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David

San Diego, CA, United States
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  • The Disappearing Spoon

  • And Other True Tales of Madness, Love, and the History of the World from the Periodic Table of the Elements
  • By: Sam Kean
  • Narrated by: Sean Runnette
  • Length: 12 hrs and 34 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,221
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,236
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,243

Reporter Sam Kean reveals the periodic table as it’s never been seen before. Not only is it one of man's crowning scientific achievements, it's also a treasure trove of stories of passion, adventure, betrayal, and obsession. The infectious tales and astounding details in The Disappearing Spoon follow carbon, neon, silicon, and gold as they play out their parts in human history, finance, mythology, war, the arts, poison, and the lives of the (frequently) mad scientists who discovered them.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Entertaining

  • By James on 10-12-10

Interesting Vignettes of Science

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

Reviewed: 03-24-19

Kean clearly has a passion for the subject and presents history, chemistry, physics, and even philosophy in a wonderful and entertaining manner. He is able to weave the periodic table's history and the stories of the men and women who dedicated themselves to its mysteries well. What keeps this from being a five star book are the frequent foot notes. It was hard to keep track personally of when certain foot notes ended. If you are not bothered by such things, and want some fascinating science history, then this is the book to listen to.

  • Lying

  • By: Sam Harris
  • Narrated by: Sam Harris
  • Length: 1 hr and 15 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,267
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,720
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,665

As it was in Anna Karenina, Madame Bovary, and Othello, so it is in life. Most forms of private vice and public evil are kindled and sustained by lies. Acts of adultery and other personal betrayals, financial fraud, government corruption - even murder and genocide - generally require an additional moral defect: a willingness to lie. In Lying, bestselling author and neuroscientist Sam Harris argues that we can radically simplify our lives and improve society by merely telling the truth in situations where others often lie.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • "Telling The Truth...

  • By Douglas on 11-29-13

An Argument for Honesty

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

Reviewed: 03-21-19

Sam Harris makes a simple and strong point in this relatively short piece. It is easy to listen to in a single sitting and it is worth thinking about. At the end of the main argument, Harris answers questions others have raised in the past about his approach to honesty. While Harris argues strongly for a completely honest approach to life, I don't know if I am convinced. Harris has his ethics, and does a good job presenting them. For a quick intro to a type of philosophy, there are worse things to be exposed to.

The Indifferent Stars Above audiobook cover art
  • The Indifferent Stars Above

  • The Harrowing Saga of a Donner Party Bride
  • By: Daniel James Brown
  • Narrated by: Michael Prichard
  • Length: 10 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 865
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 783
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 782

In this gripping narrative, New York Times best-selling author Daniel James Brown sheds new light on one of the most infamous events in American history. Following every painful footstep of Sarah's journey with the Donner Party, Brown produces a tale both spellbinding and richly informative.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Wonderful story but...

  • By Amazon Customer on 11-24-14

A Harrowing Story

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

Reviewed: 03-16-19

Pritchard did his homework and wove a compelling tale of a dark episode of the early West. The details breathe life into the story and help the listener get a strong sense of the world and the people inhabiting it. However the narrator has a pace and tone that makes it difficult for a long listen, at least personally

  • The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

  • By: Rebecca Skloot
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell, Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 12 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,666
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,475
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,515

Her name was Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor Southern tobacco farmer who worked the same land as her slave ancestors, yet her cells, taken without her knowledge, became one of the most important tools in medicine. The first immortal human cells grown in culture, they are still alive today, though she has been dead for more than 60 years.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing Story

  • By Prisca on 04-30-10

An Interesting History

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

Reviewed: 02-17-19

I will be the first to confess, I was never much a student of the sciences. In this book, Skloot is able to blend personal and scientific history beautifully, talking about the struggles of the Lacks family with the impact Henrietta's cancers cells have had on the world. It also touched on medical ethics, race relations, justice, and the importance of consent. There were times when I think reading this would have been better, especially if there were photographs included in the print edition, but it was a fairly easy listen. Campbell as always did a good job with the story, and when Turpin read Deborah's notes/journals it was a surprising treat.

  • Brothers of the Wild North Sea

  • By: Harper Fox
  • Narrated by: Hamish Long
  • Length: 13 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 85
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 82
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 82

Hundreds of years ago, on a wild sea coast, two bold-hearted men met in combat and love...This is the story of Caius, a Christian monk struggling to reconcile his sensual nature with his newfound faith, and of Fenrir, a ferocious Viking raider abandoned by his comrades and left for dead. When Caius takes pity on the wounded man, his brethren are horrified: what kind of wolf has Cai brought into the fold?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Never wanted it to end

  • By BookLubber on 02-06-18

History, Magic, and Romance

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

Reviewed: 02-17-19

Fox has a unique talent for bringing the past to life, and this story set during the Viking age is no exception. There is a blend of the fantastic, the real, and some well written love scenes between our two central characters. This was an enjoyable listen and I highly recommend it to any fans of M/M romances set in the non-recent past.

