A health book recommendation: Every Third Thought: On Life, Death and the Endgame by Robert McCrum

A critic review (source The Economist) can be read at: http://econ.st/2ChxD8t.
Mr McCrum’s bravery in staring into the abyss cannot be overestimated; reading his book inevitably brings moments of terror. But “Every Third Thought” has something positive to offer, too.
Book description from Google Books:
AS READ ON BBC RADIO 4 BOOK OF THE WEEK’Thoughtful, subtle, elegantly clever and oddly joyous, Every Third Thought is beautiful’ Kate Mosse In 1995, at the age of forty two, Robert McCrum suffered a dramatic and near-fatal stroke, the subject of his acclaimed memoir My Year Off. Ever since that life-changing event, McCrum has lived in the shadow of death, unavoidably aware of his own mortality. And now, twenty-one years on, he is noticing a change: his friends are joining him there. Death has become his contemporaries’ every third thought. The question is no longer ‘who am I?’ but ‘how long have I got?’ and ‘what happens next?’ With the words of McCrum’s favourite authors as travel companions, Every Third Thought, takes us on a journey through a year and towards death itself. As he acknowledges his own and his friends’ ageing, McCrum confronts an existential question: in a world where we have learnt to live well at all costs, can we make peace with what Freud calls ‘the necessity of dying’? Searching for answers leads him to others for advice and wisdom, and Every Third Thought is populated by the voices of brain surgeons, psychologists, cancer patients, hospice workers, writers and poets. Witty, lucid and provocative, Every Third Thought is an enthralling exploration of what it means to approach the ‘end game’, and begin to recognize, perhaps reluctantly, that we are not immortal. Deeply personal and yet always universal, this is a book for anyone who finds themselves preoccupied by matters of life and death. It is both guide and companion.
The book is rated 3.61/5 at goodreads.com, from 31 ratings. See 9 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2CMieOx.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2CMiFbD.

A health book recommendation: Every Third Thought: On Life, Death and the Endgame by Robert McCrum

A critic review (source The Economist) can be read at: http://econ.st/2ChxD8t.
Mr McCrum’s bravery in staring into the abyss cannot be overestimated; reading his book inevitably brings moments of terror. But “Every Third Thought” has something positive to offer, too.
Book description from Google Books:
AS READ ON BBC RADIO 4 BOOK OF THE WEEK’Thoughtful, subtle, elegantly clever and oddly joyous, Every Third Thought is beautiful’ Kate Mosse In 1995, at the age of forty two, Robert McCrum suffered a dramatic and near-fatal stroke, the subject of his acclaimed memoir My Year Off. Ever since that life-changing event, McCrum has lived in the shadow of death, unavoidably aware of his own mortality. And now, twenty-one years on, he is noticing a change: his friends are joining him there. Death has become his contemporaries’ every third thought. The question is no longer ‘who am I?’ but ‘how long have I got?’ and ‘what happens next?’ With the words of McCrum’s favourite authors as travel companions, Every Third Thought, takes us on a journey through a year and towards death itself. As he acknowledges his own and his friends’ ageing, McCrum confronts an existential question: in a world where we have learnt to live well at all costs, can we make peace with what Freud calls ‘the necessity of dying’? Searching for answers leads him to others for advice and wisdom, and Every Third Thought is populated by the voices of brain surgeons, psychologists, cancer patients, hospice workers, writers and poets. Witty, lucid and provocative, Every Third Thought is an enthralling exploration of what it means to approach the ‘end game’, and begin to recognize, perhaps reluctantly, that we are not immortal. Deeply personal and yet always universal, this is a book for anyone who finds themselves preoccupied by matters of life and death. It is both guide and companion.
The book is rated 3.61/5 at goodreads.com, from 31 ratings. See 9 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2CMieOx.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2CMiFbD.

A health book recommendation: Finding My Badass Self: A Year of Truths and Dares by Sherry Stanfa-Stanley

A critic review (source Dear Author) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2CGnnYv.
…honestly, reading about you stepping out and trying all these things was invigorating, hilarious – in a good way, and inspiring.
Book description from Google Books:
Fighting midlife inertia, Sherry Stanfa-Stanley chose to stare down fear through The 52/52 Project: a year of weekly new experiences designed to push her far outside her comfort zone. These ranged from visiting a nude beach with her seventy-five-year-old mother in tow to taking a road trip with her ex-husband–and then another one with his girlfriend. She also went on a raid with a vice squad and SWAT team, exfoliated a rhinoceros (inadvertently giving him an erection), and crashed a wedding (where she accidentally caught the bouquet). While finding her courage in the most unlikely of circumstances, Sherry ultimately found herself. For midlifers, fatigued parents, and anyone who may be discontent with their life and looking to shake things up, try new things, or just escape, Finding My Badass Self is proof it’s never too late to reinvent yourself–and that the best bucket list of all may be an unbucket list.
The book is rated 4.36/5 at goodreads.com, from 42 ratings. See 25 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2CenEkk.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2CJA053.

