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The Moth

4.4 of 5 stars 4.40  ·  rating details  ·  761 ratings  ·  128 reviews
For the first time in print, celebrated storytelling phenomenon The Moth presents fifty spellbinding, soul-bearing stories selected from their extensive archive (fifteen-plus years and 10,000-plus stories strong). Inspired by friends telling stories on a porch, The Moth was born in small-town Georgia, garnered a cult following in New York City, and then rose to national ac ...more
Paperback, 410 pages
Published September 3rd 2013 by Hachette Books (first published January 1st 2013)
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Aleeda I borrowed it from NYPL. I will likely buy a used copy....the stories are exquisite, even when you have heard them via the podcast/Moth Radio Hour.…moreI borrowed it from NYPL. I will likely buy a used copy....the stories are exquisite, even when you have heard them via the podcast/Moth Radio Hour.(less)
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jv poore
An unbelievably awesome collection of fifty true stories, The Moth is the first book that I've read that I can unabashedly, enthusiastically, recommend to absolutely anyone and everyone. Far surpassing a giant bag of Hershey's Miniatures, this genuinely has something for everyone.

This book pulls 50 stories from the archives of the not-for-profit organization The Moth; which was founded in 1997 and dedicated to the art and craft of storytelling. You may have heard one or more of the thousands of
I'm a big fan of The Moth . Ever since a friend introduced me to the podcast in May 2012, I've listened to every show and attended every local event I could. Despite that, I was originally uninterested in the book — the spoken medium doesn't always translate well to transcription. But a promotion offered two $18 tickets to their next show when preordering the $10 book, so I picked it up as a money-saving move.

The book contains 50 stories that they promise aren't necessarily the best, but are th
An exquisite collection of stories told by a variety of individuals at The Moth. The collection is nearly perfection and certainly an art form at its very best. There was not one story which didn't captivate me.

"Storytelling, story- sharing, tale- bearing in the good sense, yarn- spinning. A lot of its success has to do, as always in life, with much preparation and calculation beneath the seeming spontaneity. For all their seeming inconsequence and improvisational air, a good Moth story is as c
This book of short stories does what I think a great book of short stories should: delivers stories that are truly short (a few pages at most) that offer variety in terms of subject matter, tone, and/or style, while maintaining a singular premise that links them all together. Of course, the singular premise for that serves to link these stories is simple: they were all originally part of the oral tradition that is The Moth. Of course, those oral stories were all told within a time regulated time ...more
The fifty stories in this volume are drawn from the thousands told at The Moth events around the country. They are presented as originally told, with no notes, before an audience, with only the barest minimum of editing. As a devotee of The Moth, I heard many of the stories when they were broadcast, and this collection -- the first of many, I hope -- has some of my favorites. In most cases, after reading one, I think: "Wow. That's the quintessential Moth story!" And so on, throughout the book. : ...more
Fascinating, brief, true stories by . . .

famous people (Richard Price, Damian Echols, Darryl "DMC" McDaniels, Joyce Maynard),

people with interesting jobs (cop, prison guard, harem member), and

people who have gone through harrowing experiences (such as being a hospital orderly trapped in a falling elevator and resuscitating a patient whose heart stopped as a result of the fall).
If I could give this book more than five stars I certainly would. It's that good. At times funny, poignant, thought provoking, heartbreaking and simply so damn great.
Kevin Hinman
A strange book to rate, considering the moth is an aural experience, but the stories in themselves, are really impressive, inspiring even. Worth checking out.
Great content, as you'd expect from The Moth. The one from Darryl McDaniels about his experience meeting Sarah McLaughlin made me cry with happiness.
The Moth is a collection of 50 interesting short true stories. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys short stories. Stories from writers, musicians, directors, scientists, doctors, astronauts, poker players, prisoners and many more.

This is a list of some of the people who told their stories in the book. I would recommend against searching the names as it might ruin some of the stories that you will read.

Dr. Alan Rabinowitz
Jillian Lauren
Ari Handel
Richard Price
Annie Duke
Michael Massim
I enjoyed this -- and individually, I really liked some of the stories. Many of the stories. Maybe all of the stories? There were only one or two that didn't strike me in some way.
But that's the problem with this collection. It's just too much.
With the archives that The Moth has, I can't imagine it was easy to start to narrow down the tales. But more needed to be done. It weakened the best of the stories to share company with so many others, and when lines -- like "straight out of central castin
Recommended by Nic. Love the podcast.

Although I'd heard several stories before but I still enjoyed reading them and then discovering all the others. Wonderful variety. And the great thing about the book format is that I can read them again.

