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David

Quakers Hill, Australia

8
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 8 reviews
  • 43 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 4 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
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  • The Limpopo Academy of Private Detection

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Alexander McCall Smith
    • Narrated By Adjoa Andoh
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (21)
    Story
    (21)

    Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi have always relied on the advice of the classic guide to their trade, The Principles of Private Detection. But who is the eminent author, Mr Clovis Andersen, and what if he was to come to Botswana? That seems a very unlikely possibility, and yet… When Mr Andersen visits Botswana on holiday, he is delighted and intrigued to stumble across a roadside sign that reveals the existence of the No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency.

    Jane says: "A beautiful series"
    "Limp"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    McCall Smith has clearly run out of ideas. I was a great fan of Mma Ramatoswe and her doings, even if those doings were done relatively slowly. In this book, however, after 3 hours, the earlier books appear turbo-charged. Absolutely nothing happens. We are reminded about the various marriages of the detectives, Mma Makutsi's talking shoes, her husband's disability, the cows of Mma Ramotswe's father, but there is nothing at all that makes you want to keep listening. It's as if McCall Smith's publisher demanded one last book and he wrote it in his sleep rather than at his normal time of 5 in the morning. Really extremely disappointing.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Matt Ridley
    • Narrated By L J Ganser
    Overall
    (20)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (14)

    The Samuel Johnson Prize Shortlist Nominees 2011. Over 10,000 years ago there were fewer than 10 million people on the planet. Today there are more than six billion, 99 per cent of whom are better fed, better sheltered, better entertained and better protected against disease than their Stone Age ancestors. Yet, bizarrely, however much things improve from the way they were before, people still cling to the belief that the future will be nothing but disastrous.

    David says: "Breathtakingly Hypocritical"
    "Breathtakingly Hypocritical"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book was highly recommended by a friend. Despite a persuasive argument, Ridley's book cannot be considered in the absence of context, for Ridley chaired the English bank Northern Rock, a bank which, due to its high-risk lending practices, went to the wall during the GFC with red ink to the tune of twenty-some billion UK pounds, and was subsequently nationalised to prevent a 'run' on the banks and the collapse of the British financial system. Thus, while I'm a conservative who is naturally sceptical of the size and role of government in virtually every economy, I find it extremely ironical that Ridley, at the outset, states that he cannot refer to the collapse of Northern Rock 'for legal reasons' yet it is, in the style of other libertarians such as Ayn Rand, the free market which serves as the bedrock for virtually every subsequent argument. Ridley should have withdrawn the book and rewritten it in the very context of his own aristocratic background (he is now a Viscount!) and on the basis of the events which occurred at the bank of which he was Chair. In addition, I would have thought a UK narrator more preferable to a US narrator given Ridley's own background. With reality incorporated into the narrative rather than rationality, Ridley may have been onto something.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Modern Scholar: The Quest: The Historians' Search for Jesus and Muhammad

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By F. E. Peters
    Overall
    (30)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (13)

    Esteemed professor emeritus F.E. Peters compares the similarities and differences in the dual searches for the historical Jesus and the historical Muhammad. These quests have been the focus of considerable effort since the lifetime of each of these venerated figures.

    melanie says: "what an interesting audiobook"
    "Truly awful."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    FE Peters reminds me of one of the "god professors" of yore. In other words, he seems to think that by his very presence us poor, unintellectual plebians benefit. Life has moved on, however, and it rather seems to me that FE Peters has been given a bottle of gin for each lecture and been given permission to move round and round, to great redundancy, the point of his lectures. If we are lucky, he give us one point of value. If not, we are left without the veritable crumb. He repeats himself ad nauseum, duplicating and triplicating and quadruplicating his message to the point where one sees this audio as a potential cure for insomnia rather than of any educational value. Quite simply, this is embarrassing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Conquer the Chaos: How to Grow a Successful Small Business Without Going Crazy

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Clate Mask, Scott Martineau
    • Narrated By Don Hagen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (6)

    You started your business for the freedom and adventure of being your own boss, but now you feel buried by your business. So many entrepreneurs experience this, and some have given up the hope of ever finding the money, time, and control they thought business ownership would bring them. But take heart! You can meet the challenges, reclaim your life, and grow your business at the same time. Conquer the Chaos shows you how.