A health book recommendation: Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8: A Young Man’s Voice from the Silence of Autism by Naoki Higashida

A critic review (source The Economist) can be read at: http://econ.st/2D2Vqca.
Mr Higashida’s latest book, “Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8”, provides a similar guide to the “immutable beauties” of the autistic mind. Now in his 20s, the author offers a wider perspective on life with a disorder.
Book description from Google Books:
From the author of the bestselling The Reason I Jump, an extraordinary self-portrait of life as a young adult with autism Naoki Higashida was only thirteen when he wrote The Reason I Jump, a revelatory account of autism from the inside by a nonverbal Japanese child, which became an international success. Now he shares his thoughts and experiences as a twenty-four-year-old man living each day with severe autism. In short, powerful chapters, Higashida explores school memories, family relationships, the exhilaration of travel, and the difficulties of speech. He also allows readers to experience profound moments we take for granted, like the thought-steps necessary for him to register that it’s raining outside. Acutely aware of how strange his behavior can appear to others, he aims throughout to foster a better understanding of autism and to encourage society to see people with disabilities as people, not as problems. With an introduction by bestselling novelist David Mitchell, Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8 also includes a dreamlike short story Higashida wrote especially for this edition. Both moving and of practical use, this book opens a window into the mind of an inspiring young man who meets every challenge with tenacity and good humor. However often he falls down, he always gets back up. Praise for Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8 “[Naoki Higashida’s] success as a writer now transcends his diagnosis. . . . His relative isolation–with words as his primary connection to the outside world–has allowed him to fully develop the powers of observation that are necessary for good writing, and he has developed rich, deep perspectives on ideas that many take for granted. . . . The diversity of Higashida’s writing, in both subject and style, fits together like a jigsaw puzzle of life put in place with humor and thoughtfulness.”–The Japan Times “Profound insights about what the struggle of living with autism is really like . . . Once again, the invitation to step inside Higashida’s mind is irresistible.”–London Evening Standard “Naoki Higashida’s lyrical and heartfelt account of his condition is a gift to anyone involved with the same challenges. . . . Higashida shows a delicate regard for the difficulties his condition creates . . . and is adept at explaining his experiences in language that makes sense to neurotypicals.”–The Guardian “Wise and witty, [Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8] offers a second insider’s insight into the mysteries of non-verbal autism–but this time from the vantage point of a young adult. . . . Moving . . . Higashida’s reflections are at times refreshingly hard-nosed [and] his self-awareness is uplifting.”–Financial Times “[Naoki Higashida’s] thoughtful, syntactically complex writing puts the lie to the already dubious characterization of such individuals as ‘low-functioning.'”–Toronto Star
The book is rated 4.11/5 at goodreads.com, from 433 ratings. See 87 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BW7TiE.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2D3ECSl.

A health book recommendation: Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8: A Young Man’s Voice from the Silence of Autism by Naoki Higashida

A critic review (source The Economist) can be read at: http://econ.st/2D2Vqca.
Mr Higashida’s latest book, “Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8”, provides a similar guide to the “immutable beauties” of the autistic mind. Now in his 20s, the author offers a wider perspective on life with a disorder.
Book description from Google Books:
From the author of the bestselling The Reason I Jump, an extraordinary self-portrait of life as a young adult with autism Naoki Higashida was only thirteen when he wrote The Reason I Jump, a revelatory account of autism from the inside by a nonverbal Japanese child, which became an international success. Now he shares his thoughts and experiences as a twenty-four-year-old man living each day with severe autism. In short, powerful chapters, Higashida explores school memories, family relationships, the exhilaration of travel, and the difficulties of speech. He also allows readers to experience profound moments we take for granted, like the thought-steps necessary for him to register that it’s raining outside. Acutely aware of how strange his behavior can appear to others, he aims throughout to foster a better understanding of autism and to encourage society to see people with disabilities as people, not as problems. With an introduction by bestselling novelist David Mitchell, Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8 also includes a dreamlike short story Higashida wrote especially for this edition. Both moving and of practical use, this book opens a window into the mind of an inspiring young man who meets every challenge with tenacity and good humor. However often he falls down, he always gets back up. Praise for Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8 “[Naoki Higashida’s] success as a writer now transcends his diagnosis. . . . His relative isolation–with words as his primary connection to the outside world–has allowed him to fully develop the powers of observation that are necessary for good writing, and he has developed rich, deep perspectives on ideas that many take for granted. . . . The diversity of Higashida’s writing, in both subject and style, fits together like a jigsaw puzzle of life put in place with humor and thoughtfulness.”–The Japan Times “Profound insights about what the struggle of living with autism is really like . . . Once again, the invitation to step inside Higashida’s mind is irresistible.”–London Evening Standard “Naoki Higashida’s lyrical and heartfelt account of his condition is a gift to anyone involved with the same challenges. . . . Higashida shows a delicate regard for the difficulties his condition creates . . . and is adept at explaining his experiences in language that makes sense to neurotypicals.”–The Guardian “Wise and witty, [Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8] offers a second insider’s insight into the mysteries of non-verbal autism–but this time from the vantage point of a young adult. . . . Moving . . . Higashida’s reflections are at times refreshingly hard-nosed [and] his self-awareness is uplifting.”–Financial Times “[Naoki Higashida’s] thoughtful, syntactically complex writing puts the lie to the already dubious characterization of such individuals as ‘low-functioning.'”–Toronto Star
The book is rated 4.11/5 at goodreads.com, from 433 ratings. See 87 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BW7TiE.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2D3ECSl.

