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Kent M. Pitman

ratings
94
REVIEWS
7
FOLLOWING
0
FOLLOWERS
0
HELPFUL VOTES
10

  • 2008 DNC: Former Vice President Al Gore (8/28/08)

    • ORIGINAL (14 mins)
    • By Al Gore
    Overall
    (46)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    Al Gore, the former Vice President of the United States, speaks on the final night of the Democratic National Convention in Denver, August 28, 2008.

    Patrick Weldon says: "Pure drivel"
    "A Thoughtful and Inspiring Endorsement of Obama"
    Overall

    As you'd expect from any DNC speech, this one endorses Obama. But beyond that, it is a thoughtful presentation that touches on matters of substance and is a true model for the way all political speeches should be. It speaks to issues that matter, it offers hope, it challenges its audience to participate, and while it speaks to opponents, it doesn't go out of its way to malign them. It doesn't need to. It has enough substance of its own to offer that it doesn't make its point on cute little jabs at others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Impact

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Douglas Preston
    • Narrated By Scott Sowers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1206)
    Performance
    (392)
    Story
    (392)

    A brilliant meteor lights up the Maine coast and two young women borrow a boat and set out for a distant island to find the impact crater. A scientist at the National Propulsion Facility discovers an inexplicable source of gamma rays in the outer Solar System. He is found decapitated, the data missing.High resolution NASA images reveal an unnatural feature hidden in the depths of a crater on Mars and it appears to have been activated. Sixty hours and counting.

    Tom says: "Vulgar? yes, but overal, it's good"
    "An engaging story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Impact to be better than the print version?

    I didn't read the print version, so I can't say how this compares.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Probably most impressive was that he managed to resolve this at all. It's god pretty good pace and action, but though it starts in a pretty unassuming way, the plot becomes quite complex and expansive in a way that seemed like it couldn't possibly be resolved. I was pleased he managed to pull off a credible ending to wrap things up in a way that seemed definitive and sort of believable, at least in the context of the rest of the story.


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

    The reading seemed good and, most importantly, did not distract from the story. The accents were useful in places to help disambiguate. It was usually easy to tell who was who. I don't compare readings to the book, since I don't have the patience for books. What I want from a reader is someone who helps me keep track of things so I don't have to be rewinding all the time to figure out who said what. I think he did this just fine.


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

    I didn't find this story to be "deep". It's a kind of speculative yarn and it takes dramatic liberties here and there. But it's good adventure and a well-told story. The characters do seem pretty well-motivated, though, and to the extent anything could be said to have moved me in there I thought the characters were people you could care about and root for (or in some cases against).


    Any additional comments?

    I don't like this review format very much. I'd rather just write some paragraphs on topics of my own choosing with these questions as samples in the margin in case I'm not capable of coming up with things to say on my own.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Look Again

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Lisa Scottoline
    • Narrated By Mary Stuart Masterson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (729)
    Performance
    (199)
    Story
    (197)

    When reporter Ellen Gleeson gets a "Have You Seen This Child?" flyer in the mail, she almost throws it away. But something about it makes her look again, and her heart stops - the child in the photo is identical to her adopted son, Will. Her every instinct tells her to deny the similarity between the boys, because she knows her adoption was lawful. But she's a journalist and won't be able to stop thinking about the photo until she figures out the truth.

    Elaine says: "Excellent Book"
    "Not the same without Barbara Rosenblat"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I couldn't get past the absence of Barbara Rosenblat's outstanding readings, which I'm used to from Lisa's other books. The reading by her replacement, Mary Stuart Masterson, seemed flat and tonally soporific, and even after several tries I just couldn't get very far into the book.

    I was forced to enter a story rating here to avoid the software thinking my review incomplete, so I gave it a "4" by default based on my expectation from her other books. But in truth I didn't listen to enough of it to know. I only know that I felt the performance lacking, making the audiobook overall a huge disappointment. I bet I'm missing a great story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Freefall: America, Free Markets, and the Sinking of the World Economy

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Joseph E. Stiglitz
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (91)
    Performance
    (36)
    Story
    (36)

    The current global financial crisis carries a "made in America" label. In this forthright and incisive book, Nobel Laureate Joseph E. Stiglitz explains how America exported bad economics, bad policies, and bad behavior to the rest of the world, only to cobble together a haphazard and ineffective response when the markets finally seized up.

