I bought this book because it was recommended as similar to Deborah Harkness' Discovery of Witches. WELL! It's so similar that it feels like a rip-off. Skip this and enjoy the remarkable stories of Harkness.
Cool story idea, but the characters just seemed too much like Matthew and Diana.
I have to give this 4 stars because it's just so darn impressive. The author clearly did his research, and he made the interwoven stories fascinating. Sometimes, however, the history became too complex to hold my attention. I would imagine that historians would find this more compelling.
I came away from the listen with a newly-found appreciation for how the Colombian Exchange began to interconnect the world, and I'm amazed at the impact that exchange of commerce had on so many millions of people. Who knew that the chief reason I live in the U.S. is because my ancestors fled famine-struck Ireland because Columbus discovered America and the potato was discovered in Peru! Huh!
I definitely recommend this book. I wish it could have been more concise, or attempted to cover fewer outcomes of the Exchange, but I'll have to trust that the author is more of an expert than I am.
Kind of slow at first, and the ending was way too abrupt, but 98% of this story kept me interested and entertained. Fascinating characters, exceptionally well developed and intricate plot, and an engaging narrator. The only downside was that it was impossible to know what was historically-based and what was complete fiction.
A fascinating account of the settlement of the Australian continent by convicts from England, including wonderful stories of the seediness of Charles Dickens' London. The main character was the real-life inspiration for Fagin in Oliver Twist.
Description should have noted that this is not just young adult fiction, but child fiction. Cute, but really for a younger set. Although an adult, I regularly enjoy reading from the young adult category. This book is nowhere near as insightful and mature as most of its neighbors on the bookshelf.
Nice performance. It was the book I didn't care for.
The author's research is exceptional, and her ability to weave a story of strong characters and intriguing situations has kept me from living in the real world for the entirety of the crisply-delivered performance. BRAVO!
Absolutely my favorite historical fiction! I promise that you will love Deborah Harkness.
Loved this book! I'm not sure which of my favorites I'm going to bump off my Top 10, but this one definitely belongs on that list.
So long, with no resolve. Interesting sub-plots and characters, but the author never ever finishes a single thread of his multi-story story.
The reader has basically one voice. He even makes the female children sound like grown men. A British accent does not necessarily mean a good narration. Bad bad bad!
Exasperation! How many more hours and hours will I need to listen to for any of this story to be resolved?!
Stay away unless you have nothing better to do.
I have really enjoyed several of Connie Willis' books, but this one was just painful. Interesting tidbits on scientific discoveries and societal trends, but the story was very slow and pretty weak. I do have to congratulate Ms Willis for her imagination and detailed research, although I recommend Doomsday Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog. Stay away from this one.
This book is more of a history lesson than an examination of the writings and evolution of beliefs of St. Augustine. The author seems to genuinely dislike Augustine, and makes fun of him throughout the book. If you're hoping to gain more insight into the contributions Augustine made to Christianity, this is not the book for you.
I love this book! I am putting it right up there with Poisonwood Bible in my Top 10 favorite books. The author narrates this audiobook and he's wonderful. In fact, this is one of those books that you should never read because you'll miss the beautiful tempo and language pronunciation that the reader offers.
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