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The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite (Hardcover)

by David Kessler MD (Author)

From Publishers Weekly

Conditioned hypereating is a biological challenge, not a character flaw, says Kessler, former FDA commissioner under presidents Bush and Clinton). Here Kessler (A Question of Intent) describes how, since the 1980s, the food industry, in collusion with the advertising industry, and lifestyle changes have short-circuited the body's self-regulating mechanisms, leaving many at the mercy of reward-driven eating. Through the evidence of research, personal stories (including candid accounts of his own struggles) and examinations of specific foods produced by giant food corporations and restaurant chains, Kessler explains how the desire to eat—as distinct from eating itself—is stimulated in the brain by an almost infinite variety of diabolical combinations of salt, fat and sugar. Although not everyone succumbs, more people of all ages are being set up for a lifetime of food obsession due to the ever-present availability of foods laden with salt, fat and sugar. A gentle though urgent plea for reform, Kessler's book provides a simple food rehab program to fight back against the industry's relentless quest for profits while an entire country of people gain weight and get sick. According to Kessler, persistence is all that is needed to make the perceptual shifts and find new sources of rewards to regain control. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


"Dr. David Kessler has written a fascinating account of the science of human appetite, as well as its exploitation by the food industry. The End of Overeating is an invaluable contribution to the national conversation about the catastrophe that is the modern American diet." --Michael Pollan, author of In Defense of Food

"David A. Kessler, who led the battle against the tobacco industry, now joins the fight against obesity. His message is important: The problem is not only the behavior of profit-driven food companies, but also the daily choices that each one of us makes." —Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation

"David Kessler’s fascinating book is essential for anyone interested in learning more about how corporate greed and human psychology have created a national health crisis." —Alice Waters, chef and owner of Chez Panisse

"Disturbing, thought-provoking, and important." —Anthony Bourdain, author of Kitchen Confidential

"A compelling book about overeating and the obesity pandemic. Dr. Kessler thoroughly examines the nature of our relationship with food and why it is critical to understand and modify our behavior to reverse this global threat to health and well-being." —David Satcher, former Surgeon General and director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
"A fascinating, unique book by a brilliant public health leader." —Donna Shalala, former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

A clincal account of the science behind overeating, February 26, 2009
By Natasha Stryker (California)

I appreciated this book. I appreciated a health-related book discussing dieting that WAS NOT trying to sell you something. The research that went into this book is impressive and the results are fascinating. Turns out that along with our waistlines, processed food manipulation has been on the rise since the 1980's.

Food producers of all types have been seeking ways to make us want their product more, and it is working. The pleasure-seeking part of your brain is hard to turn off once saturated with key combinations of ingredients, namely fat, sugar and salt. We are hard-wired to seek foods with these ingredients combined, and the public has been trained to respond. The result? Severe obesity and obesity-related health problems in the numbers we have never seen before.

This book does a wonderful job educating the reader in what they are doing subconsciously. It gives power to those who walk around inhaling food and thinking, "why the hell am I doing this?!" Once armed with the knowledge, it is amazing how you walk through the grocery store and see the companies practicing what the book preaches.

You begin to read labels in a new way and ask yourself questions like, "why would this product have so much sugar salt AND fat in it, it's just plain spaghetti sauce?!" If you are a chronic dieter, you stop looking at just fat grams and calories and start READING the whole label. The book is completely right about so many products; fat, salt and sugar are there in combinations to solely get you hooked to eat more of the product.

This book is informative and well written; the style is very easy to read and understand without feeling talked down to. If you ever wondered why we are in the state we are in as a nation of consumers, you will enjoy the education you will get from this book.

Superb Book On How and Why People Overeat As Well As How to Stop Overeating, March 9, 2009
By scesq "scesq" (New Milford, New Jersey USA)

This is a well-written, easily understandable, interesting book on the very serious subject of overeating. The book is broken into six parts with relatively small chapters ranging in size from approximately three pages to eleven pages in length with many in the four to seven page range. The first part, for example, has 13 chapters so there is much information but it is presented in a way which flows well together.

When I got this book I was interested in the subject matter but I was worried that the book would be boring or so technical that I would lose interest. I read this book in two days and it has changed my approach to eating.

Part One of the book, Sugar, Fat, Salt, talks about why people eat and overeat. It looks at the physical as well as psychological aspects of overeating.

Part Two of the book (my favorite), The Food Industry, gives specific examples of how restaurants and the food industry contribute to the problem by creating food that people want to eat but is not healthy. For instance I never new that bread had so much slay because it takes away the bitter taste of the flour and brings up the flavor. The author also addresses how nutrition information on packaging is manipulated by the food industry. For instance if a food contains more sugar than any other ingredient it must go first on the list but if you use a number of sources of sugar like brown sugar, corn syrup and fructose each is listed individually and goes lower on the list.

Part Three, Conditioned Hypereating Emerges, talks about how we get trapped into an overeating pattern. It references numerous studies and explores whether overeating is nature, nurture or both.

Part Four, The Theory of Treatment, talks about the theoretical way people can break the overeating habit.

Part Five, Food Rehab, offers practical ways individuals can stop overeating. The advice is great.

Part Six, The End Of Overeating, talks about the challenges ahead to end overeating. While it will not be easy, each individual has the power to end his or her overeating despite roadblocks created by the food industry or our own physical or mental makeup.

This is a great book that has started me thinking differently about food. It is well written and the best on the subject I have ever read.

The 8th Confession (The Women's Murder Club) (Hardcover)

by James Patterson (Author), Maxine Paetro (Author)


"Patterson has mastered the art of writing page-turning bestsellers." (Chicago Sun-Times )

"When it comes to construction a harrowing plot, author James Patterson can turn a screw all right." (New York Daily News )

"The Man Who Can't Miss." (Time Lev Grossman )

"America's #1 storyteller." (Forbes )

"James Patterson is king of the bestseller hill." (Publishers Weekly )

"Patterson never, and I mean never, disappoints." (USA Today Larry King )

Product Description
As San Francisco's most glamorous millionaires mingle at the party of the year, someone is watching--waiting for a chance to take vengeance on Isa and Ethan Bailey, the city's most celebrated couple. Finally, the killer pinpoints the ideal moment, and it's the perfect murder. Not a trace of evidence is left behind in their glamorous home.

As Detective Lindsay Boxer investigates the high-profile murder, someone else is found brutally executed--a preacher with a message of hope for the homeless. His death nearly falls through the cracks, but when reporter Cindy Thomas hears about it, she knows the story could be huge. Probing deeper into the victim's history, she discovers he may not have been quite as saintly as everyone thought.

As the hunt for two criminals tests the limits of the Women's Murder Club, Lindsay sees sparks fly between Cindy and her partner, Detective Rich Conklin. The Women's Murder Club now faces its toughest challenge: will love destroy all that four friends have built? The exhilarating new chapter in the Women's Murder Club series, The 8th Confession serves up a double dose of speed-charged twists and shocking revelations as only James Patterson can. And remember, this is the only Murder Club episode of the year.

A masterful continuance to the series., April 28, 2009
By Reviewing for dummies "Toto"

When a homeless man's death garners no attention, Lindsay Boxer's friend, Cindy Thomas, uses her influence as a journalist to convince San Francisco Police Department to investigate the case.

Lindsay and her partner Rich Conklin have already been assigned to investigate the deaths of Ethan and Isa Bailey, however, and can't pursue the case while on duty.

As mysterious deaths begin to mount, Lindsay and Rich, find less and less time to investigate the homeless man's case. Cindy, on the other hand, continues to probe the case and bring justice to the homeless man.

As in all Patterson books, sideplots are plentiful. The Assistant District Attorney is prosecuting Stacey Glenn for the death of her parents. A mobile meth lab disguised as a school bus explodes.

Patterson is a master at developing plots and intertwining stories. The action and intrigue never ends, and the story flows smoothly.

Somewhat fractured..., April 27, 2009
By Ann Spencer (Carmel, CA)

I have enjoyed the Women's Murder Club series and was ecstatic to receive a pre publication copy, however, I found 8th confession a bit of a let down. The plot follows two different paths. One is the seemingly connected murders of some high society types-why are they being killed? The other, the murder of a likeable old homeless man. For me the plot was not very substantial and somewhat fractured. The Women really did not work as a team on this one, Claire and Yuki are hardly mentioned with the story focusing on Cindy and Lindsay. Part of the fun of this series has been the way the girls work together as a team and that was missing in this one. That being said it is still an entertaining read suitable for a plane ride or a day at the beach. If you are a fan of Patterson like pacing I do recommend the adventure thriller "A Tourist In The Yucatan."

The Core Balance Diet: 4 Weeks to Boost Your Metabolism and Lose Weight for Good (Hardcover)

by Marcelle Pick N.P. (Author), Genevieve Morgan (Author)


“If you're tired of the same old diet books that promise transformation and give you disappointment, then do something new and nourishing for yourself. Learn from a woman who has dedicated her life to providing the kind of holistic care women need to get to the root of why they can't create the balanced, healthy body they long for. The Core Balance Diet takes you through the process Marcelle has used with hundreds of patients—a process that works. I highly recommend it!”
– Cheryl Richardson, author of The Art of Extreme Self Care, The Unmistakable Touch of Grace, Life Makeovers, and Take Time for Your Life

“The Core Balance Diet is full of practical and accurate information that can help women regain metabolic balance so they can lose weight and gain vitality.”

– Christiane Northrup, M.D., author of The Secret Pleasures of Menopause, The Wisdom of Menopause, Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom, and Mother-Daughter Wisdom

“Marcelle Pick is on the forefront of a revolution in women’s health and weight loss. The Core Balance Diet is brilliant—it gives women all the tools they need to change their lives forever.”

– Frank Lipman, M.D., author of Spent and Total Renewal

“In The Core Balance Diet, Marcelle Pick has created a sensible program for women to finally reach and maintain their optimal weight. She takes a holistic look at our lives and lifestyle to get us the best results. Ultimately, what’s best for our weight is best for our overall well-being. This book will be a boon to many. I’m thrilled that it’s available!”

– Liz Lipski, Ph.D., CCN, CHN, Director of Doctoral Studies, Hawthorn University and author of Digestive Wellness and Digestive Wellness for Children

Product Description

Is your weight gain making you miserable? Have you noticed that you’re packing on pounds in unpleasant new places? Or is the scale—and the way you feel about yourself— just stuck, no matter how much you diet and exercise? If you’ve struggled without success to lose weight and keep it off, there’s always a reason, and—surprise!—it probably has little to do with how hard you’re trying or how many calories you’re counting. Now a pioneering practitioner of women’s health care shows why willpower doesn’t work in the long run and, finally, gives you a solution that does.

Marcelle Pick, co-founder of Women to Women—one of the first clinics in the country devoted to providing health care for women by women—draws upon decades of experience, her patients’ and her own, to solve the mystery of the stubborn weight gain. Explaining the science of the body with uncommon clarity, she describes the complex web of connections—between organs and systems, hormones and other biochemicals—that keep your physiology in balance and your metabolism functioning well. Because when it isn’t, your body reacts by packing on protection in the form of pounds that won’t budge, an excess that can be so harmful and intractable that Pick has named it “toxic weight.” Bringing your body back into Core Balance is the only way to heal your metabolism, soothe your body, and lose the weight for good.

The Core Balance Diet is a breakthrough plan designed to restore your body’s equilibrium and return you to a healthy, sustainable weight. With her engaging style, Pick explains six common biochemical imbalances—digestive, hormonal, adrenal, neurotransmitter, inflammation, and detoxification—and helps you determine which is affecting you most. In the first two weeks, she teaches the simple lifestyle changes and smart nutrition choices that will show you how to tune into your body and identify your fundamental obstacles to weight loss. Then Pick guides you through a customized two-week program geared to restoring your Core Balance and shedding those toxic pounds once and for all. Far from depriving yourself on this program, you’ll eat—often and well—enjoying delicious recipes made from whole foods that give your body the support it needs to heal. At the same time, you’ll start to explore underlying issues and emotional patterns that may be getting in your way, as Pick connects self-care with self-knowledge to show you the way to lasting wellness.

By picking up this book, you’re about to toss out the old way of thinking about yourself and your weight. The Core Balance Diet heralds a whole new chapter in weight loss, proving how easy it is to work with your body and the right foods—not against them—to rid yourself of weight and unhealthy habits for good. Within a month, you’ll be on your way to a lean, fit, and balanced body that is ready to support you—and look great—for the rest of your life.

Loaded with useful health & diet tips, April 14, 2009
By Susan Schenck "Author of The Live Food Factor... (San Diego, CA)

The Core Balance Diet is a must-read for women who have, well...gotten off balance (which would include probably 85-95% of American women). And Marcelle (with Genevieve) include six common ways that we have lost our balance: digestive, hormonal, adrenal, neurotransmitter, inflammatory, and detoxification. Which of us has not experienced imbalance in one of those areas, let alone two or three?

Marcelle challenges the woman who thinks she would be too overwhelmed to make some dietary and lifestyle changes: "If you could help your partner to lose weight, or help protect your child's health, by changing what he or she ate for a month, wouldn't you try and do it? Now, aren't you worth that same amount of attention?" And she is only asking you to try her program for a month! After that, she assures you, you'll be free from your food addictions and hooked on your feeling great!

Balance, as you might suppose, also entails eating approximately a 30/30/40 ratio of healthy fats, protein and complex carbs (though not as strict as the Zone Diet). But it includes much, much more than that.

The book begins with an explanation of how imbalances lead to weight gain and aging and provides a layman's easy-to-read explanation of the systems.

Marcelle provides a Core Balance quiz for you to determine which of your systems are weakest. This is followed by a chapter on each system. Each chapter (which is delight to read even if they don't apply to you as much as the others) contains the following: information on the imbalance and how to correct it; sidebars and boxes with interesting tidbits of info; a list of "Marcelle's prescriptions " for that imbalance; diagnostic tests to note the progress of that imbalance; foods to include and foods to avoid; supplements to take; "a day in the life" schedule for the lifestyle changes needed (exercise, when to eat, self- nurturing, etc.); a one-week menu; and frequently asked questions.

There are also 60 pages of recipes. Except for the medical diagnostic tests, this is a complete do-it-yourself book.

True to the Hay House spirit, there is also a chapter on the mind-body connection with the cute title, "Your Issues Are in Your Tissues" which alerts you to negative thinking and self-destructive behavior patterns that can sabotage your health.

I have read hundreds of books on health and nutrition (even wrote one myself!) and I give this book a hearty two thumbs up! I learned lots of interesting tidbits, such as how the liver is taxed on a low-fat diet, how Vitamin D deficiency is linked to obesity, and how not flossing can lead to body-wide inflammation. The only thing Marcelle could do to make it more complete would be to have a chapter on the importance of eating more raw foods since a raw diet taxes the digestive system far less.

This is a diet that can be, with a bit of imagination, used by anyone who has any dietary slant (vegan, vegetarian, raw fooder, etc). For example, if one is raw vegan, substitute raw hemp protein powder in place of meat and don't cook the vegetables.

The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level (Hardcover)

by Gay Hendricks (Author)


"Gay has the corner on living life well... he has a glorious love relationship with his wife and he is hugely successful. There is no better person to inspire us all to be the best we can be at every level." (Mariel Hemingway, author of Mariel's Kitchen and Mariel Hemingway's Healthy Living from the Inside Out )

"Gay Hendricks is a great role model for true success. He enjoys abundance and a deep connection with his own spiritual essence, and at the same time has lived for three decades in a thriving marriage. Now, he shows us how to do it for ourselves." (Mark Victor Hansen, co-author of Cracking the Millionaire Code )

"Gay Hendricks' positivity, his love, his genius fill me with hope. And in, The Big Leap, he once again names a pattern that I have always been aware of in myself but never quite brought to consciousness. Now that I have, there's no going back. " (Geneen Roth, author of When Food is Love and The Craggy Hole in My Heart )

Product Description

Most of us believe that we will finally feel satisfied and content with our lives when we get the good news we have been waiting for, find a healthy relationship, or achieve one of our personal goals. However, this rarely happens. Good fortune is often followed by negative emotions that overtake us and result in destructive behaviors. "I don't deserve this," "this is too good to be true," or any number of harmful thought patterns prevent us from experiencing the joy and satisfaction we have earned. Sound familiar? This is what New York Times bestselling author Gay Hendricks calls the Upper Limit Problem, a negative emotional reaction that occurs when anything positive enters our lives. The Upper Limit Problem not only prevents happiness, but it actually stops us from achieving our goals. It is the ultimate life roadblock.

In The Big Leap, Hendricks reveals a simple yet comprehensive program for overcoming this barrier to happiness and fulfillment, presented in a way that engages both the mind and heart. Working closely with more than one thousand extraordinary achievers in business and the arts—from rock stars to Fortune 500 executives—whose stories are featured in these pages, the book describes the four hidden fears that are at the root of the Upper Limit Problem.

The Big Leap delivers a proven method for first identifying which of these four fears prevents us from reaching our personal upper limit, and then breaking through that limitation to achieve what Hendricks refers to as our Zone of Genius. Hendricks provides a clear path for achieving our true potential and attaining not only financial success but also success in love and life.

Which Fishbowl Do You Want To Live In?, April 25, 2009
By Clint Arthur

This is a profound work. Hendricks zeros the reader right in on the primary limiting factors which keep a person down, living small, living a life of bland milquetoast instead of a life of richness, love, fun, adventure and success.

Who is this book for? It's for anyone with a small voice in the back of their mind or buried deep in the hidden crevices of their heart that screams "I want more" -- but you just don't know how to get there, or don't know where to start looking for the keys to freedom.

