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azmom

  • 13
  • reviews
  • 54
  • helpful votes
  • 162
  • ratings
  • The Martian

  • By: Andy Weir
  • Narrated by: R. C. Bray
  • Length: 10 hrs and 53 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 156,739
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 144,640
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 144,482

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive - and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plainold "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Worth it even if you've seen the movie

  • By R. MCRACKAN on 12-08-17

Thrilling!

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

Reviewed: 08-16-15

This is not a genre of book I would normally read or listen to, but given the stellar reviews (haha), I decided to give it a go. I'm so glad I did! The story was both thought provoking from a science perspective AND entertaining, moving me from moments of nail biting tension to laugh-out-loud comic relief. I won't spoil the end, but it was beautifully poignant. What a great story!

I'm particularly glad I chose the audiobook format. I've listened to more than 100 books, and THIS was by far the best performance I've ever had the pleasure of hearing. Bray's delivery was pitch perfect in every way, and the characters were read so differently that there was no question which one was speaking at any time. The voices used painted such vibrant images in my imagination for each character that I feel I know them without ever seeing them. I cannot say enough about how profoundly gifted R. C. Bray is at this, and I will go out of my way to explore other titles he has narrated in hopes of finding another performance like this one. Bravo!!!

The overall experience of this audiobook was out-of-this-world fantastic! Highly recommended.

  • Big Hero 6

  • By: Disney Press
  • Narrated by: MacLeod Andrews
  • Length: 2 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 349
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 309
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 311

Big Hero 6 features brilliant robotics prodigy Hiro Hamada, who finds himself in the grips of a criminal plot that threatens to destroy the fast-paced, high-tech city of San Fransokyo. With the help of his closest companion - a robot named Baymax - Hiro joins forces with a reluctant team of first-time crime fighters on a mission to save their city.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Why aren't there more kids' movie books like this?

  • By Danielle W. on 08-21-15

My kids loved it!

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

Reviewed: 06-13-15

Great for keeping the kids entertained and not complaining while running errands or on road trips!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Make It Stick

  • The Science of Successful Learning
  • By: Peter C. Brown
  • Narrated by: Qarie Marshall
  • Length: 8 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,329
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,881
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,840

To most of us, learning something 'the hard way' implies wasted time and effort. Good teaching, we believe, should be creatively tailored to the different learning styles of students and should use strategies that make learning easier. Make It Stick turns fashionable ideas like these on their head and will appeal to all those interested in the challenge of lifelong learning and self-improvement.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO KNOW HOW TO LEARN

  • By ANDRÉ on 11-22-14

Will turn your study habits upside down!

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

Reviewed: 05-03-15

I have a master's degree in education and create trainings for adult learners. This book has made me analyze how information is typically delivered to students and how we assess their learning. Major takeaways for me were the importance of repeating key concepts at spaced out intervals, interleaving and relating prior topics to seemingly unrelated new ones, building in unweighted quizzes to prompt memory recall, and creating audio/visual components to give context and to help embed concepts in ways that make the memories more easily retrieved when needed. Not only would this book would be useful to students and educators, it would be a fascinating listen for anyone who loves learning new things and actually being able to remember them later. I highly recommend it to everyone!

  • The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot: A 15-minute Summary & Analysis

  • By: Instaread
  • Narrated by: Jason P. Hilton
  • Length: 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 25
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 19

Henrietta Lacks was a young black woman whose cervical cancer cells became one of the most important factors in bringing about important scientific and medical advancements in the 20th century. Her family, however, did not know that researchers were using Henrietta's cells in their experiments until much later. When the family learned the truth, they endured turmoil and heartache in the decades that followed.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Summary OK, analysis & takeaways better

  • By azmom on 04-20-15

Summary OK, analysis & takeaways better

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

Reviewed: 04-20-15

This was the first time I listened to a 15-minute summary & analysis to save time from reading/listening to the book itself. It was informative enough. I'm not sure I would listen to one of these again were it not for the thought-provoking section at the end that analyzed the impact of the major points of the story. I enjoyed that more than anything. Wish the full version of books included "for further thinking" discussion prompts like these at the end. I might consider buying one of these summaries for books I HAVE read just for the analysis section to further contemplate what I read.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • 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 6,566
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 5,506
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,431

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

Some great takeaways despite the robotic narration

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

Reviewed: 04-04-15

The positive:
- I tend to get overwhelmed with large or stressful tasks and either procrastinate on starting or fail to complete them. The concept of taking your time and going slowly about your activities one little section at a time to get more done was a great take-away for me.

- Many books on mindfulness are philosophical treatises, where this one gave some very practical exercises to practice during everyday activities, allowing the reader to immediately test the ideas and put them to use.

- I also appreciated the comparisons of cultures being process oriented versus wanting fast results and how this affects the quality of the finished product. That section was worth reflection and perhaps a second listen.

The slight negative: While I appreciate narrators who speak clearly and annunciate their words, the author over annunciated to the point of distraction. I had to listen at 1.25 speed to make it more tolerable to listen to. This remedied the problem for me.

Overall, very worth the listen. I recommend this book for the wisdom and insights that the practical exercises will bring you.

