LISTENER

Michael

Redmond, WA United States
  • 3
  • reviews
  • 1
  • helpful vote
  • 8
  • ratings
  • The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

  • By: Rebecca Skloot
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell, Bahni Turpin
  • Length: 12 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10,554
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,467
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,504

Her name was Henrietta Lacks, but scientists know her as HeLa. She was a poor Southern tobacco farmer who worked the same land as her slave ancestors, yet her cells, taken without her knowledge, became one of the most important tools in medicine. The first immortal human cells grown in culture, they are still alive today, though she has been dead for more than 60 years.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing Story

  • By Prisca on 04-30-10

Great performance and story.

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

Reviewed: 02-13-17

Just great. It does get slow in the middle. I took a break when listening. But this book gives a great insight on how Henrietta's cells have impacted science and her family.

  • Born Standing Up

  • A Comic's Life
  • By: Steve Martin
  • Narrated by: Steve Martin
  • Length: 4 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,030
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,096
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,064

In the mid-70s, Steve Martin exploded onto the comedy scene. By 1978 he was the biggest concert draw in the history of stand-up. In 1981 he quit forever. Born Standing Up is, in his own words, the story of "why I did stand-up and why I walked away".

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fantastic

  • By Andrew on 11-30-07

He's holding back.

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

Reviewed: 09-26-13

So I love this book in so many ways. Steve is one of the greatest comedians of all time, but there's something damaged about him. You really understand it when he's telling the stories of his father. You can see why Steve didn't have his first child to 66 years old, don't think he wanted to be a father in the way his dad was to him. It doesn't seem like his dad was that bad, just Steve succeeded where his dad failed. So the rest of the review is gonna be slight criticism, but overall I loved this book, this guy is awesome and has had an amazing life.

I think he was overly concerned with being a good writer. Some of his analogies feel like a stretch and sound unnatural. Like he's trying to write Shakespeare for a Kentucky fried world(see what I did there?.............. analogies that don't make too much sense and take away from the focus of the story.)

It's a great incite to the world of comedy, but with every chapter I really felt like he was not telling the full story. He was protecting himself. Especially when he talked about having a panic attack when he smoked pot in the 60's, so he never did drugs again. I've heard first hand accounts of that not being entirely accurate. It's like he's trying to paint a picture of his life as how he wants to see it.Which I guess is the reason you do an autobiography. To write history in your eyes, history as you want to see it. But I think it comes off as a sterilized version of what is an incredible life story.

  • Still Foolin' 'Em

  • Where I've Been, Where I'm Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys
  • By: Billy Crystal
  • Narrated by: Billy Crystal
  • Length: 8 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,773
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,436
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,433

Billy Crystal is 65, and he's not happy about it. With his trademark wit and heart, he outlines the absurdities and challenges that come with growing old, from insomnia to memory loss to leaving dinners with half your meal on your shirt. In humorous chapters like ""Buying the Plot"" and ""Nodding Off,"" Crystal not only catalogues his physical gripes, but offers a road map to his 77 million fellow baby boomers who are arriving at this milestone age with him. He also looks back at the most powerful and memorable moments of his long and storied life, from entertaining his relatives as a kid in Long Beach, Long Island, and his years doing stand-up in the Village, up through his legendary stint at Saturday Night Live, When Harry Met Sally, and his long run as host of the Academy Awards. Listeners get a front-row seat to his one-day career with the New York Yankees (he was the first player to ever ""test positive for Maalox""), his love affair with Sophia Loren, and his enduring friendships with several of his idols, including Mickey Mantle and Muhammad Ali. He lends a light touch to more serious topics like religion (""the aging friends I know have turned to the Holy Trinity: Advil, bourbon, and Prozac""); grandparenting; and, of course, dentistry. As wise and poignant as they are funny, Crystal's reflections are an unforgettable look at an extraordinary life well lived.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Disarmingly Honest

  • By David Shear on 09-12-13

The life story from the man you love to hate!

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

Reviewed: 09-26-13

Kidding, who doesn't love Billy Crystal? I'm only 31, and I think my parents would connect to the book a little bit better, especially the stories on aging, but it's still really fun!

The live performance chapters really stand out, and I wish the entire book was done that way. There is more energy and he's a great storyteller. This isn't a deep introspective look back on his life, it's just a fun story from a great comedian.

SPOILER: If you don't decide to get this by far the weirdest fact in the book, Billy was high school friends with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Yeah, crazy, right?

1 of 2 people found this review helpful