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Samuel

PEORIA, AZ, United States | Member Since 2009

13
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 8 reviews
  • 77 ratings
  • 0 titles in library
  • 11 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • Chariots of the Gods

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 55 mins)
    • By Erich von Daniken
    • Narrated By William Dufris
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (391)
    Performance
    (333)
    Story
    (326)

    Erich von Däniken's Chariots of the Gods is a work of monumental importance---the first book to introduce the shocking theory that ancient Earth was visited by aliens. This world-famous best seller has withstood the test of time, inspiring countless books and films, including the author's own popular sequel, The Eye of the Sphinx.

    Neal says: "Answers? No. But if you wish to think it's great!"
    "Revolutionary at the time but feeling a bit dated"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from Erich von Daniken and/or William Dufris?

    No I don't think so. I learned of him through Graham Hancock's books and also through Coast to Coast AM on the radio at night.


    Would you recommend Chariots of the Gods to your friends? Why or why not?

    No I don't think so. Too many of his conclusions have been questioned and overturned about specific items of proof in archaeology for his claims of ET contact in the past. Von Daniken was a visionary in his time but too many problems with him including convictions for fraud and some prison time.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Yes narration was fine


    Did Chariots of the Gods inspire you to do anything?

    NO. Other than read some more modern books on this subject.


    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Seth Grahame-Smith
    • Narrated By Scott Holst
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6678)
    Performance
    (5071)
    Story
    (5151)

    While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for saving a Union and freeing millions of slaves, his valiant fight against the forces of the undead has remained in the shadows for hundreds of years. That is, until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon The Secret Journal of Abraham Lincoln, and became the first living person to lay eyes on it in more than 140 years.

    Haden says: "My friends thought I was crazy."
    "One Note Joke with nowhere to go"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Framing device was stolen from Anne Rice's vampire tales. I will say that it is a bit better than his Jane Austen parody about Zombies. It's just a trend and would've been an exciting idea. It's just a by-the-numbers bio of Lincoln but with Vamps thrown in


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    No more Seth Graham Smith


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Scott Holst?

    Sure


    What character would you cut from Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter?

    Lincoln


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Sea of Glory: America's Voyage of Discovery, The U.S. Exploring Expedition 1838-1842

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Nathaniel Philbrick
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (140)
    Performance
    (42)
    Story
    (44)

    In 1838, the U.S. government launched the largest discovery voyage the Western world had ever seen; six sailing vessels and 346 men bound for the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Four years later, the U.S. Exploring Expedition, or Ex. Ex. as it was known, returned with an astounding array of accomplishments and discoveries: 87,000 miles logged, 280 Pacific islands surveyed, 4,000 zoological specimens collected, including 2,000 new species, and the discovery of the continent of Antarctica.

    Ken says: "A good solid voyage of discovery"
    "almost as good the second time"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Sea of Glory the most enjoyable?

    very good narration gave meaning to the words


    Would you recommend Sea of Glory to your friends? Why or why not?

    yes as Nathaniel Philbrick is one of my favorite history authors writing style is superb. This topic is probably his least known and that simply shouldn't be given the enormous contributions of the US Ex Ex.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Exploration of Antarctica


    Any additional comments?

    I had read the printed version of the book when it was new so this was a really good comparison for me. the audiobook was tougher to follow but that's usually true as compared to having the pages in your hand.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lost Kingdom: Hawaii's Last Queen, the Sugar Kings, and America's First Imperial Adventure

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Julia Flynn Siler
    • Narrated By Joyce Bean
    Overall
    (59)
    Performance
    (51)
    Story
    (50)

    A thriving monarchy had ruled over Hawaii for generations. Taro fields and fish ponds had long sustained native Hawaiians but sugar plantations had been gradually subsuming them. This fractured, vulnerable Hawaii was the country that Queen Lili‘uokalani, or Lili‘u, inherited when she came to power at the end of the nineteenth century.

    Novie says: "Fascinating story, sparsely told"
    "Very Disappointing"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I would've thought that this book would've been written on a far larger scale. For example, I wanted a lot more about the prehistoric settlement of this most important island chain in Polynesia, which was the best environment for human settlement and where Polynesian cultures reached their zenith. Why was that? what were the ecological forces that made that happen? at the other end of the spectrum, Siler failed to place the takeover of Hawaii within the larger context of American imperialism. A reading of her book just makes the royals who guided Hawaii through the viper's nest of relations with the Great Powers look self-centered and thick. And this was at a time when absolute monarchy, although on the wane, still guided some of the largest empires in the world (Russia, Germany, Austria-Hungary to name a few, with Britain in the constitutional monarchy camp). Why was the acquisition of Hawaii so important to the US, if not at the time then throughout the coming century? For me, all these very worthwhile questions were unexplored by the author to any great degree. Again Very Disappointing.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • The Daughters of Cain

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Colin Dexter
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson
    Overall
    (99)
    Performance
    (58)
    Story
    (56)

    Little progress had been made by the Thames Valley Police since the discovery of a corpse in a North Oxford flat. The victim had been killed by a single stab wound to the stomach. The police had no weapon, no suspect, no motive, but within days of taking over the investigation, Chief Inspector Morse and Detective Sergeant Lewis uncover startling new information about the life and death of the victim, Dr. Felix McClure, late of Wolsey College, Oxford.

