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Robert

Holly, MI, USA

38
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 8 reviews
  • 8 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • Desolation Island: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    Overall
    (477)
    Performance
    (216)
    Story
    (217)

    Jack's prize money has set the household accounts aright, but if he continues frittering it on naive extravagances, it will be gone in a fortnight. Fortunately he gets a commission aboard the Leopard, bound for Australia to rescue the hated and captive Captain Bligh.

    Gene says: "Most moving chase sequence in the whole series"
    "I loved it..."
    Overall

    Consider the intrigue between the Doctor and the Lady Spy. Consider the friction between Jack and the ?I?d do it this way? Grant. Consider the parallelism between the Doctor and Herrapath [SIC], the bad luck with women, the opium problem, etc.

    I thought it as the second best of the first 5, with only the first book being better. Well written.

    And the sea chase between The Leopard and the Dutchman were outstanding.

    Can?t wait for the next one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Reverse of the Medal: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 11

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    Overall
    (360)
    Performance
    (164)
    Story
    (163)

    Jack Aubrey is back in London after a successful mission. On the advice of an acquaintance he uses the time to invest some of his prize money. However when the investments link him to London's powerful criminal element and land him in jail it looks as if he has lost his post captaincy and the H.M.S. Surprise. It is once again up to ship's surgeon and covert agent Stephen Maturin to rescue his hapless friend.

    Jonathan says: "Most Moving"
    "The doctor saves more than just Jack"
    Overall

    In fact, the doctor saves the whole book.
    The first half of the book is dreadful. I would guess that, collectively, nearly an hour is spent on "our story thus far." There's goings on between Jack and his father, along with Stephen and his intelligence people. I just couldn't get interested, and in fact, set the story aside on two occasions.
    Then, near the end of the first part, it gets going, and keeps going. In perhaps the most moving chapter of the entire series, Jack finds out who is friends really are. Outstanding.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Master and Commander: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    Overall
    (1953)
    Performance
    (867)
    Story
    (859)

    This, the first in the splendid series of Jack Aubrey novels, establishes the friendship between Captain Aubrey, Royal Navy, and Stephen Maturin, ship's surgeon and intelligence agent, against the thrilling backdrop of the Napoleonic wars. Details of life aboard a man-of-war in Nelson's navy are faultlessly rendered: the conversational idiom of the officers in the ward room and the men on the lower deck, the food, the floggings, the mysteries of the wind and the rigging, and the road of broadsides as the great ships close in battle.

    Frank says: "Choice of Narrators"
    "I thought the movie was better...."
    Overall

    Which is rare for a movie to be better than the book. But this one is. HMS Surprise pursues an American warship bent on taking the conflict to the Pacific Ocean. Jack is enjoying his cruise in Surprise, while the Doctor is doing his usual antics.
    What?s missing is the action. The movie has some great action sequences, along with the chase of Surprise by the enemy until Jack turns the tables. Well, that was actually out of a previous book. Readers will note many of the movie lines and some plot come from other books in the series.
    The best line in the book?.
    Jack and the Doctor have been captured by cannibalistic women. They?re on-board some native craft, and the crew is breaking out their ceremonial knives, talismans and the like. Jack?s comment??Looks like their going to rig for church.?
    Of course they escape, after all, it?s book 10 of 20?

    0 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Charlie Wilson's War: The Extraordinary Story of the Largest Covert Operation in History

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By George Crile
    • Narrated By Christopher Lane
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3076)
    Performance
    (860)
    Story
    (877)

    Charlie Wilson's War is the untold story behind the last battle of the Cold War and how it fueled the rise of militant Islam. George Crile tells how Charlie Wilson, a maverick congressman from east Texas, conspired with a rogue CIA operative to launch the biggest, meanest, and most successful covert operation in the agency's history.

    Chuck says: "Best Non-Fiction Book - Extremely Compelling!!!"
    "Is it real or is it Memorx?"
    Overall

