Category Archives: Humor

THE TRUTH ABOUT ANIMALS – Review

A LITERCURIOUS BOOK REVIEW

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Title The Truth About Animals
Author Lucy Cooke
Publisher Basic Books; I Edition (April 17, 2018)
Format Paperback
Pages 352
Language English
ISBN # 1541674081 (ISBN-13: 978-1541674080)

AUTHOR

Lucy Cooke has a Master’s in Zoology from British New Collage, Oxford. She specializes in animal behavior and evolution. Among Lucy’s professors at Oxford was Richard Dawkins, who is a world-renowned Zoologist and author. Lucy is passionate about conservation as well as her love of all sloth kind. She is referred to as the next David Attenborough in some circles.

Her Curriculum Vitae includes a diverse range of skills including: television producer, director, award- winning documentary presenter, and filmmaker. Lucy has lecture at TED talks, was a New York Times best-selling author, and founded the Sloth Appreciation Society.

In May, 2015 at the age of 45, Lucy was diagnosed with breast cancer. She changed her lifestyle as a result of the diagnosis and has an increased appreciation of life and love.

TARGET AUDIENCE

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

I HATE EVERYTHING – REVIEW

Litercurious Book Review

TitleI Hate Everything: A Day in the Life of a Teacher
AuthorRobert Lantana
PublisherDog Ear Publishing (October 18, 2019)
FormatPaperback
Pages102
LanguageEnglish
ISBN #-10 / #-131457571196 / 978-1457571190

educate (v.) mid-15c., educaten, “bring up (children), to train,” from Latin educatus, past participle of educare “bring up, rear, educate”

From Etymonline “Educate” Douglas Harper 2001-2020 https://www.etymonline.com/word/educate

AUTHOR

Robert Lantana has a dozen years of teaching in the dark denizens of education we like to call schools. During his time as an instructor, he seems to have acquired the attitude that all is lost in the current system of education. He produced this satire depicting the trials and tribulations of a day in the life of a teacher.

TARGET AUDIENCE

Teachers, Student Teachers, Students, Parent & Teacher Association, and scholars over 18 years of age may find this tome interesting.

SYNOPSIS

I Hate Everything: A Day in the Life of a Teacher is an no holds barred discourse on the profession from the point of view of a working educator. It is a funny, raw, vulgar, expletive filled rant against the experience of teaching in a modern-day academic institution.

The book begins with cutting humor and a bitter irony that comes to characterize the book by the end. The individual chapters include the express reason that he hates everything; capitalized for emphasis. The humor quickly becomes sidelined with his loss of hope and motivation. The disparaging opinion of the tutor’s allegations leaves the reader in no doubt as to his frustrations. His antipathy quickly becomes palpable.

Initially funny with reckless abandon and an utter lack of finesse, the atmosphere quickly changes and becomes terminally depressing and lacking in any kind of positive appeal. Phrases used to describe those in his care like “psychotic zombie monkeys” or as a “self-absorbed, reality-warped generation” line the pages. The disparaging remarks continue and are qualified towards the end the book with the comment “we aren’t educating the future. We are herding cattle.”

You have to dig deep on occasion to find the humanity that this character is left with. Despite the constant unending whinging on about his loss of faith and hope in a broken system; some passages showed he entered the profession with positive aspirations, goals, and a genuine love for imparting knowledge to willing and able students. Lantana describes the dulling of his initial enthusiasm as it slowly eroded over time due to poor pay, disrespect from the school body and the administration. The long hours with little thanks combined with trying to teach the unteachable whilst protecting the academically motivated continue to skew his mindset in a negative direction.

You could be forgiven for thinking that Lantana couldn’t give a damn about the young people under his tutelage. However, woven through the pages is a small voice which shows just how much he cares for the institution and its charges. He is concerned enough to write a book to expose to the world the problems of todays academia. His expressed concern about his scholars not having enough to eat, lacking home based leadership and basic social skills more than prompt the reader to understand his earlier desperation.

CONCLUSION

If you enjoy dark humor mixed with witty irony and raw unfiltered opinions and language that would make a sailor blush, I think you might just appreciate this. I know that many in the Western teaching profession will see similarities in their own working conditions and will sympathize with the author and his experiences.

I found this book to be a mixed bag of dark humor and the desperate cry of a solitary instructor who has lost all hope of improving an impossible situation.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I would like to thank Robert Lantana, NetGalley, and Dog Ear Publishing for affording me the opportunity to review I Hate Everything: A Day in the Life of a Teacher.

THIS IS GOING TO HURT – REVIEW

Litercurious Book Review

Title This Is Going To Hurt
Author Adam Kay
Publisher Picador (Feb 20, 2020)
Format Kindle, Paperback, Hardcover, and Audiobook     
Page 80     
Language English     
ISBN # 1509858636 ISBN #-13 (9781529034035)     

Author’s Bio

This is Going to Hurt was written by Adam Kay. In this book he shares his personal anecdotes as a doctor working in the British National Health Service (NHS) during early 2000s. His recollections come from a diary he kept, detailing the ups and downs of life on the wards. Kay was inspired to write this book after a senior member of the government had made a claim that junior doctors, expecting to work less than 79 hours per week, were greedy. In This is Going to Hurt, Kay shows us the extremes of being a young doctor in the modern NHS. 

