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  • #AskGaryVee

  • One Entrepreneur's Take on Leadership, Social Media, and Self-Awareness
  • By: Gary Vaynerchuk
  • Narrated by: Gary Vaynerchuk, Jack Welch, Dave Ramsey
  • Length: 11 hrs and 37 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 5,637
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5,145
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,105

Gary Vaynerchuk—the inspiring and unconventional entrepreneur who introduced us to the concept of crush it—knows how to get things done, have fun, and be massively successful. A marketing and business genius, Gary had the foresight to go beyond traditional methods and use social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube to reach an untapped audience that continues to grow.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Awesome book

  • By Chris B. on 04-03-18

A lesson in how "Truth to Self" means EVERYTHING!

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

Reviewed: 10-18-16

I'll keep it simple. Gary talks about self-awareness and honestly. That is all this book is, an honest and self-aware examination of life lived. In and of itself, is incredible valuable.

Thanks for sharing Gary!

QotB: You did you and it was fantastic!

  • Thinking, Fast and Slow

  • By: Daniel Kahneman
  • Narrated by: Patrick Egan
  • Length: 20 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,240
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,520
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,430

The guru to the gurus at last shares his knowledge with the rest of us. Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman's seminal studies in behavioral psychology, behavioral economics, and happiness studies have influenced numerous other authors, including Steven Pinker and Malcolm Gladwell. In Thinking, Fast and Slow, Kahneman at last offers his own, first book for the general public. It is a lucid and enlightening summary of his life's work. It will change the way you think about thinking. Two systems drive the way we think and make choices, Kahneman explains....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Already Purchased Two Copies for Friends

  • By Anthony A. on 07-13-13

A book everyone should read.

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

Reviewed: 07-02-15

The performance is that of any dense informational text. So be prepared for that. All potential "drabness" aside. This should basically be required reading in the education system somewhere. It is incredibly impactful to understanding yourself and others.

  • The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

  • By: Michael Chabon
  • Narrated by: David Colacci
  • Length: 26 hrs and 20 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,746
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,406
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,433

It's 1939, in New York City. Joe Kavalier, a young artist who has also been trained in the art of Houdiniesque escape, has just pulled off his greatest feat: smuggling himself out of Hitler's Prague. He's looking to make big money, fast, so that he can bring his family to freedom. His cousin, Brooklyn's own Sammy Clay, is looking for a partner in creating the heroes, stories, and art for the latest novelty to hit the American dreamscape: the comic book. Inspired by their own fantasies, fears, and dreams, they create the Escapist.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Escape From Reality is a Worthy Challenge

  • By Dave on 07-11-12

Adventures of a Fantasy Reader.

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

Reviewed: 06-09-14

Hopefully this gets easier, but I'll preface this review with what I stated in my title. I have read sci-fi/fantasy books almost exclusively. "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay" was my first full foray into Fiction. That being said, I think this was a great intro book for a person of my "type". It was accessible to me, with it's Comic Book and Magic Trick undertones, yet it introduced me to the mixing of non-fiction and fictional events. Which is obviously common in this genre, but was new to me. I would recommend this book to anyone really. It's a solid listen/read.

I was surprised by Chabon, probably mostly related to the fact that I'd never read a book outside of the Fantasy genre before, but I found his command of description entrancing. He obviously had a lot of real life elements that he could use to help him, but it was detailed and familiar in it's presentation. A thing wasn't just a thing, it was almost alive the way he presented it, the lamps, the lights, the sky, all of it. It would be what I might expect a detective "noire" to read like.



  • The Lies of Locke Lamora

  • By: Scott Lynch
  • Narrated by: Michael Page
  • Length: 21 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14,636
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,158
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,131

An orphan's life is harsh---and often short---in the island city of Camorr, built on the ruins of a mysterious alien race. But born with a quick wit and a gift for thieving, Locke Lamora has dodged both death and slavery, only to fall into the hands of an eyeless priest known as Chains---a man who is neither blind nor a priest. A con artist of extraordinary talent, Chains passes his skills on to his carefully selected "family" of orphans---a group known as the Gentlemen Bastards.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Stupendous, but be warned.

