Archive for March, 2007

Truth and Beauty – Ann Patchett – Audio Book

March 27, 2007

Truth & Beauty – Ann Patchett : What happens when the person who is your family is someone you aren’t bound to by blood? What happens when that person is not your lover, but your best friend? In her frank and startlingly intimate first work of nonfiction, Truth & Beauty, Ann Patchett shines light on the little-explored world of women’s friendships and shows us what it means to stand together.

Ann Patchett and Lucy Grealy met in college in 1981, and after enrolling in the Iowa Writer’s Workshop began a friendship that would be as defining to both of their lives as their work. In her critically acclaimed memoir, Autobiography of a Face, Lucy Grealy wrote about the first half of her life. In Truth & Beauty, the story isn’t Lucy’s life or Ann’s life but the parts of their lives they shared together. This is a portrait of unwavering commitment that spans 20 years, from the long cold winters of the Midwest to surgical wards to book parties in New York. Through love, fame, drugs and despair, this is what it means to be part of two lives that are intertwined.

A remarkable audio book about the human relations.

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Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar – Simon Sebag Montefiore – Audio Book

March 25, 2007

Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar – Simon Sebag Montefiore : An amazing insight into the life of one of histories greatest villains. There have been many biographies of Stalin, but the court that surrounded him is untravelled ground. Simon Sebag Montefiore, acclaimed biographer of Catherine the Great’s lover, prime minister and general, Potemkin, has unearthed the vast underpinning that sustained Stalin. Not only ministers such as Molotov or secret service chiefs such as Beria, but men and women whose loyalty he trusted only until the next purge.

If we thought that we already knew a lot about Stalin then I can tell you: we were wrong !

Undaunted Courage – Stephen E. Ambrose – Audio Book

March 23, 2007

Undaunted Courage – Stephen E. Ambrose : In 1803 President Thomas Jefferson selected his personal secretary, Captain Meriwether Lewis, to lead a voyage up the Missouri River, across the forbidding Rockies, and – by way of the Snake and mighty Columbia – down to the Pacific Ocean. Lewis and his partner, Captain William Clark, endured incredible hardships and witnessed astounding sights. With great perseverance, they worked their way into an unexplored West and when they returned two years later, they had long since been given up for dead.

Lewis is supported by a variety of colorful characters: Jefferson and his vision of the West; Clark, the artist and map-maker; and Lewis – the enigma, who let brilliantly but considered the mission a failure. After suffering several periods of depression — and despite his status as a national hero – Lewis died mysteriously, apparently by his own hand.

As breathtaking as the conquest of the West itself.

One Soldier’s Story – Bob Dole – Audio Book

March 23, 2007

One Soldier’s Story – Bob Dole : Bob Dole has a life before his political career: He was a soldier and went to war for the USA. As it’s a while back, most people were not aware of this.

For the first time in his own words, Dole tells the moving story of his harrowing experience on and off the battlefield, and how it changed his life. Before he became one of America’s most respected statesmen, Bob Dole was an average citizen serving heroically for his country. The bravery he showed after suffering near-fatal injuries in the final days of World War II is the stuff of
legend.

Bob Dole recounts his own odyssey of courage and sacrifice, and also honors the fighting spirit of the countless heroes with whom he served. Drawing on letters between him and his family during this period, Dole offers a powerful, vivid portrait of one man’s struggle to survive in the closing moments of the war.

His perspective is not that of a politician, but the view of a wounded G.I. who overcame the longest odds to rebuild his life. Heartfelt and inspiring, One Soldier’s Story is the World War II chronicle America has been waiting for.

When I listen to this audio book it seems to me that my fahter was still alive. As a french soldier during World War II and prisoner of the German – when he started to explain, only because we wanted to understand, otherwise he never spoke about it – I thought that he was still alive and I really have to say Thank You to M. Bob Dole because he used the words that I so long expected to hear from my father .

The Family – Mario Puzo – Audio Book

March 22, 2007

The Family – Mario Puzo : Mario Puzo first answered that question in his landmark bestseller The Godfather, with the creation of the Corleones. Now, thirty years later, Puzo enriches us all with his ultimate vision of the subject: the story of the greatest crime family
in Italian history — the Borgias.

In The Family, this singular novelist transports his readers back to fifteenth-century Rome, and reveals to us the extravagance and intrigue of the Vatican as surely as he once revealed the secrets of the Mafia. At the story’s center is Rodrigo Borgia, Pope Alexander VI, a man whose lustful appetites were matched only by his consuming love of family. Surrounding him are his extraordinary children: simple, unloved Jofre; irascible, heartless Juan; beautiful, strong-willed Lucrezia; and passionate warrior Cesare, Machiavelli’s friend and inspiration. Their stories constitute a symphony of human emotion and behavior, from pride to romance to jealousy to betrayal and murderous rage.

As breathless as the Godfather but how colourful ! We really are plunged in the 15th Century and we realised how ruthless this family was !

