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SUNNYSIDE, NY, United States | Member Since 2011

  • 4 reviews
  • 7 ratings
  • 93 titles in library
  • 3 purchased in 2015

  • My Man Jeeves

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By P.G. Wodehouse
    • Narrated By Martin Jarvis

    A new Jeeves audiobook is cause for celebration, especially when the stories are not available in print. This hilarious installment of the inimitable manservant Jeeves and his twit of an employer, Bertie Wooster, includes the earliest stories written by the master of the pen, prank, and pun. The stories are woven together with original material performed by Martin Jarvis.

    Tad Davis says: "Martin Jarvis is perfect"
    "Reggie is no Bertie"
    Any additional comments?

    The Jeeves stories were, as always, terrific. The Reginald Pepper stores, which form half the collection, are not as good. In a book titled My Man Jeeves, I was expecting, well, Jeeves.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Brief History of Life in Victorian Britain

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Michael Paterson
    • Narrated By Mark Meadows
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The Victorian era has dominated the popular imagination like no other period, but these myths and stories also give a very distorted view of the 19th century. The early Victorians were much stranger than we usually imagine, and their world would have felt very different from our own. It was only during the long reign of the Queen that a modern society emerged in unexpected ways.

    Amazon Customer says: "Brief, But Insightful"
    "Colonel Blimp rides again!!"

    The first 2/3 of this book is very enjoyable. It explores the customs and etiquette of Victorian Britain, detailing how life changed over the 60 years of the Queen's reign. It is obvious that the author is only interested in the lives of the upper classes, but that is understandable in that the literate, wealthy segment of a population often leaves more documentation of their lives. The section on how the bicycle and the underground changed life is very interesting. However, when the book discusses Britain's colonial legacy, it becomes rather hard to take. Patterson states that even though it is currently 'unfashionable' to defend colonialism, he feels that Britain benefited the countries it occupied by bringing them roads and education, culture and Christianity. He admits that the jobs for which education would prepare the native population would probably not be available to them anyway; he does not seem to realize that an alien culture and religion might not have been welcome 'gifts'. Neither does he address the steady stream of archaeological and cultural treasures systemically looted and sent back to England. This defense of imperialism is an odd sort of thesis for a 21st Century author, considering that the legacy of British rule has been ongoing strife in many of the countries it formerly controlled. The Irish Famine is dismissed in a sentence or two - by saying that the story that Queen Victoria only gave five pounds to famine relief is untrue. he does not say what, if anything, she and her government actually did. I would have enjoyed this book more had the author stuck to life in England, and left politics alone.

    Mark Meadows does an excellent job narrating this book - his upper class pronunciation and mellow voice suits the material very well.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • A Failed Empire: The Soviet Union in the Cold War from Stalin to Gorbachev

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Vladimir Zubok
    • Narrated By Nick Sullivan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Western interpretations of the Cold War--both realist and neoconservative--have erred by exaggerating either the Kremlin's pragmatism or its aggressiveness, argues Vladislav Zubok. Explaining the interests, aspirations, illusions, fears, and misperceptions of the Kremlin leaders and Soviet elites, Zubok offers a Soviet perspective on the greatest standoff of the 20th century.

    Augustus T. White says: "Focus on the Top Leadership"
    "A different perspective on the Cold War"
    Would you try another book from Vladimir Zubok and/or Nick Sullivan?

    Yes to both

    Any additional comments?

    A Failed Empire was interesting in that most Americans are familiar with the Western perspective on the important events of the Cold War - the Berlin Wall, Cuban missile crisis, etc. This book uses Russian sources to reveal the reasons behind some seemingly contradictory policies pursued by the USSR, and highlighted the unwillingness of some apparently belligerent Soviet leaders to risk actual war. The book is long and detailed, but worth the trouble.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Erik Larson
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America’s first ambassador to Hitler’s Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history. A mild-mannered professor from Chicago, Dodd brings along his wife, son, and flamboyant daughter, Martha. At first Martha is entranced by the parties and pomp, and the handsome young men of the Third Reich with their infectious enthusiasm for restoring Germany to a position of world prominence. Enamored of the “New Germany,” she has one affair after another....

    Chris says: "Frightening, Powerful, Deeply Thought-provoking."
    "A voice in the wilderness of 1930's berlin"
    Would you consider the audio edition of In the Garden of Beasts to be better than the print version?

    haven't encountered the print edition

    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Rudolf Diels. Although he only figured in the book in a minor way, this portrait of a paradoxically moral man in the Nazi regime was very intriguing.

    What about Stephen Hoye’s performance did you like?

    His voice is varied in tone without becoming distracting or overly dramatic

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

    Dodd responding so bluntly to Pappen's question at the Little Press Club dinner, but then bravely and compassionately visiting him when he was placed under house arrest and threatened with death.

    Any additional comments?

    Mr. Larsen has a gift for illuminating historical events by focusing on the small details of peoples lives. Although the lengthy accounts of Ambassador Dodd's annoying daughter possibly take up too much of the book, her various relationships with the notables of pre-war Germany depict these individuals in a unique way. Also, the narrative shows how her initial admiration of the Nazi 'revolution

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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