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Michael

Artist | Foodie | Dog Lover | Motorcyclist | Beer Drinker | Music Lover

Sandy, UT, United States | Member Since 2010

4
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 7 reviews
  • 25 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 14 purchased in 2014
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  • The Vikings

    • ORIGINAL (17 hrs and 58 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Kenneth W. Harl
    Overall
    (197)
    Performance
    (172)
    Story
    (174)

    As raiders and explorers, the Vikings played a decisive role in the formation of Latin Christendom, and particularly of western Europe. Now, in a series of 36 vivid lectures by an honored teacher and classical scholar, you have the opportunity to understand this remarkable race as never before, studying the Vikings not only as warriors, but in all of the other roles in which they were equally extraordinary - merchants, artists, kings, raiders, seafarers, shipbuilders, and creators of a remarkable literature of myths and sagas.

    Peter says: "Good Informational Listen"
    "Enthralling Presentation of a Fascinating Subject"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I highly recommend this lecture series. Professor Harl is a fantastic presenter thus making an interesting subject even more so given his depth of knowledgeable and dynamic coverage of Viking History.

    I took a risk in choosing a lecture series for the first time on a subject I was only mildly interested in. The risk paid in spades. I honestly expected an arduous churn up a deep information stream and yet found I was shooting the rapids with a fascinating guy: great voice, dynamic spirit, excellent depth, intriguing side bars. I found myself consumed by the lectures and now seeking out more about the lore and history of Vikings.


    Have you listened to any of Professor Kenneth W. Harl’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This the first time I've listened to the work of Professor Kenneth W. Harl and he presents the subject in such a fantastic way, I'm already trying to pick the next lecture from this man.


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

    18 hours worth of material is too much for one sitting (IMO) but I'll be damned if I didn't churn through it within just a few days once I cracked it open. So well presented and logically divided by topic that I found myself absorbed by the work, focused on the subject and listening pretty much non-stop.


    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Food: A Cultural Culinary History

    • ORIGINAL (18 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Ken Albala
    Overall
    (131)
    Performance
    (116)
    Story
    (112)

    Eating is an indispensable human activity. As a result, whether we realize it or not, the drive to obtain food has been a major catalyst across all of history, from prehistoric times to the present. Epicure Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin said it best: "Gastronomy governs the whole life of man."

    Susan says: "Very interesting course"
    "Outstanding Reveal on Food"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Food: A Cultural Culinary History the most enjoyable?

    Professor Ken Albala is well polished and presents in an very engaging way.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I love food and felt I was comfortably well informed about most things food. A Cultural Culinary History just expanded my Universe in a fun way with an incredibly fascinating wealth of information the evolution of this most common necessity.


    Have you listened to any of Professor Ken Albala’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Food: A Cultural Culinary History is the first I've heard of Professor Ken Albala's work. And I loved it.


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

    Pillage the Pantry


    Any additional comments?

    Professor Ken Albala is incredibly knowledgeable on the subject of food and culinary history. I love his tone and just how comfortable he is with a subject that effects us all whether we know how or why exactly. I'll be listening to this Series again. It was that good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Spilling the Beans

    • ABRIDGED (1 hr and 52 mins)
    • By Clarissa Dickson Wright
    • Narrated By Clarissa Dickson Wright
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (13)

    Here is the no-holds-barred autobiography, read by the author, of one of the nation's best-loved cooks. Her life has led her from wealth and privilege to alcoholism, bankruptcy, and eventually fame in Two Fat Ladies. With the stark honesty and the brilliant wit we love her for, Clarissa recounts the tale of a life lived to extremes.

    Michael says: "Clarissa is a Character in the Truest Sense"
    "Clarissa is a Character in the Truest Sense"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Spilling the Beans the most enjoyable?

    The honesty was brutal. She lived a fascinating life and hit the highest highs and lowest lows in her time with us.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Clarissa Dickson Wright of course. She was truly, one-of-a-kind.


    What three words best describe Clarissa Dickson Wright’s voice?

    Droll: aptly humorous and timely without trying. It is genuine and earnest. And yes... funny.

    Sensitive: clinical at early on, but you feel the heartache when her heart aches.

    Resilient: few have the staying power that Clarissa states as matter-of-fact. Simply stated, it was the way it was.


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

    The point where this "tough one" relates the loss of her dog due to the depths of alcoholism was incredibly moving to me. For all of Clarissa's strength, there is a most fragile heart revealed in moments like these.


    Any additional comments?

    "Spilling the Beans" is an easy listen and a brief one too. I enjoyed it. Perhaps more so because I was new to her story. I arrived here not as an ardent fan rather knowing her merely as one of "The Fat Ladies" and casually so. Upon getting wind of who this woman actually was, I realized that this was a woman of depth with a compelling story to tell. At that, I wasted no time finding this book and am glad for it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Hops and Glory

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Pete Brown
    • Narrated By Cameron Stewart
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (9)

    The original India Pale Ale was pure gold in a glass; a beer specially invented, in the 19th century, to travel halfway around the world and arrive in perfect condition for a cold drink on an Indian verandah. But although you can still buy beers with 'IPA' on the label they are a pale imitation of the original. For the first time in 140 years, a keg of Burton IPA has been brewed with the original recipe for a voyage to India by canal and tall ship, and the man carrying it is Pete Brown, Britain's best beer writer.

