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Anastasia Burke

Say something about yourself!

California | Member Since 2007

  • 59 reviews
  • 131 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 13 purchased in 2014

  • Truth in Advertising: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By John Kenney
    • Narrated By Robert Petkoff

    Finbar Dolan is lost and lonely. Except he doesn’t know it. Despite escaping his blue-collar Boston upbringing to carve out a mildly successful career at a Madison Avenue ad agency, he’s a bit of a mess and closing in on 40. He’s recently called off a wedding. Now, a few days before Christmas, he’s forced to cancel a long-postponed vacation in order to write, produce, and edit a Superbowl commercial for his diaper account in record time. Fortunately, it gets worse....

    phil b says: "Great Stuff"
    "For fans of "Silver Linings Playbook""
    Would you listen to Truth in Advertising again? Why?

    I would definitiely listen to this again, because I enjoyed how the author entertwined laugh-out-loud, wry humor with a very real pathos. This is the story of an advertising executive who looks at everything in his life thorugh the lens of television commercial, which allows him to distance himself from what's going on in his actual day-to-day existance. He wants the happy endings he creates in TV commercials. But he just doesn't know how to get there without a script, beautiful cinematography, great lighting, and a pitch-perfect musical acompaniment. It is the tale of how a man who makes a living orchestrating illusions learns at last to trust, even in what cannot be scripted.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of Truth in Advertising?

    I reallly loved the gentle friendship that develops between the main character and the never-been-loved son of a Japanese corporate magnate. And Petkoff does a spot-on Japaness accent that brought this character to life, without descending into parody.

    I do have to say that the climactic scene in which the main character blows up in front of his boss should go down in the Memorable Moments in Modern Literature Hall of Fame. I laughed so hard. Then I backed the chapter up and listened to it again. So, so brilliantly funny. And what we'd all love to say to our boss, but never will.

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

    Petkoff did a fabulous job bringing all the characters to life. His timing is perfect and each character has a distinct voice. I especially loved his interpretation of the egomaniacl, once-famous Hollywood director trying to turn a diaper commercial into high art. It's a brilliantly written scenario, made better by Petkoff's narration.

    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    In a world of illusions, love is still the one real thing.

    Any additional comments?

    I bought this book because I read a previous review in which TRUTH IN ADVERTISING was compared to books by Jonathan Tropper. I've devoured everything Tropper has written and was interested to see if John Kenney was up to the comparison. Happily, I can report that the answer is "yes," and then some.

    Like several of Tropper's novels, TRUTH revolves around a mid-life crisis, father-son estrangements, and family ties that strangle. I must admit it took me a little longer to get into the rhythm of TRUTH, but I quickly became a fan and found myself eager to see how this story would unfold.

    My best barometer of how much I like any book is how many friends I've recommended it to. Where TRUTH IN ADVERTISING is concerned, the answer is "many."

    It's well-written, thought-provoking, and a grand pot-shot at the weird world of advertising.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Life After Life: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Kate Atkinson
    • Narrated By Fenella Woolgar
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    On a cold and snowy night in 1910, Ursula Todd is born to an English banker and his wife. She dies before she can draw her first breath. On that same cold and snowy night, Ursula Todd is born, lets out a lusty wail, and embarks upon a life that will be, to say the least, unusual. For as she grows, she also dies, repeatedly, in a variety of ways, while the young century marches on towards its second cataclysmic world war.

    Diane says: "Life after life after life after life after life.."
    "Will read it again..and again"
    Would you listen to Life After Life again? Why?

    As noted by other reviewers, this book poses some very intriguing questions, primary among them--"If I'd made just one different decision, even a seemingly small one, what impact would that have had on the path my life took?"

    I'll also read it again to better examine the careful selection of language. It is no small feat to take a story that repeats itself in some ways over and over--and keep the reader hooked. Atkinson is skillful with even the least of syllables.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of Life After Life?

    Ursula, in all her many incarnations, offered too many memorable moments to select just one. I must say, I do really love how protective and "mama bear" she becomes with her daughter. Lovely scenes there.

    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    What changes...what remains the same?

    Any additional comments?

