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William

Avid "reader" of history - military and with a more British slant the past few years. Rarely read novels but Anthony Powell's DTMoTime zomg

Bainbridge Island, WA, United States | Member Since 2007

14
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 20 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 51 purchased in 2014
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  • The General: Charles De Gaulle and the France He Saved

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Jonathan Fenby
    • Narrated By Robin Bloodworth
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (16)
    Story
    (17)

    No leader of modern times was more uniquely patriotic than Charles de Gaulle. As founder and first president of the Fifth Republic, General de Gaulle saw himself as "carrying France on [his] shoulders." In his 20s, he fought for France in the trenches and at the epic battle of Verdun. In the 1930s, he waged a lonely battle to enable France to better resist Hitler's Germany. Thereafter, he twice rescued the nation from defeat and decline by extraordinary displays of leadership, political acumen, daring, and bluff, heading off civil war and leaving a heritage adopted by his successors of right and left.

    H. Segal says: "Slavishly written, Unreflective but Interesting"
    "Had to read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Any additional comments?

    I too found the narrator's use of an affected French accent annoying, as I cringed when I first heard it and then wearing as I progressed through the book. I also found his style plodding.The book provides some different anecdotes about De Gaulle and of course a different slant than the previous bio I got from Audible Books, by Don Cook which if I had a choice to listen to on a desert island, I would choose hands down.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Small Man in a Book

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Rob Brydon
    • Narrated By Rob Brydon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (33)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (31)

    Who is the man behind the many voices of Rob Brydon? Read by the man himself, this audiobook memoir will reveal the warm heart behind one of Britain's favourite impressionists. A multi-award-winning actor, writer, comedian and presenter known for his warmth, humour and inspired impressions, Rob Brydon has quickly become one of our very favourite entertainers.

    William says: "Brydon fan"
    "Brydon fan"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Certainly, because I had the time to.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The foundations of a successful comedian/actor's career....the hard work, persistence and luck involved.
    I got a bit bogged down in some of the details prior to his breakthrough as I did not know many of the other persons he worked with as I live in North America.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Brydon's delivery was...well, Brydon and being a relatively new fan of his work I enjoyed getting to know him better through him.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Dance to the Music of Time: First Movement

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Anthony Powell
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    Overall
    (483)
    Performance
    (284)
    Story
    (276)

    Anthony Powell's universally acclaimed epic encompasses a four-volume panorama of twentieth century London. Hailed by Time as "brilliant literary comedy as well as a brilliant sketch of the times," A Dance to the Music of Time opens just after World War I. Amid the fever of the 1920s and the first chill of the 1930s, Nick Jenkins and his friends confront sex, society, business, and art.

    jennifer says: "A Masterpiece on All Counts"
    "Most enjoyable"
    Overall

    I concur with all the glowing reviews of this audio book....the whole series.

    Undoubtedly, Simon Vance's, always sterling several other audio books I have, is totally in the zone with this one.

    The author's description of the mostly banal, prosaic events and interactions of the multitude of characters over the span of years, decades is quietly yet deeply fascinating.

    Though weeks since finishing the final volume, I frequently listen again to various chapters. Powell puts highly descriptive words and phrases to elemental human events that I can so much identify but never the depth nor capacity of nuance to articulate.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Heaven's Command: An Imperial Progress - Pax Britannica, Volume 1

    • ABRIDGED (7 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Jan Morris
    • Narrated By Roy McMillan
    Overall
    (1)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    The Pax Britannica trilogy is Jan Morris’s epic story of the British Empire from the accession of Queen Victoria to the death of Winston Churchill. It is a towering achievement: informative, accessible, entertaining and written with all her usual bravura. Heaven’s Command, the first volume, takes us from the crowning of Queen Victoria in 1837 to the Diamond Jubilee in 1897. The story moves effortlessly across the world, from the English shores to Fiji, Zululand, the Canadian prairies, and beyond. Totally gripping history!

    William says: "Get the Unabridged!"
    "Get the Unabridged!"
    Overall

    I've read all of Jan Morris' Pax Britannica's volumes. They are all good. I got this audible version since it's been a few years and I would enjoy hearing it read to me....but I did not realize I had picked the abridged version.
    However, should the would-be reader not have been exposed to this series and is a bit of an anglophile, then by all means try it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • East of Chosin: Entrapment and Breakout in Korea, 1950

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Roy E. Appleman
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (9)

    Roy Appleman's East of Chosin, first published in 1987, won acclaim from reviewers, readers, and veterans and their families. For the first time, there was one complete and accessible record of what happened to the army troops trapped east of the Chosin Reservoir during the first wintry blast of the Korean War. Based heavily on the author's interviews and correspondence with the survivors, East of Chosin provided some of those men with their first clue to the fate of fellow soldiers.