  • By Luke A. Reynolds on 11-30-09

The Truth of Lock Lamora

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

Reviewed: 03-28-14

No Nonsense Review:
"The Lies of Locke Lamora" is a hard book to review, particularly in this section, because I liked it so much. I always try to be straight forward and mostly emotionless, but you get what you pay for.

I see no reason why everyone shouldn't enjoy this book. I could see it being a tough read for some. It does feel a little slow in places or like it’s rambling at times, but there is a reason for it. Lynch does not spout information for information’s sake. You’ll learn that lesson quickly. Rather he demands your attention, and careful consideration of the consequences. Should you not have the foresight to savor these moments, you will miss the meal wagon. For your adherence to these demands you will be provided with a peppering of character and world building (that you will be tested on later). You have to earn it but when you do, you will eat fat and happy from the smorgasbord Lynch has prepared for you. The payoff is grand on more than one level.

---

The Details, No Spoilers:
There’s cursing in this book, a lot of it. I bring this up not because it’s terribly surprising. Plenty of books have cursing, but I don’t really ever like it in my fantasy. This was an incredible exception, probably mostly because the situations warrant the spectacularly creative F-bombs and other obscenities found in this book.
So what about the book? I’m not in the habit of in-depth reviews but each character in and of themselves would be wonderful conversation topics. Regardless, I’ll stick the main subjects.

Locke Lamora is the kind of character that, if this book were made into an adequate movie, would instantly garner a Jack Sparrow’d impact on society. I could see people drawing stark parallels between the characters, but that doesn't seem to have happened much and I’m glad for it because it would demean the genius that is the Lamora boy. “Capers” isn't an adequate term for the shenanigans he gets up to. If you ask me “Orchestrations” is far more appropriate, it carries the weight required. You won’t understand this fact, not at first. It will take a few of his schemes before you realize just how grand he is. When the woven threads all pull taunt in the finale, that’s when you’ll see the grand tapestry of the Gentlemen Bastard, in dumbfounded awe. You will beg for more.

Lynch does many things impeccably well, but the thing that will cause me to read this book again and again is very specific. He pays your senses off, as much as his conniving little thieves do to those close to their marks. The more complex the con, the more he bribes you with, and the more the payoff is when the con is put into motion.

That’s all rather grandiose, so I’ll put it simply, he connects moments, phrases, looks, and feelings; everything to each other. You’ll read something and wonder what the point of it all is, and when the point jabs you right in the gut. It will be hard to disguise the pure glee Lynch has just written on your face.

Michael Page. That is a complete statement all its own. I don’t know if this is very well known, but he won an award for his narration of “The Lies of Locke Lamora”. I want to read the story in my own voice one day, but I find it hard to believe that I won’t hear Michael Page’s voices in my head when I do.

Any one of these individual items would have made me appreciate this book, all of them together. Well, makes it hard to give this audio book anything less than 5 stars across the board. Get it, read it, enjoy the hell out of it. You’ll be hard pressed not to.

  • The Name of the Wind

  • (Kingkiller Chronicle, Book 1)
  • By: Patrick Rothfuss
  • Narrated by: Nick Podehl
  • Length: 27 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 67,146
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 61,198
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 61,286

This is a tale of sorrow, a tale of survival, a tale of one man's search for meaning in his universe, and how that search, and the indomitable will that drove it, gave birth to a legend.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wow!

  • By Joanna on 05-10-11

The Legend of Patrick Rothfuss

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

Reviewed: 03-07-14

No Nonsense Review:

"The Name of the Wind" is a tale well worth reading. Rothfuss knows his craft beyond any dispute, as many have said long before me.

Podehl's performance for me started off weak, many of the characters fizzled together. Though, later in the book he excelled beyond my expectations, and I found myself searching for other books narrated by him. This was regardless of the author he was narrating for.

My advice in reading, or listening to this book. Give it the time it needs to complete the read or listen, I do not think you will be disappointed .

---

The Details, No Spoilers:

First a piece of advice, do not go into this book expecting the fervent pacing and unforgiving brutality of Martin. Do not search for the sweeping journey of a Tolkien or Brooks.

Instead focus on the mundane. This story is not "epic" (to use a buzzword), it is personal, it is boring, it is a late night with a warm cup of tea in a comfortable chair. Focus on the flavor, the wisps of steam rising from the deep hue of the water, as it warms your hand through the porcelain. This is how you will get the most out of "The Name of the Wind".

I have rated the story only 3 stars, despite the overall being 5. I hope I can adequately explain why, though I fear it will be much like when our hero attempts to describe Denna.

Much like Kvothe, the Rothfuss legend has grown in the telling to proportions far beyond "The Name of the Wind". This is indeed a great credit to the man behind the words, as is stated more than a few times in the book, an opportunity to boost ones reputation should never be missed. Yet, all of the hullabaloo begged me to question; "Is it true? Is Rothfuss the most incredible author to come along in the last '100 years', as some reviews ardently claim?"

As I stated before, his writing prowess leaves many other's in the dust, including myself, who might claim (in vain hope) now and again to be a writer. There was just something about "The Name of the Wind" I couldn't put my finger on. I realized the problem I had about halfway through. It was screaming Harry Potter at me. This is not to say that that I think Rothfuss copied Rowling or anything of the sort. Neither am I saying that Harry Potter is a bad book. Rather I'm saying that the setting he ultimately created just felt very similar, if not obviously more adult. I find that perhaps this is at least a subconscious part of where the fervor around this book comes from. More likely it's just where my own attachment fizzled out, and I found myself wanting more.

While Kvothe claimed to be telling the truth of things, the "real" story felt as if it sat on the fringes of yet another play our Edema Ruh is putting on. He is as disconnected from his own legend as this story sometimes feels with it's own. I found myself decidedly uncaring about young Kvothe more times than I dare to say. The moments passed, but I desperately wished to come back to the present, to the bartender, the chronicler, and the faerie. Something large is happening, that the book itself seems to be hiding from. The most unique and mind boggling aspects dulled by it's own unwillingness to explore them.

This is why with a heavy hand, and clear conscience, I can say 3 for story, despite giving a 5 overall to "The Name of the Wind". Which in more ways than one paints an endearing picture that so many have enjoyed so thoroughly. An accomplishment that I both revel at and envy.




  • We Like You so Much and Want to Know You Better

  • By: Dave Eggers
  • Narrated by: Dion Graham
  • Length: 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 686
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 605
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 603

A million people, a billion, wanted to be where Mae was at this moment, entering this atrium, 30 feet high and shot through with California light, on her first day working for the only company that really mattered at all. A story from The New York Times Magazine, adapted from The Circle, a new novel by Dave Eggers.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • My kind of horror story

  • By David on 10-26-13

Modern Modernity

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

Reviewed: 01-31-14

What did you love best about We Like You So Much and Want to Know You Better?

Eggers offers a haunting look at technology and it's affect on us with "We Like You So Much and Want to Know You Better". I listened with little to no knowledge of what the actual story was. What I got from it at first, seemed like a coming of age story, later it morphed into a sort of modern societal drama.

If you’ve listened to books by Dave Eggers before, how does this one compare?

I've read/am reading Eggers and this story was refreshingly different. It's a short story, and as such requires a different sort of storytelling to have an impact. If you go into this expecting the "stream of consciousness" narrative normally provided. You might be disappointed.

What does Dion Graham bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I enjoyed Dion's performance because he didn't intentionally change the tone of the surroundings as the story became more subversive. There was a very... almost awkward normality to his method that added to the creep factor. The strangest moments were made even more odd, not because the conversation intensified, but rather because it remained so matter of fact.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Show us what you know.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful