This is a fabulously written book with both macro and micro details that present a great overall account of the war of 1812. However the minutia is also problematic for the audio account as I found it difficult to follow. Too many different people, too similar of names creates confusion and cause the listener to forget who is attacking who on the high seas. There is the USS President but also the US President and while the author probably presents a good WRITTEN account, a couple of sentences got me wondering was he talking about the ship or Madison/Jefferson/Adams/Washington (all are in the historical context of the book).
Additionally, referencing a map would be very useful. While I consider myself as having above average knowledge of geography, the author makes me feel like an idiot when citing locations of harbors, bays, rivers, etc. (Full disclosure, that might have more to do with me being from Utah and our utter lack of any seaworthy body of water (no the GSL is not a seaworthy body of water)).
My recommendation, and what I'm going to do; buy the physical written book with the aforementioned maps and battle diagrams (I'm assuming and hoping those are in the book). Additionally, with all the different ships and personalities, the ability to quickly re-read a passage or scan for other facts will be a nice benefit.
Please don't dismiss my review of this book as ignorant fool who isn't studious enough to listen to a work of quality non-fiction. I've listened to several history books e.g., Intelligence in War (Keegan), Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World (Weatherford), I, Claudius (Graves) (I know this is more historical fiction), Abraham (Feiler). All of these were easy audio listens while being full of complicated details without confusing the listener.
I only rated this book so high because of its historical factor and its significance to the genre. Otherwise, this book is a waste of time. Seriously, hard to follow (and not just because of the narrator as others have critiqued), and just not that interesting. The story, in its time, was probably magical, but there are so many other options for the genre that I suggest only reading this if you want to read everything in this field; but only if you've read everything else.
As to the other commentators' critique of the narrator, they are accurate in regard to the pause, but listening at 3X speed, it is barely noticeable.
I picked this book up, only by chance during an audible sale. I had just finished 'The Beginning of the End: Apocalypse Z' so I was still in a mood for post apocalyptic chaos, but what I got was a thoroughly researched book on how to survive the immediate aftermath.
The majority genre of end of the world scenarios paint a romanticized version of a dystopia, but 'The Disaster Diaries' (title insinuates an epistolary fiction similar to the aforementioned) is about 95% legitimate survival information and techniques and only 5% story telling (used to combine each scenario together).
The author focuses on key areas of potential doom (e.g., personal fitness, shooting, infection, water, knife fighting) that if overlooked is a silly way to die if you already beat the odds and survived an Extinction Level Event.
Get this book if you're a self-proclaimed prepper, or even if you want to be able to live through a temporary local disaster. Save yourself, save your family.
This is quite and exciting mystery and worth your time, if only for the overview of the story. If you haven't read the premise, it's simple: Soviet Students going for an advanced hiking rating by climbing an ominously named peak (translated from Russian as 'Dead Mountain') in 1959. The hikers don't return and the subsequent search party discovered some odd details surrounding their camp site, the disposition of the hiker's bodies, and the paucity of any other evidence. Fast forward some 50 years when American documentary maker stumbles across the story and decides someone needs to investigate; why not him?
The book has two parts written intermittently: the mystery, retold by hikers' journals and those involved with the search, and the author's investigation. The latter concludes with the author's presumptive but somewhat convincing answer to the mystery. Although highly speculative, nothing else seems to make sense. However, there are points the author brings up during his investigation that aren't answered by his theory e.g., radiation found on clothes and exact similar reactions by each hiker to the stated cause.
A great, real-life mystery that may have finally given some closure to the families of the hikers, albeit 50 years after the fact. The narrator, also the author, gets only three stars for performance. Although I prefer non-fiction to be read by the author, it seems like Donnie didn't even bother to take a class on audio book presentation, rather he speaks throughout the book as if he's narrating a animal dissection for high school biology
I enjoyed this version of 'The Postman' slightly more than the movie; which I loved. I'm still baffled by the scorching the movie took by critics and movie-goers. But, to each his own. If you didn't like the movie, you probably won't like the book. However, even a modicum of enjoyment of the former will translate to, at minimum, a relishing in the subtle (and so so subtle) differences.
Written in an epistolary style, this book focuses on the individual survival of one man from the outset of epidemic symptoms across the globe. The first quarter of the book touches on geo-political responses to the crisis, of which not much information is available. The book was originally written in Spanish and the entirety of the plot takes place in Spain.
Although this is my first 'Zombie' book, I have watched almost every available movie and television series, so I'm not new to the genre. This book is a simple survival tale with zombies only being the point of conflict as opposed to the overall plot as in 'World War Z' or 'Walking Dead'.
The Narrator was excellent and I would definitely listen to him again. Only four stars for the story as it doesn't meet my 'mind blown' paradigm, but it was fun and there's some out of the box thinking that occurs.
Like most, I had not previously heard of Dr. Carson (despite his previous media fame) until the National Prayer Breakfast. This book is an answer to all of the questions that immediately sprung the following morning e.g., who is Ben Carson, why was he asked to speak, did he just challenge POTUS, what are his politics.
He answers all of these and more. Specifically the charge that he 'embarrassed' POTUS and needed to apologize. Also he addresses his mea culpa following the fallout of his 'lumping together homosexuality and bestiality', which was feigning ignorance to the sensitivity of the LGBT community with bestiality.
Most importantly, being a good doctor, he prescribes practices that will help alleviate the symptoms and, hopefully, the disease(s) plaguing this country, after every chapter.
I gave only 4 stars to the narrator's performance, but only because I had the expectation that the author would be reading. Prentice Onayemi's voice was actually powerful, yet comforting and I enjoyed it immensely.
Each chapter opens with scripture, mostly proverbs. So if you're offended by a belief in God or by His written word, you'll probably not like anything Dr. Carson says. However, even atheists will find comfort in his wisdom as he calls out extremists on both ends of the ideological spectrum. He calls for civility and perspective throughout the book and simply asks his readers to remember that we're children of God first and foremost.
I listened to this before I even knew it was going to be a movie, based off a friend's recommendation. To me it was just like 'Hunger Games' only worse. Female protagonist in dystopian future, unassuming heroine, who embraces the inner demon to usurp the powers that be. The only thing missing was the love triangle, which I'm sure will come with the remaining books in the trilogy.
Reluctantly, and only because I love my wife, did I acquiesce to her wishes and went to the movie. I was surprised, as they did a better character development of Beatrice in the movie than the book. Something heretofore, I thought nearly impossible.
In the end, I choose:
Katniss of the books and Trice of the film
Seriously, I can't believe I hadn't read this until I was 36. This was one of those books you always heard others talk about, but no one had ever said, "Hey, you really need to read this book!" I might have done that way earlier in my life and saved a lot of heart and head aches.
As a Human Intelligence Collector in the Military, I've been taught and learned many of the principles taught within this book, but there's so much more and it's all right here.
Definitely worth your time, regardless of your present status in life. Although originally published in 1936, it is timeless, not an anachronism.
Seriously, just read it, the only reason I'm writing here is because I must have 15 words.
... retired Navy Seal, Sniper, Green Beret, CIA Case Officer, Army Ranger, who kills the disenfranchised, money hungry terrorist i.e., nothing really original here.
There were some fun nuggets in the book, but mostly just a re-hash of every other book out there.
The narrator was awful, I mean awful. Every sentence was a forced persona of stereotypical stupidity. Worst narrator, EVER!
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