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John

Avid audiobook listener since 2007. I've enjoyed thousands of hours while jogging, driving, and working around the house.

Garland, TX, United States | Member Since 2007

ratings
52
REVIEWS
8
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
2
HELPFUL VOTES
49

  • Meltdown: A Look at Why the Economy Tanked and Government Bailouts Will Make Things Worse

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Thomas E. Woods
    • Narrated By Alan Sklar
    Overall
    (366)
    Performance
    (109)
    Story
    (109)

    The media tells us that "deregulation" and "unfettered free markets" have wrecked our economy and will continue to make things worse without a heavy dose of federal regulation. But the real blame lies elsewhere. In Meltdown, best-selling author Thomas E. Woods, Jr., unearths the real causes behind the collapse of housing values and the stock market---and it turns out the culprits reside more in Washington than on Wall Street.

    Daniel Squires says: "Read this book!"
    "Biting and brilliant"
    Overall

    The author demolishes the standard Keynesian and monetarist models and delivers a straightforward and insightful Austrian approach to today's economic times.

    His indictment of the Fed alone is worth the price of the book. The title for this chapter is telling: "The Elephant in the Living Room."

    Even more importantly, chapter 4 "How Government Causes the Boom-Bust Cycle," is the best layman's explanation of Austrian Business Cycle Theory I have found. Presented clearly and cogently, even Paul Krugman could understand it were he so inclined.

    Solid theory backing solid solutions, an A+ for content.

    About production, Alan Sklar's narration is wonderful. Best I've heard, full stop.

    He actually seems to have read the book beforehand and gotten a sense of the author's tone and style prior to recording.* Rather than the boring monotone of so many other readers, he invests the text with life and offers a vibrant rendition of the text.

    Thank you Messrs. Woods and Sklar for offering the top combination of content and production I have yet to come across.

    ------------------

    * Yes, as some other reviewers have mentioned, Woods has a bit of sarcasm in his writing. When one deals with ideas which should have been put out of our misery many years ago but somehow keep showing up like zombies in a drive-in theater, a bit of leeway might be allowed for the positive unbelief that these ideas still hold sway in so many "educated" circles. =/

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Robin Hood

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By David B. Coe
    • Narrated By Robin Sachs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (40)
    Performance
    (24)
    Story
    (26)

    In 13th-century England, the legendary figure known by generations as Robin Hood leads an uprising that will forever alter the balance of world power and will make one man of humble beginnings an eternal symbol of freedom for his people. Now a major motion picture starring Oscar- winner Russell Crowe.

    John says: "Nicely done, great plot and lessons to be learned"
    "Nicely done, great plot and lessons to be learned"
    Overall

    This is a novelization of the movie released in 2010.

    The author did a good job of describing what happened in the movie, adding in the thoughts and emotions of the characters so as to turn a good movie into a good book.

    The production is solid and the narrator is adequate. (Having just listened to William Dufris' incredible rendition of The Maltese Falcon, any narrator would have a hard time bearing up under comparison. ;-)

    This take on the classic tale of Robin Hood carries a great message for today: liberty is worth the risk.

    I enjoyed this audiobook and guess that you will, too. Check it out. =)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Maltese Falcon

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Dashiell Hammett
    • Narrated By William Dufris
    Overall
    (796)
    Performance
    (322)
    Story
    (319)

    Hard-boiled detective Sam Spade is hired to locate a client's sister by tailing the sister's companion. Spade's partner Miles Archer takes on the assignment, and quickly both Archer and the man he was shadowing are murdered. As Spade pursues the mystery of his partner's death, he is drawn into a circle of colorful characters, and they are all after a legendary statuette of a falcon that had long ago been made for King Charles of Spain. Encrusted with jewels, it is worth a fortune.

    Jim says: "A little overacted"
    "Good story GREAT Narration"
    Overall

    Hammett had a wonderful way of telling a story which draws the reader in and offers characters which seem both genuine and interesting. Even if you know the plot, it is still a lot of fun to read it again.

    The narrator here, William Dufris, is a veteran who knows how to tell the story Hammett wrote. His voices ROCK and his characterizations were wonderful. He had such an obvious grasp of the nuances of both the characters and the story that it was a joy to listen to his telling of this classic tale.

    My only complaint is that Audible really cheaped out on the production.

    This recording was obviously taken from a set of CDs and simply converted into Audible's proprietary format. How do I know? Because they LEFT IN THE CD TRANSITIONS. "End of disc 3....Disc 4...."

    WTH? Really? They could not take the time during the transcoding to snip out maybe ten bits of audio which so glaringly interrupt the story, often in the middle of an exciting part?

    Seriously, Audible, whoever was so lazy that they could not be bothered to get rid of a few truly annoying artifacts from the original format should lose their job.

    The story and narrator are good enough that this audiobook is still worth getting, despite this shortcoming, but I have to wonder how many other audiobooks were shortchanged this way and what this means for the quality of Audible's other offerings.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Day By Day Armageddon

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By J L Bourne
    • Narrated By Jay Snyder
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3182)
    Performance
    (2278)
    Story
    (2275)

    In your hands is the handwritten journal depicting one man's struggle for survival. Trapped in the midst of global disaster, he must make decisions; choices that ultimately mean life, or the eternal curse to walk as one of them. Enter, if you will, into the world of the undead.

    rob haight says: "Great book! More more more!!"
    "Good Story, Good Narrator, But . . ."
    Overall

    The story was engaging and fun, following the journey of an airman from before the zombie plague through about 5 months of trials and tribulations. Told in the form of a diary, I liked the author's approach: detailing smart things to do and dumb things to avoid, using humor that made me laugh out loud a few times, and creating characters I wanted to follow.

    The end, however, leaves a lot to be desired. I understand that this is a series but it seemed as though Mr. Borne had written out the year and sort of decided by whim to stop in mid-May.

    The narrator was good though his voices were not as different as one might have wished. Still, he did a passable job and I enjoyed the performance.

    Overall, this book is worth listening to but be prepared to spend the money or credit on future books in the series as this one is not a complete story in itself.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Vampire$

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By John Steakley
    • Narrated By Tom Weiner
    Overall
    (135)
    Performance
    (75)
    Story
    (76)

    Suppose there really were vampires. Dark, stalking, destroying. They’d have to be killed, wouldn’t they? Of course they would. But what kind of fools would try to make a living at it? In best-selling author John Steakley's vampire classic, one tightly knit band of brothers devotes itself to hunting down the monsters that infest the modern world—for a price.

    Andrew Pollack says: "Great to see Steakley back - and in good form"
    "If you liked Armor, You'll Like Vampires"
    Overall

    The book was solid, developing believable characters in an unbelievable setting -- the world of vampire hunters.

    I enjoyed getting to know the characters as they careened through the story and, when one or another died, I understood how it fit in the story but wished they were still around, you know?

    The narration and voices by Tom Weiner were excellent and it was easy to tell characters apart.

    Interesting note: the #2 main character in Vampires is named Felix...just like the #1 character in Armor. The #1 main character in Vampires? Jack Crow...just like the #2 main character in Armor.

    Highly recommended!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • We the Living

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Ayn Rand
    • Narrated By Mary Woods
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (404)
    Performance
    (198)
    Story
    (206)

    We the Living portrays the impact of the Russian Revolution on three people who demand the right to live their own lives. At its center is a girl whose passionate love is her fortress against the cruelty and oppression of a totalitarian state. Rand said of this book: "It is as near to an autobiography as I will ever write."

    Geoffrey says: "Emotionally intense, historically authentic"
    "So-so Book, Great Production"
    Overall

    I loved Atlas Shrugged. I loved Anthem. So I was looking forward to We the Living with great anticipation.

    Unfortunately, the characters in this novel grated. Of the three main characters, the only one I respected was the Communist. :-!

    Of the other two, one got on my nerves for the last third of the novel and I hated the third before even halfway through.

    For all of her realism, Rand seemingly REALLY gave in to the notion of Romantic Love in this novel . . . utterly unlike the mature decisions made by Dagny and others in Atlas Shrugged.

    ==============

    Production value in this one was superb. Mary Woods is a *fantastic* reader and, if I am tempted to get another book and see she is the narrator, that will tip the scale.

    Great characterization, recognizable differences between characters, inflection, singing! All were some of the best I've ever heard.

    Brava, madame. Brava!

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Learning About Liberty: The Cato University Home Study Course

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Cato University
    Overall
    (106)
    Performance
    (37)
    Story
    (36)

    You can deepen your perspectives, knowledge, and insight through exposure to some of the world's most compelling thinkers. The growth of human freedom, and with it science, culture, and capitalistic prosperity, are explained through the works and ideas of some of our civilization's most brilliant thinkers.

    Roy says: "Terrific!"
    "Brilliant!"
    Overall

    Not only is the content fantastic (wonderful surveys of great works on freedom, free-market economics, the Constitution, etc.) but the quality of the production is first-rate.

    Using different, talented speakers to form a seamless tapestry of sound and thought, the producers offer a compelling and engaging course which will entertain, educate, and enlighten.

    A big FIVE STARS for the first audiobook I felt compelled to review.

    Thank you CATO and Blackstone!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The 48 Laws of Power

    • ABRIDGED (9 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Robert Greene
    • Narrated By Don Leslie
    Overall
    (1341)
    Performance
    (845)
    Story
    (851)

    Amoral, cunning, ruthless, and instructive, this piercing work distills 3,000 years of the history of power into 48 well-explicated laws. This bold volume outlines the laws of power in their unvarnished essence, synthesizing the philosophies of Machiavelli, Sun-tzu, Carl von Clausewitz, and other great thinkers.

    Ricardo L. says: "Not a how to guide .."
    "Listen at High Speed"
    Overall

    The production is high quality, but the guy talks soooo sloooowwwlllllyyyy that you can easily listen to it at 5x speed and understand every word.

    As for content, Greene put a LOT of work into this and it really shows. The stories really help lock the laws into your memory.

    But there is a ton of stuff in the book that the audiobook leaves out. The way it is organized, it would be impossible not to.

    My advice? Get the book as well. You can find it online cheap and it has even more stories and insight to share.

    Was the audiobook version worth the money? Yes.

    Was it fun to listen to? Yes.

    Do I recommend it to you? Only if you want to learn about power in all its gory details. If you're squeamish about the underbelly of wielding power, this is not for you.

    28 of 33 people found this review helpful

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