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P. Smith

ratings
19
REVIEWS
14
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
32

  • The Price of Inequality: How Today's Divided Society Endangers Our Future

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Joseph E. Stiglitz
    • Narrated By Paul Boehmer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (802)
    Performance
    (688)
    Story
    (696)

    The top 1 percent of Americans control 40 percent of the nation's wealth. And, as Joseph E. Stiglitz explains, while those at the top enjoy the best health care, education, and benefits of wealth, they fail to realize that "their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live." Stiglitz draws on his deep understanding of economics to show that growing inequality is not inevitable. He examines our current state, then teases out its implications for democracy, for monetary and budgetary policy, and for globalization. He closes with a plan for a more just and prosperous future.

    P. Smith says: "An explosion of ideas with no depth"
    "An explosion of ideas with no depth"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What disappointed you about The Price of Inequality?

    I've gone through chapter 4 and can't continue. Everything felt like an extended introduction with idea after idea being thrown at you, but never explored in any detail. To make matters worse, he'd often circle back to the same idea later on and then continue to fail to expand on it a second or third time or fourth time.


    What could Joseph E. Stiglitz have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Flesh out his ideas. I know he's talking to regular folk, not economists, but thats no excuse for failing to expand his ideas. Yes, I get that the 1 percent rigs the system in their favor and that one of the ways they do this is regulatory capture, but maybe you can give me more than 1 sentence about it. I learned far more from a 15 minute podcast I listeneded to last year than I have any chchance of learning from this book.


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

    Gravitas. I felt like I was listening to someone important and worthy of my attention.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Price of Inequality?

    So far everything but the introduction. Chapters 1 through 4 did not add anything beyond what I heard right up front. No illumination or expansion of ideas. I have not read past that and don't intend to as it literally feals like a waste of my time.


    Any additional comments?

    I'd bought this book because I was hoping to hear about the complex relationship between government and the economy and a way to produce a system with more positive feedback loops that will dissuade abuses and help make our economy stronger. He's not going there. If you want to hear complaints, this is your guy. If you want to hear anything but one-line solutions, apparently he doesn't want to go there.

    12 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • To Kill a Mockingbird

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By Harper Lee
    • Narrated By Sissy Spacek
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (22126)
    Performance
    (19977)
    Story
    (19926)

    Harper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south - and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred, available now for the first time as a digital audiobook. One of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than 40 languages, sold more than 30 million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the 20th century by librarians across the country.

    David Shear says: "A gift to be treasured"
    "wonderful story, wonderful narrator."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I doubt I could say much that people before me haven't already said about the story, so I'll just echo how very much it deserves it's praises.

    About the narrator I'll just say I quickly forgot who she was or even that she was there at all. Everyone sounded so authentically who they should be that she just drifted into the background. I can't think of higher praise for someone narrating a story so driven by it's fine characters. After listening to many, many audiobooks, I can attest to how difficult it is to pull off well. She was perfect.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Lost Starship

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Vaughn Heppner
    • Narrated By David Stifel
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3156)
    Performance
    (2911)
    Story
    (2911)

    Ten thousand years ago, a single alien super-ship survived a desperate battle. The vessel's dying crew set the AI on automatic to defend the smashed rubble of their planet. Legend has it the faithful ship continues to patrol the empty battlefield, obeying its last order throughout the lonely centuries.In the here and now, Earth needs a miracle. Out of the Beyond invade the New Men, stronger, faster and smarter than the old. Their superior warships and advanced technology destroy every fleet sent to stop them.

    Jim "The Impatient" says: "THE NEW MEN"
    "It was the Narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    The book's story was decent, but had many flaws. The narration made it seem far worse than it was. I'm not sure I could recommend it to anyone.


    If you’ve listened to books by Vaughn Heppner before, how does this one compare?

    This was my first Vaughn Heppner book. It came very close to being my last.


    Would you be willing to try another one of David Stifel’s performances?

    Not really. It was bad. He made the characters seem brain dead. At first I thought it was the writing, but then I heard an excerpt from book #2 book of the series and I realized it was the narrator that was dragging the material down. Way down.


    What character would you cut from The Lost Starship?

    Meta. She was superfluous, and the the Captain's attachment to her led to some of the worst writing in the whole book. Once again, a lot of this was probably the narrator, but she seemed like a barely tamed ape rather than the tough, but beautiful crush the writer seemed to be going for.


    Any additional comments?