    Although I'm a Kate Atkinson fan, I avoided this book for a long time, thinking that the plot sounded a little too paranormal for my tastes. I'm so glad I read it. Literally, I couldn't stop listening.

    I think fans of Audrey Neffeneger, Sebbastian Faulk, Julian Barnes, and AS Byatt will get a lot out of this book.

    I must also say that the narration is simply outstanding. I will be nominating Fenella Woolgar for every audio award out there, And reading every book she has narrated. Just abrilliant, peerless performance, a beautiful voice, with excellent accents.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Longest Ride

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Nicholas Sparks
    • Narrated By Ron McLarty, January LaVoy
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    91 year-old Ira Levinson is kept concious after a car wreck by visions of his late wife, Ruth, who recounts stories of their lifetime together. A few miles away, at a local rodeo, Sophia Danko, a senior at Wake Forest, meets a young cowboy named Luke. Ira and Ruth. Sophia and Luke. Two couples who have little in common. Yet their lives will converge with unexpected poignancy, reminding us all that even the most difficult decisions can yield extraordinary journeys: beyond despair, beyond death, to the farthest reaches of the human heart.

    Hendie says: "I Understand!"
    "I'm not the right person for this book."
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    It is wonderful that there are so many authors in the world, because it means there's something for everyone. There are many books that I've given five stars to, but which might make fans of Nicholas Sparks wrinkle up their noses and go, "Are you crazy?"

    I fell in love with Nicholas Sparks when I read, by accident, his deeply affecting autobiographical book, "Three Weeks with My Brother." I loved this funny, sweet recounting of the whirlwind trip around the world Sparks took with his brother. I gave it to my then-teenaged son, my husband, and to many friends, all of whom gave it an enthusiastic thumbs-up.

    I have since read three Sparks novels, this being the third. None of which I've ever completed.

    I have huge admiration for his ability to craft a story. And I was excited that this one had horses and bull riding and art (how many authors can do that?).

    Still, I just couldn't get through it. I know the ending because I hit the fast-forward button.

    I have finally decided that I'm just not the right person for a Nicholas Sparks novel. That doesn't mean it's a bad book. It means it's the wrong book for me.

    I think this book probably works best for fans of Kristin Hannah, Nora Roberts, or Barbara Delinsky.

    What could Nicholas Sparks have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Suggested I re-read "Anna Karenina."

    Which scene was your favorite?

    I must confess I did like the horseback riding scenes. I also thought the bull riding descriptions were accurate and well-written.

    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Longest Ride?

    If I could play editor, I would hand this off to the person in my office who specializes in romance. Because turning it away would be a really stupid financial decision. But I would not be the appropriate person to handle it.

    Any additional comments?

    Fans of Sparks will love this book. And they'll be happy, because I know now not to try another one. I've given it a good shot and it's just not a good fit.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • One Summer: America, 1927

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Bill Bryson
    • Narrated By Bill Bryson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    One of the most admired nonfiction writers of our time retells the story of one truly fabulous year in the life of his native country - a fascinating and gripping narrative featuring such outsized American heroes as Charles Lindbergh, Babe Ruth, and yes Herbert Hoover, and a gallery of criminals (Al Capone), eccentrics (Shipwreck Kelly), and close-mouthed politicians (Calvin Coolidge). It was the year Americans attempted and accomplished outsized things and came of age in a big, brawling manner. What a country. What a summer. And what a writer to bring it all so vividly alive.

    Mark says: "Why 1927?"
    "Bryson hits it out of the park again!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of One Summer to be better than the print version?

    I can no longer see well enough to read the hard copy version, so I can't answer that question. I will say, however, that my husband and I listened to "One Summer" while on a long car trip. We loved being able to listen to Bryson read his own work--and to put the right twist on his humorous asides. We also felt like we were getting a bit of a history class, but with a really funny professor. Last, being an aviation-oriented household, it was absolutely fascinating to hear about the dawn of flight, and all the fuss around Charles Lindbergh.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of One Summer?

    The thing about a Bill Bryson book is that there are always so many wonderful moments, it's hard to pick one. I will admit I still laugh, to this day, about the glass jars Bryson talked about in "The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid." Oh, wait. Different Bill Bryson book. Okay, so this one has a little something for everyone--historic flights, natural disasters, inside info on one of most demonized's all there.

    Which character – as performed by Bill Bryson – was your favorite?

    As with any Bryson book narrated by the author himself (with his quirky, Iowan-almost-turned-Brit accent), it's all good.

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

    Well, I could have. But there is so much intriguing information in here, you kind of want to listen and then maybe hit the rewind button and listen again, just to savor it. I haven't had exactly the what-will-happen-next feeling I had while reading "Seabiscuit," or "The Boys in the Boat." But I look forward to each moment I spend with this book.

    Any additional comments?

    Perfect for Bryson fans. Perfect for fans of "Unbroken," "Boys in the Boat," or any David McCullough books.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Impersonator

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By Mary Miley
    • Narrated By Tavia Gilbert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In 1917, Jessie Carr, fourteen years old and sole heiress to her family's vast fortune, disappeared without a trace. Now, years later, her uncle Oliver Beckett thinks he's found her: a young actress in a vaudeville playhouse is a dead ringer for his missing niece. But when Oliver confronts the girl, he learns he's wrong. Orphaned young, Leah's been acting since she was a toddler.

    Anastasia Burke says: "Premise = good; Execution = not so much"
    "Premise = good; Execution = not so much"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I am pretty good at getting an audiobook and devouring it. I've had this book for about a month now and am still struggling to get through it. I love the era this book is set in and liked the premise--a hungry, down-on-her-luck vaudevillian gets tapped to play the role of her life--impersonating a likely-deceased heiress. And sharing in the millions, should the ruse work.There are elements of a light mystery, a gothic thriller, and a romance. But for me, I just haven't been able to get to the end, primarily due to the narration. I've listened with satisfaction to one other of Tavia Gilbert's work. But here, I just found her too breathy, too callow-sounding for a slick, street-wise 25-year-old actress, basically a grafter, who's agreed to pretend she's a younger someone else--for real.,

    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    I probably would have encouraged Ms. Gilbert to change her interpretation.

    What didn’t you like about Tavia Gilbert’s performance?

    I'm starting to sound really mean. It just didn't work for me.

    Do you think The Impersonator needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I won't know the answer to that until I get through it. I think Mary Miley probably wrote a solid book, probably the only reason I've made it as far as I have.

    Any additional comments?

    Narration is in the ear of the listener. This one didn't work for me. But it might for someone else. I recommend that one do a preview listen before using that credit.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Bridget Jones: Mad About the Boy

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Helen Fielding
    • Narrated By Samantha Bond
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Bridget Jones, the iconic character who sold 15 million books worldwide, inspired a major motion picture franchise, and became beloved as a Chardonnay-swilling everywoman, is back in this hotly anticipated third installment.

    Marci says: "Love this book for exactly what it is"
    "Falling in love with Bridget all over again"
    Would you listen to Bridget Jones: Mad About the Boy again? Why?

    My title has a double meaning because "Mad About the Boy" reminds us why we fell in love with Bridget Jones the first time around--and we get to watch/listen to her flail about with love one last time.I don't know whether I so loved this book that I'd listen to it again. But it was bloody lovely to see Bridget trying to make it as a single mum, re-entering the dating world that has COOMPLETELY changed since she was last single. Anyone in their 50s will laugh out loud at how Bridget grapples with phones, x-boxes, remote controls, texting, and Twitter.

    What was one of the most memorable moments of Bridget Jones: Mad About the Boy?

    SPOILER ALERT: Okay, if you've been living under a rock and missed the headlines that Mark Darcy...SPOILER, I can't do it. If you don't know already, you'll have to read the book to find out. I loved the brilliant combination of tenderness and humor that Helen Fielding brings to Bridget's very real trials as a single mum of two young kids. I got a bit choked up at times. And then, just as my heart was touched, Fielding wrote something that made me laugh out loud.

    Which scene was your favorite? all of Bridget's great moments, the best comes near the end. And I'm not going to ruin it for potential listeners by describing it here.

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

    I was really touched by Bridget's interactions with her kids, and how hard she tries to hide her frustrations and sadness, and simply soldier on. There was a scene when her daughter splashes hot chocolate all over Bridget's brand new, never-been-worn, oh-so-chic white coat--and I just love the way Helen Fielding writes this sweet and simple moment--and how Samantha Bond sensitively narrated it. Perfection.

    Any additional comments?

    At the beginning of this listen, I was not thrilled with Samantha Bond's voice--it seemed too husky, too vaguely smoky or alcoholic. And then I realized, "But that's Bridget, always trying to quit smoking, always drinking a few more units of alcohol than what is perhaps best." Brilliant.And truly, Samantha Bond (whom Downton Abbey fans might know as Lady Rosamund Painswick) is the frosting on the cake of this clever, sweet book. She is absolutely pitch-perfect, her sighs, expletives, little kittenish moans, all of it worthy of an Oscar. Or Audie.It was really good to find out what Bridget is up to in her 50s. Like all previous Bridget books, it's a fairly breezy read. But it also addresses some very real issues. And in the end, you care about this character. Just the way she is.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Someone: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Alice McDermott
    • Narrated By Kate Reading
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    An ordinary life - its sharp pains and unexpected joys, its bursts of clarity and moments of confusion - lived by an ordinary woman: this is the subject of Someone, Alice McDermott’s extraordinary return, seven years after the publication of After This. Scattered recollections - of childhood, adolescence, motherhood, old age - come together in this transformative narrative, stitched into a vibrant whole by McDermott’s deft, lyrical voice.

    Anastasia Burke says: "Each word chosen like a jewel"
    "Each word chosen like a jewel"
    Where does Someone rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I listen to a lot of audiobooks, and "Someone" will be in my Top 15 for certain. I love language and it is apparent from the first paragraph that Ms. McDermott has carefully, lovingly selected each and ever word, the result being a miraculous description of a rather un-miraculous life.

    What other book might you compare Someone to and why?

    Alice McDermott's writing reminds me of Ann Patchett, and Colin McCann--it's that ability to make magical through prose something we see in everyday life. This book would be a very satisfying read for those who enjoyed McCann's enchanting "Trans-Atlantic."

    Which character – as performed by Kate Reading – was your favorite?

    I thought Ms. Reading did a fine job with all the characters, both female and male. The mark of a great narrator is, in my mind, that she compliments the story she is reading without overshadowing. Ms. Reading did exactly that. Having said that, I encourage everyone to hit the "preview" button to listen before buying. Like music, narrators are often in the eye/ear of the beholder.

    Who was the most memorable character of Someone and why?

    For me, Marie is the obvious choice, because this is her story. I just really like books, such as this, that show how someone who's not particularly beautiful, wealthy, brilliant, witty, or a standout in a way that might capture today's reality-TV-addicted world, can make a life of meaning, just by quietly putting one step in front of the other.

    Any additional comments?

    The genius of Ms. McDermott is that she has taken a rather ordinary woman, whose life is rather ordinary (heartbreaks, marriage, loss of parents--but no attempts to climb Mt. Everest, the corporate ladder, or the heights of Hollywood). Through her meticulous and lyrical words, she has brought importance to each and every moment of Marie's simple life. Most of us live these types of quiet lives--McDermott allows Marie's to shine. And through Marie, we all shine, as well.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Universe Versus Alex Woods

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Gavin Extence
    • Narrated By Joe Thomas
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    A rare meteorite struck Alex Woods when he was 10 years old, leaving scars and marking him for an extraordinary future. The son of a fortune teller, bookish, and an easy target for bullies, Alex hasn't had the easiest childhood. But when he meets curmudgeonly widower Mr. Peterson, he finds an unlikely friend. Someone who teaches him that that you only get one shot at life. That you have to make it count. So when, aged 17, Alex is stopped at customs with 113 grams of marijuana, an urn full of ashes on the front seat, and an entire nation in uproar, he's fairly sure he's done the right thing....

