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Nick

Chicago, IL, United States
  • 18
  • reviews
  • 5
  • helpful votes
  • 72
  • ratings
  • The Sultans

  • By: Noel Barber
  • Narrated by: Frederick Davidson
  • Length: 10 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 38
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 35
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 33

This brilliantly readable work of history tells the bizarre story of the Ottoman Empire as seen through the lives of its extravagant and tyrannical sultans. With their absolute power, their love of pomp, and their overwhelming venality and corruption, rarely has a great empire been ruled by such grotesque and awesome figures. For 400 years, they fought wars, terrorized their subjects, made Turkey into a great empire, and then allowed her to decline into ostentatious and impotent decay.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • One of the indispensables for several reasons:

  • By David on 07-17-14

Excellent

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

Reviewed: 01-17-19

Really loved it and the narrator was perfect. Highly recommend for anyone interested in the Ottoman Empire.

  • Constantine the Emperor

  • By: David Potter
  • Narrated by: Phil Holland
  • Length: 11 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 47
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 40
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 40

This year Christians worldwide will celebrate the 1700th anniversary of Constantine's conversion and victory at the Battle of the Milvian Bridge. No Roman emperor had a greater impact on the modern world than did Constantine. The reason is not simply that he converted to Christianity but that he did so in a way that brought his subjects along after him. Indeed, this major new biography argues that Constantine's conversion is but one feature of a unique administrative style that enabled him to take control of an empire beset by internal rebellions and external threats by Persians and Goths.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • In this sign thou shalt conquer!

  • By Darwin8u on 06-11-18

Really dull, avoid

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

Reviewed: 05-16-16

I love history and I've powered through many a dry narrative over the last few decades. However, 'Constantine' takes the cake. The only way the book could have been made worse was with a terribly dry narrator. And that's just what this audiobook has, alas. Avoid.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Manhunt

  • The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln's Killer
  • By: James L. Swanson
  • Narrated by: Richard Thomas
  • Length: 9 hrs and 6 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,202
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 511
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 523

The murder of Abraham Lincoln set off the greatest manhunt in American history, the pursuit and capture of John Wilkes Booth. From April 14 to April 26, 1865, the assassin led Union cavalry and detectives on a wild 12-day chase through the streets of Washington, D.C., across the swamps of Maryland, and into the forests of Virginia, while the nation, still reeling from the just-ended Civil War, watched in horror and sadness.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fascinating!

  • By F. Elizabeth Hauser on 12-14-08

Meh.

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

Interesting topic, but detailing each of those 12 days minute-by-minute (it seems) was occasionally tedious. That said, still good book for the most part. If you don't love history though - probably should avoid.

  • Destiny of the Republic

  • A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President
  • By: Candice Millard
  • Narrated by: Paul Michael
  • Length: 9 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,442
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,977
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,970

James A. Garfield may have been the most extraordinary man ever elected president. Born into abject poverty, he rose to become a wunderkind scholar, a Civil War hero, and a renowned and admired reformist congressman. Nominated for president against his will, he engaged in a fierce battle with the corrupt political establishment. But four months after his inauguration, a deranged office seeker tracked Garfield down and shot him in the back. But the shot didn’t kill Garfield. The drama of what hap­pened subsequently is a powerful story of a nation in tur­moil.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Marvelous, Magnificent, Millard

  • By Mel on 02-08-12

Really enjoyed.

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

Honestly didn't expect much - but thoroughly enjoyed it. Great book about a president I knew little about - for the obvious reason of what the book is about, of course.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Girl Who Played with Fire

  • The Millennium Series, Book 2
  • By: Stieg Larsson, Reg Keeland - translator
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 18 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 27,538
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 16,744
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16,762

Mikael Blomkvist, crusading journalist and publisher of the magazine Millennium, has decided to publish a story exposing an extensive sex trafficking operation between Eastern Europe and Sweden, implicating well-known and highly placed members of Swedish society, business, and government. On the eve of publication, the two reporters responsible for the story are brutally murdered.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • irritatingly engrossing

  • By David on 03-16-10

It's like the song that goes on and on . . . .

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

Fun plot that will make a great movie (again), but where was Stieg Larsson's editor? It just goes on and on and on . . . .

  • The Patriarch

  • The Remarkable Life and Turbulent Times of Joseph P. Kennedy
  • By: David Nasaw
  • Narrated by: Malcolm Hillgartner
  • Length: 30 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 491
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 423
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 417

Joseph Patrick Kennedy - whose life spanned the First World War, the Roaring Twenties, the Great Depression, the Second World War, and the Cold War - was the patriarch of America’s greatest political dynasty. The father of President John F. Kennedy and Senators Robert and Edward Kennedy, 'Joe' Kennedy was an indomitable and elusive figure whose dreams of advancement for his nine children were matched only by his extraordinary personal ambition and shrewd financial skills.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderfully entertaining and engaging

  • By Robert on 03-29-13

Interesting, but could use some editing.

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

Incredibly interesting overall, but at 31 hours it could really use some editing. Also, I kept getting the impression that this was the white-washed version of his life - the version his family would have no objections to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich

  • A History of Nazi Germany
  • By: William L. Shirer
  • Narrated by: Grover Gardner
  • Length: 57 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,594
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,148
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,129

Since its publication in 1960, William L. Shirer’s monumental study of Hitler’s German empire has been widely acclaimed as the definitive record of the 20th century’s blackest hours. The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich offers an unparalleled and thrillingly told examination of how Adolf Hitler nearly succeeded in conquering the world. With millions of copies in print around the globe, it has attained the status of a vital and enduring classic.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Held my interest for 57 hours and 13 minutes

  • By Jonnie on 11-08-10

Excellent, but terrifying.

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

Truly excellent book. While incredibly long with some passages that go on and on, it's utterly fascinating. And how one party could take over the minds and wills of an entire country's population is nothing short of terrifying. Strongly recommended. The narration is also perfect.

  • Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore

  • A Novel
  • By: Robin Sloan
  • Narrated by: Ari Fliakos
  • Length: 7 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 9,470
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,665
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 8,645

The Great Recession has shuffled Clay Jannon out of his life as a San Francisco Web-design drone - and serendipity, sheer curiosity, and the ability to climb a ladder like a monkey has landed him a new gig working the night shift at Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. But after just a few days on the job, Clay begins to realize that this store is even more curious than the name suggests. There are only a few customers, but they come in repeatedly and never seem to actually buy anything....

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A light, fun, easy listen

  • By january on 11-04-12

Nothing special.

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

First half was quite good, but then it fizzled and died. The cutesy aside jokes were funny initially - then became really annoying. Also, the sudden puppy-dog love between the main characters was nauseating. There are many better books.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • We Were the Mulvaneys

  • By: Joyce Carol Oates
  • Narrated by: J. Todd Adams
  • Length: 6 hrs and 56 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 161
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 53
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 55

The Mulvaneys are blessed by all that makes life sweet: a hardworking father, a loving mother, three fine sons, and a bright, pretty daughter. But an incident occurs on Valentine's Day, 1976 - hushed up in the rural town of Mt. Ephraim, New York and never spoken of in the Mulvaney home - that rends the fabric of their family life.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Doesn't ring true

  • By Moire on 09-12-03

Possibly my least favorite download.

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

The story was interesting, but just not good - it was like listening to a mediocre made-for-TV movie. Also, the narration was frustrating - men doing the voice of multiple female characters is hard (as is the reverse), but something about J. Todd Adams as Marianne and her mother Corinne was really difficult to listen to.

  • Drift

  • The Unmooring of American Military Power
  • By: Rachel Maddow
  • Narrated by: Rachel Maddow
  • Length: 7 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,134
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,922
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,919

Rachel Maddow's Drift argues that we've drifted away from America's original ideals and become a nation weirdly at peace with perpetual war, with all the financial and human costs that entails. Sensible yet provocative, dead serious yet seriously funny, Drift will reinvigorate a "loud and jangly" political debate about how, when, and where to apply America's strength and power - and who gets to make those decisions.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Half the National Debt?

  • By Dolf on 04-07-12

Biased, but great listen.

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

Reviewed: 09-23-13

Very biased, but still incredibly interesting. Particularly relevant recently with President Obama asking for Congress to decide on military action in Syria versus taking unilateral military action based on presidential prerogative alone. Ms. Maddow was excellent as well. Major flaw: I consider myself quite left-leaning and even I was annoyed with some of the biased presentations of major players (Reagan came off as an incredibly arrogant, possibly evil man with every intention looked at negatively while the opposite treatment was given to Tip O'Neill who was portrayed as a political angel with only the best intentions at heart).