[Brooks has] previously described his process for creating each op-ed as follows: Collect roughly 200 pages of potentially useful research, lay it all out on his floor, organize it into piles, turn his imagination loose, and meld the best parts into a tight essay. In his new book, Brooks elevates this assemblage/distillation process to new heights as he gleans the most important thoughts from some of history’s leading philosophers and theologians, and combines them with lessons learned from his own life, resulting in 300+ pages that will likely cause legions of readers to reassess how they want to spend the rest of their days ... By weaving together dozens of pearls from this spectrum of world-class thinkers and unifying their thoughts into an account of his faith pilgrimage, Brooks demonstrates powers of synthesis that surely rise to the level of genius.
In his characteristic free-flowing style, Dave Barry stares down aging by taking lessons from his 10-year-old dog, Lucy, in the delightful Lessons From Lucy ... Even as we’re laughing out loud at Lucy’s and Barry’s behavior, his witty and wise stories about aging with his dog touch our hearts
...filled with the author’s signature brand of quirky, sometimes-sarcastic humor as he wanders from topic to topic ... His integration of informative tidbits about his life helps readers see him as an average guy confronting his own mortality. Few topics are off-limits ... Even for those who are not as enamored by dogs as the author, his gentle wisdom seeps through the humor. He successfully pokes fun at the aging process without wallowing in overly long discussions of declining health and the wear and tear of body parts ... Astute advice about growing older rolled into a blanket of classic Barry humor.