Fulfillment, joy, success and love are available for every man and woman on this planet -- but only if you are willing to go for it and make your dreams into reality. The first step is to have a dream, and this book will get you off your arse and moving in the direction of daring to have a dream at all.

If you are living at anything less than your full potential, or if you are wondering "Is this all there is to life?" then this book is truly your friend.

Great book!, April 21, 2009
By J. Wells

I just read this book and it is amazing! This is the first "self help" book I have read and I found Dr. Hendricks writing style to be easy to read and the text really flowed. I have always had that thought in the back of my mind that there was something missing. This book has shown me very clearly and practically what the one problem in my life really is and how to solve it.

From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, No. 8) (Mass Market Paperback)

by Charlaine Harris (Author)

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Harris outdoes herself in this pivotal eighth Sookie Stackhouse novel (after 2007's All Together Dead), packing the story full of romantic tension and supernatural action. Having barely survived a catastrophic vampire hotel explosion, Sookie's back at work in Bon Temps, La., serving vintage blood and waiting tables at Merlotte's, a vampire bar. Participating in a friend's wedding and fending off the advances of her vampire ex-lover, Bill, and her blood-bonded pal, Eric, leaves Sookie chafing over the recent lack of communication from Quinn, her weretiger boyfriend. When a violent Were power struggle erupts as Vegas vampires attempt to take over Louisiana from disgraced queen Sophie-Anne, Sookie dives into the middle of it, determined to help her shape-changing, blood-drinking friends. Harris provides many fun twists, most significantly Sookie's meeting with her fae great-grandfather, Niall Brigant, which paves the way for a shock ending that will delight longtime fans. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

“With…an audacious wink of her eye, Harris creates a world that is both a weird possibility and a wild ride.”

“[An] increasingly riotous series.”

More like a series of vignettes than a novel to me, but I enjoyed the various parts (3.5 stars), May 10, 2008
By R. Kyle (USA)

I honestly am such a fan of Charlaine Harris that I'd go just about anywhere she'd take me. "From Dead to Worse" wasn't quite all over the map, but there wasn't as much of a central them in this book as there was in her usual entries in this series.

We went from weddings, to family revelations, to were-wars--and there was so much more. While the varying parts were interesting and many did tie together, there wasn't the overall unity in this book I have expected from the series.

The beginning chapter where Sookie served as the bridesmaid for Halleigh's wedding was a spinoff from Ms. Harris' short story in an anthology collection, "My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding." I'm wondering if the rest isn't bits and pieces that have just needed resolving for some time.

I think you will see some answers to some interesting questions you've had as readers all along--like where did Sookie get her gift, what makes her different? And there are a few other surprises in store.

Interesting, in part, not as cohesive and riveting as her usual offerings are in a whole. "From Dead to Worse" is still very much worth the read if you are a die-hard Sookie fan like I am, but this is honestly the first of the series I can't simply rave about.

Rebecca Kyle, May 2008

From Dead to Worse, May 7, 2008
By fireandfog "fireandfog" (San Francisco)

No question, From Dead to Worse is a bridge book in the Southern Vampire series. I am one fan who thinks that is just peachy keen fine. I thought this was an excellent book, very engaging, by which I mean I read it all in one sitting, no stopping. While it's true that this book is episodic in nature, my feeling is that going along with the characters on these episodes is high entertainment. As I get older, I find it becomes harder to concentrate, and that Charlaine Harris continues to hold my attention eight books into this series is just wonderful. The truth is, if you are going to read this series, you need to start with the first book. Read them in order, and don't start with this one, because you need to know all the back story to fully appreciate how far the characters have come. (And can I just say: Sookie needs a vacation! Ms. Harris, send her off to a beautiful island where she can relax, forget her cares for a while, sip some rum punch on nice beach, and maybe go limbo-ing with some nice fella who doesn't want anything more than the pleasure of her company.)

I think this book is for the fans who have fallen in love with these characters. We've spent the last year since the release of All Together Dead wondering what was going to happen next, and musing about the paths the characters would take. From Dead to Worse tells us some great stories, fills in some of the personal details we've all been aching to know, and sets the stage for what will be I hope many more books to come. I think From Dead to Worse was fabulous. Brava, Ms. Harris!

Tea Time for the Traditionally Built: The New No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency Novel

by Alexander McCall Smith (Author)


“Delightful . . . The warm humanity infused throughout [McCall Smith’s] novels . . . is what beings readers back . . . There is a simplicity and lyricism in [the] language that brings out the profound importance of . . . everyday revelations."
–San Francisco Chronicle

“Witty, charming and a delight . . . Wonderfully entertaining.”
–Tucson Citizen

“A literary confection of gossamer deliciousness . . . There is no end to the pleasure that may be extracted from these books.”
–Janet Malcolm, The New York Times Book Review

“Beautiful in spirit . . . Botswana and its way of life are described in exquisite detail . . . Delightful . . . Positively uplifting.”
–Winston-Salem Journal

“Enthralling . . . [Mma Ramotswe] is someone readers can’t help but love.”
–USA Today

From the Hardcover edition. --This text refers to the Kindle Edition edition.

“Delightful . . . The warm humanity infused throughout [McCall Smith’s] novels . . . is what beings readers back . . . There is a simplicity and lyricism in [the] language that brings out the profound importance of . . . everyday revelations."
–San Francisco Chronicle

“Witty, charming and a delight . . . Wonderfully entertaining.”
–Tucson Citizen

“A literary confection of gossamer deliciousness . . . There is no end to the pleasure that may be extracted from these books.”
–Janet Malcolm, The New York Times Book Review

“Beautiful in spirit . . . Botswana and its way of life are described in exquisite detail . . . Delightful . . . Positively uplifting.”
–Winston-Salem Journal

“Enthralling . . . [Mma Ramotswe] is someone readers can’t help but love.”
–USA Today

"Maybe the real problem with the modern world [was] not enough of us were prepared to share our chairs.", April 21, 2009
By Mary Whipple (New England)

Not believing that "progress" necessarily improves Botswana society, Mma Precious Ramotswe, the "traditionally built" owner of the No.1 Ladies Detective Agency in Gaborone, has decided that cars are among the biggest agents of change, making people lazy. She has therefore decided to walk the two miles each way to her office, located beside the garage where her husband Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni operates a car repair service. She secretly admits, however, that the real reason she is walking is that her beloved (and famous) little white van, now twenty-two years old, is making strange noises, and she fears that when Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni hears them that he will decide her little van can no longer be repaired.

More sentimental and less plot-based than some of the earlier novels in this endearing series, Tea Time for the Traditionally Built intersperses local stories, gossip, and legends among several (sometimes thin) plot lines--Mma Ramotswe's love for her little white van and her unhappiness about its possible future; the mysterious case of the Kalahari Swoopers, a great football team that is losing too many games; the fate of the romance between Mma Grace Makutsi and her fiancé, Mr. Phuti Radiphuti, after he hires glamorous (and designing) Violet Sephotho to work in his furniture shop; and the case of a woman who is trying to live with two husbands.

Mma Ramotswe's innate kindness, and her belief that "there is plenty of work for love to do," dominate her life: "We [are] all at the mercy of chance...," she says, "and when we dismiss or deny the hopes of others...we forget that they, like us, have only one chance in this life." Her husband, Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni, is equally thoughtful, donating one day every two weeks to help a needy friend keep abreast of his work. Characters familiar to readers of earlier novels also make their appearances here: Charlie, Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni's apprentice, still does not like to work; Mr. Polopetsi, a man saved from disaster in a previous novel, offers advice to Mma Ramotswe; and Mma Potokwane, who runs the orphanage, drifts in and out of the action here, too, always in need of help.

