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Howard

Concord, MA, United States
  • 58
  • reviews
  • 235
  • helpful votes
  • 110
  • ratings
  • Billy, Alfred, and General Motors

  • The Story of Two Unique Men, A Legendary Company, and a Remarkable Time in American History
  • By: William Pelfrey
  • Narrated by: Dickson Lane
  • Length: 11 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 116
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 93
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 98

You couldn't find two more different men. Billy Durant was the consummate salesman, a brilliant wheeler-dealer with grand plans, unflappable energy, and a fondness for the high life. Alfred Sloan was the intellectual, an expert in business strategy and management, master of all things organizational. Together, this odd couple built perhaps the most successful enterprise in U.S. history, General Motors, and with it an industry that has come to define modern life throughout the world.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Not Only an Automotive History

  • By Ray on 10-26-11

Not just a great history of the early age of the

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

Reviewed: 01-19-19

automobile it is at its heart a comparison between two style of leadership: that of the unharnessed genius who has flashes of genius that change the world, and that rational manager who carefully weighs the facts before making decision. Interesting as it is poignant it tracks the early days of the auto industry, the rise and (almost the failure) of GM and the two linked but differing arcs, and fates, of Sloan and Durant.

  • I Invented the Modern Age

  • The Rise of Henry Ford and the Most Important Car Ever Made
  • By: Richard Snow
  • Narrated by: Sean Runnette
  • Length: 12 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 584
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 515
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 511

In many ways, Henry Ford's story is well-known; in many more ways, it is not. Richard Snow masterfully weaves together a fascinating narrative of Ford's rise to fame through his greatest invention, the Model T. A highly pleasurable listen, filled with scenes and incidents from Ford's life, I Invented the Modern Age shows Richard Snow at the height of his powers as a popular historian and reclaims from history Henry Ford, the remarkable man who, indeed, invented the modern world as we know it.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent...But I'm a Ford Guy!

  • By Rick on 10-07-13

Outstanding biography of a contradictory character

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

Reviewed: 01-19-19

Visionary, super mechanical engineer and someone of whom is was said "he could not manage a country grocery store" Richard Snow captures the good, the bad and the inexplicable parts of Ford's character. Anyone who thinks that Ford and his company should be a model of American business after reading this book is either a madman or an incurable romantic. Snow captures both of these qualities that Ford also possessed while helping the reader understand just how much the Henry's child (more his child than the unfortunate Edsel) the Model T changed the world.

  • Stiger

  • Tales of the Seventh, Book 1
  • By: Marc Alan Edelheit
  • Narrated by: Steven Brand
  • Length: 7 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 461
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 432
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 433

A nobleman from an infamous family, Ben Stiger finds himself freshly assigned to Third Legion, Seventh Company as a lowly lieutenant in the opening stages of war between the Empire and the Kingdom of the Rivan. Third Legion has been tasked with pursuing a retreating Rivan army back to the border where the Empire can take the fight into enemy territory. However, a major obstacle stands in Third Legion's path: the river Hana.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • TALES OF THE SEVENTH?

  • By Old Sub Sailor on 07-24-17

Excellent mash up Roman Legion & low fantasy

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

Reviewed: 11-09-18

Marc Edelheit is a super writer- this is actually the first book in the prequel series to Stiger's Tigers. A super tale with excellent narration by Steven Brand that centers around the maturation and exploits of a young legionary officer Stiger. Set in a fictional world Ithros empire that mimics the Roman Empire Stiger must overcome many obstacles on his way to becoming the hardened Legionary leader he is later in the Series. Excellent description of tactics used by the Romans. Who are the Rivan (their enemies) modeled after? Well not the Parthians (that I can tell) nor the Persians (that I could tell). That is the question that I want answered! Well done!

Great historical detail (exactly like the Romans)

  • Legend

  • Drenai, Book 1
  • By: David Gemmell
  • Narrated by: Sean Barrett
  • Length: 13 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 564
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 540
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 536

Druss, Captain of the Axe: the stories of his life were told everywhere. Instead of the wealth and fame he could have claimed, he had chosen a mountain lair, high in the lonely country bordering on the clouds. There the grizzled old warrior kept company with snow leopards and awaited his old enemy, death.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Two Legends Come to Audible

  • By Carol on 06-26-17

Top Flight- One of the Best Low Fantasy Authors

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

Reviewed: 10-15-18

of our generation is on audible. Who knew? I stumbled across the audio-series on audible and with some trepidation I purchased it,

I first read "Legend" and the entire series by David Gemmell during my college years in the mid 1980s. I thought it a gem then, and upon listening to the superb audio book narration some thirty years later by Sean Barrett, I think it even better than remembered. I must say I am shocked by the low number of audible reviews it has been given. I hope this is NOT a indicator of the series popularity. For this series is a must listen for readers of low fantasy novels!

