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Extended Audio Sample Never Say Die: The Myth and Marketing of the New Old Age Audiobook, by Susan Jacoby Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (147 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Susan Jacoby Narrator: Laural Merlington Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2011 ISBN: 9781452670379
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In a narrative that combines the intensely personal with social, economic, and historical analysis, Susan Jacoby turns an unsparing eye on the marketers of longevity—pharmaceutical companies, lifestyle gurus, and scientific businessmen who suggest that there will soon be a “cure” for the “disease” of aging. She separates wishful hype from realistic hope in a wide-ranging appraisal of subjects that include the explosion of Alzheimer’s cases, the impact of possible cuts in Social Security on the economic future of aging boomers, and the fact that women make up most of the “oldest old.” Finally, Jacoby raises the fundamental question of whether living longer is a desirable thing unless it means living better, and she considers the profound moral and ethical concerns raised by increasing longevity.

Never Say Die is a lucid, provocative, and powerful argument that Americans, no matter their age, are doing themselves no favor by buying into the myth that they can stay “forever young.”

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 David Melbie | 2/17/2014

    " If you are a baby boomer (born between 1946 and 1964) and you read only one non-fiction book this year, I recommend this one. The idea that our older years are going to be our "golden years" is a myth that Jacoby shatters. If you live beyond the age of 85, you have a 50-50 chance of ending up living in a nursing home AND a near 50% chance of having some form of dementia, like Alzheimer's disease. And, if you are that unlucky, say goodbye to your money, what little you will have if Congress gets their way and cuts Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid. Read this book, get angry, and do something about it! I am contacting my Congressional Rep. right after I type this last word. . . "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marie Botcher | 1/26/2014

    " textbook. Very sobering, but probably very realistic for many aging people in our county. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 John Kennedy | 1/24/2014

    " Jacoby is a good writer and she has some salient points about how most deaths are lingering and painful. We don't go out playing tennis at 90; we drool and are incontinent in a nursing home. Unfortunately, every few pages Jacoby erupts into an anti-conservative, anti-Christian rant that really isn't germane to the topic. I found it curious that the 66-year-old author chose a picture of when she was much younger for the jacket cover. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judy | 1/24/2014

    " Pretty depressing but oh, so true. In fact, I found myself laughing in many places just because of the sick truth of it all. I didn't quite finish the book because we were leaving on vacation and it wasn't exactly vacation reading. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karen | 1/9/2014

    " Lots to think about here with how "old age" is being marketed to baby boomers versus the reality of what can happen. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Paul Heidebrecht | 1/6/2014

    " Here's a dose of hard reality. Aging is going to be hard and our collective self-denial of its reality is only setting us up for major despair. Don't buy the myth that you can escape the demise of your body and your brain and the loneliness of old age. There won't be any drugs to keep you from Alzheimers. Jacoby is an articulate atheist and a champion of reason with a capital R so the Christian view of dying holds no appeal to her. Someone needs to write a response. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jane | 12/30/2013

    " Good book. Lots of thoughts about growing old "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barry | 12/15/2013

    " Punctures a lot of current social delusions about old age, and asksa lot of difficult questions. It's not cheerful news. One key take home message: the single most important thing we can do for old people (current and prospective) is to address poverty. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Doulton Doulton | 11/11/2013

    " Many home-truths here. 80 is NOT the new 50! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Beverle Myers | 7/14/2013

    " Sobering look at the way most people age. The authors picks the sugar coating off the advertising and media view of the elderly--we won't all be skydiving on our 90th birthdays. The upbeat part is that we can realistically plan ahead, if we take our blinders off. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Laurie | 6/5/2013

    " Not exactly light reading, the main point being that we are not prepared for the physical reality of old age--ours, or our loved ones. It is an important subject, but the book is over long. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Margaret | 5/17/2013

    " depressing book but fits in well with what I've seen "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linnet | 5/8/2013

    " Facing the facts of aging in America, not just for the "young old" but for the "old old". "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Karla | 2/21/2013

    " An interesting look at what old age will really be like for most of us. As much as we Boomers want to believe that we will be leading happy, healthy, productive lives into our 80s and 90s, it will not happen for most of us. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeanne | 10/8/2012

    " Can I say I liked this book? Not really --- perhaps because reality can sometimes be a cruel thing to face. Terribly depressing on many levels. However, I can say that it is a book that causes one to look introspectively at your life, as well as the lives of your loved ones. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sharon | 9/29/2012

    " As others have pointed out, the subject is a good one, if somewhat depressing, but the author's relentless haranguing is a bit much. I only read the first few chapters but found them thought-provoking. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Monte | 9/23/2012

    " very depressing truth about old age and false marketing "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Laurie | 7/24/2012

    " I did not read the whole book. The information is important I know. But, it is just so depressing..I couldn't take it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marie | 4/20/2011

    " textbook. Very sobering, but probably very realistic for many aging people in our county. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Monte | 4/9/2011

    " very depressing truth about old age and false marketing "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linnet | 3/26/2011

    " Facing the facts of aging in America, not just for the "young old" but for the "old old". "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Margaret | 3/26/2011

    " depressing book but fits in well with what I've seen "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeanne | 3/19/2011

    " Can I say I liked this book? Not really --- perhaps because reality can sometimes be a cruel thing to face. Terribly depressing on many levels. However, I can say that it is a book that causes one to look introspectively at your life, as well as the lives of your loved ones.
    "

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About the Author

Susan Jacoby is an independent scholar and the bestselling author of almost a dozen books, including Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism, which was named a Notable Book of 2004 by the Washington Post and theTimes Literary Supplement. Her book The Age of American Unreason was a New York Times bestseller in 2008.

About the Narrator

Laural Merlington is an audiobook narrator with over two hundred titles to her credit and a winner of eight Earphones Awards. An Audie Award nominee, she has also directed over one hundred audiobooks. She teaches college in her home state of Michigan.