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CHESTER

Chet Yarbrough, an audio book addict, exercises two cocker spaniels twice a day with an Ipod in his pocket and earbuds in his ears. Hope these few reviews seduce the public into a similar obsession but walk safely and be aware of the unaware.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, United States | Member Since 2007

ratings
588
REVIEWS
121
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
28

  • The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By George Packer
    • Narrated By Robert Fass
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (274)
    Performance
    (232)
    Story
    (239)

    In The Unwinding, George Packer, author of The Assassins’ Gate: America in Iraq, tells the story of the United States over the past three decades in an utterly original way, with his characteristically sharp eye for detail and gift for weaving together complex narratives. The Unwinding portrays a superpower in danger of coming apart at the seams, its elites no longer elite, its institutions no longer working, its ordinary people left to improvise their own schemes for success and salvation.

    Janet Pittman Henley says: "Can't understand the low ratings!"
    "AMERICAN ANGER, FEAR, AND FRUSTRATION"
    Overall
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    George Packer drives a stake into America’s heart in “The Unwinding”. American anger, fear, and frustration build in the minds of all—whether Republican, Democrat, Tea Partyer, or Libertarian.

    Whether an accolade of private enterprise or government, Packer offers stories of Americans that show American’ belief makes no difference because America is no longer a land of opportunity but a land of greed; not of the free but of the shackled—a risk noted by Thomas Hobbes in the “Leviathan”. The shackles come from society’s failure to protect individuals from the tyranny of special interests. One side argues that it is because of ineffective government–the other side argues it is because of too much government.

    The unwinding of the financial crises reflected in the dot-com bubble of 2000-2001 and the 2007-08 sub-prime mortgage crises unfolds in stories told by Packer in this disturbing narrative. America has become a nation of extremes with each extreme using whatever means necessary to deny success of either “tea party”, “libertarian” or “occupy wall street” followers. The consequence is a “do-nothing” congress, an ineffectual President, and a politicized Supreme Court. One is left with fear, anger, and frustration after completing Packer’s diatribe. The only consolation is in history.

    America has been in crises before–in 1776, 1789, 1865, 1929, 1941, 1951, 1967-68, 2001. Americans survived before; Americans will survive again but how angry Americans are, and how frustrating it is to watch America muddle along while Congress fails to act.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Classical Mythology

    • ORIGINAL (12 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Elizabeth Vandiver
    Overall
    (200)
    Performance
    (180)
    Story
    (178)

    These 24 lectures are a vibrant introduction to the primary characters and most important stories of classical Greek and Roman mythology. Among those you'll investigate are the accounts of the creation of the world in Hesiod's Theogony and Ovid's Metamorphoses; the gods Zeus, Apollo, Demeter, Persephone, Hermes, Dionysos, and Aphrodite; the Greek heroes, Theseus and Heracles (Hercules in the Roman version); and the most famous of all classical myths, the Trojan War.

    Matt says: "Very Informative and Entertaining"
    "CLASSICAL MYTHOLOGY"
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    Elizabeth Vandiver travels to the past to elucidate the present in 24 lectures about Greek and Roman mythology. Professor Vandiver lectures those who wish to know something new about myths and legends but uncovers no fundamental surprise. Ancient Greek and Roman cultures infer it is a man’s world, a stage set for a future that repeats the same mistake; i.e. women as an afterthought, an extension of man to be treated as property and spoils of war.

    Vandiver acknowledges that some myths may offer insight to the subconscious mind but when taken out of the context of the myth’s time, meaning changes; like a Tragicomic Mask. In its time a myth may be comic; in the future it may be tragic. Vandiver infers that Freud, Jung, Campbell and fellow interpreters of ancient beliefs need to be skeptical about the meaning of myths and legends past.

    Vandiver’s lectures reveal a few of gods’ surprising details but her major contribution is in tempering wild conclusions about the meaning of Greek’ and Roman’ myths in modern times. Mythology is like the American Constitution, a living record modified by time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Yellow Birds: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By Kevin Powers
    • Narrated By Holter Graham
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (205)
    Performance
    (176)
    Story
    (175)

    "The war tried to kill us in the spring," begins this breathtaking account of friendship and loss. In Al Tafar, Iraq, 21-year-old Private Bartle and 18-year-old Private Murphy cling to life as their platoon launches a bloody battle for the city. In the endless days that follow, the two young soldiers do everything to protect each other from the forces that press in on every side: the insurgents, physical fatigue, and the mental stress that comes from constant danger. Bound together since basic training when their tough-as-nails sergeant ordered Bartle to watch over Murphy, the two have been dropped into a war neither is prepared for.

