4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
What goes in...must come out.,
This review is from: Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal (Paperback)
Mary Roach's new book "Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal" is like her previous works, a witty look at a science subject. She's covered death, sex, and space travel, among other topics. In "Gulp", she takes on - gulp - our alimentary canal and looks at what goes in and what comes out.
Mary Roach is a "hands on" researcher of the subjects she writes about. And in "Gulp", Roach travels the world, talking to doctors and scientists about the ins and outs of the digestive system. She begins by talking about how food "appeals" to the eater through taste and smell. Then she travels downward through the body, talking about problems like constipation and acid reflux, which many people suffer from. She skips around her subject, though, which is the only complaint I have about the book. From rectal smuggling of small radios, razor blades, and drugs, both in - and out - of jails, to Elvis and his death, to impacted colons, Roach flutters from subject to subject.
Roach is not afraid to use the words in her book about bodily functions that I cannot use here in my review. No serious reader will choose to read "Gulp", in lieu of a medical textbook on the subject, but for the curious reader, Roach has written an interesting - if sometimes scattered - look at our basic plumbing. It's the kind of book that may push the interested reader to seek out more about the subject. And that's what's so good about Mary Roach's writing; the reader can take what's given and learn from it, or be stirred on to more serious reading.