    A P says: "A different Morse"
    "Inspector Morse from early days"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to The Daughters of Cain the most enjoyable?

    Reuniting with the gruff overeducated Morse and his long-suffering, always paying for drinks assistant Lewis was like greeting old friends.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Daughters of Cain?

    Morse's "love affair" with a young punk prostitute.


    What aspect of Frederick Davidson???s performance would you have changed?

    he is spot-on


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

    NA


    Any additional comments?

    NA

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Civilization: The West and the Rest

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Niall Ferguson
    • Narrated By Niall Ferguson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (777)
    Performance
    (652)
    Story
    (644)

    The rise to global predominance of Western civilization is the single most important historical phenomenon of the past five hundred years. All over the world, an astonishing proportion of people now work for Western-style companies, study at Western-style universities, vote for Western-style governments, take Western medicines, wear Western clothes, and even work Western hours. Yet six hundred years ago the petty kingdoms of Western Europe seemed unlikely to achieve much more than perpetual internecine warfare. It was Ming China or Ottoman Turkey that had the look of world civilizations.

    F. Ribeiro says: "Niall Ferguson's Most Enjoyable Book"
    "Good explanation of Western dominance and decline"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you listen to Civilization again? Why?

    Yes. I also saw the PBS special. Ferguson is good at painting with broad strokes and brings western civilization back to the fore after two decades of cultural relativism and "world history" replacing western civ courses on most university curriculums. per Ferguson the West has been a victim of its own success. If other cultures are so superior to Western, then why did they not come to dominate. The answers are revealing and today these other cultures are literally racing to Westernize.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Civilization?

    the descriptions of Cheng He's imperial treasure fleet in the 14th century, more than 100 years before Columbus kicked off the European period of Exploration and conquest.


    What about Niall Ferguson???s performance did you like?

    Scots accent


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Can't get any better than "The West and the Rest."


    Any additional comments?

    NA

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Death of an Expert Witness: An Adam Dalgliesh Mystery

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By P. D. James
    • Narrated By Michael Jayston
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (124)
    Performance
    (64)
    Story
    (65)

    A young girl is strangled. Then the senior biologist in the forensic lab where her body is taken is also found dead. Adam Dalgleish has a baffling enquiry on his hands.

    Kathy Matthews says: "good mystery"
    "GETTING A BIT DATED"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you try another book from P. D. James and/or Michael Jayston?

    This early offering from a legendary mystery writer is really starting to look a bit frayed around the edges in our post CSI culture. But obviously, James was a pioneer in writing a book in the 70s that focused on the use of scientific evidence, in fact where the whole murder mystery was set in a laboratory that does just that.


    What was most disappointing about P. D. James???s story?

    dated quality


    What three words best describe Michael Jayston???s performance?

    he's alright but a bit stodgy


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    NA

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Blood Meridian: Or the Evening Redness in the West

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By Cormac McCarthy
    • Narrated By Richard Poe
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1137)
    Performance
    (611)
    Story
    (612)

    Author of the National Book Award-winning All the Pretty Horses, Cormac McCarthy is one of the most provocative American stylists to emerge in the last century. The striking novel Blood Meridian offers an unflinching narrative of the brutality that accompanied the push west on the 1850s Texas frontier.

    Chris says: "Bleak but Fascinating"
    "Unrelenting Brutality obscures elegiac writing"
    Overall

    I am a fan of McCarthy's of several years, however I've read his more recent books starting with All the Pretty Horses and the rest of the trilogy that ended with Cities of the Plain.
    I went back to give this early book a listen and was just appalled.
    I treasure his elegiac and poetic writing style. However in listening to this book, I realized that he had not learned to perfect and limit is use as he had in later books. At some points, I felt like simile and metaphor had lost their meaning as he piled them one on top of another for pages at a time. His later style is more spare.
    Further, the brutality which is always present in his writings is much less controlled, and I found myself truly appalled at this tale of a wandering band of psychopaths. These scalp hunters are the main focus of the book. Brutal men always show up in McCarthy's work but usually these are there as a background for the moral development of the main characters. In this book they are the main characters.
    I was very disappointed in Blood Meridian, other than as a way to trace the development of a great writer. Considering that it was written 25 years ago, it shows a writer of promise, but is certainly not up to the standard of his later works.
    Lastly, I can never decide if Cormac McCarthy really loves Mexico or really hates Mexico. He depicts such scenes of vile brutality and ignorance in that country that it makes one pause at the border station. I've been to Mexico dozens of times in the border areas he depicts and he is usually on my mind while I'm there.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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