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  • 109
  • helpful votes
  • 32
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  • Elmer Gantry

  • By: Sinclair Lewis
  • Narrated by: Anthony Heald
  • Length: 15 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 555
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 355
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 361

A greedy, philandering Baptist minister, Elmer Gantry turns to evangelism and becomes the leader of a large Methodist congregation. Often exposed as a fraud, he is never fully discredited. Elmer Gantry is considered a landmark American novel and one of the most penetrating studies of hypocrisy in modern literature. It portrays the evangelistic activity that was common in 1920s America as well as attitudes toward it.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • How a book SHOULD be written.

  • By Kacy on 08-20-10

Burt Lancanster was not Elmer Gantry

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

Reviewed: 05-01-15

As much as I liked Burt Lancaster's portrayal of Elmer Gantry, the movie is not the book. The humor and sly despicableness of Elmer Gantry is lost in the movie character. I found myself shaking my head in disbelief over how ironic it is that Elmer Gantry never learns the Truth while preaching the Truth. Lewis nails the bible thumping hypocrisy with searing accuracy. The wonderful narration enhances the irony and give life to the somewhat dated dialog of the early 20th century.

  • Alice Adams

  • By: Booth Tarkington
  • Narrated by: Traci Svendsgaard
  • Length: 8 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 76
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 56
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 56

Plucky and romantic Alice tries to rise above the crudities of her hopelessly shabby background in this Pulitzer Prize-winning classic about ambition and self-delusion. The lower-middle class Adams family faces a slow disintegration in a small Midwestern town. Alice, a social climber, is ashamed of her unsuccessful family and determined to distinguish herself.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • The wrong reader in the wrong style

  • By Edmond Clement on 04-29-12

Freedom lies in giving up false desires.

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

Reviewed: 05-01-15

It is unfortunate that Booth Tarkington was a contemporary of Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Faulkner and Lewis. He has been swept aside by America's greatest 20th century writers. This book shows that his Pulitzer prizes were well deserved. True freedom is found by giving up falsehoods on social status and marital bliss. Excellent narration, especially with the Southern accent, make this book a 5 star winner.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Far from the Madding Crowd

  • By: Thomas Hardy
  • Narrated by: Nathaniel Parker
  • Length: 13 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 533
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 456
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 454

Hardy's first major literary success, here brought to life by narrator Nathaniel Parker, is the story of the independent and spirited Bathsheba Everdene, who inherits her uncle's farm, the largest estate in the area. She surprises the villagers of Weatherbury by deciding to run it herself. Attracted to this bold young woman are three suitors all vying for her affections. They include the lonely gentleman-farmer Boldwood, the young and handsome but inconsiderate Sergeant Troy and the faithful shepherd Gabriel Oak.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Does Thomas Hardy justice

  • By vhuggins on 06-11-13

Bathsheba, after Eustacia, I love you most.

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

Reviewed: 05-01-15

OK, I admit that I am madly in love with Hardy's heroines. A great story, great dialogue and a great narration. 5 stars across the board.

  • The Three Musketeers

  • By: Alexandre Dumas
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Length: 23 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,122
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,671
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,685

Mixing a bit of seventeenth-century French history with a great deal of invention, Alexandre Dumas tells the tale of young D'Artagnan and his musketeer comrades, Porthos, Athos, and Aramis. Together they fight to foil the schemes of the brilliant, dangerous Cardinal Richelieu, who pretends to support the king while plotting to advance his own power. Bursting with swirling swordplay, swooning romance, and unforgettable figures.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • What Fun!

  • By A. A. Green on 05-17-11

If you wish to feel like a 15 year old boy again..

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

Reviewed: 05-01-15

I felt like a 15 year old boy again while listening to this audio book. Dumas is the best of the genre. The Count of Monte Cristo is better because of the mystery of the Count but this book has it all the adventure and romance that one could wish for. You do get the impression though that this was serialized and that Dumas was working on capitalizing on adventure.

  • Concert Masterworks

  • By: Robert Greenberg, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Robert Greenberg
  • Length: 24 hrs and 50 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 166
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 149
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 149

Have you ever thought about the creative process that boiled inside geniuses like Mozart, Beethoven, Dvorák, Strauss, Brahms, Mendelssohn, or Liszt-or any composer, for that matter?What goes through a composer's mind when a musical composition is being set to paper? Are those magical weeks or months spent in an agonizing creative blur of ideas first tried and then discarded, or it a matter of pure inspiration?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Down the rabbit hole with Dr. G!

  • By JaneN on 11-09-14

Very Well Done

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

Reviewed: 03-03-15

I have criticized Professor Greenberg's "over the top" approach to his lectures. For those who have felt the same as me, I encourage you to have a listen to this set of lectures. Greenberg is restrained, professional and not constantly trying to be funny. Indeed, these lectures are very technical, historical detail is precise and informative and the overall tone is one of a deep regard for what constitutes "art".
My only critique is that these lectures do not include the word scores that Professor Greenberg rightfully feels the listener should follow along with. I went to my local library and luckily found the DVD's that included the printed word scores. It greatly enhances the listening experience. I therefore gave the overall rating of 4 stars.

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Great Masters: Haydn - His Life and Music

  • By: Robert Greenberg, The Great Courses
  • Narrated by: Robert Greenberg
  • Length: 6 hrs and 5 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 127
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 114
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 113

Almost from the moment it was first set to paper, the music of Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) - technically superb, rich in quality, and widely imitated - has exemplified the Classical style, creating not only the Classical-era symphony but setting the standard, through his own 68 string quartets, against which that form has ever after been judged. And yet Haydn, despite the influence left by more than 1000 works, seems to no longer get his due, Now, in a series of eight vivid lectures, you can learn to understand and appreciate the music of one of the most original and influential composers of all time.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Another masterpiece from Greenberg

  • By Amazon Customer on 02-14-15

Professor Greenberg needs to tone it down.

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

Reviewed: 02-12-15

I was reluctant to listen to another of Professor Robert Greenberg's set of lectures. Unfortunately, Professor Greenberg is the best there is when looking at the depth of his knowledge. I say unfortunately because of the presentation style. His constant need to be funny and say witty things gets in the way. This is not as bad as some of his earlier lectures but nonetheless irritating.

1 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Gravity's Rainbow

  • By: Thomas Pynchon, Frank Miller (cover design)
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 37 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 628
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 571
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 562

Winner of the 1973 National Book Award, Gravity's Rainbow is a postmodern epic, a work as exhaustively significant to the second half of the 20th century as Joyce's Ulysses was to the first. Its sprawling, encyclopedic narrative and penetrating analysis of the impact of technology on society make it an intellectual tour de force.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • "Time to touch the person next to you"

  • By Jefferson on 07-04-16

Guidall should be commended

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

Reviewed: 02-10-15

George Guidal should be commended for this very difficult read. I knew going into this book that it was a difficult read. I also was committed to finishing it. If you can imagine a dream state in which you remember visions with no explanations, then you have this book. I can now say I finished Gravity's Rainbow. It will be the last Pynchon novel I read or listen to.

4 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Any Human Heart

  • A Novel
  • By: William Boyd
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 15 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 479
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 430
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 430

Best-selling author William Boyd—the novelist who has been called a “master storyteller” ( Chicago Tribune) and “a gutsy writer who is good company to keep” ( Time)—here gives us his most entertaining, sly, and compelling novel to date. The novel evokes the tumult, events, and iconic faces of our time as it tells the story of Logan Mountstuart—writer, lover, and man of the world—through his intimate journals. It is the “riotous and disorganized reality” of Mountstuart’s 85 years in all their extraordinary, tragic, and humorous aspects.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • very satisfying story-telling

  • By connie on 07-15-11

Very much like Anthony Powells' Dance...

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

Reviewed: 01-19-15

This reminded me so much of Anthony Powells' Dance to the Music of Time. Very enjoyable and since it was narrated by Simon Vance, it is a world class audiobook. Highly recommended.

  • Fear and Loathing at Rolling Stone

  • The Essential Writing of Hunter S. Thompson
  • By: Hunter S. Thompson
  • Narrated by: Phil Gigante
  • Length: 17 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 420
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 372
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 368

“Buy the ticket, take the ride,” was a favorite slogan of Hunter S. Thompson, and it pretty much defined both his work and his life. Fear and Loathing at Rolling Stone showcases the roller-coaster of a career at the magazine that was his literary home.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Buy the ticket...this is a great compilation.

  • By Shaun on 11-21-11

Great book for those wishing to relive the 70's.

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

Reviewed: 12-23-14

Thompson was a prolific writer in what he dubbed Gonzo Journalism. If you have never read Thompson and are curious about the original Rolling Stone Magazine and its editor then I highly recommend this book. I found the stories to be reminiscent of the times when we felt "anything was possible" - politically, socially and morally. Unfortunately, this turned out to be an illusion. This process is very well documented in this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Backlands

  • A Novel of the American West
  • By: Michael McGarrity
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 14 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 756
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 704
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 700

Michael McGarrity returns with the second installment of his sweeping, richly authentic New York Times best-selling American West trilogy set in the raw, untrammeled New Mexico backlands during the Roaring '20s, the Great Depression, and World War II. Hard Country, the first novel in the Kerney family trilogy and the debut prequel to his national best-selling Kevin Kerney crime novels, was critically acclaimed for its authentic, gritty realism; its sprawling, engrossing story; and its compelling, engaging characters.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Way too predictable

  • By Randall on 04-11-18

Not really a Novel of the American West

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

Reviewed: 12-23-14

This is not really a novel of the American West. Nor is it a novel of much of anything except a handful of characters playing superficial, stereotypical roles. The vignettes lack any cohesiveness, emotional drive or moral storyline. Very disappointing, very predictable and one gets the impression that it was written to fulfill a per page commitment / contract . The narration by the excellent George Guidall is superb.

14 of 16 people found this review helpful