What I loved best about this book was the even handed treatment of this icon. I have seen the author on various television sports shows and expected more of an "apologia to St. John" than the disinterested, dispassionate, and extremely well researched book that resulted. I also appreciate the well deserved credit and recognition given to Jerry Norman, someone with whom I was only remotely familiar, but someone who clearly deserved an enormous amount of credit for Wooden's early success (shame on Coach Wooden for not doing a better job of recognizing this brilliant coach during the former's life). Finally, as a basketball, and particularly UCLA basketball junkie, I was surprised by how much I learned about the players, coaches and opposing players and coaches throughout (and following)
Wooden's tenure as head coach.
His double standard. His "firm rules for the players" were clearly not evenly applied. Behavior that would get most players kicked off the team was tolerated and even ignored by the likes of Alcindor, Allen, Wicks, Rowe, et al. I was also shocked, but not really surprised by Wooden's tendency to ignore "boosters" whose antics would have resulted in probation and severe penalties for most other programs by the NCAA. To say that the NCAA was (and still is) hypocritical) would be oxymoronic. Years ago, I considered it poor sportsmanship and petty jealousy when other coaches, particularly Jerry Tarkanian, would bad mouth UCLA and complain about preferential treatment, but I now see that they were very clearly justified.
Not unless he was the only reader of a book that I simply could not resist listening to. On second thought, make that a flat unqualified "no." If he were the only reader, I would buy the book. As another reviewer noted, his slow and monotone voice was so annoying that I had to increase the speed on my Ipod. McLaughlin was also guilty of several unforgivable mispronunciations. Unfortunately he has a lot of company in this area, but to butcher names that anyone with even a passing knowledge of basketball would pronounce correctly is reprehensible. Two prominent examples, Adolph Rupp's surname was pronounced as "roop," and in his first mention of Don Chaney, it was pronounced "chancy." The latter was particularly sloppy since subsequent references to Chaney (but not Rupp) were pronounced correctly.
If it were physically possible and if there were a different reader, yes.
Seth is an excellent writer. The only other book I have read by him (and the only other book I am aware that he has written) was one about Earvin Johnson and Larry Bird---not available on Audible---was also very good, though not as good as Wooden. I hope he continues to write more.
Not a chance.
The most interesting part, which could have been accomplished in a short story, were the various theories on how Patton really died.
In all fairness, the narration probably deserves a higher score than I gave him, but I find him to be such a loathsome and pretentious personality that I could not get past it while listening to the book (BTW---I am very right wing, so my criticism of O'Reilly is not ideological).
Heavens no! It needs an abridgement.
No more "Killings" for me. I relented and bought this audio due to the inexplicably positive reviews.
This is a pretty good book but not up to Illes' standards. While some of his other works, e.g.the Penn Cage series, are comparably long, they are so well written that it's hard to put them down. Unfortunately Spandau Phoenix does not meet this standard.
Very little. I cannot understand why Dick Hill is so popular. When he is reading in a normal tone, he's OK, but his attempts at foreign (and female) accents are insufferable and annoying. Unlike John Lee (Century trilogy) whose accents and pronunciations are superb, Hill's are amateurish and exaggerated.
I wish Illes would either continue the Penn Cage series or begin another one.
For years Grisham has managed to get away with blatant political bias that would be the kiss of death to most authors which, I assume, is because he has always been such a superb story teller----at least that's why I keep reading his books. Well, no longer. While Gray Mountain contains his typical left wing prejudice, the story offers no redeeming value. A complete bore. Very disappointing. He had a good run but, absent a stunning comeback, I'm finished with Grisham.
I am not familiar with the reader, but she did a credible job. I gave her extra credit for not trying to imitate a man's voice and also for not being guilty of any major pronunciation errors (the latter of which is all too common even with otherwise excellent readers).
Despite the interminable (and perhaps unnecessary) length of this book, I enjoyed listening to it. The author is a good story teller and the reader performed a decent rendition. I must however agree with some of the reviewers who cite bias on the part of the author. Actually, mere "bias" would be a considerable understatement. I have never been a fan of Nixon or Reagan but was nonetheless taken aback by the palpable bias of the author toward both----and especially Reagan.
This is where the reader did a creditable job---you could actually hear the author frothing with contempt at many of Regan's initiatives. In some cases, despite the author's attempt to the contrary, the positions that Nixon and (especially) Regan were advocating came across as very persuasive. Another peculiarity I noticed, which initially surprised me, were the little shots he took at the Catholic Church; but I soon understood that his venom was directed against the traditional Catholic Church of all times and that he in fact seemed to favor some of the more outrageous manifestations of the post 1968 Vatican II church.
In summary, if you are interested in this period of history, or lived through it as I did, you will enjoy this book as I did. On the other hand, if you are offended by blatant bias and/or are big advocates of Nixon and/or Regan, you might want to stay away from it.
What I liked best was Tannenbaum continuing his use of the same characters present since the beginning of the series and his use of real current events to enliven the story. What I like least is his consistent error in his references to St. Teresa of Avila. I find her apparitions to Lucy clever and amusing, but the credibility would be enhanced if he discontinued referring to St. Teresa as a martyr. She was a virgin (V); not a virgin/martyr (VM). I also think he could have shaved off a couple of hours by cutting back on a lot of unnecessary and frankly uninteresting details on some of his sub-plots involving secondary and tertiary characters.
I would compare it with all the books in the Butch Karp/Marlene Campi series. All of the great characters are present in their typical form.
Yes, I would. He did an adequate job and also got an extra star from me for not making any blatant mispronunciations which are (regrettably) typical of so many readers---even some of the better ones. Nothing against Mr. Walter, but authors should stick with the same readers when they are writing books that are part of a series. People get used to particular voices and associate them with the respective characters.
It doesn't "need" one but I'm sure it will get one.
St. Thomas Aquinas, is without any doubt, the most brilliant human being who has ever lived. He completely systemized theology (as well as philosophy). He built upon and corrected such giants as St. Augustine, the great pagan philosopher Plato, and completed what was left to us by the greatest of all pagan philosophers, Aristotle.
St. Thomas Aquinas' most important body of work, the Summa Theologiae, while intimidating to modern readers, is brought to life and made readily understandable by Peter Kreeft. I cannot say enough about how impressed I am with this with this book!
My only additional comment is to encourage any reader/listener with an interest in theology, philosophy/epistemology to read or listen to this book. No prior education or training in philosophy is required to understand and appreciate it.
Not at all. The reader sounded like he was in a hurry and his pronunciation was atrocious----a problem, unfortunately all too common in audio books. Initially, I thought that the mispronunciations were limited to proper nouns (players' names), which while still inexcusable, would at least be tolerable. But alas, that was not the case.
I can't think of another book with which to compare Personal Foul, but I found it to be an honest and candid representation of the circumstances leading to the problem----i.e. no whining or constantly making excuses, blaming others etc. In fact, to my shock, I found myself empathizing with the author.
Yes, primarily with the plethora of mispronunciations.
I was moved by learning the extent----not the existence--of corruption and incompetence in the NBA management and officiating. If I continue to watch NBA games, and I still haven't decided upon that, it will certainly be with a jaundiced eye. Is pro basketball a sport, like college basketball where fouls are called on the basis of objective criteria, or a "performance," where the object is to keep high profile players on the floor "no matter what"? Clearly it's the latter, and this is evident across the board.
Great book. Couldn't put it down.
The story line was hackneyed, boring and cliched. I only decided to read this book based upon its (unbelievable) ranking on recent fiction---so, lesson learned for me.
It was so boring and, at times offensive, that I couldn't finish it. I think I probably got through a third of it. I suppose I liked parts of the female story---somewhat interesting and credible, but the male part was a loser in so many respects. I'm not sure which was more loathsome---the character or the reader.
I'm sorry I read this book and will never read another from this author.
I should have learned by now to take endorsements from otherwise credible sources with a grain of salt. The best I can say about this overrated/overhyped book is that the story line was interesting and character development good, however it quickly became disjointed and, frankly, boring. The primary narrator was pretty good---in fact he should have done the entire recording, because the second narrator, assuming the role of the scribe, was just awful----to the extent that I couldn't stand to listen to it. Thankfully, it was a short book but I was still unable to stick with it to the end.
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