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  • The Modern Scholar: Elemental Matters

  • An Introduction to Chemistry
  • By: Professor Deborah G. Sauder
  • Narrated by: Professor Deborah G. Sauder
  • Length: 8 hrs and 26 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 11
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 11

In "Elemental Matters", Professor Deborah Sauder leads a comprehensive overview of chemistry, a subject that influences every aspect of daily life. Kicking off the lecture series with a revealing look at one of the planet’s most vital chemicals—water—Sauder then delves into the basics of molecular structure and chemical reactions. The course concludes with an eye-opening glimpse of 21st-century applications, such as nanotechnology and energy alternatives."

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Needs accompanying PDF

  • By Product user on 20-10-13

Needs accompanying PDF

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

Reviewed: 20-10-13

What would have made The Modern Scholar: Elemental Matters better?

Lots of detail that would have benefited from an accompanying PDF handout as other modern scholar courses do

Has The Modern Scholar: Elemental Matters put you off other books in this genre?

The modern scholar series is, by and large, very good and his book is no exception. However, without a supporting PDF I found I had to repeatedly rewind and reply lots of sections

What didn’t you like about the narrator’s performance?

Narration was clear and acceptable

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Modern Scholar: Elemental Matters?

None

Any additional comments?

None

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • No One Left to Lie To

  • The Triangulations of William Jefferson Clinton
  • By: Christopher Hitchens, Douglas Brinkley (foreword)
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 4 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 75
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 64
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 65

In No One Left to Lie to, a New York Times best seller, Christopher Hitchens casts an unflinching eye on the Clinton political machine and offers a searing indictment of a president who sought to hold power at any cost. With blistering wit and meticulous documentation, Hitchens masterfully deconstructs Clinton's abject propensity for pandering to the Left while delivering to the Right.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Was there a rapist in the Whitehouse?

  • By Product user on 09-01-13

Was there a rapist in the Whitehouse?

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-01-13

Bill Clinton continues to be one of the USA's most popular Presidents. However, Hitchens suggests that behind the facade Clinton was a sexual predator who was prepared to use air-strikes on innocent targets in order to deflect attention from his sexual and financial scandals. This is a well-argued, well-evidenced book that strips away the handsome Rhode scholar image and allows the reader to see the rancid underbelly of a manipulative, bullying, self-fixated individual.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Trial of Henry Kissinger

  • By: Christopher Hitchens, Ariel Dorfman (introduction)
  • Narrated by: Simon Prebble
  • Length: 6 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 69
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 60
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 57

"If the courts and lawyers of this country will not do their duty, we shall watch as the victims and survivors of this man pursue justice and vindication in their own dignified and painstaking way, and at their own expense, and we shall be put to shame." Forget Pinochet, Milosevic, Hussein, Kim Jong-il, or Gaddafi: America need look no further than its own lauded leaders for a war criminal whose offenses rival those of the most heinous dictators in recent history-Henry Kissinger.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Compelling

  • By Nigel on 13-04-13

A compelling case that shames the USA

Overall
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-01-13

Hitchens meticulously deconstructs the record of Nobel Peace Prize winner Henry Kissinger. The charges laid before Kissinger are extensive and heinous. The extension of the Vietnamese war by four years, the expansion of that war into the neutral counties of Laos and Cambodia, the support of the Indonesian dictator Suharto in the annexing of East Timor (including the genocide of 1/3rd of the Timorese people) and support for the Greek junta in the invasion of Cyprus. Add to this Kissingers involvement in the death of Chile's democratically-elected president Salvador Allende, his support for the muderous General Pinochet and his repeated lies to Congress and the Senete - wow! This is a book worth reading.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Essential Reality

  • By: David Bohm
  • Narrated by: Michael Toms
  • Length: 57 mins
  • Original Recording
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 19
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 4
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 4

Stripping away the known and seeing reality for what it is, rather than for what our thoughts represent it to be, provides the theme for this compelling conversation. The late theoretical physicist David Bohm addresses the nature of thought and thinking, and how our conditioned minds become subordinate to the way we think.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Disappointing new-age nonsense

  • By Product user on 18-10-12

Disappointing new-age nonsense

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 18-10-12

When the interview opens up (yes this is an interview, not a book) it is made clear that this is part two of of the interview - though what happened to part one is a mystery to me. I had expected Bohm to be discussing the implications of quantum physics for reality, however, it seems that this is in the first part of the interview. This interview is much more associated with Bohm's bhuddist leanings than fundamental physics - all rather new-age nonsense. It's not helped when Bohm finishes almost every sentence with the word "right?" - a complete waste of money...

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The History of Science

  • A Sweeping Visage of Science and its History
  • By: Professor Michael Shermer
  • Narrated by: Dr. Michael Shermer
  • Length: 25 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars 14
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 14

This is a sweeping look at science, its history and philosophy from the Middle Ages to the present, with special emphasis on defining science within the cultural context of the age, who was doing science at the time, and what their goals were in conducting science. This course reflects Dr. Shermer's doctoral training at Claremont Graduate School.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A very long listen

  • By Lesley on 09-04-09

Dreadful ! A real let-down...

Overall
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 13-08-11

When buying this book I expected something akin to Bill Bryson's "Short History of Everything" - perhaps more detail and less humourous but, given the length and cost, something well-researched and well-presented. In fact this is a series of lectures given by Schermer, the structure, clarity and editing of which is significantly inferior to the standards set by the "Modern Scholar" series. Structurally the lectures are full of digressions and, at times, Schermer shows he has little grasp of some of the topics being discussed. The clarity of the recordings is awful and I lost count of the times when discussions were taking place with the audience and it was impossible to hear the questions being asked or the contributions being made. However, it is perhaps in the editing that this series is at it's weakest. "Chapter" breaks are often made when Schermer is in full flow, digressions and barely decipherable audience discussions - completely off-topic - could, and should, have been edit out.

Finally the title of the book is misleading as, given it's poor structure, it tries to span philosophy and religion as well as science and does poor justice to all three subjects. As an alternative I would recommend any potential purchaser to buy the following:
"A Short History of Everything" - Bill Bryson
"The Story of Philosophy" - Will Durrant
"The God Delusion" - Richard Dawkins

10 of 14 people found this review helpful