This is a well-written, very entertaining book about how everyday people in China are moving from a rural economy to a modern one. It's amazing to me how Hessler was able to gain the confidence of so many people in order to learn how they really feel about the things going on around them. We learn some of the cultural differences between us and people in China, but I came away thinking that we're not really that different. I give this audiobook four stars and would note to potential buyers that the mediocre overall rating so far owes much to the 1-star rating of the previous reviewer who supposedly liked the book but not the narrator. Hit the sample button to see if you like the narration. I thought the reader was very good at voice characterization, and there are a lot of different voices to perform here - from very young children to older men and women.
I always found Jim Gaffigan funny when I saw him on TV, but this book is not good. Though it's superficially divided into chapters, the book is really an undifferentiated collection of observations about kids and parenting. If I had a dollar for every time he says his wife Jeannie is great, I'd be rich. I'm sure she IS great, though I hold her responsible for typing the manuscript and so being the indirect cause of my wasted monthly Audible credit.
Why this audiobook had five stars from other reviewers is a question I'll never have answered. I hadn't read a Zane Grey book before and thought this might be a useful start. It wasn't. The main characters are barely credible, the dialogue is incredibly stilted, and I wouldn't be at all surprised to find that Grey wrote this while in high school. Or that he got a D on it in his writing class. I'm not giving up on Zane Grey; I'm sure I'll try another story. I'll just have to wait until the memory of this one fades.
What an exceptional book this is. I enoyed it even more than Jerome's "Three Men in a Boat." Like P.G. Wodehouse, Jerome doesn't waste a word or ever seem to use one that isn't perfect. Frederick Davidson is my favorite narrator and is a great choice for this book. There are many funny stories and descriptions in "Three Men on the Bummel," but the author offers many keen observations, too, about the character of the German people. Don't get the idea that this is some sort of sociological treatise, though. It's a great treat to hear.
I agree almost completely with the earlier review here. The pieces are all interesting, very illuminating, and, of course, exceptionally well written. The skips in the audio are mainly in the second half, and while they are irritating, the book is well worth the trouble.
This is a wonderful introduction to P.G. Wodehouse, very well narrated by Frederick Davidson. These are all early Bertie and Jeeves stories and contain some of the great scenes and characters fans have enjoyed for several decades. Wodehouse fans have their favorite narrators; I've enjoyed Martin Jarvis in other productions. Davidson has a great range of voices, and by the end of the book I couldn't imagine anyone giving a better performance.
The Brother Karamazov is one of the truly great classics and Frederick Davidson is a master of narration. I can't for the life of me understand reviewers who say he's pretentious. I've often searched for audiobooks he's read and have never been disappointed.
OK, I'll break the ice here. This book is wonderfully entertaining. I hadn't heard of it before, but narrator Frederick Davidson never seems to pick a dud, so I gave it a listen. The book is 300 years old, if I remember correctly, but the language is fresh and easily understandable. Very funny, even to the modern reader, and not in that high-brow way in which we're supposed to think a 500-year-old Shakespeare comedy is funny. The depiction of a naval press gang at work is worth the price alone. Anyone who enjoyed the Master and Commander series by Patrick O'Brien will love this one, too.
This is an exceptionally good overview of world history read by one of the very best narrators. Reviewers who found the book "Euro-centric" missed the point entirely. Roberts demonstrates that European values have largely been responsible for shaping the world as it is. He doesn't claim that this is all to the good, only that it is a fact. In fact, Roberts seems to have particular admiration for the Mongol Empire and modern China. How anyone construes this as Euro-centric is beyond me. Finally, another reviewer says that Frederick Davidson's narration is "affected and annoying." Perhaps he's never heard an intelligent reader before. Davidson is outstanding here. In fact, I often search for audiobooks according to the ones he's read. "Cry the Beloved Country" is a genius of narration.
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