You no longer follow Carlos Cortés

You will no longer see updates from this user when they write new reviews, or suggestions based on their library or recommendations.

You can re-follow a user if you change your mind.

OK

You now follow Carlos Cortés

You will receive updates from this user when they write new reviews, or suggestions based on their library or recommendations.

You can unfollow a user if you change your mind.

OK

Carlos Cortés

Bay Area, California | Member Since 2005

14
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 10 reviews
  • 66 ratings
  • 390 titles in library
  • 75 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0

  • The Magic of Reality: How We Know What's Really True

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Richard Dawkins
    • Narrated By Richard Dawkins, Lalla Ward
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (922)
    Performance
    (799)
    Story
    (786)

    Richard Dawkins, the world’s most famous evolutionary biologist, presents a gorgeously lucid, science book examining some of the nature’s most fundamental questions both from a mythical and scientific perspective. Science is our most precise and powerful tool for making sense of the world. Before we developed the scientific method, we created rich mythologies to explain the unknown. The pressing questions that primitive men and women asked are the same ones we ask as children. Who was the first person? What is the sun? Why is there night and day?

    Connie says: "Audio version is superb for us grown-ups"
    "Nothing new here"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I'll disclaim that I only read about half the book, giving it a solid try because I've liked other books by Dawkins. But this just had nothing that interesting or new for someone with a even cursory science education.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • 11-22-63: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (30 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson
    Overall
    (18264)
    Performance
    (16254)
    Story
    (16210)

    On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King - who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer - takes listeners on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it.

    Kelly says: "I Owe Stephen King An Apology"
    "Good, even for a 'sophisticated' reader"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I read Stephen King's book on the writing craft to help me with my own efforts, and it made me want to read one of his books. I'm not into horror, so I thought this would be good. It was, unequivocally, a page turner. I normally read a lot of intellectual non-fiction about philosophy, psychology, physics, and evolution. I didn't find myself making a lot of bookmarks for good quotes, but he really knows how to suck you into a story and want to keep reading.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Stephen King
    Overall
    (2341)
    Performance
    (1219)
    Story
    (1212)

    The prolific, perennially best selling author recounts his early life and writing struggles, gives advice on the crucial aspects of the writing art, and talks about his much-publicized, near-fatal accident.

    Bill says: "Excellent!"
    "Not actually a fan"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This book starts out interesting but not that relevant to writing. Be patient.

    So many writing books are written by someone you've never heard of whose written a few books. Many of them are wishy washy about how variable good writing can be, and they're factually correct. But Stephen King goes straight to what he thinks is important and makes his points efficiently.

    I'm not a particular fan of his fiction just because I don't care for his genre. But no matter what you think of him, he is a master of the craft. He knows how to grab the reader and persuade them to keep reading. No matter what you want to write, that's a useful skill.

    He makes me want to read one of his books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • FREE: The Future of a Radical Price

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Chris Anderson
    • Narrated By Chris Anderson
    Overall
    (2475)
    Performance
    (1216)
    Story
    (1209)

    The New York Times best-selling author heralds the future of business in Free. In his revolutionary best seller, The Long Tail, Chris Anderson demonstrated how the online marketplace creates niche markets, allowing products and consumers to connect in a way that has never been possible before. Now, in Free, he makes the compelling case that, in many instances, businesses can profit more from giving things away than they can by charging for them.

    Christopher says: "A fascinating listen"
    "Worth the read for believer and skeptic alike"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about FREE?

    I'm generally a skeptic for the free model at a deep philosophical level. I read this book to get the counter case. Ultimately, he didn't convince me that free is such a great idea, but he does his research and makes a well thought out case. He certainly convinced me that free will be bigger and more enduring than I thought. It's also more complex and multi-faceted than I realized. At the very least he explains the economics of free pricing models admirably. Certainly worth the time to read it. I paid nothing for it, but think it's worth paying for. True to his argument, his price got me to read it, and I will probably read some of his other stuff too.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • One Nation Under Therapy: How the Helping Culture is Eroding Self-Reliance

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Christina Hoff Sommers, Sally Satel
    • Narrated By Dianna Dorman
    Overall
    (22)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (8)

    Americans have traditionally placed great value on self-reliance and fortitude. Recent decades, however, have seen the rise of a therapeutic ethic that views Americans as emotionally underdeveloped, requiring the ministrations of mental-health professionals to cope with life's vicissitudes. Today, having a book for every ailment, a counselor for every crisis, a lawsuit for every grievance, and a TV show for every problem degrades one's native ability to cope with life's challenges.

