Simon Prebble did a great job narrating the story. The book goes into more depth surrounding the times of Tesla. It gives an overview history of Serbia and surrounding countries. In covering the education of Tesla the author also introduces the reader to the professors that influenced him. Marc Seifer also covers in depth the interaction between Edison, Bell, Westinghouse and investors such as J.P. Morgan, John Aster, Stanford White and others. Tesla health, habits and mental health are covered. Seifer goes into depth covering the wide array of invention of Tesla and many are just becoming a factor in our daily life. It was also interesting to note that there are many more invention that the department of defense placed under a blanket of national security and no information is available on these inventions. This book has only made me want to know more about Tesla and his fellow engineers of the 1890s.
Mayer took over the job of C.E.O. of the troubled Yahoo Company, in a male-dominated industry while pregnant. Nicholas Carlson’s book set out to reveal the controversy about Mayer because she was upsetting the women’s issues industrial complex. Some people upset because she took maternity leave right after accepting the job of C.E.O. and the other people upset because she only took two weeks leave.
The book is really two books in one, as a good portion of the book is the history of Yahoo. It’s history of brand neglect and mismanagement. The remainder is about Mayer. There is little documentation in the book regarding Mayer as it appears Carlson reported a lot of the gossip. I got the feeling from the book that Carlson reported a lot of the sexist gossip such as the name of the designer of the clothes Mayer wore etc.
Carlson demonstrates that Mayer is worth paying attention to for reasons that transcend gender. He states that Mayer is a complex personality who defies most stereotypes. Carlson states that Mayer early in her career understood personal branding and developed hers early in her career. She is a geek that doesn’t look the part. Carlson argues Mayer earned her shot at running Yahoo through years of innovative thinking in an industry that prides itself in novel ideas.
Mayer was born in Wisconsin and joined Google right out of Stanford University graduate Computer Science Program. She ultimately became one of Google’s most influential executives. As with any fast raising career person she generated jealousy and resentment from some of her co-workers. Just like many other in her field she put in the hard work, long hours and creative abilities to raise though the ranks of a company.
The question isn’t whether Mayer can save Yahoo; it’s whether Yahoo can be saved at all. For the past two years Mayer has attempted to focus on making the company’s workforce more productive and on making applications for Mobil phones with some success. She has managed to prevent mass layoffs. But Yahoo is a deeply troubled company. Carlson says she is having trouble replacing a few critical key people and without doing so she will not success. Carlson states that even if Yahoo fails Mayer is a star to watch. She has an incredible work ethic, genius sense of what makes an Internet product useable and she was worldwide frame, and charisma to success in the business world. Kitt Vandenheuvel narrated the book.
I am now at book four in the John Pearce series and I am happy I discovered David Donachie.
The year is 1793 and John Pearce and friends have just returned from a successful mission in Corsica. The siege of Toulon is escalating in violence and the Revolutionary Army is preparing to attack. Pearce has been assigned to escort five thousand radical French sailors to a port on the Atlantic coast, where there are to be set free. As you can predict, the assignment goes awry.
The book is well written and well researched. Donachie brilliantly combines a gripping adventure with intricate historical detail of the French Revolution, in this case the Siege of Toulon, to explosive effect.
If you enjoy a good Royal Navy story set during the Napoleonic Wars this is a book for you. Peter Wickham narrated the book.
I have been fascinated with Winston S. Churchill since I was a child. I try to read everything I can find about him. I was shocked to read in the book that the young people in Britain do not know who Churchill was. Johnson said he wanted to write about Churchill in such a manner as to bring Churchill to the attention of the young. Johnson thought the young might enjoy Churchill’s eccentricity.
This book is written by the current Mayor of London. The element of self-identification in Johnson’s writing is too obvious to ignore. This book is not just another biography. Rather, it is a series of polemics in which Johnson takes up the cudgels against Churchill’s critics.
One of the allegations against Churchill is that he wasn’t very nice to the little people in his life. That in private he was a mean-spirited and short tempered. Johnson relays a story to rebut this charge, told to him by Nicholas Soames, Churchill’s grandson. Johnson also discusses the accusation that Churchill was an unprincipled opportunist and he also addresses the charge of incompetent leadership during World War One that led to Gallipoli. Johnson also discusses Churchill’s literary output and explains how Churchill managed to fit all this into a busy life.
