Jeffrey Engel's spirited narration makes this production of his lecture at Southern Methodist University a must-listen for anyone wanting to know more about the foundations of citizenship in the U.S. Designed to uncover the falsehoods that plague our basic understanding of American immigration, Engel's lecture provides thoughtful research and keeps listeners engaged all the way... Read More
In just under 15 hours this audiobook covers the evolution of the American nation from 1783, when the Constitution was ratified, to 1850, when the young republic had completed its span of the continent. Narrator Graham Winton establishes a sustained and sustaining tone that is a necessary center for a narrative that is essentially a textbook arranged topically by broad elements... Read More
This audiobook, created by Seeker, a top science contributor to YouTube and other digital platforms, introduces a new series of short-form audios. Here is the story of the U.S. space program from its origins after WWII to its lunar successes in the 1960s and early 1970s. The music is dramatic, the sound effects stirring, and its accounts of epoch-making moments elevating. The... Read More
Ladies and gentlemen and children of all ages, author Les Standiford expounds upon the rise and fall of the Greatest Show on Earth--otherwise known as the circus. Narrator B.J. Harrison's inviting voice will charm listeners as he captures Standiford's enthusiasm for his subject. Circuses fell on hard times and harder times, which led to their demise, principally due to the... Read More
The prolific author says that this is the first of his books "written to be heard rather than read." Gladwell himself delivers the compelling story of the renegade WWII soldiers who pioneered precision aerial bombing--a tactic that might have saved civilian lives had it been more widely accepted. He narrates with delightful spontaneity and engagement, and the production... Read More
Narrator James Cameron Stewart's precise diction and cool tone illuminate Ross King's detailed introduction to bookmaking, ink production, parchment and papermaking, and the various methods for distributing books in Renaissance Florence in this engrossing biography of Vespasiano da Bisticci. Fifteenth-century Florence was a city in political turmoil. Vespasiano, born in 1422,... Read More
Soneela Nankani and Leon Nixon narrate alternating chapters in this deep-dive examination of American radical political movements of the 1960s and '70s. The audiobook focuses on activists such as Bobby Seale (Black Panthers), Heather Booth (abortion rights), Jane Fonda (anti-war), Cesar Chavez (labor rights), Craig Rodwell (gay pride), Russell Means (Native American rights),... Read More
This fascinating audiobook changes the focus from three of the men who helped win WWII to their daughters, whose collective efforts were surprisingly helpful to the war effort, particularly at the Yalta Conference in 1945. In attendance were Kathleen Harriman, Sarah Churchill, and Anna Roosevelt, daughters of the U.S. ambassador to Russia, the British prime minister, and the... Read More
A century after the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921, the horror of the event hasn't lessened. Historian Scott Ellsworth wrote this brief but detailed account in 1982, with emphasis on the historical context of the riot and how the media and other factions ignited the tinderbox. Ellsworth reports with empathy but without moralizing, and in this new production narrator Pat Grimes adopts... Read More
Narrator Nancy Wu traces China's use of silver coinage, ingots, and silver-backed paper currency from the 1400s through the 1940s. Wu shifts seamlessly from the English narrative to Chinese terms and concepts. Her attentive delivery flows steadily as the author examines how silver currency has affected China in its commerce throughout Asia and across the globe. The precision of... Read More
Narrator Jonathan Keeble's warm voice elucidates the enduring works of the thinkers, writers, and practical philosophers known as "Enlighteners" in this sweeping account of the influential period of Western history between 1680 and 1790. Author Robertson uses literature, particularly fiction, to illuminate the attitudes and philosophies of this period of great intellectual... Read More
Bob Souer narrates this academic study of the writing of history and its subsequent and inevitable revisions. Beginning with Herodotus and Thucydides, Eusebius and other church fathers, the work progresses rapidly through the late eighteenth century and on to the early 21st, focusing mostly on historians of the French Revolution and the American Civil War. Souer maintains a... Read More
One hundred years ago, the first all-Black musical, SHUFFLE ALONG, changed the Great White Way forever. Author/narrator Caseen Gaines offers this fascinating, well-researched history of the struggles of Black actors and others who changed the face of Broadway. Gaines delivers first-rate performances of the anecdotes recounted by Black entertainers Noble Sissle, Eubie Blake,... Read More
Narrator David Colacci approaches this opinionated, engrossing audiobook with a practiced voice that lets its numerous stories tell themselves without fanfare. He adroitly captures the author's shifts in tone--from professorial to chatty, for example--and keeps the listener's attention on this broad-brush look at the cultural history of the Cold War. The narration moves the... Read More
This Wild West saga focuses not on gunslingers and cowboys, but on two railroad tycoons who are battling to develop the American Southwest. The colorful cast of characters makes for enjoyable listening, and John Bedford Lloyd carries the narration along nicely, even during the author's occasionally overly detailed descriptions of legal maneuverings and mechanical details. He... Read More
