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LJB

Colorado Springs, CO, United States | Member Since 2011

12
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 6 reviews
  • 7 ratings
  • 382 titles in library
  • 24 purchased in 2014
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  • Finding Ultra: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World’s Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Rich Roll
    • Narrated By Rich Roll
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (901)
    Performance
    (820)
    Story
    (816)

    An incredible but true account of achieving one of the most awe-inspiring midlife physical transformations ever

    In October 2006, the night before he was to turn forty, Rich experienced a chilling glimpse of his future. Nearly fifty pounds overweight and unable to climb the stairs without stopping, he saw where his sedentary lifestyle was taking him. Most of us look the other way when granted such a moment of clarity, but not Rich.

    J. Camara says: "Insightful conquering life's challenges"
    "Ultra journey into narcissism"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Rich Roll and/or Rich Roll?

    No, not unless it was ghost-written.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Rich Roll again?

    No, forced emotion and misplaced emphasis was annoying.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    Yes, on many levels.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment at how such a great story fell flat.


    Any additional comments?

    About as painful as an ultra event was listening to the empty whining that littered this book. Although I eagerly anticipated the story of a cheeseburger couch potato turned vegan ultra athlete, the book was an "epic" (you'll understand that reference if you make it through the book) failure. His story, which as all the underpinnings of a great tale, faltered chapter after chapter with self-indulgent writing only exacerbate by an awful choice of narrator ... the author. At least Dean Karnazes (Ultramarathon Man) was an engaging narrator as he read his own story of his "personal greatness."

    Ironically, the real hero of the book was Roll's Epic5 partner, Jason Lester.

    Sadly, the book may give the impression to the uninitiated that all ultra athletes are such self-absorbed, vacuums of attention and need. Quite the opposite is true. The ultra community is "normal" people who just enjoy endurance events that, at first glance, seem crazy.

    The ability of someone like Rich Roll or Scott Jurek to be at the peak of ultra endurance competitiveness on a plant-based diet is nothing short of astonishing. The only bright spot of this book is that it gives a glimpse into the diet of a vegan ultra athlete. That almost makes the book worth a listen.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Automate This: How Algorithms Came to Rule Our World

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Christopher Steiner
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (917)
    Performance
    (798)
    Story
    (795)

    It used to be that to diagnose an illness, interpret legal documents, analyze foreign policy, or write a newspaper article you needed a human being with specific skills - and maybe an advanced degree or two. These days, high-level tasks are increasingly being handled by algorithms that can do precise work not only with speed but also with nuance. These "bots" started with human programming and logic, but now their reach extends beyond what their creators ever expected.

    PHIL says: "Wide-ranging, non-technical"
    "A disappointment of repetitive fluff"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Decrease the repetition throughout the book.


    What could Christopher Steiner have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Go deeper into the topics and eliminate the repetition of many of the examples.


    What three words best describe Walter Dixon’s voice?

    Appropriate, technical, accurate.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Not many redeeming qualities. The concepts were interesting but inadequately presented.


    Any additional comments?

    The book reads as if it was written in the early 1990s. There was little new or revolutionary about the use of algorithms (or "bots"). While there may have been some "oh, that is interesting" moments for some, nothing presented really changed one's perspective. It was a disappointment.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Innocent Man: Murder and Injustice in a Small Town

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 32 mins)
    • By John Grisham
    • Narrated By Craig Wasson
    Overall
    (996)
    Performance
    (328)
    Story
    (328)

    John Grisham's first work of nonfiction, an exploration of small town justice gone terribly awry, is his most extraordinary legal thriller yet.

    Mark says: "Good Book - Not Typical Grisham"
    "Great entry into true crime"
    Overall

    A great story of the tragic prosecution of an innocent man. The journey Grisham takes his readers (listeners) is filled with dismay and anger at the incompetent and malicious attack of the story's main character. You will find yourself yelling at your iPod!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Trial [Alpha DVD]

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Franz Kafka
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    Overall
    (53)
    Performance
    (33)
    Story
    (36)

    Josef K. is an ordinary man who is arrested on his 30th birthday. He is prosecuted by a remote, inaccessible authority, yet the nature of his crime is never revealed to him. One year after his arrest he is executed. His last words describe his own death: "Like a dog!"

    LJB says: "Excellent reading of a classic book"
    "Excellent reading of a classic book"
    Overall

    The narrator did an excellent job of adding to the already bizarre and disturbing story. If you like Kafka, you will like this translation and narration.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Watchers

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Dean Koontz
    • Narrated By J. Charles
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2021)
    Performance
    (1253)
    Story
    (1275)

    From a top-secret government laboratory come two genetically altered life forms. One is a magnificent dog of astonishing intelligence. The other, a hybrid monster of a brutally violent nature. And both are on the loose....

    Katie says: "Great book; so-so narrator"
    "Great story!"
    Overall

    What a wonderful story from a great author. Although not as "supernatural" as many of Koontz's work, the story was captivating and usually kept you wanting to listen to more. This is a great book, especially if you are a dog lover.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Tick Tock: Michael Bennett, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By James Patterson, Michael Ledwidge
    • Narrated By Bobby Cannavale, Scott Sowers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1196)
    Performance
    (546)
    Story
    (542)

    New York City's number-one detective, Michael Bennett, has a huge problem: the Son of Sam, the Werewolf of Wisteria, and the Mad Bomber are all back. The city has never been more terrified. The city calls on Detective Michael Bennett, pulling him away from a seaside retreat with his 10 adopted children, his grandfather, and their beloved nanny, Mary Catherine. Not only does it tear apart their vacation, it leaves the entire family open to attack.

    Chris says: "Another great listen!"
    "Just awful..."
    Overall

    What a horrible bit of writing. The book was laced with tired cliches, stereotypes, metaphors, and similes that were barely worthy of a high school student. The story could have gone in so many great directions, but stayed on a tired, predictable path.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful

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