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Alan

Sunrise, FL, United States | Member Since 2010

210
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 47 reviews
  • 56 ratings
  • 358 titles in library
  • 28 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
13

  • Still Foolin' 'Em: Where I've Been, Where I'm Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Billy Crystal
    • Narrated By Billy Crystal
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1877)
    Performance
    (1711)
    Story
    (1703)

    Billy Crystal is 65, and he's not happy about it. With his trademark wit and heart, he outlines the absurdities and challenges that come with growing old, from insomnia to memory loss to leaving dinners with half your meal on your shirt. In humorous chapters like ""Buying the Plot"" and ""Nodding Off,"" Crystal not only catalogues his physical gripes, but offers a road map to his 77 million fellow baby boomers who are arriving at this milestone age with him. He also looks back at the most powerful and memorable moments of his long and storied life, from entertaining his relatives as a kid in Long Beach, Long Island, and his years doing stand-up in the Village, up through his legendary stint at Saturday Night Live, When Harry Met Sally, and his long run as host of the Academy Awards. Listeners get a front-row seat to his one-day career with the New York Yankees (he was the first player to ever ""test positive for Maalox""), his love affair with Sophia Loren, and his enduring friendships with several of his idols, including Mickey Mantle and Muhammad Ali. He lends a light touch to more serious topics like religion (""the aging friends I know have turned to the Holy Trinity: Advil, bourbon, and Prozac""); grandparenting; and, of course, dentistry. As wise and poignant as they are funny, Crystal's reflections are an unforgettable look at an extraordinary life well lived.

    Pamela J says: "Growing up with Billy Crystal"
    "For the Billy Crystal fan in all of us"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a fun diversion from the history / lecture series' I normally listen to. A warm uplifting book fill with Billy's memories.

    The BEST part of this book are Mr. Crystal's stories of the great Micky Mantle and Muhammad Ali. A human face is painted on these sports legends that very few have seen. The chapter on the filming of his HBO movie 61 was probably the best chapter in the book. As a youngster, my father took me to Yankee Stadium to watch these very same legends play. Tears swelled up inside.

    The book also has its slow chapters. One can sense that Mr. Crystal has a preoccupation with death. He deals alot with dying which detracts from the otherwise brisk flow of the book.

    This book is highly recommended,

    BTW, you look marvelous

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Killing Patton: The Strange Death of World War II's Most Audacious General

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Bill O'Reilly, Martin Dugard
    • Narrated By Bill O'Reilly
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (518)
    Performance
    (472)
    Story
    (484)

    General George S. Patton, Jr., died under mysterious circumstances in the months following the end of World War II. For almost 70 years, there has been suspicion that his death was not an accident - and may very well have been an act of assassination. Killing Patton will take listeners inside the final year of the war and recount the events surrounding Patton's tragic demise, naming names of the many powerful individuals who wanted him silenced.

    Alan says: "A good book with alot of flaws"
    "A good book with alot of flaws"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Killing Patton is Bill O's latest 'fast food style' book in the Killing series. Preceded by Killing Lincoln, Kennedy and Jesus, Patton has some tall expectations to live up to.

    Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard release a historical book every year and Patton is 2014's edition. All books are written in the same format so if you enjoyed the previous three installments, you will enjoy this book. It is an easy book to listen to. Add on top of that the fact that I'm a WW2 history buff made this book a must purchase for me.

    THIS BOOK IS NOT WITHOUT ITS FAULTS

    The first chapter of this book deals with Patton's automobile accident and subsequent death. You already know the ending before the second chapter begins. For me, it is anticlimactic

    The rest of the book ping pongs back and forth through the final year of WW2. This book is not a thesis on the late General as the title suggests but more a weak melodrama. There are MANY MANY MANY incidents included in this book that have nothing to do with Patton or his immediate world around him. Examples are the chapters included about Auchwitz concentration camp The General and 3rd army never entered Poland or Auchwitz and therefor its reasons for inclusion in this book questioned. Additionally, the story of Anne Frank and her subsequent death are chronicled. Again, Anne Frank and George Patton have nothing in common. Why it is included is again a question.

    All of the facts presented in this book are already widely known and readily available. One gets the impression that this book is meant for entertainment and quick sales and not as a historical thesis. Keeping that in mind, this book is recommended for its entertainment value.

    If you enjoyed Bill's other Killing books, you will enjoy this book May I suggest to Bill a title for next years book, Killing Hoffa. Id preorder that copy right now.





