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Michelle MacDowell

Bozeman, Montana United States
  • 16
  • reviews
  • 24
  • helpful votes
  • 87
  • ratings
  • Essentialism

  • The Disciplined Pursuit of Less
  • By: Greg McKeown
  • Narrated by: Greg McKeown
  • Length: 6 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,804
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,508
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,379

By forcing us to apply a more selective criteria for what is Essential, the disciplined pursuit of less empowers us to reclaim control of our own choices about where to spend our precious time and energy - instead of giving others the implicit permission to choose for us. Essentialism is not one more thing - it’s a whole new way of doing everything. It’s about doing less, but better, in every area of our lives. Essentialism is a movement whose time has come.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Multiple reads required

  • By Chris on 04-27-14

Definitely worth listening to again

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

Reviewed: 06-04-18

This book is a solid choice for anyone wanting to get a different perspective on productivity and leadership.

  • Red Inferno

  • 1945
  • By: Robert Conroy
  • Narrated by: Paul Costanzo
  • Length: 14 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 107
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 100
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 101

In April 1945, the Allies are charging toward Berlin from the west, the Russians from the east. For Hitler, the situation is hopeless. But at this turning point in history, another war is about to explode. To win World War II, the Allies dealt with the devil. Joseph Stalin helped FDR, Churchill, and Truman crush Hitler. But what if "Uncle Joe" had given in to his desire to possess Germany and all of Europe? In this stunning novel, Robert Conroy picks up the history of the war just as American troops cross the Elbe into Germany. Then Stalin slams them with the brute force of his enormous Soviet army.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Good story - narrator makes it barely tolerable

  • By William on 04-19-18

Not bad...

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

Reviewed: 06-04-18

Don’t know why, but this book was really hard for me to get into. It seemed as though a lot of the interaction between characters was cliché.

The author did a decent job of wrapping up an an entire world war in one book. Although, the author could not help but oversimplify many aspects. There’s just so much scope that simplifying was a necessity.

In regards to the narrator, he did a great job of displaying General Patton‘s voice. As for everyone else is voices, he was average.

  • The Peloponnesian War

  • By: Thucydides
  • Narrated by: Charlton Griffin
  • Length: 26 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 255
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 230
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 227

Historians universally agree that Thucydides was the greatest historian who has ever lived, and that his story of the Peloponnesian conflict is a marvel of forensic science and fine literature. That such a triumph of intellectual accomplishment was created at the end of the fifth century B.C. in Greece is, perhaps, not so surprising, given the number of original geniuses we find in that period. But that such an historical work would also be simultaneously acknowledged as a work of great literature and a penetrating ethical evaluation of humanity is one of the miracles of ancient history.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • You better know the events before listening

  • By David A. Montalvo on 05-25-16

Drama and History

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

Reviewed: 04-12-18

Would you consider the audio edition of The Peloponnesian War to be better than the print version?

The audio version was much better than the print version for me. For some reason I just couldn't keep track of who was who with the print. The audio version with the narration kept me on track to the happenings for the most part.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Peloponnesian War?

The most memorable moment for me was the attempted breakout from Sicily by the Athenian army, which turned into a disaster of epic proportions.

What about Charlton Griffin’s performance did you like?

He was subtle in his voice inflections. I think the "Britishness" of his voice helped give the entire affair a slightly foreign feel... but not too foreign.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The killing of numerous civilians was difficult to hear about, but necessary to tell the story.

  • The Frozen Hours

  • A Novel of the Korean War
  • By: Jeff Shaara
  • Narrated by: Paul Michael
  • Length: 20 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 787
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 735
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 729

The master of military historical fiction turns his discerning eye to the Korean War in this riveting new novel, which tells the dramatic story of the Americans and the Chinese who squared off in one of the deadliest campaigns in the annals of combat: the Battle of Chosin Reservoir, also known as Frozen Chosin.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Highly educational insight into the Korean War

  • By Anke Smith on 08-28-17

A captivating story that happens to be true

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

Reviewed: 12-04-17

This is my first taste of a book that is historical, but turned into a novel. All the characters are real, but much of the conversation is put together from memory, and not from some historian sitting there recording every word.

This style of storytelling in the historical context is fantastic! It keeps the audience engaged in a way that a nonfiction book would have a tough time doing. I will look for more books like this.

The narrator does a decent job. He does a good job of changing accents, voice tonality, and rhythm to distinguish different characters.

  • The Long Fall

  • Exodus: Empires at War, Book 4
  • By: Doug Dandridge
  • Narrated by: Nick J. Russo
  • Length: 11 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 174
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 162
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 161

The saga continues, as an Emperor is seated and the threat from the Ca'cadasan Empire grows. Sean is back, saved from the grasp of the Ancient Enemy. And the Ancient Enemy is going full bore into the heart of all the human kingdoms. The Ca'cadasan Empire has it out for the humans. Their emperor had ordered the human species exterminated. But the humans got away, at least some of them, and established themselves 10,000 light years away in the Persius Arm.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • ok, i will be the first

  • By jm on 11-13-15

Fourth book in and still action-packed

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

Reviewed: 11-15-15

The Exodus Book series has yet to disappoint. I anticipated a slowdown in the action on this fourth book but was pleasantly surprised when things kept on pace. The author did a good job setting up the The series with a relatively slow first book that established a tremendous amount of action for each of the following books. This one has slightly less characters to keep track of.