  • The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly

  • A Novel
  • By: Sun-mi Hwang, Chi-Young Kim (translator)
  • Narrated by: Jill Larson
  • Length: 2 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 13

This is the story of a hen named Sprout. No longer content to lay eggs on command only to have them carted off to the market, she glimpses her future every morning through the barn doors, where the other animals roam free, and comes up with a plan to escape into the wild - and to hatch an egg of her own. An anthem for individuality and motherhood, The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly has captivated millions of fans in Korea, where it is a contemporary classic. Now the novel is making its way around the world.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • A Near Fable

  • By David on 01-13-19

A Near Fable

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

Reviewed: 01-13-19

There have been many reviews comparing this to Charlotte's Web, Babe, or even Bambi: A Life in the Forest. For me, this feels almost like a fable. Accepting the fable like quality of the story made it stronger. There are many powerful sentences about the nature of family, love, and nature. Sprout's wish to be a mother and the family she forms with Green-top could speak more to parents and children of adopted family. It's a simpler story, and it is a book you can finish in a single sitting. Considering the printed version comes with unique illustrations, it might be a better read than a listen, as the illustrations could add to fable like elements.

  • Wuthering Heights

  • By: Emily Bronte
  • Narrated by: Juliet Stevenson
  • Length: 13 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 238
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 225
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 224

The wild and passionate tale of Cathy and Heathcliff's impossible love for each other and its phenomenal setting on the blasted Yorkshire moors has to be one of the best-known love affairs in literature.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Narration

  • By Teresa Castillo on 04-18-16

A Gothic Classic

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

Reviewed: 01-11-19

Full credit to Stevenson for bringing all of the characters of this Gothic Classic to life. She devotes herself, stays in character, makes each of the voices distinct, and has a consistent pace. Bronte's world, all of the elements which are blended together, help make a world full of atmosphere. However many of the characters are not sympathetic, and despite some beautiful language come off as thoroughly unpleasant. While compelling sometimes, and understanding it to be the style of the day, it felt slightly melodramatic as a contemporary reader/listener. Despite this issue, I would recommend it, if only for its place in the gothic cannon.

  • The Address

  • A Novel
  • By: Fiona Davis
  • Narrated by: Saskia Maarleveld, Brittany Pressley
  • Length: 11 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,531
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,342
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,341

From the author of The Dollhouse and The Masterpiece comes the compelling national best-selling novel about the thin lines between love and loss, success and ruin, passion and madness, all hidden behind the walls of the Dakota - New York City’s most famous residence.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Should be a movie!

  • By Linda Slater on 10-19-17

Well Narrated, Interesting Story

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

Reviewed: 01-11-19

The Address does a very good job going between the 1890s and the 1980s, bouncing between two connected narratives. Davis did her homework for both periods, and makes the two different New Yorks feel very much alive. While the mystery element is present, it might not be the strongest part of the novel. As a connecting device it works well, but it was not hard to see how it would develop. Full credit to the narrators who did a very solid job in voicing each of the protagonists.

  • Deviant

  • The Shocking True Story of Ed Gein, the Original "Psycho"
  • By: Harold Schechter
  • Narrated by: R. C. Bray
  • Length: 8 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,874
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,740
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,737

From "America's principal chronicler of its greatest psychopathic killers" ( Boston Book Review) comes the definitive account of Ed Gein, a mild-mannered Wisconsin farmhand who stunned an unsuspecting nation - and redefined the meaning of the word psycho.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The best of true crime

  • By E F on 07-17-16

A Well Researched Story of a Disturbed Mind

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

Reviewed: 01-11-19

Schecter did his homework for this, and it shows. Not only does he talk about Gein's life, he also did a great job researching the legacy and impact of someone so disturbed. Bray's reading felt flat at times, despite the subject matter. For fans of true crime, this is a must listen. Perhaps it would be easier to read though, as it would enable the reader to keep their own notes easier.

  • The Haunting of Ashburn House

  • By: Darcy Coates
  • Narrated by: Eva Kaminsky
  • Length: 9 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,206
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,119
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 1,117

There's something wrong with Ashburn House. The ancient building has been the subject of rumours for close to a century. Its owner, Edith, refused to let guests inside and rarely visited the nearby town. Following Edith's death, her sole surviving relative, Adrienne, inherits the property. Adrienne's only possessions are a suitcase of luggage, 20 dollars, and her pet cat. Ashburn House is a lifeline she can't afford to refuse. Adrienne doesn't believe in ghosts, but it's hard to ignore the unease that grows as she explores her new home.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Keep an open mind...

  • By Elizabeth Moore on 05-28-17

Very Standard Ghost Story

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

Reviewed: 01-11-19

The Haunting of Ashburn House has many elements of a traditional ghost story, but they just don't connect well for me. I never got a very strong sense of Adrienne as a character (outside of her devotion to her cat), nor did any of the other characters feel really fleshed out. There were a few decent scenes (including Adrienne in the basement, the scene in the woods looking for a friend) but nothing that really stood out for me in a truly memorable way. Same with some of the imagery Coates created, it just doesn't lead to a satisfying payoff personally. Kaminsky does a solid job reading, trying to breathe life into the story, but I just didn't connect with it. I would be willing to try another novel by Coates, but I am in no hurry to revisit this one.