    You know how in the old Batman, everything was a "bat" this or that? Like a baterang, batmobile, batlight, batwrench, etc?. Everything in this was "space". Every time I heard "space" attached to something, it made me think I was listening to 50s scifi, but without all the old time charm and clever examination of science.

    I could go on and on, but the best way to put it is pick the most mediocre episode of your favorite scifi TV show and swap all the actors out with the bad actors who miserably failed their auditions for that show.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The White Mountains: Tripods Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By John Christopher
    • Narrated By William Gaminara
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (477)
    Performance
    (427)
    Story
    (434)

    In the first book of John Christopher's classic series, it is the year 2100, and the world is controlled by the machines called Tripods. Life goes on largely as it had in the pre-industrial era, as all of humanity is subject to mental controls which prevent anyone from challenging the established order.

    Michael says: "Love the book"
    "As good as I remembered it as a kid"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The White Mountains in three words, what would they be?

    long learning journey


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The White Mountains?

    SPOILER ALERT: when he destroyed the Tripod near the end with a grenade. Yeah, pure action, but hard to forget.


    What about William Gaminara’s performance did you like?

    I felt like he had experienced what our hero had experienced.


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

    Yes


    Any additional comments?

    A lot of books I loved as a youth did not age well. This did. I never felt the author was dumbing it down so only kids would like it. Rather, he wanted it to ring true whether you're 13, or merely remembering what 13 felt like.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Critical Failures V: Caverns and Creatures, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Robert Bevan
    • Narrated By Jonathan Sleep
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1250)
    Performance
    (1184)
    Story
    (1178)

    Many view "hitting rock bottom" as a foundation on which to rebuild one's life, a place from which one can only ascend. Gamers know to search for a secret door leading down to the sewer.

    P. Smith says: "Half a Book"
    "Half a Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you like best about Critical Failures V? What did you like least?

    The performance, as usual, was stellar. Saturn Five Sound is amazing.

    However, the story never really went anywhere. Just as it was starting to get to a place where I thought to myself, "finally, we've gone through what we needed to do to get to the good stuff," the story ended without getting to the good stuff.

    I do not consider this a classic cliffhanger. CF 1,2,3 and 4 all teased you with more cool/important/dark stuff to come, but they also finished a complete story in the process. There was no complete story here.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Robert Bevan? Why or why not?

    Heck yes! Bevan is the bomb. He writes great stories, and I always want to buy his next book. I'v purchased everything he's ever written that's gotten to Audible, and I'll definitely buy the next one in the CF series. This one was just disappointing.


    Have you listened to any of Jonathan Sleep’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This one was awesome, as have been all of his performances. Awesome!


    Was Critical Failures V worth the listening time?

    I'm sure it will be, as part of a bigger story yet to come, but now it feels like I walked half way up the block and forgot where I was going. If I could do it over again, I'd wait to read it until I already had CFVI in hand to read immediately afterward.


    Any additional comments?

    I continue to think of Bevan as a master of his dark art. I have tremendous faith in what's yet to come. I just think he made a poor choice this one time in determining where to put the "end" of his story.

    14 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Galileo's Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Alice Dreger
    • Narrated By Tavia Gilbert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (125)
    Performance
    (117)
    Story
    (115)

    A powerful defense of intellectual freedom told through the ordeals of contemporary scientists attacked for exploring controversial ideas, by a noted science historian and medical activist.

    Wayne says: "Clarion call for separating science and ideology"
    "massively inconsistent"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The main point of this book is incredibly important. Real science is often attacked by the identity groups it's evidence contradicts. Great stuff on this. But a huge part of the book, perhaps 1/2 - 2/3, is a he said she said blow by blow rundown of the minutia of several of these conflicts. It felt like a sewing circle talking about that wayward girl and every abundant way she brought shame to her mother. I don't like gossip. I like evidence. for a book that says it prizes evidence as much as I do, much of it felt an awful lot like gossip. I compromised on 4 stars, because the core message was really that important.


    The narration added to the feeling that I was listening to gossip. Breathy and self important. I assume the narrator was reflecting the wishes of the author, and if that was the case, she nailed it, and really deserves 5 stars. However, if that was not the intention of the author, this greatly detracted from the book. I compromised on 4 stars here as well


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Uncle Tom's Cabin: Life Among the Lowly

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Harriet Beecher Stowe
    • Narrated By Mary Sarah
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1295)
    Performance
    (1172)
    Story
    (1173)

    Uncle Tom's Cabin was the best-selling novel of the 19th century and the second best-selling book of that century, following the Bible. It is credited with helping fuel the abolitionist cause in the 1850s. In 1855, three years after it was published, it was called "the most popular novel of our day." A thrilling and important piece of American literature!

