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Maria

Oscoda, MI, United States
  • 27
  • reviews
  • 914
  • helpful votes
  • 30
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  • Dirty Genes

  • A Breakthrough Program to Treat the Root Cause of Illness and Optimize Your Health
  • By: Ben Lynch
  • Narrated by: Kaleo Griffith
  • Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 128
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 109
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 112

A leading expert in epigenetics - how genes switch on and off - provides a revolutionary, holistic, and personalized approach to better health by improving how your genes behave to prevent and reverse common ailments, chronic illnesses, and life-threatening diseases, including cardiovascular disease, autoimmune disorders, anxiety, depression, digestive issues, obesity, cancer, diabetes, and more.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Ugh, don't even bother!!

  • By Maria on 02-06-18

Ugh, don't even bother!!

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-06-18

This was one of the worst books I ever downloaded, and let me tell you why. First of all, I love audiobooks about epigenetics, health, disease, and biology -- so I'm familiar with this non-fiction genre. Secondly, I drive long distances regularly, with 5+ hour drives. I downloaded this book right before a very long road trip, and this is essentially how it went:

"Is it possible you could have dirty genes? Please take our questionnaire in the enhancement PDF..."

"For a list of diseases, syndromes, and issues that are likely the result of dirty genes, please refer to the enhancement..."

"What are some of the symptoms of dirty genes? Please read page 2 and 3 of the enhancement..."

"For a complete list of the kinds of things that can dirty up your genes, please refer to the enhancement PDF..."

"Foods and nutrients can help scrub dirty genes clean. For a list of those foods, please refer to the PDF enhancement..."

You get the idea. A complete joke. If I wanted to continually read and refer to something on paper or screen, then I would have bought the Kindle version. Nearly every other audiobook I've listened to in the biomedical sciences have included every list, every word, every questionnaire, every footnote in the audiobook, because most of the time people listening don't have the desire or the ability to go into a computer or device and download a document. That's the whole purpose of an audiobook. I don't understand why the author or publisher would allow it with this one, but the whole thing just comes off as lazy and incomplete. I'm returning for a credit.

(Side note, at the same time I also downloaded "The Longevity Code" by Kris Verburgh, MD which is on a similar topic. MUCH more thorough, so I recommend that instead.)

35 of 37 people found this review helpful

  • The Obesity Code

  • Unlocking the Secrets of Weight Loss
  • By: Dr. Jason Fung
  • Narrated by: Brian Nishii
  • Length: 10 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 5,514
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,949
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,891

In this highly listenable and provocative book, Dr. Jason Fung sets out an original, robust theory of obesity that provides startling insights into proper nutrition. In addition to his five basic steps - a set of lifelong habits that will improve your health and control your insulin levels - Dr. Fung explains how to use intermittent fasting to break the cycle of insulin resistance and reach a healthy weight - for good.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • We'll see, but .... why is this not common knowledge.

  • By PSBoyte on 04-30-17

YES!! Finally. The book I've been searching for!!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-10-17

I am not a doctor, nutritionist or science major. I'm just a middle-age female who has struggled with weight for the past 15 years. I have a genuine interest in biology, epigenetics, nutrition and disease prevention. I have literally read or listened to every single book published out there on those subjects. Some are good, some are bad. And all of them center around this false notion that eating the right amount or specific kinds of various macros are the key to losing weight. Don't get me wrong - some of those diets and eating plans work - in the short term. Once I even lost 30 lbs and found a love of trail running. But every single stinkin' time the weight loss would be only temporary, and it would come back on within months. I was the quintessential yo-yo dieter who people assumed went on ice cream eating binges when I definitely did not. No one ever explained set-point, or the reason why weight comes back. Dr. Fung explains the body's homeostasis so well and with such great analogies that it was like a big, bright lightbulb going off. I'm excited to begin a new journey of sustained weight loss. This time around, instead of cutting out entire food groups or focusing on macros, I bought a blood sugar monitor and will aim to lower my blood sugar and insulin levels by experimenting with the right foods and diet for me. I discovered that Greek Yogurt -- the supposed health food that almost every diet book applauds as being great for weight loss -- spikes my blood sugar (and presumably, my insulin) considerably. But a snack of Ezekiel bread and peanut butter (gasp... actual BREAD?) didn't affect my blood sugar much at all. After years of wondering if tweaking and lowering my calories by another 100 on My Fitness Pal app would help me break my plateau, I finally have real answers. (And for the record, Dr. Fung insists that answer is NO.) The narrator was fabulous, and all around I'm declaring that I don't need to listen to another weight loss book ever again. This is a God-send!