In Tusla, Oklahoma, 100 years ago, an act of evil took place that over decades became virtually unknown to all but those with a connection to the violence. This account of the now somewhat better known Tulsa race riots shows that the event was more massacre than riot. As narrated by Adrenrele Ojo, the story horrifies and educates. For a few terrifying days, Black Americans were... Read More
Author/narrator Jessica B. Harris's attentive and engaging voice masterfully guides listeners through the tumultuous and triumphant history of African-Americans by way of food and culinary traditions. Harris's delivery is filled with passion and verve as the narrative travels back to the bountiful dishes of precolonial West Africa up to the contemporary dishes prepared by... Read More
Warm humor runs throughout Einar Gunn's narration of Icelandic journalist Egill Bjarnason's audiobook. The author starts out on a personal note, telling how he first heard tourists' misconceptions about Iceland while working on a boat. From there, he focuses on telling listeners about Iceland's impact on the world stage--from Leif Eriksson's discovery of America to Iceland's... Read More
Narrator Fred Sanders's grave voice and understated performance work well for this grim and brutal history of Arctic exploration. In the sixteenth century, Dutch explorer William Barents set out three times from Amsterdam to search for a northeastern passage through the Arctic to China. Everyone made it home the first time. The second time, Barents lost crew members to polar... Read More
Narrator Janet Metzger brings skilled attention to this text, a primarily archaeological examination of Roman settlements and construction beyond city walls, mostly in the late Republic and early Imperial periods. But the choice of the audio format for this book is questionable. It's rather dry, probably meant for academics, includes many sentence-long quotations from Latin,... Read More
Many books highlight the efforts of underground freedom fighters during WWII, but this audiobook stands out for its focus on young Jewish women in Poland who banded together to aid the resistance and sabotage the Nazi war effort. The result is riveting and benefits from the narration of Mozhan Marno, whose smooth and light delivery complements Batalion's meticulously researched... Read More
With narrator Vikas Adam at the helm, listeners gain extra appreciation for the wonders, bravery, and horrors of the first Western expedition to winter in Antarctica. Written by a journalist and based on diaries, logs, photographs, and other firsthand accounts, the story of the RV BELGICA and its men laid bare includes an unruly, inexperienced crew; poor provisions; language... Read More
Rothfield's history of Renaissance Florence centers on the interplay of art, architecture, philosophy, and literature with politics. It includes appearances by such famous figures as Machiavelli and da Vinci. Narrator David de Vries's pronunciation of Italian is mostly excellent, but he misplaces the accents of several person and place names--which jars. He narrates with... Read More
Helen Lloyd's narration of this fascinating audiobook about the British intelligence agency MI9 mirrors the calm intensity of its operatives. Author Helen Fry has written a comprehensive history of the organization that rescued Allied fighters who were trapped in enemy territories during WWII. Details remained largely untold due to Britain's Official Secrecy Act, which muzzled... Read More
Sometimes there's a bit of awe in narrator Rick Adamson's voice--as when he tells listeners how the night sky was used as a compass by Indigenous seafarers and when he lists the plants bred by the Indigenous people author Conner calls Amerindians. Mostly, Adamson narrates Conner's stories of ordinary people who have contributed to science in a voice that clearly conveys... Read More
This fascinating audiobook is a fusion of exceptional writing and an outstanding narration by Suzanne Toren. Author Cynthia Saltzman presents a sweeping account of Napoleon's conquest of Europe, including the looting of its finest antiquities and Renaissance masterpieces and the creation of the Musée du Louvre. Caught between the colliding worlds of art and politics is the... Read More
With a sense of unbound curiosity, narrator Robert Petkoff narrates this fascinating account of the background and backroom dealings that crafted and sustained the American Revolution--from its financing to its persuasive pamphlets and battle plans. The story centers on Benjamin Franklin, who dedicated the second half of his life to wresting the Colonies from England. Along the... Read More
Karen White's direct, serious narration fits the tone of Green's vital work on the multigenerational impact of racist policies. In 1951, a Black high school student in Virginia led a protest against school segregation. This action established the momentum that led to the landmark Brown v. Board of Education ruling that desegregated U.S. schools. Yet in Prince Edward County,... Read More
Siobhan Redmond narrates Clare Hunter's thoughts on how her experience as a community textile artist fits into the history of textile artistry. Redmond uses an even pace and tone for academic details, such as the origin of a medieval tapestry, and speeds up and adds vocal variety when describing Hunter's excitement at seeing such notable works up close. A variety of stories... Read More
Oi, mate. Narrator Mark Robertson's musical Australian intonation is wildly appropriate for this anthropological history of early migrations in the Pacific islands between the Americas and western Asia. It is the voice of underestimated colonies raised in defense of undervalued peoples. Author Thomas provides evidence of the sophisticated boat building and navigation that took... Read More
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