Johnson has created a canvas of more than just World War II but also looks at Churchill’s contributions in the Boer War, WWI and the period leading up to the start of the European Union and shown how, at each point, Churchill’s contributions were essential to Britain’s victories or were ignored by those in power resulting in decisions that left Britain far worse off than it could have been. Johnson also addresses Churchill’s work on behalf of the working poor in the UK, his efforts to improve the living and working conditions of the poor throughout the British Empire.
The book is written with wit, and reveals fascinating nuggets of information I found fascinating. I believe Johnson has been successful in his defense of Churchill as a uniquely great man. Simon Shepherd narrated the book.
This is a novella #3.5 in the Longknife series. Kris and her crew are tasked to set up a training command for foreign navies buying Wardhaven’s fast attack boats.
Kris’s body guard, who works for the Secret Service is drafted into the Marines. This is explained in humorous detail. This adds lots more detail of how Jack got into the marines.
I am enjoying the series and that also includes the novella. Please note it is best to read this series in order, otherwise you will feel lost. I am enjoying the banter that goes on between the key characters. This short story fits in well between book number three and book number four.
I am enjoying the adventures of Kris Longknife and I would to have my own Nelly. This is a fun easy read. Dina Pearlman narrated the story.
1st Special Forces Operational Detachment –Delta (SFOD-D) is the military’s formal name for Delta Force. The Department of the Army has Delta Force and the Department of the Navy created the SEALS during World War II.
The book is divided into three sections. The first is about the SAS (British), the second is about the creation of Delta Force and the third or last section of the book is about the U.S. hostages in Iran.
Beckwith tells about the year he spent with the British Special Air Service (SAS) and thought the U.S. needed to fill the void and create its own special force. This unit would be an elite counter terrorist unit.
The middle section is about the meetings and Army politics Beckwith had to deal with to create the Unit. The book has to do with the formation of Delta Force, and as with any organization I am sure Delta Force has changed over time. Beckwith includes information about his two tours in Viet Nam and the use of Special Forces.
The last part of the book is about the selection and training of the members of Delta Force. Beckwith goes into the planning and training for its first mission, the rescue of the U.S. hostages in Iran. The ill fated mission was aborted.
Beckwith is a highly decorated soldier, and his skill in shepherding his idea through the various obstacles placed by the Army, creates an interesting memoir. Alan Sklar narrated the book.
I am a big fan of Bernard Cornwell's stories. I got hooked on Richard Sharpe and from there have read many of his other series including this exciting series of old England. This is book eight in the Saxon series of historical fiction that chronicles the making of England and is set in the eighth century England. The protagonist of the story is Uhtred of Bebbanburg. England is now fractured, torn apart by internal fighting since the death of King Alfred and the threat of a Viking invasion.
The ruler of Mercia is dying, leaving no legitimate heir. His wife, Ethelflaed is the daughter of King Alfred and is a formidable fighter and leader, but no woman has ever ruled over an English Kingdom. With Uhtred’s help Ethelflaed attempts to gain control of the throne of Mercia. The fight for the Mercia throne leaves an opportunity for the rival West Saxons to siege Mercia. Edward of Wessex is distracted by the two heirs claiming his throne. Will the Viking’s take advantage and invade?
Uhtred is older and recovering from a near fatal injury ( see book 7 The Pagan Lord) facing more turbulent times and intrigue that sees him doing what he does best-leading a war band.
Cornwell creates a sense of the historical place and time that comes through well, clearly the book is well-researched. The main characters continue to be well developed. Cornwell is truly the master of the battle scene. Cornwell leaves me waiting breathlessly for the next book in the series. Matt Bates narrates the book.
In reading this book I have learn a great deal of information about the life and work of Patrick Henry. Henry was mentioned in every biography I have read of the time frame, from George Washington to James Madison, Henry was discussed in the book but only in passing. Historians have paid the most attention to the founding fathers that attained the presidency. At the bottom of the bag, nowadays are those founders who were important for a brief period on the national level but whose working career was at the local level. Henry was the first governor of Virginia. People like Samuel Adams and Patrick Henry did not get much attention.
Harlow Giles Unger, an historian and former visiting fellow at Mount Vernon, has written a delightful biography that tries to rectify the prior lack of attention paid to Patrick Henry. The author provides an insightful glimpse into the life and work of one of the most important men who helped bring about the creation of the American republic.
