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Timothy

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  • Running with the Kenyans

  • Passion, Adventure, and the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth
  • By: Adharanand Finn
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Length: 8 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 370
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 328
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 329

Whether running is your recreation, your religion, or just a spectator sport, Adharanand Finn’s incredible journey to the elite training camps of Kenya will captivate and inspire you. Part travelogue, part memoir, this mesmerizing quest to uncover the secrets of the world’s greatest runners - and put them to the test - combines practical advice, a fresh look at barefoot running, and hard-won spiritual insights.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • His Curiosity is Contagious

  • By Sharlene on 01-28-13

No secrets, but still a pleasant jog

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

Reviewed: 03-15-17

This book won't make you a faster runner, but it will give insight into the most thriving running culture on the planet. A pleasant read for running enthusiasts to bring with them on those long runs.

  • Super Mario

  • How Nintendo Conquered America
  • By: Jeff Ryan
  • Narrated by: Ray Porter
  • Length: 8 hrs and 20 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,778
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,650
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,647

Nintendo has continually set the standard for video game innovation in America, starting in 1981 with a plucky hero who jumped over barrels to save a girl from an ape. The saga of Mario, the portly plumber who became the most successful franchise in the history of gaming, has plot twists worthy of a video game. Jeff Ryan shares the story of how this quintessentially Japanese company found success in the American market.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Truly super!

  • By brenty on 07-20-13

Worth Your Coins

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

Reviewed: 03-15-17

An intriguing look at a company's perfectionist commitment to quality storytelling. This book explains how a moustachioed bundle of pixels has come to mean so much to the world. A great read for gamers and non-gamers alike.

  • Paradise Lost

  • By: John Milton
  • Narrated by: Simon Vance
  • Length: 9 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 404
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 347
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 344

John Milton's Paradise Lost is one of the greatest epic poems in the English language. It tells the story of the Fall of Man, a tale of immense drama and excitement, of rebellion and treachery, of innocence pitted against corruption, in which God and Satan fight a bitter battle for control of mankind's destiny.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The most accessible reading of Paradise Lost

  • By Tony McClung on 02-21-10

This guy should be famous

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

Reviewed: 04-28-16

I took a chance on this little known author and he didn't let me down. Milton's insights into the human condition and man's expulsion from Eden is told in stunning heroic couplet. Simon Vance provides unwavering and seamless narration. Unfortunately, Milton's views on women are antiquated, but overall this book is sure to be named a masterpiece. Get on the bandwagon early!

7 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • The Bassoon King

  • My Life in Art, Faith, and Idiocy
  • By: Rainn Wilson
  • Narrated by: Rainn Wilson
  • Length: 8 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,070
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,924
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,918

For nine seasons Rainn Wilson played Dwight Schrute, everyone's favorite work nemesis and beet farmer. Viewers of The Office fell in love with the character and grew to love the actor who played him even more. Rainn founded a website and media company, SoulPancake, that eventually became a best-selling book of the same name. He also started a hilarious Twitter feed (sample tweet: "I'm not on Facebook" is the new "I don't even own a TV") that now has more than four million followers.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Exquisite narration!

  • By Johanna on 11-13-15

More than just The Office

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

Reviewed: 02-05-16

Rainn Wilson's entry into the comedian memoir genre is a unique one. Although it does hit many of the genre's familiar marks (witty jokes, personal reflection, and a few showbiz secrets) "The Bassoon King" digs a bit deeper and tries to impose meaning upon the medium.

Wilson's story is a unique one, and for those who, like me, only knew him from The Office you'll be interested to hear how he got there. The memoir tracks his journey from nerd-dom to the Baha'i faith to bohemian New York and beyond. Wilson's knows how to balance the silly and sincere and uses both to equal effect. Yes, there's even some Dwight Schrute thrown in.

A great read for budding artists, soul searchers, and Office fans alike.

