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My Planet: Finding Humor in the Oddest Places Paperback – 4 Apr 2013

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 193 pages
  • Publisher: Reader's Digest Association; 1 edition (4 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1621450716
  • ISBN-13: 978-1621450719
  • Product Dimensions: 14.1 x 3 x 20.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 152,181 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

About the Author

Mary Roach grew up in Etna, New Hampshire, graduated from Wesleyan in 1981, and now lives in California. She has written the bestselling books Packing for Mars (W. W. Norton & Company, August 2010), Bonk (W. W. Norton & Company April 2008), Spook (W. W. Norton & Company, September 2005), and Stiff (W. W. Norton & Company, April 2003). Her articles run in Outside, National Geographic, New Scientist, Wired, and The New York Times Magazine. Her 1995 article, "How to Win at Germ Warfare," was a National Magazine Award Finalist, and in 1996, her article on earthquake-proof bamboo houses took the Engineering Journalism Award in the general interest magazine category. She also reviews books for The New York Times.


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By Mr. Joe HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on 19 Jan. 2014
Format: Paperback
"Me, I enjoy the goofy intimacy of brushing your teeth together (with your spouse), talking over the day's events in an unintelligible foamy garble. That's what marriage is all about. Isn't it?" ‒ Mary Roach

Mary Roach's forays into popular science (with an emphasis on the human body and physiology) ‒ Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, Bonk: The Curious Coupling Of Sex and Science, Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife, Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal, and Packing for Mars: The Curious Science Of Life In Space ‒ have proven to me at least that she's a national treasure. For readers of these books, the author strives to be informative, but from a viewpoint which demonstrates that she doesn't take things too seriously; there's always that sideways look with a cocked eyebrow.

MY PLANET is a collection of sixty of her essays that originally appeared in Reader's Digest and in which she provides humorous commentary on everyday things and circumstances encountered by her in her world. As such, they may remind one of Andy Rooney's musings, both in his books and on "60 Minutes", though so far Mary hasn't demonstrated Rooney's curmudgeonly side. I like Mary's take on life's absurdities so much better.
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Format: Paperback
Mary is one of few authors whose books consistently make me laugh out loud, always provoking a response from those around me wondering what they're missing out on, or if there may be something slightly wrong with me! She is incredibly observant and witty and long may her writing continue. Well recommended to put a smile on your face.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars 210 reviews
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Funny, but... 23 May 2013
By Bob Scott - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love Mary Roach's off-the-wall scientific books, so it's interesting to see this goofy side of her. I must admit, I prefer the scientifically sharp, even sharper-witted Mary, to this one who is as clueless about some things as a lot of other people are, and has hardly anything in common with her husband. It just got a little old after a while, you know what I mean? I get it that this is a standard, every-person humor column style, a la Dave Barry, and if you talk about things at which you are competent all the time, it's just pretentious and not funny. So don't get me wrong, the book is funny and entertaining in its way, I just got to missing the other Mary. The clever one, that is funny by being smart.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Observing the world with a cocked eyebrow 19 Jan. 2014
By Mr. Joe - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Me, I enjoy the goofy intimacy of brushing your teeth together (with your spouse), talking over the day's events in an unintelligible foamy garble. That's what marriage is all about. Isn't it?" ‒ Mary Roach

Mary Roach's forays into popular science (with an emphasis on the human body and physiology) ‒ Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife, Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal, and Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void ‒ have proven to me at least that she's a national treasure. For readers of these books, the author strives to be informative, but from a viewpoint which demonstrates that she doesn't take things too seriously; there's always that sideways look with a cocked eyebrow.

MY PLANET is a collection of sixty of her essays that originally appeared in Reader's Digest and in which she provides humorous commentary on everyday things and circumstances encountered by her in her world. As such, they may remind one of Andy Rooney's musings, both in his books and on "60 Minutes", though so far Mary hasn't demonstrated Rooney's curmudgeonly side. I like Mary's take on life's absurdities so much better.

In MY PLANET, Roach's wit encompasses such of life's experiences as the inconsiderate fellow airline passenger, choosing a cold medication, and dealing with hotel room aggravations. But her best essays are those that reveal a gentle, self-deprecating humor which, on a personally wider scale, also includes her husband Ed as she makes wry comments on those, um, minor differences of opinion and perspective that provide tempest-in-a-teapot turbulences to any marriage. (One wonders what Ed's side of the stories might sound like.)

Mary Roach always makes my day. I'd like to give her a hug.
3.0 out of 5 stars A collection of short essays, not her best work 1 Mar. 2016
By suger booger - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love Mary Roach's books...Packing for Mars and Stiff are my faves...however, this is not one of those. Rather, it's a collection of her essays for Readers Digest, focused on her home life and husband. It is at times laugh out loud funny, of course, well written and clever, but the essays are so short and the book itself so short that it literally took me less than an hour to read, leaving me bereft and hungering for more...Because it focuses on things ordinary and day to day, it also lacks all the wonderful odd little factoids that she digs up in her more investigative works. It is also quite dated, which is obvious in her several essays about new fangled technological advances like the Palm Pilot.
4.0 out of 5 stars A Roach-lite collection of quirky and affectionate observations of day-to-day life 2 Jan. 2016
By Danielle - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love Mary Roach. Love, love, love! That said, I became acquainted with her narrative showcasing her as a total brainiac, laced with humor as mischievous as it is subtle. She often leaves the reader with the impression they may be in the elite few who caught her quip about cadavers, sex, spirituality, or whatever latest topic has left her indulgently curious, and who doesn't want to share a highbrow chuckle with Mary Roach? The subject matter is always interesting, but I'm just as intrigued by this author I'd love to grab a drink or 5 with. My Planet was definitely written to be more approachable by mainstream America. Leave the dictionary on the nightstand, and enjoy a chapter you can easily read on your Metro commute.
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy it. Leave it on the library shelf. Stick to the books. 6 Oct. 2016
By Victoria C Leo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Big disappointment if you loved her full-length books. Not only is it not as well written, and not as genuinely funny - perhaps the result of the shorter deadlines, because some people need to rewrite three times to get it right.... hey Jane Austen's first drafts were dreadful so don't sneer. Maybe it was just the shorter length. But it was more than dull writing. Her husband really sounds nasty. And she sounds thoroughly unpleasant and unappealing. Wish I'd maintained my previous view of her; ignorance in this case is bliss. Run away.
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