23 of 23 people found this review helpful

  • Yellow Crocus

  • By: Laila Ibrahim
  • Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 8 hrs and 21 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,163
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 6,411
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,396

Moments after Lisbeth is born, she’s taken from her mother and handed over to an enslaved wet nurse, Mattie, a young mother separated from her own infant son in order to care for her tiny charge. Thus begins an intense relationship that will shape both of their lives for decades to come. Though Lisbeth leads a life of privilege, she finds nothing but loneliness in the company of her overwhelmed mother and her distant, slave-owning father.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Beautiful southern historical fiction

  • By MissSusie66 on 02-27-15

So glad I chose the audio version

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

Reviewed: 03-29-15

I loved everything about this book. The story, the characters, the themes... Heart warming and heart breaking all at once. And I'm really glad I chose to listen to the audio version for the pleasure of the narration, which included singing. What a treat!

  • The Wonder of All Things

  • By: Jason Mott
  • Narrated by: Julia Whelan
  • Length: 8 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 544
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 486
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 489

On an ordinary day, at an air show like that in any small town across the country, a plane crashes into a crowd of spectators, killing and injuring dozens. But when the dust clears, a thirteen-year-old girl named Ava is found huddled beneath a pocket of rubble with her best friend, Wash. He is injured and bleeding, and when Ava places her hands over him, his wounds miraculously disappear. Ava has a unique gift: she can heal others of their physical ailments.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Poignant

  • By azmom on 03-23-15

Poignant

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

Reviewed: 03-23-15

It's strange to give an audiobook top scores when I'm not 100% sure I liked the story. It went in dark directions at times, I'm not sure why the story had to play out the way it did. However, it beautifully captured the mixture of joy and torment a person can experience in a lifetime (as demonstrated by the two mother figures); the fog that can settle over some who never find their way out and how this does not invalidate the love they have with those they leave behind. It explores the fragility of the human experience but the externality of the love shared in a lifetime, however long or short. There are moments in this book so poignant that I was brought to tears. While there were parts of the story that were left unexplored (at least to me), I suppose even this parallels life itself, which can be unexpectedly cut short. It reminds us to ask whether we are fully living each day to its fullest.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Breakfast with Buddha

  • A Novel
  • By: Roland Merullo
  • Narrated by: Sean Runnette
  • Length: 9 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,431
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,059
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,066

When his sister tricks him into taking her guru on a trip to their childhood home, Otto Ringling, a confirmed skeptic, is not amused. Six days on the road with an enigmatic holy man who answers every question with a riddle is not what he'd planned. But in an effort to westernize his passenger---and amuse himself---he decides to show the monk some "American fun" along the way.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • a thoughtful and often hilarious journey

  • By Amazon Customer on 09-15-11

Great writing, wonderful performance

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

Reviewed: 03-21-15

I loved this audiobook. I will likely listen to it again to extract the full richness of it. The story and existential theme is great, but what stood out to me the most were the beautiful word choices and analogies that the author crafed that caused me to alternate between giggling with appreciative humor and rewinding to take notes because of the insight they provided. I also found the narration a huge plus. The pacing, the tone, the dialects...all perfect. I might consider choosing my next audiobook just on narrator because of how good this one was. This was well worth the listen!

  • Leadership & Self-Deception

  • Getting Out of the Box
  • By: The Arbinger Institute
  • Narrated by: Peter Berkrot
  • Length: 5 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,595
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,171
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,165

Most personal and organizational problems are the result of a little-known phenomenon called "self-deception". We deceive ourselves into thinking we're doing the right thing for the right reason, but people won't follow a leader whose motives are selfish. The tricky thing is, we don't know that our motivation is flawed. This audiobook explains what self-deception is, how people get trapped in it, how it undermines relationships and organizational achievement, and - most importantly - the surprising way to solve it.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • struggled

  • By Misty on 01-24-17

Should be required reading

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

Reviewed: 01-17-15

Should be required reading for anyone preparing for management, marriage, parenthood...a relationship of any kind. This is game changing!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids

  • How to Stop Yelling and Start Connecting
  • By: Laura Markham
  • Narrated by: Xe Sands
  • Length: 6 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 981
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 826
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 810

Based on the latest research on brain development and extensive clinical experience with parents, Dr. Laura Markham's approach is as simple as it is effective. Her message: Fostering emotional connection with your child creates real and lasting change. When you have that vital connection, you don't need to threaten, nag, plead, bribe - or even punish. This remarkable guide will help parents better understand their own emotions - and get them in check - so they can parent with healthy limits, empathy, and clear communication.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Not for parents of elementary aged kids

  • By Jennifer on 10-28-16

Game Changing Approach to Parenting

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

Reviewed: 01-09-15

This book completely changed the way I see and interact with my kids. I was getting nowhere with discipline and rewards. Not only do I now understand why this doesn't work, I have the incentive to try an empathic approach. I have seen a huge difference in my ability to de-escalate tantrums, foster cooperation, and create the foundation for happy/secure kid already...just in the first week of implementing these techniques. Plus I feel so much better about myself as a competent parent when I really put everything aside to fully connect/engage with my kids. I know it works because my kids are visibly flourishing, and it feels so much better in my gut to parent this way. It's what I would have been doing all along if I'd only known how!

Should be required reading. I think I'll start gifting this at baby showers from now on!

16 of 18 people found this review helpful