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Lisa

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Guts with glory

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

Reviewed: 02-02-2020

An unexpectedly fascinating topic/book, which was written in a highly accessible & entertaining way.
Very well read and paced by the narrator.

A ‘jagged little patch of Idaho’ = a remarkable story of transformation

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

Reviewed: 09-03-2019

The multiple layers of this book are simultaneously bared and interwoven in a way which is very accessible despite most likely being beyond any frame of reference available to most readers.

There is a restrained steadiness in the telling of the story which is effective in keeping the reader engaged for the entire journey.

Westover’s personal journey and accomplishments are truly remarkable, particularly when set against the backdrop of her family life and circumstances, in that ‘jagged little patch of Idaho.’

5 people found this helpful

More than Maybe McMaybe

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

Reviewed: 05-01-2019

This is one of those books which seems that it may be far more accessible in an audio version.
Brid Brennan narrates deftly, enabling the listener to more effectively contextualise the social and cultural happenings.
Burns provides a unique window into the psycho-political situation that most of her readers may never personally experience, with a wincing portrayal of tribalism that seems surreal - yet real.
While the style of writing is refreshingly different, and it takes a small amount of time to adjust to the narrative style - it is very much worth pushing through the initial head-tilt thoughts about the style.

Lesson 22 - Read this book

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

Reviewed: 08-10-2018

This book is a highly and easily accessible look into/observation of different ways of being and thinking.
It seems a very timely gift reminding us – well, at least me – to “know thyself“ >> before it’s too late... as a Futurist Harari provides us with many provocations on which to meditate.

Worth staying the distance

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

Reviewed: 17-10-2014

Upon completion of this audible version, my first commendation Must be to the narrator. An excellent narration!!

1 person found this helpful

Popularity doesn't guarantee quality

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

Reviewed: 17-10-2014

I approached this book with an open heart and an open mind. I had read no reviews of it, had not heard of it, other than it being referred to by an acquaintance as a book that had made a positive difference in his life. I downloaded it from Audible and listened to it over two days.

As it commenced I felt connected to some of the examples being provided, including some which made me laugh out loud at how I winced or nodded thinking ‘oh damn, that’s me!’ - which set me up for feeling positive about the rest of the book.
As each chapter progressed I was reading it feeling a sense of anticipation. Anticipation of some practical insights; of some ways of connecting those insights about consciousness into my day-to-day realities.

What I found, however, was not a sense of progression but a sense of frustration.

Increasingly, each chapter would seem to be rather repetitious and not, (in any way obvious to me –and I acknowledge my potential lack of depth or existentially relevant skills) – provide any further insight than that already provided. Onward, I continued – convinced the lack of progression was mine not the author’s. Despite my developing misgivings, I continued reading, and in fact completed the book. Towards the end of the book I found I was ‘arguing’ with the author about inconsistencies.

The book for the most part presents as very respectful of all belief systems.
The broadness of approach, of language used, allows for the ‘idea’ of whatever the reader holds to be their version of ‘spiritual’ as able to be encompassed. In relation to this point, as an ‘open-minded atheist’ I appreciated this approach and was able to listen comfortably for most of the book.
Until Chapter 19 (final chapter). At this point the author seemed to fling to one side the inclusive language previously used. With the exception of one paragraph, all references exclusively and repeatedly use the term ‘god.’ Seven biblical quotations with relevant references were used while merely one sentence was used to encompass all other belief systems.

Another challenge presented in Chapter 19 was the concept of being judgemental.
Perhaps it is my naïveté. To say that someone is…(whatever the next word).. then one is being judgemental; whether, and irrelevantly, positive or negative.

“It is like the unconditional love of mother. A mother devotes every moment of her life to a child who is physically or mentally challenged. She thinks the child is beautiful. She doesn’t focus on the shortcomings. In fact, she doesn’t see them as shortcomings.”
What patronising judgements! To use the emotionally-charged elements including (but certainly not limited to): 1) a child; 2) a child with some sort/level of disability or challenge; 3) the expectations of the role of a mother; 4) the presumption that a mother will unquestioningly view her ‘challenged child’ as ‘beautiful’.

I can’t recall the section, however one part of the book left me particularly bemused. While we are exhorted to transcend judgement, we are provided examples of being judged. The author asks who do you think god would rather talk to: a whinger or someone seeing only the positive? It is answered for us, that god would obviously prefer the positive person. Is this not utterly judgemental? Particularly when the parable of the prodigal son was also proffered (a parable which provides me with a personal sense of how unfair, rather than non-judgemental, that people can be) is held aloft for us to be inspired by.

So, I would have to say that, in my opinion, this book is worth listening to as a beginning moment on a journey of consciousness. It does not, however, provide any real maps or practical methods about how to get anywhere. It is rather repetitive in its approach and does not develop the initial ideas presented to any useful extent. It does provide a starting point for challenging oneself about journey of self-actualisation.

The performance/presentation of the book is very good and I would be very happy to listen to other productions by this narrator.

38 people found this helpful