My three favorites are:
Fireworks from above by Faye Lane - I loved this story so much when I listened to it that I immediately played it for Stephen, the joy and spirit had to be shared;
Perfect Moments by Brian Finkelstein - the best sort of understated unfol
I had to return this to the library and I doubt I will check it out again even though I didn't finish it. It had a few gems, but mostly I found the authors pretentious (they all seemed to be famous people a little full of themselves) and the stories flat. Two excellent ones were the first, about the odd couple, and the one by the astronaut. There were probably a few other excellent ones, but they are buried too deep! Besides, these stories seem better to listen to. I had heard the odd couple one ...more
Since I'm not very good at keeping up with podcasts, I previously only listened to The Moth on public radio when driving with my daughter. I was happy to see this book available on Kindle, and I enjoyed it very much. If you're not familiar with The Moth, it's a program where people (some well-known and others not) tell stories out of their own lives, live on stage. In this book, each section is themed with words or phrases (examples: "Generations" and "Shot Through the Heart.") Some stories are ...more
Dana Mccloskey
Such an awesome book. I've been a long time follower of the Moth and the Moth podcast. This is sort of a best of collection of some of their most captivating stories over the years. If you aren't familiar with The Moth I strongly encourage you to check it out. It is a live storytelling event that was created by its founder who longed for the nights he used to spend on his neighbors front porch in Georgia staying up late telling stories into the night as moth's danced in the flicker of the porch ...more
C Lyons
The beauty of this book is that the stories within it are so diverse and so numerous that you can't not enjoy it. Out of fifty only one or two left me feeling indifferent. The rest had me smiling, sniffling, laughing or gasping. The shortness of the stories - most only five pages or so - means the book can easily be put aside or rationed, although in my case I found it difficult to do this (you tell yourself you're only going to read one more story and before you know it, you've read ten...). I ...more
This book compiles 50 stories from "The Moth" (Google it; better yet, look up the podcasts), and there are some excellent stories among these 50, all of which are pretty darn good to the best a story can be. The stories are arranged in rough titled groups (group 1: "Innocents Abroad", and so forth), but beyond that in no particular order. The story tellers are mostly non-famous and include a number of artist / writer types. I really appreciate the range of authors here, including a few ex-prison ...more
Amazing. Inspiring. Depressing. Uplifting. Unreal.
I want to give this a perfect five stars, but I have to hold back slightly. My problem is that I have heard every single one of these stories as told by their authors, so when I read them, I hear their voices. This is a collection of transcripts. A magnificent collection!

The thing about The Moth that sets it apart from anything I've ever experienced is its intimacy and immediacy. It's individual, unique people with their own voices, telling me their true stories. The written page cannot capture
Kevin Laprocino
The Moth on paper.

Some stories fall flat on paper. The Moth is a unique experience that is defined by the live performance these storytellers share with those of us listening. I was worried about how this book would be able to capture what is so unique to The Moth experience. I was pleasantly surprised. The book contains 50 stories and while some entertain, some capture your heart, some test your comfort levels, overall this is a magical book and leaves a mark on yourself. Each story stands on
I reached the last chapter, "Save Me," and decided to save myself from any more disappointment by not finishing it. I think the stories would have been more interesting if they were told by my friends versus some random people--and even then, after such interesting starts, I would've been disappointed in the endings. Each story in this collection was a let down for me. Not one left me feeling any emotion. That is, unless you count the anger I felt after I read another one. I'd equate each story ...more
I love The Moth and these stories were definitely some of the best, but I think there is just so much emotion that is lost when reading it in print. The live versions are so much more powerful.
Amy Sugerman
Excellent bathroom book as the stories are short enough for one sitting. One of my favorites was included -- the Hubble telescope repair-- one was not -- Lisa Jackson's story.
Amy Liddell
I discovered The Moth podcast by accident. I downloaded it thinking it was something else, and I just fell in love with it very gradually and then all at once. I have a hellish commute and in the morning or after work I would look forward to listening to it as it helped me distract myself, feel better about myself and feel so much more optimistic about the future - hey, if these wonderful, amazing, introspective, heartbreaking, funny, unusual, unexpected things can happen to other people, they c ...more
Wonderful collection of true stories that are every bit as good on paper as they are on The Moth podcast. Peoples' stories truly are amazing.

Don't get me wrong. The 50 true stories in this book are amazing. In fact, I'd be hard pressed to find a more captivating and well written collection of 50 true stories.

But I've been tainted - tainted by The Moth podcast which I've been listening to for the past few years. (btw- if you've never listened to The Moth, you need to immediately make this a part of your weekly schedule. And if you do listen to The Moth, then be sure to check out Snap Judgement as well).

Since a lot of the stories from
Jerome Jewell
I thoroughly enjoyed this collection of true, well-told stories. The stories are at times messy and at times very neat...sometimes endearing and at times ugly. They are all real and I was always left looking forward to the next one. Like most really memorable books that I've read, I dreaded coming to the end of "The Moth".

The book exudes an air of something more than authenticity. There's a sense of a conscious attempt to NOT make the stories sensational or shocking or aimed at generating a sha
The Moth is one of the best podcasts around. Smart, funny, inspirational, never know what you're going to hear from one episode to the next. The basic premise is this: EVERYONE has a story. Storytellers get coaching, and share their true stories with audiences around the globe. I didn't know if the emotional connection--hearing the stories in the voice of the storyteller, and not my onw--would be lost in the reading, but the stories proved just as powerful in print. The storyteller ...more
The Moth Radio Hour is one of my favorite radio shows. I love the concept and the stories. These are they types of stories that you sit in the driveway listening to because you don't want to turn the car off and go inside before you hear the end.

So, when I found that 50 of the stories had been published in book form, I was excited to read it! I was definitely not disappointed! It was especially fun reading stories that I had heard told on the radio before. Some funny, some tragic and many inspir
Tom Romig
What a novel idea: people telling stories! People actually examining their lives and shaping narratives around the central events that express who they are, where they've been, what's shaped them, what troubles them, what brings them joy.

The same day I finished this collection of stories I happened to read Stephen Grosz's contribution to a piece in Intelligent Life called "The Big Question: What's the Point?" He quoted Karen Blixen: "All sorrows can be borne if you put them into a story or tell
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