"Cozy," in the warmest sense of the word, the novel makes readers feel good about life, about principled women like Mma Ramotswe, about the pace of life which allows people to slow down and be kind, and about the value of communication and good will in solving problems. Though Mma Makutsi believes that "The trouble with this country [is] that there are too many people sitting down in other people's chairs." Mma Ramotswe, by contrast, believes "that not enough of us [are] prepared to share our chairs." n Mary Whipple

The Miracle at Speedy Motors (No1 Ladies Detective Agency 9)
The Kalahari Typing School for Men: More from the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
The Full Cupboard of Life (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 5)
In the Company of Cheerful Ladies (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, Book 6)
The World According to Bertie, part of the delightfully different 44 scotland street series

The Charles Dickens of our day, April 21, 2009
By C. Catherwood "writer" (Cambridge UK and Richmond VA)

Alexander McCall Smith is the Charles Dickens of the 21st century (and a good deal more cheerful and fun to read). This is the perfect book for a global recession: keep the economy going and buy 10 copies for all your friends! People have said about his books that nothing happens: this is untrue. Plenty happens in this one, especially for poor Mma Makutsi! But the pace of life is wonderfully slow, and this is one of the great strengths of this book, as one of the top lawyers in the City of London told me some while back: it is the perfect antidote to the frenetic pace of life we all live today and is thus essential reading for these troubled times! And our favourite characters are themselves in this book: we end up loving them more than ever! Buy 10 copies for all your friends and keep the economy going! This is the ideal therapy for recessionary times and huge fun! Christopher Catherwood (author of A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE MIDDLE EAST and other books)

Columbine (Hardcover)

by Dave Cullen (Author)

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. In this remarkable account of the April 20, 1999, Columbine High School shooting, journalist Cullen not only dispels several of the prevailing myths about the event but tackles the hardest question of all: why did it happen? Drawing on extensive interviews, police reports and his own reporting, Cullen meticulously pieces together what happened when 18-year-old Eric Harris and 17-year-old Dylan Klebold killed 13 people before turning their guns on themselves. The media spin was that specific students, namely jocks, were targeted and that Dylan and Eric were members of the Trench Coat Mafia. According to Cullen, they lived apparently normal lives, but under the surface lay an angry, erratic depressive (Klebold) and a sadistic psychopath (Harris), together forming a combustible pair. They planned the massacre for a year, outlining their intentions for massive carnage in extensive journals and video diaries. Cullen expertly balances the psychological analysis—enhanced by several of the nation's leading experts on psychopathology—with an examination of the shooting's effects on survivors, victims' families and the Columbine community. Readers will come away from Cullen's unflinching account with a deeper understanding of what drove these boys to kill, even if the answers aren't easy to stomach. (Apr. 6)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

"In this remarkable account of the April 20, 1999, Columbine High School shooting, journalist Cullen not only dispels several of the prevailing myths about the event but tackles the hardest question of all: why did it happen? Drawing on extensive interviews, police reports and his own reporting, Cullen meticulously pieces together what happened when 18-year-old Eric Harris and 17-year-old Dylan Klebold killed 13 people before turning their guns on themselves.... Cullen expertly balances the psychological analysis-enhanced by several of the nation's leading experts on psychopathology-with an examination of the shooting's effects on survivors, victims' families and the Columbine community. Readers will come away from Cullen's unflinching account with a deeper understanding of what drove these boys to kill, even if the answers aren't easy to stomach." (Publishers Weekly, Starred Reivew )

"Dave Cullen is the Dante of this high school hell. I came away from it thinking of Jack Nicholson hollering 'You want the truth? You can't handle the truth!' Read this quietly powerful account of Columbine and find out if you can." (Ron Rosenbaum, author of Explaining Hitler and The Shakespeare Wars )

"Half the anguish of Columbine is our mystification. How did those boys get so twisted, so murderous? Now, after nine years of great reporting, Dave Cullen has done the impossible: you will know these killers -- and it will shake you up. This is a big-time work that will endure."

(Richard Ben Cramer, author of Joe DiMaggio and What It Takes )

"Salon magazine's Dave Cullen... has been on top of the Columbine story from the start." (The New York Times Frank Rich )

A tender yet unflinching treatment of a chilling tragedy., March 29, 2009
By Hugh C. Howey

Ten years have passed since the tragic event that has become synonymous with school shootings. Columbine was once a word that simply denoted a high school, a football team or a state flower. But now the word is tainted. Despite the fact that we have moved on to newer tragedies with higher body-counts, the stain has not been scrubbed off of the word `Columbine'. But perhaps we need to do something other than wish it away. A better solution might be a deeper understanding of Columbine and similar events. The What, How and Why. Most of our answers to these simple questions have been dead-wrong and it is time to replace myth with truth.

But this is easier said than done. The Columbine shootings remain one of the most-thoroughly covered crimes in American history. However, despite the voluminous output of media coverage, what really happened that day, and the motivation behind the tragedy, is understood by very few people. The result of our curiosity led to more falsehoods than fact, making a clear picture of the events on and leading up to April 20th, 1999 difficult to discern. In many ways the vast outpouring of information makes this tragedy even harder to grasp; the chaff vastly outweighs the wheat.

Which makes Dave Cullen's new book, Columbine, an accomplishment that catapults him to the top of the genre. Not since Capote's In Cold Blood do we find such a thoughtful, illuminating, riveting, and disturbing portrait of the criminal mind. Columbine doesn't just explode the myths of what happened that day and why. Instead the book carefully dissects our biases, revealing a populace eager to blame this tragedy on poor parenting, Satan, rock music, or goth kids because it is simpler and more convenient than hearing the truth.

And the truth is that Eric Harris was a born psychopath and Dylan Klebold was clinically depressed, eager to please, and clawing for an escape hatch. Together they formed a rare and volatile combination known as a criminal dyad, a coupling of an egomaniacal control freak and a doting, depressed side-kick. Like Bonnie and Clyde and the D.C. snipers, the duo had a push-me pull-me effect that spun both kids out of control and down a dangerous path that now seems well-worn and obvious as we trace it back.

Cullen's coverage of the tragedy is remarkably broad and deep for a book that doesn't even run 400 pages. The entire scope of the Columbine shootings are covered with almost no wasted space. The book is agonizingly well-researched and brilliantly end-noted. Cullen was one of the Colorado journalists covering the event as it was happening, and has been following the aftermath for the past ten years. He has become one of the most informed minds to wrestle with the shooting, and one of the few to draw the right conclusions.

The layout and pacing in Columbine is also ingenious. Instead of pretending that this was a tidy moment in history that can be covered from beginning to end, Cullen pays homage to the frustrating way that details coalesced into a final picture. Jumping back and forth from Eric and Dylan's lives before the event to the tragic consequences that reverberated after, Cullen gradually paints a full portrait of the two men in much the way that they revealed themselves to investigators. There is no pretension here that this is a subject with an easy beginning, middle, and end. Any other method of relating this story would not do the popular confusion justice, nor would it result in such a vivid understanding of what these two boys were like, and what damage they wreaked on their community.

Another impressive touch is the complete lack of images presented in the book. The center clump of photographs, a mainstay of good non-fiction, is conspicuously absent. You will not find a single picture of the killers nor their victims. It took some time for me to appreciate this classy move by the author and publishers. There is no sensationalism here. This is an outstanding work of journalism that is not only the authoritative account of what happened at Columbine high school, it is also a glimpse of criminal psychosis that I believe will be held up as a classic in years to come. This isn't just a good book, it is an important book. It is not just about the past, and not just about this one event, it is about a sad fact of the human condition, and a call for forward-looking vigilance, not backwards-glaring vengeance.

What most impressed me about Cullen's conclusions was his shucking off of the dangerous blank slate theory that causes so much societal grief. To this day most people blame poor parenting on the tragedy of Columbine. The sadness and horror that I feel when thinking about the treatment of Eric and Dylan's parents disgusts me. This injustice is fueled by the poor grasp that the vast majority of people have about human nature. It is a failing that causes harm in thousands of daily ways, and Cullen does his part in dispelling some of these myths. Some people are born with an inability to empathize with the feelings of others. And of these, some have an uncanny ability to blend in, conning the rest of us into thinking that they are normal. They are the stereotypical serial killers, described by friends and neighbors as the "nicest boy". And our failure to grasp the innate nature of these members of society makes us even more likely to be duped by them.

One of the other fascinating threads in Columbine is the unreliability of eyewitness accounts and the way that early mistakes were not corrected with the passage of time, but rather hardened, becoming cemented in Columbine lore. The Trench Coat Mafia and a massive conspiracy involving many other participants led many people astray, including investigators. The idea that these were unpopular geeks who were picked on by bullies led to a national campaign against something that played no role in the tragedy. Eric and Dylan more often played the role of bully than they did bullied. And implications that music, movies, goth lifestyle, Hitler, or videogames inspired their actions are as false as Michael Moore's assertions that they bowled on the day of the shooting.

Columbine replaces these falsehoods with an account of two kids that simply hated the world and its occupants. Everyone was beneath them. These were not kids cast out by society; they were misfits by choice. They fled the robots/zombies/sheep with eagerness and disdain. They celebrated the fact that they did not belong. Nobody pushed them away or ridiculed them, in fact they were just as popular in their own clique as any other kid, and just as invisible to most kids as we all were to people outside of our social circle. The kids who were not respected were Eric and Dylan's peers. The duo were able to look down on them from such a height of hubris as to be able to dehumanize them. Making them something outside of their scope of empathy. Easy enough to dispatch.

In this way, Marilyn Manson got it just as wrong as anyone else. When asked what he would have said to the kids in Moore's film Bowling for Columbine, Manson replied, "I wouldn't say a single word to them. I would listen to what they have to say, and that's what no one did." This notion that the boys were raging against a world that would not take them seriously is also debunked. The sad fact is that psychopaths are born with measurable differences in how their brains work. We can point to these peculiarities on a brain scan. And the differences are noted extremely early in a child's development. The idea that more compassion would prevent these tragedies is the claim that gasoline will extinguish a fire. These kids thrived on winning people over, which they did with ease.

