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Paddy's Lament, Ireland 1846-1847: Prelude to Hatred
Thomas Gallagher
Pivot: The Only Move That Matters Is Your Next One
Jenny K. Blake
When in French: Love in a Second Language
Lauren Collins
Beyond the Job Description: How Managers and Employees Can Navigate the True Demands of the Job
Jesse Sostrin
Vision and Art: The Biology of Seeing
David Hubel, Margaret S. Livingstone
Achieving Your Potential As A Photographer: A Creative Companion and Workbook
Harold Davis
Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age
Sherry Turkle
Picture Perfect Practice: A Self-Training Guide to Mastering the Challenges of Taking World-Class Photographs (Voices That Matter)
Roberto Valenzuela
Man's Search for Meaning
Viktor E. Frankl, Harold S. Kushner
Terms of Service: Social Media and the Price of Constant Connection
Jacob Silverman
A Dangerous Fiction: A Mystery - Barbara Rogan
""The city was his birthright, not mine. I had to earn it; and to make a city yours, you must inhabit it. So whenever Hugo fussed, I'd said "Yes, dear" and "No, dear," and then I'd done as I pleased.
I was willing to cede the outer boroughs, but within Manhattan, there was nowhere I would not go." p. 126"
Shadow Tag - Louise Erdrich

Just a really hard story to appreciate. Mostly unlikeable characters and such a miserable spiral in the relationships between the characters. There were some good turns of phrase and occasional touching moments between the siblings. But all in all, just a really hard and unlikable story.

Defending Jacob

Defending Jacob - Listened to an audio version. This story is set in Newton.

The Carriage House

The Carriage House - Louisa Hall I enjoyed this. It took me a bit to get into it -- keeping the characters straight, etc. I enjoyed the references to Persuasion. The sadness surrounding Diana and the others. "Her teachers felt she had talent but hadn't ye found her voice. Her adviser asked her to decide what kind of architect she'd like to become. He offered her a list of suggestions: schools of thought she might join, theories she could espouse. He seemed to think it ought to be clear. What kinds of structures did she want to build? Diana couldn't tell him. Once, in a past life, she would have been sure. When she was playing tennis, she knew who she was. She had a ranking to measure her value. People recognized her from tennis magazines and televised tournaments. She met with her coaches every day to ensure the progression of her talent. When tennis ended, she felt as if a door had closed behind her, stranding her somewhere she did not recognize. There was no numerical system to quantify her life. Her coaches no longer checked in on her. She took for granted how surrounded she was when she was playing her sport. She was so alone out there on court, talking to herself about footwork and strategy, but she was at a center of a universe. After she quit, she was like a planet that had fallen out of its orbit. At night the other students met for drinks or worked together in the library, but Diana ran. Through neighborhood streets at first, past chain restaurants and apartment complexes, then into Shoal Creek Park, along the dry creek bed littered with pale rocks, under the arms of live oak trees draped with Spanish moss. When she got to town lake, she turned around, heading again into the world of the living, past bike shops and pet salons, home to her apartment. She never ran in loops: just straight out and straight back. The accumulations of her day could be whittled down if she ran long enough. She could almost remember the old quickness and ease. The sure trajectories. Her presence within her body, directing its forward motion" p. 108-109

A Pocket Guide for the Alzheimer's Caregiver

A Pocket Guide for the Alzheimer's Caregiver - Ellen Woodward Potts,  Daniel C. Potts,  Daniel C. Potts M. D. Being familiar with the territory, it was a quick read for me, but a good review and a good book to recommend to others.

