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VH

California | Member Since 2010

29
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 3 reviews
  • 3 ratings
  • 93 titles in library
  • 16 purchased in 2014
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  • Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Gregory Boyle
    • Narrated By Gregory Boyle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (449)
    Performance
    (398)
    Story
    (400)

    As a pastor working in a neighborhood with the highest concentration of murderous gang activity in Los Angeles, Gregory Boyle created an organization to provide jobs, job training, and encouragement so that young people could work together and learn the mutual respect that comes from collaboration.

    Jeremy says: "Perhaps the best book I've read in years."
    "One of the Best Books I Ever Read"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Tattoos on the Heart?

    I don't live or work among gangs, but I do teach at risk children who are mostly of the same ethnic heritage of Fr. Boyle's parish. Many of his insights were particularly helpful for me in dealing with the parents of my students. Many of my students' parents had been once in gangs or prison. There is as much tragedy as there is humor as there is love in this book.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Tattoos on the Heart?

    Fr. Boyle is of that wonderful Irish storyteller's tradition. I loved his stories, some very sad, and some very, very funny.


    Have you listened to any of Gregory Boyle’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, I am not aware of other works by Fr. Boyle. I live in Southern California where he is known throughout as quite a hero by anyone who regularly reads local news or hears it on the radio. I regret that I haven't gone to one of his talks. He travels all around So. CA giving talks.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, I wanted to listen to this all in one sitting. However, Boyle has also some profound thoughts in spirituality and theology interwoven with his tales of working among gangsters. Many times while driving and listening to this, I had to hit the stop button and think for miles about ideas he expressed, fresh ways of thinking about God and our role in the world.


    Any additional comments?

    Anyone working with troubled kids or adults should read or hear this book. Anyone studying the art of storytelling should also.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  • Longing and Belonging: The Complete John O'Donohue Audio Collection

    • ORIGINAL (31 hrs and 17 mins)
    • By John O'Donohue
    • Narrated By John O'Donohue
    Overall
    (95)
    Performance
    (87)
    Story
    (85)

    John O'Donohue was a one-of-a-kind force of nature: a genius with words, a brilliant thinker, and a professional excavator of the soul. In the course of his extraordinary life, this Irish poet and teacher touched the hearts of millions with his unique blend of philosophy, instruction, and spiritual insight. For over a decade, Sounds True had the privilege of working with John, and Longing and Belonging presents the full collection of his recordings for both long-time listeners and those discovering his legacy for the first time.

    Kathryn says: "Finally-- words that describe my inner landscape"
    "My Favorite of All"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Longing and Belonging in three words, what would they be?

    Profound, Spiritual, and Soothing


    What did you like best about this story?

    The author seems to not leave out any aspect of the human experience--childhood, family, faith, culture, society, humor, love, death, et al.
    He was an extremely intelligent man, yet he was also a wonderfully approachable communicator.


    What does John O'Donohue bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Having his work on audio makes all the difference. His voice is so very soothing; I love to just lie in bed after a rough day and listen; it takes away all my stress and gives me a brighter perspective and strength to take on the next day.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Yes, I did react to it strongly, though I am not an emotional person. I play and replay it many, many times because everything he says is so profound that I get more out of the recording each time I hear it, or actually I hear just a part of it at a time (though I do not agree with all of O'Donohue's ideas...I think he went a bit out there at times.) I grew up in a parish staffed by kindly Irish priests, so I think that's part of why I find hearing these recordings very soothing.


    Any additional comments?

    I am a longtime Audible member and of all my dozens and dozens of audio books I've purchased over the years, this is my favorite (and it's a bargain being several great books in one purchase!). I think I will also give it as a gift on St. Patrick's Day. Yes, it is a great gift for a friend who has any Irish heritage or interest in the Irish culture, or for someone who loves poetry and who is also spiritual, or probably for most Catholics, though O'Donohue was a former priest and some of his ideas seem New Age--ironically something he criticized--he still identified with Catholicism, had (a very early) Catholic funeral, and most certainly spoke in a very pastoral manner throughout this set of recordings.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Matt Baglio
    • Narrated By Matt Baglio
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (143)
    Performance
    (92)
    Story
    (94)

    The Rite describes the reality of demonic possession. It also traces the history of exorcism and and treats related topics such as satanic cults and black masses. Since Fr. Thomas was a skeptic and the author is a fact-seeking journalist, this book is more compelling even than the previous best-seller on this topic, The Exorcist.

    VH says: "Excellent"
    "Excellent"
    Overall

    This is an absorbing story, better than The Exorcist, at least from the standpoint of authenticity and documentation of the subject. I later saw the trailer of the film LOOSELY based on this book. While it seems like a good film, it makes major changes to the book. The book, narrated by the author, tells the real journey of a Rome UPI based journalist who started off just wanting to write an article about a new Vatican initiative to train and send off an exorcist to every Catholic diocese. So Baglio befriended and followed the experiences of an American priest undergoing what became a thoroughly life altering transformation from a kind of light hearted Bing Crosby type pastor to one who has witnessed "the dark side" and grown very deeply aware of a reality most of us don't want to even think about. The book does not at all see the Devil behind every corner. Indeed it emphasizes that an exorcism only takes place as a last resort after the analyses of a team of a psychologist, medical doctors, and psychiatrist cannot remedy the symptoms and certain overt paranormal activity takes place. Almost all cases are indeed deemed to be of psychological, not demonic, disturbance. It was really spooky to hear of what medical/head shrinker team members (cited by name and institution) reported witnessing. Though I was spellbound hearing this book, I haven't played again it since because it was a draining experience.

    15 of 15 people found this review helpful

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