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  • Pleased to Meet Me

  • Genes, Germs, and the Curious Forces That Make Us Who We Are
  • By: Bill Sullivan
  • Narrated by: Alex Boyles
  • Length: 11 hrs and 3 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (57 ratings)

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Pleased to Meet Me

By: Bill Sullivan
Narrated by: Alex Boyles
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Summary

Why are you attracted to a certain “type?” Why are you a morning person? Why do you vote the way you do? From a witty new voice in popular science comes a clever, life-changing look at what makes you you.

“I can’t believe I just said that.” “What possessed me to do that?” “What’s wrong with me?” 

We’re constantly seeking answers to these fundamental human questions, and now, science has the answers. The foods we enjoy, the people we love, the emotions we feel, and the beliefs we hold can all be traced back to our DNA, germs, and environment. This witty, colloquial book is popular science at its best, describing in everyday language how genetics, epigenetics, microbiology, and psychology work together to influence our personality and actions. 

Mixing cutting-edge research and relatable humor, Pleased to Meet Me is filled with fascinating insights that shine a light on who we really are - and how we might become our best selves.

©2019 Bill Sullivan (P)2019 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

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  • Allie Raines
  • 12-05-21

Interesting listen

Really interesting book. The author/editor was smart to save the politics and religion for the end of the book; if it would have started with that I never would have listened to the rest. Dude needs to do some psilocybin therapy before he goes on and on about things science can’t disprove any more than it can prove. Aside from that entire chunk of preaching science as a religion harder than any bible beating christian I’ve ever seen, as if something religious scarred him as a child and now he’s hellbent on convincing the reader *repetitively* that there is no such thing as a soul and it’s one of the worst fallacies we can pass on to others blah blah blah, the actual scientifically relevant rest of the book was great. I’m a huge fan of objective science. But I’m also a huge fan of the rest of the universe that science, and apparently this author, can’t reach yet; and more than maybe both of those, I’m a huge fan of not pushing shit on people either way and especially not when you haven’t experienced more than one perspective for yourself. That annoyed me enough to write a review, but really the rest WAS very interesting and fun to think about.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Jennifer
  • 06-02-21

Wonderful book...until the author starts preaching his opinions and loses objectivity

This book is worth a read-up to a point. The studies and information are well chosen and clearly explained. Jokes are peppered throughout, so the reader initially breezes through the information. But the ride stops at Chapter 9, when he becomes increasingly self-righteous about his own opinions. A bit shocking because, in the very next breath, he advises us not to "cling to our beliefs". His scornful, superior language is off-putting, even to someone who's inclined to agree with the opinions. He tears down beliefs he dislikes with unconcealed contempt and insults. Falsifiability is the gold standard for empirical work. Yet the author abandons any hint of empiricism and declares souls have been "proved" not to exist (by studies that do no such thing), for one example. Scientists do not claim (if they are sane) to be able to prove or falsify souls or an existence beyond death. The author's arrogance at the end spoiled what, for me, was otherwise a decent book.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Avery
  • 15-05-20

Eye-Opening and Interesting

Overall I liked this book, in theory I know that i’m just a brain that built itself a husk to pass on genetic material but confronting that reality is something else. Basically get ready to have a bit of an existential crisis if you’re anything like me. The only drawback was that some of the humor was pretty forced, like a dad trying to make his teenagers laugh, I couldn’t decide if this improved or detracted from the book.

3 people found this helpful

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  • A Customer
  • 23-11-19

What makes people so different? Lay-reader-friendly book with humor and pop culture references


Fun, very good science read about who we are and what helped make us that way. If you’re science-wary, I think this is a lay-reader-friendly book with a LOT of pop culture references—which helps bridge the knowledge gap between biosciences and the layman. This book has up-to-date information about “newer” topics—including epigenetics, the human microbiome, parasites, etc.—with understandable explanations. Here are some topics: tastes, appetites, addictions, moods, beliefs, etc.

I recommend this book to lay readers who wish to learn about what’s new in biosciences. This includes my paralegal/admin-assistant sister, because we have identical twin cousins with diametrically opposite personalities. I was interested in how a combination of genetics, epigenetics, family dynamics, and social environment influence child development.

OTOH, if you have more than a moderate science or medical background, you should read the sample before buying. I listened to the audiobook, which features an excellent narrator, and I liked the Audible version so much, I re-listened to selected chapters!

Note: I have a biomedical background. I’m not one for sitcoms or campy musicals, and I rarely read satire or comedy, so I docked a star.

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  • Andrew Pitts
  • 22-10-21

Pop Science, Little Empirical Evidence

This book makes claims based on popular explanations of psychological and health phenomena, and props them up with anecdotal evidence. There are few, if any, references to studies. This would not be a problem if the book were presented as a non-scientific exploration of possible explanation, but the author writes as if the content is well-verified, which it is not. Many of these ideas could be true, or have some basis in truth, but more research is needed to be sure.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 16-10-20

Interesting Book

As an expert in economics & finance, I enjoyed so much this book of microbiology & genetics. Because, is engaging and novel. Also,I like the good humour of the writer and the good narration.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Rocky Anunnaki
  • 03-02-20

it's a must-have.

Fact after fact after fact.
If you love the truth this is your book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • P. Thompson
  • 29-11-22

So Much I Never Knew I Needed To Know!

So fascinating! I knew that bacteria and viruses had more of an impact on us than most people realize, but the information on epigenetics is especially intriguing. This book really has me thinking about what gifts, skills, and even trauma we could all be carrying that aren't really ours but the effects of other things on our existence.

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  • BR549
  • 19-08-22

Interesting information but misses the mark

The author comes off like he knows all the answers on existential human questions. There are still too many unexplained phenomena to write off that there is no God.

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  • Kerri Nowak
  • 15-07-22

Important reading for any rational human

Ideas are laid out plainly and the speaker is easy to understand. I’m looking forward to a follow up publication.