    David says: "Nothing New"
    "Nothing New"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    As a business owner and a teacher of entrepreneurship, I love the stories of entrepreneurs and the insights that they can provide. These tend to be best derived or naturally emerge from the stories of their businesses and their own ups and downs. I was surprised to see how popular this title is but would not recommend it for anyone but absolute novices with very little knowlege of business and entrepreneurship. For the rest of us, there is very little in this book that will change the way your do business or think more creatively. Instead, I'd recommend Trump's "Think Big and Kick Ass" or Felix Dennis's "How to Get Rich" as among the best titles available from Audible.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mindset: The New Psychology of Success

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Carol Dweck
    • Narrated By Marguerite Gavin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1150)
    Performance
    (773)
    Story
    (771)

    Mindset is one of those rare audio books that can help you make positive changes in your life and at the same time see the world in a new way. A leading expert in motivation and personality psychology, Carol Dweck has discovered in more than 20 years of research that our mindset is not a minor personality quirk: it creates our whole mental world. It explains how we become optimistic or pessimistic. It shapes our goals, our attitude toward work, and ultimately predicts whether or not we will fulfull our potential.

    Peter says: "Gems sparsely scattered throughout a desert"
    "Overrated"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I found that the narration was so "gushing" as to be virtually unlistenable and the content was less than original with virtually nothing new. Disappointing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Chinese (Man) Phase 1, Unit 01-05: Learn to Speak and Understand Mandarin Chinese with Pimsleur Language Programs

    • ORIGINAL (2 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Pimsleur
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (23)

    Each lesson in Units 1 to 5 provides 30 minutes of spoken language practice, with an introductory conversation, and new vocabulary and structures. Detailed instructions enable you to understand and participate in the conversation. Each lesson contains practice for vocabulary introduced in previous lessons.

    Sandy says: "Very useful!"
    "Somewhat Disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The first segment of the audio describes the Pimsleur method. I'd like to say that it is as revolutionary as claimed, however I'm not sure that it is. Perhaps I'm slow, however I had to go over and over the first lesson just to remember the basics. Then, after much practice, I tried out my only sentence or two on a class of visiting Chinese professors in Sydney last week. At the conclusion of my presentation, one came up to me and said, "Your teaching was great but your Chinese was terrible." So, that's it for me Mr Pimsleur and your method. In the traditional Chinese way, I lost face and you are to blame!

    2 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • The Return of the Native

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Thomas Hardy
    • Narrated By Jill Masters
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (9)

    Eustacia Vye is a beautiful, commanding presence on England's Egdon Heath. Her longing for the glamour of city life leaves her dissatisfied with her traditionalist husband, Clym Yeobright, and leads her to take Damon Wildeve as her lover. In a mixing of fate, chance, and human error, Eustacia's marriage smolders and explodes in violent tragedy. Set against the looming presence of the Heath, Hardy's work vividly depicts characters cruelly manipulated by the forces around them, unable to dictate their own fates. This classic story, a forerunner to the 20th-century psychological novel, is presented in unabridged form, revealing all of its poetic compassion and universal themes.

    Frank says: "Life on the Heath"
    "Truly Disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    After Tess of the D'Urbervilles, I was keen to listen to more Thomas Hardy, however the differences between Tess and this title could hardly be greater. While the Audible information indicates that Jill Masters is the narrator, the cover of the audiobook indicates that it is "read by Alan Rickman". Unfortunately, Jill (or Alan, depending on what she likes to be called) is simply abominable as a narrator. She sounds like the Queen reading her Christmas address inside a trunk at the bottom of the ocean...in 1972. Not only does her very posh voice not suit the context of this book, she is simply unable to alter her voice in any significant way to make the characters in the narrative come alive. It is as though she is reading to 8 or 10 year old children. As noted, the "echo chamber" in which she appears to be reading is a constant distraction. There is no clarity at all. I love my Audible books, but this one is a complete and utter shocker.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Slap: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Christos Tsiolkas
    • Narrated By Alex Dimitriades
    Overall
    (91)
    Performance
    (58)
    Story
    (61)

    At a suburban barbecue, a man slaps a child who is not his own. This event has a shocking ricochet effect on a group of people, mostly friends, who are directly or indirectly influenced by the incident. In this remarkable novel, Christos Tsiolkas turns his unflinching and all-seeing eye onto that which connects us all: the modern family and domestic life in the 21st century.

    Annabelle says: "Engaging book - reading a bit patchy."
    "Extremely disappointing"
    Overall

    While this title has sold well in Australia, I'm not sure that I understand why. The writer focuses on the worst of his characters' characters, descends into unwarranted crudity on a regular basis, and resolves few of its plotlines. If the virtue of this book is that it mirrors the messy realities of our own lives, why read about it? Books can do such much more.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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