    Beth Anne says: "expertly written coming of age novel."
    "Boy meets world"
    Where does The Universe Versus Alex Woods rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is a simple book about a boy who is "different," and how he finds his way. It is along the lines of "The Case of the Dog in the Night," "Harold Fry," "About a Boy," and "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand," all British coincidently. But all of which gained an international audience, deservedly so. Fans of Kurt Vonnegut will also get a kick out of the all-Kurt Vonnegut book club and how this contributes to Alex's ability to navigate through life.

    What other book might you compare The Universe Versus Alex Woods to and why?

    Along with the list cited above, I might compare it to "Catcher in the Rye" for the fact that is about a teen, but should be read by YA and adult readers alike. Like RC Pallacio's brilliant book, "Wonder," you get to see the worst--and ultimately--the best in everyday life.

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

    At first, I thought Joe Thomas sounded too mature to narrate a book with a 17-year-old protagonist. But Mr. Thomas has a voice that is very easy to listen to, and I quickly was lost in the narration. He was really the perfect reader, able to capture the perfect, wry tone for those moments of understated humor. He handled tender scenes with a light touch, without getting maudlin. I will look for more of Mr. Thomas's work.

    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I laughed. I cried. I loved. I am smiling now just thinking about the satisfaction I took in this listen.

    Any additional comments?

    Time--and a credit--well spent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Daniel James Brown
    • Narrated By Edward Herrmann
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Daniel James Brown's robust book tells the story of the University of Washington's 1936 eight-oar crew and their epic quest for an Olympic gold medal, a team that transformed the sport and grabbed the attention of millions of Americans. The sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the boys defeated elite rivals first from eastern and British universities and finally the German crew rowing for Adolf Hitler in the Olympic games in Berlin, 1936.

    Benoibe says: "Best book of the year!"
    "You will cheer, even if you've never crewed!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Boys in the Boat the most enjoyable?

    Daniel James Brown takes a story about nine "boys," shows us how those "boys" were just regular people like the rest of us. And then he tells a wonderful tale of how, by committing to one another, they achieve something truly great. This is a book that highlights a little-remembered moment in history that is was so remarkable, it's chill-inducing.

    I do want to add the cautionary note that after reading this book, there is a high likelihood that you will lose several hours on YouTube, watching the amazing footage of these young men at the Berlin Olympics.

    What did you like best about this story?

    One can never really go wrong when combining the stellar Edward Hermann with a great story. But in addition to that, this is a story everyone can relate to. It is about hard times, it is about pain, both physical and emotional. It is about fear. It is about going forward despite those things.

    The sport of rowing has sadly devolved into being viewed as a very elitist activity. But from the late 1800s well into the later part of the last century, crew was a wildly popular sport, akin to baseball today. THE BOYS IN THE BOAT brings alive these nine young men, from humble--and even horrible--backgrounds and tells how they captured the attention of the entire world.

    This book showcases one of the most demanding sports there is, and how these boys used that sport to quietly put Hitler in his place.

    Which character – as performed by Edward Herrmann – was your favorite?

    It's not really a character, but rather a moment that sticks out for me in this book. It is Hermann's narration of the final race at the Olympics. I already knew the result. But his description of the actual race--written captivatingly by Brown--had me on the edge of my chair. I found myself upset, anxious, pacing...and ultimately cheering.

    I do want to add that I really loved the character of George Pocock, who built his handmade wooden racing shells with the quiet spirit of a Zen master. His quotes, which preface each chapter, can most assuredly be applied to rowing. But why stop there? Use them in life, as well.

    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    "Chariot of Fire"--with oars. You will cheer!!

    Any additional comments?

    This is one of those rare books that can capture any reader. I've given it to friends who love crew--naturally, they loved the book. But I've also given it to my 80-year-old mother, who loved it despite having no interest in rowing whatsoever. I've given it to my BFF, who mostly reads romances and frothy mysteries--and she loved it.

    To date, I've purchased 13 copies of this book, both in hard copy and audio. I've received back a 100% recommendation! Everyone loves this book.