A health book recommendation: The Secret Life: Three True Stories of the Digital Age by Andrew O’Hagan

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2j7eluY.
This book is too fragmentary and recycled to be a definitive encounter with the internet. Only a brief foreword and a few updated sections are new material. And O’Hagan’s position in the pieces – as the invited confidant of his subjects – ultimately feels too comfortable.
Book description from Google Books:
A Top 10 Book of Essays & Literary Criticism for Fall 2017, Publishers Weekly | Books We Can’t Wait to Read in the Rest of 2017, Chicago ReaderThe slippery online ecosystem is the perfect breeding ground for identities: true, false, and in between. The Internet shorthand IRL—“in real life”—now seems naïve. We no longer question the reality of online experiences but the reality of selfhood in the digital age.In The Secret Life: Three True Stories, the essayist and novelist Andrew O’Hagan issues three bulletins from the porous border between cyberspace and IRL. “Ghosting” introduces us to the beguiling and divisive Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, whose autobiography the author agrees to ghostwrite with unforeseen—and unforgettable—consequences. “The Invention of Ronnie Pinn” finds the author using the actual identity of a deceased young man to construct an entirely new one in cyberspace, leading him on a journey deep into the Web’s darkest realms. And “The Satoshi Affair” chronicles the strange case of Craig Wright, the Australian Web developer who may or may not be the mysterious inventor of Bitcoin, Satoshi Nakamoto—and who may or may not be willing, or even able, to reveal the truth.O’Hagan’s searching pieces take us to the weirder fringes of life in a digital world while also casting light on our shared predicaments. What does it mean when your very sense of self becomes, to borrow a term from the tech world, “disrupted”? Perhaps it takes a novelist, an inventor of selves, armed with the tools of a trenchant reporter, to find an answer.
The book is rated 3.83/5 at goodreads.com, from 103 ratings. See 27 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2BtcDuN.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2BsuSQW.

A health book recommendation: How to Fall in Love with Anyone: A Memoir in Essays by Mandy Len Catron

A critic review (source Toronto Star) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2Btha05.
Clear-eyed and full of heart, How to Fall in Love With Anyone is mandatory reading for anyone coping with — or curious about — the challenges of contemporary courtship.
Book description from Google Books:
An insightful, charming, and absolutely fascinating memoir from the author of the popular New York Times essay, “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This,” (one of the top five most popular New York Times pieces of 2015) explores the romantic myths we create and explains how they limit our ability to achieve and sustain intimacy.What really makes love last? Does love ever work the way we say it does in movies and books and Facebook posts? Or does obsessing over those love stories hurt our real-life relationships? When her parents divorced after a twenty-eight year marriage and her own ten-year relationship ended, those were the questions that Mandy Len Catron wanted to answer. In a series of candid, vulnerable, and wise essays that takes a closer look at what it means to love someone, be loved, and how we present our love to the world, Catron deconstructs her own personal canon of love stories. She delves all the way back to 1944, when her grandparents first met in a coal mining town in Appalachia, to her own dating life as a professor in Vancouver, drawing insights from her fascinating research into the universal psychology, biology, history, and literature of love. She uses biologists’ research into dopamine triggers to ask whether the need to love is an innate human drive. She uses literary theory to show why we prefer certain kinds of love stories. She urges us to question the unwritten scripts we follow in relationships and looks into where those scripts come from in the first place. And she tells the story of how she decided to test a psychology experiment that she’d read about—where the goal was to create intimacy between strangers using a list of thirty-six questions—and ended up in the surreal situation of having millions of people following her brand-new relationship. In How to Fall in Love with Anyone Catron flips the script on love and offers a deeply personal, and universal, investigation.
The book is rated 3.68/5 at goodreads.com, from 540 ratings. See 117 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2j6Fezd.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2j6QYSh.
Google Books preview available in full post.

