YAKIMA, WA, United States | Member Since 2009
I enjoyed the start of the book but it won me over with the mom stuff. yeah.
I like Tina Fey generally, but I'm not a big fan of 30 Rock so I wasn't sure about the book. (for the record, I think the story lines are ridiculous, I think Alec Balwin is slightly annoying and I many of the 30 Rock jokes make me feel slightly uncomfortable.)
I didn't think this book had any of the problems that 30 Rock has. Tina Fey seemed a bit neurotic but mostly just funny. I like her sarcastic take on most things (exception being: She seems pretty amazed by Alec Baldwin in a way I don't get).
I was listening to the audiobook (earphones), in part, while my daughter napped. I laughed out loud several times and was actually worried that I'd wake her.
Like I said, I particularly laughed at some of the times she talked about being a working mom and the pressures of being a mom (working or otherwise) in society today. This stuff always gets me, because I found the first 6 months of motherhood to be really hard and I like hearing from otherwise successful people who also had a hard time. Especially if they make it seem ridiculous that other people made you feel bad then. yeah.
anyway, its pretty short. You should probably read it. the book generally had some pretty right-on moments that I haven't heard before. It wasn't heavily SNL, 30 Rock or even feminist (I wouldn't have minded the former or the latter). I kept feeling that she concisely poked at a bit of truth over and over again, in a way that was light, funny and real.
nope. I don't think they have anything useful to offer me.
This was more of a self-help book for people who aren't sure if they are artists. The authors assumed that fear prevents artists from making art. I disagree. I think fear prevents not-quite-artists from becoming artists. Artists make art.
I thought this was going to to be an art history book or a contemporary criticism book about society's reaction to confrontational art and art that breaks the rules. Either that or it would be about artists like Goya depicting fear, death, and horror in art.
sure. he was fine.
it might be on Lifetime. or an old fuzzy VHS at the library that no one checks out. For just two easy payments of 9.99 you too can be an artist. Take our free drawing test.
sorry aspiring artists, but you can become a real artist if you make art. you have to just do it, you don't need to listen to this audiobook.
I had heard a lot about this book and the author, which is why I tried it. Unfortunately, this book just isn't my style. I don't know that I can say that someone else wouldn't like it. It wasn't objectively bad, just not a good fit for me. The jungle setting was interesting, I guess, but the story focused too much on the romantic relationships of the people. I'm not sure the book is about the romance, but it spent to much time on it if it wasn't the point.
As far as the meat of the story, its an adventure in the Brazilian jungle. I guess I get annoyed with fiction based on a scientific / technological mystery set in an interesting real-life place. It seems almost feasible, but I can't get a handle on what bits are real and which aren't. Personally, I'd rather read a non fiction history of the Brazilian jungle and scientific breakthroughs in fertility or a science fiction adventure in an alternate world. This fake stuff in the real world isn't as impressive to me somehow.
I love Terry Pratchett, so I downloaded some audiobooks to try to replicate the experience of the reading the book, but while my hands were busy. Unfortunately, I don't think listening to these books is equivalent to the experience of reading them. Pratchett's footnotes are like little candy treats interspersed in your reading experience. I find them so excessively rewarding, but listening doesn't quite do it.
Nigel Planer is okay, but I think I had a hard time getting used to a narrator different than the one in my head. At first I couldn't do it. I came back to the books, literally, years later and I was able to enjoy them as an alternative to (but not a replacement for) reading the books.
If you haven't read any Terry Pratchett, I can't adequately express how excellent they are.
The books with Vimes (like this one) are some of my favorites and a good place to start.
I should know better, I'm not a big fan of short stories. I kept wanting to yell at the characters for doing stupid things. They did them anyway and I didn't really care. I was happy when it ended. I feel like I'm supposed to have liked these, but I didn't. Sorry.
This book is not my typical fare; I don't read a lot of YA novels set in the real world. The story was funny and strange and a little uncomfortable at times. The characters were a bit angst, but, YA, right?
I hesitate to say that I liked the book, since at times I cringed at the behavior of the characters, but I liked the journey the author took us on with those characters. The story was interesting and I'm glad I read it. I would recommend it, but I probably won't re-read it.
The information contained in this book is excellent, full and very interesting. I was disappointed with the frustrating narration and slightly stilted organization of the writing. Regardless of the minor writing style distractions and the major narration distractions, I would highly recommend the book.