Unger provides an overview of the life of Henry. The book is not a comprehensive biography. The author delves into the key events in Henry’s life explaining how the episodes discussed helped to shape Henry’s work and approach to politics. The book covers Henry’s earliest days as a backwoods lawyer. Unger covers Henry’s friendships and family life (he fathered 18 children) as well as his relationship with George Washington.
What I found most interesting was the discussion of some of Henry’s cases as a lawyer. For example, Henry argues in defense of a group of famer’s who had refused to pay the Church tax to support the established Anglican Church of Virginia colony. Henry’s opposition to what he saw as both a violation of religious liberty and the freedom of the people to be secure against oppressive taxation by distant imperial and colonial governments.
Unger’s book is a fascinating study of one of the most colorful and important public men of the founding era. If you are interested in the formation of this country this is a book to read. William Hughes narrated the book.
This is book three in the Thomas Kydd series of historical nautical fiction. Stockwin’s richly detailed portrait of life on ship and shore during the Napoleonic Wars is engrossing. He writes of shipboard routine, the panic and confusion of combat and the terrifying approach of a hurricane at sea. Stockwin writes from the view point of a common sailor in the 18th century British Navy. It is all here the cramped conditions, the disgusting food, the underserved punishment and cruelty of some officers and the unremitting toil.
From the beginning of the book we are plunged into a fast paced series of actions. The manic plot encompasses four battles, three courts of naval inquiry, two hurricanes, two shark attacks, a shipwreck, yellow fever, and rescue of French Royalist and a few floggings and dinner parties.
Kydd goes from an ordinary sailor to a Master’s mate, picking up along the way the navigational skills and drawing room manners of an officer and a gentleman. The setting of the story is in the Caribbean as Britain and France fight over the West Indies in about 1795. Christian Rodska does his usual great job in narrating the story.
Michael Deaver is a long time Reagan staffer and he was the liaison between the Reagan staff and Nancy Reagan. Deaver states that Nancy Reagan had only one goal in life that was to support and protect Ronald Reagan. Deaver says her life was always about Ronnie.
The first part of the book covers her early life. She was born Anne Frances Robbins July 6 1921. Her nickname was Nancy. Nancy’s mother was the famous stage actress Edith Luckett (1880-1987) she did not know her father. In 1929 her mother married neurosurgeon Loyal Davis (1896-1982). They lived in Chicago and Nancy legally changed her name to Davis. Nancy graduated from Smith Collage in 1943: she majored in English and drama. As an actress she appeared on Broadway and later was contracted for film with MGM. She was in many films and retired from acting in 1962. She married Reagan in 1952 and had two children Patricia Ann and Ronald Prescott Reagan.
Deaver covers the time from Governor to President mostly from Nancy viewpoint. He shows how she went from a reluctant and hesitate speaker into a polished speaker. The author reveals Nancy as a reluctant politician’s wife but he shows how she applied herself to learn the job. Deaver says she was a direct, impatient person and as such some people felt she was intimidating.
The last part of the book covers their life living with Alzheimer disease and the toll it took on them. This is not a comprehensive biography of Nancy Reagan nor is there any pushing of a political agenda. It is primarily a personal and moving tribute to Nancy Reagan by a person who worked with her daily over more than 35 years. The book provides a look into the life of Nancy Reagan and what she thought was most important in her life. I enjoyed learning about Nancy's life as first lady. The author narrated the book.
This is book five in the Longknife series. Navy Lieutenant Kristine Longknife, Princess of Wardhaven is going on vacation to the planet New Eden. Of course, her family assigns her various diplomatic and military obligations while on the planet. These jobs are to stand around looking pretty during diplomatic occasions and dealing with paperwork.
Two assassination attempts convince Kris and her bodyguard Jack something is wrong in New Eden. They dig deeper into the planet society and find a deeply conflicted planet on the verge of a revolution. Those who tried to kill Kris picked on the wrong person as Kris shoots back. They also find that as the planet falls into chaos the Peterwald are trying to take over the planet.
More is revealed about Abbeys past in this book. Seem the author is gradually peeling away Abbeys mysterious background in each book. The characters are interesting and the plot is full of twists and peppered liberally with sharply described action. The pace of the story is fast. As with each book the author sprinkles the book liberally with humor. Every time I read one of the books in this series I become more fascinated with Kris’s computer Nelly. I would love to have a Nelly of my own. Dina Pearlman narrated the book.
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