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Edmund

  • 28
  • reviews
  • 20
  • helpful votes
  • 28
  • ratings
  • She Has Her Mother's Laugh

  • The Powers, Perversions, and Potential of Heredity
  • By: Carl Zimmer
  • Narrated by: Joe Ochman
  • Length: 20 hrs and 32 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 395
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 355
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 351

She Has Her Mother's Laugh presents a profoundly original perspective on what we pass along from generation to generation. Charles Darwin played a crucial part in turning heredity into a scientific question, and yet he failed spectacularly to answer it. The birth of genetics in the early 1900s seemed to do precisely that. Gradually, people translated their old notions about heredity into a language of genes. We need a new definition of what heredity is and, through Carl Zimmer's lucid exposition and storytelling, this resounding tour de force delivers it.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Changed this strict genetic determinist's mind

  • By Anonymous User on 06-11-18

Not what I was hoping for

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

Reviewed: 02-09-19

The Gene by Siddhartha Mukherjee is better. Zimmer covers many of the same events - Mendel, eugenics, Watson/Crick, etc, but it's not as interesting in this book. In the latter parts of the book he spends a lot of time speculating about the future which I could have done without - or highly trimmed. It's not without merit - he touches on a few topics that are new, but by the end I was looking forward to my next book.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs

  • A New History of a Lost World
  • By: Steve Brusatte
  • Narrated by: Patrick Lawlor
  • Length: 10 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,728
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,599
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,586

In this stunning narrative spanning more than 200 million years, Steve Brusatte, a young American paleontologist who has emerged as one of the foremost stars of the field - discovering 10 new species and leading groundbreaking scientific studies and fieldwork - masterfully tells the complete, surprising, and new history of the dinosaurs, drawing on cutting-edge science to dramatically bring to life their lost world and illuminate their enigmatic origins, spectacular flourishing, astonishing diversity, cataclysmic extinction, and startling living legacy.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • "The Rise of the Scientists Who Study Dinosaurs"

  • By Daniel Powell on 09-16-18

Was hoping for something better

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

Reviewed: 01-15-19

I'm always looking for good science nonfiction. This book was on several "best of" lists, but I don't know why. The author does not tell an engaging story. He spends a lot of time on his two favorite topics: dinosaurs and myself. Less memoir and more time developing the arch of a story would have been preferred. The narrater didn't help the cause.

Also, too many lists of latin names. Having the book might make it easier to follow. Then one could match names with a picture.

The book is full of information and the author does a nice job of explaining the end of the dinosaurs. It wasn't a waste of time, but overall the book was a disappointment.

  • The Perfectionists

  • How Precision Engineers Created the Modern World
  • By: Simon Winchester
  • Narrated by: Simon Winchester
  • Length: 11 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 819
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 742
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 729

The New York Times best-selling author traces the development of technology from the Industrial Age to the Digital Age to explore the single component crucial to advancement - precision - in a superb history that is both an homage and a warning for our future.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Somewhat less than perfect

  • By enya keshet on 06-19-18

Simon Winchester is back!!

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

Reviewed: 01-10-19

I've enjoyed Winchester's earlier works, but felt he'd slipped a bit with the more recent books. With The Perfectionists, it appears the man is back to his previous standards. He tells a great story, although he goes off on a few tangents. But otherwise he held my attention and I found myself repeating the stories to friends. And, it's narrated by Simon himself - which is a delight to listen to.

  • The Epigenetics Revolution

  • How Modern Biology Is Rewriting Our Understanding of Genetics, Disease, and Inheritance
  • By: Nessa Carey
  • Narrated by: Donna Postel
  • Length: 11 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 256
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 226
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 225

Epigenetics can potentially revolutionize our understanding of the structure and behavior of biological life on Earth. It explains why mapping an organism's genetic code is not enough to determine how it develops or acts and shows how nurture combines with nature to engineer biological diversity. Surveying the 20-year history of the field while also highlighting its latest findings and innovations, this volume provides a readily understandable introduction to the foundations of epigenetics.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Begins Accessible, Then Becomes Too Technical

  • By wbiro on 07-26-17

The Gene is better

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

Reviewed: 12-20-18

The Gene by Siddhartha Mukherjee is a much better book. The two authors tell many of the same stories (John Gurdon and frog eggs, the round worm C elegans for example), but Mukherjee is better at telling an interesting, captivating story. There is more specifically about epigenetics in Carey's book, but it's not worth the slug.

