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William

My book reviews, except for fiction, will mostly be about the information value of a book.

SAN DIEGO, CA, United States | Member Since 2013

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HELPFUL VOTES
  • 12 reviews
  • 15 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 11 purchased in 2014
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  • All In: The Education of General David Petraeus

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Paula Broadwell, Vernon Loeb
    • Narrated By James Lurie
    Overall
    (51)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (37)

    General David Petraeus is the most transformative leader the American military has seen since the generation of Marshall. In All In, military expert Paul Broadwell examines Petraeus's career, his intellectual development as a military officer, and his impact on the U.S. military.

    Jean says: "The scholar general"
    "Average"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I did not find this book very interesting and don't feel I learnt much about General Petraeus.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • George F. Kennan: An American Life

    • UNABRIDGED (31 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By John Lewis Gaddis
    • Narrated By Malcolm Hilgartner
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (62)
    Performance
    (51)
    Story
    (50)

    Drawing on extensive interviews with George Kennan and exclusive access to his archives, an eminent scholar of the Cold War delivers a revelatory biography of its troubled mastermind. This is a landmark work of history and biography that reveals the vast influence and rich inner landscape of a life that both mirrored and shaped the century it spanned.

    Amazon Customer says: "Kennan: a man who needs to be studied"
    "We need the benefit of George Kennan's wisdom"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I had known nothing about George Kennan before I read this book. I feel much more informed of Mr. Kennan the person, diplomat, policy adviser and teacher. George Kennan by John Lewis Gaddis is a very well written book that all should read for knowledge, and because it is relevant to the challenges we are facing today with the Russian relationship. I hope that some folks at State and the White House are dusting off copies of the Long Telegram, the Foreign Policy article by X, and the report by Task Force A of the Solarium project.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Going Home to Glory: A Memoir of Life with Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961-1969

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By David Eisenhower, Julie Nixon Eisenhower
    • Narrated By Arthur Morey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (10)
    Story
    (10)

    After President Dwight D. Eisenhower left office in 1961, he retired to a farm in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Living next door was his teenage grandson, David; they would be neighbors for the rest of the decade. Based on personal stories, letters, diaries, and the reminiscences of Eisenhower’s closest friends, Going Home to Glory is both an intimate chronicle of the elder statesman’s final years and a coming of age story.

    Ken says: "Wow - Living History - Right Before Our Eyes"
    "Gives you a more complete understanding of Ike"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    For the reader that is new to Dwight Eisenhower, I suggest reading Going Home to Glory before reading any other Dwight Eisenhower biographies or memoirs. The knowledge learned from this book will make other biographies, and Dwight Eisenhower’s own memoirs, richer. In addition to providing insight to Dwight Eisenhower the person, Going Home to Glory is a well written account of the poignant relationship between grandfather and grandson.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Berlin 1961: Kennedy, Khrushchev, and the Most Dangerous Place on Earth

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Frederick Kempe
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (47)
    Performance
    (33)
    Story
    (34)

    A former Wall Street Journal editor and the current president and CEO of the Atlantic Council, Frederick Kempe draws on recently released documents and personal interviews to re-create the powder keg that was 1961 Berlin. In Cold War Berlin, the United States and the Soviet Union stand nose to nose, with the possibility of nuclear war just one misstep away.

    theenglishmajor says: "I am scared in retrospect"
    "Practical information we can use today"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of Berlin 1961 to be better than the print version?

    They are both good.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Berlin 1961?

    Everything was memorable.


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

    Yes. This compares well with his other performances. I wish Paul Hecht could read all books.


    If you could rename Berlin 1961, what would you call it?

    I wouldn't rename this book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By Robert M. Gates
    • Narrated By George Newbern, Robert M. Gates
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (813)
    Performance
    (726)
    Story
    (726)

    From the former secretary of defense, a strikingly candid, vivid account of serving Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. When Robert M. Gates received a call from the White House, he thought he'd long left Washington politics behind: After working for six presidents in both the CIA and the National Security Council, he was happily serving as president of Texas A&M University. But when he was asked to help a nation mired in two wars and to aid the troops doing the fighting, he answered what he felt was the call of duty.

    Jean says: "Yoda speaks"
    "Excellent and informative book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War?

    That I know much more than I did before reading Duty.


    What other book might you compare Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War to and why?

    I'm reading Crusade in Europe and I think that book is analogous.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    No favorite scene. I just don't think this way when reading historical works.


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

    Robert Gates concern that his judgment was impaired by his deep concern for the welfare of our troops.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • President Reagan: The Triumph of Imagination

    • UNABRIDGED (25 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Richard Reeves
    • Narrated By George K. Wilson
    Overall
    (30)
    Performance
    (9)
    Story
    (9)

    President Reagan: The Triumph of Imagination is the story of an accomplished politician, a bold, even reckless leader, a gambler, a man who imagined an American past and an American future, and made them real. He is a man of ideas who changed the world for better or worse, a man who understands that words are often more important than deeds.

    Matt says: "GREAT Narration, Good Book"
    "Balanced Biography of Ronal Reagan"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up President Reagan in three words, what would they be?

    I have a new and more Informed Admiration President Reagan


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    President Reagan


    Which scene was your favorite?

