Thursday, June 13, 2019

The Dead Drink First by Dale Maharidge


As an Audible member, I was able to download the following Audible Original, The Dead Drink First by Dale Maharidge and narrated by Dale Maharidge. 

Listening time for The Dead Drink First by Dale Maharidge is 3 hours, 31 minutes.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of The Dead Drink First by Dale Maharidge.

I like learning about history, especially US history. I also like reading or listening to nonfiction books with good back stories and a bit of a mystery that needs to be solved through some sleuthing... And The Dead Drink First by Dale Maharidge fits the bill on all fronts for me. The Dead Drink First is well narrated and put together in a way that is engaging and interesting.

Below is an audio excerpt of The Dead Drink First by Dale Maharidge from YouTube that gives you a rough idea what it is about! 



I am giving The Dead Drink First by Dale Maharidge a rating of 3 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next, post happy reading!!

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues by Molly Harper



As an Audible member, I was able to download the Audible Original, Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues by Molly Harper, to my Kindle for FREE! 

Listening time for Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues by Molly Harper is 3 hours, 3 minutes.

Below is my honest, unbiased review of Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues by Molly Harper.

Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues is a paranormal romance novella and is part of the Mystic Bayou series. In fact, it is listed as the 2.5th read in this series. I have listened to another audiobook by Molly Harper, but it wasn't part of the Mystic Bayou series... It was titled, I'm Dreaming of an Undead Christmas and is part of the Half-Moon Hollows series.

I thought the narrators, Amanda Ronconi and Jonathan Davis, for Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues by Molly Harper were good... However, that's the best think I enjoyed about this novella. The storyline, plot development, and characters were just so-so in my opinion. I will not continue with the Mystic Bayou series.

The following is the plot summary for Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues by Molly Harper found on Audible:
A hilarious new standalone novella brimming with otherworldly charm from the reigning queen of paranormal romantic comedy Molly Harper!
Ingrid Asher is the newest resident of Mystic Bayou, a tiny town hidden in the swamp where shapeshifters, vampires, witches and dragons live alongside humans.
Ingrid doesn’t ask for much. The solitary tree nymph just wants to live a quiet life running her ice-cream shop in peace. Unfortunately, she can’t seem to shake her new neighbor, Rob Aspern, head of the League’s data science department and so good looking it just isn’t fair.
If there’s one thing Ingrid doesn’t need, it’s someone poking around in her business. But the more she gets to know the hunky mathematician, the more she finds herself letting her guard down. Can she trust him with her secrets, or will her past destroy everything?
I am giving Even Tree Nymphs Get The Blues by Molly Harper a rating of 2 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Suggestible You: A Remarkable Journey Into the Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal by Erik Vance


I recently listened to Suggestible You: A Remarkable Journey Into the Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal by Erik Vance and narrated by Paul Michael Garcia. 

Listening time for Suggestible You: A Remarkable Journey Into the Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal by Erik Vance is 9 hours, 39 minutes.

Suggestible You: A Remarkable Journey Into the Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal by Erik Vance is a work of nonfiction. I really enjoyed this book a lot. It discusses the placebo effect, nocebo effect, hypnosis, meditation, and false memories in great detail as well as addiction, depression, sexual dysfunction, TCM, acupuncture, and so much more.

I'm finding it difficult to articulate the fascinating information that I learned on just how the body and mind works when it comes to placebos, nocebos, and both traditional and alternative medicines. It's all more complicated than I once suspected and Erik Vance describes it all in fascinating detail. The last chapter even has a hypnosis session to listen to, which was cool, I thought.

I think Paul Michael Garcia was a mediocre narrator. I wish another narrator had been selected instead for this book.

Below is the publisher's summary for Suggestible You: A Remarkable Journey Into the Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal by Erik Vance from Audible:
This riveting narrative explores the world of placebos, hypnosis, false memories, and neurology to reveal the groundbreaking science of our suggestible minds. Could the secrets to personal health lie within our own brains? Journalist Erik Vance explores the surprising ways our expectations and beliefs influence our bodily responses to pain, disease, and everyday events. Drawing on centuries of research and interviews with leading experts in the field, Vance takes us on a fascinating adventure from Harvard's research labs to a witch doctor's office in Catemaco, Mexico, to an alternative medicine school near Beijing (often called "China's Hogwarts"). Vance's firsthand dispatches will change the way you think - and feel.

Continuing the success of National Geographic's brain books and rounding out our pop science category, this book shows how expectations, beliefs, and self-deception can actively change our bodies and minds. Vance builds a case for our "internal pharmacy" - the very real chemical reactions our brains produce when we think we are experiencing pain or healing, actual or perceived. Supporting this idea is centuries of placebo research in a range of forms, from sugar pills to shock waves; studies of alternative medicine techniques heralded and condemned in different parts of the world (think crystals and chakras); and, most recently, major advances in brain mapping technology. Thanks to this technology, we're learning how we might leverage our suggestibility (or lack thereof) for personalized medicine, and Vance brings us to the front lines of such study.
I can see myself giving copies of this book to others!! Suffice it to say, I really enjoyed Suggestible You

I am giving Suggestible You: A Remarkable Journey Into the Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform, and Heal by Erik Vance a rating of 5 stars out of 5 stars!!

Until my next post, happy reading!

