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TX lilbit

AusTX Lilbit

Austin, TX | Member Since 2009

21
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 8 reviews
  • 55 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 31 purchased in 2014
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  • How Markets Fail: The Logic of Economic Calamities

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By John Cassidy
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (336)
    Performance
    (168)
    Story
    (168)

    Behind the alarming headlines about job losses, bank bailouts, and corporate greed, there is a little-known story of bad ideas. For 50 years or more, economists have been busy developing elegant theories of how markets work - how they facilitate innovation, wealth creation, and an efficient allocation of society's resources. But what about when markets don't work?

    Ben says: "Way more than I expected"
    "Crystal clear explanations of hidden forces"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I loved this book. Did I think a book about the recent financial crisis and markets in general, written by an economist, would be riveting? No - but (and don't laugh) this is. It held my attention better than most fiction, and clarified for me (a non-economist for sure) all the forces that led, step by step, to the economic meltdown and the mortgage crisis. I thought I understood, and I did, on a surface level, but after listening to this book I'm much better able to articulate what went wrong. In fact I'm going to start the book over from the beginning to really cement the information in my mind. The narrator is excellent by the way. Not every voice or delivery would have been appropriate to the subject, without being dull. I really recommend this audio recording.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Telling Room: A Tale of Love, Betrayal, Revenge, and the World's Greatest Piece of Cheese

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Michael Paterniti
    • Narrated By L.J. Ganser
    Overall
    (102)
    Performance
    (86)
    Story
    (89)

    In the picturesque village of Guzmán, Spain, in a cave dug into a hillside on the edge of town, an ancient door leads to a cramped limestone chamber known as “the telling room”. Containing nothing but a wooden table and two benches, this is where villagers have gathered for centuries to share their stories and secrets - usually accompanied by copious amounts of wine. It was here, in the summer of 2000, that Michael Paterniti found himself listening to a larger-than-life Spanish cheesemaker named Ambrosio Molinos de las Heras as he spun an odd and compelling tale about a piece of cheese.

    Melinda says: "The Original Canned Cheese"
    "too bad another author didn't scoop this story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What would have made The Telling Room better?

    narrator dreadful - like the worst kind of sportscaster. Very clear he read this book through for the first time when it was recorded.


    What could Michael Paterniti have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    overheated incoherent writing packed with cliches - author completely self-involved. Less blabbing about awful author and his boring personal journey as a writer, and more about cheesemaker.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    weird parsing choices, blaring and boring delivery, wanted to slap him.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Telling Room?

    I would have given the story idea to a different author.


    Any additional comments?

    I love foodie stories. I hated this author and this book. My personal nightmare would be sitting next to this self-obsessed hack of a writer at a dinner party.

    3 of 6 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
    (857)
    Performance
    (320)
    Story
    (324)

    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"
    "Great narration of a great classic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I wasn't sure I'd enjoy listening to this novel as much as I'd enjoyed reading it, but the narrator did an excellent job. A wonderful book, of course - these characters are so completely and convincingly expressed, you'll have trouble believing you didn't meet them in real life.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Gilded Age

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Mark Twain, Charles Dudley Warner
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (8)

    The Gilded Age is the collaborative work of Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warner that satirized the era that followed the Civil War. This period is often referred to as the “Gilded Age” because of this book. The corruption and greed that was typical of the time is exemplified through two fictional narratives: one, of the Hawkins, a poor family from Tennessee that tries to persuade the government to purchase their seventy-five thousand acres of unimproved land.

    TX lilbit says: "An American classic, beautifully narrated"
    "An American classic, beautifully narrated"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really enjoyed this. I love Mark Twain and Bronson Pinchot reads him beautifully (also highly recommend Pinchot reading Twain's memoirs). It's startling to realize how well-established the short-term profit/self-interest first/speculator vein was in American culture in Twain's time. It gives some perspective on recent events. I listened to "How Markets Fail" just before this book, in a funny way they compliment each other ;-).