The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking

The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking - Oliver Burkeman Memento mori. “The psychologist Russ Harris suggests a simple exercise: imagine you are 80 years old – older if you are already 80 – and then complete the sentences ‘I wish I’d spent more time on … ‘ and I wish I’d spent less time on … ‘ This turns out to be a surprisingly effective way to achieve mortality awareness in short order. Things fall in place. It becomes far easier to follow Lauren Tillinghast’s advice – to figure out what, specifically, you might do in order to focus on life’s flavours, so as to improve your chances of reaching death having lived life as fully and as deeply as possible. Negative capability. The various approaches we have explored here frequently contradict each other on the level of details; sometimes they seem so intrinsically paradoxical as practically to contradict themselves. But in this broader sense, they all embody ‘negative capability.’ For the Stoics, the realization that we can often choose not to be distressed by events, even if we can’t choose events themselves, is the foundation of tranquility. For the Buddhists, a willingness to observe the ‘inner weather’ of your thoughts and emotions is the key to understanding that they need not dictate your actions. Each of these is a different way of resisting the ‘irritable reaching’ after better circumstances or better thoughts and feelings. But negative capability need not involve embracing an ancient philosophical or religious tradition. It is also the skill you’re exhibiting when you move forward with a project – or with life – in the absence of sharply defined goals; when you dare to inspect your failures; when you stop trying to eliminate feelings of insecurity; or when you put aside ‘motivational’ techniques in favour of actually getting things done. ….And the end result of all of this? The chief benefit of ‘openture,’ Paul Pearsall claimed, is not certitude or even calm or comfort as we normally think of them, but rather the ‘strange, excited comfort [of] being presented with, and grappling with, the tremendous mysteries life offers.’ Ultimately, what defines the ‘cult of optimism’ and the culture of positive thinking – even in its most mystically tinged, New Age forms – is that abhors a mystery. It seeks to make things certain, to make happiness permanent and final. And yet this kind of happiness – even if you do manage to achieve it – is shallow and unsatisfying. The greatest benefit of negative capability – the true power of negative thinking – is that it lets the mystery back in.” p.207-209

After Visiting Friends: A Son's Story

After Visiting Friends: A Son's Story - Michael Hainey 4.5

Cat Daddy: What the World's Most Incorrigible Cat Taught Me about Life, Love, and Coming Clean

Cat Daddy: What the World's Most Incorrigible Cat Taught Me About Life, Love, and Coming Clean - Jackson Galaxy, Joel Derfner It's as much about Jackson and his recovery as it about Benny and cats. That's okay -- but be ready.

Wait: The Art and Science of Delay

Wait: The Art and Science of Delay - Frank Partnoy The flip side of Blink. Some good stuff, but I could have done with a shorter version.

The Good Life for Less: Giving Your Family Great Meals, Good Times, and a Happy Home on a Budget

The Good Life for Less: Giving Your Family Great Meals, Good Times, and a Happy Home on a Budget - Amy Allen Clark,  Jana Murphy A lot of stuff that I'm already doing, but a good comprehensive overview. I think there are some creative suggestions, especially in terms of family activities that make it worth taking a look. Homemade onion soup mix -- sounds like a good idea. Lemon chicken in the slow cooker. homemade "rice and roni"Choosing a signature piece to bring for potlucks, holidays. The emphasis is on the piece and you can make it quickly whenever you need to -- no need to stress trying new dishes all the time. Change your frame. A picture frame matted to 8x11 opening. Change the picture out on the frame for holidays, seasons, special occasions. Homemade sidewalk paint. Homemade treasure stones.Gifts. Have a signature style -- be known for giving books, music, whatever. Using vinegar to clean, remove smell.Declutter. Repurpose spaces that aren't working for you.

Dr. Ruth's Guide for the Alzheimer's Caregiver: How to Care for Your Loved One Without Getting Overwhelmed... and Without Doing It All Yourself

