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Kate

Santa Barbara, CA, United States | Member Since 2010

3
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 19 reviews
  • 40 ratings
  • 209 titles in library
  • 25 purchased in 2014
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  • I Love Lucy: The Untold Story

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Jess Oppenheimer, Gregg Oppenheimer
    • Narrated By Larry Dobkin, Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz, and others
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    Jess Oppenheimer, "the brains" behind I Love Lucy, gives us an insider's view of this groundbreaking show, generously interspersed with recordings of classic Lucy radio and TV comedy performances - including her famous "Vitameatavegamin" routine. Oppenheimer weaves a wonderfully entertaining tale of the creation of this landmark series and its evolution from Lucy's hit radio sitcom, My Favorite Husband. Lucy aficionados will delight in his personal accounts of stars like Desi Arnaz, William Frawley, Vivian Vance, and of course, Lucille Ball.

    J Frances says: "A must for Lucy fans"
    "A great inside look at an iconic TV show"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about I Love Lucy: The Untold Story?

    I had just listened to a biography of Lucille Ball so it was interesting to hear Oppenheimer's perspective on Lucille, Desi, and the TV show.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I love the TV show and still watch the reruns--I loved hearing about the inside scoop.


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

    no--I just enjoyed it


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Doris Kearns Goodwin
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (414)
    Performance
    (366)
    Story
    (365)

    Goodwin describes the broken friendship between Teddy Roosevelt and his chosen successor, William Howard Taft. With the help of the "muckraking" press, Roosevelt had wielded the Bully Pulpit to challenge and triumph over abusive monopolies, political bosses, and corrupting money brokers. Roosevelt led a revolution that he bequeathed to Taft only to see it compromised as Taft surrendered to money men and big business. The rupture led Roosevelt to run against Taft for president, an ultimately futile race that gave power away to the Democrats.

    Cynthia says: "Makes You Forget You Live in the 21st Century Good"
    "You understand Roosevelt and Taft"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes--I learned so much, especially about Taft and his relationship to Roosevelt.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Bully Pulpit?

    Taft continually giving up the opportunity (his life-long dream) to be on the Supreme Court because he felt a duty to do something else.


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

    Great performer--it was a very long audiobook but I did not get tired to listening to him.


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

    No


    Any additional comments?

    My only complaint is that is was less about journalism and more about Roosevelt and Taft. The title is misleading.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • America at War: Concise Histories of U.S. Military Conflicts from Lexington to Afghanistan

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Terence T. Finn
    • Narrated By Sean Pratt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    War-organized violence against an enemy of the state-seems part and parcel of the American journey. Indeed, the United States was established by means of violence as ordinary citizens from New Hampshire to Georgia answered George Washington's call to arms. Since then, war has become a staple of American history. Counting the War for Independence, the United States has fought the armed forces of other nations at least twelve times, averaging a major conflict every twenty years.

    Kate says: "Fabulous history of US wars"
    "Fabulous history of US wars"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes--interesting and concise look at wars/conflict. I was not generally interested in wars, but this book was a perfect description of how the wars started, how they progressed, and how they ended. More importantly, the author summarized and gave his opinion on who won and who lost and what other outcomes were significant.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of America at War?

    I was struck by the author's determination that dropping the atomic bomb in Japan actually saved lives because the Japanese would not otherwise have given up and more would die in battle.


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

    Excellent performer--perfect way to present this material.


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

    I was struck by the author's determination that dropping the atomic bomb in Japan actually saved lives because the Japanese would not otherwise have given up and more would die in battle. Every story had a interesting perspective.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Burglary: The Discovery of J. Edgar Hoover's Secret FBI

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Betty Medsger
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    Overall
    (47)
    Performance
    (45)
    Story
    (47)

    The never-before-told full story of the history-changing break-in at the FBI office in Media, Pennsylvania, by a group of unlikely activists - quiet, ordinary, hardworking Americans - that made clear the shocking truth and confirmed what some had long suspected, that J. Edgar Hoover had created and was operating, in violation of the U.S. Constitution, his own shadow Bureau of Investigation.

