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David

Hellicopter Man

United States | Member Since 2012

30
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 31 reviews
  • 36 ratings
  • 264 titles in library
  • 39 purchased in 2015
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  • How the West Won: The Neglected Story of the Triumph of Modernity

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Rodney Stark
    • Narrated By Kevin Foley
    Overall
    (118)
    Performance
    (107)
    Story
    (107)

    Modernity developed only in the West - in Europe and North America. Nowhere else did science and democracy arise; nowhere else was slavery outlawed. Only Westerners invented chimneys, musical scores, telescopes, eyeglasses, pianos, electric lights, aspirin, and soap. The question is, why? Unfortunately, that question has become so politically incorrect that most scholars avoid it. But acclaimed author Rodney Stark provides the answers in this sweeping new look at Western civilization.

    Philip Daniels says: "Another point of view."
    "Like A Refreshing Vodka and Tonic"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does How the West Won rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    In the "Must Read" List


    What other book might you compare How the West Won to and why?

    The West And The RestHow The English Speaking Poeples Invented FreedomGuns Germs and Steel


    Which character – as performed by Kevin Foley – was your favorite?

    N/A


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, and pretty much did.


    Any additional comments?

    All sorts of things I should have known, and some things I suspected. For instance, I have always been curious how ancient Rome fed all those legions and construction workers. And the population of Rome dropped about 90% in a very short period of time at the end. Now I might know why. Specifically, the state apparatus that confiscated all that needed food was enfebled and the residents had to go out and grow their own food. Or something. Anyway, at least in Gaul, the country people became better fed.

    A LOT better fed. Skeletal autopsies and isotopic studies show this. Apparently the country people got bigger and several inches taller. The glory of rome was built on near starvation rations left over for those who provided the food. So now we might more appreciate the various rebellions.What we lost during 'the dark ages' was a vast aristocracy with leasure time to contemplate Plato and write histories of Roman Glory.

    7 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • The Sex Lives of Cannibals: Adrift in the Equatorial Pacific

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By J. Maarten Troost
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (615)
    Performance
    (298)
    Story
    (297)

    At age 26, Maarten Troost decided to pack up his flip-flops and move to a remote South Pacific island. The idea of dropping everything and moving to the ends of the earth was irresistibly romantic. But he should have known better.

    Elizabeth says: "HILARIOUS"
    "The second half makes up for the first."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Even the first half was not all THAT bad ;). And since my math is wanting it might have only been the first third.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Iron Men and Saints

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 51 mins)
    • By Harold Lamb
    • Narrated By Charlton Griffin
    Overall
    (71)
    Performance
    (60)
    Story
    (62)

    The first crusade of 1096 unleashed a wave of impassioned, personally felt, deeply pious Christian fury that was expressed in a mass movement centered in France and spreading to other European kingdoms, including Flanders, German speaking principalities, and Italy. Master historian Harold Lamb tells the incredible story of how Pope Urban II fanned the sparks of Christian anger into a mighty conflagration of righteous indignation with his speech of 1095 in Clermont. The resulting armed clashes produced some of the most amazing stories you will ever hear.

    E. Idenmill says: "Dated but with a listen"
    "Any Interesting Approach"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Although it does not ciome across as scholarly it had a sense of first hand observation that I liked. And certanly no sugar coating.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Yuval Noah Harari
    • Narrated By Derek Perkins
    Overall
    (577)
    Performance
    (491)
    Story
    (486)

    One hundred thousand years ago, at least six human species inhabited the Earth. Today there is just one. Us. Homo sapiens. How did our species succeed in the battle for dominance? Why did our foraging ancestors come together to create cities and kingdoms? How did we come to believe in gods, nations, and human rights; to trust money, books, and laws; and to be enslaved by bureaucracy, timetables, and consumerism?

    Gary says: "Masterpiece! Our myths make us who we are"
    "The Good The Bad And The Chicken Coupe"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is one history book suitable for all levels of interest. For instance, I have never read better summaries of world religions, philosophies and ideologies in such short, concise, clever and often humorous paragraphs. Here is a three word title on scientific revolution chapter: "The Discovery Of Ignorance."

