The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals Audiobook | Michael Pollan | Audible.com
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The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals | [Michael Pollan]

The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals

"What should we have for dinner?" To one degree or another, this simple question assails any creature faced with a wide choice of things to eat. Anthropologists call it the omnivore's dilemma. Choosing from among the countless potential foods nature offers, humans have had to learn what is safe, and what isn't. Today, as America confronts what can only be described as a national eating disorder, the omnivore's dilemma has returned with an atavistic vengeance.
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Publisher's Summary

The best-selling author of The Botany of Desire explores the ecology of eating to unveil why we consume what we consume in the 21st century.

"What should we have for dinner?" To one degree or another, this simple question assails any creature faced with a wide choice of things to eat. Anthropologists call it the omnivore's dilemma. Choosing from among the countless potential foods nature offers, humans have had to learn what is safe, and what isn't, which mushrooms should be avoided, for example, and which berries we can enjoy. Today, as America confronts what can only be described as a national eating disorder, the omnivore's dilemma has returned with an atavistic vengeance.

The cornucopia of the modern American supermarket and fast-food outlet has thrown us back on a bewildering landscape where we once again have to worry about which of those tasty-looking morsels might kill us. At the same time we're realizing that our food choices also have profound implications for the health of our environment. The Omnivore's Dilemma is best-selling author Michael Pollan's brilliant and eye-opening exploration of these little-known but vitally important dimensions of eating in America.

We are indeed what we eat, and what we eat remakes the world. A society of voracious and increasingly confused omnivores, we are just beginning to recognize the profound consequences of the simplest everyday food choices, both for ourselves and for the natural world. The Omnivore's Dilemma is a long-overdue book and one that will become known for bringing a completely fresh perspective to a question as ordinary and yet momentous as "What shall we have for dinner?"

©2006 Michael Pollan; (P)2006 Penguin Audio

What the Critics Say

  • National Book Critics Circle 2006 Award Finalist, Nonfiction

"Remarkably clearheaded book....A fascinating journey up and down the food chain." (Publishers Weekly)
"His supermeticulous reporting is the book's strength - you're not likely to get a better explanation of where your food comes from....In an uncommonly good year for American food writing, this is a book that stands out." (The New York Times Book Review)
"Completely charming." (Nora Ephron)

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  •  
    Mark Hollister, CA, USA 07-24-06
    Mark Hollister, CA, USA 07-24-06 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dilemma? LET'S EAT!!"

    The intimate details of the author’s experiences make this a difficult review. I’ve recommended this book more often and for more reasons than I can mention. Its entertainment value alone is worth the price of admission.. The knowledge gathered and imparted by the author is fascinating at times, disturbing at others. One of my measures of a good book is its ability to spank my naivete. In other words, the more often I can honestly say, “I didn’t know that”… the greater the book. Surprisingly, I was spanked quit often throughout. If you enjoyed “Super Size ME” or “Fast Food Nation” you’ll really like The Omnivore’s Dilemma.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristopher Ames Marysville, WA 05-30-06
    Kristopher Ames Marysville, WA 05-30-06 Member Since 2001
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    "A little Long"

    Overall, this isn't a bad book. My only complaint is that it gets very long winded and I just about didn't finish because of it.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ari beverly hills, CA, USA 03-09-08
    Ari beverly hills, CA, USA 03-09-08
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    "Gene Modifying Omnicompetence"

    I'm merely halfway done with this revelatory, revealing, and REVOLUTIONARY book that at this point it is more palatable than tonight's dinner.

    While it is historically poet, it discloses a mystifying history (and-not-so sugarcoated reality of today) in an appetizing, flavorsome, and mouthwatering way. This read flows like you were reading your own autobiography that divulged the core (or corn?) secrets and connections that you have with the "natural world", or at the very least, it can be consumed as an a la mode thriller.

    Presented in a latently brilliant and multifaceted context, if it was not for the cholesterol clogging their brains and arteries ad nauseam, it would inspire the 'Dairy Queens' and 'Burger Kings' of this world to return to the unpromised fatlands of sustainable agriculture; and it would make them want to leave their royal fast food cults overnight, leaving their ___ Bell's and ___ Boxes behind so that an even bigger picture can embrace their fat ass and their assets!

    No "chump change", "peanuts", "small potatoes" and "chickenfeed" here, a highly fruitful corny synopsis that is more about corn-u-topiaries of golden, genetically modified substance, than anything else: the refined fuel that both Americans and their gas tanks run on, whether they know it, and like it, or not.

    1 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deborah Port Angeles, WA, USA 06-25-06
    Deborah Port Angeles, WA, USA 06-25-06
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    "Couldn't finish it"

    I was looking forward to this book and relied on the other reviews posted here. Unfortunately, I can't agree with those reviews. It isn't the topic that annoyed me, it was the reader's voice and the way he ranted and raved and went on and on and on. After listening to three hours of it and seeing no change at all, I finally just deleted it and moved on. Spend your money elsewhere.

    0 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Pelham, MA, United States 08-20-08
    Richard Pelham, MA, United States 08-20-08 Member Since 2006
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    "Too obvious"

    The story was somewhat engaging and I enjoyed most of the characters. However, as usual, I picked the likely candidate for the mystery very early. Unusually (for me anyway), each step merely reinforced my guess. If you find Agatha Christy too predictable, you won't like this at all.

    The narration was good.

    1 of 46 people found this review helpful
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