    Susie says: "Forget Ocean's 11"
    "Fascinating story but overdone"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Not sure--I was fascinated by the topic but bored by most of the book. It was overly detailed and strayed too much. It seemed that the author had spent so much time on the burglary and its outcomes that she had to include everything on the topic. If I had been reading the book I would have skipped many parts.


    What other book might you compare The Burglary to and why?

    I just also finished "Flash Boys" by Michael Lewis. The only comparison is that I wanted to meet each of the characters in Lewis' book (even the "bad" guys) but could not really care about any of those in this book. There was something missing from this book--I never got engaged in spite of being interested in the subject.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Bronson Pinchot is an adequate narrator but not a performer for this topic. I found that he made the book boring and I was tempted to stop listening (although I think part of the problem was that the book itself was boring). It was like listening to paint dry.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Dylan Baker
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (320)
    Performance
    (292)
    Story
    (298)

    Michael Lewis returns to the financial world to give listeners a ringside seat as the biggest news story in years prepares to hit Wall Street....

    Darwin8u says: "Making the system deliver on its promise."
    "Another Great Book by Michael Lewis"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Flash Boys in three words, what would they be?

    crazy Wall Street


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    What Lewis describes, in only a way he can, what has been happening with high-frequency trading. I was completely drawn into the characters and the story. The way he describes each character makes you want to meet them personally, whether they are "good" or "bad".


    Which character – as performed by Dylan Baker – was your favorite?

    Ronan--I loved his irreverent language and approach to the business.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    Too many to list! I learned so much from this book and will be more cognizant of what is going on in the market.


    Any additional comments?

    I will read/listen to anything Michael Lewis writes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • What Einstein Told His Barber: More Scientific Answers to Everyday Questions

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Robert L. Wolke
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye
    Overall
    (33)
    Performance
    (29)
    Story
    (29)

    Arranged in a question-and-answer format, What Einstein Told His Barber is for anyone who ever pondered such things as why colors fade in sunlight, what happens to the rubber from worn-out tires, what makes red-hot objects glow red, and other scientific curiosities.

    Kate says: "Another great Wolke book"
    "Another great Wolke book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about What Einstein Told His Barber?

    As with all of Wolke's entertaining books, I learned a lot about everyday things that are fascinating


    What other book might you compare What Einstein Told His Barber to and why?

    Wolke's other books about everyday science explained in plain terms


    What aspect of Stephen Hoye’s performance would you have changed?

    I listened to his work on a book about Scientology and he did a great job, but I did not like him for this particular book. For this book I wish they had used Sean Runnette, who narrated Wolke's other books. Runnette has the perfect voice--I felt like I was listening to the author, who is clever and funny, narrate his own book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Short History of Nearly Everything

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Bill Bryson
    • Narrated By Richard Matthews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6270)
    Performance
    (2131)
    Story
    (2139)

    Bill Bryson has been an enormously popular author both for his travel books and for his books on the English language. Now, this beloved comic genius turns his attention to science. Although he doesn't know anything about the subject (at first), he is eager to learn, and takes information that he gets from the world's leading experts and explains it to us in a way that makes it exciting and relevant.

    Corby says: "Very informative, fun to listen to"
    "An around (and above and below) view of the world"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to A Short History of Nearly Everything the most enjoyable?

    I learned so much about all kinds of things and found it interesting--I don't think I would have enjoyed reading the book as much as I did listening


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Short History of Nearly Everything?

    I really enjoyed hearing about all of the characters behind some of the great discoveries and what happened to them (and their discoveries)


    What about Richard Matthews’s performance did you like?

    Articulate and not overly dramatic


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

    Bryson's view of how we as human's are not the best protectors of our own world


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • What Einstein Kept Under His Hat: Secrets of Science in the Kitchen

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Robert L. Wolke, Marlene Parrish
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    Overall
    (186)
    Performance
    (164)
    Story
    (157)

    Have you ever wondered why onions make us cry? Do you believe bananas contain more calories as they ripen and get sweeter? This sequel to the best-selling What Einstein Told His Cook continues Robert L. Wolke's investigations into the science behind our foods.

