The Answer to the Riddle Is Me

A Memoir of Amnesia
Narrated by: Neil Shah
Length: 6 hrs and 43 mins
4 out of 5 stars (70 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Imagine waking up in a train station in India with no idea who you are or how you got there. This is what happened to David MacLean.

In 2002, at age 28, David MacLean woke up in a foreign land with his memory wiped clean. No money. No passport. No identity.

Taken to a mental hospital by the police, MacLean then started to hallucinate so severely he had to be tied down. Soon he could remember song lyrics and scenes from television shows but not his family, his friends, or the woman he loved. All of these symptoms, it turned out, were the result of the commonly prescribed malarial medication he was taking. Upon hisreturn to the States, he struggled to piece together the fragments of his former life in a harrowing, absurd, and unforgettable journey back to himself.

A deeply felt, closely researched, and intensely personal book, The Answer to the Riddle Is Me, drawn from MacLean’s award-winning This American Life essay, confronts and celebrates the dark, mysterious depths of our psyches and the myriad ways we are all unknowable, especially to ourselves.

©2014 David Stuart MacLean (P)2014 Blackstone Audio

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

very good listen

i forget what i was going to write here, oh well . . . .

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

fascinating story

I really enjoyed it, and it made me really think about memories. I had a grandma with Alzheimer's, and I wonder if in her last Times that this was what she experienced. also, David just seems like he would be great to talk to.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting story but the narrator was unbearable

What made the experience of listening to The Answer to the Riddle Is Me the most enjoyable?
The story is very interesting introspective look at an amnesiac who tries to rediscover himself.

How could the performance have been better?
The narrator has a rather obnoxious affect to his voice which detracted significantly from the story, and his impressions of Indian Asian speakers was more annoying that I would have liked. I would rather have the actual author of this book, David MacLean, to have read it, instead. Like many others, I first heard this story when the author read a compelling excerpt of his book on the "This American Life" radio program. That performance was far more compelling than the disappointing and presumptuous presentation that Neil Shah gives here on Audible. It was distracting to say the least.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

This is an amzing story

This had me shocked from start to finish. The idea that this can happen to someone is very eye opening. Especially seeing how the situation all played out. I highly recommend this book to anyone and everyone that is looking for a great story. This is one of the greats real life you will never believe it type stories. Defiantly check it out.