Gemmel, I think, is the original source, or one of the sources, of the low fantasy authors who followed him. This includes a host of low fantasy authors including George RR Martin, Brandon Sanderson, and Joe Abercrombie, for example, whether they know it or not. When reading Gemmell Think of Martin without the gratuitous violence and you will have the essence of his writings (Gemmell's fantasy novels pre-dated Martin).

The story revolves around the holding of a mountain pass fortress of the Drenai (think Greeks) against a barbaric horde (think Mongols). The leader (who sees himself not as a General but rather as a mere warrior) is Druss.

Drenai is a great series with well fleshed out characters and that does include Druss, who seems to be modeled on Achilles. In "Legends" Druss faces death at every turn, literally. But whether he dies from old age, or at the hands of the barbaric Nadior horde, is not the question to be answered; but rather how he lives until he dies.

Yet Druss also knows that whether he dies in the battle, or lives to old age, the "Legend" he may become will obscure the actual man he is. Thus he says "‘When I die‘everyone will mourn for Druss the Legend. But who will mourn for me?’ ” This is a riff on "Elegy in a Courtyard" verse "Don't ask for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for the." For when we die , will people mourn the loss of our "legend" (who people think we are), or OUR loss as a person?

Although Legends could have ended up a as a porridge of fantasy tropes with card board characters mixed in like dried up raisins... it does not. Instead it becomes something, well, nobler than it could have been, worthy of listening and (for me anyway) of losing track of time; time spent becoming involved with each character and cringing at each death. As I said each character COULD have been a cardboard trope, but somehow Gemmell keeps that from happening, I the characters, each with their own "fantastic strengths" but also each with their very, very human flaws.

This is the essence of Gemmell. He serves up flawed people who, like all of us, must decide in what manner they will live while dying. For as Druss says "No one leaves this world alive." And none of us do!

One of the best low fantasy books ever written, whose whole is much greater than simply summing up the parts with the audible version enhanced by superb narration that captures the story perfectly! RIP David Gemmell, you lived, and wrote, well.

  • Ink and Bone

  • The Great Library
  • By: Rachel Caine
  • Narrated by: Julian Elfer
  • Length: 10 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 1,619
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,455
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,453

Ruthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses. Alchemy allows the library to deliver the content of the greatest works of history instantly - but the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden. Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the library, but the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family, who are involved in the thriving black market.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Poor, Poor Protagonist

  • By Hopeisananchor on 04-08-16

Passably good

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

Reviewed: 10-11-18

and probably great if you have never read a coming of age fantasy book. No knock on the author who has developed an alternative history of earth (although I do wonder how in the world English and not Egyptian is the lingua franca (or perhaps Greek). Narrator is excellent, writing is very good as is character development- but the plot- oh the plot- well it has been done 1000x1000 times.
Boy who does not fit in with his family and cannot find his place (an almost urchin but not really) is sent to an institution (religious, magical, in this case a magical library for training) makes friends, is abused by his teacher who is then shown to be a really nice chap under that tough exterior- enter bad player (the head of the library) put in the oven and bake for four hours and you have any one of 1,000 high fantasy books full of tropes that have been over done.

However, if you can put all that aside- and don't mind spending hard earned cash for something that has been done many times over it is not a bad book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Earthcore

  • By: Scott Sigler
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 20 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,806
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,336
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,310

EarthCore is the company with the technology, the resources, and the guts to go after the mother lode. Young executive Connell Kirkland is the company's driving force, pushing himself and those around him to uncover the massive treasure. But at three miles below the surface, where the rocks are so hot they burn bare skin, something has been waiting for centuries. Waiting...and guarding. Kirkland and EarthCore are about to find out first-hand why this treasure has never been unearthed.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Slow start, but it gained momentum quick

  • By Jan on 12-15-17

Just could not take it after a while

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

Reviewed: 10-11-18

The author does a great job of developing a mystery about what is at the core of the desolate Wawa mountains of Utah. However the cookie cutter characters, the gruesome and seemingly pointless descriptions of violence, the potty mouth nature of all the characters (I swear but not like these people) and finally when the silliness of the entire story was revealed at the massive cave scene, made me quit the book with 6 hours left to go.
I would rather have my teeth drilled, and this was like paying for a root canal but failing to supply novocaine.

  • The Ploughmen

  • A Novel
  • By: Kim Zupan
  • Narrated by: Jim Meskimen
  • Length: 7 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 991
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 911
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 901

At the center of this searing fever-dream of a novel are two men - a killer awaiting trial and a troubled young deputy - sitting across fromeach other in the dark, talking through the bars of a county jail cell: JohnGload, so brutally adept at his craft that only now, at the age of 77, has he faced the prospect of long-term incarceration; and Valentine Millimaki, low man in the Copper County sheriff's department, who draws the overnight shift after Gload's arrest.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great language and performance

  • By Villarreal on 11-06-17

Yuck just much much to much

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

Reviewed: 10-07-18

Ever had a delightful, yet simple desert dish? You know, like a fine pastry with a dollop if ice cream on it. Have you ever been tempted to add whipped cream to this dish. Then sprinkle chocolate jimmies on it, and hey, why not add a chocolate brownie or two, some jelly beans, a Snickers candy bar and a dozen jelly beans to it?

