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Dave

ratings
103
REVIEWS
23
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
1
HELPFUL VOTES
60

  • Automate This: How Algorithms Came to Rule Our World

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Christopher Steiner
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (916)
    Performance
    (798)
    Story
    (795)

    It used to be that to diagnose an illness, interpret legal documents, analyze foreign policy, or write a newspaper article you needed a human being with specific skills - and maybe an advanced degree or two. These days, high-level tasks are increasingly being handled by algorithms that can do precise work not only with speed but also with nuance. These "bots" started with human programming and logic, but now their reach extends beyond what their creators ever expected.

    PHIL says: "Wide-ranging, non-technical"
    "An eye-opener, well told"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The title is spot on when is says algorithms "rule our world." The scope, extent and impact of algorithms is mind-blowing.

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful
  • Just One Damned Thing After Another: The Chronicles of St Mary's, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Jodi Taylor
    • Narrated By Zara Ramm
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (902)
    Performance
    (813)
    Story
    (815)

    Behind the seemingly innocuous fa├žade of St Mary's, a different kind of historical research is taking place. They don't do 'time-travel' - they 'investigate major historical events in contemporary time'. Maintaining the appearance of harmless eccentrics is not always within their power - especially given their propensity for causing loud explosions when things get too quiet. Meet the disaster-magnets of St Mary's Institute of Historical Research as they ricochet around History.

    Sires says: "Action Adventure Time Travel Novel w/ Good Reader"
    "It's OK"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a pleasant enough time travel book with a good narrator and an interesting protagonist, but it's nothing special.

    The plot struck me as weak and at times I felt like I was listening to an abridged version (but I wasn't). IMHO it pales in comparison with some of Connie Willis's books which have more well developed characters and feature plots with much more tension and drama.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kansas City Lightning: The Rise and Times of Charlie Parker

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Stanley Crouch
    • Narrated By Kevin Kenerly
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    Kansas City Lightning: The Rise and Times of Charlie Parker is the first installment in the long-awaited portrait of one of the most talented and influential musicians of the twentieth century, from Stanley Crouch, one of the foremost authorities on jazz and culture in America. Throughout his life, Charlie Parker personified the tortured American artist: A revolutionary performer who used his alto saxophone to create a new music known as bebop even as he wrestled with a drug addiction that would lead to his death at the age of thirty-four.

    Dave says: "A Multifaceted Gem"
    "A Multifaceted Gem"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is excellent on so many levels: an erudite but very accessible history of pre-war America; a feels-like-you-are-there view of jazz bands battling for supremacy at the Savoy; a phenomenal account of what its like to hop a train in Kansas City and ride to New York City (and how that train ride is a metaphorical change...not just a geographical one)...and so much more.

    This is volume 1 of what will be a 2 volume biography of jazz great Charlie Parker. Author Stanley Crouch does an amazing job of describing the social, political and musical context that influenced Parker. He makes the reader (or, as the case may be, listener) feel like they are there. The only other author I encountered who has done as good a job of providing absolutely fascinating context to help drive a biography is Robert Caro, author of the multi-volume biography of Lyndon Baines Johnson.

    The performance by Kevin Kenerly is superb and he is up to the task of performing a wide variety of material--whether it be describing the love story between Charlie Parker and his first wife Rebecca, the evolution of jazz, the sociopolitical condition of African Americans in the 20s and 30s, or dialog between a drug addict and an hobo.

    This is much more than a niche book for jazz fans; it's highly recommended for all Audible members who enjoy engaging biographies supported by outstanding narration.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Time-Tested Strategy for Succesful Investing

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Burton Malkiel
    • Narrated By Kerin McCue
    Overall
    (265)
    Performance
    (121)
    Story
    (120)

    More than a million copies of this indispensible investment classic have been sold since its first publication. This fresh version is completely revised by author Burton G. Malkiel to reflect modern financial concerns and trends.

    ike9898 says: "enlightening, but parts are hard to listen to"
    "Must reading for any investor"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Well document and highly accessible, this book is must reading for any investor, regardless or experience and the amount available to save. It provides a sound framework for thinking about investments.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • In the Morning I'll Be Gone: Troubles Trilogy, Book 3 (Detective Sean Duffy, Book 3)

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Adrian McKinty
    • Narrated By Gerard Doyle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (602)
    Performance
    (541)
    Story
    (533)

    It's the early 1980s in Belfast. Sean Duffy, a conflicted Catholic cop in the Protestant RUC (Royal Ulster Constabulary), is recruited by MI5 to hunt down Dermot McCann, an IRA master bomber who has made a daring escape from the notorious Maze prison. In the course of his investigations, Sean discovers a woman who may hold the key to Dermot's whereabouts; she herself wants justice for her daughter who died in mysterious circumstances in a pub locked from the inside.

    Daniel Mcafee says: "One of my Favorites"
    "Audio book magic; Highly Recommended"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Adrian McKinty is a terrific writer and the Troubles Trilogy (about a pot-smoking Catholic police officer working for the British forces occupying Northern Ireland) is a really good story.

    But the most important thing to say in a review of this book is that the pairing of author McKinty with Narrator Doyle is pure audio book magic. It is transformative, adding depth and nuance to the story.