    Buzz says: "Sad and Unforgettable"
    "YELLOW BIRDS"
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    Kevin Powers is a thirty-something, first-book’ author that explains what it is like to be a soldier in combat. Powers recreates war experience in Iraq and shows how combat affects a soldier’s life. “The Yellow Birds”’title comes from a boot-camp’ marching song but is about more than a walking cadence mnemonic; i.e. yellow symbolizes cowardice—its symptoms of fear, self-loathing, and death. Powers’ book-title presages yellowness in his story of war.

    “The Yellow Birds” tells the story of how combat affects soldiers; i.e. it explains how heroes can become villains, how cowards can become heroes, and how every soldier is scarred by the experience of battle. War is a mess of contradictions that confuse the mind, torture the truth, and leave soldiers, parents, children, and friends alone, often broken-spirited, and sometimes broken-hearted.

    As Bertrand Russell said, “War does not determine who is right—only who is left.”

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Management Challenges for the 21st Century

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 19 mins)
    • By Peter F. Drucker
    • Narrated By Mark Blum
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (56)
    Performance
    (22)
    Story
    (22)

    In this major new work, Peter F. Drucker discusses how the new paradigms of management will change our basic assumptions about the practices and principles of management. Drucker explains "The New Information Revolution", discussing the information an executive needs and the information an executive owes.

    Roger Smith says: "Drucker for the Next Century"
    "BUSINESS MANAGEMENT"
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    Peter F. Drucker is a storied business management consultant (most famously as a consultant for General Motors) that taught business administration and sociology at Claremont University in California. He died at the age of 95 in 2005.

    Drucker’s management insight reverses the power structure of profit and non-profit enterprises; i.e. management down changes to management up with organization leaders determining direction but employees (knowledge workers) controlling productivity and effectiveness.

    Education is a critical component of Drucker’s philosophy of management. Drucker’s approach contradicts the present direction of educational reform that focuses on teacher accountability for educating students in the fundamentals of reading, writing, and arithmetic. Drucker promotes a Montessori like approach to education. Drucker believes in structuring education based on student interest rather than set curriculum. He lauds the growth of community colleges that focus on what students want to learn rather than what others think they should learn.

    Peter Drucker has been an insightful sociologist and guru of American free enterprise in the twentieth century. Managers that choose to follow Drucker’s recommendations may improve their success by following his advice in the 21st century. If Drucker is correct, not only will productivity improve, Monday morning arrival at work will be interesting and fulfilling; rather than punishing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Zeitoun

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 24 mins)
    • By Dave Eggers
    • Narrated By Firdous Bamji
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (766)
    Performance
    (358)
    Story
    (363)

    When HurricaneKatrina struck New Orleans, Abdulrahman Zeitoun - a prosperous Syrian-American and father of four - chose to stay through the storm to protect his house and contracting business. In the eerie days after the storm, he traveled the flooded streets in a secondhand canoe, passing on supplies and rescuing those he could. A week later, on September 6, 2005, Zeitoun abruptly disappeared.

    Darwin8u says: "Something bold, ebullient, yet quiet"
    "ZEITOUN"
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    “Zeitoun” is a return to Katrina. It reminds one of the horror, the destruction, and the ineptitude of government. It is also a story about injustice and prejudice in America. Dave Eggers tells a story that speaks to America’s conscience—its idealism, and its reality.

    Zeitoun’s life in America had been a fulfillment of the American Dream but the dream became a nightmare because of Katrina and America’s bureaucratic response to disaster. Prejudice rises as control of nature declines. Because Zeitoun is unknown to his captors, the color of his skin became more important than who he is or what he does. He became “other” rather than “one of us”. He was no longer an American to his captors; i.e. he was a “Syrian terrorist”, a “Muslim cultist”, an “Other”.

    Listening to a Zeitoun’ interview in August of 2010, one believes Zeitoun still believes in the American Dream. However, in August of 2012, Zeitoun is arrested for battery and accused of contracting to have his now ex-wife, Kathy, murdered. One wonders if the trauma of the Katrina disaster is to blame for the destruction of his marriage and his spiral into spousal abuse. Tragedy seems to be following Zeitoun like Katrina’s hurricane with rising water that may still consume him.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By James W. Loewen
    • Narrated By Brian Keeler
    Overall
    (818)
    Performance
    (371)
    Story
    (382)

    This national best seller is an entertaining, informative, and sometimes shocking expose of the way history is taught to American students. Lies My Teacher Told Me won the American Book Award and the Oliver Cromwell Cox Award for Distinguished Anti-Racist Scholarship.

