Category: Non-Fiction

IT TAKES ONE TO TANGO by Winifred M. Reilly

Available now from Tantor Audio. From the Publisher: “Conventional wisdom says that “it takes two” to turn a troubled marriage around and that both partners must have a shared commitment to change. So when couples can’t agree on how—or whether—to make their marriage better, many give up or settle for a less-than-satisfying marriage (or think the only way out is divorce). Fortunately, there is an alternative. It Takes One to Tango is a groundbreaking guide that shows how one determined partner—acting alone—can spark lasting, significant change in a marriage, often accomplishing change that cannot be made any other way. It doesn’t matter how short-fused, argumentative, or seemingly impossible your partner can be—or how long you’ve been stuck. Marriage and family therapist Winifred Reilly has this message for struggling partners: Take the lead. Doing so is effective—and powerful.” My recording experience: I find that I can take something of use from most self-help books, and this one was no exception. Reilly draws on her own experience as well as that of her patients and the often self-deprecating tone of her writing makes the work seem do-able and practical. Highly recommended if you’re feeling stuck in a relationship! Listen to a sample here: If you’d like to buy a copy, using this link, I’ll receive a small percentage from Amazon through their Associates program. Narrators don’t earn royalties, so this is a way I can be compensated for marketing the book.

Read More

EVERYTHING CHANGES by Beverly Conyers plus Giveaway

Available now from Tantor Audio. From the Publisher: “A relative or friend has finally taken those tentative first steps toward sobriety. With the relief of this life-changing course of action comes a new and difficult set of challenges for recovering addicts and those who love them. Family members and friends often find themselves unsure of how to weather such a dramatic turn, as the rules and routines of their relationships no longer pertain. Everything Changes assuages fears and uncertainty by teaching loved ones of newly recovering addicts how to navigate the often-tumultuous early months of recovery. Beverly Conyers, author of the acclaimed Addict in the Family, again shares the hope and knowledge that she gained as a parent of a recovering addict by focusing on the aftermath of addiction. She outlines the physical and psychological changes that recovering addicts go through, and offers practical tools to help family members and friends: build a fresh, rewarding relationship with the addict be supportive without setting themselves up for disappointment avoid enabling destructive behavior set and maintain boundaries cope with relapse deal with the practicalities of sober living” My recording experience: Thankfully, I personally have not had to cope with the challenges Conyers outlines in this book but I found it to be a wonderful balance of uplifting inspiration with very practical advice and statistics. Listen to a sample here: THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.  The randomly selected winner has been contacted and the CDs will be mailed out to her as soon as I get her address.  Thanks to all for entering!  I give away lots of books – to find out about them in the future, please consider following this blog, or my Facebook page, or on Twitter. Oftentimes, you can also enter there!

Read More

FIRST WOMEN by Kate Andersen Brower plus GIVEAWAY

Available now from Harper Audio: From the Publisher: “From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the groundbreaking backstairs look at the White House,The Residence, comes an intimate, news-making look at the true modern power brokers at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue: the First Ladies, from Jackie Kennedy to Michelle Obama. One of the most underestimated—and challenging—positions in the world, the First Lady of the United States must be many things: an inspiring leader with a forward-thinking agenda of her own; a savvy politician, skilled at navigating the treacherous rapids of Washington; a wife and mother operating under constant scrutiny; and an able CEO responsible for the smooth operation of countless services and special events at the White House. Now, as she did in her smash #1 bestseller The Residence, former White House correspondent Kate Andersen Brower draws on a wide array of untapped, candid sources—from residence staff and social secretaries to friends and political advisers—to tell the stories of the ten remarkable women who have defined that role since 1960. Brower offers new insights into this privileged group of remarkable women, including Jacqueline Kennedy, Lady Bird Johnson, Patricia Nixon, Betty Ford, Rosalynn Carter, Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush, Hillary Clinton, Laura Bush, and Michelle Obama. The stories she shares range from the heartwarming to the shocking and tragic, exploring everything from the first ladies’ political crusades to their rivalries with Washington figures; from their friendships with other first ladies to their public and private relationships with their husbands. She also offers a detailed and insightful new portrait of one of the most-watched first ladies of all time, Hillary Clinton, asking what her tumultuous years in the White House may tell us about her own historic presidential run . . . and what life could be like with the nation’s first First Husband. Candid and illuminating, this first group biography of the modern first ladies provides a revealing look at life upstairs and downstairs at the world’s most powerful address.” From the review at Book Journey: “If you do listen to this one on audio, know that Karen White (who also narrated The Residence) does an exceptional job of capturing each of these women’s essence through her words.  I listened to this audio from Minnesota to Chicago and thoroughly enjoyed all of it. Highly recommended to those of us who enjoy great non fiction with interesting facts about people.  I hope that whatever Karen Andersen Brower offers up next includes Karen White’s narration again… enjoy this duo!”   My recording experience: As much as I enjoyed Brower’s first book, The Residence, I think FIRST WOMEN topped it.  Reading about the experience these women had while witnessing the circus of the current presidential . . .

Read More

LIVE HAPPY by Deborah K. Heisz plus GIVEAWAY

Available now from Harper Audio. From the Publisher: “An eye-opening shift of perspective on the secret of authentic happiness: how surprisingly simple, everyday acts lead to lifelong joy and fulfillment, from the experts at Live Happy magazine. We are all increasingly hungry for soul-deep happiness. All over the globe, from the hallways of Harvard, where the university’s most popular course is a class on positive psychology, to the United Nations’ resolution naming March 20th the International Day of Happiness, the question of how to be authentically happy concerns millions of lives today. But what if the secret of lasting happiness is actually . . . simple? Now, in Live Happy, the editors of Live Happy magazine, the first lifestyle publication dedicated to the timeless quest to achieve authentic happiness, reveal that true happiness is all about the big impact of small acts of everyday happiness. Organized around the key components of a happy life, from gratitude to attitude and play to purpose, Live Happy brings together illuminating real-life happiness stories, eye-opening examinations on the science of happiness, and simple and inspiring everyday “happy acts” to empower readers to achieve big happiness breakthroughs. Authentic happiness is within reach—and Live Happy shows readers how they can manifest it not only in their own lives but also make a positive and lasting difference in the world.” Review from AudioFile Magazine: “Karen White narrates this clear-headed review of happiness psychology, unfolding her syllables so deliberately that the book’s message seems at first to be weighed down by formality and intensity. But once listeners adapt, White’s otherwise likable performance works well because her vocal character ultimately fits the author, a high-flying former tech executive who now leads a happiness magazine. After a succinct survey of the happiness literature, the author describes 10 practices that can improve our sense of fulfillment and satisfaction with life. Our attitudes, health habits, relationships, spiritual mindset, resilience, and generosity are addressed, and all are subject to our control. The thoroughness of this writing, combined with the author’s obvious dedication to her work, should make LIVE HAPPY a seminal audio in anyone’s personal growth library.” My recording experience: This was the first book I recorded in 2016, and it was such a wonderful way to start my year.  I’d already been keeping a journal, but I’ve added some things to it as a result of reading this book and I restarted a meditation practice. It’s truly one of those books that has something for everyone in it, so I encourage you to check it and/or Live Happy magazine out. Listen to a sample here: And, the Giveaway: THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED. Becky is the randomly selected winner.  Thanks to all . . .

Read More

FORTIFY YOUR LIFE by Tieraona Low Dog plus GIVEAWAY

Available now from Blackstone Audio.  From the Publisher: “Readily find your way to better health with this guide to nutritional supplements and holistic health Health-conscious consumers read nutritional labels, but it’s nearly impossible to get the nutrients we need with diet alone. To get the USDA-recommended daily quota of vitamin D, for example, you need to eat 15 eggs or 26 sardines; of iron, 414 almonds or 15 cups of broccoli. So we rely on nutritional supplements—vitamins and minerals, probiotics and enzymes—but the variety of pills, products, and elixirs on the market today is overwhelming. And, as we have seen in recent news, some of these products are downright fakes. Trusted natural health physician and bestselling author Tieraona Low Dog, MD, provides a personalized approach to using nutritional supplements for your specific health needs, helping you navigate the complex and often confusing landscape of vitamins, minerals, and more. Dr. Low Dog explains the basics about every essential nutritional supplement and guides the listener in creating a personalized supplement plan, tailored to individual genetics, age, gender, and lifestyle. Low Dog evaluates current research, explains the relationship between food and supplements, describes how medications cause chemical imbalances in the body, and advises on how to judge brands and read labels. Low Dog engages and encourages listeners to take charge of their own health and provides guidance to finding the right combination of nutritional supplements to improve mood, strength, energy, and overall well-being.” My recording experience: As with Dr. Low Dog’s previous book, Healthy at Home, I found this book to be very useful. You’ll want to check out the PDFs included because the charts are very helpful.  I have been taking a new set of vitamins and other supplements since recording this book in December, and I haven’t been sick once! (Despite my inability to address the stress issues in my life, but that’s another book, I guess.) Listen to a sample here: And, the Giveaway: THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.  Connie, who entered on Twitter, is the randomly selected winner and the CDs will be mailed out to her as soon as I get her address.  Thanks to all for entering! I give away lots of books – to find out about them in the future, please consider following this blog, or my Facebook page, or on Twitter.