Dr. Ruth's Guide for the Alzheimer's Caregiver: How to Care for Your Loved One Without Getting Overwhelmed... and Without Doing It All Yourself - Ruth K Westheimer I'd liked her practical, no-nonsense tone. But she admits that she is not an expert in this area and while overall I thought she did some good writing the book, I didn't agree with some of her suggestions. "understand that you will be disappointed from time to time. If you're at your very limits in terms of physical and psychological energy, such disappointments can be very hard on you. It's OK to feel sad and upset for a short time if someone disappoints you, but then I want you to put any such bad experiences aside and concentrate on all the good in your life." p. 13The importance of laughter for you and the person with Alzheimer's. Seek out ways to make him laugh. Feeling tired. "The only way to refresh your mind and body when you are a caregiver is by pursuing other interests. If you keep your mind refreshed, then your body will follow suit. But if you let yourself fall into a mental rut, then your overall view of life will change for the worse. In addition to "feeling" tired, you may also actually be physically tired. ... Be aware that if you are sleep deprived, you will encounter psychological effects and your emotions may become amplified." p. 23Loneliness. "The first thing you must do is to tell everyone you know that you welcome company. People may think they're intruding, or they may think that your home has been turned into a hospital ward and with limited visiting hours. ... Your attitude has to be welcoming. You have to put a smile on your face even if you don't feel like it, because after spending some time with a sympathetic human being, you will." p.32Frustration. "If there's one emotion that I can guarantee you're going to feel while caring for someone with Alzheimer's, it's frustration. As the disease progresses, your loved one is going to be doing the same things over and over, such as asking you a question that you answered 5 minutes earlier, and it's going to be very difficult not to become frustrated when this happens. ... Frustration can lead to anger if you let in. So, how do you keep yourself from feeling frustrated? Frustration in such cases comes from having a narrow focus. The more you focus on a particular behavior ... the more frustrated you are going to be." Widen your focus, change the pattern. Make sure your loved one understands your answer -- change the method of communication, show a picture, etc. if that works at this time. Keep in mind that questions may give you hints of what's going on in her mind. If she's asking about dinner, she may be hungry. Try giving her a snack. Distract, especially by giving the person something tactile to do. "Turtles are living proof that if you want to get anywhere, you have to stick your neck out." p.45Getting help early. "having outsiders come into your home is a challenge. You have to learn how to handle this situation and how to make sure that your care recipient is getting the best care. The more advanced the disease, the less able you will be to control the situation. If help arrives when you're overwhelmed, you're likely to just hand over control because you physically and mentally can't take it anymore. but if you bring in outside help at an earlier stage, you can integrate this help into your everyday routine. You can find people who will do the best job. You can be "professional" about it. So rather than fight this milestone, rather than say to yourself as long as I can handle everything, I'll feel as close to normal as possible," I'm advising you to do the reverse. Normalcy isn't in the cards for you any longer, so trying to hold onto it is counterproductive. The sooner you start to adapt to your new non-normal situation, the better. p. 83-84Adjusting to outside help. "You're not marrying this person, so set your sights a little lower. As long as they do offer you help, as long as as it seems the person you're caring for is doing okay under their charge, that's all you really need to expect. If you get more, great, but if you get the minimum you need to be more accepting." p.86Interviewing outside help. You want to know about their past experience working with people with dementia. You'll want to ask them if they ever had any incidents with someone in their care. You want to know that if the person they are caring for gets abusive, how they approach and handle such situations. Try to come up with questions that don't allow for yes or no answers. Try to make the person speak in full sentences so that you really get a picture of them. "If my mom refused to eat lunch, how would you handle it?" By carefully evaluating their response and observing both their verbal and nonverbal signals, you'll learn a lot about them." p.89You and the staff at a facility. "The nicer and more diplomatic you are, the more little gifts you bring, the more polite you are toward them, the better treatment your loved one is likely to get. It doesn't matter whether Medicaid, a private insurance company, or your bank account is paying, what you can offer when you're there is another type of currency that can have a lot of value."

Uninformed Consent: Hidden Dangers in Dental Care

Uninformed Consent : The Hidden Dangers in Dental Care - Hal A. Huggins, Thomas E. Levy Not sure what to make of it -- if he's right, we need to stop going to most traditional dentists and undo a lifetime of work. Thought-provoking.

On the Map: A Mind-Expanding Exploration of the Way the World Looks

On the Map: A Mind-Expanding Exploration of the Way the World Looks - Simon Garfield I didn't get as much out of this as I expected. My one insight was about the reorientation when someone is looking at a GPS and everywhere starts from where they are, versus a map, where you orient yourself in the whole scheme.

Dialogue and the Art of Thinking Together: A Pioneering Approach to Communicating in Business and in Life

Dialogue: The Art Of Thinking Together - William Isaacs, Peter M. Senge Great stuff -- I'll have to do a proper review at a later date.

Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle

Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle - Diane Sanfilippo Good explanations in the first part. Lots of gorgeous pictures throughout. I will refer to this again when I am looking for ideas of food to share with others (weekend trips, etc.)

Flight Behavior

Flight Behavior - Full of sentences and paragraphs to just swoon in.Wonderfully alive characters. I felt immersed in their world while I was reading it. Beyond the climate change, I found the class-divide discussions most interesting.Dellarobia speaking to Ovid: "Team camo, we get the right to bear arms and John Deere and the canning jars and tough love and taking care of our own. The other side wears I don't know what, something expensive. They get recycling and population control and lattes and as many second chances as anybody wants. Students emailing to tell you they deserve their A's." p. 321