    I enjoyed the entire book. I have no favorite scene.


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

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • FDR

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Jean Edward Smith
    • Narrated By Marc Cashman
    Overall
    (185)
    Performance
    (101)
    Story
    (101)

    One of today's premier biographers has written a modern, comprehensive, indeed ultimate book on the epic life of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. This is a portrait painted in broad strokes and fine details. We see how Roosevelt's restless energy, fierce intellect, personal magnetism, and ability to project effortless grace permitted him to master countless challenges throughout his life.

    Danny D. says: "Excellent Bio"
    "Excellent Book"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you consider the audio edition of FDR to be better than the print version?

    No. I like them both for different reasons. Research requires the print version. Since I drive a lot, the audio version is enjoyable and informative.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favorite character was FDR. Because, that is the reason I read the book.


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

    No


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

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • JFK Has Been Shot: A Parkland Hospital Surgeon Speaks Out

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Charles A. Crenshaw, Jens Hansen, J. Gary Shaw
    • Narrated By James C. Lewis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (19)
    Performance
    (17)
    Story
    (16)

    On November 22, 1963, Dr. Charles Crenshaw, an accomplished surgeon, tried to save John F. Kennedy's life - and then days later, the life of the alleged assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald. His gripping, firsthand account contradicts the Warren Commission and years of public misperception, and illuminates a chapter in American history long cloaked in conspiracy. Writing with eye-opening immediacy, Dr. Crenshaw takes listeners into the emergency room to share the critical events at Parkland Hospital as he lived them.

    William says: "Too much inflammatory language"
    "Too much inflammatory language"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes.

    For me, the main issue raised by Dr. Crenshaw is the actual wounds to President Kennedy’s body. Dr. Crenshaw’s eyewitness account needs unqualified corroboration from the other doctors and nurses in the operating room at the time. Clear, concise, and unqualified corroboration will place the Bethesda autopsy results in doubt and require an investigation. Unfortunately, as Dr. Crenshaw pointed out, and there is a historical record of, the Federal, State, and Local law enforcement authorities allowed contamination of the crime scene, pollution of the physical evidence, and improper handling of the victim (President Kennedy). Because of these egregious mistakes we will probably never know the truth of what happened.I do think the Warren Commission was proving a theory they had already decided was fact.


    Would you recommend JFK Has Been Shot to your friends? Why or why not?

    I do recommend this book. The reader (or listener) just needs to ignore the inflammatory language and listen for the issue and testimony.


    Which character – as performed by James C. Lewis – was your favorite?

    Unimportant and irrelevant.


    Was JFK Has Been Shot worth the listening time?

    Yes. Fortunately, it was mostly brief and too the point.


    Any additional comments?

    Worth reading

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Eisenhower in War and Peace

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Jean Edward Smith
    • Narrated By Paul Hecht
    Overall
    (269)
    Performance
    (224)
    Story
    (222)

    Author of the best-seller FDR, Jean Edward Smith is a master of the presidential biography. Setting his sights on Dwight D. Eisenhower, Smith delivers a rich account of Eisenhower’s life using previously untapped primary sources. From the military service in WWII that launched his career to the shrewd political decisions that kept America out of wars with the Soviet Union and China, Smith reveals a man who never faltered in his dedication to serving America, whether in times of war or peace.

    Keith Storrs says: "Great book to get to know Ike"
    "My favorite biography so far"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What made the experience of listening to Eisenhower in War and Peace the most enjoyable?

    From this biography, we learn about Dwight Eisenhower the person, soldier and politician. We learn plenty practical ideas for being successful in our own personal and professional lives. Paul Hecht’s presentation is just excellent.


    What other book might you compare Eisenhower in War and Peace to and why?

    Richard Labunski’s James Madison and the Struggle for the Bill of Rights is, in my opinion, much like Jean Edward Smith’s Eisenhower biography. Like the Eisenhower biography, we learn about James Madison the person, politician, and statesman. I read this book, so I cannot comment on the narrator presentation.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    There is no particular scene that stood out; the entire book stands out in my mind.


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

    The entire book moved me. Dwight Eisenhower is a person I wish I’d known personally.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • No Higher Honor: A Memoir of My Years in Washington

    • UNABRIDGED (28 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Condoleezza Rice
    • Narrated By Condoleezza Rice
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (170)
    Performance
    (144)
    Story
    (146)

    A native of Birmingham, Alabama who overcame the racism of the Civil Rights era to become a brilliant academic and expert on foreign affairs, Rice distinguished herself as an advisor to George W. Bush during the 2000 presidential campaign. Once Bush was elected, she served as his chief adviser on national-security issues – a job whose duties included harmonizing the relationship between the Secretaries of State and Defense.

    J. Chronowski says: "Facinating stories from inside Bush's White House"
    "Excellent and detailed"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does No Higher Honor rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    It is one of my favorite books so far.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of No Higher Honor?

    More of a memorable tug of war between Don Rumsfeld/Dick Cheney and Condoleezza Rice.Though "thousand of tactical mistakes..." was pretty humorous.


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

    No


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

    No


    Any additional comments?

    Read Secretary Rice's book, General McChrystal's book, and Chris Kyle's book to get a perspective on the Iraq War from very different viewpoints.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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