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Reston, VA, USA | Member Since 2006


  • The Partly Cloudy Patriot

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Sarah Vowell
    • Narrated By Sarah Vowell, Conan O'Brien, Seth Green, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Sarah Vowell travels through the American past and investigates the dusty, bumpy roads of her own life. Her essays confront a wide range of subjects, icons, and historical moments: Ike, Teddy Roosevelt, and Bill Clinton; Canadian Mounties and German Filmmakers; Tom Cruise and Buffy the Vampire Slayer; twins and nerds; the Gettysburg Address, the State of the Union, and George W. Bush's inauguration. The result is an engrossing audiobook, capturing Vowell's memorable wit and her keen social commentary.

    Erik says: "A great listen"
    "The Partly Cloudy Patriot"

    Sarah Vowell is a unique voice, in more ways than one. She mixes astute observations with historical facts and throws in a lot of wry humor and biographical musings. Idiologues will probably be impatient with the contradictions. Although she is unabashedly liberal, she is also unabashedly patriotic and fervent about the documents of the founding fathers. Not that these two are contradictory, but the way things play out liberals are often seen as unpatriotic because they are not flag wavers shouting "America first no matter what." If you've heard Sarah on This American Life, you know she has a very distinct-sounding voice, which I can only describe as being a little like Lisa Simpson. If you like This American Life, The Partly Cloudy Patriot is a little like listening to 5 hours of it, although it's just Sarah with a few Cameos thrown in narrating quotes from presidents and friends, and of course They Might Be Giants as musical accompaniment.

    115 of 127 people found this review helpful
  • Chekhov: 11 Stories

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Anton Chekhov
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham

    With amazing insight, Anton Chekhov wrote of the lives of the Russian common man as well as the landowner. He established the style of the modern short story and influenced many great writers, including George Bernard Shaw, James Joyce, Ernest Hemingway, Katherine Mansfield, and Virginia Woolf.

    jerry says: "Suble is the byword"
    "A nice selection but not the best narration."

    This is a nice selection of stories my Chekhov. I got it mainly because it contains my favorite story of his - The Black Monk. Unfortunately the narration is not the best. The pacing is a bit jerky and his pronunciation of Russian words and propper names sometimes incorrect. It's not horrible, but it could have been done better and detracts from the overall value of the audio book...

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Me Talk Pretty One Day

    • ABRIDGED (5 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By David Sedaris
    • Narrated By David Sedaris

    David Sedaris' collection of essays - including live recordings! - tells a most unconventional life story. With every clever turn of a phrase, Sedaris brings a view and a voice like no other to every unforgettable encounter. You can also listen to Sedaris in an interview with Terry Gross on Fresh Air.

    Amazon Customer says: "You will ROFL"
    "Extremely funny"

    Not much to add to the reviews already given, but I will say that I found the funniest parts to be those revolving around Sidaris's attempt to learn French and meld in with French culture. This is a big interest of mine (not French, but just cultural and linguistic differences), so it was especially funny. Other stories were also good, but to me there was nothing funnier than Sidaris speaking mock-French (basically really grammatically bad English to illustrate how basic and bad a speaker he was). I'm a pretty quiet person but was unable to contain myself on the metro hearing a lot of this despite people being within inches of me!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Shipwreck at the Bottom of the World: The Extraordinary True Story of Shackleton and the Endurance

    • NONE (3 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Jennifer Armstrong
    • Narrated By Taylor Mali

    Sir Ernest Shackleton and a crew of 27 men set off from England aboard the ship Endurance, intending to cross Antarctica from one side to the other. Instead, Endurance becomes icebound and sinks 100 miles from land, leaving Shackleton and his men to fight brutal perils on ice, land, and sea...or die trying.

    Levi says: "Shorter account with some colorful voices"
    "Shorter account with some colorful voices"

    This book is not as exhaustive as the other one on Audible (Endurence), but is still well done and includes some details and insight that the other doesn't. The narrator also tries to immatate the accents of various crew members, so there's Scottish accents, Australian, Cockney, Welsh, Canadian, and so forth. This definitely livens things up quite a bit, although the story is so riveting it doesn't need it.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Protein Power Lifeplan

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Dr. Michael R. Eades, Dr. Mary Dan Eades
    • Narrated By Dr. Michael R. Eades, Dr. Mary Dan Eades

    The authors of the New York Times best seller Protein Power are back with an expanded nutritional program. Now the Drs. Eades have amplified their theory to show how the Protein Power Lifeplan can help fight diabetes, high blood pressure, auto-immune disorder, and more.

    Levi says: "A great intro to low-carb eating."
    "A great intro to low-carb eating."

    The Eades, I think, are the "thinking person's" diet doctors. This book is a follow-up to a more basic book entitled simply Protein Power. This book is a little more ambitious and tries to cover many, many aspects of health and wellness. I think their ideas about sunbathing are questionable, but who knows, perhaps they will be proven correct in the long run. What I don't question is their dietary advise, which has been culled from years of using these recommendations in a private practice as well as painstaking research of studies.

    When I first started doing low-carb, I picked up Atkins because he is the most well known. I didn't particularly like his book because I thought it was kind of ranting and repetitive and didn't give a whole lot of science behind it. Luckily, someone recommended Protein Power and I found it worlds better and very level-headed, scientifically based, etc. If you are not one for the scientific details, some of this book will be irrelevent to you, but I myself find all of this interesting and useful. I think it is explained in a way that is simple enough for most people to undersand as well.

    17 of 18 people found this review helpful
  • Eat More, Weigh Less

    • ABRIDGED (1 hr and 30 mins)
    • By Dean Ornish
    • Narrated By Dean Ornish

    How is it possible to eat more but weigh less? Dr. Dean Ornish's program that focuses on food types rather than on amounts shows that it's not just how much you eat, but what you eat that matters. Instead of tiny portions that leave you feeling deprived, this plan offers an array of foods that create a sense of abundance because you can eat more frequently - and in greater quantities - and still lose weight.

    Levi says: "Vegetarian dogma mascarading as good medicine"
    "Vegetarian dogma mascarading as good medicine"

    Although I was persuaded by Ornish back in the mid-90's, subsequent research has made me very doubtful. First of all, he basically wants everyone to give up meat. And I don't mean just red meat, but even fish. This is because he is involved in some Indian spiritual path that prohibits eating meat. It's fine to shun meat for philosophical/ethical/regious reasons, but Ornish isn't up front about this being part of the reason he recommends against meat.

    Secondly, he maintains his almost zero fat diet as being responsible for reversing heart disease because those who have followed it under his supervision have actually had some reversal. The problem is that those same people were also undergoing a rigorous program of exercise and stress reduction at the same time, so there's no way to seperate out the diet from these other variables.

    Low-fat has actually been renounced as a way to improve health and lose weight by many even mainstream nutritionists by now, yet Ornish stubornly clings to his ideas: white meat chicken breast coming in at 6 whole grams of fat is simply too much fat for him - he wants you to have 10 grams or even less for the entire day! Fat is an important part of the diet. Fat is part of every cell membrane and the brain itself is mostly fat. It just doesn't make sense that we should get such a trace amount in our diet.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Jews, God, and History

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Max I. Dimont
    • Narrated By Anna Fields

    From ancient Palestine through Europe and the Orient, to America and modern Israel, Max Dimont shows how the saga of the Jews is interwoven with the history of virtually every nation on earth. Brilliantly narrated in a thousand and one episodes, this newly revised and updated edition tells the story of a people escaping annihilation and cultural death, fighting, falling back, and advancing again.

    Matrix2020 says: "Entertaining History of the Jewish People"
    "Exhaustive study with different points of view"

    Unlike the other reviewer, I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and I am a Jew. I only think his comments apply to Jews who have already cemented their opinion and can't stand to hear other points of view. The author provideds different opinions on many aspects of Jewish history, and also approaches the history from different perspectives of thought. It covers from the beginnings of the Jewish people and Abraham through to about 10 years ago, maybe a little more. It's very exhaustive, so if you want a good overall history, even if you differ with some interpretations, this is a very good start!

    19 of 21 people found this review helpful
  • Fast Food Nation

    • ABRIDGED (8 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Eric Schlosser
    • Narrated By Rick Adamson

    To a degree both engrossing and alarming, the story of fast food is the story of postwar America. Fast Food Nation is a groundbreaking work of investigation and cultural history that may change the way America thinks about the way it eats.

    Bruce says: "Should be required reading for all"
    "Many angles on the fast food industry"

    I thought this book was going to be mainly about the health issues surrounding fast food, but that is such a minor part of it. We learn about the entire history of the industry, its effects on popular culture, economics, and other related food industries. I knew there was good reason to stay away from certain fast food restaurants based simply on health reasons, but now there are so many others, not the least of which are how they exploit their workers and enable partners in other food industries to exploit their workers. After listening to this book, I pretty much stayed out of fast food restaurants for almost two years. It is really a fascinating and persuasive book!

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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