Self-Help, Psychology, & More: Last of the Nonfiction Previews, Jan. 2019 | Prepub Alert

Among these titles, Robert J. Brown's self-help as memoir and Marianne Power's memoir as self-help.

Brown, Robert. J. Becoming Mr. Brown: Lessons from a Life of Doing Good, Building Bridges, and Changing History. Crown. Jan. 2019. 240p. ISBN 9781524762780. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781524762797.

CEO and founder of B&C International, a global management consulting firm, Brown has been in the thick of crucial social change for decades, e.g., helping the white corporate leadership at Woolworth integrate their lunch counters and serving as counselor to every American president since John F. Kennedy. His book is less memoir than an overview of American politics showing how he grounded his life in sound spiritual advice from his grandmother. 

Butler, Katy. The Art of Dying Well: A Practical Guide to a Good End of Life. Scribner. Jan. 2019. 288p. ISBN 9781501135316. $26.
Author of the New York Times best-selling Knocking on Heaven's Door: The Path to a Better Way of Death, Butler returns to continue exploring how we now die in contemporary times, especially America, claiming that we need better rituals to ease the transition between life and death. 

Hannah, Sophie. How To Hold a Grudge: From Resentment to Contentment—The Power of Grudges To Transform Your Life. Scribner. Jan. 2019. 256p. ISBN 9781982111427. $20.

Crime fiction maven Hannah, who’s recently been giving Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot more cases to solve, is also a self-styled expert on holding grudges. In this witty yet deeply researched work, pulling from research by psychotherapists as well as her own list of grudges, Hannah explains that denying grudges just leads to more pain while using them wisely could improve our lives and personal relationships.

LeVeque, Kelly. Body Love: Every Day. Morrow. Jan. 2019. 272p. ISBN 9780062870803. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062870827.
Certified holistic nutritionist Los Angeles–based celebrity health coach has a 30-day plan for clean eating, weight loss, and wellness based on protein, fats, fiber, and greens that can be adapted to various needs, e.g., Red Carpet Ready to prep for a big, forthcoming event and Girl on the Go to create balance in a frantic schedule. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Ornish, Dean & Anne Ornish. Undo It!: How Simple Lifestyle Changes Can Reverse Most Chronic Diseases. Ballantine. Jan. 2019. 560p. ISBN 9780525479970. $29; ebk. ISBN 9780525480013.
The author of multiple best sellers, e.g., Dr. Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease has sold 1.5 million copies, Dean Ornish joins with wife and collaborator Anne Ornish to propose a program that can reserve conditions like type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, obesity, and depression in as few as nine weeks, 

Power, Marianne. Help Me! Grove. Jan. 2019. 384p. ISBN 9780802129062. $26. MEMOIR
For years, London-based journalist power thumbed through various self-help guides, then woke up to the realization that she still wasn’t living her dream life and decided to test these guides systematically, following one a month in the hopes of finding her perfect new self. The guides did change her life, but not necessarily for the better. Sold to 23 countries worldwide, so consider getting on the bandwagon. 

Rosenblatt, Josh. Why We Fight: One Man’s Search for Meaning Inside the Ring. Ecco. Jan. 2019. 224p. ISBN 9780062569981. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062570017. MEMOIR/SPORTS
A gentle-souled intellectual who’d rather drink than throw a punch, Rosenblatt realized at age 33 that he wanted to fight and, after studying Muay Thai, Krav Maga, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and boxing, participated in his first and only mixed martial arts match at age 40. Here he mediates on why we fight for sport, moving from Lord Byron to the Ukrainian shtetls to Brooklyn’s boxing gyms, from fear to pain to cultural history. Honestly, I’m a gentle-souled intellectual who’d rather drink than throw a punch, but I’m curious about this book. With a 50,000-copy first printing. 

Steinhardt, Paul. The Second Kind of Impossible: The Extraordinary Quest for a New Form of Matter. S. & S. Aug. 2018. 224p. ISBN 9781476729923. $27; ebk. ISBN 9781476729947. PHYSICS
Since the 1980s, Steinhardt, the Albert Einstein Professor in Science at Princeton, has been hunting for a new form of matter—matter he calls quasicrystal that would challenge long-held laws of crystallography. Recently, he discovered three different naturally occurring quasicrystals in the Kamchatka Peninsula. Here’s an account of his odyssey, which entails not just good science but corrupt scientists, international smugglers, and the KGB. Originally scheduled for August 2018.

Tomasky, Michael. If We Can Keep It: How the Republic Collapsed and How it Might Be Saved. Liveright: Norton. Jan. 2019. 288p. ISBN 9781631494086. $27.95. POLITICS
A columnist for the Daily Beast, a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times, and a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books, Tomasky looks at our political polarization to see where it came from and how to fix it, with his 14-point plan ranging from ranked-choice voting to a big boost in high school civics education nationwide.

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Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Book Review; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president of the National Book Critics Circle, to which she has just been reelected.

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