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Ray

Glendale, AZ, United States | Member Since 2008

231
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 78 reviews
  • 224 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 18 purchased in 2014
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34

  • The 48 Laws of Power

    • ABRIDGED (9 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Robert Greene
    • Narrated By Don Leslie
    Overall
    (1238)
    Performance
    (756)
    Story
    (759)

    Amoral, cunning, ruthless, and instructive, this piercing work distills 3,000 years of the history of power into 48 well-explicated laws. This bold volume outlines the laws of power in their unvarnished essence, synthesizing the philosophies of Machiavelli, Sun-tzu, Carl von Clausewitz, and other great thinkers.

    Ricardo L. says: "Not a how to guide .."
    "Very Wise Advice"
    Overall

    Everything he suggests hinges on self-control, particularly control of emotions, and since an overwhelming majority of the population is incapable or unwilling to do attain to such discipline, this book is unlikely to become the Machiavellian tool of the 21st century.
    Ironically, most of what is suggested in this book can be found in the Bible, old and new testament. Mainly Proverbs and the new testament "fruit of the Spirit."
    So if one strips away the devious, even evil intent of what is proposed here, what is left is much the same philosophy that is found in the Bible. Discretion of speech, self-control, show humility when appropriate, boldness when appropriate, not to make enemies with your harsh words, not to hold grudges or live in the past, even meekness is proposed in the book.

    12 of 19 people found this review helpful
  • Why We Make Things and Why It Matters: The Education of a Craftsman

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Peter Korn
    • Narrated By Traber Burns
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    In this moving account, Peter Korn explores the nature and rewards of creative practice. We follow his search for meaning as an Ivy-educated child of the middle class who finds employment as a novice carpenter on Nantucket, transitions to self-employment as a designer and maker of fine furniture, takes a turn at teaching and administration at Colorado's Anderson Ranch Arts Center, and then founds a school in Maine: the Center for Furniture Craftsmanship, an internationally respected nonprofit institution.

    Kevin Adams says: "Thoughtful and Well Written"
    "Must Read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Well, not for everyone, but for those who are at least a little disturbed by the disposable culture we now live in, it's a must read. Not as good "Shop Class as Soulcraft" though to be fair, the author isn't trying to write the same book so perhaps it's just different.

    Easier to read than Pirsig's "Zen" and definitely more to the point, it belongs on the same as shelf as these two books as well Richard Sennett, David Pye et al.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Ryan Holiday
    • Narrated By Ryan Holiday
    Overall
    (141)
    Performance
    (122)
    Story
    (120)

    We are stuck, stymied, frustrated. But it needn't be this way. There is a formula for success that's been followed by the icons of history - from John D. Rockefeller to Amelia Earhart to Ulysses S. Grant to Steve Jobs - a formula that let them turn obstacles into opportunities. Faced with impossible situations, they found the astounding triumphs we all seek.

    Jason DeFillippo says: "Great book I wish I had 25 years ago"
    "Worth Reading; Interesting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It's not a substitute for the stoics themselves, nor other well known figures who have used their obstacles as footholds, but if a person is young or otherwise not well read in such areas, this could be a good introduction. (I skipped the epilogue with the other author who's name I don't remember. He's a self-help guy, kind of smarmy and fake, but don't let that dissuade the would-be reader.)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Big Fat Surprise: Why Butter, Meat, and Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Nina Teicholz
    • Narrated By Erin Bennett
    Overall
    (48)
    Performance
    (43)
    Story
    (43)

    Dish up the red meat, eggs, and whole milk! In this well-researched and captivating narrative, veteran food writer Nina Teicholz proves how everything we've been told about fat is wrong. For decades, Americans have cut back on red meat and dairy products full of "bad" saturated fats. We obediently complied with nutritional guidelines to eat "heart healthy" fats found in olive oil, fish, and nuts, and followed a Mediterranean diet heavy on fruits, vegetables, and grains. Yet the nation's health has declined. What is going on?

    Brian says: "Good follow-up to Taubes"
    "Solid Information; Must Read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I confess that I thought the author might just be trying to ride on Gary Taubes' coat tails, and was a little skeptical, but she covered a lot of details that Taubes didn't and really delved into some of the more interesting facts behind the political wrangling over the various kinds of oils, etc.

    It's a must read for anyone that is truly interested in the facts and detailed history of how the current public health situation became so badly disorientated.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Disease Delusion: Conquering the Causes of Chronic Illness for a Healthier, Longer, and Happier Life

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Jeffrey S. Bland, Mark Hyman
    • Narrated By Brett Barry
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (15)

    Contrary to conventional wisdom, chronic disease is not genetically predetermined but results from a mismatch between our genes and environment and lifestyle. What we call a "disease" is the outcome of an imbalance in one or more of the seven core physiological processes. Leveraging a lifetime on the cutting edge of research and practice, Dr. Jeffrey S. Bland lays out a road map for good health by helping us understand these processes and the root causes of chronic illness.

    Lance says: "Doctors work for the government now"
    "Awful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A quick scan of the reviews that I've done will show that I'm not one to slam a book just for the sake of it, even if I don't like a book, I try to give it the due it deserves.

    But this was just really bad. The narrator spoke for an hour and a half and still hadn't said anything substantial as the author was obviously trying to inspire instead of inform. There was some vague cancer statistics thrown out and a study or two mentioned and how great the study was and how respected the researcher was, but no actual facts.

    I was left with the feeling that someone was trying to sell me something but didn't want to get into the details for fear of what I might think or misinterpret. Smarmy stories about people using their first names and how great their lives are now that they have this great new and improved product. But I couldn't get any real details about the product he was selling, only the pseudo-inspiring stories about the awesome people who had benefitted from it all.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Not Cool: The Hipster Elite and Their War on You

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Greg Gutfeld
    • Narrated By Steve Kramer
    Overall
    (95)
    Performance
    (87)
    Story
    (86)

    From politics to the personal, from fashion to food, from the campus to the locker room, the desire to be cool has infected all aspects of our lives. At its most harmless, it is annoying. At its worst, it is deadly, on a massive scale. The Cool are the termites of life, infiltrating every nook and cranny and destroying it from within. The Cool report the news, write the scripts, teach our children, run our government - and each day they pass judgment on those who don’t worship their coolness.

    Mark Page says: "Laugh out loud funny!"
    "Nothing New but Entertaining"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As a fellow libertarian turning into a curmudgeon as I age, I enjoyed the overall premise but the crudeness of his personality just wears thin.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt

    • UNABRIDGED (26 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Edmund Morris
    • Narrated By Mark Deakins
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (479)
    Performance
    (344)
    Story
    (344)

    Described by the Chicago Tribune as "a classic," The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt stands as one of the greatest biographies of our time. The publication of The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt on September 14th, 2001, marked the 100th anniversary of Theodore Roosevelt becoming president.

    Mike From Mesa says: "Very, very good, but very, very long."
    "Must Read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Good book that manages to show the details of Roosevelt's life without either slipping into hagiography nor the type of historical criticism that can only come from many years of hindsight. (You see some of his warts and such, but they're kept in their proper proportion and context.)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rise to Greatness: Abraham Lincoln and America's Most Perilous Year

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 1 min)
    • By David Von Drehle
    • Narrated By Robertson Dean
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (26)
    Performance
    (21)
    Story
    (21)

    As 1862 dawned, the American republic was at death’s door. The federal government appeared overwhelmed, the U.S. Treasury was broke, and the Union’s top general was gravely ill. The Confederacy - with its booming economy, expert military leadership, and commanding position on the battlefield - had a clear view to victory. To a remarkable extent, the survival of the country depended on the judgment, cunning, and resilience of the unschooled frontier lawyer who had recently been elected president. Twelve months later, the Civil War had become a cataclysm but the tide had turned.

    Sam Motes says: "Lincoln in all his glory"
    "This Book Stands Out Among Lincoln Bios"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There are of course many books about Lincoln, but this work manages to place itself in the must read category for anyone with a sincere interest in knowing more about the man.

    It is more than a collection of facts and observations, but it actually ties the timeline together into a coherent map of Lincoln's own understanding of what was unfolding before him and the nation.

    I should add however, that Rockport is not in Illinois, but in Indiana. (The starting point of one of Lincoln's flatboat trips.)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Up Side of Down: Why Failing Well Is the Key to Success

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Megan McArdle
    • Narrated By Mia Barron
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (42)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    Most new products fail. So do most small businesses. And most of us, if we are honest, have experienced a major setback in our personal or professional lives. So what determines who will bounce back and follow up with a home run? If you want to succeed in business and in life, Megan McArdle argues in this hugely thought-provoking book, you have to learn how to harness the power of failure. McArdle has been one of our most popular business bloggers for more than a decade, covering the rise and fall of some the world' s top companies and challenging us to think differently about how we live, learn, and work.

    Ray says: "Good Book"
    "Good Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First of all, this isn't a self-help book (fortunately). Rather it is an interesting look at some solid research with the author's own failings as a minor backdrop.

    Some of her examples seem to go a little far afield to make the point, but she manages to tie it all up pretty tightly before she's done. That a successful life requires a little friction isn't entirely new of course, but nothing in the book is tired or rehashed and all in all the reader walks away with some pretty good insight.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America’s Police Forces

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Radley Balko
    • Narrated By William Hughes
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (144)
    Performance
    (132)
    Story
    (134)

    Rise of the Warrior Cop traces the arc of US law enforcement from the constables and private justice of colonial times to present-day SWAT teams and riot cops. Today relentless "war on drugs" and "war on terror" pronouncements from politicians, along with battle-clad police forces with tanks and machine guns, have dangerously blurred the distinction between cop and soldier. Balko's fascinating, frightening narrative shows how martial rhetoric and reactionary policies have put modern law enforcement on a collision course with the values of a free society.

    Christopher says: "Scarier than any horror book. Because it's true!"
    "Must Read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It's a great book and a very necessary addition to anyone's library who is sincerely interested in liberty and the path that America is currently on.

    If one is sincerely concerned about the size of our government, then it stands to reason that they should be equally concerned about the militarization of that government's arm of enforcement. Likewise, if one is genuinely worried about expanding the rights of every citizen and every lifestyle, shouldn't they be just as worried about a militarized police force that is already being used to subjectively oppress those rights.

    This book is not about Left wing or Right wing, but about what is already happening to America and the individual rights that our freedom rests upon.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Go Like Hell: Ford, Ferrari, and Their Battle for Speed and Glory at Le Mans

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By AJ Baime
    • Narrated By Jones Allen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (18)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (16)

    By the early 1960s, Ford Motor Company, built to bring automobile transportation to the masses, was falling behind. Baby boomers were taking to the roads in droves, looking for speed not safety, style not comfort, and Ford didn’t offer what these young drivers wanted. Meanwhile, Enzo Ferrari lorded over the European racing scene, crafting beautiful, fast sports cars that epitomized style.

    Ray says: "Great Book"
    "Great Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Just a great book. Enough details of the main characters; Shelby, Ferarri, Ford, and so on without becoming a mini-biography on any one person.

    A lot of interesting figures from that time so it's a feat to include everyone and not get carried away.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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