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
No. Unfortunately I already have. This rambled on with totally unimportant research. I just wanted it to be over.
Grandma bibliophile! Audible books make reading with an active life possible.
from Mary Roach. I have listened to 3 books by this author and intend to get more. I'm impressed by the amount of information she researches and thoroughly enjoy her humorous way of looking at things. I think I'm in the same zone as far as skepticism and curiosity.
Didn't really know a thing about the book when I bought it, just thought the title sounded fun and it was! Very funny but very interesting. I enjoyed this audiobook a LOT!
More narrative on actual studies, less on descriptions of people, places, blah, blah, blah. The interesting science was about 20 minutes worth of the book. Remainder, thoughts of the author regarding people, places, herself, and a junior high attempt at humor.
This makes my second Mary Roach audible book. Bought were both at same time. If I had bought separately, I would not have purchased the second book.
I'm not sure. I believe the narrator tried to portray humor as the author intended. It just came off as junior high snarky snipping. And, way too much of it. Scientific test information was way drawn out with all the "aside" observations and commentary. The interesting stuff could have been condensed to two hours listening.
Yes, it gave some interesting medical science history related to the subject.
If you bemoan people who attempt to tell a story/get endlessly sidetracked on non-relevant detail and you want to scream "get to the point".......this book is not for you.
As many others have said, the narrator of this book was pretty awful, so I would change her. Normally I'm able to get accustomed to cheesey narration after a chapter or two, but the intermittent introduction of offensive imitations of Indian, British, and Southern accents was an insurmountable obstacle to enjoying this book. And as a scientist, I had to take a step back and assess whether or not I spend all my time whispering to people, but then I realized that it was just the narrator's (producer's?) perception of how we talk--not sure where this notion came from.
The story itself was entertaining. I did not enjoy as much as some of the other Mary Roach works I'm familiar with, but it definitely gets you thinking about the progression of science and the after life.
See what I would change.
I'm not sure if it was the narrator, the author, or both, but this book just came across as rude and pretentious. I regret my decision to purchase.
The reader read this book as if she were reading "Little Red Riding Hood" to a kindergarten class! It ruined Mary Roach's prose, making it seem condescending and snarky, rather than smart. I am very glad that this was the LAST Mary Roach book I listened to from Audible, rather than the first!
Wonderfully written and read, this skeptic's approach to the afterlife and science's efforts to unmask it was nothing short of amazing. I laughed out loud at times, got sad at others, and finished with a sense of complete satisfaction, despite the inherent uncertainty of the subject matter. Recommend!!!
This would have been much better without the snarky snide tone from the horribly exaggerated reading by the narrator, and none of her terribly bad accents. Also it might have benefitted from less equally nasty snark from the author. I looked forward to a reasonable inquiry into the subject, but found the author often seemed to thumb her nose at the belief systems and approaches from history to the subject, which was made exponentially worse by the overly dramatic and at times poorly spoken narrator.
Not anything with this narrator.
She broke sentences with uncomfortable and poorly placed pauses in some cases, casting confusion as to the sentences' meaning at times. She should not do accents if she cannot do them well - indeed her accents overtly ridiculed the people she portrayed, which may or may not have been the author's objective. And her delivery was so exaggerated, it was akin - no, it was worse - than the hyper-dramatic style affected by a mother reading a bedtime story to a three year old. It turned what could have been the author's somewhat witty personal comments on things into a delivery rife with snobbish disdain.
Actually haven't finished it yet, but am so turned off by the narration, I'm finding it hard to get through. Only my interest in the subject itself will steel me to finish it so as to learn the end result.
I hope to God the author did not suggest the narration style used. 'Twas and 'tis awful. Save that for something like "Snow White" or "See Spot Run".
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