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Mobituaries: Great Lives Worth Reliving

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  4,773 ratings  ·  892 reviews
11 hours, 45 minutes

From beloved CBS Sunday Morning correspondent and humorist Mo Rocca, an entertaining and rigorously researched book that celebrates the dead people who have long fascinated him.

Mo Rocca has always loved obituaries—reading about the remarkable lives of global leaders, Hollywood heavyweights, and innovators who changed the world. But not every notable li
Audiobook, Unabridged, 12 pages
Published November 5th 2019 by Simon & Schuster Audio
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Average rating 4.07  · 
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 ·  4,773 ratings  ·  892 reviews

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Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
I've been a fan of Mo Rocca's since his days on The Daily Show. If you haven't listened to the podcast this book is based on, you should. The book covers most of the topics from the podcast in addition to several new ones. The basis of the book and podcast is to bring unheralded and forgotten people, fads, and events from history that have been forgotten over the years to light. Mo has a wry wit that comes through even more so in the audiobook. ...more
Oct 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a great book for fans of the Mobituaries podcast. Mo Rocca presents more fascinating anecdotes of the deceased who led interesting lives that mattered. The conversational style of writing is light , witty and informative. These short biographies are delivered as only Mo Rocca can, chock full of complexity and nuance, simplicity and brilliance.
Karen R
Oct 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am so pleased that a few of my favorite podcasters are writing books. Last week I read Mike “Dirty Jobs” Rowe’s “The Way I Heard It” and this week, Mo Rocca’s “Mobituaries- Great Lives Worth Reliving”. Thoughtful, witty, and heartfelt storytelling about fascinating subjects. He is a true professional, down to earth and has done his homework in research and interviewing. The more I learn about Mo and his extensive resume, the more I’m a fan. Thanks to Simon & Schuster for the ARC in exchange fo ...more
Kasa Cotugno
The best adjective to describe Mo Rocca is "curious." From a very early age, his seemingly insatiable curiosity has led him to seek out facts, particularly in areas in which he is passionate about -- subjects as diverse as they are intriguing. This may have started earlier, but his love of the 1974 World Book Encyclopedia and continued fascination with its depth of interest led to his having it today line the walls of his bedroom.

Mobituaries the podcast led to this eponymous book in which Rocca
Gail C.
Nov 05, 2019 rated it liked it
This is probably best as a book you put out for the “occasional” read, so that the reader can peruse it for the people or things they find the most interesting. Each short chapter reads more like the research information and/or script that would accompany the podcast of Mobituaries, and as such is best read in short spurts. I believe the book would also be preferable as an audiobook one might choose to listen to as they do their daily exercises for example.
As someone who has enjoyed various repo
Nov 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, humor
I really enjoyed reading strange bits of history which are unknown to me. This book is based on podcasts which I am unfamiliar with but I believe most people will enjoy it!
Sep 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this guy, so obviously I have enjoyed his contributions to CBS over time. This book is witty, profound and educational in turns.
I wish I could include some of the brilliant quotes from this book, but I have been privileged to get a copy from Net Galley prior to publication date. I don't think it's allowed.
The research by Rocca was extensive and the title tells it all as it is packed with information about the lives of very interesting people throughout the ages.
Don't miss this book if yo
This would be a great book for trivia buffs. . . .a lot of random facts/personal observations, which the author, by including the subjects of these "mobituaries" in this very long list (the book) are declared "dead" (underappreciated, abandoned, abruptly ceased, circumstantially eclipsed, no longer relevant) to mainstream culture. The mobits are tinged with nostalgia, a sprinkle of wistfulness, genuine regret and some shaded chiding. There is cleverness present in this book, but it does go on . ...more
Dec 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought it would be fitting to have my final book of 2019 be one about odd and witty obituaries. The end of the year is filled with lists including those who have died that year. We'll remember those people but what about the people we have forgotten or obscure details about a person which we never knew about. That's Mobituaries. I’ve enjoyed Mo Rocca’s humor for many years and find his appearances on CBS Sunday Morning very amusing and insightful. His Mobituaries segment is always a treat whi ...more
Jan 13, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I listened to the audio book, which I believe enhanced the experience. I always enjoy hearing Mo Rocca on CBS Sunday Morning and these mobituaries were entertaining, interesting and sometimes poignant. Although Rocca presents a myriad of interesting characters, I especially enjoyed his sections on Audrey Hepburn, Sammy Davis and his tribute to his father. I'm very glad a friend recommended this book. ...more
2.5 stars - It was alright, an average book.

There were a few stories that were really interesting and had me reading selections out loud to others. But mostly, it was dry and a tad bit boring. I was disappointed by how many of the mobits were about things instead of people.

Laura Noggle
I don’t understand all the positive reviews—this was an absolute chore and I love history.

More like random lists of facts than a cohesive whole. Maybe I would have liked it better if I’d read little bits over the course of a month ... still doubtful.

Borderline 1 star, we’ll see how I feel after my book club discusses it tomorrow.
Michael Perkins
Might work as a podcast, but not as a book. His attempt at wit is dead on the page. Pretty boring.

He hits a real low point in his long-winded, over the top attack on Thomas Paine that comes across as very defensive. (Rocca is a devout Catholic).

Don't waste your money.
Jan 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: best-reads-2020
This was an excellent and informative read mixed with Mo Rocca's humor. Like other readers mentioned, I could hear his voice while reading. I always enjoyed Mo Rocca's pieces on CBS Sunday Morning Show and after reading this book, my admiration for him has even grown more than it was before.

From the book one can tell that Mo has always been a curious person and add that to intelligent mixed with humor, it makes for a good read. My favorite parts of the book were the story of Chang and Eng the S
Dec 05, 2019 rated it did not like it

Didn't know who the author was when I got the book. I’m a history buff who listens to lots of audiobooks, so I’m the target audience for this book.

