Tag Archives: Non-Fiction

Power Vs Force by David R. Hawkins M.D. Ph.D

Book Review
Book Review

Book review of Power Vs Force: 3 Treasure Boxes

Power Vs Force is a fascinating look at how spiritual power is superior to physical force. Dr. Hawkins backs up his book with thousands of tests to support his position. I recommend this book as a very good read, it is interesting and informative. Plus I like the way Dr. Hawkins shows how good will always overcome evil in the end.

The Art of Choosing by Sheena Iyengar

Book Review
Book Review

Book Review of The Art of Choosing: 2 Treasure Boxes
Publisher: Hachette Audio, Audible Audio Edition, Listening Length: 10 hours and 36 minutes, ASIN: B003D7S8W4

What is the science and psychology behind making choices, and why do we do what we do? The Art of Choosing looks at what drives our choices and Ms. Iyendar backs up her claims with research. She discusses freedom and control and how these affect what we choose.  In Chapter one, part two Ms. Iyengar says, “When we speak of choice, what we mean is the ability to exercise control over ourselves and our environment. In order to choose, we must first perceive that control is possible.”

Ms. Iyengar has written numerous essays, but The Art of Choosing is her first book. It is non-fiction and it analyzes how people make choices. It was shortlisted for the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award in 2010.

The Art of Choosing is supported by research and surveys with some surprising results. It was insightful to learn how cultural upbringing affects choices. Ms. Iyengar tests children of different backgrounds and those with an Asian upbringing were motivated if they felt their mother made the choice for them, whereas Anglo-American students felt the exact opposite. The same results were observed within factories in these different regions. Ms. Iyengar included research that was done on animals, which I felt uncomfortable reading, but the results cannot be disputed. The information is related in an interesting manner that includes stories, facts and draws the reader in through some well placed questions.

I recommend this book as a good read that provides some fascinating information. Although, I am not too sure what benefit I received other than entertainment.

To Purchase: “The Art of Choosing” from Amazon, click here or on picture above

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My Mother’s Story: The Originals by Marilyn Norry

Book Review
Book Review

Book Review of My Mother’s Story: The Originals: 3 Treasure Boxes
Publisher: Mothership Stories Society (May 24, 2012), Paperback: 234 pages, ISBN-10: 0987984403, ISBN-13: 978-0987984401

Mothers are unheralded heroes. My Mother’s Story: The Originals is a compilation of the amazing lives of everyday women, as told through the eyes of their daughters.

Marilyn Norry is an actress and she conceived this idea. It started with her own mother’s story and she expanded out to include her friend’s mother’s stories. First she created a stage production, but since the stories are all amazing she wanted to compile them in book form as the editor. She has recently released a new volume in this series: My Mother’s Story: North Vancouver in both stage production and book form.   She has created a website: http://mymothersstory.org/ It is a place where anyone, man, woman or child can share their mother’s or father’s story. She also formed a non-profit society, Mothership Stories Society, to provide a unique place to share all the wonderful stories about mothers and fathers from around the world.

Everyone has a mother, each with her own story of quiet determination, hardship and love. Each woman has a unique life that she deals with in her own way. This project encourages the breaking of the mother taboo, where people are forbidden to talk about their mothers. Instead the focus is on bringing women’s lives out of the shadows into the open where they can be recognized and valued.

The lives of these mothers range from 1890 to present day and each story is compressed to a few pages with one or two photos. Some stories are moving and brought tears to my eyes, others brought a feeling of hope and all showed the determination and wherewithal that is required to be a mother. Each tale is a fascinating glimpse into the lives of the women who helped shape our world.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I highly recommend it as a very good read. It is a wonderful tribute to motherhood.

To purchase: “My Mother’s Story: the Originals” from Amazon, click here or on picture above

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

Book Review: 1 Treasure Box
Book Review

Book Review of Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed: 1 Treasure Box
Publisher: Random House Audio, Audible Audio Edition, Listening Length: 13 hours and 6 minutes (336 pages), ASIN: B007MIWUG0

After Cheryl lost her mother in a viscous fight against cancer, she started spiraling out of control and as she began to hit bottom, she realized it was time to take her life back. She did this by hiking alone 1,100 miles up the Pacific Crest trail. This book is the story or her journey, both on the trail and through the mire her life had become.

Cheryl Strayed, whose birth name was Spangler is an American author, and she has written a couple of books, all in the memoir genre as well as several essays, and she writes an advice column: Dear Sugar for The Rumpus. “Wild” was recommended by Oprah, which helped to push it to number one for nonfiction on the New York Times Best Seller list for seven consecutive weeks.

It is great that Cheryl realized her life was out of control and she made a decision to make a change. But she jumped into this journey, like she did most things in life, without really preparing or knowing what to expect. The journey was difficult and she had plenty of challenges, but for maybe the first time in her life, she did not quit. My favorite character was Cheryl’s mother, because she seemed liked a real nice, down to earth type of person who always tried to do her best despite the circumstances. 

