An earnest account of what the author calls a “mercury epidemic” in dentistry.




In this debut memoir, educator and advocate Bauer chronicles her and her daughter’s recovery from a variety of maladies, tying them all to a single cause—mercury in her fillings.

In 1993, when the Oregon-based author began suffering from acute light sensitivity, weakness, poor vision, skin peeling, and insomnia, she found no relief from her doctors, who found nothing wrong with her. She found her own answer in an entry describing mercury poisoning in an encyclopedia of alternative medicine. After studying the topic more thoroughly and looking back on her life, she concluded that her many silver fillings, which contained mercury, had been slowly poisoning her since she was 5 years old. The harmful effects, she felt, had likely been transferred to her daughter, Miko, during pregnancy and breastfeeding. The author gradually and creatively reveals these details over the course of this memoir, using the framing device of her visit to a holistic dentistry center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, in 1994. There, she had all of her fillings replaced and underwent an intense detoxification period which eventually led her back to full health, she says. This allowed her to then focus on young Miko, who suffered from developmental delays and her own array of health problems. With the help of a unique diet, homeopathy, and therapies such as Auditory Integration Training and behavioral optometry, Bauer says, Miko was able to flourish. Bauer is a highly engaging storyteller, which makes her memoir an enjoyable read. However, although she offers a convincing account of her recovery, she doesn’t address why so many other people with similar fillings haven’t suffered the same ailments that she did. Still, she presents her arguments powerfully: “How could putting the second most dangerous element on earth into our teeth be beneficial?” She also discusses the American Dental Association, which, she says, continues to support the use of fillings that contain mercury. Her book won’t convince every reader, but some may come away from this account more curious and cautious about its subject.

An earnest account of what the author calls a “mercury epidemic” in dentistry.

Pub Date: May 7, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-948018-51-7

Page Count: 158

Publisher: Other Mother

Review Posted Online: June 6, 2019

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An extraordinary true tale of torment, retribution, and loyalty that's irresistibly readable in spite of its intrusively melodramatic prose. Starting out with calculated, movie-ready anecdotes about his boyhood gang, Carcaterra's memoir takes a hairpin turn into horror and then changes tack once more to relate grippingly what must be one of the most outrageous confidence schemes ever perpetrated. Growing up in New York's Hell's Kitchen in the 1960s, former New York Daily News reporter Carcaterra (A Safe Place, 1993) had three close friends with whom he played stickball, bedeviled nuns, and ran errands for the neighborhood Mob boss. All this is recalled through a dripping mist of nostalgia; the streetcorner banter is as stilted and coy as a late Bowery Boys film. But a third of the way in, the story suddenly takes off: In 1967 the four friends seriously injured a man when they more or less unintentionally rolled a hot-dog cart down the steps of a subway entrance. The boys, aged 11 to 14, were packed off to an upstate New York reformatory so brutal it makes Sing Sing sound like Sunnybrook Farm. The guards continually raped and beat them, at one point tossing all of them into solitary confinement, where rats gnawed at their wounds and the menu consisted of oatmeal soaked in urine. Two of Carcaterra's friends were dehumanized by their year upstate, eventually becoming prominent gangsters. In 1980, they happened upon the former guard who had been their principal torturer and shot him dead. The book's stunning denouement concerns the successful plot devised by the author and his third friend, now a Manhattan assistant DA, to free the two killers and to exact revenge against the remaining ex-guards who had scarred their lives so irrevocably. Carcaterra has run a moral and emotional gauntlet, and the resulting book, despite its flaws, is disturbing and hard to forget. (Film rights to Propaganda; author tour)

Pub Date: July 10, 1995

ISBN: 0-345-39606-5

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Ballantine

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1995

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With this detailed, versatile cookbook, readers can finally make Momofuku Milk Bar’s inventive, decadent desserts at home, or see what they’ve been missing.

In this successor to the Momofuku cookbook, Momofuku Milk Bar’s pastry chef hands over the keys to the restaurant group’s snack-food–based treats, which have had people lining up outside the door of the Manhattan bakery since it opened. The James Beard Award–nominated Tosi spares no detail, providing origin stories for her popular cookies, pies and ice-cream flavors. The recipes are meticulously outlined, with added tips on how to experiment with their format. After “understanding how we laid out this cookbook…you will be one of us,” writes the author. Still, it’s a bit more sophisticated than the typical Betty Crocker fare. In addition to a healthy stock of pretzels, cornflakes and, of course, milk powder, some recipes require readers to have feuilletine and citric acid handy, to perfect the art of quenelling. Acolytes should invest in a scale, thanks to Tosi’s preference of grams (“freedom measurements,” as the friendlier cups and spoons are called, are provided, but heavily frowned upon)—though it’s hard to be too pretentious when one of your main ingredients is Fruity Pebbles. A refreshing, youthful cookbook that will have readers happily indulging in a rising pastry-chef star’s widely appealing treats.    


Pub Date: Oct. 25, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-307-72049-8

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2011

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