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Jimmy

I am a young-executive with a voracious appetite for great stories. I read and listen constantly, and am very proud of my book collection.

Powell, OH, United States | Member Since 2010

123
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 26 reviews
  • 34 ratings
  • 676 titles in library
  • 60 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
13

  • Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Steve Coll
    • Narrated By Malcolm Hillgartner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (159)
    Performance
    (130)
    Story
    (122)

    Steve Coll investigates the largest and most powerful private corporation in the United States, revealing the true extent of its power. ExxonMobil’s annual revenues are larger than the economic activity in the great majority of countries. In many of the countries where it conducts business, ExxonMobil’s sway over politics and security is greater than that of the United States embassy. In Washington, ExxonMobil spends more money lobbying Congress and the White House than almost any other corporation. Yet despite its outsized influence, it is a black box.

    Zak says: "Please no more accents!"
    "Great Fly on the Wall Perspective of ExxonMobil"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you like to feel like an insider, then this book is for you! I really like Steven Coll's pacing, as he was able to get my attention immediately as he starts with the tragedy surrounding the Exxon Valdez and all the characters involved in this historical event. From there he takes you through the ups and downs of this enormous private enterprise, which I found very insightful.

    The key to the success of this book is the neutral perspective assumed by Coll, as I hate books that try to portray something that is simply big as also automatically bad. I am a businessman, and this book allowed me some keen insights into the thinking and doings of a major employer, energy producer, and endless source of speculation and controversy.

    This book is not going to change your life by any means, but it is a great impartial look behind the curtain of a major global player.

    I would highly recommend this book to any students of business or generally to anyone who likes to glimpse the inside.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Midnight in Siberia: A Train Journey into the Heart of Russia

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By David Greene
    • Narrated By David Greene
    Overall
    (14)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (13)

    Through the stories of fellow travelers, Greene explores the challenges and opportunities facing the new Russia: a nation that boasts open elections and newfound prosperity yet still continues to endure oppression, corruption, and stark inequality. Set against the wintery landscape of Siberia, Greene’s lively travel narrative offers a glimpse into the soul of 20th century Russia: how its people remember their history and look forward to the future.

    Kristen says: "AMAZING!"
    "A Good Ride:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Mr. Greene believes in his work--demonstrating a sincere love and respect for the Russian people in this travel log meets cultural expose.

    This tale of a foreigner in a strange land, a fish out of water, is balanced with sincere insights into the Russian Character from the objective pencil of a reporter.

    This book was a pleasant listen, and I learned a lot about what average Russians struggle, hope, and fear each day. I admire more than ever this complex culture and its epic struggles both past and present.

    You will enjoy this book! It is calm, delightful, and packed with unexpected insights.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A Backpack, a Bear, and Eight Crates of Vodka: A Memoir

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Lev Golinkin
    • Narrated By Daniel Gamburg
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2)
    Performance
    (2)
    Story
    (2)

    Lev Golinkin's memoir is the vivid, darkly comic, and poignant story of a young boy in the confusing and often chilling final decade of the Soviet Union. It's also the story of Lev Golinkin, the American man who finally confronts his buried past by returning to Austria and Eastern Europe to track down the strangers who made his escape possible…. and thank them.

    Jimmy says: "Surprisingly Warm Insights into the Cold War:"
    "Surprisingly Warm Insights into the Cold War:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    You will not go wrong with tender and sincere portrait of a young man struggling to be free. A slice of one family's epic struggle to freedom against the backdrop of the last gasps of the Cold War is both entertaining and deserving of respect and admiration.

    A brilliant book, written with the simplicity and honesty of one not accustomed to excess! This book provides a remarkable history into one Russian family as they flee the oppression of the Soviet System as it is collapsing under Glasnost and Perestroika. At once both sad and uplifting, this book humanized for me the "enemy" from my Cold Warrior childhood in the U.S.A. I used to sit on the curb and wonder if the airplanes flying above were preparing to drop atomic weapons, and yet in truth the enemy was no enemy at all. This book pulls back the curtain on the human condition in the Soviet Union at the end of this "evil empire" and illuminates family and sacrifice are universal human conditions. We are all struggling to be our best selves and shed the things that hold us back!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Ben Horowitz
    • Narrated By Kevin Kenerly
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (491)
    Performance
    (426)
    Story
    (426)

    Ben Horowitz offers essential advice on building and running a startup - practical wisdom for managing the toughest problems business school doesn’t cover, based on his popular ben’s blog. While many people talk about how great it is to start a business, very few are honest about how difficult it is to run one. The Hard Thing About Hard Things is invaluable for veteran entrepreneurs as well as those aspiring to their own new ventures, drawing from Horowitz’s personal and often humbling experiences.