    Timothy says: "Of course he has an agenda. He wrote a book!"
    "LIARS AND DAMN LIARS"
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    “Lies My Teacher Told Me” is a terrible title for this book. After a first chapter, there is a great temptation to put it aside because it is patronizing. James W. Loewen demeans himself as well as his audience by inferring that conscientious history-book’ publishers and teachers are liars.

    Education in history provides a framework for living life; it does not predict or tell the truth of life. The truth of life is living it. There are winners and losers. History is written by the winners. Historians like Loewen can help winners understand why they won and what helped them win but all historian’s truth is, at best, probabilistically true.

    Understanding leads to wisdom and wisdom may lead to a better future with more winners and fewer losers but history is not destiny. History is only one of many tools in humankind’s search for wisdom.

    Once one gets over the feeling of manipulation by Loewen’s history of America, a great deal of what he writes is interesting and enlightening. Ignore the title; get the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Judgment of Paris: The Revolutionary Decade that Gave the World Impressionism

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Ross King
    • Narrated By Tristan Layton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (171)
    Performance
    (66)
    Story
    (65)

    While the Civil War raged in America, another very different revolution was beginning to take shape across the Atlantic, in the studios of Paris. The artists who would make Impressionism the most popular art form in history were showing their first paintings amid scorn and derision from the French artistic establishment. Indeed, no artistic movement has ever been, at its inception, quite so controversial.

    Stephen says: "A marvelous book"
    "TRANSITION, WAR, AND REBELLION"
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    The Judgment of Paris offers a story of rebellion and art's transition from classic to impressionistic realism. Art's transition takes place in the context of war. Though Ross King’s book is largely about an art movement, it is also about France’s transition from monarchy to republic. King shows that art and history are judged by Paris’ events.

    King cleverly melds the transition of art with transition in politics in "The Judgment of Paris". Change is shown to be a hard; with unpredictable consequence. Consequence of change is measured by time and recorded history. Change of minds and alliances inch society closer to something different; both in art and politics. History records the value of the difference.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Story of Philosophy: The Lives and Opinions of the Greater Philosophers

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Will Durant
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (575)
    Performance
    (430)
    Story
    (423)

    Durant lucidly describes the philosophical systems of such world-famous “monarchs of the mind” as Plato, Aristotle, Francis Bacon, Spinoza, Kant, Voltaire, and Nietzsche. Along with their ideas, he offers their flesh-and-blood biographies, placing their thoughts within their own time and place and elucidating their influence on our modern intellectual heritage. This book is packed with wisdom and wit.

    Arthur says: "Beginners start here! This is the one you want!"
    "THIS I BELIEVE"
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    Edward R. Murrow interviewed several famous people in a 1950s series called This I Believe. One of the participants was Will Durant.

    Durant wrote his own “THIS I BELIEVE ESSAY” after having spent fifty years of his life researching and writing an eleven volume work titled “The History of Civilization”. His wife, Arieal Durant, a scholar in her own right, also labored those fifty years on this and other historical works. Durant writes, in his “THIS I BELIEVE ESSAY”,: “I find in the Universe so many forms of order, organization, system, law and adjustment of means to ends, that I believe in a cosmic intelligence and I conceive God as the life, mind, order and law of the world. I suspect that when I die I shall be dead. I would look upon endless existence as a curse as did the Flying Dutchman and the Wandering Jew. Death is life’s greatest invention; perpetually replacing the worn with the new.”

    Durant is not irrefutably or completely revealing the world of philosophy. He is opening a door to the importance of philosophy. He shows that philosophy addresses the fundamental questions of human life.

    In Durant’s updated (1950s) version of, “The Mansions of Philosophy”, he decries the paucity of philosophical interpretation of science and the failure of late 20th century philosophers to synthesize current scientific discoveries. He infers humanity is losing its way because scientific discoveries have little context and no direction.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Modern Scholar: Bard of the Middle Ages: The Works of Geoffrey Chaucer

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Michael Drout
    Overall
    (77)
    Performance
    (52)
    Story
    (50)

    Through his writing, Chaucer's wit, charm, and eloquence give us a deeper understanding of not only the time in which he lived, but of how human emotion, frailty, and fortitude are the base elements of human existence. Despite social upheaval and the changing fortunes of his patrons and peers, Chaucer remained a favored subject during three distinct and contrasting reigns. His experiences provided Chaucer an appreciation for his good (and bad) fortune - and that of others - made evident in his writing.