Possibly the most shocking myth stripped down in the book is that this was a school shooting by design. The event became the poster for gun restrictions, which may be a noble cause, but it misses the intentions that Eric and Dylan had that day. By all accounts, the attack was a dismal failure. The massive bombs that they rigged up did not go off as planned. They had a low body count estimate in the hundreds, but hoped for thousands. They wanted to start a worldwide revolution. And they hoped they could do this all without devastating their parents. In every possible way, these boys failed. They failed their society, their peers, their parents, and thank goodness, they failed themselves.

These failures continue to cast ripples today. Cullen devotes a good chuck of his book to the horrible aftermath of these events. An investigation that became disgustingly political included cover-ups and foot-dragging. There were copycats, pranks and bomb-threats. Survivors went through physical and emotional re-hab. Some people tried to profit from the shooting. The school had to be rebuilt, along with the student body and the surrounding community. Some relationships were bonded for eternity, and some shattered. Depression and post-traumatic-stress were prevalent and devastating. Lawsuits were filed. The entire town seemed to be cursed, with normal bad luck ascribed to the ghost of Columbine. Cullen captures all of this with stunning detail and respectfulness. There is no stone that he does not peek under, describe, and then return with loving care. That he pulled this balancing act off for the entire book, detailing an event with so many scars and controversy, is absolutely stunning.

The end result is a book that should be required reading for every teacher, guidance counselor, clinical psychologist and parent. Columbine unmasks universal and innate tendencies that a small portion of our population harbors. And what makes this minority dangerous is that they have no empathy for the rest of us, and a genius for hiding this flaw. The signs of their disease are usually there, but they are murky due to our faith in nurture conquering nature.

Columbine is not just an account of an American tragedy, it is a guide for preventing future ones. We must begin by accepting that much of who we are is the dumb luck of genetics, but that this does not exculpate our actions. Sure, we can dream up more pleasant realities for us to operate within, where free will plays a larger role, and loving someone enough will make everything all right, but fantasy is never a solution for improving our existence. It is just the comforting blanket we tragically suffocate ourselves with.

Bank on Yourself: The Life-Changing Secret to Growing and Protecting Your Financial Future (Hardcover)

by Pamela Yellen (Author)


T. Harv Eker, author, N. Y. Times #1 best seller, Secrets of the Millionaire Mind
"If you’re looking for more of the same conventional financial advice, this isn’t the book for you. But if you’re prepared to take back control of your financial life once and for all, Bank On Yourself is a ground-breaking method that can put you on the fast track to reaching your goals and dreams."

Mark Victor Hansen, co-author, Chicken Soup for the Soul series
"This book reveals a unique, powerful and time-tested method that can guarantee your financial security and peace of mind now and in the years to come."

Product Description
Bank On Yourself: The Life-Changing Secret to Growing and Protecting Your Financial Future reveals the secrets to taking back control of your financial future that Wall Street, banks, and credit card companies don't want you to know. You'll discover how to:

· Have a rock-solid financial plan and a predictable retirement income that can last as long as you do – with no luck, skill, or guesswork required

· Turn your back on the stomach-churning twists and turns of the stock and real estate markets

· Get back every penny you pay for your cars, vacations, home repairs, business equipment, a college education, and other major purchases, so you can enjoy more of life's luxuries today without robbing your nest-egg! (The average family could increase their lifetime wealth by $500,000 to $1,000,000 or more using this method, without the risk or volatility of stocks and real estate)

· Become your own source of financing and recapture the interest you pay to banks and finance companies – reduce or eliminate the control those institutions have over you

Can you imagine what it would be like to look forward to opening your account statements because they always have good news and never any ugly surprises?

More than 100,000 Americans of all ages, incomes, and backgrounds are already using Bank On Yourself to grow a nest-egg they can predict and count on, even when stocks, real estate, and other investments tumble. You'll meet some of them and hear their stories of how Bank On Yourself has helped them reach a wide variety of short-term and long-term personal and financial goals and dreams in this book.

Finally, The Truth Is Out, March 26, 2009
By Paul J. Nick (Houston, Texas)

Pamela, has done a great job at taking the complex and making it easy for the average person to understand. People can really Bank On Themselves. You finance everything you buy, you either pay interest to a finance or credit card company or you give up the interest you could have earned on your money if you pay cash. I know because my father started a similar program for me when I was just 1 month old. I have now accumulated over 14 Bank On Yourself policies and I finance my childrens private school through my system. I have also financed homes, home upgrades, business deals, and cars. It was intersting to note that banks put billions of thier safe money into similar plans but never tell their customers about it. I would highly recommend this book if you want to take control of your finances and recapture the interest your sending out every month. If you think about it, over a lifetime this could be hundreds of thousands of dollars for your family instead of the finance company. Thank you Pamela for writing this book. Everyone no matter what their financial situation can benefit from this book.

Clever plan--not always the right answer, April 14, 2009
By Sandy Winnich "Certified Financial Planner" (Arlington, TEXAS)

First off, I'm not sure why the author things CFPs would discourage plans like these--if they make money, I want my clients to use them because then they can continue to pay me :-) It kind of sounds like Mrs. Yellen is trying ot stir up conspiracy theory to make you think this is a lot more valuable than it is.

Here's the plan: you get a whole life insurance policy with a PUA rider (Paid-Up Additions) and invest (in yourself basically) up to the MEC limit. These investments will return dividends, which you reinvest in the policy. Now when you get to the MEC limit (during the capitalization period of about 5-6 years), you can take out loans on your policy (interest on which is tax deductible) and pay (yourself) back over time.

This is a pretty good plan for people who are risk averse. It will probably beat your average savings account interest (especially nowadays) and the tax deductions are a nice perk. The whole process is reminiscent of books likeSurviving the Second Great Depression --clever ways to take advantage of the current system.

I wouldn't normally follow advice from people who buys time shares, but this seems like a decent gander.

10-10-10: A Life-Transforming Idea (Hardcover)

by Suzy Welch (Author)


"This eloquent, witty, intelligent book is a triumph on several levels. Not only does it provide insightful and instructive lessons for making personal decisions but the intimate life stories illustrating Suzy Welch's decision-making process are endlessly absorbing, captivating the reader's interest from start to finish."-- Doris Kearns Goodwin, author of Team of Rivals

"Suzy Welch sparkles with brilliant ideas. In 10-10-10 she offers a profound, easy-to-apply tool for making tough decisions simple, finding clarity amid life's confusions. If you're wondering what to do, which path to follow at the fork, whether to stay or leave -- no matter what it may be -- 10-10-10 will help you find your way."-- Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence

Product Description

Any choice you make -

any decision -

will benefit from


We all want to lead a life of our own making. But in today's accelerated world, with its competing priorities, information overload, and confounding options, we can easily find ourselves steered by impulse, stress, or expedience. Are our decisions the right ones? Or are we being governed, time and time again, and against our best intentions, by the demands of the moment?

A transformative new approach to decision making, 10-10-10 is a tool for reclaiming your life at home, in love, and at work. The process is clear, straightforward, and transparent. In fact, when you're facing a dilemma, all it takes to begin are three questions: What are the consequences of my decision in 10 minutes?

In 10 months? And in 10 years?

Sound simple? Not quite. Recounting poignant stories from her own life and the lives of many other dedicated 10-10-10 users, Suzy Welch reveals how exploring the impact of our decisions in multiple time frames invariably surfaces our unconscious agendas, fears, needs, and desires -- and ultimately helps us identify and live according to our deepest goals and values.

10-10-10's applicability is uniquely broad. Whether it is used by college students or busy mothers or senior business executives, artists, government administrators, or entrepreneurs, 10-10-10 has shown its effectiveness in decisions large and small, routine and radical, consistently changing lives for the better.

Readers of O magazine discovered this pragmatic and innovative idea when Suzy Welch first introduced it in her column. Now, in this immensely useful and revelatory book, she fully explains the power of 10-10-10, a transformative idea that can replace chaos with consistency, guilt with joy, and confusion with clarity.

Living by 10s, April 4, 2009
By Kimberly Smith Martinez "Licensed Psychologis... (San Antonio, TX , USA)

A couple of days ago I received my copy, hot off the presses, of "10-10-10, 10 Minutes, 10 Months, 10 Years, A Life-Transforming Idea" and I encourage you to run out and purchase the book to learn how to apply the tool in your life and read the inspiring stories of how others have used it to live with greater satisfaction and authenticity. We all find ourselves at times immobilized in a decision process, uncertain about which way to proceed. The questions may run from the easy:
Should I hit the snooze button or get up and head to the gym? Eat the piece of chocolate cake or go for the yogurt parfait? Stop at the grocery store today or tomorrow? To the more challenging: Should I accept the job offered across the country? Should I start a family now? Do I stay in this relationship?

10-10-10 refers to a way of considering the consequences of a decision and projecting the outcome into the near and distant future. Such consideration provides one with an opportunity for perspective and, quite possibly, transformation. 10-10-10 is an easy to remember (and apply) life management tool that will help propel you out of murky indecision, toward clarity, personal fulfillment and living your life with authenticity.

I have used this process in both my personal and professional life. It has helped me in decision making as well as in communication with others. I have taught my clients the process in the course of helping them in their decision-making as well as in improving communicating with their coworkers and loved ones. This book joins other important books in my office which I suggest to my clients to offer up a new approach to a problem.

Phenomenally helpful, practical, wise, and fun!, April 17, 2009
By Edward Hallowell (Arlington, Massachusetts)

What a perfect book to help navigate the tsunami called modern life! In today's world it is imperative to live intentionally, because, if you do not steer your own course the world will quickly start steering it for you. You can end up feeling that you never really get to live the life you want to live. Suzy Welch's brilliantly simple schema will allow you to solve the problem of too much to do and not enough time to do it. This book will give you back the life you really want to lead. Not only that, the book is full of engaging, moving, and interesting stories. All in all, a triumph!

The Carrot Principle: How the Best Managers Use Recognition to Engage Their People, Retain Talent, and Accelerate Performance [Updated & Revised] (Har

by Adrian Gostick (Author), Chester Elton (Author)

Book Description

Got carrotphobia? Do you think that recognizing your employees will distract you and your team from more serious business, create jealousy, or make you look soft? Think again.The Carrot Principle reveals the groundbreaking results of one of the most in-depth management studies ever undertaken, showing definitively that the central characteristic of the most successful managers is that they provide their employees with frequent and effective recognition. With independent research from The Jackson Organization and analysis by bestselling leadership experts Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton, this breakthrough study of 200,000 people over ten years found dramatically greater business results when managers offered constructive praise and meaningful rewards in ways that powerfully motivated employees to excel.

Drawing on case studies from leading companies including Disney, DHL, KPMG, and Pepsi Bottling Group, bestselling authors Gostick and Elton show how the transformative power of purpose-based recognition produces astonishing increases in operating results--whether measured by return on equity, return on assets, or operating margin. And they show how great managers lead with carrots, not sticks, and in doing so achieve higher

* Productivity
* Engagement
* Retention
* Customer satisfaction

The Carrot Principle illustrates that the relationship between recognition and improved business results is highly predictable--it's proven to work. But it's not the employee recognition some of us have been using for years. It is recognition done right, recognition combined with four other core traits of effective leadership.

Gostick and Elton explain the remarkably simple but powerful methods great managers use to provide their employees with effective recognition, which all managers can easily learn and begin practicing for immediate results. Great recognition doesn't take time--it can be done in a matter of moments--and it doesn't take budget-busting amounts of money. This exceptional book presents the simple steps to becoming a Carrot Principle manager and to building a recognition culture in your organization; it offers a wealth of specific examples, culled from real-life cases, of the ways to do recognition right. Following these simple steps will make you a high-performance leader and take your team to a new level of achievement.

From Publishers Weekly
Gostick and Elton, consultants with the O.C. Tanner Recognition Company, have made a career out of promoting the idea of employee recognition as a corporate cure-all. (Their previous books include Managing with Carrots, The 24-Carrot Manager and A Carrot a Day). Here, they cover familiar ground, showing how many managers fail to acknowledge the special achievements of their employees and risk alienating their best workers or losing them to competing firms. They advocate creating a "carrot culture" in which successes are continually celebrated and reinforced. Dozens of recognition techniques include the obvious ("When a top performer is going on a particularly long business trip, upgrade her ticket to business class") to the offbeat ("Hire a celebrity impersonator to leave a congratulatory voice-mail message on an employee's phone"). But the authors pad the pages with unsurprising survey results, the umpteenth recapitulation of Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs and long anecdotes of questionable relevance (e.g., three pages about Charles Goodyear's rubber-vulcanizing technique in order to introduce the notion that a transforming force—like employee recognition!—can produce surprising results). Gostick and Elton's philosophy is appealing, but could have been explained in a long magazine article. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Do your people know they're appreciated?, November 16, 2008
By Nathan Barrera (Chicago)

Many business managers whine about bad worker morale, high turnover, and the like but they do little about it, and even less to try and understand the causes. In The Carrot Principle, leadership experts Adrian Gostic and Chester Elton tap a ten-year, 200,000-employee study to prove the all-around benefits of constructive praise and meaningful rewards. They persuasively demonstrate that powerfully motivated employees can spark radical improvements in every aspect of your business.

Another book I strongly recommend because it has worked wonders in my company for improving leadership skills and employee morale is The Emotional Intelligence Quick Book

Important Stuff in Depth, but Nothing New, August 1, 2007
By Walter H. Bock "Wally Bock - Author, Blogger,... (Charlotte NC)

Here are the big ideas from this book.

Positive consequences, such as praise and recognition, are great tools for encouraging people to try new things and to continue desired behaviors. They send a message about what managers value.

In work teams where people say they have been praised recently, productivity, morale, and measures of engagement are more likely to be high and people are more likely to stay with the organization.

In teams where people say they have not been praised recently, productivity, morale, and measures of engagement are more likely to be lower and people are more likely to want to leave.

Companies with high productivity, morale and engagement and low turnover are more profitable.

Managers rate themselves higher on giving praise and recognition than their subordinates rate them.

There are no breakthrough, thought-leader ideas here. There is nothing really new.

The jacket blurb implies that this is based on exciting new research. It's not. It's based on research by the authors' firm that reinforces other research, including Gallup, Blanchard, a boatload of academic researchers and my own study of top performing supervisors. So if you're looking for new or breakthrough stuff, you don't have to buy the book and you don't need to read any further.

That doesn't mean that you won't get value from the book. The points the authors make are worth making again and again. Praise in all its forms is the most powerful and most underused tool for growing great, engaged teams.

Because the book is devoted, essentially, to a single idea, you get lots of depth on that idea. Some of those are just small insights.

On page 84, the authors make the point that in service industries, the perceived value of the product is tied to the behavior of the person that the customer comes in contact with. I knew this at some level, but seeing it in print got me to reflect on it and what it means.

Other things are more substantive. The authors provide details on different types of recognition: Day-to-Day; Above and Beyond; Career; and Event. They offer forms and lists and charts.

If you haven't read much about the power of praise and recognition this is a good place to start. The book covers most of the basic research, puts it in context, and gives you tools for putting it to use.

Remember that the authors wrote this book to sell their services and products. Sometimes they try way too hard to stretch their single bed blanket of product over the double bed of the subject. Sometimes they struggle to name things "carrot" or paint them orange, when simple description would do just fine.

If you're looking for a tool to use with managers at our company or in your peer group to increase the amount and effectiveness of legitimate praise, this is a good book to buy and use. You may also want to investigate the authors' other products.

Hungry Girl: 200 Under 200: 200 Recipes Under 200 Calories (Paperback)

by Lisa Lillien (Author)

Product Description

Hungry Girl mania is sweeping the nation! The New York Times bestselling phenomenon delivers even more yum-tastic recipes!

An easy-to-use cookbook containing 200 Hungry Girl recipes all under 200 calories.

Recipes include:
* H-O-T Hot Boneless Buffalo Wings
*Sassy Southwestern Roll-Ups
*Cheesy-Good Cornbread Muffins
* Holy Moly Guacamole
* HG’s So Low Mein w/Chicken
* Cheeseburger Lettuce Cups
* Chocolate Chip Cookie Crisp Puddin’ Shake
* Swirls Gone Wild Cheesecake Brownies
* Personal Pretzel-Bottomed Ice Cream Pie!
And many more!

Told with Lisa’s signature wit and sassy style, these recipes are as fun to read as they are to make!

About the Author
She’s not a nutritionist, she’s just hungry. LISA LILLIEN is the founder of Over half a million loyal fans receive her daily emails containing guilt-free recipes, food and product reviews, dieting news, shockers and more. She lives in Los Angeles, California.

Sweet Companion to the First Book, April 14, 2009
By Elle "jadesong86" (California)

One of the things that disappointed me about the original Hungry Girl cookbook was the dismal dessert selection. Sure, I'd had some success with the pumpkin cupcakes and brownies, but I have a real sweet tooth to keep in check, so I wanted more dessert suggestions.

Fortunately for me, Hungry Girl's follow-up follows through nicely. The format is similar to the origina - a list of recommended products and staples (which are mostly the same), then the best part - more recipes to try! A lot of these recipes call for the same 'Hungry Girl stapes' - Fiber One, shirataki, eggbeaters, so you don't actually have to buy a whole slew of new foods to try out most of these recipes.

For the breakfast section, I was happy to find some pretty creative oatmeal recipes - oatmeal chocolate chip pancakes, and oatmeal sundaes. I was particularly excited to try the blueberry muffins - which don't call for a cake mix (yay!) - they turned out nicely, even though I used white flour instead of whole wheat...

The foods in this book, though by calorie standards, they're 'snacks' seem heartier and more diverse. There's a goolash recipe, cioppino(!), cornbread, and buffalo wings.

But on to the desserts...There are FOUR chapters devoted to dessert, and two that are mostly dessert. Yay!! First, to satisfy the cupcake fetish everyone seems to have nowadays - there's a chapter devoted to cupcakes, which includes red velvet adn even chocolate marshmallow - can't wait to try that one! Then there's creme brulee, tiramisu, strawberry shortcake, and apple fritters.

Like in the last book, Hungry Girl also sectionalizes the last part of the book for specific foods - in this book, that's Cool Whip, Fuji apples, Fiber One, and Vitalicious. The photos in this book also seem better organized - they're organized by chapter, making for easier reference and flipping.

As with the first book, my only real gripe with the whole Hungry Girl diet is the use of artificial sugars in a lot of the recipes, as they tend to give me headaches. Even then though, many of these recipes make such good substitutes for the unhealthier restaurant version, that it doesn't hurt too much to use real sugar instead of Splenda, so I can't complain!

Great Book., April 16, 2009
By J. Beckner

I was a big fan of the first hungry girl cookbook and am a huge fan of the second one so far. I have already made the mozzarella sticks, boneless buffalo wings, and my favorite the frozen s'mores. All are fantastic.

However, if you are not a fan of processed food, this book rely on them heavily, so you'd be best suited to go a different route. But, if you want a fun book, with very low calorie recipes that taste amazing then this is the book for you.

Patriots: A Novel of Survival in the Coming Collapse (Paperback)

by James Wesley Rawles (Author)

Product Description

Part novel, part survivalist-handbook, Patriots tells of a small group of friends facing every American's worst nightmare—the total collapse of society. The stock market plummets and hyperinflation cripples commerce and then a seemingly isolated financial crisis passes the tipping point when an unprepared government fails to act. Practically overnight, the fragile institutions of democracy fall apart and every American is forced to survive on their own.

Evading mobs of desperate, out-of-control citizens who have turned Chicago into a wasteland of looting and mayhem, this novel's protagonists make their way to a shared secure ranch in the wilds of northern Idaho. Here the survival-driven group fends off vicious attacks from the outside and eventually assists in restoring order to the country. The compelling, fast-paced action-adventure novel has readers jotting notes and referencing the book's impressive index for informative survivalist tips on everything from setting up a secure shelter to treating traumatic flesh wounds.

If "TSHTF," You Had Better Have Read This Book!, February 18, 2004
By Matthew Bracken (Florida, United States)

In Patriots, Rawles fully develops the critical themes of the importance of self-reliance, teamwork, preparedness, and dedication to our Constitution and our God. That's what "Patriots" means, to me. But what really uniquely struck me (as someone who benefited from excellent training by VN era SEALs many years ago on Uncle Sam's dime) was Rawles unique emphasis on tactical awareness and readiness. His characters always "stay tactical" appropriate to the situation, and the importance of that cannot be overestimated! This is something glossed over in 99% of books, where the heroes go merrily "smoking and joking" along, and somehow always develop ESP, or get a lucky break, just in time to avoid disaster. It doesn't work that way! In reality, in a SHTF scenario, survivors must always "stay tactical" using 360% security and all of the other drills and SOPs Rawles lays out so well. If there is one thing I hope readers take from Patriots, it's that lesson! If they do nothing else, I hope that after reading Patriots, survivalists will be encouraged to include some very good military field manuals in their libraries, and learn the small unit tactics and SOPs laid out so convincingly in Patriots. The best "stuff" in the world is of no use if you can't keep it, because you left holes in your security, or you were careless. The tactical SOPs written about in Patriots are designed to make the survivor cover all of these bases at all times. Rawles entire book is a great reminder of the critical importance of incorporating brass-tacks tactical SOPs in any realistic survivalist preparations. I very highly recommend that it occupy a center space on every serious survivalist's bookshelf.

Matt Bracken, author of "Enemies Foreign and Domestic" and "Domestic Enemies: The Reconquista."

Couldn't Put it Down!, March 27, 2000
By A Customer

Excellent work by Mr. Rawles. In it he explores the possibilities and what ifs of a total collapse of the civilized world that we have come to know and upon which we depend. Imagine, if you will, that the economy spins out of control and takes civilized society with it. Imagine this event making the Great Depression look like a walk in the park. How would one survive or thrive during such a chaotic experience? Can it be done alone? What are the real problems and issues that might need to be overcome? Mr. Rawles novel explores those possibilites. His information is well presented. Obviously a lot of thought and research went into this novel. It reads more like a contingency plan and less like some escapist fantasy. It beats any sci-fi novel hands down. I strongly recommend "Patriots" to anyone who's ever wondered what would happen should the day come when they dialed 911 and nobody answered.(Remember Hurricane Andrew and the LA Riots?) Read "Patriots" and find out. It is definitely time well spent. However, let me offer a word of warning. Pick up "Patriots" and you won't want to put it down until its finished!

Master Your Metabolism: The 3 Diet Secrets to Naturally Balancing Your Hormones for a Hot and Healthy Body! (Hardcover)

by Jillian Michaels (Author), Mariska van Aalst (Author)

Product Description

Does it feel as if you’re fighting your body to lose even one pound—or just to maintain your current weight? Respected health and wellness expert and bestselling author Jillian Michaels has been there, too. So she consulted top experts in the field of metabolism and discovered that she’d inadvertently been abusing her endocrine system for years. After “fixing” her own metabolism, she decided to share what she learned by devising this simple, 3-phase plan that engages all the weight-loss hormones (including the friendly HGH, testosterone, DHEA; and the not-so-friendly: insulin, cortisol, and excess estrogen).

In Master Your Metabolism, discover how to:
•REMOVE “anti-nutrients” from your diet
•RESTORE foods that speak directly to fat-burning genes
•REBALANCE energy and your hormones for effortless weight loss

Michaels offers a wealth of information throughout, including: shopping lists and online shopping resources, hormone-trigger food charts, how to eat “power nutrient” foods on a budget, smart strategies for eating out, quick and easy recipes, as well as mini-programs for addressing PMS, andropause, metabolic syndrome, PCOS, and menopause.

About the Author
JILLIAN MICHAELS, best known as a strength trainer and life coach for the NBC hit series The Biggest Loser, is the author of the bestselling Making the Cut and Winning by Losing.

In a nutshell - this is about going organic, April 7, 2009
By yungmom "yungmom" (Salt Lake City, UT United States)

Let me first say that in the past year I have increasingly been drawn to basic foods (without all the packaging etc.) and have loved it. My favorite breakfast is a hot cereal made of oats, millet, quinoa and other grains. My husband makes bread in our house. We've increased our fruits and veggies. Still I think that many people take "organic" too far for our family.

Jillian starts out with her experiences of her childhood and her connections to food and then goes on to her youth where she started to get fit and healthy. Still everything was a struggle for her. Then she found her hormones were out of whack.

Jillian talks about a number of different hormones, what they do and how they affect your body - weightwise and other ways. She helps you to identify the hormones that may be giving you problems.

Once she does that she goes through the 3 steps of her program which include getting rid of all the foods with additives of different kinds (she tells you just what to look for) and then gives you ideas of organic foods you should look for. It isn't just foods though - she talks about other items in your house that may cause problems such as cosmetics and plastics.

I love how much information was in the book and that it was easy to understand. She has a ton of resources listed in the back.

If you want to learn more about how your hormones affect your weight you might like this book (I do wish though there was more that talked to type 1 diabetics directly though as I've had a number of questions for myself). If you're ready to go organic the book may be for you. If you're not ready to go organic you will probably find some good information anyway. If "organic" annoys to you no end I would pass on the book.

Personally, I will be able to use some of the information, but won't be going to the extremes she suggests.

Finally, answers!!!, April 8, 2009
By M. D'AGOSTINO (Philadelphia, PA United States)

I suffer from PCOS, Insulin Resistance, and Hypothyroidism, and this book has finally helped me start to understand all of my struggles. For years I never knew why I worked out more than most people and dieted more strictly than most people but wasn't seeing the same results. I only wish the book went into MORE detail! I am now taking what I've learned and will continue to work with my endocrynologist and am thinking about getting an herbologist as well. This is the book the diet industry has needed for a long time. The chemicals in food and the environment are wreaking havoc in our bodies, and I wouldn't be surprised if my condition wasn't worsened by the cr@p I ate as a kid!! Thank you, Jillian!!!

30 Ways in 30 Days to Save Your Family (Hardcover)

by Rebecca Hagelin (Author)

Product Description

In her new book, 30 Ways in 30 Days to Save Your Family, author Rebecca Hagelin lays out 30 simple and concrete actions that parents can implement-one day at a time-to reconnect with their children and restore peace in their home. As a mother of three, a syndicated columnist, and specialist on family, culture, and media issues, Rebecca understands the frustration parents feel. She designed this book with working parents and busy families in mind. Moms and dads can read a chapter at soccer practice or while waiting in carpool and come away with practical solutions to common parenting problems that can easily be put to use.

Featuring a foreword by Sean Hannity, personal stories from Rebecca, as well as anecdotes from other parents, 30 Ways in 30 Days to Save Your Family offers common sense advice to help parents tackle everyday dilemmas.

From the Inside Flap
Your Family Can Be Stronger...
Your Kids Better Protected...
And You Can Do It in 30 Days

As a parent, you know the challenges against you can seem overwhelming. While you're trying to raise thoughtful, considerate, innocent children, popular culture seems to want to turn your children against you. Schools sometimes seem less places of learning than bazaars where your children are sold bad language and surly attitudes--or worse, drugs and sexually transmitted diseases. Your own day is stressful and hectic--and you worry that you're neglecting your children. And you sometimes think there's nowhere to turn for help.Now there is. Rebecca Hagelin's 30 Ways in 30 Days to Save Your Family is the guidebook every parent needs, laying out 30 practical actions--concrete, doable steps you can implement one day at a time--to restore peace in your home and reconnect with your children.

In 30 Ways in 30 Days to Save Your Family, Rebecca Hagelin--a mother of three, as well as a syndicated columnist, author, and specialist on family, culture, and media issues--provides a guide for parents who want more than mere encouragement; who want a practical plan: with realistic goals, specific actions to take, and a clear path to achievement. In 30 Ways in 30 Days to Save Your Family, you'll learn:

* What to say to your teen as you pass Victoria's Secret in the mall
* How to make a clothing contract with your daughter
* How (and why) to write a letter to your child
* How to slow down your life--and your child's--so that you can enjoy your time together
* How to fight the culture--and not your child
* And much more

Raising your child should be a joy, not an uphill battle that leaves you frustrated or in tears. Rebecca Hagelin's 30 Ways in 30 Days to Save Your Family is a parent-tested guide to help you succeed in the most important responsibility you have--raising happy, responsible, well-adjusted kids.

Solid Gold for Children, April 6, 2009
By James M. Kushiner (Chicago, IL)

What I most love about Rebecca Hagelin's book--besides the very practical, hands on, parent- and kid-tested suggestions and resources--is her infectious upbeat attitude, a can do, positive joy in shouldering the difficult responsibilities of parenting. Children are gifts, but we in our downbeat culture, are filled with unrelieved worries about things, material things. What Rebecca gives the reader is a bracing reminder that, hey, this is all about people we love, and let's enjoy and make the very best of the hard times and the good times--they both teach us lessons and build character. As the great fourth-century John Chrysostom reminded his packed church, material things are on loan from God; what we take with us beyond earthly life are virtues and character and the fruit of such a life. Help for struggling parents and children is here in her book.

A Book All Young Parents Need, April 7, 2009
By R. Cooper

In today's culture, even the best parents can wonder how to give their children the best practical ideas to stay thoughtful, considerate and safe. But for young parents especially, this book is a God send. Raising a child today is full of more speed bumps and pitfalls than probably any generation before us. And when the children are at school, they are constantly being offered incentives to stray from their moral upbringing. I have given this amazing and easy step-by-step guide to strengthening your family to every expecting friend, and young parent I know, in the hopes that it will do what it did for me: offer me real hope, optimism, and fresh encouraging ideas to bring my family closer together. Don't buy one copy, buy TEN! And give it to all of your friends. Buy 50 and give it to your church group, boy scout parents, soccer moms/dads, etc. because you'll find that your fellow parents are facing the same issues you are, and developing that network of support is a blessing unto itself.

The Ultimate Depression Survival Guide: Protect Your Savings, Boost Your Income, and Grow Wealthy Even in the Worst of Times (Hardcover)

by Martin D. Weiss (Author)

Product Description

Having an effective financial and personal plan for the future is now more crucial than ever. And with The Ultimate Depression Survival Guide, readers will quickly learn how to create such a plan. This comprehensive guide was especially designed to help people map out a practical financial plan in this unpredictable economic environment, so that they can stop worrying about their money and just enjoy life. Step by step, Martin Weiss--America's Consumer Advocate for Financial Safety--introduces, explains, and helps solve many of the new challenges and risks that face millions of Americans. Throughout the book, Weiss provides readers with sound strategies for coping with the credit crunch, housing bust, and decline of the U.S. dollar. The Ultimate Depression Survival Guide also examines important topics that today's investor must be familiar with--including global investing, foreign currencies, and commodities--if they intend to make it through the decade ahead.

Martin D. Weiss, PhD (Palm Beach, FL), is chairman of The Weiss Group, LLC, which consists of three separate corporations, including Weiss Research, Inc. Weiss Research is dedicated to providing information and tools to help investors make sounder financial decisions and offers its insights on Weiss is the editor of the financial newsletter Safe Money Report, known for its track record in picking major turns in interest rates. He is the author of The Ultimate Safe Money Guide: How Everyone 50 and Over Can Protect, Save, and Grow Their Money (978-0-471-15202-6) and Crash Profits: Make Money When Stocks Sink and Soar (978-0-471-42998-2).

From the Inside Flap

With no end to the global debt crisis in sight and the American economy sinking into depression, traditional advice on money could lead millions of innocent victims down the road of deepening losses. But with this timely book, Martin Weiss will guide you to the truly safe havens and show you how to turn this crisis into a unique wealth-building opportunity.

As Editor of the Safe Money Report and author of Crash Profits, Martin Weiss specifically warned of this crisis well before it began. He helped thousands of investors avoid losses by forecasting the financial difficulties of Washington Mutual, Wachovia Bank, Fannie Mae, Lehman Brothers, General Motors, and Citigroup—plus nearly every major troubled firm—well in advance. Indeed, the accuracy of his analysis is why the U.S. Government Accountability Office has praised his work; the New York Times wrote that he was "the first to warn of the dangers and say so unambiguously"; and the Wall Street Journal reported that his company's research outperformed that of all Wall Street firms they covered.

Martin Weiss's father, one of the only economists in the modern era who not only advised investors during the 1930s Great Depression, but also predicted it, performed a similar service for investors. And now, with The Ultimate Depression Survival Guide, Weiss combines the past analysis of his father with his own contemporary insights to help you protect your money, improve your income, and build wealth in the worst of times.

Step by step, Weiss outlines effective strategies that will help you to sidestep the continuing dangers in stocks, cut your losses in real estate, escape a banking crisis, build a substantial cash nest egg, and put that cash away in the safest possible place. If you feel you're stuck with sinking real estate or falling stocks, he offers you a solution that will help you sleep at night despite continuing market declines. Plus, he shows you how to recognize the ultimate bottom in real estate and stocks, giving you the opportunity to buy choice assets at bargain prices.

For the duration of this crisis—and beyond—you can also benefit from regular follow-up e-mails directly from the author. Visit to sign up for free financial updates such as critical warnings on upcoming dangers and new opportunities as they arise.

To survive the crisis on Wall Street and Main Street, you don't need extensive investing experience or the ability to forecast the future. All you need is the courage to get out of its way. So throw out your preconceived notions, start with a clean slate, and follow the commonsense guidance found in this reliable resource to survive—and thrive—during the turbulent times ahead.

Martin Weiss Has Hit Gold During Down Times. A Must Read Book, April 7, 2009
By New Reviews "Detroit Free Press" (Detroit, MI, USA)

The Ultimate Depression Survival Guide is a literal gold mine of wealth saving- and wealth creating- information that most anyone from the auto line worker to the CEO or business owner- and anyone and everyone in between- can read and learn from. This title- just like the new business title by Will Estell, Wisdom & Wisecracks for the Aspiring Business Owner-have appeared in a time when their topics are of great value and consequence for their readers. I highly suggest buying The Ultimate Depression Survival Guide, and Wisdom & Wisecracks for the Aspiring Business Owner because you cannot get this type of valuable advice anywhere else for so little investment in your time and money. Kudos to Martin Weiss for a well written, easy to read, follow and understand book that really can and will make a difference to readers.

A Think Outside the Box Kind of Book !, April 8, 2009
By Jo Ana Starr "Director of NEIH.COM" (USA)

First of all, I was impressed by the author's almost clairvoyant predictions of the financial nightmare involving the banks, brokerage companies, etc that we are now living through. What attracted me to this book were the book's title promising answers and guidance that Americans need right now and the author's reputation. I admit that I was a bit skeptical that one book could do all the title claims to do.

I was happily surprised to find solid, bottomline advise on battening down your financial hatches and once that's done, investing safely in these unpredictable times. Maybe even thriving without risking whatever you've got left after the recent stock market ups and downs.

This is a great book that I think anyone who's concerned about the current US economic situation and their own financial options within the current situation will find to be very helpful.