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The only reason I'm not giving this a 5-star rating for the story is because this might not be what you think it's going to be. I thought it was going to be a more humane version of something like Michio Kaku's "Physics of the Future."
First of all, I had a blast listening to "Homo Deus". Harari is a sublime writer, oh so humorous and wry, and Derek Perkins is flawless in his delivery.
But let me say: I haven't read/listened to "Sapiens", but I think this book might have quite a bit of the same text/situations. After all, Harari himself says you might've heard it before, but one has to know how we got from point A all the way to where we are now. This happens fairly frequently throughout the book. For me, that's no problem: It was engaging, enlightening, entertaining through and through.
Then there's the fact that there's not a whole lot of time given to what may happen in the future. Sure, plague, famine, war and all that have been made manageable and now we're seeking immortality, bliss, and divinity... but, uhm, how exactly? Harari makes a few suggestions, and you get soooo tantalizingly close to some pretty mind-blowing ideas, but then he pulls back and Wham! "From a historical perspective," "in the past," "back in the days of the Crusades," stuff like that. Back to how we got here.
Okay, that said, this is an utterly delightful book that explains humanism, liberalism, Data-ism, any kind of ism you ever wanted to know about in a profound and witty way. You'll hear about nanotechnology, genetic engineering, and artificial intelligence. If you like religious studies, history of all kinds, some light science, this is for you. If you want to know why Millennials are the way they are, why the election went the way it did (Facebook, my friends), why we're into a whole new world with new economic, ecological outlooks, this book is for you.
And if you want to wind up questioning EVERYthing you've ever believed about ANYthing, go for it.
And if you want to look at animals in a different light from this day forward?
Harari's got that too...
142 of 154 people found this review helpful
I really liked Harari's previous work, Sapiens. A lot. But, holy crap, where did this come from??!
This book is so expansive, so entertaining, so prescient, and so crammed with refreshing wisdom that I don't even know where to begin!
I'll start by saying this is one of the top three modern philosophical EPICS of our time. It paints a future that is not only believable, but -for the most part - unavoidable. Its common sense anecdotes are insightful, which seems like an oxymoron at first, but makes sense when you really think about it. Like Jerry Seinfeld, Harari has a way of making you see reality through a lens that you never knew existed before; or maybe you knew it existed, but were always too afraid to hold it up to your iris.
Everyone should read this book. I don't say that lightly, either. EVERYONE. It will make you see reality differently. And, at the end of the day, any book that can do that is WELL WORTH your time!
55 of 61 people found this review helpful