    Mark D. Adams says: "Exciting and insightful view of a "wartime CEO""
    "Based in Reality--Not New Age Hocus Pocus:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Mr. Horowitz masterfully delivers the truth and insight of those long and sleepless nights of trying to think your way through the chaos of a startup.

    This book is not the work of a man gloating of his success and using the lens of hindsight to casually relay a few helpful hints. Rather this is an in depth and insightful guide to successfully navigating the major "fork in the road" types decisions that have the potential to define your outcomes.

    This is money well spent! It does matter if you are a running the world's largest startup right now or just opened a one person carwash this book will help you. It is lively and entertaining, yet full of helpful information all clearly learned by Mr. Horowitz at the height of entrepreneurial battle.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Robert M. Gates
    • Narrated By George Newbern, Robert M. Gates
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1047)
    Performance
    (928)
    Story
    (927)

    From the former secretary of defense, a strikingly candid, vivid account of serving Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. When Robert M. Gates received a call from the White House, he thought he'd long left Washington politics behind: After working for six presidents in both the CIA and the National Security Council, he was happily serving as president of Texas A&M University. But when he was asked to help a nation mired in two wars and to aid the troops doing the fighting, he answered what he felt was the call of duty.

    Jean says: "Yoda speaks"
    "Excellent, Entertaining, & Insightful:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This fly on the wall perspective of the career of Robert M. Gates is excellent in its presentation and important in the honest analysis of the current state of affairs of the United States military. This book is guaranteed to open your eyes to many misconceptions about the office of the Secretary of Defense, Robert M. Gates, and the status of the United States in the world.

    Anyone who doubts the quality and commitment of America's leaders need only read this book. My biggest regret is that Mr. Gates has left the post!

    This is not a political review! This is a review of a man who sincerely loves his county!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Intelligent Entrepreneur

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Bill Murphy
    • Narrated By Fred Berman, L. J. Ganser
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (713)
    Performance
    (430)
    Story
    (428)

    In 1998, three Harvard Business School graduates - two men and one woman - turned down six-figure salaries at big corporations, bet on themselves, and launched their own new companies. By their 10-year reunion, their audacity had paid huge dividends. They'd made many millions of dollars, created hundreds of jobs and left their mark on the world. The Intelligent Entrepreneur tells the compelling and instructive story of how these three young founders did it.

    Mark C Walker says: "Disappointing"
    "Must Read for Young Entrepreneurs:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This very detailed and approachable study of three Harvard School of Business alumni is a must read for anyone interested in what distinguishes those truly successful in entrepreneural startups from the majority for whom success is more alluring. It takes much more than just getting an education at Harvard, but rather a character and mind set that may not necessarily be intuitive. This book will provide concrete and tangible milestones from which to compare your own startup or enterprise difficulties.

    This book is approachable and entertaining. The profiles are of real people with varied backgrounds. The diversity of the personalities and cisrcumstances in this study is what makes this book so important.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • American Turnaround: Reinventing AT&T and GM and the Way We Do Business in the USA

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Edward Whitacre, Leslie Cauley
    • Narrated By Edward Whitacre
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (34)
    Performance
    (31)
    Story
    (30)

    Ed Whitacre is credited with taking over the corporate reins at General Motors (GM) when the automotive manufacturer was on the brink of bankruptcy during 2009 and turned the company around in magnificent fashion. In this business memoir, the native Texan explores his unique management style, business acumen and patriotism. It was President Obama who reached out to Ed Whitacre to come out of retirement and take over GM in 2009.

    Michael says: "Great book"
    "Good Overall, Lacks Specific Details:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I wanted much more detail, as based on the historical circumstances there could be much more learned from this case study. Mr. Whitacre is sincere of his love for America and the two companies, AT&T and GM, that he so importantly served. I wish he would have given better examples of the battles internally as he rose through (Southwestern Bell) AT&T and ultimately aided GM as the emerged from bankruptcy. In essence, Whitacre's style is to be a straight-talker and be a man of the people. I know there is much more to his management style, but unfortunately we don't learn that here. This is a very general analysis of his career, and I found it wanting.