    Kurt says: "If you want another perspective"
    "Conservative Tripe"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Someone who wants to go back to the good old days with no real analysis of the bad things of those old days.


    What was most disappointing about Christina Hoff Sommers and Sally Satel ’s story?

    She throws together every conservative complaint about the degeneration of our society even going so far as to argue that self-esteme isn't necessarily a good thing.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    She does have some valid criticisms that are interesting to think about, but the reactionary lens of her evidence is pretty useless.


    Any additional comments?

    Disclaimer: I only read about a third of the book, but that was enough. I'm neither conservative nor liberal in the modern senses, but this book reminds me why I'm not a conservative.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • All the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Stephen Kinzer
    • Narrated By Michael Prichard
    Overall
    (632)
    Performance
    (239)
    Story
    (248)

    In a cloak-and-dagger story of spies, saboteurs, and secret agents, Kinzer reveals the involvement of Eisenhower, Churchill, Kermit Roosevelt, and the CIA in Operation Ajax, which restored Mohammad Reza Shah to power. Reza imposed a tyranny that ultimately sparked the Islamic Revolution of 1979 which, in turn, inspired fundamentalists throughout the Muslim world, including the Taliban and terrorists who thrived under its protection.

    amazonman says: "Fascinating & Insightful View of US/ Iran History"
    "One of my favorite books on foreign policy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    This books tells a shocking bit about US foriegn policy (not that most of it isn't shocking). Is very well written and enjoyable to get through. It is also clear what are is politics (which I don't agree with) and what are the facts. You can come to your own conclusions.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Time for the Stars

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Robert A. Heinlein
    • Narrated By Barrett Whitener
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (535)
    Performance
    (444)
    Story
    (448)

    Travel to other planets is now a reality, and with overpopulation stretching the resources of Earth, the necessity of finding habitable worlds is growing ever more urgent. There’s a problem though—because the spaceships are slower than light, any communication between the exploring ships and Earth would take years.

    Tom and Pat are identical twin teenagers. As twins they’ve always been close, so close that it seemed like they could read each other’s minds.

    DJM says: "My First Heinlein"
    "What a nice little surprise!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I thought I'd read all the great Heinlein books when I stumbled across this little juvenile gem on sale. It is such a well written human story comparable with "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress".

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Virtue of Selfishness

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Ayn Rand
    • Narrated By C.M. Hernert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (445)
    Performance
    (185)
    Story
    (188)

    Ayn Rand here sets forth the moral principles of Objectivism, the philosophy that holds human life - the life proper to a rational being - as the standard of moral values and regards altruism as incompatible with human nature, with the creative requirement of survival, and with a free society.

    Scott says: "Rand Lovers Only"
    "Even better on the second reading"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I read this some time ago and found it interesting, but unsettling. After reading a lot of other philosophers, developing an independent view of my own, and coming back to it, I appreciated it much, much more. The problem with Rand is her dogmatism toward her views. My own belief is that ethical frameworks are like solutions to problems, some are better than others, but we can theoretically test for fitness of solutions, in the midst of practical difficulties. She is certain that her view is 'correct', rather than superior to the other views she criticizes, and this turns people off. So you have to look past that. The thing is, I happen to think her ethical framework is an exceptionally good solution, which I appreciate more after reviewing the solutions of many other philosophers. The other thing she does is make rambling inferences along the lines of: altruism is self-loathing, self-loathing is destruction, destruction is murder (sorry I can't remember a real one). Some I agreed with, and some I didn't, but the very mechanism is just sloppy intellectualism, and she can do better. These sound very critical for a 5 star review, but the point is to understand this bathwater so that you don't throw out the baby.

