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GRYHS

ratings
29
REVIEWS
16
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
20

  • The Vatican Diaries: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Power, Personalities, and Politics at the Heart of the Catholic Church

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By John Thavis
    • Narrated By Malcolm Hillgartner
    Overall
    (351)
    Performance
    (321)
    Story
    (314)

    For more than 25 years John Thavis held one of the most fascinating journalistic jobs in the world: reporting on the inner workings of the Vatican. His daily exposure to the power, politics, and personalities in the seat of Roman Catholicism gave him a unique, behind-the-scenes perspective on an institution that is far less monolithic and unified than it first appears. Thavis reveals Vatican City as a place where Curia cardinals fight private wars, scandals threaten to undermine papal authority, and reverence for the past is continually upended by the practical considerations of modern life.

    loix says: "Timely, but disjointed"
    "Few curious anecdotes from political sidelines"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Vatican Diaries to be better than the print version?

    In so far as it won't take space on my bookshelf and the fact that i have no intention of reading it again, yes, the digital version is better for the environment


    Would you be willing to try another book from John Thavis? Why or why not?

    Not really. This has proven to be insufferably boring, and the subject is of little curiosity to me to begin with.


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

    Certainly not intentionally, but it was so boring that i fell asleep on a number of occasions. Does that count?


    Any additional comments?

    I suppose my general disagreement with the book is that i expected something a bit juicier, a bit more fun, a bit more of a 'behind the scene look'. Instead, we are treated to part story of being in a press pool ( a subject that can not be covered better than HST, so waste of pages here ) and a riveting revelation that, and I kid you not, turns out, catholic church is just another typically bureaucratically dysfunctional organization.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Liberal Redneck Manifesto: Draggin' Dixie Outta the Dark

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Trae Crowder, Drew Morgan, Corey Ryan Forrester
    • Narrated By Trae Crowder, Drew Morgan, Corey Ryan Forrester
    Overall
    (1165)
    Performance
    (1089)
    Story
    (1076)

    Smart, hilarious, and incisive, the Liberal Rednecks confront outdated traditions and intolerant attitudes, tackling everything people think they know about the South - the good, the bad, the glorious, and the shameful - in a laugh-out-loud funny and lively manifesto for the rise of a New South. Home to some of the best music, athletes, soldiers, whiskey, waffles, and weather the country has to offer, the South has also been bathing in backward bathroom bills and other bigoted legislation.

    E. Cote says: "Must read for all Americans"
    "best book about very complex social issues"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    why best? because it is honest, it's terrifying where it has to be and funny enough to keep you going. it hits!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Daily Show (the AudioBook): An Oral History as Told by Jon Stewart, the Correspondents, Staff and Guests

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Jon Stewart - foreword, Chris Smith
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman, Jay Snyder, Kevin T. Collins, and others
    Overall
    (1617)
    Performance
    (1488)
    Story
    (1485)

    This oral history takes the listener behind the curtain for all the show's highlights, from its origins as Comedy Central's underdog late-night program hosted by Craig Kilborn to Jon Stewart's long reign to Trevor Noah's succession, rising from a scrappy jester in the 24-hour political news cycle to become part of the beating heart of politics - a trusted source for not only comedy but also commentary, with a reputation for calling bullshit and an ability to effect real change in the world.

    Diana says: "Not narrated by the interviewees"
    "if you liked the show you should read the book. "
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    there's a bit of history a lot of laughs and a pile of nastalgia which in of itself is not a bad thing

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Artemis

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By Rosario Dawson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (45712)
    Performance
    (42697)
    Story
    (42563)

    Jazz Bashara is a criminal. Well, sort of. Life on Artemis, the first and only city on the moon, is tough if you're not a rich tourist or an eccentric billionaire. So smuggling in the occasional harmless bit of contraband barely counts, right? Not when you've got debts to pay and your job as a porter barely covers the rent. Everything changes when Jazz sees the chance to commit the perfect crime, with a reward too lucrative to turn down.