  • Pandora’s Lab

  • Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong
  • By: Paul A. Offit MD
  • Narrated by: Greg Tremblay
  • Length: 7 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 473
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 426
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 423

Pandora's Lab takes us from opium's heyday as the pain reliever of choice to recognition of opioids as a major cause of death in the United States; from the rise of trans fats as the golden ingredient for tastier, cheaper food to the heart disease epidemic that followed; and from the cries to ban DDT for the sake of the environment to an epidemic-level rise in world malaria.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Very interesting

  • By Aceaussie on 01-29-18

Too many familiar stories

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

Reviewed: 12-20-18

I knew most of the stories. The author brought little new insight to these stories. The style is like an educational lecture, rather than telling a captivating story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Endure

  • Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance
  • By: Alex Hutchinson, Malcolm Gladwell - foreword
  • Narrated by: Robert G. Slade
  • Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,951
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,735
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,727

Writing from both the cutting edge of scientific discovery and the front-lines of elite athletic performance, National Magazine Award-winning science journalist Alex Hutchinson presents a revolutionary account of the dynamic and controversial new science of endurance.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Loved the content; narration frustrated me

  • By Riverside Fan on 03-01-18

I wanted to like this

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

Reviewed: 12-20-18

All you need to know is what Tom Wolfe wrote in The Right Stuff about Scott Carpenter when he broke a record for a test of lung capacity. Scott "knew from years of undersea swimming that after your lungs feel completely out of air and every signal in your central nervous system predicts disaster if you hold your breath an instant longer, you actually have a substantial reserve supply of oxygen in your system."
Oh, and another point, hydration isn't all it's cracked up to be.
That's my summary of the book.

  • The Phenomenon

  • Pressure, the Yips, and the Pitch That Changed My Life
  • By: Rick Ankiel
  • Narrated by: Rick Ankiel
  • Length: 6 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 392
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 359
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 359

The Phenomenon is the story of how St. Louis Cardinals prodigy Rick Ankiel lost his once-in-a-generation ability to pitch - due not to an injury or a bolt of lightning but to a mysterious anxiety condition widely known as "the Yips". It came without warning in the middle of a playoff game, with millions of people watching. And it has never gone away.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great baseball memoir

  • By LSmith on 07-14-17

Only listened to an hour

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

Reviewed: 10-28-18

I was interested in the topic, but couldn't stand the authors style. This book reminded me why I don't like memoirs.

  • The Alchemy of Air

  • A Jewish Genius, a Doomed Tycoon, and the Scientific Discovery That Fed the World but Fueled the Rise of Hitler
  • By: Thomas Hager
  • Narrated by: Adam Verner
  • Length: 10 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,109
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 941
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 939

At the dawn of the 20th century, humanity was facing global disaster. Mass starvation, long predicted for the fast-growing population, was about to become a reality. A call went out to the worlds scientists to find a solution. This is the story of the two enormously gifted, fatally flawed men who found it: the brilliant, self-important Fritz Haber and the reclusive, alcoholic Carl Bosch. Together they discovered a way to make bread out of air, built city-sized factories, controlled world markets, and saved millions of lives.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great Book Thoroughly Researched

  • By Terry A. Gray on 10-21-11

Who needs fiction

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

Reviewed: 10-28-18

Another great story by Thomas Hager. He knows how to weave a good story and keep the listener interested. One of my favorites.

  • How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog)

  • Visionary Scientists and a Siberian Tale of Jump-Started Evolution
  • By: Lyudmila Trut, Lee Alan Dugatkin
  • Narrated by: Joe Hempel
  • Length: 7 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 538
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 499
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 499

Tucked away in Siberia, there are furry, four-legged creatures with wagging tails and floppy ears that are as docile and friendly as any lapdog. But, despite appearances, these are not dogs - they are foxes. They are the result of the most astonishing experiment in breeding ever undertaken - imagine speeding up thousands of years of evolution into a few decades. In 1959, biologists Dmitri Belyaev and Lyudmila Trut set out to do just that, by starting with a few dozen silver foxes from fox farms in the USSR and attempting to recreate the evolution of wolves into dogs in real time.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Awesome story, fantastic book!

  • By Illyria on 11-21-17

Great topic - disappointing writing

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

Reviewed: 08-13-18

Fascinating topic, but the author's tone or style is a big disappointment - seemed like a "feel-good" story I'd hear on the local news. The reader makes it worse by being overly dramatic. I increased the speed to 1.25x to get through it quickly. Again, great science with profound implications for understanding behavior, but told in a way that irritated me.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Farewell to Manzanar

  • By: Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Ikeda
  • Length: 4 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 361
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 333
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 326

Jeanne Wakatsuki was seven years old in 1942 when her family was uprooted from their home and sent to live at Manzanar internment camp - with 10,000 other Japanese Americans. Along with searchlight towers and armed guards, Manzanar ludicrously featured cheerleaders, Boy Scouts, sock hops, baton-twirling lessons, and a dance band called the Jive Bombers who would play any popular song except the nation's number-one hit: "Don't Fence Me In".

Farewell to Manzanar is the true story of one spirited Japanese-American family's attempt to survive the indignities of forced detention.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Good Read for Junior High Students

  • By Stephanie Aguilar on 05-09-17

Anne Frank in American Internment Camp

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

Reviewed: 08-06-18

Written in 1973 about her experience as a 7yo girl from 1942-45, this has become the classic story about Japanese Americans confined in camps during the Second World War. Unbelievable that such a thing could happen in America.