281 of 290 people found this review helpful

  • Two by Two

  • By: Nicholas Sparks
  • Narrated by: Ari Fliakos
  • Length: 14 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,351
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,546
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,537

At 32 Russell Green has it all: a stunning wife, a lovable six-year-old daughter, a successful career as an advertising executive, and an expansive home in Charlotte. He is living the dream, and his marriage to the bewitching Vivian is the center of that. But underneath the shiny surface of this perfect existence, fault lines are beginning to appear, and no one is more surprised than Russ when he finds every aspect of the life he took for granted turned upside down.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • I Am Stunned At The Good Reviews!

  • By Wendi on 10-17-16

Gah! Boring. Dull. Cliche.

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
1 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-18-16

I used to be an avid Nicholas Sparks fan, buying every book of his as soon as it was published. But they've been declining in quality, and I'm disappointed to say that I couldn't finish this one - and I likely won't be buying any more. It's a cliche, unimaginative story of modern American society: mousy testosterone-deprived doormat of a husband who gets cheated on by his wife when he quits his executive job, and mopes around the house feeling sorry for himself. The Mrs. is a powerful career driven mother who lands a high profile job and has an affair with her boss - dull and unlikeable from the start. Of course there's the token lesbian sister with ample digs on the Christian/Catholic church and their views on homosexuality, and a lot of mundane dialog that goes nowhere. Even the little girl is about as boring as a bowl of Kraft mac and cheese. There's an ex-girlfriend in the picture, but I honestly didn't really care to see where that storyline was going. Can you believe that with 7 hours left, I gave up and deleted it? I gave it two stars because the narrator was decent. Save your credit.

19 of 24 people found this review helpful

  • Always Too Much and Never Enough

  • By: Jasmin Singer
  • Narrated by: Jasmin Singer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 98
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 89
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 90

From the extra pounds and bullies that left her eating lunch alone at school to the low self-esteem that left her both physically and emotionally vulnerable to abuse, Jasmin Singer's weight defined her life. Even after she embraced a vegan lifestyle and a passion for animal rights advocacy, she defied any skinny vegan stereotypes by getting heavier. It was only after she committed to juice fasts and a diet of whole foods that she lost almost a hundred pounds and realized what it means to be truly full.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Touching and inspirational

  • By Daniel on 02-19-16

Meh... Not something I could relate to

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-01-16

I had wanted to like this book, but even after a couple of hours invested in it, I gave up and moved on to something else. I guess I had hoped Jasmine's story would be more inspiring than it really was. Don't get me wrong, I commend her journey and her bravery to get to the point where she is now, but it just wasn't something I could relate to. She was an overweight, quirky, "underground" outcast kind of teenager with a fondness for New York, bright lights, show tunes, Broadway and theater. She wore funky clothes, had dark eyeliner and tattoos. She fought her weight and food battles in the solace of the LGBT community and vegetarianism... giving herself wholly into both of those causes. My life was very different, as I made peace with food and weight issues by becoming friends with farmers, embracing nature and learning to become one with the outdoors. I work in a very corporate environment and had none of the childhood or social issues she had. In fact, I can't even say that I personally know anyone remotely like her. Not to say that's bad, or sheltered or close-minded, but having grown up in the Midwest, she just isn't relatable. Her stories of bullying broke my heart, and I sympathized with some of her sad and awkward moments. I suppose, though, this book just didn't do it for me. I simply got bored with it. I have no doubt that it will impact others, though, so I hope that other listeners will find what I wasn't able to. For an author, she did a good job reading her own book.

2 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • The Memory Box

  • By: Eva Lesko Natiello
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
  • Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 430
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 391
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 391

In this gripping psychological thriller, a group of privileged suburban moms amuse themselves by googling everyone in town, digging up dirt to fuel thorny gossip. Caroline Thompson, devoted mother of two, sticks to the moral high ground and attempts to avoid these women. She's relieved to hear her name appears only three times, citing her philanthropy. Despite being grateful that she has nothing to hide, a delayed pang of insecurity prods Caroline to google her maiden name - which none of the others know.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Excruciating

  • By Nick on 09-25-17

Just couldn't finish it...

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-10-16

I wanted to like this book SO much... I mean, what a cool plot idea: a woman who sees something strange online after Googling herself, which leads to family secrets. The problem was, it was boring. It was clear early on what this "family secret" was, and after listening to very (very) detailed and endless descriptions of this woman's many breakdowns, I just got bored with it. Clearly she wasn't mentally all there, and being inside this woman's head was just... well, annoying. There wasn't much action besides the protagonist gasping, freezing, choking, spinning with dizziness and collapsing over every single thing every single step of the way. I would never act that way. I just didn't like her, and couldn't relate to her. Also, the barely-there husband didn't help the shallowness of the story. Such a bummer, but I gave up after investing nearly 3 hours. I just didn't care to hear the rest it.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Primal Endurance

  • Escape Chronic Cardio and Carbohydrate Dependency, and Become a Fat-Burning Beast!
  • By: Mark Sisson, Brad Kearns
  • Narrated by: Brad Kearns
  • Length: 12 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 714
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 625
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 616

Primal Endurance shakes up the status quo and challenges the overly stressful, ineffective conventional approach to endurance training. While marathons and triathlons are wildly popular and bring much gratification and camaraderie to the participants, the majority of athletes are too slow, continually tired, and carry too much body fat respective to the time they devote to training. The prevailing "chronic cardio" approach promotes carbohydrate dependency, overly stressful lifestyle patterns, and ultimately burnout.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Wish it had a PDF included.

  • By BKNY Mo on 02-10-16

My new favorite book!!!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-08-16

I'm a fairly new runner who found my love of running a year ago. I trained hard all last summer, lost a ton of weight... and then burned out, gaining it all back and injuring myself. What the heck happened? I thought I was doing it the right way by pushing myself a little harder and faster every week, but Mark and Brad showed me clearly that this was the wrong approach. I was already a fan of Paleo eating, and this book built a strong foundation to add to my basic framework of understanding the reasons why going full-on Primal makes sense. The science and examples and early-to-understand methods (including the Maffetone Method for training) brings together all of the puzzle pieces that adds to the food competent, giving me a solid plan to give it another try -- the right way this time!! I'm usually NOT a fan of authors reading their own work, but this was one exception. Brad did such a terrific job of narrating, that I felt like he and Mark were my own personal trainers. I love the personality he injected into the book. I'll be listening to this again and again, and saved lots of bookmarks. Well done! Highly recommend for any newbie like me, or a seasoned athlete.

  • Into the Wilderness

  • Wilderness Saga, Book 1
  • By: Sara Donati
  • Narrated by: Kate Reading
  • Length: 30 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,997
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,519
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,527

Weaving a vibrant tapestry of fact and fiction, Into the Wilderness sweeps us into another time and place...and into the heart of a forbidden, incandescent affair between a spinster Englishwoman and an American frontiersman. Here is an epic of romance and history that will captivate readers from the very first page.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • So much for "if you like Gabaldon"

  • By randomactsofpunctuation on 11-24-15

Terrific! Listened nearly the entire way through!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-02-16

I loved this book! I don't know how I've gone so long without reading this series. It was enjoyable the entire way through, and I almost listened non-stop. I can't believe there are several more in the series, and am looking forward to downloading all of them. Sara Donati is brilliant in her writing, with enough action and dialog to keep it interesting and moving along at just the perfect pace. Oh, and for all you Outlander fans out there, you'll get a kick out of the Claire and Jamie Fraser reference. That was fun! I kept picturing Michelle Dockery (Lady Mary, from Downton Abbey) as Elizabeth Middleton. I hope this gets turned into a TV series or movie someday. It's brilliant! I highly recommend to anyone who loves historical fiction and Americana.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • How Not to Die

  • Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse Disease
  • By: Michael Greger MD, Gene Stone
  • Narrated by: Michael Greger MD
  • Length: 17 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 5,814
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 5,241
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 5,182

From the physician behind the wildly popular website Nutrition Facts, How Not to Die reveals the groundbreaking scientific evidence behind the only diet that can prevent and reverse many of the causes of disease-related death.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A stunningly important book

  • By Being on 12-29-15

Honestly?? Mixed feelings about this book...

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 12-10-15

I'm still only a quarter of the way through this book, but I wanted to stop and give my thoughts on it so far. First of all, this book unfortunately falls under my biggest pet peeve - when a medical professional reads his/her own book. It's SO difficult to get absorbed in the message of this book because the author chose to read it himself. Dr. Greger talks fast and mumbles A LOT, and has strange pauses and "ahhhs" in the middle of his sentences. It makes it hard to listen for more than a half hour at a time, because it's not an effortless listen. I really wish he would have used a pro -- it would have made a huge difference.

