©2001 by Michael Pollan; (P)2006 by Audio Evolution, LLC
"[Pollan] has a wide-ranging intellect, an eager grasp of evolutionary biology and a subversive streak that helps him to root out some wonderfully counterintuitive points. His prose both shimmers and snaps, and he has a knack for finding perfect quotes in the oddest places....Best of all, Pollan really loves plants." (The New York Times Book Review)
This book has buried in it a very interesting story with tasty titbits of history, botany, psychology, general fun and beautiful language, but to get to those one needs to listen through mostly bland and always lengthy philosophical ramblings. I am all in favour of moulding the language into beautiful form for sheer listening pleasure, but in the case of, say, Bill Bryson - I want to rewind and listen again, while in this case I itch to hit fast-forward, but then I might miss the small tasty part in the middle, so I don't.
If only I could split this book into two parts - captivating story and boring philosophy, and listen to just the first one...
The narrator's performance is excellent, but I don't know how he managed to get through those passages without falling asleep, which makes it even more commendable.
Audiobooks Make Weed Wacking a Pleasure
This is the most pleasurable audiobook I've heard on Audible. I didn't have any expectations, and I just loved this book. The author meanders through the topics of four plants, and his stories and insights are very interesting. The author's prose is beautiful and the narration is top-notch. I'll probably listen to this audiobook again.
Freshly graduated from college and working hard to figure out what my next step will be. Books and stories are my escape from the world.
This book seems to start slow but when you give it some time and get in to the meat and potatoes of what Pollan has to offer its truly amazing! Well researched and well read... so glad I took a chance on this one! I will definitely be looking in to Pollan's other works!
A friend recommended this book and my first thought was, "it doesn't sound like what I like." I couldn't have been happier to have been wrong. And while I thought I would find the story of cannibus most interesting, I was wrong again. Amazingly, it was the lowly potato and apple that I liked most. Who would have thought that the plants would have such interesting stories? Well, now I can say that I know. Thank you Mr. Pollan and Mr. Brick.
Just awful. The author goes off point, repeats himself, and never proves his original hypothesis. Complete waste of time.
I learned, I laughed, I didn't cry... a great listen for my commute (actually had me looking forward to my hours in the car each day). The narration took a little getting used to, but won me over in the end.
the review title pretty much says it all. also pollan has a strong tendency to portray his opinions as though their accepted facts. this is seriously irritating as those opinions which he presents this way are almost always either out right wrong or have no hard data about them to form with certainty an opinion either way.
This is a good read if you like reading popularist science and/or anthropology books. Somewhat similar to Jared Diamond or Tim Flannery, with a focus on the post-Renaissance world and possibly a more philosophical bent.
I found this book had a significant amount of really, really interesting information relating to the history/botany/biology of the topic plants. I found it very hard to get through the lengthy passages of introspection and other topics that have very little to do with apples, tulips, canabis, or potatos. I think his favorite word is Dionysus. Look for it in every other paragraph.
I enjoyed this book, I was afraid it would be a sort of enviro nut type of story, but the author does a decent job of keeping it logical aside from a few global warming references it was very educational. This is the type of book I wouldn't normal download but was glad I did, I will never look at apples and especially potatoes the same way.
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