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Bonnie H. Bennett

Minneapolis, MN United States
  • 10
  • reviews
  • 30
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  • 299
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  • The Partly Cloudy Patriot

  • By: Sarah Vowell
  • Narrated by: Sarah Vowell, Conan O'Brien, Seth Green, and others
  • Length: 5 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,250
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,007
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,006

Sarah Vowell travels through the American past and investigates the dusty, bumpy roads of her own life. Her essays confront a wide range of subjects, icons, and historical moments: Ike, Teddy Roosevelt, and Bill Clinton; Canadian Mounties and German Filmmakers; Tom Cruise and Buffy the Vampire Slayer; twins and nerds; the Gettysburg Address, the State of the Union, and George W. Bush's inauguration. The result is an engrossing audiobook, capturing Vowell's memorable wit and her keen social commentary.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • One of the best surprises on AUDIBLE.COM!!

  • By Doggy Bird on 04-14-04

Great book - wonderful connection with the author!

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

Reviewed: 04-11-16

I loved hearing her voice, her intonation & humor! I wouldn't ever buy a book by her without her being the reader!

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Civilization

  • The West and the Rest
  • By: Niall Ferguson
  • Narrated by: Niall Ferguson
  • Length: 13 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,706
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 1,460
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,450

The rise to global predominance of Western civilization is the single most important historical phenomenon of the past five hundred years. All over the world, an astonishing proportion of people now work for Western-style companies, study at Western-style universities, vote for Western-style governments, take Western medicines, wear Western clothes, and even work Western hours. Yet six hundred years ago the petty kingdoms of Western Europe seemed unlikely to achieve much more than perpetual internecine warfare. It was Ming China or Ottoman Turkey that had the look of world civilizations.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Thoughtful analysis of the ascendancy of the West.

  • By Patrick on 05-25-13

Niall Ferguson is a WONDERFUL reader!

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

Reviewed: 07-17-15

Would you listen to Civilization again? Why?

I've enjoyed other books by Niall Ferguson. He is lucid and weaves an interesting story out of dry facts and figures. I will listen to his work any time. BUT, if he reads his work himself it is EXTRAORDINARILY BETTER! He brings the passion of his words, the nuance of his humor, and the gift of his insights to light. Please: more of this!

Who was your favorite character and why?

NA

Which scene was your favorite?

NA

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

YES!

Any additional comments?

More books read by this author please!

  • And the Mountains Echoed

  • By: Khaled Hosseini
  • Narrated by: Khaled Hosseini, Navid Negahban, Shohreh Aghdashloo
  • Length: 14 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 4,242
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 3,756
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,746

Khaled Hosseini, the number-one New York Times best-selling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, has written a new novel about how we love, how we take care of one another, and how the choices we make resonate through generations.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Does the End Justify the Means

  • By FanB14 on 05-24-13

Dr. Hosseini Does it Again! Yeah!

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

Reviewed: 07-23-13

If you could sum up And the Mountains Echoed in three words, what would they be?

The story of several families, over decades, told by various members points of view.

What did you like best about this story?

I liked how an ancillary character introduced in one chapter would become a narrator in subsequent chapters. I liked figuring out who was talking, their age, location and circumstances.

Any additional comments?

In "Kite Runner" Dr. Hosseini managed to interest me in a story of his homeland. In "A Thousand Splendid Suns," he impressed me with his ability to write convincing female characters. In this novel I RELISHED the variety of narrator voices, the intricacy of the story, and the profiles of humanity.

  • The Information

  • A History, a Theory, a Flood
  • By: James Gleick
  • Narrated by: Rob Shapiro
  • Length: 16 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,398
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,011
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,017

James Gleick, the author of the best sellers Chaos and Ge­nius, brings us his crowning work: a revelatory chronicle that shows how information has become the modern era’s defining quality—the blood, the fuel, the vital principle of our world.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant book, heroic reader, better in print?

  • By Ethan M. on 03-12-11

This is my book of the decade!

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

Reviewed: 07-22-13

Where does The Information rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is among the top three (of several hundred).

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Information?

The talking drums stuck with me. I have told that story over and over.

  • No Ordinary Time

  • Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II
  • By: Doris Kearns Goodwin
  • Narrated by: Nelson Runger
  • Length: 39 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,174
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,058
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,054

No Ordinary Time describes how the isolationist and divided United States of 1940 was unified under the extraordinary leadership of Franklin Roosevelt to become the preeminent economic and military power in the world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great at 1.5 speed

  • By Brett on 01-04-13

This reader detracted from this book for me.

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

Reviewed: 07-22-13

Would you try another book from Doris Kearns Goodwin and/or Nelson Runger?

Perhaps. I read it BECAUSE Doris Kearns Goodwin had written it. I've seen her on PBS, and I've always liked her work.

Sadly, Mr. Runger, I will be avoiding your narrations in the future.

What did you like best about this story?

Ms. Goodwin's thorough research.

What didn’t you like about Nelson Runger’s performance?

1. He has a melodromatic style. Remember Gary Owens, the announcer on "Laugh In" who "over did" his narration. Mr. Runger has that style. Sadly, I fear he is not trying to be ironic or comedic as Mr. Owens certainly was.

