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Gabrielle

Member Since 2012

32
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 9 reviews
  • 9 ratings
  • 66 titles in library
  • 10 purchased in 2014
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FOLLOWERS
3

  • The Botany of Desire

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Michael Pollan
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1520)
    Performance
    (791)
    Story
    (793)

    Every schoolchild learns about the mutually beneficial dance of honeybees and flowers: The bee collects nectar and pollen to make honey and, in the process, spreads the flowers' genes far and wide. In The Botany of Desire, Michael Pollan ingeniously demonstrates how people and domesticated plants have formed a similarly reciprocal relationship.

    Teddy says: "If you have an open mind... Give it a listen"
    "Exciting and interesting! I loved every minute!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I absolutely recommend this book! yes yes!


    What other book might you compare The Botany of Desire to and why?

    similar in its interesting and complex information about plants to a book I read years ago called 'The sex life of plants' which was also very cool, fun, and informative.


    What does Scott Brick bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He has a beautiful voice and reads so eloquently. I remember that there were a couple of botany related words that were not pronounced the way I would pronounce them, but it could be that I am just a huge plant geek or it could be how these words are pronounced in America? I am sorry that I can't remember what they were.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made me laugh loud and often, and cry out in amazement sometimes at the wonderful story and the amazing information.


    Any additional comments?

    I have been deeply affected by this book - it was amazingly informative and beautiful and skilfully written and well researched, and I am already a huge botany geek and I learned a very great deal from Michael. Thank you SO much for writing this book!

    I also learned a lot about people's experiences of marijuana, which due to my law-abiding life to keep my very proper job, I can't and won't try, so that was interesting.

    And the apples growing by the roadside are even more exciting to me now and one day I hope to go see the apple forests in Almaty.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Spy the Lie: Former CIA Officers Teach You How to Detect Deception

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Philip Houston, Michael Floyd, Susan Carnicero, and others
    • Narrated By Fred Berman
    Overall
    (701)
    Performance
    (615)
    Story
    (622)

    Imagine how different your life would be if you could tell whether someone was lying or telling you the truth. Be it hiring a new employee, investing in a financial interest, speaking with your child about drugs, confronting your significant other about suspected infidelity, or even dating someone new, having the ability to unmask a lie can have far-reaching and even life-altering consequences. As former CIA officers, Philip Houston, Michael Floyd, and Susan Carnicero are among the world’s best at recognizing deceptive behavior.

    Kim says: "Excellent, with one disappointment"
    "handy but use caution"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    A very good intro to how to spot liars and exaggeration. Teaches one the right questions and directions to use when asking kids about drug use which is handy. If you are living happily in ignorance perhaps do not listen to this book, but if you are sick of being lied to unknowingly then it is a great start.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Wicked Plants: The Weed That Killed Lincoln's Mother and Other Botanical Atrocities

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Amy Stewart
    • Narrated By Coleen Marlo
    Overall
    (118)
    Performance
    (101)
    Story
    (97)

    Beware! The sordid lives of plants behaving badly. A tree that sheds poison daggers; a glistening red seed that stops the heart; a shrub that causes paralysis; a vine that strangles; and a leaf that triggered a war. Amy Stewart, best-selling author of Flower Confidential, takes on over two hundred of Mother Nature's most appalling creations in an A to Z of plants that kill, maim, intoxicate, and otherwise offend.

    Julia says: "For the Casual Nerd"
    "We are not even safe inside!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It is evidently clear that nature is intent on killing us and that is that. Plants are the likely culprit and this book tells you who it might be. This terrifying book lists one thing after another that will kill, injure or poison you, it is a scary gallop through a long list of terror ... and I loved every little bit of it. Glorious plants of all sorts are listed herein and the ways they want to hurt you is detailed in beautiful detail. It is so very interesting and reading this may also one day save your life! As a result of reading this fabulous book, I have more respect for my plants and have moved my poisonous houseplants out of reach of my naughty Chihuahua, thankfully before anything bad happened. I worry that listening to this book audibly might make people you live with feel uncomfortable, and listening to such terrible information does feel a little devious, but oh wow is it ever interesting stuff, especially for a plant nerd such as myself.

