It Burns by Marc Fennell

It Burns

Written and hosted by Marc Fennell, It Burns is the story of a 10-year scandal-plagued international competition that will take listeners from the Australian Coast to South Carolina (via an Indian Research Facility).It’s a war filled with larger than life characters. There will be sledging, accusations of cheating, theft and performance enhancing drugs. And allegations that Australia was cheated out of a Guinness World Record. In the process of...

Details It Burns

TitleIt Burns
Release DateApr 15th, 2019
GenreNonfiction, Audiobook, Food and Drink, Food

Reviews It Burns

  • Montzalee Wittmann
    It Burns: The Scandal-Plagued Race to Breed the Worlds Hottest Chilli by Marc Fennell and narrated by author is not a book I thought it would be. I thought it might be about the different contest, peppers, how they judge...I really don't know what I thought but this wasn't it. This book bounced all over the world finding the hottest chili peppers, the killers! Discussing why people love the pain and talking to dedicated Pepperheads to find out! A...
  • Karen ⊰✿
    Its like a car crash. You cant stop watching (or listening in this case!) This is a fascinating and compelling look into the world of hot chillies. Who knew there would be so much controversy, back stabbing and even death threats in this community!Told honestly and with humour, once you start you just have to listen until the end. Much more about humanity and communities than chillies, this is highly recommended listening and currently available ...
  • Thomas
    I'm not a chili lover and I wouldn't have gotten this if it hadn't been free on Audible.I enjoyed it. Chili history and science, along with insights into human nature definitely made this one worth it.
  • Cathy
    Have you heard of Chilliheads? These people are nuts. Bonkers. Wacked in the head. Look at this, the really painful bit starts 8 minutes into it: Delightfully silly topic. Unless, obviously, you are a chilli head. In that case this is dead serious, mate! A fun playlist is further down.Shockingly, there are some shocking and disturbing parts in this narrative as well and not in a good way.The mentioned Ed Currie and bre...
  • Cori
    Four stars may be the highest rating I've ever given an Audible Original. I expected to learn some scientific information and fun trivia facts about peppers, and this was so much more. This digs deep into the psyche of why torturing oneself with dragon fire fruits took off in a blaze of fanaticism. Why would someone eat something that would cause them intense agony for hours on end? Why are the chili breeders in such sharp competition to get the ...
  • Lena
    Welcome to the world of obsessive white guys burning their mouths to cleans their souls. This was a fun travelogue exploring the worlds hottest chilies but it also went deep. Why expose yourself to terrible pain for mild euphoria? Why are there so many ex-alcoholic/drug abusers in the chili community? Is the pain a sacrifice towards spiritual transcendence?My favorite chili is the Hatch and its currently Hatch Season so its in everything!These ar...
  • Henry
    An Audible original that I got for free because it seemed to be the best of a sorry lot of choices for the month. I finished it (just short of three hours), but it is really not too good. In fact a lot of it (people who choose to eat the hottest chili peppers in the world and post their excruciating pain on the internet), just deals with mentally ill people--they are masochists who enjoy pain for some perverse reason. While mental illness can be ...
  • David
    Do you like mouth-burning pain?This Audible original is about chili peppers and the people obsessed with breeding (and eating) the hottest of the hot. Today's foodie culture includes those gastronomic sadomasochists who enjoy eating Ghost Peppers, Chocolate Habaneros, Trinidad Scorpions, and the reigning king of mouth-burning pain, the Carolina Reaper.A plain old jalapeno? 8,000 Scovilles.Tobasco sauce? 50,000 Scovilles.The Carolina Reaper? Over ...
  • Liam
    Like most people I imagine, I've gotten this free from Audible.I was pleasantly surprised to hear Marc's Aussie accent when I first started listening to It Burns, I went into it knowing literally nothing about it (other than the title), which I think was a good decision as I didn't go in with any expectations.As it was, it was a rambling, mostly aimless, but very charming and entertaining little adventure through the world of high-enthusiasm chil...
  • Rob Thompson
    'It Burns', delves deep into the cut-throat world of competitive chilli-eating. It also explores the race to breed the world's hottest chilli and deal with allegations that an Australian chilli-growing family was cheated of a Guinness World Record. And finally we discover how people manage pain to shape and define their sense of self and feel more alive. I thought this would be a quirky story about a few chilli farmers. But it turned out to be so...
  • Sarah
    This is a story of hot peppers, told through a personal lens of the narrator's difficult relationship with food. While I appreciated the personal aspect, I do wish that this focused more on science/psychology, rather than speculation and personal anecdote. This isn't to say that the story completely lacked the science/psychology perspective; that was definitely in there. However, I would have preferred if the narrative focused solely on it.
  • Becky
    Note: take the trigger warnings seriouslyI really appreciated that Fennell spoke to his issues with food, he was very honest and open and it was a strength of the book. It was short, free, and fairly interesting.That said, there were some great ideas that Fennell seemed to wish to discuss but didn't have the time, leaving the book feeling like it didn't stick the landing at the end. Ideas of community, relationship to food, addiction to pain, eve...
  • Jarek
    Relatively short but nevertheless entertaining and informative. It didn't change my life, but kept me entertained for a couple of hours.
  • Snorre Lothar von Gohren Edwin
    Again, Audible orignals deliver a good story!Just getting this type of insight on how the chilli world works is cool!
  • Jen
    Jon Ronson-esk with chillies
  • Powder River Rose
    I enjoyed this audiobook and listened twice, once by myself and the second with my husband. We both found it a quite interesting subject and while the narration was very good, sometimes his voice dropped and the interviews with others were softer than his voice and then when the music played....well that was just rather irritating because its sooooo loud or distracting from the spoken word. Believe me, you will find out about an entire lifestyle ...
  • Alan Teder
    Entertaining Overview of the Hottest Chili Peppers in the WorldReview of the Audible Audio audiobook (2019)This was entertaining and informative and also provided a bit of insight into the somewhat masochistic world of hot chili pepper eaters. Also note the cover image of a hot pepper wrapped in barbed wire, an extension of the 'heart in barbed wire' meme representing a person trapped in love.Image source = Wikipedia illustration for the article ...
  • Angela
    Awesome journey by Audible and Marc Fennell. Captivating and unique. I had no idea it would get as heavy as it did. I loved hearing the authors feelings on how his research related to his own struggles with food.
  • Kristina Stefanova
    (EDIT: Warning! I started eating more chilli peppers after reading this book. :D Did you?)The author, Marc Fennel, brings us around the world in the pursuit of the hottest chilli and many other spicy stories.Surprisingly, the story begins in Australia, where the previous record is held. The hottest chilli in the world until 2013 is called "The Trinidad Scorpion Butch T", and it grows in Central Coast (NSW). But then in suspicious circumstances, h...
  • LeeTravelGoddess
    It wasnt interesting to me. It wasn’t interesting to me.
  • Karissa
    I got this for free as an audiobook from Audible Originals. It was okay and I learned some interesting things about peppers and the crazy people who like to cause themselves pain with them. I didn't think the book was especially humorous, it also took a weird turn a few times as it explored how hot food and religion are linked. Another weird digression was taken when Fennell decides to visit a dominatrix to explore people's addiction to pain (thi...
  • Elisa
    When I was living in Mexico it would drive me crazy how everybody would assume that I'd eat spicy food. I went to restaurants and clearly ordered food with no chilli peppers, only to be told, after I complained of the outstanding amount of jalapenos, how "it wasn't even that spicy." Servers, other patrons and even the people eating with me looked at me like I had grown a second head... how could I enjoy bland food? This all made me wonder what co...
  • Bill Shannon
    A surprisingly entertaining listen that's somewhere between a long podcast and a Jon Ronson subculture expose. Who knew the world of hot chili peppers was so contentious?? Much better than most of Audible's mediocre nonfiction fare.
  • Ryan Stewart
    Really enjoyable deep dive into an eccentric subculture I didn't know existed. Pain is the name of the game, and apparently so is cyberbullying, addiction and intense competition.
  • Nate Adams
    Pretty interesting and entertaining short listen. Would recommend.
  • Fahed Alnuaimi
    Finding pleasure through pain?
  • Anna
    I enjoyed listening to Chapters 1-3 with my young boys. They were enthralled. Until the start of Chapter 4. Wow, pretty inappropriate for family listening. I listened to the rest on my own hoping to find a place I could let my boys restart to listen. In the middle of Chapter 5 I thought I'd let them listen starting in the middle of Chapter 4..... And then there were several references to the inappropriate section. So, while I enjoyed it, I'm disa...
  • James Sheaves
    It Burns is a highly entertaining and surprisingly dark look at a subculture most probably haven't given much thought to. Marc Fennell, who will be most familiar to Australian audiences from SBS' The Feed, is a highly engaging host, who doesn't shy away from any opportunity to explore personal, unflinchingly honest angles to the story. There is a kind of rhythm to the story that almost seems to mirror the experience of eating a hot chilli, where ...
  • Candice
    Not nearly as much about the world of chilis as you might think. We end up delving into Marc's damaged "fat kid" (his choice of term) psyche for the most part. Which is fine, but that's not what I came here for. Mind your damage on your own time, not in a book that's supposed to be your exploration of the world of chiliheads.The world's hottest pepper debate never gets resolved, btw. Probably a spoiler, but honestly, I'll just save you the troubl...
  • Richard Gray
    Marc Fennells enthusiastic style takes him around the world in pursuit of the worlds hottest chilli. Sort of. Whats most surprising about this short Audible feature is how it marries the obsession of the Chilli Heads with Fennells own issues with food. On this level, I can totally relate: hating yourself because you cant control your own intake. Or intaking because you hate yourself. This is, of course, a double-edged sword: Fennells personal inv...