A health book recommendation: A Manual for Heartache by Cathy Rentzenbrink

A critic review (source Guardian) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2j2Zxxx.
…as with The Last Act of Love we get the subtle feeling that the very process of writing this book was a kind of therapy. It comes from a place of bleakness, but turns into a tender appreciation of life’s beauty.
Book description from Google Books:
‘I devoured A Manual for Heartache in one sitting . . . a kind, honest and wise book about how to make a friend of sadness.’ Rachel JoyceWhen Cathy Rentzenbrink was still a teenager, her happy family was torn apart by an unthinkable tragedy. In A Manual for Heartache she describes how she learnt to live with grief and loss and find joy in the world again. She explores how to cope with life at its most difficult and overwhelming and how we can emerge from suffering forever changed, but filled with hope.This is a moving, warm and uplifting book that offers solidarity and comfort to anyone going through a painful time, whatever it might be. It’s a book that will help to soothe an aching heart and assure its readers that they’re not alone.
The book is rated 4.00/5 at goodreads.com, from 194 ratings. See 29 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2Bol0HX.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2BocJUc.

A health book recommendation: How to Fall in Love with Anyone: A Memoir in Essays by Mandy Len Catron

A critic review (source Toronto Star) can be read at: http://bit.ly/2Btha05.
Clear-eyed and full of heart, How to Fall in Love With Anyone is mandatory reading for anyone coping with — or curious about — the challenges of contemporary courtship.
Book description from Google Books:
An insightful, charming, and absolutely fascinating memoir from the author of the popular New York Times essay, “To Fall in Love with Anyone, Do This,” (one of the top five most popular New York Times pieces of 2015) explores the romantic myths we create and explains how they limit our ability to achieve and sustain intimacy.What really makes love last? Does love ever work the way we say it does in movies and books and Facebook posts? Or does obsessing over those love stories hurt our real-life relationships? When her parents divorced after a twenty-eight year marriage and her own ten-year relationship ended, those were the questions that Mandy Len Catron wanted to answer. In a series of candid, vulnerable, and wise essays that takes a closer look at what it means to love someone, be loved, and how we present our love to the world, Catron deconstructs her own personal canon of love stories. She delves all the way back to 1944, when her grandparents first met in a coal mining town in Appalachia, to her own dating life as a professor in Vancouver, drawing insights from her fascinating research into the universal psychology, biology, history, and literature of love. She uses biologists’ research into dopamine triggers to ask whether the need to love is an innate human drive. She uses literary theory to show why we prefer certain kinds of love stories. She urges us to question the unwritten scripts we follow in relationships and looks into where those scripts come from in the first place. And she tells the story of how she decided to test a psychology experiment that she’d read about—where the goal was to create intimacy between strangers using a list of thirty-six questions—and ended up in the surreal situation of having millions of people following her brand-new relationship. In How to Fall in Love with Anyone Catron flips the script on love and offers a deeply personal, and universal, investigation.
The book is rated 3.68/5 at goodreads.com, from 537 ratings. See 116 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2j6Fezd.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2j6QYSh.
Google Books preview available in full post.

A health book recommendation: Memory’s Last Breath: Field Notes on My Dementia by Gerda Saunders

A critic review (source NY Times) can be read at: http://nyti.ms/2j2Po3B.
Saunders’s condition is increasingly precarious, but for the moment she remains a graceful, innovative writer — getting her thoughts on the page helps her keep track of them — and she is still capable of making connections…
Book description from Google Books:
“For anyone facing dementia, [Saunders’] words are truly enlightening…. Inspiring lessons about living and thriving with dementia.”—Maria Shriver, NBC’s Today ShowA “courageous and singular book” (Andrew Solomon), Memory’s Last Breath is an unsparing, beautifully written memoir–“an intimate, revealing account of living with dementia” (Shelf Awareness).Based on the “field notes” she keeps in her journal, Memory’s Last Breath is Gerda Saunders’ astonishing window into a life distorted by dementia. She writes about shopping trips cut short by unintentional shoplifting, car journeys derailed when she loses her bearings, and the embarrassment of forgetting what she has just said to a room of colleagues. Coping with the complications of losing short-term memory, Saunders, a former university professor, nonetheless embarks on a personal investigation of the brain and its mysteries, examining science and literature, and immersing herself in vivid memories of her childhood in South Africa.
The book is rated 3.62/5 at goodreads.com, from 195 ratings. See 47 reader reviews at: http://bit.ly/2j51OYQ.
Buy it or see reader reviews on amazon.com at: http://amzn.to/2j2PxEb.