Mindy's Reviews > Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers

Stiff by Mary Roach
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Jan 01, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: library-book, dead-people, math-and-science, 600s, non-fiction, body-parts
Read in January, 2009

Mary Roach didn't strike me as funny or witty, just annoying. She's like the wise ass class clown in the back row, heckling the teacher and distracting everyone from an otherwise fairly decent lecture. Only she's supposed to be the teacher, too. What was her point? To talk about dead bodies or impress herself with her own juvenile jokes?

On a professional note, Roach seems awfully distrustful of librarians. Does she really think the circ clerk at a medical library thinks she's freaky for checking out books on dead people? Does she really think he even cares? Does she really think a librarian is going to mistake her PubMed search as porn and bust her? Too bad, because her "facts" like "a dozen websites say..." and "when I googled this I found out..." make me think she has the research prowess of a cadaver. Roach could use a good librarian, who could help her improve her search skills and also help her find the next open mic night to practice her shtick.

Skip this book. Stick to Six Feet Under.
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Reading Progress

02/17 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Sheri (new)

Sheri Excellent and insightful review! I keep thinking I should read at least one of Mary Roach's books but I never seem to make it much of a priority. Perhaps that's a good thing, eh?

"a dozen websites say..." Good god!


message 2: by Ed (new)

Ed Stock "She's like the wise ass class clown in the back row, heckling the teacher and distracting everyone from an otherwise fairly decent lecture."
You've pretty much hit the nail on the head with this remark. While I found the author's strained humor a bit annoying I still appreciated the wide-ranging information she presented. I know a lot more about the topic now than before I read the book, even if I can't imagine ever sharing any of my new-found knowledge with friends!


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