    23 of 26 people found this review helpful
  • Defeating Hitler: Whitehall's Secret Report on Why Hitler Lost the War

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Paul Winter
    • Narrated By Alex Wyndham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (12)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (12)

    Published for the very first time, the top-secret report Some Weaknesses in German Strategy and Organisation 1933-1945 was prepared by Whitehall's highest intelligence body, the Joint Intelligence Committee, and presented to Britain's Chiefs of Staff in 1946 to "set down certain aspects of the War whilst there are still sources available who were closely connected with the events described". Paul Winter sets this unique and important document in its historical setting, providing biographies of key figures referenced in the report and a timeline of the crucial events of the Second World War.

    vanessa says: "Hard work"
    "Boring"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The history of Nazi Germany told in bullet-point fashion. One gets the feeling that the narrator is reading from a stack of Post It Notes rather than from a book. I had to put this book down; maybe Ill come back to it sometime.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Language A to Z

    • ORIGINAL (6 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By The Great Courses, John McWhorter
    • Narrated By Professor John McWhorter
    Overall
    (515)
    Performance
    (464)
    Story
    (451)

    Linguistics, the study of language, has a reputation for being complex and inaccessible. But here's a secret: There's a lot that's quirky and intriguing about how human language works-and much of it is downright fun to learn about. But with so many potential avenues of exploration, it can often seem daunting to try to understand it. Where does one even start?

    Jacobus says: "A genious Miscelany of linguistic topics"
    "What a great listen."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Professor McWhorter is FANTASTIC to listen to. I would give him 7 stars for performance but Audible only allows a maximum of 5 stars. The delivery and style are exhilarating. Just the right blend of wit adds to this wonderful listen. Don.t take my word for it, listen to the sample.

    Where I fault the series is that way too much information is presented here for the introductory course. I did manage to totally enjoy this listen even though I felt at times over my head.

    I totally recommend this audiobook.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • World War II: The United States at War

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Joseph Stromberg
    • Narrated By George C. Scott
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    World War II redrew the map of the world. No longer would Europe be the center of power. As the continent exhausted itself in yet another war, two new nations with conflicting ideologies were rising to prominence: the United States of America and the Soviet Union. Both nations would eventually fight on the same side in World War II, but they would not emerge as partners.

    Alan says: "Very disappointed"
    "Very disappointed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There are so many bad points, where to begin ....

    This is a five hour audiobook but way too much time is spent on WWI (over 1 hour)

    Generals like Omar Bradley, Douglas MacArthur, and Sir Bernard Law Montgomery are hardly even mentioned

    Many instances of historically incorrect information.

    Many battles ( Market Garden, Kursk, Monte Casino and alot more ) aren't mentioned

    Need I saw more?

    I bought this audiobook mostly because of George C. Scott however, the performance was dry and fast paced making the audiobook very boring to listen to.

    There are many books out there on WWII far better then this one.

    Do yourself a favor and check them out before buying this one

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Pope and Mussolini: The Secret History of Pius XI and the Rise of Fascism in Europe

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By David I. Kertzer
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (15)

    From National Book Award finalist David I. Kertzer comes the gripping story of Pope Pius XI’s secret relations with Italian dictator Benito Mussolini. This groundbreaking work, based on seven years of research in the Vatican and Fascist archives, including reports from Mussolini’s spies inside the highest levels of the Church, will forever change our understanding of the Vatican’s role in the rise of Fascism in Europe.

    Alan says: "A good listen"
    "A good listen"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Very very very good account of the relationships of Pope Pius XI and the future Pius XII with Benito Musillini and to a lesser degree, Adolph Hitler.

    Pius XI originally was please to find a working partner in Il Duce as he saw the chance for the Vatican to grow in influence against Pius XI's two ideological enemies, the Protestant Movement and Communism. Additionally Pius XI did not believe in a representational type of government.

    Where Pius XI began to have serious rifts with Musillini was over the newly passed anti-Semitic laws. Pius XI believed that christian compassion should extend to the Jews. Additionally, Pius XI also held different ideas when it came to baptized catholic jews.

    The future Piux XII, the papal secretary of state, favored strong ties to Mussilini and by extension, Adolph Hitler. Upon XI's death, XII ordered the total ban on the yet unpublished XI's papal encyclical which was viewed as very unfavorable to Hitler and Musillini. Both XI and XII have "a lot of 'splanin to do." Pius XII always had a cloud of antisemitism hanging over his head and this book greatly adds to that belief

    Buyer beware tho ..... Lots and lots of Italian names most of which are superfluous to the main story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Munich 1972: Tragedy, Terror, and Triumph at the Olympic Games

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By David Clay Large
    • Narrated By Gregory St. John
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Set against the backdrop of the turbulent late 1960s and early 1970s, this compelling audiobook provides the first comprehensive history of the 1972 Munich Olympic Games, notorious for the abduction of Israeli Olympians by Palestinian terrorists and the hostages' tragic deaths after a botched rescue mission by the German police. Drawing on a wealth of newly available sources from the time, eminent historian David Clay Large explores the 1972 festival in all its ramifications.

    Michael says: "Overly long, many errors in pronunciation"
    "A return to 1972"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is about the history of the 1972 Munich Olympics. These games most remembered for the terrorist attack on the Israeli athletes, is not the main topic of the book This is a complete history of Munich games from the very beginning stages the the final ending ceremonies.

    This audiobook is broken into two parts. FEEL FREE TO FAST FORWARD THROUGH THE FIRST PART, as most of this part is boring. I just couldnt get into the history of german architecture.