    Peter says: "Apologist for MacArthur and Ned Almond"
    "Dense account of over-shawdowed tragedy"
    Overall

    I read this in print shortly after it came out and have re-read it in print at least once since. When I saw it on Audible, I just had to give it a listen hands and eye free to soak it in again and follow along with topo maps of the positions and terrain.

    Excellent narration - as I imagine Appleman would have approved.

    I'd say this is strictly for those intensely interested in the subject as it is steeped in details and backstory. I feel Appleman objectively presents the issues well to more than allow the reader to interpret themselves what went wrong as a lot just is not known or may never be. But plenty of dots to connect.

    If I went back in time, I would have told Faith and MacClean to occupy and hold hill 1221 (as the Marine Lt. they were replacing intimated) with firm connectivity between the schoolhouse to the south and the inlet, but no further north of the inlet until the reinforcements arrived....which of course, they never did.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Quartered Safe Out Here: A Recollection of the War in Burma

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By George MacDonald Fraser
    • Narrated By David Case
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (26)

    George MacDonald Fraser beloved for his series of Flashman historical novels offers an action-packed memoir of his experiences in Burma during World War II. Fraser was only 19 when he arrived there in the wars final year, and he offers a first-hand glimpse at the camaraderie, danger, and satisfactions of service

    Andrew M. Woodward says: "Accents"
    "Wonderful"
    Overall

    Superbly written memoir of combat and British army life in Burma and I do love this narrator's style that fits this so well. (he does a great narration of Orwell too)

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • 1920: The Year of Six Presidents

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By David Pietrusza
    • Narrated By Paul Boehmer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (86)
    Performance
    (62)
    Story
    (64)

    The presidential election of 1920 was among history's most dramatic. Six once-and-future presidents--Wilson, Harding, Coolidge, Hoover, and Teddy and Franklin Roosevelt--jockeyed for the White House. With voters choosing between Wilson's League of Nations and Harding's front-porch isolationism, the 1920 election shaped modern America.

    D. Littman says: "A fascinating view into the US at the end of WWI"
    "Not bad but..."
    Overall

    Gives a pretty good back story to each of the "six presidents" with enough filled in details to satisfy this history buff. It took me a while to get used to the narrator's delivery as I found it choppy and slightly reminiscent Bob and Ray's routine of "slow-talkers-of-America" but faster.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • A Savage War of Peace: Algeria 1954-1962

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Alistair Horne
    • Narrated By James Adams
    Overall
    (132)
    Performance
    (47)
    Story
    (47)

    The Algerian War lasted from 1954 to 1962. It caused the fall of six French governments, led to the collapse of the Fourth Republic, and came close to provoking a civil war on French soil. More than a million Muslim Algerians died in the conflict, and as many European settlers were driven into exile. From the perspective of half a century, it looks less like the last colonial war than the first postmodern one.

    Judith says: "A fascinating book"
    "Superb"
    Overall

    I knew very little about this war. I do remember seeing it constantly referenced in the news as a child in late fifties and sixties. Being an amateur historian I eventually knew more than just the basics but until I read this book - whoa! Utterly fascinating and extremely well researched.
    The reader is wonderful and greatly leverages all aspects of this well written history.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Things I've Learned from Women Who've Dumped Me

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Ben Karlin (editor), Stephen Colbert, Will Forte, and others
    Overall
    (212)
    Performance
    (68)
    Story
    (65)

    The Emmy award-winning former executive producer of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report has assembled a stellar lineup of men who have one thing in common: all have been dumped...and are willing to share their pain and the lessons learned.

    Tracy says: "Bitter maybe, BUT bitter is funny."
    "Bah"
    Overall

    credit time had come and this time I learned my lesson by wasting money instead of a credit on something like this....if you can relate to that then you are a real deal audible.com book warrior. Not too well put together and I found the stories pretty lame. Meh -ditto.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Three Empires on the Nile: The Victorian Jihad, 1869-1899

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Dominic Green
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (104)
    Performance
    (25)
    Story
    (25)

    Three Empires on the Nile tells of the rise of the first modern Islamic state and its fateful encounter with the British Empire of Queen Victoria. Ever since the self-proclaimed Islamic messiah known as the Mahdi gathered an army in the Sudan and besieged and captured Khartoum under its British overlord Charles Gordon, the dream of a new caliphate has haunted modern Islamists. The 19th-century origins of it all were even more dramatic and strange than today's headlines.

    Sean O'Keefe says: "Astoundingly good"
    "Superb"
    Overall

    Brings to life the fascinating history of this time and place like no other I have read and its astounding connection to the present circumstance. Wonderfully narrated too.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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