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kcams

  • 9
  • reviews
  • 23
  • helpful votes
  • 32
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  • King Lear: Crisis of a Dysfunctional Man

  • By: Richard Shaw
  • Narrated by: Lori L. Parker
  • Length: 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars 1
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars 1
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars 1

This book is a study of the decline and fall of a powerful man and his family. The TV series Empire embodies themes similar to those in King Lear, with some extra creative material, which makes it a hip-hop version of King Lear. When you hear King Lear and watch the show Empire, you will be impressed with its Shakespearean connection.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Don't!

  • By kcams on 06-19-18

Don't!

Overall
1 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-19-18

I shall return this, but want to warn others who may be researching Lear as I am and are tempted to try something unreviewed. If you read Bloom, say, or Shapiro on Lear, and then try this, you'll be aghast. The thoughts are dull-witted and shallow, but they do match the writer's style. His writing would bore a fourth grader even though he's obviously aiming for adults. What he presents as insights are perfectly exemplified by the narrator, who pronounces "Goneril" as though the name were a sexually transmitted disease, and turns "Gloucester" into three syllables: glough - chess - ter. Thank god Will named the brothers Edgar and Edmund! I can't imagine how "Aguecheek" would come out. This whole thing - whatever it is - is an embarrassment to Shakespearean study. How someone chose to include it Audible's offerings is beyond me.

  • The Making of the Atomic Bomb

  • 25th Anniversary Edition
  • By: Richard Rhodes
  • Narrated by: Holter Graham
  • Length: 37 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,539
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,428
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,422

Here for the first time, in rich human, political, and scientific detail, is the complete story of how the bomb was developed, from the turn-of-the-century discovery of the vast energy locked inside the atom to the dropping of the first bombs on Japan. Few great discoveries have evolved so swiftly - or have been so misunderstood. From the theoretical discussions of nuclear energy to the bright glare of Trinity, there was a span of hardly more than 25 years.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow... Grade A+ ... Exceptional.

  • By Amazon Customer on 03-15-16

Excellent information terribly read

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-24-16

The vast history that Rhodes covers in order to help us understand how the bomb came about is detailed and clear. His achievement is remarkable. However, the narrator mispronounces so many well know names and places that I was constantly distracted. Too, he seems unable to read a complex sentence as one thought; rather, he breaks many sentences into small parts, each with a full stop, so when I thought a sentence had ended, suddenly he'd add a continuation of the author's thought. Listening becomes like bobbing up and down in a row boat on a choppy sea, so your sense of forward progress is excruciatingly minimal.

  • Razzle Dazzle

  • The Battle for Broadway
  • By: Michael Riedel
  • Narrated by: Peter Berkrot
  • Length: 16 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 106
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 98
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 97

Razzle Dazzle is a provocative, no-holds-barred narrative account of the people, money, and power that reinvented an iconic quarter of New York City, turning its gritty back alleys and sex shops into the glitzy, dazzling Great White Way - and bringing a crippled New York from the brink of bankruptcy to its glittering glory.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Razzle Dazzle does Dazzle

  • By Mary Hudson on 11-17-15

Mediocre presentation of fascinating material

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-21-15

If you are interested in theatre, Riedel's book will broaden your knowledge, and your stock of after-dinner tales. He presents two histories in one. The first is of the business people of the theatre, those who provide the money for the art while making money from the art. The second is of their productions, a concise survey of those stagings, mostly musicals, that created Broadway as we now know it and of the people who created the stagings. Both are presented in a crisp, journalistic style, often even gossipy, that makes almost no attempt to evaluated the artistic achievements of these productions but concentrates on the money, maneuvering, and manipulation that got them mounted, and how they made and lost astonishing fortunes while transforming the city of New York.
How musicals dominate Broadway is reflected in his attention, perhaps of necessity, and if you expect to learn much of anything about significant plays on Broadway - save a lengthy and fascinating description of the importance of Equus and Nickleby to the Schubert fortunes - you'll be disappointed. Once he gets past Nickleby, I can't remember his talking at any length about a play, though his hopes for future choreographers is worth his time.
More significant an irritation is the narration. The narrator is one of those breathless "I don't trust the words to be exciting, so I will make them exciting" readers who forces emphasis and significance onto words, like a library reader trying to force small children to enjoy a book. Then too, his attempts to pronounce some words - 'sui generis' as "sue -EE gen-AIR-is - becomes more of a problem when he mispronounces the name of a significant person.
Sill, I speeded him up and finished the book, glad to have the information. Reidel's accomplishment is to make quite clear why we call Broadway's version of theatre "show biz."

