Isn't that what you want?
This is a fascinating look at a career the vast majority of us simply couldn't do. The author seems interested in exploring his own psychology, and recognizes he has done something highly unusual in becoming a Seal Team member. So, he has the self-awareness to write about his experiences in a meaningful way. I was pretty impressed.
This was an interesting enough story told by an author who knows how to spin a yarn. It concerns a modern day antique book dealer and ivory-tower type pursuits, which might appeal to some listeners and leave others less intrigued. It was mildly creepy, and maybe could have used a little more angst. But, it wasn't overly long, and I was always curious about what was behind the Small Hand.
I liked the free listen, Click Clack the Rattlebag by Neil Gaiman, so I thought I would try one of his books. American Gods is entertaining, with all the trouble-making gods running amuck and being petulant. They could be a little one-dimensional like that, and it made them tiresome at times.
Overall, American Gods was somewhere between 3 and 4 stars for me, with due appreciation for how the threads of the story were intertwined, and for bringing to life the gods and plunking them down in culture-shock America. A salute to Neil Gaiman for bringing in the House on the Rock in Wisconsin,and capturing the strange vibe of this tourist trap. He did a credible job of the region, in general.
The narration was fine, although Guidall sounded a little old for Shadow, the main character. He did a masterly job, though, with the many other characters. Guidall has a naturally craggy voice, but he somehow managed to make Laura sound feminine and compelling, and the other female voices weren't bad, either.
This book was a revelation to me. I knew some of her songs, but I had no idea about all the things going on with her. In the first hour of listening, I heard hints that this might be a bit of a self-serving tale told from a predictable perspective, but after listening more (and I couldn't put it down), I changed my mind about that. Her voice (written and spoken) comes across as honest and nothing-to-hide, and all of her experiences alone make this worth a listen. She has scaled the heights, and been laid low. Sometimes, though, I wondered how her friends or acquaintances might have weighed in on the situation of the moment - I fear that sometimes she may have been the last to know.
Even if you didn't know her music, you still might find this book interesting. Besides a biography-worthy life, there is also music history in it, and as a nice bonus, she sings some of her songs.
Olga is in her nineties, and has the body and athletic abilities of someone much younger. With hundreds of medals in her closet, no one is disputing that she is a super athlete - the only question is, why? Olga wants to know, too, and she and the author set about to find the answers, looking at everything from muscle fibers to diet to psychology. The importance of exercise comes up again and again,and this book is the very embodiment of the carrot-instead-of-a-stick approach to get us all moving. Like Born to Run and the ultra marathoners, Olga made me realize humans do not necessarily have the physical limitations we may think we do. The book has a lot to say about how to get a better quality of life, too. Olga is an inspiring person, and this is an inspiring, helpful book.
This was blistering. It's a parody of a news magazine and the personalities involved, and Michael Hastings was, in real life, employed at just such a place. Maybe that was why his characters all popped off the page (or off my iPod), fully drawn. There is a kind of humor or wry observation that reminded me of A Confederacy of Dunces. Knowing that the author died before he had finished this book, I went into it expecting an uneven finish. But for me, the end was a perfect landing.
The narrator is one of those gifted individuals who can make all the characters distinct and memorable through subtle means.
This book takes place in the tropics. Conrad is a wonderful writer, and he sailed the tropical seas in real life. Heart of Darkness is one of my favorite books.
So, I wish I liked this one more. It seemed like Conrad kept trying to beat home his points about his characters and about good vs. evil. Sometimes he would go on and on about something, and even though I thought I knew what he was trying to get at when he started, by the time he was done I'd be only confused. He kept bringing up what it means to be a gentleman, but I honestly am not sure what he was trying to say on that particular subject. But, it was still a good story, and it was uncanny how it kept pulling me back in. Also, I was glad I'd been alerted to the fact that the narrator point of view shifts through the story.
This is a modern day terrorist suspense story, and was more like 3.5 stars.I don't read a lot of spy novels, but other people seemed to like this one, so I thought I would give it a try. I was glad I did. The plot itself is gripping, and is the real draw here. It seemed plausible, and as a side note, all the references to NSA were interesting. The book seemed to lag at the parts about the love story, and at some of the parts about the character's interior lives. Most characters came off as a little cardboard. But still, the author tried to make them at least somewhat human, and he avoided outright caricatures. The narration was fine, but it's hard for macho-sounding guys to have to suddenly do female voices.
This book was always going off on a macabre tangent. The tangents - the allegories - are meant to help tell the story, but it got tiresome after a while. This is a book I wanted to like. It brought in a different culture, and had elements of a gothic suspense tale. And, I sensed the sincerity of the author's efforts to make sense of a war torn land (and perhaps his frustration with it?). But as far as a straight-up story goes, it wasn't that suspenseful or engaging.
First a word about the narration. Definitely listen to the preview first, because Whitehead has a distinctive way of talking, and it might not be for you. When I first listened to him, I thought it might not be for me, either, but, funny thing, his voice grew on me, and I started to like it. I've read two other books by Whitehead, and I liked them both for the deft way he mixes cultural observations with his stories, and his fresh, clear writing. He is wry, but not overbearing about it - at least that's how it comes across to me. I really liked Zone One. For me, all his books (including The Noble Hustle) come down to one thing - Our Culture. It's worth reading The Noble Hustle just to hear him explain the different hands in poker. A pair of queens (I think it was) would be like a pair of SUV's in your neighbor's driveway, whereas your hand with only one queen is like having only one SUV in your driveway. The person with the better stuff wins. He talks a lot about his anhedonia, his feeling of being dead inside, but he has such a lock on humor and observations that he manages to be good company. It's like sitting down him next to him at casino bar, and staying longer than you'd thought, just to hear him talk.
This is a book about a man trying to explain how his marriage turned out to be different from what he'd thought it would be. It's intriguing to listen to how he gradually comes to piece things together, and how he comes to understand another married couple that he and his wife are friends with. He is insightful and clueless at the same time, but you, the listener, will have no trouble sorting things out. The characters come across so clearly, that I could easily believe they are based on real life people. I'm not sure why, but the first half of the book seemed written in a very modern way (clear and frank), and the second half seemed more old-fashioned (more drenched in woe and hand-wringing, and dealing with matters of religion in the front-and-center way they used to). I liked the first half a little better, but it was all good. The narrator kept saying what a sad story it was - and it was sad - but I found it more intriguing than gloomy. It was far from sending me into an unsettled funk. In fact, a lot of people might find it useful information.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.