The Story of My Life – Farah Ahmedi – Audio Book

March 20, 2007

The Story of My Life – Farah Ahmedi : When ABC News’ Good Morning America asked its viewers to write essays describing true-life experiences, the network never imagined receiving more than twenty thousand pages of inspiring stories.

This audiobook is the result of the most ambitious search ever conducted to publish an extraordinary life story.Farah Ahmedi is born into the world just as the war between the mujahideen and the Soviets reaches its peak in Afghanistan. Bombs are falling all over her country, and her native Kabul is swelling with thousands of people looking for homes and jobs. When Farah steps on a land mine on her way to school, her world becomes much smaller than the dreams and hopes in her heart.

The Story of My Life: An Afghan Girl on the Other Side of the Sky recounts an epic journey. It deftly interweaves a childhood in Afghanistan — where the classrooms are naked chambers with only chalkboards on the walls — with an American adolescence, where teenagers struggle to decide whether to try out for school plays.

The Story of My Life is our new great American memoir.

This audio book and above all the story which is told demonstrate once more that, despite the horrors of which the humanity is capable, it is also capable of acts of extraordinary generosities. A magnificent lesson of courage and hope.

The Chain Gang – Richard McCord – Audio Book

March 17, 2007

The Chain Gang – Richard McCord : “They’re closing in on me, Dick, and I’m afraid they’re going to get me,” said Frank Wood, publisher of the Green Bay News-Chronicle, in a phone call to his friend and colleague Richard McCord. Drained of cash and spirit, Wood could not hold out much longer against a devouring giant, the Gannett Company. As editor and publisher of the weekly Santa Fe Reporter, McCord had successfully fended off Gannett’s “Operation Demolition” when it moved into town. Now Wood was seeking the help of a survivor.

This dramatic story of two men’s efforts to save the small Green Bay daily from obliteration at the hands of the nation’s largest newspaper chain brings together startling case histories of the dubious tactics practiced by Gannett and unsparing insights into the newspaper industry. Their success is a metaphor for one of the oldest triumphs of the world: that of David over Goliath.

Its brilliant. And what makes me angry is that this type of “operations” are going on and on although we read so many books or articles about such raid ! Some are really unable to learn !

On The Wing – Alan Tennant – Audio Book

March 17, 2007

On The Wing – Alan Tennant : In this extraordinary narrative, Alan Tennant recounts his all-out effort to radio-track the transcontinental migration of the peregrine falcon—an investigation no one before him had ever taken to such lengths.

On the Wing transports us from the windswept flats of the Texas barrier islands—where the tundra falcons pause during their springtime journey north—to the Arctic, and then south, through Mexico, Belize, and into the Caribbean, in a hilariously picaresque and bumpy flight. At the helm is Tennant’s partner in falcon-chasing, George Vose, a septuagenarian World War II vet who trusts his instincts as much as his instruments.

As the two men nearly lose their lives and run afoul of the law in the race to keep their birds in view and their rattletrap Cessna gassed up and running, Tennant renders with gorgeous precision and skill the landscape and wildlife they pass on the way and the falcons that direct their course.

Magnificent !

Don’t Kiss Them Goodbye – Allison DuBois – Audio Book

March 15, 2007

Don’t Kiss Them Goodbye – Allison DuBois : Her visions have helped solve crimes; her instincts have helped find missing people; she can predict future events and sense your thoughts.

When she was six years old, Allison’s deceased great-grandfather came to her with a message for her mother: “I am okay, I am still with you. Tell your mom there’s no pain. ” Allison shared his comforting words with her mother and thus began a lifetime of creating connections between loved ones and those they have lost. The purpose of her gifts became clear when Allison worked as an intern in the homicide bureau of the district attorney’s office and found that she visualized the crime as she handled the evidence. Allison now works as a profiler on criminal investigations.

As I finished to listen to this audio book I finally understood what a real profiler is first and second what a “medium” can be.

Miles Gone By: A Literary Autobiography – William F. Buckley, Jr. – Audio Book

March 14, 2007

Miles Gone By: A Literary Autobiography – William F. Buckley, Jr. : In this autobiography, woven from personal pieces composed over the course of a celebrated writing life of more than fifty years, you’ll meet William Buckley the boy, growing up in a family of ten children; Buckley the daring young political enfant terrible, whose debut book, God and Man at Yale, was a shocking New York Times best-seller; Buckley the editor of National Review, widely hailed as the founder of the modern conservative movement; Buckley the husband and father; Buckley the spy and novelist of spies; and Buckley the bon vivant.

Along the way, the listener will be treated to Buckley’s romance with wine, his love of the
right word, his intoxication with music, and his joy in skiing and travel.

William F. Buckley, Jr., a syndicated columnist, author, editor, television host, and adventurer, was the founder of National Review and the host of the Emmy Award-winning Firing Line, the longest-running program in television history with the same host. He is the award-winning author of many best-sellers, starting with God and Man at Yale. He lives in Connecticut.

A pure delight !