Secondly, while there obviously is a lot of information about disease and plant-based diets that is spot-on and completely fascinating, there's also a lot of misinformation in this book. While he does state that he isn't an advocate for vegetarianism or a vegan diet, this book is essentially touting the benefits of those lifestyles. He makes some odd statements like how exercise doesn't provide any benefit to longevity or disease prevention, or how eating Omega-3 rich fish doesn't provide those benefits either. I reduced my C-Reactive protein from dangerous levels down to nearly negligible levels simply by initially exercising and eating way more cold water fish. Numerous studies have shown that inflammation is a contributing cause to death and disease, and that both exercise and Omega-3s found in fatty fish help to reduce inflammation.

While I absolutely agree with the fact that processed foods and commercial meats/dairy are contributors of death and disease, I once tried a "vegetarian diet" eating only plant-based foods. It left me hungry, and no matter how much olive oil or avocados and nuts I ate, my skin and hair looked limp and saggy, and my energy levels were down. I have done quite a bit of research on pasture and grass-fed meats and dairy. Humans are carnivores, and most of us have an undeniable craving for meat and fatty, calorie-dense foods such as dairy. Again, over the course of the past year, I switched my diet to one that consisted totally of small-farm raised meats and dairy, along with my usual produce, salads, greens, etc. -- and I have never felt better, more fit, or more energetic. My stamina is at an all-time high, my skin is glowing and my hair is thicker and more luxurious than ever. I eat a balanced mix of both plant-based and pasture-raised meat/dairy, and at 41, I'm the healthiest I've ever been.

I guess my point is, if you're desperate and on the verge of dying like Dr. Greger's grandmother was, then yes... this book makes sense as a drastic measure. However, I would've liked to have seen something more well-rounded and inclusive for the rest of us. Food is one of life's pleasures, and to give up two of our most satisfying food groups just isn't realistic. Most Americans aren't going to stop eating fish, meat and dairy, so education on the best kinds of fish/meat and dairy to consume with some science behind it would have made this book much more relevant to the masses. Is meat the enemy, or is it processed and commercial meat that's the problem? Heart disease is a relatively modern disease, and yet mankind has been eating fish and meat since the beginning of time. Sure, in this modern era we might gain a couple of extra years of longevity by eating like a rabbit, but that makes for a pretty dull life. Isn't there a way to have our health and eat meat, too? If so, Dr. Greger doesn't seem to think so.

94 of 158 people found this review helpful

  • Amy Snow

  • By: Tracy Rees
  • Narrated by: Melody Grove
  • Length: 15 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,295
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,203
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,204

Winner of the 2014 Richard & Judy Search for a Bestseller competition. Abandoned on a bank of snow as a baby, Amy is taken in at nearby Hatville Court. But the masters and servants of the grand estate prove cold and unwelcoming. Amy's only friend and ally is the sparkling young heiress Aurelia Vennaway. So when Aurelia tragically dies young, Amy is devastated. But Aurelia leaves Amy one last gift. A bundle of letters with a coded key. A treasure hunt that only Amy can follow. A life-changing discovery awaits ... if only she can unlock the secret.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Captivating historical fiction

  • By Olivia on 10-09-15

This was a terrific book!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-10-15

I absolutely LOVED this book!! Well done. It was a fantastic novel... SO well written. And the narrator was perfect. I'm recommending this one to all my historical fiction-loving friends. A shame there aren't more audiobooks by this author. I'd listen to them all!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Secrets of a Charmed Life

  • By: Susan Meissner
  • Narrated by: Alana Kerr Collins
  • Length: 11 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 4,111
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,793
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,780

Current day, Oxford, England. Young American scholar Kendra Van Zant, eager to pursue her vision of a perfect life, interviews Isabel McFarland just when the elderly woman is ready to give up secrets about the war that she has kept for decades...beginning with who she really is. What Kendra receives from Isabel is both a gift and a burden--one that will test her convictions and her heart.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • My favorite book of the year

  • By Joyce BZ on 06-19-15

TERRIFIC BOOK!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-06-15

I listened to it straight through, and could not put it down. I absolutely loved it. Highly recommend, and will look for other books by this author. This novel got me through some grueling hours of painting, for which I am thankful. It was beautifully written, and I love all of the plot twists and turns. It was heartwrenching, but had a great ending.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful