Thursday, February 27

Audiobook Review: Caffeine - How Caffeine Created the Modern World by Michael Pollan

Caffeine: How Caffeine Created the Modern World
Author: Michael Pollan
Narrator:  Michael Pollan
Title: Caffeine - How Caffeine Created the Modern World
Genre: Nonfiction
Format: Audiobook
Published: January 30th 2020
Where I Got It: My shelf (Audible)

Acclaimed author and journalist Michael Pollan - whose number-one New York Times best sellers include The Omnivore’s Dilemma and How to Change Your Mind - offers his latest, provocative look into the profound ways what we eat affects how we live. In Caffeine: How Caffeine Created the Modern World, Pollan calls caffeine “the most-used drug in the world” - one we give our children in the addictive form of soda, and consume ourselves in multiple daily doses of a cup of tea or coffee. By one estimate, more than 150 million adult Americans drink coffee daily. He takes us on a journey through the history of the drug - first discovered in a small part of East Africa, and within a century and an addiction affecting most of the human species.

Caffeine, it turns out, has changed the course of human history: Pollan’s reporting reveals how caffeine has won and lost wars, changed politics, and dominated economies; he asserts, with the support of voluminous research, that the Industrial Revolution would have been impossible without it. The science behind our caffeine addiction forms the fascinating backdrop to this definitive look at an insidious drug that hides in plain sight.

With his wide-ranging talents to entertain, inform and perform, Michael Pollan’s Caffeine is essential listening in a world where an estimated two billion cups of coffee are consumed every day.

I picked this up since it was free and I do have a weird complex love of coffee. I love it, but caffeine barely works for me so at most I might have a cup a day...if that. I do not need coffee to get me going. Maybe it was because I overdid it in my early young adult days working at the coffee shop? Who knows. But yes...I was intrigued by this.

This is a nonfiction about how caffeine changed the world in good ways...and bad ways. 

Can I just say first? The author narrated this and I think he should contemplate doing more narrations! I really enjoyed listening to him read. He has such a nice voice! And I was really enthralled with listening to this. I'm sure I would've liked this still...but he added a certain flavor to the story. 

Okay - now the book itself. It was very informative but entertaining. I learned a lot!! I didn't really realize how caffeine took over the world and really changed how humans evolved. Some stuff seems to maybe be just coincidence. BUT...I can see coffee/tea having a huge sway on world events. 

I loved the tie in at the end with how plants evolve and how the plant technically won evolution-wise. We treat those plants with so much love and adoration. They truly have bested humankind. haha. They have us coffee/tea/pop drinkers at their mercy! I laughed at first...but then I realized the plant truly won against us "smarter" beings. Oh dear. 

I highly recommend this. It is quick, but it is very informative and entertaining. It really makes you look at caffeine in a whole new light. I'll give this 5 stars. 


- #9 for Audiobook Challenge


Blodeuedd said...

5! Wow!
Of course not for me, booo coffee

Jen Twimom said...

Very interesting. I never really thought about caffeine in that way. It's crazy!

Sophia Rose said...

Once in a while a certain topic will hook me in to a non-fic book. Yay for finding one that hit your interest and a fascinating read and well done with the self-narration.

Carole Rae said...

B, yesss a 5!

Jen, I know neither did I!

Sophia, I was not sure what I would think, but it really got in me!