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Sean

COLUMBIA, MD, United States

2
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 10 reviews
  • 14 ratings
  • 101 titles in library
  • 24 purchased in 2014
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  • Running with the Kenyans: Passion, Adventure, and the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Adharanand Finn
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (153)
    Performance
    (135)
    Story
    (136)

    Whether running is your recreation, your religion, or just a spectator sport, Adharanand Finn’s incredible journey to the elite training camps of Kenya will captivate and inspire you. Part travelogue, part memoir, this mesmerizing quest to uncover the secrets of the world’s greatest runners - and put them to the test - combines practical advice, a fresh look at barefoot running, and hard-won spiritual insights.

    Sharlene says: "His Curiosity is Contagious"
    "Educational first hand account"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Depends. If they want to delve directly into learning the Kenyan culture of running to "feel" what it is that makes them great then yes. If they are just looking for facts about what the Kenyans do right then no. The facts can be found elsewhere. This is a story of a guy visiting Kenya to run with the Kenyan's and understand what makes them great. But there really isn't a secret as to what that is. It's a combination of many things and I'm sure there are summaries online that explain everything revealed in this book in a simpler format. Since this is the authors experience in Kenya he tells side stories about his family and what life is like there. Often they aren't relevant to why I choose to read the book and in addition I found them boring. Frequently I found myself screaming in my head, "stop telling me all these meaningless details from your everyday life!". I didn't want to hear about him not getting offered tea when he visited someone. I did get some useful information from Finn's experience though. Since the information was surrounding a real story it may help me remember it in the proper context better. From that perspective the book was a success for me. Being able to see how facts connect to reality is the biggest value I got from this book.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Adharanand Finn? Why or why not?

    No. He includes too many details of little importance to hold my attention. His story also starts too slow and strays from the central point of the book too much. I'd rather not go through that again.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Sort of. Too slow in my opinion with unnecessarily long pauses. Once he got talking about events it wasn't too bad. Most of all though the voice just didn't match how I imagined the character sounding. I know Finn is British but the narrator sounded like a grandfather too tired to walk rather than an above average marathoner in his 30's. And the English expressions in the tone of the narrator to me sounded awful sometimes. On several occasions at least I recall thinking that the author couldn't have actually used that tone matched to those expressions when he spoke to the Kenyans. I guess i could be wrong but that's what I thought of.


    What else would you have wanted to know about Adharanand Finn’s life?

    Yes. I'd like to have known more about his work with Runner's World magazine. Was he writing articles for them while he was in Kenya? What were his typical topics? Did he work much in Kenya? What kind of hours and schedules did he work? Did Runner's World pay for any of his travels and running stuff in Kenya? His occupation seems like such a useful piece of information yet Finn left out much of it's influence on his Kenya trip. Surely he was able to move to Kenya partly because Runner's World loved the idea. But he just leaves that whole piece rather empty.


    Any additional comments?

    Decent book overall. But it lacked many of the things that make a great book and great narration. I don't regret buying it but wish it were priced less considering it's quality.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Paleo Diet for Athletes Guide: Paleo Meal Plans for Endurance Athletes, Strength Training, and Fitness

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Rockridge Press
    • Narrated By Kevin Pierce
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    Maximize your workout with lean proteins and superior carbohydrates. Paleo Diet for Athletes is the ultimate guide to building strength and endurance by feeding your body foods that get results.

    The Paleo diet is a lifestyle change, not a weight loss fad. Paleo athletes eat nutritious, natural, and unprocessed foods that build muscle, boost stamina, and increase workout time.

    Brad says: "Don't waste your time or money on this one!"
    "Informative and concise"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes if they were an athlete and strongly considering a Paleo diet. It provides practical DIY details into how to hone such a diet for specific sports.


    What was most disappointing about Rockridge Press’s story?

    I thought there would be more variety to the diet described. My biggest take away was that sweet potatoes and walnuts are awesome and grains are not. So that was less than expected.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Yes. Not too fast or slow or out of tone. It was boring sometimes though. Buying a Paleo cookbook might have been just as effective.


    Could you see Paleo Diet for Athletes Guide being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    No. Unless they make a cooking channel showing how to make some of the foods described. I actually tried a couple of the recipes. Seeing someone do the food prep as it's being described could be really useful.


    Any additional comments?