    Linda says: "Excellent Narration"
    "powerful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I want to especially call out the narrator. I felt like I was hearing every word as if it was coming straight from the authors mouth. Just excellent performance.

    I doubt I could say anything about the book that hasn't already been said a thousand times, so I'll just reiterate that if you want to better understand the consequences of slavery and the politics surrounding it, this is essential reading. Worth your time and your money, even if you have very little of each.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Employee Engagement 2.0: How to Motivate Your Team for High Performance

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 6 mins)
    • By Kevin Kruse
    • Narrated By Kevin Kruse
    Overall
    (77)
    Performance
    (70)
    Story
    (70)

    Being a great leader - one who drives massive passion, commitment and engagement - is within your reach. Follow the step-by-step plan in Employee Engagement 2.0 and prepare to be a great place to work.

    P. Smith says: "short is good"
    "short is good"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The author got to the point and gave very valuable, focused information. I've read too many books that ramble, presumably because the author thinks they need to hit a certain page count to show value. This one focused on telling me what I need without irrelevant extras, and as a result I think It'll be much easier to put into practice.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Critical Failures III: Caverns and Creatures, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By Robert Bevan
    • Narrated By Jonathan Sleep
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3528)
    Performance
    (3320)
    Story
    (3303)

    Going back home was not exactly what Tim and the C&C gang expected. Trouble continues to follow them back to Gulf Coast Mississippi. Trouble...and a gnome...and an undead midget.

    Sugarpucker says: "Natural 20 in hilarity"
    "Best yet!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Bevan goes so fast, it's as if he's constantly looking behind at the reader saying "keep up!". That's a good thing. You never have to worry about cutting to the characters at the boring part of the story. You're always cutting, but none of them are boring.

    the performance was really top notch. Sleep not only totally nailed the characters, but is one of the most consistent narrators I've heard. Much like Bevan's writing, Sleep has only gotten better over the three books.

    If you haven't read any of the other CC books, this isn't the best place to start. Best to read them in order. If you're not up for a hard "R", this story isn't for you. If you think Pulp Fiction was a cute little kindergarten tale, hop on board.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Ringworld's Children

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Larry Niven
    • Narrated By Barrett Whitener
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (795)
    Performance
    (525)
    Story
    (526)

    The Ringworld is a landmark engineering achievement, a flat band 3-million-times the surface area of Earth, encircling a distant star. Home to trillions of inhabitants, not all of which are human, and host to amazing technological wonders, the Ringworld is unique in all of the universe.

    Wayne K. Werner says: "Distracting narration."
    "Good Ringworld book, but needs better narration."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The book focused a lot on the protectors, which is great. I was hoping that part of the series would be fleshed out. I enjoyed it.

    However, the narrator used different voice and personality tone for many of the established characters, and some fictional words had different pronunciations. In at least one case this violated the author's own pronunciation instruction from a previous book. The problem is that this book is a part of a series, so these changes are distracting. I understand that the Narrator has a different voice, not much you can do about that, but he should have listened to one of the other books to keep pronunciation and tone similar.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Origins of Life

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By The Great Courses, Robert M. Hazen
    • Narrated By Professor Robert M. Hazen
    Overall
    (285)
    Performance
    (249)
    Story
    (248)

    Four billion years ago, the infant Earth was a seething cauldron of erupting volcanoes, raining meteors, and hot noxious gases, totally devoid of life. But a relatively short time later-only 100 million to 200 million years-the planet was teeming with primitive organisms.What happened? Now you can find out-in a series of 24 vibrant lectures from a leader of the NASA-supported team studying the origins of life in the universe and also one of the nation's foremost science educators.

    Kevin says: "An Excellent Lecture of Life's Origins"
    "Great intro to the subject"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Origins of Life to be better than the print version?

    I've only listened to the audiobook


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

    Due to it's format, it didn't really lend itself to most memorable moments. It's a series of lectures and I found them all engaging.


    Which character – as performed by Professor Robert M. Hazen – was your favorite?

    This doesn't really have characters, but the lecturer did a great job.


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

    Life: harder than you think and we're still working on it.


    Any additional comments?

    Evolution has limits. It needs to have something to work with and it needs to have a place to start. I did not fully appreciate the difficulty of these things coming together before I read the book. If you currently think that life simply started in the primordial soup, I highly recommend you read this to get a better understanding of how complicated that concept really is.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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