I recently read Tom Standage's "History of the World in 6 Glasses." Similar to "An Edible History of Humanity," 6 glasses is a not-quite-chronological and broad-ranging history of the world focused on one aspect of humanity. Also similar to 6 glasses, Edible History is organized what feels like a 5 paragraph essay format or a textbook chapter. Standage starts with his general introduction to the chapter topic, fills it out with specific examples, interesting details and related stories or anecdotes. Unfortunately, he tends to then restate his "thesis" or the main chapter points before moving on to a related but separate topic which he introduces using similar phrasing to the previous topic introduction. I found this annoying at first (in both books) but was less bothered as the audiobook progressed (I skimmed the summaries in the 6 glasses book which I read instead of listening to).
The narrator's faults I had more trouble moving past. When the book began I thought I was listening to a filmstrip narration or an educational video being show during a particularly boring elementary school class. Later, when I had come to terms with the filmstrip-voice (though I never liked it), I was pained by the voices used by the narrator to distinguish quotes from various famous characters in the book. The Christopher Columbus voice was annoying, the Adam Smith voice was painful and the French pronunciation was painful to anyone who doesn't expect a nasal R in people and place names.
My frustrations with repetition and terrible narration aside, I enjoyed the book greatly. I was particularly pleased with some explanations on various topics that were more complete and more clear (except when spoken in French) than those I have read in previous books. I tend to devour a lot of this sort of book--idiosyncratic histories of specific topics--and I felt like this book was a complement to those I have read. On the few occasions when the author repeated information I already knew, he generally quickly related it to his topic of food and other ideas he had also been discussing.
Though the book suggests it will simply be a history of food, the author does an excellent job of integrating and incorporating politics, world events and individual experiences into his interpretation. I look forward to reading more of Tom Standage's work (hopefully with a different narrator).
There were a few remarkable specific areas where Standage improved upon my previous understanding of events or issues. Standage gave a much better explanation of the development of maize than I encountered in my previous reading (particularly Gavin Menzies' problematic 1421). I also was fascinated with the discussion of the health benefits of hunter-gather societies over agricultural ones and the explanation of why the nutritionally inferior agriculture took over and transformed the world.
Unfortunately I took notes for this book on my iPhone Audible App and the automatic spelling correction has replaced my note about something in 6000BCE in the near east with "bug blogs" I'm guessing they didn't have bug blogs in 6000BCE, so I'll have to go back and figure that out.
This isn't the sort of book I usually listen to, but I listened to Middlemarch this summer and really enjoyed it. I find Eliot to be a very interesting author. Her writing is not what I would call familiar or typical. She takes her time telling the story, taking you with her. This book was shorter than Middlemarch, but it had the same kind of leisurely pacing. With this book I didn't feel like I knew where we were headed, exactly. It wasn't predictable.
I will probably read more by Eliot, but I will wait until I have time to spare. This is not a good book to read in breaks in between work or while distracted with chores.
I enjoyed this book, though some of the pieces of information or anecdotes weren't new to me. I liked how the author clearly laid out his arguments, though I didn't always need 15 examples of the phrase or concept he was explaining. The book was a pleasant listen and I was pleased that it was broader than a basic discussion of language. The author allowed himself to spend time explaining related concepts and instincts to put the language stuff in perspective.
My main concern with the book was that it was a bit dated in places, including one reference that was just ridiculous from a 2012 perspective (but not central to the story Pinker was trying to tell). The book was first written in 94, I think, but was updated more recently. The end of book addresses those dated items. It was nice to hear a short update on some of the affected topics, though it sounds like Pinker's general theories did not change. The dated bits were mostly just pop culture references, I think the science (or theory) holds up.
I quite enjoyed this story. I'm a teacher, so I don't get to listen often during the academic year, but this book had me listening avidly while getting ready for work, on my way home and in all the little moments in between other obligations
The story was very interesting and full of bits of information and anecdotes and stories I didn't already know. I enjoyed Kean's last book, The Disappearing Spoon, and this one is at least as good. I've read a reasonably good amount of popular science books on heredity and biology, but this one was fresh and accessible with a wealth of fascinating information.
Good narration. I highly recommend it. And I wan't to read more like this.
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