Who is the Target Audience?

This is Going to Hurt is suitable for all those interested professionals or amateurs who find the life of doctors to be scintillating reading. Kay doesn’t spare us the gritty facts of life of a junior doctor and later a Senior Registrar. In this book there are some really funny tales and some truly dreadful stories of life and death. If you enjoy blood and guts descriptions of desperately sad and appalling ends, then you may enjoy the wild ride hanging on the white coat tails of Dr. Kay. If you are British, you may also gain a greater appreciation for the young medics that you interact with during your health visits. 

Synopsis

The most significant part of This is Going to Hurt is dedicated to the abuse and neglect that many doctors are exposed to working within the British NHS. Dr. Kay discloses the scarcity of essential amenities required for proper medical care in the NHS. He explains the long hours of unpaid work forced upon doctors. He describes the lack of sleep and the abandonment of family, friends, and holidays. Worst of all, he describes how the enumeration is woefully inadequate for the myriad of drawbacks. Ultimately, after long periods of neglect by his employers a life altering incident prompts a change in his thinking and eventually leads him on a new path.

Conclusion

Adam gives us a view of the true life of a doctor on the wards of a British NHS hospital. He reminds us that doctors are only human. They are not infallible; they need love, care, and respect as we all do. They have the failings we all share and he prompts us to realize that. Most of all he wants us to understand that neglecting those who care for us is dreadful and that we should value and cherish the sacrifices; social, financial and psychological that doctors working in the NHS endure to provide you with world class health service.

Acknowledgment

My sincere thanks go to: NetGalley, and Picador for affording me the opportunity to review This is Going to Hurt.

The Mystery of the Exploding Teeth – REVIEW

Litercurious Book Review

Title The Mystery of the Exploding Teeth: And Other
Curiosities from the History of Medicine
Author / Narrator Thomas Morris / Ruper Farley
Publisher Penguin Dutton; 1 edition (Nov 20, 2018)
Format Unabridged Audiobook, Kindle, Paperback, Hardcover
Time9 hours and 7 minutes
Language English     
ASIN # B07K1FC2C1  

AUTHOR

Thomas Morris was a successful radio producer for the British Broadcasting Company (BBC) for many years. He is now a freelance writer and medical historian. His first book, The Matter of the Heart: A History of the Heart in Eleven Operations, wonthe Royal Society of Literature and the Jerwood Charitable Foundation award. The award is one of three annual awards, one of £10,000 and two of £5,000, offered to authors on their first works of non-fiction. Mr. Morris now lives in London.

WHO IS THE TARGET AUDIENCE?

This book is for everyone 16 or older. The Mystery of the Exploding Teeth is written for the masses and not just for those who want to learn about historic medicine. The book is full of individual cases hand-picked through time to provide the reader with a glimpse of common medical procedures, some uncommon medical procedures, and allot of very interesting cases.

SYNOPSIS

The Mystery of the Exploding Teeth: And Other Curiosities from the History of Medicine, is a sojourn into some of the most interesting medical cases and the procedures used in those cases. It is told through the eyes of the people who were actually there. This book is a conglomeration of notes, letters, personal views of the doctors, and sometimes the patients. The author does a great job of finding the most interesting cases in history. There are some interesting cases that include various items escaping the bodies from all different places, some not very good places. How about the surgeries where the patient is not anesthetized and is an active participant? There is a chapter of patients who survived extreme injuries, some lived normal lives after their injuries.

CONCLUSION

After reading this book, I listened to the audible version and the narrator added so much more to the enjoyment. He does a great job with the inflection of his voice and the bits that are in French. The little jokes he throws in are awesome. This tome, at times, had me laughing, cringing, crying, and always wondering about the historic doctors and their sometime weird practices. The cases offer a wide variety of injuries and maladies; the causes of some of these will haunt me. I would definitely recommend this book to a friend.

SIMILAR WORKS YOU MAY BE INTERESTED IN

Dr. Mütter Marvels by Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz  #Medicine History & Commentary #History of Medicine
#Trivia & Fun Facts

Dr. Mütter’s Marvels was established by Dr. Mütter who sadly died prematurely at the age of 48. He left behind an immense collection of medical oddities that form the basis of Philadelphia’s renowned Mütter Museum. Dr Mütter’s Marvel by Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz is an insight into the dedicated surgeon’s career as well as his life and times. Aptowicz presents her view on Dr. Mütter’s medical practices and the prejudices he witnessed. Aptowicz draws upon Mütter’s speeches and lectures which reveals his humanist based approach.

Mütter Museum Historical Medical Photographs #Medicine History & Commentary #History of Medicine
#Trivia & Fun Facts

Mütter Museum: Historical Medical Photographs Is a cornucopia of high quality photographs taken by professional photographers. Between the 1860s and the 1940s, photographers took pictures of these oddities as records for physicians to share among medical colleagues. They also functioned, at the time, to demonstrate various techniques used in medicine such as micrography and X-ray. During the earliest days, they utilized the method of photography known as the daguerreotype. This processing method required the photographer to polish a sheet of copper plate with silver halide coated to a mirror finish, and treat it with fumes that made its surface light sensitive. There is much more to the Mütter Museum however, and it is not for the squeamish.