    The author is way to soft regarding cruelty on chickens and cows. Tells us these and other domestic animals are prevented from exercising their evolutionary natures. What? They are DOMESTICATED. As a kid I took care of the cow and chickens. The cow clearly was Buddhist and did not give a damn about anything and living peefect nirvana. The chickens? All they wanted was a roost, a place to lay eggs and defecate.

    Any cruelty in the coupe was me breathing in all the dried chicken crap dust they kicked up In hurricanes. And don't get me started on cow defecation while filling the milk bucket.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Oldest Enigma of Humanity

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Bertrand David, Jean-Jacques Lefrere
    • Narrated By Jason Culp
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (14)

    Thirty thousand years ago our prehistoric ancestors painted perfect images of animals on walls of tortuous caves, most often without any light. How was this possible? Scholars and archaeologists have for centuries pored over these works of art, speculating and hoping to come away with the key to the mystery. David and Lefrre give us a new understanding of an art lost in time, revealing what had until recently remained unexplainable - the oldest enigma in humanity has been solved.

    David says: "Finally a plausible explanation"
    "Finally a plausible explanation"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Oldest Enigma of Humanity?

    The cave paintings are stunning so where are the "apprentice" student sketches? The talent in these many many works seem to have been done by masters who left no developmental works. This is the first plausible explanation.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • From Babel to Dragomans: Interpreting the Middle East

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Bernard Lewis
    • Narrated By William Neenan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5)
    Performance
    (5)
    Story
    (5)

    Bernard Lewis is recognized around the globe as one of the leading authorities on Islam. Hailed as "the world's foremost Islamic scholar" (Wall Street Journal), as "a towering figure among experts on the culture and religion of the Muslim world" (Baltimore Sun), and as "the doyen of Middle Eastern studies" (New York Times), Lewis is nothing less than a national treasure, a trusted voice that politicians, journalists, historians, and the general public have all turned to for insight into the Middle East.

    David says: "Fifty Years Of Good Stuff"
    "Fifty Years Of Good Stuff"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I recommend this book to anyone with an interest in the ME affairs.

    The author is almost 100 years old and first visited ME prior to WWII. Accordingly, the material accumulated in this book spans an unbroken body of work of a duration one seldom sees.

    The casual reader, however, needs to know many of the topic chapters (and there are a lot of them) might be a bit tedious if you do not know much about the subject. However, if you are the kind of person who knows the phrase Four Rightly Guided Caliphs you may be up to speed well enough. The matterial is not very difficult, however, and the reader kept my attention.

    I plan to listen to much of it again and might even buy the Kindle version. This is because not all of the readings include the original date and they span well over 50 years. A tablet PC would be good as well in order to look up some maps, photos of places and the like.

    Finally, I recommend YouTube University! I made that term up, but Richard Bulliet has some of the best lectures on the subject I have heard. These are full length lectures, often more then an hour long. I listened to them prior to listening to this book and it was fun to have a heads up!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Heart of Darkness

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Joseph Conrad
    • Narrated By David Rintoul
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (17)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (16)

    Joseph Conrad's searing tale of one of the strangest and most memorable journeys ever taken. Quite simply the scariest book ever written, this is a searing tale of one of the strangest and most memorable journeys ever undertaken - to the heart of a geographical and psychological wilderness from which no-one returns unscarred. For this isn't simply a journey up an uncharted river into a geographical wilderness; rather, it's a trip deep into our collective subconscious.

    David J. Langrock says: "Amazing prose, breathtaking story."
    "Actually Non-Fiction"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Joseph Conrad and/or David Rintoul?

    Hmmm


    Would you recommend Heart of Darkness to your friends? Why or why not?

    No. It seemed obtuse to me, jumpy in terms of visualizing scenes and following the time line. In addition, narrative is stylized and from another era that may not have translated well into the spoken word.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    I did not like the over wrought style. That style may be appropriate to the stylized written narrative but I did not like that style either.


    Any additional comments?

