An interactive workbook for women wanting to find harmony and understand the inevitability of life’s physiological changes

THE TAO OF TURNING FIFTY

WHAT EVERY WOMAN IN HER FORTIES NEEDS TO KNOW

A pragmatic guide doubling as a workbook that examines how to find inner balance during a woman’s tumultuous midlife change.

Boire masterfully encourages introspection and engagement in her book, which brings Eastern philosophy and Western lifestyles together to deliver “what every woman in her forties needs to know.” Touching on many primary concerns that women approaching or experiencing perimenopause or menopause may feel, the book serves as a printed classroom for mapping out coping mechanisms. Poems about healing and resources for women wanting to learn more are woven throughout, along with quotes from other recommended books on the topic. The author presents aspirational exercises and questions to encourage deeper thinking. The author suggests that the reader ask herself, “If there were no obstacles and I could do whatever it is I want and not fail, what would I do?” The lessons are also transmitted via Boire’s personal anecdotes as a busy mom navigating the range of emotional and physical challenges that come with the hormonal shifts of aging. Specific tips for finding one’s center are clearly outlined, including step-by-step instructions about how to meditate and develop a sense of calm. Readers are encouraged to build on Boire’s personal experiences and advice to find their own pathways for coming to terms with menopause and the less-than-pleasant symptoms that come along with it. Boire emphasizes finding some time alone in order to “allow yourself the time and space to just be—give yourself the quiet reflective time you need to figure it out, feel your way through, and pay attention to your inner urgings—it may not seem rational or logical but you will save yourself some pain and suffering if you listen well.”

An interactive workbook for women wanting to find harmony and understand the inevitability of life’s physiological changes

Pub Date: Feb. 2, 2012

ISBN: 978-1466378117

Page Count: 146

Publisher: CreateSpace

Review Posted Online: Sept. 26, 2012

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Clever and accessibly conversational, Manson reminds us to chill out, not sweat the small stuff, and keep hope for a better...

EVERYTHING IS F*CKED

A BOOK ABOUT HOPE

The popular blogger and author delivers an entertaining and thought-provoking third book about the importance of being hopeful in terrible times.

“We are a culture and a people in need of hope,” writes Manson (The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life, 2016, etc.). With an appealing combination of gritty humor and straightforward prose, the author floats the idea of drawing strength and hope from a myriad of sources in order to tolerate the “incomprehensibility of your existence.” He broadens and illuminates his concepts through a series of hypothetical scenarios based in contemporary reality. At the dark heart of Manson’s guide is the “Uncomfortable Truth,” which reiterates our cosmic insignificance and the inevitability of death, whether we blindly ignore or blissfully embrace it. The author establishes this harsh sentiment early on, creating a firm foundation for examining the current crisis of hope, how we got here, and what it means on a larger scale. Manson’s referential text probes the heroism of Auschwitz infiltrator Witold Pilecki and the work of Isaac Newton, Nietzsche, Einstein, and Immanuel Kant, as the author explores the mechanics of how hope is created and maintained through self-control and community. Though Manson takes many serpentine intellectual detours, his dark-humored wit and blunt prose are both informative and engaging. He is at his most convincing in his discussions about the fallibility of religious beliefs, the modern world’s numerous shortcomings, deliberations over the “Feeling Brain” versus the “Thinking Brain,” and the importance of striking a happy medium between overindulging in and repressing emotions. Although we live in a “couch-potato-pundit era of tweetstorms and outrage porn,” writes Manson, hope springs eternal through the magic salves of self-awareness, rational thinking, and even pain, which is “at the heart of all emotion.”

Clever and accessibly conversational, Manson reminds us to chill out, not sweat the small stuff, and keep hope for a better world alive.

Pub Date: May 14, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-06-288843-3

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: April 1, 2019

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Readers unfamiliar with the anecdotal material Greene presents may find interesting avenues to pursue, but they should...

MASTERY

Greene (The 33 Strategies of War, 2007, etc.) believes that genius can be learned if we pay attention and reject social conformity.

The author suggests that our emergence as a species with stereoscopic, frontal vision and sophisticated hand-eye coordination gave us an advantage over earlier humans and primates because it allowed us to contemplate a situation and ponder alternatives for action. This, along with the advantages conferred by mirror neurons, which allow us to intuit what others may be thinking, contributed to our ability to learn, pass on inventions to future generations and improve our problem-solving ability. Throughout most of human history, we were hunter-gatherers, and our brains are engineered accordingly. The author has a jaundiced view of our modern technological society, which, he writes, encourages quick, rash judgments. We fail to spend the time needed to develop thorough mastery of a subject. Greene writes that every human is “born unique,” with specific potential that we can develop if we listen to our inner voice. He offers many interesting but tendentious examples to illustrate his theory, including Einstein, Darwin, Mozart and Temple Grandin. In the case of Darwin, Greene ignores the formative intellectual influences that shaped his thought, including the discovery of geological evolution with which he was familiar before his famous voyage. The author uses Grandin's struggle to overcome autistic social handicaps as a model for the necessity for everyone to create a deceptive social mask.

Readers unfamiliar with the anecdotal material Greene presents may find interesting avenues to pursue, but they should beware of the author's quirky, sometimes misleading brush-stroke characterizations.

Pub Date: Nov. 13, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-670-02496-4

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Sept. 13, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2012

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