    While I enjoyed this snippet into a diet that I don't use I think there was other less time consuming ways to find out what this book explains. i.e. a few specific internet searches could get most of it. The book just puts it in an organized grouping. If an interested reader is on the fence I'd say just do some Googling. Look into: Paleo's origins, science behind it, key tenants, adaptations for athletes, and FAQ. That's the book in a nutshell.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Finding Ultra: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World’s Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Rich Roll
    • Narrated By Rich Roll
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (901)
    Performance
    (820)
    Story
    (816)

    An incredible but true account of achieving one of the most awe-inspiring midlife physical transformations ever

    In October 2006, the night before he was to turn forty, Rich experienced a chilling glimpse of his future. Nearly fifty pounds overweight and unable to climb the stairs without stopping, he saw where his sedentary lifestyle was taking him. Most of us look the other way when granted such a moment of clarity, but not Rich.

    J. Camara says: "Insightful conquering life's challenges"
    "Inspiring and full of useful information"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Finding Ultra?

    The details of his diet. He summarized well including scientific reasoning for what he eats and why. I took long notes about his food and drink choices and did further research about it on my own. While the story was inspiring and fun to hear, it's the diet information that I've continued to put to work each week.


    What other book might you compare Finding Ultra to and why?

    I'd slightly compare this to Scott Jurek's book Eat & Run. Mainly because of the blend between his personal life and his eating life. Both overcame some heavy life stuff to become awesome athletes and both espouse similar healthy eating plans.


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

    No. I can't offer comparison here.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. It's plenty long enough to listen to over days. Plus I waned to think about what he did before continuing so I could wrap my mind around his accomplishments. In addition, taking notes and doing follow on research about his diet assertions was helpful to me getting the most from this audiobook. This required time and I would have missed much by cranking through it in one sitting.


    Any additional comments?

    Humble and filled with details. This was well worth the money and time. In fact, I bought a Vitamix blender after hearing what Rich could do with one. Next to entering an Ultra-man race I'd say this book was very impactful on me and could be for others.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • My Story

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Elizabeth Smart, Chris Stewart
    • Narrated By Elizabeth Smart
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (691)
    Performance
    (630)
    Story
    (638)

    On June 5, 2002, 14-year-old Elizabeth Smart, the daughter of a close-knit Mormon family, was taken from her home in the middle of the night by religious fanatic, Brian David Mitchell and his wife, Wanda Barzee. She was kept chained, dressed in disguise, repeatedly raped, and told she and her family would be killed if she tried to escape. After her rescue on March 12, 2003, she rejoined her family and worked to pick up the pieces of her life.

    Erin says: "Uplifting?"
    "Captivating story, educational, and emotional."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of My Story to be better than the print version?

    I haven't read the print version but in general I would say yes. Elizabeth herself reads it which is meaningful for this story. Also, there isn't much about this story that requires a person to re-read it. So hearing it once in audio at the pace and tone it was written is probably better than what may happen if read in print.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of My Story?

    When there are police nearby looking for Elizabeth but she is too afraid to scream to them for help. For me such a concept as not screaming for help when it's so desperately wanted was shocking. Yet Elizabeth does well at describing why this was so. I found that to be a powerful example and insight into how these crimes evade discovery.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Since most of the first half of the book is about lots of bad stuff happening, the part that was my favorite was Elizabeth being reunited with her family. I won't spoil it but it was quite the scene to read about. Especially, knowing it's actually happened and all that went on leading up to it.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. Sometimes it seemed like I wanted to get through it quickly. But there is only so much of the dark stuff described that I could take in one sitting. Don't get me wrong, it's not all dark, but I wanted breaks between large sections.


    Any additional comments?

    I thought the story was well told. A reasonable amount of detail was provided to honestly and throughly tell the story without going too deep into stuff that's inappropriate to share.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail (Oprah's Book Club 2.0)

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Cheryl Strayed
    • Narrated By Bernadette Dunne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3689)
    Performance
    (3254)
    Story
    (3268)

    At 22, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother's death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life: to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State - and to do it alone. She had no experience as a long-distance hiker, and the trail was little more than “an idea, vague and outlandish and full of promise.” But it was a promise of piecing back together a life that had come undone.

    FanB14 says: "Glad I Took the Trip"
    "Interesting, honest, and inspiring."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Yes. Mostly. Gave me insight into her experience on the PCT. How she handled the challenges, what the people were like, and the tie into her life themes. I enjoy learning about this stuff because a) I am a long distance hiker and can benefit from some of it and b) I enjoy hearing other people's life stories for entertainment and edification.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    I was happy with it. It made sense given the story that unfolded and how the true character developed. It didn't leave me with many unrequited frustrations like some stories do.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    The voice didn't sound as I would have pictured the character. It took some getting used to her tone.