    This is almost non-fiction. Conrad spent time in Congo and this representation apparently includes real people and a real boat (see King Leopolds Ghost - but read my review first) and is actually understated.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • King Leopold's Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Adam Hochschild
    • Narrated By Geoffrey Howard
    Overall
    (338)
    Performance
    (255)
    Story
    (256)

    In the late 1890s, Edmund Dene Morel, a young British shipping company agent, noticed something strange about the cargoes of his company's ships as they arrived from and departed for the Congo. Incoming ships were crammed with valuable ivory and rubber. Outbound ships carried little more than soldiers and firearms. Correctly concluding that only slave labor could account for these cargoes, Morel almost singlehandedly made this slave-labor regime the premier human rights story in the world.

    Edith says: "Fascinating"
    "Relentless in All Respects"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up King Leopold's Ghost in three words, what would they be?

    This needs either an executive summary or "hatchet" edit. Pun intended.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of King Leopold's Ghost?

    The author's relentless fury.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    There are no good scenes to be favorable with. The book itself demonstrates first hand, up close and personal "Heart of Darkness".

    Be Forewarned


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I really tried, with time-outs. Just could not do it. Eventually started large scale skipping at the end.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Caesar and Christ: The Story of Civilization, Volume 3

    • UNABRIDGED (36 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Will Durant
    • Narrated By Grover Gardner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (121)
    Performance
    (103)
    Story
    (105)

    The third volume of Will Durant's Pulitzer Prize-winning series, Caesar and Christ chronicles the history of Roman civilization and of Christianity from their beginnings to A.D. 325.

    Mike From Mesa says: "Superb."
    "Of the first four this third is Master Piece"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Caesar and Christ the most enjoyable?

    Comprehensive beyond title. Crafted by classical rehtoric and better heard spoken then read.


    What other book might you compare Caesar and Christ to and why?

    A World Undone (WW1) is similar in quality.


    What does Grover Gardner bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Perfect to hear the authors clearly rhetorical style read outloud.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes. And have listened much of it over again. Pausing for instance to google one thing or another. Lots of bookmarks. Start with 'model ancient rome'. Its endless.


    Any additional comments?

    Just buy it and set up your browser with a Rome category. I recommed both opera mini and opera beta.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Industrial Revolution

    • ORIGINAL (18 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Patrick N. Allitt
    Overall
    (155)
    Performance
    (132)
    Story
    (131)

    From electric lights to automobiles to the appliances that make our lives easier at work and at home, we owe so much of our world to the Industrial Revolution. In this course, The Great Courses partners with the Smithsonian - one of the world's most storied and exceptional educational institutions - to examine the extraordinary events of this period and uncover the far-reaching impact of this incredible revolution.

    Quaker says: "Incredibly entertaining, balanced, comprehensive"
    "The Reason Why Then And Why There"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Industrial Revolution?

    The second most important human development since agriculture ten thousand years ago.


    What other book might you compare The Industrial Revolution to and why?

    Will Durant Story of Civilization 3 Ceasar to Christ. Big story and well presented in all ways.


    What does Professor Patrick N. Allitt bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Personal British Background.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    One of the most important periods in all human history and includes American symbiosis.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Before 1776: Life in the American Colonies

    • ORIGINAL (18 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By The Great Courses, Robert Allison
    • Narrated By Professor Robert J. Allison
    Overall
    (100)
    Performance
    (86)
    Story
    (87)

    The history of colonial America is a story of extraordinary scope, with Europeans, Africans, and the native peoples of North America interacting in a drama of settlement and conflict that lasted nearly three centuries. Go back in time and relive this epic story in 36 spellbinding lectures. While concentrating on British North America, Professor Allison also covers developments in the colonial outposts of Spain, France, the Netherlands, and the all-important British possessions in the West Indies, which were the source of the most lucrative crop in the New World - sugar - and the reason for the enormous growth in the slave trade.

    James R. Ellis says: "New Perspectives and great insights"
    "First Rate and Plenty Of It + free read see below"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Thirty six chapters and could do with 36 more. I even searched for orher presentations by Allison but found none.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Before 1776: Life in the American Colonies?

    The captivity narratives.

    Even discovered a free audio book "Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson" at librivox which was a treat. Done by volunteers. Not professional reading but well worth the time.


    What about Professor Robert J. Allison’s performance did you like?

    Animated


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

    Captivity narative.


    Any additional comments?

    All told quite a value.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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