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Mark C Walker

Toney, AL United States | Member Since 2005

142
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 74 reviews
  • 331 ratings
  • 471 titles in library
  • 7 purchased in 2015
FOLLOWING
3
FOLLOWERS
1

  • The Triumph of the West: The Origin, Rise, and Legacy of Western Civilization

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 23 mins)
    • By J.M. Roberts
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    Overall
    (34)
    Performance
    (12)
    Story
    (11)

    Over the centuries, two important beliefs arose in Europe: a faith that man could order his own destiny and that progress was normal. By 1900, doubts arose concerning traditional Western values. The continuing problems of the world's poor, environmental deterioration, the inequality of women, and continued warfare pose real questions about the advancement of the human race.

    Mitchell says: "Disappointing"
    "Interesting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    If you enjoy reading history books then I would imagine you would enjoy this book. The title is somewhat misleading in my opinion - as Mr. Roberts' points out as many negative aspects of western civilization as he does positive ones. There was nothing in the book that I found to be unique or thought provoking. It is simply a no frills history book. Narration was good. I would however recommend "A History of Europe" by JM Roberts more than I do this one, it is much more comprehensive in detailing a lot of the same historical events.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • A History of the World in 6 Glasses

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Tom Standage
    • Narrated By Sean Runnette
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1655)
    Performance
    (1415)
    Story
    (1419)

    Throughout human history, certain drinks have done much more than just quench thirst. As Tom Standage relates with authority and charm, six of them have had a surprisingly pervasive influence on the course of history, becoming the defining drink during a pivotal historical period. A History of the World in 6 Glasses tells the story of humanity from the Stone Age to the 21st century through the lens of beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea, and cola.

    Stoker says: "Fun and Informative"
    "Fascinating"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    "A history of the World in 6 glasses" is an absolutely fascinating book. One of the most unique and interesting books I have read in some time. The author, Tom Standage, does an excellent job at describing both the history of the drinks and more importantly how each one of them impacted the evolution of mankind in a unique way. Narration was excellent. It really is amazing to think about how and why the development and evolution of cities and cultures were impacted from such ordinary drinks. The ending of the book ties everything together very neatly, how things have almost come full circle for a completely different set of circumstances. It really makes you think. If you enjoy traditional history books, you will love this book. I highly recommend it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Decisive Battles of World History

    • ORIGINAL (18 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By The Great Courses
    • Narrated By Professor Gregory S. Aldrete
    Overall
    (352)
    Performance
    (302)
    Story
    (299)

    Throughout history, military engagements have altered the course of historical events. In these 36 dynamic lectures, Professor Aldrete leads you in discovering the military conflicts that have had the greatest impact in shifting the direction of events and defining our world. Across 4,000 years of history, you'll explore nearly 40 key military engagements, from the milestone battles of Western civilization to their counterparts in the Middle East, India, and Asia.

    IRP says: "Excellent Course- Needs Battle Maps"
    "Enjoyable and interesting, but not great."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While I enjoyed this book, I found it to be my least favorite of the Great Courses books that I have listened to. This one covers a lot of ground but the content tended to be less like a history book and more like one of those “strange facts” books. A large portion of the book is essentially conjecture that comes across as fact. It also seemed like there was an effort on the part of the Author to be politically correct in his selection of the battles he determined were decisive. The battles covered, while numerous, are described at the highest of levels – the content is broad just not very deep. Professor Aldrete seemed a little uncomfortable narrating the book which made some parts difficult to listen to. In the end the Professor says his goal in writing the book was to stimulate thought on behalf of the listeners and in that sense he accomplished his goal. It’s a good book, but not Great.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Maltese Falcon

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Dashiell Hammett
    • Narrated By Eric Meyers
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (700)
    Performance
    (640)
    Story
    (646)

    Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon, first serialized in a magazine in 1930, is best known through the iconic Humphrey Bogart film of 1941. But it was the book that created the classic "noir" genre with its tough private detective threading his cool way between the criminals and the law. Sam Spade, the private eye solving the mystery of the Maltese statuette, was the template for Philip Marlowe and a host of others…. but they come no more shrewd and cunning with Hammett peppering the text with one-liners.

