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charlotte, NC, United States

  • 4 reviews
  • 4 ratings
  • 6 titles in library
  • 2 purchased in 2015

  • What Went Wrong: Western Impact and Middle Eastern Response

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 12 mins)
    • By Bernard Lewis
    • Narrated By John Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    For many centuries, the world of Islam was at the forefront of human achievement: the foremost military and economic power in the world, the leader in the arts and sciences of civilization. Christian Europe, a remote land beyond its northwestern frontier, was seen as an outer darkness of barbarism and unbelief from which there was nothing to learn or to fear.

    Jason says: "Great place to start"

    The narrative was lush and the anecdotes enthralling. The information dense style requires multiple listening for full absorption. I had trouble with the time lines as the narrative whipsawed across centuries, leaving me with no full understanding of what happened when. The author switches between saying for example "in the sixteen hundreds" to saying " in the seventeenth century" which is saying the same thing but requires a mental switch on my part in order to follow. The mongol conquest of the fourteenth century was not covered at all. This is more than a minor omission. I now feel the need to go get another book that covers this topic. This book in totality is very informative if a little clumsy. It has the feel of an exceedingly smart author, unaccustomed to dealing with lay people. The treatment of the topic was very well balanced and has no hint of partisanship, nationalism or religious bent. The author is blunt without bludgeoning.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Barbara Demick
    • Narrated By Karen White
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    Barbara Demick's Nothing to Envy follows the lives of six North Koreans over fifteen years - a chaotic period that saw the death of Kim Il-sung and the unchallenged rise to power of his son, Kim Jong-il, and the devastation of a far-ranging famine that killed one-fifth of the population. Taking us into a landscape never before seen, Demick brings to life what it means to be an average Korean citizen, living under the most repressive totalitarian regime today.

    Gohar says: "The man who wants to be GOD"
    "Yes Five stars"

    Not for the faint of heart. This book is like ice cold water pored into your warm morning bed. Like smelling salt to the nose. The inhumanity is so palpable it's like watching a holocaust film. You can only feel so deep then you go into the realm of the numb. The shameless irony of the North Korean regime feels like a kind of insanity. Like an insane class is running the country. If this were fiction it wouldn't be worth reading as it would be too fantastical. I have to recover from the first listening before listening again but listen again I must. Get a box of Kleenex and keep handy. Ironically, this may be the antidote for personal depression.

    15 of 16 people found this review helpful
  • Poorly Made in China: An Insider's Account of the Tactics Behind China's Production Game

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Paul Midler
    • Narrated By Paul Midler
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    It was a world gone wrong, one in which manufacturers thought little of manipulating product quality levels in order to save the smallest amounts, where savvy foreign business leaders were made to feel in control while they were taken for a ride by their partners, where entire manufacturing facilities sometimes vanished right into thin air... Welcome to Poorly Made in China!

    John Mckenzie says: "Hours of jaw dropping amazment"
    "Must read before shopping"

    What a great story. The author leaves nothing unanswered. I feel like I took a trip to China with a friend that knows his way around. Anyone who plans to be alive in the next few decades should read this. This book is not just for those planning to do business in China but for anyone who use manufactured goods at all. I can't wait for a part two.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Long for This World: The Strange Science of Immortality

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Jonathan Weiner
    • Narrated By Jim Meskimen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    In recent years, the dream of eternal youth has started to look like more than just a dream. In the 20th century alone, life expectancy increased by more than 30 years—almost as much time as humans have gained in the whole span of human existence. Today a motley array of scientists, researchers, and entrepreneurs believe that another, bigger leap is at hand—that human immortality is not only possible, but attainable in our own time.

    Harry says: "Educational and entertaining"
    "Maybe another book"

    You may love the narrating style but I hated it. The reader changes his voice to mimic the actual speaker. For example, Woody Allen actually has his vocal affect and so on. But the story is another story. The author had a hard time being neutral to his characters. He seemed to dislike the main contributor. The story alternates between unbearable fluff and dense esoterica. To be fair, there are passages that even I could understand. I hoped there would be more focus on the issue of genetic errors over time and what approach science would take to address this. Additionally, the role of telomeres in aging was not addressed to any satisfactory level. On the overall this book left me on the edge of my seat. I am exited to see the breakthroughs that's coming down the pike. We will have to completely re access what it means to be human. These advances will inevitably ask more questions that the questions they answer.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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