I was strongly influenced by Richard Dawkins during my own scientific training, and admire his intellect and insights into evolution and biology. So, although I had been avoiding both this book and Christopher Hitchens book, I finally decided to download this and listen. So far, I haven't been able to finish listening, because it just strikes me as an emotional, personal rant - it seems like the Church (yes, with a capital "C") did some horrible violence to the author, and he feels the need to pay back for the damage done.
His examples don't really flow in a logical way, which surprised me, again, because, in his previous books, I've always admired his ability to build logically, and tell a good story. Unfortunately, I think his emotions on this topic run too high to be able to put together a compelling argument.
I was ready to hear an opinion stated in objective terms and what I was continually offered was flavored with enough petty mockery that it caused me to doubt the authenticity of the author's offering. I was disappointed.
I agree with the facts of this book. However, I don't understand what value comes from writing and (especially) reading the book in the childish and condescending way that is was.
There are reasons that people don't believe in evolution, assuming that it is because they are foolish reveals a lack of insight.
I rated the performance with 5 stars as it perfectly portrays the tone of the author. (not surprising as he is one of the narrators)
What a fantastic recording. Dawkins and his wife are wonderful speakers, and by creatively splitting up the recording between the two of them we are provided with a very entertaining transition from section to section as the book progresses. Dawkins's points are all well thought out and researched, though he does work quite a bit of attitude into the audio recording, presumably as it was meant to be presented in the book. The attitude can, at times, come off a bit crude, and most assuredly would offend anyone suffering a religious practice out of this book's completion, though I imagine those with religious convictions are likely to sell the book short through misrepresentation even if they were to finish the book (see low star reviews obsessing over his attitude and his "dismissal of ... faith").
Great book for those curious about Atheism or Richard Dawkins's works.
I had heard much about Dawkins, of course, and read a bit of his stuff, but this book was a complete surprise: poorly reasoned, terribly written, and narrated by the author (with ghastly asides by a woman narrator) in a tone of voice dripping with condescension and impatience. Not only does he not "prove" the non-existence of God (an impossibility anyway), he completely fails to grasp the psychological complexity of religious belief, or come to terms with the odd human characteristic of the will to believe in something beyond ourselves.
I think that the subject says it all. I suppose that this book may hold epiphany for some, but it was all old news. I do believe though, that people need to leave the closet.
if i could i'd force everyone to read/listen to this book and certain others. until people start using their brains this world will continue down the path it's on. the "religion of greed" and the greed of religion will be the downfall of not only this country, but many others.
smart arguments, but painful to listen to. it was as if it was a late-night infomercial, redundantly re-stating how the author was right and the others were wrong. a good argument, but excruciating to hear them say it.
If you are looking for facts that are presented by an Atheist to debunk any religious theology then this book is for you.
Dawkins does what he does best and blast you with fact after fact of historical reference material of why [Fill in Religion] is wrong.
One thing I could not get past was his immediate dismissal of hope and faith from the human behavior.
I considered this book a few times but was always turned off by the title. I wanted to learn more about our mental health system, but I didn't want to sit through a heart wrenching first person account of the suffering.
Luckily the author's experience as a reporter allowed him to give a very balanced account--focusing more on the system than the emotions surrounding a single (personal) case.
It was a very interesting set of stories, and I think it could do a lot to readjust our attitudes.