We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
Call anytime(888) 283-5051
Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife | [Mary Roach]

Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife

In an attempt to find out, Mary Roach brings her tireless curiosity to bear on an array of contemporary and historical soul-searchers: scientists, schemers, engineers, mediums, all trying to prove (or disprove) that life goes on after we die. She begins the journey in rural India with a reincarnation researcher and ends up in a University of Virginia operating room where cardiologists have installed equipment near the ceiling to study out-of-body near-death experiences.
Regular Price:$23.07
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

"What happens when we die? Does the light just go out and that's that - the million-year nap? Or will some part of my personality, my me-ness persist? What will that feel like? What will I do all day? Is there a place to plug in my laptop?"

In an attempt to find out, Mary Roach brings her tireless curiosity to bear on an array of contemporary and historical soul-searchers: scientists, schemers, engineers, mediums, all trying to prove (or disprove) that life goes on after we die. She begins the journey in rural India with a reincarnation researcher and ends up in a University of Virginia operating room where cardiologists have installed equipment near the ceiling to study out-of-body near-death experiences. Along the way, she enrolls in an English medium school, gets electromagnetically haunted at a university in Ontario, and visits a Duke University professor with a plan to weigh the consciousness of a leech. Her historical wanderings unearth soul-seeking philosophers who rummaged through cadavers and calves' heads, a North Carolina lawsuit that established legal precedence for ghosts, and the last surviving sample of "ectoplasm" in a Cambridge University archive.

©2005 Mary Roach; (P)2005 Brilliance Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.5 (350 )
5 star
 (81)
4 star
 (97)
3 star
 (104)
2 star
 (50)
1 star
 (18)
Overall
3.8 (200 )
5 star
 (57)
4 star
 (71)
3 star
 (50)
2 star
 (17)
1 star
 (5)
Story
3.5 (199 )
5 star
 (59)
4 star
 (59)
3 star
 (34)
2 star
 (23)
1 star
 (24)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Constant Reader LA, CA, USA 12-09-11
    Constant Reader LA, CA, USA 12-09-11 Member Since 2008

    M

    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "What a Tough Crowd!"

    Jeez! I avoided this book for years, frightened away by the moans and groans over Bernadette Quigley's reading. Yes, it is a bit odd. But it's not bad. Indeed, it's rather sweet. And heck, her accents are no worse than mine. Indeed, they're better. All my accents sound the same. And anyway, Mary Roach is always -- always! -- worthwhile. The woman is a national treasure. I can't wait to see what's next...

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lauren E. Dillon Scottsdale, AZ 07-18-13
    Lauren E. Dillon Scottsdale, AZ 07-18-13 Member Since 2001

    Pretend Farmer

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Narrator Ruins Book"
    Would you try another book from Mary Roach and/or Bernadette Quigley?

    I love Mary Roach. I hate this snarky, superior, judgmental narrator. She absolutely ruined this book for me.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Bernadette Quigley’s performances?

    NO!


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chi-Hung Riverside, CA, USA 10-10-08
    Chi-Hung Riverside, CA, USA 10-10-08 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    551
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    239
    104
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    33
    0
    Overall
    "Amusing"

    Although the narrator of this book is phenomenal, and generally pleasant, she managed to make the tone of this book rather intentionally or unintentionally, patronising, and therefore amusing. I doubt the author had intended to take mockery this far. The professed content is intriguing, but execution left something to be desired. This is not a history book, but rather, a highly investigative journalistic in style. I give it three stars because although I am entertained and amused, the content and the structure definitely left something to be desired.

    4 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rudy Ramirez 07-26-14 Member Since 2011
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good Book Hindered by Terrible Reader"
    Would you be willing to try another one of Bernadette Quigley’s performances?

    I will avoid any other books read by Quigley. She does terrible accents for the characters in the book that are neither necessary nor well done, and more than once sound borderline racist.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie T Cotati, CA United States 05-19-14
    Debbie T Cotati, CA United States 05-19-14 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    95
    14
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "It's not just me -- HORRENDOUS narrator"
    Any additional comments?

    I thought I was just being snobby when I stopped listening to this book after an hour. I could not stand the narrator. Audible, please, don't ever use her again. She literally ruined this book. Like many others here, I will read this book in print. There's no way I could listen to another hour of this narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dvidal Lake Mary, FL, United States 03-15-14
    dvidal Lake Mary, FL, United States 03-15-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    24
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not what I expected but worth a listen"
    What did you love best about Spook?