    I noticed the reader changed the way she pronounced plant family names along the way which is good because she ended up saying it correctly - although the words end with '-ceae' and that looks like it should sound complicated, the correct way to say it is 'ee-ee'. I know this from asking a latin-fluent eminent biologist.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss, And Long-term Health

    • ABRIDGED (7 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By T. Colin Campbell, Thomas M. Campbell
    • Narrated By Stefan Rudnicki
    Overall
    (876)
    Performance
    (583)
    Story
    (590)

    The China Study offers conclusive evidence that a change of diet can dramatically reduce the risks of heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. The book is based on the most comprehensive study of nutrition ever conducted, a 20-year joint project between Cornell University, Oxford University, and the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine. The study surveyed the eating habits of 6,500 adults from all over China and Taiwan and found a direct correlation between diet and disease.

    James says: "Deserves a second listen"
    "scary, compelling, but I need to know more first"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The information book scares the heck out of me and makes me worry and sure makes me think twice about casein and animal proteins, but then I wonder if the information therein is skewed and I need to do some more reading elsewhere to analyse the issue. It is certainly an extremely important issue - our health and lifespans!

    One thing is for certain, I am now consuming less casein and animal protein, but not all or most, just consuming it intentionally and thinking about it. The book has made me aware that there may be an issue and I have to read more and find out.

    The delivery was excellent, it is a very good book, it is just that I am unsure of the studies' results because I do not have a solid grounding in statistics to test their claims.

    I suspect, however, that as a result of this book, were I ever to be diagnosed with cancer I would be giving its guidelines a diligent and thorough go!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Clockwork Universe: Isaac Newton, The Royal Society, and the Birth of the Modern World

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 7 mins)
    • By Edward Dolnick
    • Narrated By Alan Sklar
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1080)
    Performance
    (814)
    Story
    (828)

    The Clockwork Universe is the story of a band of men who lived in a world of dirt and disease but pictured a universe that ran like a perfect machine. A meld of history and science, this book is a group portrait of some of the greatest minds who ever lived as they wrestled with natures most sweeping mysteries. The answers they uncovered still hold the key to how we understand the world.

    Alison says: "The Royal Society comes alive."
    "ah! that explains it!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I learned a lot of useful things from this book and was able to understand the scientists and the scientific method much better as a result. Great to understand the basis for the way research is conducted and I am grateful for the explanation throughout of what thinking and knowledge was like before the invention of science through observation and empirical evidence. I never realised and feel so silly for having never thought about why it is that we think the way we do today.

    I liked learning about the personalities behind the history of science, great stories and an enhanced ability to contextualise their ideas and add interest to their contributions. I am also better able to remember their laws and contributions as a result of having known their stories.

    A terrific and fun history. I wish I had listened to it years ago before tutoring 'world history' and teaching students about enlightenment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Michael Pollan
    • Narrated By Michael Pollan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (728)
    Performance
    (650)
    Story
    (651)

    In Cooked, Michael Pollan explores the previously uncharted territory of his own kitchen. Here, he discovers the enduring power of the four classical elements - fire, water, air, and earth - to transform the stuff of nature into delicious things to eat and drink. Apprenticing himself to a succession of culinary masters, Pollan learns how to grill with fire, cook with liquid, bake bread, and ferment everything from cheese to beer. In the course of his journey, he discovers that the cook occupies a special place in the world....

    Michael says: "Very enjoyable listen!"
    "contagious passion"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about Cooked?

    I loved the description of slow roasting pork and the love of the process of fermentation in pickles, beer and baking. This book inspired me to make some mead, for which I am very grateful, thank you, Michael.

    I generally love Michael's work and enjoyed this book as I expected I would but I am already a food and brewing aficionado so I already know how to brew, bake, ferment and roast, but not to the same extremes. I do not like finicky, faddish cooking so I was relieved to see how Michael focused on the real aspects of real, good, life-giving food.

    For anyone who is wanting to go on a gastronomical journey throughout their lives with understanding and intention, this is probably an excellent place to start.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A User's Guide to the Universe: Surviving the Perils of Black Holes, Time Paradoxes, and Quantum Uncertainty

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Dave Goldberg, Jeff Blomquist
    • Narrated By Mark F. Smith
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (111)
    Performance
    (95)
    Story
    (93)

    This is an indispensable guide to physics that offers readers an overview of the most popular physics topics written in an accessible, irreverent, and engaging manner while still maintaining a tone of wry skepticism. Even the novice will be able to follow along, as the topics are addressed using plain English and (almost) no equations. Veterans of popular physics will also find their nagging questions addressed, like whether the universe can expand faster than light.

    Paul says: "Physics even I can understand"
    "a thrilling gallop through the coolest there is"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Where does A User's Guide to the Universe rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Oh this book was good, so so good, and I belly laughed hard at their geeky jokes which as promised were indeed groaners. The jokes were that nerd-funny I would pause the book, snort-laugh and go tell the joke to my husband who would also gasp and snort-laugh.

    A great introduction to some of the coolest stuff there is to know and think about in the universe - the delivery was fantastic and the subjects extremely interesting, all explained clearly and kind to the non-geeks in the world, not that I have ever met any to ask.

    I liked the author's explanation for why they do not believe the earth has been visited by flying saucers.

    I liked their explanations of most things, actually.

    great book, I loved it.



    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Joy of Science

    • ORIGINAL (30 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By The Great Courses, Robert M. Hazen
    • Narrated By Professor Robert M. Hazen
    Overall
    (65)
    Performance
    (50)
    Story
    (56)

    Science is humanity's greatest achievement. It ranges from the study of the universe itself to the smallest particles of matter contained within it - and everything in between. If you want to better understand our physical world, as most of us do, gaining a basic understanding of science itself is profoundly important - yet many are intimidated by the breathtaking scope of such an endeavor. Now an award-winning science teacher has taken out the intimidation, harnessing that breathtaking scope into a series of 60 exciting, comprehensive, and accessible lectures.

    Mark says: "Back to school"
    "beautiful and exciting"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Joy of Science in three words, what would they be?

    comprehensive, understandable, exciting


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I never realised that Faraday was so cool.


    Any additional comments?

    This course was excellent - it was comprehensive and enthralling and I learned so very much even though I already had a good understanding of science already. The details on various subjects are great for linking ideas across fields and the snippets of history told throughout contextualise the scientists and their discoveries beautifully so that the information is easy to remember and place. I loved this course, it was entertaining and I had so much to think about and talk about as a result of listening to it. Whether you have studied no science at school or have always been interested in science, this is a very good place to start your journey. It was indeed a 'joy'.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • A Place of My Own: The Architecture of Daydreams

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Michael Pollan
    • Narrated By Michael Pollan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (154)
    Performance
    (123)
    Story
    (123)

    With this updated edition of his earlier book, A Place of My Own, listeners can revisit the inspired, intelligent, and often hilarious story of Pollan’s realization of a room of his own—a small, wooden hut, his “shelter for daydreams” — built with his admittedly unhandy hands. Inspired by both Thoreau and Mr. Blandings, A Place of My Own not only works to convey the history and meaning of all human building, it also marks the connections between our bodies, our minds, and the natural world.

    justin chidester says: "Pollan is a great narrator"
    "Satisfying & I didn't even have to get a splinter."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about A Place of My Own?

    This book is a wonderful journey for the mind and through Michael Pollan's building adventure. I particularly love Pollan's ability to approach theoretical concepts in a way that actually makes the process interesting and fun, it's like what they wanted to teach you at university (in a BA program) but were usually unable to achieve. Pollan brings the wishy-washy ponce that is architectural theory and sheds light on the primal and emotional aspects that make the art a tangible concept when understanding one's feelings about a space or the importance of dwellings.


    What other book might you compare A Place of My Own to and why?

    It is like an academic text on the philosophy behind architectural theory, but much more fun.


    Which character – as performed by Michael Pollan – was your favorite?

    Himself, but I particularly liked the way Pollan wrote about Joe. Not for the gun-control, conspiracy-theorist aspect but for the way Pollan described the depths beneath the blunt handyman exterior and what I see as a yearning for knowledge without the benefits of a background focused on education or skeptical research and critical thinking. I see much of this in my own renovation tradesmen.


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    I learned about balloon framing! I now look at pine forests and housing estates in a completely new way! Also: the value of meandering garden paths to my studio (which presupposes one has a phone line in the studio or else an answering machine in the house), a better understanding of shingles, sympathy for builders in cold areas dealing with the ravages of frost, an eye tuned to nostalgia in postmodern architecture, appreciation for a well sealed roof, and satisfying smugness for my solid stone country house and renewed awe for the previous owner who built it (and the garden studio) who did it mainly by 'feel'.


    Any additional comments?

    I wonder if Michael ever used his daybed or if it just ended up as another horizontal place to put piles of documents and books?

    18 of 20 people found this review helpful

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