I did not really care for either the style or the pacing of the writing in this book. I felt that Ms. Strayed told us what was happening, but she did not really draw the reader in, she did not show us, although there was a lot of potential for this tale to be really truly spell binding. 

I would not recommend this book, and although I thought it was ok, it was not great. Ms. Strayed is not my favorite author and I probably will not read anything else that she writes. Although, I do think that her writing about the Pacific Crest brought more awareness to this wonderful trail.


To Purchase: “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail” from Amazon, click here or on picture above

Romance Your Writer Within by Melba Burns

Book Review
Book Review

Book Review of Romance Your Writer Within: 3 Treasure Boxes
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc., File Size: 407 KB, Print Length: 175 pages, ASIN: B00636PZPK

Romance Your Writer Within and Reawaken Your Passion to Write is full of helpful and insightful instruction aimed at opening up inner creativity and improving the writing process.

Melba Burns has written several inspiration books for women including Romance the Writer Within And Reawaken your Passion to Write. This non-fiction book is in the education and reference genre, and is a unique guide  through the creative process.

This is a great book for writers and it is stuffed full of practical steps. If followed, the path will lead to deeper and more meaningful results.  The book is aimed towards women, but the exercises within can help anyone, male or female. Ms. Burns has been writing and teaching writing clinics for many years. This book is an amalgamation of all the insight she has gained. It is well written in an interesting and helpful manner.

I recommend this book as a very good read, and it is a helpful tool for any writer. Almost every chapter provides a new concrete method to help bring forth creativity. As a writer, I felt most inspired by the declaration of commitment, and in general I was most intrigued by the blind walk.

To Purchase: “Romance Your Writer Within” from Amazon, click here or on the picture above

Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman

Book Review: 2 Treasure Boxes
Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business
Publisher: Penguin (Non-Classics); Revised edition (December 27, 2005), Paperback: 208 pages, ISBN-10: 014303653X, ISBN-13: 978-0143036531

What impact does entertainment have on our society?   In Amusing Ourselves to Death, Postman draws parallels between society’s obsession with entertainment and Huxley’s Brave New World where people escape reality in numerous ways.  Postman believed that television was creating a Huxleyan world view where citizens would stop thinking and instead, come under common hypnosis within a “world of technological narcotics”. Postman also felt that watching television was not the problem and “the solution must be found in how we watch”.

Neil Postman (1931–2003) was chairman of the Department of Communication Arts at New York University and founder of its Media Ecology program. He wrote more than twenty books. Amusing Ourselves to Death was first released in 1985 and in 2005 it was reissued, including an introduction by Andrew Postman.

The book is well written and examines the numerous ways that television watching has changed society. He provides an interesting history of media starting in Plato’s time and moving forward.  His chapter on “Typographic America” was insightful. He brings us forward to 1985, the Age of Entertainment, where information is released in 90 second time frames. Programmers want to do whatever is necessary to hold the interest of the audience. Postman felt that “the problem is not that television presents us with entertaining subject manner but that all subject is presented as entertaining.”

This is a good, thought provoking read and I recommend it. In manner ways the concerns that Postman had about television can also be applied to the internet.

To Purchase: “Amusing Ourselves to Death” from Amazon, click here or on picture above.

The Power of Intention by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

Book Review: 1 Treasure Box
Publisher: Hay House; 1 edition (December 15, 2005), Paperback: 272 pages, ISBN-10: 1401902162, ISBN-13: 978-1401902162

This book keeps the reader focused on their thoughts. It is a reminder that the thoughts you think influence how the world around you reacts to you.

The name of the book is a bit misleading. At first glance you think that if you have an intention it can create a power in your life to bring it into manifestation. However, Dr. Dyer changes the meaning of intention to become another phrase for God “In a universe peopled by a creative, divine, organizing intelligence, which I’m calling the power of intention…” “Since intention is being presented in this book as an invisible energy field that is inherent in all physical form, intention, then, is a part of the inexplicable, nonmaterial world of spirit.”

Dr. Wayne Dyer has written numerous books in the new thought or new age genre of self help. He is a teacher, author and speaker.

I really like how he summarizes each chapter and gives practical steps to help implement the information in the chapter. At times I felt that the information he was supplying was just guess work on Dr. Dyer’s part. “I’ll give you my concept of what I refer to as the seven faces of intention. These points represent my imagined picture of what the power of intention looks like” and “again, I’m deducing this from the opposite”.

I found the last chapter to be disappointing and full of platitudes. To summarize how the power of intention can improve your life, Dr. Dyer was using as an example a perfect person. Someone who does not exist and as such this example becomes meaningless as a method to provide help to the rest of us who are struggling through life as best we can.

To purchase: “The Power of Intention” from Amazon, click here or on picture above