52 Good Books

Book Review – Incognito by David Eagleman

To be incognito is to go unseen, operating under the radar, quietly tapping away doing your thing in glorious anonymity. But if you would like to pull back the curtain and find out more about who is pulling your strings then pick up a copy of Incognito and let David Eagleman introduce you to your brain.

A blurry screenshot of my audio book

Incognito is a fascinating dive into the enigma that is the human mind. Stuffed to the gills with interesting observations, I defy anyone not to be amazed by the facts this book puts in front of them.

I came across an endorsement of this book on Twitter and was immediately intrigued. Fortune seemed to favour me as I had an hour’s car journey coming up, so I downloaded the audio book from the library and strapped myself in. It was the most interesting journey the A315 has ever offered up.

This book breaks down neurological science and makes it accessible to you and me – the non scientists. Eagleman takes us on a romp through what is our own unknowable brain, discussing things such as vision, decision making, mental health, instincts and a whole myriad of things that make up who we are.

Apparently people of the same first initial are more likely to get married than would be statistically likely. My husband and I meet this requirement 200%. Not only do we have the same initial in our first names, we also shared the same last name initial. Our surnames also sounded kind of similar. What can I say, we like to keep ourselves aligned with statistical trends.

There are some really interesting ideas in this book about blame worthiness in relation to the legal system and sentencing. Eagleman dissects how far we are culpable for our actions and how much of sentencing should be about rehabilitation as opposed to punishment.

Eagleman points out that science is always evolving. In a hundred years from now neurological science will have amassed more knowledge and our species will marvel at how little we knew today. It kind of makes you want to live forever doesn’t it?!

Suffice to say I cannot recommend this book enough. I whizzed through the audiobook at breakneck speed and was gutted that it was all over so quickly. Eaglemans’ fascination with the human brain and it’s capabilities makes for such a moreish read that I’m sure that like me, you’ll never want this book to end. Read it and marvel at yourself, you amazing human being!

Next week I will be reading Happier Thinking by Lana Grace Riva. A succinct little self help guide which hopes to bring sunshine to everyone who reads it. See you next Monday.

 

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