A readable and wide-ranging compendium of New Age nostrums, all presented with a cleareyed vigor that aficionados of the...

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LIVE TRUE

A MINDFULNESS GUIDE TO AUTHENTICITY

A comprehensive guide to achieving greater mindfulness in life.

In her latest book, Nadrich (Says Who?, 2015), a life coach, meditation teacher, and founder of the Institute for Transformational Thinking, urges readers in a busy, modern world of worry to stop, take deep breaths, and embrace a greater degree of mindfulness. The author characterizes the latter as a state that will help them to return to their “conscious homeland.” As the centerpiece of her method, Nadrich advocates a regular practice of “living our truth in the present moment,” and this theme runs throughout the book—specifically, the notion that now is the most important moment of all, and one must live it consciously and lovingly to give one’s life meaning. In such moments, she asserts, people get an opportunity to decide who they truly are and may alter their consciousness accordingly. The book’s brief, highly readable chapters are organized as a sequence of broad concepts, such as “The Future,” “Self,” “Consciousness,” and “Perception,” and each includes meditations that concentrate primarily on its specific concept. Every chapter ends with a koanlike “Note to Self,” as well, usually consisting of just a handful of words. Along the way, readers are always encouraged to focus on the present rather than worry about lost possibilities: “Happiness will continue to elude us,” Nadrich writes, “if we are constantly longing for what ‘could be’ rather than accepting ‘what is.’ ” Readers on the path of self-realization, she says, should always be working to lift “the veils of the inauthentic self” even if, in the process, they end up confronting unwanted truths about themselves. Readers who are already familiar with mindfulness guides will find much of what Nadrich writes in this one to be reassuring. In our path to self-knowledge, she writes in a typical passage, “we strive to meet our full potential, and live true to who we really are”; it’s very comforting to assert that one should strive to be perfect while simultaneously acknowledging that one already is perfect. It’s a win-win scenario and one that readers may have encountered before. That said, not everything in this guide is as hand-holding; for example, Nadrich also warns readers that it’s very hard to lie to yourself when you’re in a state of true mindfulness, and her frequent acknowledgement of the importance of love (“If love is not what sends you out in your day, you will feel something missing, and not know quite what it is”) adds a welcome note of compassion to the book. That said, it does sometimes lean a bit too much on New Age clichés, and readers may feel that some of the author’s statements, such as, “Love is all there is” or her description of Bob Dylan as the “modern version” of William Shakespeare, are a bit overenthusiastic. Overall, though, the tone of the book is one of endearing optimism.

A readable and wide-ranging compendium of New Age nostrums, all presented with a cleareyed vigor that aficionados of the genre will find appealing.

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-578-41596-3

Page Count: 290

Publisher: IFTT PRESS

Review Posted Online: April 8, 2019

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

SEVERAL SHORT SENTENCES ABOUT WRITING

New York Times columnist and editorial board member delivers a slim book for aspiring writers, offering saws and sense, wisdom and waggery, biases and biting sarcasm.

Klinkenborg (Timothy; or, Notes of an Abject Reptile, 2006), who’s taught for decades, endeavors to keep things simple in his prose, and he urges other writers to do the same. (Note: He despises abuses of the word as, as he continually reminds readers.) In the early sections, the author ignores traditional paragraphing so that the text resembles a long free-verse poem. He urges readers to use short, clear sentences and to make sure each one is healthy before moving on; notes that it’s acceptable to start sentences with and and but; sees benefits in diagramming sentences; stresses that all writing is revision; periodically blasts the formulaic writing that many (most?) students learn in school; argues that knowing where you’re headed before you begin might be good for a vacation, but not for a piece of writing; and believes that writers must trust readers more, and trust themselves. Most of Klinkenborg’s advice is neither radical nor especially profound (“Turn to the poets. / Learn from them”), and the text suffers from a corrosive fallacy: that if his strategies work for him they will work for all. The final fifth of the text includes some passages from writers he admires (McPhee, Oates, Cheever) and some of his students’ awkward sentences, which he treats analytically but sometimes with a surprising sarcasm that veers near meanness. He includes examples of students’ dangling modifiers, malapropisms, errors of pronoun agreement, wordiness and other mistakes.

Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-307-26634-7

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2012

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