    Bry says: "Required Economic Reading"
    "An Important and Often Overlooked Point of View"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Nobel Prize Winner and former Chief Economist of the World Bank Joseph Stiglitz is a voice we don't hear enough of in modern politics. It's really unfortunate because he has a lot of really interesting perspective to offer and some very clearly articulated ideas about policy that deserve a fair hearing. He is someone who knows the ins and outs of the monetary world and yet has not lost track of the effects of policy on ordinary people. He is critical of both Bush and Obama in a way that is plainly not partisan and is more focused on measuring real effects, studying historical trends, and proposing policies that might do some good for other than just the people who've already been profiting handsomely off of others in both good times and bad. I found this book to be a real breath of fresh air and a nice solid follow-on to The Big Short, which had left me understanding pretty plainly how the financial collapse happened and ready to hear some good proposals about where to go from there.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth about the Coming Climate Catastrophe

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By James Hansen
    • Narrated By John Allen Nelson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (100)
    Performance
    (41)
    Story
    (42)

    In Storms of My Grandchildren, James Hansen - the nation's leading scientist on climate issues - speaks out for the first time with the full truth about global warming: the planet is hurtling even more rapidly than previously acknowledged to a climatic point of no return. Although Hansen was Al Gore's science adviser for the 2006 documentary An Inconvenient Truth, his recent data shows that our situation is even more dire today.

    Brad says: "This is a must read"
    "Essential Reading for All Mankind"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Understanding this issue is critical to the survival of the species.

    Hansen comes with impeccable credentials and has done a brilliant job of laying out the severity of the problem in terms that are both based in solid science and yet presented in a way that is approachable by a reader not trained as a scientist. He also avoids the trap many scientists get into of appearing dispassionate about matters of grave urgency. This is an ethically complicated choice for him, but I think he makes the right call. His presentation nicely separates science from emotion, but what he does in both areas is critical to a proper understanding of the issue.

    Also, drilling down into a particular bit of detail, I have to say that I agree with him about the importance of the integral fast reactor (IFR) technology, and that he offers a particularly lucid argument for the importance of that. This is a widely misunderstood technology and he does a great job of clarifying some critical points.

    Overall, it's an extremely good book, with a very good reader, and I heartily recommend it to anyone who even thinks they might be interested.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Spin

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Robert Charles Wilson
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    Overall
    (3348)
    Performance
    (1128)
    Story
    (1130)

    One night when he was 10, Tyler stood in his backyard and watched the stars go out. They flared into brilliance, then disappeared, replaced by an empty black barrier. He and his best friends, Jason and Diane Lawton, had seen what became known as the Big Blackout. It would shape their lives.

    Robert says: "A Classic"
    "Very engaging"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    An interesting story with a pretty unique premise, carried through quite thoroughly. I thought Scott Brick's reading was well-done and added to the experience. I enjoyed the story a great deal, both the sci-fi and the social elements, and worried after a little that it would be tough to wrap up neatly. In fact, the ending is slightly anticlimactic--not bad, just not the best thing the book had to offer. However, by the end, I had enjoyed the story enough along the way that I didn't mind how it was ended. It was very good entertainment and I recommend it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • 2008 RNC: Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (9/03/08)

    • ORIGINAL (40 mins)
    • By Sarah Palin
    Overall
    (185)
    Performance
    (44)
    Story
    (46)

    Sarah Palin, the Governor of Alaska and the Republican Party's nominee for vice president speaks on the third night of the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis, September 3, 2008.

    Matthew says: "Refreshing"
    "A Painful Listen to a Smug, Arrogant Politician"
    Overall

    As a political independent, I found this speech utterly painful to listen to. It seems more targeted to whetting the bloodlusting appetites of the hardcore republicans than doing any kind of healing of the divide George Bush has created after 8 years. It certainly did not reach out to me as an independent with anything I could feel good about endorsing. This speech is really my first and only introduction to the woman, and it makes a horrible impression. Moreover, from the research I've done, even the alleged positive elements in the speech (such as the notion that the Bridge to Nowhere is something she rejected) seem bare half-truths, since apparently she decided not to build the bridge but still kept the federal money. A properly informed voter should probably listen to this speech, but anyone who is not a hardcore Republican with a strong sense of spite for all Democrats should expect to be embarrassed or put off by what they hear. I've rated this 2 stars because I hope never to hear speeches with this smug and surly tone from anyone in either party ever. It is just not a model to emulate.

    3 of 11 people found this review helpful

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