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Download What Shamu Taught Me about Life, Love, and Marriage: Lessons for People from Animals and Their Trainers Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample What Shamu Taught Me about Life, Love, and Marriage: Lessons for People from Animals and Their Trainers, by Amy Sutherland Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (381 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Amy Sutherland Narrator: Hillary Hube Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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While observing exotic animal trainers for her acclaimed book Kicked, Bitten, and Scratched, journalist Amy Sutherland had an epiphany: What if she used these training techniques with the human animals in her own life?

The next time her husband stomped through the house in search of his mislaid car keys, she asked herself, “What would a dolphin trainer do?” The answer was: nothing. Trainers reward the behavior they want and, just as important, ignore the behavior they don’t. As she put more training principles into action, she noticed that she became more optimistic and less judgmental and that their marriage improved.

What started as a goofy experiment had such good results that Sutherland began using these training techniques with all the people in her life, with great results.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Hilarious and persuasive.”

    Good Housekeeping

  • “Playful, passionate, and practical.”


  • “Sutherland’s a smart, engaging writer, and her stories about the hows and whys of exotic animal training are fun and fascinating.”

    Boston Sunday Globe

  • “In the little, private zoo known as marriage, it helps to remind yourself that you and your partner are just two bipedal primates trying to get along in intimate co-habitation.”

    Globe and Mail (Toronto)

  • “Invaluable…It succeeds nicely as an animal-training guide, and amusingly as a relationship book.”

    Buffalo News

  • “Wise and pragmatic advice…The thing I love most about this book is that every other paragraph, Sutherland’s terrific wordsmithing, compelling logic, and anecdotes about exotic animals make me feel like she’s tossed me a biscuit.”

    Martha Beck, author of Steering by Starlight and columnist for O: The Oprah Magazine 

  • “With one of the most mature and appealing voice personalities on audio, Hillary Huber adds credibility to a lesson that might come across as less than substantial without her.”


  • “This engaging, often humorous, insightful book belongs in all public and academic libraries’ self-help, psychology, and animal behavior collections.”

    Library Journal

  • An Audie Award Finalist

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Clare | 2/18/2014

    " Writing's a little boring, but the message is good. i do wish she had kids, though, That'd move this book from good to awesome! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Tia | 2/13/2014

    " this book is based on a tremendously popular article in the New York Times. The idea? You can train the people around you to be less annoying, to whine less, not trail their dirty socks around the house, wait their turn, etc., using the same techniques animal trainers use. While the premise is intriguing, it's not really a how-to book, and the story-line drags after a while. I'm sure it was fabulous for Sutherland to hang out with tiger and seal trainers, but it's less fabulous for her audience. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Karen | 2/9/2014

    " Quick, enjoyable read about the power of positive reinforcement. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Lorna | 2/1/2014

    " It was an interesting concept, but the author tended to ramble a bit and didn't really delve into the application of what she learned. I lost interest about 1/3 of the way into it. "

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About the Author

Amy Sutherland is also the author of Kicked, Bitten, and Scratched and Cookoff. Her articles have appeared in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Boston Globe. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and divides her time between Boston and Portland, Maine.