    The second part is the main gusto of the book. It is here where all of the action takes place. From Marck Spitz to Olga Korbut, the full flavor of the games come to life. As if that wasnt enough, the mens finals in basketball between the US and USSR is detailed

    There was a lot more to the Munich games besides terrorism. This book succeeds in telling us.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Hitler I Knew: Memoirs of the Third Reich's Press Chief

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Otto Dietrich
    • Narrated By Eric Brooks
    Overall
    (8)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (8)

    When Otto Dietrich was invited in 1933 to become Adolf Hitler's press chief, he accepted with the simple uncritical conviction that Adolf Hitler was a great man, dedicated to promoting peace and welfare for the German people. At the end of the war, imprisoned and disillusioned, Otto Dietrich sat down to write what he had seen and heard in 12 years of the closest association with Hitler, requesting that it be published after his death.

    Alan says: "A hard review to write"
    "A hard review to write"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a book written by Otto Dietrich. Dietrich was Press Chief for the Nazi party and Adolph Hitler beginning in 1931.In addition, he joined the SS and rose to the rank of SS-Obergruppenführer ( roughly equivalent to 2-star major general.

    Make no mistake about it, Dietrich was a hard core Nazi.
    Dietrich had a familiar relationship with Hitler but never pierced his inner circle. Because of this lack of intimacy, most of what is in this book is common knowledge. In addition, in areas where he could have imparted a lot of information ( ex. Geli Raubau and Eva Braun ) hardly any information is given.

    The book however has its strong points. The author describes Joseph Goebbels and Joachim von Ribbentrop ( Dietrich's superiors ) in great detail. The author obviously disliked both men intensely. In addition, Martin Bormann and Rudolph Hess get alot of attention.

    After listening to this book, I feel that Otto Dietrichs buyers remorse when it comes to Hitler is not genuine. One did not become an SS-Obergruppenführer without being an ardent nazi inside and out.

    Despite this, if you had an extra credit lying around, you could use it here. If you get used to the narrators delivery style, the book is an easy listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Robert E. Lee and His High Command

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By The Great Courses, Gary W. Gallagher
    • Narrated By Professor Gary W. Gallagher
    Overall
    (26)
    Performance
    (22)
    Story
    (23)

    Few events have captivated students of American history like the Civil War. Its most striking personalities seem somehow outsized, magnified beyond the ability of books or even legend to contain them. And few among those personalities have ever held our attention like General Robert Edward Lee.With his Army of Northern Virginia, Lee came to embody the cause of the Confederacy itself

    Brad says: "Excellent Review of Lee's High Command"
    "Great lecture series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is only the third audiobook Ive given 5 / 5 / 5 stars to

    A tremendous lecture series presented by Prof. Gallagher. The professor does such a great job presenting this course to us that no maps are necessary as you need for so many other military works. Each general is presented with both his strengths and faults not only individually but how each general inter reacted with each other and how this affected the total picture

    On a personal note Id have liked to hear about Nathen Bedford Forrest

    Buy this series

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Origins of World War II: 3rd Edition

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Keith Eubank
    • Narrated By Joe Geoffrey
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    More than 60 years have passed since the outbreak of the most catastrophic conflict the world has known: 30 million people dead and unbelievable devastation. In the third edition of this popular volume, Keith Eubank seeks answers to the questions that have plagued us: Why, after the ghastly ordeal of World War I did Western powers undervalue the threat from Hitler? Why was there so much reluctance on the part of Britain and France to confront Germany? Why had Germany been permitted to rearm and to occupy independent nations without a struggle? What was the policy of appeasement?

    David F. Zarth says: "Waste of time"
    "A good book but ....."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    .... the narrator ruins the listen by his constant mispronunciation of many German names and cities. How anyone could pronounce the name KEITEL as Kah-tall is beyond me.

    The author disagrees with most historians on the point of whether or not England or France could have stopped Hitler prior to 1939. The author believes that England and France were not of the mindset to successfully challenge Hitler in any way militarily. While most historians believe this to be true, the author takes it a step further and believes that Germany would have been victorious in any pre-1939 engagement. Even though the conclusions the author reaches are not universally accepted, the book is still a good listen and is recommended. If only a better narrator had been employed .....

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Nuremberg Trial

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Ann Tusa, John Tusa
    • Narrated By Ralph Cosham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (80)
    Performance
    (73)
    Story
    (73)

    Here is a gripping account of the major postwar trial of the Nazi hierarchy in World War II. The Nuremberg Trial brilliantly recreates the trial proceedings and offers a reasoned, often profound examination of the processes that created international law. From the whimpering of Kaltenbrunner and Ribbentrop on the stand to the icy coolness of Goering, each participant is vividly drawn.

    Sandy says: "A really interesting listen"
    "Hot and Cold."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Im going to keep this review kind of short because the main problem with this book is that for half of the book, it is totally boring. The overall history of the trial is presented with way too much useless information. Just when the book actually gets interesting and you feel the story taking on speed, the author feels compelled to ruin, it. Then it gets going again and again it hits a brick wall.

    There is alot of information presented here and the history buff, if he can plow through it, might enjoy this book more then I did.

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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