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AIRPLANE MODE

AIRPLANE MODE An Irreverent History of Travel

by Shahnaz Habib | Read by Deepa Samuel

Tantor Media | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Deepa Samuel reads crisply and does well with the various languages in this globe-spanning audiobook. Her carefully articulated style makes this history/memoir with travel stories vivid. The author, a Muslim Indian woman now living in Brooklyn, brings a unique point of view to this "irreverent history of travel." As a woman of color, she has experienced what she describes as... Read More

BLIGHT

BLIGHT Fungi and the Coming Pandemic

by Emily Monosson | Read by Rosemary Benson

Tantor Media | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Rosemary Benson's clear, melodic narration aids the listener in following the myriad threads that Emily Monosson weaves in this fascinating audiobook on fungi. Some fungi are good. But there is also a parade of horribles--such as the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome, which is decimating bat populations; rusts that have already pushed some chestnut trees into extinction;... Read More

BURN BOOK

BURN BOOK A Tech Love Story

Earphones Award Winner

by Kara Swisher | Read by Kara Swisher

Simon & Schuster Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Journalist Kara Swisher specializes in reporting on the Internet. Here she narrates her memoir with urgency and focus, providing a you-are-there history of Silicon Valley. With more than a decade of podcasting experience, Swisher has developed a well-honed, rapid-fire delivery; an aura of journalistic integrity; and a firsthand knowledge of tech history. Anecdotes abound on... Read More

THE CASE FOR OPEN BORDERS

THE CASE FOR OPEN BORDERS

by John Washington | Read by Pete Cross

Dreamscape | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Pete Cross presents this deeply reported and thoroughly researched audiobook with the seriousness it merits. His well-paced narration captures the author's passion for migrants and thorough critique of the governments, corporations, and media that demonize them. He maintains a journalistic tone as the text traverses the globe, sharing the stories of those who have experienced... Read More

COOL FOOD

COOL FOOD Erasing Your Carbon Footprint One Bite at a Time

by Robert Downey Jr., Thomas Kostigen | Read by Robert Downey Jr., Thomas Kostigen, Deepti Gupta

Blackstone Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Robert Downey, Jr., teamed up with prolific climate change author Thomas Kostigen to write and narrate a fun yet impactful audio guide to choosing food habits that will cool the planet. The passionate duo seek to popularize a new climate-friendly food category--cool food--to represent the best edible options for producers and consumers. Downey, Jr., is an absolute riot to... Read More

THE CORE OF AN ONION

THE CORE OF AN ONION Peeling the Rarest Common Food- Featuring More Than 100 Historical Recipes

by Mark Kurlansky | Read by Mark Kurlansky

Bloomsbury Publishing | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Mark Kurlansky brings an authoritative narration to his latest food history endeavor. In the first part, Kurlansky explores the history and science of the onion, delivering his insights with the matter-of-fact demeanor of a seasoned professor. In the second part, Kurlansky reveals his passion for historical recipes, which is evident in his brighter narration. The recipes are... Read More

CROSSINGS

CROSSINGS How Road Ecology Is Shaping the Future of Our Planet

by Ben Goldfarb | Read by Malcolm Hillgartner

HighBridge Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Malcolm Hillgartner epitomizes a fine nonfiction narrator. He lets these often disturbing stories of road ecology (annals of roadkills) reveal themselves in an understated way. A master of pace and cadence, his tone works with the dramatic statistics provided: About one million wild animals perish daily from cars, 40 million miles of roads ring the planet, and the fires in... Read More

DINNER ON MONSTER ISLAND

DINNER ON MONSTER ISLAND

by Tania De Rozario | Read by Tania De Rozario

Harper Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Tania De Rozario performs her essay collection, which revolves around her experience growing up as a fat mixed-race queer girl in Singapore. When she was a child, school administrators required her to eat smaller meals and exercise more. After her mother learned of De Rozario's sexuality, she called church leaders to exorcise her. De Rozario narrates each of her essays with... Read More

DUST

DUST The Modern World in a Trillion Particles

by Jay Owens | Read by Naomi Frederick

Recorded Books | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

After listening to this probing audiobook, listeners will never look at a dust bunny the same way again. Narrator Naomi Frederick's spot-on performance makes listening to the environmental history of our planet's dust absolutely engaging. The author, a geographer, writer, and researcher, creatively combines travel writing with history and science to argue that environmental... Read More

FROM ONE CELL

FROM ONE CELL A Journey into Life's Origins and the Future of Medicine

by Ben Stanger | Read by Noah James Butler

Tantor Media | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Noah James Butler guides listeners through what scientists know about life's origins and what remains a puzzle with excitement and a well-placed sense of awe. He narrates clearly at a steady pace, allowing those who may be unfamiliar with medical terminology time to absorb researcher Ben Stanger's findings. This pairs well with Stanger's accessible, energetic writing style. The... Read More

GET THE PICTURE

GET THE PICTURE A Mind-Bending Journey Among the Inspired Artists and Obsessive Art Fiends Who Taught Me How to See