    Could you see Wild being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Maybe. It's got the drama and suspense for either. Movie maybe because it could show the highlights of the experience. Series since it could get into the deeper themes of the characters life which were explained in the story. Much of the book spent time on those things. I don't think any known stars should play in it. An all new cast would be appropriate for the haphazard type theme that the main character experiences. No known character could fit that well.


    Any additional comments?

    As a long distance hiker myself much of the experience the author described was very familiar to me. In that regard I was a little disappointed. I can imagine someone who has never backpacked more than a couple days on a trail would find the story way more exciting than I did.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Eat and Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Scott Jurek, Steve Friedman
    • Narrated By Quincy Dunn-Baker
    Overall
    (797)
    Performance
    (722)
    Story
    (732)

    A dominant force in the sport of ultrarunning, Scott Jurek is a seven-time winner of the 100-mile Western States Endurance Run and a two-time winner of the 135-mile Badwater Ultramarathon through Death Valley. Eat & Run offers an inspirational account of Jurek’s life as a runner and vegan. Regaling listeners with jaw-dropping tales of endurance, Jurek also delivers sound science and practical advice—as well as his favorite plant-based recipes.

    Andy says: "one of the better ultramarathon books"
    "Enjoyed it and learned a lot"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does Eat and Run rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This book ranks in the top quarter of the audiobooks I've listened to.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Eat and Run?

    Description of Scott vomiting during the Badwater race.


    What does Quincy Dunn-Baker bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I wouldn't have pictured Scott having such a pissed off voice the entire time throughout Quincy's reading. I still imagine that Scott doesn't have such a voice but it colored the whole books experience. There was a number of situations where it was appropriate to convey the competitive and tough nature of the scene. I'd say there was equally enough situations where it wasn't appropriate. Every other time was just annoying to hear that tone. By the end I got used to some but would have preferred it not be that way.


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

    This book did make me laugh at several parts and there were a few others that were very touching. I've done enough crying over my own losses so I passed on doing it here. But Scott's story is very real and human. I'm glad he shared the depth of his life. As a result the story was powerful and inspiring. If I go out and run my first ultra-marathon then I'd say I had an extreme reaction to this book. And I do want to run one now.


    Any additional comments?

    The book includes many valuable suggestions for runners. I frequently stopped and took notes so I could examine and try some of his suggestions. Considering I've been a runner for 15+ years I'd say this is worth noting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By John J. Ratey
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    Overall
    (2673)
    Performance
    (1703)
    Story
    (1684)

    Did you know you can beat stress, lift your mood, fight memory loss, sharpen your intellect, and function better than ever simply by elevating your heart rate and breaking a sweat? The evidence is incontrovertible: Aerobic exercise physically remodels our brains for peak performance.

    Kathleen says: "Spark"
    "Valuable Information in this Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. Factual information can be life transformative to someone depressed, anxious, mal nourished, or who struggles with addictive behavior. To someone already in a regular exercise routine it is supportive, informative, and motivational. I think most people could benefit from this information. I wish I knew it when I was younger. It may have saved me from much misery in my life.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Spark?

    His story of kids at a school that included vigorous aerobic exercise in their curriculum. About how they learned better,performed better academically, and had less behavioral issues.


    What about Walter Dixon’s performance did you like?

    Yes. Clean and well spoke. Good tempo and tone.


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

    The discussion about exercise and depression. I've had a number of personal experiences of dealing with depression when my physical activity decreased. Trying to describe that to friends, relatives, and even doctors was always frustrating. Now I know some of the neuroscience behind what was happening. It justified much of what I've been telling people for years and had to discover the hard way on my own. From this book I have an even clearer perspective on my own condition and how to maintain and improve the quality of my life.


    Any additional comments?

    To those who don't like exercise. The author discusses how it is true that some people may be genetically predisposed to not "like" exercise. However, he told story after story of when "those" people tried aerobic exercise it was life transforming for them. Angry people becoming calm, anxious people becoming confident, unfocused people becoming focused. Almost biblical healing kind of stuff. If only so many more of those people knew how they could help themselves how much happier people would be. This idea was one of the more profound this book has to offer.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ultramarathon Man: Confession of an All-Night Runner

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Dean Karnazes
    • Narrated By James Yaegashi
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (436)
    Performance
    (223)
    Story
    (225)

    Karnazes reveals the mind-boggling adventures of his nonstop treks through the hell of Death Valley, the incomprehensible frigidity of the South Pole, and the breathtaking beauty of the mountains and canyons of the Sierra Nevada.

    Andrea says: "Not as self-congratulating as others have said"
    "Fun and inspiring story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Ultramarathon Man to be better than the print version?

    Haven't read the print version.


    What other book might you compare Ultramarathon Man to and why?

    I read Born to Run a couple years ago and Ultramarathon Man reminds me of it. The description of the races is similar and discussions of the training routines were comparable. The format of having short stories within the master story is also a like between the two books including the details about events. The flavor of humor and awe written into the stories I think is alike between the two books as well. Overall, both were fascinating tales of a kind of life I hadn't experienced but could relate to somewhat as a runner. Born to Run I think was more enjoyable and informative but Ultramarathon Man definitely held my attention.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Yes and no. There were long pauses in the narration which didn't make sense. The narrator didn't always match the enthusiasm or condition of the character. On the positive side the slow pace of narration did go well with the concept of Dean running 100 mile races. A slow pace to draw out the sense of distance.


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

    Confessions of an All Night Runner


    Any additional comments?

    I read the reviews for this book in advance. The more negative reviews helped to prepare me for a sometimes annoying theme of the book. Dean talks much about himself and his accomplishments and not about those of the crazy people he meets. Born to Run provided a better rounded picture of the long distance running community. That said, I don't think Dean is an egotistical power and fame hungry selfist that some of the reviews present. He's simply telling HIS story. Dean's journey is his journey and that's what's told here. It sounds sometimes like he enjoys bragging only about himself. To some extent that is ok considering what he's done. I would have enjoyed less of that tone and some more side stories about the other runners he met or competed against. To be clear though, I don't think that aspect significantly ruined the book. It gave it a more personal flare and if nothing else probably communicates the competitive psyche behind a man that pushes himself to run over 200 miles.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Atlas Shrugged

    • UNABRIDGED (63 hrs)
    • By Ayn Rand
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (5704)
    Performance
    (3640)
    Story
    (3668)

    In a scrap heap within an abandoned factory, the greatest invention in history lies dormant and unused. By what fatal error of judgment has its value gone unrecognized, its brilliant inventor punished rather than rewarded for his efforts? In defense of those greatest of human qualities that have made civilization possible, one man sets out to show what would happen to the world if all the heroes of innovation and industry went on strike.

    Mica says: "Hurt version decidedly superior"
    "Engaging story and philosophy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Atlas Shrugged again? Why?

    No. It's too long. But I'd consider it if I had the time and wanted to re-enjoy the beauty of language used well and the story of important philosophy woven into a story of several people.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Atlas Shrugged?

    A discussion on the purpose of money.


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

    Elements of tone and personality to the characters and situation which helped make the story come alive.


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

    Many. Discussions of trade and money. Logic tirades arguing the harms of socialism and the value in a merit based system.


    Any additional comments?

    Though I drool over pro-capitalism and meritocracy literature it should be noted that not all of Rand's points make sense universal. She does tend to make things linear and absolute which in reality are not. Perhaps that's the beauty of her work in that she can make things absolute and clear to illustrate her points. Although, I would caution a reader that if they have conservative views or understand a more balanced approach to marketplace interaction some parts of this book may rub the wrong way.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America's Rich

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Thomas J. Stanley, William D. Danko
    • Narrated By Cotter Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2003)
    Performance
    (960)
    Story
    (951)

    Listen to the incredible national best seller that is changing people's lives - and increasing their net worth. Also available:
    The Millionaire Mind.

    Mason says: "Light Went on in My Head"
    "Informative and helpful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to The Millionaire Next Door again? Why?

    Yes. The facts included from research and real world examples made the points come to life in a very real way. It allowed the content to sink in and stick in my memory. In addition, the content was relevant to exactly what I wanted to know.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Millionaire Next Door?

    Describing how a typical medium income level earning person becomes a millionaire.


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

    No. n/a


    What’s an idea from the book that you will remember?

    The concept of investing time in how to invest and bend everyday financial decisions into an orchestra building a symphony of wealth.


    Any additional comments?

    I recommend this to other people looking to build wealth from modest incomes. Or really any income level.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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