    I'm sorry that this series ended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose from Defeat to Create the New Majority

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Patrick J. Buchanan
    • Narrated By Arthur Morey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (12)

    After suffering stinging defeats in the 1960 presidential election against John F. Kennedy, and in the 1962 California gubernatorial election, Nixon's career was declared dead by Washington press and politicians alike. Yet on January 20, 1969, just six years after he had said his political life was over, Nixon would stand taking the oath of office as 37th President of the United States. How did Richard Nixon resurrect a ruined career and reunite a shattered and fractured Republican Party to capture the White House?

    Mike says: "Great history of Nixon in the wildernest"
    "Interesting Political History"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This insider's view of Nixon's political comeback gives us a glimpse of an era when successful politicians (both Democratic and Republicans) tried to build coalitions around the center rather than appeal to the extremes of their respective parties.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Big Little Lies

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs)
    • By Liane Moriarty
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3077)
    Performance
    (2819)
    Story
    (2818)

    Pirriwee Public's annual school Trivia Night has ended in a shocking riot. One parent is dead. The school principal is horrified. As police investigate what appears to have been a tragic accident, signs begin to indicate that this devastating death might have been cold-blooded murder. In this thought-provoking novel, number-one New York Times best-selling author Liane Moriarty deftly explores the reality of parenting and playground politics, ex-husbands and ex-wives, and fractured families.

    Joanne M. McGowan says: "I didn't want to press the stop button!"
    "S....L....O....W"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While the underlying themes of domestic violence and bullying are crucially important, this book dilutes them with hours and hours of meaningless gossip and the "problems" of this group of highly privileged preschool parents.

    The first four hours were the most tedious I've ever encountered in my audio book journey, with one exception. I slogged on through it because of all the good reviews, but in retrospect I wouldn't do it again. Eventually I went to 1.25x speed then 1.5x and ultimately 2x speed to get through this bloated work.

    This would have been a super-compelling book if it had been edited down to an 8 hour unabridged edition. At 16 hours, it is torture.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D.
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2404)
    Performance
    (2010)
    Story
    (1983)

    Based on Stanford University psychologist Kelly McGonigal's wildly popular course The Science of Willpower, The Willpower Instinct is the first book to explain the new science of self-control and how it can be harnessed to improve our health, happiness, and productivity. Informed by the latest research and combining cutting-edge insights from psychology, economics, neuroscience, and medicine, The Willpower Instinct explains exactly what willpower is, how it works, and why it matters.

    Niv says: "life changing one of the best I read"
    "Some good information...but slooow going"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Dr. McGonigal provides an overview of the theory and practice of willpower, much of which is drawn from McGonigal's course at Stanford. I thought it was interesting, but I think the same content could have been delivered more efficiently if, perhaps, 1/3 of the text was edited out.

    I'm sure that many listeners would say that Walter Dixon's narration was pleasant and well delivered, but it was way too slow for me. I played much of it at 2x speed (a first for me) because it seem to be going in slow motion.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Beat the Reaper: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Josh Bazell
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1187)
    Performance
    (477)
    Story
    (475)

    Meet Peter Brown, a young Manhattan emergency room doctor with an unusual past that is just about to catch up with him. His morning begins with the quick disarming of a would-be mugger, followed by a steamy elevator encounter with a sexy young pharmaceutical rep, topped off by a visit with a new patient - and from there Peter's day is going to get a whole lot worse and a whole lot weirder.

    Chuck says: "Great book and great narrator"
    ""Goodfellas" Goes to Medical School"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Josh Bazell is a stunningly effective writer whose prose crackles with energy in this book about a former mob enforcer turned physician. Robert Petkoff gives, perhaps, my all-time-favorite narration bringing a wide range of voices to life.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Kill Decision

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Daniel Suarez
    • Narrated By Jeff Gurner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2963)
    Performance
    (2643)
    Story
    (2652)

    Linda McKinney is a myrmecologist, a scientist who studies the social structure of ants. Her academic career has left her entirely unprepared for the day her sophisticated research is conscripted by unknown forces to help run an unmanned - and thanks to her research, automated - drone army. Odin is the secretive Special Ops soldier with a unique insight into the faceless enemy who has begun to attack the American homeland with drones programmed to seek, identify, and execute targets.

    Madeleine says: "What's that droning sound?"
    "Suarez's premise is entirely believable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book features the synergistic pairing of Daniel Suarez and narrator Jeff Gurner, in a thriller whose premise is definitely not far-fetched.

    I thought the first part of the book was especially good as the plot unfolded. The action lagged in the middle third, but picked up toward the end of the book. I am sure there will be a sequel.

    I don't want to disclose any of the plot, but suffice it to say that when you listen to this book, and reflect upon related newspaper articles, the premise is entirely believable. It would not surprise me at all if some (maybe not all, but some) of this stuff starts to happen in the near future. Scary.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Dark Pools: High-Speed Traders, A.I. Bandits, and the Threat to the Global Financial System

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Scott Patterson
    • Narrated By Byron Wagner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (231)
    Performance
    (200)
    Story
    (198)

    In the beginning was Josh Levine, an idealistic programming genius who dreamed of wresting control of the market from the big exchanges that, again and again, gave the giant institutions an advantage over the little guy. Levine created a computerized trading hub named "Island" where small traders swapped stocks, and over time his invention morphed into a global electronic stock market that sent trillions in capital through a vast jungle of fiber-optic cables.

    Gary says: "Definitive history on Electronic Trading"
    "Think you understand Wall Street? Guess again"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    High-speed trading has revolutionized the stock market over the last 10 years and brought with it a whole array of risks, including flash crashes. And it could get worse as the computer-driven system becomes increasingly autonomous and too complex for people to understand.

    This book tells the story of how it happened.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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