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Bob

Westland, MI, USA

42
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 4 reviews
  • 21 ratings
  • 317 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • Swann's Way

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Marcel Proust
    • Narrated By Neville Jason
    Overall
    (41)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Swann's Way is the first part of Marcel Proust's monumental seven volume Remembrance of Things Past. Here, Proust's vision, psychological understanding and vivid powers of description combine to create one of the most poetic and magical works in all literature.

    Bob says: "Every moment comes alive"
    "Every moment comes alive"
    Overall

    In the movie THE HOURS everybody feels their lives are trivial, so they jump out of windows, etc. What they really needed was to read (or, even better, listen to, Proust). Proust puts the magic in all the trivial bits that make up our lives. He enobles them; we take dignity from them. Where Buddhism teaches "mindfulness", the awareness of each feature of each moment, and the understanding that it will never be repeated just that way again, the rest of us have Proust.
    Normally I require a plot in any book I read, but with Proust it's different. We live his life in minute detail. So accurately does he dissect every emotion, reveal every motivation and explore every ramification that we become him. We no more need a plot in this book than we need one in our own lives. Instead we take from his example the ability to see in our own trivial moments the glimmer of literature.
    One caveat: It is a pity to abridge this book. There is an unabridged version on the market--expensive, but maybe worth it.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • The Overcoat

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 17 mins)
    • By Nikolai Gogol
    • Narrated By Walter Zimmerman
    Overall
    (68)
    Performance
    (23)
    Story
    (24)

    The writer who did most to establish prose as a force in Russian literary culture was Nikolai Gogol. Gogol's example combined with the pronouncements of the literary critics of the period, established prose as the literary medium of the future. Fyodor Dostoevsky is supposed to have said, referring to himself and his fellow Realists, "We have all come out from under Gogol's "Overcoat".

    Bob says: "Good Story but bad deal"
    "Good Story but bad deal"
    Overall

    If you like short fiction, you might try "Great French and Russian Short Stories, Volume 1", which has THE OVERCOAT and many other stories (over 9 hrs in all) for not much more than you'd pay for this 1 hour story, especially if you're a Premium Listener.

    25 of 29 people found this review helpful
  • Cobb

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Al Stump
    • Narrated By Ian Esmo
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (101)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (39)

    As a boy in the 1890s he went looking for thrills in a rural Georgia that still burned with humiliation from the Civil War. As an old man in the 1960s he dared death, picked fights, refused to take his medicine, and drove off all his friends and admirers. He went to his deathbed alone, clutching a loaded pistol and a bag containing millions of dollars worth of cash and securities. During the years in between, he became, according to Al Stump, "the most shrewd, inventive, lurid, detested, mysterious, and superb of all baseball players." He was Ty Cobb. In Cobb, Stump tells how he was given a fascinating window into the Georgia Peach's life and times when the dying Cobb hired him in 1960 to ghostwrite his autobiography.

    John says: "What a man -- what a book!"
    "Baseball Plus"
    Overall

    This fine biography would obviously be a must-listen for any baseball fan. It's a story packed with incident, controversy and a flavor of baseball's past that is brought to life so fully that it seems as contemporary as Bonds and Pedro.

    My only question is: Would a non-fan be interested? I think quite possibly not, although Ty Cobb was such a head-case that this is clearly not your average sports biography. It is also part history, part psychology and part simply evidence of thorough research.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • VocabuLearn: Polish, Level 1

    • ORIGINAL (3 hrs)
    • By Penton Overseas, Inc.
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (1)
    Story
    (1)

    VocabuLearn is the only audio language learning system designed to teach the way you learn best...concentrating on vocabulary and helpful expressions. This three-hour program contains over 1,500 commonly-used words and expressions - the building blocks of language. Best of all, no textbook is required!

    Bob says: "A Boring Waste of Time"
    "A Boring Waste of Time"
    Overall

    This is not the way people learn a language. It might be a cure for insomnia, but as a language tape, it's next to worthless. Try Pimsleur's, if you don't mind the price.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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