister being raped then locked in a dungeon. Now imagine reading a story about it. You would have to be a psychopath to enjoy it, and that is what this book is like.

    3 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Sam Harris
    • Narrated By Sam Harris
    Overall
    (864)
    Performance
    (504)
    Story
    (492)

    In this explosive new book, Sam Harris tears down the wall between scientific facts and human values, arguing that most people are simply mistaken about the relationship between morality and the rest of human knowledge. Harris urges us to think about morality in terms of human and animal well-being, viewing the experiences of conscious creatures as peaks and valleys on a "moral landscape".

    gerald says: "The book says what many feel, but fear to say"
    "Sam Harris is Awesome"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Sam Harris explains what should be obvious, but isn't to most people. His logic is astounding, and he covers a lot of ground quite effectively in a short amount of time. My only criticism is that he writes like an intellectual, which may be off putting and confusing to the lay listener.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies - How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Michael Shermer
    • Narrated By Michael Shermer
    Overall
    (812)
    Performance
    (590)
    Story
    (587)

    In this, his magnum opus, the world’s best known skeptic and critical thinker Dr. Michael Shermer—founding publisher of Skeptic magazine and perennial monthly columnist (“Skeptic”) for Scientific American—presents his comprehensive theory on how beliefs are born, formed, nourished, reinforced, challenged, changed, and extinguished.

    Leigh says: "Great material. Not-so-great narration."
    "Great book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As the other reviews say, Michael is a better speaker than reader. He's also really bad at pronunciation. If you can get beyond that (I certainly did), this really is a fantastic book. I certainly hope that this will inspire more people to adopt a skeptical philosophy. Yet, I'm sure there are many who would have a hard time with the book. Namely those who fell asleep in science class and stayed awake in Sunday school. But really, EVERYONE needs to read/listen to this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Nonsense on Stilts: How to Tell Science from Bunk

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Massimo Pigliucci
    • Narrated By Jay Russell
    Overall
    (266)
    Performance
    (167)
    Story
    (169)

    Why do people believe bunk? And what causes them to embrace such pseudoscientific beliefs and practices? Noted skeptic Massimo Pigliucci sets out to separate the fact from the fantasy in this entertaining exploration of the nature of science, the borderlands of fringe science, and - borrowing a famous phrase from philosopher Jeremy Bentham - the nonsense on stilts.

    thunder road says: "Thought provoking and relevant"
    "Thoughtful analysis of science's role in society"
    Overall

    It really isn't all about debunking bad science, despite the title. Instead, it goes into a variety of topics related to science in society, and as I said, his discussion of the topics is very thoughtful and not antagonistic. While I don't agree with everything he says, I do think he handled the subject matter quite masterfully.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Evolution of God

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Robert Wright
    • Narrated By Arthur Morey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (601)
    Performance
    (280)
    Story
    (278)

    In this sweeping narrative, which takes us from the Stone Age to the Information Age, Robert Wright unveils an astonishing discovery: there is a hidden pattern that the great monotheistic faiths have followed as they have evolved. Through the prisms of archeology, theology, and evolutionary psychology, Wright's findings overturn basic assumptions about Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and are sure to cause controversy.

    Joseph says: "Very interesting and thought provoking"
    "Good Stuff"
    Overall

    Extremely well researched, reasoned, and fair. For anyone who wants a materialistic explanation of religion via a detailed investigation of the specific contexts that led to conflicting ideologies, THIS IS YOUR BOOK. Of course, I really would like to know what the real scholars think of all of the claims and explanations. So far, I haven't found anything yet.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sync: How Order Emerges from Chaos in the Universe, Nature, and Daily Life

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Steven Strogatz
    • Narrated By Kevin T. Collins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (270)
    Performance
    (191)
    Story
    (194)

    At once elegant and riveting, Sync tells the story of the dawn of a new science. Steven Strogatz, a leading mathematician in the fields of chaos and complexity theory, explains how enormous systems can synchronize themselves, from the electrons in a superconductor to the pacemaker cells in our hearts. He shows that although these phenomena might seem unrelated on the surface, at a deeper level there is a connection, forged by the unifying power of mathematics.

    Ryan says: "Engaging, but maybe better suited for non-audio"
    "One Dense Book"
    Overall

    Maybe I'm dense, but I sure thought this book was a bit on the dry and hard to follow side. Good information to be sure, but a lot of the book goes into excrutiating detail about math experiments. If you're fond of reading academic math journals, this book is for you.

    10 of 14 people found this review helpful

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