2. His women, especially Elanor (Elanor Franklin for goodness sake) were thin, wispy, vapid.

3. I finished the whole book. I did not enjoy it, I ENDURED it. The reading was very, very difficult to abide.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • The Better Angels of Our Nature

  • Why Violence Has Declined
  • By: Steven Pinker
  • Narrated by: Arthur Morey
  • Length: 36 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,337
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,802
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,770

We’ve all had the experience of reading about a bloody war or shocking crime and asking, “What is the world coming to?” But we seldom ask, “How bad was the world in the past?” In this startling new book, the best-selling cognitive scientist Steven Pinker shows that the world of the past was much worse. In fact, we may be living in the most peaceable era in our species’ existence.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I'd kill for another book this good

  • By Eric Nicolas Morgan on 11-11-11

Best book of the decade!

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

Reviewed: 04-30-13

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

No, it is far too long.

Any additional comments?

This is my candidate for the best book of the decade. It has a challenging premise that is fully documented with facts and data. I could not believe that a book of such detail, and scientific data could be so gripping in the audio format. I have quoted from the book over and over. I bought a print copy so I could get the charts and footnotes. I loved it!

  • On Intelligence

  • By: Jeff Hawkins, Sandra Blakeslee
  • Narrated by: Jeff Hawkins, Stefan Rudnicki
  • Length: 9 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 2,012
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 843
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 843

Jeff Hawkins, the man who created the PalmPilot, Treo smart phone, and other handheld devices, has reshaped our relationship to computers. Now he stands ready to revolutionize both neuroscience and computing in one stroke, with a new understanding of intelligence itself.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting Introduction to a Fascinating Field

  • By James on 04-14-06

Distracting pronunciation

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-14-10

I find it distracting when words are pronounced wrong.

Here are two:

1. Synapses - I've never heard it pronounced "sigh-naps-es" except in this book.

2. Kluge - I understand that a few folks say Kl-UH-dge, but the cognoscenti I know say kl-oo-ge. Less distracting because if appears less frequently.

4 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • The World Is Flat

  • A Brief History of the 21st Century
  • By: Thomas L. Friedman
  • Narrated by: Oliver Wyman
  • Length: 6 hrs and 19 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 605
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 35
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 37

When scholars write the history of the world 20 years from now, and they come to the chapter "Y2K to March 2004", what will they say was the most crucial development? The attacks on the World Trade Center on 9/11 and the Iraq war? Or the convergence of technology and events that allowed India, China, and so many other countries to become part of the global supply chain for services and manufacturing?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Most important book of the decade

  • By Anthony on 05-08-05

Love the author, hate the reader

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-20-05

I've been an avid listener to Friedman's earlier works. Part of the interest in his work has been the passionate way he developed his theses and the personal touches of his stories. This book has a different reader, and frankly it falls flat with this performance. The material is good, the points are well made, the illustrative stories are memorable, all typical fodder that I've come to expect from Friedman; however, the reader here is trying too hard to put the emPHasis on the right sylLABles, and the performance comes off as contrived and melodramatic in some places, tepid and bland in others. I was truly disappointed by that aspect of the audio book. A colleague who also listened to it gave up less than 1/3 of the way through because he was so put off by the reader. This book is a disappointment.

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Master and Commander

  • Aubrey/Maturin Series, Book 1
  • By: Patrick O'Brian
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 13 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,380
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 954
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 956

This, the first in the series of Jack Aubrey novels, establishes the friendship between Captain Aubrey, R.N., and Stephen Maturin, ship's surgeon and intelligence agent, against the thrilling backdrop of the Napoleonic wars. Details of life aboard a man-of-war in Nelson's navy are faultlessly rendered: the conversational idiom of the officers in the ward room and the men on the lower deck, the food, the floggings, the mysteries of the wind and the rigging.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful for either gender!

  • By Shelly on 05-05-11

Patrick Tull's Narration is much better!

Overall
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-11-05

I have listened to this entire series, some several times. I can't agree more with the reviewer who says that Patrick Tull's naration is far and away much, much better. He breaths life, emotion and individuality into each of the charcters that this rather dryer reading does not. Four stars for a good book, but only four becuase the reading is not up to Tull's quality.

8 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Longitudes & Attitudes

  • Exploring the World After September 11
  • By: Thomas L. Friedman
  • Narrated by: Thomas L. Friedman
  • Length: 5 hrs and 50 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 170
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 29
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 29

In 2002, Thomas L. Friedman won his third Pulitzer Prize "for his clarity of vision, based on extensive reporting, in commenting on the worldwide impact of the terrorist threat" after the attacks of September 11, 2001. This virtually unprecedented recognition underlines Friedman's unique ability to interpret and illuminate the world for American readers clearly, insightfully, and memorably.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Though-provoking and interesting

  • By mosselyn on 08-06-03

Well worth the listen!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-22-03

Excellent! I have been trying to learn more about the Middle East and the tensions related to the region, especially since 9/11. THIS BOOK has uniquely explained many unique insights that were not available in most of the "histories of the Middle East" I could find. Friedman's insignts and analyses (culturally, economically, and politically) are crisp and accessible.

I'm recommending this book to everyone I know!

Thanks Mr. Friedman for your work!

Keep it up!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful