Four +++ Stars. Ron Chernow provides thorough insight into the life and times of Hamilton. Hamilton's difficult childhood, his prodigious intellectual writings and incredible accomplishments, and all his many shortcomings are fluidly described in 35 hours of captivating audio. Chernow demonstrates how Hamilton, particularly in partnership with Washington, is father to many of the institutions practices and ideals that make our country great and how Hamilton's temperament held him back from accomplishing more. Eliza Hamilton, Washington, Jefferson, and Adams loom large in this book. Though I was grateful for the faster listening speed of my 4G iPod, I think that opting for the abridged version would not be wise. Chernow himself said that the abridged version is a very different book. Chernow did not fall into the trap of lionizing his biography's subject, treating Hamilton with well-balanced affection and honesty.
Try Washington's Crossing and Samuel Adams, other audible titles that round out understading these founding fathers.
Less inwardly focused on tribal jokes, stories, habits,
I suppose. My sympathies to the narrator.
None that I could discern
As an amazon reviewer said,
A poignant, endearing, complex, imaginative, and well-executed plot with wonderful fully-developed characters. Flash backs from adult lives are interleaved seamlessly and cleverly as two 12/13 year olds come of age under very difficult circumstances. Some characters are seriously flawed in realistic ways. One set of flawed parents is complemented by another set of parents cut out of whole cloth. Adult friends of the children add a special dimension in unexpected ways. Some of the objects and events loom large and carry their heartbreaking meaning from the west coast internment of Japanese-American US citizens. I would be surprised if you don't simultaneously laugh and get misty-eyed from the last few words spoken at the end of the book. Audio is very well narrated. It is as good a young adult/parent/any-adult book as is the excellent The BookThief.
Comparisons to Macbeth and Greek tragedy notwithstanding, this novel is a waste of time. Its prose is pedestrian. That it is on the NYT's Best Seller List says more about the tastes of the American public than the quality of the book. Serena is the ultimate sociopath. Other authors create "bad" characters but manage to invest them with characteristics and personalities which make them interesting in spite of their flaws -- not so with Serena.
The narrator affects a grating southern accent which he uses for the locals as well as the Bostonian Pemberton.
The book deserves a bodice ripping cover to convey its nature.
Engaging, moving, delightful and well-written. This book deserves a place among the best.
An unknown poet writes the world's oldest known epic poem. (2 hours for story; 2 hours for interpretation and explanation by the editor.) Superbly narrated by George Guidall in what is undoubtedly the way most received the story in its time. Uniquely and appropriately audio. The narrative pace translates beautifully to an easy to listen to story(publisher's notes say that earlier translations are stiff and academic). Fun and Enlightening -- not to worry if poetry puts you off -- this story flows beautifully. The interpretations and explanations of editor are worthwhile. I question his easy-to-ignore comparisons to very current events that can only be judged appropriately in the lens of history and his speculations on a homoerotic relationship between the two main characters. Very worthwhile.
I was surprised to be disappointed in this audio given the acclaim given it and its author. Feeling that I needed to re-read two confusing key scenes, I found the complete book on-line and read two entire chapters. This reading confirmed to me that the abridged version does not do the book justice. Hold out for an unabridged version!
Gripping modern-day thriller. Difficult to put down -- finished in 5 days. Just off the press on Dec 7 and number 2 on the Independent Book Sellers list. Thinly veiled characters taken from real life in a thought-provoking discourse on Global Warming and eco thought. Not for the closed-minded, absolutely politically correct. A surprise treat of 20 minutes of serious interview with author at the end. Appears to be well researched. I found the narrator good. I listened to in faster mode on 4G iPod.
Winner of the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and a National Book Critics Circle Award Winner. An excellent book. It is much more than a story of free blacks owning slaves. It is a complex story set in times of American slavery and involves good people, bad people, good people who become bad people, and wonderful things and terrible things happening. The word "Property" is used to describe and call the slaves. An excellent story line, woven in elaborate time warps and beautiful language. Well narrated.
This book is great literature and carries itself along with well-developed characters with whom you will identify -- painfully so at times. This book is attractive for its quality writing, memorable characters and intriguing story line, not for page-turning suspense.
This African-American author's first novel.
Book prizes are no guarantee of a good book, but this book clearly well deserved its awards.
The last ten minutes of the audio is a fascinating interview with the author.
The listener is carefully led through a complex plot which is revealed in an unexpected and effective manner and only fully, with penultimate sacrifice, at the end of the story. Fully developed, realistic characters and setting portray a world where individual actions and avoiding truth have bold consequences. This intertwined and unpredictable story, focusing on two women and two girl-children flows well over a twenty-year time frame.
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