    Jerker says: "Funny and interesting, but badly edited"
    "An enjoyable look at science for non-scientists"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up What Einstein Kept Under His Hat in three words, what would they be?

    understandable scientific concepts


    What other book might you compare What Einstein Kept Under His Hat to and why?

    Wolke's book about the science of cooking and food--basic,understandable, interesting facts and concepts about things I did not know


    Any additional comments?

    Enjoyed this book although there was some crossover with his book on cooking

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Bill Bryson
    • Narrated By Rob McQuay
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (394)
    Performance
    (357)
    Story
    (364)

    The Appalachian Trail trail stretches from Georgia to Maine and covers some of the most breathtaking terrain in America - majestic mountains, silent forests, sparking lakes. If you’re going to take a hike, it’s probably the place to go. And Bill Bryson is surely the most entertaing guide you’ll find. He introduces us to the history and ecology of the trail and to some of the other hardy (or just foolhardy) folks he meets along the way - and a couple of bears. Already a classic, A Walk in the Woods will make you long for the great outdoors (or at least a comfortable chair to sit and read in).

    colleen says: "What a treat"
    "Loved this book--unexpected story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to A Walk in the Woods the most enjoyable?

    Bryson is a great writer and the narrator did a wonderful job of capturing the humor. I was mesmerized by his experience and his relationship with his friend Katz.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of A Walk in the Woods?

    When Bryson "loses" his friend Katz in the woods.


    Which character – as performed by Rob McQuay – was your favorite?

    The female hiker they ran into who asserted herself as a hiking expert (and chastised them for their amateurish methods).


    Any additional comments?

    I am listening to most of Bryson's books now after listening to my favorite book of 2013--One Summer, America 1927which he wrote. I am not always sure about how listening to some books would be better listened to than read, but his books are amazing audiobooks. The performances really add to the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • What Einstein Told His Cook: Kitchen Science Explained

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Robert L. Wolke
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    Overall
    (789)
    Performance
    (663)
    Story
    (656)

    Why is red meat red? How do they decaffeinate coffee? Do you wish you understood the science of food but don't want to plow through dry, technical books? In What Einstein Told His Cook, University of Pittsburgh chemistry professor emeritus and award-winning Washington Post food columnist Robert L. Wolke provides reliable and witty explanations for your most burning food questions, while debunking misconceptions and helping you interpret confusing advertising and labeling.

    colleen says: "It was actually pretty interesting"
    "I loved this book (and I am not a cook)"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of What Einstein Told His Cook to be better than the print version?

    YES! The narrator sounded like I imagined the author--funny, wry, captivating. For sure it made the story come alive in a way that I would not have enjoyed a print version.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    Making the science of food and cooking simple and compelling.


    Have you listened to any of Sean Runnette’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I don't think I have heard him narrate before.


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

    No but parts made me laugh.


    Any additional comments?

    I got this in an Audible "sale"--it is not a book I would otherwise buy but I loved it so much that I bought all of the author's other books.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Wilson

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By A. Scott Berg
    • Narrated By Jeremy Bobb
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (67)
    Performance
    (60)
    Story
    (61)

    A hundred years after his inauguration, Woodrow Wilson still stands as one of the most influential figures of the 20th century, and one of the most enigmatic. And now, after more than a decade of research and writing, Pulitzer Prize-winning author A. Scott Berg has completed Wilson - the most personal and penetrating biography ever written about the 28th President. This is not just Wilson the icon - but Wilson the man.

    Jean says: "A complex man"
    "Wonderful story of an amazing president"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Wilson?

    I learned so much about Wilson as a man and president. It was such a great story and helped frame that period of time in US history. It was well-written and edited (something I notice more when I listen to a book than when I read one).


    Have you listened to any of Jeremy Bobb’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This is my first book narrated by Bobb.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Wilson--Man and President


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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