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Towson, MD, United States | Member Since 2010

  • 5 reviews
  • 18 ratings
  • 64 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014

  • Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare?

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 1 min)
    • By James Shapiro
    • Narrated By Wanda McCaddon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    For nearly two centuries, the authorship of William Shakespeare's plays has been challenged by writers and artists as diverse as Sigmund Freud, Mark Twain, Henry James, Helen Keller, Orson Welles, Malcolm X, and Sir Derek Jacobi. How could a young man from rural Warwickshire, lacking a university education, write some of the greatest works in the English language?

    Geoffrey says: "Somewhat Surprised and very pleased"
    "Excellent, if long winded"

    Many have questioned whether Shakespeare could have written what it is claimed that he wrote. The book does an excellent job of laying out how these arguments came to be. It also does an excellent job of refuting them. The book is well read. I would have given it 4 stars had it not been so long-winded. The author makes a point, then makes it again, and again, and again.... It is probably a bit better suited for the scholar. Still, worth a purchase for those intersted in such things.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Applied Economics: Thinking Beyond Stage One: Second Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Thomas Sowell
    • Narrated By Bill Wallace

    Applied Economics is an accessible guide to how our economic decisions develop. It explains the application of economics to major world problems, including housing, medical care, discrimination, and the economic development of nations. The book is based on an international view of economics, includes examples from around the world, and shows how certain incentives and constraints produce similar outcomes among disparate peoples and cultures.

    Eunice says: "Look at the long's important!"
    "For the far right only"
    What would have made Applied Economics better?

    Less bias.

    What do you think your next listen will be?

    A German audiobook

    What didn’t you like about Bill Wallace’s performance?

    Well, it may not have been his fault. The book was often off the wall. He came across a little pompous, but, again, it may be the book content that caused me to hear it that way.

    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    It made a few valid points.

    Any additional comments?

    This is a book that started with a conclusions in favor of the economic policies of the far right, then looked for a way to get there. At one point it suggested that the poor have adequate access to medical care via emergency room. This is often untrue. Emergency room only handle emergencies, not e.g. a chronic, non-life threatening events--and of course very expensive. Or it talked about how the founder of Woolworth started by working for free. How the success of a super-compentent person over a century ago applies to those less gifted today, the book did not say. If you are a member of the Tea Party, and only want to be told what you want to hear, you will like this book. Everyone else, including thoughtful conservatives, likely will find many shortcomings.

    5 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health

    • ABRIDGED (10 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Marion Nestle
    • Narrated By Kate Reading

    An accessible and balanced account, Food Politics laid the groundwork for today's food revolution and changed the way we respond to food industry marketing practices. Now, a new introduction and concluding chapter bring us up to date on the key events in that movement. This pathbreaking, prize-winning book helps us understand more clearly than ever before what we eat and why. This book is published by University of California Press.

    Dakota says: "Excellent except for one thing... okay, maybe two"
    "Mostly very good, diet advice dated"

    The book does an excellent job of exposing the corrupting power of big money both on nutrition research and the ability of authorities to give intelligent nutrition advice. Even the abridged version was at times long-winded.

    The book was more about process than about what makes good nutritional sense. It took the FDA's food pyramid as gospel, though many now think its heavy focus on grains leads to increased inflammation and excessive carb consumption with associated adverse health consequences. There is also little talk of the value of omega 3's. On the other hand, the book speaks of the danger of higher dose vitamin D without noting its potential benefits or the ability to maintain safety through blood testing.

    The book a little naively seems to think that if the FDA would just be left in peace, it could be relied on to give optimal nutrition advice. In fact, the area is complex, many topics lack consensus, and gross error have been made. Remember margarine? Why anyone ever thought consuming a synthetic fat made sense is beyond me. Further, given the difficulty in getting funding for supplement research and how long it takes the research to come to definitive conclusions, one can reasonably decide to take supplements before all of the research is in. On the other hand, the book correctly notes that it hardly makes sense for supplement manufacturers to be able to come out with products without safety testing.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Cleopatra and Antony: Power, Love, and Politics in the Ancient World

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Diana Preston
    • Narrated By Suzanne Toren
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The story of the worlds best-remembered celebrity couple, set against the political backdrop of their time. Oceans of mythology have grown up around them, all of which Diana Preston explores in her stirring history of the lives and times of a couple whose names more than two millennia later still invoke passion, curiosity, and intrigue.

    Tad Davis says: "Consistently interesting, broad context"
    "Title a bit misleading, but worth the listen"

    The book is actually about Roman and to a lesser extent Egyptian history from the end of Julius Caeser's reign to the beginning of that of Octavian (later Augustus). The focus is not on the relationship of Anthony and Cleopatra, though it is discussed. Of the major figures of the time, Cleopatra might get the least coverage, Anthony the most. I would have given it 4 stars if it were not so long winded. It did finish strong though. Worth a listen. Had Anthony made one military decision differently, it might have changed history dramatically.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare: 1599

    • ABRIDGED (6 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By James Shapiro
    • Narrated By James Shapiro

    How did Shakespeare go from being a talented poet and playwright to becoming one of the greatest writers who ever lived? In this one exhilarating year we follow what he reads and writes, what he sees, and who he works with as he invests in the new Globe Theatre and creates four of his most famous plays: Henry V, Julius Caesar, As You Like It, and, most remarkably, Hamlet.

    Larry Miller says: "If you love Shakespeare"
    "Exellent, helps one to see the context"

    I have read another book by this author. It is probably a good thing this one was abridged, given the author's tendency to long-windedness. This book was facinating, laying out the works of WS from 1599 in the context of the time.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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