No Sweat by Michelle Segar, PhD


Michelle Segar’s book “No Sweat” is a new look at exercise and what motivates us to move. Have you noticed the health and fitness message isn’t working for most people? We all know the secret to losing weight is to eat less and exercise more. This advice is as obvious and elusive and telling someone to achieve a well funded retirement by buying low and selling high.

Michelle’s message is to stop exercising and start having fun. She opens your eyes to all the moments in our daily lives that are OTMs (opportunities to move.) She offers a questionnaire to help you examine your deep, ugly, and unhealthy feelings about exercise so that you get over your hang ups. “Exercise” can be a gift we give ourselves rather than a chore we must do. You can discover the elements in your life that give you energy and sustain you so you can sustain your goals.

Act of God by Jill Ciment

Where would you go if you were evacuated from your home because it was invaded by a colony of glowing mushrooms? W978-0-307-91170-4[1].jpghat if that home was your last refuge?

This comedy/horror story follows the lives of a landlord, twin sister tenants, and a runaway Russian au pair after they are evacuated from their apartment due to the fungal infestation that is described by the insurance company as an “Act of God.” Soon the lethal mushrooms are spreading from one building to another and entire sections of the Manhattan are quarantined and slated for demolition. Ciment fills the story with humor as each character is faced with one challenge after another.


Mexican Whiteboy by Matt de la Pena

A couple of weeks ago the Library Association of Rockland County hosted author Matt de La Pena at the Valley Cottage Library. He was a great speaker and shared his amazing life story as the son of a Mexican man and a white, American woman. In high school Matt only finished a single book, The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros. Yet somehow he became determimgresined to go to college, which he did on a basketball scholarship.

In Mexican Whiteboy de la Pena’s explores elements of his upbringing. The main character, Danny, does not feel at home among the white boys at his private school or among his father’s Spanish speaking siblings and cousins. Danny doesn’t speak Spanish but he desperately wants to be a part of the culture of his father. The book takes place over a summer that Danny spends with his father’s family while his father is out of the country. Danny learns who he is, who his family is, and who he wants to be.

Rosetta Stone

rosetta stone cropped

Rosetta Stone is a popular language learning program that we offer to patrons with Palisades library cards. You can link to it from our home page. I logged in today for the first time to try out the Spanish language section.

In high school I spent 4 years studying Spanish and had 2 more years of instruction in college. I never speak Spanish, understand very little when it is spoken and can only read it at a second grade level. In the Rosetta Stone software I chose the Latin American program and started at level 2.

It was a lot of fun. A narrator speaks and usually the sentences are displayed on the screen. The exercise I practiced involved matching what the narrator said to pictures on the screen. There is instant feedback and the exercise advances at a nice pace. The level of difficulty was both familiar enough and challenging enough to keep me interested.

After logging on I had difficulty getting the program to begin. So I tried it on Google Chrome and was connected instantly. So use Chrome and not Firefox.

Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely

This book compliments “Drive” by Daniel Pink and would also be of interest to those who like Malcolm Gladwell and the Freakonomics series.

Would yo9780061353246_p0_v1_s260x420u walk across town to save $7 on a $25 pen at another stationary store? Would you make the same trip to save $7 on a $400 suit?

Would you take a red pencil home from work to help your daughter complete a class project? If there was no red pencil would you take $.10 from petty cash to buy one on the way home?

This was an entertaining and thought-provoking book. After reading it you may pause and observe some of your biases and how they might influence your decisions.