    Michael says: "More Than a Beer Story"
    "More Than a Beer Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Hops and Glory in three words, what would they be?

    Entertaining Beyond Beer


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    Discovering the history of Britain's East India Company was something I didn't expect and feel I was clueless about before this book. What we were taught in school seems to been a farce. Cameron Stewart's voicing made it all the more compelling.


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

    This is my first listen to a book as read by Cameron Stewart, and he was good enough, that he's the first Voice Actor I've searched for as a result. He's got a great tone and emotion to his voice.


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

    Finding just how ruthless "The Company" was is a chilling discovery. The history of India is something I now want to dive into and learn more about.


    Any additional comments?

    I love beer. IPA include. I appreciated it even more now. And have a great appreciation for Pete Brown's willingness to suffer for us.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Drunken Botanist: The Plants That Create the World's Great Drinks

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Amy Stewart
    • Narrated By Coleen Marlo
    Overall
    (144)
    Performance
    (127)
    Story
    (124)

    Every great drink starts with a plant. Sake began with a grain of rice. Scotch emerged from barley. Gin was born from a conifer shrub when medieval physicians boiled juniper berries with wine to treat stomach pain. The Drunken Botanist uncovers the surprising botanical history and fascinating science and chemistry of over 150 plants, flowers, trees, and fruits (and even a few fungi).

    Cynthia says: "No more cheap tequila!"
    "A fascinating look at Ingredient and their History"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Drunken Botanist the most enjoyable?

    The story behind so many herbs and spices that at various times, drove men to extreme measure. Intriguing and beguiling at every turn. In this book you get something worth toasting.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Drunken Botanist?

    Realizing the power many countries derived from the control of many herbs. The Dutch in particular, proved to be quite unscrupulous in their drive to control the trade.


    What about Coleen Marlo’s performance did you like?

    I enjoyed Coleen Marlo's performance. She's eloquent and energetic in her delivery.


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

    This book had lots of surprises and "now way!" moments for me. You see the best and worst in people and the lengths at which they'll go to for the power and wealth that come from botanical gems like nutmeg and vanilla. Things we take for granted today.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved this book. Its packed with all kinds of interesting and surprising facts what could be a rather mundane subject. Amy Stewart puts a lemon twist on this top-shelf cocktail of a book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Hot Kid

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Elmore Leonard
    • Narrated By Arliss Howard
    Overall
    (312)
    Performance
    (53)
    Story
    (52)

    Carl Webster, the hot kid of the marshals service, is polite, respects his elders, and can shoot a man driving away in an Essex at 400 yards. Carl works out of the Tulsa, Oklahoma, federal courthouse during the 1930s, the period of America's most notorious bank robbers: Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson...those guys.

    Shawnna says: "A great book, an even better listen"
    "Great Story, Midline Performance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does The Hot Kid rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The Hot Kid is one of the more entertaining books I've pulled recently.


    Did Arliss Howard do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Arliss Howard does a fine reading but his character performances are pretty limited when compared to other performances. He lacks the depth in voicings lacking the diversity of character I would hope for.


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

    The Hot Kid's got what everyone wants!


    Any additional comments?

    I got a kick out of Elmore Jame's "The Hot Kid" and loved the fact that it kept me guessing right to the end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Short Course in Beer: An Introduction to Tasting and Talking About the World's Most Civilized Beverage

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Lynn Hoffman
    • Narrated By Adam Verner
    Overall
    (25)
    Performance
    (24)
    Story
    (24)

    Straightforward and opinionated, Short Course in Beer is designed to turn the novice beer lover into an expert imbiber and the casual drinker into an enthusiast. Readers will come to understand the beauty of beer and the sources of its flavor, as well as learn which beers are worth our time and which are not. With tongue in cheek, the author examines beer's historical connections to the Crusades, the Hundred Years' War, and modern-day soccer riots. He talks frankly (and joyfully) about the effects of alcohol on the body and brain, he defends beer from its enemies, and ushers it out of the frat house and into the dining room.

    B. P. Hoyer says: "Outstanding Primer"
    "An Ok Beer Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would recommend "Tasting Beer" by Randy Mosher as worth spending the time to read over listening to "Short Course in Beer". Mosher's book is much more thorough yet very approachable.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    It is interesting because it is about beer, however, the writing sophomoric at times so not the most compelling treatment of this subject for that reason.


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

    Eloquence. He adds a compelling voice to a well paced reading.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    This is not a silver screen able book.


    Any additional comments?

    I find beer to be a fascinating subject and hobby and have read many books on the subject. Where I tend return to a stockpile of beer books for reference notes and details on particular points, unfortunately. This isn't one I'll likely return to. i'm glad I gave it a listen but I'm also glad that I've got other books to turn to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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