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  • Why England Lose: And Other Curious Football Phenomena Explained

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Simon Kuper, Stefan Szymanski
    • Narrated By Colin Mace

    Why do England lose? Why does Scotland suck? Why doesn't America play the sport internationally... and why do the Germans play with such an efficient but robotic style?

    Using insights and analogies from economics, statistics, psychology and business to cast a new and entertaining light on how the game works, "Why England Lose" reveals the often surprisingly counterintuitive truths about soccer.

    Gary Black says: "Not just why England (will) lose!"
    "If you follow football, you'll love this"

    This is a terrific analysis of football making some serious and clever points in a very likeable dry-witted style. The great thing about it as an audiobook is that it will bear several listens to take in the many salient points. Thoroughly recommended.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Casual Vacancy

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 49 mins)
    • By J. K. Rowling
    • Narrated By Tom Hollander
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready

    When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early 40s, the town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty facade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils.... Pagford is not what it first seems. And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen.

    Ben says: "Stick with it"
    "Small-town Britain in a nutshell"

    Of course, I'd never have selected this book if it hadn't been written by Joanne Rowling and you have to say that the subject matter & plot is courageous given that she knew how much attention it would get after the success of Harry Potter. I enjoyed it enormously for its wit, minute observation of the thoughts & motivation of the large cast of characters and for its very British small-town setting. The sheer number of characters can be a bit of a problem in a audiobook where it's difficult to rewind to recall exactly who is who/married to whom etc., but persist because it's worth it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Michael Lewis
    • Narrated By Scott Brick

    Moneyball is a quest for something as elusive as the Holy Grail, something that money apparently can't buy: the secret of success in baseball. The logical places to look would be the giant offices of major league teams and the dugouts. But the real jackpot is a cache of numbers collected over the years by a strange brotherhood of amateur baseball enthusiasts: software engineers, statisticians, Wall Street analysts, lawyers, and physics professors.

    Colin says: "Recommended reading for all sports fans"
    "Recommended reading for all sports fans"

    This book has been much referenced in UK sports in recent years - especially football - and you can see why, even if the major Premier League teams show few signs of heeding the lessons. The sheer weight of baseball statistics can be a bit heavy at times for us Brits, but it's a fascinating story of applying intelligent and analytical thinking to the task of building a sports team. The descriptions of groupthink and received-wisdoms in the baseball management and scouting community are funny and insightful, and no doubt have parallels in our sports. If you're a sports fan, I recommend it, but if you don't like sport, don't spend your money on this - however much you liked Brad Pitt in the movie.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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