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Waukesha, WI, USA | Member Since 2005

  • 9 reviews
  • 34 ratings
  • 311 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2015

  • The Problem of Pain

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By C. S. Lewis
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    For centuries Christians have been tormented by one question above all, "If God is good and all-powerful, why does he allow his creatures to suffer pain?"

    David says: "An Extraordinary Little Book"
    "Finally some decent answers"

    I write, "finally" some decent answers, and yet this book has been around since before World War II. The author, an agnostic-turned-Christian explores the knotty questions of whether God is good, powerful, and omnicient all at once, and whether and why such a god would permit pain in the human experience.

    This is one of those I'll read/listen to several times.

    13 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • The Shack

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Wm. Paul Young
    • Narrated By Roger Mueller

    Mackenzie Allen Philips' youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his Great Sadness, Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare.

    Renato says: "much more than I expected"
    "Decent Allegory that Answers Some Questions"

    This is a decent allegory that answers some of the basic questions of faith. It is short and "readable", and well narrated. It is not great literature and you may find some of the phrasing to be awkward and the narrative too simple. But the author isn't going for great literature here, he's working to explain some of the mysteries of faith in ways that almost anyone can understand. These are the questions of evil, omnipotence, omniscience, predestination, nature of God, trinity, and more.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • My Sister's Keeper

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Jodi Picoult
    • Narrated By uncredited
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    New York Times best-selling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally riveting story of a family torn apart by conflicting needs and a passionate love that triumphs over human weakness.

    Lisa says: "Wonderful Book, Very Emotional"
    "Honest, Clear, Penetrating"

    Probably one of the best theological musings I have read in a long time. The author is not afraid to ask tough questions and doesn't provide pat answers. If you're a Christian, you'll find this challenging. If you're not, you'll find it refreshing. If you hate those labels, you'll love this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Thousand Splendid Suns

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Khaled Hosseini
    • Narrated By Atossa Leoni
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss, and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them, in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul, they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation.

    David says: "Somber but gripping"
    "Compelling Story, if Hard to Read"

    This is another compelling story of Afghanistan, well written and read. The author has an incredible gift for capturing the complexity of Afghanistan from the time of the Russian occupation through 9/11. His use of metaphor is remarkable, but never so obvious that it distracts. I only wish my own writing could be so compelling.

    The story itself is disturbing... hard to read at times. But the ending is well worth the effort, and what you will learn about Afghanistan will be enduring.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Short Stories of Anton Chekhov, Volume 1

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Anton Chekhov
    • Narrated By Charlton Griffin

    Anton Pavlovich Chekhov, (1860-1904), was born in Russia at Taganrog on the Sea of Azov. His name has become synonymous with a certain literary style much admired and widely copied since his death. Typically, a Chekhov story is a "mood", a state of mind, usually with regard to relations between one person and another. Under the influence of the constant, infinitesimal, and unforeseen pinpricks of life, there occurs a gradual transformation of that state of mind.

    Darlene says: "A Box of Chocolates"
    "Like eating my vegetables"

    I picked this set of stories as a change of pace from the technology, politics, history, and biography stuff that has become my staple food. I thought this might be good for me, like eating my vegetables.

    I must be clueless. Though these were well produced, I found the stories to be dry, uninteresting, and without a point. I know others find this set of stories to be like nuggets of gold, but I can't for the moment see what others see in them.

    Read these if you love Checkov, I guess. Otherwise, check in with your English teacher first.

    0 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • The Leadership Secrets of Colin Powell

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Oren Harari
    • Narrated By Chris Ryan

    Colin Powell is the classic American success story. Born in Harlem to immigrant parents, Powell rose through the ranks of the U.S. military to become chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and a soft-spoken, steel-willed Desert Storm hero. Always seemingly one step ahead of both allies and competitors, he quickly became one of America's most trusted and beloved public icons, acknowledged for his courage, his compassion, and his ability to forge victory under the most trying circumstances.

    Paul says: "He's right but not a big surprise"
    "He's right but not a big surprise"

    I like what I see about Powell as a leader. The book is clearly written and the style is OK. But there is nothing fundamentally new here for those who have been practicing leadership for a while. It may be an excellent book for those just getting started as leaders. Those who have been around the track once or twice will find this to be a rehash of the usual management book yada yada.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • On Intelligence

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Jeff Hawkins, Sandra Blakeslee
    • Narrated By Jeff Hawkins, Stefan Rudnicki
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Jeff Hawkins, the man who created the PalmPilot, Treo smart phone, and other handheld devices, has reshaped our relationship to computers. Now he stands ready to revolutionize both neuroscience and computing in one stroke, with a new understanding of intelligence itself.

    James says: "Epiphany"
    "Makes Sense"

    The premises of this book are largely unproven hypotheses, but they match so well with my personal experience that they are hard to deny. At a minimum, it has given me new ways to think about simple things like how I manage to type these words with almost no thought as to how they get from my head to the screen in front of me.

    It is remarkably accessible to a lay audience, and meaty enough for my appetite for detail.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Memoirs of a Geisha

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Arthur Golden
    • Narrated By Bernadette Dunne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In a voice both haunting and startlingly immediate, Nitta Sayuri describes her life as a geisha. Taken from her home at the age of nine, she is sold into slavery to a renowned geisha house. Witness her transformation as you enter a world where appearances are paramount, virginity is auctioned to the highest bidder, women beguile powerful men, and love is scorned as illusion.

    Stephanie says: "Best Book in a while"
    "Not just a chick book"

    I wondered whether this was just a book for women and hesitated before clicking on "buy." I was not disappointed. The book was much more engaging for me in the first part of the book. I found the story dragged a during Sayuri's adult life. In the end, however, I have a sense that I got a decent story with some nice insight into the world of pre-WWII Japan.

    The narration was quite well done though some of the Japanese word pronounciations were a little off.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Things They Carried

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Tim O'Brien
    • Narrated By Tom Stechschulte
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    This modern classic and New York Times best seller, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award, has been called the greatest war book ever written. Walking the hallucinatory line between reality and fiction, author Tim O'Brien captures the complex dynamics of the Vietnam War.

    R. Montagne says: "Disturbing"
    "Collection of Short Stories from Viet Nam"

    The title, THE THINGS THEY CARRIED, is really the topic for the first of a series of essays on Tim O'Brien's Vienam experience. The collection conveyed some of the pain and irony of US soldiers in that period.

    I was especially struck by how clearly he conveys the idea that stories can convey truth even if the details of the story are not true.

    Extremely well read. Worth my time.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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