    This book sat on my wish list for a long time before I listened to it. I guess I?ve always kept a jaundiced eye on books about the CIA. I mean, if it?s true, it?s secret, and if you tell, well, it?s not much of a secret anymore, is it?
    The book is written, as I found out later, by a CBS 60-minutes producer. I?ve had personal problems with some of the stories that have appeared on 60 Minutes. Let?s just say they show you what they want you to see.
    The book uses several techniques used by the TV program, the most evident is the appearance of presenting the information in chronological order. Well, things jump around in time and place, and it gets hard to follow who?s where and when.
    The book mentions a documentary about the Afghan fighters created by several of the players. Neither a Google or IMDB search returned any information on said program. That was one of several issues I had with this book, which led me to develop a credibility problem.
    The congressman is just too stereotyped. Alcoholic, but connected with all the necessary players. The junkets. The women. The deals. It?s all too?.
    The book mentions, but glosses over (in true 60 Minutes style) the failures of the Carter administration in foreign policy. The Regan administration is mentioned, but exists only in the background of the story. Oliver North pops in, but is derided as an idiot with a group of conservative wackos. Again, more 60 Minutes modus operandi.
    If the book is true, then it is an incredible story of the growth of the CIA Afghan program from a hole in the wall operation to the largest covert operation in history. This was made possible mostly on the part of a well-placed and connected congressman.
    Worth the read? Yes. I figure maybe 50-60% is fact, and the rest is conjecture if not outright fiction. But don?t look at it as an expose of the intelligence operation. Rather, look at it as a story about a debauched congressman with a personal mission against communism.

    23 of 30 people found this review helpful
  • Treason's Harbour: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 9

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    Overall
    (373)
    Performance
    (185)
    Story
    (182)

    The espionage activities of cunning ship's surgeon Stephen Maturin have kept him at odds with the most important French agent in the Mediterranean, Lesueur, a man with a long memory and a taste for revenge. When that revenge takes the shape of the delicate and distracting Mrs. Fielding, who also attracts the ever-wandering eye of Jack Aubrey, Stephen's sensibilities are severely tested.

    Constance says: "Every book gets better"
    "Patrick Tull finally defeated!"
    Overall

    Finally, an accent (Italian woman), that Patrick Tull cannot do with perfection.

    The book is a typical M&C - Jack is sailing around doing Jack things, while the Doctor is up to his capers and collecting organisms.

    If you've ever wondered how they can do all that swimming in the ocean and never get attacked by sharks, you're questions are answered in this book. And it's particularly gruesome.....

    Very enjoyable listen. The end looked tedious, but was a very big surprise, including the death of a long time character.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Fortune of War: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (421)
    Performance
    (201)
    Story
    (200)

    The H.M.S. Leopard pulled into the bay of Pulo Batang looking more like a shabby merchant ship that a man-of-war. The crew had endured a calamitous voyage plagued by gaol-fever, pursued by the Dutch Waakzaamheid, and struck by an iceberg. Suffice it to say, Jack Aubrey was ready for home.

    Amazon Customer says: "Alternative Entry Point"
    "I enjoyed it..."
    Overall

    But if you are a student of history, particularly the War of 1812, you'll know how the battles are going to turn out. And that was a bit of a spoiler, at least for me.
    I enjoyed the character studies of some of the people of Boston during the period. Very entertaining.
    The only dark spot of the whole read was the detestable DV. I find I have to restrain myself from hitting the fast forward whenever she's there.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Post Captain: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Patrick Tull
    Overall
    (797)
    Performance
    (373)
    Story
    (369)

    The Peace of Amiens has left Jack Aubrey with no ship, no enemy to pursue, and no possibility of prize money to supplement his meager income. His decision to seek refuge from his troubles, and creditors, in France proves doubly disastrous.

    A. F. Latronica III says: "A fair shake"
    "I found myself yelling at the radio..."
    Overall

    "GET ON WITH IT!" So much time is spent going back and forth with the women that I was on the breaking point. Fortunately, the action picks back up and keeps going.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Eight Men Out: The Black Sox and the 1919 World Series

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Eliot Asinof
    • Narrated By Harold N. Cropp
    Overall
    (110)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (12)

    "The Most Gigantic Sporting Swindle in the History of America!" This headline proclaiming the 1919 fix of the World Series startled millions of readers and focused the attention of the entire country on one of the most incredible episodes ever to be enacted in the public eye.

    Chris Rowe says: "Very Good"
    "The movie glosses over the book"
    Overall

    But the movie hits a lot of the highlights. Forget about the Costner whitewash of Joe Jackson in "Field of Dreams." The author explains who was in, who was out, who did what, and most importantly, who made the money. The coaches, the gamblers, the players, Comiskey, and all the lawyers are covered in great detail.
    The author covers a few other facts that I had not previously known. For example, several years later Comiskey, at a civil trial, does something incredibly STUPID in an attempt to save himself a mere $18,000. (You'll have to listen to find out...)
    The reader is fair and the quality of listen is about the same. After listening, I came to the opinion that based on this, Pete Rose will never get back into baseball...too much negative history with gambling. Now, if he had sold drugs to children, that would be different, wouldn't it? (Note the hipocrisy of it all)
    But only time will tell...

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful

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