Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Listening is an Act of Love

by David Isay

This book came highly recommended by one of my "pew pals" at church so I was anxious to read it, but because I had such great exercise success with my previous audiobook, and because the title is Listening is an Act of Love, I thought this might be my next exercise motivator. Unfortunately, this is NOT the audiobook to buy for a number of reasons:
1. It is a tearjerker! Crying and exercising do not mix.
2. It is VERY abridged: so much so that it isn't fun. Each person's story in this audio version is so shortened that you barely get a sense of what they are discussing before the next clip begins. Granted, this is my fault for not carefully reading the fine print on the description, which gives listening time as 55 minutes, but I did not see the word "abridged"anywhere.
3. I realize here again this problem is solely mine, but I could not find a way to slow down the listening speed, so instead of 55 minutes of dialogue, I heard 37. These were some fast talkers :)

However, what I did learn from the snippets of this audiobook is that I want to read the real thing. A few of the excerpts were really memorable:
1. A Black American lady was trying to register to vote in the 40's and was stopped from doing so by a registration board (a panel of white men) who asked her frivolous questions. This woman did not give up her efforts to register, but went daily to the board until she got her voter ID. Typically, these racial stories turn me off a bit because sometimes I think harboring those feelings and continuing to revisit them only causes more division among a society trying to overcome, but her telling of it was moving. This emotion is one thing that you wouldn't get by reading the book.
2. A man who lost his fiance in the 9/11 disaster. This man clearly still loved the woman and talked about how she made his life better. The thing that pained me the most about his story was his ending when he said, "Don't worry Karen, I will see you again. I will do enough good to make it up there." I just wanted to grab that man and say Don't worry mister, Jesus already did enough good for you to make it up there!

This was a neat idea, but I am not going to rate it because I didn't get enough to do so. I'm sure you'll see an addendum in the near future. The one thing I can rate is the audiobook, which clearly I DO NOT recommend; go for the text.

No comments:

Post a Comment