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Carol

Oak Ridge, NJ, United States | Member Since 2014

21
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 45 reviews
  • 74 ratings
  • 252 titles in library
  • 3 purchased in 2015
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  • The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By James Gleick
    • Narrated By Rob Shapiro
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (801)
    Performance
    (498)
    Story
    (506)

    James Gleick, the author of the best sellers Chaos and Ge­nius, brings us his crowning work: a revelatory chronicle that shows how information has become the modern era’s defining quality—the blood, the fuel, the vital principle of our world.

    Ethan M. says: "Brilliant book, heroic reader, better in print?"
    "Excellent Book but perhaps Too Dense for Listening"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The reader is excellent. The book is wide-ranging and very, very good. However, it's highly intellectual material and not great for, say, long drives or exercising. I ended up buying it in paper to be able to jump back and forth through data and time. Paper rocks.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Elizabeth and Mary: Cousins, Rivals, Queens

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Jane Dunn
    • Narrated By Donada Peters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (266)
    Performance
    (73)
    Story
    (74)

    In a rich and riveting narrative, Jane Dunn reveals the extraordinary rivalry between the regal cousins. It is the story of two queens ruling on one island, each with a claim to the throne of England, each embodying dramatically opposing qualities of character, ideals of womanliness (and views of sexuality), and divinely ordained kingship.

    Catharina says: "Fantastic book"
    "More Mary than Elizabeth"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What a life Mary had! It was an insane whirl and makes you glad you aren't a queen. This well-balanced treatment puts her life into the context of Elizabeth's life and makes inevitable the battle between them. It's good, but not as good as Mary Queen of Scotland and the Isles.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Book of Night Women

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Marlon James
    • Narrated By Robin Miles
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (467)
    Performance
    (240)
    Story
    (244)

    The story of Lilith, born into slavery on a Jamaican sugar plantation at the end of the 18th century. Even at her birth, the slave women around her recognize a dark power that they - and she - will come to both revere and fear. The Night Women, as they call themselves, have long been plotting a slave revolt, and as Lilith comes of age and reveals the extent of her power, they see her as the key to their plans.

    Emily says: "read now to understand the past"
    "Passionate and Difficult"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Books about slavery are almost always difficult to read, like listening to the history of Jews in WW II. Nevertheless, a strength and beauty came out of this one. The reading is excellent - once you start you can't stop.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Break with Charity: A Story about the Salem Witch Trials

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Ann Rinaldi
    • Narrated By Laura Hicks
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (7)

    Susanna desperately wants to join the circle of girls who meet every week at the parsonage. What she doesn’t realize is that the leader of the group, the malicious Ann Putnam, is about to set off a torrent of false accusations leading to the imprisonment and execution of countless innocent people. When Susanna puts the pieces together, she faces a painful choice.

    AngelGirlrn says: "Captivating Story, Interesting Subject Matter"
    "Good Teen Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I listened to this in the car on the way to Salem with my daughter, to get the full experience. The book was good; Salem (around Halloween) good for those under 12, perhaps. The definitive book, Salem Possessed, explains it for adults (it was political). I'm so glad I was born in the 20th century . . . .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Randy O. Frost, Gail Stekeete
    • Narrated By Joe Caron
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (654)
    Performance
    (424)
    Story
    (424)

    What possesses someone to save every scrap of paper thats ever come into his home? What compulsions drive a woman like Irene, whose hoarding cost her her marriage? Or Ralph, whose imagined uses for castoff items like leaky old buckets almost lost him his house?

    JoAnn Marcon says: "Utterly fascinating"
    "Perfect Cocktail"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This was a GREAT book for me because it combined my scholarly interest in truth with my lowbrow enjoyment of the TV show Hoarders. I . . . ahem . . . might hoard a little myself, or at least not be able to throw out railroad ties and broken bottles I dig up in the woods, but I still love to hear about other people who do it WORSE. I wonder if watching / reading about hoarding is a form of hoarding itself . . . .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America, Vol. 1

    • UNABRIDGED (29 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By David Hackett Fischer
    • Narrated By Julian Elfer
    Overall
    (47)
    Performance
    (41)
    Story
    (41)

    This fascinating audiobook is the first volume in a projected cultural history of the United States, from the earliest English settlements to our own time. It is a history of American folkways as they have changed through time, and it argues a thesis about the importance for the United States of having been British in its cultural origins. While most people in the United States today have no British ancestors, they have assimilated regional cultures which were created by British colonists, even while preserving ethnic identities at the same time.

    leonie says: "This is great, much more than title suggests"
    "Good New History"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a new way of looking at history and makes much more sense than Wars, Generals and Regimes - it looks at a whole society and how it functions. It's probably not for everyone because it is scholarly, using the primary source material of comparative folklore, but the overall themes should be shared with everyone, perhaps even in secondary school texts, because it makes the mixture of people in the US much easier to understand. There were four areas in England from which the early settlers care, and we evolved from those cultures, even us latecomers. We adopted the ethics and habits of either the Puritians (northeast), Quakers (mid-Atlantic), aristocracy (south) or northern (Scottish/Irish) borderers (rural mid-south). If this type of history becomes common, we can see how all cultures contributed to America.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Black Diamonds: The Rise and Fall of an English Dynasty

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Catherine Bailey
    • Narrated By Gareth Armstrong
    Overall
    (42)
    Performance
    (34)
    Story
    (34)

    Wentworth is today a crumbling and forgotten palace in Yorkshire. Yet just 100 years ago it was the ancestral pile of the Fitzwilliam's - an aristocratic clan whose home and life were fuelled by coal mining. This is the story of their spectacular decline: of inheritance fights; rumours of a changeling and of lunacy; philandering earls; illicit love; war heroism: a tragic connection to the Kennedy's; violent deaths: mining poverty and squalor; and a class war that literally ripped apart the local landscape.

    Robert says: "A blockbuster"
    "Historic Paradigm-shift"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is a new type of history - looking behind the curtain. Instead of reinterpreting monuments of known documents, the author is going one level away from the subject and the view is much, much better. These are histories of society and social trends, of groups instead of individuals. Wonderful book. I want more. I love this new type of history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous Fourteenth Century

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Barbara W. Tuchman
    • Narrated By Nadia May
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (847)
    Performance
    (403)
    Story
    (414)

    The fourteenth century reflects two contradictory images: on the one hand, a glittering time of crusades and castles, cathedrals and chivalry, and the exquisitely decorated Books of Hours; and on the other, a time of ferocity and spiritual agony, a world of chaos and the plague.

    E. Smakman says: "Gripping, once you get into it"
    "Long but Good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is the second time I've "read" this book and listening to it gives a different dimension. Impressive historian, impressive sourcing and incisive pattern-finding. I'm not a historian but it seems to me there's been a lot of "medieval times were not so backward" going around, like "they discovered X and did Y, etc." but . . . well . . . really?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Sheri Fink
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (677)
    Performance
    (592)
    Story
    (598)

    In the tradition of the best writing on medicine, physician and reporter Sheri Fink reconstructs five days at Memorial Medical Center and draws the listener into the lives of those who struggled mightily to survive and to maintain life amidst chaos. After Katrina struck and the floodwaters rose, the power failed, and the heat climbed, exhausted caregivers chose to designate certain patients last for rescue. Months later, several health professionals faced criminal allegations that they deliberately injected numerous patients with drugs to hasten their deaths. Five Days at Memorial, the culmination of six years of reporting, unspools the mystery of what happened in those days.

    Sharon says: "A Must Read"
    "Great Capture of Events and Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I don't know if this book counts as journalism, history or whatever, but it was GOOD. It made you feel like you were there (without the agony of BEING there). The author didn't judge the characters or events which was also good. It shows how quickly society can break down even with the best of intentions and how rapidly the dogs of war come to finish the job. Great moral story and warning (which we will probably ignore).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Courtiers: Splendor and Intrigue in the Georgian Court at Kensington Palace

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Lucy Worsley
    • Narrated By Heather Wilds
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (38)
    Performance
    (31)
    Story
    (31)

    Kensington Palace is now most famous as the former home of Diana, Princess of Wales, but the palace's glory days came between 1714 and 1760, during the reigns of George I and II. In the 18th century, this palace was a world of skullduggery, intrigue, politicking, etiquette, wigs, and beauty spots, where fans whistled open like switchblades and unusual people were kept as curiosities. Lucy Worsley's The Courtiers charts the trajectory of the fantastically quarrelsome Hanovers and the last great gasp of British court life.

    Lady Wesley says: "Highly entertaining as well as informative"
    "Good Social Overview"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is the history of an environment, rather than a traditional history focused on one person or series of events. As such it was harder to listen to (and possibly harder to write). Probably if I'd bought the book instead of listening to it, images would have grounded the story more for me - hey, Audible, why don't you start including .pdfs of the pictures with each purchase? Anyhow I enjoyed it very much even though it was complex.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Story of Indian Business: The East India Company: The World's Most Powerful Corporation

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By Tirthankar Roy
    • Narrated By Vikas Adam
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (34)
    Performance
    (32)
    Story
    (31)

    For over 200 years, the East India Company was the largest and most powerful mercantile firm in Britain and Asia. Set up to procure Asian goods for British consumers, the Company's business network spanned Persia, India, China, Indonesia, and North America. In the late 1700s, its career took a dramatic turn as the Company lost ground as a trading firm, but founded an empire in India. Why did a merchant firm end up being an empire builder? Why did politics mesh so closely with the conduct of business in this time? This new account of the East India Company answers these questions by taking a fresh look at the world of Indian business.

    N. S. Desai says: "A novel approach to a complex subject"
    "Academic Economic / Business History"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm an academic, so this book was wonderful for me, an easy way to "read" for work. However, it's not for everybody - it's not "lite" history or economics. I enjoyed it very much and also I enjoyed hearing the names pronounced as they should be. More of the same please!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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