Read More

UNFINISHED BUSINESS by Anne-Marie Slaughter

Available now from Penguin Random House Audio. From the Publisher: “NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE WASHINGTON POST AND NPR • “An eye-opening call to action from someone who rethought the whole notion of ‘having it all,’ Unfinished Business could change how many of us approach our most important business: living.”—People When Anne-Marie Slaughter accepted her dream job as the first female director of policy planning at the U.S. State Department in 2009, she was confident she could juggle the demands of her position in Washington, D.C., with the responsibilities of her family life in suburban New Jersey. Her husband and two young sons encouraged her to pursue the job; she had a tremendously supportive boss, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; and she had been moving up on a high-profile career track since law school. But then life intervened. Parenting needs caused her to make a decision to leave the State Department and return to an academic career that gave her more time for her family. The reactions to her choice to leave Washington because of her kids led her to question the feminist narrative she grew up with. Her subsequent article for The Atlantic, “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All,” created a firestorm, sparked intense national debate, and became one of the most-read pieces in the magazine’s history. Since that time, Anne-Marie Slaughter has pushed forward, breaking free of her long-standing assumptions about work, life, and family. Though many solutions have been proposed for how women can continue to break the glass ceiling or rise above the “motherhood penalty,” women at the top and the bottom of the income scale are further and further apart. Now, in her refreshing and forthright voice, Anne-Marie Slaughter returns with her vision for what true equality between men and women really means, and how we can get there. She uncovers the missing piece of the puzzle, presenting a new focus that can reunite the women’s movement and provide a common banner under which both men and women can advance and thrive. With moving personal stories, individual action plans, and a broad outline for change, Anne-Marie Slaughter reveals a future in which all of us can finally finish the business of equality for women and men, work and family.” From the review in AudioFile Magazine: “Anne-Marie Slaughter, professor at Princeton University and former director of policy planning at the U.S. State Department, looks at work, family, and the myth of having it all. The introduction and the coda are both read by the author and provide an authentic voice for the discussion that follows, a combination of Slaughter’s own experiences and her expertise in looking at policy issues to . . .

Read More

RUNNING ON EMPTY by Jonice Webb, Phd plus GIVEAWAY

Available now from Tantor Media. From the Publisher: “Do you sometimes feel as if you’re just going through the motions in life? Are you good at looking and acting as if you’re fine, but secretly feel lonely and disconnected? If so, you are not alone. The world is full of people who have an innate sense that something is wrong with them. Who feel they live on the outside looking in, but have no explanation for their feeling and no way to put it into words. If you are one of these people, you may fear that you are not connected enough to your spouse, or that you don’t feel pleasure or love as profoundly as others do. You may drink too much, or eat too much, or risk too much, in an attempt to feel something good. Running on Empty will give you clear strategies for how to heal, and offers a special chapter for mental health professionals. In the world of human suffering, this book is an Emotional Smart Bomb meant to eradicate the effects of an invisible enemy.” My recording experience: I think I always turn into a bit of a hypochondriac when I narrate self help or medical books.  I end up feeling like I have the problem.  But I guess that is part of immersing myself in the subject matter!  In any case, if any part of Webb‘s description of Emotional Neglect resonates with you, you might find this book of use, as it is both insightful and practical. Listen to a sample here: And the Giveaway: THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.  Mary C. is the randomly selected winner and the CDs will be mailed out to her as soon as I get her address.  Thanks to all for entering! I give away lots of books – to find out about them in the future, please consider following this blog, or my Facebook page, or on Twitter.