Earphones Award Winner

by Bianca Bosker | Read by Bianca Bosker

Penguin Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Journalist Bianca Bosker narrates her witty audiobook about the art world with pizzazz. She has a pleasing sound, paces the sometimes frantic-sounding proceedings well, and comes across as an authentic seeker. Performing in a comic style, she enhances the audiobook's ironic undertone, which suggests that many in the art world see journalists as "the enemy." In this work she... Read More

THE GREAT WAVE

THE GREAT WAVE The Era of Radical Disruption and the Rise of the Outsider

by Michiko Kakutani | Read by Tavia Gilbert

Random House Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Tavia Gilbert, who has narrated works by this author twice before, clearly gets her informed and impassioned voice and neatly emulates her literary style. Gilbert's even tone captures the seriousness of this ambitious endeavor. Kakutani offers listeners a version of cultural history that entwines two phenomena--radical disruptions in media and the arts and the rise of the... Read More

HBCU MADE

HBCU MADE A Celebration of the Black College Experience

by Ayesha Rascoe [Ed.] | Read by Ayesha Rascoe, Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, Brandon Gilpin, Nichole Perkins, April Ryan, Karen Chilton, Adam Lazarre-White

Hachette Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) are celebrated in this moving, inspirational audiobook. Karen Chilton, Adam Lazarre-White, and original contributors, including author Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, narrate passages about what brought individual students to HBCUs and how their lives were changed. The result is a seamless listening experience. Contributors... Read More

HOMEGROWN

HOMEGROWN Timothy McVeigh and the Rise of Right-Wing Extremism

by Jeffrey Toobin | Read by Jeffrey Toobin

Simon & Schuster Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Jeffrey Toobin gives a thorough, detailed, yet quickly moving account of Oklahoma bomber Timothy McVeigh's life, beliefs, actions, and death--and how his credo lives on in current right-wing extremism. Like his text, Toobin's narration is brisk, clear, and free of adornment. His guy-next-door manner keeps the material approachable and the focus on the story. No emotional... Read More

HOW MIGRATION REALLY WORKS

HOW MIGRATION REALLY WORKS The Facts About the Most Divisive Issue in Politics

by Hein de Haas | Read by Matthew Spencer

Hachette Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

This timely audiobook on migration translates extremely well to audio due to its straightforward organization and clear summaries of statistical material. Matthew Spencer's measured pacing and professorial tone are well suited to represent the author, a Dutch sociologist who is director of Oxford University's International Migration Institute. The audiobook begins with precise... Read More

IN THE NAME OF SHARKS

IN THE NAME OF SHARKS

by François Sarano | Read by Graham Mack

HighBridge Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

British narrator Graham Mack brings listeners into the ocean with François Sarano, who once accompanied Jacques Cousteau on the CALYPSO. Sarano wants to bring humans closer to sharks, if only metaphorically. Mack sternly catalogs the current dire threats to sharks, such as the market for their fins. Switching gears, he makes swimming with sharks seem like a normal, even... Read More

LATINOLAND

LATINOLAND A Portrait of America's Largest and Least Understood Minority

by Marie Arana | Read by Cynthia Farrell

Simon & Schuster Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Cynthia Farrell brings an excellent ear for language to her narration of this wide-ranging and absorbing audiobook. Her Spanish is flawless, and her sense of story adds impact. Author Marie Arana shows how members of our fastest growing minority have added to our literature, theater, music, politics, and sports. Based on thorough research, including hundreds of interviews, the... Read More

LESSONS FOR SURVIVAL

LESSONS FOR SURVIVAL Mothering Against "the Apocalypse"

by Emily Raboteau | Read by Emily Raboteau

Macmillan Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Emily Raboteau reads with purpose, a clear voice, and a conversational tone that works well for the personal essays in this satisfying audiobook. Her delivery style adjusts to the varied subjects: a sense of wonder at identifying birds, exasperation at dealing with New York City real estate, and empathy for a water-starved Palestinian family. She has a gift for languages; in... Read More

MAKING IT IN AMERICA

MAKING IT IN AMERICA The Almost Impossible Quest to Manufacture in the U.S.A. (And How It Got That Way)

by Rachel Slade | Read by Natalie Duke

Random House Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Natalie Duke perfectly delivers the tone of Slade's concise deep dive into how America came to reject domestic manufacturing and the long-term damage that resulted. Listeners may be familiar with how union membership has bottomed out, the ripple effects of so-called free-trade agreements, and the explosive growth of online shopping. Slade's audiobook brings this damaging... Read More

THE MASTERS: CURATED AUDIO EXCERPTS

THE MASTERS: CURATED AUDIO EXCERPTS Historic Recordings with Lennon, Jagger, Townshend, Garcia, Bono, and Springsteen

by Jann S. Wenner et al. | Read by Jann S. Wenner et al.