This is exactly what the author does. He takes simple prose and then he ads one adjective and adverb to another until the entire novel reads like some summer fiction writing project given a teenager. Really I could not take it after the twelfth sentence in a row reading something like "... the scudding cloud moved quickly over the dull azure skies with tendril of rain, like gossamer cobwebs, reaching down and holding them to earth." I am not kidding EVERY sentence (or at least every sentence in the first quarter of the book since I then stopped listening at that point) reads like this. I thought I was going to go into adjective/adverb overuse shock after about one hour of this. I have no idea of what the plot is about because I found this so off putting.

  • The Pen and the Sword

  • Destiny's Crucible, Book 2
  • By: Olan Thorensen
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 17 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,350
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2,222
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,214

The Narthani, a militant realm who believe their manifest destiny is to rule the entire planet, Anyar, plan to absorb Caedellium into their empire. Yozef Kolsko (a.k.a. Joe Colsco) works to find ways to increase the chances of resistance to the Narthani's planned conquest. The enemy is coming. The odds seem overwhelming, and it will take all Yozef can do, the courage of his new people, and luck, to survive.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Gripping. Refreshing ratio of sci-fi to fantasy!

  • By Jordan on 08-01-17

Fantastic series thus far- a great first book

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

Reviewed: 09-01-18

leads into this second FANTASTIC installment of this series. With well rounded characters and a looming long term crisis this book is both fun and interesting to listen to. Joseph's inventions, the non-stop action and watching (listening) to him overcome his cowardice are just a few things that make this installment a great listen. if you like any one of the following genres: history, military history, sci-fi, or fantasy then this is for you!

  • Cast Under an Alien Sun

  • Destiny's Crucible, Book 1
  • By: Olan Thorensen
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 15 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,157
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,977
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,979

Joe Colsco boarded a flight from San Francisco to Chicago to attend a national chemistry meeting. He would never set foot on Earth again. On planet Anyar, Joe is found unconscious on a beach of a large island inhabited by humans where the level of technology is similar to Earth circa 1700. He awakes amid strangers speaking an unintelligible language and struggles to accept losing his previous life and finding a place in a society with different customs, needing a way to support himself and not knowing a single soul.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Slowly we turn, step by step, inch by inch...

  • By Ron on 09-18-17

Thank GOD for Audible Reviews

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

Reviewed: 08-27-18

For without the many reviews telling me to "hang with the story" for the first 45 minutes I would have given up, demanded a refund and missed the glorious adventure awaiting me in this series.

Thoransen clearly needed an editor for the first 45 minutes- all of the background information on the Narthani could not only have been easily conveyed as the series unfolded- it actually IS conveyed as the story unfolds. This is why I give it a four star- although I would really like to give it 4.5!

Okay with the ONE complaint out of the way- what a series and what a great first book. It really does force one to imagine what would happen if we woke up in the early 18th century. The excitement of watching Joe share discoveries with the Kielanders, with the Narthani always in the background, plus the super character development and descriptions of Kieland culture make this a top choice for not only fantasy fans, but those, like me, who love the sweeping histories of nations and culture.

The only other nag (not complaint) I have is the chances of another planet, inhabited by transported humans, almost exactly (but not completely) replicating the culture of early 18th century northern Europe right down to a monotheistic religion similar to Judeo-Christianity. Of course since the peoples were apparently transplanted from Earth by a yet to be revealed alien culture, the timing of which has not yet been revealed, that may indeed be the explanation. Maybe the place was constructed twenty years in the past and everyone given a brain implant. Oh well- this does not detract from the superb series.

Jonathan Davis is a superb narratory and mimic. He is pitch perfect!

If you like sweeping sci-fi, military and/or fantasy series this is absolutely a must.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Speer

  • Hitler's Architect
  • By: Martin Kitchen
  • Narrated by: Michael Page
  • Length: 19 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 13
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 12
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 12

In his best-selling autobiography, Albert Speer, Minister of Armaments and chief architect of Nazi Germany, repeatedly insisted he knew nothing of the genocidal crimes of Hitler's Third Reich. In this revealing new biography, author Martin Kitchen disputes Speer's lifelong assertions of ignorance and innocence, portraying a far darker figure who was deeply implicated in the appalling crimes committed by the regime he served so well. Kitchen reconstructs Speer's life with what we now know, including information from valuable new sources that have come to light only in recent years.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting, but extremely biased

  • By Rodney on 10-28-18

Something is wrong

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

Reviewed: 04-25-18

The story just ended at 9hours 33 minutes- in 1944- without recounting the last year of Speer work with the Third Reich... nor the last years of his life.
I tried re-downloading it- but same thing. It stopped mid chapter- seemingly.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful