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Bruce

Laguna Hills, CA, United States | Member Since 2012

6
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 4 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 9 purchased in 2014
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  • Roger Williams and the Creation of the American Soul: Church, State, and the Birth of Liberty

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By John M. Barry
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (38)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    This is a story of power, set against Puritan America and the English Civil War. Williams's interactions with King James, Francis Bacon, Oliver Cromwell, and his mentor Edward Coke set his course, but his fundamental ideas came to fruition in America, as Williams, though a Puritan, collided with John Winthrop's vision of his "City upon a Hill."

    Bruce says: "Fascinating Story and Legacy"
    "Fascinating Story and Legacy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I remember Roger Williams from my high school and college days as the founder of Rhode Island, but I didn't know much more about him than that. I have four children, all of them adults. I asked each one of them, on separate occasions, if they had studied about Roger Williams in school. Not one of my children had even heard of Roger Williams. That is sad. It is doubly sad because it is such a fascinating story, told extremely well here by one of my favorite authors. He actually was going to write about the home front during World War I, but became intrigued about Roger Williams and the influence on him from Edward Koch, who he worked closely with, and Francis Bacon.

    I did not know how strongly he stood for freedom, many times at personal peril. Through this audiobook, I learned to appreciate his independent thought, his courage, his determination, and his advocacy of the cause of freedom, even for those who did not believe as he believed. In fact, especially for those, including the Indians, with whom he had a strong relationship throughout his life. He was much respected by them, even during times of war.

    I had thought before that he just gone down to Rhode Island when he was banished from Massachusetts and founded it. End of story. This book completely dispels that notion, detailing the constant struggle to maintain a bastion of freedom and not be swallowed up by the aggressiveness and religious intolerance of the Massachusetts Bay Colonies. This book fills a very definite hole in my understanding of pre-colonial America, despite my having read a number of books on this era. It also gives a very good account of what was happening in England before and during the early colonization of Massachusetts and the surrounding area, during the reigns of James I and Charles I. Highly recommended.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Son

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Philipp Meyer
    • Narrated By Will Patton, Kate Mulgrew, Scott Shepherd, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1141)
    Performance
    (1022)
    Story
    (1041)

    Part epic of Texas, part classic coming-of-age story, part unflinching portrait of the bloody price of power, The Son is an utterly transporting novel that maps the legacy of violence in the American West through the lives of the McCulloughs, an ambitious family as resilient and dangerous as the land they claim. Spring, 1849: Eli McCullough is 13 years old when a marauding band of Comanches takes him captive. Brave and clever, Eli quickly adapts to life among the Comanches, learning their ways and waging war against their enemies, including white men - which complicates his sense of loyalty and understanding of who he is.

    Melinda says: "Five Stars for the Lone Star, The Son, & Meyer"
    "Good Production"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was an enjoyable book to listen to. The performances for the characters of Eli McClulloch and Peter McCulloch were excellent. I wasn't as impressed with the performance of J.A. McCulloch, but that may be because her story was not near as interesting as the other two main characters, particularly that of Peter McCulloch - from his diaries. In fact, I had a hard time figuring out what the story gained by the history of J.A. McCulloch. I guess it allowed you to see how much things have changed from the time of the lawless early days of Texas to the current day. Or perhaps it was included just so the author could get a properly sized novel. Things were certainly very brutal in the early days, and survival was much more iffy. I listened to the book going to and from work. I would recommend it as a good audible book, but I don't think I would have it enjoyed it as much if I had just read it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Handmaid's Tale

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs)
    • By Margaret Atwood
    • Narrated By Claire Danes
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3249)
    Performance
    (2925)
    Story
    (2938)

    Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead, serving in the household of the enigmatic Commander and his bitter wife. She may go out once a day to markets whose signs are now pictures because women are not allowed to read. She must pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, for in a time of declining birthrates her value lies in her fertility, and failure means exile to the dangerously polluted Colonies. Offred can remember a time when she lived with her husband and daughter and had a job, before she lost even her own name....

    Melinda says: "Not So Far-Fetched -- Still Chilling"
    "Not Sure How to Rate It"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I debated long and hard whether to give this 3 stars or 4. I ultimately decided on 3, notwithstanding the superb narration of Claire Danes. She is also the reason I downloaded the book in the first place, not knowing fully what to expect. It was generally a good story albeit, I thought, somewhat far fetched. It was thought provoking, however. We do take a lot of our freedoms for granted. For some reason, it is my time to be reading what are typically thought to be women's books. I am also in the process of reading Jane Eyre. That one I am thoroughly enjoying, already anticipating a 5 star review. Anyway, I for the most part found O Fred's tale interesting, particularly enhanced by the narration of Claire Danes, which I thought was great.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Plum Island

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Nelson DeMille
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2468)
    Performance
    (1764)
    Story
    (1756)

    Wounded in the line of duty, NYPD homicide cop John Corey is convalescing in rural eastern Long Island when an attractive young couple he knows is found shot to death on the family patio. The victims were biologists at Plum Island, a research site rumored to be an incubator for germ warfare. Suddenly, a local double murder takes on shattering global implications - and thrusts Corey and two extraordinary women into a dangerous search for the secret of Plum Island....

    DERALD says: "Great on par with" LION'S GAME""
    "Thoroughly Enjoyable"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Plum Island again? Why?

    I don't think I would listen to it again because a book has to be exceptional to want to come back to. It was a good story and a good listen, but this is not a sufficient reason to want a repeat.


    What other book might you compare Plum Island to and why?

    Other Nelson DeMille books. Probably Michael Connelly books compare similarly.


    Which character – as performed by Scott Brick – was your favorite?

    Scott Brick narrates the story of John Corey in the first person, so it would have to be him. However, I also liked Emma Whitestone.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Was just enjoyable to listen to and entertaining. But not an extreme reaction


    Any additional comments?

    I thought Scott Brick did a superb job with the narration. It has made my drives to and from work very entertaining over the last 3 weeks. This was my first Audible.com book I have listened to clear to the end, and it has made me want to listen to more books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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