As far as the narration goes, I don't think I've heard a better narrator. What makes The book particularly entertaining is that the narrator is able to change his voice according to the species both in cadence and tone.

This book is slightly shorter than the three previous in the series, but still slightly longer than the average book of it's type.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • The Lion's Gate

  • On the Front Lines of the Six Day War
  • By: Steven Pressfield
  • Narrated by: Malcolm Hillgartner
  • Length: 14 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 495
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 446
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 449

June 5, 1967: The fearsome, Soviet-equipped Egyptian Army and its 1000 tanks are massed on Israel's southern border. Meanwhile, the Syrian Army is shelling the much smaller nation from the north. And to the east, Jordan and Iraq are moving brigades and fighter squadrons into position to attack. Egypt's President Nasser has declared that the Arab world's goal is no less than "the destruction of Israel."

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • As close to being there as you can get

  • By Andy from FL on 07-13-14

An interesting military narrative

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

Reviewed: 08-20-15

Lots of interesting stories and experiences from a handful of Israeli units during the Six-Day War. Definitely not a history lesson, but you get the jest of what's going on anyway. There are many names, and much of them are in Hebrew, so it gets a little difficult to remember who's who.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Killing Rommel

  • By: Steven Pressfield
  • Narrated by: Alfred Molina
  • Length: 10 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 634
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 387
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 387

Autumn 1942. Hitler's legions have swept across Europe; France has fallen; Churchill and the English stand isolated on their island. In North Africa, Rommel and his Panzers have routed the British Eighth Army and stand poised to overrun Egypt, Suez, and the oil fields of the Middle East.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Killing Rommel

  • By James on 07-09-08

A solid book of historical fiction.

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

Reviewed: 07-18-15

It's oddly captivating to read a book of historical fiction where everything that happens in this story outside the main characters actually happened.



  • The Practicing Mind

  • Developing Focus and Discipline in Your Life
  • By: Thomas M. Sterner
  • Narrated by: Thomas M. Sterner
  • Length: 3 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,689
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5,618
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,544

Present moment awareness is an essential ingredient in life if one expects to experience any degree of authentic peace and contentment. It has been acknowledged for centuries as the cornerstone of spiritual awakening in all traditions of Eastern thought. In the West, however, it is still a relatively unrecognized concept for living. The Western mind is always restless, never content with the moment.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Some great takeaways despite the robotic narration

  • By azmom on 04-04-15

Solid book for those who want to get better at a task.

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

Reviewed: 07-12-15

Not a very fast-paced book but it is full of solid tips for having a disciplined and calm mind.

Narrating is fine. Lots of analogies to music.

  • American Sniper

  • The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History
  • By: Chris Kyle, Scott McEwan, Jim DeFelice
  • Narrated by: John Pruden
  • Length: 10 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 24,520
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 21,547
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 21,551

From 1999 to 2009, U.S. Navy SEAL Chris Kyle recorded the most career sniper kills in United States military history. The Pentagon has officially confirmed more than 150 of Kyles kills (the previous American record was 109), but it has declined to verify the astonishing total number for this book. Iraqi insurgents feared Kyle so much they named him al-Shaitan ("the devil") and placed a bounty on his head.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • It's been censored by the publisher

  • By K9NSP on 10-21-17

Exceeded expectations

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

Reviewed: 06-13-15

Author does a good job of telling his story and not letting it get cheesy.


0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • When the Bough Breaks

  • The Empire's Corps, Book 3
  • By: Christopher G. Nuttall
  • Narrated by: Jeffrey Kafer
  • Length: 12 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,247
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,154
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,152

The Galactic Empire is dying. In their high towers, the Grand Senators plot and struggle to grasp a larger share of power while on the streets, the poor struggle to survive just one more day. Chaos and anarchy are running through the megacities of Earth, while giant corporations tighten the screws and colony worlds plot to declare independence and escape the Empire's increasing demands for resources. Centuries of mismanagement are finally catching up with the human race.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The collapse of empire

  • By Michelle MacDowell on 02-12-15

The collapse of empire

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

Reviewed: 02-12-15

The story for book 3 departs from the main storyline that the first two books start out with. To be clear, this book does not follow Edward Stalker or his Marines on Avalon. This story takes place simultaneously or so it would appear on earth. The story explains in detail the collapse of empire.
Both the author and the narrator do a great job on this book. Christopher G Nuttal did a good job of painting the picture of a tragedy, but with a story of hope in its midst. Five stars. Would highly recommend to anyone over the age of 14.

My only quibble would be the explanation of how society on earth develops. The end result of societal development on earth seems to be very similar to the movie idiocrasy (A comedy with a plotline that was purposefully ludicrous). Basically, The entire population is too ignorant to do the most basic tasks.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful