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Todd Albert

Member Since 2003


  • Napoleon

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Paul Johnson
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Paul Johnson's book is a refreshing return to a concept whose time has come once again: the Great Man theory of biography. It serves as "the greatest possible refutation of those who hold that events are governed by forces, classes, economics, and geography rather than the powerful wills of men and women". Napoleon truly was the Great Man of his age, a towering and terrible genius who managed to conquer the Continent.

    Mark Grannis says: "Not your standard biography"
    "Start with this Napoleon Book"

    I dowloaded and lsitened to this Napoleon book, and the one by Fischer also available on Audible. I am new to Napoleon, and if you are too, I recommend starting with this book by Johnson first, and the one by Fischer afterwards. Johnson's short book sets the stage for the modern reader and is read is a gripping manner by John Lee. Fischer's book provides sought after detail but loses the novice Napoleon reader because it assumes some familiarity with the outlines of his career.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • The Beach: The History of Paradise on Earth

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Lena Lencek, Gideon Gideon
    • Narrated By Nadia May

    Here for the first time is the full story of the seashore: its natural and social history, spectacles, and scandals. The turquoise surf and sugary sand of the beach make it a favorite retreat today, but this wasn't always so. The oceans of antiquity engendered contradictory feelings. Greek and Roman myths filled it with bellicose monsters and alluring sirens. Medieval Europeans feared immersion in water.

    Todd Albert says: "From Roman Architecture to Coney Island"
    "From Roman Architecture to Coney Island"

    I really enjoyed listening to this book and rated it five stars, but I see that the only two other people to rate it so far have only given it two stars. I think the difference may lay in expectations. This isn't light summer reading - it expects the reader to be well educated and well traveled - at least in the mind's eye - with a nodding acquaintance with the beaches of Europe, classical history - and an anglophile. I'm an American anglophile classicist living in continental Europe - so I ticked all the boxes and this book was just my cup of tea. If you know where Scheveningen is, what class of ancient Romans lived on the Bay of Naples, who had his summer residence in Brighton, which famous poet swam across the Dardanelles, have friends with a beach house in New England (or wish you did), and enjoy reading books where rivers "debauch" into the ocean instead of flowing into it - this book is for you. My pro-tip: skip the first chapter about the geology of beaches - the information is outdated and wrong, and the author clearly didn't enjoy writing that chapter. There is a night and day difference between the first chapter and the rest of the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Aeneid

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Virgil
    • Narrated By Simon Callow

    The publication of a new translation by Fagles is a literary event. His translations of both the Iliad and Odyssey have sold hundreds of thousands of copies and have become the standard translations of our era. Now, with this stunning modern verse translation, Fagles has reintroduced Virgil's Aeneid to a whole new generation, and completed the classical triptych at the heart of Western civilization.

    Rob says: "Fagles is best"
    "The Best Aeneid Translation Ever"

    This translation of the Aeneid stands head and shoulders above anything else I have seen in English. It's exciting, to the point, and very very nuanced. The narrator is a fantastic choice too. His voice creates a world and moves you along through it. I put on my earphones just intending to to listen to a few minutes of the beginning the night I downloaded this, and I was pulled in for four hours of adventure before I could finally force myself to click "stop".

    18 of 19 people found this review helpful
  • Post Captain: Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By Patrick O'Brian
    • Narrated By Simon Vance
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Post Captain is the second novel in Patrick O'Brian's beloved adventure series. In 1803 Napoleon smashes the Peace of Amiens, and Captain Jack Aubrey, Royal Navy, taking refuge in France from his creditors, is interned. He escapes from France, from debtors' prison, from a possible mutiny, and pursues his quarry straight into the mouth of a French-held-harbor.

    Debbie in Plano says: "Narrator preference"
    "CAREFUL - Two Narrators available for this title"

    This is the Blackstone Audio version of the novel. I found that the Recorded Books version, also available here on, was the narrator I preferred. Both are good, it is simply a matter of taste.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Six Months That Changed the World: The Treaty of Versailles and World War II [Portable Professor]

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Margaret MacMillan
    • Narrated By Margaret MacMillan

    Between January and July 1919 delegates from all over the world converged on Paris to forge a lasting peace in the wake of World War I. Margaret MacMillan vividly portrays the historical events surrounding the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, which laid the groundwork for an even more devastating conflict-World War II-by demanding punishing reparations from the defeated nation of Germany.

    Nancy says: "Illuminating"
    "A Fast Paced and Invigorating Listen"

    The author of this lecture series speaks quickly and with energy. Her style of delivery pulls you in and carries you along. I've heard five lecture series (two at audible and three from another company) and this was the best in terms of "narration".

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Odysseus: A Life

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Charles Rowan Beye
    • Narrated By Mark Bramhall

    From an acclaimed classicist comes a witty, unusual, and fascinating "biography" of Homer's fictional Bronze Age hero, Odysseus. In this entertaining book, Charles Beye fills out the story of this extraordinary figure while at the same time portraying Odysseus' evolution through the course of a strange and adventuresome life, at times so remote, at times so immediate in the contemporary perspective.

    Todd Albert says: "The best of the Odysseus Tales on Audible"
    "The best of the Odysseus Tales on Audible"

    I've downloaded and listen to all the Greek mythology available on Audible - and this book is the best, absolutely top notch. It presents Odysseus' life and bronze age ancient Greece in vivid and gripping detail, understandable to people new to the topic, and a filled with details for the connoisseur.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • The Thieves of Ostia: The Roman Mysteries #1

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Caroline Lawrence
    • Narrated By Kim Hicks

    The year is 79 A.D. The place is Ostia, the port of Rome. Flavia Gemina, a Roman sea captain's daughter, is about to embark on a thrilling adventure.

    Todd Albert says: "Well written, interesting for adults too"
    "Well written, interesting for adults too"

    Although the mystery the children tackle in this story is at a young adult level, vivid descriptions and details make this enjoyable for adults with an interest in Roman history too. Even if your interest goes beyond beyond the amateur and you are well read in Roman history, I think you'll find listening to this story enjoyable - I did.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The French Executioner

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By C.C. Humphreys
    • Narrated By C.C. Humphreys

    It is 1536 and the expert swordsman Jean Rombaud has been brought over from France by Henry VIII to behead Anne Boleyn. But on the eve of her execution, Rombaud swears a vow to the ill-fated queen. He promises to bury her six-fingered hand, symbol of her rumored witchery, at a sacred crossroads. From a battle between slave galleys, through the hallucinations of St Anthony's Fire to the fortress of an apocalyptic Messiah, Jean seeks to honor his vow.

    jack rose says: "Great potential but drifts into the sick"
    "More like a Hollywood Screenplay"

    While technically polished and well written with a good narrator (the author himself I believe), the novel seems to be a fairly by-the-numbers adventure more suitable for the screen than between the pages of a book. The characters, situations, and resolutions were unfortunately predictable. I did not feel richer for the time I spent listening to this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tanglewood Tales

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs)
    • By Nathaniel Hawthorne
    • Narrated By Walter Covell

    Todd Albert says: "Great Telling, Skip the Preface"
    "Great Telling, Skip the Preface"

    I enjoyed the longer length of the Greek myths as retold by the author, the longest telling I have found in audio so far and his inventive details. The author's preface however (the first fifteen minutes of the audio book)is atrocious and nothing like the rest of the book, either in style, content, or narrator. Don't let it scare you off.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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