Smart Read

Book Reviews for Health and Human Interest

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Why recommend books anymore?

Does anyone read? A friend of mine said frankly, “I don’t have time to read. I get my information from the Internet and TV.” Many people evidently feel that way, since the print circulation of newspapers and magazines has fallen dramatically in recent years, and many once robust publications have gone out of business.

Despite these trends

We thought it would be fun and informative to share recommended book reviews on this blog. Summer is a great time to think about bringing a book to the pool or beach and soaking up information while listening to water sounds in the background. We hope to review books that will positively impact your health, nutrition, and fitness.

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi, Published by Corcovado, 2016

My good friend from medical school forwarded me an article called Before I Go published in the Spring 2015 Stanford Medicine magazine. It was written so beautifully by a young neurosurgeon that it made me tear up. Dr. Kalanithi majored in English and biology at Stanford and then got a master’s in English literature before attending Yale School of Medicine. This…
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Before It’s Too Late: A Parent’s Guide on Teens, Sex, and Sanity

Before It’s Too Late: A Parent’s Guide on Teens, Sex, and Sanity meets the urgent need to proactively reach adults before their teen is in crisis. The book will educate and wake up parents who would recoil at the thought that their teen could become pregnant at the age of 14 or contract a sexually transmitted disease…
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How To Raise An Adult: Break Free of the Overparenting Trap and Prepare Your Kid for Success by Julie Lythcott-Haims, Henry Holt and Company, 2015

In the introduction to this book, the author remembers that “by the time I stepped down as dean at Stanford in 2012 I had interacted not only with a tremendous number of parents but with students who seemed increasingly reliant upon their parents in ways that felt, simply, off.” “Helicopter parenting” , “invasive parenting”, and…
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CAN’T WE TALK ABOUT SOMETHING MORE PLEASANT? By Roz Chast – a book review

Are your parents aging? Are you trying to attend to their needs, perhaps to their medical crises, while working and raising children? Or, are you wondering what will happen when your parents can no longer take care of themselves? If so, you are not alone and Roz Chast‘s memoir “Can’t we talk about something more…
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What the Dog Saw, and Other Adventures, by Malcolm Gladwell

Every time I’m on vacation, I bring a book to read but never seemed to finish it. The vacation destination takes my mind off the book and I end up savoring every waking minute exploring the new area. Over the holidays, however, my habit changed. I started reading Malcolm Gladwell’s “What the Dog Saw” halfway into the flight…
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Recently I had the opportunity

To tour the Evergreen House in Baltimore, which is the restored 19th century home of the Garrett Family, of B&O Railroad fame. If you get a chance to see this unique place, do visit! http://www.museums.jhu.edu/evergreen.php

The Garretts were significant patrons of artists, dancers, and actors, and their home is full of BOOKS! The books date back to the 1500s, fill at least 5 rooms floor to ceiling, and are used by scholars of rare books today. This display emphasized the significant role books had on everyday life for those who could read in the 1800s. Because there was no internet, TV, or other forms of communication, people spent a significant amount of their day thinking of and pondering the written word. Although life has changed significantly since that time, we hope that reading a few great books every year will improve your intellectual, as well as physical, well-being. Enjoy summer and enjoy reading!

Linda Yau, M.D.

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