A spiritual yet sturdy approach to an issue of national consequence.

WE'RE TIPPING OVER!

THE URGENCY TO RETHINK GOVERNMENT, BUSINESS, HEART AND SOUL!

Feld’s (Wake Up! Your Life is Calling!, 2009, etc.) self-help manual advocates a sensible, feel-good approach to surviving America’s economic downfall.

In this slim volume, Feld spouts statistics and what-ifs that should concern any American. “China is producing new engineering graduates at almost fifty times our rate in the United States,” he says. Or: What if the value of American homes keeps falling and the current economic state is the new normal? At first glance, Feld appears to be a scaremonger, although it’s hard to refute his logic. He says Americans have grown fat and lazy while the rest of the world has become educated, entrepreneurial, and willing to work for lower wages and fewer benefits. Feld postulates that if politicians continue to demand six-figure incomes and citizens insist on maintaining elite living standards, America will crumble. Endorsing a curious blend of the practical and the ethereal, Feld says that America’s only hope is to embrace love and “oneness.” By recognizing the spiritual thread that connects us all and working on raising our individual “vibrational energy,” Feld says that the country will prosper. The book offers specific, easy-to-follow methods intended to enable readers to access their nonphysical natures. Reaching beyond New Age notions of the higher self, the author proposes commonsense solutions to help overcome the global economic undoing, such as rejecting the victimhood mentality and adopting proactive rather than reactive financial measures. The book vacillates between being a spiritual self-help manual and an economic guide, managing to seamlessly blend the two approaches. It closes with astute suggestions to help reinvigorate America’s fallen state, particularly through a course of action that calls for individual responsibility, including daily meditation to awaken the spiritual aspect of socioeconomic regeneration. Less-spiritual steps toward economic stability include reclaiming overseas manufacturing by lowering domestic labor rates and denouncing material attachments. Some readers may find Feld’s budgetary concepts obvious and his approach too mystical, yet the disparate topics unify successfully into a compelling proposal.

A spiritual yet sturdy approach to an issue of national consequence.

Pub Date: Nov. 16, 2011

ISBN: 978-1462058310

Page Count: 144

Publisher: iUniverse

Review Posted Online: June 7, 2012

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Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

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UNTAMED

More life reflections from the bestselling author on themes of societal captivity and the catharsis of personal freedom.

In her third book, Doyle (Love Warrior, 2016, etc.) begins with a life-changing event. “Four years ago,” she writes, “married to the father of my three children, I fell in love with a woman.” That woman, Abby Wambach, would become her wife. Emblematically arranged into three sections—“Caged,” “Keys,” “Freedom”—the narrative offers, among other elements, vignettes about the soulful author’s girlhood, when she was bulimic and felt like a zoo animal, a “caged girl made for wide-open skies.” She followed the path that seemed right and appropriate based on her Catholic upbringing and adolescent conditioning. After a downward spiral into “drinking, drugging, and purging,” Doyle found sobriety and the authentic self she’d been suppressing. Still, there was trouble: Straining an already troubled marriage was her husband’s infidelity, which eventually led to life-altering choices and the discovery of a love she’d never experienced before. Throughout the book, Doyle remains open and candid, whether she’s admitting to rigging a high school homecoming court election or denouncing the doting perfectionism of “cream cheese parenting,” which is about “giving your children the best of everything.” The author’s fears and concerns are often mirrored by real-world issues: gender roles and bias, white privilege, racism, and religion-fueled homophobia and hypocrisy. Some stories merely skim the surface of larger issues, but Doyle revisits them in later sections and digs deeper, using friends and familial references to personify their impact on her life, both past and present. Shorter pieces, some only a page in length, manage to effectively translate an emotional gut punch, as when Doyle’s therapist called her blooming extramarital lesbian love a “dangerous distraction.” Ultimately, the narrative is an in-depth look at a courageous woman eager to share the wealth of her experiences by embracing vulnerability and reclaiming her inner strength and resiliency.

Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

Pub Date: March 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-9848-0125-8

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2020

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A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

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GREENLIGHTS

All right, all right, all right: The affable, laconic actor delivers a combination of memoir and self-help book.

“This is an approach book,” writes McConaughey, adding that it contains “philosophies that can be objectively understood, and if you choose, subjectively adopted, by either changing your reality, or changing how you see it. This is a playbook, based on adventures in my life.” Some of those philosophies come in the form of apothegms: “When you can design your own weather, blow in the breeze”; “Simplify, focus, conserve to liberate.” Others come in the form of sometimes rambling stories that never take the shortest route from point A to point B, as when he recounts a dream-spurred, challenging visit to the Malian musician Ali Farka Touré, who offered a significant lesson in how disagreement can be expressed politely and without rancor. Fans of McConaughey will enjoy his memories—which line up squarely with other accounts in Melissa Maerz’s recent oral history, Alright, Alright, Alright—of his debut in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, to which he contributed not just that signature phrase, but also a kind of too-cool-for-school hipness that dissolves a bit upon realizing that he’s an older guy on the prowl for teenage girls. McConaughey’s prep to settle into the role of Wooderson involved inhabiting the mind of a dude who digs cars, rock ’n’ roll, and “chicks,” and he ran with it, reminding readers that the film originally had only three scripted scenes for his character. The lesson: “Do one thing well, then another. Once, then once more.” It’s clear that the author is a thoughtful man, even an intellectual of sorts, though without the earnestness of Ethan Hawke or James Franco. Though some of the sentiments are greeting card–ish, this book is entertaining and full of good lessons.

A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-13913-4

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Oct. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2020

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