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The Uninhabitable Earth

A Story of the Future
Narrated by: David Wallace-Wells
Length: 8 hrs and 33 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (573 ratings)

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Summary

Brought to you by Penguin. 

It is worse, much worse, than you think. 

The slowness of climate change is a fairy tale, perhaps as pernicious as the one that says it isn't happening at all, and if your anxiety about it is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible, even within the lifetime of a teenager today. 

Over the past decades, the term 'Anthropocene' has climbed into the popular imagination - a name given to the geologic era we live in now, one defined by human intervention in the life of the planet. But however sanguine you might be about the proposition that we have ravaged the natural world, which we surely have, it is another thing entirely to consider the possibility that we have only provoked it, engineering first in ignorance and then in denial a climate system that will now go to war with us for many centuries, perhaps until it destroys us. In the meantime, it will remake us, transforming every aspect of the way we live - the planet no longer nurturing a dream of abundance but a living nightmare.

Written and read by David Wallace-Wells, The Uninhabitable Earth is a powerful examination of the world we find ourselves in. 

©2019 David Wallace-Wells (P)2019 Penguin Books Ltd

What listeners say about The Uninhabitable Earth

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent content, essential read, poor narration.

The content of the book is excellent, it is well researched, the information is factual-obtained from statistical data and scientific publications however, the narration is poor. The narrator/author accentuates the pronunciation of every word before a comma or full stop with an american drawl, which becomes annoying and hard to listen to at times, but focusing on the information and not its delivery is more than enough to keep anyone listening. A professional narrator with a neutral accent would be highly beneficial in the delivery of this book otherwise, this book is a very informative, essential read that details the current and future shocking effects of climate change. A recommended listen for everyone, especially for people who know little about the subject, or have been misinformed and believe climate change isn't real or won't affect them.

3 people found this helpful

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Serves a purpose, but flawed delivery

The book clearly has a purpose, to shock the reader/listener into realising just how serious the climate change threat is to the world and how much action is required quickly to slow or stop the damage. In this purpose, the book is very successful. I have finished it in no doubt that climate change is a serious and impending issue. However, there are two large problems with the book which meant I couldn’t bring myself to give it 5 stars. Firstly, the relentless depressing statistics, whilst serving the overall purpose above, become tiresome after a while. It’s an endless stream of fact and figure about how terrible things could be with very little additional narrative to puncture the onslaught - the message would have been more digestible had there really been some “human” element to it e.g. stories of individual exposure to the effects of a changing climate, rather than blanket global statistics. Secondly, the later parts of the book, after the statistics, are scattered and without a clear message or structure. He seems to jump from religion, to extra terrestrial life, to politics. I found the end very difficult to follow and found myself looking forward to the last couple of chapters being over. I think the book will add the cause and inform and encourage activity on climate change, but a 2nd version would do well to improve on the items above to make it even more compelling.

7 people found this helpful

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The most important book you'll listen to this year

The significance of this topic is impossible to overstate. It is surely a must listen perspective regarding the future of our reality on this increasingly fragile being we call Earth. Well narrated, easy to grasp & at times terrifyingly mind blowing stuff.

5 people found this helpful

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A true horror story

This is hard to read - not because of his style but because it’s so terrifying. Wallace-Wells spells out the true impact of climate change on the world - food, access to water, economy, war, refugees- all within the foreseeable future. Should be read by all politicians

3 people found this helpful

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Well worth a listen

The major take away from it for me is that I always saw climate change as sea level rise and more frequent big storms. Where I live ment neither would likely affect me. however this book educated me to the fact that it's climate change and climate effects everything and so it has changed my view of the subject entirely. it's narrated by the author and not bad but might have been better with a different voice.

3 people found this helpful

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awful narrator

had to stop as couldn't really listen to it. the guy had this voice that sounded like he had a bad cold and his voice cracked all the time like he was always starting to cry. serious subject deserved a good narrator. a pity.

8 people found this helpful

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A poor reading let's down the content

I'll have to read this important book instead as unfortunately the author's rhythm and intonation is so repetitive sentence to sentence it is unbearable to listen to for long.

3 people found this helpful

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One star

Just one long rant, great for sending you to sleep. Overly negative, lots of figures and lacking in educational value.

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a wake up call for us all

This is not an easy listen and certainly pulls no punches. However it is worth heeding a stark warning of our futures

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Anthropic Principle

Took a while to finish, but some heavy ideas to interpret. Is there a chance for human survival? Probably, but on a much warmer planet.

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  • John
  • 28-02-20

Real life horror story

If 10% of this book is truth and that truth comes to pass then as a species we are in allot of trouble. There is so much press about climate and allot of talk about renewable energy and our ability to engineer our way out of the problem of global warming. David puts this talk to the test and in short it’s not good. Lots of facts and figures but most of it is referenced albeit vaguely. It’s high level but that’s the point.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 17-12-19

Life-changing

A fascinating look at things to come, unless we act. With regards the performance/narration, I think that David Wallace-Wells did a great job. Having the narration delivered by the author adds value, in my opinion.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 26-06-19

Great book marred by poor delivery

A must read. Fascinating. Pity the delivery is so poor. The voice is unattractive and the reader (none other than the author himself) seems to be reading the text for the first time, with pauses in all the wrong places. Still, I recommend this urgent environmental wake-up call.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Bea
  • 29-04-19

Everyone needs to read this ASAP

Everyone needs to read this ASAP, there is so little time and so much to do. THIS IS OUR WW3 senario and needs global attention. THIS IS OUR revolution.....