Read More

THE RESIDENCE by Kate Anderson Brower

Available now from Harper Audio. From the Publisher: “A remarkable history with elements of both In the President’s Secret Service and The Butler, The Residence offers an intimate account of the service staff of the White House, from the Kennedys to the Obamas. America’s First Families are unknowable in many ways. No one has insight into their true character like the people who serve their meals and make their beds every day. Full of stories and details by turns dramatic, humorous, and heartwarming, The Residence reveals daily life in the White House as it is really lived through the voices of the maids, butlers, cooks, florists, doormen, engineers, and others who tend to the needs of the President and First Family. These dedicated professionals maintain the six-floor mansion’s 132 rooms, 35 bathrooms, 28 fireplaces, three elevators, and eight staircases, and prepare everything from hors d’oeuvres for intimate gatherings to meals served at elaborate state dinners. Over the course of the day, they gather in the lower level’s basement kitchen to share stories, trade secrets, forge lifelong friendships, and sometimes even fall in love. Combining incredible first-person anecdotes from extensive interviews with scores of White House staff members—many speaking for the first time—with archival research, Kate Andersen Brower tells their story. She reveals the intimacy between the First Family and the people who serve them, as well as tension that has shaken the staff over the decades. From the housekeeper and engineer who fell in love while serving President Reagan to Jackie Kennedy’s private moment of grief with a beloved staffer after her husband’s assassination to the tumultuous days surrounding President Nixon’s resignation and President Clinton’s impeachment battle, The Residence is full of surprising and moving details that illuminate day-to-day life at the White House.” From the review at Book Journey: “I absolutely devoured this book.  I listened to it on audio and so enjoyed the narration by Karen White.  Beautifully spoken, each story was so interesting.”   My recording experience: This book has some hilarious accounts in it – my favorite story comes from the beleaguered plumber who can’t get the shower pressure high enough or the water temperature hot enough for President Johnson – but what I truly loved was that Brower was able to get to know her interviewees well enough that she, and then I, really cared about them.  I found myself tearing up at the passing of one of these elderly gentlemen, who served the White House with incredible wisdom, grace and loyalty.  A unique book and I hope an engaging listen! Listen to a sample here:

Read More

WE SELL DRUGS by Suzanna Reiss

Available from Audible.com. From the Publisher: “We Sell Drugs is a study grounded in the transnational geography and political economy of the coca-leaf and coca-derived commodities market stretching from Peru and Bolivia into the United States. More than a narrow biography of one famous plant and its equally famous derivative products – Coca-Cola and cocaine – this audiobook situates these commodities within the larger landscape of drug production and consumption. Examining efforts to control the circuits through which coca traveled, Suzanna Reiss provides a geographic and legal basis for considering the historical construction of designations of legality and illegality. The book also argues that the legal status of any given drug is largely premised on who grew, manufactured, distributed, and consumed it and not on the qualities of the drug itself. Drug control is a powerful tool for ordering international trade, national economies, and society’s habits and daily lives. In a historical landscape animated by struggles over political economy, national autonomy, hegemony, and racial equality, We Sell Drugs insists on the socio-historical underpinnings of designations of legality to explore how drug control became a major weapon in asserting control of domestic and international affairs.” My recording experience: This is one of those books where I didn’t even know what I didn’t know about the subject.  Who knew there were connections between poor farmers in Bolivia, Germany’s loss of WWII and Coca-Cola? And that connection is the pharmaceutical industry, of course.  Fascinating stuff if you’re into world history. Listen to a sample here:

Read More

THE BURMA SPRING by Rena Pederson plus GIVEAWAY

Available now from Blackstone Audio. From the Publisher: “Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma’s “woman of destiny” and one of the most admired voices for freedom in the world today, comes alive through this brilliant rendering of Burma’s tumultuous history. Award-winning journalist and former State Department speechwriter Rena Pederson brings to light fresh details about the charismatic Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi: the inspiration for Burma’s (now Myanmar) first steps towards democracy. Suu Kyi’s party will be a major contender in the 2015 elections, a revolutionary breakthrough after years of military dictatorship. Using exclusive interviews with Suu Kyi since her release from fifteen years of house arrest, as well as recently disclosed diplomatic cables, Pederson uncovers new facets to Suu Kyi’s extraordinary story. The Burma Spring also reveals the extraordinary steps taken by First Lady Laura Bush to help Suu Kyi, as well as how former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton injected new momentum into Burma’s democratic rebirth. Pederson provides a never-before-seen view of the harrowing hardships the people of Burma have endured and the fiery political atmosphere in which Suu Kyi has fought a life-and-death struggle for liberty in this fascinating part of the world.” My recording experience: This was a very challenging book to record.  Not simply because of it’s length or because it is filled with words and names from all over Asia (including Aung San Suu Kyi, a name notoriously difficult to get right, and I’m sure I got it wrong, too).  But mostly because of how sad it made me.  I am embarrassed to say that my knowledge of the grievous situation in Myanmar/Burma before reading this book was nonexistent.  Pederson has done exhaustive research for this book and I don’t think she missed detailing much of the suffering endured, not just by Suu Kyi, but by the millions of people she has valiantly tried to represent.  I’d highly recommend the book to anyone curious about this inspirational woman or the country of Myanmar, still on a shaky road toward democracy as the book was published. Listen to a sample here: THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED.  The randomly selected winner has been contacted and the CDs will be mailed out to her as soon as I get her address.  Thanks to all for entering! I give away lots of books – to find out about them in the future, please consider following this blog, or my Facebook page, or on Twitter.

Read More