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brian

Member Since 2010

41
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 110 reviews
  • 110 ratings
  • 139 titles in library
  • 19 purchased in 2014
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  • Young Stalin

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Simon Sebag Montefiore
    • Narrated By James Adams
    Overall
    (80)
    Performance
    (24)
    Story
    (27)

    Young Stalin tells the story of an exceptional, charismatic, darkly turbulent young man born into obscurity, fancying himself a poet and a priest, and finally embracing revolutionary idealism as his Messianic mission in life. Equal parts scholar and terrorist, a mastermind of bank robberies, extortion, piracy, and murder, he was so impressive in his brutality that Lenin made him, along with Trotsky, his chief henchman.

    Antonio says: "Young Stalin audio book part 1"
    "Stalin's life before He came to power now revealed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Young Stalin again? Why?

    I might to catch up on chatpers I might have missed.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Knowing who was who in Stalin's life.


    What about James Adams’s performance did you like?

    I liked the whole thing honestly.


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

    NOt really, but I had no idea Joseph was such a womanizer.


    Any additional comments?

    A must have for any history fan.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • In the Time of the Butterflies

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Julia Alvarez
    • Narrated By Noemi de la Puente, Alma Cuervo, Bianca Carnacho, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (151)
    Performance
    (78)
    Story
    (78)

    It is November 25, 1960, and the bodies of three beautiful, convent-educated sisters have been found near their wrecked Jeep at the bottom of a 150-foot cliff on the north coast of the Dominican Republic. El Caribe, the official newspaper, reports their deaths as an accident. It does not mention that a fourth sister lives. Nor does it explain that the sisters were among the leading opponents of General Raphael Leonidas Trujillo's dictatorship.

    Ginger says: "Beautiful"
    "The truth is..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to In the Time of the Butterflies again? Why?

    I would to remember parts I might have missed.


    What other book might you compare In the Time of the Butterflies to and why?

    I can't think of any comparison.


    What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

    Having several different narrators for each sister was confusing at times, but interesting too.


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

    No.


    Any additional comments?

    A book that opens a dorr to a forgotten part of the past.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Spy Among Friends: Kim Philby and the Great Betrayal

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Ben Macintyre
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (81)
    Performance
    (72)
    Story
    (72)

    Kim Philby was the greatest spy in history, a brilliant and charming man who rose to head Britain's counterintelligence against the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War - while he was secretly working for the enemy. And nobody thought he knew Philby like Nicholas Elliott, Philby's best friend and fellow officer in MI6.

    Michael Eaton says: "The Greatest Spy -- Ever Discovered"
    "The man who played people like violins."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of A Spy Among Friends to be better than the print version?

    I would.


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    The friendship between Philby and Angleton.


    Have you listened to any of John Le Carre’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I hadn't.


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

    How Philby started spying for the USSR, and other early points in his work.


    Any additional comments?

    None.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Nixon Defense: What He Knew and When He Knew It

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By John W. Dean
    • Narrated By Joe Barrett
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (14)

    Watergate forever changed American politics, and in light of the revelations about the NSA's wide­spread surveillance program, the scandal has taken on new significance. Yet remarkably, four decades after he was forced to resign, no one has told the full story of Nixon's involvement in Watergate.

    Tad Davis says: "Nixon HAD no defense"
    "New information for an old case."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would if they're interested in Watergate.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The narration. The narrator's excellent with voices as well as accents.


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

    Excellent voice work.


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

    Some of the bits with Nixon's reactions to events made me crack up.


    Any additional comments?

    None.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Tom Clancy Support and Defend: A Campus Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Mark Greaney
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (323)
    Performance
    (281)
    Story
    (280)

    Dominic Caruso. Nephew of President Jack Ryan. FBI agent and operator for The Campus, a top secret intelligence agency that works off the books for the U.S. government. Already scarred by the death of his brother, Caruso is devastated when he can't save a friend and his family from a terrorist attack. Ethan Ross was a mid-level staffer for the National Security Council. Now he's a wanted fugitive on the run with a microdrive that contains enough information to wreck American intelligence efforts around the world.

    Buffalogal says: "Curb your expectations!"
    "Taking over from where the late Clancy left off."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would. Why, I'm not sure.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    It did. Not knowing who would survive mostly.


    Which character – as performed by Scott Brick – was your favorite?

    All of them. Scott's very good at accents.


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

    Nope.


    Any additional comments?

    None.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • 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
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (147)
    Performance
    (133)
    Story
    (129)

    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.

    Linda says: "A neutral look at inner workings of the Vatican"
    "Some Truth behind the spin."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Vatican Diaries rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It's a very fine book, but not one of my favorites.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Vatican Diaries?

    Several. Some funny moments with the press getting stranded or something else happening to them on state visits, and the testimonies in chapter 3 against the LC's founder creeped me out.


    What about Malcolm Hillgartner’s performance did you like?

    He's okay with accents, but not that great.


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

    The contrast between Pope John Paul the Second's and Benidict the 16th in personality.


