An often powerful guidebook for conquering adversity.

MY JOURNEY FROM HOMELESS TO ABUNDANCE

A man transforms his life after hitting rock bottom in this inspirational memoir and self-help manual.

Things were going great for debut author Harding; after a long and successful career in corporate consulting, he was able to retire and invest his money in real estate. When the real estate market crashed, he suddenly lost everything and found himself homeless in 2011. Stunned and angry, Harding lived in an abandoned house without water or electricity, and these dire circumstances made him feel hopeless and led him to blame others for his plight, he says. However, Harding also asserts that this unexpected hardship was the catalyst for monumental change in his life. By suddenly becoming homeless, he says, he discovered a new way of looking at the world: “If I took the position that I was here because of my reactions to events and decisions I had made in my past then all I had to do was make different decisions and my life could change.” This simple shift in perspective gave him a new life, he says—one full of gratitude and spiritual faith. (Readers of New Age literature will be familiar with the manner in which he takes esoteric concepts, such as quantum physics and universal law, and relates them to personal change.) Even in the face of extreme scarcity, Harding effectively emphasizes that being grateful for what one has can be a powerful force: “An attitude of gratitude is the connection between our desires and the manifestation of them into our life.” In a direct, sincere manner, Harding encourages readers to “own [their] greatness” through consistent mindfulness practices, and his book includes daily manifestation practices as examples. Its chapters quickly convey the book’s earnest messages, such as “Creating by Choosing—Consciously.” The book is relatively compact at only 62 pages in length, but readers of self-help books will likely find that it packs an emotional punch.

An often powerful guidebook for conquering adversity.

Pub Date: Sept. 20, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-982234-25-6

Page Count: 62

Publisher: BalboaPress

Review Posted Online: April 8, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A blissfully vicarious, heartfelt glimpse into the life of a Manhattan burlesque dancer.

TANQUERAY

A former New York City dancer reflects on her zesty heyday in the 1970s.

Discovered on a Manhattan street in 2020 and introduced on Stanton’s Humans of New York Instagram page, Johnson, then 76, shares her dynamic history as a “fiercely independent” Black burlesque dancer who used the stage name Tanqueray and became a celebrated fixture in midtown adult theaters. “I was the only black girl making white girl money,” she boasts, telling a vibrant story about sex and struggle in a bygone era. Frank and unapologetic, Johnson vividly captures aspects of her former life as a stage seductress shimmying to blues tracks during 18-minute sets or sewing lingerie for plus-sized dancers. Though her work was far from the Broadway shows she dreamed about, it eventually became all about the nightly hustle to simply survive. Her anecdotes are humorous, heartfelt, and supremely captivating, recounted with the passion of a true survivor and the acerbic wit of a weathered, street-wise New Yorker. She shares stories of growing up in an abusive household in Albany in the 1940s, a teenage pregnancy, and prison time for robbery as nonchalantly as she recalls selling rhinestone G-strings to prostitutes to make them sparkle in the headlights of passing cars. Complemented by an array of revealing personal photographs, the narrative alternates between heartfelt nostalgia about the seedier side of Manhattan’s go-go scene and funny quips about her unconventional stage performances. Encounters with a variety of hardworking dancers, drag queens, and pimps, plus an account of the complexities of a first love with a drug-addled hustler, fill out the memoir with personality and candor. With a narrative assist from Stanton, the result is a consistently titillating and often moving story of human struggle as well as an insider glimpse into the days when Times Square was considered the Big Apple’s gloriously unpolished underbelly. The book also includes Yee’s lush watercolor illustrations.

A blissfully vicarious, heartfelt glimpse into the life of a Manhattan burlesque dancer.

Pub Date: July 12, 2022

ISBN: 978-1-250-27827-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: July 28, 2022

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

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

Did you like this book?

more