    Humor


    What other book might you compare Spook to and why?

    Any of Mary Roach's books


    Which character – as performed by Bernadette Quigley – was your favorite?

    I didn't realize the narrator was not the author until after I finished the book. She very convincingly made the words her own.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. Sometimes the chapters felt fluffed, with a lot of information that was not necessary.


    Any additional comments?

    I did enjoy the book and the narrator, but I liked it less than some of Mary Roach's other books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jordan Edmonton, Alberta, Canada 12-28-13
    Jordan Edmonton, Alberta, Canada 12-28-13 Member Since 2013

    I LIKE BOOK TALKY TALK

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    4
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "SO DOPE"
    If you could sum up Spook in three words, what would they be?

    REALLY RATHER INTERESTING


    What did you like best about this story?

    MARY ROACH BE A FUNNY LADY


    Which character – as performed by Bernadette Quigley – was your favorite?

    I RATHER ENJOYED ALL OF HER VOICES, ALL WERE UNIQUE AND INSPIRED. MARY BEING THE MAIN CHARACTER OF COURSE ENDED UP BEING MY FAVORITE..


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    NO NOT REALLY


    Any additional comments?

    I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS BOOK. I LOVE ME SOME MARY ROOOOACH

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrea Riverside, CA, United States 06-26-13
    Andrea Riverside, CA, United States 06-26-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    23
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Warning: Terrible narrator!"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    A decent narrator that doesn't engage in cheesy dramatics (and terrible, unneeded accents). I could not finish the book as the awful reading was too distracting. It actually made me cringe, partly because it was bad and partly out of embarrassment for the narrator. She reads the book like a high school girl engaging in empty gossip.


    Has Spook turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No, but I will check that this narrator is not the reader for anything else I buy. I wish I had listened to a sample beforehand.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Bernadette Quigley?

    Whoever was the narrator for Roach's previous book, Stiff.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Spook?

    I don't know, because I couldn't get through the book due to the terrible narrator.


    Any additional comments?

    I wish I had checked who the narrator was and listened to a sample before I purchased the book. I may check the book out of the library in print to finish it.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joe Kansas City, MO, United States 05-30-12
    Joe Kansas City, MO, United States 05-30-12 Member Since 2011

    I read science, biographies, histories, mysteries, adventures, thrillers, educationals, linguistics but not no way, not no how, romances.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    112
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    155
    71
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    16
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "As Always From Mary Roach, Amazing"

    I am working my way through everything Mrs. Roach has written and without exception her work is incredible. Here she approaches the afterlife (reincarnation, out of body experiences, psychics, mediums) with a sense of profound wonder and scientific curiosity. What separates her writing on the subject is her open minded approach to the subject matter. She is never callous and never cynical; she genuinely wants to know what's out there after death. On top of the scope of this book and its intrigue, there is her wonderful sense of humor which keeps the topic of death very light and fun.

    First she follows a scientist who researches reincarnation in India, then she's off to history where serious scholars debated when the soul enters the body, then she's on to psychics and ectoplasm and how such acts were faked. Near the end she visits operating rooms, trying to understand out of body experiences. With each encounter she exams the evidence, and the lack thereof, and tries to draw reasonable conclusions. Naturally, there is no way she can prove anything. This book is about the journey. And what a journey.

    Of particular interest is the time she enrolls in a British course that promises to teach her how to become a medium to the spiritual world. After that she goes back to America and tape records the site of the Donnor Party's disaster with several devices and listens to the static, trying to pick up voices. It's funny and wonderful to hear about these experiences.

    And standing out here is the narrator. She is passionate and enthused about the material and brings her own sense of comedy to the proceedings. Really, Bernadette Quigley is a gem!

    Get this book. Now. Right now. Why are you still reading? But be warned, you will end up spending all your future credits on the rest of Mary Roach's books (Stiff, Bonk, and Packing For Mars) and enjoying yourself the whole way!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William Tucson, AZ, United States 05-21-12
    William Tucson, AZ, United States 05-21-12 Member Since 2008
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "One of my favorite books"
    What did you love best about Spook?

    It's science and history told in an engaging fashion


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Spook?

    The stories about ectoplasm were a hoot.


    What about Bernadette Quigley’s performance did you like?

    She has a great and subtle range of emotions


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

    It made me curious for more. I found myself browsing the internet many times.


    Any additional comments?

    She makes science and history fun.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-20 of 38 results PREVIOUS1234NEXT

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

CANCEL

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.