    Margaret says: "Drout does it again!"
    "MASTER OF AMBIGUITY"
    Overall
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    Geoffrey Chaucer is a master of ambiguity. Michael Drout, in the Modern Scholar series, offers an informative and laudatory appreciation of Chaucer as the Bard of the Middle Ages. Drout notes that Chaucer’s view of life is best revealed in The Canterbury Tales.

    Drout offers high praise for Chaucer, suggesting The Canterbury Tales seeds centuries of fictional narratives; in part because of Chaucer’s prescient understanding of human nature but also because of life’s ambiguous truths. Drout considers Chaucer equal to William Shakespeare, the greatest poet and playwright of all time.

    Though Drout does not suggest Chaucer endorses cultural’ transgressions, it appears Chaucer is ambiguous about his character’s opinions. Drout suggests Chaucer may have been repentant in The Parson’s Tale (the last of The Canterbury Tales that endorses religion of Chaucer’s era) because he is nearing the end of his life. In any case, it is clear that Chaucer is ahead of his time; earned his place in West Minster Abbey (the first poet to be buried there), and deserves his reputation as the Father of English Literature.

    Drout gives his audience an excellent summary of Chaucer’s contribution to literature in these lectures; however, Chaucer is best represented by his own writing. Every listener/reader reaches their own opinion after experiencing Chaucer’s work; that is what makes The Canterbury Tales a classic.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Modern Scholar: Dante and His Divine Comedy: The Modern Scholar

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Timothy B. Shutt
    Overall
    (67)
    Performance
    (46)
    Story
    (46)

    Kenyon College professor Dr. Timothy B. Shutt examines Dante's greatest work, The Divine Comedy, both in terms of its autobiographical elements and its allegorical meaning for the human race.

    amar says: "Amazing Analysis"
    "DANTE'S JOURNEY"
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    Occasionally, Audible.com offers a discounted price on academic lectures about various literary, historical, and scientific events. After reading “The Divine Comedy” (translated by Charles Norton) Professor Shutt’s lectures are a valuable guide to a better understanding of Dante’s masterpiece.

    The origin of the story seems simple but its meaning is complex and revelatory. Dante Alighieri is a wealthy aristocrat that represents a major leadership faction in 13th century Italy, the“White Gulphs” which are vying for power with the Ghibelline. Their conflict is over the integrity of the Pope in Rome at the time of relocation of the papal enclave to Avignon, France. The move occurs in 1309 and lasts for 67 years. Pope Boniface VIII sides with the Ghibelline to overthrow the Gulphs and excommunicate Dante. Dante loses his political position, his wealth, and coincidently, the life of the woman he loves, Beatrice. These crushing events in Dante’s life compel him to complete and publish (between 1308 and his death in 1321) what Shutt calls the greatest single piece of literature ever written.

    Purgatory may be a way-station to heaven for a believer that is cleansed of their sin or an eternal home for the non-believer or pagan. Hell is perdition for eternity with no surcease of pain or opportunity for escape. Heaven is a place of eternal rest, peace, and love.

    One is overwhelmed by Dante’s genius whether or not a believer. Shutt gives one a better understanding of who Dante was and why “The Divine Comedy” is a classic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Y-Size Your Business: How Gen Y Employees Can Save You Money and Grow Your Business

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Jason Ryan Dorsey
    • Narrated By Joshua Swanson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (8)
    Story
    (8)

    In today's economy, maximizing the performance of every employee is critical to business survival and growth. Gen Sometimes called Millennial provides an enticing opportunity for employers to increase their short-term profitability and create a long-term competitive advantage. Almost 80 million strong, Gen Y is the fastest growing segment in the US workforce and now comprises the entire 18 to 32 demographic.

    CHESTER says: "MILLENNIAL GERNERATION"
    "MILLENNIAL GERNERATION"
    Overall
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    Jason Ryan Dorsey’s book is an insightful look at the 1977 to 1995 American’ cohort known as the “Y” or “Millennial” generation. Three observations by Dorsey are that Millennials: 1)are not tech savvy but are tech dependent; 2) are participants in the work place that includes, for the first time in history, four different employee generations; and 3) that money is not “Y” generation’s primary motivation for work.

    Matures’, Boomer, and “X” generation’ managers have to learn how to suspend their ideas about what works in an organization and listen to Millennials to mutually develop a view of organizational needs that will continue to improve American’ prosperity and stability. The underlying motivation of all generations is found in human nature. Understanding human nature; meeting generational needs and desires, make the difference between organization’ success and failure.

    Matures and Boomers are on the cusp of retirement. The “X” generation is too small to dominate the American system of organization management and leadership. Millennials are tomorrows leaders and managers. Current organization managers and leaders need to help Millennials grow into their futures. Millennials are the energy of America’s engine of future prosperity.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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