    will says: "A ferrari with no motor"
    "starts great... and then becomes contrived"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I really rather wanted to like this one. And in all honesty, it's written quite well. The hard sci-fi nerd details are worked out quite well, and the plot does not slow down. And yet... two things completely destroy it for me: the ending and the economics.
    Let's dispatch with the latter first: the further you get into the book the more economics is presented as the mythical force that drives everything (with a high prophet to boot). Yet there's nothing mythical about economics, nor is it a driving force behind every action one takes, but most importantly the author's great economic theory of the moon is hardly comprehensive or even plausible: money laundering with an inherently traceable digital currency, a newfound tech that will make an export driven economy, an assertion that tourist based economies can't exist, etc, etc, etc.
    Now to the ending: first of all the actual ending is telegraphed throughout the book, an opportunity to redeem a character via a real development arc is squandered, the resolution of another character's story is neither fulfilling not even plausible when the mystery of the number that drives the plot of the book is revealed, and last but not least, even the author knows that the punnishment is so laughably small and inadequate that a bar scene needs to be conjured to make us believe the unbelievable.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Void Star

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Zachary Mason
    • Narrated By Cassandra Campbell, Tristan Morris, Sean Pratt, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (134)
    Performance
    (119)
    Story
    (121)

    Not far in the future, the seas have risen, and the central latitudes are emptying. But it's still a good time to be rich in San Francisco, where weapons drones patrol the skies to keep out the multitudinous poor.

    Zachary says: "if you're That Guy"
    "everyone gets a happy ending except for the baddy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Character depth much?
    I wouldn't generally ask for character depth in a sci-fi story, but the actual sci-fi is rather lacking as well, so what else is there?
    Characters, are lacking, and thus is any character development. The stroytelling relies on not telling you what's actually going on, which could be a neat trick, but when crucial information is withheld for more than half the book it rather feels like the lack of story was covered up by hiding things. Perhaps there is some great moral question explored in this book: the dangers of technology, the new economic reality of the post-ecologic-catastrophy world, the socio-economic stratification and the implications? Any of these subjects alone would have been a great story to explore. Instead we have a vague picture of post-apocalyptic world, personalized medicine ad absurdum, a hint of a libertarian wet dream and a nothing burger for a conclusion.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Devil's Bargain: Steve Bannon, Donald Trump, and the Nationalist Uprising

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Joshua Green
    • Narrated By Fred Sanders
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1426)
    Performance
    (1259)
    Story
    (1254)

    From the reporter who was there at the very beginning comes the revealing inside story of the partnership between Steve Bannon and Donald Trump - the key to understanding the rise of the alt-right, the fall of Hillary Clinton, and the hidden forces that drove the greatest upset in American political history.

    Charles P. Oconnor says: "Bannon elects Trump"
    "Oh, steve!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Between steve and donnie, i guess steve? I think that one had a lot more complex arc.


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

    It made me sob uncontrollably, because of what was done to great american democracy.


    Any additional comments?

    Jokes aside, this is a pretty good primer on the political strategy of radical right. Their strength, their integration in the new media landscape. Certainly a worthwhile read.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Hitler 1889-1936: Hubris

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Ian Kershaw
    • Narrated By Graeme Malcolm
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (317)
    Performance
    (293)
    Story
    (292)

    Hailed as the most compelling biography of the German dictator yet written, Ian Kershaw's Hitler brings us closer than ever before to the heart of its subject's immense darkness. Ian Kershaw's Hitler brings us closer than ever before to the character of the bizarre misfit in his thirty-year ascent from a Viennese shelter for the indigent to uncontested rule over the German nation that had tried and rejected democracy in the crippling aftermath of World War I.

    Mike From Mesa says: "The heart of evil"
    "Better than Main Kampf!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Hitler 1889-1936: Hubris? What did you like least?