    Any additional comments?

    No other comments.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Heist

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Daniel Silva
    • Narrated By George Guidall
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (502)
    Performance
    (449)
    Story
    (447)

    Master novelist Daniel Silva has thrilled listeners with 16 thoughtful and gripping spy novels featuring a diverse cast of compelling characters and ingenious plots that have taken them around the globe and back - from the United States to Europe, Russia to the Middle East. His brilliant creation, Gabriel Allon - art restorer, assassin, spy - has joined the pantheon of great fictional secret agents, including George Smiley, Jack Ryan, Jason Bourne, and Simon Templar.

    Brian says: "If new to Daniel Silva, great book. Otherwise..."
    "Gabriel's back and better then ever."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Heist rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Not sure what you mean by rank.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    It did. What would happen to the girl, I wondered? Would they get to her in time?


    Which character – as performed by George Guidall – was your favorite?

    Everyone. He's excellent with accents.


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

    Nope.


    Any additional comments?

    None.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • 935 Lies: The Future of Truth and the Decline of America’s Moral Integrity

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Charles Lewis
    • Narrated By Don Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    Facts are and must be the coin of the realm in a democracy. Unfortunately, for citizens in the United States and throughout the world, distinguishing between fact and fiction - always a formidable challenge - is now more difficult than ever, as a constant stream of questionable information pours into media outlets. Lewis argues forcefully that while data points and factoids abound, it is much harder to get to the whole truth of complex issues in time for that truth to guide citizens, voters, and decision makers.

    Chris Reich says: "This Is the Book We All Should Read"
    "Interesting, yet full of facts I already knew."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about 935 Lies?

    The interesting facts I didn't know.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of 935 Lies?

    I couldn't pick one.


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

    I didn't like the way he tried narration, no accents, no nothing.


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

    Afraid I can't think of one.


    Any additional comments?

    None.

    0 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • William Shakespeare's The Jedi Doth Return

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Ian Doescher
    • Narrated By Marc Thompson, Jonathan Davis, Daniel Davis, and others
    Overall
    (41)
    Performance
    (40)
    Story
    (40)

    Hot on the heels of the New York Times best seller William Shakespeare's Star Wars comes the next two installments of the original trilogy: William Shakespeare's The Empire Striketh Back and William Shakespeare's The Jedi Doth Return. Return to the star-crossed galaxy far, far away as the brooding young hero, a power-mad emperor, and their jesting droids match wits, struggle for power, and soliloquize in elegant and impeccable iambic pentameter. Something Wookiee this way comes!

    Amazon Customer says: "Tis a Worthy Conclusion"
    "The grand finale."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up William Shakespeare's The Jedi Doth Return in three words, what would they be?

    I can't think of any I'm afraid.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The narration and writing.


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

    Acting.


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

    I wouldn't sence there's already a film


    Any additional comments?

    I hope the author makes more Shakespeare style stories if he wishes.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Dear Leader: Poet, Spy, Escapee - A Look inside North Korea

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Jang Jin-sung
    • Narrated By Daniel York
    Overall
    (120)
    Performance
    (116)
    Story
    (117)

    As North Korea's State Poet Laureate, Jang Jin-sung led a charmed life. With food provisions (even as the country suffered through its great famine), a travel pass, access to strictly censored information, and audiences with Kim Jong-il himself, his life in Pyongyang seemed safe and secure. But this privileged existence was about to be shattered. When a strictly forbidden magazine he lent to a friend goes missing, Jang Jin-sung must flee for his life.

    David says: "Stop browsing and get this Book"
    "Exposing the truth."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Dear Leader the most enjoyable?

    All the information revealed to me.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Dear Leader?

    Jang meeting Kim for the first time.


    Which character – as performed by Daniel York – was your favorite?

    Jang and the other North Koreans.


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

    The Truth Exposed.


    Any additional comments?

    A great book about a mysterious government.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Life and Fate: The Complete Series (Dramatised)

    • ORIGINAL (7 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By Vasily Grossman
    • Narrated By Kenneth Branagh, David Tennant
    Overall
    (48)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (40)

    Kenneth Branagh stars in BBC Radio 4's ambitious eight-hour dramatisation of Life and Fate, Vasily Grossman's epic masterpiece set during the Battle of Stalingrad. This powerful work, completed in 1960, charts the fate of both a nation and a family in the turmoil of war. Its comparison of Stalinism with Nazism was considered by Soviet authorities to be so dangerous that the KGB placed the manuscript under arrest and Grossman was informed his book would not be published for at least 200 years.

    Alifa says: "Vasily Grossman's Life and Fate"
    "A great drama from a great book."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Life and Fate: The Complete Series (Dramatised)?

    The narration.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Life and Fate: The Complete Series (Dramatised)?

    Nikolay being arrested by the NKVD.


    What does Kenneth Branagh and David Tennant bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Excellent narration from them, and others in the cast.


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

    No extreme reaction, I was impressed witht he sound desing and acting.


    Any additional comments?

    None.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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