    This is still a good book, and I think it a "feel-good" analysis of the very public auto bailout.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Goldfinch

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Donna Tartt
    • Narrated By David Pittu
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (10241)
    Performance
    (9370)
    Story
    (9390)

    The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity. It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a 13-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

    B.J. says: "A stunning achievement - for author and narrator"
    "The Slow Start in Retrospect Is Brilliant:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I am embarrassed to say that I almost moved past this book, as I did not have the patience to tolerate being unable to predict the direction of this book. The action comes so fast and furious that I left behind my misgivings and held on for a realistic ride through the eyes of an archetypical American young man--brutally honest despite the risk to himself.

    This book is candid, the language direct, and a the action real and believable. This book is a large mirror for our Modern America, and at times you likely will not like what you see. Many themes are woven together to create this masterpiece: some delicate, love and longing, and some violent, drugs, terrorism, and theft! However, of hero, Theo, always has a good reason for his conduct and you cannot help but find sympathy for this flawed young man.

    This book is for anyone who loves the bitter sweet reality of this human experience. Theo happens to live on the edge, but it is through this lens that we see the real message: the human being is capable of joy despite horrible and devastating loss. Love finds its way into our hearts despite time blasting away youth's innocence.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Ray Kurzweil
    • Narrated By George K. Wilson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (651)
    Performance
    (520)
    Story
    (517)

    For over three decades, the great inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil has been one of the most respected and provocative advocates of the role of technology in our future. In his classic The Age of Spiritual Machines, he argued that computers would soon rival the full range of human intelligence at its best. Now he examines the next step in this inexorable evolutionary process: the union of human and machine.

    Sean Gately says: "Great Idea, terribly slow and painful listen"
    "Wanted to Hang Myself:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Could have been more effective in a 5 hour book. Way too repetitive.

    Sorry, as I have giving a negative review but this was not good.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Sycamore Row

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Michael Beck
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9458)
    Performance
    (8520)
    Story
    (8528)

    Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of lung cancer. He trusts no one. Before he hangs himself from a sycamore tree, Hubbard leaves a new, handwritten, will. It is an act that drags his adult children, his black maid, and Jake into a conflict as riveting and dramatic as the murder trial that made Brigance one of Ford County's most notorious citizens, just three years earlier. The second will raises far more questions than it answers. Why would Hubbard leave nearly all of his fortune to his maid? Had chemotherapy and painkillers affected his ability to think clearly?

    Brock says: "Grisham at his best (again)"
    "Excellent, Believable, & Dramatic:"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Grisham utilizes this famous and familiar setting and cast of characters in a truly remarkable way! This book was genuine, sincere, and very entertaining. As a lawyer I enjoyed the suspense created through this intensely battled will-contest. Grisham was able to weave the story and the action in such a believable way that I found myself upset when the book ended.

    I highly recommend this title for anyone interested in a good legal drama that thankfully does not require over the top death and violence. This is a human drama with many twists and turns. The action is intense and realistic--no hyperbole required here as the human drama more than satisfies!

    Great listen!

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Winter of the World: The Century Trilogy, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Ken Follett
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5381)
    Performance
    (4555)
    Story
    (4565)

    Winter of the World picks up right where the first book left off, as its five interrelated families - American, German, Russian, English, Welsh - enter a time of enormous social, political, and economic turmoil, beginning with the rise of the Third Reich, through the Spanish Civil War and the great dramas of World War II, up to the explosions of the American and Soviet atomic bombs. As always with Ken Follett, the historical background is brilliantly researched and rendered, the action fast-moving, the characters rich in nuance and emotion.

    Tim says: "Brilliant Sequel"
    "Epic, Remarkable, Easy & Enjoyable!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The wonder of this book is that most of us intimately understand the subject matter, and Follet does a wonderful job of creating the emotion and devastation associated with this tumultuous era in World History.

    He seamlessly weaves the characters together in a believable and dignified way. The comparisons of cultures and the representative actors is achieved in a subtle and believable manner. I could not be more impressed with his point of view on what it would have been like to witness some of the 20th Century's most notable events.

    I highly recommend this book, as it is exactly what an audio book should be: entertaining, representative of a unique point of view, and enjoyable!

    38 of 40 people found this review helpful

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