    Kathi says: "Outstanding American classic!"
    "Outstanding"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Maltese Falcon, by Dashiell Hammett with Eric Meyers as the narrator is fantastic. It has all of the elements of a great detective novel – extremely interesting story, lots of plot twists and complex characters. In many ways I see this as the forerunner of modern day detective novels and even in some ways a predecessor to modern day adventure movies like Raiders of the Lost Ark and National Treasure. It is much more realistic though than those movies in sense that this artifact is both plausible and elusive. The character development too is amazing. All of the characters, including Sam Spade are flawed in some aspect and the story really leverages off of their shortcomings to tie everything together into an exceptional book.

    The book was written long ago but the story transcends the years. The narrator, Eric Meyers, was outstanding. If you enjoy detective novels you will not be disappointed, I would highly recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Big Sleep

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By Raymond Chandler
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    Overall
    (49)
    Performance
    (46)
    Story
    (47)

    Los Angeles PI Philip Marlowe is working for the Sternwood family. Old man Sternwood, crippled and wheelchair-bound, is being given the squeeze by a blackmailer and he wants Marlowe to make the problem go away. But with Sternwood's two wild, devil-may-care daughters prowling LA's seedy backstreets, Marlowe's got his work cut out - and that's before he stumbles over the first corpse.

    Aaron says: "Detective Noir at its finest"
    "Decent, but a little disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I was very excited to see that many of Ray Chandler's books were now available with Ray Porter as the narrator. Ray Porter is one of the aces among narrators and Ray Chandler a pioneer among detective novelists - would seem to be a slam dunk for an audio book but it really turned out to be only mediocre. I think the way Chandler writes didn't sync well with the way Porter reads, which made it one of those books that was difficult to follow. I found myself perpetually re-listening to a part trying to figure out what had just happened.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Burning Room

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Titus Welliver
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2238)
    Performance
    (2003)
    Story
    (1991)

    In the LAPD's Open-Unsolved Unit, not many murder victims die almost a decade after the crime. So when a man succumbs to complications from being shot by a stray bullet nine years earlier, Bosch catches a case in which the body is still fresh, but all other evidence is virtually nonexistent. Now Bosch and rookie Detective Lucia Soto, are tasked with solving what turns out to be a highly charged, politically sensitive case.

    Amazon Customer says: "Not up to par"
    "Time for Harry to retire"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Over the years I think the Harry Bosch series has been my favorite detective novel series. I think though that the series probably peaked a few years back and has slowly been in decline - after finishing "the burning room" I wish he would simply retire the character before ruining the series. Surprisingly, the Bosch of the most recent books no longer has a lot of depth. Connelly seemed to have been at his best with the Bosch series when he wrote "City of Bones" and on through "the Narrows". I would rate all of those books during that stretch of time to be five stars. The storylines and the things going on in his life outside of the case made them all very easy listens. Always found his music interests to be interesting and most of those books seemed to have parts in the book that were very humorous.

    This book, like the prior one, is simply a cop out. The character isn't really interesting or likeable anymore. In my opinion the most recent books in the series are mediocre. I think Connelly is looking for a way to focus on Haller but Bosch is his cash cow.

    The problem with the series is Bosch has got to be in his mid sixties at this point. The LAPD ought to give him "freeway therapy" and let him move on.

    Like most of the other reviewers I agree that the narration in this one is lame. I am not sure though that even Len Cariou could have made this one more than just average, simply not a lot to work with.

    If you are a Bosch fan then I am sure you will want to get the book regardless. If you are new to the series don't start with this one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Invasion of the Body Snatchers

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Jack Finney
    • Narrated By Kristoffer Tabori
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (342)
    Performance
    (172)
    Story
    (173)

    On a quiet fall evening in the small, peaceful town of Mill Valley, California, Dr. Miles Bennell discovers an insidious, horrifying plot. Silently, subtly, almost imperceptibly, alien life-forms are taking over the bodies and minds of his neighbors, his friends, his family, the woman he loves, and the world as he knows it.

    Jenna says: "Warning!"
    "Excellent Sci-Fi Thriller"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While I was looking for a new book I stumbled across this one and I remembered seeing the old movie, so I took a chance - and I am glad I did. I cannot say enough about how excellent both the story and the narration were - I was completely absorbed from the first sentence all the way through to the end. Set sometime in the 20th century, a lot of the content seemed quaint, yet nevertheless intense. The length of the book was just right for this story - about 6 hours. If you enjoy Sci-Fi you will not be disappointed. Following the book there is a discussion with the narrator that is very interesting as well - he is the son of the director of the first movie.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Magic of Thinking Big

    • ABRIDGED (4 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By David J. Schwartz
    • Narrated By David J. Schwartz
    Overall
    (1671)
    Performance
    (815)
    Story
    (809)

    Millions of people throughout the world have improved their lives using The Magic of Thinking Big. Dr. David J. Schwartz, long regarded as one of the foremost experts on motivation, will help you sell better, manage better, earn more money, and - most important of all - find greater happiness and peace of mind.

    Brittany says: "Life-changing literature."
    "Motivating"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I came across a recommendation for the “The magic of thinking big” while reading the “4 hour workweek”. The first thing that struck me was the narrator – he seemed very enthusiastic, but also seemed to be older. The more I listened though the narration really seemed to be the perfect complement to the content of the book. There is a great deal of really good information in the book and it is delivered in such a quaint way that it is almost like listening to someone you trust giving advice. I thoroughly enjoyed the book, found the information to be very informative. I would say the content is more focused on motivational and somewhat less focused on entrepreneurial content. Dr Schwartz passed away nearly 30 years ago, and yet the messages he conveys are as relevant today as they were then. I would highly recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Great Commanders: Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Horatio Nelson, Napoleon Bonaparte, Ulysses S. Grant, Georgi Zhukov

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Phil Grabsky
    • Narrated By Phil Grabsky
    Overall
    (40)
    Performance
    (38)
    Story
    (37)

    The Great Commanders is a masterly portrait of six men - Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Horatio Nelson, Napoleon Bonaparte, Ulysses S. Grant and Georgi Zhukov - whose military genius changed the course of world history.

    Mark C Walker says: "Broad, and High Level History"
    "Broad, and High Level History"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I picked up the Great Commanders primarily because the title seemed to cover such a diverse group of Military Leaders, many of whom I knew little about. The book was very enjoyable and one that I would recommend for World History buffs. The author treated each of the Commanders in a very even handed manner - noting good and bad character traits that they appeared to exhibit. Of particular interest to me was what seemed to be the motivating factor for each of the Commanders that are detailed in the book - some were fighting simply for glory, some for their very survival, and some for an ideal or a particular vision that they held. The book was enjoyable and one that I would recommend, but I will say that the content is high level and not incredibly detailed. If you are looking for detailed information of the individual commanders themselves then I would probably recommend reading biographies in lieu of this one. The narration was enthusiastic and for the most part above average.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Trustee from the Toolroom

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Nevil Shute
    • Narrated By Frank Muller
    Overall
    (988)
    Performance
    (882)
    Story
    (886)

    Keith Stewart, a retiring and ingenious engineer, could not have been happier in his little house in the shabby London suburb of Ealing. There he invented the mini-motor, the six-volt generator, and the tiny Congreve clock. Then a chain of events sweeps him into deep waters and leads him to his happiest discovery yet.

    Paula says: "Just Simply a Great Story!"
    "Great Characters, Great Story, Great Book."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I stumbled onto this one as I was searching for books narrated by Frank Muller, one of my favorite narrators. What I found was a wonderful yarn about a humble, but determined Engineer that is singularly focused on doing the right thing, even at the peril of himself and his family. If you are looking for mystery, suspense, or jaw dropping plot twists then I would say that this isn’t the book for you. However, if you are looking for an excellent human interest story with likeable characters then I would highly recommend this one. I had never heard of Nevil Shute before reading this book but I found this book to be so enjoyable that I plan to try another one of his. The narration was exceptional.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • It

    • UNABRIDGED (44 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Steven Weber
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (5574)
    Performance
    (4224)
    Story
    (4253)

    They were just kids when they stumbled upon the horror of their hometown. Now, as adults, none of them can withstand the force that has drawn them all back to Derry, Maine, to face the nightmare without end, and the evil without a name.

    Parola138 says: "I thought I was desensitized"
    "10 hours of substance crammed into a 45 hour book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    There were portions of this book that were scary, but the vast majority of it wasn't. This book reminded me of the adage "hours and hours and hours of total boredom interrupted every now and then with a few moments of stark terror". After listening to it I wished I had skipped many sections as they seemed to be a total waste of time. This Audio book would probably lend itself more to an abridged version, if one existed. Narration was above average. If you like Stephen King Books you probably wouldn't be too disappointed in this one, but be prepared - it is an extremely long book that develops very, very slowly. I was very underwhelmed by the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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