PositiveSan Francisco ChronicleIt doesn’t take a research paper for us to jump aboard the fun train—but Price does ask a critical question. If we’re all in agreement that we really like fun, why do we have so little of it? ... Drawing on research from the field of positive psychology, Price presents lots of hard evidence citing fun’s benefits, noting it improves relationships, happiness, overall health and cognitive function, longevity and confidence. Couldn’t we all use some fun about now? This book feels right for the moment, and its fun-amplification program is the kind of New Year’s resolution a person could really keep. The top-line takeaway is simply to prioritize fun. Let’s go!
Meg Waite Clayton
RaveSan Francisco Chronicle... gripping ... Clayton’s book offers an evocative love story layered with heroism and intrigue—the film Casablanca if Rick had an artsy bent. It’s a vividly rendered, dramatic world, even a bit escapist (as long as notes of rising authoritarianism from the present day don’t ring in your ears). This is another powerful historical novel from Clayton ... an homage to the courage of creative acts, to the refuge of art and its reminder, or insistence, on our shared humanity.
RaveThe San Francisco ChronicleWith her new book, Hernández — now a journalist and associate professor at Miami University in Ohio — translates for the nation the story of the devastating disease afflicting her aunt and 300,000 other Americans. “The Kissing Bug: A True Story of a Family, an Insect, and a Nation’s Neglect of a Deadly Disease” is part memoir, part investigative thriller ... The tragedy Hernández describes is not just the fact of this awful disease that leaves 40-year-olds in end-stage heart failure, but the medical ignorance and systemic racism that add to the damage ... The neglect of immigrants is one of the book’s gravest concerns ... [Hernández\'s] book shines a light on this neglected harm, like the sun forcing kissing bugs into retreat.
PositiveThe San Francisco Chronicle... an elegant narrative about the limits—physical and psychological—faced by an Italian woman in midlife ... a headier, more ephemeral book than Lahiri’s earlier ones. The characters are lightly sketched, though her prose shimmers with precise detail. The novel can be read as a character’s crisis of disorientation and loneliness. And it offers a philosophical parable on fears that keep us in the dark. Yet, as always with Lahiri, there’s more to unpack ... Lahiri has demonstrated that she is a master of cultural collisions. Whereabouts returns to her ever-present theme, now in an Italian setting, of the terrors and joys wrought by bridging worlds.