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Sense of an Ending: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Julian Barnes
    • Narrated By Richard Morant
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (769)
    Performance
    (651)
    Story
    (655)

    Tony Webster and his clique first met Adrian Finn at school. Sex-hungry and book-hungry, they would navigate the girl-less sixth form together, trading in affectations, in-jokes, rumor, and wit. Maybe Adrian was a little more serious than the others, certainly more intelligent, but they all swore to stay friends for life. Now Tony is retired. He’s had a career and a single marriage, a calm divorce. He’s certainly never tried to hurt anybody. Memory, though, is imperfect. It can always throw up surprises, as a lawyer’s letter is about to prove.

    Chris Reich says: "Stunning. I'm Guilty. Are You?"
    "proficient established writer - implausible story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Julian Barnes is not really my cup of tea, so if you're a big fan, disregard this review. This book was very much in his usual vein; fussy, extremely detailed examinations of the main protagonist's inner processes and reflections. Personally I thought the characters' reactions and behaviors were unrealistic much of the time. One character is so incredibly unpleasant (at least if she has appeal it isn't conveyed) that it's impossible to see why anyone would waste time with her, let alone obsess for 40 years about her. Another character feels personally responsible for someone else's personal tragedy for almost no reason. And a romance between two 15-year-olds is treated like the love-story of a lifetime. There are a few interesting plot twists. It was not bad, but I can't say I thought it was good either. I enjoyed some of his other books more.

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • The House at Riverton

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Kate Morton
    • Narrated By Caroline Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2499)
    Performance
    (1586)
    Story
    (1581)

    Summer 1924: On the eve of a glittering Society party, by the lake of a grand English country house, a young poet takes his life. The only witnesses, sisters Hannah and Emmeline Hartford, will never speak to each other again....Winter 1999: Grace Bradley, 98, one-time housemaid of Riverton Manor, is visited by a young director making a film about the poet's suicide. Ghosts awaken, and memories, long consigned to the dark reaches of Grace's mind, begin to sneak back through the cracks.

    Cathy says: "superbly written mystery"
    "Not good."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Like listening to a little Australian girl play Masterpiece Theatre with her paper dolls. One-dimensional caricatures of the British upper class, dialogue packed with clicheed phrases and ideas, inconsistent narration. Sorry folks, hated this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Chapters from My Autobiography

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Mark Twain
    • Narrated By Bronson Pinchot
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (101)
    Performance
    (45)
    Story
    (45)

    This book is part memoir, part philosophical text, part study in human behavior, from one of America's greatest literary treasures. Narrated masterfully by Bronson Pinchot, this audiobook also includes Twain’s popular short story, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County".

    Avid Reader and Listener says: "Good stuff!"
    "One of the finest narrators on Audible"
    Overall

    Bronson Pinchot takes Twain's words and turns them into a living play. Another reviewer suggested that Twain's real voice was different - high and almost whiny. I couldn't care less. Pinchot doesn't read, and he doesn't sound like he's acting. He sounds like a truly original person reliving a fascinating life, with all its poignant moments, humor, etc. He'll bring tears to your eyes. That person being Mark Twain, much of the writing is beautiful. I read somewhere else that Twain dictated his memoirs verbatim with almost no revisions. Think about this as you listen - it makes the quality of the "writing" even more startling.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Parrot and Olivier in America

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Peter Carey
    • Narrated By Humphrey Bower
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (152)
    Performance
    (55)
    Story
    (56)

    Olivier, an improvisation on the life of Alexis de Tocqueville, is the traumatized child of aristocratic survivors of the French Revolution. Parrot is the motherless son of an itinerant English printer. Born on different sides of history, their lives will be joined by an enigmatic one-armed marquis.

    TX lilbit says: "Like nothing else"
    "Like nothing else"
    Overall

    This is a great book to turn to when you feel as if no-one is telling original stories anymore. It will remind you that great writers can recognize compelling stories (with compelling characters, situations, dialogue) everywhere. The narrator is absolutely brilliant as well, and he makes the characters live - especially impressive given that the two main characters could not be more different.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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