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Showing 1-5 of 5 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 8 reviews
TOP 1000 REVIEWERon July 28, 2011
Brain Cuttings by Carl Zimmer

Brain Cuttings is a book of essays about brain science from the excellent author Carl Zimmer. This interesting page-turner of a book takes us for a journey to the fascinating world of brain science. This 364 KB-book is composed of the following fifteen essays: 1. "Does Shame Excite a Blush?" 2. The Googled Mind, 3. The Music of Time, 4. They Imprint Your Genes, Your Mum and Dad, 5. Of Ether and Consciousness, 6. Stalking the Grandmother Cell, 7. The Flash of Desire, 8. Two Brains in One, 9. The Neurobiology of Zoning Out, 10. The Brains Dark Matter, 11. An Intuition for Math, 12. The Speed of Thought, 13. Fear's Anatomy, 14. The Mind's Eye Goes Blind, and 15. Too Clever.

Positives:
1. Carl Zimmer is a fantastic writer. Always produces consistent quality work.
2. One of the most fascinating topics in science, the brain.
3. Fifteen brief yet interesting essays that cover a wide spectrum of topics regarding the human brain. All accessible to the masses.
4. Where would we be without the grand theory of evolution?
5. Fascinating tidbits throughout. "People with Botox may be less vulnerable to the angry emotions..." perhaps somewhat speculative but fascinating nonetheless.
6. The extended mind theory.
7. How fear impacts our neurons, "scary" stuff...
8. Fascinating brain disorders.
9. Gene imprinting.
10. The mystery of anesthesia. The intriguing history.
11. The nature of consciousness.
12. How neurons work.
13. The essay "Flash of Desire" was hilarious yet as with all the essays informative.
14. What we know about areas of the brain and their functions. Including the two hemispheres.
15. Mind wandering, say what?
16. Glia, a sticky subject or is it?
17. Numbers and the brain, you can count on it.
18. The speed of neurons.
19. Studies of blindsight.
20. The future of neuroscience.
21. Great references section.

Negatives:
1. I wanted more and more depth.
2. Never gets into the more controversial topics like dualism, free will or out of body experiences.
3. A topic on how brain injuries impact the brain and hence the individual would have been welcomed.

In summary, this is a great science appetizer. It's a brief digital book but touches on many on-going fascinating topics in brain science. I enjoyed the book immensely and my only criticism is that it was too brief and left out some of the more controversial topics. That being said, I highly recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in brain science, it is such a fascinating world and it has many implications for the future.

Further suggestions: "The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies---How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths..." by Michael Shermer, "The Scientific American Brave New Brain: How Neuroscience, Brain-Machine Interfaces, Neuroimaging, Psychopharmacology, Epigenetics, the Internet, and ... and Enhancing the Future of Mental Power..." by Judith Horstman, "The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature" by Steven Pinker, "Human: The Science Behind What Makes Us Unique, "SuperSense: Why We Believe in the Unbelievable" by Bruce M. Hood, "Hardwired Behavior: What Neuroscience Reveals about Morality" by Laurence Tancredi, "Braintrust: What Neuroscience Tells Us about Morality" by Patricia S. Churchland, and "The Brain and the Meaning of Life" by Paul Thagard.
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on May 28, 2015
I'll be brief: Read this book. You will learn something about how our minds work, and your imagination will be sparked by the potential for monumental breakthroughs in the years to come.
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on June 29, 2011
This is a good, but short, introduction to the current state of neuroscience and its beginnings of figuring out the human brain. Carl Zimmer is always a careful science journalist and uncovers research into the brain from several scientists. There seems to be several recent books on this subject and some of these essays overlap those books and other essays appear to be the first exposure of certain brain phenomena. One recommendation for those who wish to read more about brain research should read "The Tell-Tale Brain" by V.S. Ramachandran.

If you are a fan of Carl Zimmer, he has published a number of wonderful books and magazine articles about various science area. His writings are always delightful to read.
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It's okay - a bit ho-hum. I thought it would be more intense.
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on November 24, 2012
Being an OT who specializes in neuro patients I am always looking for quirky stories about our noggins. This was another great find
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse