The Man Who Wasn’t There: Investigations into the Strange New Science of the Self

Anil Ananthaswamy, read by Rene Ruiz. Books on Tape, library exclusive, 8 CDs, 9.5 hrs., $40 ISBN 978-1-101-91493-9
Veteran stage actor Ruiz delivers a smooth and pleasant rendition of science writer Ananthaswamy’s examination of human consciousness and the self. As Ananthaswamy sheds light on the nuances of self-awareness and its philosophical and moral implications, Ruiz gives a straightforward, occasionally lackluster reading of the demanding scholarly material. Such issues as autism and Alzheimer’s disease work their way into the narrative, and the information holds value for those with a more general interest in matters the brain. Yet Ruiz doesn’t offer the tremendous range of the many personality quirks and temperaments presented in Ananthaswamy’s research. His approach as narrator seems a bit detached from the emotional experiences tied to personal identity. The result certainly won’t disappoint fans of journalistic medical reporting like the kind found on public radio, but more casual listeners may be a bit disengaged at points. A Dutton hardcover. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 10/26/2015
Genre: Audio
Hardcover - 320 pages - 978-0-525-95419-4
Compact Disc - 978-1-61176-433-8
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-1-101-98432-1
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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