David McCullough has three things going for him.
1) is that he has an amazing voice for an author
2) is that he could make a phone book sound facinating, and
3) is that David McCullough knows what he is talking about.
For a short read, you cannot go wrong with this book.
Will and Ariel Durant are fascinating in their look at the meaning and significance of history. It is not, however, a book mainstream history buffs would enjoy. It is dry, pedantic, and dense at moments, and if the reader/listener is not a professional historian or a VERY avid amateur this work will not be an enjoyable listen.
This was a very enjoyable glimpse into the life of a president who has gone from unappreciated pariah of presidential history to gutsy, heroic defender of the Republic. My only reason for giving this audiobook 4/5 stars is even for an abridged edition, it is rather short for a biography of a president during a time in history where there is a veritable ocean of sources from which to draw. I would have liked to see more detail on his presidency, but McCullough had written the book specifically to focus on pre/post presidency. Aside from that, I have nothing but praise for this biography and highly recommend it to anyone interested in any subject remotely connected with Harry Truman.
Jon Meacham is a master narrative historian who has proven time and again that he can tell a story with depth and make it accessible to a broad public. He continues this in American Lion, where he writes about one of the more colorful personalities who resided in the White House. I give this four stars only because the subject matter can sound dry at parts, and I think that it is purely subjective if others would agree with me. I personally was not looking for as much background information on the era, a time which I do not find terribly interesting. I was looking for a personal look at the man himself, which I certainly got. This is highly recommended for anyone interested in American history, and with the proviso that it may help to be interested in the time period, I believe this is a book any lover of history would enjoy.
Steve Jobs is an enigma, and likely will always be an enigma. So it is with great interest that I read all the information I can about Mr. Jobs, and this book is easily the most balanced, fair, and incisive view of his life and accomplishments available at the present time. The only reason this does not get a 5/5 is due to the age of the book, it ends at the introduction of the iPod. An updated version, as has been known to happen with biographies, would be a marked improvement, as quite a bit has happened since the iPod (ie the transition to Intel processors, the iPhone, iTunes music dominance, etc.). That minor complaint aside, this is the best Steve Jobs biography likely to be out for some time, and anyone remotely interested in him, Apple, movies, or technology would be well served in listening to his audiobook.
Grover Gardner is possibly the best reader Audible employs, and an audiobook as long as "Franklin and Winston" needs such a voice. Jon Meacham's narrative of FDR and Churchill is masterful from the first word until the last. There are times when the reader will certainly be choked up, and other times where there will be a genuine smile on his/her face. For any lover of history, both casual and avid, this book will surely be among their favorites in their Audible collection. Very highly recommended.
David Allen knows what he is talking about when it comes to the art of getting things done, and it shows in his book. The information is amazing, indeed it could seriously be called life-changing. However, the biggest issue with this audiobook is the fact that it is an audiobook. This is a guide, a textbook, and a checklist, among other things. Step-by-step instructions and charts/graphs are not nearly as effective as spoken word as in paper form. This is a wonderful book, and anyone who is interested in GTD should consider this the cornerstone of their efforts. If you want this as an audiobook for convenience or another reason you will not be disappointed, but do yourself a favor and re-read it in physical form, you will get far more out of it.
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