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Guns at Last Light

  • The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945
  • By: Rick Atkinson
  • Narrated by: L. J. Ganser
  • Length: 32 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 833
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 763
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 762

It is the 20th century's unrivaled epic: At a staggering price, the United States and its allies liberated Europe and vanquished Hitler. In the first two volumes of his best-selling Liberation Trilogy, Rick Atkinson recounted the history of how the American-led coalition fought its way from North Africa and Italy to the threshold of victory. Now he tells the most dramatic story of all - the titanic battle in Western Europe. D-Day marked the commencement of the war's final campaign, and Atkinson's astonishingly fresh account of that enormous gamble sets the pace for the masterly narrative that follows.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Well Written Overview

  • By David I. Williams on 05-25-13

Wonderful research, but where did it happen?

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-13-14

The author's scholarship and style is commendable. His book is an insightful, moving, and detailed account of these great moments in world history. But it is history. And history is linked to geography. The narrator phrases clearly but too often leaves you with no idea where these events take place because the proper pronunciation of too many of these foreign place names escapes him entirely. This production is sinfully sloppy. Do listen to the book, but check with a map and an audible source of foreign place names or your friends will laugh should you discuss what you've learned. And you will learn a lot.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Fool

  • A Novel
  • By: Christopher Moore
  • Narrated by: Euan Morton
  • Length: 8 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,519
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,239
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,261

Pocket has been Lear's cherished fool for years. So naturally Pocket is at his brainless, elderly liege's side when Lear demands that his kids swear to him their undying love and devotion. Of course Goneril and Regan are only too happy to brownnose Dad. But Cordelia believes that her father's request is kind of...well...stupid, and her blunt honesty ends up costing her her rightful share of the kingdom and earns her a banishment to boot.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Mr Moore does it again.

  • By Michael on 02-17-09

More fun than a barrel of...never mind

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-26-14

I don't believe I've used five stars across the board before, but whatever quibbles would barely knock a point off any. Not only is this scandalously funny, I mean Rabelaisian, but it is delightfully allusive, irreverent, and clever to the point of adding not only wit but insight to Lear no matter how well you think you know the play. Too, I'm rarely fond of narrators making funny voices, but Morton dares and nails the characters, to my mind's eye. Plus he does sardonic marvelously well. Should I ever get a chance to direct Lear, Moore and Morton have given me some wonderful ideas.

  • The Life of William Shakespeare

  • A Critical Biography
  • By: Lois Potter
  • Narrated by: J. Paul Guimont
  • Length: 22 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 6
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 5

Think you know Shakespeare? Think again… Was a real skull used in the first performance of Hamlet? Were Shakespeare's plays Elizabethan blockbusters? How much do we really know about the playwright's life? And what of his notorious relationship with his wife? Exploring and exploding 30 popular myths about the great playwright, this illuminating new book evaluates all the evidence to show how historical material - or its absence - can be interpreted and misinterpreted

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Academic study hurt by narrator

  • By kcams on 01-05-14

Academic study hurt by narrator

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-05-14

Potter's scholarship and breadth of reference is informative and extensive. The book spends more time on detailed critical considerations of the works, including the poems, than on the life but brings contemporary lenses to both. Unfortunately, the narrator emphasizes all the academic qualities of the prose with an overly enunciated, staccato reading that sounds just short of robotic, except when he is reading from the works, when his phrasing, remarkably, often becomes smooth and coherent. Quotes, too, are in a range of arbitrary accents that distract. He appears to have no acquaintance with the period at all, which results in pronunciations - shire rhyming with fire, Henslowe with now, Navarre in three syllables, etc.- that can only be generously called not standard. And "roman a clef" as "Roman ah cleff" is simply hilarious. The production is poor. You will learn more about Shkspr. You will work hard to do so.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Arguably: Essays by Christopher Hitchens