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Hank Green Shares 8 Things He Wished He's Known When Writing His First Novel!


It's always fascinating to hear writers talk about their writing, so I found it enlightening to hear Hank Green discuss 8 things he wished he'd known when writing his first novel.

Friday, June 7, 2019

A Public Library Kind of Morning For Me!!



I haven't spent much time at our public library lately.
So, this morning I found myself at our local branch.
I arrived at 10:30am and found the San Ramon Public Library
already bustling with activity. 
Mainly, I found moms with young kids or kids and teens
by themselves making use of the public library.

It's lovely to see that our public library is being used
by the community and so soon after it opened on a week day morning.

I had a brief look around the library and also purchased a
couple of used books at the FOL Used Bookstore section
of the library before I finally found the perfect spot to read
on the second floor near the young adult section.
 
My view of the library from one of the comfy lime green and navy blue sofas
I spent my time reading more of The Italian Teacher by Tom Rachman while at the public library today. I've only
recently begun reading this novel and I am looking 
forward to seeing where it leads me.

As far as my used book purchases go... I grabbed a
copy of Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson (which has
been on my reading wishlist for awhile) and

The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher.


I spent approximately 60 to 75 minutes at the public
library today. I would have gladly spent more time reading there,
unfortunately the library had the air conditioner blasting
on high due to the hot weather we've been experiencing. 
I felt like I was sitting in an arctic zone, so I ended up leaving.

Do you spend time at your public library?

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday - Books From My Favorite Genre


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme hosted by Jana @ That Artsy Reader GirlTop Ten Tuesday was originally created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

I'm not sure I have a favorite genre. I like paranormal romances... But I wouldn't say that paranormal romance novels are my favorite genre. Below is a list of ten paranormal romances I've enjoyed!!

1. Luca's Mate by Kristina King
2. Protected Mate by J. H. Croix
3. Taming The Alpha by Savannah Stuart
4. The Ghost and the Graveyard by Genevieve Jack
6. All By My Selfie by Jo Noelle
7. Scent of a Mate by Milly Taiden
8. Forgotten Monsters: The Lost and Found Collection by Kelly Apple
9. Vampire For Christmas by Felicity Heaton
10. Haunted on Bourbon Street by Deanna Chase

Saturday, June 1, 2019

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot


I've had the physical paperback of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot for years now. I have been meaning to read this nonfiction book since I obtained it as I've heard nothing but good things about The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot

Since I've procrastinated on reading the physical version of this book, I finally downloaded and listened to the Audible edition of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot on my Kindle as I'm an audiobook junkie these days! 

I still love reading books, but sometimes listening to a well narrated book can be so much more fun. Plus, I can do other things (like knit) while listening to audiobooks.

Back to reviewing The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. I found The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks to be both a fascinating and a bit overwhelming read at the same time. The various subjects discussed were fascinating and well organized... But the amount of diverse information packed into this book was a bit overwhelming at times as there was so much great information presented throughout the entire book itself. 

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot covers not only the life of Henrietta Lacks, her family's history, and the lives of her descendants... But it also covers many other subjects like the fact that Henrietta Lacks's cells were the first immortal human cells grown in culture and how her cells have played a vital role in medicine. 

I also found parts of the book to be difficult to take in as I listened to the audio version of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks... The way in which Henrietta Lacks was treated as a patient and how much she suffered during her cancer treatment was difficult to stomach. Also, the history of how African Americans have been mistreated in US history is highlighted (the medical experimentation on African Americans for example), and the fact that "scientists investigating HeLa began using her husband and children in research without informed consent" had me shaking my head. 

Bioethics becomes a big topic in The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. I learned a lot of eye opening stuff about bioethics that I didn't know about before through listening to The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.

Listening time for The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot is 12 hours, 30 minutes. It's well narrated by Cassandra Campbell and Bahni Turpin. So if you're a fan of audiobooks, then I recommend listening to The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot.

Below is the publisher's summary for The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot from Audible:
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.
If you could pile all HeLa cells ever grown onto a scale, they'd weigh more than 50 million metric tons - as much as a hundred Empire State Buildings. 
HeLa cells were vital for developing the polio vaccine; uncovered secrets of cancer, viruses, and the atom bombs effects; helped lead to important advances like in vitro fertilization, cloning, and gene mapping; and have been bought and sold by the billions. Yet Henrietta Lacks remains virtually unknown, buried in an unmarked grave.
Now, Rebecca Skloot takes us on an extraordinary journey, from the colored ward of Johns Hopkins Hospital in the 1950s to stark white laboratories with freezers full of HeLa cells; from Henriettas small, dying hometown of Clover, Virginia, a land of wooden slave quarters, faith healings, and voodoo, to East Baltimore today, where her children and grandchildren live and struggle with the legacy of her cells.
Henrietta's family did not learn of her immortality until more than 20 years after her death, when scientists investigating HeLa began using her husband and children in research without informed consent. And though the cells had launched a multimillion-dollar industry that sells human biological materials, her family never saw any of the profits. As Rebecca Skloot so brilliantly shows, the story of the Lacks family, past and present, is inextricably connected to the dark history of experimentation on African Americans, the birth of bioethics, and the legal battles over whether we control the stuff we are made of.
I'm giving The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot a rating of 5 stars out of 5 stars.

Until my next post, happy reading!!