  • Lost at Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries

  • By: Jon Ronson
  • Narrated by: Jon Ronson
  • Length: 15 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,011
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,833
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,830

Jon Ronson is fascinated by madness, extraordinary behaviour and the human mind. He has spent his life investigating crazy events, following fascinating people and unearthing unusual stories. Collected here from various sources (including the Guardian and GQ America) are the best of his adventures.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Like a Collection of TAL Episodes

  • By Pamela Harvey on 10-20-12

Stories from the fringe

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

Reviewed: 02-04-16

Follow Jon Ronson as he explores the fascinating and strange. Anchored by Ronson's consistent skepticism, this series of stories is a nice overview of Ronson's journeys as a reporter. From the Insane Clown Posse to a Disney cruise-liner, Ronson stops at nothing to push his understanding of how the world works. The stories can be interesting, funny, heartbreaking, and baffling. "Lost at Sea" is a must listen for Ronson fans and conspiracy theorists alike.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian audiobook cover art
  • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

  • By: Sherman Alexie
  • Narrated by: Sherman Alexie
  • Length: 4 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,293
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,536
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,525

Born poor and hydrocephalic, Arnold Spirit survives brain surgery. But his enormous skull, lopsided eyes, profound stuttering, and frequent seizures target him for abuse on his Indian reservation. Protected by a formidable friend, the book-loving artist survives childhood. And then - convinced his future lies off the rez - the bright 14-year-old enrolls in an all-white high school 22 miles away.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Essential reading for anyone trying to understand Rez Life

  • By Richard W Smith on 01-03-16

Hilarious and heartbreaking, a diary worth hearing

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

Reviewed: 12-02-15

Sherman Alexie's renown as a writer and storyteller are well-deserved. His unique window into the American experience is articulated with such honesty, emotion and control that he had me hanging onto each story and word. This collection of stories can one second have you laughing only to sucker punch you the next.

Alexie is an efficient writer, and manages to cover a lot of ground in a short audiobook. His narration only adds to the book's sincere appeal–his voice, like the text, can turn from playful to serious on a dime.

A wonderful read/listen that I would highly recommend. Sherman Alexie has a sensitivity that allows him to capture the essence of teenager-hood and give it mass appeal.

  • The Body Keeps the Score

  • Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma
  • By: Bessel Van der Kolk MD
  • Narrated by: Sean Pratt
  • Length: 16 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 5,900
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5,176
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 5,097

In The Body Keeps the Score, Bessel van der Kolk transforms our understanding of traumatic stress, revealing how it literally rearranges the brain’s wiring - specifically areas dedicated to pleasure, engagement, control, and trust. He shows how these areas can be reactivated through innovative treatments including neuro feedback, mindfulness techniques, play, yoga, and other therapies.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Unbelievably clear and Life Changing

  • By colleen geis on 05-06-15

Real life and research to help the healing

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

Reviewed: 11-20-15

Van der Kolk's experience and research as one of the top psychologists in the trauma field set this apart as a unique perspective on the human experience. The technical aspects of the book are presented in an accessible way, and Van der Kolk remains attuned to his reader.

Van der Kolk also shares stories about patients that he has had throughout his decades of work in order to back up his approaches to treatment. I liked his self-reflection throughout and explanations about how he has grown and changed through his experience.

The production on the story could have been better. At times the narrater was engaged and attentive to text, but this sometimes shifted and I had a hard time adapting to the shift in tone. However, I appreciated the narrators gentle tone throughout.

Overall, "The Body Keeps the Score" is worth a listen for anyone looking to connect more with the world around them. He tackles a difficult and often painful topic with hope and guidance for those directly or indirectly living with trauma, and always maintains a focus on healing.

Half of a Yellow Sun audiobook cover art
  • Half of a Yellow Sun

  • A Novel
  • By: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • Narrated by: Robin Miles
  • Length: 18 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,689
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,519
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,516

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Adichie’s brilliant historical novel follows the fortunes of five characters living through the tumultuous 1960s—a time when the Biafran-Nigerian War raged in southern Africa.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant narration of a captivating story

  • By MB on 08-16-12

Ambitious and confident. Worth a listen.

