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Roger Friedman

Member Since 2011

  • 4 reviews
  • 4 ratings
  • 120 titles in library
  • 4 purchased in 2015

  • Those Guys Have All the Fun: Inside the World of ESPN

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 1 min)
    • By James Andrew Miller, Tom Shales
    • Narrated By James Andrew Miller, Matt McCarthy, Joan Baker
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    ESPN began as an outrageous gamble with a lineup that included Australian Rules Football, rodeo, and a rinky-dinky clip show called Sports Center. Today the empire stretches far beyond television into radio, magazines, mobile phones, restaurants, video games and more, while ESPN's personalities have become global superstars to rival the sports icons they cover.

    Bernie says: "A Compelling Story Made Less So by the Narration"
    "Endless, Lazy, and Not Very Interesting"
    What would have made Those Guys Have All the Fun better?

    An editor would have been helpful. As it was, it was an endless and seemingly random stream of quotes from various participants in ESPN's rise to glory.

    What could James Andrew Miller and Tom Shales have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    It was as if the authors emailed everyone who ever worked at ESPN, gathered the responses, and cut-and-pasted everything into a giant tome -- no real insights, not much of interest, and no flow.

    Would you be willing to try another one of the narrators’s performances?

    One of the narrators was decent, although it was challenging because so many of the voices of the players in the book are so familiar. The narrator who read the few, brief connecting pieces (the blurbs between the stream of quotes) sounded as if he were put off to have to read his parts. The woman's role was so over-the-top, "Well, golly!" that it subconsciously made all the female characters sound like ditzes.

    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    I did learn more about the rise of ESPN, but ultimately, I guess, to what end?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Slow Getting Up: A Story of NFL Survival from the Bottom of the Pile

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Nate Jackson
    • Narrated By Nate Jackson

    Nate Jackson’s Slow Getting Up is an unvarnished and uncensored memoir of everyday life in the most popular sports league in America - and the most damaging to its players - the National Football League. After playing college ball at a tiny Division III school, Jackson, a receiver, signed as a free agent with the San Francisco 49ers, before moving to the Denver Broncos. For six seasons in the NFL as a Bronco, he alternated between the practice squad and the active roster, eventually winning a starting spot - a short, tenuous career emblematic of the average pro player.

    Roger Friedman says: "It's not art, but it is insightful"
    "It's not art, but it is insightful"
    Would you listen to Slow Getting Up again? Why?

    Nate Jackson provides a very clear picture of what life is like for a professional football player, from the pain of a torn muscle to the availability of "jersey chasers" for a pro athlete. He peppers his story with more philosophical meanderings and extended metaphors than you might imagine, but it's largely an instructive, interesting, informative inside look inside the locker room.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ready Player One

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Ernest Cline
    • Narrated By Wil Wheaton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    At once wildly original and stuffed with irresistible nostalgia, Ready Player One is a spectacularly genre-busting, ambitious, and charming debut—part quest novel, part love story, and part virtual space opera set in a universe where spell-slinging mages battle giant Japanese robots, entire planets are inspired by Blade Runner, and flying DeLoreans achieve light speed.

    Travis says: "ADD TO CART, POWER UP +10000"
    "I didn't expect to like this book"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I find myself telling a lot of people (mostly guys around age 40) unprompted that they have to read this book. To be clear, I didn't spend my youth plugging quarters into the games at the arcade and I never had tape on my glasses (actually didn't even wear glasses until an unfortunate attempt to appear scholarly much later), but this innovative futuristic/nostalgic blend totally appealed to my inner nerd. Great concept, very strong writing, and even for a guy who has trouble with willful suspension of disbelief, somehow totally believable.

    What about Wil Wheaton’s performance did you like?

    I hadn't thought about it before I got to this question, but Wheaton himself represents for me both the nostalgia (I saw Stand By Me at least six times) and futurism (Star Trek: Next Generation) that the book captures. He just sounded right.

    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Not moved, so much, but made me react in some real way. I actually look forward to going back and listening to this one again in a year or so.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Fault in Our Stars

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By John Green
    • Narrated By Kate Rudd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten. Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning-author John Green’s most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.

    FanB14 says: "Sad Premise, Fantastic Story"
    "Totally absorbing"
    What made the experience of listening to The Fault in Our Stars the most enjoyable?

    The premise doesn't sound like all that much fun, but it's incredibly well written, incredibly well told, incredibly engaging. The writing is crisp, capturing the feelings and conversations in a way that was totally believable. And I can think of at least a dozen times when I hit the "back 30 seconds" icon so I could listen again to the way a paragraph was constructed or the incredible wit delivered in a line.

    What does Kate Rudd bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    It almost felt as if John Green had her in mind when he wrote it. It was just the right marriage of story and voice.

    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yup, and I even listened to the author Q&A at the end because I didn't want to stop.

    Any additional comments?

    I was startled in that Q&A when the interviewer asked why he only wrote Young Adult books. Frankly, I had no idea that it was meant for teens. I mean, I guess in retrospect it's a bit obvious, but it was a book for everyone.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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