    4 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Dispossessed: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Ursula K. Le Guin
    • Narrated By Don Leslie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (197)
    Performance
    (150)
    Story
    (152)

    Shevek, a brilliant physicist, decides to take action. He will seek answers, question the unquestionable, and attempt to tear down the walls of hatred that have isolated his planet of anarchists from the rest of the civilized universe. To do this dangerous task will mean giving up his family and possibly his life. Shevek must make the unprecedented journey to the utopian mother planet, Anarres, to challenge the complex structures of life and living, and ignite the fires of change.

    Justin says: "The Anti Atlas Shrugged"
    "The dream of communism is still alive, unfortunate"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Ursula K. Le Guin and/or Don Leslie?

    no


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    uninteresting and anti-climactic


    What does Don Leslie bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    excellent reader.


    Was The Dispossessed worth the listening time?

    For a political philosophy junkie like me, barely, for most people I think not.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is about what communists and socialists dream about, what's called anarcho-syndicalism. As such, it's very well executed. As an aspiring writer, I find anarchy a very interesting topic. This was a good book to get a feel of what what these types are thinking. I believe, the anarchists you heard about among the occupy wall st crowd were essentially of this variation. What I found interesting was to identify the inconsistencies with this vision. But I find Anarcho-capitalist's arguments much more compelling. For an understanding of that perspective, read 'The Moon is a Harsh Mistress' in fiction or 'A Market for Liberty' in non-fiction.

    These people are supposedly free, but they can't leave their planet, and no one is allowed to come to theirs, they can't name their own children, and a computer runs their lives even separating families which are very loosely sanctioned. And nobody who's in charge of keeping the 'ruling computer' uses it corruptly for their benefit, though there are hints of corruption that don't seem to spin out of control like we witness in every pretty much every society with a power structure.

    Every effort at communism end's in very big, corrupt government and severe poverty if not outright starvation, so this vision is totally impossible. Le Guin recognizes that such 'equality' means a more meager existence, but she under-appreciates the complete societal breakdown which ensues.
    This book has nothing to do with reality, but gives insight into a very odd and dangerous political philosophy.

    The book, while reasonably engaging and well written, is also overly philosophical and insufficiently story-based. The science fiction ideas are totally weak and erroneous. The protagonist travels around near light-speed without having to worry about aging differences with his loved ones. She doesn't seem to fully understand her invention of the Ansible which is reused from an earlier novel.

    3 of 18 people found this review helpful
  • The Modern Scholar: Ethics: A History of Moral Thought

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Peter Kreeft
    • Narrated By Peter Kreeft
    Overall
    (187)
    Performance
    (100)
    Story
    (98)

    This course addresses some of the eternal questions that man has grappled with since the beginning of time. What is good? What is bad? Why is justice important? Why is it better to be good and just than it is to be bad and unjust? Most human beings have the faculty to discern between right and wrong, good and bad behavior, and to make judgments over what is just and what is unjust. But why are ethics important to us?

    J. Maxwell says: "Surprisingly Good"
    "Pretty good for a religious guy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Modern Scholar?

    Very digestible presentation. Does a reasonable job of presenting ancient philosophers' views, then separately asserting his opinions.


    What does Peter Kreeft bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He read's well for a content author, so the emphasis is perfect. Philosophy is particularly awkward when read by the average author.


    Any additional comments?

    His philosophical positions are totally absurd from my thinking. Example: He asserts that if God exists and is morally perfect, then god must be the basis or our morality. I can't even begin to understand how someone who calls himself a philosopher could sling together such a collection of unsubstantiated claims. "if god exists and is morally perfect?" That seems utterly impossible for any creature, sentient or not but fine, we'll just assume it's true even though we can't begin to understand the implications. "Then our morality must be based on god's" What!? God is a completely different kind of organism from us and there's only one of him. His social morality would be fundamentally different from ours. He is far more powerful than we are. His morality requires him to show far greater restraint in using his power to his own benefit than humans do. I can go on, but you get the point.

    4 of 9 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.