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

Reviewed: 11-18-15

Adichie's sprawling novel tackles broad themes (war, politics, class and human rights) with confidence and a tender attention to detail. Despite a roaming narrative, there are enough moments of poignant detail and clarity to keep the listener going.

Centering around the Nigerian civil war, the novel documents the unraveling of a country through a focus on a few central characters. It is Adichie's tender attention to these characters that made the novel great for me. She treats them with tenderness even at their most despicable moments, and in doing so makes them real and relatable.

Adichie's supreme confidence in her artistic voice is also a pleasure to behold. Although the novel sometimes dips into indulgent description, it is held together by an unwavering focus and vibrancy that propels it forward. She is able to wade through complicated and messy issues such as war and love and imbue them with clarity and grace. This balances out the more indulgent aspects of the story. Robin Miles is the perfect vocal complement to Adichie's writing, and adds her own energy and excitement to the story.

This novel is great for a patient reader looking for a thought-provoking listen. Adichie's intelligence and talent create a vibrancy that mark her as a special storyteller and writer.

  • The Sign of Four

  • By: Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Narrated by: David Timson
  • Length: 4 hrs and 36 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 755
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 681
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 679

The Sign of Four is the second story by Conan Doyle about the exploits of Sherlock Holmes. From the moment Mary Morstan tells Holmes about the mysterious disappearance of her father and the yearly gift of a pearl from an unknown benefactor, Holmes and his companion Watson are involved in an exotic tale of stolen treasure, secret oaths and murder, culminating in a breath-taking chase down the Thames. Holmes is on top form, and Watson falls in love.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Revisiting the 1890 classic

  • By Zaubermond on 04-02-13

A fine follow-up

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

Reviewed: 10-23-15

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's follow-up foyer into Sherlock Holme's logic dominated world delivers much of what is introduced in the debut: strong characters, mystery, murder, all set against the backdrop of gloomy London. Unfortunately, it doesn't bring anything new to the franchise.

Holmes and Watson are entertaining in their banter and adventures, but there was a lack of freshness to the story that was present in "A Study In Scarlet." I found Watson's romance subplot to be overly maudlin and distracting from the better elements of the story. The story does offer a fine tour of London at an interesting age, and Conan Doyle's use of the city as a landscape is one of the novel's major strengths.

Timson does an excellent job with the narration and the audiobook is well-produced. Would not recommend as a starting-off point for the series, but definitely worth a listen for Sherlock Holmes fans.

  • Hamlet, Prince of Denmark: A Novel

  • By: A. J. Hartley, David Hewson
  • Narrated by: Richard Armitage
  • Length: 9 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,389
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,159
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,143

It is a tale of ghosts, of madness, of revenge - of old alliances giving way to new intrigues. Denmark is changing, shaking off its medieval past. War with Norway is on the horizon. And Hamlet - son of the old king, nephew of the new - becomes increasingly entangled in a web of deception - and murder. Beautifully performed by actor Richard Armitage ("Thorin Oakenshield" in the Hobbit films), Hamlet, Prince of Denmark takes Shakespeare’s original into unexpected realms, reinventing a story we thought we knew.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Something Rotten in Denmark...

  • By Carole T. on 08-23-14

Hamlet comes back from the dead

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

Reviewed: 10-20-15

A retelling of Shakespeare's famous play brings the story to life. This novelization adds superb descriptions, dialogues, and even characters in order to make the story feel just as lively as a real-life performance.

Hartley and Hewson approach the classic tale with knowledge and reverence, and are balanced and thoughtful in what they choose to tinker with. The afterword provides some helpful perspective on their approach as well as some interesting history. Equal to the novel's writing is its narrator. Richard Armitage provides the best narration that I've heard in an audiobook.

If you're a Shakespeare fan or even somebody who was happy to put Hamlet to rest in high school, this audiobook is well worth a listen.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful