Easy-to-assimilate lessons on creating a healthy and respectful relationship with your child.

PARENTS UNDER THE INFLUENCE

WORDS OF WISDOM FROM A FORMER BAD MOTHER

How to avoid making the same mistakes as your parents.

When many of us become parents, we vow to raise our children differently than we were raised. Far too often, however, we fall back on automatic responses to our children that actually correlate to how we were raised, whether it’s a positive or negative response. David-Weill (The Suitors, 2013, etc.) takes a close look at how our unconscious actions, what we might call parental instincts, are actually reproductions of our own parents’ behavior and how we must consciously regulate and evaluate our reactions if we truly seek to take a different approach to parenting. Throughout the text, the author includes numerous examples to illustrate the wide range of ways we follow what we learned as children, whether it’s choosing a bedtime, deciding what foods to serve, or disciplining rambunctious children in the back seat of a car. She also addresses more intriguing topics, such as why we can resent having to raise our children, the amount of time we should devote to our children so they ultimately gain independence, and how squabbling over minor issues can be a way to hide from larger, more urgent issues—depression, drug use, etc. At the end of the book, a comprehensive “Practical Guide” provides parents with advice on the do’s and don’ts they can follow so they don’t become their parents as well as a series of questions that evaluate the type of parent they really are. Much of what David-Weill discusses is straightforward and common sense, but having it compiled into a logically progressive text that identifies the key ways we mimic our parents and then provides helpful ways to work around these issues makes this book a worthy read for parents of children of all ages.

Easy-to-assimilate lessons on creating a healthy and respectful relationship with your child.

Pub Date: Jan. 14, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-59051-056-8

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Other Press

Review Posted Online: Sept. 29, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

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If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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