The Executive Job Search: A Comprehensive Handbook for Seasoned Professionals|
by Orrin Wood
Surviving a Nuclear Powered Family
by Candi McLean
Health Care: Conflicting Opinions, Tough Decisions
by William V. Weiss
Dying for Care
by Harry Van Bommel
Canadian Scientists & Inventors: Biographical Profiles of Fame, Fortune, & Folly
by Harry Black
Now I Know Why Tigers Eat Their Young/How to Survive Your Teenagers-With Wisdom and a Little Humor
by Peter, Ph.D. Marshall
Post Your Opinion
|Roads To Recovery
by Pat Barclay
If you`ve got a problem, we`ve got a book
SO YOU THINK you`ve got problems? Meet Candi McLean, author of Surviving a Nuclear Powered Family (Detselig, 119 pages, $14.95 paper), who writes sage and funny reflections on parenting in whatever passes for her spare time. Somehow, she manages to tell the truth about the raising of small children and still make it sound like something an adult with all his/her marbles would willingly undertake. Maybe not in this excerpt, however:
If you are running around making supper for the children because you`re going out, and they sweetly ask you to sit down at the table with them, do not be a big old sop and go all misty-eyed. You need your vision. When I sat down, it was on an apple juice container (almost empty) which they had improved into a whoopee cushion. I cannot tell you how I laughed and laughed, because I didn`t. But my goodness how they did. Whoopee ding.
Coping with small children is only one of the many stages of life to which self-help writers have been addressing themselves lately. Adolescence has its turn with two new titles, Now I Know Why Tigers Eat Their Young: How to Survive Your Teenagers with Humor (Whitecap, 127 pages, $11.95 paper), by Peter Marshall and Looking Good: Teenagers and Eating Disorders (NC Press, 108 pages, $12.95 paper), by Marion Crook. Marshall offers consolation, straight talk, and canny advice on subjects such as "the selective use of democratic principles" and "the gentle shove" ("what if you are ready to let them go and you can`t get rid Of them?"). Crook has a B.Sc.N. and is clearly a special person. For her book, she travelled across Canada to talk to sick teens and their medical and family helpers for insight into the life-threatening illnesses anorexia nervosa. and bulimia. What she heard convinced her that severe problems develop with the suppression of strong feelings. Crook`s respect for her interviewees contributes to the frankness of their responses; anyone concerned about eating disorders should benefit from reading this book. Anyone interested in working or studying abroad will want to take a look at The Canadian Guide to Working and Living Overseas: The Complete Reference Guide for Entry-Level and
Seasoned Professionals (Intercultural Systems, 502 pages, $34.50 paper), by Jean-Marc Hachey. With profiles of more than 700 organizations that operate overseas, a large annotated bibliography, and three indexes, not to mention informed tips on such topics as "culture shock" and "creative resumes," The Canadian Guide is an important new source of information.
So is Food Irradiation: A Canadian Folly (Paper Birch, 228 pages, $19.95 paper), by Karen Graham. Graham`s negative view of the irradiation of food and Canada`s leading role in promoting it are the result of research she helped undertake as chair of a committee on this hot topic for the Canadian Dietetic Association in 1987-89. When the committee`s recommendations were "effectively brushed aside" by the CDA, Graham decided to self-publish its findings. Though the book`s opinions are "strictly my own" (sample: "While food irradiation is sadly a dead horse, industry continues to flog it"), Graham backs them up with hundreds of references and discussions of "sound alternatives" and "the politics of food irradiation." Concerned consumers should also take a look at The Ethical Shopper`s Guide to Canadian Supermarket Products (Broadview, 285 pages, $14.95 paper), by Joan Helson and Kelly Green and David Nitkin, Amy Stein, and the staff of EthicScan Canada. This book rates our leading consumer-products companies in such areas as community involvement, women`s issues, environmental performance, tabour relations, and Canadian content, and invites input from its readers for future Shopper`s Guides. Consumers who have had to endure being manipulated now have the opportunity to do a little manipulating of their own.
Smart shoppers get another boost from Margaret Harnum`s Eat to Your Heart`s Content: Healthy Eating on a Budget (Harry Cuff, 144 pages, $ 10 paper). Dedicated to the Single Parent Association of Newfoundland and Labrador, Eat to Your Heart`s Content is a summary of what Harnum had to learn the hard way about feeding a young family healthy food at low cost. Basic recipes, nutritional tips, and Harnum`s own kitchen know-how ("Use wild game such as rabbit, moose, seat, etc. when available") make this book a useful backup for those New Year`s resolutions about eating right at last.
If eating properly is the least of your concerns right now, maybe you`re the reader that Keith Anderson and Roy MacSkimming are writing for in On Your Own Again- The Down-to-Earth Guide to Getting Through a Divorce or Separation and Getting On with Your Life (McClelland & Stewart, 180 pages, $14.99 paper). Anderson believes the "fundamental motive" for consulting a therapist is "a profound need to learn how to be in the world - how to know, and become, your own unique self." Helping people deal with their emotional pain is but the first stage in a four-part recovery plan ("Hurting," "Exploring ... .. Becoming You ... .. Getting Comfortable") that can take up to three years to complete. If you`ve been looking for a book to hold your hand and convince you that you`re not alone, this could be the one.
On the way to "becoming you," you might want to pause long enough to check out three new titles in the mushrooming field of "personal growth." The Inside Edge: High Performance Through Mental Fitness (Macmillan, 192 pages, $27.95 cloth), by Peter Jensen, harvests the fruits of Jensen`s work with highperformance athletes and business people, and explains in entertaining detail the importance of "training from the inside out." Cecilia Mavrow`s Journal Writing (Ruksak, 228 pages, $14.95 paper) would inspire a lump of porridge to keep a journal. Mavrow has amassed an impressive collection of quotes, stories, ideas, and practical suggestions aimed at getting us off our duffs and into observing, thinking, and writing for ourselves. The Conscious 1: Clarity and Direction Through Meditation, A Handbook for Radical Change (Somerville, 140 pages, $16.95 paper), is by the Tai Chi and meditation teacher Andy James, who began his working life as a chartered accountant with a degree from the London School of Economics! The central problem of our planet is how to change ourselves, says James. Until we "surrender" our egos, we "may make `progress` but will never reach [our] destination." James`s book explains the techniques of "insight meditation," which he says are difficult to learn but make real change possible.
Changes on more familiar levels are addressed by four new titles, ranging from Retirement: A New Beginning (Jesperson, 105 pages, $12 paper), by Michael S. Greene, to Dying for Care: Hospice Care or Euthanasia (NC Press, 110 pages, $14.95 paper), by Harry van Bommel. A former engineer who`s been consulting for five years since his own retirement, Greene brings a sly sense of burnout to ideas and hints on planning for the leisure years (sample: "There is at least one group of water diviners who meet regularly to exchange stories and see who can find cream for the coffee"). In Full Circle: Experiences with an Aging Parent (Detselig, 115 pages, $12.95 paper), Judith LeeHoffer shares poignant vignettes of her mother as she nears the end of her life. This sensitive and honest book is a celebration of the fact that in loving human relationships, one plus one can equal three. Alastair J. Cunningham`s long-awaited The Healing journey: Overcoming the Crisis of Cancer (Key Porter, 158 pages, $16.95 paper) is good news for cancer patients. As a cancer survivor himself with two Ph.D.s (in cell biology and psychology) and over 30 years` research experience, Cunningham has achieved a unique depth of insight and knowledge.
His book seeks to ally "the conservatism of modem western medicine" with the "radicalism of New Age thinking" in the best interests of the patient. Its essential, persuasive message is that selfhelp does help.
Harry van Bommel`s Dying for Care is persuasive, too. He believes that if we spent more time, energy, and funds on hospice or palliative care, the so-called euthanasia debate would move to the intellectual-exercise yard where it belongs. "We must listen more to people who are dying," says van Bommel. "Do they believe in euthanasia when they have sufficient physical, emotional and spiritual support?"
And finally, an argument for the proposition that "healthcare should be the biggest industry on earth" from William V Weiss in Healthcare: Conflicting Opinions, Tough Decisions (NC Press, 212 pages, $16.95 paper). Weiss is an engineer, a doctor, and the president of a medical-computing and softwaredevelopment consulting company, so it`s hardly surprising that he sees "a National Health Information Utility" as the answer to just about everything, including a software developer`s prayer. (What I`d like to see is software that would remove diagnosis from the realm of each doctor`s individual - and relative - expertise, but I suppose this suggestion is too impertinent for consideration.) "Healthcare innovators must be amply rewarded," writes Weiss blandly. "The best role for government is not in monopolizing healthcare delivery, but encouraging innovation and entrepreneurism." Maybe someone should encourage Dr. Weiss by giving him the first annual award for the ultimate in self-help writing.