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John

Oak Park, IL, United States | Member Since 2008

ratings
65
REVIEWS
50
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
2
HELPFUL VOTES
75

  • Churchill's Secret War: The British Empire and the Ravaging of India During World War II

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Madhusree Mukarjee
    • Narrated By James Adams
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (75)
    Performance
    (45)
    Story
    (45)

    In 1943 Winston Churchill and the British Empire needed millions of Indian troops, all of India's industrial output, and tons of Indian grain to support the Allied war effort. Such massive contributions were certain to trigger famine in India. Because Churchill believed that the fate of the British Empire hung in the balance, he proceeded, sacrificing millions of Indian lives in order to preserve what he held most dear. The result: the Bengal Famine of 1943-44, in which millions of villagers starved to death.

    scmathew says: "A fascinating narrative with a flawed narration"
    "Westerners forget this part of WWII"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Author Madhusree Mukarjee deserves credit for bringing attention to a part of WWII that Westerners have conveniently forgotten - over a million Indians died of starvation caused at least party by British demands for India to provide supplies during WWII.

    However, the author goes too far in implying repeatedly that Indians would be rich people if the British would disappear. The reality is that most Indians have no ability to earn money and anyway they have lots of babies and cannot support those babies.

    The narration was very good.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Arctic Rising

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Tobias S. Buckell
    • Narrated By Carolyn Michelle Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (79)
    Performance
    (74)
    Story
    (71)

    Global warming has transformed the Earth, and it's about to get even hotter. The Arctic Ice Cap has all but melted, and the international community is racing desperately to claim the massive amounts of oil beneath the newly accessible ocean. Enter the Gaia Corporation. Its two founders have come up with a plan to roll back global warming. They plan to terraform Earth to save it from itself—but in doing so, they have created a superweapon the likes of which the world has never seen.

    K Cornwinkle says: "Plausible & interesting first 1/3; then falters"
    "socialist book promoted as libertarian book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am absolutely shocked that this book is a contender for an award from the Libertarian Futurist Society. The book has strong socialist undertones. And, anyway, the story isn't very good.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Kill Decision

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Daniel Suarez
    • Narrated By Jeff Gurner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2709)
    Performance
    (2419)
    Story
    (2425)

    Linda McKinney is a myrmecologist, a scientist who studies the social structure of ants. Her academic career has left her entirely unprepared for the day her sophisticated research is conscripted by unknown forces to help run an unmanned - and thanks to her research, automated - drone army. Odin is the secretive Special Ops soldier with a unique insight into the faceless enemy who has begun to attack the American homeland with drones programmed to seek, identify, and execute targets.

    Madeleine says: "What's that droning sound?"
    "top quality sci-fi"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This novel was lots of fun because it explores some interesting, and realistic, technology that could change the world over the next decade. Of course, the plot also has action and romance. Excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Tehran Initiative

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Joel C. Rosenberg
    • Narrated By Christopher Lane
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (950)
    Performance
    (817)
    Story
    (834)

    The world is on the brink of disaster. Iran has just conducted its first atomic weapons test. Millions of Muslims around the world are convinced their messiah — known as the Twelfth Imam — has arrived on earth. Israeli leaders fear Tehran, under the Twelfth Imam’s spell, will soon launch a nuclear attack that could bring about a second Holocaust and the annihilation of Israel.

    Susan says: "Rosenberg does it again - couldn't put it down!"
    "excellent quality, but with one flaw"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "The Tehran Initiative" lives up to the high quality standards set by Joel C. Rosenberg in his earlier novels. The characters, action, and plot kept me gripped throughout.

    The viewpoint that people are correct to defend themselves against aggressors is very important to promote today, particularly since most Americans have shifted to a pro-appeasement outlook. The novel is therefore controversial as it goes against mainstream opinion.

    The only weakness I see in Rosenberg's work is his effort to make this into a religious question. In fact, this is a matter of pure scientific rationality. If you don't defend yourself, you will die.

    The quality of the narration was excellent. There was a bit of dramatization, but not too much.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Reamde

    • UNABRIDGED (38 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Neal Stephenson
    • Narrated By Malcolm Hillgartner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3598)
    Performance
    (3148)
    Story
    (3182)

    Richard Forthrast created T’Rain, a multibillion-dollar, massively multiplayer online role-playing game. But T’Rain’s success has also made it a target. Hackers have struck gold by unleashing REAMDE, a virus that encrypts all of a player’s electronic files and holds them for ransom. They have also unwittingly triggered a deadly war beyond the boundaries of the game’s virtual universe - and Richard is at ground zero.

    ShySusan says: "Not perfect, but worth a listen."
    "refreshing look at villains"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Neal Stephenson is at his best in techno-thriller Reamde.

    A particular reason why I like Stephenson's humorous characterizations is because the villains are depicted as idiots.

    This is correct because a person must be an idiot in order to be a villain.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help You Find - and Keep - Love

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Amir Levine, Rachel S. F. Heller
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    Overall
    (700)
    Performance
    (603)
    Story
    (597)

    Is there a science to love? In this groundbreaking audiobook, psychiatrist and neuroscientist Amir Levine and psychologist Rachel S. F. Heller reveal how an understanding of attachment theory - the most advanced relationship science in existence today - can help us find and sustain love. Attachment theory forms the basis for many best-selling books on the parent/child relationship, but there has yet to be an accessible guide to what this fascinating science has to tell us about adult romantic relationships - until now.

    Grace says: "Great book. Very illustrative."
    "myth that therapy will make people happy"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The theme of this book seems to be that everyone has a possibility to find a happy relationship. I guess this is a myth that makes some people feel good. However, it isn't reality because everyone has faults and therefore must make compromises. The suggestion that it is normal for people to pay therapists for 3 or 4 years makes me wonder if the objective of the authors is to gain customers for the therapist industry.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Canticle for Leibowitz

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Walter M. Miller
    • Narrated By Tom Weiner
    Overall
    (837)
    Performance
    (735)
    Story
    (741)

    Winner of the 1961 Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller’s A Canticle for Leibowitz is a true landmark of 20th-century literature—a chilling and still-provocative look at a postapocalyptic future.

    Joel says: "A Classic"
    "sci-fi classic mocks religion"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Far in the future, most humans continue to shun rationality and science and devote themselves to dogmatic religion. However, there is always hope. Science gets rediscovered no matter how hard the zealots try to stamp it out. Well written, brilliantly insightful, and funny at times.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Capitol Game

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Brian Haig
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (227)
    Performance
    (75)
    Story
    (73)

    It was the deal of the decade, if not the century. A small, insignificant company on the edge of bankruptcy had discovered an alchemist's dream; a miraculous polymer, that when coated on any vehicle, was the equivalent of 30 inches of steel. With bloody conflicts surging in Iraq and Afghanistan, the polymer promises to save thousands of lives and change the course of both wars.

    Gary says: "Good Guys Win"
    "bad guys in the Capitol get what they deserve"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the perfect novel for people fed up with sleaze in Washington. Enjoyable and meaningful.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lucifer's Hammer

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle
    • Narrated By Marc Vietor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3167)
    Performance
    (1808)
    Story
    (1827)

    The gigantic comet had slammed into Earth, forging earthquakes a thousand times too powerful to measure on the Richter scale, tidal waves thousands of feet high. Cities were turned into oceans; oceans turned into steam. It was the beginning of a new Ice Age and the end of civilization. But for the terrified men and women chance had saved, it was also the dawn of a new struggle for survival--a struggle more dangerous and challenging than any they had ever known....

    DJM says: "Good story from front to back"
    "interesting post-apocalyptic novel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story is interesting throughout and the narrator is perfect for the part.

    I like the themes in the struggle between Hamner, Randall, and Jellison on one side (Stronghold) and Armitage (New Brotherhood Army) on the other side.

    The Stronghold group adheres to rationality and science and wants to preserve civilization. The New Brotherhood Army adheres to mysticism and fights civilization. Good stuff for fans of Ayn Rand.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Free Market Revolution: How Ayn Rand’s Ideas Can End Big Government

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Yaron Brook, Don Watkins
    • Narrated By Tom Weiner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (52)
    Performance
    (48)
    Story
    (49)

    The rise of the Tea Party and the 2010 election results revealed that tens of millions of Americans are alarmed by big government but skeptical that anything can or will be done to stop the growth of the state. In Free Market Revolution, the keepers of Ayn Rand’s legacy argue that the answer lies in Rand’s pioneering philosophy of capitalism and self-interest—a philosophy that more and more people are turning to for answers.

    John says: "Ayn Rand is relevant today"
    "Ayn Rand is relevant today"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Yaron Brook has done great work explaining Ayn Rand's philosophy in clear and concise language in "Free Market Revolution." Included is discussion on the "3 pillars of Capitalism": private property, individual liberty, voluntary association.

    Mr. Brook has also listed examples of modern-day situations where the US government is doing the wrong thing and the economy is suffering as a result. The Democrats and Republicans are both at fault.

    I enjoyed the style and content of the book. My only criticism (and this goes for Rand's books as well) is that Objectivists are dreaming if they think typical voters with low levels of intelligence will read a book like this and change how they vote.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Wolves Eat Dogs

    • ABRIDGED (6 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Martin Cruz Smith
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty
    Overall
    (22)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    While investigating the death of one of Russia's top entrepreneurs, Renko, the chronically melancholic senior investigator in Moscow, follows a trail that eventually leads him to the desolate area of Chernobyl. In this bizarre wasteland, things might just be looking up for Renko.

    Richard R says: "Terrific"
    "Martin Cruz Smith at his best"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "Wolves eat Dogs" is a well written and well narrated tale with important themes.

    As usual, Arkady Renko is trying to discover and expose the truth while others with typical Soviet mentalities try to cover up the truth. Hurray for Arkady!

    The history of the Chernobyl disaster is skilfully woven into the plot.

    John Christmas, author of "Democracy Society"

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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