...Falling Out of Time permits itself the freedom of despair. It has a necessary feel: a book that needed to be written. It reads like a postscript but that, after all, is what an elegy is.
But “The Splendid Things We Planned” is about Blake’s brother and, to a lesser extent, his parents, not the author, which is too bad. Blake is a more interesting character than his family, and has contributed much to the understanding of lives and works of major writers.
These new mental frontiers make for captivating reading, yet Kaku’s optimism and enthusiasm provides cover for what are mostly overhyped claims.
...Mr Werth’s account comes at a cost. Vertex gave the author access to its executives and scientists. Having devoted two books to the firm, Mr Werth at times seems too allied with it. “The Antidote” describes Mr Boger as an evangelist; in Mr Werth, he seems to have found a convert.
Stossel’s personal stories are absorbing...His discovery that his young daughter has a phobia of vomiting, despite not knowing of her father’s identical fear, is both eye-opening and heartbreaking...My Age of Anxiety is a compelling mix of research, personal journalism and insights.
In the end I’m not sure that some of the central questions about writing and drinking ever really get answered. Their alcoholism may have destroyed them, but did it in some way make them great writers?
For Montgomery, the city is a “happiness project” that exists in part to corral our conviviality and channel it productively. Though Montgomery’s argument may seem strange at first, the book will likely make you a believer.
...Carnegie’s biggest legacy is as the “father of the self-help movement”, writes Mr Watts. Finding personal satisfaction is no easy thing, Carnegie acknowledged. But it is always best to begin with a smile.
This is an entertaining book. But it teaches little of general import, for the morals of the stories it tells lack solid foundations in evidence and logic.
Finkel’s prose, following the rhythms of the people he shadows, is spare and riveting, and incites both compassion for the wounded and fury at the system.
Berthoud and Elderkin’s elegant prose and discussions that span the history of 2,000 years of literature will surely make readers seek out these books. Taking two novellas and calling the bibliotherapist in the morning sounds welcome indeed.
A book about the death of a spouse that is unlike any other—book or spouse—and thus illuminates the singularity as well as the commonality of grieving.
At just over 600 pages, Command and Control approaches cinder-block status, but there is very little in it I would’ve wanted trimmed — I read the entire thing over two days, while happily ignoring the beautiful fall weather outside. Schlosser never lets himself get lost in jargon...
Ms. Butler’s memoir does a great service to all families dealing with the decline in health of a loved one by showing the psychological, physiological, and financial costs of the illness on the caregivers.
An intriguing discussion of poverty and scarcity that uses the tools of behavioral economics and offers some different approaches to mitigation...An appealing, very different approach to a pressing problem.
It seems like the two goals of StrengthsFinder 2.0 are to (1) collect data and (2) sell research. The author works for Gallup, so I guess I should have seen that coming.
Higashida wants readers to feel his discomfort, and he manages it surprisingly well for a 13-year-old.
"The Sports Gene" is bound to put the cat among the pigeons in the blank-slate crowd who think that we can all be equal as long as we equalize environmental inputs such as practice. But the science says that it just ain't so. Not even 10,000 hours of wishful thinking will change nature.
There are no straightforward answers in this book, and no neat happy endings. Montross readily acknowledges that psychiatry is an imprecise science...But the book's great achievement is to make us understand that these people on their locked wards are not freaks or monstrosities, to be gawped at like the inmates of the Bedlam.
This is a good and brave book and one that, if you’re anything like me, will make you hate yourself just a little bit.