- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 35 hours and 3 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
- Audible.com Release Date: August 7, 2013
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00EDSLSBK
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
- It is not really a chronology. It's more of a topicology. It covers topics in a range of times. This means it jumps around a little in an area that can be a little confusing. For instance, it will cover his investments in the University of Chicago for a timeframe then go backward to cover another topic during that time frame.
- There are huge gaps in coverage of his mother and family. Maybe I missed something but I don't even remember a mention of his sister Mary.
- Rockefeller lived at one of the most exciting times in this nations history. He saw the invention of the car and of the airplane. It's hard to imagine he wasn't more than a little interested in what the Wright Brothers were doing.
- It's very hard to get a sense of his wealth. The numbers in the books seem a little inconsistent at times.
In general, I found the story of Rockefeller's life fascinating. There was nothing especially exceptional about him and yet he became the wealthiest man in the history of the world. While there is debate about this I have no doubt. Unlike today's wealthy who are paper rich (stock) Rockefeller was taking in all of his wealth in the form of untaxed dividends. At one point he was taking in the equivalent of more than $1B a year. While today's rich promise to give their money away when they die Rockefeller spent half of his life giving away as much as he could. While he got vilified throughout life I'm actually amazed at how reserved and content he was. With all of his money he theoretically could have taken over everything. He had enough money to control nearly every major industry if he wanted.
If I could have one major criticism of him it would be the way he was with his wife. She clearly had issues for a great portion of her life and yet Rockefeller still pretty much did as he wished. Perhaps that is what she wanted or perhaps it was either that or he just sat around the house and withered away too. In any, case it seems odd how much time he spends away from her during all of her troubles.
On the other hand it's absolutely remarkable the restraint he shows in dealing with his brother and children. It's amazing that the most powerful man in the world just sits by as his daughter lives in Europe and refuses to even come home for her mother's funeral.
I highly recommend this book.