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Aaron

Richmond, VA, United States | Member Since 2012

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  • The First American: The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By H. W. Brands
    • Narrated By Nelson Runger
    Overall
    (272)
    Performance
    (190)
    Story
    (192)

    Many consider Franklin the most fascinating American man who ever lived. A scientist, businessman, diplomat, author, inventor, philosopher and politician, he is America's original Renaissance man. His remarkable and varied accomplishments include the discovery of electricity and the modernization of the postal system. Brilliant and bawdy, a master statesman and a cultural icon, Franklin was so important and popular in his day that, according to the author, "... only Washington mattered as much."

    William says: "History tends to bore but I couldnt stop listening"
    "A laborious chore with some fun sewn in"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The First American?

    First of all it was entirely too long and too detailed. TO be sure, Ben Franklin was obviously a great man and he lived a long and full life which deserves such treatment, however the author spent so much time discussing random friends, acquaintances, and contemporary accounts that his (Franklin's) life got muted. I'm glad I stuck it, but more like in the way that you feel after finishing exams than from completing a task you enjoy.


    Would you be willing to try another book from H. W. Brands? Why or why not?

    Not really, I'd have to think that other biographers do a better job of editing and focusing on the things that matter.


    How could the performance have been better?

    The constant swallowing, nose breathing, and other gross noises made listening a bit distracting...and at times disgusting. Runger is a great reader and I enjoyed his voice, but I do think they should have been able to edit the track a bit better.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    I was mostly glad to have learned so much about an important figure during an important time in our history, I just wish it could have been more fun.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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