This is a surprisingly good history of the Positive Thought movement that ultimately gave us Norman Vincent Peale and Dale Carnegie, not to mention fi...moreThis is a surprisingly good history of the Positive Thought movement that ultimately gave us Norman Vincent Peale and Dale Carnegie, not to mention figures such as Oprah Winfrey and Wayne Dyer. The history begins in the 1800s with Mary Baker Eddy and shows the development of thoughts that lead to their contemporary development which includes a lengthy discussion of understanding President Ronald Reagan.
I wouldn't say this was an academic book, though it does cite sources. It is an easy and pleasant read for someone interested in how the phenomenon of self-help books and prosperity theology came to be.(less)
Dr. Khoddam argues that C.S. Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia are literature of the first order, not just children's stories. She discusses the many litera...moreDr. Khoddam argues that C.S. Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia are literature of the first order, not just children's stories. She discusses the many literary sources that Lewis built his work upon in order to show the place of his work among the rest of great literature.(less)
This book is a journalist's exploration of the technologies required to traveling to Mars and surviving there. She interviews people from NASA and oth...moreThis book is a journalist's exploration of the technologies required to traveling to Mars and surviving there. She interviews people from NASA and other international space agencies to find out what is needed. The result is lots of stories about past space explorations.(less)
This is my 3rd time to read this. I have read it twice in the last 4 or 5 days. I think this could be as. valuable to me as Kerry Patterson, et. al's....moreThis is my 3rd time to read this. I have read it twice in the last 4 or 5 days. I think this could be as. valuable to me as Kerry Patterson, et. al's. "Change Anything" was for me last year.(less)
Carpe diem, though a smooth piece of rhetoric the book must be viewed with a critical eye. A search on the internet for the author's name will provide...moreCarpe diem, though a smooth piece of rhetoric the book must be viewed with a critical eye. A search on the internet for the author's name will provide the story of a man with reoccurring legal problems from the 90's through to last year for charges of fraud.
If nothing else, the book can be read with pleasure as a fine example of rhetoric. I believe the man could charm the birds out of the trees. On the face of it his financial advice sounds good. But, it is odd to read some of the author's claims about himself, the glaring omissions to the story of his life, and to see his persona of self-righteous indignation on behalf of the citizens of the United States.
At look at book reviews from academic publishers indicate that the financial advice in the book is usually good, but everything the author says can be found elsewhere from reputable sources.(less)
Last year I decided I wanted to make a change a couple of months before my 50th birthday. I went on a gluten-free diet...moreProvides plenty to think about.
Last year I decided I wanted to make a change a couple of months before my 50th birthday. I went on a gluten-free diet and began swimming regularly. I lost over 80 pounds and have kept it off so far. These days a mile is my minimum workout. Typically I swim a mile-and-a-half per day. When I started I had no idea of the success I would have. I didn't expect it.
As I saw success in physical fitness, and it looked like it was sticking, I kept hoping something similar would happen in other parts of my life. I tried to move some things that direction but I can't say anything has happened.
I could see the principles in this book being just the thing to create a dramatic change in a person's life similar to what I experienced last year with weight-loss and fitness. Here's to making changes in our lives. (less)
This book reminds me of earlier Pynchon books Vineland and Inherent Vice, more than his earlier work. These books emphasize the character development...moreThis book reminds me of earlier Pynchon books Vineland and Inherent Vice, more than his earlier work. These books emphasize the character development of their heroes.
Vineland opens in Oregon during the 1990s with hippie Zoyd Wheeler's annual jump through a store-front window to continue eligibility for mental disability support. One thing leads to another and he must act to protect his daughter from the threat of a CIA agent who has been Wheeler's nemesis for decades. The agent long ago stole Wheeler's wife and has a sick need to harm Wheeler going back to the 1970s.
Inherent Vice shows the high jinks of Larry "Doc" Sportello, private investigator, and another hippie, from the California surfing scene. His ex-girl friend, and love of his life, asks him to find her boy friend, a real estate agent who has been disappeared. Sportello also has to save the woman before the book is finished. He has a fun bromance with a police officer who always puts our hero in harms way to shake things up as he investigates who murdered his police partner.
Like the books above, Bleeding Edge provides another investigator, this time from 2001. Maxine Tornow is a former fraud investigator turned private eye since she lost her license in fraud for asking too many questions. At the beginning of the book she is a New York City single mom trying to make ends meet. She uncovers the black ops side of .coms that have way too much money and power.
I have a long standing love of Pynchon's work going back to the mid-1980s. I have only liked two of his books the first time I read them. These were V: a Novel and Against the Day. Otherwise, I have always been enthusiastic when a new Pynchon novel comes out, am disappointed as I read it, and end disappointed. Something always draws me back. I will want a better understanding of how things in the book go together and I will reread it. This usually results in five or six readings in which I appreciate the book more each time until I become its fan.
At this time I am not that happy with Bleeding Edge. (I give it four instead of three stars because I know how things will probably go eventually.) My current experience is that Maxine Tornow is not developed as well as "Doc" Sportello was. But I didn't like "Doc" Sportello in the beginning either and I dismissed Vineland for years before giving it a second chance.
It has occurred to me as I have slogged my way through Bleeding Edge that I should plan on rereading it again soon in order to move the cycle of my experience along to its next phase.(less)