    With the rise of popular nazi-like movements around the world, the itch to re-examine hitler and draw unhealthy parallels is taking over the media like a storm. And yet, such examination might actually be in order, if only one had a solid source of material instead of wikipedia and pop history. Behold: the book that goes into painstaking details examining Hitler's rise to power. And i'm talking painstaking, which i can't really fault the book, but at the same time this is long and occasionally mind-numbingly boring, especially because the author keeps reiterating that it wasn't just hitler, but the circumstances that caused, blah, blah, blah.


    What else would you have wanted to know about Ian Kershaw’s life?

    nothing


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Generation of Sociopaths: How the Baby Boomers Betrayed America

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Bruce Cannon Gibney
    • Narrated By Wayne Pyle
    Overall
    (283)
    Performance
    (259)
    Story
    (256)

    What happens when a society is run by people who are antisocial? Welcome to baby boomer America. In A Generation of Sociopaths, Bruce Cannon Gibney shows how America was hijacked by the boomers, a generation whose reckless self-indulgence degraded the foundations of American prosperity.

    Joshua Hagood says: "Single minded but convincing arguments within"
    "there's an idea there... but!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a curious case. Yet another person finds that something is utterly wrong with our socity, but what is it?
    Well a quick detour is in order. Upon my first reading of DSM V I developed a bit of a hobby of armchair psychiatry, deploying newfound knowledge everywhere with reckless abandon. As fun as such exercise is, it is hardly scientific; but to try to do it on a scale of population cohorts, as tempting as it is, I'm sure, is sheer lunacy. Especially given how much DSM V emphasise the individual patient difference.
    And thus is the main flaw of the book, the author tries to cram his arguments to fit the description of a mental disorder. A metaphor gone too far takes over the narrative. Yet, if that flaw can be put aside, and that takes quite an effort, mind you, many gems can be found in this book.
    There is however a great irony here, since the DSM V was in fact a rather questionable tome written in no small part by pharmaceutical industry it is surprising that the author does not make any reference to altering the water supply. On the other hand, I find the whole thing rather questionable since if he ignored all the flaws of DSM V while trying to cram the content of the book into a diagnostic model prescribed by it, one can't stop and wonder about the quality of the rest of the evidence.

    7 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • The Deep State: The Fall of the Constitution and the Rise of a Shadow Government

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Mike Lofgren
    • Narrated By Brian O'Neill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (283)
    Performance
    (249)
    Story
    (250)

    Mike Lofgren is back with a book perfectly pitched for the frenzied circus of the primaries. His argument this time is that for all of the backstabbing and money grubbing of the campaign season, the politicians we elect have as little ability to shift policy as Communist party apparatchiks. Welcome to Mike Lofgren's Washington, DC - a This Town where the political theater that is endlessly tweeted and blogged about has nothing to do with actual decision making.

    Jim D. says: "Great survey of our currently dysfunction"
    "Not your crazy uncle's deep state"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, yes and yes again. In fact I generally recommend it to anyone who can listen. This is an important study of how plutocracy and bureaucracy conspire to undermine democracy.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By John Perkins
    • Narrated By Tom Taylorson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1283)
    Performance
    (1150)
    Story
    (1153)

    The previous edition of this now-classic book revealed the existence and subversive manipulations of "economic hit men". John Perkins wrote that economic hit men (EHM) "are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. Their tools include fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder".

    Bill Redfield says: "Don't buy the first "confessions. .." buy this one"
    "Is career in economic consulting right for you?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about this story?

    It asks a lot of important questions about how this world of ours works. Why do plutocratic dictatorships keep proliferating in third world despite all the development grants? Or more importantly, is it despite or because? Is economics really a science, or just a veneer of sophistication used to prove a point?


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

    No. There is a lot of information to digest, and a book like this, that strives to challenge you, really does require active reading: e.g. stopping, thinking about the information presented, verifying the things you find surprising, etc. Certainly a multiple reading kinda a book.


    Any additional comments?

    This is one of the books, that to me is much more usable in hard copy format.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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