  • By: Christopher Hitchens
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 28 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,021
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 857
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 844

The first new collection of essays by Christopher Hitchens since 2004, Arguably offers an indispensable key to understanding the passionate and skeptical spirit of one of our most dazzling writers, widely admired for the clarity of his style, a result of his disciplined and candid thinking. Topics range from ruminations on why Charles Dickens was among the best of writers and the worst of men to the enduring legacies of Thomas Jefferson and George Orwell.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Grab it

  • By Davol2449 on 09-02-11

Worth every credit

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-02-12

Two things are remarkable about this audio book.

The first is the quality of the content. Hitchens' mind, evidently, possessed a voracious curiosity, an enormous capacity, and the gift of incisive synthesis. Additionally, he had the ability to articulate this combination with precision and delight.

The second is the rare, to me, ability of the narrator to match the clarity of the prose. He makes no attempt to clarify meaning, merely and intelligently allowing it to come through in the phrasing of the writer's sentences and the shapes of his paragraphs. The result is the clear emergence of both sense and the author's voice.

The listener is very fortunate to find both at once.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Steve Jobs

  • By: Walter Isaacson
  • Narrated by: Dylan Baker
  • Length: 25 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 23,064
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20,284
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 20,248

Based on more than 40 interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting man

  • By Jeanne on 11-13-11

Well worth your time

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-26-12

Jobs' life is a fascinating story, particularly if you're curious about technology. But there's a great deal more than high tech, and Isaacson covers it all efficiently, although other sources hint that he presents a slightly more generous view of Jobs than others might have. His access to Jobs' family is intimate, but time may tell whether it colored an admiring portrait.
The reader has three problems.He occasionally mispronounces common words and some names, so you stop listening for a second to mentally correct what you've heard. He also seems to think he has to make the copy interesting, so it's often as if you're listening to something written with sudden ALL CAPS. Third, he's rarely able to quote someone talking without making them sound as if he or she is whinning. I found I was creating an opinion of a person from how he sounded, not from what he said. When I went back and repeated the quote to myself, I found its effect could be very different. No doubt Jobs and Eisner and Ellison, et. al., could complain, but surely they could be simply declarative more often.
He does not, fortunately, get so between you and the book as to prevent both following it and enjoying the content. Given the impact of Jobs on our culture and the details of his story, this is a biography well worth reading.

  • History of the World, Updated

  • By: J.M. Roberts
  • Narrated by: Frederick Davidson
  • Length: 54 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 501
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 231
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 227

In the History of the World, Updated, J. M. Roberts has revised his monumental previous work, History of the World, taking into account the great range of discoveries that have altered our views on everything from early civilizations to post-Cold War globalism. Large portions of text have been rewritten, addressing events as recent as the relationship between the Arab and Western worlds in the wake of the September 11 attacks.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Comprehensive world history

  • By Alan Rither on 03-31-07

Useful information marred by narration

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-09-08

This is a valuable, albeit basically Eurocentric, history, that goes into sufficient detail to allow you feel familar with each epoch. So far, it has avoided any overtly political agendas and over speculation.
Had I know the reader was David Case, however, I would never have purchased it. For this book he uses a pseudonym, but his flaws remain.He is such a lazy, apparently undirected or produced - certainly uncorrected - reader that I swore never to listen to him again. Some may mistake his accent for a sign of literacy, but to call his pronunciations "non-standard" is generous, whether one looks for them in British or American usage. Further, he seems often unable to distinguish between a comma and a full stop, leaving a closely listening reader to repeat the sentence in the mind, adjusting the dependancy of clauses simply to make sense of what one has just heard.
While I recommend what Roberts has to say, I find myself irritatingly distracted by who is saying it. Buy the book, but be prepared to work far harder at listening than a competent reader would permit.

14 of 21 people found this review helpful