Come to find out... I’m NOT. People who don’t know history are the target audience.

I thought the writing/stories were mediocre ...too dry and textbooky (better to just read a Wiki page). The author needs to punch up his writing to make it more interesting (I suggest he read anything by Robert Caro).

For those interested in 20 - 30 minute short histor
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Nov 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Mo Rocca writes obituaries for people who have been ignored or missed as well as for things and places and events that have come and gone but need to be recognized. These mobituaries are quirky, of course, and fun, and oddly informative. A great way to spend a few days with a book.
10% in: Learning about Northern segregation as well as the Great Male Renunciation. Also finding out the differences between Thomas Paine and T-Pain.

20% in: Joyce Kilmer was a man?!

Overall: Quirky, wide-ranging, informative, entertaining
Dec 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
I've liked Mo Rocca since I watched him on the Daily Show. I enjoy his humor as I listen to him regularly on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me. Listening to this book, however, I realize that we also share a love of trivia (and I might add, similar types of trivia) and this leads to a similar sense of humor.

I think Mo Rocca would be a great teacher, which I think is one of the greatest compliments I can offer to someone. I haven't been a pod-cast listener, but I've downloaded the app so I can start lis
Jan 14, 2020 rated it it was ok
Thank goodness this is not the kind of book one needs to read cover to cover. It is the size of a coffee table book, it is very heavy and hard to handle.
It is not exclusively about people. There are sections dealing with places, science, sports teams and many other subjects. You may choose the sections that interest you and forego the ones that don’t.
There are titbits of interesting trivia that may be of interest for the moment and forgotten the next day.
It was disappointing not to have any pic
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
Interesting pieces of history, some of them fairly obscure. The described demises are not limited to humans. I listened to the audiobook, read by the author. If I had been reading it, it would have been something to pick up and read small sections over a longer period of time. Looking forward to hearing more of these stories on Mo’s podcast of the same name.
Jan 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Mo Rocca is such a clean, clear, and clever writer, and his fun take on the obit made it such a joy to read about history. And dang if he didn’t wrap it all up with a tear-jerker to pull it all together. What a wonderful gift from my husband!
Maureen Caupp
Aug 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Full of Mo's humor and compassion. An interesting collection of well researched facts about a variety of people, places, and things. The reader can learn a little bit about many things.

May 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audio-book
History has never been so entertaining and I am not just saying that because the author was born in Maryland...well maybe!
Sep 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If Trivial Pursuit, a game invented for people who never got picked in gym, ever comes back in style, I want Mo Rocca on my team. He knows more trivia, is able to rattle off more facts, and has never met ephemora that he didn't love.

I became addicted to his podcasts, Mobituaries, last year. Each episode was a gem of lost history drawn out to a full show, filled with fun facts and lesser known minutiae about things that have gone before. Two of the most popular were the history of Chang and Eng B
Nov 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So very happy to have had the opportunity to read Mobituaries by Mo Rocca. What a fantastically written book and what a facinating topic. I too enjoy a good obituary so I knew I would enjoy this book, especially when I saw who the author was. I haven't ever listened to a podcast, I'm not quite sure how they differ from a radio program but if I were to listen to one, Mo Rocca would top my list. When I have had the pleasure to see him on tv I found him very interesting. I feel the same way with hi ...more
Mo Rocca has provided entertaining obituaries for interesting people who were otherwise left without much said about them!

While the pace, at times, felt slow and plodding, the information was so rich and descriptive. I would definitely say this book is better served as a chapter a day type of read. A coffee table book, maybe. Trying to sit and read through more than one chapter at a time just felt like cramming for a history test. Taking the time to read a chapter here and there with breaks in b
Biblio Files (takingadayoff)
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Mobituaries are a blend of obituaries, history, trivia, and comedy. The podcast, soon to start its second season, features Mo Rocca spending an entertaining half hour on a deceased celebrity (Audrey Hepburn), or historical figure (Herbert Hoover), or even a deceased trend, such as the station wagon. The book expands on the material in the podcasts and for those of us who are bibliography addicts, provides a massive list of sources Mo and company used to research the book & podcast. I enjoyed the ...more
People, places, things, tv shows, and more! Anyone who has any kind of interest in any kind of history will geek this book as much as I do. I never had a lot of interest in TV (working off shifts is part of it) so I've never seen the author's contributions there, but I have now subscribed to the Mobituaries podcasts. I'm tempted to list the chapter headings, but that would get crazy. So, I'll just leave you with the idea that this is a great read and also a great gift.
I requested and received a
Lynn Coulter
Oct 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you've ever happened across an obituary that was out of the ordinary, you'll enjoy Mo Rocca's new book, Mobituaries. Rocca, a commentator on CBS Sunday morning, has compiled a collection of humorous, witty, warm and ironic obituaries that give readers insights into some of our late celebrities, political leaders and more. An enjoyable and recommended read. ...more
Apr 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. I learned so much about different people, places, and periods of history and I found myself googling to learn more about a topic in almost every chapter. The writing is light, occasionally humorous, and has a lot of the author’s personal touches. I would highly recommend this to anyone looking for nonfiction that is full of interesting facts.
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Maurice Alberto "Mo" Rocca is an American humorist, journalist, and actor.

He is a correspondent for CBS Sunday Morning, the host and creator of My Grandmother's Ravioli on the Cooking Channel, and also the host of The Henry Ford's Innovation Nation on CBS. He is the moderator of the National Geographic Society's National Geographic Bee, and host of the CBS News podcast Mobituaries with Mo Rocca.

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