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Publisher's Summary

Follow New York Times best-selling author Mary Roach - but be careful not to trip - as she weaves through personal anecdotes and everyday musings riddled with her uncanny wit and amazingly analytical eye. These essays, which found a well-deserved home within the pages of Reader's Digest as the column "My Planet," detail the inner workings of hypochondriacs, hoarders, and compulsive cheapskates. (Did we mention neurotic interior designers and professional list makers?) For Roach, humor is hidden in the most unlikely places, which means that nothing is off limits. Whether she is dwelling on her age or talking about the pros and cons of a bedroom night light - "A married couple can best be defined as a unit of people whose sleep habits are carefully engineered to keep each other awake" - Roach finds a lesson, a slice of sarcasm, or a dash of something special that makes each day comical and absolutely priceless.

In keeping with our mission - curating the best listens in the land - Reader's Digest editors neatly packaged these timeless (and hilarious) Roach essays together for the first time.

©2013 The Reader's Digest Association, Inc. (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.9 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    159
  • 4 Stars
    120
  • 3 Stars
    95
  • 2 Stars
    31
  • 1 Stars
    14

Performance

  • 3.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    150
  • 4 Stars
    84
  • 3 Stars
    57
  • 2 Stars
    48
  • 1 Stars
    52

Story

  • 4.0 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    167
  • 4 Stars
    104
  • 3 Stars
    85
  • 2 Stars
    17
  • 1 Stars
    15
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Ann
  • California
  • 04-23-14

Narrator drove me crazy

Is there anything you would change about this book?

The narrator

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The way she would draw out the vowels in words. I couldn't finish this book because the narrator was too distracting.

Any additional comments?

I loved Mary Roach's other books. I'm sure this one is very good as well but I couldn't get past the first few chapters.

24 of 24 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Suzanne
  • Tampa, FL, United States
  • 12-25-13

Terrible narration ruins an entertaining book

Would you try another book from Mary Roach and/or Angela Dawe?

I like Mary Roach. The trouble was the narration. She sounded like she was trying too hard to project her voice, which left no room for personality, Very flat and monotone. I will have to break down and actually read this book!

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Unlistenable Narrator: Didn't Get Past the Forward

What didn’t you like about Angela Dawe’s performance?

The narrator sounds like a carnival barker. I couldn't get past a few minutes of the forward. The book's content might be fine, but I'll never know. Roach should just narrate her own books.

14 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Ann
  • SAINT MARYS, OH, United States
  • 11-30-13

Bad narrator

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Felt the need to emphasize the last word of every SENTENCE. No matter what word it WAS. Couldn't bear it for more than 45 min. Love Mary Roach, but I think I'll get this one in print.

27 of 28 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Sara
  • nashville, TN, United States
  • 11-15-13

Needs a different narrator.

Great stories but the narrator kind of ruined my listening experience. Would give it another try with a less monotone voice.

19 of 20 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Amusing and good

Mary Roach continues to impress, while the narrator seemed to be yelling the words at me. Overall really quite good!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

If the sound of nails on a blackboard don't bother you, then go ahead and buy this book.

Narrator's voice was grating. I got through 4 or 5 chapters and gave up.
I don't recommend this book.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Tanny
  • Rockport, MA, United States
  • 02-28-15

Love Mary Roach.

My Mary Roach collection is complete. i have enjoyed her quirky perspective through every book. This one is short, funny 'slice of life' essays and are different from her other books but has me giggling and connecting frequently. I did not love the narrator, I felt she sounded as though she was shouting. I just lowered the volume and it certainly was not enough to keep me from listening.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Wayne
  • Matthews, NC
  • 08-13-15

My Planet is a series of newspaper columns...

written by Mary Roach. It may deserve more than 2 stars but Mary Roach's other books are much better. I especially liked Stiff and Gulp.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Very Funny

The book is comprised of short essays on random subjects of everyday life. Most are amusing, and some made me burst out laughing, causing some odd looks because I was listening with headphones in public.
Mary's own personality comes though, and she seems like a person you'd like to know in person. Also, almost all of the book is g rated, with a sprinkling of pg stuff like a tiny bit of bad language.
The narrator sounds like a brash NYC comedian, which sometimes doesn't feel right but overall didn't detract too much.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jana
  • 01-04-16

Love the book, can't stand the performer's voice

Well, the title describes my feelings completely. I am a big fan of Mary Roaches work. Despite the fact that this book is different from her usual meticulous research driven work it is still very enjoyable and refreshingly entertaining.

but...

The performer's voice is just...wrong. It sounds as if she's shouting every word and the intonation seems off too. After a few minutes of listening I actually feel wound up instead of relaxed. Trying to introduce this book to friends resulted in the same discomfort for them. Coincidentally, they found Roaches other great book Packing for Mars sounding like being read by a robot.

I can't see myself being able to suffer through the rest of this audio book. If only there was a way of "reading it"...oh, wait...;)