Hachette Audio | Audio Program
Contemporary Culture

The cofounder of ROLLING STONE magazine, Jann Wenner, has released these original recordings of his interviews with superstar artists Bruce Springsteen, John Lennon, Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Jerry Garcia, and Pete Townsend. The audiobook is a mixed bag, hampered at times by decades-old recordings. The interviews range from amazing statements by John Lennon to indecipherable... Read More

OUR HIDDEN CONVERSATIONS

OUR HIDDEN CONVERSATIONS What Americans Really Think About Race and Identity

Earphones Award Winner

by Michele Norris | Read by Michele Norris and a Full Cast

Simon & Schuster Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Peabody Award-winning journalist Michele Norris and a full cast deliver a must-listen performance of Norris's riveting examination of race in America. Based on 12 years of submissions to Norris's Race Card Project--six words about race from over half-a-million people--the audiobook shifts between Norris's clear, warm, thoughtful commentary and participants' contributions, all... Read More

A POETRY HANDBOOK

A POETRY HANDBOOK A Prose Guide to Understanding and Writing Poetry

Earphones Award Winner

by Mary Oliver | Read by Kimberly Farr

Harper Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

The best poets get that way because they have given a great deal of thought to questions such as: "What is poetry?" "How does it get that way?" Mary Oliver was one of those best poets, and in this audio version of her classic work about how to write and read poetry she offers some answers, both detailed and expansive, to John Ciardi's classic question: "How does a poem mean?"... Read More

SECRET LIFE OF THE CITY

SECRET LIFE OF THE CITY How Nature Thrives in the Urban Wild

by Hanna Hagen Bjørgaas, Matt Bagguley [Trans.] | Read by Mary Helen Gallucci

Tantor Media | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

For any nature lover, this audiobook is nearly irresistible. Bjorgaas, a biologist, takes a close look at the ways insects, birds, mammals, trees, and plants adapt to life in the more densely populated human environs. The anecdotes are vividly written and fascinating, albeit somewhat awkwardly organized. Mary Helen Gallucci is an earnest narrator who does a fine job with pace,... Read More

STAMPED FROM THE BEGINNING

STAMPED FROM THE BEGINNING The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America

Earphones Award Winner

by Ibram X. Kendi | Read by Avery Kidd Waddell

Tantor Media | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Avery Kidd Waddell delivers a commanding narration. He confidently conveys the scope of this new edition of one of the most influential audiobooks on the history of race, which dismantles the myth of a post-racial society. Kendi's work investigates the histories of six historical figures, including Thomas Jefferson, W.E.B Du Bois, and Angela Davis. Their actions, writings, and... Read More

THIS WON'T HELP

THIS WON'T HELP Modest Proposals for a More Enjoyable Apocalypse

by Eli Grober | Read by Eli Grober

Tantor Media | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Eli Grober narrates his collection of dystopian satires with deadpan self-assurance. It's the ideal voice for the 100 essays--none longer than eight minutes--with titles such as "'I'm Only Joking,' I Say As I Kill You" and "How I Saved Enough To Buy a House With My Parents' Money." One of Grober's more sincere readings can be heard in "The Telescope We Sent to Deep Space Wants... Read More

THUNDER SONG

THUNDER SONG Essays

by Sasha LaPointe | Read by Sasha LaPointe

Dreamscape | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Sasha LaPointe, a poet and performer, delivers her edgy essays with a pleasing voice and a sure sense of the significance of her message. She reads in a word-loving style with the tempo of one who appreciates the meanings her words convey. A Coast Salish woman, she was raised on a reservation in the Pacific Northwest, knows the stresses of growing up a Native girl, and... Read More

TWELVE TREES

TWELVE TREES The Deep Roots of Our Future

by Daniel Lewis | Read by Kaleo Griffith

Simon & Schuster Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Books come from trees, but the trees themselves can tell us stories of their own if we know how to listen. Fittingly, I listened to part of this audiobook while sitting next to a campfire. Kaleo Griffith's narration is almost perfect for such a fireside chat. His straightforward yet conversational tone exactly matches the feel of the work. Author Daniel Lewis profiles a dozen... Read More

UNMASKING AI

UNMASKING AI My Mission to Protect What Is Human in a World of Machines

by Joy Buolamwini | Read by Joy Buolamwini

Random House Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Dr. Joy Buolamwini carefully narrates this hybrid memoir detailing her groundbreaking research on AI software discrimination. Labeling the phenomenon she uncovered as "the coded gaze," she explains how predominantly white male computer programmers have subconsciously established bias in algorithmic decision making. As an activist, Buolamwini warns that some systems claim they... Read More

WHITE HOLES

WHITE HOLES

by Carlo Rovelli | Read by Harry Lloyd

Penguin Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Narrator Harry Lloyd's affable narration echoes physicist Carlo Rovelli's casual writing style. Their conversational approach to the concept of white holes allows a variety of listeners to engage with complex physics regardless of how much knowledge they start with. Simply put, white holes cannot be entered but allow information to escape; they are the opposite of black holes,... Read More

WHY WE READ

WHY WE READ On Bookworms, Libraries, and Just One More Page Before Lights Out

by Shannon Reed | Read by Paige McKinney

Harlequin Audio | Unabridged
Contemporary Culture

Paige McKinney offers a lively delivery of Shannon Reed's musings on her lifelong love of books. Listeners will quickly note that what's offered is an accounting of why the author reads--for her amusement, edification, and comfort. Listeners will likely find common ground, and those who share Reed's sense of humor will be amused. Sometimes Reed's background as a humor writer... Read More

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