    In a few years, this book will be a fabulous film and it will sweep the Oscars. Read it now, so you can say "Oh yes. I read that story when it first came out. Great book. Better than the movie actually." ; )

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • All That Is: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By James Salter
    • Narrated By Joe Barrett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    After his experiences as a young naval officer in battles off Okinawa, Philip Bowman returns to America and finds a position as a book editor. It is a time when publishing is still largely a private affair - a scattered family of small houses here and in Europe - a time of gatherings in fabled apartments and conversations that continue long into the night. In this world of dinners, deals, and literary careers, Bowman finds he fits in perfectly. But despite his success, love eludes him.

    Anastasia Burke says: "The kudos are totally appropriate"
    "The kudos are totally appropriate"
    Would you consider the audio edition of All That Is to be better than the print version?

    Unfortunately, I cannot answer that question adequately, as my vision prevents me from reading a print version. The audio edition is my only choice. So having said that, I'd say yes, the audio edition definitely was better.

    Yeah, I'm smirking.

    What other book might you compare All That Is to and why?

    The primary setting--the Big Apple just after WWII--reminded me of Mark Helprin's IN SUNLIGHT AND IN SHADOW. But the writing itself reminded me of the greats, such as John Irving, Richard Ford, Richard Russo, and Phillip Roth.

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

    Joe Barrett does author James Salter the ultimate good turn by allowing the thoughtful prose to do its job without force or artifice. He voices both men and women without getting in the way of what needs to be said. He is a most considerate narrator, and yet the characters come brilliantly to life.

    If you could take any character from All That Is out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    I can't really discuss this without ruining a major event in the book. So without disclosing anything, I have to admit I'd love to take protagonist Phillip Bowman to dinner (I'll make him put it on his fancy publishing house expense report). I'd say to him, "Whoa! I totally didn't see that coming." And then I'd have to ask, "Did you have that planned all along? Do you ever feel bad about it? Or did it make you chuckle inside, this terrible thing that you did. And by the way, you don't mention it at all in the book, but did you ever lose any sleep about it?"

    You see? I can't really answer that question without leaving review readers going, "Huh?"

    So I'll just say this: If you like Roth, Irving, Updike...this book is a very good use of your Audible credit.

    Any additional comments?

    I have to admit that I initially had a difficult time getting into this book. I thought it was okay. But I wasn't just bowled over. Still, I kept going and, all of a sudden, discovered that I had to know what happens next.

    Salter's prose is worthy of all the praise from notable reviewers. Listening to this book is time well spent.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Battlefield Medicine: A History of the Military Ambulance from the Napoleonic Wars Through World War I

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By John S. Haller Jr.
    • Narrated By Todd Barsness

    In this first history of the military ambulance, historian John S. Haller Jr. documents the development of medical technologies for treating and transporting wounded soldiers on the battlefield. More than a history of medical evacuation systems and vehicles, this exhaustively researched and richly illustrated volume tells a fascinating story, giving listeners a unique perspective of the changing nature of warfare in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

    Michelle Radin says: "HORRABLE narration"
    "Dry history, presented dryly"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I read/listened to this book as part of my research for a project involving World War I. I found the information I needed within this book. The facts of war and battlefield life-and-death are presented in a very workmanlike way, and I wondered if this was written as a paper for a university course or thesis.This is very dry material and does not give the narrator much to work with. Having said that, I knew I was a bit in trouble when, within the first few minutes, Todd Barsness pronounced the word "havoc" as "have-oak." Later on, he pronounces the term "noblesse oblige" as "oh-blyyj" rather than its proper form of "oh-bleej."Small issues, but as the saying goes, God is in the details. I would not expect the print version to have typos. These mispronunciations are akin to audio typos in my mind.Just sayin'.

    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Yes. See above. And again, in his defense, the material is very dry, very much a research tome than a thrilling adventure back into history.

    Was Battlefield Medicine worth the listening time?

    For me, yes, because it provided me important information I will use for my project.

    Any additional comments?

    This book offers a well-researched view into the primitive world of battlefield hospitals through the First World War. In particular, I was horrified to read the injury and death statistics involved in each war chronicled, particularly WWI. The author did a thorough, workmanlike job of writing a book on a topic that is pretty grim.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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